I suppose I’ve always had my own personal bouts with self-hate, and the influences of media with that regard. I do consider the thought pattern as something of a psychosis, an internal battle to force all that is wrong with you into a mental template based on your outer presentation. Or vibration of energies reflecting from you, as the case is, in more technical terms. I never knew just how deeply the roots of this particular thought pattern where, however, until I began a more concentrated perusal of the things that people write on the interweb. The more Black blogs I read, the more I wonder if we are all satirist, vying for a spot on The Onion, or just madly in love with hating ourselves and wishing to be white.
So, while I was listening to Rick Ross’ “Push It To The Limit” for the fourth, fifth, or even possibly sixth time(theme songs should always be played on repeat), I came across a Twitter update in the @BetterYouEbook timeline retweeted from one of the people that I follow. The update was a lambaste regarding @ToureX of mainstream media fame, and he interviews hip hop artists sometimes too. Being a fan of Toure X beratings, I decided to follow the course of replies to where they originated. Man oh man, did I not know how far down that rabbit hole would take me. Let’s say I wound up at the doorstep of @madamenoire.
Now, one of the major dangers(depending on who you are), and one of the perks(once again, depending on who you are) of interweb usage is being able to conjure up a variable of identities. Let that thought sit for a timepiece, will return to that later.
Being of a sound mind, alright, I was on a break from work and decided to get on twitter and surf for a few minutes, I clicked on the link to the Madame Noire website, and I did a google search on the name. I was lead to the timeline of another person that I follow on twitter: @Christelyn(Also known as Christelyn Karazin, writer of the book,“Swirling: How to Date, Mate and Relate Mixing Race Culture and Creed”(I can’t conjure this stuff up, folks, if only my imagination were that cruel…). The updates that I found in her timeline, the consecutively posted updates in her timeline, mind you, are here captured in this jpeg:
No implications necessary. I do believe that Christelyn is brash and bold enough to write under her own handle. However, as always in the Asylum, when we do critiques of others works, we want to not be bothered with grammatical errors, syntax, or pettiness–we come for intentions. Since I am not accusing Christelyn of writing the piece that we will be critiquing in this post, I don’t want to spend too much time on her blog with categories in her top navigation such as:“My Story: Jumping The Broom With A White Boy” aligned next to her navigational link of “No Wedding, No Womb”–the online movement that she spearheads with the pronounced focus of(according to her website):”…is an initiative that seeks to address the problems of – and provide solutions to — the unplanned pregnancies among African American single women.” Obviously, yes, OBVIOUSLY, one of her main solutions to solving the problem of children in the Black community being born out of wedlock is for Black women to get married to White men and have babies.(With all the banter about “marrying a white boy”, I have no fear of a rebuttal on that note!)
As stated, this is not an address on Christelyn or her “trademarked slogan, No Wedding, No Womb!”(If I could make it up, I wouldn’t be broke!!). It is simply a lengthy(I know, I know already, on with the show…) introduction and a neat(well, I thought so before you guys started skimming…) anecdote on how I got to read this post: “8 Reasons To Date A White Man”(featured in the “LIVING” section, no doubt(thank the Universe for the interwebs, I am simply not this creative…).
Alright…what everybody came for…
According to the article written by LaShaun Williams(I’m really hoping the google results on your name are incorrect, sister):
” I am married to a Black man—dark-skinned, 100 percent cocoa. To me, there is nothing more physically beautiful on this earth. Notice I said physically. Outside of that, there are plenty of more financially, intellectually and emotionally stable options. It’s time to taste the unknown. There are just too many—too many bright and beautiful single Black women waiting for their Black prince charming, only to see more and more of them riding off with their porcelain-skinned beauties.
My question is what are you waiting for—a baby and no ring? Black men are obviously seeing a lot in others they like. As an open-minded woman, I can tell you from experience some things about white are right. In no particular order, here are the reasons you should be giving vanilla a chance.”
The initial opening salvo is basically a disclaimer. It is a technique used in critical writings to stave off ad hominem attacks. Now, I agree that one should be careful with ad hominem usages, primarily due to the tendency too place to much attention on the messenger and not the message. In this case, I feel a “This IS Sparta!” moment coming on. She states that she is married to a black man, makes sure that we know he is of the darker variety of such sexually appealing beasts, and that this sexual appealing stud(or brute, you can choose your own US slavery created stereotype here) has no other values to offer. The description of the man she has married to is then very subtly magnified to represent the general population of Black men.
There are several qualifying characteristics we will have to infer from the piece, and it best that we get them out of the way. What does Williams mean by Black? Is she referring to a description of all humans with a melanin make up of high density compared to those of European origin? Is she simply referring to the ones of US birth? Due to her not offering us any statistics or facts beyond conjecture, we are left to assume that she is referring to Black men born in the United States of America. For the sake of the argument, we also assume that she is referring to White man born in the United States of America.
Williams moves into her second paragraph with another generalization and assumption based on popular belief. She asks her audience–we will assume by virtue of the context that she is writing for an audience of single black heterosexual women– what are they waiting for, a baby and no ring. Once again, we have the correlation of the “No Wedding, No Womb” movement with the thoughts of this author. Once again, I am addressing a correlation, and not an implication. The writer assumes that, and I’ll give her the benefit of the doubt, that the majority of Black eligible bachelors are simply going to get women pregnant and leave them. I’m a little taken aback here because of the degree of patriarchal sentiment. The idea that every black woman wants to be married, that marriage is the panacea of all of one’s woes, that Black men don’t marry Black women, that Black women don’t know how to be responsible over their bodies with regard to sexual intercourse–just a litany of general assumptions wrapped up in one scare tactic. And ultimately, the solution is the white man.
One more thing before I move on, because it occurred to me while reading the William piece: why didn’t she use any other culture? Alright, you feel the need to attack Black men, and that is what this piece is, a direct attack against black men, and a testimonial to just how far Black people HAVEN’T come in this society as a unified community. And yet, Williams could have said any other culture of men that have a culture where she believes a Black woman could find some one simpler or easier to marry. You have a whole continent of men raised in cultures where marriage is tied to the Aryan notions of patriarchal religious standards. You can look all throughout the continent of Afrika and find men willing to do much of the things she assumes that most black men are not going to do. But she didn’t. Why not?
” Gay White men tend to be more forthcoming about their sexuality with family and friends. The down low phenomenon is less prevalent, which preserves the battery usage on your gaydar and relieves the stress of dissecting every male relationship.”
This is just damn silly. The Oprah effect is such a dynamic force in the Black community. So forceful, so influential, that a women by the name of Lashaun Williams would use as a reason for Black women not to date brothers, and instead look toward the children of their former slave masters, and present oppressors for a commitment is the “Down Low Brother Syndrome”. The tendency for white republicans to vote against gay rights and yet they are gay is not considered. The Catholic priesthood with the embarrassing record of homosexual molestations while preaching against homosexuality and touting marriage gets overlooked as well. I suppose these cases are different due to the societal pressures placed on these men by the public…and why do we suppose the Black men that are hiding their homosexual tendencies are doing it for? There are no white men who feel the same pressures?
I would further this discussion by saying that homosexuality in the black community is actually more excepted there than in the white community. I tend to believe that the predominance of homosexuality in the white community is higher, however. More people tend to create a situation of more behaviors being displayed. But the notion that my little sister or older sister has more of a chance of dating a closet homosexual in the black community than the white is simply preposterous. Number TWO
” Thanks to the absence of family, fathers and marriage in the Black community, a great number of our men have backward expectations when it comes to romantic relationships. A higher percentage of White men come from stronger family structures and more traditional gender roles, where the men seek to care for the women.”
Once again, Williams is trumpeting one)a grave generalization, and two) a notion of white patriarchy. She is equating “romance” with the concept of a man taking care of a woman. Regardless of my own personal beliefs or agreement, not all men believe like that, in fact many white men don’t. If we look at the statements of Chad Hurley, the late Randy Pausch, and John McClain, we see a number of white man who have “married up”. It is simply not a verity that all white men think that they are supposed to take care of a woman, let alone treat her in anyway akin to “romantic”.
It is here that the woman known to us as “Lauren Williams” begins to tell on whoever she is, or whoever is using that psuedonym(more like nome de guerre, but I told myself I’d be nice…). Is it romance that you really want, or someone to pay off all of those college loans you’ve accrued over the years? I’m slightly kidding, I don’t know if this Lauren Williams is even real, I mean, I don’t know if they ever went to college, or have any debts, but they are pushing the money thing pretty tough here.
” Black women are graduating from college and Black men continue to drop out. As a result, degrees become intimidating when dating Black men. In White culture, education is valued and expected. Thus, White men have no problem dating educated women with advanced degrees. It is impressive rather than intimidating.”
A few thoughts come to mind here: White women graduate at higher numbers than all US college students. This is an aggregate of a few factors: women tend to enroll in higher numbers, women tend to fare better than men in college, and in a society where there are more white families with the economic resources to send their children to paid institutions of higher learning, you are going to find more white women than any other ethnic grouping.
Black men don’t have an issue dating white women with degrees, so this argument needs to be refined. I won’t attack the flimsy premise, because I’d like to get a rethinking on this notion. The idea being, I’d like it to address the fact that in the United States of America, most men drop out of college. The reasons of economics needs to be reflected in that discussion. Number FOUR(yes, I do feel like the Count from Sesame Street doing this…)
“For whatever reason, White men just don’t have children sprinkled all over the world like Black men. And, if they do, most of them were married to the mother at some point. Sure, they divorce but you can only divorce if you at least attempt a marriage.”
So, it is alright to have babies “sprinkled all over the world”(hyperbole much, chick?), as long as you have at least attempted a marriage? I don’t want anyone to claim that I am throwing straw, so let me break this one down for my critics.
Her premise: If a white man has babies all over the world(the world, Craig…sorry), then they must have been divorced. The antecedent: Sure, White men divorce. Conclusion: It is okay that they have babies all over the world because they were once married.
Divorce rates not withstanding…
” They may listen to rap music, but they are smart enough not to act it out. The “thug life” is not something to be aspired. White men have a firmer grasp on what really defines manhood.”
The United States of America is a patriarchal country. Hypermasculine behavior can be seen in the form of Marine males screaming “Uh RA! Devil Dog!”, to white athletes gang raping women(HERE and HERE). If we take a look at the media messages, we will see that Black males are often more feminized in their portrayals than their white counterparts. Ultimately, hypermasculinity and gender role definitions are an issue of a patriarchal rulership, especially one with the foreign policy and military propaganda of the United States. To assert that white males are not affected by the stream of images portraying them as tough undefeatable boxers, one man armies, and Mafiaoso killers is to be lazy in one’s research. Maybe that one researcher should start with the increasing number of white militias appearing around the country. Or maybe that researcher should use a definition of manhood that wasn’t authored by the white manhood she is attempting measure black manhood by. Number SIX
” Black people, especially men, are always trying to shine—often spending more money than they have. White men tend to be more educated in the area of finance with a greater understanding of retirement planning, savings, investments, etc. This is mostly due to a higher level of exposure and teaching, but all that matters is they know and make better decisions than Black men when it comes to managing money.”
