Friday, November 30, 2007

I'm gonna throw up massive chunks mixed with bile flavoured goo...,

I know that supposedly Henry Louis Gates Jr. believes that if the descendants of kidnapped Africans just buckle down and decide to participate in relationships, work, life, country, world as it has been defined for us and handed down to us, do so, then things will eventually get better for Black people in general.

Us descendants of African kidnap victims...
who were betrayed by other black people...
Meaning the ancestors were tricked, captured, stolen, shipped, abused, raped, bought, bred, forced worked and indoctrinated into a previously minor yet predatory monotheistic faith that had risen to cult status after originating in the middle east, gaining prominence once the story of a prophet carpenter fisher of men, killed by authority figures and rebirthed as a zombie making leader of the poor and disenfranchised, was added and the support of a hallucinating roman overlord who fell off his horse on the battle field screaming about seeing a cross in the sky, decided to spread it like a plague of epic proportions far and wide...
These same African forced workers, who, after centuries of living alongside their captors in substandard conditions, working for them, suffering untold hardships at their hands and being forced to worship the above mentioned malevolent, jealous and insecure (phallic) gawd(at the)head with walking dead zombie son and intact hymen sporting, limp and pathetic mother, the triad of personalities at the center of the of the afore mentioned desert cult that, by the time the kidnappers of the Africans dragged their cult/death worshiping patriarchal faith across the sea, it had risen to the status of official cult of all kingdoms, with a few variations, in the pale fatherlands from whence they came...
Then, after many years, the enslaved Africans were sold a whopper of a lie about now being "free"...
Of course some had already run away or tried to by that time...
Some of the remaining survivors on being told of their "emancipation" cut and ran for all they were worth and got on boats...
But many stayed and attempted to buy in...
Which meant that they would now live in impoverished communities not too far from their former captors and that they and their descendants would be
abused, raped, tortured, jailed, infected, tested on, murdered, terrorized, be (under) paid and repeatedly swindled...
All of which they would tolerate in order to get portions of the lands stolen from the original denizens of the now occupied lands...
Who were separate groupings of people who had welcomed the pale crazy cultists and had subsequently been lied to, tricked, swindled, abused, raped, massacred, tortured, humiliated, infected with diseases and chased off their land, their precious land which was now constructed by the afore mentioned followers of the jealous, insecure, virulent (male)gawd(phallic head) cult, as prime real estate...
Although now "free", the Africans still worked their fingers to the bone because the written words of the dead white zombie son of the phallicgawdhead they were taught to worship, the zombie son a pox on his name, birthed to a mother who had never fucked, as interpreted by the people who first stole the land and massacred its people, who then stole African HUMAN BEINGS and kept them as tormented captives...
Then kept the land and kept on tormenting its peoples...
Then "freed" the Africans only to keep on tormenting them which they mostly tried to ignore because they wanted 40 acres of (blood) land (whole nations of men, women and children were deeply harmed and humiliated and corralled and starved while trying desperately to protect) and a bruk down worker cousin of the horse with a name the thieving captors also like translate into spanish and use when they referred to the children who were born from their rapes of African female captives...
Yes, since pale, unwashed, disease spreading, malnourished with teeth falling out, thieves, liars, rapists, abusers, criminals spoke highly of the link between the favour of their overrated gawd, pathological overwork and the worth of the individual...
The "freed" people, taught to understand the afore mentioned toothless, unwashed, backward murderous lying bastards as the proud epitome of humanity, much greater than themselves...
So recently having been worked to the bone, took to the idea of compulsive extreme workaholism on behalf of these occupiers understood as (im)moral compasses and their god, like fish take to water...
Of course, there were other ideas which these "freed" African mass kidnapping victims, stockholm sufferers had also been forced to absorb from the afore mentioned merciless, rude, evil bred right in the bone human buyers...their supposed betters...along the way...
Ideas such as work for pay under the supervision of those who understand themselves as your betters eventually leading to an upwardly mobile change in circumstances for those who break their backs and work long hours
being linked
to the worth and marriageability of the individual
being linked
to godliness
being linked
to believing in hierarchical power structures where everybody has a place they need to stay in
being linked to
ideas about how best to structure our families
being linked
to ideas about men being superior to women
being linked to biological maleness being linked to understandings of what it means to be a man and biological femaleness being linked to understandings of what it means to be a woman
being linked to the idea that those who are born bearing cunts should identify as "woman" and those who are born bearing cocks should identify as "man"
being linked
to ideas about whose voices should boom and occupy space and whose voices should chime and be hardly, if ever, heard.
being linked
to ideas about a natural biol0gical gender based order of things handed down from that nasty ole jealous, simple, violent, insecure triad of personalities containing the unfucked bio incubator of the zombie carpenter and the invisible yet all powerful phallic gawd
to ideas about women being the property of men
being linked
to ideas about children birthed to a woman being the property of their male progenitors
being linked
to ideas about women needing to keep their fucking thighs shut if they're going to be understood as nice and clean
being linked
to women being constructed as low class gutter trash if they don't find one man and stay with him
being linked
to men having to be sure that any children a woman bears being understood as property
being linked
to ideas about what a woman does if she wants to be liked meaning understood as suitable enough to be understood as potential property
being linked
to ideas about who is attractive and why it is that a woman must make sure to be seen as smiling, compliant, accommodating and fucking nice at all times
being linked
to women as those whose transgressions can smear whole families, whole communities
being linked
to ideas about the salvation of whole communities, whole peoples resting on women maintaining easily verifiable sexual social and familial bonds with men who are understood to own them
being linked to ideas sex as equated with heterosexual wedded procreation validated by the phallic desert god head and his dead son and his unfucked and orgasmically deprived and miserable mother
being linked
to same gendered sex and affection being a threat to the very foundation of the family, the community, the nation and the world
being linked
to ideas about what it means to have established oneself, one's family and one's community
being linked
to ideas about who is better off and who is lowly and common class
being linked
to the idea that some human beings, their families, their communities, their values, their religions and their way of just generally running things are better than other human beings' approaches to these very same things...

