All posts filed under: Race

Transcending America: How Russell Westbrook, Odell Beckham and Cameron Newton Have Changed Black Masculinity

Originally posted on The Uppity Negro:
It’s time for a new black male aesthetic.   Especially one that captures decolonized postmodern black masculinity as well as one that has ontologically transcendent capabilities.  In simpler terms, an aesthetic that allows for black masculinity to not be defined by archaic norms in the realm of fashion, black male-to-male relationships and how one images themselves for the sake of respectability politics. The year 2012 was significant for black male masculinity on several fronts, far too many to discuss here, many of which were around how black men were entering public conversations about black women and black male privilege in social media spheres, to the way that black urban fashion had shed much of its nascent hip hop bagginess trading it in for fitted and skinny jeans, Obama was running for re-election, same-sex marriage in black religious circles was a hot-button topic as the president came out in favor of it, more and more young people were freer to talk about sex and sexuality and at the same time the demographic remained woefully…

Here’s What I Mean When I Say “Pro Black Doesn’t Mean Anti-White”

Originally posted on Black Millennials:
To be pro-Black does not mean to be anti-white. To be pro-Black means to be anti-white supremacy. I wrote these words in a piece about interracial dating some months ago. The piece argues that being pro-Black means to affirm Black bodies, spirit, and culture while denouncing the evils of white supremacy as unnatural, deadly, and unsustainable. Pro-Blackness is a value system that demands the centering of Black people in a structural world designed by the white ruling corporatist class. Some elements of pro-Blackness posit the belief that white supremacy must be thoroughly destroyed for everlasting Black survival. Upon writing that piece, I’ve seen and heard many — mostly Black folk — similarly express that the pro-Black value system does not ultimately condemn “all” white people, just the omnipotent network of institutions, structures, systems, and constructs derived from white supremacist ideology, and the individual agents that empower them. From social media feeds to think pieces, I’ve seen these expressions manifested in digital space. In the physical realm, I’ve seen nonprofit professionals try to embed the sentiment in grant proposals.…

Selective Outrage Won’t Get Us Free

Originally posted on Black Millennials:
Jamar Clark was killed execution-style while handcuffed in Minneapolis. Black activists most notably affiliated with the local Black Lives Matter chapter and the local NAACP shut down highways and occupied the 4th police precinct. National media is starting to pick up on the local unrest, especially after white supremacist terrorists shot five Black Lives Matter protestors. In Chicago, video released shows LaQuan McDonald being shot some sixteen times by a white police officer. His murderer has been charged, and thousands are mobilizing. Traditional media is focusing on the clashes between protesters and police, while social media is aflame. The gruesome video (which I admittedly haven’t watched) lives on the pages of many. Heated debate about the discomfiting consumption of Black death and pain is — once again — underway. Not one to homogenize Black murder and resulting unrest, I can’t help but draw striking parallels to Ferguson and Baltimore. From the expansive number of mass mobilizations and frontline energies, to the tweets of solidarity, frenetic live-streaming, and the viciously heavy-handed responses…

Why Connect?

Originally posted on PRinspires:
One of Project Reverso, Inc.’s tenets is Connecting Communities, and sometimes we’re reminded of the importance of making a concerted effort to do so. But at times it can be difficult to find real-life ways to connect with others from other communities. Over the last few years I’ve personally made a commitment to be as uncomfortable as possible by stepping outside of the comforts of my own cultural status quo. By going on multiple service trips abroad to intentionally reaching out to persons in the LGBTQ community to become friends I’ve gained perspectives that I would have otherwise never had. This summer and fall semester I took the opportunity to host two English learning foreign exchange students; one this summer from Colombia and this fall from Japan.  Under what other circumstances would I have the opportunity to live with individuals from cultures and communities that are polar opposites from that in which I grew up in? One student even admitted to being afraid once he realized that I wasn’t a white male…

Black British Girlhood

Originally posted on BLK GRRRL BOOK FAIR:
Art by Pearl Ivy Some of BlkGrrrl’s favorite voices on the African Diaspora are from the United Kingdom. While their size compared to the white population in the UK is smaller than in the United States, their perspective offers a diverse look of the Black experience outside the continent of Africa. In many ways it seems that the Black British Grrrl experience is more diverse in the UK than in the US. Today we’re looking at the summer London exhibit Black British Girlhood. The curator of the event is Bekke Popoola who in an article in IC3 magazine describes herself as, “Almost British, almost Nigerian.” ?Popoola is a graphic artist who was born-and-raised in East London. Bekke Popoola: What inspired the name of the exhibit Black British Girlhood? #BlkGrrrl: It was inspired by a friend called Deborah aka DJ Pepper-Coast posting her diary on Tumblr from when she was 8-years-old. Sparked a lot of nostalgia and I came up with the name Black British Girlhood.?Me, Olivia and Kariima…

An Open Letter to Everyone

Originally posted on Black Millennials:
I am deeply in Love with Black People. And that makes me dangerous. My Love for Black People is not like regular love. My Love isn’t like the love I have for Harry Potter, hot sauce, or beer. My Love for Black People is something else entirely — rooted in an ancestral well of cultural traditions and decentralized mythologies that I will never have the capacity to holistically understand. My Love for Black People is a Love that I can’t, in this moment, explore with brevity, thoroughness, or accuracy. My Love for Black People comes from my Love of Blackness. Where whiteness is a system of destruction, Blackness is a celestial spirit of Connection, Resiliency, Resistance, Majesty, Artistry, and overall Cultural Craftsmanship. Blackness does not need whiteness for its ethereal existence, and thrives in spite of it. Whiteness relies on Blackness for its survival. Ironically, as Blackness thrives in its innovation and adaptation, whiteness adapts to encroach upon it. Whiteness takes the parts of Blackness that can be manufactured and…

I’m No Better…

Originally posted on dionnacamille:
I’m a on the train from DC to Philadelphia. I am in an aisle seat. I hear a man make an offensive joke (something about terrorism). Another man, who appears to be of Middle Eastern decent looks over with annoyance. Probably because the joke teller is so loud 😒. I now zero in on the annoyed guy. He’s fidgety. He keeps looking up at his bag. He can’t seem to get comfortable. He keeps looking behind him. I’m worried. Worried that the media has filled my head with so many of their images and ideas of what a “terrorist” looks like. Worried that I am judging this man purely on his ethnicity and nothing else. I write this with tears in my eyes I’m no better than the fools I unfollow for their daily ignorant posts. The articles I breeze by spewing and promoting hate. To the young Middle Eastern guy riding the train with his father. Who’s fidgety movements look like a result of something else (autism). Who’s constant Turing…

What’sa Motto With You?

For those of you who are cultured, you know that line is from Lion King. If not, perhaps you’re familiar with the phrase Hakuna Matata (what a wonderful phrase). Hakuna Matata ain’t no passing craze. It means no worries, for the rest of your days. It’s my problem free philosophy. Hakuna Matata. I’m not sorry. I had to do it! A lot has happened in the past month. There have been race issues, nude photos leaking (gender issues), and inappropriate rape tweets (sexual issues). I’m going to keep my response short and simple. Why do these things matter? Race, gender, sexuality. Honestly, they shouldn’t. By that I mean, these are all important things. Many people have branches of their identity that stem from some or all of them. However, my race, gender, sexuality, and so forth should NOT BE A PROBLEM. They are not harmful to anyone and therefore should not be a problem. Perhaps the terms I’m putting this in are too simple, however I’m failing to understand any logic that claims they have the right to …