Monthly Archives: October 2016

. . . .AND YET ANOTHER BLACK WOMAN DOCTOR SAYS DELTA AIRLINES DISCRIMINATED AGAINST HER

Another Black Female Doctor Says Delta Airlines Discriminated Against Her

Dr. Ashley Denmark said flight attendants on her flight also didn’t believe she was a doctor when a fellow passenger needed medical attention.

Dr. Ashley Denmark
Dr. Ashley Denmark Facebook

Apparently, if you’re a black female doctor flying Delta Airlines, certain flight attendants would rather let a passenger die, or allow nurses to come to their assistance, if a passenger is in medical distress.

Last week, Dr. Tamika Cross made social media headlines when she recounted her experience dealing with a Delta Airlines flight attendant who didn’t believe she was a doctor. The incident spawned the #WhatADoctorLooksLike hashtag to dispel the notion that black women aren’t out there saving lives.

On the heels of Cross’ incident, yet another doctor has taken to Facebook to share a similar story. Dr. Ashley Denmark wrote about her flight on Delta Airlines and how the flight attendant didn’t believe she was a doctor and instead allowed nurses to help the passenger:

As I settled in to watch a movie and read a book, about 1 hour into our flight over the intercom, a flight attendant requested a doctor or nurse to report to front of cabin to assist a passenger. When duty calls it calls- even if you are 30,000 feet in air. Without hesitation, I got out of my seat and made my way towards the front of the cabin where I was greeted by two Caucasian women and a delta flight attendant. I quickly asked “What’s going on?” Then I stated, “I’m a doctor. How can I help?” Immediately, I was greeted by puzzled looks from all three women. The flight attendant asked, “Are you a doctor?” to which I replied “Yes.” My response only left a more puzzled look on the attendant’s face. She turned around and began to talk to another flight attendant. I stood there in bewilderment because someone on the plane was in need of medical assistance and no one was escorting me to the passenger in need. Finally, one of the Caucasian passengers who came to assist spoke and stated her and the other passenger present to assist were both nurses. Then she asked, “Are you a doctor?” to which I responded “Yes” …..again. She immediately responded “Well you need credentials to show you are a medical professional.” I gave a funny look but, remained composed and quickly quipped “I have my hospital badge which should be enough.”

Obviously her hospital badge wasn’t enough because the flight attendants informed Denmark that her help wasn’t needed. But, Denmark went on to write, the scenario was all too familiar.

“As an African American female physician, I am too familiar with this scenario. Despite overcoming and excelling academically and obtaining the title of Dr. in front of my name, I still get side-eye glances when I introduce myself as Dr. Denmark. Commonly, I’m mistaken for an assistant, janitor, secretary, nurse, student, etc even when I have my white coat on,” Denmark wrote.

And that’s a pretty sad commentary for 2016.

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THE RACIST HATE THAT BLACK WOMEN DOCTORS FACE: IT IS MORE COMMON THAN YOU REALIZE

Everyone by now has heard the story of Dr. Tamika Cross, when on Sunday, October 9, 2016, Tamika Cross, a Black American OB-GYN, posted her experience on Facebook after flying to Detroit on flight DL945. When her Facebook post went viral, it blew up the Internet and Youtube over how this competent physician was mistreated by a believer in racist white supremacy, the denigration of Black women, and the callous disregard for the skills and capabilities of Black women and other women physicians.

But Dr. Cross is by no means the only Black physician who has been assailed by racist hate.

Here is the story of yet some other physicians whose offer of help was ignored and denigrated.

********************************************

Her story went viral. But she is not the only black doctor ignored in an airplane emergency

By Pamela Wible

October 20, 2016

Unconscious man on plane. Wife screaming. Doctor is two rows away. What happens next? Emergency care is delayed because flight attendant doesn’t believe black woman is a doctor.

True story. This medical misadventure aboard Delta this month went viral after a Facebook post by Tamika Cross, the physician turned away from caring for the unresponsive passenger. And she’s not alone.

I’m a physician who investigates human rights violations in medicine, and after Cross’s story was told, I received a flurry of emails from other dark-skinned doctors bypassed in favor of white nurses, pharmacists or doctors. Yes, these female physicians offering critical-care expertise are told to sit down and keep quiet while lesser-skilled, lighter-skinned men are ushered right down the aisle to ailing passengers. Even when women are seated close to ill passengers and identify themselves as physicians, they’re still pushed aside. Here’s why: At 30,000 feet, the pressure of an emergency may intensify underlying implicit bias — a deep-seated, unconscious prejudice that affects our behavior.

So what does a doctor on an airplane look like? Could be the petite new mom in a sundress breast-feeding her infant in the seat next to you or the burly biker dude wearing the backward baseball cap across the aisle. In an emergency, skill trumps everything. A young physician such as Cross is better suited to care for an unresponsive passenger than a retired radiologist. Specialty matters. Ethnicity doesn’t. Hint: Choose a pulmonologist in sweatpants and flip-flops over a well-dressed psychiatrist.

Safety comes first. Let the doctor care for the passenger. Let the crew Google her name via onboard WiFi to verify credentials. Quick reminder: In general, docs don’t carry mini-diplomas in their wallets. Our degrees are framed at the office, not stowed in overhead bins.

Obstructing medical care is never in the best interest of the patient — or the airline. The difference between life and death is sometimes measured in seconds. Not only can one skilled physician aboard an aircraft save a passenger’s life, but her quick action may also save the airline more than $100,000 in a flight diversion and ensure that hundreds of passengers arrive to their destinations on time.

Here are some of the stories I’ve heard from other physicians — in their own words — since Cross went public.

Let’s start with Cross’s experience.

