Monday, July 15, 2013

Why We Are Angry

It's July. I said that I would rededicate myself to blogging and that fell through. Yep it bite the dust major. 

I write now, not to make promises, but to simply share. This one is for my cousin Sally, who tells me she loves the way I write.

I promised myself that I would not get caught up in the circus of social media this weekend. Given the heartache surrounding the Zimmerman verdict I gracefully bowed out. Stop talking about it. Just chose to reflect. Reflect on my commitment to truth and to God.....until....I read a FB post by a former student of mines .....

"The black community is outraged over Trayvon Martin being killed but remains eerily silent when thousands of other young blacks are killed each year. The only difference being the race of the gunman. ..."

Yep it stirred me to the bone. All my professional adult career I have dedicated myself to being more. More than just an English/Literature teacher. It has been my desire to produce a desire in my students to not accept the general as evidence of truth. So here I sit reading the exact opposite....interesting.....
and other former students like the my work in vain?

Being the ONLY Black teacher in a high majority non diversified space was rough all 10 years. Yes I said 10 years. To say white privilege rested, ruled and nested within was an understatement. Seeing this post reminded me of my struggle to lead during those 10 years. I tried so hard to maintain my value while empowering my students with a desire to meet their unspoken potential. I faced so many silent racist incidents. So many. I spoke when urged, yet walked with head held high throughout the entire time. I knew folks were looking at more than my classroom praxis, yet I understood my assignment was just that; an assignment--an appointed position. Time sensitive and results bound.

But let me come back the point. It is ill advised to make a gross generalization. We tend to make emotional statements to pass as truth when we logically have no answer. Understandable. Yet unacceptable. At no point and time should be devalue the emotions of others. These judgements come from negative spaces. Spaces chosen to be occupied with privileged ideology instead of researched truth. It happens to the best of us, it really does. We all hold some thoughts above the truth out of fear of knowing the power of the truth. However those ideologies become dangerous when we begin to substitute those misconceptions for the truth. 

And this is why the Black Community is angry. 

Because we have been denied the power of truth by those who understand its potential expose and explode power. We have been told so many lies about our identity, our ancestry, our capabilities that those have taken the appearance of truth. Every injustice reminds us that the lies are prevalent and still believed. Trayvon Marton is unfortunately one of many of the pieces of our broken heart in the 21st century.....Darius Simmons, Jordan Russell Davis, James Craig Edison, Sean Bell, Amadou Diallo, and the list can go on and go. Unarmed. All unarmed. 

Justice for People of Color has never been blind. 

And that is why we are angry. Angry that another high profile case has proven to the world that we are just as dispensable as we were during the slave trade. That injustice and inequalities are the norm. That we must teach our children how to navigate the world that has been handed to them--how to "not" look suspicious when walking home, how to react when you are followed in a store, or people of a different race cross the street just because you are walking toward them, how they are not at-risk but at-potential, how they have wealth within their bellies no matter what the statistics say and so much more. And that is just the beginning. 

And this is why the Black Community is angry.

Many have been yelling from the rooftops with great actions of change following, yet media only chooses to focus on the deficit not the wealth. Why? Because the deficit continues the lie. If you continue to feed the stray it comes back. The media feeds bullsh*t and the nation has become gluttonous. Just because you sit and watch while many do doesn't mean there are not actions happening. Wake up. don't be that ignorant. Go to the place where the noise is taking place if you would like to hear. 

And this is why the Black Community is angry.

Because we are continually seen as the "wretched of the earth" and you believe it. 

Because as a nation we refuse to talk about race, racial issues have abounded the more. My heart hurts at the core. When we dismiss the human factor we deny the truth to be evident. I'm sick that we have gotten to a place where it is acceptable to criticize on the sidelines and walk home and spread those lies creating a web large enough to engulf us all. 

