Tag: black lives matter

Dear Martin

Dear Dr. King:

How marvelous it is to know and read of you! How wonderful it is to know your compassion lead you to action and how your wife has supported you. I wish to thank you for your life and service. I’m sure those two words are rarely heard, and never heard enough. On behalf of those whom benefit from history and hindsight, once more, thank you.

In the fifty years since your passing from living to ancestry and then to legacy, there is still so much to be done, Martin. There are strides, stutter-steps and fighting for every inch of ground we as a people have. There are policies and laws in place now that weren’t fifty years ago, yet there are places in this nation where my almost seventy year old mother would still be called a ‘colored girl.’ There is still so much work laid, yet so much work to do, which at the weight of it all–sometimes threaten to crush my soul, spirit and heart.

As this new movement, this strive to be ‘woke’, has been something akin to what I am sure you, Coretta and all of SNCC and the NAACP saw. There has been a unity emerging which is needed and necessary, yet there is a thread, once pulled reveals motives, hearts, agendas and intentions. It is sometimes such lonely work, Martin. Such lonely work.

What I have decided to, Martin, perhaps what you considered:  work my niche. I have found my niche to be organizing, support, mentoring, refuge and education. I have found that the work, this work of the gospel and social justice, will always be ongoing. The mission field is too wide a swath to tackle alone! I am learning it will not be perfect, I will not be perfect in learning, but there is a restlessness in me which makes me want to keep going. I have to keep going.

Martin, Dr. King, I understand more what Margaret Mitchell meant when she said, “Respectability is the punishment for the wild.” For all the fires I caused and walked away from, I now must start and kindle to others.

I want to thank you for not giving up. I thank you for showing what a possible path to freedom looked like. I thank you for your grace, fierceness, courage and boldness. I don’t believe to change the world as a person of color you have to be ‘the good negro’–and I have always rejected that depiction of you. I know now, to change the world as a person of color you have to know the game you’re playing and play it better.

I’m deciding to play it better.

In Hope, Fight and Faith,

Pastor Jennifer P. Harris, Spirit of Life Church-St. Louis

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Dark Fountains

In this the fourth month, eighteen years into the new millennium, my heart has an ache, it’s as heavy as stone (I Cover The Waterfront-Billie Holiday). In this most rainy month, with the freak weather the Midwest had over the holiday weekend, perhaps it is fitting this month I talk about, the contributing staff talk about, is this uptick in black children, young children, committing suicide.

Suicide.

Ending the life not even two decades old!

Consider this an introduction to a portion of Black life, the Black experience, we don’t talk about often or often enough. We fall victim to the invincibility of our own mythos. Too often we despise and detest the frailty found in ourselves, but accessible to non-people of color. Psychology and coinciding therapies are or may be seen as stuff “white people do.”

Indeed.

But we’re supposed to fight through it? Because we saw our mothers, fathers, grandparents and alienated family fight through it? From that legacy, we get children whom wander through these dark orchards, eating of these bitter trees.

We see children now, the children that hold and bear our reflections, in a place of learned helplessness, panic, isolation and apathy. If the police aren’t murdering their neighbors and family members, they get made fun of at school for being smart like 12-year-old Storm, in Washington, D.C. in January of this year!

Black children are expected to deal with trauma, death and suffering like no other demographic of children. They are supposed to be impervious to bullying, immune to billets and illiterate to the world around them! The emotional soil tilled in the life of black children in this nation is hard, rocky and neglected. Today, I will start tilling this ground, planting trees and gardens to offer help, safety and space to not be okay.

We who are alive and remain can no longer sit as if this slow catastrophe is not happening! We must be proactive in the lives of children who do look like us, whose struggles we know and have overcome. The time has come and now is for us to pay attention!

The children are crying, but they keep covering their own mouths to muffle their own screams of pain. Why? It’s what they have been taught to do.

 

Share this post often.

Share the suicide hotline number.

Life is all our responsibility. Help someone keep living. Thank you.

❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

 

[images from Google]

WEEK 9: ADDRESSING MICROGGRESSIONS

Microaggressions are always meant to minimize or question blackness or anything different or non-white. It’s a slick way to chip away at your person, your worth and right to be whom you will.

It can be a simple as your name! The thing behind your birthplace, family and cis-gender you cannot control. I was told that my name was a white girl name since I started school! And this was told to me by black and white kids! I tell my children that the easiest thing you can do to show someone that you respect them is to learn to pronounce someone’s name correctly.

In addressing microaggressions, these slick social assaults, you have to understand microaggressions have their roots in the following: stereotypes, prejudice and racism. They are ways to poke at racial issues without being seen as being noticeably racist.

But here’s a pro-tip: it’s still racist.

No more, no less. No retraction.

You have to consider the source of this ignorance on order to defuse it. It’s like the sun in an empty room—once you see it, there is no way to unsee it.

The defusing of these situations requires you remain confident in who you are in the midst of white supremacist nonsense. You have to be willing to look at the situation you are in so that you can effectively defuse (lookahere, and when need be? READ FOR RUPAUL LEVEL DRASTIC AF FILTH.)

Microaggressions are to make your doubt your worth and all you contain–to undercut and devour. Even if it’s one cut at a time. But like any other bully or virus, unless you are willing to confront it where you find that bullshit, it will persist. Whether that be ally, enemy or friend! If they can’t handle that–treat them like Beyoncé would.

Microaggressions lead to a comfort in those whom tolerate and perpetuate it! Which allows room for the one black/Asian/Gay/Hispanic or Latinx/Muslim friend they have. Microaggressions cannot allowed to flourish because they breed–bringing their cousin big cousin bigotry, Auntie -Isms, and their roommate, Apathy.

It’s 2018, y’all! Solange told Becky not to touch our hair. Next time she do? We snatching her up!

#FormationOrNah

 

[images from Google]

WEEK 8: WHITE PRIVILEDGE STILL SO FRAGILE

Image result for snowflakes

So…aight.

My good girlfriend, Kelly, is a working single Mom who has landed this bomb job at a law firm. She is slated to graduate this summer with a stellar GPA. As she is an executive paralegal, she is familiar with the demands of a law firm, precise nature of the work required and she is getting invaluable training which will only make her a better paralegal. And she can play Wu-Tang Clan at work! Kelly’s job is awesome!

However, there was bitter broad in her class cohort. Let’s call her *Regular Rachel. Somehow, Regular Rachel found out about Kelly’s job, and went to the head of the program to complain that Kelly had an unfair advantage.

Yes. That happened.

This advantage is the similar to a nursing student employed as a CNA through nursing school. You literally are employing skills which will make you a better nurse. Chile, please.

The epilogue to this is my girl emailed her program head, and let them know in 2018 this is still happening, and how silly it is, and how Regular Rachel needs to find some business. Regular Rachel responded to the situation as all Regular Rachel’s do:

“I am not a racist, and I just want to put this whole situation behind me and move forward…”

Girl.

Ta-Nahsi Coates said the white people in this country are taught that everything belongs to them. I would have to agree. White privilege can only permit as long as there are systems in place to keep it untouched and unchallenged. White privilege is fragile AF because it is dependent on reinforcement, oppression and the game staying rigged.

Kelly couldn’t have an advantage that outdid her own advantage because that would mean she wouldn’t win. White privilege is steeped in the idea of winning, indoctrination of inherent minority loss, which allows a learned helplessness to become a ceiling to all those who would dare challenge it:  you can go no further than what we believe you should. If you happen to assert yourself, and use the same tricks we use to get over, WEE WHEEL NAWT HAAV EET!

Nall.

White supremacy needs to take  L’s on two occasions:  continuously and often.

 “If the only way you can be tall is if someone is on their knees, then you have a serious problem.”

-Toni Morrison (a revered Mother Oracle)

White privilege is fragile because it cannot stand alone, or apart from an oppressive system of operation. It remains fragile because it has to be retaught, reinforced and oppressive all those who challenge it. This social construct, much like race, is to assert the belief where to not be white is to be less than.

