Thursday, June 30, 2016

How DOES She Do It All?

WOMAN
LOVER
JOURNALIST

WIFE
MOTHER
FRIEND

[ Soledad ] O'Brien said sometimes she has to pour her whole self into her work and at those times she's probably a crappy mom. But at other times she puts work on hold so she can focus solely on her family, even if that makes her a bad journalist in the eyes of others. She said she realized she can't always be great at all her roles in this world and that's OK.
[A]nother woman juggling a career with motherhood....was asked the key to balance. She leaned into the microphone and said, "Balance is a unicorn."
 ~Writeous Babe


Of course, you've heard women say, "Nobody asks men, 'How do you do it all' " And that is very true. Nobody does. When Marcia Clarke was trying O J Simpson for murder, people asked with outrage, "Who is taking care of her children?" to which I and several others responded, "The same person that is taking care of her male co-worker's children - the spouse."

The other thing that gets to me is that a man can stand up at a microphone, after 30 years of service in the Senate or something, and publicly say to crowds of people and multiple television cameras that he worked 80 hours a week while his wife did virtually all the raising of children without anybody uttering the words "You were a bad father," even though he was.


Rarely will anyone claim that a man was a bad parent if his job is either very powerful or earning him and his family millions of dollars per year. Even those who like to wag their fingers at mothers (but not fathers) who don't worship "balance" have no problem if a man is an absentee father if the power or the money is rolling in.  

There are supposed to be two parents, last I heard. Heterosexually speaking, a mom and a dad may not be interchangeable in their functions and their talents. And that's probably a good thing. But when one PARENT is busy and not there for the child, the other parent should make themselves unbusy and present. And hopefully the unbusy and present parent is not ALWAYS the same parent over and over again.. 

A child needs BOTH parents to be parents, yes? 

When two people are functioning as partners and parents --once the mother separates from the child after birthing and breast feeding-- there really shouldn't be a reason for a mother to feel guilty because she's not with her children 24/7. That's what husbands, mothers, in-laws, and the rest of the village is for, yes? 

The reasonable reason to feel guilty, I would think, is when your child barely recognizes you and doesn't seek comfort from you, because you've become a virtual stranger due to being at work all the time -- no matter how much money and/or power is rolling in. When fathers learn to feel this same reasonable guilt for the same reason and take steps to avoid ever having to feel it, we'll all be better off.

Maybe one day Soledad and mothers all over the world will stop calling themselves the occasionally "crappy mother" as measured by an unrealistic standard and get used to the idea that fathers should feel just as responsible for the day-to-day raising of their children.

Maybe if men feel just as responsible for the day-to-day raising of their children too, maybe they won't count themselves as good fathers once they are divorced and only see their children every other weekend. And if men don't feel like "good fathers" for seeing their children every other weekend, maybe they'll be more invested in staying married --which, again, requires day to day engagement with their children and their wife.

The days of a man being "just a provider" ought to be over by now. And the days of men feeling like "the beast of burden" of their families would be over by now if the men and women who love hard gender roles and also the idea that motherhood is somehow more magical and important than fatherhood would stop and smell the rosy feminism just waiting for them to partake.



File this under *Feminism was supposed to make life better for men (fathers) too.*


Read More
http://www.writeousbabe.com/2016/06/why-i-dont-believe-in-balance.html

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

What Might Maya Say About Orlando?



"Thoughts on the Orlando Massacre from Maya Angelou's son Guy Johnson:
I was thinking about what my mother would say if she had been notified of the madness in Orlando when, my wife, Stephanie mentioned "A Brave and Startling Truth." A quick review of the poem revealed that its theme is congruent to any discussion of the tragedies in Orlando and in Chicago where sixty-nine people were shot and many of them killed recently in one weekend, as well as any other cities around the world where gun violence has caused loss of life. The theme of the poem is a plea that we humans need to get our heads on right and come to the conclusion that despite our differences, we are one people.
Although the whole poem relates to the subject of man’s humanity and inhumanity to man, I included just the last four stanzas because they appear most appropriate, but I would encourage everyone to read the whole poem."

