Break Fee!

break the chains

For something in me was just never satisfied.
I would sit on the porch and stare at the mountains,
convinced that there was something, something calling to me,
beseeching me to “Come, come and drink from overflowing fountains!”

There is another world out there beyond the tall green mountain trees.
No telling what destiny will find for you to do if only you will wander,
wander away from the safety of boredom and the mundane,
and fling yourself into timelessness that only youth can squander.

And so I fled, I fled from the stagnation and strangulation of my nine to five;
and I lived, I lived as only the truly free can live, free from the bonds of society,
free to make my own rules and for this I was punished, held accountable.
 For those who wield the whip will never let the slave break free from his chains of slavery!

Written by,
Shelby I. Courtland
©2017 Shelby I. Courtland

Each day, we are reminded in many different ways that life is just too short. We hear of a loved one who is seriously ill. We hear of horrors occurring daily to others in our neighborhoods and around the world and yet, each day, we go to the daily grind so that we can afford to go ‘home’ and what….’live’? Ask yourself this question, “What does it mean to ‘live’? I don’t mean to suck in air and release it. Are you doing what you truly love or are you doing what you NEED to do just to survive? Are you just going to work so that you can keep up the payments on that house and car and maybe, at the end of the week, you can sit down and have a beer and consider yourself lucky? Is this all you want out  of, dare I say, ‘life’? Is this all there is to ‘life’? Working to make someone more money while you give that same person the money that you ‘earn’ so that you can keep a roof over your head and sit in hours of traffic and think and dream about what it would be like if you could do just what the hell you want? We are all stifled and oppressed by what we have allowed. We have allowed others to tell us how to ‘live’ and if our doctor ever gives us the ‘bad’ news that it’s almost over for us, the only reason we kick up a fuss is because it is expected of us and because we fear the unknown.

Life is to be lived, not merely gotten through. Think about it. Are you living life or are you just waiting until your number is up? And when it is, will you smile and say, “At least I lived,” or will you say, “Damn, in a few more years, I promised myself that I was going to live!” Think about it. Live your life, don’t just go through the motions!

The Brother on the Bridge: The Miseducation of Black Suicide

I am sitting here sniffling and shedding tear after tear over this!

“Not dead, not dead, but escaped; not bond, but free.”

For the love of !!!!!

Whispers of a Womanist

“The calm, Cool face of the river, Asked me for a kiss” Langston Hughes

The moonlight betrays the body of a black male at the foot of the bridge. His stillness conceals his face and disposition to the casual onlooker. His head is slightly lifted and pointed towards the moon in a frozen like stance as if it holds the answers to all his unasked questions. Childhood questions that grew into adult confusion. A confusion that yielded to the strategy of white supremacy, leaving him despondent and yearning for an acceptance the white world never be willing to provide. A despondency nurtured by the oppressive forces that rendered his twenty-six-year-old black male body “overstaying its welcome” on this stolen soil.

His gaze shifts to the water. Tired of the world’s obscurity, the water’s transparency seduces him. Its quiet whisper serenades him with promises of a peace and freedom. Ultimately the…

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This Reeks of a Set-Up!

shooting-in-nashville

 

…and here we go again!

Nashville officer fatally shoots man after traffic stop

According  to this article, a KKKop in an unmarked ‘police’ car notices a man running a stop sign, apparently follows him until he pulls into a housing project and then gets out of his unmarked ‘police’ car and approaches the BLACK man just to ‘talk’ to him about running a stop sign. The big, scary Black man, then charges at the little ole puny KKKop, knocking him all about all the while brandishing his.357 and somehow, he pushes the little puny KKKop out of the way and makes a run for the housing project’s door, whereas he is then shot in the back by some ‘white’ man dressed in a KKKop uniform who just got out of an unmarked ‘patrol’ car ‘believing he was in imminent danger’ while the Big scary Black guy had his back turned towards him. Seriously???!! Really??!! For real????!! I’m not buying that load of horseshit!

