NYU Black Renaissance Noire Winter 2014 - Page 7

How does Klein know this? Did he interview any of the principals involved? Did he cite any sources? Who knows? Klein certainly never deigns to attribute this “inside” information to any source. His is a perfect illustration of what’s wrong with much of what passes as “the mainstream media” these days. Whether it is some critic calling Kara Walker “a genius” or Edward Klein spouting all kinds of unsubstantiated nonsense on television about President Obama and First Lady, Michelle Obama, we are living in a time when anything of substance can be cancelled out, immediately knocked off the airwaves — if it ever gets that far — or never published anywhere, if the “powers that be” don’t want it to see the light of day, for whatever reason. This is where the country is in my view. Finally, in the United States we see a cynical, dysfunctional, ideologically driven Supreme Court making bone-headed and destructive rulings in favor of corporations and the ruling class, in concert with a Congress dominated by so many racist Republicans watching from the sideline everyday, doing absolutely nothing. They believe that doing nothing will make President Obama look bad and ultimately give Republicans total power in the country. We in this country and others in the world find ourselves in a terrible, horrific situation today. It seems more and more the world is in a state of devolution, approaching a death spiral, as groups on both side of this struggle refuse to compromise on anything. People on one side of a question point fingers at everyone else with whom they disagree on practically every question. Such intransigence leads inevitably to more violence and destruction, a recipe for total madness. Future historians will look back at this bleak and dark period as a time of travesty and total breakdown of human morality. It seems we have few wise people with vision steering and guiding the ships of nations through increasingly powerful, relentless storms roiling the polluted waters surrounding us all. We have gathered together for you another highly readable issue of Black Renaissance Noire. In this issue we offer poetry by Allison Adele Hedge Coke, Aracelis Girmay, Tyehimba Jess, Yusef Komunyakaa, Colleen McElroy, Cynthia Dewi Oka, Sterling Plumpp, Meha Semwal, Matthew Shenoda, Ekere Tallie, Derek Walcott; visual art by Jules Allen, C. Michael Norton, John Pinderhughes, and Lezley Saar; exciting fiction by Henry Dumas and Hermine Pinson, non-fiction by Chinweizu, Carol Diehl, Aracelis Girmay, Paul Carter Harrison, Dennis Kardon, Barbara Lewis, Ethelbert Miller, Kofi Natambu, Brenda Marie Osbey, Eugene B. Redmond, v