"When we come to it
We, this people, on this minuscule and kithless globe
Who reach daily for the bomb, the blade and the dagger
Yet who petition in the dark for tokens of peace
We, this people on this mote of matter
In whose mouths abide cankerous words
Which challenge our very existence
Yet out of those same mouths
Come songs of such exquisite sweetness
That the heart falters in its labor
And the body is quieted into awe
We, this people, on this small and drifting planet
Whose hands can strike with such abandon
That in a twinkling, life is sapped from the living
Yet those same hands can touch with such healing, irresistible tenderness
That the haughty neck is happy to bow
And the proud back is glad to bend
Out of such chaos, of such contradiction
We learn that we are neither devils nor divines
When we come to it
We, this people, on this wayward, floating body
Created on this earth, of this earth
Have the power to fashion for this earth
A climate where every man and every woman
Can live freely without sanctimonious piety
Without crippling fear
When we come to it
We must confess that we are the possible
We are the miraculous, the true wonder of this world
That is when, and only when
We come to it."
Maya Angelou



"The underlying note here is that gun violence in America is getting out of hand. As a thinking people, with the right to vote, we need to implement some sort of controls over the selling and ownership of guns. Hey, I'm a gun owner. My people were hunters. I grew up around guns: pistols, shotguns and rifles were the firearms of choice. I didn't know anyone who had a machine gun or a fully automatic weapon with a big clip until I was an adult. There is no way that fully automatic firearms should be sold across the counter to anyone, nor should anyone be able to buy such weapons. However, if we continue to refuse to outlaw the sale of such weapons, they should not be purchased without a thorough background check and a detailed registration process.

We continue to send prayers and condolences to all those who lost loved ones in the terrible tragedy in Orlando."
The Angelou Johnson Family

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

JESSE WILLIAMS: EXACTLY WHAT A FEMINIST LOOKS LIKE

There are some women who don't think men can be feminists.

I'm not one of them.


To me, saying "I am a feminist" is similar to saying "I am black" When I make the declaration that "I am black" about myself, I am saying that I belong to a group called black people even though I am not exactly like every single black person in the same group.

When I say "I believe in the Black Lives Matter Movement" I am declaring myself as belonging to a group dedicated to racial equality, to stopping the deaths innocent black people at the hands of police. When I make declarations like "I am an anti-racist" about myself I belong to a group that is dedicated to stopping racism.


I don't think the "label" of belonging that is "feminism" is any different. I am not like every other feminist but I belong to this group that is dedicated to women's equality and gender equality. I don't think "feminist" says "I am female" I think it says I am dedicated to women's issues. I think a man's ability to say he is anything that SOUNDS female in this misogynistic country is one baby step in the right direction, the direction of equality for women.

Some people don't want to declare their allegiance, to be supportive of the group called "feminists." They are afraid of the f-word, calling it a meaningless label  so as to excuse themselves when the f-word, "feminism", is about as meaningless to me as my calling myself "Black," or "Black American" or "African American."  

Sometimes people can't deal with the stereotype associated with the f-word. And if you can't bear the weight, maybe one day you will. I feel the day is coming where sexism and misogyny are going to be taken just as seriously in the black community as racism is as it is damaging the black community just as much or more as racism is, but from within.




I think the reality that "feminism" is just common sense will sink in with more and more black people one day. And those that think feminism is "white created" will realize that's just echo of some black men trying to retain their superiority over black women joining their voices to the section of white people who believe they've created everything on this planet that is worthwhile.  

So, I have not found an article on Jesse Williams' feminism. I see his name and his speeches all over feminist sites. But I have not seen him declare himself as one of us. Again, he could have, but I haven't found an article on his feminism.

But Jesse Williams is precisely what a black male feminist looks like and sounds like. Furthermore, he is most definitely feminist created. 


You wouldn't even know who Jesse Williams is, if it weren't for feminists.

Shonda Rhimes raised him up by making him famous on "Grey's Anatomy" and Alicia Garza, Patrisse Cullors, and Opal Tometi created Black Lives Matter Movement that he is famous within and all of them are feminists. And like I said, he is being megaphoned on feminist websites because he doesn't "forget" black women.  


Jesse Williams' specific shout out to black women aside, you know the biggest difference between a black male feminist and other black men?

Black male feminists, like Jesse Williams whether he has courageously declared himself to be one or not, aren't even casually divisive. Black Male Feminists don't forget Rekia Boyd when making a list of the unarmed dead killed by police. Black Male Feminists  rarely "forget black women" and by using the phrase "black men" as if it is interchangeable for "black people." They only say "black men" when they mean "black men." 



  


Sunday, June 26, 2016

STORIES FROM THE AFRICAN DIASPORA: ON BEING YOUNG, BLACK AND DEVASTATED IN GERMANY

ONE PERSON'S TESTIMONY



"I was born and raised in Germany and literally can't do it anymore.  I grew up in a small town and in kindergarten, school and high school I've always been the only black kid.


I was being physically, psychologically as well as verbally abused by my teachers. I got bullied by them..from hitting me with a stick, calling me the n-word, to dragging me by hair, to literally rippin my earrings out..leaving my ears bleeding... I experienced the same thing outside from school in my everyday life where I also was physically and verbally attacked by grown men in public, feeling helpless because no one bat an eye. 


Anyways...In germany we have a very different school system than the US..after fourth grade, you are either sent to the „Hauptschule,“ „Realschule“ or the „Gymnasium.“ If you graduate from the „Hauptschule/Realschule“ you can NOT attend university.. So at 10 years old almost all children of color or black children are sent to the „Realschule/Hauptschule“ so they can't attend university later in life.

