Thursday, July 21, 2016

Dr. Shirley Jackson




Dr. Shirley Jackson was the first black female to receive a doctorate from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and is the first black female president of a major technological institute (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute).  However, she also has a staggering list of inventions to her credit.  Her experiments with theoretical physics are responsible for many telecommunications developments including the touch tone telephone, the portable fax, caller ID, call waiting, and the fiber optic cables that make overseas phone calls crystal clear.

From Wikipedia:
Shirley Ann Jackson (born August 5, 1946) is a theoretical physicist and famous black inventor, has been credited with making many advances in science , and the eighteenth president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. She received her Ph.D. in nuclear physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1973, becoming the first African-American woman to earn a doctorate at MIT.

Jackson was born in Washington D.C. Her parents, Beatrice and George Jackson, strongly valued education and encouraged her in school. Her father spurred on her interest in science by helping her with projects for her science classes. At Roosevelt High School, Jackson attended accelerated programs in both math and science, and graduated in 1964 as valedictorian.

Jackson began classes at MIT in 1964, one of fewer than twenty African American students and the only one studying theoretical physics. While a student she did volunteer work at Boston City Hospital and tutored students at the Roxbury YMCA. She earned her bachelor's degree in 1968, writing her thesis on solid-state physics.

Jackson elected to stay at MIT for her doctoral work, in part to encourage more African American students to attend the institution. She worked on elementary particle theory for her Ph.D., which she completed in 1973, the first African-American woman to earn a doctorate degree from MIT. Her research was directed by James Young. Jackson was also the second African American woman in the United States to earn a doctorate in physics.

Shirley Jackson is married to Morris A. Washington, a physics professor at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and has one son, Alan, a Dartmouth College alumnus.



As a postdoctoral researcher of subatomic particles during the 1970s, Jackson studied and conducted research at a number of prestigious physics laboratories in both the United States and Europe. Her first position was as research associate at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Batavia, Illinois (known as Fermilab) where she studied hadrons. In 1974 she became visiting scientist at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Switzerland. There she explored theories of strongly interacting elementary particles. In 1976 and 1977, she both lectured in physics at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center and became a visiting scientist at the Aspen Center for Physics.

At one time her research focused on Landau–Ginsburg theories of charge density waves in layered compounds, and has studied two-dimensional Yang-Mills gauge theories and neutrino reactions.
Jackson has described her interests:


      I am interested in the electronic, optical, magnetic, and transport properties  of  novel semiconductor systems. 
     Of special interest are the behavior of magnetic polarons in semi magnetic             and  dilute magnetic semiconductors, and the optical response properties of        semiconductor quantum-wells and superlattices. 
     My interests also include quantum dots, mesoscopic systems, and the role of         antiferromagnetic fluctuations in correlated 2D electron systems.

Jackson joined the Theoretical Physics Research Department at AT&T Bell Laboratories in 1976, examining the fundamental properties of various materials. She began her time at Bell Labs by studying materials to be used in the semiconductor industry. In 1978, Jackson became part of the Scattering and Low Energy Physics Research Department, and in 1988 she moved to the Solid State and Quantum Physics Research Department. At Bell Labs, Jackson researched the optical and electronic properties of two-dimensional and quasi-two dimensional systems. In her research, Jackson has made contributions to the knowledge of charged density waves in layered compounds,polaronic aspects of electrons in the surface of liquid helium films, and optical and electronic properties of semiconductor strained-layer superlattices. On these topics and others she has prepared or collaborated on over 100 scientific articles.


Jackson served on the faculty at Rutgers University in Piscataway and New Brunswick, New Jersey from 1991 to 1995, in addition to continuing to consult with Bell Labs on semiconductor theory. Her research during this time focused on the electronic and optical properties of two-dimensional systems.

In 1995, President Bill Clinton appointed Jackson to serve as Chairman of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), becoming the first woman and first African American to hold that position. At the NRC, she had "ultimate authority for all NRC functions pertaining to an emergency involving an NRC licensee."

On July 1, 1999, Jackson became the 18th president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. She was the first woman and first African American to hold this position. Since her appointment to president of RPI, Jackson has helped raise over $1 billion in donations for philanthropic causes. Jackson is leading a strategic initiative called The Rensselaer Plan and much progress has been made towards achieving the Plan's goals. She has overseen a large capital improvement campaign, including the construction of an Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center and the East Campus Athletic Village. She enjoys the ongoing support of the RPI Board of Trustees. On April 26, 2006, the faculty of RPI (including a number of retirees) voted 155 to 149 against a vote of no-confidence in Jackson. In the Fall of 2007, the Rensselaer Board of Trustees suspended the faculty senate, thus prompting a strong reaction from the Rensselaer community that resulted in various protests including a "teach in".

Jackson has received many fellowships, including the Martin Marietta Aircraft Company Scholarship and Fellowship, the Prince Hall Masons Scholarship, the National Science Foundation Traineeship, and a Ford Foundation Advanced Study Fellowship. She has been elected to numerous special societies, including the American Physical Society and American Philosophical Society. In 2014, she was named recipient of the National Medal of Science .

Her achievements in science and education have been recognized with multiple awards, including the CIBA-GEIGY Exceptional Black Scientist Award. In the early 1990s, Governor James Florio awarded her the Thomas Alva Edison Science Award for her contributions to physics and for the promotion of science. In 2001 she received the Richtmyer Memorial Award given annually by the American Association of Physics Teachers. She has also received many honorary doctorate degrees.

