Tuesday, December 22, 2015

S.A.L.T. Wayback Presents - R. Kelly To Write Memoirs

Ed. Note:  In 2009, it was announced that R. Kelly was writing his memoirs.  Pepperidge Farm remembers, and so do I, especially in the wake of R. Kelly making the news again.


R. Kelly is preparing to enter into a media realm. As reported elsewhere, R. Kelly will be preparing to write his memoirs. In a blockbuster Chubby Afro/Shut'cher Gobbige Mowf EXCLUSIVE, we have acquired leaked first drafts of some of this explosive tome.

R. Kelly (born Robert Sylvester Kelly) begins by telling the world what drew him to the cut-throat, lucrative, and intense business of being an entertainer:

Kelz and his humble beginnings

Very telling. Very telling.

In this yet-untitled memoir, Kelly also explains the creative process behind his hit R&B opera, "Trapped In The Closet, Parts 1 through Infinity":

Kelly details the intense creative process behind "Trapped In The Closet"

The piece-de-resistance of the leaked excerpts is next. Finally free to speak his mind about the child pornography charges that have dogged him for years, Kelly uses his memoir to express exactly how that infamous night went down. Kelly breaking his silence on this issue is incredible. Simply incredible:

R. Kelly finally breaks his silence on the charges that he faced.

We expect that this memoir will set the literary world aflame.

Stay tuned, as we may have more exclusive excerpts in the near future.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Boss Rahm Must Go! (...but not so fast...)

Behold Boss Rahm.  The Rahm-Father.  Chicago's mayor, the Honorable Rahm Emanuel.  He managed to squeak into his second term as mayor in 2014, after defeating candidate Jesus "Chuy" Garcia in a run-off election.  For what it's worth, the restructuring of the mayoral race was designed to prevent such a thing from happening.  Chicago's mayors are selected by popular vote, in a non-partisan race.  If no candidate has 50% of the vote, then a run-off election decides the winner.  He was elected in 2011, with his primary positives being not Pharaoh Richard Daley and the former Chief of Staff for President Obama.

But enough history.

Right now, Boss Rahm is very vulnerable.  The shooting death of Laquan McDonald has revealed some horrifying information about the city of Chicago, the Chicago Police Department, and the stink goes all the way up to the 5th Floor of City Hall.  Long story short, Laquan was shot by the police.  The police spun a narrative saying that Laquan, while high on PCP, lunged at the police, forcing Officer Jason Van Dyke to open fire, shooting Laquan twice in the chest and killing him.  That was the prevailing narrative for over a year, and the narrative was carried through in press releases and comments from the head of the local chapter of the Fraternal Order of Police.  But for a whistle-blower, some actual investigative journalists, the Freedom of Information Act, and a judge's court order, that would STILL be the prevailing narrative.

But thanks to these efforts, the truth came out.  The horrific video (which is available everywhere on the 'net) shows Laquan walking AWAY from the cops, with Van Dyke then opening fire twice.  And after Laquan's body hits the ground, Van Dyke empties his clip, shooting Laquan 14 more times.  14 more bullets enter into a dead teenager's body.  The video was so damning and so revealing that the city settled with the family for $5 million, even before the family had a chance to file a civil or wrongful-death suit.  And guess who fought to keep the video from being released?

You guessed it, Boss Rahm.

After the video was released, the city has seen protest after protest.  They were peaceful protests, and as a side note, I will never buy the Chicago Sun-Times for their coverage of the Black Friday protests.

Pictured:  Irresponsible journalism and something to line your cat's litter box.
Cook County District Attorney Anita Alvarez actually charged Officer Van Dyke with murder, but her record with prosecuting police and being on the side of the people isn't exactly stellar.  She is vulnerable, as well, as her former allies are turning on her and abandoning her.  But this isn't about her for now, although she has her own metric ton of questions that need to be answered.

Since the video has been released, lots of people are taking the hit.  Garry McCarthy was the first major figure to take a hit.  After meeting with the media, Garry assured himself that everything was fine.

McCarthy:  Rahm, did you hear that? Sounds like a bus...
Rahm:  No, didn't here a thing... now if you can just stand over THERE...

