Martin Luther King Jr. vs The Military Industrial Complex

martin luther king jr


Martin Luther King Jr. vs. The Military Industrial Complex

Junious Ricardo Stanton


“The greatest purveyor of violence in the world today is my own government” Martin Luther King Jr. April 4, 1967


One year prior to his murder by the United States’ imperial forces, Martin Luther King Jr. gave a profoundly well thought out and cogent speech at Riverside Church in New York City on why he opposed the Vietnam War. In it King gave a history of Western imperialism in Southeast Asia, how the United States stepped in to fill the European colonial vacuum after the French were run out of Vietnam. He gave a detailed synopsis of the Vietnamese people’s struggle for freedom and how the US callously rejected their attempts to forge friendly relationships with America.

King detailed the hypocrisy and mendacity of Americans travelling thousands of miles to wage a war for “freedom and democracy” when Blacks who were being drafted to be crippled and maimed in higher numbers than our percentage of the population were denied freedom and democracy at home. King put the war in a global context of racism, imperialism and moral depravity. He linked the war in Southeast Asia and the Vietnamese people’s valiant struggle to free themselves from the yoke of Western imperialism and neocolonialism with Afro-Americans ongoing struggle for dignity, human rights and personhood. King noted the cruel irony of an imperialist war that conscripted Black and white boys to fight and die in side by side solidarity when they were forbidden to live side by side in the United States due to vestiges of American apartheid.

King saw the war as a great drain of resources and waste of human potential at a time when poverty was rampant in the US, that the Vietnam War was undermining the struggle for civil rights and economic justice at home.

He shared with the audience how he was at a loss to preach to young Black people about the value of non-violent civil disobedience in the face of virulent government sanctioned brutality especially when they asked him, “What about Vietnam and America’s use of unrestrained violence and atrocity?” He stated in a matter of fact way to the crowded church that it troubled him deeply that “the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today is my own government.”

As a clergyman, a citizen, as a conscious and conscientious human being King stated to remain silent in the face of such institutionalized evil was betrayal. This marked a change in King’s program. He added peace to his agenda. Martin Luther King Jr. was the only prominent religious figure who came out in opposition of the war. Norma Vincent Peale was silent; Billy Graham uttered not a mumbling word, Bishop Fulton Sheen remained mute, only King, a Black man, stood up and spoke truth to power about peace.

His continuous assault on the Military Industrial Complex, US foreign policy and his campaigns to break down US racial apartheid and economic privation was the straw that broke the camel’s back with regard to the ruling class’ tolerance of his movement.

The same liberal journalists, newspapers and politicians who lauded him for being non-violent in the face of Southern whites’ insanity and brutality turned on him when he challenged the moral and financial inhumanity and waste of the Vietnam War. Once the ruling elites’ campaign to turn the tide of public opinion against King went into full effect, the government put their plan to neutralize King in motion.

King was planning a Poor People’s March on Washington D.C. to galvanize a full spectrum mobilization of whites and people of color to challenge and change US foreign and domestic policies in favor of the people.

This was a huge no-no as King’s support invigorated the Peace and anti-movements and he was forging a wider coalition for social justice and change, thus thwarting the usual divide and rule paradigm, so the ruling class determined he had to go!

So a year later on April 4, 1968 Martin Luther King was murdered. King’s assassination was part of a larger counter insurgency program run by the FBI and CIA called COINTELPRO and Operation Chaos respectively and local police The US government declared war on dissent going full bore framing, demonizing, jailing and even murdering US citizens for daring to want change.

Today every vile and immoral act the government sanctioned during that era is legal thanks to the 9-11 false flag operation. Today America is undeniably at the point King warned us about in 1967. He said, “The war in Vietnam is but a symptom of a far deeper malady within the American spirit, and if we ignore this sobering reality… we will find ourselves organizing “clergy and laymen concerned” committees for the next generation. They will be concerned about Guatemala — Guatemala and Peru. They will be concerned about Thailand and Cambodia. They will be concerned about Mozambique and South Africa. We will be marching for these and a dozen other names and attending rallies without end, unless there is a significant and profound change in American life and policy.”

