Saturday, February 22, 2014

I Don't Like to Lose

One of my colleagues is a racist--flat out. I get that already, but I thought a part of my mission as it relates to having been placed on this team of misfits, was to be the example of a worthy black man. One who you don't have to who is articulate and sharp. Though I embody the aforementioned, it has done little to change the racist's mind. Every time a situation comes up--in particular the Zimmerman and the Dunn trials, there has been nothing but strife between us as we try to talk out what I know and understand to be the inherent racism present in both cases.

My purpose is not so much to re-litigate the cases as it is to use the cases as a concrete example of what Black people in America can be subjected to. I was impressed with Mark Geragos who said very plainly on television that America is still a very racist place. Geragos remarked that he was not at all surprised by the stuff that Dunn was saying--animals, thugs, more people should kill them like so they'll get the hint, etc--because he says that he hears that type of stuff all the time when people think it's 'safe' to say it. I sent the guy a link to that video and another one so he could hear and see people who look like him affirm that America's racist ways are not yet gone. Contrary to the narrative that he believes. He's of the opinion that clearly racism is over exaggerated and inflated because we have a Black president. The thinking public is keenly aware that this view is unfounded.

We were discussing the issues via email and in person. He said something like, "I don't have to defend myself." What did he say that for? I laid his soul to rest. I'll shorten it...basically I told him that I have not asked him to defend his position simply because it is indefensible--full stop. I just wanted him to gain new data...because when we know better we do better.

A Black colleague of mine told me to let it go. The other coworker is never going to get it.

I am disappointed in that because he has a child who he will likely rear with this racist view. Funny thing is he doesn't think he's racist. I guess I don't have to tell you he a firm Tea Party supporter.

Here's a scenario he posed to me. Racist coworker and a friend were at Dave and Buster's playing a basketball game. A Black guy came up behind the friend and called next on the game. The friend bent down to tear off the tickets he had won. THe Black guy must've thought the guy was trying to play another game because he mentioned again that he had called next. The ticket tearer said that he was only retrieving his tickets. My racist coworker wanted to know what's the line between self defense and murder. He posed the question because he said the Black guy was close to them and they felt threatened. Racist coworker wanted to know if it would have been okay to kill the guy since they felt threatened. Enter my blank stare.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Here We Are Again...

Yet another time in the sordid tale of race relations African Americans--males in particular are devalued and dehumanized. Although I didn't follow the trial of Michael Dunn very closely I was displeased to hear the snippets of media coverage that I heard prior to the verdict. Dubbed the 'loud music trial', all I would hear is about how this random white guy parked near/beside some young black guys and asked (probably demanded--because some of us have unreasonable expectations colored by the white privilege we unknowingly or pretend to unknowingly enjoy) them to turn down the music.I don't need to go into all the other ways Dunn could have avoided any conflict, but clearly he was looking to start trouble, at least from my vantage point.

I wasn't there that fateful night, but I do know that it ended with Dunn exiting his vehicle, taking a knee like he's a vigilante from the wild wild west and firing 10 shots into the nice Dodge Durango they were inside. How tragic that a white man's inflated sense of self, superiority, privilege and disdain for difference costed Jordan Davis his short life.

Even more tragic is my lack of surprise at this travesty of justice. To be fair, Dunn was found guilty on like 4 of the charges, but the jury was hung on the main charge of first degree murder. That means that at least one juror had to believe that Dunn was justified in using deadly force against a group of teenagers who didn't tap dance on command. Enough of these weak punks who resort to wielding guns when they cannot have their way. America, God is not pleased.

We cannot continue to ignore the inequities that face people who are minorities. Would Dunn have reached for a gun had it been a group of four white boys? We'll never know...but my claim is no..he absolutely would not have reacted the same way. What is it about the mystique of the black man that scares so many. Is it because others feel that they are powerful beyond measure or at least potentially equal to them? If you believe that then it is in your best interest to feed the media machine with negative images and to keep the playing field uneven so that self actualization will only know a few and not the many.

Coming on the heels of the Trayvon Martin case I was already woefully poised to accept a verdict of not guilty or a mistrial on the charge of murder one. What's different here is that whether Dunn is found guilty or not for the first degree murder charge--and Angela Corey, Florida State District Attorney, has pledged to try the case again, he will serve upwards of 50 years for the charges that he was found guilty for, provided there's not a different decision rendered by an appellate court.