That was the sound of Boss Rahm throwing McCarthy under the bus.  But that was just the first in several dominoes to fall.  U.S. Attorney General has announced that the U.S. Justice Department will investigate the Chicago Police Department in the wake of the Laquan McDonald shooting.  And the aftermath has caused other rats to leave the sinking ship.  Among them are Chicago Police Chief of Detectives Constantine "Dean" Andrews, and Scott Ando, the head of the Independent Police Review Authority.  The latter is especially interesting, since the purpose of the Independent Police Review Authority was to independently investigate bad cops.  But the Blue Wall of Silence was so pervasive that one of its investigators was fired because he wouldn't cook the books to make police look good.

Which brings us back to the very vulnerable Boss Rahm.  He is trying to salvage his career by creating a "Task Force" to "strengthen the fabric of trust between the Chicago Police Department and the communities it protects.  But that is doing little to reduce the calls for Boss Rahm to be tossed from office.  There was a huge protest today (12/9) that spilled into the James R. Thompson Center, because City Hall was locked down.  The calls for Boss Rahm to step down are coming from all corners of the city.  But I think that Boss Rahm should not be given the luxury of resigning from office.  Voters have notoriously short memories, and if Boss Rahm is allowed to walk away, the outrage that is felt now will have dissipated by the time the next mayoral election rolls around.

In the wake of these shootings, investigations, and whatever else the Justice Department uncovers, Boss Rahm should stay in office.  He should stay in office and answer all of the questions he has to face.  He should have to answer questions about what he knew about the Laquan McDonald shooting, and when he knew it.  He should answer questions about why, under his watch, an Independent Police Review Authority inspector was fired for doing exactly what his job called for him to do.  Every remaining moment of Boss Rahm's mayoral career should be moments holding him accountable for everything that happened under his watch.  Every Chicago tax payer's dollar that was used to settle cases involving terrible police officers.  Every officer in the McDonald shooting that signed off on the original, false narrative that remains on the job.  Every school privatization horror story involving terrible food.  Every dollar of funds used in Barbara Byrd-Bennett's schemes (and what did he know about HER, and when did he know THAT)?

Edited to add:

In my haste, I forgot about a particular incident where Boss Rahm went into full Corleone mode.  He basically said to youth leaders, Black clergy, and members of the City Council Black Caucus that "it would be a shame if there were no jobs funneled into your community because of these protests."  THAT was Boss Rahm being the same man who sent his opposition a dead fish wrapped in a newspaper.

If we have the political and intestinal fortitude, Boss Rahm can either be forced out of office in disgrace or (my preferred choice) dragged into the next mayoral race as a lame duck, which would be a first for Chicago.  And up until that moment, the voters can actually put action behind the protests and show up at the polls in unprecedented amounts.  Boss Rahm can receive the public condemnation and repudiation from the public that he so richly deserves as he is unceremoniously cast from office.  

As for his replacement and the next mayor of Chicago?  I have an idea.

The Honorable Dr. Amara Enyia, Mayor Of Chicago
...I can dream, can't I?

Friday, October 16, 2015

Raven-Symone Corleone Strikes Again

An open letter to Raven-Symone (Corleone - as in "Fredo Corleone").

Dear Ms. Symone... or is it Raven-Symone'?  Ms. Raven-Symone'?  And why do you have a little accent over a silent "e"?

I digress.

Recently, you went on TV talking about how you wouldn't hire anyone with a "ghetto" name, using names like "Watermelondrea" for example.  You have since apologized.  But before I get into what's grinding my gears, let me give you a gentle reminder.

"Don't do the crime if you can't do the time..."
When you go on TV looking like Baretta's cockatoo after it fell into a vat of Kool-Aid, AND your name has a dash AND an accent-mark over a silent letter, you do not have the moral high ground to call anything else "embarrassing."  But when it seems that you kinda hit rock bottom, you started digging.

On national TV, you let yourself get checked by the Coultergeist.  By Evil Incarnate.  By Ann Coulter.

