*As we all know, whether we want to admit it or not, truth ain’t always pretty. As a matter of fact, its usually ugly. Think about it. When someone you know and love tells you something about your look, behavior or attitude — and that something is not meant to be an insult but its unflattering, we’re hurt. And keeping with the whole pretty vs. ugly metaphor, we see it as ugly. Their remark to us, about us, was ugly.
But it takes a bigger person to see the ugliness within, like this dad of an interracial family who decided to put himself on blast. Continue reading →
*“I’m a pretty girl and she’s a pretty girl too.” What’s the saying…Straight from the mouths of babes? Sometimes their timing on checking us adults is impeccable — and the thing is, you never know when or where that’s going to happen.
As a gift for completing her potty training, Sophia, the little cutie pictured above, was taken to Target to shop for a doll as a gift from her parents, Brandi and Nick. When she finally found the one she liked best, a brown doll dressed like a doctor — just like Sophia dreams to be when she grows up — they went to the counter to pay.
Things got weird when the cashier asked Sophia if she had chosen the “wrong doll.”
*In a true case of hit ’em where it hurts, three African American students and their families have been awarded $450,000 in a racial discrimination settlement by the University Place School District. The students, Jamal Welch, Elijah West and Tyrell Wells, filed the suit in 2015, and say they were the constant targets of name-calling and slander by both students and teachers. When their parents complained to school authorities, they were brushed off.
According to Your Black World, the students were enrolled in Curtis High School when the incidents occurred. Now that they are all over the age of 18, they have left the school district.
Wells admits that as a result of the treatment, he struggles with anxiety and stress. Continue reading →
*I saw the Academy Award-winning Moonlight for the first time at the beginning of its initial run in theaters, last fall. I walked into a screening of the movie with every intention of reviewing it. I walked out having been profoundly moved, forever changed, and temporarily muted. I simply couldn’t find the words to describe the movie.
I’d not felt that way after seeing a film since Precious, another film with honest, gritty performances, flawed, human characters that commanded my attention, and a character arc that left me literally exhausted and speechless. I felt the same way after seeing Monster’s Ball and, to a somewhat lesser extent, Dreamgirls.
In all of those prior cases, the films went on to win Academy Awards, and I’d accurately predicted them. In the case of Monster’s Ball, I knew that if Halle Berry hadn’t gone on to win the Oscar for Best Actress, it would have been due to racism in the industry. Berry’s performance, particularly a critical scene during which her character is processing an unfathomable loss, earned that trophy.
Similarly, after watching Moonlight, I called Mahershala’s Oscar, the screenplay award, and the Oscar for Best Picture. I knew if Moonlight didn’t win on Oscar night, homophobia — not racism — would have been the primary culprit.
*A few months ago, I wrote an editorial about the use of “the N word” and why I think it has no place in modern, civilized society. That said, I also think that use of the phrase “the N word” diminishes the impact of the word in media reports of its use.
Pardon the pun, but the media should just call a spade a spade. It’s kinda like writers who use the spelling “f**ck,” or worse “phuck.” We know what you’re saying, so just say it for fuck’s sake — or better yet, find another, more articulate and less abrasive way to express your thoughts and feelings.
So back to “nigger.” I believe the word has no place, and its prevalence in what’s now popular music and public vernacular (especially with younger people) has desensitized us. Even the media’s use of the phrase “the N word” obscures “nigger”’s vile history and current power.
After I published that original story, most of the readers I heard from agreed with me. However, a small minority argued that the younger generation had reclaimed the word and that the newly-branded “nigga” didn’t hold the same meaning.
I stick to my original thesis, especially after the conversation I had last week with a white fellow coffee-lover in a quaint little bistro in California’s Bay area.Continue reading →
*Whose bad? Well, certainly not the two pieces of racist sh*t that showed up in a Georgia court on Monday to learn how payment for their ugly behavior was going to play out. It was a different look than the one that got them there. The two had been part of a group of truck-riding, confederate flag waving, shit talking racists who screamed racial expletives and threats to African American adults and children celebrating the birthday of an 8-year-old Black child in July of 2015.
Jose Ismael Torres, 26, and Kayla Rae Norton, 25 wept in court as the judge handed down their lengthy prison terms for the behavior which took place in Douglasville, Ga. less than one month following white supremacist Dylann Roof’s fatal attack on nine African-Americans who had invited him inside to Bible study at a historic black church in South Carolina. Continue reading →
Coleman Young was Detroit’s first black mayor, and its longest running, serving from 1974 to 1994. He was a hero in metro Detroit’s African American community when I was growing up there. Young was renowned — or infamous, depending on who described him — for not shying away from public debates, be it on the air with prominent television news anchors like the late Bill Bonds, or at town halls with prominent Republican politicians from neighboring counties, like L. Brooks Patterson.
Boy, we could use a “Coleman Young” on the national stage right now, huh?
*We smile through it, don’t we? I remember being so happy when I was once hired to work at a prominent Los Angeles radio station more than a decade ago. But from day one, (and subsequently two years later), the Caucasian GM walked by my desk each morning; where I sat right next to a white woman who held the same position as I, and spoke to her — yet ignored me. The story you are about to read took me right back to that time. Sgt. Qiana Brown was obviously being a “good sport” in the picture above even though she has continued to endure years of harassment, including racial and gender discrimination. It’s crap like THIS that makes the blood of Black folk and other well-meaning individuals just boil! To hear that a female veteran-turned-police officer-turned-sergeant and now mom has been through hell just because of her skin color makes me tremble with rage as I type this.
Ignorant heartless, souless, bastards!!!
Now Sgt. Qiana Brown of Hillside, New Jersey has been forced to file a civil law suit that spells out the treatment she has endured in detail. She has been denied promotions even though her test scores were among the highest; she was denied the right to express breast milk as she requested after having her baby; her hours were revised so that she could not spend time with her infant, and on and on and on. Continue reading →