Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Black Girl Missing...

As we all know, media coverage for missing persons is skewed towards young white females who are perceived as attractive. Often times the media completely ignores a missing black woman, attractive or not, regardless to her contributions to her community what she means to her family. I will not get into the obvious implication of value placed on the lives of white women vs blacks. I will say let's make enough noise. Luckily, I found out about this young lady because this is circling in the Nigerian-American community. I can only imagine how many other missing Black women I don't know about.

Let's change this today.
If you know anything about the whereabouts of Tosin Oyelowo call your local police department or alert the city of Charleston, SC Missing Persons department at 843-577-7434 or email Detective K. Stone of the Charleston Police Central Investigations Missing Persons Unit StoneK@charleston-sc.gov
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Wednesday, December 07, 2011

No! TJ Holmes Leaving CNN

The very reason I am up early watching the news on a Saturday morning instead of reruns of the Sopranos is this man right here...T.J. Holmes.

Born Loutelious Ann Holmes, Jr. *cough*, T.J. is leaving for "other opportunities". I can't imagine what other opportunities he would want to pursue instead of entertaining me on weekends.


Oh well.

***UPDATE*** He's going to BET! This can be a good thing... maybe someone heard my cry for the return of BET nightly news, or anything respectable in general. Or this can be terrible. Period.
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Tuesday, December 06, 2011

‎"No poor kids have good work habits unless they're illegal"

I've been missing, but with good reason!! In the meantime Uncle Herman has dropped out of the race for the republican presidential nomination amid attacks against his moral character. Newt Gingrich, very reason I think Herman Cain should have NOT dropped out (I mean this guy is moral slime... if we are going there),is now surging in the polls. Considering he is in the lead...when it matters...we should revisit his views particularly on child labor laws. Most especially, that he believes that poor kids should help clean bathrooms at school. Yes, let's kill the esteems of little one's by humiliating them among their peers. What happened to just working at McDonalds.
‎His quote "No poor kids have good work habits unless they're illegal" takes the cake. Just because you occasionally watch the news and live in a gentrified establishment does not mean that you KNOW poor people.
What kind of work ethic do rich kids have anyway? I hardly call what Paris Hilton and Kim Kardashian did 'working'.
‎"No poor kids have good work habits unless they're illegal"SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I Can't.



As in I just can't speak on it. I have just too much emotion exploding to have anything reasonable come out.

Horsing around with children in showers are inappropriate. It is not a defense. Oh and his lawyer impregnated a 16 year old that he was representing. Yep, can't make this up.
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Sunday, October 30, 2011

Another story to help me appreciate how lucky I am

...and remember that there is something bigger than all of us. Mark Herzlich was diagnosed with bone cancer while he was a football star at Boston College. Again, I said bone cancer. He beat the cancer and with a titanium rod in his leg, worked his way on to the NFL roster. Of course not with out road blocks.



Just the story I need to start off the week.
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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Told you so...

Condeleeza Rice is releasing her memoir No Higher Honor and reviews/excerpts have been hitting the net. I might read it. Despite the fact that our politics are different, she is a black woman navigating American life and politics and that is not an experience to dismiss lightly. (Funny thing is I read something I wrote about Condi on this blog 6 years back and couldn't stop laughing. ) I also always believed that she like Colin Powell, after leaving the Bush administration and perhaps even politics altogether, would fully acknowledge her role and responsibility to, and further indentify with the Black community.

 I always believed keeping mum on critical issues that affect minorities as a minority was a means of "keeping your job". Condeleeza is no different. In an excerpt she writes:
...my senior advisor, Jim Wilkinson, walked into my suite. “Boss, I should have seen this coming,” he said. He showed me the day’s Drudge Report headline on the Web: “Eyewitness: Sec of State Condi Rice laughs it up at ‘Spamalot’ while Gulf Coast lays in tatter.” “Get a plane up here to take me home,” I said. I called Mariann and Randy and apologized and then sat there kicking myself for having been so tone-deaf. I wasn’t just the secretary of state with responsibility for foreign affairs; I was the highest-ranking black in the administration and a key advisor to the President. What had I been thinking?
She further writes:
There’s never much opportunity at the time to reflect on a crisis like Katrina. In retrospect, the hurricane’s aftermath was the first in a spiral of negative events that would almost engulf the Bush presidency. Clearly the response of the federal government was slower than the President himself wanted it to be, and there were many missteps, both in perception and in reality. I’m still mad at myself for only belatedly understanding my own role and responsibilities in the crisis.

She's human. I'll take that.

Read more of her excerpt from her book at Newsweek.
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Gaddafi was the richest man in the world?? By far?

There is buzz that as Libya stakes stock of the recent happenings they are adding up Gaddafi's wealth and the number being thrown around the Internet is $200 Billion. Yes. This would make him the richest person on Earth.

We know he was rich but I guess people are only now able to appreciate the scope of his investments and holdings.

I still don't know how I feel about it. I always assert that there is lots of wealth in many African countries, but the distribution of wealth is wack.  The L.A. Times writes:
 Revelation of the stunning size of the portfolio may stir anger among Libya's 6.5 million people — about one-third of whom live in poverty. 

They go on to say:
Kadafi was sending vast sums abroad "at a time when Libyans were struggling for the money they needed for schools, hospitals and all sorts of infrastructure," said one person close to the council, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigations are ongoing.
Not to be a complete jerk about this but...at a time when America is struggling for money for schools, hospitals and rebuilding and maintaining infrastructure, the people at the top as a collective continue to horde money and adopt policies to ensure that the hoard continues to grow. Oh and poverty in the States is around 20% (ranging from 15-22% across the nation). I think the more I examine an oppressive dictator, the more I am able to acknowledge the current oppression in the U.S.

I'm sure there are a number of really rich people pissed to the nines at that $200B figure, but plotting on how they can "get their Gaddafi on". I'm just saying.
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Monday, October 24, 2011

Gaddafi is dead and I feel some kinda way about it...

I said some kinda way. If I knew which kind of way I would have written about it by now. I just can't put my finger on it. I do hate the commentary about him being a "clowninsh" or "flamboyant" in regards to his appearance, more specifically his attire. His outfits look like what my father, or uncles or grandfather would wear when giving their daughter away in a wedding ceremony. It take it as a direct attack on all things African not just non-Western garb. Such criticism is spared for the Saudi dignitaries. It makes me a little angry actually.

However, the commentary about his "flamboyant" actions especially in the last few decades are well deserved. What I have learned is to never be persuaded by the West's depiction of a "horrible dictator".  What is the difference between a monarch and a dictator? Really, think about it. Who is doing the defining? After reading up on the former Libyan ruler, my sentiments did not change. He's a man who came to power with amazing ideas and supported many non-(not Anti) Western, Christian, efforts but who in the end was a glutton for power and clung to it by any means necessary. Ok, your standard tyrannical ruler.

My husband, the African in residence,  is much more astute in the area of African politics. I asked him how he felt about Gaddafi being killed and the manner in which he died and he said "Well, the people didn't want him as a leader anymore and instead of stepping down, he said he'd fight to the death, that he will die in Libya. Why would it end any other way?"

I guess there you have it.


Check out his history in photos here
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Thursday, October 13, 2011

I wish...

