DeityNyota

For Those Who Go Beyond Boundaries

Posts Tagged ‘United States

How To Be Black: I have to agree with Mia McKenzie

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One of my Facebook contacts thought it would be funny to post an article titled  “How To Be Black In America: A (Relatively) Short List” written by author and activist Mia McKenzie. Mia studied writing at the University of Pittsburgh ; and is described as being a smart, scrappy Philadelphian (now living in the bay area) with a deep love of vegan pomegranate ice cream and fake fur collars. She see’s herself as being a black feminist and a “freaking queer” (her words not mine); who’s thoughts and ideas are often reflected in her writings, which have won her such awards and grants as:

  • Astraea Foundation Writers Fund Award, 2009
  • Leeway Foundation Transformation Award, 2011

She comprised a ‘short list’ of things that black people should do in order to become accepted or seen as normal by the rest of society.  Now,  knowing my friend I’m assuming this list was brought forward in attempts to poke fun of CNN anchor and social contributor Don Lemon. Who recently shared with the world the lessons his families elders taught him about to conduct himself. But in my personal opinion, her ‘list’ actually back fired.

Now, I’m no one of importance, I haven’t won any literary awards nor had any of my works published, but (based upon what I’m seeing) I feel that If  she was attempting to engage in a game of snarky sarcasm, it honestly didn’t work. Because I and many others happen to agree with the list she provided. But I’ll explain the hot sticking points for me, in more detail; because I think some ignorant, close-minded, and petty black folks are missing the over all big picture.

Here’s some of the list

1. Don’t sag your pants. Pull them up. Slowly. Don’t make any sudden movements: I don’t know about not making any subtle moves, but yes, please pull  up your pants. And while you’re at it, wear a belt. I do not want to see your boxers, much less think this prison style of dress is appealing or cool. This goes for the young ladies as well. Advertising your goods in low-rise jeans or cut off shorts that stop two inches short of your burning bush is not the example of a respectable young woman. Nor is this look cute either. And you’re wondering why you’re having men make derogatory comments via sexually explicit and suggestive ‘complements’.

2. Stop talking about racism. That’s over. (see: black President): No, don’t stop talking about racism, but do understand that we too are just as guilty of being racist. Not only towards other ethnicities, but we do it to one another (inter-cultural racism based upon complexion). We too become enraged with black men/women whom chose to date/marry someone who’s not black, and we too say and carry out racist actions towards others.

So if we’re going to point out the wrongs of others, we MUST acknowledged what we’re no better. If we’re going to talk about slavery, let touch on how ‘we’ (some of our African ancestors) sold us into slavery as well.

Let’s focus on how the Black Egyptians enslaved the Black Israelites/Hebrews.

Let’s talk about how we’re still slaves in mentality as a result of the physical enslavement we’ve endured (and how we continue to perpetuate this mind-set with our actions towards one another).  If we’re to have an honest talk about racism, let’s be honest with ourselves and acknowledge the part that we play.

3. Stop asking the black President to do anything to help you. That’s reverse-racism. Or something: This one still baffles me too this day. Because I keep asking black people this, what do “WE” want him to do for us that we can’t and shouldn’t already be doing for ourselves?

We keep harping on what he’s done for other communities, but we don’t mention the fact that these other communities do what we refuse to do; work together! They fight together; stand together for what they believe in and they hold the government (not just the President) accountable as such.

They learn the process of authoring bills and legislation in their favor, and they fight to push these bills and acts through the house and senate. They’re active in local/state/federal government and they don’t take no for an answer.

They VOTE during the primary and mid-term elections; because they understand that who ever is voted into the house/senate and local government affects the issues they hold dear. This is something many of ‘us’ fail to do. How can we hold the President accountable for what’s wrong in our communities when WE won’t even hold one another and ourselves accountable is my question? If we don’t fight to keep our communities free of drugs and gang violence, how in the heck do we expect the President to rid our communities of crime? He can’t do that for us, we have to do that!  If we don’t fight to ensure our children receive adequate health care and eduction, why do we expect him to do it for us?

4. Get an education somehow. Speak properly, for Christ’s sake. But don’t be uppity: I love this one! YES, WE DON’T STRESS education enough in our homes and in our communities! So yes, I’m all for education and I feel we need to fight diligently to ensure that our children understand the importance of being academically competitive.

AND YES, we need to teach our children how to speak proper English. Slang and street talk won’t help you get a job and it won’t assist them with effectively articulating themselves. The perception of individuals who ‘talk like that’ is one of negative stereotypes  (uneducated, dumb and ‘hood’). And may we agree with it or not, it assist people with passing judgment upon first meeting you. If WE seek to be seen for our intelligence and not appearance, DO NOT give society more ammunition to label you.

5. Be nicer. You know people are intimidated by you, right? Why are you making it harder on yourself?: There are some sisters and brothers with some nasty, unsavory attitudes. Even though this is not specific one ethnicity, we can all admit that we’ve shaken our heads at them while standing in line at the supermarket.

We’ve witnessed them speaking harshly to customer service representatives, and cursing out cashiers.

We’ve seen them hold up lines at events cursing out the volunteers because they paid “too much money” to get in for this.

WE see it all the time and it’s not a good look for us. THEY (the one’s whom demonstrate this behavior) make us all look bad, because there’s no need to be that way. You don’t have to curse people out or tell them like it ‘T.I. is’ (rolling my neck and snapping my fingers) to get your point across. But we see this every day. The manner in which many of ‘us’ carry ourselves is very unbecoming and ugly.

6. Be successful somehow. But do it without any kind of help. I mean, that’s how white people did it, right? No help whatsoever: Check out the chart below, and ask yourselves’ why don’t ‘we’ American born Africans get it?

Black Africans and people of African Origins come to this country and fare better in entrepreneurship, education, and finances than that of American Born Africans; whom have the same opportunities available too them, yet we’re lagging in these areas. They come here with absolutely nothing but a few mere belongings and they open businesses that are thriving (some within our community), they’re graduating with higher GPA’s from prestigious institutes of higher education and they pass down self-made wealth to their children.

That speaks volumes for how ungrateful ‘we’ (those of us born here) are. They’re more successful that most of us; and they do it with very little to no assistance.

We teach our children to become great workers (depending upon someone else to create job opportunities for us) while they teach their children to become the employers.

They understand the importance of commerce and how it’s linked to successful business ownership.

They do what we fail to do, stress education!

So, if they can find a way to be successful with nothing, what’s stopping ‘us’? They work together! They fund businesses with one another and they understand how there’s power in numbers. And its less of them; but they’re faring better than ‘us’; making do with next to nothing and still making it.