This assumes an assimilist posture. For one, everybody’s definition of the slang term,”shine” is different. Therefore it is highly specious to assume that what White men do with their money is different in scope than what black men do. But that would be straw, right?
It is difficult for me to stereotype the spending habits of all men, let alone generalized on the spending habits of Black men. Most Black men that I know would actually be considered fiscally conservative. In Thomas M. Shapiro’s book,”The Hidded Cost Of Being African American”, he notes the danger of assuming a lack of financial responsibility on the part of blacks in comparison to a group of people who are able to pass on wealth held generationally. That is to say, it is easy for someone to spend foolishly and be overlooked for that err in judgment if mom and dad are going to foot the bill. It is also interesting for me to note here that many white males are allowed to stay with their parents longer than many Black males. And many white males have a considerable inheritance and financial foundation to make mistakes that Blacks aren’t afforded.
And it must be highlighted, that once again, the writer has returned to their main selling point: white men will take care of you…with their money. That is so…moving on…
” Ever wonder why White people can date the friends of exes and so on? It’s because they don’t let the past hinder the present. Promiscuous Black men think they deserve to settle down with virgins, and allow past relationships to haunt the present. Not White men. They have no problem turning a hoe into a housewife.”
I will agree that the white media portrays the white woman as virtuous beyond their past indiscretions. However, white males are trained in the same ways as black males to deem women as objects. As such, women are rated by how easy a sexual conquest can occur. Take a look at the phrase,”Oh, anybody can beat that guy ass” and compare it to,”Oh, anybody can fuck her.” Its a sport, and it is a sport that has been passed down to blacks through whites. According to bell hooks in her book,”Ain’t I A Woman”, one of the many reasons that white men avoided serious commitments to Black women during the early twentieth century was because they deemed Black women as overly sexual, irredeemably so. If we take a cursory look at a movie such as “Showgirls”, we see that it is the White woman who is deemed as worthy of romantic commitments regardless of her sexual promiscuity, and it is the black woman that is sodomized regardless of her innocence.
Of course, I’m being extremely kind due to criticisms from the academic community. I could just as easily have stated, “Why would any woman identify herself as a ‘hoe’?” Very telling there, Williams…very telling.
” Intimidation and insecurity are two reasons for the rift between Black men and women. As a result of their insecurities and low self-esteem, Black men are intimidated by the strength of an educated and ambitious Black woman. Rather than seeing her as a strong teammate, she is a threat to their manhood. Thus, they feel the need to overcompensate. White men, on the other hand, are more secure. What Black men see as threatening is what makes a great wife and business partner to them.”
You’ve got to be kidding me, right? So, white women are still attempting break the influence of the “Old Boys Network” because white men are so secure in their positions? Sure. Women have more degrees than white men, women have more jobs than white men, and yet women get less money and typically live in poverty. Is that because of Black men? Or is that because of the rulership of your precious white man? Can someone please give me the statistics of businesses ran by a white man and black woman? Can someone else give me the statistics of businesses ran by a black man and a black woman? Oh…she didn’t mean a real business…hmmm…I think I’m starting see a pattern here…
As I’ve stated elsewhere, or somewhere on the interweb, the more I hear, read, or find women using the term “bitch” the more I feel the need to either regulate my usage of the term “nigga”, or to remove it completely out of my verbal circulation. Although many of the posts on this site can be regarded as academic or erudite, their inception usually demands an anecdote. I was in a conversation the other day with a sister that I respect highly. The discussion referenced a phrase that has become a sort of proverb in the black community. The phrase is, “You can’t turn a hoe into a housewife.” It always strikes me when women, especially women that I consider highly intelligent and strong, utilize and subscribe to patriarchal notions. In this particular instance, two notions of male rulership and designations of the woman’s “place” within that structure. The phrase might have slipped under the left radar had it been used in a different context, however, because this beautiful black goddess used this phrase in reference to herself, it struck a chord.
“In Renaissance Europe, coutiers played an extremely important role in upper-class society. It was customary for royal couple to lead separate lives — marrying simply to preserve bloodlines and to secure political alliances– men and women would often seek gratification and companionship from people living at court. In fact, the verb “to court” originally meant “to be or reside at court”, and later came to mean “to behave as a courtier” and then “to pay amorous attention to somebody”. The most intimate companion of a ruler was called the favourite.
‘Prostitution and the sex discrepancy in reported number of sexual partners'(Brewer, 2000) goes on to estimate a mean number of 868 male sexual partners per prostitute per year of active sex work…
In some cultures, prostitutes were the sole women allowed to sing in public or act in theatrical performances.”
“Whore means prostitute. And a prostitute is a woman who offers to hire her body for indiscriminate sexual intercourse, or so says The Concise Oxford Dictionary. Prostitute is further defined as a verb: to prostitute oneself is to sell one’s honor for base gain or to put one’s abilities to infamous use. Other dictionaries include men secondarily in the noun definition and specify in the verb definition the shame attached to dishonor and the unworthiness and wrongdoing attached to infamous use. The noun clearly denotes a person, especially a woman, offering heterosexual sex, in particular intercourse, for money; the verb denotes any person’s activity, which need not be sexual, put to uncommendable use. Those meanings are likely to conform to popular opinion except that many people collapse the second definition into the first. A prostitute then becomes one who sells her honor by offering to hire her body for base gain or for an unworthy doing, specifically sexual intercourse.”
– Gail Phetersoon, “The Whore Stigma, Female Dishonor and Male Unworthiness”
As expected, the above, with exception to Willie D’s artistic expressions of cynicism, if not outright misogyny, follow the western academic practice of overlooking, or outright not detailing, the historical practices of white male exploitation of Black Women. The term “hoe” derives from the word “whore”, which, as already mentioned in the quotes, is synonymous with the term “prostitute”. In a system of patriarchy, where women have to vie for male acceptance, and the oft coveted position of wife next to a man of means, the prostitute sits low on the totem pole of the hierarchy of desirable positions for women to have. The term “whore”, and “hoe”, have come to mean one behaving in such a manner, ultimately, a person that has numerous sexual partners outside of exclusive bondings, or a relationship of such a nature. It can also refer to a woman that dresses as such. The term, in the black community doesn’t solely refer to women, however, because the system of patriarchy affords a standard for men that is highly approving of sexual conquests. The term “hoe” when applied to a male is often considered a compliment to the receiver.
I suppose I would have to thank Todd Shaw for introducing the concept(“never make a hoe into a housewife”) to my impressionable young mind. As the song’s lyrics show, the term “hoe” is used interchangeably to refer to women in general, and women who sell sex as a profession. It is the use of the phrase “hoe” out of the context of prostitution that I would like the Asylum to consider here.
You see some people like to play the dating game
Meet a new freak and ask “what’s your name?”
Wine and dine and waste all that time
Spending money on a hoe cause you think she’s fine
Holding hands at the movies, waiting months to fuck
Played like a sucker, you should know what’s up
Getting dogged by a snotty, fake, broke-ass hoe
Listen to a real dog, cause I know
You get a pretty yellow bitch with that long-ass hair
Fine motherfucker trying to get with a player
Can’t fuck worth shit, old stiff-ass bitch
Tried to get some head and she just kissed my dick
I need a bitch with a beeper, a full time tramp
She can’t suck dick like she’s licking a stamp
But she can lick it all around, or swallow it whole
Deep throat this big dick and act real bold
You go to sleep, she’ll straight rob your ass
Cause Hoes like to steal and take all your cash
And when hoes go to jail, pimps make bail
Take ’em to the stroll and let the pussy sell
Cause to a trick, they’re just quick nuts
But to a grandmother, they’re like big sluts
And if you’re short dog, they look like bank rolls
If I ever go broke I’ll just break hoes
Cause hoes were made to be broken
It happens every day in Oakland
I need a bitch, that’s one thing I know
Put my money where my mouth is and just break that hoe
Two and fro, they like to run in pairs
Hit small towns and sell pussy everywhere
I ain’t giving no bitches, no kind of slack
Cause Oakland, California is where they made “The Mack”
Prostitution is the oldest profession
Kick back young partner, learn your lesson
Pimp till you die, as long as you know
Pimps ain’t nothing but hoes
Getting paid, for everything you say
If a hoe wants to fuck you, she gots to pay
Keep the bitch broke and control the world
Cause when hoes get rich, they call ’em “call girls”
Now ain’t nothing like a neighborhood trampy slut
Take a hoe to a spot and let her lick these nuts
Get a square bitch, you gotta lie to kick it
But with a nasty bitch, she’ll just lick it and lick it
I had a square bitch, man, she looked way too cool
She said she loved me, but is that true’
She asked me could she be my lady
Wanted so much to have my baby
So what bitch’ I popped your cherry
Hell fucking no, I don’t wanna get married
Cause can’t no bitch hound me
Talking that shit about a family
I wants no champagne, I drink gin and juice
Bring a bag of ice and watch a ho get loose
Spread the word, we’re getting tossed tonight
And please don’t trip on the cellulite
I got a fat bitch, sucking on my dick
Every day homie it’s the same old shit
Don’t look stupid, hoe, drop them goddamn drawers
Get your ass in the bed and let’s fuck like dogs
On the very first night, we fucked
I got the pussy, I got sucked
I couldn’t wait, she asked me why
I let the answer shoot straight in her eye, bitch
Hoes are like cum freaks, they suck you dry
The do what you say, and don’t ask why
Who said that hoe ain’t old enough’
If she could bleed, then she can fuck
Call me “dirty dog” but your cock stank
Motherfuckers think pimps ain’t making bank
But the, pimp game just don’t stop
You gotta be down to reach the top
I tell all my homies “play these hoes”
Don’t eat the pussy or pay these hoes
Cause some of these hoes get tore up smoking
Bitches like that you find all through Oakland
Miniskirts and no panties on
When it’s time to fuck, it don’t take too long
And it’s mandatory for hoes to simp
Catch other hoes and bring ’em to pimps
So take this game and keep it for life
Never make a hoe into a housewife
Just get a good bitch, a workaholic like holly
Bitch so bold, she’ll take a piss in the alley
And make big bank, it’s the pussy is dope
They keep coming back until the tricks go broke
But if that hoe jumps off the track
Another young bitch will bring them tricks right back
During the epoch of US slavery, black women were regarded as less than human. They were deemed subhuman females and were situated below white women of all classes and practices on the social hierarchy of white capitalist patriarchy. Black women were thought to possess high levels of libidinous energy, which would work as a justification for the rape and sexual exploitation of Black women by the white US male. For breeding purposes, Black women would be offered trinkets to have sex.