Well that's my two cents on the matter. I could go on and on, but we will respect the justice system, no matter how flawed it may be. NO surprise that a justice system that was never designed for minorities like myself still does not have a good handle on how to divy up equal justice.

One more rant...yeah this piece isn't flowing in an organized manner, but I want to get it all on paper. Why did we spend so much time focusing on the victim's perceived bad boy behavior--you know---listning to music on a Friday night with friends, and not enough time digging into the past of Dunn? I've seen clips and stuff online about perceptions of folks who knew him for for years. None of that was introduced at trial...I guess the prosecution had their reasons, but after losing the Trayvon Martin case, if I were them, I would have brought out all the stops. It almost feels like we just can't get it right to honor our fallen. I would appreciate it if they could've gotten a complete victory. The symbolism..especially during Black History Month would have been refreshing.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Thoughts...A Collection

1. I am so glad that during the State of the Union address that my President called climate change a fact. Like....why does the right not want to own the validity of science? I have a guy on my team at work who believes it's all a liberal hoax. It's 1:14 am so I don't have the energy to go into the craziness of his argument.
2. Sometimes we have to go through to get through. We don't always get there at the same time and we may not use the same methods. The point is that we all will get there. Sounds like you've finally arrived. I'll be there to meet you at the shore.
3. I have started operation get rid of this debt. I have been paying down all my credit cards so that I will have zero balances moving forward. I gotta get that score up so I can purchase in the near future.
4. I hate when you have to suffer for someone else's inadequacy. A lil situation happened on my job where I thought I would be able to leave sooner than it appears I will be able to leave. Well....all things in time. I believe everything happens for a reason. I really don't believe in coincidence; I believe in providence.
5. Even though she didn't hustle today,those Patron margaritas were on point.
6. Why are insurance companies allowed to play games when I need my car repaired. Someone hit me in the back on a snow day couple weeks ago. The dude has yet to call in (as far as I know) to his [father's] insurance company so that I can go have my vehicle repaired. Found out the process could take up to 45 days before they make a ruling. Smh....
7. Soon I want to sit down and set some goals for the year. Well I already have some things in mind, but I want to write the vision and make it plain.
8.I cannot find my passport. I need to order a new one.
9. I also need to pay the maintenance fee on the timeshare. If they send me one more "final notice...."
10.Am I the only person who doesn't have Facebook and Instagram? I do tweet though.
11. Blogger is on point....I typed in HTML in this post and it let me know really quick that I had a broken tag. Go 'head Google.
12. Speaking of head...
13. I'm ready for election season to start. Doesn't election season seem to be going the way of Christmas? You know how we have that Christmas September they start reminding up about the upcoming season....same with election season. Here it is 2 years out and I'm brimming with excitement.
14. Chris Christie would have done better in my book by just saying, hey I know ole dude, but I don't stand by his actions. (Like go ahead and still throw him under the bus but let him know that he has to be the sacrificial lamb in order for Christie's presidential bid). We used to kick it back in the day. Especially since the job at the Ports Authority that the guy had was created for him by Christie. Now...who creating jobs for someone they don't really know like that? Huh? I'll wait......
15. Another white guy shot another young black teenager? For some music? This has got to stop. And I think it happened in Florida no less.
16. Speaking of travesties...has everyone learned for Kendrick Johnson? The 17 year old non-mentally challenged almost adult who 'fell into a mat in a high school and died for positional asphysia? The nerve it takes to make up a story like that, drive across town and deliver that message with a straight face without fear of getting molly whopped. I don't know who signed off on that cockamamey crap but if I was in the room and heard that out loud I would have been like...ok...wait...y'all...we gotta come up with something better than that.
17. The second anniversary of my father's death passed this month. As a matter of fact today technically is the day we buried him and the day Nippy was found dead in her hotel at The Beverly. You know when I was in L.A. I had to go by and see the spot.
18. Guess I should take it on back to sleep. Just had a lot jump off today and I thought I should channel some of this energy by posting something on my neglected blog.
19. I wonder if any of the people I've followed on Twitter recently know that I am following them because I know them from the Blogosphere. They may not know why I comment sometimes on their posts. Oh well....