*CLEARS THROAT*

HELLO AND WELCOME TO BLACK HISTORY MONTH!
I feel like I haven’t any added anybody recently, so I don’t have to write out disclaimers, BUT in case YOU send this to somebody new this year: please be aware that these are random black history facts, based on whatever I feel like talking about. Ain’t no martin luther (the) king jr, no malcolm x and definitely no george washington carver facts (EFF nuts and peanut butter. fight me) to be found here. what you get is what I give you, when I give it to you with weekends off for being black and doing hoodrat things with my friends and family. Please to enjoy (or don’t. One monkey don’t stop no show)

How y’all been? Good?
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA….*coughs* that’s rhetorical. I read the news. I know how y’all doin’.

Shall we catch up on what *I* been doin’? Great!
Last year, I took my first international trip!
It was too. Mexico doesn’t count because I live in California.
Canada doesn’t count because it’s just upper america. (nah. I’m not upper casing america until it earns it)

I went to London to see my baby girl.
Although I guess I can’t really call her a baby anymore, she’s 21!
Which. Didn’t mean as much as it woulda if she’d been stateside, ‘cause the legal drinking age across the pond is 18. But it DID mean that she got to buy her mama a drink (it also meant she got carded because even though she ISN’T a baby, she still looks like one)
It was a short trip, but well worth it. Also would definitely recommend. It’s truly interesting to go somewhere and see how other people live.
Even though it was KINDA like being home, only with more accent, and much more walking.
Also, I totally recommend Virgin. I absolutely love their service. They’re always super nice, the seats are comfy and OMG so much food
(and booze, DID Y’ALL KNOW THE BOOZE WAS FREE ON INTERNATIONAL FLIGHTS?!)
In fact, the only real hiccup on this trip was when I was returning back the u.s., I got the extra pat down because I’m an american traveler.
For reals.

heathrow

(though I suppose it’s better than TSA messing with my hair because I’m black)

But then, 10 hours and several movies later, I was home sweet home and Obama was still my president. I was tired y’all. I could not imagine coming back to Tom Bradley (International Airport) and finding a full blown protest happening*.

BUT THIS IS BLACK HISTORY MONTH, SO I’M NOT GONNA TALK ABOUT CURRENT EVENTS. I’ma talk about HISTORY. Specifically, Tom Bradley.

AHEM

*opens Wikipedia page*

Thomas J. Bradley was the first and only Black Mayor of Los Angeles, serving from 1973 – 1993, marking his the longest tenure by any mayor in the city’s history.

Tom Bradley, was the grandson of a slave in Calvert, Texas, born in 1917. The family moved to Arizona to pick cotton and then in 1924, his family moved to 1924 to the Temple-Alvarado area of LA. Tom went to (f)UCLA in 1937 on an athletic scholarship and joined Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity (y’all know I looked for a picture of him in his crimson and cream, but I do not have all day to look for one. But you know I woulda paid cash money to be able to link to a video of Tom doin’ a shoulder shimmy).

Tom left his studies in 1940 to join the LAPD. He became one of the “just 400 blacks” in the department (of 4000).

“When I came on the department, there were literally two assignments for black officers. You either worked Newton Street Division, which has a predominantly black community, or you worked traffic downtown. You could not work with a white officer, and that continued until 1964” [hmmm…I wonder what happened in 1964?]

Bradley attended Southwestern University Law School while still a police officer and began his practice as a lawyer when he retired from LAPD, specializing in international trade issues. *cough* his entry into politics came when he decided to become president of the United Club, which was part of the California Democratic Council, , a liberal, reformist group organized in the 1950s by young Democrats energized by Adlai E. Stevenson’s presidential campaigns.

In 1969, Bradley first challenged incumbent Mayor Sam Yorty, a conservative Democrat (later Republican) though the election was nonpartisan. Bradley held a substantial lead over Yorty in the primary, but was a few percentage points shy of winning the race outright. However, in the runoff, Yorty pulled an amazing come from behind victory to win reelection primarily because he played racial politics. Yorty questioned Bradley’s credibility in fighting crime and painted a picture of Bradley, his fellow Democrat, as a threat to Los Angeles because he would supposedly open up the city to feared Black Nationalists. Bradley did not use his record as a police officer in the election. But her emails, with the racial factor, even many liberal white voters became hesitant to support Bradley.

With the passage of the 1974 redevelopment plan and the inclusion of business leaders on in influential committees, Bradley received support from downtown businesses. Bradley helped contribute to the financial success of the city by helping develop the satellite business hubs at Century City and Warner Center. Bradley was a driving force behind the construction of Los Angeles’ light rail network. He also pushed for expansion of Los Angeles International Airport and development of the terminals which are in use today. The Tom Bradley International Terminal is named in his honor.He went on to serve for twenty years as mayor of Los Angeles, surpassing Fletcher Bowron with the longest tenure in that office.

Bradley ALSO ran for Governor of California twice, in 1982 and 1986, but lost both times to Republican George Deukmejian. He was the first African American to head a gubernatorial ticket in California. In 1982, the election was extremely close. Bradley led in the polls going into Election Day, and in the initial hours after the polls closed, some news organizations projected him as the winner. Ultimately, Bradley lost the election by about 100,000 votes. These circumstances gave rise to the term the “Bradley effect” which refers to a tendency of voters to tell interviewers or pollsters that they are undecided or likely to vote for a black candidate, but then actually vote for his white opponent. [I’m sensing some sort of parallel, but I just can’t…reach it. Maybe if I was a little bit taller, y’all. Nope. Not sorry.]
*closes Wikipedia page*

And with that, is the end of today’s Black History fact. They’re not always this long, but when they are I definitely say “that’s what she said”. See you tomorrow for tomorrow’s fact about black people who did stuff that you probably didn’t know about because they save all the (same) black people for February like black folks aren’t doing stuff the rest of the year!
*But if I did, I’d probably join the protest, because I firmly believe that protests need to disrupt to get your attention, otherwise you’d just ignore it and go on with your lives.

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