She was inducted into National Women's Hall of Fame in 1998 for "her significant contributions as a distinguished scientist and advocate for education, science, and public policy".

Jackson has also been active in professional associations and in serving society through public scientific commissions. In 1985, Governor Thomas Kean appointed her to the New Jersey Commission on Science and Technology. She is an active voice in numerous committees of the National Academy of Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), and the National Science Foundation. Her continuing aim has been to preserve and strengthen the U.S. national capacity for innovation by increasing support for basic research in science and engineering. This is done in part by attracting talent from abroad and by expanding the domestic talent pool by attracting women and members of under-represented groups into careers in science. In 2004, she became president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and chaired the AAAS board in 2005.

In spring 2007, she was awarded the Vannevar Bush Award for "a lifetime of achievements in scientific research, education and senior statesman-like contributions to public policy".

Jackson continues to be involved in politics and public policy. In 2008 she became the University Vice Chairman of the U.S. Council on Competitiveness, a non-for profit group based in Washington, D.C.. In 2009, President Barack Obama appointed Jackson to serve on the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, a 20-member advisory group dedicated to public policy. She was appointed an International Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering  in 2012.



MIT Corporation life member
Member, Executive Committee of the MIT Corporation 1989–1991, 1992–1995
President, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Shirley Jackson received her SB and PhD degrees in physics from MIT. Time Magazine described her as “perhaps the ultimate role model for women in science”, thanks to her senior leadership positions in government, education, and industry. Dr. Jackson was named the chair of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, a position she held until becoming the 18th president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, the oldest technological institute in the United States.



Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Fairness AND Growth: the Progressive Economic Alternative

Prince - What If God Was One Of Us







Ever heard Prince do religious music?  My pastor had informed us years ago that it existed, but I never found it before.  This is amazing that Prince was inspired to stretch out and use his talent in this manner.  Kudos to Prince for expanding his creativity to the maximum degree.  Whaddaya think, Friends?  I'm told there are many more.

Monday, July 11, 2016

"America, Now is the Time to Weep" | Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II


       July 8th, 2016 - Young people from the North Carolina Prince Hall Mason Youth Assembly join Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II to respond to the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, two African American men who were shot dead by police in less than twenty-four hours of each other; and also the deaths of five Dallas Police Officers that followed.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Rosewood massacre



From Wikipedia,
Rosewood is a former populated place in Levy County, Florida, United States. The site is located just off State Road 24, approximately 1 mile (1.6 km) northeast of Sumner and 9 miles (14 km) northeast of Cedar Key. The town was destroyed by whites and subsequently abandoned in 1923

Rosewood was settled in 1845, nine miles (14 km) east of Cedar Key, near the Gulf of Mexico. Local industry centered on timber. The name Rosewood refers to the reddish color of cut cedar wood. Two pencil mills were nearby in Cedar Key; several turpentine mills and a sawmill three miles (4.8 km) away in Sumner helped support local residents, as did farming of citrus and cotton. The hamlet grew enough to warrant the construction of a post office and train depot on the Florida Railroad in 1870, but it was never incorporated as a town.

The initial settlers of Rosewood were both black and white. When most of the cedar trees in the area had been cut by 1890, the pencil mills closed, and many white residents moved to Sumner. By 1900, the population in Rosewood had become predominantly black. The village of Sumner was predominantly white, and relations between the two communities were relatively amicable.

The population of Rosewood peaked in 1915 at 355 people. Two black families in Rosewood named Goins and Carrier were the most influential. The Goins family brought the turpentine industry to the area, and in the years preceding the attacks, were the second largest landowners in Levy County. To avoid lawsuits from white competitors, the Goins brothers moved to Gainesville, and the population of Rosewood decreased slightly. The Carriers were also a large family, responsible for logging in the region. By the 1920s, almost everyone in the close-knit community was distantly related to each other. Although residents of Rosewood probably did not vote because voter registration requirements in Florida had effectively disfranchised blacks since the turn of the century, both Sumner and Rosewood were part of a single voting precinct counted by the U.S. Census. In 1920, the combined population of both towns was 344 blacks and 294 whites.

As was common in the late 19th century South, Florida had imposed legal racial segregation under Jim Crow laws, requiring separate black and white public facilities and transportation.  Blacks and whites created their own community centers: in 1920, the residents of Rosewood were mostly self-sufficient. They had three churches, a school, a large Masonic Hall, a turpentine mill, a sugarcane mill, a baseball team named the Rosewood Stars, and two general stores, one of which was white-owned. The village had about a dozen two-story wooden plank homes, other small two-room houses, and several small unoccupied plank farm and storage structures. Some families owned pianos, organs, and other symbols of middle-class prosperity. Survivors of Rosewood remember it as a happy place. In 1995 survivor Robie Mortin recalled at age 79, "Rosewood was a town where everyone's house was painted. There were roses everywhere you walked. Lovely." 

           Rosewood Massacre (1923)
 

Rosewood massacre more details:

It’s said that most racial disputes are ultimately about money — who’s perceived as taking jobs, who’s perceived as causing crime. In Rosewood, black residents owned their own businesses and their own land, and one of the first things the whites did that week was to loot their property and steal their land. Survivors were too terrorized to ever return.

