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Fear: A Great Motivator

Fear. False Evidence Appearing Real. I’m afraid for the future. I’m afraid of the kinds of changes we’re going through. I’m afraid I’m never going to get Shadow obedience trained. I’m afraid that the Zombie Apocalypse is going to be a real thing and that too many stupid people will survive because all the smart people are going about their lives unwilling to consider the possibilities. I’m afraid I’ll never achieve this “together” level that I’m supposed to be getting life. I’m afraid that I’ll never be satisfied. I’m afraid of being afraid.

The bombings in Brussels yesterday changed the color of this piece. See, the thing about Media Loves Isisterrorists and terrorism is that it’s primary purpose is to strike fear into the hearts of men. So as afraid as I am of so many things, when these attacks happen, my defiant nature kicks in and instead of staying afraid, I want to prove to those people that their antics didn’t work on me. I want to take a train blindfolded with my headphones on and sit right next to a suspicious bag. I want to fly out to Afghanistan with all of my femininity and girldom wearing a tank top, form fitting jeans, and flip flops, rent a car and drive through residential areas blasting old Beatles, Michael Jackson, and whichever local revolutionary underground rapper they’d want to silence. I want to tell the TSA and the NSA and the alphabet soup of agencies to find new jobs because their services are no longer needed and we won’t be letting acts of terrorism direct how we live our lives and treat our people. Much like how my negative experiences with racists hasn’t made me hate white people, I refuse to let these extremists scare me out of living. The only fear I have now is of being fearful… and zombies… because F*ck zombies.

I feel like the suggestions of adding security checks before people even get to the airport plays right into their agenda… Whoever “they” really are. I remember the scenes in Swordfish with John Travolta’s character explaining how  perpetrating acts of Fear... and Spidersterrorism is important ad necessary to the world… or at least maintaining the American way of life. He justifies killing tens, hundreds and thousands of children in the name of maintaining the American status quo. The objective is to keep people afraid to keep us in line. Fear: a Great motivator. Have you ever heard someone say “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself” but then they turn around and freak out over a spider? That’s what is being done to us. Drumpf is out there pointing at imaginary spiders. The terrorists are out there breeding wolf spiders, sending them to highly populated areas, and detonating their egg sacks and dispersing thousands of tiny spiders like miniature eight-legged fear bombs. They spread all kinds of fear for all kinds of reasons and we give in to it. They do it to keep us in line, they do it to keep us distracted, they do it to get us to let them do things to us that we’d otherwise revolt for. They’ve been doing it for centuries. The Romans did it with public executions. Slave owners did it to their “white” slaves. Bush did it with his infamous, imaginary “weapons of mass destruction”… and we the people fall for it every time. We the people ignore the voices of reason in our heads and give into the proverbial spiders. Every. Time.

Supposedly, the worst thing that could happen is death. Last time I checked, all of the religious sects Underdoghave happy places to go for the good people and unpleasant places to go for the bad ones. Well, if they’re right, and I’m considered good, what do we have to worry about? If I’m considered bad, with all there is to be afraid of here, going to any version of hell would be just like being here, so what are we afraid of? And if I’m right, and heaven and hell are created here on earth, then death might just be a welcomed release from all the damn stress, anxiety, and of course: fear. Further, to put the icing on the proverbial cake, death is the great equalizer; it will happen to all of us eventually… so get scared for wha?

I’m choosing to ignore my fear in favor of hope. Bravery is being afraid and choosing to act anyway. Let’s be brave. Let’s #feeltheBern. Let’s protect the future by doing what we need to do today to protect it. Let’s vote so the fear mongers of the world don’t get to lead us into another unnecessary war here or abroad. Let’s stand together again in favor of continuing to effect the change we believed in when we voted for Obama. Send me links and ideas to get Shadow to o back to being the obedient little pup-panion that’s I’ve come to depend on. Let’s pay attention to all of the possibilities… Let’s not allow ourselves to become like zombies; mindlessly dragging ourselves around giving in to our baser instincts and our penchant for instant gratification. I know that if we can do these things, we’ll all have a better chance at achieving that “together” thing that we have all claimed to be working towards and that even if I am never satisfied, I might at least be able to get close.

…oh, and let’s Do More & Require Better.

And now… at the end of the hour

cropped-wordsdontdoit2-1.jpg

This week we debuted a brand new podcast with a livestream. We said goodbye to one of the founders. We tackled coons, and hoteps. As well as assault, and the HIV & AIDS treatment drug Truvada.

 

 

I skipped a couple lines to let that sink in.

When this started I literally just wanted to take my usual facebook ranting to a website. I figured it would be like the old days of my Xanga page. Now, now I deal with potential sponsors, have production meetings, worry about our average listening and reading time, and look for brand expansion.

I remind you, I was so bored in the last semester of law school I decided to make a blog to archive the things I would normally rant about on Facebook.

 

So you can understand that having gone from that place to now is rather…amazing if I’m honest. I had no idea. We’ve added and lost people over that time. But more than their contributions or mine, we’ve gotten to know a lot of you. As of this writing, 92,000 of you have come to get to know us over these 3 years of Words Don’t Do It Justice. And you must like it here, because you’ve dropped in 302,000 times.

