You Know Before We Go Off the Deep End Maybe We Should Take A Breath Or Two

It’s so easy to feel antsy and worry about what the Obama administration will and will not mean for us. Will he pick too many former Clinton staffers? Will those that supported him early on have more access and drown out the voices of those that still haven’t come around? How many people are still going to chanting “Yes We Can” one year from now? Is he qualified to fix the economy – or will it be a hastily slapped on bandage? Do those that occupy the Red States consider everybody else not really American? If Obama offered reparations would Blacks be ready to take advantage of the opportunity or waste it? Can we really come together even if we don’t everything we want when we want it?
Well these are valid questions, but do we need answers right away? We don’t have to take up arms and rage against the machine just yet. We can regroup but still be enthusiastic. We can meet up with like-minded individuals and decide on a course of action. We can take a breath and exhale S-L-O-W-L-Y cuz it’s gonna be a long 8 years. 
I’m already feeling a bit wobbly wondering what the Rethug attack machine will do. How many professional Black contrarians will emerge to assist the mostly white media in diminishing and thwarting Obama’s every move? I wonder if the working poor will get real relief for the first time in 30 years, cuz everyone isn’t middle class and we’re definitely not all wealthy. 
We can’t invalidate one group of people’s needs for the other. We also can’t blame each other for not being willing to go farther or work harder than we care to for things that don’t immediately interest us. We cannot get discouraged and be poised to throw in the towel. The man hasn’t even taken office yet. We don’t need to decide we see potential enemies in our midst. Instead we need to recognize all the potential allies that surround us. From the most pressing matters to the most lofty of goals we can continue to create opportunities of expression.
We’ve had music artists write great songs and utilized the internet and Web 2.0 in ways unlike any other campaign before. Let’s continue to tap into resources and our creativity. The Office of the President-Elect has a great web site where we can make our voices heard. We won’t be silenced either by interference or apathy again. We are not alone!
What do you want? What are you going to do to reach out to people to get it? Will you listen or lecture? Will you see a person or an obstacle? When we begin answering these questions and working on our own hearts and minds we can transform everyone else’s by example. We can all have a seat at the table now. Let’s be gracious and generous with one another, patient and considerate. Let’s not implode upon ourselves or react harshly against each other. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for, remember?

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Barack & Michelle Come to Washington

Don’t they making a dashing pair?
Reuters/Joshua Roberts
It will take me at least a year before the idea of seeing Brown people who are in charge at the White House becomes old hat. It may be a symbolic gesture but it has still has merit for many. I am very curious about how Michelle Obama will utilize the role of First Lady after she and the wee Michelles settle in. I can’t wait to see the puppy!
So while Shrub and Ba-rock went off the get down to the nitty gritty, Mrs. Shrub gave Mrs. O a quick tour of the House. Did Laura show Michelle the secret trap door should she feel the need to escape from all the insanity? Will the WH be covered with graffiti or littered with empty beer bottles and corn chips when they move in? Will Michelle have to put out an ABP on the china? Time will only tell.
On a more serious note, I am feeling somewhat uneasy with some of the names being presented for Obama’s administration. They are left-overs from the Clinton administration and certainly not the only qualified people! Perhaps this is a pre-emptive strike at squashing those that could undermine him ala the adage: keep your friends close and your enemies closer. I just hope some of the ineptitude and excess from the last Democratic administration doesn’t creep into this one. The one trait that Obama has is discipline so perhaps he will be reigning in any foolishness! Being President sure is fun, huh?

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Let the Backlash From Prop 8 Be A Warning