“On some plantations a woman might be given a small pig each time a child was born to her. Women were promised a new dress or a new pair of shoes at the birth of a child. A small monetary sum, form on to five dollars, might be given a slave woman at the birth of her fourth of fifth child. A few slaveowners promised freedom to black women who bore large families. A case appeared before the Virginia courts in 1761 in a dispute over a will that included a provision to free a female slave Jenny if she bore ten live children. Some enslaved women desired pregnancy, for they saw it as a means of obtaining certain advantages, the primary one being a lightening of the work load.” – bell hooks, “Ain’t I A Woman”
So, historically, and at the roots of the Black in America’s culture, we see a pattern where the women are reduced to sexual beings, and a forced form of prostitution has developed. The sexuality of the Black woman, and the hyperbolic, and grossly mythologized stereotype that Black women held “loose” sexual morals, and were sexual beasts would saturate the media and thus the psycho-cultural atmosphere of the US. The white woman, as a symbol of all that is pure in woman, would be held in high esteem. These patterns of thought have trickled down through the socio-historical storm drain, and revisit us in various forms.
As I have alluded to in another article, the white woman’s sexuality is presented to us in such a fashion, that even if she is portrayed as a “street walker”, considered the lowest status that a white women in this white capitalist patriarchal society could hold, she is still worthy of the white male of means emotional/romantic consideration. We see this plot played out in the movie, “Pretty Woman”.
As this trailer shows, the movie is full of the woman under the spell of patriarchal magic. We have the poor white woman being swept away by the rich white male. The writer, J.F. Lawton, places these words in her mouth as the describing of her childhood dream. This concept of the “prince” coming to save the “damsel in distress” riding on a horse, no doubt, the “Cinderalla” story, is saturated throughout white patriarchal folklore and story-telling. We’ve seen this script and template played out in various Tyler Perry plays and motion pictures. Unfortunately, in the black community, males are less apt to “save” the Black women down on her luck. In fact, the black man is taught against “saving hoes”.
What we see in this video is a use of the term “hoe” to imply underclass Black women. The video depicts a man driving a drop top 5.0 mustang(a mustang is a horse, and during the time of this video’s production, the vehicle was a status symbol in the Black community) pulling up to a woman walking with two children. The message is that a Black woman with two children is in an undesirable socio-economic condition, and any man willing to “save” her is worthy of disrespect. It is interesting to note that “Pretty Woman” is released in theaters in 1990, and “Captain-Save-A-Hoe” is featured on E-40’s 1993 release of “Mailman”. You have two very poignant depictions of social reflections with regard to how the Black man and the White man view their respective women. In one case, you have a woman that is soliciting sex, blatantly asking for money, and is regarded as worthy of a man who can make a statement about buying a billion dollar business over breakfast. In the other, you have a group of women being labeled hoes simply because of their economic status, and possibly race. Even if the argument that the song’s co-author, Earl Stevens, was making a statement about black men spending money on “gold diggers” is true, in comparison to the White patriarchy’s media message, the song still communicates a strong message to the Black community,”The Black woman is simply not worth the effort, and you are dumb if you try.” This message is in stark contrast to that of the White male’s message to his male grouping and to that of his female counterparts.
Since I am on the discussion of White men and their portrayal as saviors of their womenfolk, and because this is one of my favorite movies, I will venture to show the white woman as prostitute being romantically fought for in another theatrical piece. In the movie, “True Romance”, a script written by my favorite white writer/director to attack for racist portrayals, Quentin Tarantino, Clarence(Christian Slater) is a clerk in a comic book store that call-girl Alabama(Patricia Arquette) is paid to go on a date with. The two wind up having sex, and a teary eyed Alabama pronounces her love for Clarence, and they get married. Clarence confronts Alabama’s pimp, and in an interesting scene only Tarantino could have conjured up, Clarence kills Drexl, Alabama’s pimp. Now the movie has a few plot twist that I don’t feel concern us here, but over the course of the movie, Clarence shows his devotion to the former “whore” Alabama.
Of interest is that this movie was also released in 1993. Another noticeable contrast between what the white male media is presenting with regard to the white woman and how the Black Woman is presented by black males is the professional prostitute who finds love versus the regular woman who’s male counterparts are being advised to overlook them. Two movies released around the same time with similar messages:”prostitutes are people too, more so if they are white…of course.” The songs we have listened to have the message of “black women from underclass environs are all hoes.” Ironically, those black males who might argue that a man doesn’t want to be with a woman with several partners or the like, are comparing women who might have double digit amounts of past partners with women who are being portrayed as women who have, according to the above statistic, over eight hundred! That message alone says much about the media messages being disseminated. A Black woman is a hoe if she is unmarried with two children, or enjoys sex in the manner of men;a white woman is a hoe if she is a prostitute, and even in said instance, it is the duty of the white male to save her. In the black community, males are taught that they don’t want to be saved.
The sexual virtue of Black women has been attacked, and vilified since the early days of slavery. With the need to justify and legitimize the rape and sexual torture of black women, the white male system defined the Black Woman as a sexual temptress of sorts. When we look at the modern dances, dress codes, and styles of behavior, we are reminded of these myths and stereotypes that have been recreated and accepted in the Black community. My biggest concern is that Black women seeking approval and acceptance from Black men fall into the trap of internalizing these concepts. As Black males fail to secure power, and find themselves wrestling and killing one another for status symbols, the psycho-social templates of hyper masculinity will continue to readdress themselves. In a patriarchal society, the men of the oppressed peoples tend to degrade their own women for not treating them as the women of the oppressing race treat their men. It shouldn’t be a shock that most Black men seek out white woman once they have achieved a high level of financial success in this country. As the Lexus and Benz are symbols of wealth, and status, so is the white woman objectified as a symbol of the same. The Black Woman as the mistress, the other woman, the sexual appetite appeaser is still a common thought as we have seen in Tyler Perry’s “The Family That Preys”. The idea being that black women are cool to fuck, but you don’t want to settle down with them.
However, as long as Black women define themselves by the terms of a powerless, misogynistic male group, they will never rise to the potential within. If you define yourself as a hoe, based on my definition of the word, then you will always be a slave to the whims of my making. In a country where Black women are beset by sexism and racism, it is my opinion that Black women should be cautious on all fronts. Since we live in a capitalist economy, a patriarchal capitalism, it is dangerous for Black women to place themselves into any psychological framework that will objectify them based on any standard. There is no ideology or framework of thinking in this country that places Black woman in a truly free position. It is a man’s world as James Brown once noted.
If you are being clothed from head to toe, or wearing a business suit, or some form of professional attire, you will be disrespected by men. Mostly by males of your own race. If you decide to be a human and enjoy sexual encounters, you will be dubbed a “hoe”. Mostly by males of your own race, and some females of your own race. If you can’t critically assess the situation as it stands, and you choose to play this societal game with no regard for alternative ways of being, then so be it.
I’d only remind you that you are being attacked by the media on all fronts. If you succeed in any field you will be labeled a “bitch”, or a “hoe”. If you don’t find a male to marry or even to pursue an exclusive dating arrangement with, you will be labeled a “lonely bitch”, and depending on your age, possibly a “lonely bitter bitch”. If you decide to pursue sexual exploits outside of a relationship, you will be regarded as a “hoe”. If you express that you enjoy male companionship without the concomitant emotional or romantic ties, you will be called a “hoe”.
With all that on the table for you from others, I’d simply suggest you not call yourself a “bitch” or a “hoe”. There are plenty of us out here that already are. You might want to protect your own psychological space. Trust me, it is better to be your own friend than your own enemy…
“There are some fine sisters in the Party, Kathy, Marsha, and some others, who were walking in front of a little barber shop, two doors down from the National Headquarters in Berkeley. It’s a shop where a lot of brothers, many of whom have just recently come out of the joint, go to get processes on their heads. Some of these brothers call themselves pimps, and you can figure that some of them, at one point or another, are pushing weed or something — the type of activities that black men are driven to, trying to live. These brothers are playing their old game, saying to each other,’Man, I know I can rap to one of the Panther sisters and take all of those chicks away from all of the cats over there in the Panther office.’
Now, this is an old game that’s related to male chauvinism, to the brother dominating the sister. What that’s related to– as Malcolm X put it one time– is that the President is the biggest pimp in the country. And this pimping the sister on the block is related to the continued existence of a class system. It’s cross-related to the economic problems in the black community where the male is put in to a position where he can’t really be the breadwinner for the home.
So when the sisters walked in front of the little barber shop, I noticed some brothers were huddled among each other, speculating on the Panther sisters. They tried to rap to Marsha and a couple of sisters, and Marsha set them straight.
She said,’Look, brother, you’re getting none of this! You don’t use this on the streets, either. The only way you can get close to me is to get hip to some of the real ideology of the Black Panther Party.’
Then another sister said,’Yeah. If you want to get next to us, why don’t you check out the Red Book?’
Well, those brothers were a little shocked. Then the other brothers inside the place started laughing at the brothers outside. Well, this got off with the brothers. It seemed like the whole barber shop got upset, not in an antagonistic manner, but wanting to know what it was that didn’t allow these sisters to go for that old pimp game. Naturally their speculation was that the sisters made love to us, and therefore they agreed with our rap. What they didn’t understand, is that you can’t define it in terms of what kind of rap is going down, that it was the ideology of the Party that was helping us bring us out of that very same kind of thinking.
So their curiosity was aroused, and the brothers tried rapping with some of the other sisters, and got the same answers. The next thing I knew, all those brothers had come over to the Party headquarters, twenty-five or thirty of them, to buy some Panther literature and some Red Books. They stopped talking and started listening. And the sisters laid the revolutionary ideology right on them.
We had tried for a long time, in a lot of ways to get these brothers motivated, but it took some sisters with a new and respectful way of looking at themselves, to bring these brothers in!” – Bobby Seale, “Seize The Time”
In The Name Of The All Which IS That ALL, The Bounty Giver, And The One That Provides For Even The Undeserving…
“This is the Book;in it is guidance sure without doubt, to those who fear God; Who believe in the Unseen; are steadfast in prayer, and spend out of what We Have provide for them…” -The Holy Qu’ran of Mecca, Surah Baqara Ayats 2 – 3, English translation by Abdyllah Yusuf Ali.
Peace and heavy ethanol libations for the cognitively inebriated and those of easy subconscious sedations.
