Kristin: Supreme Court agrees with New Haven 20

BY KRISTIN OF BECAUSE I SAID SO

The Supreme Court has decided to reverse a decision made by the U.S. Court of Appeals which included Judge Sonia Sotomayor. I have yet to read the entire ruling but I find myself wondering about the ramifications the ruling will have on the New Haven community. It is my understanding that New Haven is predominately a minority community and will now be served by few minorities in positions of authority. I know of many people who came from areas where authority figures did not look like them. I know first hand how feelings of mistrust will pervade the neighborhood and do very little to bridge a widening gulf.

After reading the original ruling I agreed with the ruling in which Judge Areterton arrived. I can say with all honesty I am happy the New Haven 20 will receive the promotions they deserve. I will also say I am very apprehensive about the future of affirmative action.

It is my personal belief that though we have come along way affirmative action is very much needed to ensure a diverse environment,especially on college campuses. For many minorities affirmative action is our Legacy admission. It will be interseting to see how this affects Sotomayor’s confirmation I am of the opinion that it will matter little. Judge Souter whom she would replace agreed with her ruling.

It is undeniable to me that Sotomayor is right in respects that the bench is were policy is made. The supreme court basically laid forth a new policy that will have far reaching effects for the future. Exactly what those outcomes are remains to be seen.

10 Questions with JMJ Fitness Superstar client, Kristin

BY JASON JOHNSON
Hi everyone. I would like you all to meet one of my JMJ Fitness Superstar clients, Kristin! You may know her from the blog Because I Said So, or as a contributor to Dallas South.
She just completed an awesome personal fitness goal. I asked her 10 questions so you could get to know her and see why she is a superstar client!
1) JMJ: Kristin, you just completed a goal you set way back in February. Can you tell everyone what you just accomplished?
K: I finished my first 10k in 1:27:40:55 in Boulder, Colorado.
2) JMJ: Have you always been a runner? Do you have a running background?
K: I used to run every now and then but nothing like I have done recently.
3) JMJ: You also had a temporary injury set-back during your training. Can you tell us what happened and how it affected your training for the 10K?
K: Training was going really well then I started experiencing knee problems which felt as if my leg was going to give out. I consulted with an Orthopedic and he diagnosed me with having Patellar Tracking Disorder. For roughly 4 weeks I was limited to upper body weights only and no cardio.
4) JMJ: How did you feel immediately after the 10K? At some point, did you experience the “runner’s high”?
K: Tired! By mile four I don’t know if that was the runners high I was experiencing or gratitude that only two miles were left.
5) JMJ: We’ve been working together since February. Through your training and nutrition experience thus far, what are some of the changes you’ve noticed in your health and fitness levels?

K: I have a lot more energy and endurance. I actually look forward to most of my workouts and a good sweat. And of course noticing that I fit into smaller clothes.

6) JMJ: Have you set any other running goals or fitness goals? You know I’m all about clients setting goals!

K: I want to run a half-marathon before I turn 30 next year. There is the White Rock Lake race (this fall) or the Half-Marathon in Austin next year in February that I plan on checking off my must do before I turn 30 list.
7) JMJ: What has been the #1 thing or motivator that has helped you achieve
your fitness goals?
K: First it was weight loss then it gradual became the goal itself.
8) JMJ: What has been the toughest part about your new fitness lifestyle?
K: Sugar! I don’t mind the workouts but the limitations on my sugar consumption has been a hard transition. I do find when I load up on fruit I don’t have refined sugar cravings.
9) JMJ: Kristin, how would you complete this sentence. Even on my worst days, when I’m not motivated, I still __________as a part of my new fitness lifestyle.
K: I do as you always say, I put on my clothes and just see what happens
10) JMJ: How does it feel to say to yourself, “I ran a 10K!”????
K: I feel very proud of myself. My mom is too she called all of my aunts after wards.

JMJ: Awesome, awesome job Kristin! It’s definitely a great feeling to accomplish a personal goal and cross it off your list. And it’s amazing how you start looking for the next challenge or goal you can accomplish. It’s a great domino effect, the “fitness bug” is very contagious.

