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Archive for December, 2010|Monthly archive page

Bittersweet

In Uncategorized on December 13, 2010 at 11:05 am

Cam Netwon, the son. The controversy continues, especially after, one Mr. Newton took home college football’s top honor, the Heisman Trophy. Cecil Newton, the father–was not in attendance at any of the award ceremonies, but in his acceptance speech for the Heisman, Newton, the son, acknowledged how important his father has been in his life and career. No matter where you sit on this issue, the victory for Newton, the son was bittersweet. I’m not concerned about what may happen later, but for the here and now, Cam Newton is the best college football player for the 2010 season.

What is in the bittersweet victory? A win is a win, right? What detracts from the victory? How can it be sweeter? For the Newtons, Cam got the trophy, the attention, the fame, but at what cost? Not saying that Newton, the son, is guilty, but there’s a cost he’s paid up to this point. And yet his efforts on the field seem effortless through the turmoil, the breakdown, the aftermath of a scandal.

Gary Grant, “I call it the second bittersweet victory.” Was he talking about Cam Newton???–not close. He’s referring to the second settlement African American farmers have received from the federal government. The 1997 Pigford v. Glickman case, where African American farmers sued the USDA for years of discrimination against African American farmers, was settled out of court in 1999. On December 8, President Obama signed legislation authorizing the payments of the original settlement, to the tune of $1.15 billion (the settlement is separate from the $3.4 billion settlement reached for Native Americans).

Founder of the Black Farmers Association, John Boyd says that “It’s vindication and justice for black farmers. This is what I wanted. I wanted a final restitution from the government so the black farmers can move on.”

So, for African American farmers, this has been long coming; and a victory for those farmers who lost farms and who were, according to the lawsuit, routinely denied loans that their white counterparts received. It’s a victory for the Newtons. The question remains, how long will it take for the sweetness of victories overcome the bitter?

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