And many of us, lefty or no, understand that this system, an interlocked web of power and domination is really the only way to move. You gotta fit yourself into this somewhere somehow...E, tven if you lie and say that you really wanna change up everything, this is understood by most, by many as the only game in town.

Find and know your place. Even if you happen to be one of the afore mentioned denizens of this land, even if you are a descendant of the kidnap victims union, you still are expected to find your place and willingly occupy it...even if you have to lie and bleed internally, bite the insides of your own mouth, bite your tongue repeatedly...for the rest of your life, just find your place and know it and never forget it.

Because the others who have been told the same thing, who believe that finding their place in the midst of this mess is what they were put on the planet to do, are watching you.
And if they see that you haven't found your place, don't know your place, don't have a place in all this mess of interlocking rules and rituals, they will realize and will expect others to realize that you're insane, you're nasty, you're stupid, you're unemployable, you're not cool, you're ugly.

And if people around you start understanding you in any of these ways they will give it to you by deciding to understand you as a threat. They will decide to understand you as a nessary target. They will make sure that you are uncomfortable. They will decide to give you nothing but the lowest paying jobs. They will make sure that you, your children, your family starve and that everyone understands that it's your own fault.

They will talk to you about wanting to save you which either means put you in the crazy house, in jail, or working at a McDonalds drive thru cleanin' the employee latrine.

In any case, if you don't take a hint and start trying harder to fit in, eventually they will explain to you as they come and kidnap your children, that you're in serious danger. Which will leave you feeling uncertain and wondering if you're hearing voices or talking to yourself. And once people realize that you're snapping, cracking, zig zagging rather than flying straight, flying right, they're gonna pull away. They will isolate you and call it your social alienation. Soon, you'll start feeling depressed. You might even end up being suicidal or substance addicted...if you weren't already.

And once you are, you will have a hard time ensuring your own survival, let alone the survival of your children, your family's survival, your community's survival.

