Playground or Politics?

Sunday, January 24, 2016

As I shared here, I have been entrusted with a weekly column in the prestigious Southeast Missourian, with my first one in the January 12, 2016, newspaper.

My second column was published on January 19 and is available online for your enjoyment and reflection--or read it right here:

Playground or Politics?

For months, Americans have tuned in to watch the Republican presidential candidates gather on stage to answer questions crafted to reveal who is most qualified to lead the nation. Because the field is the size of a small army, these debates have been divided in two -- undercard and main -- based on polling.

I watched the JV team members swallow their pride and mount the stage each time. Those debates gave us some of the best exchanges and revealed some of the most talented candidates in the entire race. Carly Fiorina, for example, emerged after the first undercard debate as a force with whom to be reckoned. Granted, I doubt she actually has a shot at the Oval Office, at least not at the top spot, but no one can credibly deny that she has a commanding grasp of the issues, is articulate, and is undaunted-- particularly as it pertains to taking it to Hillary Clinton. Her impressive performance garnered her a main stage podium in subsequent debates.

Which brings us to last week and the Fox Business Channel debate. Sen. Rand Paul did not qualify for the main debate and responded by announcing he would not participate in the undercard, either. He disputed the accuracy of the polling used to determine which debate candidates qualified for and accused the powers-that-be of trying to mute his message.

"We will not participate in anything that's not first tier," he said, because he has a "top-tier campaign" and deserves to be on the main stage with the varsity team. Translation: "I'm taking my toys, leaving the playground and going home." Yes, his decision was childish at best, and he followed it by sticking his middle finger up -- literally -- "at the media" during an interview with ABC Radio.

Really, Rand?

Though Paul used this perceived slight to "take his message directly to the voters of New Hampshire and Iowa" and to fundraise, he has done the American people a disservice.

The proper response, even if he really were the "top tier" candidate he fancies himself to be, would be to behave like a top-notch diplomat. The proper response for someone who wants to be the leader of the free world would be to humble himself, show up on stage with the others -- Sen. Rick Santorum, Gov. Mike Huckabee and Carly Fiorina (who, once again, found herself in the undercard debate) -- and answer the questions that matter to Americans. We already have a president whom many feel is afflicted with a severe case of arrogance; we don't need another.

Truth be told, this is not Paul's time. If ever it was or if ever it will be, I do not know. But I do know that at this time, when national security is the No. 1 concern among voters, Paul's message is not the message people are embracing. If the NSA is the first thought that comes to mind when your name is uttered, now is not your time. If your picture could easily be in the dictionary alongside the word "isolationist," again, now is not your time. Americans are craving safety and security, and we want a leader who will do what's necessary to provide and protect that. It will take more than the "Stand with Rand" mantra to drag Paul's "top tier" campaign to the top of the pack.

Had I been considering casting a vote for the senator from Kentucky -- which I was not -- his behavior last week would have put the kibosh on it. It revealed deep disrespect for the process by which we weigh candidates who want our votes, and it was a slap in the face of the other candidates, who found the humility to appear on the lesser stage because they recognized the American people deserve as much.

Fiorina disputed the polling also, but what was her response? "In the Fox News poll, I'm in sixth place, which would qualify me," she said, adding, "But hey, I'll debate anyone, anytime, anywhere. I'll be in South Carolina, and what I know is that polls don't win elections; voters do."

Fiorina demonstrated leadership. Leadership demands a willingness to do what's necessary -- as unpleasant or humbling as it may be -- to get your message to as many as possible. Paul could learn a lot from her. His decision to skip the debate reveals an inability not only to lead in this most crucial time in American history, but to follow, as well.

Adrienne Ross is an editor, writer, public speaker, former teacher and coach, Southeast Missourian editorial board member and owner of Adrienne Ross Communications.

Read my first column, "Obama's Empty Chair and Sincere, Empty Tears," at the Southeast Missourian here.

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My Take on #OscarsSoWhite and Call for Blacks to Boycott Oscars

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Jada Pinkett Smith and others are calling on blacks, using the #OscarsSoWhite hashtag, to boycott the Oscars and perhaps break from mainstream entertainment. Their beef is that black actors and actresses are being overlooked for Academy Award nominations. I was asked for my take on this.