In January 1923, white men from nearby towns lynched a Rosewood resident allegedly in response to a lie that a white woman in nearby Sumner had been beaten and possibly raped by a black drifter. The woman was actually beaten up by her lover while her husband was at work. When black citizens defended themselves against further attack, several hundred whites organized to comb the countryside hunting for black people and burned almost every structure in Rosewood. Survivors hid for several days in nearby swamps and were evacuated by train and car to larger towns. Although state and local authorities were aware of the violence, they made no arrests for the activities in Rosewood. The town was abandoned by black residents during the attacks. None ever returned. In the spring of 1994, the Florida state legislature voted to give $2 million in compensation for the surviving families. In December 2010, a state scholarship was established for descendants of families that survived the massacre.

Prior this event a series of incidents had stirred racial tensions within Rosewood.  During the previous winter of 1922 a white school teacher from Perry had been murdered and on New Years Eve of 1922 there was a Ku Klux Klan rally held in Gainesville, located not far away from Rosewood.

In response to the allegation by Taylor, white men began to search for Jesse Hunter, Aaron Carrier and Sam Carter who were believed to be accomplices.  Carrier was captured and incarcerated while Carter was lynched. The white mob suspected Aaron's cousin, Sylvester Carrier, a Rosewood resident of harboring the fugitive, Jesse Hunter. 

On January 4, 1923 a group of 20 to 30 white men approached the Carrier home and shot the family dog.  When Sylvester's mother Sarah came to the porch to confront the mob they shot and killed her.  Sylvester defended his home, killing two men and wounding four in the ensuing battle before he too was killed. The remaining survivors fled to the swamps for refuge where many of the African American residents of Rosewood had already retreated, hoping to avoid the rising conflict and increasing racial tension.

The next day the white mob burned the Carrier home before joining with a group of 200 men from surrounding towns who had heard erroneously that a black man had killed two white men.  As night descended the mob attacked the town, slaughtering animals and burning buildings. An official report claims six blacks killed along with two whites.  Other accounts suggest a larger total. At the end of the carnage only two buildings remained standing, a house and the town general store.

 Many of the black residents of Rosewood who fled to the swamps were evacuated on January 6 by two local train conductors, John and William Bryce. Many others were hidden by John Wright, the owner of the general store.  Other black residents of Rosewood fled to Gainesville and to northern cities.  As a consequence of the massacre, Rosewood became deserted. The initial report of the Rosewood incident presented less than a month after the massacre claimed there was insufficient evidence for prosecution.  Thus no one was charged with any of the Rosewood murders.
  
Theresa Brown Robinson of Rosewood 

Long before The Real Rosewood Foundation was created, my mother strongly suggested researching the real truths of the Rosewood occurrence. The two of us shared the dark secrets of the Rosewood story over the years starting in 1943, when I was only five. For me, the most significant part of the Rosewood story is centered on its schoolteacher, Mom’s sister, my favorite aunt and mentor, Mahulda Gussie Brown Carrier.

The memory of Rosewood is constantly on my mind. I have not been able to lay the burden of its history down. To my mother, Theresa Brown Robinson, Rosewood was a “song” etched in her heart. She promised my Aunt Mahulda that she would keep her secrets safely hidden, but the thought of what happened to her dear sister in Rosewood made the vow too tremendous a task to keep silent during the making of the movie, ROSEWOOD. As the title of the old Negro Spiritual suggests, “I Said I Wasn’t Gonna Tell Nobody but I Couldn't Keep It to Myself,” my mother was compelled to share her sister’s story, reliving the horrifying and hostile events she witnessed in 1923, at age 21. Mom contributed a great deal of information to the moviemakers; however, they used her information and did not properly give credit.

She was offended after watching the Rosewood movie and charged me with completing her Rosewood research, firmly stating, "Mommy didn't raise no fools. You finish my research and tell our own Rosewood story. I have given you enough oral family history to make a documentary and you must do just that!"

Because Mom was never satisfied with the violations her sister endured during the savage attacks on an innocent people, she assigned me the task of authenticating Rosewood's truths. “You must keep Sister’s name in Rosewood’s history,” aware her sister had suffered physically and mentally during the vicious raid of her hometown. Mom instructed me to start a scholarship in her sister Mahulda's name and build a museum honoring all Rosewood survivors and descendants. If I were to do a thorough job as requested by my mother, I understood it would become a lengthy journey and challenging project. And Mom's expectation of me radiated when she said,

If mama wasn’t so old, she'd do it herself.
From my mother's point of view, as told to her by her sister the Rosewood schoolteacher, I set out with pen and pad to bring respect and dignity to a history that was dormant for years because of the embarrassment it would add to Levy County. The incomplete work of Rosewood is the glue that holds Mom’s lessons and my writings together.

Being an educator, I wanted to educate professors, teachers, and students. I could not begin to do such without supporting evidence, therefore, I made it my mission to confront the danger and take charge of a family history that I am proud of because I have learned truth and now use that same truth to impart important lessons and build better race relations. Educate people on the real Rosewood history… In order to do this, I dedicated time to researching the records dating back to 1845, when my great, great, grandfather, Henry McIntyre, arrived in Cedar Keys as a one-year-old toddler. Side Note: I have not been able to place him with a family. According to the Levy County 1870 Census, my great, great, grandfather was a 24-year-old black male, laborer and full-time stud, father of six children, and husband of a 25-year-old black female named Emma McIntyre. They lived on the adjacent Lot 202 next to who is believed to be Sheriff Robert Walker’s cousin, Harriet Walker, a white single woman with four children who lived on Lot 201, known then as "Outside of Cedar Keys District”. One can deduce that Sheriff Walker’s actions, working tirelessly to save Rosewood citizens, were because he knew many of the residents personally. Read Rosewood History

I have done the research, authenticated and documented my findings; therefore, Rosewood’s real story is my story. I am neither angry nor bitter about a situation I did not cause. I do not blame and will never accuse anyone of this undesirable saga during that era. It is Florida's history and needs to be told and archived for future generations, never to be repeated.