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7. Read a lot of books. Get recommendations from awesome people: YES! Black people need to encourage reading not only for our children but for ourselves. The problem I see with many of us is that we don’t read enough. And its one of the reasons why the chart listed above shows how we’re falling behind in education, and median house hold income.

Many African Americans refuse to broaden their scope and perception of life while gaining a plethora of knowledge on various topics by taking the time to read.

We’ll read Zane’s Sex Chronicles and 50 Shades of Stupidity; but we won’t read about African History, or how to become economically successful. There’s nothing wrong with encouraging reading! Pick up a book and turn off them damn soap operas and loosely based realty T.V. shows.

8. If you’re black and GLBT, choose which of those communities to align yourself with. I think the choice is obvious. (see: Recent Supreme Court Rulings): WE do this to our GLBT sisters and brothers! African-Americans reject them based upon sexual orientation due to religious beliefs and what we assume to be social norms.

WE see them as being an abomination, because many of us mistakenly believe that they made the choice to be gay (going against God’s design); thus such broad support within the African-American community for Prop 8.

WE don’t believe that their fight for equality is civil like ours, so WE reject their claims and tell them that their concerns are not ours!  We’re the one’s who reject them. Now, I have to admit that throughout the years our ideas and stances have changed, but African American’s still stand stanch in their fight against these civil unions (or making their marriage legal)

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9. Try really hard to get on a jury: YES! We complain about African-Americans not being judge by a jury of their peers, but we’re not getting actively involved in the litigation process. We will refuse to sit on jury duty (see it as an inconvenience) yet get mad when a brother or sister is convicted of a crime by people who don’t look like them. Take a look at these statistics and just image if we’re more active in the legal system, ensure that everyone is judged equally.

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10. Love: Yes, this is another problem with ‘us’! We don’t love one another enough. Black men and women don’t show one another enough love; and our mothers and fathers don’t show their children they love them enough.

We don’t have enough love for our communities, public schools and homes to ensure that they’re crime and drug free, up to code and a healthy environment for our children to flourish.

We don’t love our streets enough to keep them clean (NO we don’t) and we don’t love ourselves enough to ensure the images being projected of ‘us’ are not the negative and stereotypical images we see daily.

We don’t love ourselves enough to eat more healthier, nourishing foods that will combat hyper tension, diabetes and cancer. Many of us don’t even drink water because we don’t like the taste of it.

So yes, the Black Community is in dire need of love, love for one another, our children, our environment, our health/overall well-being and ourselves.

11. Look hard at your own individual selves and fix it so you can be better at love: One of the worst things in the world is witnessing a man or woman who refuses to take responsibility for their contributions to the dysfunctional relationships they engage in. These people will always blame everyone else for what went wrong in their relationship/marriage (it’s always the other person fault), while completely (conveniently) absolving their actions and themselves of being a contributing factor to why they’re either unhappily married, or can’t stay in a healthy relationship with anyone.

Some of ‘us’ fail to understand that for every action there’s a reaction and that sometimes the things we do and say to those we keep company with can be the reason why they’re “crazy”. Crazy doesn’t happen over night, there’s a gradual process of perpetual behavior (in most cases) that causes an individual to react a in a specific manner. Although this is not specific to one ethnicity, I always stress to both women and men how important it is to take the time they need to work on one’s self first! Prior to hopping into a new relationship after leaving another. I see so many people seek love from others, because they lack the spiritual tools needed to find love for one’s self. So I’m in complete agreement with this one.

12. Make crazy good, life-altering art: This one I can agree with 100%. And Its one of the reasons I started my small, minority, veteran, woman owned entertainment company. I was tired of seeing the images that society (and black people) believes to be an accurate representation of who we are. I seek to provide thought-provoking, socially controversial art that makes people think about how we as a people are being viewed and how “we” as a people view ourselves. We’ve seen so much of the negatives in the media that not only do other ethnicities believe this is who we are; we’ve come to terms with these images by embracing, internalizing and emulating them in the media geared towards black social-psycho consciousness.  The ‘art’ that we see today is no longer imitating life. And I’ve arrived at the conclusion that the lives of young black men (and women) is now imitating what we have been brainwashed into believing is art. Which is composed of nothing more than mediocre rap verses, over a hot looped track, heavy base line with half-naked (or fully nude) women in videos and on album covers; has replaced  what many within the African-American Community consider to be creative. There must come a time when ‘we’ become sickened with the perversion of our art by the entertainment industry; that’s telling us what it means to be black.

Please read “The 2nd Amendment vs. The Thug Image of Color”

https://dietynyota.wordpress.com/2013/08/04/the-2nd-amendment-vs-the-thug-image-of-color/

I’m not sure if Ms. McKenzie was seeking to be funny, or poke fun of African-American pendants via social satire; but may she realize it or not, she made some really good points.

The 2nd Amendment VS. The Thug Image of Color.

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1016920_4928400260706_2106243091_nI find it interesting how we view gun ownership in this country (The United States Of America). On one hand, one image is seen as patriotic and a freedom of one’s rights to bear arms. Where as on the other hand, one image is seen as a depiction of impoverished crime, pre-medidated murder and a prime example of what’s wrong with our society.

Or, its seen as being justification for why the first image must fight to defend their rights to bear arms.

I don’t like to make such topics an issue of ethnicity (not race, because we’re all of the human race). But I like to focus more on the damaging affects of social norms, stereotypes and sensationalized propaganda in the media.

The first image is seen as being a normal American family, that’s proud of their impressive collection of firearms. The father is a man that provides for his family and will protect them at any cost. Society would have you believe that they’re all in their right minds, have no criminal records and have possibly never been convicted of a crime. They’re middle class (or affluent), drug free, educated and possibly reside in the suburbs. You wouldn’t think that maybe (just maybe) the guns they’re holding may have possibly been purchased on the black market (illegally). Thus they’re not accounted for and may have been used to commit a murder/crime. Looking at this image, you first thought would not be organized crime, nor would you see either of them as being members of a White Supremacist, anti-government group.

Maybe they are, and maybe they aren’t. But would the negatives of who would we assume they are would not be the first thing that comes to mind.

Let’s flip the script for a second

The second image could be one of an individual who has legally purchased and owns his firearm. Its possible that he resides in an environment where he’s forced to own a weapon to protect both his family and himself. Fire arms that he may have purchased legally! But, because of his style of dress, and yes; his ethnicity he’s more than likely to be seen as a repeat offender who’s been incarcerated and is possibly actively engaged in organized crime. The images being projected of individuals who looks like image two has programed society into believing that he’s a thug, gangster or pimp that’s ready to rape, rob, kill and steel.