According to police, Clemmons had parked his vehicle outside of a public housing development and was getting out when Nashville Officer Josh Lippert drove up to talk to him about running a stop sign. Clemmons was carrying a loaded .357 pistol and charged at Lippert, then ran through the parking lot of the development.

Lippert caught up with Clemmons, and the two had a physical confrontation. Clemmons refused orders to drop his gun. Believing he was in imminent danger, Lippert fired three times at Clemmons, according to police.

I don’t care how crazy it sounds, they will spin it any way they can and expect us to believe that bullshit when we know better. How many times have we been told to watch out for fake KKKops who get out of unmarked cars and pretend to be the police. Women have been raped. Homes have been invaded and homeowners beaten senseless by ‘white’ men pretending to be KKKops and so why would a KKKop be patrolling in the projects in an unmarked patrol car? What was the reasoning behind this? It was a set-up from the gitgo because the purpose was to shoot another Black man, dead!

And of course, here it comes!

Clemmons was convicted of a cocaine felony in 2014 and received an eight-year probated sentence. As a convicted felon, it would have been a violation of both state and federal law to possess the pistol, according to the statement.

“Oh looky! We got a real bad career criminal off the streets and inside the morgue! Thank us! Real bad Black dude here had a felony criminal record thanks to the ‘War on Drugs’ cause he was caught with some cocaine on him and that’s a felony. See folks, the ‘War on Drugs’ is working!”

But let’s take a look at something.

Coroner: [Actor]Philip Seymour Hoffman died of acute mixed drug intoxication

Actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, who was found dead February 2 on the bathroom floor of his New York apartment with a syringe in his left arm, died of acute mixed drug intoxication, including heroin, cocaine, benzodiazepines and amphetamine, the New York medical examiner’s office said Friday.

Now, how did Philip Seymour Hoffman obtain his cocaine that helped him overdose to death? Where were the KKKops when Philip Seymour Hoffman was pulling up to his New York apartment with heroin, cocaine, syringes and every goddamn thing else on him? You see, the KKKops are busy laying in wait for Black men in the projects who have already been arrested for cocaine possession and who are also well known by the KKKops since they’ve got a mug shot posted in their unmarked vehicles that they use to trap Black people who’ve previously been convicted of cocaine possession. What, they’ve busted up all their ‘marked’ patrol cars in Nashville, TN? And why no KKKops stationed in unmarked cars in upper crust neighborhoods? Anyone with more than two brain cells connected cannot think that cocaine use is not prevalent among whites. Hell! The KKKops are more than likely driving up in ‘unmarked’ cars and delivering their drugs to them while we are busy getting shot for doing less criminal shit than they do. And of course the deceased Mr. Clemmons had a gun. Don’t all Black men carry guns? But if in this instance, by some miracle, Mr. Clemmons did not have a gun, by the time the KKKops get their stories straight, he’ll have had several, including the one tattooed on top of his head that ‘could’ have fired because we have all heard the stories from KKKops of how suspects that are handcuffed in the back of the ‘patrol’ car have somehow maneuvered their hands and found a weapon that the KKKops couldn’t find on them during the search and shot themselves, in the head no less, and  of course, died. So, tell me, who are the REAL criminals?

You want some examples of people dressing up as KKKops? Here are a few just for starters. Here and what about Stockton Teen Thwarts Home Invasion By Men Dressed As Police Officers or what about Man impersonating cop handcuffs woman during kidnapping attempt and I could go on and on, and so why would a KKKop ride around in the projects in an unmarked car? To kill another Big, scary Black man in a set-up, that’s why! Because if a KKKop is not in a ‘marked’ patrol car in the first place and then waits until the ‘suspect’ who allegedly ran a stop sign pulls up in the housing projects and then steps out with a KKKop uniform on and goes up to the man who allegedly ran the stoplight, ostensibly just to talk to him, what could possibly go wrong? What would you have been thinking if confronted with this scenario? Is this shit for real? Well, if you’re Black, it’s real and it means death! And in this case, dead men tell no tales. As usual, the KKKops write the script and they certainly never stray from it, do they? What need have they? They are just doing what they’ve signed on to do and what they were hired to do, kill those niggers! Yeah! I know who the real gangsters are, in and out of ‘patrol’ cars!

