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Friday, February 22, 2008

This post is all about me: And my book signing


Meet Author Cheris Hodges at Real Eyes Bookstore from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. on March 15, 2008. The store is located at 3306-A North Davidson St., Charlotte.
Get a sneak peek at "Let's Get It On" as she signs copies of the re-released novel "Cautious Heart."
There will be free wine and food.

Cautious Heart follows Charlotte police detective Caprice Johnson, is fighting for her life and her career after her cheating ex-fiancé is found dead in a Charlotte hotel room. Her former partner, Nathan Wallace has been trying to keep his feelings for Caprice silent since the day they met, but with her career and life on the line, Caprice has to rely on Nathan and the truth to survive.

And coming this summer, “Let’s Get It On.” Also set in Charlotte, this novel proves that it’s never too late for second chances.
NFL wide receiver Maurice Goings never thought he’d miss the one woman he pushed away. But when he reconnects with his first love in the tropics, sparks fly.
Kenya Taylor never wanted to see Maurice again after he tossed her heart away nine years ago. But he’s determined to have her back in his life—can she resist him?

Monday, February 18, 2008

Anybody who knows me, knows that I am for Barack Obama

I'm voting for Obama, unless he does something crazy like kills his wife. And we know that is not going to happen. I love Michelle Obama and she looks like a sister who doesn't play. Don't let the Ivy League degrees fool you.
But I digress.
There has been this dust up over Mr. Obama's attendance at the State of The Black Union, hosted by Tavis Smiley.
There was talk that Mrs. Obama was offered as Mr. Obama's replacement. Sorry, but I'm with Tavis on this, Michelle, despite how BRILLIANT you are, you're not the candidate.
So, Mr. Obama can't go. That's fine. But all this talk trying to pit Tavis against Barack is bullshit.
And what's even more bullshit is Roland Martin's latest commentary on the subject:
Read CNN political analyst Roland Martin's column "Why Obama should skip Tavis Smiley's State of the Black Union" here.




Why Obama should skip Tavis Smiley's State of the Black Union By Roland Martin
Sen. Barack Obama took a lot of heat last year from participants in Tavis Smiley's State of the Black Union annual confab, which was held in Virginia. To be fair, he was a little busy that day...announcing HE WAS RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT!

Some of the folks there were besides themselves, and frankly, were childish about it, even saying that he should have put off his presidential announcement to be there.

Now, almost a year later, he is faced with a similar dilemma.

Tavis has announced that he will hold his State of the Black Union annual talkfest on Feb. 23 in New Orleans, La. This is a huge event attended by thousands each year; broadcast on C-SPAN; and attracts some of the nation's top black activists, politicians and intellectuals.

During his commentary Thursday on the Tom Joyner Morning Show, the most listened to black radio show, Tavis said he's invited the three top candidates, Republican frontrunner, Sen. John McCain of Arizona, and Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. He said only one has accepted, and he will wait until tomorrow for the other two to decide.

He didn't say which one decided to attend, but on Friday, Clinton announced that she was attending.

In his commentary, Smiley said he was going to snap on those who don't attend on Tuesday's show, demanding that they own up to black issues and zero in on social justice issues as outlined in the book he edited, "The Covenant with Black America."

Here is my analysis of the situation, and hopefully it will put this presidential campaign and the delicate task of navigating the waters of black politics in perspective.

1. Clinton MUST attend. She led Obama in all of 2007 among black voters by huge margins. But that trend has shifted -dramatically. At best, she's polling at 25% among African Americans. Her acceptance is critical because she needs to capture 30% to 40% of the black to really stop Obama.

The perceived racial slights toward Obama by Clinton campaign surrogates, as well as her husband, former President Bill Clinton, has done significant damage in the black community. His attempts to explain the comments haven't mollified African Americans. Her appearance at the event can help her restore her standing among a vital Democratic constituency, which she will need to turn out en masse if she wins the nomination.