I wish I could just sit around and read fun sh*t all day. There is so much to learn and so much available in the net--blogs, Internet magazines etc. I used to sit around and read all day but it was NOT fun. As a graduate research assistant while finishing up my coursework in graduate school all I did was read... and write. The scope of the material and the ability to choose was severely limited. However, I caught myself the other day wishing that I had the day to focus on reading and writing. Maybe, I'd actually finish this dang degree.

Funny how we take things for granted.





p.s. I think I may read this book. Though I'm sure I can write a book of my own. I was such at fool at 20.
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Saturday, October 08, 2011

From the Facebook News Feed...

"Eventually one of two things will happen; either they will realize you're worth it, or you'll realize they aren't."
And sometimes that takes a REALLY long time.
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Friday, October 07, 2011

The Real Price of Education: A Foreword

Before I get into the real costs of higher education in this current economic climate, I would like to note a what I found in my Facebook feed in reference to the recent passing of Apple creator and  CEO Steve Jobs:
"Many people didn't know that Steve Jobs was put up for adoption, imagine how different the world would be if his parents would have chosen abortion."
 Truth be told, this quote didn't even make me think of the pro-choice/pro-life debate. You see, I had just finished watching a bio on CNBC on Steve Jobs (I had no clue he'd passed until they mentioned it at the end of the program) and, Steve Jobs biological mother was a graduate student* who was adamant that her child be adopted by college graduates. (His father was a Syrian man named Abdulfattah Jandali) When Jobs was born, his pre-selected adoptive parents decided that they did want a boy and so the next in line, a working class couple was happy to have him. His mother was upset that she didn't even sign the adoption papers, it was only after his adoptive parents promise that they would make sure the kid went to college did she sign the papers.

Jobs ended up dropping out of college because as he put it--he was wasting his parents' life savings. He didn't know what he wanted to do and didn't see how college was going to help him figure it out. It was dropping out that allowed him to audit classes he was interested in and the flexibility to pursue his own passion and talents.

Instead, where would the world be if Steve jobs were raised by college graduates? Perhaps if he was raised by affluent ones who had the means to send him to college and ability to emotionally pressure him to stay in school when he found little use for it? Or less affluent ones causing him to be saddled with debt, chaining him to the perpetual pursuit of a job to make the minimum payments on his student loan?

The point here is what we most certainly believed would guarantee success---including his biological mother--- it what the sheer absence of it that allowed for his greatness. While all education is valuable, it is not always worth the money we pay for it.
Higher Education may no longer be an aid towards achieving the American dream but what rather is now keeping us from it.
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Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Coupe Dreams

My childhood visions of myself at this age featured a well-paying job, a Chanel handbag and a Porsche coupe. Well, never really imagined myself past the age of 25. Anything after 25 was just 'happily ever after'.  Needless to say I am still dreaming but I am very practical in my adult dreams. I dream about jobs that allow international travel but also give more than 30 days paid vacation time and about which coupe will allow me to carry a few of my imaginary children.

It was in those dreams that I realized how hard it was to translate my childhood dreams of 20 years ago to the reality of today. It isn't because I had some wild fantasies. The economy is not what it used to be and the relationship between the employer and employees has changed. Loyalty is no longer present nor expected. Who's getting 30 days paid vacation at a time when every one's getting laid off?  Secondly, it seems as though parenthood requires a minivan or SUV.  In the late 80's just before the Dodge Caravans etc., my mother would haul 3 children whose ages ranged from 5 yrs to 18 months around town in  her Toyota Starlet, a little red hatchback with tan vinyl seats. I can only recall the vinyl seats being hot against my legs in the summertime otherwise I assume I was comfortable.

But that would be illegal now, with increased safety regulations all three of us would require some sort of car seat. I appreciate the efforts towards safety, but it has a major effect on the quality of life of a family of 5. With car seats in tow, families require much larger cars which 1) cost more to purchase and maintain 2) cost more to gas up. Couple this with fuel prices around being around $3.50 compared to the $0.89 of 15 years ago. There are no subsidies to ease this burden on families and salaries have been pretty stagnant over the past decade. So even with what I consider to be a well-paying job, I'll be working much harder spending much more money trying to live a regular life than anyone would have considered 20 years ago.

Hell, these coupe dreams are dreams indeed.
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Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Justice in a Post-Racial Society


A recent post from Kevin Powell on Facebook remined me of the story of George Junious Stinney Jr. I watched the movie about this case when I was young. At the age of 14 he's the youngest person to ever be executed in the U.S. He was convicted of killing 2 white girls with a railroad spike he was likely to too small to yield. With no eyewitness and only word from a deputy that he confessed, he was sentenced to electric chair. I hadn't been able synthesize my many emotions into one coherent written reaction to the execution of Troy Davis until now.

A few years ago during Memorial Day weekend on Miami Beach, aka Urban Beach Week two friends were shouting outside of a club. One had just gotten into a verbal altercation inside the club--let's call him Stanley-- and the other was urging him to calm down and let it go. The police quickly came to separate them, though Stanley was still pretty heated. During questioning one police officer began to tase Stanley and in quick response the other police officer tased the other man, repeatedly. The officers filed an elaborate report stating that Stanley struck the police officer and in response his friend leaped screaming "get off my homeboy" and struck the other officer. Both were charged with felony battery against a police officer. The other young man in this case was a recent college grad who majored in computer engineering. He would NEVER attack a police officer and I don't really know people who would remember to say 'homeboy' in a crisis. The other guy was my younger brother.
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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Clemency Denied for Troy Davis

Someone killed Officer MacPhail, but how is there enough certainty to pin it all on Troy Davis? Casey Anthony was freed with more evidence linking her to the murder of her little girl yet Troy Davis is scheduled to die tommorrow for a crime in which there is no murder weapon and eye witnesses have recanted there testimony.




The larger questions are: Why after many appeals have this not been over turned? Is there something we are missing? When in America did the victim get the last word? The MacPhails are really the only people who are so certain Troy Davis killed their loved one. Which is odd, because they weren't there and in light of the lack of evidence it's their grieving heart and their vengeful nature that simply wants to see someone---anyone--- pay for the loss of their son. Even if it is the wrong person. After all... I'm sure the family thinks we look the same too. This is the statement for the Board that recently denied clemency:
Atlanta, GA – This morning, the State Board of Pardons and Paroles issued its decision denying clemency for Troy Anthony Davis. The Board members have not taken their responsibility lightly and certainly understand the emotions attached to a death penalty case.

Since 2000, the Board has commuted three death penalty cases. In considering clemency in such cases, the Board weighs each case on its own merit. The Board has considered the totality of the information presented in this case and thoroughly deliberated on it, after which the decision was to deny clemency.
Faith in the justice system is all but gone at this point, faith in people too.
The names of the Board Members are:
  • James E. Donald -Chair
  • Albert R. Murray-Vice Chair
  • L. Gale Buckner- Member
  • Robert E. Keller- Member
  • Terry E. Barnard- Member
The Public Affairs Office is
Phone: (404) 657-9450

Let them know how you feel.
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Saturday, September 17, 2011

From the Facebook Feed

Jealousy is the art of counting someone else's blessing instead of your own.


Indeed.
From the Facebook FeedSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Say What, Armstrong?