Interracial Relationships: A Walking Death?

C.C. is on a roll! Another ‘must read’!

Whispers of a Womanist

Just the other day, social media acquainted me with an image that I found rather disturbing. Oddly, the picture probably proved innocuous to most and sweet to others. The picture displayed a black woman alongside her boyfriend. While he appeared to eschew the camera gaze, she beamed with pride. I scrolled to a few other (recent) pictures that contained this male—seemingly her boyfriend. She embodied the contemporary casing that accompanies many black women, a head full of someone else’s hair, makeup and stylish clothing. Interestingly, every picture displayed a different hairstyle, that while overtly varying from the prior picture, commonly veiled her natural hair with inauthentic textures and or hair color. The pictures with this male and the selfies are obviously staged, existing to evoke envy and discount any question pertaining to this woman’s desirability. This profile disturbed me not only because of its ostentation, but the insecurity that lies beneath…

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Chipotle, Taco Bell and the Kmart on Lake Street in Minneapolis is Closed Today!

immigrant-protest

 

Businesses close as immigrants stay home to protest Trump

In what has been heralded as an unprecedented attack on germs and bedbugs in America, “A Day Without Undocumented Workers,” whereas Chipotles and Taco Bells and Days Inns all across America did not open for business today, has been considered a resounding success. Also, in Minneapolis, MN, the only Kmart still standing is also closed in recognition of all the undocumented workers who work there but who are using someone else’s Social Security number. Thank You! One less ‘Identity Theft’ day!

Also, not to be outdone, Days Inn is telling its guests that they are going to have to do their own housekeeping and check-in. No reservations are being accepted today since the call center, located in Mexico City, had all its workers walk off the job in solidarity with their American counterparts. ‘The Taco Truck’ that used to be parked at the corner of Frito Lay Way and Ponce de Leon Drive in ‘Spanish Harlem’ New York will not be there as usual. A notice on a nearby post reads,

“En solidaridad con nuestros hermanos y hermanas indocumentados, ¡cerraremos el día!” “In solidarity with our undocumented brothers and sisters, we will close for the day!”

Although, this move was anticipated, it is having far reaching effects on many communities, nationwide. Americans who did not stock up on refried beans, tacos, Guacamole, tamales and fajitas are finding it difficult to obtain these items if guests are clamoring for them at dinner parties. To make matters worse, grocery stores are selling out of fajita and taco kits. Liquor stores nationwide are reporting a run on tequila and Corona. Also, roofing companies are reporting that their work crews are a no-show. California is having a hard time finding American workers to tend the fields as no one has come in to pick the harvest. A request was posted in the California Produce Growers Gazette for any Americans willing to bend over fields of corn, string beans, squash, watermelon and cantaloupe. Also attached to the request was the wording, “This does not apply to descendants of slaves as you have more than done your part!”

Activists called on [undocumented] immigrants to stay home from work, avoid shopping and eating out and skip classes in an effort to highlight the vital role they play in American society. This will make it extremely difficult for ICE officials(Immigration and Customs Enforcement)to pick you up and process you for deportation.
Churches are rolling out the red carpet to assist with any who may be swept up by ICE raids and a standoff will commence between church and state. Several DREAMers, short for Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act, who were given the ‘all clear’ under the Obama Administration are now fair game under the new Trump Administration. Churches, seen as safe havens are now harboring fugitives from justice; people who have stolen the identity of others and who are using it to remain in this country.

One reporter caught up with a regional manager at Chipotle and when asked why had Chipotles closed nationwide, had this to say, “Please keep my name out of this but the majority of our work force is undocumented and if not for those who know how Mexican food should be cooked, we could not stay in business. Americans do not know how to cook Mexican food. We do realize that what we are doing is illegal, but so is using deformed chickens, but we use them anyway; that profit margin thing you know and why pick on us, everyone knows that Smithfield Meat Packing Plant hires only undocumented workers as does Taco Bell and the Kmart on Lake Street in Minneapolis, MN!”

