How do I Love Thee…
Let me count the ways…
I wish I could say that it was just as easy as writing a poem, but in today’s marriages we often find that the reasons we married someone aren’t the things we remember when we’re going through issues.
Hence this blog…I have been married for almost 10 years, and 2 years ago I was in that place. I couldn’t remember the reason why we got married. I thought we were so very different that maybe we didn’t “fit” the way I once thought. I was in a dark, dark place, as I’ve said before. The problem with that dark place was that I never considered that in marriage, people do change. When you feel hurt, you adjust to that hurt, or maybe build a wall. Brick by brick, piece by piece, those hurts mount up into something that we don’t always know is there. When I say that I just mean that you could be hurt and when you say you’re over something or have forgiven, maybe you’re just saying to yourself, “Well that’s another piece of the wall going up.” Maybe you’re also saying that you don’t want to be hurt again by that person or anyone for that matter. I know that’s how it always worked for me. Whenever someone would hurt me I was probably the most unforgiving of them all. I wouldn’t allow anyone to get close to me. Even and especially my wife. I used that hurt, that pain, as a device to punish her. Not physically BY ANY MEANS. I just mean that I used my pain to not open up to her. To silence the voice I had, and to stuff it all inside. I used that hurt because I just didn’t want to be disappointed again. The truth of the matter is by stuffing that hurt inside, I only made the issues we had worse. Everything she said to me, would be like…”See….that’s why I don’t talk, because when I do, I just cannot talk to her…” or “she doesn’t understand me…she never will. There’s no use in talking about a subject we’re always gonna disagree on.” Yep…I was that guy. I made it seem as though the issue was resolved when truth be told, I just didn’t want her words to hurt me anymore. I was just trying to spare myself the disappointment of her saying “No” or her disagreeing with me. The funny thing about all of that is that I love the idea of debating with someone. But I will say that you can’t fight when the other party won’t.
My wife is a fighter, and I was a runner…But I thank God that it didn’t keep her from Loving me. I thank God that she is willing to fight. I say all of this because most marriages will never be what they are purposed to be if you don’t remember the reasons why you married them in the first place. And let me first say that I’m not talking about a place that you need or are codependent on someone. I’m speaking merely of the reasons why you believed they were marriage material in the first place. I’ll be completely honest and tell you that from the moment my wife and I had our first conversation over the phone, I knew she was special. I knew she was marriage material. The reason being is that she was always so Understanding…There was so many things I’d say to her (too many to remember) and she’d always be there. She always spoke to me from a friend’s perspective. And for that reason she became my very best friend. I just believed that I could talk to her about literally ANYTHING and we’d be alright. Did I mention, she just understood…and she was SO OPEN…to me and who I was at the time.
She was also intelligent and could go anywhere with me. She was my Road-dog…Wherever I was, or was going, she was the first person I wanted to invite or be there. It wasn’t that I didn’t have others to bring, it’s just I never felt more confident in myself than when she was around. There’s something about her that exudes influence and favor. People just want to hear what she has to say. She didn’t have it all together, but her common sense just made it seem like she did. Not a hair out of place, makeup was flawless, and had the mind to match. She was and still is beautiful. Don’t get me wrong, I had some ladies out there that I thought were fly. I thought I was the man for all intensive purposes. I was fine, smart, and as arrogant as they come. And she could still hang with me. She made me better. So much better. And at the time, I knew it.
She was also so very loyal. No matter what we’ve been through, the breakups, the makeups…the fights, the issues, she has always been there. I mean just been there. Fellas…have you ever had a lady that was just THERE? I mean ride or die. That put up with all of your SHIT…the nonsense. The ‘in-your-feelings’ moments we men tend to have? Y’all don’t understand. She IS this amazingly vigilant person, who puts her own feelings aside and tries to get over things without talking about them, because she loves me THAT much. I just realized that. I just thought about how much she LOVED me. She Loved me when I was trying to figure out who I was. She loved me when I was broken in pieces and couldn’t put them back together. She Loved me when I walked away and still let me back in. Those are just a few reasons. Besides those, she’s consistent and confident in herself. She knows who she is and is not easily swayed by the world around her. She’s her own person. And she’s amazing for those reasons.