The term “burning” seems to be the word of the week. As a small congregation of US Christians in Gainesville, Fla gained world-wide attention for their planned “International Burn A Koran Day” hosted by the Terry Jones, a 58 year old former hotel manager and European missionary. His sect, ironically dubbed “The Dove World Outreach Center” has been mentioned in the past for their Crusade-like anti-Islamic behavior such as erecting a sign on the church’s lawn proclaiming that “Islam is of the Devil”, as well as having children of the congregation wearing t-shirts to school with the same wording on the back. Jones, who holds a degree from the California Graduate School of Theology, has also published “Islam is of the Devil”, a 176 page book published by Creation House on August 3, 2010.
A supposed cancellation of the burning at the date and time of this post has been placed in suspended limbo as Jones attempts to negotiate a deal to have the Islamic Center being built two blocks away from ground zero relocated. What the Asylum needs to consider here is that Jones met with Imam Muhammad Musri, the leader of the Islamic Society of Central Florida, in an attempt to stop the actions of a group of Muslims in New York City. Ultimately, that can be akin to a group of Southern Baptists in Texas attempting to get a group of Methodists in Maine to stop the purchase of a new church in their hometown. It seems to be an effort to gain more attention for the small group of US Christians, one with little possibility of actually meeting their desires. Donald Trump of real estate fame, felt he could push the Christians against Islam efforts by buying the building at a 25% premium to whatever the real estate owners paid for their portion of the site; his offer was turned down.
Within the same time frame, the Secretary of Defense Robert Gates also attempted to persuade the Christian leader to cancel his Qu’ranic inferno. The appeal of violent repurcussions while US troops in Afghanistan and US citizens abroad in Islamic territories led the Obama administration to act in such an unprecedented manner.
The entire matter of “burning” and violence as a tool for governmental actions reminds us here at The Asylum of the sinister nature and history of the Christian. As the Obama administration looks over the brutality festering among the people’s of Obama’s residency of Chicago, yet makes it their business to address this possible cause of violence, I am reminded of how Christians also burned another vessel of God’s word – The Black person in America.
Bennie Simmons, June 13, Anadarko, OK. Soaked in coal oil before being set on fire.
Jesse Washington, Waco, Texas, 1916. Mentally handicapped farmhand burned and hanged. This is a postcard that would be sent with pride by Christians.
The murder rates of Blacks in the US increases(In 2005, 41% of all murders in the US where the race was known were Black;in 2006, 42%; in 2008, 48%) and the number of incidences involving police officers climbs, and yet no voice from the Obama Administration. I suppose the lives of others are just that more valuable to the first partially African president. While the chants of the black scholastic community rage out for the black community to get out there and vote if they want change, those who threaten violence seem to be the only ones with the right coins at this particular “change” machine. The burning of Black bodies by the torque and heat of bullets goes unnoticed by this government.
I pray that the Christians of Pastor Terry’s congregation, and the good college trained theologian himself find it in their hearts not to add on to the blindness that separates us in this country. I pray that he doesn’t follow in the footsteps of so many US Christians that have been his guide. Those millions of US Christians that seek to use violence and extreme measures to control the opinions of the human psyche. But more so, I pray that Blacks in this country understand what really motivates.
It is of interest to the residents of the Asylum here that we notice the power that persuades the US government. Peaceful protesters of Oakland berated those who might act out of violence due to their concerns that the trial of Johannes Mehserle, convicted of involuntary manslaughter for the Oscar Grant slaying, had been unjust. Gates sensed no need to address the court that they might want to consider the repercussions. Possibly, he sensed that no repercussions would occur. Maybe if the Black Community threatened to act in violence, the same sort of violence used in the growing impoverished communities throughout the United States of America, the “first Black President” might sense a need to act on the historical element of his position. As troops in Afghanistan and US citizens abroad in Muslim countries were considered as a reason for the Secretary of Defense to address Jones in this incident, the people’s of the Black community are not considered as the list of murders at the hands of police continue to rise. Jones is now in the position to negotiate, not because he “got out the vote”, but because he created an environment in which violence would be meted out.
Regardless of what occurs inside the black community, if you are not black then your degree of disdain for blacks and stereotypical approach to dealing with people is questionable. There is a huge difference between a black person saying “nigga” and Mel Gibson saying,”nigger”. Huge difference.
I understand the discussion regarding American Blacks and certain unacceptable behavior patterns. When I hear Dead Prez say “nigga”, I understand what they are discussing. When Mel Gibson says,”nigger”, within a particular context, I understand what is being stated. Not that Mel Gibson is far from an intoxicated rant, but because the state of affairs between American Blacks and white americans is so strained. I can forgive Mel for his drunken disposition, but I can only alert my people to the fact that his statements are a reflection of the image that has been historically pressed into this society’s psyche regarding Black males.
Incidentally, 52% of all rapes in the US are perpetuated by white men.
We all have our faults, and we all should be corrected when at fault.
I’ve been thinking a lot today about unity. Mainly organizations and working with others. I find that I can work with others to a degree. It is like the minute we start getting too personal then it happens. And in the back of mind I’m playing this video of all the times I’ve had to deal with personalities that I clashed with. As the type of person that seems to get his kindness taking for granted, I have to constantly be on the watch for people who like to put boxes around you. Which I tend to believe is very normal, actually. Humans need a high level of repetition to feel comfortable, further we are socialized to be competitive. That creates a situation where people want to size you up, mentally comparing you to people that they have met in the past in order feel a sense of balance. Which is all fine and dandy, but when it comes to manipulation, my tolerance is real low.
Malcolm X states that he looked at Elijah Muhammad as a father. He states that he felt betrayed. Sometimes I revisit that thought as I enter into relationships with people. I once spoke with a brother that discussed leading and following with me. Many feel in order to be a good leader; you have to be a good follower. I tend to agree, however, I also notice that most people telling others that are in the leadership position, and aren’t even trying to follow half of their own tenets. My acquaintance simply related to me that he had reached the point where he simply didn’t want to be harnessed anymore. To “harness” means, “to tie together”. And I understood exactly what he meant. It is quite appropriate to have a vision, and to even seek out those to assist you in carrying that out, as I discuss in my eBook, The Better You. Someone is willing to assist you in bearing that load. I am not as aggressive in my leadership, more of a magnet than a gun, so I have a difficult time accepting aggressive leadership and demands on my time. I dislike being taken for granted, and I don’t like having my identity nullified by what other feel I ought to be doing. Working a job is one thing, pay me to do a service, I’ll do it. At the end of the day, I go home. I don’t like corporate bodies. I’m not trying to be a part of your “professional family” that I can be fired from. I would rather export my expertise, pick up my money, and bid you a fair ado.
I feel the same way with unity. I’d rather say solidarity, but we can interchange them as this thought progresses. I don’t have to believe like you to be working on the same causes as you. I don’t have to wear all black to feel a part of the pro-black movement. In fact, let’s discuss that. I am not black by virtue of anything other than the trading of bodies that occurred during the birth of this nation. The whole notion of race for me is ambiguous, but I understand the social pressure. If you have whites who will toss my application away because it says “black”, then I need to be working with other blacks. In order to ward off the economic and social ills of white power, I am forced to align myself with those who I’ve been categorized with. Although, I strongly believe that in order for a group of people to stay bonded, they should share some cultural norms and ideological percepts, as we say in dominoes…mine don’t fit. And for the most part, I’d rather not have anyone force their beliefs on me, no matter what. Certain sacrifices I can no longer afford.
I am a pretty bright guy. I don’t have to speak to shine. My gifts don’t require me to play in any popularity contest. My personality doesn’t need any extra wattage. What I have seen in the few black organizations I have been a part of, are these very things. I’ve watched people run out of meetings screaming that we need to do this and do that, and upon further reflection, I came to understand that to mean, “since I’m only good at this particular act, it is the most important one–thus you should follow me!!” I’ve heard the whispers in the pews of elder members, “They think they white…” Let me take a moment with that one.
This whole notion of a “real” black person has saturated and in my opinion, tainted the very fabric of every movement it has birthed. What I have found is that most don’t want unity or solidarity of purpose, they want control. In that same vein, those that wish to label you as not being “black” enough, or the new one that has cropped up, you are “too black”, seek to control you as well. In a world of transparency by surveillance, it is often difficult to for one to express their self honestly, because everyone either wishes to put you in a box, or assassinate your character. That is not something I’m always comfortable with.
I enjoy expressing myself a bit too much for the normal crowd. I don’t want you in my business, mainly because I don’t need your judgments. You can barely think without regret, what makes me think I’ll get a good hearing in your courtroom? Many American Blacks are swept away by this notion of white unity. There really was none though. There were blacks and there were poor whites that needed to be harnessed by rich whites. This is your unity. You had landowners that had prospered and no longer wished to be taxed by England. Grand discussions and noble ideas were written in timeless documents, but the spirit was superficial. Unfortunately, for me, symbolic gestures are like masturbation. I say that this is unfortunate for me, because like Obama, you realize real quick how important symbolism means to most of the population of earth. There are way more metaphysicians than scientists. More “healers” than doctors.
Too many con artists and not enough truly skilled at the art of earning and deserving our confidence…
I have really grown in so many different directions over the past few years.(Looking at my stomach, seems like in more ways than one. Better start hitting that gym, again.)
But jokes aside, I’ve noticed a certain slant in my thinking these days that I’ve called others “sell out” and “elitist” for having in my younger thinking. (Well, after a quick scan, it wasn’t that long ago, but stay with me.) I’m still a supporter of the idea of separation, and I’m still hopeful about pan-Afrikan ideals beyond the superficial dashiki tossed over a polo shirt and a few KiSwahili terms tossed about. I just don’t want to be in this box any longer. Granted, I don’t play well with the other grown children, but I refuse to fall into these cultural identifiers that I have really never been into. I give enough credence to my hypermasculine childhood and whatever ghosts I’ll probably never shake that came from that. But where is the point in your life where conformity ends, you begin? You know what I’m talking about(I did it a damn gin!!)
I am not talking about behaving in ways that make you feel as though you have risen above the class standards either. I’m discussing complete idiosyncratic expressions without the 3000 behind it though. I can always come back to where I am from. I don’t even know if I want to though. Is that “selling out”? Why is it? I’m no bible thumper, I am partially atheist, but I think the quote from in the book Bible is fitting here,”There is no Prophet without honour except in his own country, and among his own relatives, and in his own home.”
Now, am I a “prophet”? I don’t fucking know. Is there a class I have to take to get certified for that? Oh, let me not offend the spiritualist before I curse out the “Goddess” again. Oh, and let me not offend my “black nationalist” brethren, I realize I don’t need the “white man’s” certification for everything. Everyone needs to exercise some experience building. Nothing insular is beautiful. Look at your heart. Not your damn “astral” heart!! I mean the one that is beating inside you. The one that is actually keeping you alive. The one that doesn’t need your “ego”, doesn’t need that “you”, or “I”, conscious functionality. You can’t. YOU CAN’T LOOK AT YOUR OWN HEART. It is insular. I lived like that.