Here in California the moment of our coming together unraveled rather quickly don’t you think? Some people may not have noticed yet but certain people have already drawn their line on the white side and are gunning for our jugular. 
Some of these white people who identify as gay were sorta okay with following the Obama train because they felt he would do a little jig and tap dance on cue. They were anticipating tit for tat. If they voted for Obama, we’d vote No on 8. The fact that they made NO EFFORT WHATSOEVER to speak to Black (straight) people and have a history of excluding most Black people gay or straight from the official Gay Rights Industrial Complex then what were they expecting? Magical thinking doesn’t work for anyone. 
It is not a coincidence CNN released inaccurate exit poll information and tried to present it a representation of actual votes. It is not a coincidence that certain white males who identify as gay with media access continued this lie and further spread the racial arson. It is not a coincidence that white people will appropriate elements of Black social movements and claim an endangered status when it suits them. It is a suit they can wear when navigating less amenable waters which can then be quickly removed once they are back on solid ground. 
I know many people are genuinely disappointed and angry that Yes on 8 passed. For them it may a singular issue of utmost importance. This affects many LGBT of color as well, but they’re not the ones rioting! Since so many like to talk about discrimination I’d like to know how much people are willing to sacrifice to get rid of it?  Are people willing to denounce their white privilege to make it a level playing field for everyone? 
I highly doubt it!
I see this theme about ‘homophobic Black bogeymen’ as a straw hat argument that has no discernible meaning any more than the ‘menacing Black mugger’ Ashley Todd tried to use to start a race war on behalf of John McCain.  If a real discussion and analysis had been had the immediate eruption of anger and use of racial epithets even against fellow LGBT who are Black would not have occurred.  
Writer-activist Jasmynne Cannick wrote a great Op-Ed for the Los Angeles Times that you can read here.

Magic Negros & Blaming Black People for the Failure of No on 8

**NOTE to NO on 8 Organizers: YOU MESSED UP! Admit it and do something about it!! You don’t get a cookie because you (may have) voted for Obama. You’re really doing a disservice to those that supported your agenda while you let others speak for you and BASH BLACK PEOPLE. 
I was reluctant to touch this topic and have remained silent for the past three days but I must be unleashed! Yeah I’m talking to you Dan Savage, Andrew Sullivan and all the other so-called white gay progressives and Black apologists who are playing the “Black People Didn’t Support No on 8 So They Must Be Bigots” song. And no I’m not linking to them either! Here you can find definitive analysis of those that actually supported Yes on 8 and guess what: THEY ARE MOSTLY WHITE!
This is for the No on 8 organization and supporters who did a CRAPPY job making your case and would’ve otherwise gone back to your life of ease and separatism except now you’re going to be forced to deal with the inconvenience of building relationships with Black people gay and straight if you want to get any legislation passed. Perhaps you should have listened to a Black same-gender loving woman who warned you why your campaign wasn’t working instead of trying to blame us now for your failings. Voting for Obama as the latest genie in the bottle doesn’t absolve you of your racism and racial privilege either. 
I won’t presume to speak for all the people that voted for these bans and make assumptions about why they were opposed. Neither should anyone else. I will touch on a few reasons why I think this is still an issue in California and why it’s going to take at least 4 years, possibly 8 or more to work on the hearts and minds of people.
That would start with you. You who support Marriage Equality but insist that everyone has to agree with you without question. You’re going to have to get your hands dirty. Research the ones with the purse strings and the organization. Know your enemy. Stop conducting focus groups, writing press releases and putting flyers on doors. Don’t be invisible during the off years and show up begging for voters later. Don’t approach a Black person and tell them you understand “what it’s like”. YOU DON’T! It’s beyond insulting.
Let’s be blunt and ask a few individuals who voted for the ban: what’s in it for THEM to support your cause? The opinion that Gay marriage = Middle Class to Wealthy White people (Men mostly) wanting their cherry on the top of the sundae is a powerful one. You already have everything else and know you want this too?!  No on 8 wants the votes from people of color and support without giving anything in exchange. That’s not an alliance, That’s just using people. Especially when once the desired goal is achieved they’ll pack up shop and disappear.  
The Yes on 8 supporters were very effective at deflecting their true nature. The tv ads were successful in delivering the desired result: fear and a desire to protect children from the big bad. It was a false enemy but its message was not counteracted. The No on 8 ads were very cerebral with an air of assumption.
You have to take the time to build alliances. You need allies in large numbers consisting of people who may not agree with you. You don’t need them to agree necessarily but you do need to convince them to help you. Find some common ground.
Of course if you actually had Black LGBT people sitting at the table, making leadership decisions with check signing authority you wouldn’t have this huge obstacle. Then again, your GLAADs, your HRCs, etc. of the world would be completely different. The agenda would be different. You would potentially be out of a job because there are plenty of fabulous lesbian/lesbian-supportive sistas with the looks, brains and pedigree to run these organizations AND help the people who need it most. And yes, I’m advocating a Black woman to run things.
By the way: Black people are still suspicious and angry about Isaiah Washington’s firing from Grey’s Anatomy after his 5-month walk on glass public humiliation tour. And the show totally sucks now!