And even the Pentagon is getting in on the action.

At the Pentagon, about half a dozen food outlets were forced to close after staff members joined the protest, including a Starbucks, a Taco Bell and a Burger King, according to a Defense Department spokesman.

Since the closing of these restaurants, no one at the Pentagon has come back to work after lunch complaining of nausea, diarrhea, upset stomach, vomiting and heartburn. This is suspected as the real reason employees at the Pentagon joined in the protest; they were tired of missing work thanks to gastric disturbances that occurred right after lunch, mainly after eating at Taco Bell.

One upside to this movement is that it is occurring during the winter months and so it has no noticeable effect on yard work. We expect this standoff to have been worked out by the time grass cutting and serious tree trimming work is necessary. Thankfully, so far, not much snow has fallen across the country that would lead to a mass shutdown of services due to a shortage of workers willing to shovel snow. Those of us who employ undocumented workers do so because we can. And just as soon as all of this blows over, we will give our contacts in Mexico, a call and our profits will be back in the ‘black’.

Americans just do not understand the absolute necessity for undocumented workers. If you will not clean your homes, cut your grass, re-tile your roof, clean your hotel rooms and cook your burritos and tacos, someone must and we have workers who are most happy to fill these positions for mere pesos…uh…I mean pennies…uh…dollars. Plus, they can’t complain because we know that one word from us and ICE is all over their ass! And there are plenty more where they came from. So, shut the hell up and let us get on with the business of using undocumented workers to continue to keep America, grinding along! Bienvenidos a América!

Beyonce-A Win For White Supremacy

Another excellent read from C.C.!

Whispers of a Womanist

Following her Grammy speech and performance, superstar Beyonce garnered abundant praise.  Beyonce’s grammy performance portrayed Queen Bey in a manner that proved as royal as her title. Beyonce’s look seemed reminiscent of the queens of our indigenous homeland— a connection that did not go unnoticed by spectators. However, Beyonce garnered the most praise for something fans are not used to associating with Beyonce—loss.

Beyonce lost to Adele in the “Album of the Year” category. To most, this loss was inevitable due to a racially aware stance accompanying some tracks in her latest studio album Lemonade. Lemonade presented the contemporary world with all that has come to associate with Beyonce while intertwining a “woke” perspective not commonly aligned with the singer. The visual album featured the mothers of slain teens Trayvon Martin and Mike Brown and songs like “Freedom” that sought to paint Beyonce as an ally to the black collective…

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America’s unspeakable problem: Whites Speaking on ‘African-American’s Crime Rates

 

stolen from Africa

I was reading a post of a fellow blogger that I follow and this caption caught my eye:

America’s unspeakable problem: African-American’s crime rates

Breitbart is not the kind of news service I rely on, but occasionally even a blind squirrel finds a nut, as in this Nov 2015 story by Jerome Hudson: “5 Devastating Facts About Black-on-Black Crime“.

“In 2012, white males were 38% of the population and committed 4,582 murders. That same year, black males were just 6.6% of the population but committed a staggering 5,531 murders. In other words: black people -– at just a fifth of the size — committed almost 1,000 more murders than their white counterparts.

“The figures above highlight a horrific truth that black racialists and white liberals routinely ignore: Lawbreaking black Americans, young black males particularly, put themselves in close proximity to (mostly white male) police officers at rates sometimes five to 10 times higher than whites.

So yeah, I am going to go to Breitbart when I want fair and balanced reporting especially when that reporting is on descendants of slaves in America.

First of all, right out of the gate, you are wrong because an African-American is an African who immigrated to America, took a Naturalization test and gained his citizenship. Voila! African-American. That is not us. We are not African-Americans. I was not born in Africa and immigrated to America, took a Naturalization test and gained my American citizenship and so then why are we the only generally hyphenated group in America? I guess that is on us as well.

The writer went on to state, in essence, that Black males are literally throwing themselves at the police and so that is why we have so many police involved killings of Black men. No! This is why we have so many police involved killings of Black men.

