FACTS: Divergence

August 22, 2014

It keeps looking like “protect and serve” might only be for some people and THIS IS NOT NEW INFORMATION! This is not a repeat of past “bad” history, this is a continuation of it. In the same vein, the same people (namely, people of color), for whom “protect and serve” do not apply, are far too frequently impacted by acts that show protection from illegal search and seizure; freedom of the press; freedom of assembly; separation of church and state; the right to vote; the right to bear arms; the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness; among other “inalienable rights” are only permitted for a segment of the population in which people of color do not inhabit. There seems to be everlasting issues with rights of minority individuals in this country.

It also seems as though these issues are so increasingly complex, comprehension of the nature of power, control, and access to basic “human rights” need to be discussed on a broader spectrum. These need to be discussed outside of people who already advocate for awareness around ones own privileges & prejudices. Moreover, institutional racism needs to be discussed as a FACT, not an opinion. It needn’t be discussed under the notion of people of color playing the “race card.” A card of which WE would be incapable of playing if it weren’t in OUR hand. A card that would not so injure you if the reality of it was not that its presence strips away some of the privilege and power you hold closely (knowingly or not) and freely wield as a factor of your privilege.

This is reality. It is not some fabricated imagining of paranoid people of color and we do not need to prove it to you. As a matter of fact, You only need to look around you to see its evidence. It is a fact that the individuals controlling, regulating, writing, and enacting the laws do so with an agenda that routinely negatively impacts a segment of American society. This routine negative impact is so normal that a President speaking strongly against oppression of people of color can be perceived as negative, in a country that advocated the people in other countries overthrow regimes that ignored their basic human rights. This routine negative impact is so normal that people try to minimize it while ignoring the facts of history and present reality, that even while the face of this country and while holding the “highest (political) office” people of color lack social, political, and economic POWER in many critical realms.

This doesn’t mean the minority/people of color populations are hopeless, helpless, hapless, and incapable of agency. Instead, it means WE are so thoroughly hindered, these hindrances continually and negatively effect us for GENERATIONS. Also, in the same way institutional racism needs to be discussed as a FACT, so does generational poverty. But, maybe that’s for another topic for another time.

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A REAL Debate to Have

December 17, 2013

I am attempting to coalesce the dissonance of the many critiques of women in the media.  From women twerking, to the sexualized image of girls in pageants, to the dissonance of Beyoncé being a feminist.  People critique women for the men they marry, the men they do not marry, their lack of marriage, the fact that they are married, when they do not have children,  when they do have children and especially when they are “out of wedlock”—as if being within wedlock is the end all, be all for women.  We are critiqued for being hypersexualized, sexual, asexual, homo-hetero-bi-try-pan-any-sexual.  And in this process we are dehumanized and people tend to lack the insight into the variability and growth potential of us women as humans, even when we loudly vocalized our variable history.

I find the critiques of events as they occur in our social media sphere to be limited.  Not only in their word count, but especially in their critique of the nuanced natures of women.  We can only be woman if … we can only be feminist if … we can only be this if … we can only be that if …

Yet, in the process the criticizers yell how they are interrupters, pro-feminine, pro-woman, et cetera; while denying women their own feminism.  Is that not anti-feminist, anti-woman, anti-interrupter?  Are feminists incapable of being sexualized in their professional or personal life?  Are they incapable of being feminist because of things their husbands’ say/do/experience or said/did/experienced? And in the most recent case of Beyoncé, is she not capable of being a feminist because she sampled words that were not her own but provided a strong message for hundreds of thousands, millions even that would not have otherwise heard about it? And is that the only thing that would make her seem like a feminist on her entire album?  On some level, I want to ask ain’t she a woman. Even with the myriad of sexualized, dynamic, dissonance-creating images and positions that women embody as they navigate their degrees of power in this Western patriarchal society, why do we continue to have to ask–especially in reference to women of color “Ain’t I a woman?”

It is always nice to dialogue about the merits of another individual, but how about in our contemporary urge to dialogue about the merits of Olivia Pope (fictional), Michelle Obama (real), Beyoncé Knowles-Carter (real) we stray from critiquing one person’s personage and instead critique the work they have done when they profess that girls run the world, for women to demand the relationship they desire, that it is okay to give up career to be wife and mother, that it is okay to eschew the wife-mother roles, and the list goes on.  How about we critique the patriarchal powers that dictate to them the manners they should be female, the manners they should own or accept their OWN sexuality, how they should feel about their body, how their body should be, how they should negotiate their own identity, and the list goes on?  How about discussing the patriarchy that has people debating the merits of Beyoncé’s (of all people’s) sexuality, femininity, and feminism, among other things? Where is the debate about  the hegemonic structures dictating that Michelle Obama must be angry in a picture when she may just be giving ‘neutral face?’  Where is the critical thinking in our discussion about the intersectionality that plagues women of color (Michelle Obama, Beyoncé, and even Olivia-fictional character-Pope) as they navigate the Westernized patriarchy that commodifies their bodies and decries them for their comfort in their being!?