Sometimes you have to explore new horizons. I’ll always be me. You know(GOT DAMN IT!!)? I’m like Jay-Z in some ways, I’ll probably never change. I’m at peace with that. But I’d like to get outside of the ideological and cultural paradigms that have kept me in prison long after I walked away from that hell you all call “paying dues to society”(What a fucking joke!!). But what makes those behaviors “black”? Everything I hate about myself, others call “acceptable”. My cousin seems to think my habits make me tough. He boasts about my past life as if that shit won me an oscar(Oh, fuck!! No, you dashiki by Ralph Lauren wearing fucker, I don’t think every white socially applauded construct is needed to make me feel confident…). And I often have to remind him, to one, fucking “grow up”(As in maturity, no one but the incredibly shrinking woman can grow down), and two, hell, that wasn’t me any damn way.
This culture of hypermasculinity. It is real. I beg those that argue with me to come down on 25th and State in E. St. Louis and take a walk with me. I am sure the experiment will prove my hypothesis.
We have lost that love for intellectualism. We want “Tupac with a degree”. Let me tell you something, “Tupac with a degree” is as broke as a car that only drives in reverse, and spent most of his time in college sleeping in the library hoping he could write five papers in one night. Don’t belittle the efforts of the scholar because undergrad wasn’t shit. That BA or BS doesn’t qualify much in my humble but highly passionate opinion. I walked in class and noticed those who didn’t say much, and those who were still high from the last night. I know how easy it is to “slide” through classes. I was doing 18 credit hours a semester, so I know who was in the library every night and every morning, and I know who was on the yard asking to see whose paper. Even at the university level many of us just don’t have a respect for learning.
Academic or not.
I was in a discussion with this doctor I really shouldn’t be lusting after, but sorry, intelligent women make my blood vessels run to the tip of my penis like black militants running to help a white girl out of her car in the sixties(alright, old joke, couldn’t help myself). The discussion surrounded her feelings about “street knowledge”. Now, she’s a sister that grew up in middle class US and didn’t do the “date a thug” thing, so her term “street knowledge” is in reference to black militant rhetoric. And I was sort of taken aback. I am not sure if she knows my history, and so I asked her, and her response was to the effect of, black people who accept any form of information without doing research have been pimped. Now after she said that I envisioned my tongue touching every nerve on the top of her clit for like five hours, but instead I simply agreed.
We got bonded. We got attached to the rhetorical. We figured out ways to survive without knowledge so long that it became a joke. I respect all the brothers and sisters who are coming to the US in pursuit of higher education. I fear that American Blacks will be thrust into a lower class permanence such as the “untouchables” of India. And that is why I have to get out of this damn box.
I’ve tried everything. I’ve seen it your way. I’ve done the “black” thing so long I’ve become a fucking parrot, YOU KNOW(alright, I can understand that)? How many people are there out there like me? How many children? Whose son is about to make the same insane choices I made trying to adapt to a culture that is insane to begin with? I didn’t go to college to become a musician, I went because I like making lights flash on this blinking box. Then I said, hey, I also like writing things on this blinking box. And now…I want to know how our brains started blinking, and how it blinks, and why it blinks.
Hell, I’ve done what most said I couldn’t my whole life, why can’t I? Ain’t that BLACK?
This is for Aiyana. We all put together our thoughts in a very quick manner in order to explain in our way our pain for this travesty. Much of what you read will not be edited. We feel that the raw energy needed to deal with this situation deserves our naked souls..
I have two daughters… 11 and 4 years old… they wear the same types of barrettes Aiyana Jones wore… I can’t look at her face without seeing my own children’s faces. I look at my husband and think about Aiyana’s father lying face down in his dyeing daughters’ blood. Then I think…How the fuck did we get to this place? How did we get to a place where Aiyana Jones’ name is NOT the top story on the news, the number one trending topic on twitter, on talk shows…? Why is this story NOT Breaking News on a 24 hour news cycle like the Amber alerts that literally stop time when a little white child goes missing? What else is there to talk about?
The media & police are united…they are not negligent in their delivery…the officer’s gun “went off”… it “went off” and a child is dead…but we have people discussing the nuances of where the child was sleeping, the type of neighborhood she lived in, the danger the police were potentially going into. At what point does a sleeping 7year old child present a threat to law enforcement…no amount of rationalization can justify this child’s death at the hands of the people who are hired to protect and serve. And no amount of rationalization can justify why the voices that have the most “influence” in the Black community … entertainers, athletes, politicians… have been completely silent either!!
Who is to blame? I feel responsible for this child’s death…we are ALL responsible for not policing ourselves, or communities…allowing our circumstances to victimize us. We’ve grown afraid of each other…the village no longer exists. We HAVE to do better. THEY don’t care about us…we have to care about US enough to be moved to action…to STOP it. We KNOW who shot Aiyana Jones… but we all had a hand in it…
To wake up this morning to more news
about #Aiyana Jones, the 7 year old girl
who was tragically and senselessly
murdered by men who were supposed to
serve and protect her broke my heart.
Her death should break all our hearts.
A little girl who could have grown up to
be anything – full of promise and
potential – slain by cops who got
trigger happy because there were reality
show cameras focused on them.
Who serves a warrant on a house where
children and elderly persons live by
throwing a flash grenade in a window?
Reports have even surfaced of toys in
the yard and neighbours who told LEO
(Law Enforcement Officers) that children
lived inside. To add insult to injury,
the suspect was not even apprehended at
the same apartment in which little
Aiyana and her family lived.
Many subjects and opinions have come to
light over today: Racism, police
brutality, poverty, living in urban
areas, and more; But my thought lies
with [something I’m familiar with]
Social Media. During the Iran Elections
(just rock with me for a second), when
the riots and violence started – it was
less than a day before the number one
topic on Twitter (most likely the
longest running political trending
topic) was #IranElection. Soon to
follow was #MSMFail (Mainstream Media
Fail) also #Mousavi and #CNNFail were
top ranking as well. In fact, the
entire TT list – all 10 topics – at one
point referenced the Iran Elections.
Major news houses all over the world
were getting their news from Twitter!
Not reinforcing already known news, but
we [Tweeters!] were updating the world
on the Iran Election. Quickly,
Succinctly, and Clearly. Even when dis-
(and mis)information came up, the
solidarity of people who understand the
gift of the internet quickly squashed
I say all that to reiterate my point:
If it was done once, it can be done
again. #Aiyana deserves justice and
attention. The poor in America who are
brutalized every day by LEO deserve
justice and attention. The tense racial
situation in this country deserves
attention. The LEO who forgot the
people that they serve because they were
too busy posturing for reality
television deserve attention and
ostracizing. We deserve to stand up and
say “I will not live in a police state.
I will not watch my children be murdered
by ignorant police officers. I will not
watch my country go up in flames while
people look on as if it were a movie –
I am, in my heart, disappointed and
angry. Where is President Obama to
speak on this? Where is Cornel West?
Where is Tavis Smiley? Where is the
honorable Minister Farrakhan? Where are
our black leaders to speak out and put
#Aiyana first instead of more posturing?
Where are the voices? Where is the
cacophony of screams for justice? They
are not here.
They aren’t here. But we are. #Aiyana
From @Zqclay““Like the boys in blue, when they come through with them boots
And they kickin down the door, and they don’t care who they shoot
But we do care who they shoot, so we do what we must do.”
– Andre 3000
Who is Aiyana Jones?
My little sister. My cousin. My future niece. My future granddaughter. She is…me.
Police malfeasance in regards to the underclass is nothing new. It’s as clichéd as a Memorial Day cookout. If excessive force is systemic, and the system has persisted for over a century, then what is a person to feel? It’s obvious that America has found a way to live without a certain percentage of Americans.
These “excess Americans” seem to be little than enemies of war and cannon fodder for cops and thugs, who both carry out the same agenda of black marginalization.
But we do care who they shoot. So we do what we must do.
Hopeless and utter despair is what I’m thwarting as I attempt to find the balance between outrage and calm, methodical and effective action. Indifference and apathy from grown men and women whose daughters and nieces and cousins look just like the victim is as confounding as the implausible details of the story.
Who is Aiyana Jones?
A girl who loved Disney like any other black girl in America. A girl who was couldn’t even sleep in the comfort of a bed for whatever reason. A girl who won’t graduate from elementary school. Or college. Get her driver’s license. Go to the prom. Get the steppin’ out of Detroit. Who knows her potential?
Who is Aiyana Jones?
Her truncated life yields more questions than answers. If we fail to vet those questions in any form whatsoever, we’ve failed her. We’ve failed her predecessors. And we’ll continue to fail others like her who’ll fall victim to the discharge of the “protectors and servers” of their communities.
Who is Aiyana Jones?
A reminder to tell every little girl I encounter that she is valued, loved and protected.
A reminder that a group united can enact real change.
A reminder that despite the frequent disregard of minorities’ civil liberties, there is still resiliency within the group affected.
A reminder that we must NOT tolerate nonsense around our babies.
A reminder that our inactions have profound consequences on our loved ones.
My perception of Aiyana Jones currently resides in the abstract, because the prevalence of questions as opposed to answers. But this I can state with certainty:
She is not collateral damage. She is not their throwaway. She is not a cause. She is not a footnote.
Who is Aiyana Jones? More than a rhetorical question.
Rest in Power baby girl. We do care who they shoot.
I am five long years past 18 on this day, and only just coming to reach a certain threshold into adulthood. For me, at least, it is signified as a certain form of accountability. In my twenty-three years, I have to recognize what thinking and what actions and what words I express and how they affect the world all around me. For me – at Least – I feel I have to step up and realize what I give power to.. What I love.. What I hate.. And how the society in which I partake (re)acts. For me, I have to See exactly what lines in the sand I accept.. Who’s on what side.. and who is harmed in that crossfire. As a man falling head-first into adulthood, I have to feel the particle of innocence that died within me with Aiyana Jones.
A very wise man said in response to this tragedy that it always takes something so extreme and tragic and other-worldly cruel to See, and to catapult ourSelves into change.. The remorse I feel today brings me to ask only “why?” Why does it take a 7 year-old girl being shot and killed in her own home (by the men and women we pay out of our very pockets to protect and serve her) for everyone’s consciousness to rise? Why do we have to witness suffering so dramatic to feel compassion for a father and a family that, too, are asking themselves “Why” this has come to pass? Why only after imagining (to the best of one’s ability) how many things this family would have done differently, how many bullets they would have jumped in front of, how many dollars and hours they’d have spent – just to save their little girl – are we capable of such Awareness?
