a blog/forum from the desk of author, P. J. Dean, primarily for promoting her latest releases, for discussing romance writing and that curious niche christened "multicultural." Tea will be sipped and occasionally spilled about the irrational, racial and religious WTFery that goes on in the industry. Related "multicultural" stateside doings will be highlighted too.
My maternal grandmother had 12 children. A quarter of them went into various branches of the armed services. So, they thought I would have been interested in "serving." Um, er, nope. Big nope. Even with the benefits. Which I found out were not all that great. Two of my uncles who dodged bullets in battle in WWII were DENIED use of the G.I. Bill. A little thing full of loopholes that benefitted White G.I.s How do you think all those returning soldiers were able to go to school AND buy that split-level in one of those new 'burbs that were cropping up? Not all from hard labor. The burgeoning middle-class was made possible due to the GOV'T PROGRAMS with low interest rates made available to WHITE G.I.s only. A sort of affirmative action shall we say? Black G.I.s were systemically cut out on purpose. You want proof? Go read THE COLOR OF LAW by RICHARD ROTHSTEIN. Great book. He puts it down in print that the discrimination practiced in housing was supported and FUNDED by the U. S. GOV'T.
Why am I not surprised? No one does subterfuge better.
Those brand-spanking new suburbs that popped up just outside big cities were the result of "White Flight" and the G.I. BILL. The sub-divisions were advertised in such a way to assure Whites that no Blacks would be moving in. In fact, any Black person, no matter how well-situated he was to purchase a home in one of these wastelands (yes, I call them that. Any time one needs a car to get to a Dunkin Donuts, it's a wasteland as far as I'm concerned. Why do you think so many suburbanites today fleeing BACK to the city? GENTRIFICATION. But I digress. That's a post for another day.), was not allowed to buy.. Usually through red tape that was so ridiculous that it discouraged the Black buyer from even applying for a loan. And that's if he made it that far..
One of my WWII Vet uncle's who'd married in 1948, had a baby two years later and who'd wanted to take advantage of the G.I. Bill, couldn't due to the aforementioned crap. He had to wait until he and his wife had saved CASH for their split-level in a mostly Black sub-division. The price tag was $17, 500. Not that much in today's dollars but the price in cash was a hill they had rather not had to climb. Their daughter was a PRE-TEEN by the time they'd saved enough to buy their house. Both of them had worked TWO JOBS each for THIRTEEN FRIGGIN' YEARS.
That's not right!
Don't tell me "Well done." Screw "Well done." Why wasn't he afforded the same "in" his White counterparts had been? It would have shaved years off my uncle and aunt's grueling, backbreaking journey to home ownership.
Oh, some did manage to "get in" a house sooner and and immediately regretted it. The houses were in all-White enclaves. Usually, a White guy who had served with a Black guy in WWII or The Korean Conflict, had become friends . The White guy living in the 'burbs was ready to implement the next stage in his 5 year plan. Meaning? He was set to move into a bigger house because he had sizeable equity and it was time to move on up. He had a ready buyer in his friend. Except due to having signed on the dotted line that he (the White guy) would not sell to anyone non-White, the sale would have to be a "straw" one. Think sale by proxy. No one in the neighborhood would know that good ole Ted was moving (because he and his family would move out under cover of night) until they saw Leroy moving in. Then all hell would break loose.
Read about how the sub-divisions named "Levittown" around the country exploded into ugly, dangerous showdown towns reminiscent of a cross between KKK rallies and lynchings.
Not America's finest hours.
The Levittown, PA sub-division near me erupted in serious hate crime mode in 1958. It was before my time but it was seared into the memories of my family members as every terrifying thing that happened to the one Black family who'd moved there was in print everyday for all to see.
Fire-bombings. Crowds out front of their house chanting N-this and N-that. Rocks sailing through windows at all hours. Yet, these were the kinds of people the current president would call "very fine." I bet not a one, if they are still drawing a bigoted breath (and I am sure their wrinkled asses are alive), thinks they did anything wrong.
But, hey, I am certain "very fine" people, just like politicians and whores, get respectable with age.
So, no, I was never patriotic enough, or naive enough or able to swallow bs without getting sick, to have joined the armed forces. I was, am , not that girl. But to non-White citizens who could and can, I commend you.