Until next time.
Stay healthy and stay active,
Jason M. Johnson, ACE-CPT
JMJ Fitness

Kristin: Stepping Out of the Box

By Kristin of Because I Said So

My husband usually likes to spend vacation on a beach somewhere relaxing to the sound of the waves. For my birthday he decided to accompany me on my yearly trip to Colorado for some light hiking and for the annual Bolder Boulder 10k.

While the beach offers softly crashing waves it doesn’t compare to the majestic beauty of the Rocky Mountain range in Colorado. For my husband’s first visit the weather could not have been worse.

It rained at some point every day and was cloudy the entire time. We did not bother going to Pike’s Peak because it would have been pointless, all that would have been visible would have been clouds. However, the beauty in the gently rolling hillside the quaint housing and the occasional glimpse of snow capped covered mountains has my husband eager for next year’s trip.


We traveled to Bear Lake (9475 elevation) in hopes of completing a four mile hike. Instead we were met with at least five inches of snow which impeded our trek because we did not have snow shoes. At one point we were actually walking in the lake without realizing we had ventured off the trail.

We got up close and personal with some Elk and later enjoyed Elk and Buffalo burgers in the town of Estes. Some other sights included a visit to red top hotel which, is where Stephen King’s Shining was filmed. Later we headed to Denver for a vendor festival they were having before a torrential downpour forced everyone inside for cover.

I participated in the Bolder Boulder 10k race this year and had set a goal for myself of 1:25 (to see if I met this goal stay tuned for Jason Johnson’s post to learn my results). The race was incredible 50,000 people show up each year for the race and for the culmination in the elite runner’s race at the end of the day. The men’s elite runner finished in a mere 27 minutes! The Memorial Day celebration at CU was great 6 parachuteers floated in and at the very end of the national anthem three fighter jets flew over just in time to beat the storms.

Our trip was great. I had a secret agenda in this year’s trip I wanted to introduce my husband to a different way of living in hopes that he will want to start a new life in Colorado. He enjoyed himself immensely but I don’t think it was enough to sway him, YET.

Theater Review: “If By Chance” playing at the Bishop Arts Theater Center March 6th-March 15th

Review by Kristin of Because I Said So

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If By Chance

Playwright Donnie Wilson has been “directly inspired by our society’s preoccupation with Barack Obama’s ethnicity”. If By Chance is his outstanding play which depicts many undercurrents of racial inadequacy punctuated with bursts of humor. Mr. Wilson was able to balance his play with levity while administering the heavy and precarious topic of racial identification in our society.


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The play tackled numerous facets of race in America, and chronicled the psychological journey of biracial man in his search for his identity. Chance (portrayed by lead actor Cameron Law) is a tormented individual overwhelmed with his biracial ambiguity.


Mr. Wilson in his first social lesson illustrates how influential and at times detrimental parents can be in shaping the lives of their children. Chance’s mother (Lisa B. Whitefield) lived a tortured childhood in which her Blackness was always pitted against a dominating White America. She passes her racial inadequacy onto her son who struggles to accept his Black heritage while openly embracing his White heritage.


Truth (lead actress Perri Camper) gave a phenomenal performance of a young bombastic, arrogant and confident college student. Truth plays a vocal character outspoken for civil injustices raised in a healthy household, yet still unaware of how to communicate her frustration in a manner that is constructive.

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Wilson’s play pokes holes and exposes a range of flawed thinking regarding race held in America and particularly the black community. I found bits of my personality in the characters of Chance and Truth and nothing is as sobering or informative as seeing parts of yourself portrayed in the words and actions of others. I encourage the Dallas South Family to plan a “Play Night” then comeback to Dallas South and share your own review of “If By Chance”.

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The play tackled numerous facets of race in America, and chronicled the psychological journey of biracial man in his search for his identity. Chance (portrayed by lead actor Cameron Law) is a tormented individual overwhelmed with his biracial ambiguity.


“If By Chance” is playing at the Bishop Arts Theater Center showing March 6th through March 15th Thursdays at 7:30pm, Saturday & Sunday matinees at 3pm, Friday & Saturday performances at 8 PM.


The entire cast and crew deserve recognition for an excellent production.


Cast

Cameron Law (Chance)

Perri Camper (Truth)

Lisa B. Whitefield (Stella: Chance’s Mother)

Kelley Settles (Waitress/Doctor)

Monique Vasquez (Celeste)

Malcolm Underwood (young Chancellor)

Janis Roscoe (Psychiatrist)

Thomas Mosely (The Poet) performance dominated whenever he took to the stage

Arnulfo Diaz, Jr. provided comedic relief with a well timed delivery and execution.