Why are these bread and butter issues tossed aside in favor of placing all the eggs in one basket of Marriage Amendments: 

1. Sex workers
2. Transgendered teens (and adults), particularly those of color 
3. Police brutality (esp virulent against #2)
4. Job Training/Jobs period!
5. Housin
6. Drug abuse and dependency
7. Medical related
8. Psychological related

As long as you approach a Black person and tell them they are discriminating against you, the white male (and female) one wouldn’t easily read as gay, you will get nowhere. What these organizations want is a continuation of white supremacy.

There is a class warfare going on. Paper covers rock. When San Francisco has lost more than half of its Black population due to lack of jobs and being intentionally priced out of neighborhoods your argument over ‘fairness’ has already been lost. Our pretty boy Mayor thought he was going to ride the Gay Marriage wave to the Governor’s office when his term ends. I think he has a little more work to do. 

What work have the No on 8 organizers done in poorer communities? Who are the representatives? I watched every single advertisement. I didn’t see one example of a loving couple, let alone any people of color. Let me clarify. I saw the ad with the Ugly Betty stars running during the episodes talking about how Latinos were not discriminatory. I saw the ad that Samuel Jackson narrated where Japanese internment and a photo of the Lovings was used. I would’ve advised against it, although I did agree with it in theory. That was preaching to the choir, though.
You have to accept and acknowledge that people are going to have a difference of opinion and different religious traditions. Not every church is affirming of homosexuality. Most people cling to religiosity but don’t really understand the Bible anyway. That is an internal journey that each of us has to take.
There could have been a very effective argument how the Mormon Church was behind the legislation. Mormons who based a religion on naming Black people as being inferior and only changed it in 1979 – not that long ago – due to social pressure! Nothing will get the Black church more riled up that white people being oppressive!
Where are the Black LGBTs? Don’t they typically live in the neighborhoods they grew up in with everybody else. They’re not all moving to the Castro, West Hollywood, etc. Where the average rent is $2500/mo. See Black people can be funny that way. We may have a don’t ask don’t tell policy in our families but we have plenty of gay relatives. When the rubber hits the road race trumps sexual orientation and gender issues. Ask me how I know. 
I will never forget the day I was called a Nigger by a white gay male in the Castro for no reason whatsoever. Or how a work incentive became an ultimatum between firing me or my gay white male co-worker who’d I’d replaced as the top salesperson at a jewelry store. I stayed. I interviewed for an au pair position a few years ago for a couple who’d adopted a Black child. I didn’t know the race of the parents or the child prior to meeting them. When the child expressed delight in our sharing a similar phenotype I had a sinking feeling that was what got me eliminated from consideration. The owner of a popular nightclub in the Castro has been picketed for requiring Black patrons to produce 3 different sets of ID in order to enter, but where was GLAAD? Crickets…..
Having sex with, being friends with or having a co-worker doesn’t absolve people of their prejudices. If it did men would be fairer to women! Women wouldn’t tear each other down either.
The transgendered disconnect within the gay movement is staggering to me. It’s the same argument over how bi-sexuality doesn’t exist for some gays but worse. Reassignment surgery and the entire process costs so much that it’s out of reach for most people of color. I have yet to see one Black post-op person on Oprah who discusses their successful journey over adversity. 
Take my thoughts with a grain of salt. I am a Black woman who didn’t grow up with a silver spoon in her mouth. I don’t need to appropriate someone else’s culture because it is my own. I worked with ACT-UP back in the day but am by no means an ‘expert’. I’m just a person who’d like the world to be a little kinder.
There are shades of grey here. People don’t necessarily have to hide for fear of being murdered. We’ve all heard of Matthew Shepard but what about Michael Shandy or Sakia Gunn? Or the New Jersey Seven? Like it or not but a lot of this argument is about convenience. Civil unions are allowed. Domestic partnerships have been approved. Adoption is not banned here like other states. We are also not living in a developing nation where life is much more perilous for LGBT people. So we need to have perspective and place things is proper context. 
I enter public spaces with a cross section of ‘progressives’ and when the discussion turns to racial issues the white posters typically engage in Oppression Olympics obfuscation. They just don’t want to acknowledge their white privilege and how they benefit from it. There’s a huge difference between the daily struggles we all have and systematic racism being added on top of that.
It’s kinda like lumping all Latinos together irrespective of their individual cultural ties and assuming everyone speaks Spanish. Similar to the focus on illegal immigration being on the land crossings between Mexico and the United States while IGNORING the cargo ships bringing millions of people from Europe and Asia in equal if not greater amounts. 
You have to start with mothers, at least the mothers who haven’t abandoned their children for being gay. Any revolution that isn’t fought with Black women at your side is an effort that will fail. We birthed this nation and bore all her ills.
I voted for No on 8 but I wasn’t asked to participate in an inclusive campaign. Even I can separate this into a “them vs. us” issue. I also realize this negatively affects Middle Class-Wealthier Black people as well but you can add this to the pile of crap we have to deal with!
Black people make up 7% of the entire population in CA. We are being replaced slowly and assuredly, so I don’t even want to hear about this nonsensical theme in the media of the bigoted Black person. Yes, there are some but there are far many more bigoted white people. I don’t like this focus on Black people being the architects of hatred when we are all too often its recipients.  
Asians and Latinos represent a higher population in the state and their numbers along with white voters far outnumber the Black voters – yet none of the focus is on them. Why is that? What’s your real agenda? 
Update: Just to further show you ignoramuses how ignorant you are I’d like to point out to you how this new administration operates when it comes to hiring practices:

The Obama-Biden Transition Project does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, or any other basis of discrimination prohibited by law. 

Can all you Gay Rights’ organizations say the same?

The Real Affirmative Action Candidate

Sarah Palin Joe Biden
J. Scott Applewhite/AP Photo
Is going back to Alaska and I’m so sorry for my fellow citizens up North but she’s your problem! You voted for her in the first place. We have our own idiot Governor to deal with. If the Republicans think they can trot the CTLF (Candidate They’d Like to F*ck) out in 4 years they will taste the wrath of the electorate once again and the end of your relevance will be greeted with joy. Don’t worry though we’re going to be spending the next 4 years rooting out and exposing the white racist wing of the Democrats as well – maybe they’ll become Republicans and we can kill two birds with one stone! 
The 5 Top Reasons Why I Hated Sarah Palin
1. Her fake Fargo accent. Watch the Gubernatorial debates on YouTube and tell me it wasn’t an act.
2.  This woman had no problem pimping out her children for votes. Special needs my ass!
3. She is willfully ignorant, small minded and a racist while bringing out the worst in people.
4.  She tried to play the victim card (of sexism) while using sex to appeal to voters.
5. She refused to address specifics of policies and agendas but had no problem manipulating the media to control her image. 
Make sure you give all the clothes back. Goodbye and Good Riddance!

Black Women Coming Full Circle

Let’s acknowledge the assistance and support Barack Obama has received from his staunchest allies: Black women. From his wife, to Oprah, to the Black vote which is 6 out of 10 Black women we came out when it counted. He made sure to thank Georgia resident Ann Cooper who at 106 cast a decisive ballot for him during his acceptance speech. Now of course many people have participated and worked together, but let’s face it: Oprah stuck her neck out when she didn’t have to. The demographics for her talk show are white women aged 55 and above. There was some backlash but it was overblown by the corporate media to tear her down. It didn’t work though.
I am hard pressed to think of any high profile Black person be they politicians or entertainers that supported the Obama candidacy without reservation early on but Oprah. Her endorsement has been estimated to have netted him one million votes. That’s nothing to take lightly and it made all the difference during the primary battle against the Clintons. 
I can say I was personally driven to take action beyond simply voting, hand-wringing and worrying. I had been prepared to support the eventual Democratic nominee but I wasn’t exactly enthusiastic about it. I am really glad I got to vote for the candidate of my choice!! 
This by no means indicates a 100% universal support of Obama amongst Black people or the rest of the country. There are many people who will never be satisfied! This is a journey that will be certain to have bumps along the road. That’s ok. I do hope some of the Cynthia McKinney agenda gets implemented into future gov’t policies because despite whatever reservations some may have about her she does have our interests at heart. 
Here’s the culmination of Oprah’s dream:
Be sure the watch the full intro from her Election Special. Oprah is UNLEASHED! Did anybody record it? I need a copy stat!!!! If there was ever a time to offer videos for sale on ITunes it is now Miss Oprah.  
Update: Link to Interview with ABC’s Robin Roberts. It was funny!