Look, the statue is nice. The doll is fine. But name a freakin' space station after her, NASA. The U. S. of A. would not have reaches the stars if she, and others like her, had not been "computers supreme!" Any time John Friggin' Glenn said to run HER computations against a computer because he TRUSTED HER RESULTS over the machine's, name a gotdamned space station after her before she passes..She's the only one left from her group and she's 99 years old! She has more than earned it! I'm looking at you NASA. I'm out.
Well, for me it was a fun time whe I could get to Philly to participate. Oh, Lord. I am getting up there. I went to the very first one in 1975. My youngest, very militant, brilliant uncle, Mr. Black Consciousness himself, took me. Me, I had a great time eating, dancing and soaking up the atmosphere.It only was one city block when I went. It is now comprises about 15 city blocks. And I was always mesmerized by the beauty of the offerings given to the water goddess, Osun, at the festival. It has grown exponentially. It takes place Sunday, June 10th, 2018 in South Philly. ODUNDE was created in 1975 by Lois Fernandez and Ruth Arthur. The festival attracts UP TO 500,000 people annually and is the largest African American street festivals held in the country.The festival, whose concept originates from the Yoruba people of Nigeria, West Africa, celebrates the coming of another year for African Americans and Africanized people around the world. It is an occasion highlighted by a colorful procession from 23rd and South Streets to the Schuylkill River where an offering of fruit and flowers is made to Oshun, the Yoruba goddess of the river. ODUNDE is also known for its authentic African marketplace featuring vendors from around the world selling merchandise from many African nations, the Caribbean and Brazil. Each year, the second Sunday in June, ODUNDE takes place covering 12 city blocks. ODUNDE will be celebrating its 39TH year in the traditional south Philadelphia location near 23rd and South streets. The festival started in 1975 with a $100.00 grant and neighbors from Fernandez's south Philadelphia community. In just two years the ODUNDE Festival exploded. The eclectic mix of vendors, entertainment and music started to draw people from around and beyond the region and each year continues to be no different. ODUNDE IS FOR EVERYONE, WE LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING YOU AND YOUR FAMILY THIS YEAR!!! Learn more about it! https://www.odundefestival.org/
And if you are interested and can't make it like me. LISTEN on wurdradio.com from 12pm to 2pm on Sunday
This stately lady has a impressive resume. The daughter of sharecroppers, from Grapeland, Tx., whipped through Dillard University for undergrad, then took on Harvard University for a master's and a doctorate in Romantic Literature.
Cycling through a slew of academic appointment, she landed the position of provost at Spelman College then president of Smith College. With those accomplishments under hr belt, she went on to become Ivy League's Brown University's president where she made waves.
Settled into a hard earned retirement, she was coaxed by her brother to come out of retirement and helm Prairie View A&M University, his alma mater, in a interim presidential position. She liked it. The school liked her. She stayed and is now its current president as of her inauguration on April 20th, 2018. .
Full life, goals accomplished, retired. Then she comes back.
In the 5th book in my "FELIG CHRONICLES" series, GAMBIT, I used this ugly issue as the plotline. Felig are a alien race who live off others. They invade Earth and BOOM!Smorgasbord! To make a long story short (Actually, make it long. Go buy the series so far and catch up) the rich, in installment 5, make a deal with the Felig to leave them alone. But at a price. The Felig will be offered Earth's prisoners to consume, and the rich, who have stock in private prisons, will keep them filled to capacity, keep their grip on the public's minds, fill their pockets and feed the Felig at the same time.
Who knew this was playing out in real life to a degree in the U. S. A.? And with "respected" businesses? No. No Felig are involved but prisoners sure are.
Gobble. Gobble. And it ain't even turkey day.
Read how Vicky Secret can afford you cute, satiny thongs for pennies. I dare ya.
I thought I'd post this as Meghan Markle walks down the aisle. She is a bright, young woman; I'd like to think she picked this day on purpose but I doubt if she's that conscious. I wonder what Malcolm would of thought of the event of the day if he were alive?
el-Hajj Malik el-Shabazz (Malcolm X) May 19th 1925 - February 21st 1965
"The future belongs to those who prepare for it today."
The Kent State University incident from 1970 (May 4th) got more press, and still gets more press than, the Jackson State killings that happened days later involving Black college students. Kent State involved the National Guard being called in to disrupt student unrest on campus over the Vietnam War, and ended in the killings of 4 unarmed students instead by the Guard.