Alas King was wrong; unfortunately the peace movement is moribund and non-existent it has been co-opted by the corporate/government war machine which does not bode well for the soul of America.



If Beale Street Could Talk

        if beale street could talk                                       

                                                          If Beale Street Could Talk

Junious Ricardo Stanton


Do yourself a huge favor; see the motion picture If Beale Street Could Talk as soon as you can before it is pulled from theaters.  It will not be pulled because it is a poorly crafted and shot film, but because it is a low budget film produced by a company that has not spent much money marketing their film.

The film is directed by Barry Jenkins a talented story teller who has also directed several other “art type” films, meaning he focuses his energy and creative talents on characters and stories rather than CGI, violence and gratuitous sex. The film is about Black love, family and being Black in America in Harlem in the 1950’s. The film is based on a novel by the great author and social critic James Baldwin. If you know anything about James Baldwin you know he holds up a mirror to America and tells it like it is, straight no chaser.

Without spoiling the whole plot, Jenkins shot the film using flashbacks and back story to show how two youngsters Alonzo “Lonny” Hunt and Tish Rivers played by Stephen James and Kiki Layne respectively, life long friends whose families know each other and have known Lonny and Tish since they are kids discover love and plan to be together. Circumstances put a halt to their plans and we watch as they are forced to adjust, cope and strive to maintain their relationship despite the egregious discrimination, disrespect and challenges Black folks are forced to endure on a daily basis that severely complicate their lives but they refuse to allow to beat them down.

Regina King gives a stellar performance as Tish’s mother a woman of optimism and a deep love for the couple. It is a powerful film is about Black family, told in a by-gone era when Black men were men; fathers did what they had to do to raise their children, love them and help them during their trials and tribulations.

Lonny like many Black males through no fault of his own, gets caught up in the system; accused of a crime he did not commit which turns both families’ lives up side down. Baldwin’s novel and Jenkins film depict Lonny and Tish’s lives through the socio-economic and racial realities of New York City; landlords who won’t rent to them, a racist policeman who frames Lonny because he dared to protect Tish from a white man’s uncouth advances and we hear Lonny’s friend Daniel tell him what the system and prison did to him. Subsequently we discover through dialogue how the police and DA scoop Daniel up and lock him away so he cannot provide an alibi for Lonny that would help prove his innocence.

The families search for a lawyer to take Lonny’s case. They find a young white attorney willing to take the case.  Looking at the facts he realizes Lonny is innocent but the families’ lack of financial resources hampers his ability to get Lonny out of jail. The attorney does what he can to deal with the corruption of the system; but he also sees the stark contrast between the Hunt and Rivers lives and his own privileged background.

All the supporting characters are extremely talented and provide great character presence. Colman Domingo plays Tish’s father a man who loves his daughter who does what he can to raise money to get Lonny, a boy he has known all his life and the man his daughter loves, out of jail. He does this because he knows Lonny and that the system is rigged against Black people. Michael Beach plays Lonny’s father who loves his son but is fearful what the system will do to him. The two fathers partner together to hustle and do what they can to raise the money to pay for a lawyer and get Lonny out of jail.

The film is narrated by Tish and the flashbacks provide meaning and substance to her experiences and how she sees the world. There is one funny scene between the two families but there are stark contrasts between the River’s marriage and the Hunt’s.

I promise not to give any more of the plot away but you need to see this film. The camera shots of the faces and expressions of the actors are awesome; there is a gritty realism, the all too familiar feel of the oppressive conditions Black people face daily interspersed with a unique vision of Black love and family.

As a writer Baldwin never shied away from American racism and its devastating and grinding impact on the lives of Black people yet in the midst of all that he depicted Black love, resilience and hope.

This film captures that essence. The ending may surprise you but the film will stick with you after you’ve left the theater. Please go see If Beale Street Could Talk.



2019 Predictions

    2019 calendar                                                   



                                                               2019 Predictions

                                                           Junious Ricardo Stanton


As we begin a new year while I don’t have a crystal ball or the power of clairvoyance, I am able to see trends and patterns that may continue well into 2019. Much of this will be unsettling because the US Empire is in rapid decline both on the foreign and domestic levels. But it doesn’t have to play out this way.