300000

That is astounding. That is epic. And to think that it has all come before we put up a single ad, before we shilled a single product, without a marketing team, and mostly from the effort of our authors, and their friends and family who have additionally believed in us and shared us with other people.  I can’t tell you enough thank you for all you’ve done and continue to do. It really has made the difference.

What that means is even what I’ve done in the past year isn’t enough. I have to do more. And I am. While we lost a podcast co-host today, I’m proud to say we gained 2 new ones for our show Give No Quarter. While we have Reason on break for a while, I’m happy to say we will be launching Weekends Don’t Do It Justice as its own site (www.wkndlife.com www.weekendsdontdoitjustice.net www.weekendsdontdoitjustice.com). Look for a review of a hilariously bad movie coming over there soon from me.

Heck, go buy a shirt, phone case, hoodie or tank. https://www.teepublic.com/user/314publishing

Check out our current Shirt and cases designs. Buy one now while you wait for more. Click the photo to go straight to the store!

Check out our current Shirt and cases designs. Buy one now while you wait for more.
Click the photo to go straight to the store!

 

I’m also happy to say that I’m teaming with Mr. 9 to 5 gamer himself Bami O to open a new gaming site and channel called “Save State Society” (www.savestatesociety.com www.savestatesociety.net) here soon as well. And we’re open with some great games and reviews. But that is going to take a lot to talk about, and I’ve got work to do there.

You’re here reading because this is about Words Don’t Do it Justice. The granddaddy of them all. Okay, the origin of them all. Three years in, and even though health wise I’ve dealt with issues. Professional life wise, I’ve had great forward steps but also set backs. Heck life in general being strange. After all that I’m proud of where we are. Where you’ve brought us. And so for the third time we come to the end of the hour. Where I say thank you without any reservations. Where for the third time ever, I get to step out of my role as Head Blogger, Editor, Podcast host, Lucremo, THE Ruthless Wonder, and everything that comes with it, and instead just talk to you as Matt Williams. We have a few reflection pieces and some alumni coming back to give us a piece. And we are going to celebrate all the way to my personal birthday on March 14th. But right now I’m just going to end by saying thank you all for bringing me and us from where we were to where we are and pushing us forward to where we are going next. As always Words Don’t Do YOU Justice.

“THE Ruthless Wonder” Matthew Elisha Williams

The Letter Series: Dear Coons, Hoteps, Self Hating Negroes, & So-Called ‘Woke’ Folks

ConneryFirst, the disclaimer segment. I actually don’t like the term “coon,” don’t generally use the term “hotep,” disassociate myself from “self hating negroes” as soon as I possibly can, and I used to consider myself among the “conscious” aka “woke” folks back in the day when it wasn’t synonymous with being a pretentious, self-important dick. However, in this case I’m going to make an exception. Its funny how writing to one set of people seems to always require a message to their counterparts. Last week, I had to address the miseducated masses. This week, I’m addressing … well, actually… I guess the coons and them are probably still miseducated, but it’s more like a different side of the same coin. Let me splain…

Apparently, in addressing the miseducated, I somehow triggered reactions from people who should know these things, but prefer the bliss of ignorance. I refuse to believe that these people legitimately belong to the miseducated masses because they–the miseducated masses–drank the misinformation flavored kool aid while these fools are guzzling down the mystery flavor and calling it water. Even now I’m sitting here trying to explain and for the life of me I can’t fathom a logical parallel, a plausible simile, an appropriate metaphor that captures them because they are a mystery to me. I guess the people of The Jim Crow Museum explained it best:

The coon […] was not happy with his status. He was, simply, too lazy or too cynical to attempt to change his lowly position…” and “[…] were increasingly identified with young, urban blacks who disrespected whites.

The modern day coon is barely different. They’re still lazy and cynical, but they also justify their coonery with the actions of the self hating negroes that support a white supremacist agenda with the fervor and zeal of Uncle Ruckus at an Obama rally. Then come the hoteps and so-called conscious folk spouting their half truths and well formulated lies for the coons to drink up with the rest of the mystery kool aid like dietary supplements. I just can’t. I seriously fucking can’t.

Story time:

This dude called me out for posting all this “race stuff” because it adds to his already heavy load.Negro Protection Really dude?!? Will not seeing “race stuff” magically diminish the weight of your load as a Black man? Does ignoring reality make racism go away for you? Or are you just trying to get comfortable with the load you have? He went on to say “My issue is that hearing about police brutallity, discriminatory behavior, and similar human rights violations isn’t new nor special to me. I wake up to this alot. and in my mind it’s like “I can’t tell if people want to be informed or be pissed off and untrusting of white america? […] it feels like the race card is constantly being played because of something going wrong among black and white people.” Misspelling aside, I was reading what I knew were English words, but there was something about it that my brain just could not compute. I was sitting there looking at the screen like… “Wait, did he just… wait… what?”

It seemed like he was saying that people are posting about injustices just to have something to be upset about… because I guess the injustices are only upsetting because they get posted. It was as if the riots after the Rodney King beating or the riots in NYC after the murder of Jose Garcia. There was no social media back then, but I guess back then people were just looking for something to be upset about then too? I guess we have no reason to be “untrusting of white America.” I guess history and current events are no indication of a need for protest. See I don’t know which category this young man falls into, but I know whichever one he ascribes to is one that I needed to disassociate myself from with urgent haste. But before I did, I said the same thing I’m about to say to the rest of you:

OppressionDear Coons, Hoteps, Self Hating Negroes, & So-Called ‘Woke’ Folks;

I’m not reopening the conversation, I’m finishing it. This one picture in a series of pictures [floating around Facebook] explains why we can’t be friends… But I’ll be a bit more specific.

