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Are you a flower 
or a weed?
By Ma’at Seba
     Flowers and weeds are both plants. One is generally grown for the beauty of its blossoms and the other is considered to be a nuisance with no real value. Flowers can change the appearance of a home or building, they can bring a smile and happiness when given as a gift, and their beauty and scent will enhance any table. Wild flowers, on the other hand, when created into a dry flower arrangement are beautiful, yet in their natural state growing wild they are considered weeds.
  Only our human egotistical point of view labels a weed a weed, instead of viewing them as critical and valuable functioning parts of nature. For instance, sorrels, docks and horsetails are indicators that the soil is becoming too acidic. Dandelions actually heal the soil by transporting minerals, especially calcium, upward from the deeper layers. They warn the lawn owner that something is wrong with his soil. Dandelion greens cooked or dried and made into a tea is a very powerful blood purifier. Daisies signal that the soil lacks lime. We perceive people in that same way, either they carry some value to us or they are a pest or an irritation.
  A flower? Or a weed? Actually, it is all relative. We are all flowers and weeds; it just depends on what soil we choose to grow in. Most people would say that they believe that they are a nice person (or a flower), however, someone else might think of them as being a weed.
  Let’s say for instance that you were a political figure lobbying for free health care. To the people, you would be a flower but to the insurance companies, you would be a weed.
  The murder of a little boy was the weed in his parent’s life experience. But that experience was turned into a flower when the parents took to task the criminal justice system which has lead to a television show called "America's Most Wanted" resulting in the capture of hundreds of criminals.
  The news of a pregnancy to a teen mother might at first be looked upon as a weed. Yet, when the baby is born with its little fat face and dancing eyes, it melts everyone’s heart and then it becomes the family’s flower.
  You walk into the break room at work and the room is buzzing with gossip. You are not one who enjoys gossip so you do not indulge in their conversations. You consider yourself to be a flower but they consider you to be a weed.
  A young man molested and killed several children; society looked down upon him as being a weed. During a television interview, the young man told his life story which was filled with physical and sexual abuse of not only himself but of his siblings as well. His pleas for help went unheard by those who “didn’t want to get involved”. He was pushed to his breaking point, which resulted in his violent acts. As a result of the interview, a television movie about his life was made and a great awareness of child abuse and its adverse long-term effects was brought to light. Is this young man a weed or a flower?
  Peacemakers and troublemakers, they are all God’s children, and they are all relative. Peacemakers can cause trouble and troublemakers can ultimately bring about peace.
  God instructed us to not judge and this is one reason why. None of us knows what each others journey is or what that journey might entail. So who are we to judge whether someone is a flower or a weed? We are also instructed to love and to pray for our enemies. Now you might be able to understand a little better what that means. Are your enemies really weeds?
  In my experiences, I fully understand that there is no such thing as a “bad” person or a weed, only people who through their words, actions or inaction’s in some way has incited change to occur.
  Everything in this universe is energy and all energy is in constant motion, constant change. So it is in the human drama, things always have and always will be in constant motion and change. Dynasties, kingdoms, and nations have risen and fallen and someone or several someones were the catalysts for that change. Humans naturally resist change, which is the natural order of the universe, and our global and human conditions reflect that consciousness. The plant and animal kingdoms, which are supposed to be below our level of “intelligence”, understand the natural order, and function in accordance with it. So who is setting the example for whom?
  You might think of yourself as a flower and want people to love and to pray for you, but you also might be someone’s weed, so does that mean that you don’t still deserve love and prayer? Think about it. Try to see the bigger picture, which is what God wants us to see. Now tell me, are you a flower or a weed?
   Ma’at Seba is a motivational speaker and writer. Email her at Maatseba@yahoo.com. or call (313) 861-1118.  

Mom on the Rebound
By D. L. Gibson
  Sister girl wouldn’t stop laughing, which caused Marsha to speculate that there may be more than the picture. I gave Sister girl the evil eye and hinted that she should shut up. 
  After all, Marsha was the crazy deacon’s sister-in-law. We would be fools to think that anything we told Marsha wouldn’t get back to the crazy deacon’s wife. She was just as crazy as her husband.
    Suddenly, I tried to change the subject by asking if there was any change in her sister’s condition.
     Marsha wasn’t having it. She said, “Don’t try to change the subject Miss Dee. Something tells me that you have more than just this picture.”
  I tried to throw her off track by admitting that I had a couple more pictures. I didn’t dare mention the video, and I hoped that sister girl would follow my lead and not mention it either.
  Marsha then told the bait and asked about the other pictures.
    I tried to brush it off by saying it was pictures of some of the other deacons with the drag queens. Then, she asked to see them.
  I had to come up with an excuse fast to prevent her from viewing the picture gallery in my phone. My gallery also included the video.
     They’re on my laptop at home, I replied. If you give me your email, I’ll send them to you later.
     Sister girl wouldn’t stop laughing, causing Marsha to wonder if I was lying.
     “I don’t believe you,” said Marsha. “Otherwise Sister girl wouldn’t be laughing. There must be more to it.”
     Thinking quickly, I said she’s laughing at what’s in the pictures. Girl you’re going to laugh to, when you see them.
     Marsha refused to move onto another subject. She asked,”Well...what are they doing in the picture that you two find so funny?”
  Oh...it’s just pictures of the deacons hugged up with drag queens at the club. But, the expressions on their faces are what’s so funny.
  Then, sister girl blurted out, “Girl you should see the picture of deacon junior wearing his momma’s dress and red stilettos. You’re going to fall off the chair, when you see that one. So, brace yourself.”