This is the very, very, --oh wait one more--very, rare occasion that the Conservative political commentator Armstrong Williams offers an opinion and I am not literally overpowered by the sheer force of my swift opposition to his reasoning. (Like the last time.)

Here is an excerpt of his post in the Pundits Blog at the Hill.com entitled Depiction of Africa

There is almost no mention of the rich history of African culture or the modern realities of Africa in the mainstream media. I think we all agree that for Africa to advance on the global stage we have to exercise greater influence over the messages that the public receives about the continent.

Word?? Pardon me as I check outside for a solar eclipse.
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Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Love, revisited.

I have been forced to reflect lately over the happenings of the last decade or so of my life after I awoke from a dream in which I been suffering from a broken heart. I carried that feeling with me for at least the entire morning. Even after I had realized it was a dream, even after I had kissed my husband and seen him off to work, I still held that heaviness in my heart. I felt so bad for that girl, the dreamland version of me. She was someone I used to be, feeling things I used to feel. She felt something that no matter how bad things get I cannot relate to.

I realized that I have learned to love in a different context. Love in my youth (---ugh, youth!) was largely characterized by desire, by a longing to have, needing, the idea of passion. "Love is the feeling that you can't live without someone." And how tragic is that? If you can imagine, my most significant romantic relationships were mainly with people who simply were not available to me. Whether he was not willing to commit, to equally engage with me emotionally, or was absent physically, the love of the moment was never in my grasp. I felt like I needed them, couldn't live without them. My heart was constantly in chase mode.

I used to reason that I must I enjoy the chase, like men. But I hated it, I am a woman after all and a very sensitive one at that (despite the image I put forth). My heart was exhausted. It was once the person I loved was no longer absent that I truly changed the way I viewed love. There is so much to love that is front and center. It's not just about how I feel about that person but really how that person makes me feel. Sadly, I had never viewed love as something that should be uplifting, providing pleasure and security. In fact upon reflection for every man I said I loved, love did just the opposite.

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Rude

Bradley, my 5 year old Boston Terrier woke me up rather early to let him outside this morning. 4:25am. Opening the door, I was met with the horrible, terrible, sensation of cold wind against my skin. WTF! This weather is completely inconsiderate of my wardrobe, my holiday plans, and my slow process of parting with warm weather. Temperatures in the 50s in early September in the Florida are rare. Usually, I am still trying to get in a little beach time, pool time, and cookout time in September---when it’s no longer unbearably hot. A few weeks ago it my car's thermostat reported the temperature to be 109 degrees. It was so hot that the dashboard display flickered for 20 minutes. Now it is effing cold. I never stood a chance. Bradley went out for literally 5 seconds and ran back in the house. He decided to relieve himself when the weather decided to treat us more kindly. I gave it a few choice words before I slammed the door.
RudeSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

From the Facebook News Feed...

"Had a lot of fun last night. When certain songs come on I forget I'm educated."
From the Facebook News Feed...SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Balance the Crazy (Redux)

An additional note is which is a totally contradicting sentiment from my previous post...what's the point of voting in a Black president that isn't going to do this explicitly for Black people? That's the whole point of representative politics. The Right wants a business owner and Christian to push their agenda. I mean, the "he isn't Black enough argument"---I wouldn't characterize it that way because it cheapens it--- makes a valid point. If a really great academic definition of public policy is “The authoritative statements or actions of government which reflect the decisions, values, or goals of policymakers”, then the President lacks the conviction to make efforts for Black people. They way W. did for Evangelicals and Businesses. He doesn't own it. He lacks the crazy or from Bill Maher perspective, heart.
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Balance the Crazy

While on vacay a couple of weeks ago I caught Bill Maher proposing a liberal version of the Tea Party. Let me preface this by saying he thought that liberals were spineless in the fact that they have yet to do this. He equates logic and reason with lack of heart. Love, and despise if you ask me, makes the world go round and there ain't nothing rational about the two.  So I get his point.



While the clip was hilarious it caused me to seriously think about this idea of "balancing the crazy". A great deal of people are very, very frustrated with the President. Partially it is about his policies (or lack there of) but mainly that they do not sufficiently address need of any specific interest group in his constituency and even more so his political base (Blacks, Latinos, Gays, low and middle income). He is so middle-of-the road, that no one is happy. Secondly, "the middle" keeps moving farther and farther to the Right due to the extreme views and increasing rise of the Tea Party. (...Median voter theorem) In order to bring the middle the Left really does need to bring the crazy. Now unfortunately, the essence of the political party is that it is all encompassing. So it would be whose left-crazy would we promote? How do we organize the crazy?  We could  do just as much Bible thumping and counter the Evangelicals and the Rights anti-tax/social programs. The Bible says love thy neighbor and we should abide with "... faith, hope, charity, these three: but the greatest of these is charity" (1 Corinthians 13:13) but the left has sooooo many unbelievers it would be difficult to execute (I'm referring to Atheists as upon further study, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam at its core are quite similar). Race/Otherness mitigates issues of class in this country. So this poverty tour, um yeah...while I know we reaaaaally want to, racializing the issue of poverty with out a critical mass almost guarantees it will be ignored. (Though I will note that they did a descent job by including stops in West Virginia and a few in Wisconsin. Outside of Milwaukee I'm willing to put good money down that there isn't a real "Black presence" in those areas.) So again, how does the Left begin to organize the crazy?

The Right has it so easy. For them otherness trumps class all together and the Left is a collection of heathens. Done.

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Saturday, August 20, 2011

The Hidden Costs Fine Leather Goods

I love fine leather goods. It's a weakness.  My husband thinks I collect handbags and shoes, but it's not true. It's the leather, the more rich and supple the better. So of course this lends itself to e-reader covers, car seats, coasters...it's a real interest. Though recently, I came across a video on Perez Hilton (don't judge me) that was almost as chilling as the narrative of  conflict diamonds and the torture over hair weave. Has anyone seen the task of leather tanning??? This features a 17year old in Morocco whose family has been tanning hides for generations. It is nasty, disgusting and after further research involves child labor.




It almost changed my life...Almost. *touching handbag*
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From the Facebook News Feed...

"Let's ignore for one second that my political and moral views (i.e. I don't believe in hate) differ from those of Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann and focus on the biggest issue I have with them, which is that they are making WOMEN look absolutely ridiculous!"
From the Facebook News Feed...SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Thursday, August 18, 2011

From the Facebook Feed

Kreayshawn??????????
Speechless...I can't



A great reaction to Kreayshawn and her eh, gimick is over at one my favorite blogs Politics and Fashion.
From the Facebook FeedSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Drought. No, Famine.

Again, during my hiatus, I was away from my blog, but not away from my news sources. The Horn of Africa has been experiencing one of the worst droughts in history and the pictures suck something terrible. I am tempted to lament about the "humanitarian effort" that was launched in Libya on our behalf but is sooooo not present right now in East Africa. Especially now that effort that is "humanitarian" in definition and likeness is imperative. The US did commit to $545 million dollars to the UN effort. I will not say that that is equal to just one Will Smith and 1/112 of one Bill Gates. I am not going to get into how the world is desensitized to blacks suffering on a wide-scale and thus aren't pressed to help. It's too easy.