Tamika Cross, chief resident

“I was on Delta Flight 945, and someone two rows in front of me was screaming for help. Her husband was unresponsive. I naturally jumped into doctor mode as no one else was getting up. Unbuckled my seat belt and threw my tray table up, and as I’m about to stand up, flight attendant says, ‘Everyone stay calm, it’s just a night terror, he is all right.’

“I continue to watch the scene closely. A couple minutes later, he is unresponsive again and the flight attendant yells, ‘Call overhead for a physician on board.’ I raise my hand to grab her attention. She says to me, ‘Oh no sweetie, put your hand down, we are looking for actual physicians or nurses or some type of medical personnel; we don’t have time to talk to you.’ I try to inform her that I am a physician, but I’m continually cut off by condescending remarks. Then overhead they page, ‘Any physician on board, please press your button.’ I stare at her as I go to press my button. She says, ‘Oh wow, you’re an actual physician?’ I reply yes. She says, ‘Let me see your credentials. What type of doctor are you? Where do you work? Why were you in Detroit?’ (Please remember, this man is in need of help and she is blocking my row while bombarding me with questions.) I respond, ‘OBGYN, work in Houston, in Detroit for a wedding . . . Now excuse me so I can help the man in need.’

“Another ‘seasoned’ white male approaches the row and says he is a physician as well. She says to me, ‘Thanks for your help but he can help us, and he has his credentials.’ (Mind you he hasn’t shown anything to her. Just showed up and fit the ‘description of a doctor.’) I stay seated. Mind blown. Blood boiling. . . . Supervisor verifies with me afterward that in an emergency they never ask for credentials. This could have been life or death. We didn’t know if he had a pulse!”

(The patient survived and walked off the airplane. In a statement, Delta said it was troubled by any accusation of discrimination and was investigating the incident.)

Kadijah Ray, anesthesiologist

“I’ve received that same treatment on two different flights in 2006 and 2008 while trying to help people in distress. They passed me up for whites: a female pharmacist, nurse and male MD who I believe was something like radiology; I can’t remember exactly his specialty, but I remember him telling them, ‘Trust me, you want an anesthesiologist to help before me.’ And no, I didn’t have my credentials with me. Would far exceed the airline’s weight and size requirements.”

Trupti Shah,
emergency medicine

“On an overnight flight from Cairo to JFK in 2007, the lady seated in front of me was having difficulty breathing. I heard the commotion but did not understand the conversation since it was in Arabic. I asked if I could help and identified myself as a doctor. I was told by the male head flight attendant to sit down. Then they made an overhead announcement seeking medical help. I got up again but was ignored.

“A male cardiologist from New York who was fluent in Arabic offered assistance and was immediately ushered to the woman. He noticed that I was trying to help but was not allowed. While they went to get him the medical kit, we spoke. He had trained at my hospital. As soon as he was handed the medical kit, he immediately gave it to me, but the flight attendant tried to take it back. He had to intervene in order for me to help the woman; he translated.

“The woman had taken amoxicillin for a sore throat and developed a rash, itchy throat and shortness of breath. I checked her blood pressure and lungs. Then I administered prednisone, Benadryl and Pepcid from my carry-on (all of which I carry with me when I travel abroad). She felt better after 30 minutes. An hour later, meals were served. I had reserved a vegetarian meal, but when I requested it, the same male flight attendant replied, ‘You people always lie.’ I showed him my printed flight itinerary. He then brought me a completely burned tray.”

Mariam Anwar,
internal medicine/geriatrics

“On an international trip during the summer of 2015, the flight manager asked for my credentials and wouldn’t let me help but let a white nurse help without asking for credentials. Of course, I helped anyway. It was an elderly male with emphysema — hypoxic and also having an anxiety attack. We had to calculate if we would have enough oxygen to last the trip without having to land.

“The manager put him in business class and gave us seats, too. We monitored him for several hours. He became unresponsive, hypertensive. I checked an EKG, glucose and after several sternal rubs he woke up. Of course I lost several hours of sleep on a long flight, and a flight attendant had to take care of my toddler while I assisted the man. When his shift was over, another manager came. He told me to go back to economy class, and he let the white nurse stay in business class the entire flight! Blatant discrimination and lack of respect!”

Amina Moghul, family medicine

“Had something similar happen to me in June. A patient fainted right next to my seat. I identified myself as a physician and was pushed out of the way and told to step aside for an older white male RN to tend to the passenger. I was so stunned, I froze for a few seconds before politely introducing myself to the nurse as a physician and recommended we work together. The flight attendant continued to ignore me and direct questions and offers to get help or equipment to the male nurse. I thought it was just me who had experienced this.”

Janelle Evans, urogynecology

“On July 22, we were in the middle of the Atlantic on a flight to Johannesburg when a man had a GI bleed and hypotension and became unresponsive in my aisle. Of the four physicians on board, only I had credentials with me, and the purser denied the man care until one of us produced them. An ICU physician was told she could not help. (She was Latina and similarly petite like me.) I told her to ignore the purser and assist.

“While we worked to stabilize the patient, the purser would not put the lights on to start IVs and adequately see the medical kit. The kit was less than half-stocked, with no aspirin, no nitro, nothing. She tried to start drink service while we had a fully naked man in the walkway between lavatories and bloody stool all over one side of the plane. We successfully stabilized him, and no sooner had we done so than she angrily declared that we were relieved of medical duty because she was going to deal with the in-flight-phone physician rather than us. I had made it clear I wasn’t leaving the area and personally spoke with the ground doc, who confirmed that his condition required in-flight assistance. I never received a thank-you from the purser and left the plane with the patient, covered in bloody feces. I never heard from [the airline] until I published my article, at which point they did call and comp our flight.”