I write all this to say and to suggest that all of us have reasons why we married our spouse. The key is remembering that some of those same things that you fight about every day, week, or month, are also probably part of the reason why you married her. I can tell you the Truth about something in terms of why I truly wanted to be with/marry my Pretty Lady. The number 1 reason is: SHE’s Not ME or Like Me. She’s so TOTALLY different from all that I am, that it absolutely Compliments me. We butt heads so much. But I wouldn’t have it any other way. We have things that are similar like our Value systems and how to raise children, our faith, and our supreme love for all things Teen Mom (I Can’t STAND Farrah, and that damn Cailyn…). We enjoy laughing and I enjoy talking to her, because she’s one of the most open minded people I know. Like I said there’s a reason for everything. And everybody has their own reasons for marrying the person that you did. And believe it or not, those reasons were sound reasons…
All these marriages out there ending for issues that can be resolved if you just have a bit of patience. If we could consider that if you’re not out there cheating…or beating, your differences are rarely irreconcilable. You can get through anything whether you agree or don’t agree. Weigh it out…it’s not always as big of a deal as we (I mean I…) make it. And truth be told it will take some compromise on both of your parts to get and to stay on the same page. I’m just at a point in my life where I believe most divorces can be prevented. Prevented if you not just ask Why Did I Get Married? But also actually answer the question. When you do answer…don’t say I don’t know…truly explore that things and see what you come up with. Chances are a lot of those things you wanted are still there within that person. Sometimes you just have to get past yourself in order to see them.
More to come…
Today we have moments like the #MeToo and #TimesUp spearheaded by multiple races. Shonda Rhimes, Reese Witherspoon, Rose McGowan Oprah Winfrey, Sandra Bullock, Rosario Dawson, Selma Hayek, just to name a few. They are battling the likes of the Harvey Weinstein’s and Matt Lauer’s out there who have taken advantage of their position in show business for years. The claims of sexual assault and harassment now plague their careers because of this unified movement. While there is an absolute need for this in society, the sad truth is that the public can only handle one type of serious movement at a time. With that said, movements like #TakeaKnee and #BlackLivesMovement again are poised to take a backseat yet again. Here’s a question, did anyone every really take them seriously to begin with. More and more Americans came out on the side of #45, saying those players were disrespecting the flag, and therefore forgot about the movement against police brutality. They forgot about the kids being killed in the black community for no reason. Now it’s all about #MeToo. Next year, it will be something else.
Which brings me to the subject at hand.
Let’s face it…Be real with ourselves…it’s 2018…
And Black People getting no closer to being loved by other races, than we were 20 or 50 years ago. Racism is more poignant than ever. The conversation of the subject itself is so polarizing that no one will touch it with a 10 foot pole. I have white friends, that I’ve asked and called upon to speak on it. But they remain silent for fear of the backlash in their own community. They just choose. For all intensive words…to stay neutral.
And to be honest I would say that it makes me sad, but it doesn’t. It’s just par for the course at this point. This is the way it has always been. And it’s not going anywhere. For the past 250+ years there has been a concerted effort for Blacks to be included and indoctrinated into this American society. We as black people tend to oftentimes be overly concerned with whether or not, things are fair. Tell me, when is the last time you noticed how fair things in this country were? When has life in general been fair? There have been people getting their hearts broken, dying for nothing through the course of history. That will never change. One more time. That will never, ever change.
Black People have tried and worked so hard for inclusion over the centuries. We should have a come to Jesus moment and think about it for a moment. Have you ever had something, and then had a friend who always talked about how good they believe you have it? Everything they say is about what you have, and how they wish they had what you have. Also how they’d do anything just to have the opportunities that you have been afforded….Doesn’t that get old after a while? Doesn’t seem like we’re doing more talking, than doing? Does it not feel like we’ve been saying that same thing, since we were slaves? It’s wrong. It’s envy. And we’re a beautiful people (Black People), and we don’t need to envy ANYONE. Our cultures boasts some of the greatest innovators, minds, athletes, teachers, scholars, pastors, engineers, technicians, of all time. A black man was the first doctor to perform open heart surgery. Created the stop light, the gas mask, even the home security system. Oh yeah, and that heart you love so much, was helped out by the pace maker that a black man helped crate. Became president, and some of the most renowned spiritual minds in the world. We’ve overcome so many things. Now we need to learn to overcome ourselves. Did you know the first female millionaire in the US, was Madam C.J. Walker. She created a successful empire of something she created FOR BLACKS…
And that’s the point. Because that’s the way we’ve gotten by without being included, or given the freedoms we should have always been afforded. We tend to expect white folks to help us out with this too. But do we REALLY need their help? Sure, they hold positions, and seats, and opportunities, but I’m sure you didn’t graduate Summa Cum Laude, just so you could wait on another person to give you an opportunity to prove your worth. Fair enough, there will be some things in the world that we will need to be given. But those other things, those unalienable rights, those necessities for jobs, and health care…Oh those things can be created. Created by us.