Pictured:  Evil Incarnate in its flesh costume
The Coultergeist was on "The View", and Raven attempted to call Coulter out on some of the hateful things that Coulter said.  It should have been an easy task, since Coulter has gone on record spewing hate at anyone who isn't a white, Christian male.  Race, religion, 911... you name it, there isn't a topic that she hasn't spewed hateful bile all over, corroding and corrupting everything she encounters.  She's a racist, she's vile, and she is an attention whore.  There is nothing that she won't say to keep her disgusting name and visage in the public eye.

Which brings us to today, Raven.  It sounded like you were attempting to shame Coulter, but this soulless monster has no shame.  You brought up how it's mean of her to say mean things, and she countered with... well, let's go to the tape.

She counters your "feel good" comments with your comments about Black names and then... she shuts you up, because she claims that at least she is talking about policy, while you're just insulting people with their names.  And then... SILENCE.

How could you let her work you into a corner like that, when there is SO. MUCH. MATERIAL. to work from?  The Coultergeist talks POLICY?  You let that slide, and you have gone down in infamy like so many Hindenburgs.

Oh, the humanity.

Artist's rendition of Raven Symone
Do you not do any research on your show?

"Our Blacks are better than their Blacks." - Ann Coulter on Black conservatives vs. Black liberals

"These broads are millionaires, lionized on TV and in articles about them, reveling in their status as celebrities and stalked by griefparrazies.  I have never seen people enjoying their husband's deaths so much. - Ann Coulter on 9/11 widows

"We need to execute people like (John Walker Lindh) in order to physically intimidate liberals."

"My only regret with Timothy McVeigh is that he did not go to the New York Times Building." - Ann Coulter on domestic terrorist Timothy McVeigh

"I think the government should be spying on all Arabs, engaging in torture as a televised spectator sport, dropping daisy cutters wantonly throughout the Middle East and sending liberals to Guantanamo." - Ann Coulter on civil liberties

This was just off the top of the head, and with a very quick Google search.  You let this venomous creature shut you down because she rope-a-doped (emphasis on DOPE, ya dope) you into a corner with claims that her comments are based solely on policy.  NOTHING from what was quoted above has anything to do with "policy", except that it represents the worst of conservative ideology.  Now, instead of the news cycle being about your stupid comment about names, the pop culture news cycle is about people actually and regretfully taking the Coultergeist's side, or at least giving her props for shutting you down.

A common reaction to having to choose between Raven Symone and the Coultergeist
Once again, you have disappointed everyone around you.  There are no winners here.

And once again, Raven Symone...

Do better, Raven-Symone Corleone.  Let people know that you're "smart and not dumb, like people say."

Monday, October 12, 2015

Tamir Rice And Why "Black Lives Matter" Is Needed

The other day, "independent experts" have ruled that the Tamir Rice shooting was justified.  Of course, this set off a firestorm of controversy.  I have been stating that this "justification" ruling was why Black Lives Matter was needed.  And people have been responding that the Black Lives Matter movement is racist.

Here is my response when people say that this movement is racist:

Black Lives Matter is not racist. People tend to translate "Black Lives Matter" as "Black Lives Matter, but others, not so much." But in reality, it's "Black Lives Matter, As Well As Everyone Else's." Black Lives Matter isn't to the exclusion of anyone else. In an ideal situation, the officer that shot Tamir Rice would be under intense scrutiny. But when innocent Black people are shot by police, THEIR lives are placed under a microscope. "They must have had it coming." "They deserved it." "They were thugs anyway."

Tamir Rice was a 12-year-old child playing with a toy gun, in a state where open-carry is legal. It stands to reason that if Tamir was an adult with a real gun, he would have survived his encounter. Now here, you might say that I'm pulling the "race card", but I have seen plenty of videos of adult white people with real guns encounter police, and they tell the police what's what. One guy even told the police to stand down. Tamir Rice wasn't given that luxury, as he was gunned down within seconds of his encounter with the police.

In the wake of the shooting, and this "justification" ruling, more people were blaming Tamir for the heinous crime of playing with his gun. In another situation with cops and a white person with guns, there was a white male walking the streets with a gun. When the police approached him, they backed off. Then, they formed a perimeter. Then, they talked to the guy. Eventually, they de-escalated the situation to the point where one of the officers could sit on a curb next to the gunman, TALKING. Again, a luxury not afforded young Mr. Rice.