Here are a few things to watch for in 2019 that I am fairly certain we will see. On the national political level the Democrats have taken over the majority in the US House of Representatives, look for them to: continue the canard that the Russians hacked the 2016 election despite the fact there is absolutely no proof that occurred, and look for them to totally ignore the fact Israel and Britain actually tried to influenced the 2016 election. Look for more government gridlock and lack of productivity; we will see increased partisan bickering, more senseless acrimony and a protracted government shut down.

We will see the continuation of fiscal irresponsibility, whereby the federal government will spend more than it takes in thereby increasing the federal deficit way past the twenty-one trillion dollars already in existence. The Trump/Republican tax cuts have resulted in lower revenues and there has been no accompanying cut in spending so the consequences will shoot the deficit higher and higher.

The accounts of fiscal insanity are all around us, “After fiscal 2018’s deficit increased from $666 billion to $779 billion, the first month of fiscal 2019’s deficit increased from $63 billion to $100 billion. This was largely driven by increased spending in Medicare (up $28 billion) and defense ($9 billion). The jump in Medicare may be an anomaly, but it does look like this year’s deficit is on a path to break $1 trillion. Not to be overlooked is the interest on debt increasing by $4 billion, which at the same monthly amount will add about $50 billion to the deficit in fiscal 2019; and should continue to grow.” Trump’s Economy: The Federal Budget Is On a Path To $1 Trillion Chuck Jones

Despite Trump saying he will bring US troops home from Syria and Afghanistan the US Empire is definitely not contracting. The US will still have over eight hundred bases around the world in one hundred fifty countries not counting drone bases and secret covert operations stations. Look for the empire to maintain its bases and to continue to try and extend its global hegemony and keep imperialism as a top priority.

This massive expenditure of funds for “defense” and empire will further drain resources that could otherwise go to repairing the US’s crumbling infrastructure, create more affordable housing; provide efficient, low cost health care for all Americans and reduce the overall cost of government. The US will continue to provoke Russia and threaten China, Iran and North Korea while plotting and war gaming actual wars against these countries.

We will see the US economy take a downward turn due Trump’s tariffs and trade wars with China, European allies as much of the world moves away from the US dollar as the world reserve currency, further diminishing US influence in the world. The US economy will be adversely impacted by the Federal Reserve Banks’ monetary policies, their interest rate hikes and how it deals with the money supply (inflation or deflation) which will impact the interest rates on mortgages, credit cards and loans for ordinary Americans.

In 2019 the opioid crisis will continue and unless we as a people change our attitudes, lifestyle and outlook, the two year trend of lower life expectancy will also continue.

The good news is we have agency and the power to live our lives differently no matter what is going on around us. We can choose to eat better, drink more water get enough sleep and treat our neighbors like neighbors instead of strangers. We can choose to be in it but not of it as the US Empire, its political and economic systems implode due to moral rot, corruption and malfeasance and work to make where we are better and more humane despite what the 1% does.

We can change the tone and tenor of our lives and our immediate surroundings.  We can reject what the media tells us to believe, buy and be like. We can stop imitating the “reality shows” and rethink what it means to be kind and supportive to our coworkers and neighbors. We can be more positive and come together to make our communities better. If we do this 2019 can be better. We can think about peace and harmony and make it real in our lives and our immediate environment and make the nay sayers and negative prognosticators wrong. We have the power to make 2019 a good year.




Living 2019 on Purpose

Living 2019 On Purpose

Junious Ricardo Stanton


As we enter the New Year, let’s focus on ways to empower ourselves, enhance our health on a personal, community and global level. As a people we need to be more conscious of our inner and outer worlds and work towards being our truest and greatest selves in order to turn this world around and make it a better place to live. The New Year is a great opportunity to forge new life paths, life goals and work to improve ourselves, our environment and the world.

We are all extensions of the DIVINE, we are sparks from the GREAT I AM and as such we should live our lives in full cognizance of this reality. As extensions of the DIVINE we have the same essence and power as the CREATOR only in lesser amount. We have the power of imagination, the ability to create in our mind’s eye images and scenarios we want to make real and manifest in our lives. As such we have an obligation to think good thoughts, envision positive outcomes, and generate positive energy and emotions that influence our immediate surroundings and the people we interact with.