There have been many people that have gone out of their way to empower black people to do more. They’ve spoken at schools, they’ve become leaders of our communities. And yet somehow, their words don’t resonate in each of us to unify. It’s like the words of these amazing individuals are falling on deaf ears. Hmmm… I wonder if Dr. King, Malcolm X, President Obama, in their many wonderful speeches to empower us, had us still dealing drugs in our communities, because that was the only way we could survive. I wonder how they felt about us going into our neighbors homes and robbing stealing from each other. Or better yet, that we’d kill each other because of a different colored bandanna we wore. Hmmm. Interesting…to say the least. I don’t think they had any of that in mind when they gave those beautifully crafted speeches.
Even the slaves that wanted to be free so badly couldn’t fathom killing each other. They just wanted to be free. They wanted so badly to get a taste of what it was like to not be whipped on a daily basis, that they were willing to band together for the greater good. That’s what I’m talking about here. Blacks want each other to support their own businesses, but don’t wanna take the time to put out a good product. You want the support regardless. Check this out bruh…I’m not gonna eat at your spot, if your food doesn’t taste good. It’s like eating the food of someone who can’t cook just because you love’em. Sometimes…it’s a McDonald’s night, because daddy burned the food. That’s real. That’s the way it is.
People put laws together that have jailed us…to screw us over…That might’ve been the intent. But ask yourself a question: Did the law created cause us to break it? Let’s be honest. If we’re gonna have the conversation, then the least we can do is keep it 110 right now…
The problem with inclusion isn’t so much that we need it, but it’s more that we are chasing after a waterfall here. We’re missing something that was actually never there for us. I mean don’t get me wrong, there have been those that would join blacks in the world, but for the most part, we’ve never been included or really invited to the table with all the “heavy hitters”. We’ve always had to exceed expectations to get there. That’s why I wonder why we care so much about assimilation in the first place. Michael Jordan’s talent got him noticed. His exceeding expectations got him to the table. But he didn’t stop there. He wasn’t content at sitting at the table. He ended up creating his own table. Oprah grew up poor, worked hard and got a seat at the table. But she wasn’t content with just being there. She left her own show, and dreamed bigger. Rather than just have a radio or TV show. She created a conglomerate, that included a Magazine, a TV network and movies that she was able to create content that she wanted to see. With people that looked and had been through some of the similar things that she had. Along with people like Steve Harvey, Tyler Perry, etc.
That’s where I’m getting at. It’s not a bad thing to want to be included in others. But it is a bad thing to expect other groups of people to do so for us. I could sit here and complain about how people like the Kardashians and Ellen, or whomever should be more adept to being for the rights of blacks and our movements. Support us the way we have supported them, but the truth of the matter is, I don’t have another life to wait for them to do come to that mentality. We just gotta do it ourselves black people. Start being great on our own. Let’s use some of that Black Girl/Boy Magic we brag so much about. Let’s get the job done, and be who we wanna be! Black is Strong! Black is Family! Black is Beautiful. Black is Powerful. Black is Prosperous and Luxurious. Never forget that!!
I know…it seems like just yesterday I was speeding back to San Francisco. My wife wincing and pain from each contraction. She’s such a trooper but this was a pain that we didn’t know how to fix. The nurses at the hospital told her that she was in labor. And 3 months early at that. What would we do? Was it the flying at such a late stage in the pregnancy? Was it something I did or forced her to do that she shouldn’t have while pregnant. I guess it’s something I’ll never know. We’ll never know. All I knew then was that she was coming. And there wasn’t much we could do to prevent it. The doctor’s told us that Heavon would be in the hospital for the duration of her pregnancy.
