The Next Steps In Creating The Change You Want To See

This is going to be a shockingly brief (for me) post. Some folks think Viola Davis wuz robbed of an Oscar for The Mammy Chronicles, but many of these non-critical thinkers actually dismiss the bigger picture in assuming she was just playing a maid. Besides, Octavia Spencer filled the Mammy persona/fat acceptance/othering of black women very nicely. You still don’t think all that “praise” of her presenting “real women” was for our collective benefit do you? When Melissa McCarthy was right there on the red carpet, too?

Meanwhile the political feminists/anti-feminine brigade stayed complaining about how “oppressed” the white women were because they had to go to an exclusive event seen by millions where they got to wear fresh-off-the-runway gowns, were loaned million dollar jewelry, got insanely expensive free gifts and had access to some of the world’s wealthiest and connected people. Hardship galore!

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Dr. Phil Features A Black Couple Who Make A Mockery Of Parenting

Happy Black History Month! This has been one for the record books in the canon of the collective. Between the unexpected passing of a music icon, to the groundbreaking of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture to many insights gained time marches on. Don’t miss the boat!

I stumbled across an episode of the Dr. Quack Phil Show on open marriages because I turned on the idiot box while making tea. It warranted a channel change of course, but the extent of the foolishness displayed by the couple featured was too great to ignore because they have three children.

Of course, the producers selected an aggressive, loud, obnoxious black woman to redefine and defend her (willful) denigration as something progressive. I can take a guess who between the two of them originated this malarkey and who volunteered to go down a sinking ship. Why she talked over everyone, including the host. This is the state of black love.

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Warring Dichotomy Between Who We Are And How Others Want Us To Be

There is…a myth about America to which we are clinging which has nothing to do with the lives we lead…this collision between one’s image of oneself and what one actually is is always very painful and there are two things you can do about it, you can meet the collision head-on and try and become what you really are or you can retreat and try to remain what you thought you were, which is a fantasy, in which you will certainly perish.

James Baldwin – Nobody Knows My Name

I’d like to amend one aspect to this quotation. If we try to remain what others would like us to be – which most likely diminishes our full potential – it won’t satisfy them but it will destroy us. It’s one thing to find a minimum  comfort level in life. Some people are better suited as employees instead of entrepreneurs. Everyone isn’t trying to aim for the sun.

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Lessons In Synchronicity & Love: Kevin Costner On Whitney Houston

We Were All Rooting For Her Triumphant Return
Having just watched this very moving funeral service, I want us to remember some of the highlights of the life and career of Whitney Houston. I just reworked this post as I was saving to publish until March, but hearing Kevin Costner speak today reiterated some of the basic messaging we cover in this forum.

Costner offered such insight into Houston and many learned how much he went to bat for her to be cast opposite him in The Bodyguard. The movie had been considered for Ryan O’Neal and Diana Ross as leads way back in the late 70’s. Costner discussed some of the background of how the film got made in the following interview. He selected Whitney Houston. Costner was the hottest male A-List actor at the time and had his pick of any actress to work with. What most didn’t know was he waited one year for Houston to be available to film it. It was HIS project and Houston was untested in the film industry at that time. The “other” singer not mentioned by name that the studio wanted was Madonna.

Of course they were concerned about finding the right female lead. Of course some executives initially put up a fight about casting a black woman, but Costner was far too open-minded to not notice her beauty and talent. If you recall in the concert film, Truth or Dare Madonna made fun of Costner on camera. That may have eliminated her despite the fact she later apologized while lobbying for the role. Regardless, Costner had already made his choice of leading lady and eventually the studio relented. He pursued, Houston accepted and the rest is history.

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Favorite Blogs 2012 Edition: From Our Friends Up North

There are some pretty cool Canadian blogs and media forums that you may be missing out on. One of the best things and possibly the only thing worthwhile about growing up along a border state was the proximity to Canada. Canada arguably has the best positioning for viewing Niagara Falls, began a national recycling program decades ago and has produced many creative geniuses. From Corey Hart to Canadian Mounties (remember Natasha & Bullwinkle?), Keanu Reeves to Malcolm Gladwell to Ice Wine there is much to explore.

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Rapper Too Short Makes ‘Rape’ Training Video, Liz Trotta Shoulder Shrugs, But We’ll Let CBS & The Grammys Have the Last Word Regarding Chris Brown

I admit I’m a little overloaded – and heated from seeing so many of Whitney Houston’s “friends” deflect, deny and blame others while being rather dismissive of their own ignorance and complicity. Kelly Price claiming Houston was “sober” from using certain illegal drugs (ignoring the Rx ones) but that she’d only been a little tipsy from drinking champagne. Chaka Khan blasting Clive Davis for not cancelling his annual pre-Grammy party but saying her fondest memory of Whitney was them getting high with Bobby Brown in Miami. Jennifer Holliday telling the world Whitney experimented with drugs before meeting Bobby Brown. It was 80’s. Drugs were passed around like party favors back then. There’s a huge leap from occasional use to addict. Some people are so happy to get in front of a national audience they forget it isn’t about them! The toxic influence of those closest to Houston was certainly indicative of where her life would go.

Now onto the matter at hand. More anti-woman tomfoolery!!

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Valentine Aspirations And Fulfillment

Wishing all of you lovelies a Happy Valentine’s Day for tomorrow!! I was considering posting about gifts and edibles, but then I saw a copy of Paul Newman’s letter to his second wife Joanne Woodward on their wedding day. They were married fifty years until his passing in 2008 at the age of 83.

Here’s an excerpt:

It is having a mutual sense of values and common objectives. It is standing together facing the world. It is forming a circle of love that gathers in the whole family.

Someone was also reading one of my archived posts from April 2009 where a guy tells women how to better navigate relationships and watch their behavior.

Here’s an excerpt from Ladies Get It From The Horses Mouth.

Ladies, start living with your eyes OPEN. Most shady men give themselves away one way or another, usually before the first 30 days. Women have to STOP being so afraid to ask the important questions that would reveal his TRUE lifestyle.

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When Advertisers Positively Acknowledge Black Women

Consider this an adjacent conversation to our Super Bowl Media Watch. There are specific instances I will address in a separate post a) the total erasure of black women from ads this year b) the Roland Martin situation (nothing like witnessing a meltdown in real-time on Twitter) c) another advertiser with a majority women customer base not including women innovators in their ad d) why the argument over what I dub “sexy woman” ads has different ramifications for black women.

Objectification is in the eye of the beholder. Stereotypes are a gross exaggeration that devalues underlying causation. Regardless these things can be combated. For all of the potential harm viewing women as one-dimensional implies, being completely erased is far worse.

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Prop 8 Analysis From Around The Web

It was an interesting day on the Interwebs yesterday with the annual National Black HIV/AIDS Day (more on this ongoing initiative in a future post). What many were anticipating was a ruling from the Ninth Appellate Court of Appeals regarding Proposition 8.

You may recall the passage of Prop 8 banned same-sex marriage in California. In a cruel twist of fate it happened the same day Barack Obama won his bid for President. The backlash from certain quarters was immediate, vicious and irrational. Black voters were initially blamed even though they only comprise 6% of the State population.

In what appears to have been a precursor to the current swell of racial animus and nostalgia, latent attitudes were unleashed. There was a sudden rash of people who’d complain about being oppressed in some fashion engage in discrimination themselves.

“Either the United States will destroy ignorance or ignorance will destroy the United States”

~ W.E.B. DuBois

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