It is our job as Black people to remind everyone that racism is still a thing. It’s a heavy load we don’t get to put down. Ignoring it doesn’t make the load lighter, it just becomes a load we get accustomed to bearing. No, I don’t enjoy struggling. I don’t want to get used to carrying this load. I don’t want my load slightly diminished. I want it gone. And I don’t just want my load gone I want every oppressed person’s load gone. You on the other hand seem to want to just get comfortable with your load. You’re not going to get that being my friend. If you were a smoker, I’d point out the benefits of quitting and how little I think of smokers every opportunity I got. I’m the same way about racism, sexism, homophobia and other oppressive prejudices. And knowing how you feel, I’d likely go out of my way to add a new feather to your load every chance I got… Kinda like now… Because I guess I’m the kind of ass hole who doesn’t care about the discomfort of people who have gotten comfortable with their load.

Furthermore, if you and your ilk think that anything good will come of continuing to play the “I’m not that kind of Black” role; if you think that being a “good ol’ darkie” will make you seem The Answerlike less of a threat to the miseducated massed of white people you’d like to count among your friends and allies, remember that they will turn on you just as quickly as they have turned on ever other Black person who stepped out of their neat little box. Beyoncé wasn’t the first and she most certainly will not be the last.

We don’t deserve to be harassed ad brutalized just because we might “fit the description.” We don’t deserve to get beaten by cops for being belligerent. We don’t consider that an acceptable way to treat animals, why the hell is it okay to treat a human being that way? It isn’t. You shouldn’t be so willing to roll over and take it, if for no other reason than because when someone like me Requires Better of them, they shouldn’t be surprised.o we are not all the same, but they haven’t all earned that yet. Whitewashing yourself, isn’t going to make you any less Black. Standing up for the equal rights of ALL–yes, that includes the LGBT+ community, women, and all other people of color– will not diminish your Blackness. You are only less of a man if you can’t see that any oppression is an oppression worth standing against. WE ALL have to Do More and Require Better. All of us. No exceptions. And while you jack asses are busy posturing… puffing yourselves up like so many stuffed birds… claiming to be fed up with all this “race stuff” and wondering why people are still talking about it, I’ll be that ass hole plucking your proud feathers… helping to build the comfortable bed that your children will one day lay in, thankful that I insisted on Doing More and Requiring Better way back when.

With a Side-eye of Epic Proportions,Reign

The Letter Series: Dear Miseducated Masses

I promise that I have been paying attention to the world these last few weeks. Although I have been focusing on love, relationships, and Blackness, I know that the Broncos won the Superbowl, Jeb dropped out of the running, that Beyoncé shocked the miseducated pale world by coming out as a Southern Black Woman, that Red Lobster has apparently taken this opportunity to raise their prices, and that–as of today–Facebook added new “Reactions” to the “Like” option. However, this being the last week of February, I have an obligation to make sure we keep the focus on important happenings in Blackdom, so I’m going to have to finally address how people have been losing their minds about Bey, her Blackness, and her “tribute” to the Black Panthers.

First of all, I have to say that I really don’t see it. I didn’t watch the Superbowl, but I saw the performance after the fact, and personally, I think it would have been more tributary if she had also donned an Afro instead of her usual long blonde weave. I might have even accepted it if she kept it Blonde, as long as she also wore an Afro. Why? To me it still lacked the embrace of her own Blackness that everyone else seems to be giving her credit for. As if to say as long as she embraces other people’s blackness and not her own, it counts? Beyonce Formation HatNah, sorry, not for me. If we move over to the video, and everyone praising her for including Blu Ivy with her baby fro, I still think she’s showing her daughter that longer, blonder, and straighter is still better. So, as far as I’m concerned, its only a partial parenting win. No, I’m not saying, like most people seem to be saying, that blackness can be neatly summed up into big fro and a fist in the air, because there was certainly more than that to be noted in both the video and the performance. Unfortunately, the few moments of negro consciousness in the video–very artistically well done moments–went by so quickly and were so (for me) overshadowed by her lyrical inferences to her Southern heritage, I barely saw them. Hot sauce in a purse and Red Lobster for a job well done are not intrinsic to Black culture. Afros are. The police’s widespread abuse of power and overreaction to unarmed Black people is. As a matter of fact, nothing about the song itself speaks to Black pride at all. It’s about her, her money, her man, and her experience and a rich country girl. For me, it actually stands in absolute opposition to the positive image  people want to attribute to the video. But again, that’s just me.

Apparently, the miseducated masses have taken her Superbowl “tribute” and video in a completely different direction, having decided that because she chose costumes inspired by Michael Jackson in his Black Panther tribute she must be promoting violence and terrorism… because they learned that that’s what the Black Panthers were all about: killing cops, hating white people, and promoting violence and terrorism in the name of pro-blackness. Time for a history lesson.