Bobby Anderson (The Poet- understudy)

Crew

Donnie F. Wilson (Playwright/Executive Producer)

Bill Fountain (Director)

Stephanie Jackson (Stage Manger)

Lisa Long (Assistant Director)

Ellen Mizener (Scenic Design)

Sam Nance (Lighting Design)

Week One Weight Loss Update From Kristin

Kristin, my co-host on the Shawn P. Williams Now Blog Talk show is sharing her weight loss journey with the Dallas South Family. She is working with Dallas South contributor and JMJ Fitness proprietor Jason Johnson on a 6-week program. Today, Kristin tells us about her first week following Jason’s prescribed eating and exercise routine.

kristin-food

BY KRISTIN

Day One was terrible I swear I had several Loony Tunes moment. You know, the ones where the character visualizes the person talking to them turns into nice little plump drumsticks. However Day One was a success, even though there were many temptations.

Jason provided me with a list of short term and long term goals that I should keep handy and in a visible place. As the week progressed the eating routine became easy to adjust to. The weekend presented an entirely different kind of challenge.

Weekends are go-go time and it was much harder to stick to the eating schedule. Adjustments will have to be made for next weekend so that I find time to fit in all six meals.

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The workout routines were fine though I thought they were a bit on the light side. Jason assures me the intensity will increase week by week.

I do have great news to report: I saved 50 Bucks this week alone by brown bagging snacks and lunch. As far as scale weight, I weighed early morning and according to the scale I lost the two pounds later that day the same scales said I had gained three pounds go figure.

I think for the first two weeks it’s going to be hard for me to have an accurate scale weight which can be discouraging. But I am going to drive through and keep at it. Week 1 down 5 more to go.

Kristin shares her JMJ Fitness experience with Dallas South

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In the last couple of months, the health posts submitted by guest blogger Jason Johnson have been very well received. Jason is a personal trainer and is the proprietor of JMJ Fitness.

Kristin (formerly known as Jazzy) who blogs at Because I Said So and serves as Co-Host on my Blog Talk Radio Show (Shawn P. Williams Now), has enlisted Jason’s services for a 6-week program. “I was a size 6 forever until I got married (almost 4 years ago),” Kristin said on her blog as she discussed her decision.” She went on to say “over a four year period I have packed on twenty pounds.”

I asked Jason exactly what the program will look like. “I have designed a time-efficient and effective fat loss exercise routines for Kristin.” Jason said. “She will workout 4 times a week and follow my online training exercise program and diet plan,” he says. She will also follow the diet plan for the full 6 weeks,” he said. Kristin’s program started on Monday.

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Kristin’s Day One Snack
Once or twice each week Kristin will update us on the progress of her weight loss journey. She’ll tell us what she feels like after workouts and how she’s taking to Jason’s presrcibed meal plan.
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Kristin’s Day One Dinner

So continue to check in with Kristin as she sends in pictures and journal entries over the next few weeks. I’m sure she would appreciate your support via comments. Kristin you know I’ve got your back. I’ll be hitting the garage in the morning for a boxing workout in your honor.

Barack, Michelle, and Joe share similar personal stories come from the same place

By Jazzy of Because I Said So 

Barack and Michelle Obama, and Joe (married to Jill) Biden are 3 the hard way. Each of these individuals has personal tragedies and triumphs that a vast amount of Americans can identify with. Barack and Michelle’s stories we have heard often along the campaign trail for the past eighteen months and they are stories of perseverance and stamina. If you are unfamiliar with the Obama’s story you can read here and here .

Another story that you may not know as well is that of Joe Biden . Where Barack Obama is cool and measured the type of man who is the lighthouse in a stormy sea. Joe Biden can be viewed as fiery willing and able to give a dissenting opinion. Joe Biden after the death of his first wife (Neilia Hunter) and daughter showed a grit and determination a steady resolve to continue to serve his country.

Joe was able to do all of this while keeping his family first and ensuring his sons were raised in a well balanced home. For five years Joe was a single father working in Washington until he met Jill. Jill is a force of her own and would be a great national asset with two Master’s degree and a PhD. in Education. Jill is almost more qualified than a certain Vice-Presidential candidate the only thing she is lacking is that she can’t see Russia from her home.