Texas Officers Fired for Membership in KKK

Two law enforcement officers in Williamson County, Texas, have been fired after it was discovered they were members of the Ku Klux Klan.

County Sheriff John Maspero said there was no evidence the two men, Deputy David Gay, 45, and Sgt. Greg Palm, 29, had committed any acts of discrimination or failed to perform their duties, but said membership in the notorious hate group was sufficient reason to dismiss them.

Officials said they found out the two men belonged to the Klan after they approached another officer and asked him to join.

 He stopped just short of saying that ALL Black men have some sort of ‘crime’ gene in them that renders them incapable of civilized behavior and that the gene they carry needs to be isolated and destroyed so as they can go peacefully about their business and stop murdering one another or throwing themselves at the police who are members of the KKK.  And I am quite sure that the two law enforcement officers in the above block quote are the only ones. Yeah! I’m that delusional. But apparently whites don’t have this gene as they are not murdering other whites at the same rate that Black men are murdering other Black men, they just sign up as KKK members and then join the police force. The editor of this ‘America’s Unspeakable Problem’ post did not say a goddamn thing about the whites who have gone all across this country lynching, shooting and dragging Black men to their deaths because that just ain’t crime right there. That’s justifiable, don’t you know. I fucking swear, my head is going to explode over the sheer outrageous bullshit that appears on my reader.

I went on to post another comment and it reads as follows:

Crime is the result of an ignored problem and the problem in this case is unmitigated poverty, gentrification, homelessness and drug addiction. I live in one of the cities that has been designated a high crime city with a yearly murder rate of over 300.

You go to Breitbart, one of the most right-leaning websites to post your statistics and then try and pretend that you’ve reported on this issue, unbiased when you have not. I can cite statistics from a website that will counter yours and then you can likewise find another website similar to Breitbart to attempt to refute my statistics, meanwhile what does this do for the problem of crime, period? And it is the whites who are always clamoring for lax gun laws and who are shooting each other even at the gun range and who are also the number one killers of each other while cleaning guns or keeping their guns in reach of young children.

Let’s take a look at something.

5 Facts That Shatter the Myth of ‘Black-on-Black’ Crime

Here are 5 facts that prove white-on-white crime is actually the real problem, and that anyone trying to make “black-on-black crime” a major issue is just a racist looking for positive reinforcement of their prejudiced worldview.

1. 84 percent of white murder victims were white

2. Whites kill more whites than black people kill each other

In 2011, the most recent year for which data is available, 2,630 white people killed 3,172 white people, according to FBI homicide statistics. When comparing that to the black population, in which 2,447 African-Americans murdered 2,695 of their own, white-on-white murder is clearly the bigger issue.

. White people commit more crimes than any other race

4. White people kill more members of vulnerable populations than any other race

5. Gang murders are most common among white gangs
While a lot of attention has been given to the gang-related homicides in Chicago’s predominantly-black South side, very little press has been devoted to covering the epidemic of white-on-white gangland murders. As the above chart demonstrates, the majority of gang-related homicides are committed by white people (53.3 percent white, 42.2 percent black), and the majority of white gang murder victims are also white (56.5 percent white, 40 percent black). Have this fact handy the next time someone bemoans “black-on-black” gang violence.

source: http://usuncut.com/black-lives-matter/black-on-black-crime/
——————————————————

Yeah, so have these figures handy the next time you want to mouth off about ‘America’s unspeakable problem….’

You conveniently neglect to mention how violent whites are but their crime statistics are not reported because of who controls the reporting and because the agenda is to make Black people out to be the worst folks breathing while whites always get a free pass. Not on my watch, you don’t! Whites are killing whites, and how, but you didn’t bother to go on and on about that because that’s not something that anyone wants bandied about because let us just focus on the REAL BAD BLACK FOLKS killing each other. I will certainly be blogging about this post, count on it!

And even after I posted this, the situation only deteriorated, just as I thought.

Editor of the Fabius Maximus website Post author

15 February 2017 at 9:22 am

Shelby,

(1) “the problem in this case is unmitigated poverty, gentrification, homelessness and drug addiction.”