Black Lives Matter because the cop that shot Tamir should not have been on the Cleveland police force to begin with, but TAMIR'S life was under a bigger microscope than this officer's life. Black Lives Matter because a 12-year-old Black child should have a greater benefit of the doubt in a case involving lethal force than an objectively incompetent police officer.

Black Lives Matter because Tamir Rice, John Crawford III, Amidou Diallo, Akai Gurley, Rekesha Boyd, Sandra Bland, etc ad infinitum, should not have had death as the ultimate consequence of their encounter with police. Black Lives Matter because Abner Louima should not have been assaulted with a plunger. Black Lives Matter because a baby should not be injured by a flash grenade. Black Lives Matter because a Black teenaged girl shouldn't be slammed to the ground by a police officer. Black Lives Matter because a Black woman shouldn't be pummeled by a cop straddling her like he's working on MMA ground and pound techniques.  Black Lives Matter because Bruce Springsteen should not have had to make this song:

And to those who talk about white people facing police brutality, I would simply ask these questions: Aren't you angry about that? If not, why not?

Because regardless, you still get killed for living in your American Skin.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Yes, The Southern Strategy Was A Thing

Conservatives love re-writing history.  Advanced Placement (AP) History and other high school history classes are being rewritten to downplay all of the nasty things about America, like Jim Crow or the Ku Klux Klan.  Some have even gone so far as to re-write American History to feature Moses as an honorary Founding Father.

"Fourscore and seven thousand years ago... wait... HERE is where the HAND OF GOD signed the Declaration of Independence..."

Recently, on MSNBC's Facebook page, I read a post from a guy stating why Republicans and Black people are "natural allies."  He calmly stated his point, citing the Democratic Party's terrible track record with slavery and civil rights.  However, like most conservatives and fans of revisionist history, his comments included a denial that the Southern Strategy ever happened.  Rather than respond point for point, I just responded with the following, and this will be my official response when someone either states that the Democrats are still the party that supports slavery, that the Southern Strategy never happened, and/or the Republicans are the party of civil and human rights.

If you believe that the Democrats that supported slavery are the same Democrats today, then there's probably nothing that I can say to convince you otherwise. However, here are some facts to consider:

1. If you ask any white supremacist, raci
st, or member of any Aryan groups if they align themselves with the party that has an African-American with the middle name of Hussein as their standard bearer, their answers might surprise you. And, ask them if they align themselves with a party that supports things such as marriage equality, wage equality, affirmative action, and the like.

2. Upon the election of President Obama, which party felt that it was no problem mailing out racist mailers, such as those with the White House covered in watermelons, or the President's face on a bucket of chicken?

3. Regarding the horrors of slavery that the Republicans back then fought against: Which party today is crying the loudest about the removal of the Confederate flag from government institutions, such as the South Carolina State Capitol? And which party is trying its best to preserve "heritage not hate" regarding the Confederate flag? And let me know if you want to defend the "heritage" of the Confederate flag. If you do, since you're well-versed in history, you will want to include such things as the Cornerstone Speech by the Vice President of the Confederacy, and the words of the Confederate flag's designer - all of which supported white supremacy and the subjugation of Africans in America.

4. Let's look at Voting Rights. Yes, the Republicans back then fought in favor of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. But when the conservative-leaning Supreme Court decimated this landmark legislation, as yourself this: Which party TODAY celebrated by passing draconian "voter ID laws" that reminded Civil Rights stalwarts such as John Lewis of the time before this legislation was passed? And which party today is now fighting to have this legislation restored?

You may have convinced yourself that there was no ideological switch between the parties, but history, facts, and the modern ideals of both parties say otherwise.

And lastly, which party TODAY has pundits that tell Black people that we ought to be THANKFUL for the horrors of the TransAtlantic Slave Trade? The key to answering this question is by Googling "Jesse Lee Peterson."

