Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Can Fairness be Accomplished?

The best interaction in business is one that both opposing parties consider as a “win-win”, where both parties gave a little, and agreed towards more in the middle of the conflict vs. being compromised from their prospective positions. A “fairness” level can be accomplished if both parties are truly sincere in creating a mutually beneficial business environment. That’s the key.

In the text (Messick and Sentis, 1979) point out as a general rule fairness is a matter of perception. Such perception is usually self-serving by the parties involved. Therefore when two opposing parties seek to achieve a mutually amicable solution they have to determine from with the fairness gap, which is the gap between what they need vs. what the other party needs; two diametrically opposing positions. The primary focus by both parties should be on identifying the gap, specifying the dynamics of the gap, creating a critical path towards the middle, and doing a self-assessment of whether if the middle is achieved could you feel the outcome was fair?

In conflict situations opposing party’s often present solutions that they feel is fair to the other party. The problem is always the presenting party always discounts or minimizes the other parties’ position. This fact is human nature, but an adjustment of ones perception takes work. It takes a person to consider the other persons position and internalize the dynamics as they would see it played out, in order to have a real affinity for the opposition’s position. This takes skill.

Depending upon the magnitude of the deal, or conflict to under estimate the other parties position can be detrimental to achieving any real solution. The key to constructive reasoning of another parties position is to control what (Messick and Sentis, 1979) terms as the phenomenon of egocentric bias. You have to take your own ego out of the equation. Not necessarily compromising your principals, but, always defaulting to a more humble “I’m just trying to seek common ground” approach. Once that skill is learned then one can put themselves into a position to compromise. Compromising takes deductive reasoning, and good instinct that the fight for a happy medium is more valuable than a fight for your unwavering principles. If both parties exercise compromising principles then fairness can be accomplished.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Chapter One ~

It was 9:48 a.m. Tuesday morning on December 22nd,, the year 2009. Gregory Heartwell was particularly pleased that he’d experienced a restful sleep the previous night, but more importantly, he was pleased that God had tapped him on the forehead to awake and see another day.

As he stretched his arms out and yawned he began a conversation with himself with the tone of pause and reflection.

This day was no regular day. This marked his 50th birthday. My golden anniversary on this earth! Yes, this would be a great day!

Have I really lived my life to its fullest? Had I lived the life that I was supposed to live?

Fifty years had caught up with him. He’d been running from aging all life long while chasing the hopes and dreams that he’d always promised himself as a youngster.
By the time I’m twenty I’m going to be playing major league professional baseball, and by the time I’m 30 I’m going to be married with children and live in a big house rich beyond my wildest imagination and loving life.

When none of those things happened, he’d adjust his goals with new sights. I’m going to be a top executive in a major company by the time I’m 35. Then I’m going to be retired, by the time I’m 40.

When none of these things happened the way he hoped he stopped dreaming and started just living. He stopped putting pressure on himself to accomplish this by then and that by when. Just live!

In all honesty, the life he’d lived was one that he could say maximized his true talents, and was consistent with his outgoing personality. He’d taken many different paths, with wondrous experiences of things that the average person could only imagine, read or hear about. After all was said and done, he’d been blessed!
The weather was exceptionally beautiful, crisp and calm this morning. In the background the birds were chirping, leaves were rustling through the light, cool but comfortable breeze, which was coming off of the lake at the mouth of the property about a half mile away.

As the music played from the IPOD, Peter Franklin’s In the Center provided the right jazzy spiritual setting that he’d anticipated and hoped for on this Sunday. For he’d carefully planned out this day down to the time that he’d awake to his attire, to the reading he’d partake, the drink he’d swallow, to the music that would fill his ear lobes .

Just as he envisioned, he smiled and was satisfied with the tone being established. The vibe of meditation and the day had been carefully planned to let the thoughts flow in a natural, holistic manner. It was a time for deep reflection!
Feeling vibrant his internal conversation continued, I’m sporting my freshly laundered, white, French-cuffed shirt, with my ruby red, heart-shaped cuff links, Sean Jean baggy jeans, I’m reading the latest edition of Forbes Magazine, and my day is off to a great start.

Cutting his eyes away from the article about the impending president-elect Obama’s proposed economic stimulus plans.

As the sun showered down onto his Mikasa china cup the reflection of his face inside of the herbal tea drink, caught his attention. His face showed as clear as glass. “Damn, I look good for an old man!” he laughingly proclaimed.
God’s been good to me. He gave my family good genes, and blessed me with the good sense to take care of my health and body, and live a clean life.

Throughout his life his looks would usually get him in the door to certain opportunities. But his guile, character, and street-honed survival skills are what would help him to achieve the benefits. Proud of the fact that he never took those attributes for granted. His humble approach to life always served him well.
As he scanned his surroundings he took a moment to inhale the naturally clean air, green pastures and natural beauty that Mississippi possessed. After all, it was one the primary reason he was sold on this property.

“If God made something more beautiful I had yet to see it.”
Nestled in the outskirts of Jackson, Mississippi, about 15 miles from Philadelphia’s Choctaw Indian reservation, rested the 100 acre paradise of his forefathers; Heritage Hill.

The property and its surrounding land within five miles radius was owned and controlled by several families who’d resided there for centuries of generations back to slave days. Each family was related to the other.

A story was passed down by generation that Master Peeler during the days of share cropping would request his main trusted Negro Mr. George to take his horses and other cattle to town for the purpose of auction. Mr. George, who expected to make a percentage of the proceeds from the auction sales, would often get paid in deeds of trust for land instead of cash.

