Tag Archives: Sexism

Want to teach your students about structural racism? Prepare for a formal reprimand.

I am in Reblog heaven! Another excellent post. What is happening to education in this country? If ever we were in need of education, beyond technocracy, it would be now. It’s sad how stupid people are becoming on subjects of any real depth. How easy we want everything handed to us. How averse AND slow we are at seeking spiritual knowledge, exploring moral depths and upholding justice SMH. Ok, but I digress. Part of this tide of eroding educational standards must be laid squarely at the doors of Corpocracy and Capitalism polluting the waters.

It’s a sad and sobering day when teachers, from grade school to college, are shouting warnings that few seem willing to listen to.

The New Ramblings of D.A. Adams

This article is from Slate:

Shannon Gibney is a professor of English and African diaspora studies at Minneapolis Community and Technical College (MCTC). When that’s your job, there are a lot of opportunities to talk about racism, imperialism, capitalism, and history. There are also a lot of opportunities to anger students who would rather not learn about racism, imperialism, capitalism, and history. I presume MCTC knows that; they have an African diaspora studies program. Back in January 2009, white students made charges of discrimination after Gibney suggested to them that fashioning a noose in the newsroom of the campus newspaper—as an editor had done the previous fall—might alienate students of color. More recently, when Gibney led a discussion on structural racism in her mass communication class, three white students filed a discrimination complaint because it made them feel uncomfortable. This time, MCTC reprimanded Gibney under their anti-discrimination policy.

Elevating…

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It Will Not Stand: The War on Women’s Choice

I’ve had many discussions with older African Americans about what we call the apathy of the younger generation. They seem to be incredibly distant from the struggles of Civil Rights Era. To hear them tell it, it has little to do with them and I can only hypothesize that this mental “distance” is part ignorance, part self defense and partly the right of those who benefit but do not get bloodied in the fight.

In my opinion, the view that the world is so different today that they don’t need to actively engage and fight for change in the Black community is sadly way too prevalent.

As a a child born the year that Dr. Martin Luther King & Malcolm X were assassinated, great granddaughter of a slave and Native American Indian and the daughter of a woman who lived through Jim Crow, the struggle is an ingrained part of who I am. I see myself, individually and collectively, connected to a legacy of strife and ascension of which I am the beneficiary and guardian. I do not feel the disconnection but the continuum of The Dream.

Regardless of what this generation might believe, this shift towards individualism and away from a collective sense of struggle, which were the glue of the Black community, is only possible because they are beneficiaries of the Civil Rights era.

That is where we differ.

The past few weeks have shown me where we connect. The assaults on women’s rights have left me stunned only because I’ve spent my life in the same protective bubble of inherited blind confidence, assurance and disconnectedness. I am moved by tales of women having back alley abortions, disturbed by old movies where women were so clearly lacking any real autonomy but that’s just so yesterday. How could they have stood such a thing? I just never got it. Women have fought for their rights as equal citizens and made tremendous, unassailable strides, or so I thought.

I was wrong.

Women’s rights are under attack. Our right to our bodies, to self-determination and actualization is what’s on the chopping block. I had no doubt that we remain second class citizens in the eyes of many men and that we live in a world whose limitations are defined by patriarchy but those rights which women marched for, died for, and laws which had already been passed…I never imagined that they would be challenged. Not in the 21st century.

Beneath the skin of our nation, ideological warfare is being waged. Religious zealotry has infected politics under the guise of the GOP, threatening to undo 40 years of progress. The separation of church and state is guaranteed by the first amendment and yet that seems to hold little sway in the political arena TODAY. You only have to listen to Santorum to get the lay of the land. The Right wing agenda is actively and insidiously pushing legislation based on their religious beliefs, challenging and undermining women’s reproductive choice. Transvaginal ultrasound my ass. If you think that’s an exaggeration, read this article from the Daily Kos. You can also read the excellent article, The GOP War on birth control by Rachel Maddow of MSNBC.