All of those factors are real. But African-Americans have far higher crime rates than other races even controlling for that.

(2) “pretend that you’ve reported on this issue, unbiased ”

No, I said exctly the opposite.

(3) ” I can cite statistics from a website that will counter yours and then you”

I look forward to you doing so. I doubt that you can. The numbers you cite ignore the point shown here. We’re talking about rates of violence. Numbers of crimes per thousand, or relative rates of crime between races. You are looking at absolute numbers, which tell us only that African-Americans are only a tenth of the population. Violent crime rates are what matter inside a community, not the aggregate number of crimes in the nation.

(4) “Gang murders are most common among white gangs”

We’re looking at overall violent crime rates. Parsing those into the many specific kinds of violent crimes is irrelevant to the large point made here, although it is important when taking specific public policy actions to address crime.

See what I mean? “No Shelby, we are looking at ‘overall violent crime rates’.” No, he is not. He is talking about crime rates as it pertains to inner cities that are supposedly committed by ‘African-Americans and since African-Americans are those Africans who willingly rowed up to the shores of America and got processed, then he cannot be speaking of descendants of African slaves, but if he was to be speaking of descendants of African slaves, has he forgotten THE reason we are over here? I even addressed that and it was tossed out like yesterday’s garbage as inconsequential to the situation at hand of out-of-control rampaging male descendants of slaves revolting and attempting to overthrow their white oppressors. Ain’t that just the end of enough? How dare all those ‘Nat Turners’ be out and about just attempting to gain their freedom from their oppressors who just sit somewhere pontificating over why there is so much crime among descendants of slaves.

Goddamn it! We would not be here if your ancestors had not been some of the most lazy ass, good for nothings who had no work ethic whatsoever and so went in search of free labor to build up a stolen land. Must I continuously give a history lesson?Print that! Pontificate over that! Be judgmental about that! Go find that on Breitbart, I fucking dare you! But you won’t do that because that is just not your agenda. Your agenda is to attempt to show everyone that there is just something inherently criminal in Black males and so why the police are killing them is no mystery to you. The police are just doing what medical science refuses to do, eradicate the bad gene that must be what is causing the male descendants of slaves to go rogue! Fuck that and you! I am sick to shit of this type of tripe that does nothing but place the blame for what ails Black communities on Black communities and not on where it belongs, whitey white ass!

And once again, for the motherfuckers out there who are dumb as all hell, we would not be here for you to wonder at your leisure over our so-called crime rates if your ancestors had not dragged ours over here. But that is something that you just want overlooked because though you may think yourselves blameless, you are SO not! We don’t want to have to deal with you any more than you want to deal with us! But yet, you want to pretend as if your shit don’t stink. Well goddamn it, it reeks to the stars and back! Your shit is a funky ass, filthy vile and malodorous stench and so accept it because it’s yours! Goddamn it! Your shit ain’t on us, it’s on you! You own this! Yeah! Fucking begin with why the fuck we are here! And then come talk to me!

Lastly, what the fuck are you worried about? We’re fucking not shooting you. Your own goddamn kind is killing you, so worry about your white buddy that lives down the street from you, going the fuck off because he lost his job or he just got back from Afghanistan and can’t distinguish the ‘good guys’ from the ‘bad guys’. He’s more likely to bust a cap all up in your ass. That’s what you pontificate and worry about, you racist son of a bitch!

Carlos Santana To Beyoncé: “You Can’t Sing!”

beyonce-and-santana

 

And I’d like to add my voice to Santana’s, “Beyoncé, you can’t sing!”

 “With all respect to our sister Beyonce, Beyonce is very beautiful to look at and it’s more like modeling kind of music — music to model a dress — she’s not a singer-singer, with all respect to her,” he[Carlos Santana] said.

According to this article, Santana was congratulating Adele on receiving her Grammy award at the 59th Annual Grammy Awards and stating that she really can sing as opposed to Beyoncé kinda sorta mod-singing as opposed to singing.