"Unless we remember, neither we, nor future generations will understand..."  – Lillian Brown, AARP

    Rosewood, Florida Destroyed by Rioting White Mob

Sunday, June 19, 2016

A Heritage Of Racism



   Why Is No One Coming For The Parents Of Toddler For Death of 5 Alligators?

by Antwan Herron  Jun 16, 2016

In America, Blaming Parents of Black Children For Animal Tragedies Is Not Incidental. It’s heritage.

Late Tuesday night in Orlando, FL., a 2-year-old boy on vacation with his parents and 4-year-old sister at Disney World was snatched by an alligator after wandering about 2 ft. into a lagoon — marked “No Swimming” — stretching along one of Disney’s many family resorts.

The toddler went missing for over 15 hours.

Police, undertaking a “search and rescue” mission, intervened, but not without casualties. Five alligators were killed, including the alligator that actually attacked the child.

The whole ordeal was horrible, a nightmare beyond words. By Wednesday afternoon, the parent’s worst fears were met — although police had found the child’s body intact, he was pronounced dead.

One news host, during a CNN report, said that she couldn’t “imagine what the boy’s parents were going through, right now.” Many of us can’t. It may be too hard, too excruciatingly painful to let in.

But, I suspect everyone is trying. I’m convinced everyone is making an effort to withhold judgment and place themselves in those white parent’s shoes.

No one believes that the child’s death is the parents fault for not keeping the small boy out of body of water marked “No Swimming.”

No one believes that someone should call Child Protective Services to inquire about having the 4-year-old girl removed from the parent’s custody.

No one believes we should conduct a personal background check on the mother and father.

No one is posting the parent’s criminal record to Facebook and Twitter.

No one is painting the parents as “thugs” and criminals.

No one is pushing a story about “parental negligence.”

No one is creating “JusticeForAlligators” hashtags.

No one is coming for the parents, even though 5 alligators were killed.

This is as it should be. We are, and should, identify with the aggrieved. We should be compassionate and hopeful in the knowledge that they are possibly drawing some sense of comfort from society’s prayers and condolences.

In America, however, this doesn’t always happen. Whether or not it does depends very much on the racial background of the parents enduring a tragedy involving an animal.

Remember Harambe? The 440 lb. lowland, silverback gorilla Cincinnati Zoo officials were forced to shoot three weeks ago to save a 3-year-old black boy who had fallen into the ape’s moat.

Remember the country’s reaction to that incident?

Zoo officials argued that killing the ape was the right call. The public disagreed. In fact, everyone — virtually the whole world — was livid about the murder of Harambe. And not just with zoo personnel.

Most of their ire — all of it, really — was reserved for 3-year old’s Black parents.

It got ugly.

Social media blew up. No one seemed relieved by the fact that a black boy-child was safely returned to his parents. Instead, people were outraged that a gorilla was killed to save a black boy.

They demanded #JusticeForHarambe.

To be fair, some experts did question zoo protocol for dealing with incidents of visitors getting past safety barriers and into an animal’s enclosure. Some critics argued that zoos should not exist at all and insisted that all animals be liberated.

However, the real culprits, by all accounts — clearly articulated in petitions that circulated online — were the toddler’s parents.

Animal lover’s called mother and father “shitheads” who should be arrested for child endangerment.

People combed the web and dredged up the father’s criminal record. They called him a “thug” and accused him of being an absentee parent.

He wasn’t. But, that made no difference.

It was a witch hunt and character lynching of the first order. Worse still, for 24 hours, the mainstream media had a field day running with this lynch-the-parents story.

I can’t imagine how mortified those Black parents must have felt.

In all this passionate frustration over the killing of  Harambe the gorilla, I cannot recall seeing anyone — not one person — issue a prayer for the family of black toddler, thank their God for granting the child’s safe return to his parents.

I cannot recall seeing any posts expressing empathy for the mother and father of that Black child.

I cannot recall anyone blaming the zoo in the way that people are blaming Disney for not warning tourists about the presence of alligators in the lagoon.

The sad, painful and frustrating truth is that no one seemed capable or willing to identify with those Black parents.

Like every other institution in America informed by race, that inability to identify with pain and suffering of black families involved in animal tragedies is neither accidental nor . It’s national heritage.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Muhammad Ali



                                Muhammad Ali
 Muhammad Ali was the first national figure to speak out against the war in Vietnam.

Muhammad Ali touches countless lives with his unwavering spirit. He was not only a monumental athlete, but also a humanitarian and a global citizen – the legend of Muhammad Ali goes far beyond the boxing ring.

        Muhammad Ali, Ready To Meet God


Muhammad Ali’s polarizing decision inspired Americans of all backgrounds. New York Times columnist, William Rhoden, wrote, "Ali's actions changed my standard of what constituted an athlete's greatness. Possessing a killer jump shot or the ability to stop on a dime was no longer enough. What were you doing for the liberation of your people? What were you doing to help your country live up to the covenant of its founding principles?"