The Life Force gives us the energy and ability to move, do and accomplish what we will. Deeply embedded within our personal Life Force/Energy is our destiny the reason we incarnated to this plane.  In 2019 let’s make it our purpose to live on purpose in accordance with DIVINE LAW which is in our best interest to do.

Our African ancestors understood the universe was not random, that it was the result of DIVINE DESIGN, INTELLIGENCE and INTENTION and everything in the universe is in DIVINE ORDER (Ma’at) with a DIVINE PURPOSE.  We are because the UNIVERSE exists, the UNIVERSE exists because we are part of it (Ubuntu). Traditional African philosophy posited that we all have a purpose and mission when we incarnate on this plane and that our mission is an inextricable part of our true self. “The DESTINY or SPIRTITUAL DOUBLE variously known as Ka (ancient Egypt), Chi (Igbo of Nigeria) Ori (Yoruba of Nigeria) Kra (Asante of Ghana), Kla (Ga of Ghana), Ehi (Bini of Nigeria) Se (Fon of Benin) Ido (Kuba of Zaire) etc. … This self is central in that it is often associated with the other selves that make up the person and also in that it appears to orientate the whole person towards the fulfillment of his destiny or life purpose. It takes part in choosing the individual’s destiny in the invisible realm before the individual is born… Thus this is the aspect of the self around which other aspects orientate themselves, since the person’s destiny and purpose represents the direction in which  aspects of the person’s being must develop or evolve.” Person Divinity and Nature A Modern View of the Person and the Cosmos In African Thought Chukwunyere Kamalu page 53.

We are here for a reason, many reasons actually. We are here to give experience to the CREATOR which is a noncorporal SPIRIT, we are here to accomplish a life mission and destiny to make a positive impact on our society and surroundings. One of the reasons we are so out of sorts, agitated and frustrated is because we have not made contact with our life purpose. Living in a barbaric aspiritual society, with a materialistic and immoral focus does not help. So it is our duty and responsibility to, as our ancestors said, “Know Thyself”.

In  traditional African society rituals and ceremonies helped the community discern the life purpose of the new baby and it was the community’s responsibility to support the child in this mission, reinforce and encourage the child to be who they came here to be. For the most part these mechanisms are not utilized for the masses in the West. The closest they come is using occult means like Astrology, Numerology Palmistry etc to glean one’s life purpose and aptitudes.

If we are to take our rightful place in the UNIVERSE as sons and daughters of the MOST HIGH, we must be cognizant of who we are and why we are here! There are many ways to accomplish this, meditation, divination using a traditional African divination process/system or obtaining a full Astrological chart interpretation. Meditation is the easiest and simplest way.

So in 2019 practice quieting your mind, engage in serious introspection to discern the VOICE of SPIRIT, your Highest Self within you. Learn to distinguish it from the meandering mind chatter we all have and the external voices of the world. Learn to trust it, remember intuition is never wrong no matter how unusual the message, it is your DIVINE SELF communicating with you for your best interests. Listen to it and follow its guidance.

In 2019 give yourself and the world the gift of your truest self, manifest your life mission and destiny. The journey may not be easy, but it will be exciting and well worth it!



The Thucydides Trap




                               Is The United States Approaching the Thucydides Trap?

Junious Ricardo Stanton


“The phrase ‘Thucydides’s Trap’ was coined by an American political scientist and Harvard professor, Graham T. Allison, to describe the phenomena of a rising power and an established dominant power almost always breaking into conflict. He took the term from the writings of Thucydides who was writing on the state of Greek affairs in The History of the Peloponnesian War which describes a series of wars between Athens and Sparta that changed the balance of power in Greece.”’s-Trap


The politicians and the corporate mind control apparatus program us to believe the United States is the good guys, the exceptional and indispensible nation, the sole repository of morality and goodness in the world. This is propaganda to brainwash the masses into acquiescing to the American global empire and its plunder rape and degradation of the people and the planet. The US currently has over eight hundred military bases in seventy countries around the world and this doesn’t count drone bases and covert operations run by the CIA and paid mercenaries.