History is written by the victors. I always thought it was funny how the Panthers are criminalized for physically standing up for regular Black folks at a time where Black people were being openly targeted by a police system that was allowed to assume that dark skin = criminal… kinda like now. Let me break it down: The Black Panthers made it their business to stand in the way of Black people being tried and sentenced by overzealous police officers. They advocated self defense, education, employment, land ownership, and an end to the unjust incarceration of Black people. Yes, they called for revolution, because they believed that the nonviolent path preached by Rev. Dr. King “had failed and any promised changes to their lifestyle via the ‘traditional’ civil rights movement, would take too long to be implemented or simply not introduced.

It’s super convenient for white people to feel assaulted by the mere suggestion that Black people might revolt against a white supremacist status quo. In a conversation I was having last week, one such White person expressed his sentiment that any movement that suggests the use of violence is automatically less valid and unacceptable to him. And when I asked about the American Revolution, he responded with understanding and excuses, explaining that the colonists didn’t really want to go to war at first… Which is the shit that really gets my gall. So hundreds of years of slavery, police brutality, the KKK, Jim Crow, segregation, lynch mobs… but the suggestion that Black people need to defend themselves is just too appalling? When it’s white people defending themselves against unfair taxes, its okay? When it’s white people killing people at random, it’s a sign of metal illness, but an organized group of Black people defending other Black people who are big victimized by white police officers, they’re a terrorist group? This trend of the media miseducating the masses by painting Black people with the villain brush and white criminals as regular people isn’t new. And I know I’m not alone when I say I’m tired of it. I had a recording for you, but instead, I’ll have to get back to writing you fucktards letters so you’ll get the point.

Dear Miseducated Masses,

I want to be understanding. I want to be forgiving. I want to be a Christ-like, But whatcheek-turning, self-sacrificing, patient, listener who continues to have these conversations in hopes that you’ll one day see the error of ways, your thinking, your false logic, and your double standards. Unfortunately, I don’t have the promise of an eternity of being worshiped and praised while sitting next to the big guy in the sky and watching the Human-Earth show for fun to look forward to. I have to live here with you, and if there is an afterlife, I may have to share my throne room in hell with you. I am subject to the injustices that you seem comfortable watching me and people like me go through. I don’t need your pats on the back for being as tolerant as I have already been of your collective bull shit. You are no longer allowed to count me among your ‘this many black friends’ when you justify your racist stances by saying “I’m not racist, but…” first.

Here’s the thing, the entire world has been all about making and keeping White people, and often more Y'all Madspecifically White Americans, comfortable. Those days are coming to an end. Even our performers starting to whisper “Stop Killing Us” through images of graffiti stained walls, sinking police cars, and lines of militarized police forces. After decades of being the only images of beauty in the media, you have the audacity to get upset now? After centuries of being able to ignore and often cause the suffering of people of color world wide, NOW you want to act like #AllLivesMatter… and get emotional over the collective “Fuck you” from your favorite colored entertainers? Miss me, Bey, and Blu Ivy with that. The kid gloves are off and we are requiring you to take wake up and smell you shit. It has NEVER smelled like the roses you claim your American Dream smells like. It’s shit. It stinks. And it’s time to get it together and start really cleaning. You’ve been “white washing” everything like the world is your personal white picket fence, and we’re not letting you do it anymore. You will see us as more than just thugs and criminals. You will stop forcing us into either/or roles that diminish the truth of our experiences. You will acknowledge your privilege, and really start adjusting your attitudes to this New World Order.

If you really want this to be a world where race doesn’t matter, start White Historyre-educating yourselves. Start really listening to your however-many-Black-friends/acquaintances when they tell you that you’re being racist. Stop making excuses, getting defensive, and making false equivalences to justify your ignorance. If you really believe that #AllLivesMatter, then stop acting like an all white jury can justly hear a case about a Black man being killed by any white man. Stop thinking that it’s normal for an armed white man to “fear for [his] life” just looking at a Black kid or group of Black kids. Stop treating Black children like miniature adults as soon as they’re old enough to walk and talk. You’ll ever be able to walk 1 foot in any of our shoes, but you could at least acknowledge that 1 foot in a Black person’s shoes is like 10 miles in yours, AND that it isn’t okay. If the picture to the right makes you uncomfortable, Good. It makes us uncomfortable too. We’re afraid that your ignorance is going to allow us to go ac to those days, and you’ll all just move on with your heads n the proverbial sands while we are stuck fighting for our lives because you were too busy “not seeing color.” Most of all, Do More & Require Better of yourselves. If not because I said so, then because several of your Black friend’s lives depend on it.

Sincerely,
Reign

RSI – Black Love: Part 2, Better Black Relationships

So in Part 1, I went in to the history of some of the psychology of where we are in Black relationships. Once again, when I talk about
“Black Love” and Black Relationships, I’m talking about any relationship that involves a Black person. I think it’s important that we can come to an understanding on this Black Love Wordspoint in particular because while there are so many messages out there that seem to suggest division and separation, I really do believe that we–all of us we–won’t get anywhere without each other. No revolution has ever been won without the help of sympathetic “outsiders.” The American revolution wouldn’t have been won without the French. The women’s movement wouldn’t have moved forward without the assistance of men. The LGBT (and whichever other letters have been added) community wouldn’t have gotten as far as it has without hetero help… and similarly, Black people and other people of color won’t succeed without White people. Somewhere out there, there’s an interracial couple at odds because they got together before the proverbial kitchen got hot. Maybe someone said something uninformed about The Black Panthers. Maybe someone got just a bit too passionate about police brutality. Either way the line was drawn then crossed, and the truth is out. If we can’t get to the core and come to a mutual understanding; where the people with privilege can acknowledge the whole situation and the rest of us can help them level out the playing field.