Also, her campaign doesn't have the cash Obama has. She needs any free media. And if Obama shows up, that means all the national media will be there, and the stage is set for her. Tavis said on the air that he would push for the candidates to debate the issues. She's called for more; Obama has only accepted two.

Smart politics on her part, and if I were advising her, no doubt I would tell her to attend.

2. Obama must look forward, not in the past. The Louisiana primary, which he won handily, was on Saturday. Why go back to Louisiana for an event on Feb. 23? That is not to dismiss the needs of people along the Gulf Coast. But the only way he can truly help them is if he wins the nomination and the White House.

Obama needs to be solely focused on Texas and Ohio. Those two mega-states offer a huge bounty of delegates, and he needs to win a large state to move ahead of Clinton. She polls strongly in both states, and they are a huge part of her winning strategy; so much of her time will be spent there in the coming weeks.

All his time must be on the ground. In Texas, he must blanket South Texas because of the Hispanic influence. He didn't do well among Hispanics in California, and he must change that.

There is some hope (no pun intended). When former Dallas Mayor Ron Kirk ran in 2002 for the U.S. Senate, he took 74 percent of South Texas. Yes, an Hispanic was running for governor, but that bodes well for Obama. In Ohio, he must do well among blue collar Democrats. Clinton has owned these low- to middle-income voters, and Obama must score well among them.

If Tavis wanted to have an impact, he should have held his event before Louisiana or before the Mississippi primary. As the saying goes, bad planning on your part doesn't constitute a sense of urgency on mine.

3. He can't be defined again as the black candidate. Some will say he must avoid black folks to be more palatable to whites and Hispanics. I disagree. But you can't deny the reality that he's running for president of the United States and not president of Black America. The week of the South Carolina was all about race, and he knows that is not a winning discussion because of this nation's history. His campaign successfully beat back that issue since South Carolina, winning nearly all-white states like Utah, Idaho, Montana, Minnesota, Delaware, Connecticut, and Nebraska.

Obama is looking to have mass appeal, and showing up in New Orleans at a State of the Black Union event doesn't help him at all in a close race.

4. Send Michelle Obama. What is the purpose of surrogates if you can't make it somewhere? His wife is perfectly suited for this event, and that frees him up to go elsewhere. Plus, he's his top surrogate, and having a female counter your female opponent isn't a bad matchup.

Ask any campaign manager and they will tell you that when it comes to politics, especially in a close race, every minute matters. Candidates are on the phone lines campaigning, trying to raise money, and secure endorsements.

Spending the day with Tavis and his panelists is vital for Clinton. For Obama, time spent courting Latinos in Texas is more important.

African Americans are asking a lot of Obama, the best chance blacks have ever had of one of their own capturing the White House. I often hear folks say they want to know if he is going to back "their" issues. It is no different than how white women are feeling about Clinton. These are indeed historic firsts.

By the way, when people say that black issues are being ignored in the campaign, they are wrong.

The Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, the nation's most prestigious think tank devoted to African American issues, released a survey showing that the top issues to blacks are the war in Iraq; healthcare; jobs and the economy; and education.

Sounds to me like the candidates have spent a lot of time on those issues, although they could always do more.

As an aside, when I asked my radio listeners on WVON in Chicago if Obama should skip the event, we got 29 calls in two hours, and only two said he should go. And this is a crowd that is normally in agreement with Smiley.

Here's what we should do--drink some prune juice and let the shit go. The country is at stake here!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Is George Bush really that stupid?

Here we are nearly two years after Jena 6. And let's not forget the time that has passed since Bush was the governor of Texas and James Byrd was murdered by racists men who drug him as if he were an uprooted tree. And today Bush speaks out against nooses?
What the fuck?
This asshole had eight years to address racism and he waits until now to do it?
Give me a damned break.
Bush: Noose displays 'deeply offensive' By DEB RIECHMANN
14 minutes ago



WASHINGTON - President Bush said Tuesday that recent displays of nooses are disturbing and indicate that some Americans may be losing sight of the suffering that blacks have endured across the nation.