The fact is for most of the world, the US is the major threat to world peace and stability, the major purveyor of volatility and violence on the planet. A recent Pew Research Center survey of thirty countries indicated people around the world hold a very different opinion of the US than the mass mind control apparatus tells us. “Nevertheless, the proportion of the public that views American power as a major threat to their country grew in 21 of the 30 nations between 2013 and 2017. The largest increases occurred in Spain (42 percentage points), Chile (34 points), and Turkey and Ghana (28 points each).

Just in the past year, perceptions of the U.S. as a major threat have increased by at least 8 percentage points among several long-standing American allies, including Australia (13 points) and the UK (11 points). Concern about U.S. power is up 10 points in Canada, Germany and Sweden, and 8 points in France and the Netherlands.”  This survey saw an increased perception of the US as a threat to world peace compared to the survey taken in 2013!

People should be concerned. The American Empire is in decline and fears losing its top perch to a competing nation like China. The US is increasing bellicose, belligerent and threatening to not only China but Russia and Iran. Currently the US is engaged in a full fledged trade war with China, is imposing sanctions (which are a form of economic intimidation and warfare) on Russia, Iran and threatening anyone who does not go along with their program of sanctions and tariffs.

What we are witnessing is what has been called the Thucydides Trap. What is that you ask?  Here is the historical background, “The Thucydides Trap is a political metaphor, so in order to understand it we need to look at its namesake. Thucydides was a 5th-century BCE Greek historian and politician who wrote the most famous account of the Peloponnesian War. Here’s what he observed in the outbreak of the nearly 30-year conflict that rocked the Greek city-states. Sparta was the hegemony, or dominant power, of the Aegean. Athens, however, was growing so quickly that Sparta got spooked. They worried that Athens would soon become a real threat to their power, so they attacked preemptively. And that’s the trap. Athens’ ambition and Sparta’s fear of losing power drew the two into conflict, even when no one expected it. When Sparta attacked Athens, it forced the other Greek city-states to pick a side, and a massive Greek war ensued that lasted for decades. Thucydides would later write that the entire Peloponnesian War was due to ‘’the growth in power of Athens, and the alarm which this inspired in Sparta.’’

In 2015, Harvard political scientist and Professor Graham Allison identified a scenario he calls the Thucydides Trap. Basically, the Thucydides Trap says that as a rising power challenges the dominance of an established power, that dominant power is likely to respond with violence. It’s a model for predicting when warfare is likely between two nations, but also a way to propose alternative solutions meant to prevent warfare. After all, the whole point of identifying a trap is to avoid it.”

We are seeing this scenario played out between the US and China and to a lesser degree between the US and Russia. But China is the US’s main economic rival. China is the one on a fast pace to supplant the US as the world’s largest economy. The US is having conniptions and it is trying to assert itself to rebuff China. This is really what Trump’s tariffs and trade war are all about. Based upon the Thucydides Trap trade wars eventually become shooting wars.  So given the American Empire’s history of imperialist war and carnage including against China (the second Opium War 1857-1859), prospects for peaceful coexistence do not look good.

The Chinese have never forgotten their humiliation by the West. What’s worse, the US knows it is in a precarious position but is selling wolf tickets anyway.  Read this report to see for yourself.

I learned a long time ago never let your mouth write a check your behind can’t cash.




Bizarro World

Bizarro World


From the Ramparts

Junious Ricardo Stanton

Bizarro World


“We’ll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false.” – William Casey former Director of CIA


We live in a virtual Bizzaro World like in the old Superman comics where Superman’s antagonist Bizarro, a Frankenstein like version of Superman, was banished to Bizarro World a place where everything was the exact opposite of our reality, up was down, first was last, good was bad, wrong was right, white was black, logical was illogical, giving was taking, insanity was sane, liberty was tyranny etc. In our version of Bizzaro World deceit is truth, exploitation is generosity, oppression is freedom, genocide is life, war is peace and evil was righteousness.

Examples of just how steeped in Bizzaro World we are were put on vivid display this past week, when CNN fired Marc Lamont Hill for speaking truth at the United Nations of all places and the ruling class and media adulation following the death of past President George H.W. Bush.

Marc Lamont Hill a university professor, activist, author, scholar and entrepreneur was demonized and vilified by miscreants who sicced the media hellhounds on Hill calling for him to be terminated by Temple University in addition to his firing by CNN.