So, how do we combat it? We combat it just as my girl Kelly did! You call it out, you confront it and you don’t let Regular Rachels, Bitter Beckys and Tryingit Tanyas ruin what you want to do, the hustle you have, and the ambition you power.

The moral of the story:  Keep it pushin. If they can’t stand you, tell Regular Rachel to get a seat and saddown.

*-Regular Rachels are pervasive!

 They are the Beckys with chips on their shoulder and just enough sense of self to believe their own bullshit. Regular Rachel’s are built to fight, but they call managers if the melaninated girl behind the counter is to ‘brash’. They email professors  if they find out someone has an ‘unfair’ advantage. Regular Rachel’s are the goons of white supremacy. Beckys are the molls. Allies don’t allow their circles to have Regular Rachels in their midst and not allow them to roam unchecked. Firestarters, check your circles. None of us have time for the ridiculousness Regular Rachels bring.

 

[images from Google]

1808-This Doesn’t Happen In Wakanda

(Remember, 1808 means this is NSFW.)

I spoke about this story when I first heard about it before Christmas. Click here for that initial tea. See this link for this low-grade fuckery out of Hartford University.

I cannot say what is in another woman’s heart, or their faith, but a girl that put my toothbrush in her ass needs to take an L. I in no way can advocate for her on any level. Help me be better Jesus, because I can’t and don’t ask me to!

Chennell “Jazzy” Rowe went to the sentencing hearing of a broad that wiped menstrual blood on her things and spit in her lotion and put her toothbrush in her ass. The Lord says to forgive, but you ain’t gotta do this here! I can’t do it bruh. I can’t do it!

The problem I have with this is the constant assault on black women. The barrage we are subjected to simply for being melaninated! This silly clear trollop said she did these things to her after she found out Jazzy put a video of her snoring on social media.

Aight. 😒

Even with that being so, this shit is uncalled for. There are different ways to handle a nasty b!tc#. I’m from St. Louis, Missouri bruh, Idda handed out an ass-whuppin once I found out, since we one-uppin!

I am proud of Jazzy’s poise. And restraint. I am over how black women are treated and expected to hold to his Mammie expectation that everything done to us by those white folk that don’t know no better just needs to be forgiven!

I’m not advocating vengeance, but fairness. Do I think this is hate crime? I do actually. If the girl was that mad about a roommate, she could have found another one. Point blank.

Miss me with she didn’t know, wasn’t aware and didn’t mean it. When you set your mind to put something I put in my mouth, in your ass, you aim to get all you got coming to you once I find out. Slap ya mammie, because she just as trifling and could teach you no better.

RUNITBACK FRIDAY-3/9/18

A Wrinkle In Time makes a black girl shine. Go out and support Black Girl Magic! It is essential this movie be supported as well as BLACK PANTHER.  But here goes everything beloveds! Buckle up.

#JemelleHill #MichaelSmith #ESPN #WhoTheyPlayingWith #BlackGirlMagic #WeHaveToBeBetterThanThis #ThisIsRidiculous #NoPlantationPolitics  #WeFreeBawse #GoAndConquer #BuildAndTrust #Allyship #BlackMenSupportBlackWomen #WhatsYourMotivation #ThisIsNonsense #IStillRideForJemelleAndMike

So…the saga continues. Jemelle Hill has left ESPN and now Michael Smith has. In reviewing, Michael and Jemelle had hosted The6 (SC6) for over a year, and thanks to the added racism and sexism of Chris Berman,  it’s evident that since the passing of Stuart Scott, ESPN isn’t as clean and tolerant as we think they are.

As a sportsfan, as a black woman, as a writer, as the daughter of a football player (and my Daddy was a DITKA ERA FOOTBALL FAN!), I’m about over ESPN. Clearly, ESPN likes their negroes quiet and docile. Not boatrocking, not creative, not assertive, and not politically aware.  Clearly, that does not include Michael and Jemelle.