Maybe he is, and maybe he isn’t. We know no more about him than we do the family in the first image. But his skin tells us what he is and what he’s about. Why is this an issue?

I place the blame for the manner in which we view image one verse image two to rest squarely upon the shoulders of the entertainment industry and the 24 hour news programming. Carefully selected stories and crime dramatizations assist with feeding society a hearty helping of visual and electronic media that tells us image two is bad, and image one is good. Not to mention the dramatic change in the hip hop/rap industry that glorifies trafficking narcotics, prison culture, premeditated murder and sexual objectification of women through date rape/sexual assault; its easy for us to view image two as representing the negative of American society.

But what if neither is good, nor bad?

What if they both have a criminal history?

Or what if neither have ever been incarcerated?

If you where to see either of these images walking down the street with an open carry weapon; what would your reaction be? Your reaction to their presence demonstrates your perception of who they are as people (may you know them personally or not). And it demonstrates how media has assisted you with developing your opinions people who look like them.

You’re Pro Life, but you Love Guns, Support the Death Penalty, and Hate Government Aid For the Poor

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934651_623154197709566_1828265228_nI personally have found the whole pro-life stance interesting. Because the people who protest against abortion will sit for hours upon end picketing and protesting outside of abortion clinics, even going as far as bombing the buildings and shooting doctors who perform the procedures. Yet you won’t see them putting the same time and energy into ensuring hungry children both stateside and abroad are feed; or that children in war torn and impoverished communities/countries receive the care they need.

They’re all for adoption, as long as the couple seeking to adopt is a stereotypical, heterosexual, Christian/Puritan model of what society deems “wholesome” and “stable”  Homosexuals, single women/men and immigrants need not apply.

Do NOT abort your child after a rape/sexual assault; because

A. That was in God’s plan

B. Your body should have ‘shut that whole thing down’, so its possibly your fault that a child was conceived during that ‘situation’ you got yourself into.

C. At 15 weeks a human fetus can pleasure his/herself ; so they have a concept of pain.

I kid you not, A Republican Representative used that explanation as his reasoning for standing against Abortion and Planned Parenthood.

In my honest opinion (and this is just me speaking) you can’t say you care for the well-being of an unborn fetus future; yet care nothing for them once they’re here. And this is not to say that all children who’re spared from abortion are birth into these unfortunate circumstances, but the question comes to light

Do pro-life people really care about the lives of these children?

Or do they care more about pushing a political/religious agenda?

You hate abortion, but you’ll kill someone when standing your ground. And you have the right to defend your property; you’ve worked for it and its yours. But when you see these people justify the slaying of unarmed individuals (such as Travyon Martin) based more so upon behavior in one’s past or stereotypes.

Are you really “pro-life” if you feel he deserved to die?

You hate abortion, but you can’t stand such government funded programs as WIC, Foodstamps and TANIF, that assist parents on hard times with providing nourishment for their chdilren. BUT you feel that billions of dollars in Government spending is justifiable as long as its for new military weapons systems and vehicles.

You’re cool with bombs and bullets, but hate breadbaskets and free government cheese.

Never mind educating these children after their born. Because you feel the Department of Education should be done away with. So not only do you NOT care if they starve, but you have no problem with them being shot and killed if someone feels threatened by their clothes and stature, and you care nothing about supporting the very system set up to ensure they’re academically competitive if they lack the funding needed to attend privatized institutes of education.

So you want them alive, just malnourished, impoverished, uneducated and at risk for targeting.

I’m honestly on no side of the fence when it comes to such hot button issues as abortion. Because I feel that various circumstances arise which may cause a woman to make an unfortunate choice (which is not an easy one). But I just wonder about the people who’re pro-life, yet stand against programs that provide food aid, medicine and education for disadvantaged children? Not saying that a poor woman must abort her child; but

are you really pro-life if you don’t support the programs that assist some people (disadvantaged and impoverished) with sustaining life?

Steve Harvey Says I have A Gold Mine, and I Agree!

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I guess I made some people mad!!!

I was surfing facebook last night prior to going to bed as always. When I came across the facebook page of former comedian/radio personality Steve Harvey. Before I go any further, I want people to know that I like Steve; I don’t like his books, because to me personally I feel that the advice he gives women in regards to relationships is stuff that should be common sense. But I’ve followed his career from when he first started; and have cheerfully supported its transform through out the years. Well, while scrolling through his feed, this image jumped out at me. And immediately I liked it because I think it makes perfect sense.

I was under (what I’m assuming) was the mistaken impression that this statement serves as a reminder to women of how precious and priceless our bodies are.

I thought (and maybe I was wrong) that its saying to women, your body is your temple, and it can’t be bought, nor sold. Or that any man who seeks to find your treasures must first hold the key to your heart. Now, I know it sounds like something from a Walt Disney movie in todays age of “bag and tag” a dime piece for bragging rights; but I still think his message to women today is that we shouldn’t use our ‘cookie’ as bartering currency in exchange for goods and services.

At least that’s what my logical analysis told me 0_O?

I guess that maybe this isn’t what he was meaning by this statement, or it may be possible that my response to an individual poster wasn’t appreciated.

There was a woman (name shall remain anonymous) who’s response read something like this:

“that’s right ladies, that means that if you have a man and you’re working “it” right, your bills should be paid, food should be on the table, rent paid (not mortgage but rent), and you should have money in your pocket if your in a relationship with a man” (Not  if you’re someone’s wife, but a relationship with ‘a man’)

It was clear that this woman was so proud of her response; I even imagined her smiling to herself as she typed her half-thought out justification for promoting self-prostitituion. There was even a few (misguided) women who disagreed with the posting, assuming that Steve and this woman (as well as many others) where echoing the same thought process.

One woman asked why do ‘we’ as a people (black folks) teach our daughters such non-sense; after a male subscriber pretty much came out and admitted that he feels any woman who believes that what she has is sacred treasure is not worth the time it takes to get it, because he can go and get it from someone more willing.

To men personally, seeing these people take that approach to this comment demonstrates the dysfunction between normalcy in the perceptions of female sexuality and appeal vs the projection of hyper-sexualality that we see daily of the female anatomy. Or is what I a many others assume to be normally (celibacy) an uncommon reality for most women?