As far as I am concerned, Carlos Santana has no reason in the world to backtrack or to apologize for his statement because it is true. I admit that I have not listened to much of what Beyoncé has ‘sung’ but it is only because I cannot get through the end of her ‘songs’, she sounds so bad. And what is with all the near naked gyrating? Real singers have no need to continuously bare all or almost bare all if they do indeed, have a natural talent for singing.

Take Whitney Houston, for example. She had no need to bare her body to help her with her singing. Whitney could sing a A capella and I could listen to her all day and night. Who could forget her rendition of “I Will Always Love You?” That song will always move me to tears. Nothing that I have ever heard from Beyoncé moved me to do anything other than to turn that mess off! There is natural talent and then there is the studio produced sound and Beyoncé is nothing more than naked thighs and a studio voice and if she is performing, she is lip syncing would be my guess.

Why is it that everyone is expected to apologize for stating the truth how they see it? The “You need to apologize!” police are all over anyone who says anything they find disagreeable over their established ‘gods’ and ‘goddesses’. To hell with that! I will not be politically corrected to pieces for merely stating my mind and my opinion.

I say, “Beyoncé cannot sing!” Now make me apologize for that! The naked harridan cannot sing and why everyone is worshipping and idolizing something that married a piece of dirt that’s rapped for decades about bitches, niggaz and hos, ain’t all that! But then, Jay Z could have been rapping about her AND his daughter AND the two that’s inside Beyoncé’s belly that she just can’t keep covered.

One thing I can say for Adele, at least she has the good grace to conduct herself like a lady and even though I detest the sound of her voice and if I hear ‘Hello!” one goddamn more time, I shall surely scream, she at least garners my respect for being ladylike. Beyoncé, on the other hand, hell no!

I Spent Thanksgiving In Atlantic City

atlantic-cityThis is why I love living on the East Coast because in a couple of hours, I can be just about anywhere! And so, instead of heading south to deal with family members that I loathe, I headed for Atlantic City instead and stayed at Bally’s.

what-a-day-012And I strolled by the Wild West Saloon right off the boardwalk and they were not serving turkey, but you could certainly get your drink on and your gambling. For myself, I had been imbibing ‘free’ champagne while at the Bally’s slots and decided to stagger down the boardwalk and came across this joint.

wildwestI believe in doing just what the signs says, “Go WILD!” LOL! Damn! Am I on the ‘strip’ or the boardwalk? Oh well, it was too cold to take the plunge and so I headed back inside and down the hatch it flowed, champagne, that is!

 

However, I do want to say that Atlantic City has become a really sad city. The people who worked in the casino/hotel were telling me that they were surprised to even see people looking enthusiastically around Atlantic City because there is just nothing to come to Atlantic City for these days. I could not get them to understand that I come to stand by the ocean and just watch the wild waves crash on the shore and that the best time of the year for me to enjoy doing this is when it is cold because I can be sure that I am not amongst a crowd, jostling for a space on the beach. There was much laughter following this because I was told that there are no crowds even at the peak of summer.

It did not used to be this way. My uncle, bless his soul, is dead now but he spent all of his retirement years in Atlantic City; he and his wife. They both had gambling fever and would lose their shirt every time and yet every month, they’d be back in Atlantic City to do it all over again. One time, my ex-husband and I went with them and I was in the casino watching my ex-husband lose his money when I heard my name over the casino loudspeaker and I was wanted at the cashier station. I found the cashier station and there stood my uncle. He had requested that I be paged because he wanted to ‘borrow’ some money from me because his money had all been gambled away and so had his wife’s. He got no money from me! I’ll never forget, on the bus ride back home, when the bus driver pulled into a restaurant so that we could get some food, I was the only one who got off the bus and got back on with food and everyone groaned when the smell wafted through the bus because they were all broke. My ex-husband looked at me when I sat down beside him and he asked me wasn’t I going to give him some of my food. HA! I laughed in his face! I tortured those broke gamblers all the way back to our hometown. It was so much fun!

