Bright. Intelligent.

Latest

Originally posted on Akilah.Shireen:

This month, Vibe Magazine released an article entitled “The Mean Girls of Morehouse” which took a very personal look at the current juxtaposition of being a Black gay man at Morehouse College in Atlanta. The article speaks about one young man’s feelings of exclusion and inevitably separatism for being what is referred to as ‘gender bending’ . In the article, the protagonist of this story, ‘Diamond’ says  “Morehouse wasn’t ready for me”.

The article by Vibe was partially inspired by a semi-recent attempt (its been in effect for about a year or so) to uphold male student’s standards of appearance and “get back to the legacy” of what it’s historically meant to be a Morehouse man (a private, historically black all boys school whose alumni include Dr. Martin Luther Kind Jr., Robert Johnson, and Spike Lee).

Atlanta, for those who haven’t been, is a mecca of up and coming artists…

View original 429 more words

Quote

Image is Powerful

Image is Powerful….but also IMAGE Is superficial

Video

Image is Everything: Priviledge

Model Cameron Russell inspires my ‘IMAGE is everything” segment on my blog. Have a look  first.

So I sent this to a friend of mine because we have this discussion more often than not. It almost seems as though the conversation about race with those who are of the ‘dominent racial class’ seems to go no where. For years people have talked about race and we’ve kinda skated through this major theme of race politics in America. Being white in America has and entitles you to privilege.

Cameron Russell is the perfect person right:

  • Beautiful
  • White
  • Skinny

In a nutshell, this is her stance (I didn’t make this up!!). She owns this and what makes this powerful is that people might have actually been listening. Too often the dialogue on race becomes about one of the following

  • Guilt- why should I feel guilty about race…it ain’t my fault
  • Denial-what racism?
  • Indifference- ok so it happened…sorry Black folks, move on.

But Cameron came with this

  • Truth- I (and white women all over this green earth) benefited greatly from racism AND I accept this as truth AND this is the gospel of race politics AND there’s nothing I can personally do to remove that stigma BUT Ted talk is a great start.

That, I think, is what gets the ‘Black community’ (what might be left of the community…..more on that later) so…upset. Its like why won’t you finally admit that this is an issue? Why can’t we just say yes this happened AND these are the effects. The latter half of that is Oh So Crucial.

No one in their right mind would EVER deny the holocaust. And rightfully so. But everyone and their momma is quick to turn their back on HUNDREDS OF YEARS of slavery. I could be wrong.

'Anti-Ebonicism' or something like that……


Why isn’t there a version of anti-Semetism for Black folks, Jay and Russell?  It seems to be so common place no one even cares anymore about the “straight up hate” Blacks get by way of television and major studies (Geez).

It’s so bad and has been so for so many (hundreds of) years now, that I think it’s time we came up with a term for it. Because once you name it, people feel more inclined to say and DO something about it. Something like Anti-Africanism. Or Dis-eboni-cism? Anti-Ebonicism! Minor logistics but we’ll figure it out…..

It’s not as though a term is not warranted either. It’s legitimate because everyday I’m bombarded with very degrading and desensitized images of African-Americans. As an African-American (yup, I’m one of ‘them’) lots of things have struck me as rather offensive. I’ve compiled a short list of the top 10 most insulting “Anti-Ebonicistic’ remarks (in no particular order, really):

  1. Dr. Satoshi Kanazawa says Black women are point blank…..ugly
  2. Georgia proposes Blacks pick fruit, cotton…..again?
  3. The wrestling team in CA discovered a ‘slave‘ was among them
  4. Hoodlums in the white hizzouse!
  5. Michelle Obama is the face of the angry Black woman
  6. A study (dammit, another study!?) saying Black women are invisible…..
  7. Even another clearly Black woman (Ethiopia…..yup they’re one of us too :-) critiques American Black women. This is an example of self hate….
  8. Most dangerous place for Black babies is in the womb ad
  9. The entire political career of President Barack Obama since he’s taken office but if I had to choose my favorite, it would be the Campaign to Get this Black Man out of Office, led by Donald Trump
  10. And of course Black People….You Don’t Know Jack! (about politics anyway)

To me it is as though with all the consistent hate speak circling Blacks in American, we’ve gotten complacent and just accepted it. We don’t even fight it anymore. We hear these stories and don’t nip it at the bud like hate speak against other groups.