Which takes us to Mr. Henry Louis Gates. I still haven't read the link that SecondWaver sent me. I just can't. The little I glanced at was seriously disturbing.

But I think he mentioned something about there being two groups of black people. Two classes?

Two different communities of black people? Not a spider webbed collectivity with various facets, layers and hierarchies all occupying continuums of shared history, herstory, experience and oppression, linked in some areas, pushed apart at other points?

Nope.
The well paid academic, the well educated academic says there are two separating distinct groupings.

A binary.

I said to papi that if Gates can theorize away the direct experiential, causal and social relational links between poor, working, middle and upper class blacks (Condi isn't from the lower middle class suburbs of washington, yo) then the black middle class aren't really related to the roiling masses of the black underclass.
All together now! Black middle class? Gimme a big, collective sigh of relief.
And if the Black middle class aren't directly related to the others, if they actually have more in common with the white middle class, then the privileges of the black middle class aren't derived from the oppression of the black working and poor classes...
In the ways that the privileges and power of the white middle class are derived from the suffering of black people and people of colour in general, poor and working class black people and people of colour and poor and working class white.

And if this is the case, then the Black middle class is free and clear. They arose from the salt foamed sea on a fucking half shell. They ain't hurt nobody, looked down on nobody, dusted off their clothes and straightened their ties in order to not be associated with nobody. Their hands are clean, not bloodied, stained with the blood of their disowned, disassociated other selves living in some tenement slum crack house.

I know they feel a certain responsibility to try and help those poor people who they remember because these folks have been, for some strange reason, left back, to suffer and to wallow in the old, poor neighbourhoods.
"Why that person out in the road, eyes wild, half dressed trying to lean up on that man's car askin' for a dollar fi'ty? Why can't they just clean themselves up, get a job, go talk to god in his house, use HUD to get a house, meet a nice, clean woman, have a couple of kids, settle down, stay faithful, have mediocre sex with that same person for the rest of their lives and just act respectable? Like us!"
Which is what I think Mr. Seriously Misled Gates Jr. and many other black folks I keep encountering online are trying to say about how Black people will finally be redeemed and saved from eternal damnation:
We've just got to be more patriarchal, heterosexual, monogamous, god fearin', baby havin', married and nice. Living together just isn't enough! If you don't buy in fully, you won't reap the benefits of living in this (stolen, bloodied, abused, poisoned) land of plenty!
Descendants of slaves were taught that doing all this would raise us up in the eyes of those who bought us, fucked the wimmin, fucked the men, forced the mothers to fuck the sons, forced the uncles to fuck the nieces, forced everyone to go to church and pray to the white patriarchal god, bought, sold and tortured human flesh and felt that they were the arbiters of what it meant to be proper human beings.

And so, with this in mind, with the fact that the idea of patriarchal, romantic, heterosexual, monogamous, wedded love as the one and only saviour of black people firmly nestled as a perpetually vomit inducing irritant in my mind...
I now present to you since the proposal...
"To date more than 100 million people world wide have experienced the slide show that captured our engagement. Click below to view a vision of love unfolded...You are cordially invited to share in our wedding experience. Submit your e-mail address to receive notification each time we update our website. Don't miss out on all of our pre-wedding bliss... Viewers of our proposal slide show have shared with us the positive impact it has had on their lives. Read more about how it has changed our lives as well...Who knew that being obedient to God would change our lives so much or that the vision that I labored over for a year would affect so many people the way that it has...My desire was only to express my deepest love for the woman who had blessed my life in such a miraculous way. In asking for her hand in marriage I was essentially securing God’s greatest gift to me. Through her I have realized the truest definition of agape love...It was not our intention for so many people to witness such an intimate moment in the transition of our relationship...The public reaction to our proposal amazed us because it mirrored the same emotions that we experienced privately. It seems as though all around the world we are connected by the same desires. We hope for joy, peace and true love. Our ultimate joy was manifested through our obedience to God and our submission to His will for our lives...As a result of the expansive circulation of the slide show, we began to pray more than ever about the new direction our lives were taking. We knew that we had to stay firmly rooted in our faith if we wanted God to be able to be glorified throughout this process...We also prayed for discernment so that we could hear his voice more clearly while our relationship was being placed in the spotlight...While many people have expressed that God has used our slide show as an instrument to encourage and inspire them, we have honestly been equally encouraged and inspired by the responses that we have received. Our lives aren’t perfect, we are still pressing toward a higher calling. But for this season, at this time, we are truly grateful that God has used your love and appreciation as confirmation that he does honor those who are obedient to Him."
Over three hundred years have passed and we're still right there. right THERE!