There’s Nothing Quite Like a Fair Weather Friend

I am continuing my theme of all the Black people who are acting like they were in the tank for Obama all along – except (when) they weren’t! Everybody loves a winner!! I’ll keep adding more names and videos as they get posted. Rejoice now (Johnny Come Lately supporters) but if I were Obama I’d offer a handshake from afar lest I ended up shanked! But he’s so magnanimous he said he’d be the President for all those that didn’t support him as well. He’s a better person than I’d be. I guess that’s why HE WON!!!! 
Magic Johnson
Did your hedge fund deal not pan out with Ron Burkle? Whassup?! 
It runs from 7:20-11:04.
Vernon Jordan 
BFF of Bill Clinton. Not certain if it’s reciprocated or not. He’s got a book to promote after all. CYA. CYA. CYA. All the way. 

Jesse Jackson, Sr.
OMG! How could I have forgotten about him? Well, I wasn’t gonna bother. He was crying like a baby with Oprah and them. How could we ever forget that hot mic on Fox though. I guess Obama’s Father’s Day speech where he merely suggested that all men take responsibility for their children was just too much. Ahhhhh let’s recap for giggles!  

They All Feel Safe To Come Out Now

Yeah, I know it’s a new day and all and we’re going to come together and be one. I also know that as I’m breathing this air certain Rethug pundits are regrouping for their next coordinated attack. But we see you!! Now there’s a lot of Black people that were and will continue toting water for their masters or just not have a vision for a brighter future that can obtained with hard work, focus and unity. It’s time to get with the program
Everybody did not jump on the Civil Rights bandwagon despite best wishes for revisionist history. That didn’t stop them from ‘milking’ it after the fact, though. Be you an elder, a senior member of a political administration or my local mail carrier it’s time to step up to the plate. This is not about blind support, but about elevating each other to fulfill greatness and holding each other accountable. I know some may be offended but if we don’t do it then who will?
There’s this amazing post by Christian Progressive Liberal over at Jack & Jill Politics that I thought summed it up best.

Condoleeza Rice 

Thanks Condi for your grand gesture. You’re still a war criminal! May you forever be held accountable for shoe shopping while the ‘undesirables’ were dying in NOLA.

Maya Angelou
Thanks for finally believing. Where were you when your good friends were race-baiting and making light of political assassinations?  
It’s Two-Fer. Dumb and Dumber are still trying to stay relevant. Harold Ford, Jr. wishes he was Obama and spent the past year trashing him every chance he got. Tavis Smiley is still stuck in the Civil Rights Industrial Complex (CRIC) mode thinking he was going to be KING-maker. Barf!


Note to Tara Wall, Juan Williams (he slipped up a bit last night and was actually reasonable), Amy Holmes and all you professional Black contrarians, who think you’re going to ride the gravy train joining the Rethug pile-on to tear down an Obama administration……think again!!! 
As for you John McCain, your concession was nice. Too bad you didn’t run your campaign with any class. No cookie for you!

OBAMA IS 44!!!!!

