i am

My photo
harlem, usa
same-gender-loving contemporary descendant of enslaved africans. community activist, feminist, health educator, independent filmmaker, mentor, playwright, poet & spiritual being. featured at, in & on africana.com, afrikan poetry theatre, angel herald, bejata dot com, bet tonight with tavis smiley, blacklight online, black noir, brooklyn moon cafe, gmhc's barbershop, klmo-fm, lgbt community services center, longmoor productions, nuyorican poets cafe, our corner, poz, pulse, rolling out new york, rush arts gallery, saint veronica's church, schomburg center for research in black culture, sexplorations, the citizen, the new york times, the soundz bar, the trenton times, the village voice, upn news, uzuri, venus, vibe, wbai-fm, wnyc-fm & wqht-fm. volunteered with adodi, bailey house, inc., black men's xchange-new york, colorofchange.org, drug policy alliance, east harlem tutorial program, imagenation film & music festival, presente.org, save darfur coalition, the enough project, the osborne association, the sledge group & your black world. worked on films with maurice jamal & heather murphy. writing student of phil bertelsen & ed bullins. mjt975@msn.com.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Lakers Beat Celtics In Game 7 Of NBA Finals

the los angeles lakers defeated the boston celtics 83-79 in game 7 of the 2010 nba finals at the staples center in los angeles b4 a frenzied & purple sellout crowd. the lakers defended their 2009 title, repeating as champions 4 the second time in a decade. neither team shot well from the floor, yet the solid defense of both squads made it close at the end, as the lakers overcame a 13 point deficit midway thru the 3rd quarter. this was the most watched nba final since the bulls defeated the jazz in 1998.

kobe bryant was named nba finals mvp 4 the second str8 year. the 31-year old superstar now has five rings, equaling laker hall-of-famer magic johnson, just one shy of all-time great kareem abdul-jabbar. laker coach phil jackson won a record-setting 11th title, his 5th with the lakers. jackson guided the chicago bulls in the mid-90's to 6 championships - the only team 2 three-peat twice, '91-'93 & '96-'98. jackson has 113 wins with chicago & 112 wins with the lakers.

the last nba finals' game 7 took place 16 years ago when the eighth-seeded houston rockets won the last 2 games against the favored new york knicks in 1994. the lakers now have 16 titles in 32 championship games, compared with the celtics' 17 wins in 22 finals. the stored rivalry was their 12th final in nba history, unparalleled in team sports. boston has a 9-3 edge. the last time these two greats played a game 7 was in 1987 when the lakers, led by magic, kareem & james worthy, prevailed over the celtics' larry bird, kevin mchale & robert parrish.

pundits have already begun 2 speculate on the immediate future of celtics coach doc rivers, the 2008 champion, as well as lakers coach phil jackson who earlier this year suggested retirement may become a reality. celtics guard ray allen is among the free agents this summer, as july 1, 2010 will go down as the most hotly anticipated day in nba history. other free agents include lebron james, dwayne wade, amare' stoudamire, chris bosh, joe johnson, yao ming, dirk novwitzki & carlos boozer.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

South Africa Honors Soweto Uprising During 2010 World Cup

south africa, the host country of the fifa 2010 world cup soccer tournament, observed the 34th anniversary of the june 16, 1976 soweto uprising. historically recognized as the catalyst to the anti-apartheid movement, thousands of students from the black township of soweto gathered to embody self-dertermination & march in protest at being forced to go to school in afrikaans, the language of the white supremacist minority regime.

police opened fire on the unarmed students, killing hundreds, including a 13 year-old teenager. hector pieterson was the first - in the spirit of crispus attacks - to die in the violence. photographs of a demonstrator carrying away the boy's limp body caused international outrage & stoked resistance to legalized apartheid & socialized racism.

the anniversary is now commemorated as youth day, coinciding this year with south africa's match against uruguay, its 2nd game in a world cup. how far has the country come since the end of apartheid in '94? said national football team captain aaron mokoena, "we all know what the day means for south africans & especially for the youth...it would be very special to win the game on the day...it is a day we all remember."

the soweto of 2010 is a far cry from the impoverished slums which the students marched through in 1976. the township originally established to house white johannesburg's black labour force. today landscape parks, a massive shopping mall, a newly renovated golf course & sports-paved streets are recognizable traits of a modern city.

soccer city stadium sits at the township's edge. and orlando stadium, the students' destination in the 1976 march, hosted a star-studded world cup kick-off concert last week featuring the black eyed peas, john legend & shakira. south africa is the venue for the world cup's opening & closing matches. long live the students of soweto!

Friday, June 04, 2010

Obama Extends Benefits To Same-Sex Couples

president barack obama ordered government agencies wednesday to extend additional benefits to same-sex partners of federal employees, including child care services & expanded family leave. the initiative comes a year after obama signed a memorandum giving federal workers' same-sex partners a first round of benefits including dependent-care & visitation rights. additionally, obama asked federal agencies to determine what other benefits could be given to domestic partners without congressional action.

among the results of his review he announced included: access to credit union & other memberships when those are provided to federal workers; child-care services & subsidies; giving domestic partners the same status as 'family members' when federal appointments are made; more flexibility to use family leave to attend to the needs of domestic partners & their children; as well as relocation benefits.

as with obama's memo a year ago, this one covers only benefits that can be extended under existing law, without congressional approval. legislative action would be required for a full range of health care & other benefits. in fact, health care benefits are the ultimate piece-de-resistance' for many activists, which obama supports wholeheartedly. in a statement, obama called on congress to extend health benefits to same-sex partners.

obama said, "while this memorandum is an important step on the path to equality, my administration continues to be prevented by existing federal law from providing same-sex domestic partners with the full range of benefits enjoyed by heterosexual married couples."

several times during obama's historic presidential campaign he pledged to support the lgbt community, which has been critical of his actions as commander-in-chief. the white house recently backed a compromise on the military "don't ask, don't tell" policy on gays in the military that would move ahead on repeal but still allow the pentagon time to implement new policies. in april, obama moved to grant same-sex partners full visitation rights in hospitals.