I attribute the negativity that transpired on this thread to the following:

Disrespect:

Not only are women disrespecting and desecrating their bodies in pursuit of financial gains and fame, but there’s a surge in disrespect of black women from black men. Its evident in the constant video’s we see of black men beating black girls and women in clubs and on public busses, and the blatant disrespect for any black woman who’s not their idea of beauty that the black male posters mention where ready to tear apart any woman who agreed with the comment from a positive standpoint. I watched the drama unfold as regulars who where identified by female subscribers as trolls posted rude and crass comments about how women are of less value if they’re promiscuous, and how their ‘man-hood’ would be the key to unlock that ‘rusty dusty’ box as one man put it.

There’s nearly no love for a woman who values her body as being a gift to share between her husband and she; completely what many of us considered the holy trinity ordained by God (man, woman and child). We’ve some how subconsciously assisted with self-degredation by willingly perpetuating the need to be valued and validated base mostly upon sex and less upon love. Some of us women foolishly believe that the ‘better’ our sex is the more pleasing we are as a spouse for a sex-cracved male; who’ll in turn love and provide for us. Or, we think allowing him to ‘test drive’ our gears will show him that we’re the one he needs in his life, placing us above the rest of his side line chicks, dime pieces, jump off’s, baby mama(s), and booty buddies.

In todays society (mainly what I’ve seen within the African American community as of late) its become a negative if a woman choses to wait until marriage for intercourse. You’re seen as being a prude, selfish, or putting ‘it’ upon a pedal-stool; while making yourself unobtainable by most men. As a woman who choses to wait, I’ve learned that celibacy can do one of two things to many men today. It can

A. drive them away: They’d rather dump you and find a woman who’s willing to give them sex; yet complain later about having baby mama drama; STD’s and issues with crazy women. And you’d think they’d have the common sense to link their issues with women to the misuse of their genitals. But for some strange reason this is a rare epiphany.

B. teach them patients: Some men honestly appreciate a woman who’ll wait until marriage or take her time before having sex. These men appreciate a woman who’s more confident in getting to know him and herself, seeing if they’re emotionally compatable vs.  hopping in the sack. But this type of virtuous woman is few and far in between, and these type of patient men are rare finds. Those of us who don’t just ‘do the do’ are like undiscovered dinosaur facile. It takes the careful uncovering of layers and years of emotional dirt pilled on one’s psychological being, as a result of past relationships and emotional baggage.

And In most cases that I’ve seen, most men of today chose A. This brand of disrespect becomes a game of casual dissing and mutual contempt towards any woman they’re unable to gain carnal knowledge of. And don’t be a woman who’s seeking more in a relationship than just providing him with a steady supply of sex, because now you’re labeled a stuck up, cold hearted, ice-queen; and stuck with being seen as a tease that’s a waste of his time. Some of the men in the thread took it a step further and started to insult the women whom where thinking the same as I; childishly resorting to name calling and making accusations of assumed under cover freaky sexual behavior, and fetishes with adult toys.

All that because we said we’d rather wait O_o?

You don’t even know me!

The “Beat Down”:

This could have two meanings within the African American community.

This could mean the fast growing rate of African American women who’re victims of physical, verbal, sexual and psychological abuse resorting to sex as a means of mental escape and comfort. Incidents of family violence within the African American family are at their highest; with the number one killer of African American women age 15 to 34 being dying at the hands of a lover or spouse.

African American women tend to experience a lack in intimacy in their unions with lovers and in many cases, the only time she feels safe or comfortable with her partner is during intercourse.  Many African American women have been raised in homes where sex is used as conflict resolution, control, or as a means of self-gratification.

If she’s desired sexually then she feels complete as a woman and sees her self as being attractive and worthy enough for love.

If she gives in and gives him what he wants (satisfies his urges) there’s less of a chance of physical altercation

Or (as the woman stated) she’ll receive payment (money, bills/rent paid, gifts, cars and maybe even stardom).

This goes back to the emotional detachment that black men today experience with black women, leaving the only connection that many from the male species have with women is through sex.

Or it can mean that he ‘beat it up’. His or her sex is so good that it makes their loves become ‘drunk’ off their love making. Not realizing this assist with further incorporating the hyper-sexual mentality of black men and women that can be linked to slavery. Where black male slaves where used as ‘studs’  for breading live stock and black female slaves where used as ‘bed-warmers’ and sexual outlets for their slave owners, even for breading.

SOME black men (not all) find it difficult to stay faithful to one woman; thus creating the following mentality.

Keep an Ace In the Hole: 

Infidelity within the African American community is a norm. Its advocated and highlighted in our songs, projected in mass media messaging, and “we” brag about sexual conquest while being unfaithful to a lover and/or spouse. Many African American women feel that if their ‘good good’ is so good, it will keep a man and act as their personal Gold Mine. Leading to career advancement, financial stability, fame and personal gains.

There are African American men who’re married to or dating one faithful woman, while having many ‘side-line’ jump off’s. These additional women pray on these unfaithful men by using their ‘good good’ to secure their future with a wealthy man (maybe even a married man) ensuring their needs are met.

Again, as advocated by the female poster; I’ve heard many African American men state that they have something on the ‘side’ ready just in case their main or ‘bottom’ acts up. Thus the additoinal woman/women benefit form the ‘Ace’ menaltiy demonstrated by some black men.

To hell with it

To be honest, I don’t know if I’m wrong or if I’m thinking to much (going to deep) into this posting. As a Virgo, I tend to over analzye darn near everything! But isn’t this statement speaking of the exact opposite of using what you’ve got to get what you want? I don’t know if its just me; but I thought that what Steve was saying is that as women “WE” should take responsibility over our bodies and our sexuality by not being so willing to give our ‘treasures’ away so freely. I thought (and maybe I’m wrong) that he’s telling women we must understand that there’s more to us as a people than what we can provide for a man sexually. We’re human beings that have dreams, goals and aspirations in life; and most importantly we desire (OR SHOULD DESIRE) to be loved for who we are as women and we should be patient enough to take our time when seeking to be found by a man who understands and respects the values and morals we project for ourselves.

I tried to go back and check on the colorful responses from the plethora of black folks who’d liked his page; but I discovered that I was removed; my comments in response to the other individuals posting was removed and many of the other comments that followed where removed. So I can just imagine the verbal feeding frenzy that was spawned during that “light hearted” conversation.

I’m not upset about it, after all its just facebook; so its not serious enough to go “H.A.M” and conduct a “e-thugh” drive-by posting to other users pages. Although the thought did cross my mind after reading some of the things being said. But I just chalked it up to being that awkward moment you feel when you say something that to you makes sense, while everyone else thinks its stupid.

Wrongful Death: We need Capital Punishment Reform

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This is the latest victim of "wrongful death" at the hands of a corrupt legal system.

How many more must die before we wake up?

