This man was one of my husband’s favorite musicians, so I know this news is going to be shocking. While he isn’t going to mourn Mr. Bowie like I mourned Whitney Houston, I can relate to his sense of loss.
They have one 15-year-old daughter, Alexandria Zahra Jones (Bowie is a stage name). Oh, that has to be tough. Prayers for his family.
A few weeks ago I noticed that there was a baby boom going on among the interracially married Black female YouTubers that I follow. It all started when I watched Jamie and Nikki’s baby gender reveal video, which captured what seemed like a sincerely joyous occasion.
The ending almost made me mist up, as Jamie and Nikki ruminated about what lies ahead for their baby girl, especially the part where Nikki Perkins talked about how their daughter will be a little spoiled for future relationships, because no one will measure up to her father. Love, good wishes and happiness awaits that little one, I tell you!
Then David and Adanna revealed that they are expecting a boy, and she made the bonus announcement that her sister is also expecting (who is married to a Black man).
Nikki Perkins, a former model, is looking absolutely radiant during her pregnancy. Like a queen! I couldn’t help but to check out her IG page for more stunning modelesque photos of her, like this one:
A photo posted by Nikki Perkins (@jamieandniks) on
And then Patricia Bright announced her pregnancy. And then I heard that Britt from the Nive Nulls is about to make her daughter a big sister! Little children are emerging everywhere, and this subscriber is totally overjoyed for everyone.
I don’t watch all of these channels diligently, but I do enjoy popping in for a view, and usually a thumbs up, when I have the time. Their channels are entertaining, thw content is heartfelt, and if these parents are any indication of how biracial kids are being brought up, then we can expect a brighter future for this country, I think. Congrats to all!
OK, whose next? Lemme check in on Naptural85. Olivia might be looking around for a sibling right about now …
Like half of the adult women out there, I put down my last comic book at around the same time that I picked up my first bottle of perfume, thinking that I was putting away childish things to be a more responsible grown up. I didn’t turn to comics again until I was a college intern, and I had to write a story for a magazine about a small comic book publisher. Back then, only a handful of Black comic book writers were on the scene, and one had to make deliberate efforts to find the brave creative souls who told African descendants’ stories of adventure and intrigue.
But how wonderful it was to simply scroll through my social media feed this morning and find this endearing trailer promoting a new comic, “Raising Dion.” As Whitney once sang, “Mommies and Daddies always believe/that their little angels are special indeed …” But Dion, the son of a slain American hero, is actually a one-of-a-kind child who possesses superpowers of his own. His late father’s best friend is white, so hopefully they can touch on how two cultures can integrate harmoniously and do so with a warm gentle touch, without a heavy handed, preachy tone.
Now, Black comics are flourishing, and we can have our choice of comics where we are the central character, in the driver’s seat. Sometimes, being treated as the sidekick, regardless of how infallible moral he or she might be, who is noble and loyal to the point of neglecting his or her own life and needs (hello, Abbie Mills of Sleepy Hollow) is just not enough!
Moments after Star Wars devotees sniffled through watching the Star Wars VII trailer, they composed themselves and got onto social media to share their experience, they encountered this: #BoycottStarWarsVII. It’s a protest from a handful of racist White supremacists who cannot abide the idea that a Black man was cast as a storm trooper, that a white man is not the central character, nor does he carry the film.
Because heaven forbid that good, wholesome Americans should be deprived of their escapist fantasy, a world where white men defend and protect the right of white people to exist! To rape, pillage, defame, degrade and destroy any civilization that doesn’t worship them as the darlings of creation.
I don’t know all of the fundamental tenets of Star Wars mythology, but I do know that in a distant galaxy, a long time ago a rather handsome and dashing gambler and mercenary named Lando Calrissian found his moral compass and mounted a daring attack on the second Death Star, and was helpful to the new Galactic Alliance. And looky here, we have a photo of him.
What a handsome fellow! It’s a shame these boycotters couldn’t recognize that the vast galaxy was peopled with diverse populations, and was a rich source of material for Storm Trooper clones. But then again, you can’t expect much from racist mutant inbreds.
Still, I wonder if they don’t have a point in their protest. It appears that intelligent, prosperous swashbuckling Black heroes are just a figment of our imagination. Also, beautiful, brainy and accomplished Black women can only serve on the bridge of intergalactic ships in our dreams.