I tried to be strong, but while she was waiting for her epideral I ran to the car balling, tears streaming down my face. I was soooo scared. Scared we’d lose the baby. Scared I’d lose the Love of My Life. I never could have imagined feeling that way, until she would get pneumonia a year later. New ailment, same fear. Life is scary. Especially when you have children. You try to protect them from so many things and realize you have absolutely no power to stop the worst things from happening. Yeah, being a parent taught me that. But it also taught me that God is so amazing. And that His love could be replicated by what is a simple thing for Him. For us, she is a miracle. A miracle baby, a miracle toddler, and now a miracle little girl. She is the very heartbeat us. She is the one who kept us together when we didn’t know what to do with ourselves. If God would’ve taken her at the time, I don’t know if we would have survived it. But His grace spared us. And it’s given us some of the best moments in 5 years we could ever know.
I cherish moments like this. Where we can celebrate birthdays. Where can feel like we actually made a difference in something in this world. God is and will always be the center of our lives. And His reminder of how perfect His love is, is right there. In our daughter. Samaya Sky Austin. She is so amazing. And I guess I could say, I might have been okay without her, but the truth of the matter is, Now I don’t know how we ever got along without her. She is a culmination of a Love that has lasted 18 years. Both she and her little brother. And today, on her day. January 3, 2018…I’d say. Happy Birthday Baby!!! The best is yet to come!!
I haven’t done this in a while, but it’s time. And usually at the beginning of the year I would do more of a year in review, but this year I’m starting off being something different. Doing something different. Rather than recap the past two years and talk about how crazy they have been, I am going to do what I believe God has wanted me to do all along. I am claiming the Victory!!!
Have you been to war, Jason?? Not quite. At least not the way all of you might imagine. I didn’t fight any battles, take up arms, in a literal since. But I did fight. Over the past two years I’ve been doing a lot of fighting. Fighting my family, fighting people I couldn’t see and fighting myself. I even fought with my wife and God over some things. More like a lot of things.
In the battle for self and knowing who I am, God saw me through some serious trials. He taught me that I wasn’t the leader I proclaimed myself to be. He also showed me what I looked like in the mirror (And believe me i wasn’t as sexy and beautiful as i think i am). I actually saw myself being judgmental of others and their situations. He had a way of reminding me that my mind could take me places I never wanted to go if I allowed it to. Dark places…very dark places. The lessons learned brought me to this place. To 2018. But before I got there I had to almost literally lose everything. And I say that with a grain of salt because the truth of the matter is that a lot of us allow our circumstances to dictate what we do. I wasn’t losing everything so much as I was allowing what I had gone through to loosen my grip on what I held dear. I was almost giving up.
Finding yourself and who you really are can be painful and hurtful, but I promise it’s worth it. A few days ago, while in church, I heard the pastor speak a message about being a dreamer. And in understanding our dreams we must let go of the expectation that everyone will be able to go with us on the journey we are about to embark on. That’s so true for me. I had to give up some things, and people. And it wasn’t necessarily giving up on the people in general. It was just weighing out the importance of them being in my life going forward. I also had to release some of my own preconceived notions that I previously held on to. In other words I had to change. Because where I was headed couldn’t hold the weight of my past.
I know it sounds cryptic but some of you have gone through similar things. Ranging from marital issues to a war with your mind. Many others have also had financial trouble. But like they say, desperate times call for desperate measures. Times when you have to just do things differently. Stop talking about things and just be the things. Take a leap so to speak. Trust me I know that stepping out on faith is a huge risk, and sometimes you’ll fall flat on your face. And believe me. I rarely feels like any good is coming out of it.
So where does this victory come in to play???
Well…here it is…God saved me…from myself. He restored my home, and my family. He renewed my mind. And not only that, but solidified and put me back together, stronger than ever. I honestly didn’t believe it was possible for him to do some of what He’s done. I’m not afraid to give credit where it is due. He became the calm in my storm and showed me that everything I ever wanted was right in front of me. And I didn’t have to venture out to go get it because He had already answered so many of my prayers. I was also able to get my life and mind back into focus on the things I wanted not just for family, but for me. To all you out there that want to be married and yet somewhat single. Prepare for your marriage not to work. Because if you haven’t discovered by now that being married to someone is a symbiotic process. You are an Individual to some degree but when you realize that you represent something greater than just you, that’s when the real process starts to take over. And you have to trust that process. And while to some those aren’t huge victories. They are victories nevertheless. Plus if you can’t learn to celebrate when you get something small, you’ll never appreciate when the big breakthrough comes.
