Sunday, May 25, 2008

What other folks are saying

This week, Essential Presence posted disheartening news about a young woman who was shot when she and her friends refused the advances of a car full of men.
There was a time when if you rebuffed a stranger's advances, if you didn't give him your phone number he would just call you a bitch and tell you that you aren't shit. And as his friends laughed at his witty response they would all walk or drive off.

Now, young Black women have to choose between some bug-a-boo calling their cell phone or risk getting shot. 18-year-old Mildred Beaubrun and her friends were getting gas and something to drink at a gas station after a night out when they came across a vehicle of animals who wanted a phone number.

"Hey, baby, what's your phone number?" they called out as the cars traveled west through Orlando.

Then the banter grew more aggressive. The men threw a T-shirt, then an AA battery, at the Nissan. One of the women threw a broken cell-phone charger back. At one point, the HHR swerved into the Nissan's lane and tried to run the car off the road.

When the Nissan turned north on John Young Parkway, the HHR followed. Then, at Princeton Street, a shot rang out. Shrapnel flew as the bullet pierced the door and struck 18-year-old Beaubrun, who was sitting in the back seat.


At DaddyBStrong, Mac Daddy wrote about his admiration for Malcolm X and his experiences in the National of Islam.

Listen up. The daddy's got a confession to make. Okay, two confessions, both related. First, the daddy is feeling lazy. He doesn't want to do anything in particular. Second, he only wants to sit on his living-room couch and think about Malcolm X, the man who was called Minister Malcolm by some back in the day, who I still call Minister Malcolm now.

No, the daddy never met him. Never got to see him, But, as a kid, the daddy belonged to the religious sect that he made into a powerful national force in the United States, The Nation of Islam. It was an institution with which to be reckoned in the 1960's.

No, the daddy was no leader in the group. In fact, the daddy was kicked out of the
group for reading Minister Malcolm's book, "The Autobiography of Malcolm X." You see, the daddy was a kid and didn't know about this war going on inside the Nation of Islam between the brothers and sisters who were loyal to late Honorable Elijah Muhammad and those who were loyal to Minister Malcolm, even though Minister Malcolm was dead by that time. But after finishing the book, after speaking to present and former members from both sides, the daddy lost faith in the leadership of The Nation of Islam, never asked to be reinstated, and left the organization for good. Why? Because brothers and sister told him something that he could not ignore or wish away: that Minister Malcolm was too honest, too committed to black people, and too disappointed in the immoral behavior of the late Honorable Elijah Muhammad, his mentor and substitute father, to keep his mouth shut about the corruption and immorality going on at the top levels of the Nation of Islam at that time-- that Minister Malcolm had to die, because he was too dedicated and knew too much. I left, because I believed them.


Months ago I read a great diary by Grassroots Mom on Daily Kos that compared the Senate records of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. For all that still believe the presumptive Democratic nominee is an empty suit, read on:

The next President is going to have some MAJOR challenges.

I refuse to buy into the hype, on either side, but especially on that of Obama. However the "empty rhetoric" v. "history of accomplishments" arguments have prompted me to check it out on my own, not relying on any candidate's website, book, or worst of all supporters' diaries, like this one.

I went to the Library of Congress Website. The FACTS of what each did in the Senate last year sure surprised me. I'm sure they will surprise you, too. Whether you love or hate Hillary, you will be surprised. Whether you think Obama is the second coming of JFK or an inexperienced lightweight, you will surprised.

Go check out the Library of Congress Website. After spending some time there, it will be clear that there is really only one candidate would is ready to be the next president, even better than Gore. If you don't want to spend an hour or two doing research, then I'll tell you what I discovered on the jump.


Racialicious guest contributor Bridgette penned an interesting essay about the fashion industry's habit of using "exotic" people (read black, brown, Native, Asian) as props in fashion shoots.

I think I’ve touched on why fashion shoots in “exotic” (read non-Western) locales tend to get under my skin. The main issue for me is the tendency for the photographer to use whatever local is handy as a prop and/or or exploit the model’s own ethnicity if she happens to be non-White. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve seen British/Jamaican Naomi Campbell dressed as an African villager on the pages of Elle and Vogue.

This kind of shoot is always lazy and sometimes just plain offensive to me but it is a fashion industry staple, just like pictures of models jumping in expensive clothes in American Vogue.


Deesha over at Mamalicious posted a great essay on her struggles to get fit and healthy. As I am trying to make similar life changes, I found her article engrossing and inspiring.

Growing up, I was one of those girls who hated gym class. One of those girls who the boys never wanted on their team during games because my fellow gym-haters and I would stand around gossiping, determined not to break a sweat in 90-plus degree Florida heat, reciting the words to “The Real Roxanne” until we had them all memorized–instead of, oh, I don’t know, chasing the softballs that came our way in the outfield, or hitting the volleyball over the net?

A big reason that I hated gym class was because I was chronically unfit and overweight. Nary a Presidential Physical Fitness Test did I pass during my entire school career, not the overall test, nor any of the sub-tests.

In adulthood, I remained generally unfit and sedentary–the occasional gym membership (which eventually went to waste) notwithstanding. When I became pregnant with my oldest child in 1998, I began my current mostly healthy, whole, organic way of eating, but exercise continued to be something I did in spurts.

In 2003, I lost nearly 40 pounds through a combination of food-related lifestyle changes and step aerobics at home about 5 times a week.

In 2005, I lost my mother to breast cancer. That same year, my grandmother died of colon cancer, and my father died of a massive stroke. Among the many effects these tragedies had on me were these: 1) I gained back about half of the weight I’d lost, due to grief and stress, and 2) I took to heart the fact that weight loss could reduce my risk of getting breast cancer.

So, I resolved to get healthier. I tried to do it the way I had before, but to no
avail. So I joined a gym (again), and considered getting a personal trainer. It seemed like such an indulgence; ladies who lunch get personal trainers, right? But then I looked at it another way: Clearly, trying to do this by myself wasn’t working. I didn’t like going to the gym, and could think of at least 50 things I would rather be doing. I had the desire to get fit, but lacked the basic motivation to see it through–if that makes any sense.



MacDaddy said...

Thanks, Tami.

Ferocious Kitty said...

Hey, Tami...Glad you were inspired! It's been uphill, and I got sidetracked by a cold, but I shaved 30 more seconds off my mile. Onward!

Brother OMi said...

thanks for the links


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