Anyway, I feel like knowing the history; the psychology of a behavior or thought pattern should make it easier to overcome. With that in mind, I went t the place where I was always told that women talk about relationships: the hair shop. Thanx to the ladies of Coco Hair Co. who who opened up and shared their perspectives on Black relationships. I have to say, I found myself apologizing on several
different occasions because I had to take things much deeper than the average “these n___s ain’t sh*t” conversation, and as the young folks say, they weren’t ready. They had to know about how we have been conditioned to mistrust each other… and that is, unsurprisingly, what it all really comes down to; trust &  security. Stop LyingThe answer to all of our woes, on every side of the conversation comes down to being able to trust each other, and from that trust, can we feel secure–emotionally, physically, financially, etc.–with each other. One young lady, who explained that she is not yet ready to be in a committed relationship explains that the bare minimum she should still be able to count on is that the dude(s) she’s dealing with is honest with her. She isn’t asking for exclusivity, only that she should know if/when he is seeing other women. Guys, I know, you probably don’t understand why she’d want to know. Have you ever seen how crazy a woman can get when she thinks the guy she’s seeing is seeing other women? Don’t you think he has a right to know what she might be getting herself into if one of your other women might find out about her and say… show up at her place of business or home starting trouble? So much drama can be prevented by simply making sure that all involved parties know what they’re getting in to. Common courtesy… common sense… common decency; not so common. She should also have the opportunity to make an informed decision as to whether or not she wants to continue her part of the arrangement. When you lie, you’re taking that option off the table. You get to hold the cards, and although you’ve shuffled the deck and changed the game, she still thinks you’re playing Crazy Eights when in fact you’ve switched to Poker.

Similarly, I’ve heard guys say all kids of things that suggest that some women are less deserving of honesty or “real”-ness; citing a woman’s choice of hair style or use of makeup almost as justification for misbehavior. I believe that men with this kind of thinking shouldn’t bother with relationships at all, least of all, Black relationshBlack Long Hairips. Guys, if you judge the content of a Black woman’s character by what she chooses to do with her hair, or how much time she seems to spend putting on makeup, you’re missing the point. No, I’m not saying that you should all go out and find the girl with the longest weave or the best contouring technique, but I am saying that a girl or woman’s cosmetic care choices shouldn’t diminish how you view her as a potential partner. What we do with our hair, nails, and makeup, if we choose to do anything at all isn’t always a superficial, political, or psychological decision… and it almost never really has anything to do with what you think its about. Using myself as an example, my more recent hair and makeup choices are about who I want to see looking back at me. I got all the way through high school without pimples, and now I have adult acne. As if I don’t look young enough I have to add acne to the mix? As far as my hair is concerned… that’s a bit more complicated. The simple version is that I most recently got it done, caving in to conservative society’s view of what is “acceptable” hair for Black women. I was angry about feeling forced into the style choice, and I’m still angry that participating in “their” world means that I can’t be authentic to my whole self. The take away from this segment should be that as women we have it hard enough, and as black women we have it that much harder. We shouldn’t have to add the disapproving commentary from our potential significant others to that list.

I’ve also heard that a girlfriend isn’t a wife so why should they bother making that effort? I’m equally disgusted when women make similar exclamations as if the absence of a ring decreases the level of pain inflicted by a broken heart. Stop. No seriously: Stop. That Not How This Worksisn’t how it works, and shame on you for acting like you’d be okay with someone lying to, playing with, or cheating on you claiming that the ring makes the difference. As a matter of fact, I’ll go as far to say that being “cheated on” by someone you’re cheating with or are “just f*cking” will still make you feel some kind of way. Which brings us full circle and back to the ladies at Coco’s. They provided a pretty simple list of what they’s really want from a man: Honesty, Accountability, Communication, and the ability to “handle” being with them. Now, that last one is the hardest thing on the list, but that’s what dating is for: figuring out if that person is someone you can handle. This short list isn’t too much to ask for. Like I said last week, we don’t necessarily need a significant other as a provider anymore. Further Black relationships in America have never even allowed for lack men to be providers. What we do need is a partner. Someone who provides emotional support and balance in a world where the struggle is real and constant and everyone just needs to be reminded that there is more to life than the daily grind. There’s love.

Do More for love. Require Better from lovers.

RSI 101 – Black Love: Part 1

Black Kids Cheek KissThis is probably going to be a really long piece for a lot of reasons. I want to talk about love, about relationships, about being black in relationships (aka Black Love)… and further, after having done a recording wherein I barely touched on everything I want to say tells me that this needs to be a 2, maybe even 3 part discussion.  I have a feeling that some of my readers/listeners are going to feel alienated because much of this is going to be Black People specific, but remember, its Black history month, I’m Black, and as far as I’m concerned, some conversations are just to important to be PC about. Which reminds me…

About this Black history month thing: It shouldn’t be thing… more specifically, it shouldn’t have to be a thing. Black history, as we in the US commemorate it, is American history. It should be a part of the history curriculum. It should be included in English, Literature, and Reading lessons because we have there are Black American writers. Slavery and racism should as be openly and HONESTLY discussed as the Civil War and Abraham Lincoln. Little Black girls ad boys shouldn’t be relegated to only learning about people who look like them during the shortest month of the year. It shouldn’t be that Blackness is only open for discussion in 30 second video clips before commercials. February shouldn’t be the only month people are encouraged to cram all of their/our appreciation of Blackness into. Just like people should be aware of breast cancer and heart disease all year, so should Black people, and our experience.

