If These Gay Rights Groups Don’t Come Down On Perez Hilton They’re Done!

I think I should have titled this “I’m Done With the Gay Rights Industrial Complex”. 

Yeah this is supposed to be about the big bad blogger who uses his 1st amendment rights to bash other people for laughs and profits. This is supposed to be about our discussing how it’s wrong for people to get into physical confrontations. Apparently Will.I.Am and Fergie approached blogger Mario Lavaderia, who writes as Perez Hilton at the Much Music Awards show (it’s the MTV of Canada for those not aware) to complain about his pissy behavior. Things got heated and his manager hit Perez, according to…Perez. It’s a little hard to tell since he’s changed his story a few times. 

So in what is highly suspicious behavior Perez sends a message on Twitter for readers of his blog to call the police. He retaliates by verbally attacking Will.I.Am – not the manager. He uses several choice “F” words including the one universally accepted as an anti-gay slur. Then he proceeds to make a video to talk about it. He claims he was “intimidated”. That’s code word for “he’s a Black dude and they’re downright dangerous”. Perez is like 6′ while Will.I.Am is like 5’5″. Now if that isn’t *itch behavior I don’t know what is!

I read this and I rolled my eyes, honestly because we have so many more important things going on, but this hasn’t died down yet. Perez is using this to draw further attention to himself and his blog. Again, I thought I was going to ignore this as the actions of stupid, immature person, but now I’m a little peeved because another blogger posted a link on Twitter today’s Dish Rag column in the LA Times AND I watched the video:
Said Hilton in his video: “I made the split-second decision — that I was gonna say what I thought was the worst possible thing that thug would ever want to hear” — which was a handful of assorted F-bombs.  {No I’m not linking to it}

Oh so calling a Black man a thug and faggot is okay, Perez….really?

Per GLAAD rep Rashad Robinson: “These are vulgar anti-gay slurs that feed a climate of hatred and intolerance toward our community. For someone in our own community to use it to attack another person by saying that it is, quote, ‘The worst possible thing that thug would ever want to hear,’ is incredibly dangerous. It legitimizes use of a slur that is often linked to violence against our community. And it sends a message that it is OK to attempt to dehumanize people by exploiting anti-gay attitudes.”

The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation has asked Perez Hilton to apologize for slurs he hurled at Will.i.am of the Black Eyed Peas. 

I’m taking big breaths here….they’ve ASKED? Um Perez…could you pretty please with sugar on top not be such an hypocritical *sshole because you’re drawing too much attention to our hypocrisy and we can’t have that.

First of all how many Black people work for GLAAD? In positions of authority (i.e check-writing ability)? In Kat Williams voice: I’ll wait.

This is the ongoing argument and unresolved problem with the Gay Rights Industrial Complex. It’s run by a bunch of cis-gender white men who will be the first to cry discrimination when it suits them but engage in their own version of racist/sexist/gender identification terrorism and erasure from the table when it suits them. Of course there are white women in charge as well so they don’t get off the hook either, but I’m focusing on the majority ruling class here.

Why only ASK? How about DEMAND?!!!

See I remember not too long ago when a Black man (I know some of you are surprised I’m taking up the cause of one as I’m critical of so many…whatever) on a certain tv show was vilified in the press for MONTHS and subsequently FIRED on the mere ACCUSATION of using the word Faggot.

That would be one Isaiah Washington. 

Can I just say how much the show blows and the Dr. Burke character was great but the actor got sold down the river for not showing enough deference to a white man. I still don’t know how an argument with one actor turned into a anti-gay railroad job involving another actor who wasn’t even involved (and has now taken his overinflated ego elsewhere). Except that I think he and a certain blond actress (who decided to stay on the show) used the conflict to their advantage for more money and increased air time. Don’t tell me Hollywood isn’t cutthroat!! 

Perez Hilton was all over this with multiple postings about Washington and saying some particularly nasty things. Have I also mentioned that Perez used to work for GLAAD? Well…I digress. My point is the GRIC needs to come and police their wayward enfant terrible with a quickness! They need to devote air time and hand-wringing over one of their own being JUST AS DISCRIMINATORY (EVEN MORESO) as they’ve accused others, including Washington of being.

Otherwise I don’t want to hear about how unfair it is that “we’re” not supporting ENDA, DOMA and other discrimination. Don’t ask me for money or to participate in your campaigns either. As an African-American woman I have enough crap to deal with yet I still spend time and energy devoting myself to injustices that occur everywhere. 