A few weeks ago, current Republican and “Tea Party” elected Representatives engaged in a televised Presidential Debate.  The Republican hopefuls stood in front of a live audience of Tea Party members and supporters, laying out their proposed platforms for change, in hope of swaying future Republican voters in their favor. Verbal sparing ensued as the debate began, they traded jabs at one another’s thoughts and stances on Religion, the Constitution, Health Care, Economics and American Foreign Policies.

But the event that garnished the most attention during that particular debate, was awarded to the Republican Candidate (and front runner for the Republican Party) Rick Perry ( R ) Texas; who received a round of cheerful applause as he proudly boasts about the incorporation of  Capital Punishment into the Texas legal system. With a “Walker Texas Ranger” brand of swagger, he squared his shoulders and flashed a slight smirk when describing the justifiable yet lengthy processes that goes into determining an individual’s innocence, prior to being placed on death row and/or execution. Two Hundred and Thirty Four inmates where executed in the state of Texas by Governor Rick Perry, who’s authorized more executions than any Governor in modern times. I had to write out the words “Two Hundred and Thirty Four”; because I’m not sure if just putting 234 brings home the over all impact of the lives that have been affected by these numbers alone.

How many men and/or women who belong to this total sum of 234 where wrongly convicted of a crime and executed at the stroke of a pin is my question?

In 1997, 17 Death Row inmates nation wide where found innocent and freed after exoneration, seven of those men were in Illinois. Many legal advocates in that state and around the country are where flabbergasted that the state’s justice system repeatedly failed miserably at providing adequate representation and a fair trial to those who where sentence to death. Throughout every one of the men’s ordeals, corruption, flawed investigations, and inadequate legal representation plagued them; and it took the intervention of people completely outside of the justice system for them to win back their freedom. 40 lawyers, judges, and legal organizations signed a petition asking the Illinois Supreme Court for a 1-year moratorium on setting execution dates so that an investigation could be made to find out why the state has sentenced so many innocent men to die. The request was filed as an “amicus curiae” brief,  asking the Court to create a special commission to be made up of highly qualified members of the criminal defense community, prosecutors, judges, academics, and other experts.

Now, I’m not a lawyer, but from what I understand, Amicus Curiae briefs are filed in many Supreme Court matters, at the Petition for  “Writ of Cetiorari” stage. A “Writ of Cetiorari” (from what I understand) is a decision by the Supreme Court to hear an appeal from a lower court, when the Court is deciding a case based upon its merits. What this basically states (to the best of my understading) is that a “friend” of the courts (outside legal representation possibly)submits briefs  that provide valuable information in regards to legal arguments, or how a case might affect people other than the parties to the case.  Some organizations file friend of the court briefs in an attempt to “lobby” the Supreme Court, obtain media attention, or to fight for a social/political cause.

“An amicus curiae brief that brings to the attention of the Court relevant matter not already brought to its attention by the parties may be of considerable help to the Court.  An amicus curiae brief that does not serve this purpose burdens the Court, and its filing is not favored.” Rule 37(1), Rules of the Supreme Court of the U.S.

 

Gov. George Ryan of Illinois halted executions in 2000 rather than risk killing innocent prison inmates;  upon hearing the news of wrongful convictions. The state’s last execution took place in 1999.

Now, as a strong supporter of capital punishment in cases where its proven beyond a reasonable doubt that the perpetrator was guilty of his/her crime, I decided to do some research on DNA exonerations. Especially when I found that there was no legally creditable evidence linking the late Troy Davis to the murder of a slain Police Officer Joan MacPhail-Harris the state of Georgia. I recalled hearing about the “Innocence Project” (http://www.innocenceproject.org/); A national litigation and public policy organization dedicated to exonerating wrongfully convicted individuals through DNA testing. This organization was brought forward as a means of combating the execution of inmates who where wrongly convicted of crimes they did not commit, and where facing execution.

Reading their website was eye-opening, because I found that there have been 273 post-conviction DNA exonerations in the United States alone; and that the first DNA exonerations took place in the year 1989. Exonerations have been won in 34 states since 2000, with over 206 exonerations. Now there is no telling how many more have been exonerated during this DNA testing process since these numbers where reported; up till 11:08 pm last night; when Mr. Davis took his last breath.

17 of the 273 people exonerated through DNA testing had already served on average 13 years in prison on death row awaiting scheduled execution. The total number of years served accounted by these freed persons is approximately 3,524 years (and I’m sure this number has increased since then). The average age of an exonerated inmate at the time of wrongful convictions was 27.

What’s most interesting to me in respects to the 273 exonerees is their ethnicity. And this is not an attempt to make this an issue of race on my behalf (I do not play the race card) but the numbers are astounding and shocking. 166 where recording as being of African American (non Hispanic) decent, 
81 where classified as Caucasian, 20 identified themselves as Hispanic/Latino/Mexican, 2 Asian American, and 4 whose ethnicity was unknown. Again, I’m sure these numbers have since  then changed based upon the time  this information was given. During re-trial and review of all DNA evidence readily presented (if not “missing” damaged, or degraded over time), the true suspects and/or perpetrators have been identified in 124 of the DNA exoneration cases tried.

Since 1989, there have been tens of thousands of cases where prime suspects were identified and pursued, but testing of DNA evidence (prior to conviction) proved that they were wrongly accused. And in more than 25 percent of cases reported via the National Institute of Justice, suspects were excluded once DNA testing was conducted during the criminal investigation (the study, conducted in 1995, included 10,060 cases where testing was performed by FBI labs).

About half of the individuals exonerated through DNA testing have been financially compensated by the state in which they where prosecuted. 27 states, the federal government, and the District of Columbia have passed laws to compensate people who were wrongfully incarcerated. But this is after they’ve served no less than 10 to 15 years in prison, or having 1 to 2 stay’s of execution. After being freed they’re awarded the monies under these statutes that vary from state to state. 22 percent of cases closed by the Innocence Project since 2004 were closed because of  (conveniently) missing evidence.

The leading cause of wrongful death convictions in these DNA exoneration cases was that the Innocence Project was able to provided irrefutable proof that wrongful convictions are not isolated or rare events (meaning the ish happens all the time), as well as showing a rise in systemic defects that can be precisely identified and addressed during retrials.  The Innocence Project has worked for over 15 years to pinpoint these trends, and there are still cases that they’ve yet to start working on!!

As with the Troy Davis case, “Eyewitness Misidentification” was a factor in 75 percent of post-conviction DNA exoneration cases in the U.S., making it the leading cause of wrongful convictions. At least 40 percent of these eyewitness identifications involved cross racial identification; and some even later re-canted their statements; stating that they where forced to pin point a perpetrator as being the suspect in a case by law enforcement officials.