Muhammad’s life and career have been played out as much on the front pages of newspapers as on the inside in the sports pages. His early relationship with the Nation of Islam and his insistence on being called Muhammad Ali instead of his “slave name”, Cassius Clay, heralded a new era in black pride. His refusal to be inducted into the United States Army anticipated the growing antiwar movement of the 1960s. His willingness to stage his much-promoted and publicized fights in such far-flung locales as Kinshasa, Manila, and Kuala Lumpur signaled a shift from superpower dominance toward a growing awareness of the developing world.

        Muhammad Ali: In Memoriam



Boxing legend Muhammad Ali died of septic shock after spending five days at an Arizona hospital for what started out as respiratory problems and gradually worsened, succumbing only after his wife and children arrived at his bedside to say goodbye

Ali's family revealed plans for a funeral in his hometown of Louisville, Kentucky, a daylong affair that will include a procession through the streets where the 74-year-old world champion grew up and learned to box.

 Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer marveled at the many outsize roles Ali embodied: sports champion, civil rights icon, humanitarian and "interfaith pioneer."

       Muhammad Ali Mourned Around the World


Muhammad Ali born Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr., January 17, 1942 – June 3, 2016,was born in Louisville, Kentucky. The older of two boys, he was named for his father, Cassius Marcellus Clay Sr., who himself was named in honor of the 19th-century Abolitionist and Republican politician of the same name. He had a sister and four brothers, including Nathaniel Clay. Clay's paternal grandparents were John Clay and Sallie Anne Clay; Clay's sister Eva claimed that Sallie was a native of Madagascar. He was a descendant of pre-Civil War era American slaves in the American South, and was predominantly of African descent, with Irish and English heritage. His father painted billboards and signs, and his mother, Odessa O'Grady Clay, was a household domestic. Although Cassius Sr. was a Methodist, he allowed Odessa to bring up both Cassius and his younger brother Rudolph "Rudy" Clay (later renamed Rahman Ali) as Baptists.

Cassius Clay Sr. gifted his son a new red-and-white Schwinn in 1954, which was promptly stolen. The 12-year-old, 89-pound Cassius Clay vowed “I'm gonna whup whoever stole my bike!” A policeman, Joe Martin, told young Cassius Clay that he better learn how to fight before he challenged anyone. After 6 months of training with Joe Martin, Cassius won his debut match in a three-round decision. Young Cassius Clay dedicated himself to boxing and training with an unmatched fervor. According to Joe Martin, Clay set himself apart by two things: He was “sassy,” and he outworked all the other boys.

Clay made his amateur boxing debut in 1954.  He won six Kentucky Golden Gloves titles, two national Golden Gloves titles, Cassius Clay participated in the light-heavyweight class Golden Gloves tournament for novices in 1956. It took him three years, but finally in 1959, Ali was named Golden Gloves Champion and earned the Amateur Athletic Union’s national title in the light-heavyweight division.

Shortly after his high school graduation, 18 year-old Cassius Clay began his journey towards greatness at the 1960 Rome Olympics. His expansive personality and larger-than-life spirit earned him the nickname “The Mayor of Olympic Village.”

The future 3-time Heavyweight World Champion nearly missed the trip to Rome due to his fear of airplane travel; he insisted on bringing a parachute on the plane with him.

On September 5, 1960, “The Greatest” proved his dominance in the Light Heavyweight Boxing Division by beating Zigzy Pietrzykowski of Poland, capturing the Olympic Gold Medal. Sports Illustrated praised Clay's “supreme confidence” and “intricate dance steps.”

By late 1963, Clay had become the top contender for Sonny Liston's title. The fight was set for February 25, 1964, in Miami. Liston was an intimidating personality, a dominating fighter with a criminal past and ties to the mob. Based on Clay's uninspired performance against Jones and Cooper in his previous two fights, and Liston's destruction of former heavyweight champion Floyd Patterson in two first-round knock outs, Clay was a 7–1 underdog. Despite this, Clay taunted Liston during the pre-fight buildup, dubbing him "the big ugly bear". "Liston even smells like a bear", Clay said. "After I beat him I'm going to donate him to the zoo." Clay turned the pre-fight weigh-in into a circus, shouting at Liston that "someone is going to die at ringside tonight". Clay's pulse rate was measured at 120, more than double his normal 54. Many of those in attendance thought Clay's behavior stemmed from fear, and some commentators wondered if he would show up for the bout.

The outcome of the fight was a major upset. At the opening bell, Liston rushed at Clay, seemingly angry and looking for a quick knockout, but Clay's superior speed and mobility enabled him to elude Liston, making the champion miss and look awkward. At the end of the first round Clay opened up his attack and hit Liston repeatedly with jabs. Liston fought better in round two, but at the beginning of the third round Clay hit Liston with a combination that buckled his knees and opened a cut under his left eye. This was the first time Liston had ever been cut. At the end of round four, as Clay returned to his corner, he began experiencing blinding pain in his eyes and asked his trainer Angelo Dundee to cut off his gloves. Dundee refused. It has been speculated that the problem was due to ointment used to seal Liston's cuts, perhaps deliberately applied by his corner to his gloves. Though unconfirmed, Bert Sugar claimed that two of Liston's opponents also complained about their  eyes "burning". Despite Liston's attempts to knock out a blinded Clay, Clay was able to survive the fifth round until sweat and tears rinsed the irritation from his eyes. In the sixth, Clay dominated, hitting Liston repeatedly. Liston did not answer the bell for the seventh round, and Clay was declared the winner by TKO. Liston stated that the reason he quit was an injured shoulder. Following the win, a triumphant Clay rushed to the edge of the ring and, pointing to the ringside press, shouted: "Eat your words!" He added, "I am the greatest! I shook up the world. I'm the prettiest thing that ever lived."