In every such instance of this tragedy – and not to take from this One, but there are Many – we feel a pain that any human must feel. I am no religious man, but I do Believe in cause and effect. Our callousness, our heartlessness, our lack of compassion for those unfamiliar to us – brings upon the entire World such a loss. Such a needless cause… And such a needless effect. I want everyone to think on this, as I am and shall continue to think on it until I, mySelf, change: Who could you possibly hate So much that you’d want death to befall not him, but his Seven Year-Old Daughter? As I see it, whether I like it or not, this is a judgment made on our “thinking” and our perceptions.
The Babies are Dying for Our Sins.
The hopes of our better tomorrow are being lost to yesterday’s wars amongst men of which they are not even wholly Aware. Again, I want you to think on this. And I want this thought to come not through the veil of pain and anger that we all most-assuredly feel. I want this thought to come not in calculation for some sort of revenge.. As if this poor child could Be avenged. No, this thinking need not be set above the flames of our passions, but the icy silence of our souls. I want this thinking to bring you resolve and Understanding. Through such thinking, I pray you find it in you to Adapt and Grow and Change. For to save the innocent (the children), we accountable (the Elders) must See what cycles we continue. We, each and every last individual, must see within us all that we cause. YourSelf, MySelf, him- and herSelf, must find the courage within us, One by One, to impress upon our own respective Universes a Cause that will produce a much greater, more inspiring, more captivating, and less destructive Effect. If not for your Self, then for every Aiyana hereafter.
Because every single step you make reverberates in the lives of every other.. and we need not wait for such a gut-wrenching imprint on our very souls to realize how it affects the youth.
RIP Aiyana Jones.
ONE Day there will be no more Aiyana Jones….
TOO Many of our children are walking murdered…. There Dreams Have been killed by the darkness of their environment.
THREE Days ago no one was outraged… In three days will you still be?
FOR the sake of our children… Do Better
FIVE Fingers on a hand and it only took One on a trigger to break the hearts of millions..
SIX SIX SICKens me to my stomach to imagine how different Aiyana life would have been if men like the suspect were ostracized instead of embraced…
Seven years of life is not long enough
Seven years of life is not long enough
Seven years of life is not long enough
Seven years of life is not long enough
Seven years of life is not long enough
Seven years of life is not long enough
Seven years of life ended with a flash bomb…
Aiyana is too close to mine…
This isn’t even a hard one. The police were wrong, period. The way they “went in”, I’m SURE, was fueled by them losing one of their own in the recent days. Is this a new instance though? Nope. Should the child’s death be brought to “justice”? Of course. Will this happen? Doubtful. Does it ever? Rarely. Now. What CAN we change and/or control? Back in the days when cops were snatching school boys up and beating them for “fitting the description”, chances are, what the “offense” was wasn’t even a real crime in the first place. People just trying to live. No records, no reason for suspicion, just going to work. What have we now? Are some still just minding their business and still harassed? Of course. Is this often the case now? Of course not. We now take pride in a lifestyle that CONSTANTLY straddles the fence of legal and illegal. The cops haven’t changed, we have. Can we change the cops? Of course not. Can we change ourselves. YES WE CAN. We need to focus on what we can change. Who knows, maybe a people that offer no PROUD examples of ridiculous behavior will be taken more seriously at the table. People have it twisted, we’re definitely at the table…with no manners. The passion that should be behind the remembrance of Aiyana is being misplaced. Somebody is outside acting a fool RIGHT damn now, and their elders are ignoring it. “Who’s gon’ check them, boo?”…me damnit. You should too. If we don’t, the blood is on our hands as well. Yup. Mathematics.
– a donor
When I read the story of Aiyana Jones, I was brought back to a place of uneasiness and then thought how her father’s life has been changed forever. Aiyana’s birthday, Christmas or even Easter -the holiday where the good lord and savior’s resurrection is celebrated- didn’t come to mind. But I remembered quality family times as a child, oddly enough, on Halloween. It was one we all looked forward to. It so happens that my favorite uncle’s birthday is October 31st, which has meant a party every year in addition to America’s favorite tricks and treats. I remembered how my Father would spend the week before the party with me and my older brother looking for costumes and how much fun it was. There was a joy that seemed to radiate from him knowing that it was times such as these he would remember forever. He even Allowed us to get a candy bar when we checked out after finally finding something we all agreed on. It was him and his boys out spending time together while my mom was at home relaxing for a change. These are times only he and the two of us will remember so vividly. we would arrive at the party and laugh with love at each other costumes. My brother and I always had the best ones.
The best thing about the party was at one point, my aunt, my godmother actually, would gather all the cousins together and take us around the neighborhood to go trick-or-treating: It was free candy, I was with my family and to top it off I was able to be Spider man, suit and all. On this day even my Evangelist aunt would come and commune with the heathens who celebrated such a holiday.
Everyone enjoyed each other. It was a time for us to talk about school, show each other the latest dances and share secrets we had been holding tightly. Once things died down we would say our goodbyes and load into our cars one by one hugging and waving as we drove away. I would often fall asleep on my brothers shoulder and by the end of the ride my dad would have to wake us both up.
We were once in a car accident where a drunk driver rear ended us. Long story short my leg was broken. I remembered my Father jumped out of the car and instantly started cursing before the man could even open his car door. “What the fuck is wrong with you man?! Do you know I have my children in the car?!” he yelled while unbuttoning his sleeves. I tried to move to get a better view but was paralyzed and instantly screamed from the pain that came over me when I applied pressure to my leg. My Father was back at the car leaning over me before I could take another breath. “You okay lil man? What hurts you?” he asked me with all the concern a parent could have for their child. My Mother instructed my Father to call the police and finish talking to the man, who at this point was leaning on the car and had started crying and apologizing, while she attended to me.
“Look man you could have killed my family, my children!” he said. I thought how it was no longer, in that moment, at all about my mother but about myself and my sibling. “Mother baby, fathers maybe” the old saying goes, expressing how the Mother has a special bond in knowing that the child is hers beyond any shadow of doubt. But there’s something to be said about a Father who is protective of his child, as all fathers should be. It is even more special for a Black Man who is a Father and present in his or any child’s life. A certain Bell of Celebration rings knowing we are there, even if only in the shadows, according to statistics.
The police arrived and if this is of any surprise they actually treated my Father as if he was in the wrong. I should mention the drunk driver was white and this was in New Orleans. Even though this was over 15years ago to this day two things make me upset and uneasy: drunk drivers and police officers.
There has been countless times where police officers have wrongly offended, beaten and accused black men of the craziest crimes and at this point cannot afford teach his children that police are there to protect them. When everyday reality shows them they are really put out there for their own demise. Whether on the Streets or even sleeping after having a fun filled day, a child knows from seeing how their parents are treated, they are never safe in today’s society. This story has bulls eyed me in a spot I thought most of America would have been hit in as well. We all have children or nieces or nephews whom we love dearly, yet it seems as if this story and case isn’t going anywhere but to the land of #oldtrendingtwittertopics.
I felt the need to ask: Is there an obligation that we as adults have to children? Is there an obligation that all parents have to think of the child, regardless of whose it is, first?
Is it okay when the dealer on the corner shoots a stray bullet and it hits our children? Do we not go after him with torches and pitchforks? Should we not go after careless police officers, who already don’t respect us as a race, with that same vengeance? Or do we only react when “tragic mistakes” take the life of a Caucasian, Jewish or Asian family’s child?
The holiday these Officers of Integrity, Professionalism and Courtesy seem to be celebrating needs to come to an end. The Laziness, Disrespect and treatment of Disregard is costing the Black Community its future. Soon we will be celebrating “the day of the dead” more than the opposed, “our savior’s birth.” How long can this go on for Christ’s sake?
As a people, we have suffered through slavery, economic disadvantages, substandard living environments, strategic criminal opportunities, wrongful imprisonment, aggression from law enforcement and unjust sentences which have been plaguing our communities for centuries. We have tolerated these disadvantages as we have continually pursued freedom from all bondages that have diminished our faith in each other as well as murdered our pride in our race. When we analyze these situations, we cannot help but conclude that we are being held down by design, as we have the ability to access our history and our progress only to clearly recognize the unfathomable energy that has gone into the demise of the African race.
We have been systematically programmed to hate one another by hating ourselves. The bias and prejudice that we have experienced as a people has caused some of us to unconsciously detest our skin color and history, as many of us are not only ignorant to our true history, but have no desire to be informed. These subconscious positions that we have taken against our existence have spiraled out of control and we are now beyond victims, we are headed towards extinction if this cycle continues.
The only hope that we have left is to educate and restore pride into our children concerning their real history and to infuse within their spirits an interest in to the true knowledge of self. Many generations have passed these dysfunctional attributes down to their descendants, but as consciousness and the knowledge of self is at a season of refinement, we have determined to provide those who are younger than us with the information necessary to restore us to the original place in which we have unseemingly fallen from. Our future release from oppression is directly connected to our present decision to enlighten the minds of our youth in this generation so that they in turn can prepare the generations to come.
Aiyanna Stanley Jones was a jewel who was removed from having the opportunity to contribute to the future success of our people. She was viciously killed while asleep on the couch in her home and had no control or opportunity to grow into the woman who she was predestined to be. Her future has been stolen from her due to the carelessness, insecurity and needless aggression of individuals who took an oath to protect and to serve her and her community. At the age of 7 years old, she was removed from delivering a significant contribution to this world which had the potential of contributing to the well being, restoration and future of our people. Her life was taken as a direct result of the spiraling abuse that has been ensued against our people which has not been corrected, diverted or stopped on any level within our cities, states and nation. There is no justification that can be provided for the blatant, vicious attack against this beautiful little girl and we are insulted as well as outraged at the attempt to do so.
Aiyanna Stanley Jones was undeserving of being murdered in this tragedy, yet she is hailed as a hero to our people and will be a constant thorn in the side of the oppressors as we who remain will ensure that her name is stuck to this mission of freedom and truth. Her life was sacrificed on our behalf to remind us of the horrible agenda that has been implemented against our people and to intensify the fire that we carry to ensure that our future generations are positioned as rulers and not as worthless nationalists in a country that has diminished our value. We are forever indebted to Aiyana Stanley Jones and will vindicate her life by taking the pain of her loss and enlightening as many of our people, both children and adults to the truths of our ancestors, our purpose and our God. What the enemy has meant for evil against our people once again, we will successfully apply to the good of our future by studying, clarifying and embracing our past.
Rest In Peace Aiyana. Your life will not be in vain.
Forgive us, Bless-ed one
For not shielding you from the evil
That cloaked you in your peace
While you sleep,
Search For the strength
to mourn you.
For the indignation
That will make this time
The last time
we let this happen.