But as usual, I digress. Atlantic City is just sad, like so many other American cities that have had their heyday and no one invested in the city or its people. From what I understand, crime is off the charts thanks to a lack of jobs, poverty, homelessness, prostitution, drug abuse and the list is endless. Why is this endemic to almost every major American city? What is wrong with the politicians when they can see this as problematic and would still rather have big developers come in and further add insult to injury to  the already poverty stricken by building upscale dwellings and opening upscale fancy named stores that people who are jobless cannot shop at? And then proceed to go on and on about the high crime rates as if they don’t know that poverty and high crime rates go hand in hand? Back in the day, Atlantic City catered to people like my uncle who would go to Atlantic City, religiously and not only gamble, but would go to the restaurants and spend money in the little shops that were lined up and down the boardwalk, taking back home with them, cheap souvenirs and $1 boxes of salt water taffy. Now, you’ll find only high end stores in the mall on the boardwalk. Pier shops is what its called and there you’ll find Wolf Fine Jewelry, Tiffany & Co.,  bebe, Louie Vuitton, Michael Kors, Marshall Rousso, Glow Gold, Burberry and other stores of the like, but you’ll not find what used to be there; Dollar Tree, McDonalds, Burger King, Payless Shoe Source, The 99 cent Taffy Store, The Everything’s A Dollar Gift Shop and more of the like. And back then, Atlantic City was thriving, but there still was a problem of no investment in Atlantic City beyond the boardwalk and the casinos. I noticed this decades ago and I thought, “If this continues, this city is going to go into a decline.” And it has, big time!

Casinos are now vying for customers to the point where I was able to receive $25 in the form of a voucher after having paid $30 for the bus ticket to Atlantic City. So, it only cost me $5.00 to go to Atlantic City and back. Of course, I had to use the voucher in the casino, the $25.00 wasn’t given to me in cash, but what was even better, I discovered while sitting at the slot machine that I could order any drink I wanted. They even had champagne! I could not believe it! I sat at that slot machine and pressed the button to order champagne for hours. They even gave it to me in a champagne flute. The music was playing overhead and I was just a giggling and enjoying my ‘free’ champagne in my gifted new flute and was winning too! Now how great was that? I finally staggered on out of the casino and to the elevator to go up to my room, only to fall into bed and get up a few hours later and start all over again. Good heavens! Did I enjoy Thanksgiving or did I enjoy Thanksgiving? I enjoyed Thanksgiving.

But then, I thought of all the people who were just a mere couple hundred feet beyond the casino doors, hulking in the shadows, shivering and hungry while I was being courted as a desirable customer at the casino. I thought, “Oh, what a hypocrite, am I!” I write about all the injustices that are going on today and then someone only has to hand me a champagne flute  and continuously fill the flute for as long as I can sit without falling down drunk. Right then and there, I pledged to do better. I pledged to try and do what I can to find solutions and to stop forgetting even for a few hours that there are people beyond the doors, homeless and shivering; that there are people, who once worked in that casino but because so few come there anymore, their jobs were terminated and that I am being courted not because I am valued, but because I am one of the few who will still come back to a city that is virtually, a ghost town; a city that needs its politicians to revitalize and give hope to a population of citizens who have been neglected thanks to indifferent politicians, broken promises and vulture capitalists.

Atlantic City will soon have much company.

 

 

Runaway Slaves and Racial Regression

Another direct hit from C.C. Read and learn something. I always do!

Thanks C.C.!

Whispers of a Womanist

Paris Jackson, the daughter of the late and great Michael Jackson, recently made headlines for publicly declaring her blackness. Jackson’s declaration undoubtedly caused many to reread her statement in disbelief and brought others to a jilted laughter. However, Jackson’s admission presents an interesting duality with regards to blackness and identity. For one, Jackson’s declaration functions to discount whispers of Michael Jackson’s presumed self-hatred, as raising his children in his non-altered image most likely proves surprising to most, if not all who knew the superstar only through the veil of white media. Conversely, actor Taye Diggs, who has a son with his white ex-wife, references his child as “mixed” not black. This labeling indisputable consummates Diggs’ personal desire to escape his chocolate state and ultimately not pass this “curse” onto his child. This dynamic does not limit itself to Diggs but presents itself in every black person that breaks their identity…

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