Wednesday, March 25, 2015

from: Laini Madhabuti

Hi! How are you?

Have you seen this before? Oprah had been using it for over a year!
laini madhabuti

Это сообщение проверено на вирусы антивирусом Avast.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

hinged: a central point or principle on which everything depends

if your
or comfort lies in your complete understanding of me, who i am, why i am, and why i am not like you...then your sanity is in peril.

if your sanity is threatened, you are liable to do insane things.

it is an insane act to publicly, and even privately, humiliate a person because you think she looks strange. it is an insane act to humiliate someone because you think her strength is TOO MUCH FOR A WOMAN. because let's be clear, the initial inquiry into the biological gender of ms. caster semenya was a sexist act. in my humble and loud opinion, all women need to be completely insulted. with the initial inquiry
you were told that you could not be that strong. any person that strong must be male. it doesn't even sound strange when i say it. and that is the problem. and now this woman is reportedly undergoing counseling and is under suicide watch? some powerful heads need to be hanging low in horror at what they set in motion. not one person alive fits into the original mold of who we were supposed to be. it's entirely too restrictive. besides, there are too many different minds configuring that mold.

any one of us could be caster. i know i'm different. i know i make many uncomfortable. icing on the cake is that i don't give a fuck. i mean, i'll sit down and talk to you. i don't hate you and i don't resent your curiosity. i swear i'll try to make you understand how i am different from you and how valid my experience is. but if you can't accept that there are things you just don't know, that you need to be told, then it's
your work to make sure your comfort is not hinged to my submission. cuz good luck to you (and often good luck to us all) if it is. uncomfortable people are capable of insane things. with a touch of gall they can humiliate, they can assault, they can murder, they can rape.

the issue many don't understand is that i do not make you. and you do not make me. if you fail, it is not because i made gains. your understanding of our differences is not your biggest problem in the world. it will not cure all that ails you. it is not cause or permission for you to grant or invalidate my right to be who i am. it is not cause for you to disrupt my life. who i am cannot shift according to your desire, so it is not defiance toward you. my identity does not shift according to your need for comfort and understanding, so your comfort cannot sit attached to me.

often we put too much stock in understanding our differences.
gasp! what kinda radical black lezzie am i?? understanding is enlightening. it feels good. but first, to shield our self and our fellow man from the power of our ego, we need to acknowledge that we will not understand every difference or explanation, and that ignorance should never threaten our sanity.

Friday, May 29, 2009

sure, let's discuss "traditional marriage"...

With all of this debate about gay marriage, we as Americans, and particularly Black people, need to really re-examine and perhaps respect traditional marriage. I mean, I'm all for a fight. But since traditional marriage seems to be so important for the have's, especially Black have's, let's remind ourselves of what traditional marriage actually means. Maybe we really do need to preserve it. Hell, I could be wrong...

"...These two services are often cited because the right to education and the right to choose one's employment are commonly thought of as the two most important rights that were denied to slaves. However, the cruelest aspect of slavery may have been the denial of a slave's right to a secure family structure.

Current social theorists emphasize strong family relationships as being paramount for an individual's emotional and mental health. (Owens 191-192) A stable nuclear family was almost impossible to maintain under slavery. Marriage between slaves was not legally recognized. Slaves requested permission from their masters to be allowed to marry and the recognition of the union only came from within the slave community. The slave marriage ceremony, if one was held at all, varied from the couple jumping over a broomstick together to exchanging vows in front of a white minister. Whatever the nature of the wedding ceremony, slave marriages ultimately depended on the will of the masters. Some slaves were forced into "marriage" for breeding purposes. (King 64, Owens 93, Unwritten 1) Husbands, wives, and children were often separated when sold. To many whites, the slave family consisted of transient members who could be easily exchanged emotionally by the slave as they could physically by the master. Because of this, slaves obtained a reputation among whites as being immoral and devoid of family values. (Owens 193)"

--Valley of the Shadow Project at the University of Virginia

Sounds so familiar:
  • Marriage between ___________ was not legally recognized.
  • To many _______, the ______ family consisted of transient members who could be easily exchanged emotionally.
  • Because of this, ________ obtained a reputation among _______ as being immoral and devoid of family values.

An account of marriage by Mary Reynolds who was once enslaved:

"After while I was taken a notion to marry, and Massa and Missy marries us same as all the niggers. They stands inside the house with a broom held crosswise of the door, and we stands outside. Missy puts a li'l wreath on my head they kept there, and we steps over the broom into the the house. Now, that's all they was to the marryin'. After freedom I gits married and has it put in the book by a preacher."

So, go jump your pretty lace-covered broom, share your rose-colored views about the tradition of marriage, and enjoy that that you believe to be your god-given right. If it ain't broke for you, don't fix it. Freedom in this country has long be fought for by a minority and won without the sweat and tears of those unwilling to disturb their comfortable peace, and I am not worried. The stumbles on our path don't upset me. I see the future. Twenty years from now, after the battles have been won and the war has ended and soldiers on both sides have settled down, I see millions telling tall tales about what side of the fence they were on, afraid to look cowardly or bigoted in the eyes of a purer generation.

As a child I looked at the angry faces in pictures from the days of the civil rights movement and wondered where did these people settle in to? These people who fought so hard to preserve their way of life and to deny very simple rights to a group of people they felt were so unlike them, they were clearly walking amongst us without a sign or a patch to distinguish them. In polite company, nothing distinguishes them so I can't ask, "What do you think now? How does this equality you were so scared of, how does it feel now? Does it hurt as much as you thought it would? Did the initial sting bite but the pain subside?"

But it's just curiosity fueled by the knowledge that as polite as we are to each other now, many of our gracious neighbors once proudly and publicly embraced more selfish thoughts. So as hard as it is for many of us to take losses graciously, I personally don't worry. The day of the Prop 8 ruling I walked around with Dr. King's voice ringing in my head. Lines about the promise land. Even if I don't personally see the day when my right is legally my right, I know that day is coming. Don't be angry. Don't be complacent. Settle in on the right side of the fence now and have faith. Breathe. It really will be ok.