if what you're reading here grips you, holds you, fascinates you, provokes you, emboldens you, pushes you, galvanizes you, discomfits you, tickles you, enrages you so much that you find yourself returning again and again...then link me.

Hate Crime - Black South African Lesbians...

Raped For Who They Are...





if what you're reading here grips you, holds you, fascinates you, provokes you, emboldens you, pushes you, galvanizes you, discomfits you, tickles you, enrages you so much that you find yourself returning again and again...then link me.

Long overdue...

dear darkdaughta,
it's me, your friend darkdaughta. it just wanted to drop you a quick line to say how much i love the work you're doing on this blog. absolutely refuckingfreshing. you are such a gem, woman. i appreciate how you choose your words. i appreciate your sense of humour. i appreciate your determination and your courage. you are definitely a blogger to look out for just because you are an original. i've been wanting to give you an award for quite a while especially after thinking girl did it. that was really nice of her but i know that you'll appreciate my awards much more because we come from the same neck of the woods. i know getting an award from me will be so deliciously irreverent and vindicating because you can't stand the popularity mongers who seem to have taken a potentially flattened electronic field where anyone can come and set up shop and be read/noticed and turned it into a miss universe e-popularity in-club pageant where there are hierarchical layers inside of hierarchical layers inside of hierarchical layers all driven by the stuff that makes people tick real time. how do you know if your blog is tha shit? oh, someone validated it and you. someone told you that you were worthwhile. they functioned as middle man opening a doorway to you and wider acceptance. dearest darkie, i know you're not cool with others measuring your worth, especially since the yard sticks most use are so fucken skewed and oppressive, it's not even funny. i know you would prefer to subvert these competitive and therefore warlike, self esteem attacking award systems and to invite others to do the same, so as to try and create space for you and for others to blog without fear of not fucking being popular enough. with that in mind, i hereby confer on you:


competitive and colonized smiling animal - best in show

weirdest blogger in a self induced vegetative state - runner up

coolest hidden tattoo on an unpopular feminist mama of a girl blogger - dishonourable mention

nicest blogger - special award conferred by sisters for the return of the anti-christ...of latter day saints

2007 heartless blogger award - for the blogger most able to upset the widest variety of bloggers in any given category, career, calling or field on any given lefty blogroll...they just want you to know that this is their way of saying thanks for the repeated intellectual enemas... unh...dd?...best if you pack up and run now because they put their money together in order to purchase the services of a "cleaner" who is pulling up to your front door right...about...now...





big blogland shout outs to all the people who sent and received the secret emails related to all your various awards.

and remember, when they're silent and don't comment on the posts you worked really hard to birth, it's not because they don't like you, it's because you've done such an amazing job freaking them out. :)

Keep on opening the tops of their heads, taking out their brains and using them like festively coloured lawn bowling balls.

Love and hugs,
your friend and fellow firestarter,

darkdaughta








if what you're reading here grips you, holds you, fascinates you, provokes you, emboldens you, pushes you, galvanizes you, discomfits you, tickles you, enrages you so much that you find yourself returning again and again...then link me.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

We're not christians...

My father, one of Stinkapee's nanas took her to this mckiddy place called ChuckEcheese. She fucking loved it! More junk food than she's ever had, kids gone wild, playing games...did I mention junk? So she brought home this cup with this wierd liquid in it. I think she was more hung up on the cup. It was purple, had a crown attached to the lid...a princess cup, it was.