You graduate from the ''Hauptschule/Realschule'' at 14-16 years old and enter the workforce immediately. 




But I somehow still managed to graduate from the Gymnasium so that I could attend University... Let's just say that I didn't have an easy childhood in this small ass white ass conservative town. It's a miracle that I made it to college cause boy white people didn't make it easy for me or my family..my sisters experienced the similiar things....


[M]y parents also experience racism on the daily. Their German is fine, but they do have a little bit of an accent. My mom cleans rich white peoples houses and my dad works at an office and also cleans. They also get treated like sh*t. They have several jobs to make ends meet and they play a big role on what kept me motivated through all of this bullshit... 



Fast forward to today: In April I graduated from the "Gymnasium“ and I moved away for university in a bigger, more ''liberal'' city. I made my parents proud and I was so excited to meet more open minded people..but boy I was so f*cking wrong. University in this city is almost just as bad as school back home. [I don't know] why I was so naive to think that things would get better but I'm just so disappointed and ready to drop out. My professors are so racist and although there are many POC/black people living in this city there are almost none in uni.

I'm just so devastated..



~A.K.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

DO OVERS NEEDED FOR BLACK BUT BLEACHED STORIES

I'm probably one of the few black people on earth that hasn't seen most of the original Roots.  And I either skipped over most of the other white washed slave movies or I erased them from my mind. So that makes me one of those black folks that hasn't seen "too many slave movies" because...

I've been waiting for the ones that are now being made and influenced by black people. So, I was waiting for "12 YEARS A SLAVE."


And, I'm loving John Legend for bringing "UNDERGROUND" to television.  If they reduce the white couple's role in the show and I also get to see Harriet Tubman in action next season, I might send him a bouquet of flowers.  




And I'm dying to see Octavia Butler's "Kindred" made into a movie too. 




HOWEVER, I do get that people are tired of the same time period being hit again and again and again in the movies. It is amazing to me how stories of the time right after reconstruction get passed over, as far as historical movie making goes.  

There was a time right after the Civil War when black folks were elected to Congress, were so hopeful of an easy transition to equality (They never would have guessed it would take 100 years to...) The time before the Southern Whites got their feet back under themselves after the Civil War,  that window before the full court press of Jim Crow has triumphant black stories in it. Tons of them. I know it does.

After reconstruction., there was the time of black women's suffrage. Ida B Wells and a bunch of black women's stories need to be told. Then came the Harlem Renaissance. It's amazing how many black stories are not told and not put in books. 


I can't even find a decent black mystery book anymore.


Black books are better at visiting different time periods, but I'm tired ot "the struggle" being center of so many black written books. We can solve mysteries or be heroically brave and loving when a new friend is dying of cancer or be a superhero (other than Storm) or go back in time to save our own parents too. 


I'm glad to see a slave movie produced, controlled, and well done by black people. I'm glad to see Civil Rights Movies produced, controlled, and well done by black people. That does NOT describe most of the slave movies many people are talking about being tired of seeing. Roots was fairly white washed for the masses according to friends who have seen the original Roots.

So I'm looking forward to Nate Parker's "BIRTH OF A NATION."  The white version of the Nat Turner story in a book won a Pulitzer. And it's horrifying in it's white liberal attempt to be kind to simple-minded black men who think like children (<--yes a="" actually="" and="" as="" attitudes="" be="" behaviors.="" black="" by="" can="" come="" do="" existence="" font="" for="" google="" have="" i="" in="" instead="" irth="" is="" it="" justified="" kkk="" made="" many="" might="" more="" motive="" movie.="" movie="" murder="" name.="" nate="" nation="" of="" original="" other="" over-written.="" over="" parker="" people.="" probably="" provided="" put="" racists="" s="" same="" sarcasm="" so="" styron="" t="" the="" their="" thing="" this="" to="" understand="" unified="" up="" version="" wait="" which="" white="" william="" write="">


BUT if time and money available for black movies is limited I'd rather see something from a time period other than slavery. On this, I do agree with the "I'm tired of Slavery Movies" folk.

But I also understand black movie makers seeing and reading white washed versions of OUR stories and deciding, "I'm not going to let this stand as part of the record, not even the fictionalized account. I'm making a new one."

So for every 4 or 5 movies Ava DuVernay makes, I'm fine with a civil rights or slavery movie  For every 4 or 5 movies Nate Parker makes, I'm fine with a civil rights or slavery movie.

We have more social power than ever before. That's why the verbal violence (Trump) and the physical violence (white supremacy laden police killing us) is so out in the open again. It's push back. When white people feel like their very real privilege is not privilege but just "normal" then losing that privilege is going to feel like loss. All the ugliness going on around us, born of white fear, tells me that our social power exists and is increasing.