I wish Jemelle and Michael the best of luck going forward, the best life offers greet them. There is no reason left to watch ESPN now is Unc on Undisputed (NFL HOF Shannon Sharpe) get Skip together.

#DotardTrump #StormyWeather #SheAG #BagGrabbingAintGolddigging #SomethingGoinOn #OutsideBaby #AreTheWhitePeoplePleased #DoesThisPleaseWhiteJesus #SayWhatchaWantSheAintATrollop

So..CHILE!

This non-disclosure agreement is EVERYTHING! In the life of someone who thrives on words, their analysis and interpretation, something is afoot here, Watson! There is something to this! Granted, she took this first money ($130,000), but she coming for the rest of these bags, doe! From what The Rachel Maddow Show shared last night (3/8/2018)? Dude! There is something going on! Barron may have a sibling! You can’t tell me otherwise! You cannot tell me different! This bastard was messing around on Hoe-2, who just had a baby, with this woman, and JUST NOW she get this check cut not even 2 years ago?!

NALL.

The game is afoot, and she smells money, power and influence. This is–nall. C’mon now! Think about this, y’all! Think! Why would she come out now, and then a year later say it’s not enough money. There are two reasons for this:

1.) MONEY. Stormy may have been/is a kept woman, and she came up on something that required some more money. For all the sexual antics he may have required? She gon need ‘adequate compensation’. And all she want is the rest of her ‘adequate compensation’.

2.)  A BABY. There was a phrase in the document that said ‘or paternity information’. Hmm. Of all the phrasing, why this one? If there is a baby, there may have been a lump sum given or agreed upon to help her raise this child–or did he pay for an abortion? B mad. I’m not the only one whom thought about it! Pay attention, y’all!

Pay attention.

Stay Woke, Firestarters! Stay woke. Critical thinking is still free.

Pretty Black Girl

As a black woman, it is an act or rebellion and revolution to love yourself.

It took me so long to look in the mirror and like the brown skinned, button nosed, gap-toothed girl I saw there. There were days when I avoided mirrors because I couldn’t handle what I saw there.

The world outside my house, and sometimes in it, told me how I looked, my natural aesthetic was not enough, it was I wasn’t pretty, light or hair straight enough. Compile that with a white girl name? Nall, nothing about me was right.

I began to love myself thanks to the adamant belief my mother fed me that I was enough, I was pretty, I was a formidable girl and should not be treated as anything less.

With my mother being the fashionista she is, she subscribed to Essence Magazine until I was Junior in High School. Seeing women and girls that looked like me? Amazing.

With the European aesthetic dominant, and nappy hair being a sin with relaxers and pressing combs present (oh, Lord! Little black girls and their hair!), in my childhood and well into my adulthood, gradually, I began to love the girl looking back at me.

I believe that every black girl has that search at least once. Where the world you are told you are a part of, whose destiny you are assigned, looks you in your melanin and tells you that you’re ugly, you don’t match what they want and you cannot even be considered “pretty” because nothing dark or black be pretty.

It started with my eyes. I thought my eyes were pretty because they are my mothers. And I thought she was pretty. There were pretty black girls in Essence, Seventeen and Y &M magazine.

I looked at my skin tone and compared it to light chocolate or a mocha mix. My lips? Thick and even better when I smiled. From accepting the black about me would not change, my view of it had to change. The world didn’t like my black, but celebrated tanning.

It wasn’t my color that was the problem, it was the world that had the issue with my color. That problem I made my own–and that problem made me hate something I could not change.

For a little black girl to hear she is beautiful, just as she is, in all her raw natural sugar form, is revolutionary. For a little black girl to see she is beautiful is powerful.

Beyond the fetish for her skin and hair.

Beyond the curiosity of her shape.

For a little black girl to seeshe is is beautiful herself, is life changing. One of the keys to help that is representation and affirmation.

Self-love is a radical act in a world that constantly tells you to change, when even the changes are not sufficient!

For a pretty black girl to love herself? She changes the world.