We were good. Papi tried to throw it out a few times, but I stopped him. Usually when Stinkapee brings kiddy domination oriented junk home, she eventually forgets about it, breaks it or loses it. So, I told Papi: "Wait". But I couldn't have fortold what she would do.

So, she's home from school today. This morning as I was bawling, tip tapping at the computer, writing constipated shit out on this blog, Stinkapee and Shmolee were doing homeschool with Papsi. Shmolee was learning about the different sounds different objects make and Stinkapee was writing, spelling, reading...

At one point she picked up her new cup to examine it.
She had a realization: "Why is there a cross on the cup?"
Both my and Papi's heads swung up and around? "A cross on the cup? A christian cross?"
"There's a christian cross on my cup. But we're not christian. Why do they want everyone to be christian?"
Papi and I were like: "Yeah! Ew! Not everybody has to be christian. Don't they realize that we're not christian?"
"I'm throwing this cup out."
Papi and I exchanged looks. "Hunh?"
Stinkapee marched over to the garbage can and threw out the cup! Papi and I shrugged and smiled. We've talked quite a bit about christianity and the way it was used by the old big masters, the pale people to explain why it was okay to steal Africans from their homes, put us on boats and take us to turtle island.
We point out christian churches all over the city and talk about different kinds of architecture.
We talk about Santa Claus and about how Christmas is a christian holiday designed to make everyone like christianity and think it's fun! Can you imagine?
We know about christianity, but we also know about islam, the goddess, the ancestors and the universe. We know that different people celebrate and worship and pray to different kinds of gods and goddesses. We know that we believe in Goddess Mother Earth who is the mother of us all, who takes care of us, who supports us and gives us everything we need and more.

So, out went the rattid christian cross cup. :)







if what you're reading here grips you, holds you, fascinates you, provokes you, emboldens you, pushes you, galvanizes you, discomfits you, tickles you, enrages you so much that you find yourself returning again and again...then link me.

Hee, hee, hee!...











if what you're reading here grips you, holds you, fascinates you, provokes you, emboldens you, pushes you, galvanizes you, discomfits you, tickles you, enrages you so much that you find yourself returning again and again...then link me.

Context?...

bint alshamsa has left a new comment on your post "Well with a toddler in one arm...":

DarkDaughta,

I want to add you to my blogroll but, given our last interaction, I thought it best to ask your permission first. If you would prefer that I didn't, then please let me know in some way.

I saw you on Kili's blog and I realized that I hadn't visited here in a few months. It's good to see you still kicking ass and taking names. You have a lot to offer (but you already know that) and I think that if I'm going to continue to enjoy your writing, it shouldn't just be a parasitic thing. All I can offer in return for being able to read what you write is to make it available to whoever visits mine and might be interested to see what/who I'm reading on a daily basis.

salaam

Publish
this comment.

Reject
this comment.

Moderate
comments for this blog.

oops! If I wasn't clear, sorry. this is my response to her note:

I was going to keep going with the link making, but I got tired re-reading the shite and I started to feel like I was being drawn from where I wanted to be.

Last night I had an argument with Papi. He tried to shut down, which is what he usually tries to do. I didn't pursue him or the conversation...for a bit. Then I looked at him and he looked at me and I looked at him...and he looked at me...and looked away.

I finally asked him if he was going to leave the conversation where he had abandoned it.

He started to talk. This was good.

I pointed out to him that at this point, so many years in, though, what I'm actually seeking is for him to resume conversations when he exits. I'm wanting him to take responsibility to dealing with enough of his stuff, letting his ego quiet enough that he can speak clear and true from what he knows rather than speaking so as to cover, to hide, to obscure, to keep up appearances from a place of fear, no longer worried about discovery.

I said I didn't want to create the space for this to happen, as I had been attempting to do this for years to no avail as he had, at different moments, attempted to demonize me and to locate the pain I feel in these moments or the anger I speak to in these moments, as his reason for having to hide some more.

I think he got stuck there, cuz he started falling back on his usual conversational coping strategies, those he admits to having learned in his bio family home. Most importantly, he stopped listening to me.