We need to use that power to re-write the white washed versions of our own stories.  Hell, I'm already looking forward to a black remake of  "Django."
 

Friday, June 24, 2016

HOW I MADE SPACE FOR MY FEMINISM IN MY RELATIONSHIP WITH MY DESI PARENTS

Feeling Rebloggy
“You’re 20 years old. You don’t have to answer to your parents anymore,” my friend frustratingly declared after I told her that I had to be home...



My friend did not understand the reality that she is a white girl and I am a brown girl. Unlike her, I was raised to fear the night and remain obedient to my parents. When explaining my lifestyle to my white friends and to my parents, there is one thing in common from both parties: neither understand my needs and experience. 
~Black Girl Dangerous




Read More:http://www.blackgirldangerous.org/2016/06/desi-feminism/

Thursday, June 23, 2016

McKINNEY POOL PARTY OFFICER ERIC CASEBOLT WALKS AWAY IN TEXAS


ERIC CASEBOLT IS A TWO TIME WINNER.
This is the second time (AT LEAST) that he's abused a black person and gotten away with it. 

Albert  E Brown Jr was first.
Dejerrica Becton is the second.



A grand jury in Texas has declined to indict white Officer Eric Casebolt after he abused a 15 year old black girl and pulled a gun on unarmed teenage black and brown boys attempting to help her as she screamed for her mother.




It just so happens I was looking for a top 10 list of the most racist state in the nation today. I haven't finished my research, but Texas was at the top of the list two articles I read due to the large number of hate groups there.

Most of Texas's 84 hate groups are clustered in the North East of Texas.

Wanna guess where McKinney Texas is?



All those little gray circles in top image of Texas are Ku Klux Klan hats symbolizing the locations of numerous KKK chapter. The other circles are other hate groups identified by the Southern Poverty Law Center.   

In the bottom image of Texas, you can see where McKinney Texas is. And it is surrounded by KKK chapters so just about any-white-body can belong to one. 

Even though Eric Casebolt was fired due to petitions, I knew it was highly unlikely that Casebolt would be indicted. Nobody died. And they don't have a grand jury meet on a case for more than a year so things die down first. They want us to forget. And the white media does forget.

As big as this case was, there's barely any coverage on white dominated mainstream news.

None of us can say we are surprised about the outcome of this case. White cops haven't been indicted when somebody black actually died. One white cop stood on the hood of a car and fired down into two unarmed black people and the judge dismissed the case. And that didn't happen in the deep south. The story of Malissa Williams and Timothy Russell's death didn't get to be a big story, probably because they were either mentally ill and/or homeless and also because some other white cop shooting of a black person was going on simultaneously.  But at least I can say I was surprised when Michael Brelo totally walked.

Officer Michael Brelo fired a few dozen bullets into unarmed black people



So now, as I look at that map above, now I know there wasn't even a snowball's chance in hell Casebolt would be indicted. In fact, a snowball would have a better chance of surviving hell than us getting an indictment of a white cop for the non-fatal abuse of black teenagers in Klan Country. 



Read More: http://thescoopblog.dallasnews.com/2016/06/grand-jury-declines-to-indict-ex-cop-involved-in-mckinney-pool-party.html/


I'm starting to think we need to stomp white supremacy out one state at a time. Sandra Bland died in Texas. That kid who brought a clock to school only to have it mistaken for a bomb was in Texas. The only question I have about stomping out white racism on state at a time, should that turn out to be a good idea, is whether the white racists in Texas (that don't even know they are white racists) should be first or last.   

* * * * *


By the way, do you know where the content of your children's textbooks are being created and printed?  Let me be the first to tell you - Texas.




A REVIEW THE ORIGINAL STORIES OF 
 DEJERRICA BECTON AND ALBERT E BROWN

http://thankherforsurviving.blogspot.com/2015/06/black-teen-pool-party-vs-white-super-cop.html

LEARNING FEMALENESS FROM A NEW TEENAGED PLAYBOY BUNNY STEPMOM

An answer to the question:

What happens to a girl child when the immature boy raising her gets everything he learned to want in a woman?





Feeling Rebloggy
This imp-like girl with big brown doe eyes and wildly feathered hair (as per 1980’s protocol) standing there with just two black garbage bags of worldly possessions, was barely eighteen years old, herself. My God! Only thirteen years older than I, she was! In a large family, she could have very well been my older sister.


She was introduced to my brother and me as our Aunt Lou, come to care for us children while our father worked, and now that mom was gone—since he had full custody. He was a police officer and his schedule was erratic at best, so it was important to have someone always available for....him. 


It is hard for anyone to truly protect the innocence of youth, regardless of....The kids at school overheard the gossip of their parents, which spread like wildfire in our very small, but suburban, middle-class town.