Ali defended his title against former heavyweight champion Floyd Patterson on November 22, 1965. Before the match, Ali mocked Patterson, who was widely known to call him by his former name Cassius Clay, as an "Uncle Tom", calling him "The Rabbit". Although Ali clearly had the better of Patterson, who appeared injured during the fight, the match lasted 12 rounds before being called on a technical knockout. Patterson later said he had strained his sacroiliac. Ali was criticized in the sports media for appearing to have toyed with Patterson during the fight

Ali and then-WBA heavyweight champion boxer Ernie Terrell had agreed to meet for a bout in Chicago on March 29, 1966 (the WBA, one of two boxing associations, had stripped Ali of his title following his joining the Nation of Islam). But in February Ali was reclassified by the Louisville draft board as 1-A from 1-Y, and he indicated that he would refuse to serve, commenting to the press, "I ain't got nothing against no Viet Cong; no Viet Cong never called me nigger."Ali returned to the United States to fight Cleveland Williams in the Houston Astrodome on November 14, 1966. The bout drew a record-breaking indoor crowd of 35,460 people. Williams had once been considered among the hardest punchers in the heavyweight division, but in 1964 he had been shot at point-blank range by a Texas policeman, resulting in the loss of one kidney and 10 feet (3.0 m) of his small intestine. Ali dominated Williams, winning a third-round technical knockout in what some consider the finest performance of his career. Amidst the media and public outcry over Ali's stance, the Illinois Athletic Commission refused to sanction the fight, citing technicalities. Instead, Ali traveled to Canada and Europe and won championship bouts against George Chuvalo, Henry Cooper, Brian London and Karl Mildenberger.

Ali returned to the United States to fight Cleveland Williams in the Houston Astrodome on November 14, 1966. The bout drew a record-breaking indoor crowd of 35,460 people. Williams had once been considered among the hardest punchers in the heavyweight division, but in 1964 he had been shot at point-blank range by a Texas policeman, resulting in the loss of one kidney and 10 feet (3.0 m) of his small intestine. Ali dominated Williams, winning a third-round technical knockout in what some consider the finest performance of his career.

Ali fought Terrell in Houston on February 6, 1967. Terrell was billed as Ali's toughest opponent since Liston—unbeaten in five years and having defeated many of the boxers Ali had faced. Terrell was big, strong and had a three-inch reach advantage over Ali. During the lead up to the bout, Terrell repeatedly called Ali "Clay", much to Ali's annoyance (Ali called Cassius Clay his "slave name"). The two almost came to blows over the name issue in a pre-fight interview with Howard Cosell. Ali seemed intent on humiliating Terrell. "I want to torture him", he said. "A clean knockout is too good for him."

The fight was close until the seventh round when Ali bloodied Terrell and almost knocked him out. In the eighth round, Ali taunted Terrell, hitting him with jabs and shouting between punches, "What's my name, Uncle Tom... what's my name?" Ali won a unanimous 15-round decision. Terrell claimed that early in the fight Ali deliberately thumbed him in the eye — forcing Terrell to fight half-blind — and then, in a clinch, rubbed the wounded eye against the ropes. Because of Ali's apparent intent to prolong the fight to inflict maximum punishment, critics described the bout as "one of the ugliest boxing fights". Tex Maule later wrote: "It was a wonderful demonstration of boxing skill and a barbarous display of cruelty." Ali denied the accusations of cruelty but, for Ali's critics, the fight provided more evidence of his arrogance.

After Ali's title defense against Zora Folley on March 22, he was stripped of his title due to his refusal to be drafted to army service. His boxing license was also suspended by the state of New York. He was convicted of draft evasion on June 20 and sentenced to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine. He paid a bond and remained free while the verdict was being appealed.

Ali refused to be inducted into the armed forces, stating that he had "no quarrel with them Vietcong". "My conscience won't let me go shoot my brother, or some darker people, or some poor hungry people in the mud for big powerful America. And shoot them for what? They never called me nigger, they never lynched me, they didn't put no dogs on me, they didn't rob me of my nationality, rape or kill my mother and father.... How can I shoot them poor people? Just take me to jail." He was systematically denied a boxing license in every state and stripped of his passport. As a result, he did not fight from March 1967 to October 1970—from ages 25 to almost 29—as his case worked its way through the appeals process. In 1971, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned his conviction in a unanimous 8–0 ruling (Thurgood Marshall recused himself, as he had been the U.S. Solicitor General at the time of Ali's conviction).

During this time of inactivity, as opposition to the Vietnam War began to grow and Ali's stance gained sympathy, he spoke at colleges across the nation, criticizing the Vietnam War and advocating African American pride and racial justice.

On August 12, 1970, with his case still in appeal, Ali was granted a license to box by the City of Atlanta Athletic Commission, thanks to State Senator Leroy R. Johnson. Ali's first return bout was against Jerry Quarry on October 26, resulting in a win after three rounds after Quarry was cut.

