Tuesday, May 10, 2011


By Cash Michaels

MOTHER’S DAY - I hope you and yours had an excellent and loving Mother’s Day last weekend. I know we did at my house as KaLa and I cooked a lovely dinner for my wife, Markita.
But beyond thanking my wife for being a devoted and committed mom, Mother’s Day is also the time every year when I thank GOD for the mother who raised me. As you know, she died in January 2009, a loss I will never get over.
So Sunday, before my family ate an early dinner, I went out to her cemetery to spend some time at her gravesite.
No other place on Earth, maybe with the exception of the ocean, gives me the sense of peace and understanding that being with my mother does, especially now.
I drove out to the cemetery in Raleigh, only to discover that it had been closed by the city because of extensive damage by the recent tornadoes. Just a quick look at through the fence confirmed that many, many large trees had been uprooted and strewn across the landscape. Driving through the graveyard was certainly not an option.
And yet, I saw something heartwarming. People, dressed in their Sunday best, obviously just coming from church, were parking their cars outside the cemetery, and simply taking their graveside flowers, and finding a way into the cemetery to visit their loved ones.
They would NOT be deterred, and neither would I.
So I parked, and then followed them in. I was heartened to see so, so many, young and old, visiting their loved ones, taking precious moments to reconnect.
I did the same.
My mother NEVER allowed any obstacle get in the way of making sure that her little boy got the best that she could give him. If she had to climb a fence, or a building, Mom was always there for me.
If there is any shred of decency in me, my mother is responsible for it.
So permit me to pay tribute to my dear mother, Lillian, and my beloved mother-in-law, Katherine.
Two towering black women who I will love forever.
GUTS - There is no doubt that those bold, brave and courageous members of that US Navy SEAL team who raided that Pakistan stronghold to assassinate master terrorist Osama bin Laden, put their lives on the line for their nation, and we should be forever grateful.
But can you imagine what would be said and debated right now if that SEAL team failed to get bin Laden? Let’s be honest here - they wouldn’t have gotten the blame.
Their Commander-in-chief, President Barack Obama would have. After all, he was in on key stages of the planning, he signed off on the riskiest option to get bin Laden - namely the helicopter raid - and, as Commander-in-chief, he gave the final “Go” order.
And all of this in a foreign, sovereign country without its knowledge, which certainly would have caused problems if it had been detected. It was 50-50 at best.
So, at the end of the day, any American blood spilt, and any failure of the mission, would be on his hands.
But, to GOD be the glory, that didn’t happen, did it?
And that’s why President Obama must be lauded for his extraordinary courage as well.
If you look at the facts, this president put his entire presidency on the line with Operation Geronimo (the military code name for bin Laden). Failure would have deepened the depression most Americans are already in. It would have bent the back of self-confidence for Obama and crippled his foreign policy position in the world. The news would have weakened the economic marketplace, and emboldened the president’s enemies to viciously and relentlessly attack him as a weakling in the tone of Jimmy Carter who has dishonored the United States with illegitimate leadership.
Donald Trump, Rush Limbaugh and Fox News would never cease to propagandize.
That is what this brave, young president of color risked when he went for all of the marbles. What Obama did in his decision-making, in his attention to detail to ensure that the mission was sound, and his expressed confidence in his intelligence services and US military, was nothing short of brilliant.
He was even willing, according to a report from the New York Times Tuesday, to militarily engage Pakistani troops in an effort to protect the SEAL team, if necessary. That would have really thrown gasoline on the fire if things went wrong.
In short, you’ll have to look long and hard throughout history to find a US president with the kind of courage Barack Obama displayed on this one.
And that’s why we, as Americans, and as a community, should be infinitely proud of our president. After all of the birther nonsense, all of the battering, all of the lies about his character, all of the carnival barking, Pres. Obama, in a strong, dignified way, proved them all wrong in decisive fashion.
Especially a certain former US Army brigadier general now turned Wake County Public Schools superintendent, namely Anthony Tata, who had the unmitigated gall to get on Fox News Channel last year and charge that President Obama is,” … vested in all of the perks and luxuriating in the perks of his office. But to really get down and to understand what being Commander-in-chief is, I don’t think he’s fully vested in that.”
             Tata continued, “He’s sort of disinterested, in my opinion, in that he’s got these two wars that he was handed, that he has to manage, but comments such as [Obama’s Iraq troop pullout speech] really kind of unhinge in my mind, his passion which I don’t believe is there from the reality that I just don’t think he’s fully vested in the military, and fully vested in the security of this nation.”
            The 28-year US Army veteran had precious little bad to say about his former Commander-in-chief now. He was given two chances to take some of that back last week, one of them by me, the other by Anthony Wilson of WTVD-TV News in Durham.
            He wouldn’t respond to my request for comment at all, and all Tata told Anthony about Obama was that he was sure bin Laden was dead, not only because he trusted that his brethren on the military did the job, but also that “our president…confirms” it.
            It would take real guts, REAL courage on the part of Supt. Tata to say he was wrong about Pres. Obama. It would take real fortitude and honesty to admit that by ordering the hit on bin Laden, Pres. Obama, himself, has certainly become a direct target for terrorists himself.
            And it would take REAL character on the part of Tata to say, point blank, that Pres. Obama IS vested in the national security of this nation, and IS vested in our military, highly honors it, and trusts it 100 percent.
            If Tony Tata showed me all of the above, that would show me what kind of guts and strength of character he truly has to admit how wrong he was.
            So I’ll just end this right here and now by simply saying, “I’m waiting.”
Make sure you tune in every Thursday afternoon at 4 p.m. for my talk radio show, ''Make It Happen'' on Power 750 WAUG-AM, or online at www.Power750.com. And read more about my thoughts and opinions exclusively at my new blog, ‘The Cash Roc” (http://thecashroc.blogspot.com/2011/01/cash-roc-begins.html). I promise it will be interesting.”
Cash in the Apple - honored as the Best Column Writing of 2006 by the National Newspaper Publishers Association, by Cash Michaels, honored this year as well by NNPA for Best Feature Story Journalist of 2009.
Until next week, keep a smile on your face, GOD in your heart, and The Carolinian your life. Bye, bye.

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