Edited to add the following regarding GOP Presidential Front-Runner, one Donald J. Trump


If you really believe that the Republicans are the party of civil rights, and that the Democrats are the party of racists, then ask yourself this:

In recent memory, when was the last time that someone felt comfortable enough to yell "White Power" and pass out racist literature at a Democratic Party Presidential candidate's rally?  Because that certainly DID happen at Donald Trump's rally.

Edited again, because the hits just keep on coming.

One more thing to my conservative brothers and sisters.  If the Democrats are the pro-slavery party, when was the last time a liberal media host talked about slavery?  And you know where this is going.

A conservative Iowa radio host, who is supposedly an Iowa king-maker for the Republicans (think Karl Rove on a local level), offered a unique solution to the immigration problem.  If they don't leave, they become property of the state.  Property.  PROPERTY.  In other words, under this guy's plan, immigrants who don't leave become SLAVES.  And he thinks that idea is just peachy-keen.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Why We, As Progressives, STAY Losing

Black Lives Matter vs. Bernie Sanders

This is why, as progressives, as liberals, as people trying to fight the good fight, we STAY losing.  We stay too busy trying to fight the small skirmishes, fight the little battles, fight the inconsequential wars and then stay home when it really matters.  

The latest example comes from some Black Lives Matter activists shutting down a campaign rally by U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders.  He was there to speak about some of his campaign issues, specifically, Social Security, Medicare, and Medicare.  He was shut down by activists who refused to let him even speak.  I don't understand it, and it's counterproductive.  Then, I saw a Facebook post that seems to encapsulate the defense of these activists:

 #‎BernieSanders‬ needs to get with ghe program. While we as young black people understand what he has done in the past, and we are well aware of the Medicare and Medicaid system and its affects on our elderly family members of color. Bernie needs to understand that his speeches aren't addressing racism. Until he addresses racism and how the system he wants to change was built on that notion, ‪#‎BlackLivesMatter‬ will continue to interrupt his rallies. He is the only one talking the talk and #BlackLivesMatter wants him to walk the walk. He can and we hope that he does because he could win the election with a landslide. We will see how this plays out...

Bernie Sanders needs to "get with the program"?  Maybe it's me, but if I recall correctly, Sanders was "with the program" before most of these activists were even born.  As for Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security, this response is the epitome of being short-sighted.  EVERYONE can be potentially affected by cuts in any of these programs.  A simple Google search can help explain the difference between Medicare and Medicaid.  While Medicare is a program that assists senior citizens, Medicaid assists poor families, period.  And these activists are shutting down one of the candidates who has always defended these programs.  Then, this person says that Senator Sanders' speeches don't address racism.  If they were serious about confronting Sanders' stance on racism, then they might want to visit his site to see where he stands on the issues.  And here is just a snippet:

  • We must demilitarize our police forces so they don’t look and act like invading armies.
  • We must invest in community policing. Only when we get officers into the communities, working within neighborhoods before trouble arises, do we develop the relationships necessary to make our communities safer together. Among other things, that means increasing civilian oversight of police departments.
  • The fight for minority voting rights is a fight for justice. It is inseparable from the struggle for democracy itself.

    • We must work vigilantly to ensure that every American, regardless of skin color or national origin, is able to vote freely and easily.Congress must restore the Voting Rights Act’s “pre-clearance” provision, which extended protections to minority voters in states where they were clearly needed.
    • We must expand the Act’s scope so that every American, regardless of skin color or national origin, is able to vote freely.

    • We need to ban prisons for profit, which result in an over-incentive to arrest, jail and detain, in order to keep prison beds full.
    • We need to turn back from the failed “War on Drugs” and eliminate mandatory minimums which result in sentencing disparities between black and white people.
    • Knowing that black women earn 64 cents on the dollar compared to white men, we must pass federal legislation to establish pay equity for women.
    • We must prevent employers from discriminating against applicants based on criminal history.

Then, the writer admits that Bernie Sanders talks the talk, but the activists want to see him walk the walk.  Maybe it's me, but demanding that arguably one of the most progressive, left-leaning candidates "walk the walk" while admitting that he "talks the talk" is counterproductive.  You want him to address racism, but then you shut him down to the point that he can't even speak about ANY of the issues, let alone racism.  