No I am going to take the hard road and look at Africa as an African (you can make the argument about how "African" I am...). Droughts happen. Droughts happen fairly often in East Africa and increasingly often in recent years. Droughts do not necessarily produce famine---scarcity of food. This year it has. It is painfully tragic. As an African, we can no longer look to, depend on, wait on, the Western World for aid. Outside of their focus on maintaining the level of world exploitation and massive consumption (I mean, the housing crisis was really because we (I'm American here) were buying homes we couldn't afford and trying to live the American Dream--which is massive consumption) the Western World does not consider you "as human" as them. Nope. If God were to strike Canada with famine right now...millions of American dollars would appear out of no where. That's not going to change.

What we have to do Africa, as a fellow African...is help ourselves. The New York Time reports that the African Union has a Fundraising Conference planned for August 25. Really? You need to clear out your schedules?     
South Africa,has given $150,000 and promised another $850,000. Sudan has sent $2.5 million, Namibia $500,000, and Botswana a little less. Kenya and Ethiopia, affected by the drought, are using their own money internally. But from the remaining 48 countries in Africa, there has been nothing.

What happened to all talk about "African solutions for African problems".  Oil-rich Nigeria and the other large African economies Angola, Tanzania and Egypt have not contributed at all. Also there is a world of difference economically between South Africa and Sudan. It is unfortunate that their aid does not reflect that. The continent is not poor, the resources are poorly managed. The richest man in Africa is worth 13.8 Billion...#51 in the world according to Forbes. A Nigerian. I guess Nigerian tax code doesn't deem a donation tax deductible. What about Africans in the Diaspora, whether 1 year, 1 generation or 5 generations removed? Let's see...Jay-Z and Kanye are auctioning a vandalized Maybach and donating that person's money to the effort...meanwhile Jay just dropped $250,000 on champagne in at the Fountainbleu. Gluttony is one of the seven deadly sins for a reason.

Famine is the severe shortage of food. While I'm eating overpriced prime rib, a fellow sister as old as I is waiting in line for peanut butter paste...for her 6 kids and watching her infant shrivel away because her bosom is as dry as the soil. We may not be able to guard against drought, but we can guard against famine and that is through proper planning and allocation of public goods and resources. I know we have our own issues domestically...but we can still eat, eventually.
Donate. Please.



[photo source]
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Monday, August 15, 2011

The Throne was Well...Shiny

Last week my Facebook feed was filled with folks declaring that they've downloaded the Jay-Z/Kanye West collaboration "Watch The Throne" at midnight and intended for it to be the soundtrack to the night's shenanigans.

Then, crickets...for almost a week.

No one applauding the full length album or saying they have a specific song on repeat. No one said they hated it, no one said it was a huge disappointment. That was really concerning. Were people scared to say they hated it? It's ok to not like something but I also knew I couldn't trust their opinion (or their conspicuous lack there of) folks hated Beyonce's recent album "4". I am far from a Beyonce fanatic but she totally made that CD for yours truly. It is full of African-Caribbean beats and nods to the 90s. She didn't have to take such big risks to win over just one fan. She could have just sent me the mixtape.

On the other hand, I am stupid crazy Kanye fan and prior to that a stupid crazy Jay-Z fan. I spend the extra money to get floor seats at their concerts.

You already know what I'm about: flying birds down South
Moving wet off the step, purple rain in a drought
----Jay-Z "What More Can I Say"
Yeah...I'm lame like that, and I had no clue what "wet" was for years. So needless to say I am unfit to give an objective critique of such a collaboration yet still I give it two shrugged shoulders. It was Kanye and Jay being Kanye and Jay. But it was post-808 & Heartbreak and Kingdom Come Kanye and Jay. My biggest concern is that I am unsure if they are still connected to the "masses". All this talk about Audermars Piqet watches and $300 bottles of Champagne burns my stomach. Jay mentions the number of black faces he sees dwindles as they rise in wealth and status, they have a responsibility that is less like Will and Jada and more like Oprah's...to be relatable. I can't relate to "luxury rap". Not many unemployed Americans who are upside down in their homes and sending their kids to school with one pack of Lunchables but no juice (you know that is not enough food!) can relate to G4 jets or even aspire to. I was a bit distressed by the video of them cutting up the $375K Maybach even if it is going to be auctioned off for charity. (Who's gonna buy that shit anyway?) Lastly, I think the Frank Ocean features from OFWGKTA felt forced, like they were trying to Oprah an artist on me. Yes, I used Oprah as a verb. Don't dictate to me what's cool...just be cool, damn. OFWGKTA is their own beast. But it's hard to be cool on your own when you flying around in jets buying 100s of $10k Hermes bags for your wife's birthday...what do you know about the real world.

But it'll probably be on repeat for at least the next couple of days...because I am a crazy stupid fan and some of their lines were funny as hell.
The Throne was Well...ShinySocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

From the Facebook News Feed...

 The announcement that Tim Pawlenty has dropped out of the race for the GOP nomination was met with a collective "meh" from the political community. His two campaign volunteers and a field of crickets were mildly disappointed.

From the Facebook News Feed...SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Saturday, August 13, 2011

It all started with the idea that I had too many shoes...

Phew! What an interesting 6 weeks! Well, my birthday has come and gone. I'm still standing...and the back to school commercials are rolling like clock work. I still hate them but I probably purchase a couple packs of college ruled loose leaf paper because I just can't help myself.
      I took a much need break...mental that is, I still have bills to pay. I may have been "away from my desk" but not too far from the T.V. The Debt Ceiling Drama reminds me of why I am a political scientist instead of a politician, the policy wonk instead of the campaign staffer. I can see the game but I lack the emotion to offer it. The Federal Government is not the same as a household and I am a little tired of the comparison. But if it were, I would send my new Mercedes back AND get a higher paying job to pay down my existing debt. Of course, I would also make sure my family members could still get around. So...clearly to not cut spending is silly and to not increase revenue is terribly silly. What makes this NOT similar to a household budget is that the upcoming election is a very real thing. In fact, the very basis of political theories involve the fact that politicians are motivated by the desire to be re-elected. That's it. No really, that's it. Incumbents would trade babies for crack to sell on the street if it would guarantee re-election. Some would sell more than others but everyone would sell.

So with that in mind, campaign money helps one get re-elected, people who actually vote...helps one get re-elected. Most importantly, crazy extremely passionate citizens who vote and are able to infect others with their crazy AND get them to vote...helps get a politician re-elected. Crazy people rule the country.

Where was I...if you ever hear me say I have too many shoes as some sort of "revelation" then know something is wrong. I've thrown some out and I'm off to buy more.


It all started with the idea that I had too many shoes...SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Monday, July 11, 2011

Planking...

I am no longer asking "why" or "what's so cool about it?" I'm over the fact that a great deal of the photos I have seen look down right dangerous.


I really want to know would this have even come up with out social networks? I mean would people simply take photos of themselves laying face down on odd objects in odd places and frame it to hang in there home. Or even better, hang in their office to show their co-workers?