A month earlier, a victory in federal court forced the New York State Boxing Commission to reinstate Ali's license. He fought Oscar Bonavena at Madison Square Garden in December, an uninspired performance that ended in a dramatic TKO of Bonavena in the 15th round. The win left Ali as a top contender against heavyweight champion Joe Frazier.

Ali and Frazier's first fight, held at the Garden on March 8, 1971, was nicknamed the "Fight of the Century", due to the tremendous excitement surrounding a bout between two undefeated fighters, each with a legitimate claim as heavyweight champions. Veteran boxing writer John Condon called it "the greatest event I've ever worked on in my life". The bout was broadcast to 35 foreign countries; promoters granted 760 press passes.

Adding to the atmosphere were the considerable pre-fight theatrics and name calling. Ali portrayed Frazier as a "dumb tool of the white establishment". "Frazier is too ugly to be champ", Ali said. "Frazier is too dumb to be champ." Ali also frequently called Frazier an Uncle Tom. Dave Wolf, who worked in Frazier's camp, recalled that, "Ali was saying 'the only people rooting for Joe Frazier are white people in suits, Alabama sheriffs, and members of the Ku Klux Klan. I'm fighting for the little man in the ghetto.' Joe was sitting there, smashing his fist into the palm of his hand, saying, 'What the fuck does he know about the ghetto?'"

Ali began training at a farm near Reading, Pennsylvania, in 1971 and, finding the country setting to his liking, sought to develop a real training camp in the countryside. He found a five-acre site on a Pennsylvania country road in the village of Deer Lake, On this site, Ali carved out what was to become his training camp, the camp where he lived and trained for all the many fights he had from 1972 on to the end of his career in the 1980s.

The Monday night fight lived up to its billing. In a preview of their two other fights, a crouching, bobbing and weaving Frazier constantly pressured Ali, getting hit regularly by Ali jabs and combinations, but relentlessly attacking and scoring repeatedly, especially to Ali's body. The fight was even in the early rounds, but Ali was taking more punishment than ever in his career. On several occasions in the early rounds he played to the crowd and shook his head "no" after he was hit. In the later rounds—in what was the first appearance of the "rope-a-dope strategy"—Ali leaned against the ropes and absorbed punishment from Frazier, hoping to tire him. In the 11th round, Frazier connected with a left hook that wobbled Ali, but because it appeared that Ali might be clowning as he staggered backwards across the ring, Frazier hesitated to press his advantage, fearing an Ali counter-attack. In the final round, Frazier knocked Ali down with a vicious left hook, which referee Arthur Mercante said was as hard as a man can be hit. Ali was back on his feet in three seconds. Nevertheless, Ali lost by unanimous decision, his first professional defeat.

After the loss to Frazier, Ali fought Jerry Quarry, had a second bout with Floyd Patterson and faced Bob Foster in 1972, winning a total of six fights that year. In 1973, Ken Norton broke Ali's jaw while giving him the second loss of his career. After initially seeking retirement, Ali won a controversial decision against Norton in their second bout, leading to a rematch at Madison Square Garden on January 28, 1974, with Joe Frazier—who had recently lost his title to George Foreman. Ali was strong in the early rounds of the fight, and staggered Frazier in the second round (referee Tony Perez mistakenly thought he heard the bell ending the round and stepped between the two fighters as Ali was pressing his attack, giving Frazier time to recover). However, Frazier came on in the middle rounds, snapping Ali's head in round seven and driving him to the ropes at the end of round eight. The last four rounds saw round-to-round shifts in momentum between the two fighters. Throughout most of the bout, however, Ali was able to circle away from Frazier's dangerous left hook and to tie Frazier up when he was cornered—the latter a tactic that Frazier's camp complained of bitterly. Judges awarded Ali a unanimous decision.

The defeat of Frazier set the stage for a title fight against heavyweight champion George Foreman in Kinshasa, Zaire, on October 30, 1974 — a bout nicknamed "The Rumble in the Jungle". Foreman was considered one of the hardest punchers in heavyweight history. In assessing the fight, analysts pointed out that Joe Frazier and Ken Norton — who had given Ali four tough battles and won two of them—had been both devastated by Foreman in second round knockouts. Ali was 32 years old, and had clearly lost speed and reflexes since his twenties. Contrary to his later persona, Foreman was at the time a brooding and intimidating presence.

Almost no one associated with the sport, not even Ali's long-time supporter Howard Cosell, gave the former champion a chance of winning. As usual, Ali was confident and colorful before the fight. He told interviewer David Frost, "If you think the world was surprised when Nixon resigned, wait 'til I whup Foreman's behind!"  He told the press, "I've done something new for this fight. I done wrestled with an alligator, I done tussled with a whale; handcuffed lightning, thrown thunder in jail; only last week, I murdered a rock, injured a stone, hospitalized a brick; I'm so mean I make medicine sick." Ali was wildly popular in Zaire, with crowds chanting "Ali, bomaye" ("Ali, kill him") wherever he went.