See the famous photo below.
The Jackson State killings (May 14th, 1970) sounded a lot like the Kent State shootings on May 4, 1970, but it happened 10 days later at a predominantly black college in the South. Except this time it was the police who fired on the students. And the incident was not about the Vietnam War. City and State police were called in due to reports of Whites who'd strolled through campus had been pelted with rocks. A lot more scenarios erupted which fueled the cops to shoot. They fired for about 30 seconds on a group of students , killing two and wounding 12 others.. Rocks versus bullets? Umm. To this day this incident is widely ignored. Hazard a guess as to why? The reasons for the killings were as thin as tissue paper including authorities saying that a sniper perched on a high building had shot at the police. No one was ever brought up on charges though a special commission called the use of force "an unreasonable and unjustified overreaction."
I don't recall this event. I was probably obsessing over my Barbies instead. But my dear, militant, youngest uncle, who when his hand wasn't holding an iron to press his jeans was usually clenched in Black Power fist, definitely would have recalled every detail. He was a news-hound extraordinare.
This uproar at Ohio State University was over the lack of a curriculum devoted to Black Studies. This incident led to colleges and universities re-examining why they ONLY taught the dominant culture's legacy and finally implementing a curriculum which told the story of a huge part of the population that had never been considered..
On April 26, 1968, Black students, and those in solidarity, fed up with the absence of any literary or historical, or for that matter, any accurate mention of Black people in the materials being taught, rebelled and took over the Administration Building at OSU. They did so until they got the attention of campus authorities. This was not the only occurrence. This scene was repeating itself across U. S. campuses rapidly. So, university authorities had to cooperate or have protests and stale-mates on their campuses indefinitely as the black students were not backing down.
Hence, the birth of Black Studies as a viable, crucial course of study in institutions of higher learning in the U. S.
Mug shot of John C. Evans. Due to his leadership in the take-over of the Administration Building at OSU, he was the only student charged in 1968.. He eventually had all charges dropped against him and graduated in June 1970. I hope his life was not negatively impacted for standing up.
Flora Batson (1864 - 1906) was a phenomenon in her day. Her nickname was "Double-Voice Queen of Song" because of her soprano-baritone range. A contemporary of Jenny Lind, she toured like her rival and filled music venues around the globe.
Born in D. C. on April 16, 1864, her career began humbly with church singing. It progressed from there. Discovered by John C. Bergen, the manager of the all-Black Bergen Star Concert Company, they worked together and eventually wed. It was an interracial marriage and the tabloids never let up on that fact, or as it was quaintly called "curiosity."
Her career expanded as she performed around the world, including singing before Queen Victoria and Queen Liliuokalani of the Hawaiian Islands. Widowed and remarried, as musical tastes changed, Flora turned to giving recitals for philanthropic causes and for churches.
Having come full circle in her life, she passed at the young age of 42 in Philadelphia on December 1, 1906.
King's "I've been to the Mountaintop" full speech. As you this is the speech I admire.THIS is the King I honor. THIS is the King who'd had enough. THIS is the King they killed. The King who was demanding what he wanted not asking permission THIS was the MAN who had completely transformed into a prophet.Look at his face in the video. The man KNEW something was going to go dowm. He KNEW he was a marked man. The FBI KNEW too.
James Earl Ray (his "killer") was a patsy.
Oh. Did I say that?
King had been asked to come to Memphis to give support to striking Black sanitation workers who were being treated like crap by the city. Black Trash workers were relegated to collecting only the most filthy, disgusting GARBAGE throughout the city; they also were given the most dilapidated garbage trucks to drive. In fact, one of the reasons King came to Memphis was to demand justice for two Black workers who'd gotten CRUSHED TO DEATH in a malfunctioning trash truck and whose families were not ever going to be compensated by the city for their deaths! White workers did not do such work and were not treated in such a manner. The misery was reserved for Blacks. Fair? I do not think so. These guys simply wanted decent wages and respect. They wanted to be treated like MEN.
Many remembrance ceremonies are being held. Some started this past Sunday and many will continue all this week.