Pass the Superficial

July 17, 2011

Initially, my idea was to write about “getting past the superficial when I (you/we) like everything else about a person but the package.” Yet, as I thought about it more and more, I came to the realization that I am shallow. So, whenever I get over my shallowness, I’ll write that blog. In the meantime, I need to sink into the realization that the external package matters to me. Sadly, it matters enough that I have willingly passed up riveting conversation to look a handsome man in the face while he talked about nothing … literally.
 
Now, if I were honest with myself I’d admit that good, riveting, enthralling conversation is a much bigger turn-on than good looks. Yet, I’m still shallow as a brook, and simultaneous deeper than … well … the ocean. I cannot tolerate the idea of me being in a real relationship with someone that I am just moderately attracted to because he has good-convo nor can I be in a relationship with someone who is astronomically beautiful but dumber than whatever is dumber than a box of rocks. 
 
With all of this said, I’ll tell you a “story.” I was recently conversing with this guy, with his dazzling, sparkling eyes that took his attractiveness up 5 notches, but he lacked a great deal of intellectual acumen. He was fun to talk to, a great distraction. But, he would text message me in horridly spelled “English” and expect me to know what he meant then liken it to him being from another region (the Midwest). 
 
DUDE! I’m from freakin’ Ohio, that’s the Midwest too; as a matter of fact, my family is from Alabama and Georgia, I understand slang and the different ways that people from different regions speak. You, my dear, just do not make sense.
 
To be fair, I didn’t actually say this but this is what I thought as he would spin these metaphors that made no sense and blame their nonsensical nature on other things. Yet, he was attractive (those dazzling eyes were awesome) and usually fun to talk to. So, I continued to converse with him. (Sidenote: Thank heavens he didn’t say “conversate,” I abhor that ‘word.’) Then, after maybe 3 weeks max of regular/semi-regular conversations, he says he wants to be in a relationship with me.
 
Really? Me? I’m shallow. I’m finicky. I nitpick. And I’m shallow. Why would you want to be in a relationship with me? Why is a few weeks conversation enough for you to know that you want to be my beau? 
 
Okay, I know that shallow is mentioned twice and finicky and nitpicking may as well be the same thing. Further, those aren’t really good reasons for him to not want to be in a relationship with me since I am beautiful, have a sense of humor, intelligent, kind, open, and an all around great person. 
 
So, what’d I do? Not something to prove that I’m an “all around great person.”
 
I suddenly became very busy … busy not answering his text messages or calls. I know, I know, I should have been more mature and told him straight out that I did not want him to be my beau or I only want to be friends, as soon as he threw out the whole ‘more to the relationship’ type stuff. But, I didn’t. Thankfully, I didn’t string him along for too long (it was maybe a couple of days). I told him that I wanted to be friends AKA I don’t think I can be in a relationship with you because I’m too superficial to pass up on some things for the possibility of greater things.
 
Now, I don’t think I’ll be alone forever or anything dire like that because I’m particular. Yet, as long as I’m seeking I’d like to get past the superficial but all I’m thinking is ‘it ain’t gonna happen.’ Instead, I’m just going to say, whoever deals with me, at some point, is going to get served a meal with a side of superficial.
 
Blog Sponsored by: Society for Superficial Singles
not a real organization

Ideas for Writing More

December 13, 2010

So, I’m one of the writing lab tutors at my school and a fellow student asked me, “I feel like I never write enough. How can I write more?” (paraphrased statement) So, I sent her THIS … it’s long but I figured … this is my blog and I can post what I please, with no regard for my readers … lol … j/k … I love you and I’ll write about whatever you want me to write about, if you just tell me what to write about but that’s an entirely different blog … nevertheless … this is what I came up with … ENJOY!

This may be long because I want to be sure that I give you as many ideas, as specifically, as I can.