Quite naturally those deeds were considered worth less than the dirt that accumulated on that property of those deeds. But in Mr. George’s mind; what other choice did he have? He couldn’t rebel and callout Master Peeler, but he believed in his heart of hearts that one day those deeds would be worth 100 times the value than of those times. So he made the sacrifice for the greater reward for his family.
He held the deeds close to his person, coveting them like any other family jewel. Besides, the deeds represented ownership of the very property where previous generations of family members were housed as slaves and where he grew up as a little boy. He knew if he was smart his family would always have a home. Hopefully, he could teach his offspring to value the tenet of the deeds and continue the stewardship of the property for generations to come.

Mr. George was Heartwell’s grandma Nola’s, uncle! He was a great man who lived until he was 92. God used him well. One day Gregory got a chance to meet with him before he left the world.

Reminiscing with a glaze of remembrance Gregory gazed across the knoll of his sprawling property and focused on a spot just on the other side of the property line.
We sat on his porch drinking lemonade out of his Mason jar glass talking about life scanning over 80 years of historical events. His knowledge and wisdom will forever be with me.

Heritage Hill represented peace, tranquility and safety to George. “When I go into town amongst all that ciaos and return back up this here hill, as soon as I get to main road up to the house I feel safe and secure and protected. Everyone on the hill knows me and I know them; we’re all family.

Nodding with agreement to that statement by George, Gregory was puzzled about when he would come and visit Mississippi, “Coming from the big cities of California, I never did understand why my family especially my mom, who spent her childhood in this beautiful place, never came back to visit Heritage Hill. The natural beauty here is awesome!”

Admittedly, there was an instance when while driving he took a wrong turn off a main road and ended up onto a rural, dirt road lined on both sides of this narrow path containing weeping willow trees. Except these trees were weeping for other reasons, Gregory suddenly got an eerie, frightening vision of his ancestors’ lifeless expressionless bodies hung from the neck suspended from those trees in their slave garb. Visions of bodies swinging in the wind like the leaves on the tree, slowly from side to side were eminent in his mind.

Immediately he slammed on the brakes, and made a u-turn convinced that he was not meant to travel down that road. The remnants of slavery are still in the air in the South if one looked deep enough, and listened hard enough. But, with the guidance of the undying sprit of his ancestors who lived a real life daily existence of terror one could find the mind to enjoy the overwhelming beauty of the South’s topography.
Heartwell’s success in business afforded him the opportunity to live a comfortable life wherever he wished. He chose Mississippi to call home.

His family resisted leaving the big city for the country. Especially the country in the south, so far away from the West Coast! Heartwell understood their concerns; they really didn’t want to leave their friends.

However, when he’d journey to Heritage Hill from California and arrive onto the property, he’d often take a walk on the grounds between the weeping willow trees along the natural rustling running water from the creek, and suddenly would stop and just look in amazement at how innocent and virgin the land had been. Hearing the breeze through the branches with his eyes closed he’d listen to the whispering of the wind. He could hear the whispering voices of his ancestors who’d cultivated the land.

Those ancient spoken whispers were messages from God, telling him that his path will one day return back to where it all began. Back to the center of my soul!
The Heartwell’s committed to Mississippi living by building an exquisite custom built Mediterranean style home nestled in the middle of the 80 acre property, privacy would not be a problem.

Reflecting about the painstaking and intricate process he took in choosing each amenity. Everything that he’d ever dreamt about was featured in the estate. The finest appointments of mahogany wood, hand-cut pillowed limestone flooring in the foyer and throughout, ten foot high glass paneled French entry doors, cascading fountains and formal gardens of odoriferous flowers made the grounds look like an oasis.

Heartwell’s kids loved the grotto style pool and sports court. His wife spent most of her time in the granite clad gourmet kitchen. Baby I’ll have to admit some delicious grub comes out of that kitchen.

But, my favorite place on the property was right here on the Veranda in my favorite rocker chair overlooking the complete grounds and the valley which one can see as far as their imagination can take them. This was the place which brought me to the center of my soul. When the setting’s right like today, life really makes sense. Life is good!

Focusing back into his cup, he remembered that life hadn’t always been so kind. He’d come a long way to this place. It was less than a decade and a half ago when I was at a serious impasse in my life. I’d just been released from my contract in professional baseball. I was sent packing back to California in the most embarrassing way. In front of all of my teammates!

With shattered dreams and broken promises, not really knowing where my next step would take me. My spirit broken, I ended up on my brothers’ couch literally trying to sleep off the bad dream.

Of course being pitiful wasn’t productive! So one day his brother Hampton gave him that, “Brotha you’d better get your ass off of the couch and do something with yourself. Yes, I understand that baseball thing didn’t work but you’ll find something else. You always do. Besides you can’t stay here forever…; speech.”
Hampton was right of course. He couldn’t continue that existence, but he’d been hurt. He’d been rejected by his former professional baseball team. He’d been told that he was no longer the Chosen One, “Your services are immediately terminated. You will be okay, because you’re educated unlike many of our other players”. Ironically that’s why he was chosen versus one of his teammates whose fate wouldn’t be so successful if he was released. That teammate wouldn’t have as many options. “He’d be forced to carry a lunch pail for the rest of his life” Mr. Bean the General Manger would proclaim.

Don’t do me any favors, was his thought to that ridiculous ass statement. Nevertheless, he got fired from his dream and it hurt.

No! Life wasn’t always so great, but I’m a survivor! I’m from the streets. Underneath this sophisticated exterior is a boy from the urban inner-city of America who used his street savvy to develop a keen business intellect, took horrible life experiences to build a strong instinct about people, and the circumstances of the game.