My mother in law told me that working things out is tough, but it’s like rebuilding a road. At first it gets torn up and looks so ugly. Laden with potholes and cracks throughout the street. After tearing it down you get to lay down some new asphalt filling the holes and inconsistencies. You even get to make some of the original things you couldn’t see right. The street then gets flattened and smoothed over and ultimately has a brand new finish. The surface is made better than before….
A process for me to live by…one that is tangible
So what are my parting words after such a victory in the fact that I made it through? Here goes:
Be loving. Be truthful, faithful, and forgiving. And that love won’t fail. Ever. Trust in God. Trust in God. Trust in God. That’s the victory. The victory is knowing that no matter what 2016 or 2017 looked like. 2018 is here. And we don’t have to dwell on what was. Let’s move forward and be grateful for what is. Is it perfect? …not yet. But it’s still incredible in its own right. And that makes me…dare I say. Happy…
More to come…
More to come…
As much as I love to write and even read what I write I believe this is actually a tough subject for me to speak on. It is because this subject matter contains the very worst of me. It contains things I don’t even want my children to know getting older. It shows me in a light that oftentimes I am so uncomfortable with. But I really believe it’s time to tell this story. It’s been over a year that I’ve been wrestling with really talking about it but I guess this is what I am being led to do. I hope that whoever reads this can get a better understanding of me through this or just the subject as a whole.
The past two years have been what some would call tumultuous for me. They’ve been riddled With decision after bad decision. Choice after terrible choice. And some of which I look back on with shame because of how I acted in key moments.
The things I did could make any one think that I was either on drugs or just not in my right mind. And there it is, the latter of the two happened to me. And I’ll be the first to say that I never, not in a million years thought that I would take a moment to admit this. It’s because I believed in myself almost to a point of arrogance. I thought that there was nothing I couldn’t do. Nothing I couldn’t overcome. And while I still believe that to be true, I am now armed with the knowledge that I can do all things, just not alone.
You see my truth statement for today is that over the years I have come to suffer with bouts of depression. Now to how severe it’s been, I’m sure that’s for a doctor to say. But for me there have been moments when it got pretty bad. So bad in fact that there was a moment for me. A moment that I’m not sure if I even know anyone that has been this way. I just know that I had a moment when I was so riddled with guilt and shame from my decisions that I believed that I wanted to do harm to myself. And when I say harm, I mean I wanted to actually end my life. Now don’t get me wrong, thankfully I was able to snap out of it and realize that I couldn’t do my children or wife any good while not being on this earth. And even though I came out of it for the moment it wasn’t the end. I didn’t even realize at the moment what it was.
One of my favorite scriptures in the Bible says “As a man thinketh in his heart, so shall he be…”. That comes from Proverbs 23:7
I like it because it talks so much about the power of the Mind. I honestly don’t think that most people think about the things we will ourselves to do. We also don’t think about the trouble we could get ourselves into if we don’t take control or put some type of perspective into some of those thoughts.
I say all of that to say that this is a problem for not just my people, my community, my family, but a serious thing to address for many families and communities out there. There are so many cases out there where the signs of depression go untreated and even unnoticed. Yes you would think that it’s easy to determine to the factors or when someone out there is dealing with mental illness. But truth be told, there are so many that hide it well. In my case it started out pretty subtle, but ultimately got worse and worse because of my refusal to speak on it and admit that there was something wrong. Something I couldn’t handle on my own. For me in particular, hiding it only made it worse. So much worse until I got to a point where I just broke. And when I say broke, I could almost describe it as kind of being shattered into small pieces, not knowing which went where or how long it would take to put it back together. I was broken. I couldn’t control my thoughts or my emotions. I allowed life to become too much because I believed so much that it was all about me and how I handled things. That If I could mess it up by myself. Then I could fix it by myself. I couldn’t even fathom how wrong I was.
When you hear the phrases, ‘Battlefield of the Mind’ or ‘war of the Minds’ it really is that. Joyce Meyer and Flame knew what they were talking about respectively. It’s more than just a form of warfare. It’s a down right fight for your life under certain circumstances. People think that they can just overcome things on their own, but I want you to know there’s actually no shame in getting help. And for all you “believers” spiritual, and religious folk out there, you think that prayer is the thing that can get you through everything. I know I did. I thought that because I believed in God and that He is able to do all things, that it would get me through. The thing is, if you believe in God, you should know that God is not just one of faith, but of action. He has allowed for the different medicines for every illness. And this is no different. The medicine out there could be in the form of some drug, but for me it is in the form of counseling.