Historically, women vote in greater numbers than men and I’m betting that the 2012 election will be nothing short of historic.

In a society where women are still struggling for equal representation, still not earning the same pay for the same work as their male colleagues, still make up less than 15% of congress, never mind be president, and comprise less than 10% of media executives, which stops us from telling our own stories and combating embedded stereotypes, lack of reproductive choice is a death sentence.

Every woman I know is outraged at the dismissiveness of elected officials and their intrusion, legally mandated, on our personal choice. Women need to send a resounding message that we will not go back. I will never in my lifetime support a candidate who espouses the rhetoric and policies coming from the GOP candidates seeking presidential nomination.

It will not stand.

The call has gone out for a National March against the War on Women to be held in Washington on 4/28/12. I plan to be there with every person I can wrangle to show that our voice matters, ensure my rights and those of future generations. Just to ensure that they get their chance to glide along in the protective bubble and take for granted, as long as they can, that their rights are guaranteed. 🙂

Go to http://www.facebook.com/UniteWomen for more information.

White Women’s Rage: 5 Thoughts On Why Jan Brewer Should Keep Her Fingers To Herself (Crunk Feminist Collective)

I LOVE THIS POST! They broke it down righteously ;). Fantastic blog to know. Happy reading!

The Crunk Feminist Collective

What is wrong with this picture?

1.)   He is the President. She is being disrespectful. As hell.  Period. Point Blank. End of Discussion.

2.)   White privilege conditions white people not to see white rage. However, it makes them hyper-aware of Black threat.   Newt Gingrich is white rage personified. And for it, he gets loads of applause.  So is Jan Brewer, but usually we think of white rage in masculine terms. Gender stereotypes condition us not to see white women as being capable of this kind of dangerous emotional output. We reserve our notions of female anger for Black women. Such hidden race-gender logics allow Brewer to assert that she “felt threatened,” even though she was trying to handle the situation “with grace.”  Now look back at the picture: who is threatening whom? Couple white rage with white women’s access to the protections that have been afforded to their gender, and…

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I Am The 99%

This post was inspired by We Are the 99%

2008 is a year that I will never forget. First, I lost $50,000 in value from my 401K which was 1/3rd of the value of my portfolio and had taken me 14 arduous years to save. I thought that was the worst.

Then, October came along and I lost my eleven year job as a Telecommunications Engineer/Project Manager. I was one of three laid off with whom I shared tenure as we all had been with the firm for over a decade. Not surprisingly, two of us were POC. Too boot, I was the only female technologist. I did have a sneaking suspicion but that did not really prepare me. As I was to discover, what we imagine rarely holds up against the implacableness of stark reality.

I remember what I wore that day, red and gold. I was attired as a warrior goddess, ready for battle and was already packed, just in case. My motto, never let them see you sweat held firm – for a minute.

I made it home fueled on rage and then went grocery shopping. In aisle 11 of Costco, the dam burst and I dissolved in tears. I was hit by a mix of emotions, best summarized as disbelief and fear.

Anyone who works in Corporate America is intimate with the knowledge that anyone is dispensable. That is doubly true for POC and triple enforced with superglue for those of the fairer sex. Even so, I had great difficulty getting my mind around how I suddenly lacked value with 22 years of experience. It took a lot of stripping away to face the ugly reality that I had NEVER been valued and it was the thing that sat on my chest at night, indigestible and spirit stealing. Honestly, I merely stomached it in exchange for my piece of the American dream. It kept me up at nights but I always put on my game face because the ends justifies the means. How wrong and horribly naive of me.

I could not belive how wrong I was and I can’t tell you how many hours I spent grappling with the truth that was entrenched in my spirit and the deconstruction of my carefully constructed reality. I wonder even now where I would be today had I not been so eager to buy into what I was told and invested more in my dreams.