As a naturally awkward introvert good at blending in with the shadows, I was able to pick up on what the subtle—but dirty—looks and blatant finger pointing was for.


Aunts do not share bedrooms with their
brother-in-laws. Or the same bed. I came to
realize the reality behind this farce my father 
had built to protect the minds of his young....


~Good Men Project



Kind of An Awesome Story 
about what you start believing "a real woman" is. 

The endless pop ups are annoying, but you can wait them out. Read More if you wanna....

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

WOW!!! HOUSE DEMOCRATS STAGE A SIT-IN FOR GUN VIOLENCE


THIS is what happens when you let a bunch a black and brown folk in government! They start causing a ruckus!


HA!!!!!!


I hear the republicans are busy trying to turn off the cameras. But I hope something comes of this. I hope the sit-in continues for as long as necessary.

But if it's only a symbolic sit in and very temporary --John Lewis who must be 70 years old -- then it's an important symbol.

I hope the spectacle they make of themselves is big enough to put the pressure on republicans. I hope real gun control reform is not going to take what I'm pretty sure it's gonna take. 






http://www.c-span.org/video/?411500-1/us-house-democrats-stage-sitin-gun-violence

NAILS by StacyAnn Chin


Nails down my back don't scare me
even when they leave trails
in threes and fours
running down the lengthh of my spine
making my roommate wonder
what ARE they are doing
in that bathroom so long?


I don't mind
the soft touch of knuckles grazing cheeks
fingertips touching breast tips
so gently
that the orgasm is afraid to come

ONE out of every FIVE times
I prefer that
slow,
easy kind of loving that makes the body
slide into self
sleepy and complete
with a cat-like purring
of a puss well stroked

But on the ordinary day

whenever I've wrtten a good poem
or a f--- up poem,
a poem I'm too ashamed
to let the other poets see
I WANT A LEASH
WITH MY NAME ON IT
attached to a collar
with tiny silver studs
to press into me
when i attempt to escape

I WANT TO WEAR CHEAP LINGERIE
so you can
rip the lace into strips
you'll use to tie my hands together
and spank me for exposing the details
of our not so ordinary sex life

AND I THINK IT'S GOOD TO BE 110 pounds
THAT WAY
you can get into
my hard to reach places easily

AND I SERIOUSLY DOUBT
you could do that twister thing
with a woman much bigger than this
THAT THING where I'm steading on the edge of bath
and I'm not allowed to hold onto the curtain rod
and you behind me making me....

(GASP)

OR that other thing
where I'm in the kitchen
and you hoist me up onto the counter by my knees
and dinner
is a little bit later than we planned

THOSE DAYS
I DON'T WANT QUIET
I wouldn't know what to do with it

I LIKE IT
when there are
SCREAMS!
and BATTLE SCARS!
and TROPHIES!

THAT WAY
before the war BEGINS
I ALREADY KNOW WHAT I'M ABOUT TO FIGHT FOR!

Nails, Stacyann Chin

 — with Stacyanne Chin.


This is worth listening to.
I promise




Tuesday, June 21, 2016

ZOE SALDANA, RACHEL DOLEZEL AND ILLEGITIMACY OF WHITE FORMULATED BLACKNESS

"Even as we each embrace our own beautiful, unique, and valid versions of our blackness.  Remember the tie that does bind us as African Americans 

And that is our particular awareness
  • of injustice
  • and unfairness
  • and struggle


That means we cannot sleepwalk through life
We cannot be ignorant of history
We cannot meet the world with a sense of entitlement
~ President Barack Obama
Commencement Speech, 2016

Our President is correct. Black people are not monolithic yet we have some points of commonality that cannot be denied. Zoe Saldana has not only attempted to deny that there are things that black people share, but she has also denied that race is real, that blackness is real, and has also therefore implied that the socialization of blackness is not real.

But blackness is real. Being a Black American is a real thing. You know what else is real? Whiteness and white racial perspective.


EXHIBIT A: SLEEP WALKING THROUGH LIFE
Saldana 2013

"I find it uncomfortable to have to speak about my identity all of the time, when in reality it’s not something that drives me or wakes me up out of bed everyday....


I literally run away from people that use words like ethnic. It’s preposterous! To me there is no such thing as people of color cause in reality people aren’t white. Paper is white. People are pink, it’s a bit ridiculous when I have to explain to a human being, that is an adult like I am, that looks intelligent but for some reason I have to question his intelligence and explain to him as if he was a two year old, my composition in order for him to say, “Oh I guess I can chill with you, I can work with you.” I will not underestimate a human being and I will not allow another human being to underestimate me. I feel like as a race, that’s a minute problem against the problems we face just as women versus men, in a world that’s more geared and designed to cater towards the male species.