Ashley Denmark,
family medicine resident

“On [a flight] from Seattle to Hawaii in October, a flight attendant requested over the intercom a doctor or nurse to report to front of cabin to assist a passenger. Without hesitation, I made my way and was greeted by two Caucasian women and a flight attendant. I quickly asked, ‘What’s going on?’ Then I stated: ‘I’m a doctor. How can I help?’ I was greeted by puzzled looks from all three women. The flight attendant asked, ‘Are you a doctor?’ to which I replied ‘Yes.’ The attendant turned around and began to talk to another flight attendant. I stood there in bewilderment.

“Finally, one of the Caucasian women stated that she and the other passenger present to assist were nurses. Then she asked, ‘Are you a doctor?’ to which I responded ‘Yes’ again. She immediately responded, ‘Well, you need credentials to show you are a medical professional.’ I gave her a funny look, remained composed and quickly quipped, ‘I have my hospital badge, which should be enough.’ The attendant continued to look puzzled, then stated: ‘We have two nurses here who came first. You can have a seat now, and we will let them handle it. If we need more help, we will come and find you.’

“Then the gravity of the situation hit me like a ton of bricks. Apparently the nurses and flight attendants didn’t think I was a doctor. Why else were nurses being allowed to take charge in a medical situation when a doctor was present? Surely it couldn’t be the color of my brown skin? So here I was, a doctor with 11 years of training being asked to take a seat and not partake in caring for the passenger in need.

“As an African American female physician, I am too familiar with this scenario. Despite excelling academically and obtaining the title of ‘doctor’ in front of my name, I still get side-eye glances when I introduce myself as Dr. Denmark. Commonly, I’m mistaken for an assistant, janitor, secretary, nurse, student, etc., even when I have my white coat on.”

Wible is a family physician who has provided medical care during two in-flight emergencies. Nobody asked for her credentials.

SOURCE

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BLACK VOTERS, AGHAST AT TRUMP, FIND A PLACE OF FOOD AND COMFORT

Black Voters, Aghast at Trump, Find a Place of Food and Comfort

A home in East Mount Airy, a neighborhood in Philadelphia long considered a symbol of upward black mobility. Credit Hilary Swift for The New York Times

PHILADELPHIA — Natalie Solomon was always an early riser. Back in her days at a Ford-owned auto electronics plant, managing production schedules and bringing in $60,000 a year with overtime, she would be behind the wheel of her Ford Explorer by 4 a.m. — in time to grab coffee at Wawa, swing by her locker, grab her smock and get on the factory floor before 5.

“But that part of my life is closed now,” she said. Still, at 60, car or no car, she needs a morning routine.

So twice each week at 5:30 a.m., earbuds in and listening to a motivational speaker “to get myself together,” she pads down the steps of her stone house and heads for the No. 18 bus.

Natalie Solomon in September. When she worked for a Ford-owned auto electronics plant, earning $60,000 a year, she considered herself part of the middle class. “But that part of my life is closed now,” she said. Credit Hilary Swift for The New York Times

Her destination: Mount Airy, a tidy neighborhood of brick homes where she volunteers at one of Philadelphia’s busiest food pantries, the Kitchen of Love. By the time Ms. Solomon arrives, the line for free groceries is growing, populated with proud retirees and struggling working-class people like herself.

It is a poignant scene in an election year filled with snapshots of Americans whose grievances have fueled the rise of Donald J. Trump. But this part of Mount Airy is largely blue-collar and black, not white. And far from being animated by Mr. Trump’s angry campaign, people here are terrified by it — and are mourning the departure of Barack Obama, the nation’s first (and, some fear, its last) black president.

Anxious in America

Articles in this series will explore the national mood in this election year.

  • Philadelphia

    The Food Pantry Where Black Voters Seek Refuge From Donald TrumpOct. 30, 2016

“I wish he was a dictator,” Calvin Gardner, 64, a retired construction worker, said, expressing longing for a third Obama term.

There is the same rage at an economy that has sent jobs overseas. “Rich people have enough doggone money, and we need to bring our jobs back,” Ms. Solomon said.

   

MONTGOMERY COUNTY PENNSYLVANIA East Mount Airy Chestnut Hill Germantown 76951  North Philadelphia Delaware R. Philadelphia NEW JERSEY Camden 395 3 miles,     OCT. 30, 2016 By The New York Times

There is the same disgust at the whole campaign spectacle, the same frustration at a system that benefits society’s extremes. As Tony Morse, 49, a behavioral health specialist who uses the pantry to feed foster children in homes he supervises, said, “Politics is for the very rich and the very poor.”

But after that, the race is a study in, well, black and white.

When Mr. Trump says America needs to be made great again, people here see a nation that Mr. Obama pulled back from the brink. When Mr. Trump vows to take on the Islamic State, they envision their children and grandchildren being sent to war.

When he talks about “law and order,” they imagine more funerals for black people killed by the police. His racially charged appeals for their votes, and unfounded warnings of voter fraud in cities like Philadelphia, sound alarm bells about their civil rights.

“What the hell have you got to lose? You live in poverty! You fools ain’t no good!” Yvonne Hilton, 66, a Jamaican-born nurse, exclaimed, angrily mimicking Mr. Trump.

And in her impression is perhaps what separates those at the Kitchen of Love from many whites in similar economic circumstances. In an anxious time, in a needy place, everyone seems fixated on what they have to lose.

Ms. Solomon waited before dawn for the bus that would take her to Kitchen of Love, the food pantry where she volunteers. Credit Hilary Swift for The New York Times

Less to Fall Back On

The volunteer-run Kitchen of Love, open on Thursdays and Fridays, serves 500 to 700 people each week, roughly half of them older than 65. That it thrives in such a stable corner of Philadelphia tells a deeper national tale, about what the Urban Institute in Washington calls the “stalled, struggling black middle class.”

