African

‘MeToo’ Creator Tarana Burke Talks Time’s ‘Person Of The Year’ Honor — Black America Web

TIME has named The Silence Breakers – the brave voices who sparked a movement in coming forward with their stories of sexual harassment – as its 2017 Person of the Year. The magazine’s editor-in-chief Edward Felsenthal revealed the selection Wednesday on “Today” along with the cover, a composite group photo that includes actress Ashley Judd,…

via ‘MeToo’ Creator Tarana Burke Talks Time’s ‘Person Of The Year’ Honor — Black America Web

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Ivory Toldson Taking the Lead in Educating Black Students | Harbari Gani, America!

Dr. Ivory A. Toldson declares himself the “myth buster” when it comes to researching the implications of racial biases on the education system serving Black students. He supports this claim by debunking well-worn biases and treading new ground that few within that system approach for solutions.

Black students are the most challenged population in America’s education system. They are examined through a kaleidoscope of negative stereotypes accumulated over 400 years and are fortunate to have a champion like Ivory Toldson, former Executive Director of the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities, and Howard University Professor changing the tides.

In his new position as President and CEO of the Quality Education for Minorities network, Toldson will have the opportunity to expand his research, providing educators across the nation with resources to strengthen minority education goals.

As a newly free agent, Toldson stretches his wings serving as the keynote speaker for the National Education Association Conference on Minorities and Women’s Conference on Racial Justice and Education, Closing Plenary. Toldson understands present research processes and practices are made toxic by societal and personal biases, but he offered jewels enabling educators and administrators to reached beyond these borders with his “10 myth busters” for your edification below. He says,

“…these are what I call the 10 biggest lies that I hear about young, black males. And the reason why it is important to understand that they are lies is because these are often used as the excuse for why certain people in our field aren’t doing what they’re supposed to do for our children.

Number 1 — There are more Black men in prison than in college.

  • In fact, right now there are more than 600,000 more black men in college than in prison.

Number 2 — 50% of Black boys dropout.

  • Most people believe that because of their interpretation of some very popular reports, including the Shot Foundation‘s report with a looked at graduation rates and not dropout rates. You have to understand the difference between graduation rates and dropout rates in order to interpret that report responsibly, but the true dropout rate among black males as characterized by the National Center For Educational Statistics is right around 12%. Now, that is nothing to clap about, but when we look at a room full of Black males and we think that one of them are going to drop out, that is not the type of perspective or mentality we want our teachers to go into the classroom with.

Number 3 — Black boys can’t read.

  • Now, most people are identified as non-readers because of our standardized tests. There are all kinds of reasons why a student who may be able to read functionally won’t do well on a standardized test, and if we don’t understand those reasons and just use these blanket indicators from the NAEP exam to say what percent are not proficient, and then interpret proficiency as their lack of an ability to do the things we need them to do in the school, then we are not going to exercise the best practices when we work with the students.

Number 4 — Black youth of today are more violent than any generation in history.

  • When in fact, crime among Black youth escalated in the 80’s, reached its peak by the mid-1990’s, has been going down since the late-1990’s, and this is generation of youth is the least violent of any generation of youth since before the 1960’s.

Number 5 — One in three Black boys will serve time in prison.

  • In fact, most of the reports that have claimed this have never looked at Blackmales as they exist right now. They use projections. The article that most people cite or the study that most people cite is by someone named Thomas P. Bonczar that did something called the “Double-Decrement Life Table” that looked at the year someone was born and then projected their odds of going to prison. He did this report over 10 years ago, and the only group of cohorts that had a one in three chance were those who were born a year before he wrote the report.
  • So, in other words, he was looking at 2-year-olds and saying they would have a one in three chance of going to prison based on what he thought would be an escalation in the crime rate, not a de-escalation, which is what we actually got.

Number 6 — Black boys are at a natural disadvantage because most are from single-parent households.

  • I have written two articles in this regard, but the summary of those articles is it doesn’t matter the composition of your household. It matters who your parents are. It matters the value they place on education, their engagement with the school, the socialization of their child to the academic environment,and it has nothing to do with who is in their bed.

Number 7 — Black students purposely underachieve because they associate being smart with acting white.

  • Now, there is a lot I can say about that, but I have written an article on it. You can see the evidence. That is not true. And in fact, among Black girls, most of the strongest surveys show that Black girls actually have the highest regard for education than any other group of students out there. And in fact, there is a lesser known function that has been constantly found in the literature, and that is called the “Attitude Achievement Paradox.” That is the fact that in most survey research Black students actually show a higher attitude about the abstract notion of education, but their achievement is not measuring up to that.

