Month: February 2017

Some People Just Don’t-and-Won’t Get It

This past week, I was listening to a local radio talk show (very rare for me) and I heard a few comments that really got my blood boiling.  I tend to have a low tolerance for stupidity, but I think I’ve gotten a lot better guys.  After my attention settled in for a few minutes, it became obvious that this radio talk show host was not African American.  I don’t know what race he was, but African Americans know African Americans by voice (but I can admit that it’s not a science).  We have genetically inherited certain qualities, just like other races have that we [African Americans] weren’t blessed with.  He wasn’t one of us; I’ll just leave it there.  But anyhow, for some odd reason, this talk show host had decided to take another shot at President Obama even though we’re already weeks into having a new president.  My “spider” senses told me that he’s definitely in approval of the new president, so he should be in a good mood when speaking on the political climate in our country today.  In my mind, I was already thinking, “Here we go again”….but shortly after listening to his perspective, I had more animated emotions.  The presentation went a little something like this…

—President Obama granted clemency to over 100 inmates during his 8-year tenure as president (voice reeking of frustration).  Many of those that received this ‘special treatment’ were individuals serving sentences of 25 years – to – life for federal drug violations.  Obama wanted to stress equality, but the majority of the these felons were black; that doesn’t seem like equality to me.  He backed his actions by arguing that these individual cases involved harsher punishments than necessary.  Well, one of those drug felons that he released a few months ago was just arrested again in Texas after a high-speed pursuit.  Law enforcement was tipped off that this individual had begun to be involved with distribution of narcotics again, which was  the same thing that landed the man a life sentence after being convicted in 1991.  Not even out three months after being granted a handout by President Obama, this man proved that his release was unwarranted and another clear error by our former president.  Hopefully, we are in better hands now.—

Guys, none of the previous paragraph is fiction or exaggerated.  I may not have quoted this radio personality verbatim, but I can assure you that the context and message is pretty close.  Here are my issues and what got me so upset early that morning:

  1. The blatant disrespect towards President Obama is real; no other way to put it.
  2. Anybody that believes that anyone should be serving a LIFE SENTENCE for drug offenses is misguided and/or racist; flat-out.  We all know who these drug laws work against the most, right?  Those that have fewer opportunities in this country financially (due to many circumstances that I won’t expound upon) that are having to make desperate decisions for survival.  Hmmm, I wonder who those people ‘typically’ are in this country?….Furthermore, there are people in this country getting 10-year sentences for MURDER….white men getting 3-month sentences for RAPE…but it’s okay for a individual with drug violations to get a LIFE SENTENCE….mannnnn….
  3. You decide to question our former president’s decision-making due to one case out of over 100?  So, you’ve decided to form an opinion on 1% of data, and ignore the remaining 99%?  What kind of confidence interval are you injecting into this equation (statistically speaking)….
  4. Are you really that disappointed that approximately 100 individuals were released from prison?  We all know how populated our prisons are, right?  Or is it because more-than-likely those released from prison due to these harsh sentences were more prone to be black, statistically?  Just sayin…
  5. Exactly why are you surprised that a man that has been in federal prison since 1991 resorts back to desperate measures when the penal system has done nothing to produce opportunities for him upon his release?  Where is he supposed to get a job with a felony on his record?  Exactly what skill or trade has he been able to develop since he’s been in jail since he was 18 years old?

I really don’t have any more words to say; I could literally write all night in regards to this topic.  I thought I’d be able to write this out and not get upset all over again…..that’s being proven not to be the case.  Simply put, some people just won’t get it yawl….they just won’t.  And it’s sad….but it is what it is.  Onward and upward….


Here Now to Son Part 2


I have been watching your activities: your service to community building; your service to the people of the community; your service to yourself and your dreams; and your service to God. And son, all I want to say is, “Negro, do not be like your father who ignores the relics in the room that really count!”

Ms. Vanessa Nettingham has been that relic in the room; in which, no BlackmenBlackminds gent should forget.

She is like “water to a vase,” “grease to bacon,” “Michelle to Obama,” “Sheba to Egypt,” “Milk to Cereal,” “Emotions to hearts,” “thought to brain,” “letters to manuscripts,” “Clothes to hangers,” “Hope and Faith to prayer,” and “profit to labor.” Now, Negro, I could go on and on  and on and on, but Negro you are my son who has a diploma and a couple of degrees on top of that. Otis Redding sings, “You don’t miss your water, till your well runs dry!”


Tell Vanessa Nettingham Happy Valentine’s Day even if she is not your boo! Hasn’t she been supporting the BlackmenBlackminds’s cause? Isn’t she acknowledging that some black men are doing their best in restoring a black man’s image through her acknowledgement and endorsements that some black men are making a difference? All of that love cannot go unnoticed! As one cannot deny that the sun is in the sky, we men cannot deny the emotional support Vanessa’s rays of support are producing. As the sun grants my son’s Vitamin D, Vanessa, thank you for offering them vigorous determination. In my day, a million men marched to Washington to stand in solidarity. I cannot begin to fathom how many brave women cultivated those men to accept their calling and march.

Vanessa Nettingham, if you are growing weary in your efforts in supporting my Negro sons’ journey in restoring the portrait of a black man, it is only because my sons are not thanking you enough for being the water and bucket in the well, for being Michelle, for being grease to bacon, for being clothes to hangers, for being faith to prayer, the single mother to successful entrepreneurs, for being hope to broken images, and for being close enough to care.

Because of your time and awareness Vanessa, especially when guys like to be noticed too, my son will acknowledge and honor the fact that BlackmenBlackminds has its on Coretta, despite how he feels about me due to my absence.

It’s like a sin for him not to honor you; it’s a sin for him not to honor himself. Thank you for your faith in my Negro sons! Thanks for taking on more than the role of just being a “rib”. You are living, breathing, active, and are a necessity. Importantly, you are heard.

A father,

Here Now

Here Now to Son Part 1


I love you. Comparing a person who only seeks the presence of God once a year to me who have only told you that “I love you” once of your earthly life, I understand your will to forget every black man that resembles me.

I understand your will to turn away from personified mirrors: the black young male English teacher who draws closer though you push away; the black young male counselor who embraces your silence though he is enthralled by his anticipation of your voice; the black young male cashier who still says yes sir though he is older; the black young male preacher who agrees that you should feel anger; the black young father whose daughter you are courting; all versions of me; all versions of you.

To stand before you, like you, I have to encounter all the things that remind me of you: the black young English teacher who is being a better father than myself; the black young male counselor who has learned more of your secrets than myself and even the power and beauty of your silence; the black young cashier who respects you because he knows that you are royalty more than me, your father; the black young male preacher who gets to accept that he cannot solve all of your problems but he could stand in solidarity with you before heaven; the black young father whose daughter you are courting that gets to be the grandpa that the grandchildren would rescue from a nursing so that he may die with loved ones.

Son, let me die for you to all attempts of self-sabotaging. Your future is still cocooning; therefore, butterfly of my loins: do not turn away the black encyclopedia that reads and shares its commodities; complete your healing; let those that would like to be ointment their work so you could be lulled to sleep; accept that you are the foot that lands which demands creatures to respond; wise men bowed down to Jesus, wise men will bestow honor onto you; be angry at a father and his absence but don’t sin against your help. Remember the teacher. Remember the counselor. Remember the preacher. And son, forgive me or you lose your African Queen and forfeit your future dynasty; disrespect one father you will disrespect two fathers-the father whose daughter you court and the father you are capable of being in emotional health.

In time, do all of these things–in time.

Your dad,

Here Now