Heartwell was a person who used his athletic accomplishment to fuel a competitive nature that always landed him atop of company’s lists of top producers. Most importantly, his most valuable resource was the wisdom of his whispering ancestors who guarded him from the pitfalls of the path of no return.

In a gaze into the morning sunlight shining just off the side of the balcony providing a comforting blanket of warmth and calm. Admittedly, life has been amazingly interesting.

I believe that I lived it rather than just survived it. One day I’ll enjoy telling my grandkids, just like George, about my 80 years of historical events and share lemonade in a Mason jar on my front porch downloading all of the knowledge and wisdom that had been bestowed upon me.

Caught up in a gaze Heartwell heard sounds of several footsteps coming in his direction, which would surely mark the end of peace and solitude. It would be time to be daddy and husband soon, but his day had started just perfectly, and his family would just add the icing to the cake. Yes this would be unlike any of his other birthdays in his life.

“Honey, are you ready for breakfast? What are you doing out there all by yourself anyway?”

“Nothin! Just, sittin up lookin”! Yeah, I’m ready for that good grub you’re serving in that kitchen. Baby, have I ever told you that I really love your cooking?

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

A Little Meditation Never Hurt Anyone

“Unleash the Power of the Cerebrum”

According to Alan Watts “A Conversation with Myself” -- and the Dalai Lama what is the instructive value of meditating or emptying the mind rather than the traditional studying in order to fill it?

The cerebrum is the largest part of the brain that makes sense of signals sent from the sensory nerves in the body to process thoughts ideas, linguistics, and ideals. The brain is a complex magnificent organ which the creator gave our species which can conceive almost anything that’s possible.

However in all of its natural complexities, humans insist on simplifying the concept of thought, by interjecting knowledge and concepts. We tend to try to simplify in order to control our environment (i.e. - geometrics, science, mathematical formulas, technology, and linguistics).

When we think naturally, we think in colors, pictures or images, words, sounds, emotions, and languages. This process is a constant and fluid processing of information by the brain. When we interject science, math and other formal disciplines of information that’s learned; even though the brain has the natural capacity to process, understand, and store that information in its data base that process is counter the natural process of creativity.

Alan Watts (A Conversation with Myself) used the term “wiggly” that nature uses to flow with the naturalness of it movements. Human beings counteract nature by trying to place thoughts and ideas into simplified contexts (boxes, straight-line, rigid forms of life). The openness of ones mind allows for the natural flows of thought and creativity that’s meant for the mind to comprehend.

He further describes the brain as a network of interconnected neurons. A message of yes or no, but nature is far more complicated than that. Everything is interconnected, like a flower is connected to a field, the stem, dirt and water.

Non-Western alternatives which is working out the mind as it-is taps into the more embodied philosophies which are considered more in line with nature. The basis of Western culture is a logical formula of simplifying concepts which is counter to how nature really works, artificially causes a homeostasis of our universe. Nature is more of complex moving elements of the world.

2. How have alternative [i.e. non-Western] approaches to problem solving or healing worked for you or anyone that you know?

The body believes what the mind conceives and vice versa. If ones mind tells the body its sick it the body can become sick. In extreme cases ones mind can be interconnected that it can convince the body to become extremely ill. Psychosomatic disorder is the medical or clinical term used for a person whose mental emotions cause them to affect their physical organs. Therefore it’s imperative for us to be able to control our minds and direct our thoughts.

When I utilize Eastern philosophies of meditation my main objective is to place myself mentally and physically in a state of relaxation where the naturalness of thoughts and ideas flow freely. I can control my mind and direct my thoughts more freely when I’m able to effectively place myself in a meditative state. I can accomplish this state of being on a long ride in the country, or a long jog on a nature trail with my Ipod playing my favorite relaxing tunes. The ladder is my preference; because it allows me to connect with receive nature’s elements of the sun, air, wind, water, grass, birds, and the flowers.

Additionally, the physical nature of the cardio vascular activity causes my endorphin’s to increase which stimulates my brain waves that and serves to relax my thoughts. These elements facilitate a natural process of open mindedness, of which allows ideas to flow freely and uninhibited.

The Dalai Lama’s teachings of meditation encompasses an emptying of the mind of all thoughts through formal processes, which helps facilitate an environment of physical and mental mind openness. These processes help break-down the inhibitors that interferes with the steadiness of the object of observation and causes it to fluctuate; excitement or, in a more general way, scattering.

They help to reach clarity through the inner most intimate thoughts, so that the intensity of the mode of apprehension begins to lower. To withdraw the mind, it helps to think about something that makes you more sober, a little sad.

Another type of meditation involves looking at the mind itself. Try to leave your mind vividly in a natural state, without thinking of what happened in the past or of what you are planning for the future, without generating any conceptuality.

In theory something that’s formal in process and structured in its nature in order to be effective counterbalances the natural evolution of a thought process. The reality is the mind conceives thoughts and ideas whenever and however. One mind can be blocked by the very tension that can be created by the brain which can get consumed with the thought that the mind and body must take a specific planned time to meditate.

How many times have we heard of writers block, where someone who purposely has placed themselves in what they’ve considered a creative place of existence (i.e. - a cabin in the woods, a private hotel room, etc.) just to accomplish that sustainable mind-opening environment, but nothing happens? They cannot seem to collect their thoughts.

Dalai Lama teaches that a callisthenic training of the mind with persistent practice, consciousness may eventually be perceived or felt as an entity of mere luminosity and knowing, to which anything is capable of appearing and which, when appropriate conditions arise, can be generated in the image of whatsoever object.