Number 8, Black males are avoiding the teaching profession.

  • Again, I have written an article about all of these. You will get the link soon. When you look at young, Black males who are college-educated, teaching is actually the number one profession. So you ask, why is it less than 2%? That is because we are only 5.5% of the population. Of that 5.5%, only 17% have at least a bachelor’s degree, and among those who go on to get their degrees in education — and this is a little-known fact, but it is in the report that I have written — Black males are more likely than any other race group to be promoted out of the classroom into administration.

Number 9 — Black men are underrepresented at institutions of higher education.

  • The nation has 12.7 million Black men who are 18 years and older, and we make up about 5.5% of the adult population, and 5% of those who are in college. Where we are underrepresented is the most competitive colleges. So, those colleges with selective admissions criteria have an underrepresentation of Black students. And those that have open admissions criteria, like community colleges, have an overrepresentation of Black students. And that is largely because a lot of the factors these students talked about earlier, especially a young lady who says she was advised to go to a community college when she clearly had the academic credentials to go to Michigan State.

Finally, Black men are a dying breed.

  • Now, one of the things we have to understand is that when we are in a nation that only refers — only uses the terms breeds, endangered, and species for black men and animals, then that is a problem. But in fact, black men have an increasing representation in the population. Our numbers are growing. White males, their numbers are decreasing. Now that doesn’t mean either one is in danger. But when all we are doing is using these types of terms to deal with humans, then we are dehumanizing them. “

~ Conference on Racial Justice and Education, Closing Plenary (Video)
More on Ivory Toldson Leaving White House Initiative on HBCUs Post – Higher Education

Jesse Williams Wants You To ‘Stay Woke’ In New Film On Black Lives Matter | HuffPost, Black Voices

STAY WOKE: The Black Lives Matter Movement, a Jesse Williams production.

“Black Lives Matter is in many ways, in its adolescence,” Williams told The Huffington Post about his involvement in the film and his thoughts on various aspects about the movement. He discussed with HuffPost the birth of the #BlackLivesMatter hashtag, how it subsequently swept the Internet by storm and how the hashtag helped to bring about real change. He also highlighted the daunting feat the movement’s participants have in figuring out how to create lasting change. 

Catch the rest of the article here: STAY WOKE

Source: Jesse Williams Wants You To ‘Stay Woke’ In New Film On Black Lives Matter

Mommafucious: Final Thoughts for 2015, Part II

Rudin1Final Thoughts for 2015 Part II: This is part two because I know that tomorrow, there will be more uncluttered ruminations.