This mellow voice is no longer with us but her birthday was this past March 29th. She would have been 87. The lirico-spirito soprano shared the same dream my mom had but she achieved hers. At what coasts we'll never know but she did get the chance to live it. If my mom had succeeded in achieving her dream they would have been contemporaries. No. Not rivals. There were not enough roles in opera for Black women for them to fight over. And any one of them getting one was a victory for all of them. Like Gloria, my mom would have had to sail for Europe to sing on a regular basis. And probably accept that not having a family would be a reality. So, definitely, no ME. That was the life of a Black opera singer. Either and Or. Oh, there were a tiny few who married and had a family but that was rare. Those who did marry usually wed a spouse who was probably a non-Black man because, let's face it. What Black guy could afford to, or would put his pride aside, to travel the world with his opera singing wife?
Davy was one of the few who did marry. She did so several times to European men and had one son.
She was the first African-American to sing "Aida' at the Met.
So Miss Davy reached her pinnacle in Europe "cuz we know how the U. S of .A. of any era has a "quota" on how many Black anything-of-excellence can be recognized and tolerated. Leontyne price was coming up. Marian Anderson had her gigs. And then there was Grace Bumbry. Oh, hunty. To this day "mainstream" heads explode when they have to witness, and acknowledge, Black success too often. Instead of enjoying or welcoming it, they will take the same energy used to praise it and go out of its way to be nasty to Black excellence.
Ask Misty Copeland.
So, today, three days late, I honor the glorious Gloria Davy. A woman who kept it pushing even when others pushed back.
Reading this article has given me more ideas for my next historical. Plus, it's about a bunch of folks from my hometown. Philly! You have been so provincial at times, and still are, but when you've dropped your cretinous tendencies and gone progressive...You take no prisoners.
For the record, I shall repeat. BLACK people from centuries prior, wherever they were in the diaspora, or from the African continent, were NOT all living as SLAVES.
The African presence was routine in the Western world for many centuries before modern day "scholars" had thought. Many Blacks were far more learned than the peoples of the Western world they encountered. Only when Blacks began being threats, intellectually and a growing vocal force, did insecure Westerners find reason to stunt their growth.
Anyone living today, be it lay person or professional historian, who believes SLAVERY was the "beginning" of a Black presence in the world, or was the only "contribution" Black people made to the world, (and God knows that free labor benefited the world! Do not lie to yourself) needs to READ actual history books written by non-White historians instead of badly written, badly researched "plantation romances" peopled with tragic protagonists concocted by mainstream authors for the "thrill factor."
Yeah, I said it.
It is possible to write a book/romance about mixed race people without a dense layer of the sturm und drang. Not saying life was a bed of roses for them. Far from it. Unfortunately in the Western mind because said mind has been so conditioned to see Black skin as a burden, said mind views EVERYTHING Black as sorrowful. NO. NO. NO.
Joy was found the daily life of Blacks of any station despite the Hell going on around them.
Read the article above for another real facet of Black LIFE, not STRIFE in days past.
Or listen to the discussion at the additional link
Driven by the need and desire to teach the formerly enslaved, Fanny Jackson Coppin began her long journey to realize that dream once an aunt, who'd been saving for a looong time, purchased her freedom.
Fanny's curiosity and purpose served as the fire under her bottom that kept her going as she toiled as a servant while studying. Eventually, Oberlin College, the only institution of higher learning at the time that permitted entrance to both blacks and women, became her first step to progress. She became a pupil-teacher there. Building off that feat, she opened a night school for Freedmen. And the rest is Black history.
Famed Coppin State University is named for her
Read more about Fanny Jackson Coppin at the link above
I didn't notice the passing of this scholar until this week. I was greatly impressed by his historical research into the origins of Black people in America. I used his landmark tome, Before the Mayflower: A History of Black America, along with several other history books, to write my historical romance, Kindred: An American Love Story. I recall being so thrilled to find a history of early Black life that had NOT been written by a non-Black person. Why, you might ask? Because it MATTERS!
It's like looking out a window. Not everybody is gonna have the same view. Some will have a straight on view and never look down to the ground right below the window. Others might only look at the ground right below the window. Others might take a panoramic approach, and scope out everything. None will see the same thing.
That's how history should be written. All views.Not just from the view of the conqueror. Even if that view is not the one that will be told and sold for centuries. Not even if that view is not pretty or self-serving..
Mr. Bennett wrote ALL the views.
That's my view on how to pen a good historical romance too.
But I digress. This ain't about me.