I think what really works is a consistently seeking to create a balance of nature and science, because our civilization is built around formulaic concepts that drive our practical lives. But, in addition to inhibiting ideas and concepts, I utilize meditation to de-stress my mind, in order to promote better mental and physical health. I do subscribe to the philosophy of letting the mind flow of its own accord without conceptual overlay. Letting the mind rest in its natural state, and observe it.

If you are able to do a little meditation daily, withdrawing this scattered mind on one object inside, it is very helpful.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


The theory of Darwin proclaimed that species survive because their ancestors before them had certain superior traits that were passed down to their offspring. He believed that the unexplained circumstances in life counter any divine creation, because God would have intentionally made transparent reasoning for all things left unexplainable.

From Darwin’s prospective what God was supposed to BE; was perfect in every way, including all that He created, and therefore the imperfections in life were proof against God being responsible for creation of the world.

Thomas Aquinas that human existence is part of a divine plan (of Creationism). The imperfections are in fact perfect in God’s mind. There’s a purpose for everything, even the unexplainable.

Biologically man and other species are born into this world the way that they are. The question still remains why man is at the top of the food chain? Why man was made to be superior to the animals, vegetation, fish and crops placed on earth for man’s primary source of survival?

We are more than just a species that was more equipped to survive than others. It’s ironic that humans, who have something that no other organism have; the ability to evaluate our existence for a historical, contemporary and futuristic perspective. Who we are, and where we are going? Don’t seem to be as debated as the question of where we came from? Why is this knowledge so important for us to define?

In knowing our history part of what’s considered fact vs. fiction is the element of science. Therefore if biologists can determine the history of earth through fossil records it’s important to note that these facts earmark things that occurred in a time and place, what things probably looked like. Fossils are like a photograph of captured moments of history.

Now with relative science either previously developed or recently developed can calculate with some reasonableness a story or hypothesis of what occurred 100’s of millions of years ago.

With the evidence of science as an accepted barometer by society as factual evidence, so to is the story of the Bible which contradicts some of the scientific facts that are recounted about how the earth began.

The main thing that is consistent between both the recount of the Bible and scientific methodologies is we humans are often viewed as a superior species. Maybe that is true. Darwin would have us believe it was the evolution that brought us to superior species. And, un-foretold and unforeseen circumstances directed us though the maze of our own evolution from our ancestors with strong traits that so happened to bring us to a point where one man learned to make tools and solve problems. Well that’s one man’s theory.

However, survival is always the main component of evolution. Basic survival is influenced by environmental factors which force us to adapt. This truism would lead us to believe logically that if evolution was strictly tied to the environment then we probably would resemble robots rather than humans.
The environment has evolved significantly over the centuries, but humans relatively haven’t changed much in appearance.

So the question remains do our recognized superior traits allow us to control our evolution? Or are we still evolving to adapt to the changes in environmental conditions which adversely affect us in order to survive?

When the phrase is used “they don’t make them like they used to”! Does this also apply to human beings?

We recognize the evolutionary process was designed only for the fittest and strongest, but does tomorrows evolution mean the people that are the healthiest, least stressed, live the most Green Life, are the most intellectually adept are the ones that will survive? Just like the example of the evolution of cars. Will humans have to adapt to be more energy efficient, and safe?

It was Cicero who once said (contemporary translation) “Man not knowing the events that took place before in time, is like going through life as an infant”. Regardless of ones theories or ideological perspectives that fact remains that it is now and always has been man who’s deciphered what’s happened in history. Man made up the standards of science. Man determined the benchmark process of what’s acceptable or not in our society. Even the Bible is the chronicles of 8 men who through their own witness interpreted what occurred in history.

These facts are and will always be the impetus for a debate that will never be solved in contemporary times because no one was there to witness what happened! In our society it’s always so important for us to have one single answer for everything that effects our lives, especially when it comes to our history. Maybe there isn’t just one explanation, and maybe our history was a series of complicated and convoluted occurrences. I think that the evidence that we have discovered points towards the more complicated explanation than the Big Bang or any other singular theory.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Racial Profiling Real or Percieved?


ABSTRACT: Racial Profiling still remains a problem in American society today, and seems to be a practice amongst our peace keepers/ law enforcement personnel throughout this country. The need for a higher level or training, legislation and leadership will be required in order to alleviate this ongoing practice going forward.

In spite of the appeals process, courts system, and the legislative laws of our society, as evidenced above the definition of Racial Profiling is incongruent amongst law enforcement channels in America. As a result, the interpretation of proper procedures relative to Racial Profiling is left up to the discretion of the officers on the streets. These “Street Level Bureaucrats” are given the power to interpret, enforce, and in most case become the absolute final judge relative to a person receiving the full benefits of the laws that were intended to protect society.

The term “Driving while black” (or brown) still exists today. The factual based data cited in the source (, states that blacks are six times more likely to get stopped and have their vehicles searched than whites is evidence of the racial based subjectivity being levied by our nation’s officers.

There are still officers throughout law enforcement channels who feel the oath to “Protect and serve” doesn’t apply to blacks or other people of color. They feel the oath should be used to “control” the ethnic population in order to deter the inevitable; criminal intent (Reginald Lyles- Law Enforcement Consultant on sensitivity “Best Practices”, special sensitivity consultant for BART Police Department/post Mehserle incident, former Captain of Novato Police Department- 30 years).

Additionally, in contemporary environments many police officers operate with a certain level of fear and distrust regarding ethnic individuals’ especially black, Hispanic, and Middle Eastern males. Their lack of intimate understanding of the cultural and psychological attitudes and characteristics serves to limit their perspective to enable them to reach an alternative perspective from their own.

