• 26

    Mar

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By Ron Carter Blog Post Updates

Curbing Bad Behavior/The Miami Heat Big Three

LeBron James (right) prepares to dunk a basket...
LeBron James (right) prepares to dunk a basketball as fellow teammates Dwyane Wade (left) and Chris Bosh (center) watch during a preseason practice session Sept. 28, 2010, at the Aderholt Fitness Center at Hurlburt Field, Fla. The team will use the fitness center for their week-long training camp. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Three years ago during the LeBron James and Chris Bosh‘s signings to play with Dwyane Wade for the NBA Basketball Team Miami Heat, I prognosticated to a friend, “the Miami Heat will win two of the next three NBA basketball championships.” I am not clairvoyant, but I did believe at the time three of the best basketball players in the NBA playing together created a best case scenario where my prediction could become a reality. Judging from the Miami Heat current performances – they have won 27 consecutive games, the second best in the NBA’s history – my thin-sliced thought might be right on point.

The first year, 2010/2011, LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade (The Big Three) played together for the Miami Heat, they were finalist in the NBA Championship. They lost the NBA title that year to the Dallas Mavericks. During the year several events contributed to the Heat losing in the NBA Finals. Events such as LeBron’s bad behavior towards his former team, the Cleveland Cavaliers; Dwyane Wade’s public and acrimonious separation and ultimately divorce from his ex-wife and Chris Bosh lack of confidence where he fitted in during all the rock star treatment the team received everywhere they played.

The second year, 2011/2012, The Big Three played together, they won the NBA Championship and received one of the two championships I remarked they would win. During the championship season, they played with effectiveness and grit which was  absent in their first year together. Dwyane accepted the role of being the second best player on the team; the Miami Heat became LeBron’s team in his second year playing in Miami, Florida. And, most important the team had matured into a cohesive skilled group who seemed to be having fun playing together. I was happy to observed the pressure being lifted from the shoulders of LeBron after he won his first NBA championship. He was constantly being ridiculed for his performance on the court even though he was the best player in the NBA. Yours truly, me, wrote a few blogs admonishing his behavior. Yet, I supported the team and felt LeBron would win a few NBA Championships.

As the 2012/2013 NBA Playoffs approaches and the Miami Heat is on a 27-consecutive game winning streak, I am somewhat resolved that my prognostication three years ago was a reasonable remark. If you are a basketball fan and have not seen the Miami Heat played recently, you are missing some of the best basketball seen on television. I trust the Miami Heat will break the NBA’s consecutive game winning record, which is currently held by the 1973 Los Angeles Lakers, who won 33 consecutive games.  Moreover, should the Miami Heat win the 2012/2013 NBA title, it would make me feel great.

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  • 19

    Mar

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By Ron Carter Blog Post Updates

Curbing Bad Behavior/Electing Jackie Lacey Los Angeles District Attorney

Los Angeles District Attorney Jackie Lacey
Los Angeles District Attorney Jackie Lacey

Every now and then, one has the experience of being at the right place and at the right time. Such was the case for me last Saturday, March 16, 2013. I attended our, Black Journalist Association of Southern California, monthly meeting at the SAG/AFTRA building. It was a historic meeting. Our keynote speaker at the meeting was the new Los Angeles District Attorney Jackie Lacey. The meeting was historic, because Ms. Lacey is the first female and first African-American who will serve as Los Angeles, California, District Attorney. The meeting was well attended. Our president, Xavier Higgs, had to bring extra chairs into the meeting room to seat the numerous attendees.I was elated to see District Attorney Lacey again and hear her presentation. I had the pleasure of meeting her when I co-hosted a fundraiser for her campaign and I was present at her Election Night Party at Union Station in downtown Los Angeles where we, her guests and the media, awaited the election night results. District Attorney Lacey is taking her new job seriously. She outlined to us several issues her office will explore. Issues such as abuse in jails; alternative sentencing court; hiring a community liaison to help with improving relationships with her office; mental illness amongst the incarcerated population; the closing of several Los Angeles Courts due to budget constraints and transparency between her office and the media were some of her immediate concerns.

I applauded District Attorney Lacey and prayed she will succeed in her new job. She has proven that one can win important and significant elections without negative campaigning. She ran a clean campaign which was rewarded by voters electing her to one of the highest law enforcement office in Los Angeles, California. Her election has been the first step in breaking the glass ceiling for women and African-Americans who are in the law enforcement profession in Los Angeles. She was not the favorite when the election race started, but she won mostly, I believe, because of her integrity, intellect and hard work. Towards the end of her presentation, an attendee asked her “why did you want this job with all of the budget cuts and problems associated with it?” She answered in a calm and confident manner “some of us run into ‘burning’ buildings.”

I trust District Attorney Jackie Lacey’s tenure will usher in a new image for law enforcement in Los Angeles, California. I plan on supporting her efforts.

 

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  • 12

    Mar

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By Ron Carter Blog Post Updates

Curbing Bad Behavior/The Implicit Power of Forgiveness

Marco McMillian
Marco McMillian

The implicit power of forgiveness should never be taken for granted. In September 2012, I received a phone call from one of my fraternity brothers. He intimated to me, he was calling because he respected me and wanted me to know he had committed an act which he believed I might disagree with. He further mentioned he wanted me to hear about the act first from him. After several minutes of back and forth debate, he was correct, I disagreed with his actions. We agreed after the candid conversation to agree to disagree. As I pondering what he had done, I was upset with him. I asked myself, why was he behaving in such an overtly contrary manner?

In December 2012, he was on a business trip to California and I had the opportunity to visit and speak with him. As I was leaving the location where he was staying, we embraced, as friends do, and wished each other well. As I was driving back to my home, I felt relieved that the cloud of uncertainty was lifted from our friendship. He seemed happy and engaged with the work he was embarking upon and I was happy for him.

On Monday, February 18, 2013, we were assembled on our fraternity, Phi Beta Sigma, Inc, Standards Committee conference call. We both served as members of the Standards Committee. I asked him, before the call began, how was his campaign going. He, Marco McMillian, was running for mayor in his hometown, Clarksdale, Mississippi. He mentioned to us, Jerry Green, Lynard Carter, Carl Walker, William Walker, Stan Buford and me, his campaign was going well and we, his fraternity brothers, should pray for him, because forces were working against him. Jerry and Lynard offered to drive to Clarksdale to assist him since they both lived in New Orleans, Louisiana, the border state to Mississippi. As usual, we had a productive conference call and wished each other well as our assembly ended.

The following week, Monday, February 25, 2013, I received a message announcing Marco was missing. His family, campaign staff and law enforcement officials were searching for him. We cancelled our weekly call and awaited word of Marco’s appearance. On Tuesday, February 26, 2013, I received word Marco was found dead. His body was recovered from a levee along the Mississippi River. According to a statement from his family, which was released to the media, Marco’s body was beaten, dragged, and set on fire. His death remains under investigation.

As you can imagine, our brotherhood has been devastated by Marco’s death. He was a very intelligent, hardworking and civic-minded young man. He was 33 years old and our fraternity’s youngest Executive Director. Today, I am at peace knowing that back in December, 2012, on the afternoon we saw each other, I forgave Marco for his actions which resulted in a brief breach in our friendship. I will cherish his memory forever. Even though he may have thought his behavior was controversial, he felt compelled to call me for my opinion. I respected him for his outreach to me.

May his soul Rest In Peace and may the individual (s) who killed him be brought to justice.

 

 

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