V Day ChocolateSimilarly, Valentine’s Day shouldn’t have to be a thing. We shouldn’t need a specific day to remember to show appreciation to our significant others. Further, the media should be ashamed of themselves for suggesting that men need to spend exorbitant amounts of money and women simply need to supply the sex to show appreciation for our significant others. Unfortunately, if it wasn’t for Valentine’s day, many wouldn’t get to know they were appreciated until something bad happened in the relationship…. because who really remembers Anniversaries anyway? Many married men would have to wait for God knows how long for their wives to remember that lingerie can be more enticing than comfy pajamas, or that men deserve to feel special too.

Now let’s combine this and get to what I really want to talk about: Relationships. Black Love & HappinessNow, if you’ve been reading me since the beginning, you’ll know that I don’t like giving romantic relationship advice… I will, but I don’t generally like to. This time I’m going this because there are people on my feed and in my family who have thoughts ad questions, that I think deserve a attention. First, history and upbringing… as they relate to Black Americans. Up front, I think it bears mentioning that a lot of what I am making Black people specific, is actually universal, thus, if you’re not Black, and reading this, you might still be able to relate.

All the messages we receive put us at odd with one another. As men and women, regardless of sexual orientation, romantic relationships are painted in hard and violent colors. There’s a battle for dominance; a question about who wears the pants in the relationship, that just makes things difficult.

Time to dig deep…

Back in the day, marriage was a form of ownership. Women, having no rights of their own, or value other than their ability to bear children and tend to the house were basically sold into servitude by their fathers to their husbands, or their husband’s family (depending on the age). Is it really any wonder that since the day women started working outside the home (because parenting and housekeeping is work) that a functional dynamic of relationships has been difficult to maintain? I’ll go deeper. Black women in You Don't Deserve HerAmerica have always worked outside the home. Whether it was raising the master’s children, picking the cotton, cooking, cleaning… slaving in general was work. And then they had to go to wherever the slaves slept, and work more for their own families. Although white women were undervalued in their homes, they could at least count on the protection of the men in their lives. Black women could not; Black women had to bear the brunt of all of the abuse, the rape, the indignity, knowing that no one would be coming to save her… not her father, brothers, or even her husband.  Her mother or sister might be able to offer herself up to the master to offer a reprieve, but it wouldn’t be man, at least not if he valued his life… not if he didn’t want to risk being sold to another plantation. Throughout history, women have had to do the parenting thing alone. Men were off hunting, fighting wars, and forging frontiers. Even when they were around, they were mainly there for sex and food. They gave women more work to do. I’m not trying to diminish the value of having a man in the home, I’m simply saying that not having a man at the home isn’t a new thing either. The value of male-female companionship didn’t actually come into play until much later.

Now, I can already hear some of you saying “That was then, this is now Reign… time to move on Reign.” But see, if you look at where we are in relationships now, where we have to be specific about “Black Love”–as if love isn’t complicated enough–especially with the women’s movement having given rise to messages that tell men that we, women, don’t need them, I want you to really understand
where that comes from. So where am I going with this?  Simple: women don’t need men… LOL… Okay, no, that isn’t where I was Storm Black Panther Kissgoing, but  had to say it. Because we don’t need men the way we needed them back then. Like all women, we need companionship. We need partnership. We need bed warmers. We need someone to be special to. Yes, we need you. The feminist movement, while I still consider myself a proud feminist, got that message wrong, or at least incomplete. More specifically, as a Black woman, I have to speak directly to the need for Black men. The complaint about Black women being too hard, too independent, too masculine… if you look at the history, you’d understand that we didn’t have a choice, and that being penalized for it is an injustice that is still prevalent in Black relationships today. Not just as companions–straying from the romantic element of relationships for this–but as partners in the struggle. When we are agonizing about #BlackLivesMatter, the people who understand through experience are Black men. The man you are least likely to have to explain why and how racism is still a problem for you personally, even if you never stepped foot in the hood, is a Black man. When being a “strong black woman” was in style and it got mixed in with the feminist movement, the message got twisted, everything fell apart, and the idea of Black love became a novelty. It became more about devaluing men and their role in our lives, and less about empowering women. Suddenly, “taking care of home” was a weak woman’s job; a white woman’s job. The rhetoric about men being unnecessary, more specifically how Black men “ain’t shit” became more important than strong families. I’ll ask this: What’s the point of being a strong Black woman if all you let yourself see are weak men?

At the same time, men were hearing all those messages too; and the message was loud and clear. So why are we surprised when they
fell back on their role as men? Why shouldn’t they have switched to only focusing on what they need us for? If we don’t need them to do the right thing, why should they? What’s their incentive? They’re told they aren’t necessary, but they’re still expected to pay for the dates, pay the bills, be physically present in their children’s lives–technically a new requirement–and sometimes the lives of children that aren’t theirs, be emotionally and financially stable, be able to fix stuff around the house, be educated, committed, and faithful… and in return, they might be able to look forward to sex. Where’s the equality in that? Where is the love in that? Since we’re out working, they can’t expect a cooked meal when they get home. They can’t expect well raised, respectful children who understand the value in patience and perseverance over the acquisition of things and instant gratification. They can’t expect anything because like the song says, “we run this.