How could you have known
The world was out to get you?
You never grew to know
How much anger is in our bellies.
No evil can befall you now
But we will be OK
your heart did not conform to this World
Like we allowed ours to do.
We pray you can forgive us.
We promise to do better.
We will grow forward
And forever Love you.
Here I lay in my princess covers, sleeping soundly. Dreaming. Letting my hopes paint a picture in my head. Maybe one day I can be the first woman president. Maybe I can be a doctor and save someone’s life if they get sick. Or maybe I can be a nanny, work at a daycare—taking care of others’ kids. I love children. I could tuck them in when they take their naps, just like Daddy does every night.
Today was a good day. Granny made my favorite dinner and we even played dolls together. She always tells me how cute I dress up mine. I hope I can play again with her tomorrow, after I get out of school.
If only Aiyana would have got that opportunity.
If only she would have got to see the sunrise.
A bullet does have a name–this one was Aiyana Jones.
As she slept her dreams, hopes, aspiration were robbed by a police and his best friend—a gun. She would never awake again. She would never get to feel her grandmother’s warm caressing hugs. She would never get to play with her best friend at her school the next day on the monkey bars, racing each other on the slide, and skipping along the blacktop. She would never feel her Dad tuck her in again. And her family would never see her light in her smile—the power of an innocent child. She was gone—forever.
The media has attempted to paint a picture in our head that it was an “accident” and the officer which was fighting with the grandmother and somehow, someway the gun mysteriously went off in the direction of the sleeping child.
Evidence goes on to show—ON CAMERA—that shots were actually shot from the outside porch. So this makes me wonder just how much the police actually cared about whom they hit. Especially, since they were warned several times by neighbors that there were children inside.
Yes, apparently they were there for a good reason—to get a suspect in another homicide of a 17-year-old-boy. But the simple fact that there is already cameras of an A&E channel should be reason enough to question what’s going on in this area. There has to be some kind of problem for them to be drawn to this Detroit.
This makes me think of “Set it Off “in the beginning and the movie that was based on a true story—“American Violet” with the police using their power TOO much and not caring about their citizens because of two things. RACE AND CLASS.
I doubt a raid would be going on in a rich area of the United States whether they thought a person killed a 17-year-old or not. Since when are the police SO concerned with one homicide of a teenage boy that they “raid” a house for the suspect with guns and such? I know a lot of people that have died in my community where the police had good leads for suspect, and never have they raided that suspect’s house, especially to the degree that it is necessary to throw a flash grenade and shoot from OUTSIDE of the house.
This whole story is fishy if you ask me. And should not only be a wake up to the black community, but to the rest of the world on the direct attack of the people who hold this country together—the working class.
I want to know when some leaders are going to get involved and question our government and people who are supposed to “protect and serve” EVERY individual in the United States of America, and not just the RICH—the rich white who had a 500 year head start to make it in this world as opposed to the “minorities”. The minorities who are still enslaved in the system, underrepresented, and lied to constantly by the media.
Don’t let Aiyana be the first of many before you WAKE UP. Something needs to be done so things like this don’t happen again. It was bad enough for Rodney King to be directly attacked by the police, but taking the life of a sweet child “by accident” with a shot from the outside when you were fully aware there was children is nothing but hatred. Open your eyes.
Spread the word.
Don’t accept this as okay. Create a change.
a 7 year old child was taken from us because of blatant disregard for black life by the police. i am sad, enraged and exhausted. However as we all well know the white supremacy police brutality playbook is well known. Our most viable and effective counter strategies have been laid out in detail. I plead w/ my brothers and sisters for proper execution.
But I want to talk to Aiyana. Aiyana i want you to know that many of your brothers and sisters that you may or may not have known that you had are holding you very close to their hearts right now. Please understand we are seeking justice for you and as you are being taken to the ancestors know that you will be safe and wont be lonely. Everything will be fine. Transition well little sister. We will be with you son. Ase
MY TRUTH- REST IN JUSTICE PRINCESS AIYANA: As I went through my day, my heart ached and I was saddened for the fallen martyr “Princess” Aiyana Jones. As I went through my day I felt gut wrenching, heart twisting pain that I’m sure was channeled from an ancestor on the day her child was sold away. And as I looked at my own children ages 6, 4, and 2, I couldn’t help but think about the Jones family.
I decided to break this tragic news to my children during our evening discussion, as they prepared for bed an hour ago. You see, I am a parent that KNOWS it’s critical to keep children abreast of news and aware of the struggle. I warned them that I had something sad to share before I summarized the MSNBC report, and presented the now famous image of Princess Aiyana standing in front of two animated princesses. My two oldest children immediately began linking this injustice to the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. They asked me “how” and “why”…and I told them, the same racism that fueled slavery and the “treatment during Dr. King’s times” never died.
I told them I was preparing to write this piece about Princess Aiyana, and they each asked if they could write a letter to her. So these are the letters Donovan and Daymion dictated to me on 5/17/10 at 8:45pm. When you read them you will see why I wept as I hugged them extra tight:
Dear Little Aiyana:
You are so smart. I just want to cry at what the police did to you. You are cute. You are the greatest little girl.
Donovan (6 years old)
P.S. You look just like Darielle in my class.
I just want to say you’re so great at math. I just want to cry with blinds [sic]. I just wish you could stay alive and they didn’t shoot and kill you. I want you to be alive forever and ever and ever. I just want to give you a flower today.
Daymion (4 years old)
Where should I start¿?
I arose to my faux wood shaded walls
Window open…listening as the water falls
From the sky, rolling on cloulds like light blue & white cheeks
6:30 am…awake from the nights sleep
As the sun makes its way over the mountains into the valley that I reside
The dusk turns to dawn…and it seems as the night cried
As the gray overcast sets the tone of the broken hearted
All Black attire is a reminder of the recent departed
Brown skin, so young, not even half of my cousins age
Intellegent mind set…an unwritten book with unfinished pages
Who knows where to put the blame¿?
Blue & Red lights…a flash bang
Altercation ends with a slug in a girls brain
Serve & Protect¿?
Get served…protect they own assets
Or better yet…lack of Re-Spect
Even heard the white coats came quick with the hospital rush
Pronounced DOA…fuck autotune…I have bigger issues than that
Realizing that its a crime to be black…
Punishable by death it seems
Even moving alil white can get one life in pursuit of green
Innocent child victims…
Funeral arrangements are always fucked up
Asking a mother which color casket to pick from
Then you can watch the family nut up
Reflecting on the occurence that caused the current crisis
How carelessness has taken the color from out her iris
And its damn near on a daily you hear about this shyt
Until it hits home…
Then you’ll be fed up with this bullshyt!!!
From Coach @BilalSankofa
LIFES greatest fear is that when she dies
that that is HER will become NOTHING.
A Manifest ZERO.
Sadly, Death is the HERU that springs life into existence.
We’ve been taught that we evolved from ZERO
that when we die we will return to ZERO
There in that thought LIES our problem
Subconsciously we were filled with the FEAR of being reduced to a ZERO
Oh but the Circle of Life
The Circle of Life
But NOW take a moment & think deepl, ponder, toil over & reflect over all that that is YOU.
What goes around comes around.
Grandma LIVES in YOU!
Grandpa LIVES in YOU!
All YOUR grandparents dated back to FOREVER are ALIVE through and In YOU!!
They are ALIVE but you perceive it not.
If we ask the sound of sound
The drummers kick & snare
The rhythm of the strings on the bass
The melodies tinkling over the keys of the key board
If we asked all of them & listened deeply
SOUND would reply: I come from nowhere; I have ALWAYS been here waiting for the right conditions to process me into the NOW!
When conditions are sufficient, we manifest
When conditions are no longer sufficient, we no longer manifest.
It does not mean that we no longer exist- but like the sound of sound, without the proper instrument we do not manifest.
All that we are depends on causes & conditions.
All that has existed before-exists now & all that will ever exist in the future are all connected.
If a baby does not make it to full term
We must not mourn for too long for WE KNOW that there was not sufficient causes & conditions to fully bloom at that time, She will COME AGAIN.
Everything done in the dark will soon come to light.
We must always remember the knowledge of this ZERO is the Circle of Life
This 360 Degree Circle of Life
The Ying & Yang
The wisdom of the WE
The OURS goes on forever.
Don’t fall off into the darkness of confusion for that will only be a 180, a complete about face, an incomplete journey traveled halfway, a half circle.
Family, it all lives in this metaphorical ZERO
This Circle of Life.
KNOW then, that there is NO BIRTH!
There is NO DEATH!
There is no COMING nor GOING!
There is neither SAME nor DIFFERENT!
There is NO BEGINNING!
There is NO ENDING!
IT IS THAT IT IS!
Princess Aiyana Jones Transitioned so that we may learn HOW TO LIVE.
Mourn OUR DEATH but REJOICE in her giving all of us LIFE & Returning to FOREVER.
Nkonso Nkonso: We are forever linked like links in a chain.
Coach Bilal Sankofa
They call them flash
Took her breath
Designed to paralyze by fear.
Has spilled onto the streets.
In a flash.
There is something about Aiyana Jones. There is this feeling, this motivation, this energy circulating around this situation. People know and understand that she is not the first to be murdered in Babylon by terrorists in uniforms given authority sanctioned by the state – more commonly referred to as ‘police’ [see Sean Bell, Oscar Grant…Jerean Baker]. And somewhere in the deep recesses of our mind, no matter how it hurts, we know that she will probably not be the last…
So what is it about this beautiful, black, 7 year old princess named Aiyana Jones? What we feel is bigger than Aiyana. Make no mistake, this is ABOUT Aiyana, but it is BIGGER than Aiyana.
It is what she represents: Countless, unknown/un-named children being murdered in malicious fashion by police (and niggas alike). Her death represents the vicious disregard for black life, the flagrant nonchalance toward innocence.
She is the sleeping giant – look what they did, look what we’ve allowed, look at where we must go.
Her murder is reality, but the manner in which she was murdered is symbolic – colonialism, slavery, jim crow, racism, self hatred can all be found in the depths of this story. So what is it about Aiyana Jones…she’s is us; ourselves, our daughters, our sisters, our nieces, our cousins, our generation, our people. BIGGER.
Aiyana Jones – In Lak Esh [You Are My Other Me]. And that is where this energy emerges. We know, whether consciously or not, that Aiyana is who we are.
There is no justice for Aiyana Jones, just as there is no justice for our people…and if there is no justice there can be no peace in Babylon. We cannot rest, or become complacent. We must speak her name aloud. We must remember. We must build.