Un-validated or Improper Forensic Science played a role in approximately 50 percent of wrongful convictions later overturned by DNA testing. While DNA testing was developed through extensive scientific research, many other forensic techniques – such as hair microscopy, bite mark comparisons, firearm tool mark analysis and shoe print comparisons, have never been subjected to rigorous scientific evaluation. Meanwhile, forensics techniques that have been properly validated, such as serology, commonly known as blood typing, and are sometimes improperly conducted or inaccurately conveyed in trial testimony. In other wrongful conviction cases, forensic scientists have engaged in misconduct.

False confessions and incriminating statements lead to wrongful convictions in approximately 25 percent of cases.  In 35 percent of false confession or admission cases, the defendant was 18 years old or younger and/or developmentally disabled. Twenty-two of the first 265 DNA exonerees pled guilty to crimes they did not commit.

Note: The Innocence Project encourages police departments to electronically record all custodial interrogations in their entirety in order to prevent coercion and to provide an accurate record of the proceedings. More than 500 jurisdictions have voluntarily adopted policies to record interrogations.

State supreme courts have taken action in Alaska, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, and Wisconsin. Illinois, Maine, New Mexico, and the District of Columbia require the taping of interrogations in homicide cases.

Informants contributed to wrongful convictions in 19 percent of cases. Whenever informant testimony is used, the Innocence Project recommends that the judge instruct the jury that most informant testimony is unreliable as it may be offered in return for deals, special treatment, or the dropping of charges in pending cases. Prosecutors should also reveal any incentive the informant might receive, and all communication between prosecutors and informants should be recorded.

Anthony Graves is one of 12 death row inmates who have been exonerated in Texas since 1973. Five of those exonerations occurred while Rick Perry was governor, according to the Death Penalty Information Center, a group that opposes capital punishment. Graves spend 18 years in prison and 12 years on death row as a convicted murder. And in 2010 his conviction was overturned and he was released.  Graves was convicted of assisting in multiple murders  in 1992. And in 2006, the US Court of Appeals of the 5th Circuit overturned his conviction citing that the prosecutors made false statements. A special prosecutor hired for the second trial came to the realization that Graves was innocent after months of in-depth investigation.

(http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2011/09/exonerated-texas-inmate-how-can-you-applaud-death/)

Cameron Willingham was executed in Texas in 2004 for an arson fire in 1991 which took the lives of his three small daughters. Subsequently, doubt has been cast on the forensic evidence which underlay the conviction, particularly whether evidence existed of an accelerant having been used to start the blaze. Again, Rick Perry authorized the execution.

I don’t question capital punishment. I’m for it in cases such as that of  Lawrence Russell Brewer, 44 who was convicted in the dragging death of James Byrd Jr. 49 in Texas. Any case where the evidence is undisputable proof of one’s guilt; by all means; put a needle in their arms and fire way.

But I question why those who’re tasked to uphold the law are not held to same standards as the innocent victims they sentence to death? To me personally, killing two innocent people does not solve a crime, much less give either of the families closure. What’s the point in killing the wrong persons for the murder of someone else? 0_o?

Why is it that police officers, Prosecutors, District Attorneys and Judges can get way with jury tampering, falsifying legal documents and witness statements, “bully” witnesses into purging themselves on the stand under oath and sentence people to death and nothing is ever done to them for breaking the very laws they swore to uphold?

Wrongful execution is a miscarriage of justice occurring when an innocent person is put to death by capital punishment, the “death penalty.” , and cases of wrongful execution are cited as an argument by the opponents of capital punishment; because it happens all the time! Why is there not a law set forward that puts the Officers of the court on trial when its found that they’ve suppressed evidence, tamped with the jury, and undermined the legal system seeking a guilty conviction in the cases of those who’ve been exonerated?  Are we still that ‘barbaric’ of a society where “Salem Witch Hunt” styled murder trials and convictions are the norm for the economically disadvantaged? For the immigrant that may not speak proper English, or the young man facing the death penalty for a crime he didn’t commit (based upon his legal history)?

When does it?

Marriage and the Black Woman

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Black Women can (and do) find love, they just have to accept it in its rarest form..diversity.

I was little perturbed if you will at comments being made on a Facebook blog that I frequent from time to time. When directly addressing to some of the black women present in regards to the attitudes that men in other countries demonstrate towards American born black women, I was meet with some serious resistance. I made the mistake of making it known that I find it amazing how men (or people if you will) outside the U.S. tend to be more open and willing to getting to know black women who’re born here in the U.S., for who they are as individuals; free of judgment based upon stereotypes and negative imagery (no thanks to some of our own people).

Needless to say, the conversation became very heated when a borage of various black men in company began to make some unnecessarily vulgar, and negative comments that where seriously emotionally driven

Side Note: Men are just as emotional as women! Just FYI

These ‘men’ who’re possibly boys who can shave, charged me with being guilty of allowing ‘the man’ to brain wash me into the Willie Lynch syndrome; explaining that I’d turned my back on black men and the black race over all by demonstrating such view points. To them, I was some how making myself vulnerable and available to the sexual pleasures of white men while seeking to carry out a slave and master role play, linked to a deeply hidden type of sexual fantasy of mine 0_o? Where they arrived to that conclusion by me stating that I love MEN over all and not just black men I don’t know; but it was interested to watch them build their case based upon what they assumed to be ‘known’ facts about me and black women whom think like myself.

These black men claimed that black women who share the same sentiments as I are nothing but mere ‘pets’ for play at the whelm of white men who suffer from a need to satisfy a sweet-tooth for chocolate. They then resorted to calling me out my name and telling me that I’m the type of black woman who would never find happiness with a black man (or no black man would want me); while one brother took it to the extreme by advocating a future gang rape.

And I quote

“A group of about 12 brotha’s, need to get together, paint their faces white and go to town your stupid ass, because black women like you give all black women a bad name! You’re a disgrace and you deserve to have them just run up in you, the same way white men rapped black women for years.”

I can not make this ish up; these where his words.

Now, I clearly understand that there are psychos out there who do not speak for everyone within the African American community; but his hate filled sentiments spoke volumes of the mentality that many within African American community share when it comes to black women and inter-racial dating and marriage. Mind you, he’s not the first Blackman I’ve heard speak passionate animosity towards any black woman who dare to seek true love beyond the boundaries of race. I’ve even heard my father make these same comments on occasion when demonstrating disgust towards any black woman who chose to date or marry a non-black man. Yet, he encouraged this type of union for black men. In his mind, this was the black mans way of getting back at ‘the man’ for many years of rape and enslavement.