My response is rather simple. I do not know the inner workings of the Academy or Hollywood. I am not entrenched in what those who are complaining may be entrenched in. I am not even a movie buff. That being said, I believe that Dr. King's dream was that no one would be judged by color. We should all be judged by the merits of our characters--and our abilities. People should not be given a nomination just to fill a quota. If the Academy is playing dirty, then by all means, call them out. However, if folks just want a nod because they feel entitled or are playing the victim, that's not cool.

When I score big, I want to score big because I earned it, not because I complained and made others feel guilty that they didn't pick me or someone who looks like me. I am confident enough in my abilities to believe that they can stand up to anyone else's abilities--be they black, white, male, or female. Judge me on that.

If next year, a dozen, five, one black actor receives a nomination, will the thought be, "They got that because they complained"? Will the nod be given because pressure was applied? That's not cool, either. We know there are many talented black actors and actresses; they do not deserve to have an asterisk hanging over their Academy Award. As for me, I want to be applauded because I deserve it--without threats of boycotts and bashing.

Janet Hubert, who played Aunt Viv on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, blasted Will and Jada in a video on YouTube. It does include some profanity, so be advised:



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Back Online

Saturday, January 16, 2016

MotivationTruth is back. We have been down for a while due to some technical difficulties I was experiencing. I think we're good to go now. So much has transpired in the months since I've posted, and I won't try to rehash.

One exciting thing I will share is that I have been given my own weekly column in the Southeast Missourian, where I freelance and am on the editorial board. This past Tuesday, January 12, was my first column. It is posted below and is also online.


Enjoy:


Obama's Empty Chair and Sincere, Empty Tears

On Tuesday, President Obama stood before the nation and wept. He wept for the children lost to gun violence. Those who, like the Sandy Hook Elementary School students, were innocent and precious and deserved to be nurtured and protected, not gunned down. He stood at the podium in the same room as people who have lost loved ones in the cruelest of ways and announced his executive actions on gun control.

Who wouldn't understand the shedding of tears after such shedding of blood? But the second I heard his silence and saw his streaming tears, I knew what was coming: a plethora of comments about the sincerity -- or lack thereof, rather -- of the president's display of emotion: "political posturing," playing on fears," "empty tears."

One must wonder how we got to the place where tears about something that ought to choke all of us up became fodder for criticism. However we got here, whenever we got here, we've certainly arrived.

This president cannot do anything without being subjected to the scalpel conservatives across the nation wield. And I have been one of them. But as a patient's own behavior is often responsible for the condition in which he finds himself, so, too, Obama holds some responsibility for his. His penchant for being unmoved by things of incredible importance has garnered him the evil eye. No wonder his tears are deemed empty.

After announcing that the Islamic State (ISIS) had beheaded American journalist James Foley, the president of the United States returned to the golf course. While some called his golf game "bad optics," others called it unfathomable. How does one even stomach a game after someone's head has been severed from his body for all to see? Where were his tears then?

Where were his tears as we watched in horror as Planned Parenthood staff members appeared to discuss the monetary value of aborted baby body parts, all while swigging wine and indulging in salad at a restaurant? While they discussed employing "less crunchy" methods of the abortion procedure to procure "whole specimens," did he shed any tears? Did he seem even the slightest bit moved for the most innocent among us?

Unlike some, I do not doubt President Obama's sincerity as he shed tears contemplating lives lost through senseless acts of violence. Mind you, I don't agree with his use of executive actions to trample the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens, and I know that not one of the actions he announced would have stopped one of the mass shootings or terrorist attacks he referenced, but I do not doubt the authenticity of his tears. His tears were real, and they reveal what he truly cares about -- what moves him to action -- just as they reveal what does not move him. But because his real tears do not lead to actions that provide real solutions, those tears are empty.

Obama's response to the deep concern Americans have about terrorism is to mock and criticize. His response to the belief that it is foolish to admit Syrian refugees without a proper vetting process is to preach to Christians about the "orphan and the widow." His response to law-abiding citizens who cling to their right to protect themselves and their families with firearms is to blow them off, using his pen and phone to override them. His response to those who want to protect the right to life, which includes, of course, the unborn, is to label them "right-wing extremists" and "radical domestic terrorists" -- all while refusing to apply the term "radical Islam" to the ideology espoused by avowed radical Islamic State terrorists.