So, Mr. Bennett was a historian and a journalist who saw the big picture and had the ability to write the many truths of a story. Particularly the story on HOW this land was formed and how it was formed by ALL the players involved. .
He passed on February 14th, 2018 at the age of 89.
ERIK KILLMONGER IS MY HERO! OKAY? I need to say that BLACK PANTHER was a beautifully made film. Hollywood put money into this project. You can see it on the screen. The cast is 1st rate in talent and looks. BUT, I am familiar with the character of Killmonger as written in the comic books. He is totally different than the portrayal in the film. In the comics, he is cousins with T'Challa. Their fathers were brothers. They shares a bloodline; he was as much a true contender for the Wakandan throne as anyone. To make a long story short, Killmonger was kidnapped as a kid from Wakanda by slavers, brought to America and not raised in luxury like T'Challa. He grows up poor. He grows up wanting revenge on the land that didn't rescue him and because the throne was his father's by right, and by direct succession, his. THE STUDIO CHANGED THE FRIGGIN' PLOTLINE! SORRY BUT IT RUBBED ME THE WRONG WAY! Instead, the studio made this: It made Killmonger this "misguided," insane, CIA-trained, AFRICAN-AMERICAN.REVOLUTIONARY (he is seen as an African-American, an outsider, because he was raised in the States even though he is Wakandan) who comes to Wakanda to challenge the passive African T'Challa for the throne and convince him to use their resource of vibranium to liberate all Blacks wherever they are in the world. But T'Challa declines and says OTHER BLACK FOLKS' PROBLEMS aren't HIS. Actually, I feel one of his problems is he ain't taking care of no one but the Wakandan elite. The regular Wakandans aren't benefiting from their natural resource. I tend to see things like that. But I digress. He tells Killmonger that he wants Wakanda to stay hidden, and safe and isolated and not open to the world. YET, boyfriend allows an outsider, a White guy, who is not blood, who is CIA, to come in and learn all about the vibranium. Well, that ticked me off. Way the hell off. T'Challa turned down blood over a foreigner, the colonizer as they like to toss around. He's depicted as noble and level-headed and blah, blah, blah. Killmonger is portrayed as that unreasonable, loose-canon, ANGRY, AFRICAN-AMERICAN who T'Challa points out as being as bad as those (CIA) who created him. Now let's be clear. Killmonger is ruthless. He does some wack shit. Still, I consider his upbringing. Anyhoo, cutting to the chase, they fight one last time and T'Challa kills Killmonger. After killing him, T'Challa ruminates and ponders Erik's way of doing things but chooses to boost foreigners' interest. The movie showed Black against Black for White interests. It shows a docile, content-with-the-status-quo, royal AFRICAN sweeping an ANGRY AFRICAN-AMERICAN upstart under the bus! Everybody else in the film got a pass but this "cousin" to be as greedy and shitty as they wanted to be. That's deep. That's Hollywood. That's propaganda! At the movie's end, under the guise of working for world peace with the U. N., the African T'Challa chooses to maintain a foreigner's hold (an outsider) over his land through their need for vibranium, instead of using it to unite all Blacks (in Wakanda and in the diaspora) to be totally free to do as they please with the resource. Talk about a sell-out! Why change a character''s background (Killmonger) so radically? Why? Unless it's to send a subliminal message? And that's what it did. And African-Americans ate it up. They paid money to be insulted in style. African-American moviegoers are being gaslit by shiny sets, an all Black cast, pretty costumes and fantasy.. This movie showed Killmonger as an unorganized psychopath who shouldn't be acknowledged because he didn't have a plan for liberation only rancor. Bullcrap! He had a plan. He was going to start with taking out the financial sectors in NYC, London and China. It wasn't a tidy plan but he was a REVOLUTIONARY. And to lead one, you can't be timid and freshly starched.. So, Hollywood and the U. S. A. got their chance to show the world, in Dolby and in high definition, with talented, beautiful actors, how it feels about, and sees African-Americans. We are the untamed, the wild, the ungrateful, the people who are full of grudges about the past. That pesky past. Oh, why can't we get over it, they say? Through Erik, we are portrayed as some lab experiment gone wrong that won't die or act nice. We are seen as being less than anyone else on the globe, even by those in a land from where we originated. So, no. as handsome as Chadwick Boseman is, his King T'challa is not my hero. He does not have the heart of a revolutionary. He is an appeaser which is fine if you think you can settle a score over a beer. But if you want to change things, you need an Erik Killmonger..This country's worst nightmare. Thing is this country should love him. He is its creature. So, I'll continue to shake my head over dashiki-wearing, Wakanda-fevered, Black movie-goers as they stand on line or exit the theater. In their euphoria over seeing all those Black faces at once on a the big screen, they can't see that they are being dissed and fleeced. A lot of folk are making mad bank off this film and they are largely non-Black. All I can think of is a line from the song from the Broadway musical, Chicago. "Give 'em the old razzle dazzle. razzle dazzle 'erm! " In fact, I should have stayed home and watched that movie on DVD instead. If I had, I wouldn't have this lingering bad taste in my mouth. ERIK KILLMONGER FOREVER!
