History was made July 26 in Philadelphia. The majority of delegates at the Democratic National Convention selected Hillary Clinton as their nominee for president, making her the first woman to ever be chosen as the nominee for either major American party.
A giant screen showed photos of the previous 43 male presidents and an animation of glass breaking before cutting to a video of Clinton.
She told the crowd: “We just put the biggest crack in that glass ceiling yet.”
With the historic nomination of Hillary Clinton and the cooling embers of the Bernie Sanders revolution, Democrats gathered in Philadelphia hoped they have turned a corner. The momentous day was capped by a rousing Bill Clinton speech that attempted to humanize a woman who has been defined and redefined over two and a half decades in the national spotlight.
In the most extended applause line of his speech, the former president said Republicans are running against “a cartoon” version of Hillary Clinton, but “earlier today, you nominated the real one.”
His address attempted to counter his wife’s main political vulnerabilities, from being seen as untrustworthy by large swaths of the American public to a perception that she’s too close to the established political system to meaningfully change it.
“This woman has never been satisfied with the status quo on anything. She has always wanted to move the ball forward. That is who she is,” Bill Clinton said. “She’s a change-maker,” he added, a label he used several times.
Bill Clinton began with a happy-go-lucky story of their meeting and ended with a testimonial to her toughness and determination. His speech also glossed over the well-documented troubles in their marriage and the controversies that have dogged them both since Bill Clinton first ran for president in 1992.
Both Clintons and party leaders were eager to change the storyline of the convention, which began with the toppling of Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, and rowdy crowds of Sanders supporters who waved placards, chanted his name, jeered Clinton allies, booed her name and vented about a system they see as rigged.
The anger of Sanders’ supporters showed signs of subsiding after their candidate gave his stamp of approval to Hillary Clinton’s nomination, though dozens of them staged a protest at the convention site and demonstrations outside the security area caused buses for delegates to be diverted as they headed for hotels closer to downtown Philadelphia.
In a dramatic moment during the roll-call vote on the nomination, Sanders took the microphone as the Vermont delegation was called at the end.
“I move that all votes, all votes cast by delegates be reflected in the official record,” Sanders said. “And I move that Hillary Clinton be selected as the nominee of the Democratic Party for president of the United States,” he said before being drowned out by cheers.
Delegates erupted in a loud “aye” when the call for the vote was made, though there were some audible boos in the arena. With that, a year-long battle that has divided the party was over.
One of the most exciting things for me as I watched the convention was the sightings of several elected officials and delegates from South L.A. U.S. Rep. Karen Bass, State Sen. Holly Mitchell, Los Angeles City Councilmembers Marqueece Harris-Dawson and Joe Buscaino, activists Areva Martin, Keisha Sexton, Jimmie Woods Gray, Rosa, Russell, B.C. Roberts, Pastor Willam Smart, Matt Johnson, Mary Hodge and of course our own L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti. They were just a few of the movers and shakers who I saw on the convention floor. They represented L.A. with pride and dignity.
It’s that time of the summer. Jazz season is in full swing. I don’t miss too many concerts. I attended Jazz Fest West last week, which was awesome. This weekend the annual Central Avenue Jazz Festival, which has been a staple for the community — celebrating the area’s rich cultural past, present and future — will be held on July 30 and 31 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. both days.
Councilman Curren Price is responsible for the 21st annual Central Avenue Jazz Festival, which brings top-notch talent to the city such as Kenny Burrell, jazz guitarist Justo Almario, and includes three stages of live music, pavilions focused on health and wellness, children’s activities and business and employment services.
For more information, please visit http://www.centralavejazz.org/
And last but not least. Once again, the 29th annual Long Beach Jazz Festival, Southern California’s longest running festival, offers three days of the best in music and ambience. The most talked about and recognized premiere jazz festival in Southern California is sponsored by CBS2/KCAL9, McDonald’s, Union Bank, Stella Artois, Payne Pest Management, Norwegian, EventNetUSA.
For three days, Rainbow Promotions will again transform Rainbow Lagoon Park into a unique environment energized with music, food, health awareness and that special jazz fest ambience. The Long Beach Jazz Festival, the crème de la crème of Southern California’s festivals, will be held Aug. 12-14. It will bring its class, sophistication and musical magic like no other!
More than music, mingling, munching and marveling at merchandise, attendees will enjoy a beautiful lagoon and coastal surroundings. Specialty vendors, health and wellness specialists, and guest speakers are available to share the latest information, products and services to enhance overall well-being of body, mind and spirit.
The lineup includes:
Aug. 12: Michael Franks, Peter White, Paul Taylor, Euge Groove, Elan Trotman, Althea René and Major.
Aug. 13: Jeffrey Osborne, BWB, featuring Norman Brown, Kirk Whalum and Rick Braun; the Rippingtons, Everette Harp, Paul Jackson Jr. and Mindless Groove.
Aug. 14: Dave Koz and David Sanborn: Side by Side; Michael Lington, Kenny Lattimore; Sax Pack featuring Jeff Kashiwa, Steve Cole and Kim Waters; Stanley Jordan, the Al Williams Jazz Society (with special guest); and Richard “88 Fingers” Turner Jr.
The guests will also experience “A Healthy Taste of Jazz” at the Health and Wellness Pavilion where the focus is on nourishing mind, body, and soul. The event features renowned musical artists, wellness speakers and leaders, treatment centers, vendors and healthy food options.
Festival attendees are offered tools for creating a healthier lifestyle. Information and experiences are available to help festival goers feel more energized, focused and destressed. And this is just what our community needs. A jazz festival with great music information and food.
Under the direction of Kimberly Benoit, president of Rainbow Promotions. this annual event is all about jazz.
For 29 years, Rainbow Promotions, has produced the Long Beach Jazz Festival, one of the city’s major events. For more information, call (562) 424-0013.
Rainbow Promotions is an African-American owned business that we all should support. I support it with my dollars and my advocacy. I love jazz as many Wave readers do. Hope to see you at this amazing festival.
For news tips, email BrotherNajeeali@gmail.com or follow me on Twitter@Najeeali.