Make no mistake: His tears were real. We should all cry as we think of those first-graders whose time on this earth was the blink of an eye. We need to cry, too, for efforts to infringe on our right to arm ourselves and protect such children. We need to cry for those who are never given a chance to be born and whose bodies are not even respected after that chance is terminated. Instead, Obama cries for things that don't offer solutions. He cries for gun control. He cries for law-abiding Muslims he believes will be mistreated, without evidence that this is prevalent. He cries for climate control, which, unbelievably, he deems the greatest threat we face. He cries empty -- albeit, sincere -- tears.

Tonight, during his State of the Union address, Obama will leave one seat empty in Michelle Obama's guest box to represent those lost to gun violence -- "to honor their memory" and send a gun control message to Congress. His empty chair this Tuesday and his empty, sincere tears last Tuesday reveal his agenda, which is empty of anything that will solve the problems we face. But they do reveal who he sincerely is -- both what he values and what he does not.

Adrienne Ross is an editor, writer, public speaker, former teacher and coach, Southeast Missourian editorial board member, and owner of Adrienne Ross Communications. She has been a speaker and panelist at churches, education forums, youth gatherings, school assemblies, and political events, and has written for politicians, public figures, newspapers, and websites. Adrienne hosts an online radio show, The Right Voice, which covers politics and national and global news. She has been interviewed on radio, television, and online about topics such as education, politics, race, and faith.

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The Right Voice Radio: Unmasking Planned Parenthood's Purpose

Friday, July 31, 2015


I am one of two hosts of an online radio show called The Right Voice. Glo Smith and I use this platform to discuss what's going nationally and globally. TRV airs live on Tuesday evenings from 8-9 Eastern/7-8 Central. The call-in number is (646) 200-3715. Broadcasts are archived, so you can tune in later if you're not available during the live show. To see past broadcasts, go to http://www.blogtalkradio.com/therightvoice for on-demand episodes.

Tuesday's show was particularly important, as we focused on Planned Parenthood and unmasking its original intent, as set in motion by founder Margaret Sanger--a eugenicist, a racist, and an advocate for eradicating such "unfit" people as blacks, poor people, and those with special needs, whom, she believed "should never have been born." These "human weeds" should be given birth control so that society could be whittled down to a "cleaner race." And why are 80% of Planned Parenthood clinics in minority communities? Could this have any connection to its founder's original purpose?

Revelations are coming in by the day calling into question the way Planned Parenthood operates, as videos suggest they are heavily involved in illegal activity--selling the body parts of aborted babies. These videos are stomach-churning and heartbreaking. There's never been a more important time to delve deeply into Planned Parenthood, which receives over half-a-billion dollars in taxpayer money annually.

As we tackled unmasking Planned Parenthood on the show, we are glad that some powerful voices are listening to our voice, as well. Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin tuned in and shared this on her Facebook page about the broadcast:

Co-hosts Adrienne Ross and Glo Smith tackled the Planned Parenthood issue last night during their broadcast of "The Right Voice" radio show, shedding light on Planned Parenthood's racist origins and the motives of its eugenicist founder Margaret Sanger. They implored those quoting "Black Lives Matter" to also direct their passion to the disproportionate impact abortion has on the black community. Listen to their broadcast, "Unmasking Planned Parenthood's Purpose," here: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/…/unmasking-planned-parenthood…, and tune in every Tuesday from 8-9 p.m Eastern here: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/therightvoice


Listen to "Unmasking Planned Parenthood's Purpose" by clicking below:

Check Out Politics Conservative Podcasts at Blog Talk Radio with The Right Voice on BlogTalkRadio with The Right Voice on BlogTalkRadio

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Independence Day: 'Free Indeed'

Saturday, July 4, 2015


Happy Independence Day!

"If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed." ~ John 8:36

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Father's Day 2015

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Happy Father's Day to every father, stepfather, and father figure who has been an example of manhood. The difference you make in the lives of others is unparalleled. No one can take your place. Thank you for your impact.

My dad, John Ross, Jr., passed away in 1993. I honor him for his life and his role in mine.

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Memorial Day: The Ultimate Sacrifice

Monday, May 25, 2015




Happy Memorial Day, everyone. Let us never forget those who have paid the ultimate price--those who died in service to our country. God bless their loved ones, who, in losing them, sacrificed the greatest they had to give.

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Mother's Day Tribute

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Mother's Day is a special day for every mom and woman who has ever filled the mother role. You have enriched the world by investing yourself into the lives of children. Thank you!

A special "thank you" to my mom, my aunt Mary, and my aunt Alma--all of whom helped raise me to be the woman I am.