Nope. #InternetInsanity
Planking...SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Sunday, July 10, 2011

I Miss Blockbuster

                                            (Closed and now a mega-wigs and weave store) 
           A year or so ago Blockbuster began closing close to 960 stores nationwide, this included every location in the city I live in. As Blockbuster shut its doors, I relied more and more on Redbox which appears on every corner, every gas station, Wal-mart and drug stores. It was sad but Blockbuster was hard to miss. It was not until I need a Molly Ringwald fix and wanted to watch Sixteen Candles. Nothing simplifies life and touches me deep down like teen movies of the 80s. At times watching Legally Blonde would suffice but this time I needed the real deal. I looked up Redbox.com and searched for Sixteen Candles and it was not...in....any...locations...near...me.


Excuse me. But what the hell was I supposed to do?

          I never thought about how much I would miss Blockbuster. Netflix is not a suitable alternative, it requires commitment. I had the urge to watch The NeverEnding Story the other day and I did NOT want to fill out a form, give my credit card information and take on the burden of remembering to cancel my subscription the next month just to do so.

As much as I love the convenience of Redbox and $1 rentals...it's seemed to cost us so much more.
I Miss BlockbusterSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Overwhelmed.

My birthday is comes up this month. It's close enough that I can't keep ignoring it. As a child I used to interpret my birthday as the first indication that the summer was winding down. Back to school ads would follow the music videos I spent the entire summer watching and I would become queasy. I kinda have that feeling right now.
I'm at that age when each birthday brings super harsh self-criticism about where my life and career is and more particularly isn't. I'm at the age where I 'm begging for the years to slow down so that I may catch up from all that time I wasted on dumb shit.
          Today, I am very overwhelmed with that feeling of catching up, of getting things right, of holding it all together. I am overwhelmed with resentment for wasting my time, energy, and good years not really working out because it's only harder to lose weight now. I am overwhelmed with my job, with my degree program--that I am still doing for goodness sakes--- and the hard work it takes to be a married woman and maintain the loving friendships that have grounded me over the last 15 years. I am mainly overwhelmed with the task of becoming more patient, as I realize that things happen on their own time or God's time--- pretty much anyone else's time but mine. I struggle with the feeling that I can perform well 97% of the time, in every aspect of my life but it is in that 3% when I don't that it actually counts. Feelings like that make it very hard for you to relax.
Overwhelmed.SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Is College Worth the Investment?

         This seems to be a standard question these days since for the better part of the last decade it has been difficult for a fresh college graduate to get a job. I never thought of working right out of undergrad. In fact, I was in graduate school in Louisiana with in weeks of recieving my bachelor's degree. I should have bottled up that spunk and exuberance...

But to answer the question, is College worth it...my answer is "Do we have a choice?" The price of a College degree is probably as elastic as that of gasoline especially for those who live in the south. Our yards are big and our cities are spralling. If gas rises to 7 dollars people in Atlanta are screwed. Point is, we will keep on buying (car pooling still consumes gas!), this is the same with college degrees. As graduates are rewarded less and less after earning a college degree and the price of a college education is steadily rising., it is practically impossible to NOT get one.

Who do we blame? Increase in the accessiblity of a college education, decrease in non-collegiate alternatives and plant jobs moved overseas? Or my go-to group for scapegoating---Babyboomers?

I really think at some point the price of education will peak. People will no longer persue advanced degrees as a meantime strategy as they wait out the stock market. Instead people will opt to increase work experience or obtain professional credentialling instead of advanced degrees that don't exactly produce a large return on the investment.
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Friday, July 01, 2011

Governor, Thanks?

Florida Governor Rick Scott reverses a move that made the state of Florida the laughing stock of the nation for about a week. Within weeks of taking office he rejected $2.4 billion in federal dollars to aid the state in building a highspeed rail between Orlando and Tampa. The SunRail as the project is called, had been debated for at 2 to 3 years prior to Rick Scott's arrival and was heavily backed by his own Republican party. The move was more than gutsy manuver to stick it to the Obama Administration as it was characterized, it was at the very least ill-informed as it crossed too many people politically and cost the state approximately 70,000 jobs. The case was taken to the Florida Supreme Court and the courts sided with him. (which was crazy)

But now that Rick Scott has made national news as the Governor with the worst approval rating in the country (In the whole freaking United States of America!!!) he has Ok'd the use of the Federal dollars. This is when states like California and North Carolina have their eyes on it. Is it even still available. Luck would have it that it isn't and he just not what to look like the bad guy.
Governor, Thanks?SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Monday, June 27, 2011

Congressional Frosted Flakes: Youuuu're Great!

Rep. Michelle Bachmann has formally announced her candidacy for the U.S. Presidency and this past Sunday was asked very bluntly by Fox's Chris Wallace,"Are you a flake?" She was pissed! I personally think she was over reacting. Wallace has since apologized. She did NOT accept, saying it was "insulting to insinuate that a candidate for president is less than serious." C'mon!
Sour grapes.
Even funnier is this tweet from her fellow Republican House rep from Arizona
Bwahahaha! You're awesome Rep. Flake. You're alright with me.
Congressional Frosted Flakes: Youuuu're Great!SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

What the F?


North Carolina has had a 50 year policy of forced sterilization of people that are um...less than favorable to society. Read: poor, minorities, unwed mothers, poor minorities, poor unwed mother's who are racial/ethnic minorities. Their Eugenics Board was abolished in 1977, which is crazy. I mean, that is a decade after the Civil Rights era. However, the law was a actual state statute until 2003.

One victim says:
"A social worker convinced my mom to sign for me to undergo an operation that would prevent me from getting pregnant, not knowing all the while that I was being set up to be sterilized like I was some kind of animal."
While this is indeed upsetting, most upsetting is the states response to the victims of such a heinous policy. About 3000 of the more than 7500 citizens are still living but the legislature feels that $50,000 is too much compensation for their citizens who have suffered mutilation.

CNN says "At least seven other states have issued formal apologies for similar eugenics programs. So far, only North Carolina has considered establishing a program to compensate individual victims."

Such a shame.
What the F?SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Funk.

I'm in an interesting place right now. I haven't the words to describe it... which is terribly unfortunate. Blogs need words. This one anyway.
Funk.SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Talk About Oil Spills!

Yesterday's feature on In Focus w/ Alan Taylor  over at The Atlanta looks at Nigeria and it's oil industry, in photos of course.
Nigeria is the world's 8th largest producer of crude oil, yet remains one of its poorest nations -- an estimated 70 percent of its 150 million residents live below the poverty line. The environment is paying a steep price as well. An estimated 500 million gallons of oil have spilled into the delta -- the equivalent of roughly one Exxon Valdez disaster per year.
And that is as damn shame.

One of the fundamental issues that I have with my country of heritage is the level of inequality. There is no discernible middle class. If almost 70 percent is poor, almost 30 percent of the population is relatively rich and benefits from the corruption and poor management and distribution of the country's resources. Don't know how they operate with a clear conscience.

Check out the remaining 30 photos here.
Talk About Oil Spills!SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Things that I hate

One thing that turns me off, like "flip the light switch and unscrew the light bulb" off, is pure unnecessary rudeness. I especially hate my date being rude to the server at a restaurant and I just was reminded of a few dates during my single days. Ewww. I have been a server/waitress at various restaurants and so I can relate to their experience. But then, it is just plain ugly for a man to be nasty and moody. Gross...