There are pastors, teachers, and many people alike who suffer from this very thing. Mental illness is very high in the black community as well. We tell ourselves that because we’re black and deal with so many different adversities daily, we should be able to get through this as well. And it’s true, we can get through it. But we must take the proper steps.
So why do I write all of this?
I do so because I want to warn others that even when you have this to deal with, not dealing with it comes with serious consequences. My battle of the Mind, told me that my own family didn’t need me. That they were better off without me. It told me, that all I was doing was hindering them. It also told me that my wife could do better than me. So much so that I convinced myself that my only option was to get as far away from them as I could. It told me that maybe God was wrong about us. Isn’t that something? You’d be surprise the things people hear when they are going through such things. You would think the love you have for something or someone couldn’t be swayed, but I’m here to say that once the Mind sets itself on something, it can be difficult to get past it. Just like if you are so angry at someone that it’s hard to get past. You start telling yourself that’s all you see. And after a while if not dealt with, the damage becomes even more difficult to get past or put it in your rear-view.
Am I done with depression, I don’t know, maybe…but not done because I’ll never get sad again. I’m done because I’ve acknowledged that it happens to me. Now I know the signs as well as the triggers. I also have the knowledge that God helps me to answer my own prayers as well concerning this. Through counseling. Through prayer. Through a strong support system. Also through being still. Stillness tells me not to move or make decisions when I feel that despair coming on. And speaking of a support system, I’m here to say, that sometimes that system cannot or doesn’t involve your immediate family. Because there will be times when our families are just not properly equipped to help us deal with this serious issue. Without the proper dealing with this there are so many long lasting effects. Believe it or not, some of which I deal with everyday.
I’m telling my story because I don’t want anyone out there to lose what I almost lost. I almost lost my wife, my children, and Last but not least, myself. Trust me when I tell you it is War. And war always has casualties. You can minimize them along with the wounds and scars if you just learn how to fight the battles. But just like most battles or wars, this one is winnable. We have to remember that with every battle, the one you are most likely to win, is the one that you don’t try to go at alone. If you remember anything I say at all , please, remember that.
More to come…
So here we are. Back again to discuss what it’s like to be Black, African American, and a person of color. Now don’t get me wrong, I love being black. I love my skin, the skin of my wife and kids, their hair and everything that comes with being black. I love our culture and the way we have such an influence on what society does artistically. So the question is, “Jason, if you could change anything about your life as a black person, what would it be?” Honestly?? I’m not sure if anyone wants me to answer this question, but just for the sake of being a writer I will say this: I personally would change the innate fear that all black people have. We fear that we will always be mistreated in this world. That we will always be slaves the eyes of whites (F&%K you JERRY JONES!). That we will always have to explain to our sons and daughters how to make it in a “white-washed” world or how not to be assaulted or killed by the police for no reason.
Yeah, that’s real. And most likely you can ask almost any black person you know. That’s what it’s been like ever since the Atlantic slave trade. A mentality that has plagued our race and culture for over 400 years. It’s the whole Staying “Woke” movement. Staying “Woke” means to just be aware of what the truth about the day and age is. Always being aware so that we don’t go back to becoming enslaved again. And I mean that both literally and figuratively.
You see the thing about being black is that I always (AND I DO MEAN ALWAYS) have to be concerned with social injustice. It doesn’t matter how far we’ve come or how much money we make. What parties or country clubs we get invited to join. Black people have always been the butt of the joke in every room (ask Jourdan Rodrigue). Take what’s going on in the world today. Recently an @ESPN analyst Jemele Hill was suspended for giving her opinion on a situation involving flag protests and mandates by an NFL owner to stand during the national anthem. She also two weeks before said that Donald Trump, the president, is a racist and white supremacist (something EVERYBODY knows). ESPN first warned Ms. Hill about her remarks calling them inappropriate, and just yesterday suspending her for calling out the social injustice of the NFL and it’s owners. So there’s two sides to this right? First side she works for the ESPN and she has an obligation to that company. We all know that companies that are in the public eye are not as keen on free speech as one would think. So she needed to be a bit more aware, the same way she said Cam Newton should’ve been (but that’s another story for another day). On the other hand, this was her personal twitter account and she should be able to express her own personal thoughts the way the president of this country does. (Hmmm) So isn’t it a bit of hypocrisy to say that she has to face retribution and the leader of the free world does not? That’s why we have to stay “Woke”. Because we have to be aware of issues that the average white person will never be concerned about. We have to worry about the president, who’s supposed to be looking out for our best interests as people of color as well. I mean but the truth is, chances are we probably only had a handful of people who held the office of President who weren’t racist. Maybe about 3. That’s the truth. Even the white folks that love black people and that aren’t racist don’t have to worry about the amount of issues and problems we have. Like I said it doesn’t matter what circles I run with.