Yes. More firsts. I'll be glad when that monicker can be retired but I don't see it happening soon.
Olivia J. Hooker. Remember that name. She turned 102 this past Monday (Feb. 12). She was the 1st African-American to be join the United States Coast Guard after the U. S. Navy rejected her. She had signed on to the Navy but said, "Ta Ta" after rethinking the antics they'd pulled to keep her out initially.
Wow. Getting choosy about who even wants to defend this country. Just wow. Then again, the U. S. Army wasn't desegregated until Truman took office as President. And that's because the U. S. Was getting its butt kicked in both "theaters' of engagement.
But I digress.
Olivia was really dedicated because even after witnessing the horror of the burning, looting and demolition her home, and the all-Black area of Tulsa, Oklahoma known as "Black Wall Street", she STILL desired to join this land's armed forces. Would not have been me. Nope.
A graduate of Ohio State University, Columbia University and finally of U. of Rochester where she earned her Ph D. She went on to teach at Fordham and didn't retire until 7 years go!
Dr. Hooker is still active in a civilian branch of the Coast Guard.
Now retired, Angela James held many titles, one being an inductee into Canada's Hockey Hall of Fame. Known for playing fierce defense, she earned another title of being the "Wayne Gretzky of Women's Hockey." She earned every national and international award possible but when it came to the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics, the 1st time a women's hockey event had ever been featured, she was cut out due to "factors."
What the hell are "factors?" A disease?
Anyhoo, whatever these "factors" were, her absence screwed Canada royally. The Land-o-Maples-Leaves LOST to America in the gold medal finals.
Anyhoo, James went on to win many other awards and titles and retired in 2000. She turned to coaching and opened her own women's ice hockey school.
In 2010, she became the second Black player to be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame behind fellow Canadian, Grant Fuhr.. Lear more about Angela James below.
Well, it's that time again. Yep! It's BLACK HISTORY MONTH! How generous. Oh my. A whole month. The shortest, coldest one at that. It's a time when certain folks think all this stuff is made up, or plain just don't give a rat's ass about any of it.
But I digress.
So, to kick off the celebration of my skinfolk surviving over 400 years in this place (my Grandfather used to say that we were "prisoners of war." LOL.Granddad wasn't know for his subtlety.), let me start with an man who had been a slave. After escaping bondage, and through sheer power of will, William Wells Brown, not only became free but a writer and a playwright.
He settled in Boston after fleeing chattel slavery on a Missouri steamboat. He was educated by Quakers and had established a life, with a wife and kids, but still was a fugitive. With the passage of the Fugitive Slave Act, a vicious little piece of "law" that could be enforced against runaway "property" no matter to where said "property'" had fled, (free state be damned!), Brown sailed to Europe until some White acquaintances could buy his freedom.. While abroad he created books and plays. His best known work is Clotel. or The President's Daughter. The plot of the narrative follows the trials and tribulations of one of good, ole boy Tommy Jefferson's daughters by one of his slaves. I do not know if was one of the daughters he had with Sally Hemings. If not, that means old TJ loved sneaking off to the slave quarters on the regular.
I any case, Brown lived a full life in Europe and came back to the States in 1854 a free man. He taught and studied and even became a physician too. Talk about a Renaissance Man.
The mystery of the illegal slave ship The Clothilda just might be solved. This ship and its crew for hire defied slaving laws and smuggled slaves on the regular when it had been strictly forbidden.
On its last known run in the mid to late 1800's, a run that had been privately financed by a planter in the Mobile Ala. region, it was destroyed to hide the fact that it had been to West Africa, had captured 110 people and had delivered them to the port city.