Right now this is looking like good old fashioned white racism on Perez’s part. He doesn’t get to run to the Discrimination Safety Zone by using his orientation or ethnicity when it suits him while actively engaging in it against others. The silence from the GRIC will only confirm they are in agreement with hating on Black people.

You are either in support of justice across the board or you are full of it!

**Update a little birdy on Twitter told me that somebody read my little post…and Perez has “officially” apologized.** Imagine that! Now it’s time to start reigning in all the wayward Blacks that are dragging down the perception of the entire group with their foolishness.
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Uncle Ruckus – er Clarence Proves Why He’s So Dangerous to Blacks

Beware the Black face in a high place. That includes you know who!! I feel a little bit like Shakespeare writing Julius Ceasar: beware the Ides of March. Some of them don’t even pretend to have your (our?) interests at heart *cough Condi Rice cough*. Now that she’s gone back to private life millions of dollars richer she can continue supporting her “husband” on her own dime at least.  At least she supported education for everyone. Such is not the case with Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. 
In typical conservative activist action, Thomas was the only one to vote against reauthorizing Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act. It requires federal preclearance of voting procedure modifications in areas where minorities were discriminated against in the past. Let’s review some of the ways women and non-whites were prevented from voting: poll taxes and requiring parental/husband permission. We use fancy words like disenfranchisement and voter fraud.
Modern techniques at stopping people from voting involve redrawing district lines, closing polling locations at the last minute, claiming a voter has a prior felony or simply taking their name from the roll. You know how much I hate the word minority in relation to how non-whites are discounted to make way for the continued domination of whites though the physical numbers wouldn’t support that. I digress though. 
Section 5 is supposed to prevent obvious and overt means of subterfuge. In other words, a voting district can’t just change the way people are allowed to vote without getting approval and telling others. The problem is Section 5 isn’t permanent and can be challenged. It’s set to expire in 2031.
This also doesn’t guarantee that said district – or state – can’t ever obtain approval to make changes that adversely affect certain voters. The push for voter identification cards is like a modern day poll tax. Just because you’re not being beat over the head doesn’t mean others are not seeking to discourage you from exercising your right to vote.
From Detroit News: The Austin utility district, backed by a conservative group opposed to the law, brought the court challenge.  It said that either it should be allowed to opt out or the entire provision should be declared unconstitutional. 
The court said that the Northwest Austin Municipal Utility District No. 1 in Austin, Texas, can apply to opt out of the advance approval requirement, reversing a lower federal court that found it could not. Justice Clarence Thomas, alone among his colleagues, said he would have resolved the case and held that the provision, known as Section 5, is unconstitutional. 
“The violence, intimidation and subterfuge that led Congress to pass Section 5 and this court to uphold it no longer remains,” Thomas said.   {Oh really and how would you know?}
Debo Adegbile, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund lawyer who argued for the preservation of the law at the high court, said, “The fact is, the case was filed to tear the heart out of the preclearance provision of the Voting Rights Act and that effort failed today.”
It failed today, but we can’t guarantee it won’t the next time it’s challenged. The Court could have refused to hear the case thereby leaving it intact as is. Black people, our rights are being chipped away little by little and some of us had better wake up out of our fog before it’s too late. We have people that look like us that seek to do us far more harm than others. They want to be the only ones standing. They laugh at us, demean us, call us uncouth, pretend to be our friend or claim to be with us in solidarity when they are anything but. 
The sad…and scary thing is Thomas is far too obvious and predictable. We have many other infiltrators and combatants that are trying – no succeeding – in destroying some of us from within. If you don’t think media representation matters guess again. If you think denigrating the women from “our” group doesn’t matter think again. If you think self-hate doesn’t matter you are wrong. You may be okay but others are not and will not be. Perhaps you’d rather spend your efforts on other activities but those of us who are a little more self-aware or in positions to affect change might want to reconsider that. Or it could be too late and the tide is just over the horizon. I don’t know, but I had to put out my two cents here. The coffee’s bubbling over. 

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Michelle Obama in San Francisco Today

The FLOTUS is in California attending the National Conference on Volunteering and Service. More fodder for those that hate seeing the daughter of the survivors of slavery in the White House. Too bad! This is a live stream. If it doesn’t repeat I’ll look for it on Youtube later to switch it out. Enjoy!

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CA vs. Chris Brown Proceeds. Will A Prison Number Follow?