The real challenge with this attitude is, authorities don’t have a way to clear and concise mechanism to uncover those hidden feelings. Even some of the personality tests that are given in the pre-hiring screening process don’t necessarily uncover these survival instincts that evolve when that officer is placed in a compromising situation.

Administrators have to take additional measures to ensure that our officers have been trained, prepared and equipped with enough social morays to effectively administer fair and descent policing practices within our communities. The reality has demonstrated that there still exists a sensitivity gap that is either real or perceived by society that constantly finds our police officers on the wrong end of a civil law suit.

The key argument is that profiling enables law enforcement authorities to screen effectively and succinctly towards people or sectors that are more likely than others to have a proclivity for criminal activity. But there hasn’t been any empirical proof that Racial Profiling or Profiling has been an effective tool for deterring criminal behavior.

The reality is profiling isn’t just indigenous to just certain races. When an officer sees a person that appears out of place in the environment where their being detained for example a white man standing or resting in an deep inner-city neighborhood, or a tattooed biker tooling through a well known upscale neighborhood, aspects of racial profiling are considered justified by law officials because the person was looking suspicious and therefore provided probable cause to be questioned.

Officers are given the oath to protect & serve the citizens of community, provided a set of laws and empowered to enact those laws within the purview of their own individual discretion. Law enforcement official’s biggest challenge comes in the area of changing regarding discretionary techniques. Is that sufficient enough to best prepare our officers?

Training depth is left up to the discretion of the training officer who’s own particular paradigms dictate how much of the un-mandated subject matter gets interjected into the training session. Cognitive Orientation identifies that people’s ideologies frames is central to their approach to power. In the certain instances a person with a radical perspective will frame society in a class or race which focuses on Marist doctrine of unequal distribution of power in society (Morgan, 1986, p.186).

The paradigm requirement of the new Peacekeeper must better educated, possess a broader prospective about our ever increasing diverse society; unlike the myopic views historically displayed by many within the law enforcement community.

These officers must be better trained in social matters, with a heavy skew towards contextual critical thinking and best practices case study examples. The new Peacekeeper must possess leadership skills which are employed in helping create an environment of peer influences towards “best practices” police work. They must be empowered to uphold the self-policing mechanism through an un-retaliatory procedure that accomplishes rooting out the Rogue Cop, and helps to maintain the proper image and expectations of society’s police.

Police officers have to develop a renewed sense of pride for their work. The natural perception by most outsiders is that a police officer is special and proud for placing themselves in harms way on behalf of protecting the citizens of society.

Admittedly, not everyone has the intestinal fortitude to become a police officer, however, because of the Rogue Officer; the law enforcement profession has developed a bad reputation within society. Ironically, society has essentially enacted the same type of profiling about police officers, by essentially pre-judging police officers as being all the same relative to their propensity to behave in a prejudicial manner. Only law enforcement stakeholders can effectively change this dynamic.

The values of constructive conflict resolution reflects some basis values, to which people are profoundly divided by reasonable philosophical and moral values doctrines can adhere (Rawls, 1996,-P. xxxix). A reasonable doctrine in the case of racial profiling is the acceptance that police are there to provide protection all citizens of the land, and such protection requires a certain amount of scrutiny in order to ensure everyone’s safety including the officers.

The people need to cognizant of the difficulty that law enforcement personnel face in their daily work that involves extreme danger and a natural instinct of human beings is to protect themselves from harm. Therefore there are times when they are forced to make instinctual decisions that aren’t necessarily a personal indictment on ones character or status but merely an interjection of the full extent of the officer’s paradigm in handling conflict.


I just wanted to comment on your abstract. I have recently done quite a bit of research on the topic of "driving while black." I feel that it is unfair to say that it is a reality and occurring all over our nation. In my findings, I found that the majority of cities and rural areas had proportional stoppages in comparison to their population. I am not the only to find this to be the case either. All of my research came from other professional’s studies. I also interviewed numerous people in law enforcement from different agencies and positions. Everyone agreed that racial profiling is a horrific injustice and is hardly ever the case. I will not argue that it never happens because I too believe that there are a few bad apples out there that do this. What seemed to more prevalent was criminal profiling, in which certain characteristics of the vehicles or mannerisms of the driver and passengers are displaying. If you have not noticed, I feel very strongly about this topic. I think that is very unfair to suspect that racial profiling is running rampant among law enforcement agencies.



I guess the research and interviews we both conducted have varying points of view. First I never used the word "rampant". I stated that it's still an issue. I'll assume that you agree with this statement.

Furthermore, your opinion, the research that you said that you've conducted and the people that you've interviewed are perfect examples of why Racial Profiling still exists, because you ALL dismiss the actions of these officers as "isolated incidences", or to use your term "bad apples". No! The problem is systemic. If two out of the past three Presidents have had to get involved with the matter as a matter of public interest, I think that its a bit more than one isolated incident after another.

I take it that you're not a member of any of the ethnic races that are 6 times more likely to get pulled over than someone like yourself. So from a practical matter, you can conduct all the research you want with people whom you feel are subject matter experts, but unless they're victims then they don't have a legitimate say in what really is going on. I can probably deduce that if they are subject matter experts and make a statement that Racial Profiling only exists in certain rural areas, and in the same sentence of use the word "stoppage" then they probably are the perpetrators of the act.

I think that just like in the health care debate you'd better start talking to those people who are affected by the problem to gain real facts. We'll just have to agree to disagree on this one. Case closed!

Monday, January 4, 2010

The Truth and Nothing but the Truth So help Me God!

Why do you think it is often so difficult to correct outright lies and misinformation?