We were still exchanging words, but that was all.

I sighed and thought about active listening. I mentioned it to him and described it. He was the one who remembered the phrase "active listening". He googled it and started reading.

While he was reading, I started thinking about all of you and about the shite. I thought about whether things would have gone any differently if I had communicated with less of my angry, pissed off, fearful, sick and tired, muthafuckin' imp. :)
Would things have gone differently if I had maintained interactive accommodating mama once people's oppressive stuff squashing this neck hadn't abated? If I had continued to say: There is an issue here that arose directly out of someone's reaction to things I posted on a mama blog, things that spoke about my identity openly and with courage, in opposition to much of what most black wimmin are allowed to state about who they really are as sexually autonomous beings. They/we are expected to embrace various closets and to understand our poonies as possessions. Precious possessions, but possessions, nonetheless. When her writing, designed to reclaim space for only the most narrow expression of wimmin's erotic (patriarchal heterosexual monogamy) ended up in a women of color venue where my work had been chosen, without context and without my permission, I understood that there would be more soul sucking, oppressive conversation directed my way. In my interactions with women of color/feminists of color who, at the time I came into blogland were writing posts that betrayed the fact that they had precious little comprehension of a radical political erotic (I remember one really special post where one of the premier women of color wrote about how disabled wimmin don't have time to worry about desire because they are oppressed...sweet...)sigh...I have often, mostly been constructed as the source of a particular approach...without context. It's almost as if to say...I am the originator of particular ideas about the erotic, which means I am the "go to person". I usually avoid these sorts of set ups as being the "go to person" inevitably means that my energy and work will be utilized rather than folks using their own energies to do their own research in order to painfully arrive at their own conclusions. So, major anxiety about my boundaries about to be crossed by every and any woman/person who would read that woman's post about the benefits of monogamy and then come on down the line to my post and attempt to engage me in questions, force a situation where I would be compelled to answer questions that this woman had left unanswered out of sheer and obvious ignorance. I had not agreed to the dance. I had not agreed to enter an artificial binary debate format so popular among the amerikkkan bloggers I had encountered. Yes, because blah, blah, blah. No, because blah, blah, blah. I agree, because blah, blah, blah. I don't agree, because blah, blah, blah. He's right because blah, blah, blah. He's wrong because blah, blah, blah. This was less of a "her side"/"my side" artificiality and more of a "there is a lot of information she hadn't read because as a patriarchal, heterosexual, monogamous woman, she didn't have to" sort of situation. (Oh, by the way, should she be lurking, I'm still not interested in debating the oppression that comes with patriarchal heterosexual monogamous value systems)
Could things have gone differently given that the onus was on me to tolerate the crossing of my boundaries, to accommodate those who had done it even as they explained that they were a gathering with rules they expected me to bend to which meant they could according to their own rules ignore my feelings, which would inevitably lead to me being forced to educate those who would come, directed by my link positioned in their gathering without my permission? Only if I was willing to be dominated into silence by these wimmin who should have really known better, who attempted to, through writing about the ethics of their carnival and not taking anyone's work without permission, to perform as if they knew better and as if this knowledge had just dropped out of the sky...after the fact.

Having spent years serving as bridge for women of color who did not could not respect my boundaries, I was clear about not being interested in being a bridge, exhausted, drained, sad, used, broken, this time.

Forced to be a bridge nonetheless, my teenager, the pyromaniac burnt it down around all our ears...she relights the fires every few days, now, not as a beacon to anyone who might be brave enough to brave the fires, but as a reminder to those of you who came so long ago...don't push me, cuz I've gone o-vah tha edge...

sigh...
Early this morning discussing active listening with Papi, I thought about all of you...well the ones I had had the misfortune of encountering. In that swarming, mob ruling, moment I yearned for active listening past the defense of public radical revolutionary personas.

Papi read on about active listening and we spoke. The conversation ended in a hopeful place. The light was on in his eyes. Change was brewing.

I had to pee. But instead I went to the computer at just after 3am to check my mail and look for comments. I used to dread them...after all of you came and wrote, after I left....