The activists promise to interrupt the campaign rallies.  But here's what gets me.  They are shutting down someone that is arguably on their side, while letting the people vehemently OPPOSED to them off the hook.  We just had a Presidential debate that featured a Kid's Table debate and a prime-time debate.  Not one activist tried to shut them down.  One of my friends posited that it's because these kinds of activists wouldn't be let near a Republican campaign event.  But because Sen. Sanders grants them access, they will use that access to disrupt the event.  Again, this is counterproductive, because if Bernie Sanders starts restricting access, then what have we won?  Who have we convinced about the issues?

This kind of ideological purity is what kills us every time.  EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.  We saw it when some progressives stayed home from the 2010 midterm elections, and it allowed the Tea Potty to gain the control it has now.  Why?  Because President Obama had not walked on water as part of his first term.  We see it again when the President is heckled... BY PEOPLE HE INVITES TO THE PROGRAMS... because he's not... what... behaving like a benevolent emperor and eliminating problems with a wave of his hand?

Someone on Twitter replied to my question by saying that the BLM activists don't like Hillary Clinton, either.  To my knowledge, I haven't seen a Clinton event shut down by some of these activists.  And to a bigger point, if this were a matter of simply "not liking the candidate", then they should be chasing EVERY GOP CANDIDATE across the country with pitchforks and torches until these problems are erased.

So, who are we going to go after and shut down:  The guy(s) on our side that doesn't say EXACTLY what we want to hear, EXACTLY when we want to hear it, RIGHT THEN AND THERE, or the guy(s) that openly stand AGAINST the things that we stand for, and dare us to do something about it?

It should be a simple choice, but apparently, it's not.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

The Sandra Bland Dashcam Video...

A few days ago, I saw a video of a white guy being stopped at a DUI checkpoint in Tennessee.  He rolled his window down partly.  The cop demanded that the guy roll his window all the way down, and the guy refused, stating that as long as the cop can hear and see him, he's fine.  The cop demanded that the guy identify himself, and the guy refused, citing his Constitutional rights.  The cop used some trickery with a police dog to suggest that there may be a suspicion of drugs.  The dog followed the commands and made actions as if the dog detected drugs.  With that, the cop was able to search the guy's car without his consent.

Upon searching the car (on a bogus search), the cop talks to another cop, and they commend the guy (when he was out of earshot) on knowing his Constitutional rights.  They then see that they are being recorded.  The guy lives to tell the tale and post the video.

Contrast that to the Sandra Bland video, where the cop demanded that she get out of her car because she wouldn't put out her cigarette.  He manhandled her and threatened to taze her.  Now, you can't tell me that someone who is willing to put up a fight for her Constitutional rights suddenly becomes suicidal.  You can't tell me that a woman who recognized that she was being mistreated (and who TRIED TO RECORD THE INCIDENT HERSELF and said that she will take this to court) suddenly decided to end it all.  I'm no health care expert, but that dash cam video does not reveal a person surrendering in a struggle with mental illness. I saw a woman who wasn't going down without a fight, and I'm very suspicious that in jail, the cops gave her a little "tune-up" to adjust her "attitude."

I couldn't watch all of it, but I saw more than enough of what was needed.

"...and you want us to say 'God bless America?!  NO, NO, NO... not God BLESS America..."

You said it, Doctor.   You said it all right there...

Saturday, July 11, 2015


Welcome to the Chronicles Of S.A.L.T. (Socially Awkward Life of Ty).  See the welcome mat?  Come on in.

What can you expect here?  Well, this will be a consolidation of the things that I currently blog about, like politics, and faith and spirituality.  I will try to post about music that I like, pop culture, my hobbies (including photography), and maybe post about semi-personal and awkward things, like dating and health.

I got the idea to consolidate my blogs by following people like My Name Is Not Matt, Real Awkward Moments, the great Awesomely Luvvie, and a few others. 

This blog is an ever-evolving process of trying to find my voice, express myself, and maybe even become less awkward (if such a thing is possible via the internet).  So, have some tea, kick your feet up, and thank you for visiting my little corner of the interwebs.