“Jim Jones Cool-aide” was once drunk by a group of religious fanatics that were led to believe that the contents of that drink would set their souls free. History will dictate that the drink which was mixed with an ounce of truth and a whole lot of lies, and was of coursed laced with poisonous cyanide; killed hundreds of believers as a result of their faithfulness. This is a severe example but relevant in my opinion.

People within my inner-circle use a well used phrase, “drinking the juice,” when describing someone who unquestionably follows a mistruth or misleading fact merely because they consider the source of the information as being credible.

The same as the Jim Jones disciples did back in the 70’s so do many American’s who blindly will believe misinformation or mistruths regarding certain subject matters as “Gospel”. Most of the mistruths that are disseminated in this society are related to very serious matters of government, political policy or personal information about our elected officials, or threats of war. This type of practice is very irresponsible and reckless.

In our society we thrive on controversy and fear. The more controversial the more fear can be created the more interesting! And, its not important if the subject matter is fact based or not, (remember our Military Intelligence Report which stated that Sadaam was harboring weapons of mass destruction), it’s the emotive response that gives legs to untruthful information.

In the Columbia Journal Review (August-2009) it used the term false claims relative to the counter information being spread by Republican supporters against President Obama’s health care reform proposal. The Rush Limbaugh’s, Bill O’Reilly’s, and Glen Beck’s of conservative talk show fame have a responsibility to their listener base. Their listener base obviously likes to drink the “anti-Liberal at all cost” juice. And to them all cost means to discredit the opposite principles even if it means to lie, twist or misrepresent the truth. Is that fighting fair? Well in our society, yes! Anything goes. And that’s unfortunate

We purport ourselves as a moral society, who stands up on the Constitution, human and civil rights, and the truth. But, in practice we’re anything but moral. We’re moral when it’s self-serving. But, the one thing about our Constitution is we are a nation of people, and for the people. As the people we have the ultimate power and influence over how we want to live our lives, however, we choose to minimize and trivialize our existence with constant and reckless spreading or rumors, mistruths and innuendos under the auspices of our greatest prized “freedom of speech”.

When we choose to use this gift as a weapon against each other we do nothing short of mock the Constitution. And, no matter what the media chooses to make newsworthy, we the people are what gives it life or death. We’re ultimately responsible for our information in its current form; untrustworthy.

I recall a recent debate with a colleague of mine when discussing the whole Steroid Scandal, which uncovered major league baseball players who reportedly used steroids. It’s important to note that at the time of the independent report that was famously known as the Mitchell Report, uncovered confirmed steroid use amongst certain players (the truth), but it’s universally believed that the report was supposed to be used as a tool to support evidence that the greatest player of the “Steroid Era”, Barry Bonds was also guilty of alleged use.

When the reports were released to the media, and an intense grand jury investigation, and formal indictments levied against Bonds, in the “court of public opinion” he’s completely guilty of (one would think murder). This is a classis example of a little truth mixed in with a bunch of twisted lies, opinions, and a personal vendetta of a grand jury prosecutor who’s vowed to take Barry down. My colleague stated his philosophy was that he always wanted to know the truth, regardless of how it’s obtained.

As a mature adult my andragogy has provided me with a keen practical knowledge and instinct especially as it relates to media driven scandals, to wait until the final truth comes out. The truth will always come out in the end, just like it did with the Iraq War, like it did with Watergate, like it did with President Clinton, and like it did in a twisted way with OJ Simpson. The real truth has a way to rising to the top and providing a balance in this chaotic society. Thank God!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Special Assignment: The Magnificent Interview

Matthew 6:6-8, A person must pray in private. Private means, finding a storage room (place of medication) where blessings are stored and then given to others and then replenished through prayer.

Understanding your life’s meaning and purpose? Being obedient to God’s will is the impetus for your actions. Your belief in God resonates in your work. Selflessness; having someone else’s interest in mind, less fortunate than you, , without malice, predetermined expectations, and without expecting reward in return of your gift, is paramount to your giving.

Alright! Everyone come in and settle down! The sooner that you have a seat and quiet down the sooner we can get you outa here!

Now! As we’ve mentioned to you this day would come for us to do some off the field work in preparation for the season.

I know no one wants to talk with a shrink but maybe you haven’t heard that playing in front of thousands of people can make you do some things that might cause you to act out of character.

We want to give you the tools and support you need to give you the best possible opportunity to be successful on and off of the field.

Some of you might even find this exercise useful in your lives away from baseball. So listen closely.

Please welcome from the University of California, Dr. Stephen Draeger a certified sports psychologist who’s going to talk to you about certain things you can do to mentally concentrate while under pressure.

Dr. Draeger!

Thank you! Yes, I know that you all are thinking’ what’s this got to do with hitting a fastball?

Well I’ll tell you that if you implement some of the things that I’m going to talk with you about in the next hour, you might just hit that fastball instead of striking out. What? Why the quizzical faces? Oh! You never strike out! Thank you for pointing that out to me. For all of those whom never strike out you’re free to leave!

Just as I thought everyone stays, listens and learns! Right?

Okay! Everyone move your seats to the outer wall. While at the wall remove your shoes and place them on top of your chair and return back to the space of which your chair was occupying.

Now while standing there, turn to face me. Shake out you legs, and you arms, roll you neck side to side, up and down.

Now I want you to squat right down on the floor.

Now spread out as to not crowd each other, but not to far apart from each other either. You’re going to need each others energy to help us maximize the effect.

While sitting, I want you to relax.

I want you so relaxed that some of you might even get accused of taking a nap. Yes, a nap!