Facebook and Twitter Posts keep me informed. Unlike the little challenged Main St. local and national news, there are many voices. During the year they varied, became morose, battle scenes, rants then cheerleaders slip in their philosophical cheers for the day. Some are eternally happy, living in clouds. Their feet never touch the ground. We have the merchants, buy me or you will never know where it’s at. A popup IM. “Are you all right?” “How’s your day going?” “We are sisters.” “We are one.” Some send flowers and stolen memes. “Sent from the iPhone of…” Even more distant are the “I am beautiful.” “She is beautiful.” “LMAO” and the infamous “LOL.”
Twitter condenses life into 140 characters. It gives you just enough space to get to the point. Black Twitter and it’s coalescing body, Blavity has found a home at the Los Angeles Times news desk. Someone is paid to read your thoughts and track the wave a Blackness storming the globe. They are mostly young and eager to tell the world where we are at. Most interesting are the trolls that attach themselves to the #BlackTwitter hashtag simply to peek at the dang Black upstarts. Remember, if they are angry you must be doing something right.
Election year “I am running for…” Trump boasts that he paid little in advertisement. Everyone in their weakest moment gasped at his barbs, posted them in succession along with video footage of his latest interview. “Mr. Trump, would you explain …” We sit on a perch waiting for the next go round of a news cycle.
Bernie Sanders proved to me that “it’s not the dog in the fight; it’s the fight in the dog.” Lately, he asked for and raised $2,000,000 in small campaign contributions from the masses in two days. And he is still humble enough to hug Hilary Clinton. That might the reason. Another charming quality about Bernie is that when confronted by Black Lives Matter and the racial equality agenda, he didn’t do as most politicians. He didn’t lock his jaw, roll his eyes, clutch the pearls, and ignore. Bernie took note, if only in rhetoric. But rhetoric has proven to matter also.
Local politics was profane in 2015. We saw familiar faces and blood-soaked fingers pat ringwormed heads, curled their lips, and chided activists’ bad behavior. One NY politician chose to ignore. Why is that profane to me? It reminds me of the Liberal and Black politicians that can only tell the Black community all of the world’s problems are that I don’t vote. Not toxic site dumping in poor and minority neighborhoods, large and small producers spewing toxins into the air to ramp up climate change, not education disparities and marginalization, not even that they are worthless beings and don’t give a damn as long as they have a job until the next election cycle. Check history. If Blacks vote too much, “conservatives” (Oh my god, that word) burn the town down. I do vote, by the way.
I never thought “outsiders” would become the dirtiest word amid the flames of protest. But it was. One woman stood amidst a burning city and a neatly drawn chalk line to proclaim they had never had a problem in their town until outsiders infiltrated their ranks. It was clear that she was the one that posted the “Bless this house” meme that went across the country more than 60,000 times.
My timeline oozed Black historical figures and Black achievements. The greatest achievement this year, however, was the realization that despite all of the blood shed for the cause, there is still much blood left to go around. Most of it, no one will notice. They are all scrapbooking the black and white photos of those they will never emulate; pretending ties to philosophy righteousness has long put to rest. I’m waiting to see what else is contrived for Black History Month this February. Danielle Colin’s beautiful, “Dreaming in Kreyol” sits on my nightstand. I wonder how many centuries will go by before I see an academic critique. Will her photo be in color?
The most interesting are the young traversing grounds they swear are new and innovative. I once asked a woman sitting still, drinking, and smiling through her 40’s with years of destruction around her how she can do such a thing. “I’ve done all that before,” was her answer. 20 years later, I understand. That is why she sits.
dreaminginKreyol
Photos… oh they are called selfies now. This is my moratorium to what you missed. I read articles that claim people who post selfies are narcissistic. I think selfies tell the world how much they are missed. How small we feel in vast spaces, even in our own bathrooms. Not everyone smiles. The fearful ones sometimes but mostly never smile. The haughty contort their faces in some kind of grotesque pout mimicking their last black and white photo in the scrapbook. Still, the most grotesque are withered beings covered in masquerade hats and feathers. They try to bring it back. But bring what back? We will never know.
Videos are more time consuming but are the most revealing. The Walmart and WorldStar are the best. The police shootings informative. The baby in the cage – the worst. You might have a better take on this, but for me watching modern America go up in flames as the displaced find our borders for refuge is historic. The only difference between then and now is video. Hang a bulb on the tree and call it done.
This holiday season… Should I say holiday? Are you offended? Should I be specific, exclusive – pick my side in the war of holidays this year? Can’t I just sing because I am happy? Or do I have to choose a happiness – a mirror of yours? Ok then… I choose Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza, and all of the many visions of celebration the world has to offer tied in a pink and yellow box with black ribbon. I am sending it out to all of you without exclusion, discrimination, history, or -ism. This is how we prove to ourselves that we are still human – above the beast. Convention, stability in an unstable world. So preserve some of your humanity in a tree, a candle, a bowl of fruit. It makes no difference to the lion, the mouse, the elephant, the spider – they are all assured in their civility and grandeur without symbols.

 

 

The Passion of Nicki Minaj – The New York Times

This is the Nikki Minaj I understand. This the flavor that coated glass covered hills African Diasporan immigrants climbed in the past, present, and future if needed.

“She pointed my way, her extended arm all I could see other than the diamonds glinting in her ears. This wasn’t over yet. ‘‘That’s the typical thing that women do. What did you putting me down right there do for you?’’ she asked. ‘‘Women blame women for things that have nothing to do with them. I really want to know why — as a matter of fact, I don’t. Can we move on, do you have anything else to ask?’’ she continued. ‘‘To put down a woman for something that men do, as if they’re children and I’m responsible, has nothing to do with you asking stupid questions, because you know that’s not just a stupid question. That’s a premeditated thing you just did.’’ She called me ‘‘rude’’ and ‘‘a troublemaker,’’ said ‘‘Do not speak to me like I’m stupid or beneath you in any way’’ and, at last, declared, ‘‘I don’t care to speak to you anymore.’’”

Source: The Passion of Nicki Minaj – The New York Times

Trevor Noah, The Daily Show, Salon Reviewer Gets It Right | Habari Gani, America!

Salon published a spot on critique of The Daily Show’s new host, Trevor Noah, written by Matt Carotenuto. The article, “Trevor Noah schools racists: “The Daily Show” has an essential new mission and comic voice” should not be taken lightly by any reader. Carotenuto explains the relevance of one who is African and in a power-filled American position. Noah has the ability to have a far-reaching impact on our culture with his comedic voice.

Noah, a South African native, now holds one of the most powerful seats – American main media. He cued his audience in the video advertisement previous to his first show. Social media posted various comments to this video, but the actual symbolism seemed to be lost on the average viewer.