Blacks have less equity in their homes and are less likely than whites to inherit money, and were thus hit harder by the foreclosure crisis. They are more likely than whites to be raising grandchildren or supporting needy relatives. In tough times, they have less to fall back on.

All of this is playing out here in East Mount Airy, once a heavily white and Jewish neighborhood in northwestern Philadelphia, just across the border from suburban Montgomery County. Sandwiched between Chestnut Hill, with its upscale boutiques, and less affluent Germantown, where Ms. Solomon lives, it has long stood for upward black mobility.

“I often say this was the place where working-class black folks would come when they wanted some R and R,” Cherelle Parker, a member of the Philadelphia City Council and former state legislator, said. “But R and R has translated from rest and relaxation to reverse mortgages and retirement insecurity.”

Marlene Trice, who founded the Kitchen of Love, bears witness to these changes.

A no-nonsense woman with a booming voice and a penchant for T-shirts with sayings like “Keep Calm and Love Jesus,” Mrs. Trice, 69, and her husband, Clarence, 73, bought their home in East Mount Airy in 1969. He details cars; she worked at the prepared food counter at Pathmark — “I fried the chicken, made the hoagies, did the party trays” — until its parent company filed for bankruptcy last year.

“I thought I would work until I was 75,” she said.

In 1996, Mrs. Trice opened the food pantry in North Philadelphia, the poor neighborhood where she grew up. In 2010, a new recreation center was built in East Mount Airy. Ms. Parker suggested that Mrs. Trice move the pantry to the old center, in a boxy cinder-block building next to a playground and school.

“I said, ‘No, the people are not going to come out like they do in North Philly,’” Mrs. Trice recalled. “But now, let me tell you something: They made a liar out of me.”

Helping, and Receiving Help

Ms. Solomon turned up at the Kitchen of Love four years ago, frightened and sick. “I was hoping it would help me to eat better,” she said.

Still, during her 27 years at the Ford factory, later spun off as a subsidiary called Visteon, she “considered myself middle class.” Active in her union, she took trips to cities like Cincinnati, where she shook hands with Mr. Obama at the N.A.A.C.P. convention in 2008. She thought he might save the plant, but it closed in 2010. She does not blame him.

“I blame Ford,” she said.

A poster of the Obama family in Cuts Correct, a barbershop in Mount Airy. Many residents are mourning the end of President Obama’s tenure. Credit Hilary Swift for The New York Times

She was too young for early retirement, and the Affordable Care Act had not yet become law. She declined coverage under the Cobra program; she needed the money, she said, to buy heating oil for her house. When her unemployment compensation ran out, she dipped into her pension, agreeing to benefits at a vastly reduced rate: roughly $5,000 a year.

The local community college offers a human services program — “to prepare graduates for careers as professionals in mental health agencies and social services,” according to its website — and Ms. Solomon enrolled. She has no computer and was often on campus until 10 p.m.

“I wasn’t really eating,” she said. “Maybe twice a week I would go to the cafeteria and eat half a turkey sandwich with lettuce and tomatoes on, but most of the time I drank Mountain Dew and Pepsis and coffee and cakes to keep myself alert, for the sugar. I would wake up at 3 in the morning, trying to do homework.”

EAST MOUNT AIRY, Pa.

  • Population (2015)

    Mount Airy: 70,133 | Philadelphia: 1.5 million

  • Change in population, 2010-2015

    – 0.4 percent

  • People over 25 with a bachelor’s degree or higher

    21.9 percent

  • Racial and ethnic breakdown

    Mount Airy: 90.6 percent black, 6.2 percent white, 2 percent Hispanic (who may be of any race), 0.5 percent Asian Philadelphia: 43.0 percent black, 41.6 percent white, 13 percent Hispanic, 6.7 percent Asian

  • Median household income

    Mount Airy: $56,500 | Philadelphia metro area: $65,123

  • Home ownership

    71.44 percent

  • People living in poverty

    Mount Airy: 19.4 percent | Philadelphia: 26.7 percent

Then the fainting spells started. She spent five days in the hospital getting blood transfusions. Mrs. Trice later helped her find a doctor. Today, Ms. Solomon has health coverage through Medicaid, expanded in Pennsylvania under the Affordable Care Act.

“She came to me asking for help,” Mrs. Trice recalled. “And after maybe six months, she asked me, ‘Could I volunteer?’”

Uncertain Times

Parked outside Mrs. Trice’s home is a rusty white pickup truck, with 172,000 miles on it and a creaky driver’s-side door that needs to be slammed several times before it will shut. Stepping off the bus, Ms. Solomon pulled the key out of her purse: Her volunteer duties include driving to local grocery stores to pick up their castoffs.

As much as food, the Kitchen of Love offers comfort in an uncertain world. It is a place to debate whether the new Powerball lottery is a good value or a scam; to get tips on which programs help with home heating costs; to watch the schoolchildren, in uniforms of khaki and blue, scamper around the playground — and maybe get a kiss from a grandchild passing by.

It is also, lately, a place to vent about a presidential race that feels too horrible to watch, yet too compelling to avoid.

Raymond Melton, 11, left, and his brother, Eric, 9, playing basketball behind their Mount Airy home in September. Credit Hilary Swift for The New York Times

In Mr. Trump’s statements, people here concede, there is a tiny kernel of truth. Yes, there is violence in their community; Ms. Solomon, in her quiet grief, knows this. Yes, many people here lost their jobs, even under an African-American president, but some of Ms. Solomon’s friends from the factory are now employed.

When people here watch Trump rallies, some see imagery that reminds them of their childhoods in the Deep South; some go so far as to wonder if Mr. Trump’s supporters have been planted by the Ku Klux Klan. Their feelings about Mrs. Clinton are mixed, but those who are voting for president will vote for her.