I remembered one man picked on everything our server did "So are you going to give us butter with our bread? I don't see you writing our orders down." Another kept barking at the poor girl and rolling his eyes when she came by our table. This is only going to discourage her from doing so. The next time comes by he asks her out of nowhere "I mean, can I have some more tea in my glass? Dang!" There is a difference between server and servant and one you don't get for only a 6 dollar tip.

Can you believe that man tried to kiss me after that date??? WTF!

One date merely told me an instance of his unnecessary rudeness, which quite frankly revealed his ability to be quite cold.  We were casually discussing our past relationships-- the point in which many first date conversations tend to travel--over Jimmy John subs and sodas. Here this man was boasting about how he would see his past girlfriend of 4 years in the street and walk right by her. They broke up over a misunderstanding for goodness sakes and because he was a stubborn jerk. Yet, he told of how they still share mutual friends and he could stand next to her and not say a word. This is despite her many attempts to make contact. He laughed and spoke of it as though he should be commended and they had been broken up over a year! I later told him that I can't see us hanging out because he was an evil bastard mean-spirited. And that was that. He didn't accept it right away but his persistence couldn't change my mind. I could tell deep down in my soul...that he'd be the type of man who'd be rude to a waitress.
Things that I hateSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Monday, June 06, 2011

I'll Tell You a Secret

                                 
                                  I. Don't. Give. A. Crap. 
I didn't last week and now that he admits that it was indeed his photo, I still don't. Like we didn't know! After the last few months with Edwards, Schwarzenegger and Ensign affairs in the headlines, the fact that it was a photo of his covered penis still in the rightful place of his Hanes or Fruit of the Looms...made me change the channel. Every time. This should be relegated to the late night talk show circuit at best. No matter his political affiliation I couldn't care less if I was paid to.

[photo source]
I'll Tell You a SecretSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

What's So Bad About Drug Testing...?

"Studies show that Welfare recipients use drugs more than the rest of the population". ---Florida Governor Rick Scott.



         I watched the Governor's interview yesterday on CNN's Sunday Morning with TJ Holmes (and his handsome self ) in which the Governor defended the new Florida policy on drug testing welfare recipients. It is unfortunate that this policy feeds the misconception of the lazy, welfare queen of the 80's strung out on crack rock (do people still say "crack rock" ??) giving birth to multiple crack babies. Oh yeah, and Black. It is unfortunate that even though there are more White women on the welfare rolls than Black women (Blacks are only 13% of the entire population...duh!) the racialization of issues like this gets these ridiculous and condescending policies passed. What is more unfortunate is this is just another example of how the rich hit the race button to manipulate the masses to support something that is purely beneficial to them.

          The rich have touched upon our in-group/out-group inclinations and need for a distinct underclass that preferably preserves that of which was at the country's founding. Here, we find that now the state will force welfare recipients for drug testing and the Governor (well his wife now) owns shares in a drug testing company. Hmm...oh he said they will be selling it at the end of the month?? To whom? Someone on craigslist? Of course not, it is someone he knows, who too will benefit from such a policy.

            Lastly, it's unfortunate that studies do show increased drug use among Welfare recipients than the population. None of which is more recent than 7or 8 years ago. One in particular out of U.of Michigan concludes that roughly 21% of Welfare recipients that reported recent drug use in their survey but only a very small fraction show a chemical dependency. The National Household Survey of 1997 (1997 Geez!!) Says that 18% households in which one person was a welfare recipient reported drug use in the past year. This is compared to 11% of those without a welfare recipient. In addition, drug use was highest among 12 to 17 year olds and showed no income preference. AND that the results comparing the welfare households should be interpreted with caution because they have MORE YOUTHS! Besides, this isn't even state specific. Florida already tried this before and it was shut down because it showed no difference and was wasteful.

Where is Al Sharpton on this? Better yet, where is Cornel West??? *Crickets*
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Sunday, June 05, 2011

Too many shoes...

            Often when we loose loved one's we are reminded just how precious life is. It often sparks great dialog about how "tomorrow is not promised"; it encourages people to finally make that gutsy move they have been debating for a years. It forces us to make those uncomfortable phone calls to friends and family members we have been avoiding because well, they are annoying and offensive as hell. They make our blood boil at times...many times...but we can't see life without them.
             Recently, I have been forced to re-assess what matters to me, true in form to when you lose someone you care for. I have come to notice and appreciate all the individuals that provide me support and help my life, as I know it, stay afloat and run. I have come to redefine the term 'family' to extent further than blood and marriage. I have come to the place that with all the abnormalities and my lack of millions, I wouldn't trade my life and those in it for anything. I have come to the conclusion that I have too many shoes.

              When I am overcome with the feeling of having too many shoes, it is a tale-tale sign that I am a little depressed. I'm sad about the loss, but I am not depressed. I'm just over material things and numerous Ivy League degrees. God will not ask you about those in the end. If you don't believe in God, that's even less reason to care. To whom much is given, much is required. I have decreasing patience for those who talk about what that have but not how they give back. I buy shoes and bags because I don't enjoy buying clothes and that is because my weight fluctuates...and I had a need for material things. Faced with those reasons, life is too precious to loose it to emotional eating and spending. So many other things are more important to me than "stuff ".  Now that my definition of family has expanded my idea of "inessential stuff" has too.

I need to clean out my closet.
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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

For Real???

Over at TheYBF they report that Naomi Campbell says she is willing to sue Cadbury over their ad that states
Move over Naomi, there is a new diva in town
I preface this by saying that I am aware of society's obsession with skin-complexion and the debilitating complex that many Black people have regarding it, especially Black women. I will also say that I also recognize that "I am not that dark". I actually hate when people go there when we have discussions about skin color and its psychological effect, but I can admit that it may present a difference in perspective. That said...I am utterly confused and terribly embarrassed by this. Chocolate has always been a complement for a brown skinned lady and one I am sure Naomi Campbell in the past has happily accepted. As you can see on the photo on the left, the theme might be in fact "Sexual Chocolate".

My issue is two-fold. Naomi is notorious for being a Diva, so is Mariah Carey but Naomi more so. No reference was made to her skin color in the slightest. We cannot assume that every Black woman takes 'Chocolate' as a compliment. however the photo with the chocolate Playboy bunny is more damning and she willingly posed for it. Interesting, right? Perhaps she was upset with being called a diva. Fair enough but PLEASE don't call it racist. People...White, Black and Others throw the term racist around like it's a joke. It has been diluted with nonsense that we can't really tell what is racist. Seriously, purposefully disenfranchising ex-felons after they have paid their debt to society ONLY in states with the highest percentage of minorities is racist. Yes, actual prisoners can vote in some New England states.

There are real issues of racism and this sort of thing sets Blacks and other minorities back. She should show some social responsibility.
For Real???SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

While We Were Preparing for the Rapture, Gov. Scott signed the "Elections Bill"

The economy had to have experienced a little jolt this past week as Christians that are clearly unfamiliar with the Bible prepared for the Apocalypse that was scheduled for May 21, 2011 at 6pm. Seriously? I understand the human desire to be forewarned but the Rapture isn't something that can be scheduled in a Blackberry. Can you imaging the 10 minute reminder? Rapture in 10 mins. Then what, you'd hit snooze??