I’m always gonna be Black. Till the day I die and even then some white person will refer to me as a “dead nigger”. That’s just how my life is gonna go. That’s how my son’s life will be as well. And it’s sad. Sad that I have to spend my days seeing white people call me or someone that looks like me out of their name. While they stay unaware of the issues the black community has to deal with. Of course there are some who might find empathy in the plight of blacks, but you’ll never know for sure. You’ll never walk 10 minutes in our shoes.
And here’s something you might not know. The truth about staying aware or “Woke” , is that it’s EXHAUSTING!!!! It makes us so tired. We try and try and try not to think about racism. We try to believe that every one is truly free. Or that there’s someone out there to speak on our behalf. But honestly, you just won’t let it die. Places and events like Charlottesville, VA won’t let it happen. Do you honestly think I wanna spend all my days being angry and thinking about this? Days where I worry about my son being shot because he was at the park pretending to serve and protect with his toy gun. He will emulate not only a black man who serves the public, but whites as well. But he’ll be called a thug on national TV. They’ll dig into his history, and say that he got suspended from school for smoking weed or getting into a fight. Or a spoiled millionaire who gets paid for playing a game. Or even worse. An ungrateful nigger who expresses his first amendment right to peacefully protest and kneel during the national anthem. They’ll say he’s disrespecting the flag (an inanimate object) when his grandfather fought in the Vietnam War for his rights and whites rights for freedom. When his uncle and cousins fought in the Gulf or Iraq or even Afghanistan to insure that he, as an American, who just so happens to be Black, can live without the fears his father currently lives with.
Yeah…the $hIT is definitely EXHAUSTING. We are so tired of it. We just wanna be free. That’s all we ask. Think about it.
More to come….
Mr. Kapernick…how long I’ve wanted to speak with you regarding your decision to not vote in this past election. Citing reasons, that it didn’t make a difference because of the state you lived in. Yep…That’s what it is right there. It’s symbolic of a condition that has plagued Black America for the longest time. It’s something that blacks all over America are just ashamed of. It’s the disease of APATHY. A great Apathy at that.
Apathy is defined as a lack of interest; lack of concern; indifference; lack of enthusiasm
And my problem with Kapernick isn’t necessarily because he didn’t vote, because I’m not quite sure that we cared about that. It’s more about the hypocrisy behind his NOT voting. He, like many in America talk a good game, as to why they can’t be this, or they can’t be that. Making the excuse that there’s no opportunity for blacks to successful, but when given an opportunity to change things, they do exactly what the rest of country expects a black man to do…NOTHING…And by that I mean in a way that says, I don’t care about anything, but what benefits me personally. Although, I’m smart, and have some great ideas on how we can turn this country or what not around, I’m going to ruin my point, by doing the one thing that will keep me disenfranchised. That will keep me bound. I’m going to not exercise my right, because for some reason or another, it doesn’t make sense for me. The right that my ancestors fought tirelessly to get. Something that I should’ve had from the start, but because I grew up free, I can take that same right, for granted.