In an article originally published in MintPress News the writer, Whitney Webb, identifies the organizations behind the character assassination, vilification and media lynching of Marc Lamont Hill. The groups cited in the article are attempting to silence Hill for speaking truth to power exposing the harsh conditions, the vicious genocidal policies the Israelis employ against the Palestinians and for daring to call for justice and mercy on their behalf.

Hill has apologized for any misinterpretation and misunderstanding his words may have caused but that is not enough, the Zionists want his head on a platter. They have assailed Hill as an anti-Semite, maliciously employing Bizzaro World illogic to twist Hill’s call for “a free Palestine from the river to the sea”, to claim Hill called for the destruction of Israel.

First of all their canard about Hill being an anti-Semite is absurd since most people who call themselves Jews are not Semites at all. Modern DNA analysis has proven most Ashkenazim Jews have no genetic link or connection to the Biblical Hebrews! Secondly, Hill was referring to the traditional boundaries and borders of Palestine not insinuating Israel should be obliterated! But in Bizzaro World, deceit is truth and geo-political deception is fact. Hill is what the oppressors and warmongers most fear, a brilliant conscious Black man courageous enough to stand up for truth, righteousness and peace.

The second blatant example of Bizarro World mendacity is the canonization of the war criminal, mass murderer, fraudster and paragon of evil George Herbert Walker Bush as a hero, “humanitarian” and “statesman” by the ruling class and their media.

The corporate media reflects the interests, worldview, politics and policies of its owners and the corporate media is owned by the same class of psychopaths the Bush family is part of. In a show of bi-partisan mendacity and Bizzaro World illogic, George H.W. Bu$h was extolled as a great humanitarian, statesman, father, grandfather and all around good guy. Nowhere was it mentioned he was the scion of an upper crust family with deep roots in what is now called the “Deep State”.

Bu$h’s grandfather Samuel Prescott Bu$h was connected with the Rockefeller’s and became a railroad and steel executive. He also helped the Remington Arms Company that the Pryor and Rockefeller families held a large interest in, to gain a huge percentage of the contracts for the US Army during WWI, after he was recommended by Wall Street financier Clarence Dillon for appointment to the War Industries Board. In turn Samuel Bu$h made a fortune from those business connections.

Samuel’s son Prescott, was a former US Senator from Connecticut and an investment banker whose ambition of becoming president were dashed when it was discovered he was the banker for Adolf Hitler and the Nazis and his assets were seized under the Trading With the Enemy Act. Prescott Bu$h was also linked to the failed coup against President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Prescott Bu$h left Connecticut and relocated in Texas. Political intrigue, war profiteering and brass knuckle politics run in the Bu$h family.

George H.W. Bu$h followed in his grandfather and father’s footsteps becoming a player in the oil industry, a UN Ambassador, head of the CIA, a two term Vice President and one term president who participated in global drug running, money laundering, war and covert operations which caused the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people around the world., . Let’s not forget the Bu$h crime family was deeply engaged in the Savings and Loan and Enron scandals

George H.W. Bu$h like most presidents before him led the US into war based upon lies, propaganda and disinformation. Case in point, Saddam Hussein was deliberately given false information by US Ambassador to Iraq April Glaspie who told Hussein President George H.W. Bu$h had no problem with Hussein going into Kuwait to stop Kuwait from using slant drilling to steal Iraqi oil. Hussein invaded Kuwait and Bu$h turned on him leading to the deaths of thousands of innocent Iraqis.  I could go on and on but you get my drift.

Don’t fall for Bizarro World illogic and lies also known as the okey-doke.




US Life Expectancy Rates Continue To Decline



                                                cemetery                                                        From the Ramparts

Junious Ricardo Stanton

US Life Expectancy Rates Continue to Decline


Life expectancy in the United States declined again in 2017, the government said Thursday in a bleak series of reports that showed a nation still in the grip of escalating drug and suicide crises. The data continued the longest sustained decline in expected life span at birth in a century, an appalling performance not seen in the United States since 1915 through 1918. That four-year period included World War I and a flu pandemic that killed 675,000 people in the United States and perhaps 50 million worldwide.”