Despite all of the delay attempts by his defense team, the case against singer Chris Brown has continued with a preliminary hearing scheduled for later today in Los Angeles. Rihanna had to be subpeonaed but she will testify about the events that lead to her attack this past February. In case you’ve been living under a rock, the two singers got into some type of altercation where Brown proceeded to talk with his fists instead of you know, agreeing to disagree. Based on the police report filed we now know that Brown is adept at driving a car with one hand while using the other to punch, bite and choke a woman. I’d say it wasn’t his first time doing it then.
I wrote a post after it was reported the two had reunited here where I was critical of the idea that Rihanna would return to the arms of her (alleged) attacker and how certainly more abuse would be coming. Some think it’s blaming but I look at it from a strictly non-emotional place: if a building is on fire you don’t walk back into it once you’ve gotten out. The average woman who’s in an abusive relationship needs several attempts before she successfully disengages herself – if she ever does. Often it is when the woman finally decided she’s had enough that the man she was with decides to kill her. 
I don’t want to split hairs with this scenario but I would like to acknowledge there are distinctions between dating violence, domestic violence, rape, molestation, emotional abuse, physical abuse, etc but that it all starts out in one or two seemingly harmless scenarios. The men do things to test the women they decide to abuse long before it actually starts. Be it an insult passed off as a joke, approaching a woman on the street, luring a child with a puppy or online contact there’s a pattern of learned and practiced behavior on the part of the perp who’s looking for a victim. It’s cold, it’s calculated and it’s usually successful.
Now as far as Rihanna is concerned I hope Chris Brown goes to prison. Anyone who hires Mark Gerragos is guilty of something as far as I’m concerned. Any attorney that would (unsuccessfully) defend a man who decapitates his pregnant wife (Scott Peterson) is someone who enjoys a certain amount of celebrity. I’m not always the most pragmatic I realize, but I wouldn’t trust them. I also don’t know the inner company machinations going on right now as the two are signed to the same record label and were (allegedly) paired together by them in the first place to draw attention away from their other relationships. They certainly seemed like media darlings at the time. 
Despite all the protestations to the contrary it will be good for people to actually watch someone be forced to take responsibility for their crimes. It’s just too bad that some other men – R Kelly comes to mind – had their crimes supported by people who should really know better. After all isn’t this what some want over the Mehserle/Grant shooting? You can’t cry out for “justice” in one scenario while ignoring the wrong-doing of another. Race and gender can’t be ignored nor can the protection of any Black man no matter what his crime go on unchecked.
Update: Why do I ask these “silly” questions? Of course not! Chris Brown accepted a plea deal and will get 5 years probation. He also has highway cleanup duty for 180 days. Rihanna did not testify. I’d love to have been a fly on the wall in that room as you know some wheels were greased in the case. I’m also certain he won’t look as cute as Naomi Campbell does in orange. Somehow I’m still thinking one of the messages we’re being sent is that because some white people like pets a Black man got several years in prison for abusing dogs, while another just gets….the chance to abuse another woman. #Priority Fail.   

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We Have Home Grown Terror Groups Right Here In the USA

This may be shocking to some people but the corporate media has continued to assist the Republican Party in their obfuscation tactics. Why else would so many angry white men blathering on about nothing get so much air time? Except theirs is a concentrated effort at spreading misinformation and telling lies to an audience of people who’ve been battered and are on the brink. 
It’s why some will claim they’re just “commentators” as if that was a harmless thing. They act as if they were being accused of high treason from reading the weather report instead of disseminating a carefully constructed message with code words that activate cell members to engage in their planned destruction. It goes far beyond dog-whistle catch words related to appealing to certain voters – though we saw it in action during the Presidential race last year.
This is why we need to shift our priority back to what goes on in this country instead of constantly trying to point out what’s “wrong” elsewhere. It’s why Osama Bin Laden (the man and the myth) may as well be a unicorn for all the good it does chasing after him. Is he still alive or is he too a symbol of a larger fight for all sides who wish to make a statement? Regardless he is the least of our worries when it comes to the next terror attack.
It is far too likely that it will occur right here – at the hands of people already in this country who are likely to be US citizens or residents. When you can buy a gun illegally with more ease than you can obtain a library card then we have a problem. The library card requires identification and proof of address. The gov’t monitors what we check out. There are filters on the computers available to track what people did when they were logged on. Privacy is a concept in theory – not reality anymore.
When groups such as Operation Rescue and PETA exist and are allowed to run amuck we have a problem. They use counterintelligence tactics to cause confusion, hysteria and fear. They track people on their enemies list and share it. They have a public face but a private agenda. They are 99.99% white-oriented and supported and their goal is to take away the rights of others to make their own decisions about how to live. Their goal is to dominate and destroy. 
I don’t care how many people want to talk about bunny rabbits, poison or babies. They operate in absolutes and anyone who crosses them may not survive to tell the tale. People may think they’re surrounding themselves with others trying to “do the right thing” on a single issue but they are being used as cannon fodder. These groups may seem to have different agendas but I hope people start to connect the dots and realize that if you swap out manifestos you’re getting the same movement from different angles. 
They want control over your mind and your body and to dictate the terms of how you may use them or whether you can at all. Any act of violation is condoned as long as it gets the desired result. 
Sounds like terrorism to me.

