Kamala Harris has become the first Woman — First black woman Vice President of the United States. She was born to Indian and Jamaican immigrants. Madam Vice President is also a proud graduate of the historically-black Howard University.
Amanda Gordon was outstanding. The LA born 22-year-old is the youngest inaugural poet in U.S. history and youngest youth Poet Laureate.
The amount of vitriol I’ve received in social media today just from sharing my joy – my pages – shows a lot of work on the path of love is yet to be done.
Always choose love – on this MLK Day and – every day!
In celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King & Coretta Scott King, founder of The King Center instrumental in making this a Federal Holiday – Happy MLK Day.
Let’s not forget Stevie Wonder, Labor Unions, Rep. John Conyers / Congressional Black Caucus, Southern Christian Leadership Conference & then President Jimmy Carter all instrumental for this day – only two other figures have Federal holidays (George Washington & Christopher Columbus ) . It takes a village. Keep going in the fight for justice, equality and greater humanity.
Sometimes you just have to take a step back..reflect and breathe. I’m glad to have this blog here on my website to share thoughts whether anyone agrees or not..I don’t post for likes or comments when I write here. Mostly, I’m about my music and business and inspiring others. Sometimes in these significant events, one must hit the pause button in the midst of it all.
January 6, 2021 was historic in more ways than one – needless to say. We began the day with the news that in two Senate runoffs, the state of Georgia elected its first black senator in the state’s history. Raphael Warnock who’d been a pastor for the past 15 years at the historic Ebenezer Baptist Church where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once preached defeating incumbent Kelly Loeffler. Warnock lamented in a powerful acceptance speech that his mother’s 82 year old hands that once picked someone else’s cotton helped pick the first black senator for the state. Not long after, Democrat Jon Ossoff, who will be the youngest to be sworn in, also secured a senate seat, defeating incumbent Republican David Perdue. These wins turned both houses Democratic for President Elect Joe Biden and VP Kamala Harris – maybe things will be easier to get done now. We shall see.
At the helm of this seismic shift was the incredible Stacey Abrams (voting rights activist, lawyer, politician and best selling romance author) who has shown fearless leadership in galvanizing the voters of Georgia after her own run for Governor was fraught with voter suppression in 2018. This is how you turn things around. Strategize. organize and keep it moving.
On the other said, before this flipping of Georgia could be totally celebrated be those who worked so tirelessly in these efforts and the voters of Georgia..another sort of organization was in full in effect with the attempted coup led by the current ‘President 45’ who has stoked the fires of divisiveness, hate and conspiracy on all fronts. If you can’t see it and haven’t seen it the past several years – you are blind and a part of the problem. It was shocking – but then not really if being honest that the scene of extremists. domestic terrorists, anarchists, thugs, whatever you want to call them once they were so freely able to storm and take over the Capital bldg. The wannabe dictator probably enjoyed every minute – his ego reveling in the ‘look at my people, those are my people..trying to overturn a legit election and outcome. They were encouraged and enable so it was no surprise to hear 45 refer to them as ‘special people’ and loved.. while using not so kind language when Colin Kaepernick took a knee, when Jemelle Hill called him a racist and so on. ‘Nasty people’.. he calls anyone one fighting for social justice and an end to police brutality. Most of know what his not so coded language has meant. That’s why his supporters carry his flag or the confederate flag. We also know if those who stormed the State Capitol were black, there would have been a bloodbath. Where were the dogs? Arrests? Rubber bullets shooting people in the face?? There is no doubt in my mind there was assistance from the ‘inside’ to pull this off and have the outcome be as it was. These people had free reign and were allowed to walk out of there as if they had just attended a rave..with bad costumes I’d add. Who left the doors unlocked?! Where was security? Did no one see this coming – all of the rhetoric and provocation was there.
Taking selfies with cops, mocking the killing of George Floyd. No buses lined up, no one made to sit on the sidewalk with plastic handcuffs for hours while being processed (typical in what they describe as protests or civil unrest)..nothing. Where I live here in an area in what some would say an affluent area in Los Angeles…there were tanks placed on the streets with armed military during the BLM actual protests..not one trying to take over the damn government or government structures – they had to protect Gucci and Chanel! The Capitol Building and Congress? Not so much. But yes.. arrest the kids stealing Nikes, while doing nothing to those trying to actually steal the country and election and destroying one of the most revered buildings in D.C. with Congress inside attempting to do ‘the people’s work.’ It’s insane and yes on the wrong side of history in this case.
In the midst of the failed coup yesterday -remember there’s still a pandemic and they were out there of course with no masks..these are the same people calling it a hoax..