The US Center for Disease Control just issued a report indicating life expectancy in the United States declined again in 2017. This is the third year in a row a decline has been reported. Health officials are concerned about the trend and are attempting to ascertain exactly why this is happening.

One cause is the rise of drug overdoses and suicides fueled by growing pessimism, economic uncertainty and feelings of hopelessness. “NEW YORK (AP) — Suicides and drug overdoses pushed up U.S. deaths last year, and drove a continuing decline in how long Americans are expected to live. Overall, there were more than 2.8 million U.S. deaths in 2017, or nearly 70,000 more than the previous year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Thursday. It was the most deaths in a single year since the government began counting more than a century ago. The increase partly reflects the nation’s growing and aging population. But it’s deaths in younger age groups — particularly middle-aged people — that have had the largest impact on calculations of life expectancy, experts said…CDC officials did not speculate about what’s behind declining life expectancy, but Dr. William Dietz, a disease prevention expert at George Washington University, sees a sense of hopelessness. Financial struggles, a widening income gap and divisive politics are all casting a pall over many Americans, he suggested. “I really do believe that people are increasingly hopeless, and that that leads to drug use, it leads potentially to suicide,” he said. VoteCast, a wide-ranging survey of the electorate conducted by The Associated Press, found voters expressing pessimistic views about the future: About half of voters nationwide said they expect life in America for the next generation to be worse than it is today. Nearly a quarter said life would be better and about as many said it would be the same. VoteCast surveyed more than 115,000 voters nationwide as Americans cast ballots in this year’s midterm elections.”

Depressing socio-economic conditions are being blamed for the rise in US suicides. “During 2000–2016, the suicide rate among the U.S. working age population (persons aged 16–64 years) increased 34%, from 12.9 per 100,000 population to 17.3 ( To better understand suicide among different occupational groups and inform suicide prevention efforts, CDC analyzed suicide deaths by Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) major groups for decedents aged 16–64 years from the 17 states participating in both the 2012 and 2015 National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS) ( The occupational group with the highest male suicide rate in 2012 and 2015 was Construction and Extraction (43.6 and 53.2 per 100,000 civilian noninstitutionalized working persons, respectively), whereas the group with the highest female suicide rate was Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media (11.7 [2012] and 15.6 [2015]). The largest suicide rate increase among males from 2012 to 2015 (47%) occurred in the Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media occupational group (26.9 to 39.7) and among females, in the Food Preparation and Serving Related group, from 6.1 to 9.4 (54%). ”

We do not have to succumb to this trend. We are not powerless; we can impact the quality and even the length of our lives. When we examine our people’s “lifestyles” we realize we are contributing to our own ill health and premature death. It is not about germs and bacteria. Good health is a holistically inclusive process. Our health is based upon our mental, emotional, spiritual as well as physical state. Our thinking and mental functioning impacts our wellbeing. If we are constantly thinking, imagining and self-talking negativity, envisioning and anticipating worst case scenarios this will impact your emotional state; your emotional state in turn triggers hormones, enzymes and electro-chemical reactions within your body that impact your heart rate which raises or lowers your blood pressure and influences your autoimmune system’s ability to maintain an optimal state of homeostasis and equilibrium.

Our African ancestors were the first physicians/psychologists. They realized the importance of maintaining spiritual and physical vitality. They studied themselves and came to some very important conclusions about life, living, health and wellbeing. For Africans health is an integrated systemic process: it is spiritual, personal, social and environmental. Optimum health is generated through harmonious living, harmonious relationships with THE CREATOR, one’s self, others and nature.

Ancient Africans admonished living a life of moral rectitude (Ma’at), so that one’s heart was light, guilt free, and one’s relationships with others and nature was righteous. Read the 42 Declarations of Innocence which were the precursor to the Ten Commandments and you will see just how deep and profound African culture was.

Keep it light, lighten up don’t allow the news to depress you in fact turn it off. Don’t get caught up in the negativity around you.  Meditate and connect with your DIVINE SELF, honor and venerate yourself, your ancestors and live a life worthy of our heritage. These along with a healthy diet and always getting ample sleep will enhance the quality of your life and lengthen it.