Saturday, March 31, 2012
Imagine being marked because your skin isn’t the preferred or valued tint. Unless you are ethnic and a shade of brown you cannot know and it isn’t easy for non-ethnic people to grasp even my most diverse friends who have many hues in their friendship pool they cannot imagine it. I also want to express frustration at the economic gap that has spawned decades of misery within the ethnic community and still has not been rectified in our society. In fact there is no example of the same socio-economic disparity within the white community that hasn’t spawned crime. If you are poor and don’t have any other options you will be a criminal because we need to have our needs met regardless if it is legal. The human animal will do whatever it takes to feed themselves and maybe their family. If you belong to a group of people who cannot find a way and you happen to be on the bad side of the socioeconomic divide you will commit crime. When you see the profile of wealth it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see a racial preference or trend. It is a white man who is given all of the opportunities in our society and so much so it is hard not to think there is an unspoken conspiracy to keep the non-white people down. I personally have pushed against this thinking because I come from the great”white” north; Canada where we are so far removed from the American south we have forgotten our ancestors struggles.Canada, where I have benefited from a safe childhood sequestered away from racial tensions until my family moved to Detroit in the late 60’s to get a green card and work for Motown. There we were thrust or dumped into the ghetto where we had to fend and endure near rape and physical violence that when we finally left almost two years later we still don’t remember who drove us to LA. My mother being shell shocked (divorce,moving,money stress) jammed my sister and I into a strangers car; a man and a women who then drove us to California. I promise you it was a stressful drive but somehow we realized LA would be kinder, better than the ghetto of Detroit Michigan and we were right.It almost doesn’t matter who drove us to California because we made it intact. Do remember making sure the man stayed clear of us and the while women was the creepier one and thankfully there were With only two nights of sleeping in motels which must of been tricky because this was the 60’s and a lot of places weren’t friendly to blacks. We made it and I will say my poor 8 year old psyche was on alert always because someone had to protect us from adults and I was it.Now as an adult myself and a middle aged woman of color, I pay attention and being a mother myself to a young man I like the rest of the world am in pain, because of the Trayvon Martin cases world wide. In fact it seems after decades of denying my race, because in denying it I could infiltrate and integrate or so I thought. Today I can attest, that denying my race was erroneous thinking. No matter how integrated one may think they are, they are not the same as them. We are different and diverse and it is a good thing. So now awake to the fact that my race is and is not going away and it has been in many moments of my career and life a liability. So, I can breathe a sigh of sadness for all of the above. It doesn’t help the planet to deny ones heritage and racial makeup just as it doesn’t help the planet to bludgeon society every minute of everyday with it “hello new Black Panther party”.Somewhere or somehow there has to be balance. How do we balance life in this society when there are giant gaps and injustices and plain straight up forces of suppression? There is a thought that the FBI and the CIA in the 70’s encouraged drug use in the ghetto’s to distract and disable the men and women who lived there. Drug saturation to keep the brown masses down. It could be argued it happened but it is unprovable because if those agencies were doing that they certainly don’t want the brown masses to know it. Let's face it every day horrendous stuff is done against humanity somewhere globally by agencies everywhere. It is a huge almost unfathomable crisis. Still here in America we need to be vigilant and protect our brown skinned children and men from harm and we also need to help educate and encourage better choices and help those driven to the edge of society and crime. I do know that a scintilla of the defense budget could create a G.I. Bill educating the entire veterans core. We could rebuild roads and bridges, provide for better mental health clinics and rehab facilities. So much could be done and legally we must begin to examine laws that are geared to suppress the men and women who happen to be of color. This isn’t a thorough comment I know and this subject to huge to even begin to comment on but I have to say something. My heart is broken and it doesn’t seem to be healing anytime soon. I want justice, a more level playing field because it is constitutionally right that all men be able to walk home in safety with their skittles and ice tea.
Posted by Rae Dawn Chong at 7:59 AM
Thursday, March 29, 2012
My mom and I were talking this morning about the Trayvon Martin case which is everywhere and still so very raw in all of us. She was explaining to me that the new Black Panther party has offered a bounty for Zimmerman as if killing the man will bring any closure. It will not and even if he were to receive life without parole it will not bring any satisfaction because the crime has been committed and the young life extinguished its tragedy all around. Still I was saying that the new BPP could help in Florida and country wide with voter registration and that alone would ensure fairness in the next election and have a farther reach than revenge. I am not saying that I want Zimmerman to be treated with kindness or any other specialness I do think he is a liar and guilty and a racist murdering fool still I do know that the biggest damage has been done. Still we are awake and there is a bigger issue afoot and that is voter suppression. As an American who is ethnic and awake I want to be cautious and helpful and be able to see Obama in the White House for another 4. It is imperative for me individually and as a community member. Better more affordable education, less defense spending, the rebuilding of our infrastructure and economy these things are at the forefront of our immediate needs. Yes, we need justice in the Trayvon case and I am hoping we will live to see it and as important we need voters to be registered and President Obama re-elected. There is a conspiracy to hurt Americans and to keep the 99%’ers down but we are a strong group and we can prevail, we must!