God bless and universal protection for the front line workers, doctors, nurses.. EMT’s, respirator technicians..all of the hospital staffs in all capacities putting their lives on the line to save lives.
It’s a lot to take in but I hope Congress and all powers that be invoke the 25th Amendment and get him out..as he continues to spread lies, wreaking havoc as the ultimate sore loser. Criminal in Chief.
Obama would be charged with treason and they would still be removing bodies off from inside and outside the Capitol building has this happened under his leadership and watch..but gasp remember the tan suit?!
That is all .. had to get this off my chest before going back to my music and candles..and trying to live, stay healthy, safe and in gratitude no matter how troubling these times are.
Keep it moving forward – no matter what. Most of us just want to live a good life, make a good living to be self-sufficient, have some joy, enjoy family and loved ones.. the simple things in life. Some people will always be miserable, hateful and dissatisfied no matter what.
Voted early for the first time – thank you Governor Newsom in California for making sure all ballots were sent out and to allow tracking of ballot as well.
I never recall an election period so tense and full of divisiveness that has been created to the point businesses feel the need to board up fearing an uprising because the current lack of leadership has been fueling this negativity.
Looking forward to some positivity, decorum and class back in the Oval in the results tonight. Vote Him Out, so The Healing Can Begin.
Whatever the outcome – life will have to proceed forward and we must make the best of what we have regardless of who you voted for.
I’m proud to be a GRAMMYAdvocacy #DistrictAdvocate!
Today I join the other Recording Academy members and advocates to urge Members of Congress to take action on key #COVID19 priorities for our music community––access to small biz loans and unemployment benefits for the music community and underserved communities.
Nearly 2,000 members of the Recording Academy are meeting with members of Congress for District Advocate day, the largest grassroots advocacy movement for music.
You can also join the movement and help make a difference.
Legislators are still negotiating the next COVID-19 relief package, and we have to ensure they include critical relief for the music community. We are trying to help make a difference for all music creators and those who work in the industry and are self employed.
Tune in tomorrow June 12, 2020 – I’ll be going LIVE on Facebook and Youtube with Black Press USA pages, celebrating 80 Years of the NNPA and 193 years of The Black Press at 4 PM PST, 4 PM EST.
The BlackPressUSA is the only national website featuring news exclusively from African-American journalists, founded by Benjamin F. Chavis Jr., entrepreneur, global business leader, educator, civil rights leader, NAACP Life Member, syndicated columnist and author is the President and CEO of the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA).
I’m not that great with short captions and descriptions on serious topics and so my blog is often is my place to get further into my thoughts or views. It’s cathartic to just write and not be concerned about likes or comments. My blog here is more akin to a journal entry and a quiet safe space for me. This week in general on social media trying to not get stressed and overwhelmed myself by the flood of posts since the murders of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and with Breonna Taylor’s murder getting more deserved attention has been a lot needless to say for all of us in this country. Personally it’s added even more intensity having a protests turn into riots in my area, looting and vandalism, reading tweets on how they are targeting what they perceive to be all affluent white areas – ‘let’s burn it down’ as I read and think ok what’s my plan when there streets were blocked off, emergency alerts on curfews each day throughout the day these past few days, followed by a mini earthquake – my nerves have been frayed. Change is never pretty or easy. To a degree since the pandemic began I’ve felt a need to take a step back in many ways and appreciate not being on as frequently, trying to listen to music, read a book clear my brain from overload. Reading a particular quote meme the other day on Instagram resonated a good one to share prompting these additional thoughts that some may be feeling or experiencing as well. My song ‘The Healing’ remains on repeat – take the time.
In a conversation with someone very close to me who does very little social media they conveyed the frustration of this underlying pressure to be public and visible, brought on by co-workers on what people are doing right or not doing now for social advocacy. What are you doing? It’s like if your feed is not all protests and memes you must have apathy which is not the case. We agreed that not all of us are good at online activism, especially if you don’t do social media much anyway. My advice was it’s always best to be authentic and most of all what we do offline is what really matters and can be just as if not more impactful. This is not a contest. A lot of corporations and people are being called out for being disingenuous in a rush to ‘say something.’ I even cringed at the music industry proclaiming that the gatekeepers wanted a ‘the show must pause’ on Blackout Tuesday..the same gatekeepers that make sure black artists are paid less, shut out, rarely given positions beyond the ‘urban departments’ and have totally obliterated R&B music from the mainstream airwaves.