They hold Republicans in disdain. But their reaction to Mr. Trump is especially deep and visceral.

“Back to slavery days,” Ms. Solomon said gravely. “Do as master say.”

But if Mr. Trump has brought racial animus to the fore, some see that as a blessing. “It kind of pulled a blindfold off of America,” Inez Muhammad, 54, a disabled federal worker, said.

Like many here and across the nation, Ms. Solomon is looking past Election Day: She fears that Washington “will be a mess,” with Mr. Trump kicking up a fuss if he loses. She has been working on her résumé and intends to re-enroll in college, to prove to her grandchildren that “if Nana can get a degree, you can too.”

In the meantime, she has volunteered to help Democrats register voters and pushing everyone she knows to go to the polls, especially her grandson, who is 18. “I told him, that’s not a given right for black people,” she said. “Too many people died for you to give up that right.”

Correction: October 31, 2016
Because of an editing error, an earlier version of a picture caption with this article stated incorrectly that Raymond Melton and his brother, Eric, were foster children and ate food provided by the Kitchen of Love pantry. Raymond and Eric live in the East Mount Airy neighborhood of Philadelphia, not from the food pantry.SOURCE

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IN REMEMBRANCE: 10-30-2016

SKIPPER LEE FRAZIER, LEGENDARY RADIO VETERAN AND MUSIC PROMOTER

Legendary Radio Veteran and Music Promoter, Skipper Lee Frazier, Dead at Age 89

When it comes to radio and music, there are certain individuals who are great, and then there are those who come along and set the bar so high that they become iconic and legendary. Sadly, Houston just lost one of the most iconic figures to ever grace the radio airwaves of Houston.slf05

Legendary radio veteran, community advocate, producer, promoter, manager and businessman, Skipper Lee Frazier, known for his signature voice and “Mountain of Soul” trademark, has passed away at the age of 89. He died this past Saturday, October 15, at his home surrounded by family members. Since 1954, until his death, Frazier has been involved with radio in Houston, and has served in various capacities, from disc jockey to ownership.

Frazier excelled beyond just merely being a radio personality. He was one of the greatest to ever grace the radio airwaves, but was also a successful businessman and one of the most successful music promoters to come out of the Greater Houston area.

“Skipper Lee was a true inspiration to me and was like the older big brother you never had,” said legendary sports talk show host Ralph Cooper. “The very first time I was on the radio was on his show, and he would bring me on his show on Fridays to predict football games. I was writing for the Forward Times at the time, and because of him I gained confidence to be a better broadcaster.”

Cooper emphasized how positive and encouraging Frazier was with everybody, and how he pushed people to do things that they could not see themselves doing.

“Although he was a local giant here in Houston, he always reached back and helped people,” said Cooper. “He included everybody on his program, including business owners and just regular members of the community. He also helped numerous local musicians and gave them exposure to show their talents across the country, like Archie Bell & The Drells. He will be truly missed.”

Another legendary disc jockey and signature voice talent, Don Sam, chimed in on Frazier’s passing.

“I remember meeting Skipper Lee in Barrett Station when I was about 13 years old and helping him bring his music in,” said Sam. “I remember cutting commercials with him and doing his drops on KWWJ. It was quite the journey to say the least and I will miss him much.”

From the time he was born on July 31, 1927, in the small Texas town of Magnolia Springs, TX, Frazier was an active and busy man. After finishing high school in Orange, TX, his father wanted him to study to become a doctor, so he went on to study at Southern University in Baton Rouge, LA. Frazier never wanted to become a doctor, so he decided to start taking some business courses. He gained a healthy appreciation for business ownership. After completing a certificate in tailoring, Frazier went into business for himself in Orange, making and selling clothes. Because most of his customers were in the construction business, however, he soon learned that they did not have enough spare money to buy his clothing because of the extended bouts of bad weather they had experienced over a several month period, causing him to shut down the business and do something else.

Frazier eventually found his way to Houston, and while working at Finger Furniture Company, he realized he wasn’t making much progress so he decided to apply for a job at the post office. While working at the post office for several years, he found himself listening to the radio one day and heard that a school for disc jockeys was opening in Houston. Frazier enrolled and finished the course, and after receiving his certificate, he learned that there was an opening at the legendary KYOK 1590 AM. A friend of his recommended him to the station owners, and while visiting his mother in Magnolia Springs, he received a phone call from his friend asking him if he wanted to be a disc jockey on KYOK. He hurried back to Houston, applied for the job and was hired as a part-time weekend disc jockey. Frazier worked on Sundays, all the way from 6 am to midnight. He would play gospel music in the morning, R&B in the afternoon and jazz at night. Frazier also had two radio personality names. In the morning and at night he went by the radio handle Lee Frazier, but during the afternoon he went by “Hip Skipper,” and that is when he became more and more popular. It was during that time that Frazier did record hops and talent shows, which eventually led him to manage many of Houston’s up-and-coming talents.

After working weekends at KYOK for three years, Frazier applied for a full-time job at KCOH radio, after they heard him doing his thing on KYOK for years. KCOH eventually hired him and he took over the 3 pm drive-time slot, which is when he began using his “Mountain of Soul” trademark theme song. It went like this:

“Skipper Lee, tell us your story. When did you come to Houston and why? This is my story. Last night as I tried to sleep, it seemed I could hear voices. These voices kept telling me, ‘Skipper Lee, steal away and carry a mountain of soul to Houston.’ Over and over again I kept hearing those voices. So I called my mother and I kissed her goodbye. I called my father in and shook his hand. As I walked out the door with my bags in my hand, I knelt down and kissed my little sister. Then I began the long, lonesome journey to carry a mountain of soul to Houston because I could not ignore those voices. Over and over again I kept hearing those voices. ‘Skipper Lee, steal away and carry a mountain of soul to Houston.’ Have mercy, have mercy. So here I am Houston! Here I am, Houston! I’ve brought a mountain of soul to this city. Have mercy, have mercy.”

