The Help

This weekend, I saw the much criticized/acclaimed movie The Help. I had planned to keep this a secret, to never tell a soul, and pretend this never happened. But, I wanted to have an opinion about the movie so I bought a ticket to The Smurfs and saw The Help instead (I wanted to see it, but not support it). I refrained from reading any reviews, or any synopses of the book or the film. I wanted to go in with an open mind, and an open heart. But I couldn’t.

Something just wasn’t right. From the moment I first saw the preview, to the moment I walked past the movie poster on my way into the theater. I knew that something wasn’t right. I have slowly begun to build defenses against the biased, narrow and sometimes problematic ways Black women are portrayed in the media but I wasn’t ready for this.

A Political Soundtrack


“Musicians Don’t’ Die, They Decompose.”

The power of music is a secret to no one. You can find the manifestations of this power everywhere. Just observe the impulse you get when you hear a strong base in the background of a new track, or the tired feeling you get when listening to something slow and melodic, or the passion felt through an A’Capella group. There is no doubting the roots of music and the ability it has to impact your mood/emotions.

What is even more fascinating is seeing the power of music extended and connected to political movements. In South Africa music is the backbone of social mobilization. And it is a powerful backbone; one that brings people together, gives hope, inspires, and creates an artistic expression that simply cannot be articulated outside of a musical context.

"Please Describe Your Background"

When I’m asked “What are you?” a question which my slight racial ambiguity warrants on almost a daily basis, I say black. So I check black on my college app. Then sometimes (most times actually), the question is followed by “Yeah, but what else?” and sometimes “She’s Cuban!” “She’s Puerto Rican.” “She’s Italian.” from eavesdroppers. No, I’m actually not. Thanks, but I have my racial identity figured out.. I don’t really like to be the object of twenty questions.

When pressed, and not offended, I’ll explain that yes, my father is a white, non religious Jew. This often leads to further confusion about the Jewish people as an ethnic group. “Did you have a Bat Mitvzah?” No. “Then you’re not Jewish.” Right, I’m black. “Okay, you’re mixed.” I’m black. “Whatever.”

Secession aint gonna end the recession

The old saying goes, “Don’t mess with Texas”. Believe me, I haven’t really messed with Texas since the 1995 Dallas Cowboys team. Although my heart is as big as the state itself, it’s tough for me to stomach the thought of Rick Perry becoming President of the United States. Maybe I’ll try to overlook the fact that Perry refuses to admit that global warming is real. Perhaps, I’ll even not pay attention to the fact that he invited xenophobic musician,  Ted Nugent, to perform at his 2nd inauguration. What I can’t overlook is the fact that same man that wanted to secede from the union now wants represent the entire union.

1-900-Blame a N!&&@, the UK Version

Actually, I’m surprised it took this long for somebody to blame the riots on black people. In the BBC interview with Darcus Howe, a West Indian Writer and Broadcaster, where he attempted to explain the conditions that lead to the beginning of the uprising in Tottenham (including Mark Dugan being shot in the head by police and ballistics proving he didn’t fire a gun at them), he was basically called a rioter by the “idiot” new anchor.

Sadly this isn’t new and I’m sure “historian” David Starkey knows this. Black people have been convenient scapegoats for many of societies ills, even though we’re almost always in the position of least power. I find it ironic and sad that the murders, rapes, and brutality written in the history of countries like England are explained away by these same historians, yet the victims to this very day of oppression and exploitation, are now “gangtas”.

No amount of looting could pay back what England stole from the darker people of the planet and trust me it’s all you’re culture’s fault. Your history shows a people who took whatever they wanted by force. That fact that you now wear suits and dresses and appear civilized cannot erase the blood stains. In fact whatever institution gave David Starkey the title historian should be closed immediately.

Worse of all, many people will take David Starkey’s flawed philosophy and run with it. Why? Cause it’s easy to blame rap or black people and build more prisons, than to deal with a mentality that hoards wealth, access and opportunity and creates the conditions that lead to riots, just ask brilliant political philosopher Paul Mooney.

*Warning this contains extreme language

On Not Seeing 'The Help'

I did not see The Help this weekend; I also did not read the book. Since I both read and saw The Secret Life of Bees a couple of years ago and am conversationally familiar with The Blind Side, I figured I had earned enough credit to sit this one out. Call it a mental health decision.

WATCH THE THRONE, And Why Jay-Z and Mitt Romney Have A LOT In Common

Mitt Romney and Jay-Z have a lot in common.

Like Jay-Z, whose widely considered to be the most influential and important figure in Hip Hop today, Mitt Romney is currently the front runner for the Republican Presidential Nomination. In fact, like Jay-Z, he’s been the de facto “front runner” in the race for a while now.

And like Jay-Z, Mitt Romney continues to hold onto this position for no good reason at all. And probably won’t be holding onto it for long.

How Facebook Can Depress You as a Single Black Girl

So, I am discovering how utterly depressing Facebook can be. Yes, I did not stutter. Facebook, touted as the pen-ultimate medium for awkward wall flowers to gain social inclusion and social integration, is depressing. Not depressing in the most clinical sense of depressing, but more depressing in the vein of, “Damn, all my friends (I use the term, friends, loosely because are we really friends If I met you in the club one night and we said lets Facebook) are finding great partners,” as evidenced by their many corny profile pictures of them and their boo hugged up for dear life.

'World of Money' teaches dollars and sense to black youth

‘World of Money’ teaches dollars and sense to black youth

Michelle Balani, The Grio | August 11, 2011

Many adults never quite master the concept of managing their finances but several New York City youngsters are now one step closer to becoming well versed in the language of money. They are all graduates of three week Financial Education Training program put on by the World of Money, a nonprofit organization that’s dedicated to empowering underserved youth by teaching them how to learn, earn, save, invest and donate.

Sabrina Lamb launched World of Money in 2005 after attending a financial seminar. As she listened to the lessons that day, she thought about how beneficial it would be if children could learn these concepts at an early age. That whisper of a thought turned out to be one of the greatest inspirations her life, and now, six years later, she has helped hundreds of young people become more financially savvy.

According to the Council for Economic Education, only 13 states require students to take a financial literacy-type course in high school. Programs like the World of Money are helping to fill that void and are providing young people with the tools they will need to secure a better financial future. And given that the nation’s economy is at a virtual standstill, teaching the next generation about budgeting, money management, investing, disciplined saving and responsible credit card usage could be one of the best defenses against economic uncertainty in the coming years.  (Read more)



Respecting A Helping Hand

I was walking in the door and held the door for a lady and of course that was the correct thing to do. But as I walked in behind her I realized it would’ve been nice to get a Thank You. How many times have that happened or are we so use to doing things that we’ve forgot that common respect between each other.   It is so many things that go on from day to day that are overlooked and sometimes ignored. For example how many times has someone let you in while you were driving and you didn’t give a simple gesture of thanks (by  waving your hand)or, how many times have someone stepped aside while you were walking behind them and let you past? It is so many things that occur from day to day that are easily ignored and overlooked as the respectful thing to do. Now I know in life sometimes we get busy and we are consumed with so much that we forget to say thank you.