There are experts at advocacy and politics of course beyond posting out of emotion. We should applaud these brave and inspired people who do it for a living, it’s a life purpose. Fighting for police reform (defunding the police, holding them accountable for their brutality, racism and not dealing with bad repeat offending cops, Black Lives Matter movement, Black Trans, LGBT rights, homelessness, education a full time job for many. For an awakened portion of society at this important at this pivotal time while cell phones capture the ugliness that exists time after time we are constant virtual witnesses to so much hatred and racism. Now we do have broadened to mass attention and support worldwide as everyone can now see what black people have been experiencing for so long, marching, protesting for change, other countries deal with racism, poverty and so on as well so the world becomes smaller in it’s fatigue of injustice and an imbalance of financial and class equality mixed in. It’s important to say not all black people are not homogenous or monolith in how we do things or think to other blacks and also to non blacks. Stop with the blackness policing, something I’ve experienced as an artist my entire career. Everyone’s feed is full of outrage for one reason or another and it can get a bit overwhelming while understanding absolute need for all of it. I’ve personally been taking more social media breaks, it can’t be healthy to be consumed by the intensity of consistent bad news and violent images all day – day in and day out.
Yes it’s indeed powerful that whites, Asians, Latinos are joining the movement because blacks have been putting the time in for years – this new force will begin to make the change happen. In the midst of all of this there’s still a pandemic, people aren’t working – including artists like myself and you want to find some things to bring you joy each day without feeling guilty that you don’t want full days of anger, frustration, sadness and so on.
The positive is that with so much diversity and especially young people who will be the ultimate agents of change.I’m of the the don’t just post about it be about it mindset. This is not a competition of who can post the most or protest in the streets the most. There are many ways to help bring about and be a part of change, it’s about finding balance and what works for each individual in doing what’s right and just.
This is what prompted this blog, I added to it..
some are posting on social media
some are protesting in the streets
some are donating silently to organizations that fight for justice and equality year-round
some are educating themselves
some are signing petitions (change.org, colorofchange, blacklivesmatter..)
some are having tough conversations with friends, family and co-workers
a revolution has many lanes be kind to yourself and to others who are traveling in the same direction
just keep your foot on the gas
I’d like to add this too posted by a friend of mine on IG based on a reaction often given to “Black Lives Matter”
Another thing I’ve seen..the comment “why don’t black people protest black on black crime?” Crime as a whole is always an issue but when trying to use that, it’s as if it’s a justification or code to not be outraged by police officers who are hired as professionals to serve and protect not abuse their power and not consistently target black people while hiding behind the power of their badge – simple.
Here are resources if you are so inclined to be involved and choosing to not take it to the streets – this is an ongoing process for systemic change that will have to endure and take sustained energy beyond this moment in this country and history.
You can google the links and certainly many I don’t know about..I’m new at a lot of this myself and don’t profess to be an expert by any stretch.
Sign Petitions at Change.Org for Breonna Taylor, David McAtee, Ahmard Arbery, Sandra Bland, Alejandro, Tete Gulley, Marshae Jones, Antonio Domingos Viola (shot and killed for not wearing a mask) T and so many more that I’m still learning about.
Minnesota Freedom Fund
Reclaim The Block
National Bail Out
Black Lives Matter
National Bail Fund Network
The Innocent Project
Run With Maud
Justice For Breonna
Black Lives Matter Los Angeles
Alliance of Californians For Community Alliance
Numbers to Call or Text:
Text Justice to 66-8336
Text Enough to 55-165
Black Trans Protestors Emergency Fund
Black Trans Collective
For The Gworls
The Okra Project
What to know if you’re protesting, know your rights and have a plan; Tips
Leave a message for Louisville Mayor and demand Justice, Independent Internal Investigation for Breonna Taylor 502 574 2003 the 26 year old EMT frontline worker shot 8 times in her own home in the wee hours of the morning in her own bed as police used a no knock warrant at the wrong house. No arrests or charges have been filed..this is not a first – look up 7 year old Aiyana Jones in Detroit.
Vote in your local elections get these old guard racists out and of course in the upcoming national election systematic racism must come to an end.
It’s not enough say say “I’m not racist” – your actions must show that you are “anti-racist” that’s how the change will continue to happen long after this the biggest civil rights movement in history. 50 states, 18 countries of all races who have come out in protest.
Tuesday June 2, 2020 :: Vote primaries today – PENNSYLVANIA, South Dakota, MARYLAND, INDIANA, Washington DC, Idaho, New Mexico, Montana and make sure to vote in all other upcoming local primaries, elections.
Here are a few suggestions to make a difference today :: Support by donating funds for justice for Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery, help the family of George Floyd, donate to community bail funds for protestors and organizations that fight for social justice and equality year round, sign legal petitions for justice, find ways to be an ally beyond this moment against racism and inequality, support small business, black owned businesses, don’t just post memes about it – be about it …take a break if you need one.
Posted on Saturday 5.30.2020 to my social media ::