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"The era of rampant lynching is a shameful chapter in American history," Bush said at a black history month event at the White House, which began with serious comments about prejudice and ended with music performed by The Temptations.

"The noose is not a symbol of prairie justice, but of gross injustice," the president said. "Displaying one is not a harmless prank. Lynching is not a word to be mentioned in jest."

As a civil society, Americans should agree that noose displays and lynching jokes are "deeply offensive," Bush said.

"They are wrong," the president said, referring to such displays and jokes. "And they have no place in America today."

For decades, the noose was a symbolic part of a campaign of violence, fear and intimidation against blacks, the president said. Sometimes, he added, it was orchestrated by the law enforcement officers charged with protecting them. Bush also said the noose was a tool for intimidation and killing that conveyed a sense of powerlessness to millions of blacks throughout the country.

"Fathers were dragged from their homes in the dark of night before the eyes of their terrified children," he said. "Summary executions were held by torchlight in front of hateful crowds. In many cases, law enforcement officers responsible for protecting the victims were complicit in their deaths."

The Justice Department says it is actively investigating a number of noose incidents at schools, work places and neighborhoods around the country.

The FBI reported in November that hate-crime incidents in the United States rose in 2006 by nearly 8 percent. Police across the nation reported 7,722 criminal incidents in 2006 targeting victims or property as a result of bias against a particular race, religion, sexual orientation, ethnic or national origin or physical or mental disability. That was up 7.8 percent from the 7,163 incidents reported in 2005.

At the event, Bush honored Rep. John Lewis, the Georgia Democrat who was a leader of the civil rights movement and organized freedom rides, sit-ins and voter registration drives; and William Coleman, the first black American to be a clerk on the U.S. Supreme Court and who served as President Ford's transportation secretary. Coleman thus was the first black to hold a Cabinet post in a Republican administration.

Bush also recognized Ernest Green, one of the nine black students in Little Rock, Ark., who were escorted into the city's all-white Central High School following the historic Brown vs. Board of Education of the mid 1950s, and Otis Williams, a leader of the "The Temptations."

After the president's remarks, his podium was replaced with five microphones and the members of the group, sporting gray suits trimmed in black, got the packed East Room clapping in time to their music. By the end of the eighth tune, "My Girl," the group had the audience standing and singing along.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Kanye West, is the greatest rapper of these times

Did you catch his performance on the Grammys and the moving tribute he did to his mother?
That's why I don't care what nobody says about Kanye's ego and I don't care what people say about his tantrums, he is the man! No other rapper can touch him--maybe Common.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Hillary got Barack-ed this weekend

Barack Obama won all three of the primary states that voted on Saturday and at the Jefferson-Jackson Dinner in Va, Obama showed that he is Fired UP and Ready to Go.
Senator Obama represents change. He isn't bogged down with Whitewater and years of dirt being tossed on him because his husband got his dick sucked.
Yes, I'm talking about Hillary.
She is old Washington. And all of this stuff she is talking about passing and doing, why didn't she do it in the eight years that Bill was in office?
I don't get to vote until May, but everytime I hear Obama speak, it makes me impaitent to get out there and vote for him!
www.barackobama.com

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

The Anti-Valentine's Day Story

Hell hath no fury ...
Scorned Charlotteans tell tales of revenge ... Happy Valentine's Day.
By Cheris Hodges
It must have been the beginning of February when the ladies decided to get together for their annual dinner at Ruby Tuesday. This year, as it turned out, none of them had Valentine's Day plans. For once, this group of single women was without boyfriends, lovers or whatever.

But you know what happens when you put a bunch of single women together close to St. Valentine's Day? The stories start pouring out. It's like a bad episode of Sex and The City -- but the tales of awesome sex are replaced by stories explaining why men should take heed of the hearts they break.

A tall waiter walks over to the table, smiling at the women and assuring them that he's going to take care of them.