Violence Towards Inter-racial Couples is advocated

A group of black men cheered on one blog, where the tragic story of a young Marine and his wife where murder by fellow Marines sometime back. The slain Marine was White and his wife was black. And a group of four Black Marines felt it was their duty to kill the White Marine, later rapping and killing his Black Wife; based upon their views of her inter-racial marriage. I was not only shocked, but also shamed when I saw some of the things that some black and white men where saying about the murdered victims.

http://articles.nydailynews.com/2008-11-05/news/17909857_1_four-other-marines-military-base-sergeant

But this ignorance seems to breed life into an air of arrogance and acceptance within the African American Community of inter-racial dating/marriage when it comes to black men; while continually creating negative stigma toward black women when choosing to explore the very same options. I find that black women who’re open to such unthinkable epiphanies are met with ridicule, hostility, anger, resentment, and even violence from those whom fail to see the beauty in the diversity of true love.  Any black woman who’s brave enough to see love through a pair of ‘color free’ goggles can face a number of issues that range from (but are not limited too)

1.Becoming an outcast from the family

  1. Placing herself and her lover at risk of verbal and physical assault (God  forbid if they have children)
  2. Losing so-called ‘friends’
  3. Being ostracized by narrow-minded individuals within her community

These are just a few of the factors that make many black women feel as if they must stay within the confinements of their ethnicity. Yet experiencing a false sense of victim hood when waiting for a black lover. Many black women feel as if they’re being placed upon the ‘back burner’ as my mother use to say when hearing many black men make it official that they chose to never date, nor marry a black woman.

A black Woman’s “Duty” to stay True

Black women are being made to feel as if it is their duty to stay committed to black men and black men only. And because many black women feel this unyielding need to be faithful to black men, they’re enraged at the thought of black men choosing to love or start a family with women of various ethnicities based upon skin. Now, I myself can’t stand when I see these black athletes raise to fame and talk ish about all black women. Its become a pre-requisite for famous black men to confess to the world how he’ll never date or marry a black woman. Making many black women feel as though they’re ‘standing in line’ waiting for their turn to assume their rightful place at the side of a black King.

But I’m not going to get mad at a black man (or all black men in general) who choses to marry someone he loves, free of the fear that inhibits many black women from doing the same thing. Black women are no more bound to dating or marring someone who’s the same ethnicity as themselves no more than anyone else walking the face of this earth. But black women seem to be the most vocal when expressing anger and mistrust for black men whom have the courage to love who they love.

Basically, black men are being taught to explore their options for a potential mate, while black women are being taught to stay faithful. And because black men and women are receiving two different lessons in life and love, its causing black men to move on and find love with women whom don’t look like their mother, and black women to feel this sense of self-worthlessness, based upon the fact that black men are doing what ever (or whom ever) they please.

Black on Black Discrimination

Black women feel that black men are discriminating against black women, simply because they’re black; thus leaving black women to foolishly believe that they’re being left at a disadvantage when it comes to marriage and family life.  But one must ask themselves

Are black women choosing to do so because they’re madly in love with black men?

Or

Do black women feel so strongly about being with black men only, because they fear the repercussions they may face from being with someone of another persuasion?

Double Standards? Perhaps…

There’s an unspoken double standard when it comes to crossing the color lines in search of love, for black women.   Black women are being sub-consciously forced (through early childhood brainwashing) to stay ‘true’ to black men. They’re receiving this nation wide, broadcast PSA that states a black woman’s main lot in life is to grow up, get married, and have children with a godly black man. This is why black women reach their adult years seeking this mythical man based on what they’ve been told they’re destined to achieve if they’re ‘godly’ proverbs women. What most black women fail to realize is that they’re honestly falling in lines with the ideologies of yester year, being preached by a generation of African Americans who where taught stay true to their own kind.

And because black men are finding the courage to love who they love, regardless of what anyone else thinks, black women are buying into the myth that there are “No good, godly black men” left for them to chose from. When in all actually, there are plenty of good men, or godly men to go around; they’re just not the ideal men that many of these black women are subconsciously seeking.

Good Men Are Available my Sisters, Really, they are!

There are plenty of ‘good men’ out there. These good men are of various ethnicities and social, economical classes, they follow a variant of religious customs and traditions, and they can be found worldwide.  Its just that many of them may not pray to the same deities, they may not have the same color skin, make the same amount of money, and they may possibly not even speak the same language. But they’re good men none the less. Men who’re every bit capable of loving black women unconditionally, in the same manner as the black men they’re taught to seek.

Once you Go Black….

Another reasons why black women tend to experience difficulty in finding love outside the bounds of color restrictions is that its assumed that all black women are ‘infatuated’ with (ehem) the black magic stick. Some Black women are foolish enough to become spellbound to these majestically myth that all black men have a gifted 3rd appendage. Now, granted, there are some black men whom have the tools to get the job done and then some. But not all black men are ‘blessed’ in that department. To be honest, some black men come up short, but that’s neither here nor there. Nonetheless, there are men in general who’re large, medium and small. It just all depends upon individual genetics.

In closing, I just hope that some day, black women whom feel they’re being left behind our ineligible for love one day find the courage needed to accept love when it finds them. Regardless of the shape, color, religion, or ethnicity of the man who demonstrates this love for them. People will always have something to say, but black women need to ask themselves if what other people say or think of the love they’ve found in a ‘good man’ really matters?

You Are What You Eat

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While shopping for groceries, I decided to stop at one of my favorite supermarkets in the Washington D.C. area. But, I was little hungry, so before I hit them up; I dropped by “Chopped“. For those of you who don’t know what a ‘chopped’ is, Chopped is a fast food restaurant that serves an assortment of healthy and tasty salads for anyone trying to maintain a healthy diet. I discovered Chopped during my first quarter of school at the Art Institute of Washington D.C.

Anyway,

I grabbed a salad bowl that contained a mouth watering arugula and baby spinach mix, a few tasty and fresh veggies (mushrooms, unions, tomatoes, bell peppers, heart of artichoke, carrots and a sunflower seeds if I’m not mistaken). Then I added tuna for protein and topped it off with a red wine balsamic vinaigrette dressing. I finished the purchase with a pomegranate and cranberry Nantucket, and a sweet yet simple dark chocolate  fudge bar square. Total ring up $15.00. From there I stopped at Sunoco gas station and put about $20.00 in my tank, which brought the needle to almost half a tank. That should last me….a day….which isn’t much with driving between school and work.