Frazier came on every day with that signature trademark and it elevated him to one of the most popular radio personalities in Houston. His career in radio eventually led to his involvement in the music recording industry, where he set the bar for himself as manager, producer and promoter of several successful acts out of Houston, such as the Masters of Soul, Beau Williams (who was known then as Bobo Mr. Soul), the TSU (Texas State University) Toronadoes, as well as managing the group Archie Bell & the Drells, who became well-known for their 1968 gold number one R&B hit “Tighten Up,” written and produced by Frazier.

“Tighten Up” brought national acclaim to the city of Houston, and throughout Frazier’s association with the music industry, he was afforded the opportunity to promote shows for renowned artists such as James Brown, B. B. King, the O’Jays and Wes Montgomery. Frazier also became an extremely close friend of boxing legend Muhammad Ali.

Through his involvement in both radio and music management, he became the producer, promoter, booking agent and master of ceremonies of the KOOL Jazz Festival. The KOOL Jazz Festival was presented in several cities across the country and turned out to be a resounding success. He also hosted his very own television variety show titled “The Skipper Lee Show,” as well as ran an advertising business and operated budget motels. Then after a 55-year career, Frazier captured his iconic life in his very own autobiography entitled, “The Man Who Brought a Mountain of Soul to Houston, Texas: Autobiography of a Disc Jockey.”

Frazier eventually purchased a funeral home, which is known all across the city as Eternal Rest Funeral Home. After being out of radio for some years, Frazier eventually went back into radio as a gospel disc jockey on KWWJ Gospel 1360AM.

Frazier was inducted into the Texas Radio Hall of Fame on October 30, 2004 in San Antonio, TX, and donated all of his radio memorabilia, music and music contracts to the University of Texas Music Department.

The Celebration of Life and Homegoing Service for Skipper Lee Frazier will be at Jones Memorial at 11 a.m. on Friday, October 21, 2016. He will lie in state from 12-9 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday, with wakes on both days from 6-9 p.m. at Eternal Rest Funeral Home located at 4610 South Wayside, Houston, Texas 77087.

Expressions of sympathy may be sent to:

Sister Joyce Frazier & Family

4606 Wilmington St.

Houston, TX 77051

The Forward Times wishes to extend our heartfelt condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of Skipper Lee Frazier, and we celebrate the legacy he has left us all here in Houston.

SOURCE

Yes, he brought a mountain of soul to Houston.

Anyone growing up listening to the voice of “Skipper” Lee Frazier has nothing but the fondest and warmest memories of this self-effacing man who gave so much joy, love and commitment of himself to the Black community that was fortunate to have lived in Mr. Frazier’s heyday.

The music, the talk shows (loved those talk shows, especially Wash Allen’s show), the news reports and community information, those were wonderful times.

“Skipper Lee, tell us your story. When did you come to Houston and why? This is my story. Last night as I tried to sleep, it seemed I could hear voices. These voices kept telling me, ‘Skipper Lee, steal away and carry a mountain of soul to Houston.’ Over and over again I kept hearing those voices. So I called my mother and I kissed her goodbye. I called my father in and shook his hand. As I walked out the door with my bags in my hand, I knelt down and kissed my little sister. Then I began the long, lonesome journey to carry a mountain of soul to Houston because I could not ignore those voices. Over and over again I kept hearing those voices. ‘Skipper Lee, steal away and carry a mountain of soul to Houston.’ Have mercy, have mercy. So here I am Houston! Here I am, Houston! I’ve brought a mountain of soul to this city. Have mercy, have mercy.”

Now, Mr. Frazier has left, and I can only hope that wherever in the great beyond he goes, that he will be most appreciated.

Rest in peace, Mr. Skipper Lee Frazier.

Rest in peace.

*******************************************************

TOM HAYDEN, CIVIL RIGHTS AND ANTIWAR ACTIVIST TURNED LAWMAKER

 

Slide Show|12 Photos

Tom Hayden: 1939-2016

CreditJ. Emilio Flores for The New York Times

Tom Hayden, who burst out of the 1960s counterculture as a radical leader of America’s civil rights and antiwar movements, but rocked the boat more gently later in life with a progressive political agenda as an author and California state legislator, died on Sunday in Santa Monica, Calif. He was 76.

His wife, Barbara Williams, said he died in a hospital. He had been treated for heart problems and fell ill in July while attending the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. He lived in Los Angeles.

During the racial unrest and antiwar protests of the 1960s and early ’70s, Mr. Hayden was one of the nation’s most visible radicals. He was a founder of Students for a Democratic Society, a defendant in the Chicago Seven trial after riots at the 1968 Democratic National Convention, and a peace activist who married Jane Fonda, went to Hanoi and escorted American prisoners of war home from Vietnam.

As a civil rights worker, he was beaten in Mississippi and jailed in Georgia. In his cell he began writing what became the Port Huron Statement, the political manifesto of S.D.S. and the New Left that envisioned an alliance of college students in a peaceful crusade to overcome what it called repressive government, corporate greed and racism. Its aim was to create a multiracial, egalitarian society.

In 1974, with the Vietnam War in its final stages after American military involvement had all but ended, Mr. Hayden and Ms. Fonda, who were married by then, traveled across Vietnam, talking to people about their lives after years of war, and produced a documentary film, “Introduction to the Enemy.” Detractors labeled it Communist propaganda, but Nora Sayre, reviewing it for The New York Times, called it a “pensive and moving film.”