I’m the kind of feminist who actually believes in equality, only with a realistic twist… Love Never Failsbecause we aren’t equal; not in all things. There are some things that should be exclusive to men, just like there are some things that are exclusive to women. Allowing this dynamic to break down; allowing the incomplete messages to corrupt the fundamentals is one major component to why relationships, specifically relationships between Black people, has become so difficult. Unlike most other racial groups, there’s a lot more to Black love than just love… and I have a lot more to say about it…

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I know that was long (especially on top of all this)… and I have even more to say about it. So come back next week for Black Love, Part 2.

In the mean time, Do More, Require Better.

Dear Lost Cause, err America

Let’s be real for a few minutes of your Monday afternoon.

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Dear America,

I sat back on Super Bowl Sunday a day traditionally I enjoy above all sports days, most movies, presidential elections, and if we’re being honest, most holidays in any give year save Christmas, and found myself underwhelmed. You as always were at peak Superbowl hype, great commercials, a game that until the actual last few minutes was not in hand, and yet, I just wasn’t feeling it. I turned down prior to the game the exact same amount of “hey come watch the game with us” invitations as I did the day of.  Because football I watch with Mom when I’m in KC. But that wasn’t really the thing that started this off. I found myself underwhelmed by everything around the game. In years past in the name of sports we as a society have put down our arms to celebrate sports. Well to celebrate the Super bowl. Predictably we did not yesterday. Out right racism directed at Cam Newton had and has been going on all season and it like everything else, only ramped up for the game. When Beyoncé and Bruno Mars appeared during the halftime show, the racist sections of twitter I monitor as a sort of barometer of American and International issues for this site and my other work, went nuts. But I expected that. It was the average everyday people, both on my friends list, and friends of those friends I found my surprise. From comments about Beyoncé’s song choice(No White people, the Black Panthers were not a black KKK, and they do not in fact mean the same thing). To Bill RomaRacist’s Boy comment to Cam Newton being defended(I dare you to call another adult male of any race boy in person without putting up your hands in defense). To one particularly open and shockingly new racist who said this is why you can’t let black people perform at big events. If I could bear the responses, and digression from these I wouldn’t need this letter. But often in response there are mild and tame, but also extremity.

I say all that to give you back ground. Because I’m done with you. I’ve given you to date, just a month and 6 days shy of 34 years of respect. Just shy of 34 years of honor. And even with these blog posts I have tried to be what you have made me. For as I often say, I am a villain because I do not spare the world the truth of my goals and desires, and a monster because I show this world a mirror, and it fears to look into it. But I’m done. No more mirror. You don’t want to get better, because you would rather yell about the need to change or need to improve than do it. You’d rather point blame at some pre-conceived notion of an “Other” to create the us versus them narrative, than handle the actual enemies at the gate. Watching the Superbowl I realized how much the song and dance is really the only game in town. Let me show you how much of a lost cause this is.

“Love it or Leave it”

The extremity in Democrats and Republicans is at all time highs for the internet age (1992 – Present), and that has led to a lot more “if (insert name) is elected, I’m leaving the country) So let’s start right there. You aren’t leaving ya liar. And beyond the fact that you’re unable to turn off hyperbole to talk like a rational person, I have some facts to back up why you aren’t.

Here are the top 49 countries of the developed world.

 

Developed world

Here are, more specifically, the ones within the direct influence of the US.

First World – Industrialized Countries, within the Western European and United States’ Sphere of Influence

NATO Member States during the Cold War
Belgium Canada Denmark
France Germany Greece
Iceland Italy Luxembourg
Netherlands Norway Portugal
Spain (since 1982) Turkey United Kingdom
USA
US Aligned States
Israel Japan Korea (South)
Former British Colonies
Australia New Zealand
Neutral and more or less industrialized capitalist countries
Austria Ireland Sweden
Switzerland

 

Why is this important?

Because without that you get into

  1. Countries that have antagonistic relationships with the US, and thus with U.S. citizens moving there.
  2. Countries with so little chance of you hitting English speakers you might as well tap out now.

So let’s look at our second group there. Conservatives looking for a No Bernie or Hillary haven, you’re up first.

Japan and Korea are out for you, besides how hard it is to learn a new language, your ability to become a citizen in Japan is a problem because of that whole, you weren’t born in Japan to two fully ethnic Japanese citizens. Both have strict gun laws, and being anything other that Korean or Japanese respectively, makes you a minority.

Australia, and New Zealand, beyond actively attempting to kill you at every turn with what would easily be called the most inordinate amount of killer nonhuman species concentrated in a given area is also home to the kinds of strict gun laws and speech laws you will run around of. A man was recently prosecuted for his Facebook comments. So no Fosters or Lord of the Rings location tour for you.

Sweden is exactly what you want to escape here, high taxes to take care of the entire population, universal single payer style healthcare, they’d make Bernie King there. RUN!