I could only sit still so long though. In the background, was an ever increasing death knell of friends who were let go, one after another, and others who spent fruitless hours job searching. I told myself it wasn’t THAT bad but the unanswered query letters, calls to industry friends and mounting resume submissions kept climbing right alongside my mortgage, my credit card bills and all that I needed to live.

November came and just as I had predicted Obama won. His victory shook me out of my stupor and propelled me forward to start a business. Finally, due to unforeseen circumstances, I could take all the energy I put into someone elses business and do something that I loved. 12/31/08 was the date of my incorporation and that day changed my life forever. It realigned my personal beliefs with my reality and I changed. An unfolding which will always be incredibly precious and beautiful to me.

I’d rather be naked in the light of truth than bask in the falsehoods designed to keep us compliant and satisfied. Not a lot of people feel that way, sadly.

Do I have to say that I was told that I was crazy? A Black female entrepreneur in the landscaping business in NEW JERSEY?! I pressed on anyway because of all the things around me in that I no longer believed in – I still believed in myself. It is the one thing they could not take away from me.

I withdrew what remained of my 401K savings and invested it in – me. Fuck a stock. Banks weren’t lending at the time either. Who better to gamble on? I thought for sure then everything would be alright. WRONG. In hindsight, I realize that I had merely bought into the mindset that I could “Pull myself up by my bootstraps.” You can only do that if the system isn’t rigged. It didn’t take long for my severance package to run out, followed by unemployment. Unemployment is the new welfare, quiet as it’s kept. In NJ, you can only get $320 a week. Try having a mortgage and a car and kids etc. and living off that amount. Good luck! Not to mention the indignity of filing reports, being called down to the office for mandated workshops and certifying continuously so they won’t cut you off. Amazing, since I paid for insurance for 22 years. It took me ONE week to even get through to the office since the lines were flooded and they now only have one office to walk in – located in Albany – for New York.

It seemed that there was no other choice than to supplement my income with what was left of my 401K savings. My health insurance went by the wayside. COBRA was approx. $500 a month after the government subsidies expired in 2010. Who needs to be healthy anyway?

To add to my delight, there is the conundrum of my taxes. For the first time in my life, I owe the IRS a double-digit figure because I had the gall to LIVE off my savings. There were claims that there would be dispensation for such circumstances during the election but my accountant laughed when I mentioned it. His laughter still rings in my ears as I go about the daily business of survival.

Now, foreclosure looms. Chase (aka Cheat)continues to play with me, 120 pages of documentation and 3 applications later, my modification app. is still amongst the thousands pending. Yet, they keep asking for MORE information, 99% of which they already have, as one friendly rep told me. Is there oversight – NO.

I am not alone. Many of my friends face the same struggles and the reality of panic attacks, poor health, depression and ongoing stress, as they try to cope with the mounting waves of economic fallout. They too, did what they were told and their worthless degrees and professional accolades mock them. They too have had to face that their reality was ALWAYS tenuous and that the angry rhetoric we spouted about the system being stacked against us was a pale shadow of what could come. When shit gets real, that’s when you find out what you are made of.

My mother was on welfare when I was a child and I remember thinking that I would NEVER be in such a position. I would NEVER ask for anyone’s help after the way I saw her treated by so called social workers and professionals who were there to help. At 9, I could tell that was a JOKE. Yet, no one could be more amazed than I that when I finally had no choice but to ask for help, from a system which I have spent my life upholding and following inside the lines, there would be roadblocks, penalties and misdirection at EVERY turn. The banks are good though. Who will bailout faltering Americans?

Are you feeling worthless yet?

The closest articulation of truth that I have found, outside my own heart, is the cry that arises from Occupy Wall Street. I wouldn’t have believed it but the camaraderie, tons of information that I have gotten thanks to Twitter and the people/organizations which I have found through them has empowered me to continue fighting when I was just about to give up. Now I fight for more than my survival, I fight for CHANGE.

We are the 99%.