The solution in my opinion? If we name it, we can claim it! And them we can move to erase some of these negative-ism. This is because it would no longer be ‘generalized’ and we could teach our children, all children that this is a REAL issue that affects millions of people. And along with “The Diary of Anne Frank”, we can have books like “The Souls of Black Folks” as mandatory readings for school aged kids. And in addition to learning about the horrors of the Holocaust, college students would hear about Black art and artists, like Jupitor Hammon long before they were required to take the class only to graduate. And maybe, just maybe Black little girls and boys wouldn’t hate themselves. A crazy idea that giving hatred a name isolates it and prevents it from internally eating away at a people.

Friends with Benefits


“Before you were sex without emotion….now you’re emotion without the sex”

Friends with benefits is everything your mother told you not to do. But alas, you’ve convinced yourselves that it’s not that big of a deal. To you it’s a lot more PG-13 than just a random hook up and safer than handing your heart over to some unrelenting stranger. It has surpassed the generational boundaries of just being a young person’s thing, a black or white thing, or even a thing that men do (because women fought hard for equality in all areas of human endevour).

But what happens when people stop playing with each other (pun intended) and start being real? Who really gets the benefits? 9 times out of 10 he is but I never believe in absolutes so please let me know if you’re the one who actually made it work.

Whether you’ve been friends for 10 years or 10 minutes, the phenomena usually starts off great. Intense chemistry, consistent cat and mouse behavior filled with sexting, flirting, and even some random night caps. And then it almost always ends up in spontaneous combustion (take that however you’d like). I never understood why people subjected themselves to the potential of drama and near friendship-death experiences, myself included. But as I get older, I see how the flesh is certainly weak and so is the mind. Here are the top reasons why FWBs don’t work (especially for women). I’ve included it so it makes sense to every personality type:

  1. For the ‘it’s my body I can do what I want’ types: Friends have STDs too. Be not deceived by simply knowing someone forever that you actually ‘know’ them.
  2. For the ‘only religious when it’s convenient’ types: 1 Corinthians 6:12
  3. For the ‘all men are the same types': You already know then…
  4. For the ‘give me some hard proof’ types: Physiologically women are wired to feel close to everything (just about). When women looks for the benefits package it’s usually because they’re lonely and deep down are looking for some sort of companionship. We crave sex just as much as any man. But the FWB factor is compromised by Oxytocin; a hormone released in women when they give birth, breast feed or have their nipples stimulated, or simply have an orgasm. So in essence with every hook up (and potentially every touch) you just make the problem worse.
  5. For those who needs visuals: exclusive FWB relationships can become dysfunctional as opposed to a healthy level of chillin’ with no sex.
  6. For the ‘worse case scenario’ types: What if you get pregnant!  OMG!confused
  7. For the ‘you only live once’ types: Just do it √. And then refer back to #6 andor #1
  8. For the ‘that will NEVER happen to me’ types: Call me winking
  9. For the ‘it’s only for a little while, then I’ll stop': You’ve developed the Bobby and Whitney syndrome. Not saying you can’t beat the addiction it’s just how much can you afford to lose before you’re known as the Artist I mean ‘Friend formally known as’?
  10. For everyone else: See video below

Our society makes excuses for everything we do that tests conventional wisdom and unfortunately, it’s the foundation of failure. I stand firm on the idea that the benefits systems has a glass ceiling and women will almost always get the short end of the stick. Benefits ideally should be consistently available to all parties involved. Unfortunately the FWB system does not always insure this after a long stint of ‘F-ing with Benefits’.

What do you think? Is a night (or a string of nights) of ‘kcid’ or ‘the pink monster’ worth the friendship-suicide?

All Black Everything?

Professor Michael Eric Dyson speaks on a topic that I’ve heard so many people bring up as of late. I hear people ask, When will Barack Obama focus on ‘Black’ issues? Why hasn’t he gotten to US? Where’s our check? To this I say (in the best possible way)….. why? What has really changed except a new face with an odd name?

Whether it’s on CNN or Fox, the resolve in politics always centers around race. We focus on Obama being the Great ‘Bi-Racial Hope’ but the bottom line of it is we are all much too comfortable and spend too much time focused on the trifles of a world that has us engrossed in all the wrong things (for the right reasons) and so we can’t even hold a candle to the movements of yesterday.

“Don’t mistake cultural pride for political accountability….some people think that Obama is Martin Luther King, JR. Excuse me!? Martin Luther King shed blood in Memphis…. from that blood… sprouted every ability of Black people in a post king era to survive” -Michael Eric Dyson

No where in the world can a country be so boggled down in debt, financial destruction, and moral impotence be found but in the United States. That’s not a anti-American talking that’s strictly patriotic voice of a woman who authentically traces her roots to those who were slaves. We’re not just a melting pot of citizens who belong to a one nation under God, it’s a bit more complex than that. And so race is relevant, yes but by how much if no one wants to do anything about it?