Democrat Barack Obama.(AP)
Yahoo Photo
In Numerology the number 44 is considered a Master number and very powerful. The person who best embodies the necessary qualities for 44th President of these oft-divided states needs to be a visionary, create a certain spark of interest, be an open seeker of knowledge, disciplined and willing to combine wisdom with reason. 
Using Obama’s birth date of August 4, 1961 = 8+4+1+9+6+1 = 11 which is another Mater number. 1+1 = 2. The birth number is also the life path number. Now you can also evaluate someone by their name as well, but I really like the life path. I think it’s the ‘face’ we show to the world. 2’s are considerate, creative, inspiring, spiritual and very sensitive. 
We can also evaluate Obama by his astrological sun sign – which is in Leo. In Chinese zodiac animal signs he is an Ox. Leos are very charismatic and have definite star quality, are loyal and born leaders. Oxen like to be in positions of power, but are very down to earth, seek security and are very family oriented.  
Some less enlightened religious interpreters may condemn the use of astrology, runes, numerology etc., but they are simply the application of numbers used as a tool to gain personal insight. We use personality tests, academic exams and psychology to do that as well. The danger is always in having a narrow definition of what “it” means be that religion, sexuality, race or standards of Blackness! That Higher Power is trying to reach out to us in ways that we can easily relate to – hence the prevalence of these ‘spiritual’ self-help books.
The Bible uses a lot of symbolism with the use of the number 40 and 12. The Israelites wandering in the desert, the amount of time Jesus was tempted by the Devil, the number of disciples for example. These numbers are not necessarily literal, but powerful tools which represent something worth further examination.
We really need to think more critically and perhaps put what we read into proper context for the time it was written and how memes are shaped. We also need to utilize various translations and compare the differences when using Greek, Aramaic English and other languages. Singers don’t come into their own vocally until the after the age of 30 development-wise. Why would we expect the acclimation of our religious traditions be similar? Why wouldn’t our growth as humans continue to evolve?
One such example to consider would be how when Jesus was resurrected He could have chosen to come to anyone and he chose his most faithful: the women. Not the most strict rules followers, not the ones that donated the most money and not the ones that showed up in the fanciest clothes.
Do you really think women didn’t have leadership roles on equal standing with the men under those circumstances after that? Or is that a continuation of a social construct like categorizing people by phenotype?
Someone shared a verse from Proverbs 29:2 with me on the eve of Election Day: “When the godly are in authority, the people rejoice. But when the wicked are in power they groan.“ And of course the one Commandment those that refer to themselves as Christians are supposed to be following is, “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
Note it doesn’t say:
1. Tell someone how to live based on one’s interpretation or personal opinions.
2. Bear false witness and continue to blatantly lie (on the campaign trail).
3. Allow your supporters to seek the physical destruction of your political rival. 
4. Place your interpretations and viewpoints above all else even your “God”.
If leaking confidential immigration data and filing erroneous charges for a candidate’s use of a plane to see a dying relative aren’t reprehensible enough for some of you to reconsider your political affiliations I don’t know what will. 
Women of color (of all religious traditions) and their allies may very well be the ones to lead this country out of darkness away from wickedness, wherever it comes from, up to and including themselves. Our survival depends on it. 
Might I also add that I think sooooo many people will be getting the shock of their lives if they’re around when Jesus comes back and he doesn’t look or act like they’ve imagined. Especially if we find out our entire concept of Jesus was wrong (like there being no Jesus since everyone doesn’t follow that tenet) and Heaven and Hell has been right here on Earth this entire time and we messed it up!
**For those that don’t ascribe to this line of thinking or utilize it in different forms please feel free to share your own stories or alternate philosophies. This is my perspective but not the only one.

Denver Ambition

The first tallies are coming in: McCain has won Kentucky with 8 Electoral votes while Obama has won Vermont with 3. It’s going to be a long night folks. Here I thought I’d be running all over town and feeling totally wired, but I’m sorta calm. We’ve done all we could. It’s up to the people of this country to make a choice of mediocrity and division or go the course less travelled. 

It all came together on a warm evening in August where Barack Obama accepted the nomination of the Democratic Party for President. I took a bunch of photos and shot some video. I’ve added them to my Flickr account but will post a few here (sorry for the one photo Blogger is NOT cooperating) for viewing.
And if you can stand the sweetness, Black Snob has a great array of photos of our future First Family (whether it’s now or 2012 or thereafter) that will give you instant cavities!!! Oh it’s so good. Professor Tracey has a hilarious Top 10 List that I can agree with. Has no one put out an ABP on Ann Coulter?
Ok, that’s it for me I think. I may be back cuz I can’t help myself. I’m going to making a few nation-wide phone calls to check in with friends and la familia just to calm myself. I’ll pop into the local Obama HQ and I will probably go to a watch party. I need to charge my laptop though.
Good Luck to us all!!!!