Trevor Noah’s first week as host of the Daily Show showed the promise of someone who will educate America, not only about Africa – but about who we are as Americans beyond the punchlines. I pictured some avid Daily Show viewer in their living room shouting, “Who does he think he is?” This was most evident in Noah’s interview with Governor of New Jersey, Chris Christie.

In Daily Show style, Noah began to interview Christie about the politics of his state. Christie tried the “Be careful, I can get to you Black Boy,” inference only to be met with the “Annndd???” gaze. So Noah is the man to maintain his static professionalism and self-awareness in the face of what we in America denote as White Privilege and political might, characteristics he might pass on to the American viewer.

As a Daily Show correspondent, Noah’s brief segments on Africa were palatable only because those who were not culturally educated could yawn their way through it. As the host, Noah sits center stage formulating material for a culture starved and resistant American audience as well as the culturally aware. This tight high profile comedic balance was first achieved by Bert Williams in the early 1900’s, where Williams’ crafty monologues and scenes with his partner George Walker spoke to white and black audiences simultaneous and apart. It was said that at some shows, it was noticeable that whites would roar with laughter in some instances, while Blacks at others; each drawing their own coded messages from the verse. Noah would be smart to study this design.

In reading this article, I found a kindred spirit in Matt Carotenuto. We will both sit on the edge of our seats each night pulling threads, shaking our fist, and hopefully formulating more articles – Noah worthy.


Excerpt:

As a teacher/scholar of African studies, I was delighted when South African Trevor Noah was announced as the replacement for Jon Stewart. Drawing from his complex mixed-race heritage and experience growing up in apartheid era South Africa, Noah is a great candidate to critique America’s single stereotypical story of Africa as a place of merely violence, disease and poverty.

Source: Trevor Noah schools racists: “The Daily Show” has an essential new mission and comic voice – Salon.com

Decolonising the mind: The misunderstanding of traditional African beliefs – This Is Africa

Source: Decolonising the mind: The misunderstanding of traditional African beliefs – This Is Africa

There are few religions as globally misunderstood as African traditional religions. Whether it is being wrongly labelled voodoo, juju or witchcraft, indigenous African faith systems tend to be associated with darkness, animal and human sacrifices, violence and general backwardness

Source: Decolonising the mind: The misunderstanding of traditional African beliefs – This Is Africa

Black Americans Wearing African Clothing Is NOT Cultural Appropriation | Our Legaci

Source: Black Americans Wearing African Clothing Is NOT Cultural Appropriation | Our Legaci

Cultural appropriation is when a dominant culture takes, claims and establishes itself the creator of the cultural heritage and artifacts of a minority and or marginalized culture thereby erasing the history of the marginalized culture.

World Championships facts, expectations and opportunities for Jamaica – Columns | JamaicaObserver.com

Tallawah is not an appropriation of any other culture but Jamaica. It is a testament to who and what underlies a vibrant Caribbean history. Tallawah, tallawah, TALLAWAH!

TALLAWAH: “1. Sturdy, strong, not to be underestimated; tough, stubborn.”Dictionary of Jamaican English; second edition edited by F. G. Cassidy and R. B. LePage; Cambridge University Press 1967, 1980; page 436.

World Championships facts, expectations and opportunities for Jamaica - Columns - JamaicaObserver.com

ALTHOUGH Chris Gayle’s Jamaica Tallawahs are aptly named, Jamaica’s historical performance in the IAAF World Championships demonstrates the essence of the word tallawah. This uniquely Jamaican word depicts an individual of small stature exhibiting prowess way beyond his/her size, and one who must never be underestimated.

With the 15th World Championships only days away, we can reflect on the rich past of little Jamaica in this world event and recognise that our track stars — and, of course, cricketers — have given Jamaica and Jamaicans a stellar reputation. Look at Jamaica’s performance compared to the approximately 200 countries and 2,000 athletes that attend this biennial event which started in 1983.

via World Championships facts, expectations and opportunities for Jamaica – Columns – JamaicaObserver.com.

The Most Stylish Women In Africa-Who made The List | FashionGHANA.com: 100% African Fashion

Genevieve Nnaji (NIGERIA)

These Fashionistas rule in more ways than one.

Mirror Mirror on the wall, these ladies are polished without being fussy, sexy,classy and make statement in a way that people can’t. They are our most stylish women ruling Africa, with easy asses to designer clothing, they ensemble in a way to turn heads and steal attention on social media and in real life.

Number 1 is Genevieve Nnaji
See: The Most Stylish Women In Africa-Who made The List | FashionGHANA.com: 100% African Fashion.