When I see images like this:

I don’t understand them but so much. Never once did I get the impression that the dream was solely to have a Black man elected to Presidency. Because while a few of us are in a ‘good position’ many of us are not. And while it was a proud moment in history it doesn’t mean we can hang up the towel. But alas, we have. We’ve gotten juuuust enough to keep us content and besides… that’s what we wanted right? :-/

I respect Michael Eric Dyson and his work within academia as well as the community. He’s well respect and extremely eloquent man who I admire. I do feel however that these public rants about how Obama does nothing for the Black community, does NOTHING for the Black community. And while I beg to differ on this viewpoint, I often reflect on whether if President Obama did, would we even be receptive to receive it? ‘Obama-care‘ has been coined as such because ultimately, it will ensure the millions of minorities (including myself thank you kindly) who do not have access to healthcare. First Lady Obama has even attempted to get our nations children on the right track but alas it gets not love from Tea Partyers and a nice portion Americans of Color who don’t even know what the politics pundits are saying because Basketball wives are on and Twitter is “poppin’ “.

While it is true, fundamentally, America is built up a system of oppression (whether you want to believe its white supremacy,  or not) we are remissed in talking about because most everyone reading this (no, EVERYone reading this) is comfortable enough to get by; but it exist. But it’s the basic legislation that can’t get passed, or the funding that gets cut because a special interest group says its un-American, or even a subtly shift in the way people think about Obama’s leadership conveniently before re-election season.

Mr. Obama isn’t just a figure-head to the Black community but he has been ‘allowed’ to lead the free world; set in place to organize the agenda of the American empire. Despite this he isn’t omnipotent. The power is always in the people, it’s just a matter of getting the masses of people to believe it. And today, I’d argue that not one of us in the streets major cities like New York, Philly, or Atlanta lack leadership but we’ve got too much to lose.

Why I Don't Respect 'Wife-y' Culture

I get it. Words change through the course of time. Like the word gay isn’t really talking about sunshine and flowers anymore and depending on what era you were born, phat may have a different connotation for you than your children. Even the words nigger and nigga have been debated upon for the past two decades and the Black community still has that under review.

But I will NEVER respect the word wifey and the connotation behind it…and here is why:

I included this video dubbed ‘Bottom Bitch Theory” because it’s a satirical yet powerful display of what I call ‘wifey culture”.

What is wifey? The comparison about being some mans Wife versus wifey is just as whack as the argument between ‘nigger’ and ‘nigga’. But unlike a nigga versus a nigger, ‘wifey’ and ‘Wife’ and TWO very different things. A wifey is Wife-like; a knock-off version of the prize; the half freakhalf housewife that every man wants but not all deserve. Wifey has made it to the playoffs but not the championships. Some men live with wifey and some don’t. Either way, wifey has been deemed a potential candidate for wife but I’ve yet to see a wifey actually make it across the threshold. It happens, I’m very sure, but on average wifey may have to settle for baby-moms. She’s  a ‘special’ type of a girlfriend whom he holds closer than the others but inevitably wifey is just a clever way men blow sunshine up our behinds (notice I didn’t say the only girlfriend but the closest to his “heart”). Even the suffix -y gives me the impression that you’re a less than adequate version of a Wife. Think of the words like ‘tiny’ or ‘wishy-washy’….a Wife should be neither.

Every wifey believes she is the one and only but this title unlike Wife doesn’t come with the same lifetime guarantee. Even UrbnDictionary.com refers to wifey as “not your only but your favorite”. Wifey is a promise to a hopelessly devoted woman’s ear that because you got the title you’ve got his devotion. And that’s just not the case in ‘wifey culture’.

Ask some women and they are 100% content with the ‘prestigious’ title. But why? Is it a lack of self-confidence? A hidden agenda to be Cinderalla? An opportunity to have bragging rights amongst your peers? Immaturity? It could be a combination of things or even all of the above. But what’s even worse to think about is that fact that wifey culture has made being an actual Wife that much more elusive….

People have a bad habit of playing around with words and now it’s definitely proven to be to a fault. Not everyone is cut out to be a wife. Nor are all men fit to be husband. But to add insult to injury, holding wifey in such high regard is an insult to real wives around the world who put in serious work. And who’ve got a pretty little rock to go along with it. :-D

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.