Ali opened the fight moving and scoring with right crosses to Foreman's head. Then, beginning in the second round—and to the consternation of his corner—Ali retreated to the ropes and invited Foreman to hit him while covering up, clinching and counter-punching—all while verbally taunting Foreman. ("Is that all you got, George? They told me you could hit.") The move, which would later become known as the "Rope-A-Dope", so violated conventional boxing wisdom—letting one of the hardest hitters in boxing strike at will—that at ringside writer George Plimpton thought the fight had to be fixed.  Foreman, increasingly angered, threw punches that were deflected and did not land squarely. Midway through the fight, as Foreman began tiring, Ali countered more frequently and effectively with punches and flurries, which electrified the pro-Ali crowd. In the eighth round, Ali dropped an exhausted Foreman with a combination at center ring; Foreman failed to make the count. Against the odds, and amidst pandemonium in the ring, Ali had regained the title by knockout.

In reflecting on the fight, George Foreman later said: "I'll admit it. Muhammad outthought me and outfought me."

Ali's next opponents included Chuck Wepner, Ron Lyle, and Joe Bugner. Wepner, a journeyman known as "The Bayonne Bleeder", stunned Ali with a knockdown in the ninth round; Ali would later say he tripped on Wepner's foot. It was a bout that would inspire Sylvester Stallone to create the acclaimed film, Rocky.

Ali then agreed to a third match with Joe Frazier in Manila. The bout, known as the "Thrilla in Manila", was held on October 1, 1975, in temperatures approaching 100 °F (38 °C). In the first rounds, Ali was aggressive, moving and exchanging blows with Frazier. However, Ali soon appeared to tire and adopted the "rope-a-dope" strategy, frequently resorting to clinches. During this part of the bout Ali did some effective counter-punching, but for the most part absorbed punishment from a relentlessly attacking Frazier. In the 12th round, Frazier began to tire, and Ali scored several sharp blows that closed Frazier's left eye and opened a cut over his right eye. With Frazier's vision now diminished, Ali dominated the 13th and 14th rounds, at times conducting what boxing historian Mike Silver called "target practice" on Frazier's head. The fight was stopped when Frazier's trainer, Eddie Futch, refused to allow Frazier to answer the bell for the 15th and final round, despite Frazier's protests. Frazier's eyes were both swollen shut. Ali, in his corner, winner by TKO, slumped on his stool, clearly spent.
An ailing Ali said afterwards that the fight "was the closest thing to dying that I know", and, when later asked if he had viewed the fight on videotape, reportedly said, "Why would I want to go back and see Hell?" After the fight he cited Frazier as "the greatest fighter of all times next to me".

In 1984, Muhammad Ali publicly announced that he had Parkinson’s disease, a degenerative neurological condition. Following his diagnosis, he created and continues to raise funds for the Muhammad Ali Parkinson’s Center in Phoenix, Arizona. Although his disease has progressed, Ali remains an active public figure and philanthropist, dedicated to his faith and humanitarian beliefs.

Ali published an oral history, Muhammad Ali: His Life and Times by Thomas Hauser, in 1991. That same year, Ali traveled to Iraq during the Gulf War, and met with Saddam Hussein in an attempt to negotiate the release of American hostages. In 1996, he had the honor of lighting the flame at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia.

Ali's bout with Parkinson's led to a gradual decline in Ali's health though he was still active into the early years of the millennium, even promoting his own biopic, Ali, in 2001. Ali also contributed an on-camera segment to the America: A Tribute to Heroes benefit concert.

        From Wikipedia & muhammadali.com

   George Foreman vs Muhammad Ali - Oct. 30, 1974 - Entire fight - Rounds 1 - 8 & Interview


Joe Frazier vs Muhammad Ali, March 8, 1971 [Full Fight]

   Muhammad Ali vs Joe Frazier II - Jan 28, 1974 - Entire fight - Rounds 1 - 12 & Interviews


   Muhammad Ali vs Joe Frazier (III) 1975-10-01 "Thrilla in Manila"


    Muhammad Ali Dies At 74




Wednesday, June 1, 2016

President Obama Delivers the Commencement Address at Howard University




      President Obama Delivers the Commencement Address at Howard University


Friday, May 27, 2016

Nina Simone - Why? (The King of Love is Dead) [Full Live Version]



Nina Simone - Why? (The King of Love is Dead) [Full Live Version]


Recorded on April 7, 1968, live three days after the death of Martin Luther King, Jr. and performed at the Westbury Music Fair. Nina Simone dedicated her performance to King's memory.
"Why? (The King Of Love Is Dead)", written by Nina's bass player Gene Taylor after the news of Dr. King's death had reached him. It was performed here for the first time. The song was heavily cut from the longer original recording, which featured a lot of Simone's monologue

"Pourquoi? (The King Of Love Is Dead)", écrit par le bassiste de Nina Gene Taylor après la mort du Dr King. Elle a été exécutée pour la première fois. La chanson a été fortement coupé à partir de l'enregistrement original un tres long monologue de Simone.

Lyrics
What's gonna happen now? In all of our cities?
My people are rising; they're living in lies.
Even if they have to die
Even if they have to die at the moment they know what life is
Even at that one moment that ya know what life is
If you have to die, it's all right
Cause you know what life is
You know what freedom is for one moment of your life

But he had seen the mountaintop
And he knew he could not stop
Always living with the threat of death ahead
Folks you'd better stop and think
Everybody knows we're on the brink
What will happen, now that the King is dead?

We can all shed tears; it won't change a thing
Teach your people: Will they ever learn?
Must you always kill with burn and burn with guns
And kill with guns and burn - don't you know how we gotta react?

But he had seen the mountaintop
And he knew he could not stop
Always living with the threat of death ahead
Folks you'd better stop and think
Everybody knows we're on the brink
What will happen, now that the King of love is dead?