And, you thought this session was going to be boring and worthless.

I sense that some of you are still a little tense. To better get you prepared, you must be relaxed. So, I want you all to lie on your backs, with your arms resting calmly on you laps.

Okay relax! Wiggle your toes, close your eyes, and breathe in and out. Take long breathes, in and out. Blow the bad air out of your wind pipes, and taking the good air in to your lungs.

Good! Now, I want you to think about a situation that’s very stressful. What immediately comes to your mind? Quickly! Everyone say it out loud all at once.

Good! Stop! Now, imagine there are 30,000 screaming fans hollering at the top of their lungs, and it’s the bottom of the ninth inning and your team is down by one run, but there are two men in scoring position, with two, outs. What’s even worse is if you loose this game you loose the championship. And you’re at your home park, with all of your friends and family in attendance, because you gave them tickets to see you play. And, oh! You haven’t had a particularly good game up to this point. As a matter of fact you’re error was the reason why your team was behind in the first place.

Feel the pressure? I see it on your faces as I walk around this room.

I see that some of you have been there before! Pressure is common. It builds fear inside of your stomach. It’s called butterflies. It’s called butterflies because it almost feels like your insides are flying around like a butterfly. The worse part, you never really know when they’re going to show up. All you know is; they usually show up at the worse possible times. Imagine that!

We’re going to discuss how we can try to control those unannounced butterflies, when they do show up.

When under pressure it’s paramount to stay calm and relaxed as you are now. You have to immediately imagine yourself as being successful maybe even being carried around the ball park on your teammates shoulder after winning the game because of your heroics.

This must be your immediate thought, because you cannot allow a negative thought to enter into your head, at that pressure moment. When you do, those thoughts ironically end up in the pit of your stomach and the forefront of your mind.

Remember this thought has nothing to do with ego, skill, or macho manhood crap! This is about mind control techniques.

Okay! Now that we’re calm we still have to perform. This is where we must force ourselves to concentrate at a high level. This is in spite of all the thoughts that creep up inside of our minds at that moment. Like those thoughts about, your girl friend breaking up with you, your paycheck coming up short, the coach is telling you that you were dogging it when you were in the field. You know the usual!

All these thoughts along with the fans yelling and the pressure of the moment sounds like a marching band at a football game going off inside of your freakin head!

Through all of this you must figure out how to concentrate on the situation at hand. Surely you cannot ask for time out and take an hour for meditation, to “get your head right”!

No! But, I can teach you how to; at the close of your eyes, cause your mind to go into an accelerated meditative state.

Now, that I’ve gotten your attention. I see the curiosity on your faces. That’s good!

Let’s take another deep breathe, and listen to my voice! (In a longer cadence) Focus only on my voice. Nothing else! Clear your mind of all thoughts. Concentrate deeply on my voice!

I want you to imagine yourself looking down upon yourself lying there nice and relaxed. Look at that picture!

Now, look at you head. Imagine your brain having four evenly separate boxes. In those four boxes we’re going to put something special inside of them.

The something special were going to put inside of those four boxes are happy thoughts; not of things that you’ve yet to experience but of things that have already occurred in your life. These things made you happy, gave you joy and were very positive. As a matter of fact when you think about them you feel very warm inside. Warm with joy!

We’re going to call these boxes your happy places!

First, let’s concentrate on just these happy things the thoughts of your favorite vacation; where did you go? What did you see? Who did you go with? Was it you family, your wife, girlfriend, your kids? What was special about the place that you visited? Was it peaceful, beautiful, great weather, great and the sights unique? Why did that place have an ever lasting special meaning for you?

Okay, now let’s place that thought right in the middle of that first box in the corner of your mind put the lid on and lock it away until later when we need it.

Now, let’s think about the time you felt the most loved. Was it by your girlfriend, parents, maybe your pet? How did you feel? Let’s lock that thought away the same as the first one.

In the next box we’re going to place the thought of the most successful game you ever had in your life. What did you do? Did you have 4 hits, or 3 home runs, throw a no hitter, make a spectacular catch, or all of the above? Think about what you did differently that day? Did you eat differently, leave for the ball park earlier, or maybe even later than usual? Did you have a special meal or the same? How did that game make you feel when it was over? Did it cause a surreal moment? Were you totally exhausted from the maximum effort; knowing that you gave it your best on that day!

I can tell you all can hear the roar of the crowd chanting your names in your heads right now. Let’s place those thought in your special box and lock it up.

In that last box, were going to think of that thing, that IT that makes you unique. What is that one special thing that allows you to be in that position, with the opportunity to become the hero in the first place? The one thing that people say most about you that’s you find the most endearing and complimentary? The one thing that defines your character and persona, gives you strength, and when you hear it said about you it makes you feel like you’re 10 feet tall! Let’s fill our last box with those thought and lock it up tight with the others.

Now that we’ve filled our four boxes up with special thoughts, let’s carry those boxes in our arms, upstairs to the attic of your minds.

Why the attic? Because, the attic is where we store things; right? And when we store things in that attic, we usually don’t think of them until we need them for something.

Well, we’re going to store our boxes away for those times when we need them the most. Times of difficult circumstances and pressure!

Now, let’s envision those four boxes lying there, side by side on the floor of that attic. Just sitting there with those shinny locks on them, waiting to one day opened again.

Remember gentleman! Only you have the key to open them again. Only you know what’s in those special boxes. And when you open these boxes you’ll find noting but happiness awaiting you from its contents, for you placed those thoughts there from a special place, with care and love, success and adoration and most of all strength and character. That’s power from within!

Unleashing the greatness within oneself can help overcome the biggest obstacle, even if it seems the odds ore insurmountable.

