Category Archives: In the News…

Today’s Word is… DISTRACTION

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Right now I’m writing this, dinner is in the oven, I have a drink that Brady is determined to spill, so I have to keep throwing his ball in the opposite direction, I’m having multiple text conversations, awaiting my turn in Words With Friends and Trivia Crack,  the TV is on ESPN game but muted because I’m listening to The Internet’s “Just Saying/I Tried” on the stereo.  (Somewhere in America, National Grid is still twerking).  I’m able to multitask,  I do so from the time I wake up, I do so at work, and now that I’m home.  This isn’t anything special, we all multitask,  its simply inefficient to focus on one thing and solely that one thing at a time.  Except apparently, when there’s a story about black people being killed or harassed….then you must enter activist mode and remain there indefinitely, stay woke B.  It’s perhaps one of the things that annoys me the most on Facebook outside of my grandparents having conversations under 4 year old pictures and seeing friends from college share memes from whatever Right Wing nonsense page, every day somebody’s cousin makes a meme about a tragedy in black America and something else that we are being distracted by. 

This week, its the tragic MURDER of Sandra Bland and the rap “beef” between Meek Mill and Drake.  Now, on Twitter I gave my thoughts on both matters.  My heart broke watching that dashcam video, I’ve spoken before about a time I got sassy with an officer, and I think about times even my sisters had.  We’re human we have emotions, we react, and it’s terrifying to think one of us could lose our lives if we dare show them.  I also believe Bland was murdered; there’s no way a woman over 6 ft tall could physically hang herself with a trash can liner on a wall that’s shorter than her.  Even if you believe that fallacy to be true, you can watch that video and see she had no business being in jail with a $500 bond in the first damn place.   I also opined on the Meek Mill/Drake beef, Meek looks foolish and I think like authors, artists reach a level of prestige and then start to outsource their work.   Speaking on something as ridiculous as that doesn’t take away from my desire for justice for Bland’s family.  I can live tweet an episode of Power it doesn’t make me less aware of Kindra Chapman, an 18 year old girl who also “committed suicide” after spending a night in a holding cell for taking a cell phone.  I’m painfully aware of a lot of things going on and at times it’s just….exhausting, being angry and hurt and afraid every day.  Sometimes I rather just watch Ballers and escape for a few.  And I shouldn’t have to feel guilty about it.  So one of yall go get your cousin with the distraction memes.

What is a distraction is people going off online about how everyone else is turning a blind eye on something they themselves just learned about minutes ago.  Time spent attacking others is a distraction.  It’s like black people aren’t even allowed to compartmentalize, you got to #staywoke incessantly and damn if you want to just make fun of rappers, listen to ratchet music or debate sports.  There’s this expectation to just be “on” all the time and it’s tiring.  Perchance some people are able to shoulder that burden 24/7, I am not.   I’m able to suffer in silence for a little bit, take my mind off and try and enjoy a distraction.  Lord knows there’s only a limited time until there’s an announcement of no charges being filed or someone else is killed. 

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… STAY

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So last week, The IlluminaTMZ released a second video actually showing the assault of Janay Palmer Rice by her then fiance Ray Rice, former Baltimore Raven and June 19ers fantasy player.  I expressed my feelings on the initial video, then again following reaction to his diminutive 2 game suspension, and now the story has been given new life because people are realizing that how poorly this was handled from day one.  Suddenly people are curious why wasn’t he imprisoned, why was he only given a 2 game suspension (ironically enough he would’ve been reinstated today), and of course, why did Janay stay with him and has since married him and to this day is riding out for him.

This sparked an online debate of why do women stay, why do women leave, and why do outsiders even care about what life she chooses to live.  If you’ve been reading this blog or follow me on Twitter, you know I’m staunchly against a man hitting a woman; yes its a double standard, no I don’t give a fuck.  I ain’t pass the the Bar but I know a little bit, enough to know it’s against the law to assault people.  That’s not me concerning myself with people’s private lives, that’s not me expressing fake outrage.  I’m also aware in different eras, this may not have always been as black and white as it appears to me now.