Sadly people maxed out credit cards, quit jobs, gave away life savings and the media much more sadly covered it. What's worse is that as we were watching, laughing but anxiously looking at our clocks, two days earlier the Florida Governor Rick Scott signed into law a bill to fight against the Lockness Monster of American democracy--Voter Fraud.

The issue of Voter Fraud could very well be taken seriously if number one, didn't fall on party lines and number two, was indeed an actual issue. National voter turnout hovers around 50% during presidential elections and 37% during midterm elections. Citizens aren't exactly clamoring to vote so it's hard for me to imagine covetous non-citizens scheming to have their one vote count. It is unfortunate because the very ill it is supposed to correct is what it will perpetrate. HB1355 or the "Elections Bill" as it is commonly referred, makes it harder to register, harder to vote and harder for your vote to actually be counted. Voter registration groups like the League of Women Voters (a.k.a. the nice old ladies asking if you are a registered voter) once had 10 days to turn in forms from registration drives. Now it is shortened to 2.  It sets a deadline for voters to update their legal address, nullifying a law that for 4 decades allowed them to do so on Polling Day. It also reduces the number of early voting days from 15 days to 8 days.

What does this all mean? Well studies show that increases in voter turnout tend to favor Democrats, so to suppress turnout would likely do the opposite. College students often have a permanent address and the one they actually live in and the new deadlines would make it difficult for them. Obama's victory is largely attributed to the youth vote. The League of Women Voters, who have a century long tradition of encouraging people to do their civic duty have said they will no longer operate in Florida because the strict deadline and fees that accompany it if unmet make it .... Wage-earners who are often lower income and/or minorities utilized the early voting provision and instead of 2 weeks you just get one.

So guess who is the big proponent of fighting voter fraud? Republicans!! I believe the reasoning is if the election doesn't have the outcome that we desire than it must be a result of fraud. We Americans like to believe our elections are just and would fight to make sure it is so. (Although times have changed, people don't fight anymore we just make Facebook pages about it.) So while we weren't watching, the Republican Governor of Florida signed into law a bill that effectively rigs elections in the state. How about that for democracy?
While We Were Preparing for the Rapture, Gov. Scott signed the "Elections Bill"SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

In Case You Wondered What Could Break a 25 Year Marriage

...fathering a child outside the marriage. Yep. Wait no, it's the years of rumored philandering, the exploding career that had to be put aside because
being married to a narcissistic movie star is a lot of work. It is the sleeping with the house staff (classic case of messing around with the nanny/maid) who had worked for the family for 20 years AND making a baby from that. Oh wait, and telling your wife 10 years later about it (while the maid is still working for you) you know, to ensure that she feels like a COMPLETE idiot.

Yep, that would do it.

But to find this at 6:30 am? Seriously, again? They have one more time to break news overnight. Who actually makes this a press strategy??
In Case You Wondered What Could Break a 25 Year MarriageSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Saddest Ring of Fire: Battle for the Republican Ticket

The Republican heavyweights are begging, really begging, for a real candidate. This upcoming Presidential election is about to be as bad as the Lakers vs the Mavs. A big Sweep. In May 2007, Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Edwards had officially launched their campaigns. I had already attended an Obama rally. In the race for the Republican primary, McCain was already leading Romney and Giuliani in the polls. Fast forward to the 2012 campaign and President Obama is practically running unopposed.

Let's see, Jeb Bush has said (repeatedly) he refuses to run. Rubio has refused. Huckabee has just announced that he is not running and was wasting our time. Trump has come to his senses and decided not to run. I mean, you can't base your whole campaign on that Birther non-sense. I can't really name any other candidate besides Mitt Romney and Ron Paul. Ron Paul is the Republican Ralph Nader. He just feels obliged to run. Republicans don't even like Mitt Romney.But then...they didn't like McCain either. A Massachusetts Republican is like a Southern Democrat and Romney is trying very hard to live down RomneyCare. Oh wait, there is Tim Pawlenty and I don't care to know more.

At this point the race for the Republican challenger looks like the high school talent show that no one wants to participate in...except for the lameOs
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Monday, May 16, 2011

The Return of Eugenics

Satoshi Kanazawa has a blog on Psychology Today entitled The Scientific Fundamentalist: A Look at the Hard Truths About Human Nature. His most recent post is "Why are Black Women Rated Less Physically Attractive Than Other Women, But Black Men Are Rated Better Looking Than Other Men?" Firstly, anything or anyone referred to as a "Fundamentalist" are almost always extremist. Fundamentalism in many sections of society harbors an element of racism. So with this in mind I can answer why anyone would do such a study. Why it would become published I'm still unsure.
The subjects in the study interviewed respondents and at the end of the interview rated their attractiveness from 1-5. Yep, like we did of the boys in middle school. There was a health component to it as well though it was not explained. He used factor analysis as his method of statistical analysis. Email me if you would like me to explain it. The general gist of the study is this:
  • *Women are considered more attractive than men on average, except for Black women
  • *Blacks are considered less attractive on average, than the other races( White, Asian and Native  American)
  • *However, within sex there is little variation among the perceived attractiveness of males.
  • *When health was included, Black women were considered far less attractive than women of other races.
  • *Black women are heavier than other women (higher BMI on average) which may contribute to their lack of attractiveness
  • *Blacks find consider themselves more attractive (subjectively) than they are considered objectively
  • *Intelligence makes Black men more attractive, no effect on the perception of Black Women
Kanazawa ends with this:
The only thing I can think of that might potentially explain the lower average level of physical attractiveness among black women is testosterone. Africans on average have higher levels of testosterone than other races, and testosterone, being an androgen (male hormone), affects the physical attractiveness of men and women differently. Men with higher levels of testosterone have more masculine features and are therefore more physically attractive. In contrast, women with higher levels of testosterone also have more masculine features and are therefore less physically attractive.
For Real??? With all the breasts and booty on Black women...on average of course... We have more testosterone? Bull. It's two things plain and simple: we find attractive what we are told is attractive and to a lesser degree, people who look like ourselves. White, Asian and Native Americans have more in common aesthetically than Blacks, small wonder that they would find Blacks less attractive. But I guarantee you that they find Naomi Campbell, Iman and Halle Berry. This is part and parcel because they labeled as attractive Black women. Similarly, star athletes are more often than not, Black men. And this is the epitome of masculinity, therefore it is understandable that though Black men differ greatly from other races they will still be considered attractive. Uma Thurman is supposed to be beautiful: A tall blonde, blue-eyed movie star. She graces magazines covers but quite honestly, I find her to be quite funny looking. Nothing close to attractive.

I am concerned about the attempt at some scientific explanation of why some races are superior to others, whether it be in social or economic standing, intelligence or beauty. It's called Eugenics and it is scientific racism, a blight on the field of psychology and science as a whole. I've gotten enough play from other races to know that Black women are found attractive. And yes, they go straight for my butt.
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Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Click Google.com Today!

Or check it out below. They had an animated doodle of "Google" today in honor of the Martha Graham dance studio. Just beautiful, the things they come up with. Also very smart...makes me go to Google just to see what they create next!

Google - Martha Graham from Ryan J Woodward on Vimeo.

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There is a word for this type of thing...