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Are You There Chicago — It’s Me Faith!

I’m attending Blogging While Brown this weekend!!!
I am so psyched to be joining the many participants whose words I’ve read for months that I’ll get to meet in person. Isn’t it funny what can happen within a year? 
I started a blog.
I actively participate in social media.
I’ve been challenged, dissed and made some great online friends.
Much of my thinking has been refined and I have a perspective dimensionally indicative of important issues. 
This is why meeting like-minded people and those actively engaged in empowering efforts is so important. Hey it even helps to meet people whose views are entirely divergent from yours to get a sense of where you truly stand on certain issues. 
I’m looking forward to building relationships and I’m certain I will take away much that will help me in the continued renewal of my mind. I hope to impart some knowledge as well.
Thanks to Gina McCauley, blog host of What About Our Daughters for envisioning this conference and to everyone who is making it happen!!
Are there any must-see places, must-do activities I should be aware of? Send me a comment! 
Here are some posts to acclimate yourselves with:
Deploying A Little Negro Spirit Series on Musical/Cultural Abandonment & Appropriation

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I’m So Used To Black Women Being Dissed I Almost Missed the Lesson!

For yesterday’s post I wrote with a certain amount or irony how the virtue of white women was reinforced by Letterman’s very public chastisement and remains as viable as ever. Even he was bewildered about what happened. I wasn’t defending what he’d said I was just surprised by the backlash. I’m certain he’s got the message now! (Bill Maher – you’re next!!) He may have thought he was just being harsh on the Palin family but what he failed to understand is that he unleashed the battle cry for a war against other white men over the continued domination of the “white” race.

White women and girls are to be protected at all costs.

I admit I hadn’t quite comprehended the full ramifications of this. As an African American woman I tend to think in historic terms of the relationship between the two and how patriarchy was reinforced during and after slavery. In other words I’ve had visions of Scarlett O’Hara dancing in my head….and I’ve wanted to take a mallet to that image. I’m certain I’m not the only one that would like to see certain things dismantled. I’ve written my share of posts were I’ve lamented ruefully how white women were being put on a pedestal because it was so painfully obvious to me that Black women were not.

I get it now.

Excerpted comment from Evia: 

Letterman had the audacity to attack a ww and her children, so other wm QUICKLY put him in his place. This sends a powerful message to OTHER wm of all ages who may be thinking about denigrating a ww publicly–to NEVER do that and if they do, they’re going to be very sorry. This is why Letterman is blathering apologies all over the place. Unbeknownst to lots of AAs, many wm see plenty of faults and flaws among ww, but they understand that when you degrade your women en masse PUBLICLY, your WHOLE group is headed for destruction.

See Black women wouldn’t know what being protected is like because we’re being attacked every day by other people who look like us or share a more recent lineage as well as by those that don’t. They either don’t want to be part of the tribe or want to thoroughly bash it. Just so that we’re clear I’m speaking about the collective. I know there are plenty of individual situations where this is not the case.
This is why DL Idiot was allowed to go on Leno and call other Black women ugly and say he agreed with Imus. It was why Imus felt free to make such a comment in the first place. It’s why the would-be rapper Asher Roth revisited that “joke” on Twitter and couldn’t understand the angry response. It’s why the denigration in “our” music will continue to lead us on the straight path to hell. It’s why Nancy Grace rarely does a story on missing and exploited Black females. It’s why so many women are self-medicating ourselves into an early grave. It’s why many of us can’t walk down the street in certain neighborhoods without being verbally assaulted with the underlying threat of physical harm. It’s also why I’m going to hear a lot of excuses from some Black men who read this post, but that the most virulent denials and objections are going to come from….cue the lights: other Black women.

We don’t know what it’s like being protected and held in such high regard.