This is the white colorblind approach to race which has been identified by numerous scholars as a form of racism itself.  

EXHIBIT B: IGNORANT OF OUR HISTORY
SALDANA 2015

Saldana's Reasoning As Evidence of White Socialization
If we question why Michael has been cast to play the Human Torch in Fantastic Four then we must also question why Elizabeth Taylor played Cleopatra, why Angelina Jolie played Mariane Pearl in a Mighty Heart, why Laurence Olivier played Othello, Burt Lancaster in Apache, and the list goes on....and on....

You know what?  White people, Zoe Saldana, and very few others try to compare these particular apples and oranges.

The Human Torch was a cartoon character created in United States during a more overtly racist time period. Now that 1960s white comic book heroes moving from comic books to 21st century movies, black and brown people are being added to the casts -- something that wouldn't be necessary if white racism hadn't eliminated black and brown people from comics in the first place.

Some black people, as we are not monolithic, may not agree with changing the Human Torch into a black character. That's neither here nor there. But it's pretty much only white people and Zoe Saldana that do not understand casting white people as black and real brown people and characters like "Othello", even using black face to do it, is a facet of white supremacy.

EXHIBIT C: 
MEET THE WORLD WITH A SENSE OF ENTITLEMENT
SALDANA 2016
The other side of white washing a movie Finding black actresses that aren't too black, even when the actress is playing
Nina Simone


 
Two months after Zoe Saldana's movie "Nina" flopped at the box office, just like the movies " "Exodus:Gods and Kings," " Aloha," and "Gods of Egypt" before it, Saldana decided to give an interview to a magazine to shout about her blackness to the world.


Please note that Saldana did not go to EBONY Magazine to do  this interview on her blackness

Nor did Saldana did not go to ESSENCE Magazine to do this interview on her blackness

Saldana did not go to VIBE, JET, BET or even mostly white OPRAH Magazine to do an interview on her blackness.



Nope. Saldana took her new blackness to the very nearly entirely white ALLURE Magazine --which,  I believe, has a relatively new Asian Editor. If she is new and Asian, shame on her. She hasn't made a dent in the magazines overwhelming whiteness judging by her willingness to showcase Saldana's mixture of arrogance and ignorance on race in general and being a black woman specifically.



A couple of brown dots here and there. But mostly white females adorn these magazine covers.
Judge the styling of Saldana's photos for yourself


"The very idea that Saldana could be considered too pretty to play Simone seems to make the actress more sad than defensive.

"I never saw her as unattractive. Nina looks like half my family!" she says. "But if you think the [prosthetic] nose I wore was unattractive, then maybe you need to ask yourself, What do youconsider beautiful? Do you consider a thinner nose beautiful, so the wider you get, the more insulted you become?" 


Did you know that Halle Berry was once told that she was too beautiful to play a slave?

Can you guess who it might have been that told Halle was too beautiful to play a slave.? (
I'll give you a hint. It's the demographic who likes to pretend white massa wasn't raping and producing bi-racial children by the boat loads from the beginning of slavery until well past the official end of slavery.) 

You get three guesses at who told Halle Berry she was too beautiful to play a slave. Was it...


A) Black Women
B) Asian Men
C) White People



Can you guess who it might have been that told Zoe she was too beautiful to play Nina, that the issue was that the nose prosthetic is ugly -- and that this is why people object to her playing Nina Simone?
Three choices
A) Black Women
B) Asian Men
C) White People


Can you guess who it is Zoe hangs around with, is socialized by, day in and day out for most of her life? 

Three choices
A) Black Women
B) Asian Men
C) White People


The answers are likely. C,C,C
(We won't talk about some of the black men in Hollywood, never seen with anything darker than a paper bag. That's a different story for a different day)


Do you know who black women should be yelling at over doing something as ignorant as wearing black face and a nose prosthetic to play a black icon like Nina Simone? 
A white woman.
  

Do you know who black people 
should be(are) arguing with over using black face just like white characters did 60 years ago when the United States more overtly racist?

White people 




Thousands, if not millions of black women have been screaming one thing at Saldana: You do not put on black face to play a black woman that having problems being accepted in her own country due to how black she was, how dark-skinned she was, and how black her features were. 

But what does Zoe think the issue is?  
That OTHER PEOPLE THINK
she's too beautiful 
(because of her white features) 




Conclusion: Zoe Saldana has been socialized to be a white girl. Rachel Dolezal was as well. Biology is not the issue as far as either one's claims to being a black woman. Neithr one gets that. One is as ignorant as the other from opposite sides of the same coin.

In her interviews on race, at the very least, Saldana portrays herself as thinking, acting, talking, and entitling herself to anything she sees and wants just like the liberal white racists among white people. 

