Wayfarer Hodgepodge

How do you hold a moonbeam in your hand?

Sometimes people think they know you. They know a few facts about you, and they piece you together in a way that makes sense to them. And if you don’t know yourself very well, you might even believe that they are right. But the truth is, that isn’t you. That isn’t you at all.

—Leila Sales, This Song Will Save Your Life (via thisisme-noah)

(Source: sempiternale, via bu-hashem)

I was once a linebacker-sized eighteen-year-old, too. What I knew then, what black people have been required to know, is that there are few things more dangerous than the perception that one is a danger.

Jelani Cobb on Ferguson. (via newyorker)

(via journolist)

Every one of us is tested in different ways. For some of us, it might be the excess of wealth, for others, the lack of wealth. For some, it might be in the avoidance of alcohol, for other, guarding one’s tongue from speaking evil.

Never feel superior to someone struggling with one test, because for sure, you are struggling with another.

It’s not my responsibility to be beautiful. I’m not alive for that purpose. My existence is not about how desirable you find me.

—Warsan Shire (via quotes-shape-us)

(via bu-hashem)

reclaimingthelatinatag:

Isabella’s Hair and How She Learned to Love It is a children’s book by New York author of Afro-Boricua descent, Marshalla Soriano Ramos.
Ramos, who is also an English as a Second Language teacher, poet and Mom, wrote Isabella”s Hair and How She Learned to Love It “out of a desire to respond to the issues surrounding self image within the Afro-Latino community and to contribute to multi-cultural protagonists being represented in children’s literature” [x].

Above picture courtesy of WordPress blog Festival AfroLatino de Nueva York.

reclaimingthelatinatag:

Isabella’s Hair and How She Learned to Love It is a children’s book by New York author of Afro-Boricua descent, Marshalla Soriano Ramos.

Ramos, who is also an English as a Second Language teacher, poet and Mom, wrote Isabella”s Hair and How She Learned to Love It “out of a desire to respond to the issues surrounding self image within the Afro-Latino community and to contribute to multi-cultural protagonists being represented in children’s literature” [x].

Above picture courtesy of WordPress blog Festival AfroLatino de Nueva York.

(via thisisnotlatino)

So a Black boy needs to be an angel in order to not be deserving of death? Is this the conclusion of the New York Times article?

This relates to the ludicrous nature of respectability politics.

In a way, respectability politics doesn’t really exist. I say that in the sense that it isn’t possible for a Black person to ever be worthy and valuable within a white supremacist context. This is abundantly true if an apparently reputable publication is using facts that are true of many American teenagers to paint Mike Brown as somebody deserving of being executed.

But even the New York Times article stepped around its true conclusion. It isn’t that Mike Brown deserved to die because he wasn’t perfect. He didn’t deserve to die because he got into “at least one scuffle” or because he had tried marijuana or because he wasn’t constantly on the honor roll. He deserved to die because he’s Black. According to white supremacist discourse every Black person deserves to die.

Fundamentally, the idea that being respectable will save you is dangled over Black people’s head. But it’s a false promise. Respectability politics is an ideology that Black people use to police ourselves — to limit ourselves. And to what gain?

There is no such thing as being a respectable Black person outside of the Black community. Everything that makes us respectable in our own eyes is dismissed in the larger world.

To be Black is to be un-respectable.

At the end of the day if our humanity can be parsed by not getting good grades or experimenting with drugs then we were never accorded humanity to begin with.

Beyond Ferguson, the pattern is clear. Blacks are always to blame, even as we are brutalized by police, ghettoized by neoliberal policies, and disenfranchised by a racist criminal (in)justice system.

But that’s the crux of white supremacist racial logic: the problem with black people is … well, black people – not mass incarceration and the deindustrialization of urban America, not educational inequality and generational poverty, not 400 years of slavery, lynchings, and Jim Crow. To be black in America is to be victimized and then made responsible for our victimization. We built this country. But, apparently, it is we who are lazy and dependent. We are bullied politically, socially and economically. But it is we who are called ‘thugs.’

One misconception outsiders have about Haiti, or any so-called “third world” country, is that poverty is all there is. Reality tells a different story. People live, die, get married, lose their virginity, graduate high school and college, dream and strive in Haiti. There are, in fact, many possibilities.

Haitians are humans, not symbols of poverty. But you shouldn’t have to go to Haiti to find that out.

The Slaves of Saint-Domingue Did Not Dream, They Exploded by Ferrari Sheppard (via caribbeancivilisation)

(via afro-dominicano)

my-tardis-sense-is-tingling:

These tweets (and one retweet) are from my friend Ryan, a journalist who has been on the ground in Ferguson for the past few days. (His Twitter account is here, and it’s a great source of updates on the situation there   [x]).

I just wanted to remind everybody that while spreading word about Michael Brown’s unjust murder and the horrifying events of the night of August 14, 2014, please do not oversimplify or ignore the complexities of the situation.

Some journalists in the town have been doing what journalists do: focusing on all the negative aspects about the community to try and make it look like a hell-hole in order to sell their own pictures and stories, and basically all many of them want to do is further their own careers. But focusing on all that negativity only paints the picture of one side of the story, ignoring a lot of other important things going on there.

Please do not fall prey to the media’s game. Anger at the actions of the police in Ferguson is totally justified, but in the midst of that we cannot allow the people who are living with the situation every day to be dehumanized. Despite all this tragedy and chaos going on around them, they’re still a community and in many ways they’re pulling through all of it together. They want peace. Anyone looting or burning things down is a very small portion of the community. The whole story is so much bigger.

A story doesn’t need tear gas to be interesting. We need to hear every side of this story, not just the horrific parts.

TL:DR: please don’t fall prey to media attempts to dehumanize and oversimplify the situation in ferguson!!

(via latinegro)