"That's what they all say," Erica says after he's out of earshot.

The other ladies laugh.

"Sometimes," I say, "you have to take care of them. Teach them a lesson, if you will."

All eyes are on me, and my mouth just starts running.

There was this guy that I was dating a few years ago; at first things were good. We watched old movies at his place and went to lunch in the park during the spring and summer. But once he got comfortable, things started to change. You know how men talk about a woman changing in a relationship after a period of time? It was the total opposite with this dude. Let's call him Charles.

Charles started making promises, but never followed through on them. There was the New Edition concert at Carowinds that we never made it to. There was the time he swore he was going to wash my car because it was so dirty.

It got so bad that when he talked, it was just like listening to the teacher from The Peanuts.

Finally, I got tired of it. And the straw that broke the proverbial camel's back was when the stereo in my car stopped working and he said, "If you purchase a radio for your car, I'll install it for you."

"OK," I replied. I'd already called around to some of the stereo installation stores in Charlotte and their prices were just outrageous. Besides, Charles installed stereos for a living, and as his girlfriend, he should install mine for free anyway. Hell, it was the least the asshole could do after all of the broken promises and bullshit I'd been putting up with.

I went to Wal-Mart and purchased the car stereo. I really needed the CD player because Charlotte radio sucks, but I digress.

That Monday, I called Charles and said, "Hey, when can you install the stereo?"

"Uh, well, I'm going to have to call you back," was his reply.

All right, I thought as I headed for work. Mind you, my job at the time was only about a block and a half from his place of business. So, imagine my utter surprise when I'm driving in to work and I see this fool all up in some girl's face, smiling and shooting the shit as if he didn't have a care in the world.

Had I been early for work, I might have driven my car right into them. But I was running late, so I headed to the South End office building while I dialed his cell phone. Don't you know, this fucker sent my call to voice mail!

Now I was mad.

The women lean in as if they can feel the climax to this story coming.

"Did you kick her ass?" Wendy asks.

"No," I reply. "She wasn't the one giving me the run around, nor was she the one who was supposed to be committed to me. That's the mistake that women make, we blame the other woman."

"Shut up, Oprah!" Erica says. "Get on with the story."

Read the rest at www.charlotte.creativeloafing.com

Judge this book by it's cover!! I'm nominated for an award!


Sometimes, it’s good to judge a book by its cover
Romance author Cheris Hodges is a finalist for the cover of the year, an award given out at the Romance Slam Jam. This year’s event will be held in Chicago on April 30-May 4.
Hodges’s latest novel, “Just Can’t Get Enough,” was nominated for the Emma award in the category of best cover.
Named after the co-founder of the Romance Slam Jam, the Emma Awards is the premier awards event for readers and authors of black romance.
The Romance Slam Jam grew out of an early desire to recognize, and pay respect to our authors, and to celebrate their craft with their avid fans, says the founders of the event.
Emma Rodgers, Ashira Tosihwe and Francis Ray gave birth to the ROMANCE SLAM JAM in 1995 in Dallas, Texas, to demonstrate what Nikki Giovanni describes as “The Power, Passion and Pain of Black Love.”
There was much success at Black Images marketing, promoting and selling the works of black romance writers since the early 90’s that they decided it was time to take their love for romance to a new level by bringing writers and readers together.
To view the nominated cover, log on to www.cherishodges.com or www.myspace.com/cherishodges.
For more information on the Romance Slam Jam, log on to www.romanceslamjam.org.
“Just Can’t Get Enough” is in stores now.

Friday, February 1, 2008

It's Black History Month

And we have an extra day in Black History month. Yay, I say sarcastically.
You know what kind of pisses me off about Black History Month--we trot out the same stories about the same sports figures and entertainers. What about Marcus Garvey, what about Nat Turner?
What about people in your community that have changed the city where you live? Isn't it time to stop teaching our kids that music and sports are the only way to have a better life?
Holla!
And the Black History figure of the week is Zora Neale Hurston. Goggle her!