“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Imagine sending your daughter to bed and wrapping her up in her favorite Disney blanket. Imagine kissing her on the forehead and envisioning a prosperous future for her. Picture doing all of these things and when you awake in the morning she is no longer with you. Envision being Charles Jones, the father of Aiyana, and having to lie face down in your daughter’s blood as police officers mimicking military soldiers treat your family like enemy combatants in a war zone. Or Mertilla Jones, Aiyana’s grandmother, forced to go through 12 hours of police interrogations, because inept officers wanted to cover up their wrong doings. This is the story of Aiyana Stanley Jones, a beautiful 7 year old girl who was murdered in cold blood by the Detroit Police Department.
As this painful ordeal continues to unfold, several questions are left to be asked. Why was such force needed to be used with a child in the home? If officers were aware of the suspect’s location in the adjoining apartment, then why was the home of Aiyana raided?
I am hurt, angered, and confused by this tragedy. Aiyana’s death haunts me because I see her all around me. My friend who has a 3 year old daughter; every time I think of the possibility of something similar happening to her tears immediately begin to fill my eyes. I have a cousin the same age as Aiyana; the mere thought of him being stripped away from me is unfathomable. This affliction makes me ponder on my 9 year old god-sister, who has the world before her, imagining that her future could be taken by heartless individuals is unbearable. We all know Aiyanas and unfortunately we have heard Aiyana’s story too many times.
With pain in my heart and anger in my spirit I write these words to awaken you. I write these words to keep the story of Aiyana alive. I write these words in the name of our ancestors who have witnessed these abominations and are crying out. I write these words to my future children who may someday read this and realize the fragility of their lives. I write these words as a covenant to protect them by any means necessary and ensure that their future will be just as bright as their smiling faces.
The Detroit police decided that it was appropriate to storm an apartment building in 1940’s Chicago fashion. As though they were on a military operation in Iraq, they let flash grenades go off in the house as the unit crashed into the floors of the house. They had been warned by the neighboring community that there were children inside; the neighbors pointed to the toys outside of the building as evidence. The members of the local military, in gestapo fashion, continued their onslaught with out due concern. With weapons drawn, off safety and cocked, they invaded the home where the seven year old was sleeping. As the police unit, behaving like blood thirsty gestapo hunting down Jewish residents, entered the building they encountered nervous and afraid residents. One, the father of young Aiyana Jones was told to lie down in the blood of his daughter. She had been shot in the neck. She would later die in the hospital.
What concerns us most is that a young life has been lost. In the novel, “Native Son”, we are informed of the racial and class-based raids on the apartments of the Chicago area. We are told how police would raid home by home, and floor by floor. This type of ancient custom has returned to us. And it has left a young innocent girl without breath, without a future. The father of the slain child was then forced by law officials to lay in the blood of his dying daughter. How inhumane the thought. How brutal that must have been on that man, Charles Jones. Can you possibly imagine the torture of having to lay in the blood of your dying child? To have no one defending you, no one to speak for you, no one to protect you from those sent to protect you. To have your daughter’s blood pervade your entire mental scope, and then to be force by those you pay to serve you to lie your daughter’s blood. How atrocious is that scene? How atrocious is that? But what if it were you?
The details of the capture of the 34-year old man that the unit of slave patrollers were suspicious of places the man upstairs in another unit. This shows us that the entire complex was searched and bombarded. Can you imagine the outrage if a complex of condominiums with white residents were to have been stormed looking for one suspect ended in the murder of a seven year old white child? Would it be even possible for the gunman responsible for that child’s death to be suspended with full pay? Can you imagine the media frenzy surrounding this?
It is the concern of some in the American Black community that the fault of this child’s horrific murder lies on the criminals that stayed in the home. Yet, as the above paragraph details, the home was not that of any criminal. In a land where the custom is supposed to be innocent until proven guilty, it is very frightening to know that an entire neighborhood of citizens and taxpayers will have to live under the terror of those they call “justice providers”. If this man is found not guilty, where does the blood of this young potential first woman president lie? The hopes and dreams of many impoverished communities lies on the backs of the children. Aiyana Jones will no longer be in the running.
There is a lot to be said more about the black intellectual experience in the US. What a lot of American Blacks don’t understand is the class system being built around education. In so many ways, Brown v. Topeka(1954) has been rendered null and void. Although, the 1954 Brown v. The Board of Education ruling overturned segregation, in a de jure sense, in practice, its sway and influence began to decline after 1970. During the 1990s, school districts that had chosen voluntary desegregation programs were attacked with litigation by schools that sought to remain segregated such as the case Swann v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg, North Carolina. The impact of white flight from districts with predominantly black neighborhoods has lowered racial intermixing on a social level (mumford1.dyndns.org).
The highest rate of segregation appears to occur in large Northern metropolitan areas that are surrounded by white suburban areas. The findings of the 1974 Milliken Supreme court decision stands, a finding that forbids desegregation plans that cross school district lines. This creates a condition where densely populated areas of Blacks are unable to benefit from interacting with their white counter parts if the suburbs and the city are in differing districts. (colorlines.com)
So, in effect, you have a situaton where three-hundred and plus years of murder if you read, plus another hundred and plus years of schools that received low funding if at all by the government, and now a slight hundred years after that we have the same sort of thing. With the culture of anti-intellectualism being a customary for most cultures(the Khazarians killed their intellectual children), many in the American Black community have begun to define Black in manners that imply lack of intelligence, reason, or informed civility. The term “savage”, and phrases like “zero understanding” reflect this internalizing of the plight that American Blacks have had to face in gaining proper tools to become educated in a systematic manner outside of religious dogma and traditional American Black culture. Given that only 30% of the total population is degreed, and around 52% are high school educated, even with “street smarts”, the advantages of those who are able to obtain a foothold in this treacherous playing field of cultural capital hide and go seek are indeed great.
The same effects as what we might see in India with the “untouchables” begins to occur. Even at a possibly worse pitch due to the nature of inculcation. WHen a group of people that are as insular as the American Black population, with an extremely limited ability to influence and direct self-determination, begin to treat education in the same manner as the marginally-attached, then no matter how few accept this mentality, it will extend beyond those few “talented” ones. Class capitalism is as much about customs and culture as it is about wealth. With the legal system in the hands of the white wealthy, it is difficult to foretell if the American Black will be able to use criminal means to create a foothold as have the original British, French, and Spanish settlers, and all other European entities after them. Although there is an understandable degree of fear shared among the working and professional class of Blacks for those found in the urban setting, it would be more plausible for that group to build libraries and develop a leisure class outside of dependence on white american consumer marketing.
Land is land. Buildings are buildings. People make communities. The danger of any community is not in poorly built structures, that is to say outside of natural disasters of course. The danger is in the lack of respect for life. However, we have seen this lack of respect for life in everything that is human. Murdering one’s on kin is not the monopoly of the American BLack. The very term Anglo-Saxon is a reflection of gang/tribal warfare. Yet, without a balance of notions of what one can accomplish, without a discipline of thought, without an understanding of the power being weilded by outsiders via consumer marketing, the next generation of American Blacks might as all be murdered at seven by the police. They will either be dead, or serve the market in prison, or serve the market in stratafied housing zones and job placements. Those who succeed to rise above their brothers and sisters will be no different than the slave who slept in the attic of the master’s home one the plantation. They will be forced to drink beers and smile with the true power holders no matter the position of the member of the power holding race.
So, I woke up this morning from one of those weird dreams that I’m sure many shell shocked victims of any sort of stressful past that affected them physically will have. Upon waking up, I cursed out the fedloan and all the banks, and thought about urinating on the debt statements I now owe the US Government. I sat down to this keyboard, as I always do when I am upset with the world, and yet have no other party to actually be upset with other than myself. A question arose that had nothing to do with my prior angst. What if Malcolm X decided to start Essence magazine?
Strange, indeed. But media has that sort of effect on your mind. I thought about something that Mulchan wrote in his treatise on the understand of media, namely, “During the mechanical ages we had extended our bodies in space. Today, after more than a century of electric technology, we have extended our central nervous system itself in a global embrace, abolishing both space and time as far as our planet is concerned. Rapidly, we approach the final phase of the extensions of man– the technological simulation of consciousness, when the creative process of knowing will be collectively and corporately extended to the whole of human society…”
To build on that thought, I immediately recognized the parallel when George Jackson spoke about the extension of the human appendage through knife and gun. The extension of the physical has always been a human necessity due to the lack of physical capability to defeat and destroy predators of the land. The lion, the bear, and many of the predatorial animals of the world had an advantage the human did not. As such, it became needed to prepare controlled weapons, traps of artifice, mechanisms that would avail the human in the pursuit of survival. The Human has always needed means to extend itself throughout the physical. Now, as we have read through the above passage and even are being subtly informed through movies such as Avatar, the human is further extending the consciousness of individual selves.
The name of the movie, “Avatar” in and of itself is very symbolic. Due to the nature of the extension of consciousness in our time, in more colloquial terms, the everyday updating of sources, it is not persuasive enough for me to Google the term “avatar”. So, I have gone far enough with the definition in Webster’s New World Dictionary, Third College edition. This is a dictionary dated as being published in 1988, far from the influence of internet updates which are grounded in popular parlance and the like.
According to the dictionary:
1. Hinduism a god’s coming down in bodily form to the earth; incarnation of a god 2 any incarnation or embodiment, as a of quality or concept in a person.
This is very telling for us. Let’s consider a modern, more popular definition and derive a deeper psycho-social understanding…
Going to dictionary.com at the URL http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/avatar you will read:
1. Hindu Mythology. The descent of a deity to the earth in an incarnate form or some manifest shape; the incarnation of a god.
2. An embodiment or personification, as of a principle, attitude, or view of life.
3. Computers. A graphical image that represents a person, as on the Internet.
At what point does the connection get made between descent of a deity and the use of a graphical image to represent a person…as on the internet?
Maybe the higher conscious was considered a diety; maybe those that began to develop graphical images to represent a person had a great philosophical sense of humor. Regardless, the avatar in the movie was a body that looked like those it needed to communicate and interact with.
The avatar was able to use the streams of consciousness with the body of the mind conduit. The body of the avatar became one with the mind that was being transmitted from another body. In much the same way that the media uses every vehicle it has to use to convey the thoughts of those that control it. In much the same way that I use the avatar on twitter and at times facebook to convey my consciousness. In much the same way you do too. Are you in battle against much with your avatar?
I ask these questions because I believe that the change necessary is located in the evolution of the means by which humans are “communicating”. That term is so limited. We are doing more than communicating. We are extending ourselves through medium. That has always been the difference between humans and other sentient beings we have met. Have black people begun to understand this? What if Malcolm x left and decided to use popular forms of media? What if Malcolm X was still living and had started up a popular periodical that was popular to Black women? What if Malcolm had a twitter account? What if you were Malcolm?
Feel free to address this question in the dialogue boxes below…