     Why did sister girl say that? It was just as bad as telling Marsha about the video. Didn’t she realize that Marsha is deacon junior’s aunt. When she sees it, she’ll likely end up having a heart attack and being placed in a hospital bed next to her sister.
     Then, sister girl’s comment started to sink in.
  Marsha said, “Run that by me again. 
    Did I hear you say that you’ve got a picture of my nephew wearing my sister’s dress and shoes? All heck to the naw! Miss Dee let’s go!”
  Go where, I asked.
     “To your house, before I set it off in this hospital.”
     Oh Lord...help me. Here we go again. 
     Mom on the Rebound is based on actual events.  

Telford Telescope: 
A TRUMPian Tale
By Dr. John Telford
     In 2016, might Harper & Rowe or Hollywood have accepted a proposal like this for a story line of a novel or a movie? 
     There dwells today in a dis-United States of America a bullying, fatheaded, psycho-pathologically narcissistic businessman whose Wharton professor once pronounced him "the dumbest student I ever had," and who inherited wealth from his father--a former Ku Klux Klansman. This portly, utterly amoral misogynist somehow manages to accumulate a billion-dollar real-estate empire via extensive double-dealing with Russian underworld moguls and then loses it all due to his own pigheaded and stupid mismanagement. He gets bailed out of bankruptcy by oligarchic Russian mafiosi via money-laundering and other nefarious investments which include a beauty contest in Moscow, where he has had extensive underhanded interchanges throughout the four previous decades, and where it is rumored that he exploitively copulated with the beauty contestants, submitting himself in this and in other covert activities to potential blackmail to render himself an abject stooge of Russian premier Vladimir Putin. He is also alleged to have beaten one of his earlier wives and to have initiated extramarital affairs with Playboy centerfolds and a prominent porn star. He becomes a reality television personality, questions the legitimacy of the birthplace of the U.S. president--an African-American--and ultimately runs for president himself with a trumpeted paroxysm of coarse, ignorantly monosyllabic name-calling against opponents, and with the help of minions whom he orders to pay off two of his former extramarital concubines for their silence on the eve of the election, and also with the help of disinformation sneaked to gullible U.S. voters by Putin and the Kremlin--assistance with which the 71-year-old candidate and his campaign eagerly collude.  
     With a platform based on racial and ethnic discrimination, xenophobic divisiveness, and a disavowal of the scientific fact of global warming, he steals the presidency unexpectedly but loses the popular election to the spouse of a former president by three million votes, that lady having become the rightful president but remaining unseated by virtue of the treacherous theft that the bullying businessman has perpetrated to get himself fraudulently elected. When it's ultimately clear to most of the U.S. public and the free world that in the process he has conspired with an adversarial government and obstructed justice to become an un-rightful president, he desperately accelerates a tweeted stream of disinformation, lying to the American people more than 4,200 times and hiring and firing mostly inept, fawning White House staff in a revolving-door procession----one of his more competent staffers having correctly labeled him a f-----g moron and another having pronounced him an assho--. A special-counsel investigation of his having thus treasonously trashed traditional democratic ideals and institutions closes in on him, so he attempts to silence assorted heroic American patriots who have spoken out against his authoritarianism, including retired generals, his unjustly fired FBI director, an ex-director of the CIA, and several practicing officials of those agencies by punitively revoking their security clearances. Meanwhile, global warming incinerates California, and polar mountains of ice melt and flood Manhattan, Hawaii, and the Netherlands. 
     In a neo-Hitlerian coup carried out directly in the face of cravenly nonresistant and self-servingly unpatriotic majority-GOP Congressional legislators, this lumpish buffoon whom Moscow helped cheat to become president declares martial law, commandeers the military, the schools, the free media, and the courts, imprisons minority activists without trials, abolishes Congress, has himself named President-for-Life, and invades Canada, Mexico, Venezuela, and Australia. He brutally quashes a brief and bloody American uprising of 100,000 armed deer hunters, recently-discharged veterans, Army and Marine defectors, urban police, and pistol-packing multi-racial civilians led by his presidential predecessor. A Mexican-American Marine sergeant whose cousin was unjustly deported and separated from her child tries to assassinate him. This near-miss traumatizes the trembling false president to the extent that he tremulously triples his personal security detail and becomes fearfully reclusive. He has his predecessor and other rebels and critics shot along with his would-be assassin, and their executions televised. He thereupon declares war on China, Iran, North Korea, India, and America's former western European allies and bombs all of them to devastation in a nuclear armageddon. Some still-extant military forces in China and North Korea retaliate in kind, and the false president perishes in the resultant nuclear holocaust, along with most of the populations of New York, Los Angeles, Detroit, and Washington, D.C.  
  The scant surviving Americans, Chinese, and Iranians--plus Putin and his countrymen and a few thousand western Europeans and all additional remaining humans, other mammals, birds, and most sea creatures--suffer slower deaths beneath the radiation fallout of a long nuclear winter. Eons later, hardy surviving cockroaches evolve on the ravaged planet into higher life forms and repeat the now-extinct humans' homicidal cycle of self-destruction.  
  So--in 2016, would most of this "never-could-really-happen" plot have been far too fantastical to be marketable? Maybe. Or maybe not. 
   Recent Detroit Public Schools superintendent and former WSU All-American sprinter John Telford is the author of seven books available in stores and on amazon.com. He currently serves as the Detroit Public Schools Community District Poet-in-Residence. His website is www.AlifeontheRUN.com. Hear him Saturday mornings at 9:30 and Monday evenings at 6:30 on WCHB1340 AM. Contact his at (313) 460-8272.