It’s like tasting really fresh vegetables for the first time. We didn’t know it could be so good. So something must be “wrong” with it then! No, it’s just the way things are SUPPOSED TO BE!
Letterman may have thought he was deriding one woman politically and socially while being willing to use her offspring to do it. This is a teachable moment for all of us that even that ONE INCIDENT was NOT TOLERATED because it would CHIP AWAY AT THE COLLECTIVE leaving it in a WEAKENED STATE. So next time someone wants to make an excuse about how a song referring to a Black woman as a BITCH is “just a song” or “about a particular kind of woman” let’s look at this situation and compare how other white men stepped in protect their women (even if they can’t stand some of them) from one of their own. If they hadn’t it would’ve been the start of a very slippery slope indeed.
If Letterman had been allowed to continue without pause it would have signaled it was okay for other men that it was open season. One incident multiplies, accelerates and mutates in ways you cannot control after a while. It goes from “hoes” to “no dark butts” to “why can’t I talk about my preference for light-skinned women” to “I don’t want to be Black” to “I want to stick my *ick in you” to “raping you is no big deal…it’s the white man’s fault anyway” to bye-bye collective.
Now that I’ve learned this lesson I have to ask: when are Black women going to get their respect and protection from Black men? 

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White Woman Virtue Intact As Letterman Forced to Eat His Words

Wow there is some serious animus going on. I totally missed the David Letterman controversy because I was off doing other things. Apparently he insulted Alex Rodriquez by suggesting that he’d be interested in one of Sarah Palin’s daughters. Actually he made a joke about her getting knocked-up at the Yankees game. Was the joke tasteless? Yes. Did it deserve the level of outrage that has gone on for four days? That’s debatable. 
Clearly Letterman has no love for Sarah Palin and I would’ve thought it best to leave any children out of it – except for the fact that she’s pimped out her own kids and “superior” moral virtue. I figure if you don’t feed the gremlins they won’t grow, but leave it to their PR machine to kick in. By the way, Letterman’s joking is all President Obama’s fault!
Now Letterman has apologized because some advertisers pulled out. He owns his show so he can pretty much do what he wants but I’m surprised by the level of vitriol on both sides and the undercurrent of hostility which has everything to do with the declining influence of the Republican Party. 
So I’m not going to talk about free speech or how the Palins are using this to their advantage because we already know this! I almost feel sorry for Dave except he’s a very wealthy white man and will be fine. He’s just butted heads with the great big Right Wing machine – which he’s been doing for some time now. So this is kind of like two titans fighting it out. 
The hypocrisy occurs of course because of the attention that’s been given this as if it was a SERIOUS ISSUE!! when Fox, MSNBC, CNN and plenty of other newspapers and media spread their lies and vile hate speech EVERY SINGLE DAY and it’s ok when THEY do it. This doesn’t even compare. My only advice to Dave is that he should remember that white womanhood is a sacred thing to many that they will defend regardless if it is Sarah Palin or her daughters. 

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AA Legacy Series Spotlight on Ethel Waters

Just so that we don’t forget where we come from here’s my tribute to Ethel Waters. Who? You may ask. Well that’s why it’s important to do these….

Ethel Waters was first and foremost a survivor. Now this isn’t going to be one of those “she was a strong Black woman” meme reinforcements. She did have some serious obstacles to overcome given that her birth was the result of a violation. It just goes to show why the current focus on the health and welfare of Black women and girls in particular is such important work for some of us and needs to be continued. Like many people who have stories to tell she was able to successfully pursue a career in the arts. Given the time she lived (1896-1977) she would’ve definitely had some I bet!

She was the second African-American woman nominated for an Academy Award for her role in the movie Pinky. She wrote an autobiography of her life. She was part of the Harlem Renaissance. She was the first African-American woman to have her own variety show. Her contemporaries ranged from Bessie Smith to Julie Harris and she influenced some of those we consider greats like Billie Holiday.

Via AfroAm History: Waters’ success was related to her style of singing. She could sing like other classic blues singers with plenty of passion and fire, but she had a unique approach. She was not a shouter, but was able to hold the attention of the audience with her low and sweet voice. Because of her varied repertoire, she has also been categorized as a jazz singer. Her rhythm was closer to jazz than blues, and in her later career she sang popular songs with a jazz approach. Waters’ talent extended beyond musical style; she also had the gift of interpretation. As blues women began to fade in popularity, Waters was able use her interpretive ability to take advantage of acting opportunities on stage and screen.

Ethel sings Stormy Weather with the Duke Ellington Orchestra. She was the first to record the song that many connect with Lena Horne.

Here’s a lovely tribute that I found on Youtube, but after I finish my Final Cut Pro class I’ll be be able to do these myself!!

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