But, recently, as I've written with more clarity about who I am, my agendas and about my expectations in my sidebar, I got less odd comments from people who didn't realize they were draining and more comments from people whose blogs I liked to read sometimes.

Happy.

I had to pee. But instead I sat down, opened my yahoo account and saw your name. Bint Alshamsa. The pee dried up. :) It just evaporated.

Your communication seemed so benign, so respectful, so friendly...I still can't find that post of your where you called me "evil" in the title. (wan smile...emotions buffered by distance, I think...)

My hands felt cold. Papi asked if anyone had commented, which is what he always does when I sit down to check my mail. I lied and said there was nothing important there. So not true. But I wasn't able to deal with all of what lay below the surface of your seemingly innocuous note.

I went upstairs to the second floor.
Bathroom.
Pee now. Peed and then I started to push. There was shit. Lots of shit. My mind reeled with it. Reeled with the emails, the posts, the interactions. Reeled with the home environment I lived in when I started this blog in utter desperation, seeking something that would save my life. Reeled with the conversations, with the comments, with the posts, with the personalities, with the hope, with the frustration, with the eventual despair. Sitting, peeing, shitting, I reeled with aloneness.

There was shit, tiny little channas...I'm constipated, blocked. This stuff is blocking me, cycling me back, time and time and time again.

I am a treasure.
I have lots to offer.
I am useful.
I am smart.
I am insightful.
I am brave.
I am loyal.
I am honest.
I am loving.
I am taboo.
I am alone.
I am blocked.
I am feared.
I am hated.
I am avoided.
I am no one's sister.
I am not a pretty, light, fake friendly, nice, wispy voiced, frail sound byte.
I am a warrior.
I am a necessary monster.

Pushing out shit, I remembered lying on my bed at the intentional community old house, in labour, with so many points of departure, abandonment, leave taking, roiling inside me, a stormyemotionpainbleedingmemorymass wanting to take over my birth, wanting to send me to the hospital, wanting to cut me open, wanting to sacrifice my child.

I laid there, every brain cell, every ounce of control, every bit of power in me, holding back a wall of rage directed not at me, I understand, but at what I represent to those diasporans and coloured 'uns raised in the old way. Its not me they want to harm, I understand. It's the new, it's the change they have been seeking coming in ways they don't recognize. Change come too soon in a body they can't legitimize. Change sharing space with rude, not nice, uncomfortable, loud, cussing, ugly, smelly. Change is supposed to be more attractive. :)

I pushed out shit, pieces coming together, going CRASH, tears flowed, conscious of all what your note did not say, avoided saying, could not begin to explain.

I wiped myself and stood in front of the sink. I turned on the water picked up the aloe soap and looked at my hands, feeling them tingle with blood feeling like molten lava flowing inside. I wrung those hands around that soap, spreading suds and bubbles trying to feel...something...

Tears...we'll be coming up on two years of passive aggressive war between me and those you understand as your own, real soon...two years of suppressed tears and shrieks, you and yours will never hear or witness...soap suds...washing away shit, cleaning away shit...tears sobbed into the quiet of the night, my children and partner asleep...tears of regret...not for having spoken or resisted ... tears .... tears ... for having been born different enough that "home" may never be found in this life....tears, now, tears...shit and soap mingling...tears...there isn't enough water to clean it all away...tears shit soap just makes more mess for me to try and explain potentially more mess for you and yours to try and bury...

I want to bless you. But I'm not that strong or benevolent. I want to embrace you, Audre, bell, alice, luisah, angela and all the rest resonating in my ears, singing in my heart to this very day...I love, I love, I loved who I was when I read myself in their simple, flat, singular black woman words...they did not prepare me for life on the messy, layered frontlines. Or is it that they explained and I didn't understand?

I want to bless you, but I think I'll have to settle for releasing myself and claiming my tears.

I'll bless my tears. I'll claim them. Tears, running down my face now as I type and feel and remember, I'll claim them and love them because they're mine.