In our present world, where things really matter, Blacks have “no history,” and there is just no place for Blacks to have real earthly power, much less galactic influence. Right?
Hubby and I would like to think that our child will always view us, and the other loving and nurturing adults in our family, as desirable role models in life. Yeah, right! Once this child hits fifth grade, at the latest, she will finally break away from all my attempts to dress her like a little lady and pay more attention to what she wants and what her friends think.
On the way, I hope she runs into more wide awake youngsters like Amandla Stenberg (Hunger Games, Sleepy Hollow). I’ve been wanting to write about Amandla for the last few months, just to big her up on her keen awareness of the B.S. that white America loves to rub in Black girls’ faces. You know what I mean; the nonsense that says our dark skin, full lips, curves and hair texture are not desirable on us, but when any white woman pays a plastic surgeon to achieve any one of the things that we were born with naturally, that she is somehow more worthy of regard and respect than we are. Even if one of them is a cheap and tawdry porn star, or one of the innumerable sisters of said tart.
Well, Amandla comes to mind today because she put one of the Jenner girls (who cares which one, really) in check about appropriating Black style and culture with no regard for the actual people whose creativity facilitate her temporary look. (This would be a good time to click away if you’re saying internally “It’s only hair!” When it comes to Black self esteem, hair is never, ever “only hair,” and only people who take half a minute to be enlightened can understand that.)
It’s not just her Twitter wisecrack about the Jenner girl that got my attention. On a purely personal note, both Amandla and my daughter have Zulu names, given by their Black mothers, and inspired by artistic works. This child isn’t some vapid little starlet. She has substance. She has spoken up about the appropriation of Black features before, notably in this video, “Don’t Cash Crop On My Cornrows.”
She has also voiced sympathy for the young people rioting in Baltimore, and frequently Tweets her exasperation about the silly questions White folks inadvertently ask about her hair, her looks and her heritage. We might not care to see our public figures like Amandla delve into areas of worthy of serious thought; and maybe that is because we think they are out of their depth intellectually, or that Hollywood figures are just acrobats, troubadours and assorted minstrels who are detached from reality and are bound to commit a huge gaffe one day, thereby ruining their credibility and overshadowing the discourse they are trying to lead. The latter is why I remain a committed skeptic of anything or anyone that comes out of that desert mirage called Hollywood, and why only Oprah comes close to being someone I would hold up as a personal or professional role model out there. Not even these megachurch pastors, preaching in their designer suits and microphone packs, make the cut. (Sir, are you going to give back Tyler Perry’s laying on of hands, in light of his out-of-wedlock child?) Oprah holds court in Chicago, with its flinty resilience and Midwestern pragmatism. She didn’t roll out massive agricultural and luxury residential developments in a semi-arid climate, and then suck the Colorado River dry to support them.
OK, let’s refocus. It is remarkable that I’ve bookmarked, but not followed, Amandla’s Twitter account where she makes the usual amusing, and often smart, teen observations on life, and her ex-cellent Tumblr page, where she showcases Black female beauty. Maybe when Baby Girl begins to drift from me and process all these issues of race and culture, she’ll see someone like Amandla in the mix, asking the same questions, and doing it from the shared perspective of watching a Black mother navigate the beauty standards that are so different from her, and falling somewhere in the middle. That is hugely powerful for tweens and adolescents. Amandla’s blog represents her as an actress and activist against child hunger.
We don’t worship celebrities in this house. It’s not what I know, so I can’t set that example for my daughter. My childhood was spent being indoctrinated in the legalism of the Apostolic church, which preached, among other things, that faithfully following the lives of singers, rappers, actors and athletes was akin to melting down the gold-plated communion serving ware and molding a calf. It was a no-no! And so I passed through my entire adolescence missing out on Whitney Houston’s miraculous live concert performances, and there was always homework or Bible study, so who had time to watch her effortlessly making everyone else look frumpy and clownish on the red carpets. And I never told anyone that I secretly relished the fact that I had one thing in common with LeDonna Gaines, the Goddess of Love, the Queen of Disco. Baby Girl’s childhood will be spent binge watching Wild Kratts, perfecting her crawl, and delving into spirituality, history and culture. But in case she wants to double check what we are giving her and run it by someone like her, there’s Amandla.