Tom Hayden speaking in Lincoln Park in Chicago during the Democratic National Convention in August 1968. Credit Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Later, with the war over and the idealisms of the ’60s fading, Mr. Hayden settled into a new life as a family man, writer and mainstream politician. In 1976, he ran for the Democratic nomination for the United States Senate from California, declaring, “The radicalism of the 1960s is fast becoming the common sense of the 1970s.” He lost to the incumbent, Senator John V. Tunney.

But focusing on state and local issues like solar energy and rent control, he won a seat in the California Legislature in Sacramento in 1982. He was an assemblyman for a decade and a state senator from 1993 to 2000, sponsoring bills on the environment, education, public safety and civil rights. He lost a Democratic primary for California governor in 1994, a race for mayor of Los Angeles in 1997 and a bid for a seat on the Los Angeles City Council in 2001.

He was often the target of protests by leftists who called him an outlaw hypocrite, and by Vietnamese refugees and American military veterans who called him a traitor. Conservative news media kept alive the memories of his radical days. In a memoir, “Reunion” (1988), he described himself as a “born-again Middle American” and expressed regret for “romanticizing the Vietnamese” and allowing his antiwar zeal to turn into anti-Americanism.

“His soul-searching and explanations make fascinating reading,” The Boston Globe said, “but do not, he concedes, pacify critics on the left who accuse him of selling out to personal ambition or on the right ‘who tell me to go back to Russia.’ He says he doesn’t care.”

“I get re-elected,” Mr. Hayden told The Globe. “To me, that’s the bottom line. The issues persons like myself are working on are modern, workplace, neighborhood issues.”

Thomas Emmet Hayden was born in Royal Oak, Mich., on Dec. 11, 1939, the only child of John Hayden, an accountant, and the former Genevieve Garity, both Irish Catholics. His parents divorced, and Tom was raised by his mother, a film librarian.

A federal marshal escorts Mr. Hayden in San Francisco after he was indicted in connection with antiwar protests at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago. Credit Associated Press

At Dondero High School in Royal Oak, Mr. Hayden was editor of the student newspaper. His final editorial before graduation in 1957 almost cost him his diploma. In his exhortation to old-fashioned patriotism, he encrypted, in the first letter of each paragraph, an acrostic for “Go to hell.”

His turn to radical politics began at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, where he was inspired by student protests against the anti-Communist witch hunts of the House Un-American Activities Committee and by lunch counter sit-ins by black students in Greensboro, N.C. He met Dr. King in California in the summer of 1960 and soon joined sit-in protests and voter registration drives in the South.

Perceiving a need for a national student organization to coordinate civil rights projects around the country, he and 35 like-minded activists formed Students for a Democratic Society at Ann Arbor in 1960. He also became editor of the campus newspaper, The Michigan Daily. He earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology at Michigan in 1961 and did graduate work there in 1962 and 1963.

His marriage in 1961 to Sandra Cason, a civil rights worker, ended after two years. He met Ms. Fonda at an antiwar rally, and they were married in 1973. They had a son, Troy Garity. Ms. Fonda had a daughter, Vanessa, by a previous marriage, to the film director Roger Vadim. Mr. Hayden and Ms. Fonda divorced in 1990.

Mr. Hayden married Ms. Williams, a Canadian actress, in 1993. They adopted a son, Liam. Along with his wife, Mr. Hayden is survived by the three children as well as two grandchildren and a sister, Mary Frey.

Mr. Hayden joined the Freedom Riders on interstate buses in the South in 1961, challenging the authorities who had refused to enforce the Supreme Court’s rulings banning segregation on public buses. His jailhouse draft of what became the 25,000-word S.D.S. manifesto was debated, revised and formally adopted at the organization’s first convention, in Port Huron, Mich., in 1962.

“We are people of this generation,” it began, “bred in at least modest comfort, housed now in universities, looking uncomfortably to the world we inherit.”

Tom Hayden after announcing he would run for the Democratic nomination for the United States Senate from California in 1976. Credit Walter Zeboski/Associated Press

It did not recommend specific programs but attacked the arms race, racial discrimination, bureaucracy and apathy in the face of poverty, and it called for “participatory democracy” and a society based on “fraternity,” “honesty” and “brotherhood.”

He made the first of several trips to Vietnam in 1965, accompanying Herbert Aptheker, a Communist Party theoretician, and Staughton Lynd, a radical professor at Yale. While the visit was technically illegal, it was apparently ignored by the State Department to allow the American peace movement and Hanoi to establish informal contacts. The group went to Hanoi and toured villages and factories in North Vietnam. Mr. Hayden wrote a book, “The Other Side” (1966), about the experience.

At Hanoi’s invitation, he attended a 1967 conference in Bratislava, in what was then Czechoslovakia, and met North Vietnamese leaders, who agreed to release some captured American prisoners as a gesture of “solidarity” with the American peace movement. Mr. Hayden then made a second journey to Hanoi to discuss the details. Soon afterward he picked up three American P.O.W.s at a rendezvous in Cambodia and escorted them home.

Directing an S.D.S. antipoverty project in Newark from 1964 to 1967, Mr. Hayden, in his last year there, witnessed days of rioting, looting and destruction that left 26 people dead and hundreds injured. The experience led to “Rebellion in Newark” (1967), in which he wrote, “Americans have to turn their attention from the lawbreaking violence of the rioters to the original and greater violence of racism.”

In 1968, Mr. Hayden helped plan antiwar protests in Chicago to coincide with the Democratic National Convention. Club-swinging police officers clashed with thousands of demonstrators, injuring hundreds in a televised spectacle that a national commission later called a police riot.

But federal officials charged Mr. Hayden and others with inciting to riot and conspiracy. The Chicago Seven trial became a classic confrontation between radicals and Judge Julius Hoffman, marked by insults, angry judicial outbursts and contempt citations.

