Rules

22 years ago this month I was in basic training. I am remembering on a particular day where I tried to tabulate the number of jumping jacks I performed that day. I lost track after 2,000. My mind simply hadn’t the energy to add or retain numbers at some point. The reason I contemplate this memory today is because I remember the company commander’s declaration early in the process of induction disseminating the policies and procedures that he was bound by. So we would know what was right from wrong, that we should all always as a sailor be obligated…

Sorry, Not Sorry

Social media has been splashed with well-meaning, and some not-so-well-meaning stories of average Muslims decrying the acts of the Islamic extremists from the Paris attacks last Friday. It seems that twice, in one year, terrorism has been brought to the City of Lights by people who say they are speaking for Allah. Of course, they are not, but throughout history, many people have murdered in the name of their Lords, why would we expect this one to be any different, right? Right? Wrong. There is something extrinsic that tells us we must now promenade each and every Muslim out and…

Being a Black Woman…

Means learning to be soft to plight of others. Long, delicate brown fingers brush away the tears of the same people who will turn a hard shoulder to us. Patient ears listening to woes of those that are often deaf to us. Plush bosom crutching tightly to heads that quickly away when the hour of need is concluded. Often criticized by our own men. Too often fetishized by the men of others. Always admiring, never the “prize”. In relationships, personal and private, we will give and be taken. We will have our value questioned to a degree that it makes…

Why I Can’t Stay…

In 2012, when George Zimmerman killed Trayvon Martin, I realized that I had better tell my son that he is black because the world would see him that way, and if something awful happened to him, they would blame him, no matter who was actually at fault. I realized that I had done him a great disservice by allowing him to be “himself” which seemed absurd to me, but instantly true. It did not matter how he saw himself, how he felt himself, it only actually matter how the world saw him because his life could very well be at…