I find it hard to say, that everything is alright
Don't look at me that way, like everything is alright
Cuz my own eyes can see, through all your false pretenses
But what you fail to see, is all the consequences
You think our lives are cheap, and easy to be wasted
As history repeats, so foul you can taste it
And while the people sleep, too comfortable to face it
His life so incomplete, and nothing can replace it
And while the people sleep, too comfortable to face it
Your lives so incomplete, and nothing can replace it
Fret not thyself I say, against these laws of man
Cuz like the Bible says, His blood is on their hands
And what I gotta say, and what I gotta say, is rebel
While today is still today, choose well
And what I gotta say, is rebel, it can't go down this way
Choose well, choose well, choose well...
...choose well, choose well, choose well
And while the people sleep, too comfortable to face it
Your lives are so incomplete, and nothing, and no one, can replace it
No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no
And what I gotta say, and what I gotta say
And what I gotta say, and what I gotta say
And what I gotta say, and what I gotta say
And what I gotta say, and what I gotta say
Is rebel... rebel, rebel, rebel, rebel, rebel, rebel
Rebel, rebel, rebel, rebel, rebel
Repent, the day is far too spent, rebel... rebel!
Wake up, wake up, wake up, wake up, wake up, wake up, wake up...
Wake up and rebel
We must destroy in order to rebuild
Wake up, you might as well
Oh are you... oh are you satisfied
Oh are you satisfied
Rebel... ohhh rebel
Why don't you rebel, why don't you rebel?
Why don't you rebel?

Lauryn Hill "I Find it Hard to Say (Rebel)"

Sunday, May 26, 2013

TV Makes It Look Easy

Wooooo I haven't done this in a while. Where have I been?

I don't know. Maybe I can explore that answer at some other time. Maybe.

In my efforts to avoid work on this 3 day weekend I found myself watching NBC's The Voice. Considering I don't have cable, my options are limited. During a commercial break I actually paid attention. I'm not sure what automtovie company it was, but they sampled Bob Marley's Three Little Birds (Don't Worry). As the chorus ran the couple driving the car literally did not worry about any obstacle that came their way. I mean not one.

Right there I thought, when am I going to live like that? No worries, no fear. Just live.

My heart pounds when a new situation arises and for about 30 minutes I'm stunned.

I don't believe I have reaching living. True living.

Does anyone ever reach living

We speak of its glory, marvel at its shine, and envy its portrayal of ease. Yet we watch from afar.

But maybe it is that easy. Maybe we have been so captivated from afar that we are missing its simplicity. Maybe the secret to its success lies within our reach. But where? Why is it is easy to allude?

Don't fool yourself and say you are living. Honesty goes far when one truly searches the mirror. That statement has only been reserved by a few, though it is attainable by all.

Maybe we just don't really know what living truly means. We think we know its appearance, but when we replicate it looks fake. Contrived. Overworked. Lacking. Dull.

I don't know how to live. Yet. But I wanna learn.

I wanna live. Really truly live. As easy as they do on TV. We've mastered so much in this world, yet we still don't know how to live.

Monday, January 7, 2013

A Resolve or Determination (Resolution)

It is upon us! You know...that time of year when you place all bets on win. Cast the year's shrug and all doubts to the wind. Dig your sneakers out of the closet and plop that swipe on the gym rep's desk; I'll take the year's deal which I will come out of the gate in full blast until it's time to round the corner when I will full on STOP.

Com'on we all do it! Make those statements we don't live up to, though we have full intentions to do so. Lauryn said it best...the road to Hell is paved with good intentions...


Yeah it is. Made myself pause on that one. I've had good intentions create some hell in my life! Definitely not shamed to admit fault. Bad choices.

MEGA ASIDE: It's odd how I can't keep a promise to myself, yet I will go beyond to keep a bond to others...ummm. Do I value others more than self? 

I'm not quite sure how to answer that question....

But I do know now is the time to reflect upon its presence and other choices in my life. Reflection and resolve.

Resolve to end any backwards motion from years past. Forward motion only. Reflect. Ponder. Laugh. Even cry if necessary. Tears flush out deep pain. We all should do it. Silent tears. Tears of joy. Even angry tears. 

So I enter into 2013 grateful. Grateful for mere breathe. Lord knows I've lost the halo long long ago.  I don't make promises I don't plan to keep no matter how good my intends may be.

Not all resolutions end this way. Broken. Unkempt.

Somewhere they lost their determination to see the continued progression; true resolve has no endpoint. Growth just continues. You gain something along the way that you desire to hold on to and habit is shaping into lifestyle.

My lifestyle consists of consistent change. I heard a great man say, If you don't change you don't grow and if you don't grow you die. Reflect. Change. Determine to live.

So maybe before we dedicate wasted time and effort to half-hearted determination, maybe we should reflect on that last curve. Who or what halted progression?