Lost for decades, it seems the wreckage has been found submerged in deep mud in a delta in Alabama. Read more about it at the link above.
One cannot hide what's done in the dark. It always comes to light.
Today marks what would have been the 89th birthday of the Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King, Jr. and @its 32st year being a federal holiday. Reagan signed it into law in 1983. The first observance was in 1986.
Here goes. What can I add to my annual post about Martin Luther King, Jr. that will be any different than previous posts?
Very little. My stance remains the same.
How this "holiday" is celebrated has rubbed me the wrong way for decades. From the mattress and furniture sales to the organized clean up of vacant lots. WTF? We, AADOS (African-American Descendants of Slaves), need to cut the BS and reframe the narrative before Dr. King's efforts becomes a theme park ride somewhere. We need to put our eyes back on the "prize." We need to present a "cease and desist" order to the purveyors of the Disney-fication of his life and legacy.
I honor the poor, sacrificed soul that has been reduced to a safe, docile Bobblehead of a dreamer by non-Blacks who need feel-good moments in their lives, once a year,(i.e. "the "I Have a Dream" speech) to assure them that the USA isn't really as terrible as her history can confirm.
I honor the poor, sacrificed soul that many in the younger, "woke" generation of AADOS have called a "sellout." My take on that sentiment? Go do your research, READ some books, ask for documentation and put down the blunt. The man was FAR from a sellout. He was a compromiser who, unfortunately, realized too late that he'd been played by his gov't and probably by someone close to him in his circle..
That's the way COINTELPRO works.
He was human and on the SAME PAGE as Malcolm X in philosophy at the end of his life. He wanted no more compromises. No more manipulation. No more lies. Talk about a power couple! I ponder the progress that could have been made if these two could have lived and worked together. I wonder what they would have to say about the divisive buffoonery that erupts every day on YouTube and Twitter amongst "woke" Black people.
I say honor King NOT by cleaning up a vacant lot in the neighborhood. That's the city's job. I say ditch the "I Have a Dream" speech and take up his 1967 book "Where Do We Go from Here: Chaos or Community?" It's the words of a changed King. A RADICAL King. A King the gov't was afraid of.
How will you honor him today? Want suggestions? How about shutting out non-productive chatter? Those destructive channels on social media, like YouTube et al., that pass for intellect. How about shutting down ALL COLORS of people who do not have your best interests at heart as a AADOS?How about shutting out those who live for praise and "likes" and "thumbs up" and high view counts?
And last, but not least, how about shutting out, or down, the noise from myriad people telling you that FIFTY YEARS of Civil Rights is ENOUGH TIME time to correct the damage of THREE HUNDRED FIFTY YEARS previous years of America's boot heel on your neck? And that's a theme park ride for which I do not need a ticket. I got a lifetime, front-row-seat pass to that m-effer.
The weather here on the Eastern seaboard of the USA has been crazy. It's appropriate. This past week revealed that our President is. Oh, that bunch in the White House is gona get us all killed, or badly injured. So, pay your bills. Nothing like being current when the ax drops because what if by chance the annihilation gets called off?
It's 6 friggin' degrees this morning!
It's been colder than a witch's tit in a tin bra since since last Thursday. Why? Because this thing called a "Bombcyclone" rolled in, deposited a over a foot of snow in lots of places, and then left in its wake, unconscionable cold. The Polar Vortex. The "Bombcyclone." The first word sounds like a thing on a "Star Trek" episode. The second one sounds like a word cobbled together by a hipster while he/she drank his/her soy latte with a half-caf twist with hints of leather at the kitchen table he/she "bartered for" in their re-habbed, three-story, row home in the gentrified section of that previously poor, mostly non-White 'hood.
It's 6 friggin' degrees this morning!
Pardon my rancor. No, wait a minute. Don't. If I hurt your feelings...Good! Try being uncomfy. It's called life. No refunds. No reassurances. No sure things. It's a crapshoot. Life. There are no warnings to alert you that something might "trigger" you. No. Trigger? That's just what's gonna happen today. You cannot plan for it. You cannot brace yourself for it.
Yep. Life is a beautiful bitch of a "bombcyclone" that sometimes feels like 6 friggin degrees. Just wish it had kissed me first.
Oops! But then I'd be breaking one of those "brace yourself" rules.