I am convinced that there is a small population of grown Black men out there who sleep in oversized cribs every night, passed out after guzzling a sippy cup of warm milk, and then snore loudly with visions of humiliated Black women dancing in their heads. Why else would a grown man spend time at his computer to contrive this depraved view of interracial romance? (And it’s a shoddy image, I might add. Those poses are physically impossible. )
A bitter Hotep with way too much time on his hands.
A young cousin of mine texted this photo to me, as an FYI on the types of people who should stay away from the Internet. It looks like a desperate attempt, by some cuckoo out there, to portray modern interracial romances as fundamentally depraved and unnatural. I probably won’t ever find out who created this crazy image, but I’m pretty sure it was a Hotep.
Hoteps are supposedly pseudo Black intellects, stuck reliving the glory days when the Moors occupied Spain and Old Mali dominated West Africa, and Black Africans were basically the shit. Any graduate of a liberal arts college that drew a significant representation of African-American students, particularly a state college or university, knows this Hotep type. When I was in college, a lot of these guys went around addressing every eligible Black woman as a “Nubian queen,” and when they did manage to wrangle a girlfriend, marry and have kids, they gave their children these cloying, pretentious, regal sounding names. Often it seems like the children’s naming practices were less an expression of authentic nod to one’s cultural heritage, and more likely a display of symptoms of any number of disorder resembling Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. It’s like they were on the auctioning block just the other day and named their children “Your Majesty” or “Royal” in a desperate attempt to cling to a life where they held their rightful station in their rightful ancestral home, in Africa. No ruler is complete without his or her intriguers at court, and so let’s not forget the Hotep’s henchmen, the silly women, sometimes called handmaidens, or — more disagreeable to me — Mammies, who encourage their foolishness by supporting their misogynistic campaigns!
I’m used to seeing nasty comments about Black women who marry out, and how quickly the language can take an abusive turn. People who hate marriages like mine say we are nothing but bed wenches, white men’s whores, concubines to, get ready, recessive-gene maggots. And I kid you not on the last one; I’ve read this in the comment section of an article. I couldn’t take this photo seriously for any reason at all, including the fact that the graphic design work is second rate, and it isn’t possible for any individual to hold another that way. But I will say this: This graphic is less an indictment on Black women’s supposedly ignorant and foolhardy decisions to marry white men than it is an expression of the Hotep’s need to thrive off of the idea that Black women are miserable without them, regardless of how much solid evidence says otherwise. Dream on, Hoteps. Black women who marry out certainly aren’t in the grip of a white supremacist terrorist. No matter how much you wish we are headed for disaster, all evidence says we and the kids are doing quite well, thank you. Take the steps to speak to a psychologist about these misogynistic tendencies of yours, and address whatever disorder it is that makes your short circuit and descend into irrational thinking.
A few months ago Americans started to toss around a catch phrase called “a conversation about race.” Well, this week a deranged, racist young man with strong delusions of restoring American democracy to its white supremacist glory did everything he could to provoke a conversation about race in this country, by slaughtering nine people who gathered in a church for prayer and Bible study. And despite the jolt that Dylann Roof’s massacre delivered to our collective mind frame as a country, some Americans are being abject simpletons, and are actually using their platforms to say that the attack was not, in fact, racially motivated.
Of course, a lot of this denial of a blatant racial attack comes from FOX News. But anyone with basic powers of logic will acknowledge that Roof hated Blacks, has a long track record of revering white supremacist regimes, and that he deliberately targeted Blacks for murder when he planned the shooting and sat next to the congregants for an hour prior to the shooting. I’ve read up on the history of Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, S.C., and if you do the same, you’ll realize that it was a hub for Black activism and advocacy in the South, and it has been targeted multiple times over its history for hate-driven violence and intimidation.
Black churches in general stand as places where Christians can not only get spiritual rejuvenation, but activists can find supporters to their cause. Unfortunately, racists also know that they can find Blacks in these houses of worship, and target them for violence. It’s been said that Dylann Roof wanted to trigger a “race war” with the killings. Well, to him and any other nut job out there, I say we’ve already fought a race war. It was called the American Civil War, and the racist South got its ass handed to it. If the nut jobs that Dylann Roof represents want to provoke a second “race war,” and we are forced to give them another humiliating ass whuppin, will they then shut up and stop waving their defeated Confederate flag already? The pride of the South is America’s shame. Face it.