Germany isn’t a safe bet, not only do they hardcore prosecute hate crimes and hate speech(I wonder why), but they also have strict gun laws. In fact all of these do. strict gun laws, lax drug laws, mostly non-English. And the English speakers have ongoing conflict with each other(Why does that seem familiar?). We even have more than a few monarchies, all with universal health care, all with higher taxes, and all considered far more liberal and progressive than even your opposition democrats that you want to escape now. And the places that aren’t don’t actually want you moving there. What to do what to do?

 

But all is not sunny for the liberals.

I don’t know why you think you’re going to escape my comments. But I know you thought you were.

Let’s get back to basics. I know you just as well as I know them. You look at that list and think, man I could go there, but I could go to anywhere they consider the third world too. No, no you couldn’t. Let’s get into it shall we? First off, you’re reading this on your computer. You took time to sit down at your PC, or on your smart phone to do so. Unless you are like or are my buddy Adam Jung you aren’t built to handle long term living in less than first world accommodations. You need reliable internet access. You need reliable cell phone coverage. You need guaranteed running water in pipes in your living conditions. You need assured electricity. Your diet is filled with first world supplements. Your gym has mats, walls, weights, and trainers on muscle milk and creatine. You go to spin class and send me photos on snap chat(TheNeoSadist, mark it down). Your entire world is filled with tech and the things that supply it to such a degree that you’re locked in to USA. But so much bigger than that, you won’t leave. I know that seems like a throwaway line but I mean it. You won’t leave. You’re in love with your nationality so much that nothing else matters. In the end you love America so much you could experience a civil war over your personal right to live here and you wouldn’t leave. You’ll never be honest about that. In fact when someone says love it or leave it, you’re going to be the first to speak against them. Because that is your secret shame. For all your talk, you will never walk away.

 

Hyper sanity is a thing.

Someone once asked Grant Morrison about the Joker. And he said the Joker had a super sanity about him. Basically, he is so aware of everything that he above everything. In the Joker’s case so much so that he to some degree knows he is in a comic book. With America, as much as I have tried to deny it, I have this Hyper Sanity. I’m well aware that incremental change often occurs through subtle actions, and subversive means, and thus big attention means greater backlash and fewer things done. I’m also well aware that by pushing back, sometimes violently against the injustice in front of you, that things will get done on a larger scale. But I’m aware that the larger the scale the farther from the things people need. I’m so aware of this and more that I see the futility in all of it. There is no progress in pointing out the hypocrisy of LGBTQ people fighting for quality with straight people while being racist within their community. There is no progress in pointing at Men’s Rights Activists and Feminists and making them aware that their silence on the comments of the extremists among them, or extreme statements by them(Madeleine Albright of all people said there is a special place in hell for women who don’t vote for Hillary Clinton in the democratic primaries. And she can now fuck off just like Roosh V) is just as bad as openly approving of them, and makes them no better than the people they oppose.

Why do I say no progress?

Because you don’t want progress. You want to be angry. In my travels, and in my discussions I often talk to folks who have very strong political, philosophical, theological, or just generally interesting beliefs. These are great things. Difference in perspective often gives me additional things to shape my opinions or update my information with. And when I find error in myself or in my thoughts on something, I adjust and change. I even change on here if you haven’t noticed. But people so staunchly into something that they use the same vitriol of their oppossition? Well that means you love the hate more than the change. Using your opponents weapons against them, often referred to as (insert issue) judo, is a tactic for war. For battle between opposing sides. But internal change isn’t war. Improving things for all doesn’t mean defeating the other side. Change is about realization. It is about getting someone who holds one system of thought to see there is more out there and that they need to open perspective. It is about taking a viewpoint rooted in hate, misinformation, or just generally different belief and seeing that the change you want doesn’t take their underlying belief away, it just improves the life they and others have.  But every time someone has that message for people they get killed…

 

Lost Cause

So knowing this I’m finished with trying to help change by showing you the nature of what you are doing. I have spent my life, and indeed my blogging time specifically, trying to give you perspective. Trying to get you out of the comfort of thinking your beliefs are without flaws. When you defend Cam Newton because people have been racist to him, but attack Adele for being white, I’m done. When you saw feminists are harming society by not dealing with the female favored inequalities, but want to lead pro-rape rallies and run away because female boxers want to show up, I’m done. I have said before I am a man of constant wonder about where I stand. I believe in people being free and equal in treatment so I don’t give deference to men or women on the things I do. I don’t assume that someone who has a different ethnic background automatically has some stereotype well-known, in that background. But for not having the perfectly inline beliefs of anyone particular group on any issue I have been sexist, racist, reverse racist, uncle tom, coon, apologist, islamaphobe, gay, freak, tranny lover, fetishistic, elitist, Christian fundamentalist, pig, oaf, and so many curse words and to the person perceived slights that I, even I, won’t give them time by restating them. And that is just stuff from Americans. So I’m done. I’ve strained from taking drastic steps. From making drastic statements. I’ve decided that I’m giving up trying to change you by staying above the fray. I’ve resisted my own beliefs beyond specific instances because I believed analysis was more important. No more. You’re a lost cause. You will hate any perceived other until you die, after having passed on that legacy of hatred to your children and anyone else you can influence. You lot are lost in the forest of hatred by choice. So I’m going to leave you to it. Enjoy it. Feed on it. Choke on it. Or don’t. The best part about today for you is you will have one less person telling you not to hate. The worst part of course is, I’m no longer above the fray. If you you don’t get it. Well, Words Don’t Do it Justice!

 

– THE Ruthless Wonder