Read More:
http://www.allure.com/celebrity-trends/cover-shoot/2016/zoe-saldana-interview


To me, Saldana's latest interview makes it even clearer that she thinks it is her skin color that automatically gives her the right to call herself a black woman. But she's wrong.

Race is not biology.

While I see claiming black racial identity as a personal choice, it ought to be based on your black experience as a black person and not what's convenient for you when you are about to star in a movie or when you want to add legitimacy to your running a NAACP Chapter, among other things  

Saldana has denied race and blackness in a way that sounds very much like colorblind racism, which is often anti-black. She talks about racist acts as if they are not racist, denies the acting out of racism (the acts of others and her own) all as if she's a white woman herself. Either she thinks her fitting into the white beauty aesthetic is why BLACK PEOPLE think she is too pretty play Nina Simone OR she has only consulted white people who think she's not right to play Nina Simone because she's too pretty.

"There's no one way to be black," she says quietly and slowly, clearly choosing her words carefully. "I'm black the way I know how to be. You have no idea who I am. I am black. I'm raising black men. Don't you ever think you can look at me and address me with such disdain."

"There is no one way to be black." This statement is absolutely true. But you can turn anything into a cliche'. And she's done that with "There's no one way to be black." However there are a bunch of ways to act out whiteness (and white colorblind racism at that) and Zoe Saldana has touched on a few of them.
To me, it's clear that Zoe Saldana has been socialized as a white person complete with denials of the various facets of white supremacy. And as far as her claims of raising black men go? I hope she renames one of her children Tiger and the other one Woods.


Again this is not about her biology.


President Obama has a white parent and does not have her problem. He's was even raised by white people and yet he's still clearly black and accepted as black. Jesse Williams has a white parent and does not share her problem. He's black. Halle Berry has a white parent and does not share Saldana's problem. She's black.  Zendaya is accepted as black. There are even biracial people who don't necessarily identify as "Black," that identify as "bi-racial" instead that do not share the problem of having been socialized into being a mildly racist white person.
Zendaya, Jesse Williams, Thandie Newton

And all of these black biologically bi-racial people have done and said things that other black people do not agree with -- just as famous black people with two black parents have. Yet they are accepted as part of us, as black, as people that don't deliberately steal from and degrade us while NOT US as Zoe did when she made "Nina" in black face.

Saldana's problems are NOT biological. They are sociological. 

That is, who Saldana talks to, hangs out with, and learns life from is creating a very white problem for her -- unawareness of her own belief in, and reinforcement of,  white supremacy.


Zoe Saldana thinks the main issue is that we don't know who she is. It's clear to me that she doesn't know who we are, who black people are. She's saying she belongs to us, to our group, and then hasn't got 1/2 an ear to listen to what we, supposedly the ones she would call "sister" and "brother" are saying to her about using black face to play Nina Simone.

She went to a white magazine to have her say about her blackness so as to get support from white people, the ones whose opinion counts on blackness.

Yeah.

Right.

Okay.

I'm pretty sure I'm ready to boycott any movie with her in it. No more "Star Trek" for me, I think.






Monday, June 20, 2016

CORNROWING FOR DUMMIES LIKE ME



Don't judge me!

I'm a black woman who can't cornrow. Well....I learned a few years ago, but my fingers braid overhand not underhand. My cornrows on my own head look horrible. Feeding hair in? HAH! Forget it. But now that I've actually seen some cornrow theory, I may start practicing again.

Maybe.  For whatever reason, I find cornrowing (very, very short sections) on somebody else's head 1000x easier. As far as doing my own head, my black woman self-esteem crashes with every failure. And, there have been MANY.

NAPTURAL 85 to the rescue!

Naptural 85 has a much looser curl than mine and bunch of my 4c afro sister chicks. But nobody consistently beats her as far as giving clear instructions like these.

 

Sunday, June 19, 2016

WHITE STUDIES








Continued from Part 1:  "i don't exactly hate being white."
Since white racism is the central race problem in this country and most European ones too based on the Cecile Emeke Series I've been watching, it stands to reason that is whiteness that must be studied -- and not so much the victimization of black and brown people because that doesn't decrease the victimization.

You want to figure out who the criminal is, you study the victim looking for clues the criminal left. But once you know who the criminal is but find you cannot put him in jail because you don't have the right laws in place, you study the criminal and his motives and his habits and create the detailed laws you need.
not officially a "white studies" book

In an oversimplified way, this describes how every law ever written was first thought out and created.
The crime of racism is no different.  And the racism that matters is the racism that is systemic because when it's not systemic, you can be refused a job at company A walk down the street and get a job at company B. Therefore the racists that matter, in this country, are the ones that are white. The white people in this country, unaware of their own racism or not, are the ones with the numbers and the power to perform systemic racism. That makes white folk the problem, the criminal to be studied.
Therefore I'm glad that sociologist study an entire subject called "White Studies."   