This is how my story fits with my chosen candidate and his running mate. Raised by a single mother, with the help of wonderful grandparents, I lost my grandfather during a pivotal moment in my development. I was able to attend one of the best private schools in Texas, and continued on to grad school. Barack, Michelle, Joe, and I share an American dream; we are the American realization.

Barack’s proposed policies, Joe’s unrelenting persona together are focused on repositioning America as a dominate force in the world and removing the mockery that has become the last 8 years. There are three weeks left so get to know these candidates better, to see who really shares your story and in doing so you will see who really will have your back in Washington.

Jazzy wants to know: Presidential Election ’08 – What are your issues?

By Jazzy of Because I Said So 

As the election date draws closer both parties should focus on issues and leave trivial lipstick on the pig non-issues behind. I am curious as to what readers and potential voters are focusing on as their must haves in a candidate. I

s shared religious views, shared hobbies, and extracurricular activities enough for you to base your vote? What are we as voters deciding to base our votes on this year?

The media is having a veritable field day with gaffes and fodder, but there is little to no accountability for substance. I have visited both candidates’ websites intensively and have chosen education, health care reform, and the protection and reverence for our senior community as paramount issues that must be addressed to my satisfaction in order to receive my vote.

I am concerned for those individuals that are only receiving their information form media sources and push polls. So as a voter what issues are you using to determine which candidate receives your vote? Let me reiterate this is not a post as to why you are NOT voting for someone but a post regarding why a candidate is receiving you vote.

What issues are most important to you and how does your candidate measure up. Please be truthful and factual your answers may sway someone who is still undecided in ’08.

What will November 4th Tell Us? Presidential Election or Popularity Contest

By Jazzy of Because I Said So

This election is beginning to remind me of the time I ran for my high school senior class secretary position (which I won, yeah me). That election was solely based on how many people knew your name, what they knew about you, and what others said about you.

Basically it was a popularity contest. Politics can be regulated to being a popularity contest (except for in the case of Al Gore). This election is going to be determined by how much do I identify with the candidate for a vast amount of America versus which candidate truly has the progressive view for our country.

Never more strongly have I believed in a candidate  as I do Barack Obama his plan and vision for this country will propel us back as a dominated world leader with restore morality in the eyes of our counterparts.  Obama’s election will change the last 8 years of our misplaced trust in a President that everything but our best interest at heart.Obama’s election will change the last 8 years of our doubt in government and bring accountability to the White House and transparency.

There will be no more big brother is watching as under the Bush administration there will be no more violation of civil liberties, no more stretching the dollar. There will be change you can believe in. Who would not want affordable health care, better public schools, adequate mental health coverage, immigration reform (that will work for all), and a stable economy.

I guess we will find out on Nov. 4th

Palin sticks to the script in acceptance speech

By Jazzy of Because I Said So



Gov. Sarah Palin delivered a well rehearsed personal character assassination against Obama which, I expected, she is a conservative Republican, after all. I did learn a lot about her, I, I, I, I was the recurring noun for the night. For a hot second I almost forgot that she was only the Vice pick.

Seriously, with all of her executive experience (for a population of 675,000 that’s less than South Oak Cliff, Tom Leppert is better qualified) why is she not at the top of the ticket. Does her executive experience not apply to John McCain who has none as well, or does he get a pass because of his POW status. I was also disappointed by the crowds chant of “Drill baby Drill” as a resolution for energy dependence.

There were absolutely no talking points about the Republican direction for the country. I did not hear her mention or define her role as a potential Vice President. Overall the Pit Bull with lipstick delivered politricks as usual.

I have no doubt that her speech was effective for the home base but not those Republicans that have become aware that our country can not continue in the failed direction of the last 8 years. Those were the people she was brought on board to reach and I think she failed in that capacity last night.

I will be looking forward to the debates now as the conventions draw to an end. There was one thing the Republicans mothers obviously forgot to teach them at that was “Don’t poke at a hornets nest”. Another phrase my husband is fond of using and aptly applies here is if you put  yourself in a man’s place then don’t cry foul when you are treated like a man.

On a side note I was happy to see that the Republican Party is becoming more inclusive, I counted 5 Negroes and a Latino. WOW!