Now I don’t want anyone to get me wrong, this blog is not about Colin Kapernick, even though one might say that it could be (and I just don’t wanna waste my keystrokes on talking about him). It’s about Blacks, African Americans, colored people, etc. (whatever they are calling us this year). It’s about us, not doing what we know we need to do at the most crucial of times. Like I said, it’s not that Colin didn’t vote. It’s that he brought all that attention to himself and to the issue of not being treated fairly to the forefront. And in doing so, he allowed a spotlight to be on himself. Everyone clowns Bill Cosby for telling blacks that they need to get off their couches and behinds and educate themselves. I can’t defend Mr. Cosby for everything he’s ever said, but at least he was going out to the schools and talking with people. Donating his time and money to schools as well. He also voted. But his point too was marred by the fact that he was accused by 50-plus women of sexual assault. It doesn’t mean that he did it, but it does cloud your points, gentlemen. Yes, the blacks are treated unfairly in this country. By whites, by other races alike. In this graduating class of race, we win most of the negative superlatives. A few categories, such as Most Likely to Be Stopped by the police for no reason. Most likely to be judged before we speak. Also Most likely to Be Killed for no reason other than the color of our skin. We are presumed guilty before we walk in the door. Even before we go to trial, and it’s a shame. But when we do get the chance to show what we are made of, some of us don’t even show up to the party. We have this attitude of, well it doesn’t even matter, it’s not made for us. It’s the system and It’s rigged. (That sounds quite familiar doesn’t it.)
My basic point is this: How effective can we be, if when given the opportunity to prove what we can do, we just lay down or not even show up. As if it doesn’t matter to us. The people who do that are the same people you will hear complaining about the injustices of he world for the next 4 to 8 years, especially given the fact that half the people out there protesting Trump didn’t even vote.
Now I will say, that every experiment has to have a control, so here’s the other side of the argument:
I’m not saying that this justifies inaction, but there are reasons why some blacks choose to do nothing. There’s a reason why blacks can come across so apathetic. It’s partially because there have been so many attempts to block our basic unalienable rights (You know those rights given to everyone COUNTED as human in the Declaration of Independence), that some of us, have quit fighting. That’s what you (the rest of America) wanted anyway. Slavery was a time in which many blacks/Africans fought for their freedom, only to have it beat out of them… And it worked. For those who don’t think slavery was that bad. Imagine being a soldier in a war, and then being captured by the enemy. Imagine, them torturing you on a daily basis. Them asking you what your name is, and then getting beat when you say a name that was actually given to you at birth. Being waterboarded for hours, nearly drowning, until you give up on everything you held dear, because you didn’t wanna die. Because you hoped that one day you’d see your family, or friends again. Then coming home and not even understanding who you really are anymore, or carrying this latent guilt that you aren’t even good enough to live. That your life is worth nothing. I honestly don’t know if there will ever be a way to adequately describe what those innate feelings are like. I guess some could describe or equate it to PTSD from a historical standpoint. Yeah, I’d say that at times it’s that serious. Like you don’t matter when it all comes down to it, because of the way you’ve seen your parents, or grandparents treated historically. It’s literally the definition of being an oppressed people.
I think that’s what makes it so difficult for me. The apathy is extremely serious among African Americans. So serious that we almost do all of the distress that our ancestors had gone through a disservice. I’m sure if Martin Luther King would’ve known he was gonna die for us to choose not to vote, he might’ve had a different dream. After all, he was jailed, beaten, hosed down, and later assassinated so our people could be free. It was his dream. Not only his dream, but the dream of all of those who marched, black and white, for us to have the ability to do the things we all dreamed of or desired. It’s just (and I’m gonna keep it real) a slap in the face. It’s a real problem with our community . When I see the numbers of this past election and realize that over half of us registered to vote didn’t get out there, it just makes me sick. No wonder other races don’t take us seriously. Because we won’t even honor our own struggles throughout history. We are becoming just as entitled as everyone else. Only difference is, we’re the ones that will continue paying for that entitlement. Other cultures will go on living their lives, with the laws that were designed for them to succeed, and we won’t even stand a chance. When it’s all said and done, we’ll still be living in the ‘hood’, or tenements that were designed to keep us down in the first place. We will have to live with them voting every 50 years on the Civil Rights Act, because it’s a law that actually expires (CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT SH#@). We will have to continue being oppressed, not because of the majority of blacks that are out there making a difference in their communities and homes. But by the minority of us, that don’t give damn, because of all their conspiracy theories that believe white folks are STILL the cause of us being held back. Yeah…they will be, if we remain lazy, keeping our mouths shut, and ourselves out of the voting booths when we should be casting a ballot.
The time for kneeling is OVER. At this point, the only thing kneeling can do for us, is make it easier for a Slave Owner like Trump to strike us with his trusty whip!!! The time to Stand is Now!! If you want real Change, start by coming up with a new work ethic. A movement that says we will no longer stand for the injustices of the world or our own back yard for that matter. That will be United in exercising our Civil Rights!! That’s the type of Change that anyone would and should be willing to die for!!