In 1970, all seven defendants were acquitted of conspiracy, but Mr. Hayden and four others — Abbie Hoffman, Jerry Rubin, David Dellinger and Rennie Davis — were convicted of inciting to riot and sentenced to five years in prison. The verdicts were overturned on appeal, as were various contempt citations, on the basis of judicial bias. Mr. Hayden’s book “Trial” (1970) recounted the events.

Mr. Hayden at his Los Angeles home in 2014. Credit Emily Berl for The New York Times

(The Chicago Seven trial was originally the Chicago Eight trial, with the Black Panther leader Bobby Seale included as a defendant. After his repeated outbursts in court, calling Judge Hoffman “a pig” and “a fascist,” the judge ordered him bound and gagged in his chair — the image of a black man chained in court shocked many Americans — and later severed his case for a separate trial that was never adjudicated. Judge Hoffman sentenced Mr. Seale to four years in prison on 16 counts of contempt of court, but he served only 21 months before the citations were overturned on appeal.)

Mr. Hayden was Gov. Jerry Brown’s appointed chairman of the SolarCal Council, which encourages solar energy development, from 1978 to 1982. He lost a Democratic primary for governor in 1994 to Kathleen Brown, the governor’s sister, who lost the general election to the Republican governor, Pete Wilson. In 1997, as the Democratic candidate for mayor of Los Angeles, Mr. Hayden lost to the Republican incumbent, Richard J. Riordan.

After his legislative career, he directed the Peace and Justice Resource Center in Culver City, Calif., a platform for his opposition to wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. He taught at California colleges and at Harvard, and wrote articles for The Times, The Washington Post and The Nation.

Mr. Hayden wrote more than 20 books, including several memoirs, re-examinations of the civil rights and antiwar movements, and volumes on street gangs, Vietnam, his own Irish heritage, the environment and the future of the United States. In 2015, he explored American relations with Cuba in “Listen, Yankee!: Why Cuba Matters.” His last book, “Hell No: The Forgotten Power of the Vietnam Movement,” is to be published early next year by Yale University Press.

His personal papers, 120 boxes covering his life since the 1960s, were given in 2014 to the University of Michigan. Besides troves on civil rights and antiwar activities, they included 22,000 pages of F.B.I. files amassed in a 16-year surveillance of Mr. Hayden.

“One of your prime objectives,” J. Edgar Hoover, the longtime F.B.I. director, said in one memo, “should be to neutralize him in the New Left movement.”

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. . . .AND NOW FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT: “BLACK WOMEN MARRY YOURSELF A WHITE MAN!

 

They were called the Kings of Comedy.

Richard Pryor and George Carlin.

But, if they could come back to this world, I would advise them to come with pencil and pad in hand.

This man is a true comedian and the following routine would make even Richard and George fall down laughing their guts out.

“Obama’s father in heat!”

“Went a-whoring after Obama’s White mother!”

“Black men taking you to MacDonald!”

“White men being thrown out the truck/seat/door of a car!”

“Ask me, I’ll perform the ceremony!” (“I will not perform same-sex marriages!”)

ROFLMAO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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WORLD CITIES DAY: OCTOBER 31, 2016

WORLD CITIES DAY

 

Quito, Ecuador

The Habitat III Conference was held in Quito, Ecuador. Photo: Rocio Franco.

“Cities are increasingly the home of humanity. They are central to climate action, global prosperity, peace and human rights.” — UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon

2016 Theme: Inclusive Cities, Shared Development

Recognizing the significance of urban basic services as a foundation for the overall social and economic development, the UN General Assembly designated by resolution 68/239 31 October as World Cities Day.

Planned urbanization maximizes the capacity of cities to generate employment and wealth, and to foster diversity and social cohesion between different classes, cultures, ethnicities and religions. Cities designed to live together create opportunities, enable connection and interaction, and facilitate sustainable use of shared resources.

This year, the United Nations has selected the theme Inclusive Cities, Shared Development to highlight the important role of urbanization as a source of global development and social inclusion.

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SKYWATCH: SPOOKY SIGHTS FOR HALLOWEEN NIGHTS, WHAT HAPPENED TO SCHIAPARELLI, AND MORE

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Schiaparelli: Requiem for a Mars Lander

Sky & Telescope

New glimpses from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and ongoing data analysis are revealing the fate of the Schiaparelli lander.

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Astronomers Map Milky Way in Incredible Detail

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Astronomers have mapped atomic neutral hydrogen across the entire sky, creating an unprecedented portrait of our galaxy and some of its nearest neighbors.

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Orbital Path 11: Black Hole Breakthroughs

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Michelle Thaller talks black holes with three experts – how do we know they exist, where do they come from, and how can we learn more about them without getting too close?

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OBSERVING HIGHLIGHTS

This Week’s Sky at a Glance, October 28 – November 5

Sky & Telescope

Halloween is approaching, and this means that Arcturus, the star sparkling low in the west-northwest in twilight, is taking on its role as “the Ghost of Summer Suns.”

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Jupiter Returns with a Surprise

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The gas giant is emerging in the glow of dawn sporting an tumultuous North Temperate Belt.

Take a look…

New Bright Nova in Sagittarius

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A nova in Sagittarius, discovered a few nights ago by a Japanese amateur, has become bright enough to see in binoculars.

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Spooky Nebulae for Halloween Nights

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While the kids are gathering sweet treats this Halloween, get a celestial scare with these frightful deep-sky sights.

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Tour November’s Sky: Hello, Venus!

Sky & Telescope

Download our monthly astronomy podcast to track down Saturn in the evening sky one last time. Mars is still hanging around, and Venus is climbing higher each evening.

Tune in…

 

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