With your special boxes in an eyes blink you can cause combustion of stored energy powerful enough for you to overcome any temporary state of exhumed fear, caused by that pressure moment.

Feel it! Feel the power! Feel the control over your thought! Feel your outer body visions of your calm and controlled demeanor! Internalize those positive thoughts, and put aside the negative conversation that your hearts having with your mind; and become strong. Now dominate the moment!

Wow! That meditative journey I traveled even though directed by the doctor to concentrate on a specific scenario that we’d most likely encounter during the course of battle caused a more broad application to the concept he delivered.

With my eyes closed my mind drifted towards higher meaning, worldly social issues.

The deep meditative state conjured up a more special place than what my attic could comprehend.

If an earthly being wanted to talk to God Himself to gain knowledge and explanation about the things of controversy that have occurred in this world; which person would be most qualified to ask those questions? You, I, Larry King? No! I think Oprah Winfrey!

Oprah Winfrey is a person who’s transcended cultural lines, broken down social barriers, accepted and recognized around the world as a person who can get down to the reality of situations that effect the most common person.

Having made the determination, in my mind Oprah was THAT person! Even though I subconsciously could hear the doctor’s voice in the background, consciously my concentration was on having my Oprah Moment.

Good afternoon ladies and gentleman! We have here special for you the creator of Man, of earth, the flowers, the birds, the sky and all beautiful things.

He’s the all knowing, all seeing, he’s everywhere at all times. He’s in your hearts, in your minds, and in your thoughts, as a matter of fact he knows what you’re thinking before you even think it. He’s the person that you’ve been waiting for all of your life! He’s God himself here today!

God, first of all I must say that you’re not all like I imagined you would be. You look like a regular person.
Of course that would make sense because you made man in your own image. But, the way that most of us have envisioned you is a spirit that’s bigger than life, so powerful that just being in your mere presence would cause great fear!

But, of course that doesn’t make much sense because you wouldn’t want a person to fear you; but embrace you and accept your open arms of love.

I also, recognize that you look very healthy and vibrant, not like a person that’s been alive from the very beginning of time.

Finally, not to ramble, but this moment marks the most special interview that I could ever have in my career. I’m honored that you chose me to provide you the opportunity to give your message in your own words.

God, with that introduction, I must admit that there’s major concern and chaos occurring in the world, almost to the point that many people believe that you’re coming to end the world; Armageddon. I hope your not here to make THAT announcement!

Assuming, that’s not the case, I do have some questions that I’d like to hear your answers to:

Was Tsunami and Hurricane Katrina really your doing?

Was 911 Holy War against America?

Why is the United States at war with Iraq?

Why do people struggle with their faith in you?

Is Satan stronger than ever? If so why?

Why are there sexual predators?

Why do little children get molested? Aren’t they the most cherished of your creations, thus warrant the most protection from harm?

What happening with the black family today?

Why don’t black American families stay together?

Why do black American lack leadership today?

Why do so many black American young men end up on the streets, selling drugs, using drugs, lacking direction, disrespecting society, rebelling against authority, and lacking responsibility for their actions?

Why are black Americans so unhealthy? Why do black Americans die of cancer, hypertension, heart disease and diabetes at such an alarming rate?

Why does racism still exist?

Is there such of a thing called a natural born leader?

What’s success by YOUR standards?

What’s happening with love between men & women?

Why do corporations steal from their employees’ pension funds?

Why do women suffer so much pain during pregnancy and giving birth to new life? Was it really because of Adam and Eve?

If Adam and Eve were husband and wife and their children mated each other therefore creating the human race, is the inbred factor the reason for the worlds dysfunctional behavior?

Why is there hunger in a world full of surplus?

Is the world really going to come to an end through our own doing, from things like global warming, and nuclear bombs? If so, why won’t you stop it?

Why is there a stronger belief that there’s hell on earth than heaven above? Furthermore, why doe’s Hell feel more realistic than Heaven?

When blessed people like Dr. Martin Luther King, Gandhi and Mother Theresa call for harmony and peace among fellow man, that they’re considered impractical and radical by the majority?

Why can’t your angels who’ve been blessed by your hands to deliver your message of obedience to the Commandments and to the Covenant of Jesus Christ to your flock cannot seem to penetrate bureaucracy of the world’s government to instill to the people priority of faith versus governments power and influence?

Why do people have to get suffer near death experiences to hear your words clearly?

Why do send messages thru people like the Homeless Man to talk to your children?

What is your plan for us really?

Awakened by the vibrato of the Professors insistent voice about controlling our inner-self I opened my eyes to more than just the room.

I saw that my journey had been one of learning through experiences, guided by individuals who’d seen something special in my eyes that told them I could be unique and radical, but ground in earthy values.

God blessed me with a protective layer of people who’d ensure I stayed out of Hell Land, but more importantly maintained a path of success.

Success defined by how I lived my life conscientious of others wellbeing self improvement and happiness. The effective operation of the premise of the systematization of our life’s process consists of decisions one has to make everyday, of which decisions; if handled improperly could negatively alter ones life, however if properly made could become a positive life altering decision.

The success becomes, when the intersection of ones innate virtues, spirituality, character capital, intellectual capacity, emotional command, humble persona, permits one to travel life’s journey reaping the benefits reserved by God, on their behalf.

The by-product of that success is often financial reward, respect even power and influence. But, Gandhi and Mother Theresa, the Dalai Lama each very successful weren’t know as wealthy monetarily.

The question remains, does money define ones success, or is ones cause and fight for righteousness and the respect that’s gleaned from ones efforts?