The incredible irony is that the environment that created this monster, this avowed white supremacist, is in complete denial about his clearly articulated motive for the slaughter. So when you have people going on FOX News saying that we have to take a close look at whether these attacks were actually attacks on Christianity, it just indicates to me how unprepared Americans are to start making progress on the racial tensions in this country. They can’t even acknowledge that a problem exists. They’ll come up with a number of lame theories to explain the actions of Dylann Roof and others.
So we want to know if we need to have a national “conversation about race,” or if we’re overdoing all this “racial shit.” Well, let’s try to look at this a different way. Dylann Roof, the mass murder suspect, was apprehended by law enforcement without incident, clothed in a bullet-proof vest so that a vigilante wouldn’t take him out. He will now go through the legal process and hopefully be brought to justice. Was the same due process extended to Michael Brown, Eric Garner or Walter Scott? These men were not saints, but I don’t think petty theft and child support arrears are grounds for their killings! Since when is an on-the-spot death penalty an acceptable way to deal with petty theft and child support arrears?!
What about the two Black girls who were brutally thrown around by much bigger and stronger white male officers, in two separate incidents at neighborhood swimming pools, one in McKinney, Texas, and the other in Fairfield, Ohio. Both girls were wearing swimsuits, and I doubt they concealed deadly weapons in them. How can any rational person fail to see the differences in the police responses to these situations? Still not convinced? Well the late monster Timothy McVeigh blew up a federal building in Oklahoma City, then watched the destruction from nearby, feeding his already sick mind with images of people being blown apart. Then he had the nerve to say that the murders of the children were collateral!! He got a trial. No police officer shot him dead on the spot in the back.
It’s not my style to define myself based on others’ perceptions of me. But when hate groups flourish, and police officers respond to Blacks with brutality, I know there is a difference between me and Hubby, and the way our country sees us. And I laugh at people who say silly things like: “I don’t see color.” “There is no such thing as race.”
Maybe the reason some of these pundits cannot bring themselves to call out racism when the see it is because they would come to an awful realization. In order for them to see racism in someone else, they’d have to admit that it exists, and perhaps they’d have to admit that this country has a problem, and they are part of it, with their idiotic assessment thatb the is had nothing to do with race. Maybe the reason they come up with soft, lame explanations like “it’s mental illness,” is to distract us from the real problem in this country. Why they would want to do that, I don’t know, since depravity and destruction await if we diddle and do nothing. Well, maybe that’s OK with them, too.
It’s refreshing to see awards and honors go to people who really deserve them. So when I scanned this article on Essence.com, about their Best in Black Beauty Awards, I was happy to see that Whitney White, also known as “Naptural85,” topped the heap.
She really is a cut above the rest, with her tips for cultivating, maintaining and styling natural hair. I stumbled across her channel while researching how to care for Baby’s hair, and I learned a lot about caring for my own hair in the process, too.
So congratulations, Whitney “Naptural85” White! Richly deserved. Here is her latest video, “Natural Hiar is TOO EXPENSIVE!?!”
UPDATE: Naptural85 is also a conversation starter. Here’s a response from hilarious 4C natural hair vlogger Glamfun:
Are Lupita Nyong’o and Common dating?? Reports have them hanging out in Brooklyn, where she has an apartment. He apparently lives in Fort Greene. If they are “taking things slow” in the beginning, that would be awesome!! No pressure, though. Just take your sweet time enjoying each other’s company. We can wait for the … whatever comes down the line!
Lupita attends a high-profile press event or Hollywood award show and delivers a heartfelt and inspiring speech that goes viral. Excerpts (or full videos) are embedded in blogs like this one, and snippets are used for memes circulated on Twitter, in discussion forums and eventually become inspirational quotes. This time, the event is Glamour magazine’s “Women of the Year” awards, and once again Lupita showed up and showed us what true beauty is.
Here’s a link to the full video, with an introduction from one of her early mentors.
Hollywood might be slow to catch on to Lupita’s perfections, but magazine editors really like her. Of course, one notable exception to that is Vanity Fair. Greydon Carter, the editor in chief there, is the beholder through which the magazine’s faithful readers see celebrity life, and he seems to have a general aversion to acknowledging Black beauty front and center too often, lest anyone get any radical ideas about what represents female attractiveness. Well, nevermind all that. Lupita has already had Vogue and Glamour.
And I’d much rather watch a video of hers, because she’s usually up to something intelligent and commendable, than see a creation of plastic surgery and hyper-contouring — and mother who ought to be ashamed of herself — be so desperate for attention that she drops her clothes for a little bit of paper.