Posted by Rae Dawn Chong at 12:00 PM
Monday, March 26, 2012
Thursday, March 22, 2012
Here we go yet again with the staggering pain that we feel about the loss of life for this baby; Trayvon Martin and all the Trayvon Martins in America and the world over its unmanageable. There is nothing to compare with the loss of a child and I will confess that being a mother of a child who can ”pass” I cannot fathom what it means to be a mother of a child who cannot “pass” and what daily fear exists in ones heart as our boys make their way through life. I hope justice is served and Mr. Zimmerman is arrested and treated properly. It isn’t just the fact that Trayvon’s body was kept unidentified in the morgue for three days because no one imagined that he belonged to anyone. What is wrong with this picture? How evil is racism in America and with the presidency being a polarizing contest and the issue of race ‘up” it still doesn’t answer so many questions we need to be asking ourselves. If you are not ethnic I ask you how diversified are your friends? If there is little or none you need help. Because we self segregate it creates untruths both ways. I know African Americans who don’t believe there are honest trustworthy Caucasians so it does cut both ways. Diversification is an answer a very good one. The entire south but especially in Florida with its suspect racial history needs an overhaul. A physical and spiritual and political overhaul, I hear many comedians complain that Florida is home to the lowest common denominator of human kind, maybe. I won’t go that far but these cases as well as the many on the book of unsolved missing person cases that seem racially charged in Florida aren’t helping the state. It’s a shame we are still here fighting for decency. One child walking back from the store with candy to watch a sporting event loses his life because the neighborhood nut job has a ‘thing” against “African Americans. It makes me wanna scream, cry and hang my head in sadness, in fact I spontaneous cry for the family of Trayvon martin and for myself and all of us who know what it feels like to be “other”. We need to do better than this, all of us.
Posted by Rae Dawn Chong at 3:34 PM
Monday, March 5, 2012
Rush and Fatty Arbuckle have a lot in common both at one time at the top of their game seemingly invincible and yet both have met their match and probable destruction by abusing women. The thing is Fatty as rumor goes may or may not have physically harmed the alleged victim who died by brutal causes nonetheless he attended the “orgy” and was blamed for the event that resulted in the death of a young girl. I believe he was exonerated of charges later in his career but by that time the damage was done. He wasn’t king anymore. Like Fatty, Rush’s invincibility has been shaken and I like to think/hope irreparably damaged by a young woman. A young woman whose character he tried to assassinate. What a fascinating similarity “who’d a thunk it?” Felled by a young woman voicing her opinion and concern as a citizen before Congress, his true nature revealed and exposed and harshly rejected. It is the moment millions of us have been waiting for. It is a witch hunt, the witch being Fatty Rush Limbaugh. Like Fatty Arbuckle he may think he will or can survive this by cash and influence and damage control but I am thinking this time he has “stepped in it deep” the crap isn’t washing off anytime soon. It couldn’t have happened to a nicer person. I also find it horrifying that he uses Peter Gabriel’s music on his show and can’t imagine Peter would approve of it. Listening and watching him spew his vitriol against the sound track of Peter Gabriel’s sledge hammer was disturbing. I hope his lawyers do something about that. Don’t get me wrong it is healthy to have opposing viewpoints regarding any subject and I am not saying that we should erase any opposition. I am not saying this I just think we need to hold accountable the degenerates the lower than the men and some women who harm. Everything he said last week was not to humor it was to destroy, scorch and dismember. Like the awful tragedy that Fatty Arbuckle found himself mired in this one will hurt that big buffoon and maybe critically, one can only hope.
For a giggle have a look;
For a giggle have a look;
Posted by Rae Dawn Chong at 4:41 PM
Thursday, March 1, 2012
I play the lotto because my neighbor in Vancouver won the thing twice for a tax free total of 26,000,000, all because he played the thing for three dollars each drawing and so the joke goes “buy a ticket”. Of course I have no idea what that size of cash would do to my equilibrium and I imagine I cannot imagine the disruption and maybe regret. None of us knows what a hassle to our lives winning tens of millions of dollars would be. We can only see the imagined up side. My friend Chris felt sad today he is stressful about money and work. We all get that way and its weird but somehow I think it is part of the human condition to be worried and sad occasionally or maybe always. Do we ever examine the why of it? Does it ever do any good to worry away whilst we wonder where our good fortune will come from? It doesn’t and yet all of us are addicted to panicking. The truth is we need to focus laser beam like on the NOW and get out of the future and past. Easier said than done and we need to be grateful. It changes the DNA of the moment and allows which can open up the vibration to usher in our abundance and opportunity. Turning 51 on Tuesday was interesting young no more, I have not been young for over a decade. Do I miss the ease of youth? Yup, but I am digging the wisdom of age and I notice I am not worried about whether you like me or not. In fact I worry about adult things like how the Senate votes. We are each exactly where we need to be now in this moment. It is a privilege. We are blessed even if we are moldering on death row. To be alive is the thing…trust me.
Posted by Rae Dawn Chong at 10:14 AM