Bryan Williams aka "Baby" aka "Birdman" has reportedly purchased an $8 million 2005 concept car Maybach Excelero. Now, I have already expressed how balling can become disgusting with the $2 million dollar Bugatti. I seriously didn't believe this could be topped.

Needless to say I think this spending $8 million dollars on a car...even if it is the only one ever made... is terribly disappointing/ unattractive/ill advised/disgusting/irresponsible/a recipe for disaster. However, I do think we need to put this travesty into perspective and not simply write this off as "dumb things people do".

Forbes recently listed the top five wealthiest Hip-Hop artists, (because we really need to know):
  • Sean "Puffy" Combs (I still call him Puffy)-$475 million
  • Jay-Z -$450 million
  • Dr. Dre- $125 million
  • Bryan "Birdman" Williams-$100 million
  • 50 Cent-$100 million
So to be clear, Birdman has 50 Cent money and NOT Jay-Z money and there is a $300 mil difference. Oh and he also has the dreaded Bugatti...of course. Jay-Z rented the Maybach Exelero for his "Lost Ones" video...but Birdman bought it. Think Jay-Z is jealous? (or anyone for that matter?) He's probably laughing his head off.

So while other rich people are looking for tax-shelters and Swiss bank accounts, Birdman buys million dollar cars. I must say, when living in New Orleans I once heard on the radio station that Birdman walked into a Foot Locker and purchased a pair of shoes for everyone that happened to be in the store. So perhaps he gives back in ways that don't make the news. But when I think of all the good $8 million dollars could have done in his hometown I cringe. Their public education system sucks, there are homeless people who need a sandwich on Canal St, people who can't afford health care...

It is unfortunate that the richest people in "our community" are also the least educated. I mean this with love. You don't need diplomas, you just need a moral compass and to know when to "ask somebody". There is a word for this sort of thing... you know for buying an $8 million dollar car to add to your $50 million car collection when you are worth $100 million. Ignorant isn't it. No. It called fuckery. Pure fuckery. And now I must wash my mouth out with soap.
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Tuesday, May 10, 2011

For Good Reason...

I suffer from a chronic illness called Procrastination. It is something that I have to manage daily, but I often have serious flare ups. Another blog posted that Forever 21 had an "I love My Hair" tank for $13.50. I quickly followed the link and added the tank to my shopping cart. But you see, I needed a total of $50 to qualify for free shipping. I'm too cheap to just buy random things and Forever 21 has a discouraging return policy. So...I waited. A couple of days later it was sold out! *fists in the air*

So for the past few days I have been (1) kicking myself (2) checking Forever 21 to see if they have restocked and (3) looking for alternatives. It was in my search for alternatives that I noticed that (well it was pointed out) that the girl on the Forever 21 shirt was much lighter than the alternatives and the original character.  I am sure it would be argued that it was done to broaden the market for the t-shirt. This way Black, Latino, Jewish and Middle Eastern people with curly textures could wear the shirt.

Sure. But then again, it goes against everything that the character was created for. A little Ethiopian girl wanted to look like kids she saw in class, women she saw on T.V. and her adopted parents. It was expressed first through her disdain for her hair, but next it would be her skin. It's the natural progression of things in a society that primes us at birth to hate ourselves. Even when it's a smiling face telling you to in fact, love yourself.
For $10 dollars extra you can get a shirt with character with her original brown skin here. I guess I missed buying it on the low for good reason.  That would have been $13.50 down the drain.
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Monday, May 09, 2011

The Ignorance is becoming too embarassing...

Sigh... Two Muslims Imams were kicked off a Delta flight for...being and having the unmitigated gall to look Muslim. For goodness sakes, why would two Islamic religious figures on their way to a religious conference about intolerance against Muslims---want to dress like Muslims? I cannot take it. They were not praying or chanting. They had cleared security. They were selected for additional security and of course, cleared the additional security. The pilot began to taxi on the runway and then suddenly made an announcement that they were returning to remove the two passengers. The pilot said that the Imams were making the passengers uncomfortable, when in fact they just made him uncomfortable. So much so, that the pilot resisted all efforts made by the airline to reason with him. The pilot took off without him. So this pilot better be without a job by the end of this week.

Secondly, minorities need to stand up against this type of bigotry. People started claiming Obama was a Muslim and no sooner were they walking around with Curious George dolls (and other Monkey related items) with Obama's name on it. This is a slippery slope to the overt discrimination of the most disadvantaged ethnic minorities and a large body of people are just itching for the chance to use the N-word at work without repercussions.

Where is Al Sharpton on this? *crickets*
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Saturday, May 07, 2011

What the Hell is Hipster Culture?

My sister often makes refernce to hipster coulture and I honestly believed she just means "cool and trendy". But hipster culture is now a bit of a force to be reckoned with as I am loosing my baby brother to it. Yes, loosing him, to this horrible gray space of a subculture that is useless and ill-defined. So ill defined, I think I may be apart of it. To gain a better understanding, I called my BFF who I thought should have better access to these folks... on the street, at the farmers market or Urban Outfitters. From there we put our heads together did the only thing I really know how to do, research.

I came across an article entitled Hipster: The Dead End of Western Civilization that actually describes the hipster in detail

    Take a stroll down the street in any major North American or European city and you'll be sure to see a speckle of fashion-conscious twenty-somethings hanging about and sporting a number of predictable stylistic trademarks: skinny jeans, cotton spandex leggings, fixed-gear bikes, vintage flannel, fake eyeglasses ...
Gasp!! that's my brother!! Twenty-something with skinny jeans, skinny tie, the bike! Then it goes on to include a Keffiyeh
...and a keffiyeh Рinitially sported by Jewish students and Western protesters to express solidarity with Palestinians, the keffiyeh has become a completely meaningless hipster clich̩ fashion accessory

Hold the phone, I love the look with the Keffiyeh. A white tee and skinny jeans and heels, a good hand bag and bangles. That's my fresh look! Am I a hipster? Assuming hipsters don't wear 4-inch heels is the only way I can sleep at night.

There is also a little golden nugget called "Hipster Hitler".  It's a cartoon/comic that portrays Hitler as well...a Hipster (again whatever the hell that means) styled in ironic T-shirts and armed with that weird attitude I usually attribute to "being a teenager". I am a little concerned about a subculture that feels comfortable using Hitler as satirical material that is apolitical and lacking of any moral lessons. After giving it weeks of thought (Okay, maybe not weeks if you add it all up) and comparing "Hipster Hitler" to an entire comic dedicated to Uncle Ruckus from the "Boondocks"(which would be a lot)...I kinda see where they are coming from. A little. Okay not really but I am still trying.
But couldn't they have used like...Manuel Noriega? Noriega in skinny jeans and Ironic tees? Stalin? Rasputin?   No...because that requires effort and knowledge. I understand my "not getting it" is part and parcel of the subculture. What gets me most is... Hitler...with a side-part (slicked with a little pomade or gel in his hair) and a man cardigan, sipping a juice box with a tee shirt that says...I love Juice. Say it out loud.  Yes...it sounds like Jews. If you felt the urge to chuckle...you're human and I won't hold it against you. If you didn't feel at least a tiny bit of shame afterwards however, then you my friend are not.

I kind of get this one. And it could have totally been useful except Eastside-Westside beef was soooooo 90s. Oh wait Hipster's like retro too. Damn.
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