I’ve had discussions with other people who support Janay standing by her family and trying to push forward.  They cite what their grandparents, parents, aunts and uncles have done and sometimes shit just happens.  I don’t agree, but I can understand.  Some people are just conditioned to love being hard, adverse, a struggle, and as I’ve expressed numerous times here, it doesn’t have to be.  I don’t want a woman I would have to strike to gain respect, nor a woman who doesn’t have enough respect for me as a man to strike me.  Yes, we all seen the old grumpy couple who seemingly abhor each other but still together because, where else they going to go.  We’ve also seen women stick around abusive relationships and be killed by that very person.   I personally feel there’s violence where there’s no respect, no respect where there’s no love, but this time I have no law to support it, I’ll just be in my camp they can be in theirs. 

As for my final words on Raymell and Janay, because I legit cannot debate this anymore for my own faith in humanity; what I saw in that video I do not believe was a “bad night” or a mistake.  I’ve knocked out grown men and immediately after felt some remorse, this man KO’ed his fiancée and couldn’t even pick her up or pull her skirt down.  I don’t agree with her standing by her man, but I can understand it to a degree.  I think the NFL shouldn’t be held accountable for what the law should be doing.  I don’t believe that was his first time striking her, for her and their daughter’s sake I can only pray it’s his last.

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… FERGUSON

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It was my freshman year of college.  The football team was on a Cinderella like run and had made it into the Division 1AA championship against Appalachian State, the defending champs.  It was a hard fought game, ultimately going to Appalachian State. Disappointed; students started to pour out onto the campus, curious, me and my friends went to go see what the buzz was about, after all, we lost.  The vibe on campus however, felt like anything but.  Thousands of students are cheering and chanting, saluting a great season for our team.  Not sure how or what started it, but the crowd went from happy to agitated pushing and shoving.  Police came in on horses,  warning students to settle down or go back to your dorms, ain’t gotta tell me twice, we were about to go about our business.  Then comes a “Fuck the Police” followed by a beer can hurled at a mounted cop.  And chaos ensued.  Places trashed (you know, that we’re spending thousands of borrowed dollars to be), students arrested and expelled. 

Again, this was over a football game….that we lost.  This was after 3 Super Bowls and a World Series.  These dumbasses rioted their own school that they’re still paying for.  Privilege, at its finest.

Fast forward to now, I watch with horror as the events unfold in Ferguson, MO. This didn’t start over a lost football game, this started because a police department would rather turn their back on the community they sworn to serve and protect than turn in on of their own.  Because a police department would rather use their power to make an example of Ferguson than let Ferguson serve as an example of the power of a community.  I’m watching livestreams and vines, and its shocking this was a quiet suburb 2 weeks ago.  People on social media who I’m usually chop it up with about sports and music are actually in the trenches, they aren’t militants, they aren’t anarchists, they’re parents, they’re bloggers.  These cops throwing flashbangs, pointing military grade weapons at civilians, they aren’t soldiers, they’re suburban police officers and highway patrolmen.   Ferguson could’ve happened anywhere, even in the quiet suburban town I live now.  (Well I have faith in our elected officials, and in the local police who all live and are a part of the community they serve, such a novel concept ya think… that Ferguson would not happen here)

But alas, here we are.  I wake up and check certain timelines for updates (who have more credence than cable news). I’ve donated to the cause, I’ve used my own platforms to encourage and inform, but still…I feel helpless.  You wait and see if this will spark a change that will affect history or will this just go down as another #Occupy movement?  How ugly can this get?  Divisive positions are being made amongst parties, amongst races, amongst agendas and we’re already losing sight of what’s broken already.  So as I watch people debate about who gets treated worse, the media skew facts to fit their agendas, politicians get questionably quiet, the police dept double down and get more aggressive, a young black man have his legacy  vilified, I feel like I’m back on campus again wondering what is all of this for?  …..we lost.

-Stan-

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