One of the things that black sociologists focus on within White Studies is the white person's tendency to assume that their perspective is "normal" while everyone else's perspective is "raced" and therefore "biased."


I think one of the keys to blasting white people out of their "normal" comfort zone into realizing that they have a raced perspective, which also means, as part of the dominant culture, that they probably have "racist" ideas about other groups that don't have to involve "hate"  IF they've never taken the time to examine their own top-of-the-heap perspectives passed down to them generation to generation along with their assumptions of "normal"

I cannot be amazed at the racism I hear coming out of white people's mouths at least two or three times a month. But every now and again I do tune into myself and realize I am shocked at white people's own lack of self-awareness. And I'm not talking about white racism washing over me from news broadcasts either. I'm not talking about anonymous type stuff. I'm talking about in-my-face, person-to-person white racism batting me around a bit, that perfectly "nice" and "pleasant" white people are not even slightly aware of. But their racist belief systems are so subtle it would take me two hours to try and breakdown the negative race-based statement that the person expressed today, that the white person expressed yesterday and the day before, and also the pattern they're showing every time they open their mouth ----
-if the unaware white person's fragility didn't dissolve them into a teary mess before 2 minutes had passed,  much less 2 hours. 

And this kind of painful explaining is something I would only owe a friend.  So mostly --at work, on the street, wherever-- I listen, digest it, regurgitate the problems of whiteness as I see them.  It's important for me to do this. It's important for you to do it. It's important, period.

People will read what I and other bloggers and comment-ers and social media wizards write then create videos and books that maybe some white people, like the young white woman quoted yesterday, will watch, read, and repeat something healthy themselves.


Make no mistake, when it comes to race and racism in this country 90% of the changing that needs to done needs to be done by white people. It is their systematic oppression that is the seed of the problems in this country. And some of the actual "racists" know it deep down.  When (white) privilege that feels like normal" starts to slip away --black president, vocal black lives matter movement, black controlled television and movies-- some white people feel quite violent about losing what they feel they are entitled to  -- which is why violent rhetoric of Donald Trump is popular with so many white people on the right.


In November, if Trump winds up being the Republican Nominee,  we're going to find out what percentage of white people can deny their own racism and the racism of others. We're also going to find out just how big the internalized racism problem is in each race and each ethnic group -- because Trump has made it quite apparent that he holds in contempt every single group not white. And, while I may eventually be forced to make allowances for those who don 't speak English well,  for now, I'm going to say that every single body who can't see Trump for what he is has some form of ethno-racism problem.

Once the election is over, if the Donald Trump is the nominee, we're going to be able to count the racists and internalized-ethnoracists by race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation because there's always a detailed breakdown of who voted for who.

We're all gonna know.

There are white writers on the right and white writers on the left writing and yakety-yakking about all kinds of reasons why, other than racism,  that white people like Trump. And I have one thing to say to them: "It's the racism stupid."

Talking about Trump's politics and Trump lovers without talking about racism is like saying, "Well Hitler was fine except for the anti-semitism. He actual had a point about this, that, and the other policies."

Trump's racism is his core and it's at the core of his supporters too.

Come November
We're all gonna know.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

i don't exactly hate being white...

"i don't exactly hate being white. i don't talk about this often because i don't want to be appropriative or anything but i think it would be nice to not be white because i have always had trouble liking the features my heritage has given me, and i think other features typical of other races and even regionally are much more beautiful. i definitely hold a grudge against other white people and i too assume they're bigoted until they prove otherwise because i've just met so many who are and the "benefit of the doubt" has blown up in my face so many times. i don't get mad at people for thinking that of me though. i think it just kind of comes with the territory of privilege and if it doesn't apply to me then i shouldn't be mad about it and i'll just keep being me." ~AH


Of course I've found out people were racists all of a sudden. But this doesn't happen to me too often. I've been on this planet a long time. And I've been black in the United States for all of it. 


My awareness is pretty good most days. There are usually what I call "iceberg comments" before you get too deep into a relationship with a person. These comments on the top of the water give you very good idea of what's going on beneath the surface. And you can step away. 


So I don't get surprised by racism too often. 


But I never thought about what it must be like to be white, be relatively unaware of white privilege and unaware of yourself as raced-person TOO, then have something like Trayvon Martin or Renisha McBride happen. AND THEN listen to close relatives, friends, and co-workers start spewing racism...that you never knew was there. 


It's one thing for this to happen to a black person. Nothing about it is shocking. Or it shouldn't be. It's just like disappointment----again and again and again. 


But it has to be a nastiest of shocks when racism explodes WITHIN somebody close to you and comes out. And then you start looking around and seeing the subtler signs of it in an ever widening circle around you. 


There's a lot to unpack here.  

Read More in Part 2: "White Studies