Good ideas to write more:

  1. Ask a question in the document and answer it.
  2. Research one more article/chapter/book and incorporate one or two ideas from this.
  3. Look at the articles that you reference, if they ask any questions related to the purpose of your document, attempt to answer the questions.
  4. Ask yourself: “What else can I say?”
  5. Try to be as wordy as possible.
  6. Have 3-5 ideas that you would like to remark upon.
    • For each thing that you want to remark upon have 3 things that support or are related to the remarks. This will create the basic 1-2 page paper that consists of 3-5 paragraph, with introductions, 3 supporting statements and conclusive statements for each paragraph. Also you should include a final paragraph that summarizes the key point from each of the previous paragraphs, with a conclusive statement for the whole document. (If I’m being lazy I’ll take the conclusive statements and summarize each of those.)

Also, in the same vein, a great thing to do is to have an outline such as:

  1. Paragraph 1 (This paragraph could summarize what the paper is about/what the purpose for writing it is; sort of like the abstract of a journal article. You can make this 5 sentences and in the same format as the bullet below. Each “support sentence” would be a brief introduction to each of the “Ideas” that the paragraphs are about. Also, the “Conclusion statement/sentence” in this paragraph can be a brief synopsis of the paper; this is called a thesis statement, it is often one of the last things you write; since, by the end of the document you should have one cohesive message and be able to state it succinctly. You can also replicate this sentence at the end of the document, so that you bring the document to a succinct close.)
  2. Support Paragraph 2/Idea 1 (which was mentioned in the introductory paragraph)
    1. Introductory statement (this should introduce the idea that you are going to support)
    2. Support Sentence/Idea 1
    3. Support Sentence/Idea 2
    4. Support Sentence/Idea 3 (you can have more than 3 support sentences/ideas but you should not have fewer than 3. Each of these ideas should provide further support to corroborate the points of the paragraph)
    5. Conclusion Statement (this could/should provide a summary of the paragraph; it can also, simultaneously, be a way to segue into the next paragraph)
    6. Support Paragraph 3-??/Idea 2-??
    7. Conclusive/Summary/Future Ideas/Et Cetera Paragraph (this is a good paragraph to summarize your arguments, provide a conclusion, provide suggestions for the future and, even, ask questions that you did not answer but may be good for future exploration)

This is all about pre-planning. Pull out the ideas that you want to argue for/against or present in the document. Create an outline of each of these ideas and at least 3 supportive ideas. Write the introductory paragraph with each of the support ideas being briefly mentioned. Write each support paragraphs in the standard paragraph format. Write the conclusive paragraph. Create a works cited/references page; include any graphs, charts, etc. as appendices.

If you feel like you do not have enough after doing this, go back and add one more idea; ask a question in the document and answer it; research one more article/chapter/book and incorporate one or two ideas from this; Look at the articles that you reference, if they ask any questions related to the purpose of your document, attempt to answer the questions. REMEMBER: Anything that you add has to be able to flow with the document; so place it accordingly, and if you cannot place it, attempt to segue into it, before the conclusion paragraph.

 

I hope this is some help, to someone out there … besides me!

Blogging again

December 1, 2010

I noticed recently that whenever I frequent other blogs I have more and more to say. I’ve noticed my responses have been longer, even, than a blog or two. Now, I think this is a sign of several things: 1. I read some interesting blogs 2. I need to pick up my pen & pad, sit down and spew my opinion on some subjects 3. When I have these long and evolved comments I can take them and transform them into a blog of my own. Since I am supposed to have an opinion 365 days of the year. Maybe I can try to blog, even a paragraph on some random news event.

Such as, today, December 1, is World AIDS Day. Check out the Blog on it! 😀

This has been bugging me for some time. I do not understand WHY there are bans on gay marriage. It has to be against some constitutional right(s), right? So, I did a little research and all of the results about bans on gay marriage pointed me to the 14th Amendment. You know, the one that states:

No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

Isn’t banning gay marriage a deprivation of life, liberty, AND property? I am completely and utterly confused. How is it legal for a state to do something to its citizens that is unconstitutional? If bans on gay marriage are acceptable, why don’t states just start enslaving African Americans again? It’s free labor.

That’s a rhetorical question. Please, States of the United States, PLEASE, do not enslave African Americans again … I couldn’t take working in a field, picking fruit or any other purposes that may be thought up!

Anyway … my point is:

I have an idea to fix this whole gay marriage ban issue … but I do not want to exploit gay people for a cause. But, I’m going to let my plan out either way.

I think it’d be a good idea to organize a group of gay people who want to marry, in all of the states with bans on marriage to go to their state marriage licensing boards place to get licenses to marry in their states. If/when they are disallowed have them, they sue their states & the U.S.A. for violating their 14th Amendment rights (Equal Protection of the law and Due Process) in a class action lawsuit. All they’d need is a lawyer who’d take the case!

Good idea? Yes? No? Maybe?

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