Once I arrived at Wegmans I started to fill up my basket with some of the same healthy items placed in my salad. But after about an hour or so of me browsing around Wegmans, I started to to hungry again. So, I plopped down at the sushi bar, and ordered a spider roll, with a dragon roll, and hot green tea. Sipping on my miso soup, I decided that some hot sake would be in order, since it was a little chilly outside. Total ring up $35.00

While I was eating I started to notice the variety of people shopping and dinning in at this popular food chain. They where all of various ethnicity, seem to be employed in lucrative careers, and they all looked healthy. Everyone’s basket was filled to the brim with the many foods and produce recommended by the American Heart Association, to maintain a healthy height weight standard; and to combat such illnesses as Hyper Tension, Heart Disease, Diabetes  and Cancer. Everyone was happy and cheerful. No one was rude, pushy, or overly aggressive, and you could find everything you needed and then some at what most of us would assume to be an affordable price for organic meats and produce. Total ring up for purchases in basket $120.00

Being  the absent minded individual I am, I forget a few things and had to stop at Wal Mart to grab them on  my way back home. In which the atmosphere in there was like hell. People where rude, they use their buggies to push in your path so they could get what they wanted; and I never had anyone utter the words “excuse me” or “How are you” like I did in Wegmans. I witnessed this colossal woman, wearing a badly mitch-matched outfit, with tons of weave, curse out the cashier because she felt she was being short changed $2.00 on her total ring up. STORE SECURITY had to be called in to calm this big woman down while escorting her out the door where she was greeted by Fair Fax County Police. As I’m watching this dram unfold, I started to notice that everyone in WalMart (darn near) was over weight. They where using the state equivalent debit card for ‘food stamps’ and you could tell that most of them did  not have much money. Now, this is judging a book by its cover because I don’t know these people; but it was very obvious that I would not see the clientele of WalMart in Wegmans anytime soon.

Every time the American media wants to focus on the issue of obesity in this grate nation, we see pictures of morbidly obese women and men who resemble that of the customers in WalMart. Its normally B-reel footage of a black woman waddling in a cross-walk as her whole body sways in motion with her extremely huge rear end. The camera then does a jump shot to a middle aged, balding white man sitting at a park bench, guzzling a Grande Cafe Moca from Star Bucks and smoking. Not to mention the fact that he’s almost always always suffering from ‘dun-lop’  (meaning his belly ‘done lopped’ over the top of his belt and trousers).  Our media strategically focuses on these specific people because American society has counted them amongst the ranks of individuals who seemly don’t care about their health much less over all appearance. We’ve deemed them unattractive, and unworthy of being acknowledge as the epitome of pride in America, because we  mistakenly assume they’re fat because they have no pride in themselves.

With all the money I spent between Chopped, Sunoco, And Wegmans I spent about $200.00+; all within about a 2 to 4 hour time span. But I can afford to do so. I make enough money annually between my job and monies for school to be able to splurge a little on a meals that I could have prepared at home.

But what about the people shopping at Wal Mart?

What about the folks who’re unemployed, and living on unemployment benefits (if they haven’t run out)?

The big girl at the counter in WalMart was complaining about that additional $200 because that could have been money that she would need to purchase milk for her baby, or to put with what ever change she has to get gas. Or, it could have assisted with paying her electricity bill to keep her children and herself heated during the harsh winter. So even thought that $200 she was fighting mad over meant nothing to me, it may have had significant value for her in regards to survival.

I’ve found that people in lover income communities are not able to afford sitting at a sushi bar in Wegams; paying $20.00 for gas and spending $13.00+ dollars at chopped for a salad that will leave them and their family hungry 20min later. They have to purchase what’s both affordable, and what will keep them full until its time to go to bed. Which happens to be junk food. The foods that are only available in impoverished communities are in most cases franchise fast food restaurants who’s over all objective is profit and not community health (i.e. Wendy’s, Burger King, Taco Hell and Jack in the Crack).

McDonald’s is the biggers repeat offender of diabetes and obesity in the Black community; because they pose as being care-givers to the community, while pumping out value meals that contain a 500+ caloric fat count. Most of the corner store shops don’t carry fresh fruits and vegetables, or organic, chemical/hormone free meats. They have boxed, frozen T.V. Dinners and pizzas (600+ calories a pop), 40 oz Mad Dog’s, 20/20, and ‘grab and snack’ type items. Example the hot dog weenies that have been rolling in grease under a heat lamp, the beef patties and tripple dipped, batter fried chicken wings (at least we hope its chicken) and sky-rocket sodium drenched bags of chips.  If they do have produce, its normally the scavenged left overs from such super markets as Wegmans, in which no self-respecting customer who frequents Wegmans   would buy.And these mom and pop corners stores have the nerves to charge more for their items than that of Wegmans, even though the quality of their produce Fing sucks!

Thus the foods in lower-income communities look like this

The shit you shouldn't be eating

Verses like this

The stuff you need to eat to stay alive

To understand why minorities who reside in lower income and impoverished communities are over weight, even lazy, pushy and die soon; you must understand that their diets contribute to such deficiencies. The inability to access foods (or afford foods) that are rich in omega ‘3s and anti-oxidants; or assist in promoting a heart healthy diet is what contributes to newly reported cases of Type 1 and 2 diabetes and heart hyper tension. Lets not forget that many of them refuse to see the doctor to routine  check up; because they either can’t afford the co-pays or they lack insurance over all. Yes, there are free clinics, but they’re staffing, testing and services are limited due to a lack of funding.

The foods that they can afford, are killing them! They’re working dead end jobs that are high in stress, and leaves little to no time or money to sit down and eat a healthy meal. For some of the kids in these communities, the only time they eat anything is when they’re at school. So for them, school constitutes a free food source  vs. a free education. And this is why many of them attend school sleepy, hungry, cranky and unable to concentrate while in class, because they’re not eating anything at home.  Thus, leading to the inability to concentrate on the materials and actively par take in class activities. They fall behind other students who eat healthy and become disruptive during class time instruction because they’re hungry, and their home life sucks.

It was stated that Gen. William T. Sherman of the Union Army had some of the most well trained, effective killing machines under his command. One of the reasons why they where so affective was because all of his soldiers where well fed. He ensured that everyone had proper meals that enhanced nutrition suitable for a strong body and sound mind. They could carry out military instruction with precision because their bellies where not touching their spin.  How can we expect our youth to be of the same caliber as Sherman’s army in school, if they’re over weight, unable to participate in athletics and can’ t hear the teacher’s lecture  over the grumbling over their stomach’s?