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Great News about Kristi King Medical Fund

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Many of you have read about the Kristi King Medical Fund I set up through Go Fund Me to help a friend in need. Thank you so much, those of you who have so generously given. Kristi is grateful beyond words, and so am I. She got some really great news the other day, and I have posted an update!

The update reads:

Thanks to the generosity of many of you, Kristi King received some great news! After her application to waive her medical bills was denied, I started the Go Fund Me, since she had no insurance at the time of her accident and became unemployed. After hearing an inspiring message from her pastor about having faith and using the resources God has given to "go for it," she took the money that had already been donated--over $5,000--and applied it to her bill, as I mentioned in the last update. She still owed over $7,000, however. Taking inspiration from her pastor's sermon, in a leap of faith, Kristi decided to try again and reapplied for the medical bill waiver. She just got word yesterday that she was approved, and the remainder of the debt has been waived! Without your contributions--and God's favor--this would not be the case. Your help has not been in vain! Your giving enabled her to pay on the bill, showing the hospital a genuine effort to settle the debt, and they responded by giving her a clean slate--because of you! Some gave because you love Kristi, and others didn't even know her, but gave because you love me. Some gave a little, and some gave much. Some gave once, and some gave multiple times. And some couldn't give, but prayed. All of it--every last bit--is appreciated more than words could ever express. Thank you, and God bless you!

Thank you all! God is faithful!

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Your Help Is Greatly Appreciated: Krist King's Medical Fund

Friday, February 20, 2015


Sometimes, life throws us curve balls. At the end of November, my friend Kristi King experienced something that could have ended her life: in short, a stair at the top of her loft cracked and sent her down over the top and onto the floor below, where she landed on her head. Doctors say it is a miracle she did not break her neck. For that miracle, those of us who are her friends and family are grateful to God.

Kristi is healing well, but she still needs help. Her job had just approached its end due to employment cuts, and she had no health insurance at the time of the accident. Kristi is not one to ask for help; she takes personal responsibility for her life. But sometimes, we all need a hand up. I decided to extend a hand, and I started a GoFundMe to assist her, praying that the generosity of others could help eradicate that $13,000 debt she now faces.

I have included her story below, which is also posted on the GoFundMe.com/kristiking page I launched. It fully details Kristi's story. Please read it and consider donating to Kristi, someone who would do anything to help anyone.

Some people prefer to give anonymously, which GoFundMe allows; when you click the Donate button, you have the option of having your identity hidden. Also, please know that as there is no donation too big, there is no donation too small, either; the $5.00, $10.00, and $20.00 donations mean just as much as the larger donations. Although GoFundMe is both legitimate and reputable, I realize, too, that some would rather not give online. If that's the case, please email me at motivationtruth@aol.com, and I will let you know where to send your donation. Thank you so much for considering donating to my friend.

Here's the story behind Kristi King's Medical Fund:

On November 29, two days after Thanksgiving, Kristi suffered multiple injuries when the top step of her loft cracked as she was going downstairs. This sent her down over the top onto the first floor, where she landed on her head and was knocked unconscious. She eventually woke up and was able to call for help and get to the hospital. Kristi suffered orbital skull fractures, a concussion, and whiplash. The doctors said it was a miracle she didn’t break her neck. Though she has still been dealing with the effects of the accident, thank God she survived and is on the mend.

However, Kristi had no medical insurance when she fell, and she had recently received news that her job was ending, as her employer was cutting back. So with no insurance and no employment, she was faced with trying to figure out how she would pay for the medical bills from this horrific fall.

Kristi applied for a bill waiver in light of her financial circumstance, but she received word recently that she was not approved. It's for this reason that I have resorted to asking you to help. She has always taken personal responsibility for her life and has always worked hard. She prides herself on being a good steward of her blessings. Kristi has maintained great credit all these years, but that is now threatened, as she finds herself with a $13,000 medical bill—and no new job yet.

As Kristi’s friend, I have turned to GoFundMe to help her in her time of need, and I turn to you to ask for your assistance. Would you donate to help her? I know that we can make a difference, and I know she will appreciate every dollar you contribute. It will not go unnoticed and certainly not unappreciated. You can give once, periodically, or even monthly.

I humbly ask that you make a donation to the Kristi King Medical Fund. Thank you and God bless you!

Please consider both giving a donation and sharing this information with others. Thank you so much, and God bless you abundantly.

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