I am a treasure.
I have lots to offer.
I am useful.
I am smart.
I am insightful.
I am brave.
I am loyal.
I am honest.
I am loving.
I am taboo.
I am alone.
I am blocked.
I am feared.
I am hated.
I am avoided.
I am no one's sister.
I am not a pretty, light, fake friendly, nice, wispy voiced, frail sound byte.
I am a warrior.
I am a necessary monster.

This monsterwarriormamasisterscornedone will decide what bridges I want to build and what bridges I will have to let fall, which bridges I needs must allow to burn.

I am human, a human being striving towards change in her own way.

And so, despite all of it, despite what hasn't been claimed in your note, despite the voids, the absence of meaning and context, despite having experienced you as their bouncer woman, an enforcer come to make me eat my words, come to defend the indefensible...despite having grave misgivings that you come to once more fulfill that very same role with more stealth this time because so many are watching, I'll say:

Virus/thought/meme/change, I am.
I was born and raised to aloneness, perfectly suited to the nasty, ugly, unpalatable work of change best done when not seduced by popularity or group acceptance.
I have a job.
I have a purpose.
My purpose is served even when those who hate me visit me here.
My purpose is served even when those who don't get me visit me here.
My purpose is served even when those who shrink away from my choice of words visit me here.
My purpose is served even when I'm cut to the core. My job is sometimes about being cut to the core. This is painful, saddening, horrifying, depressing, enfuriating, frustrating, hopeless, hopeful work, that, when done well, elicits no applause, no rewards. I don't usually feel the love. :)

My experience with you and some of the other key members of the radical feminists women of color confused me, cut me to the core and left me with the feeling that, even searching a whole planetary human continuum will not yield sistren, brethren or family.

That experience changed me, derailed me for a moment. It altered my plan of approach here in blogland, turned this blog into an attack vessel, not an invitation to forge treaty. The pain was crucial in that it actually served to adjust my tone so as to best be heard by those who would ignore a softer sell. My chosen approach has served me well even as it has left me a marked woman, bloodied and fearsome. From digging around here and there I understand, see and read that the experience that helped to craft this blog, this weapon, has changed many of you, too and perhaps served you all, as well.

Now, hot tears finally shed, I can say that I am glad to have entered a crucible, however unwittingly, however unwillingly, with some of you. A layer of sensitive, protective flesh was stripped off me and it was so easy to howl in pain, to draw away and to hate. I didn't budge from that place, couldn't budge from that place until your note, so emptied of context, forced me to draw together whatever bits I could so early this morning in service of my own sanity.

Seeing how I have moved in terms of the thoroughly unrealistic expectations I had when I entered blogland I am thankful for the intensely wicked (double entendre in full effect) reality check. Stripped of another layer of assumption about what it means to be a political lefty black woman diasporic african feminist woman of color, I am thankful for the raw, pulsing, bleeding soreness indicating the place where I attached and detached only to continue working in tandem...from a calculated distance.

I can't re-attach. This post/response isn't about re-attaching. Though, in reality, if any of what has happened could be grabbed by tiny sparse hairs and pulled out into the open by anyone save me, you'd be able to knock me over with a feather, grab my locks and drag me right back on over, red rover, red rover. If any of you could be courageous enough to claim your part in this shit, I'd have no choice but to come back on over.

sigh...

Change. I have a job. It doesn't pay anything. It's dangerous. It's unpopular. I fear for my children. My job will never be comfortable. I am very rarely comfortable. Reading your note was uncomfortable. I feel uncomfortable now, as I type. But, this is the work of making change. So, yes, Bint Alshamsa, visit at will and link away.






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Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Well with a toddler in one arm...














This is definitely easier...




















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It's almost as if I don't have to draw anymore...






















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More than a victimizer of poor defenseless wimmin...

I was looking at these photos and I remembered myself and my life, my actual life past blogging, past hopefully, willfully, consciously and fiercely taking up space here on a multitude of different experiential levels...simultaneously...in hopes of steamrolling right on past people who perpetuate oppressive status quos without realizing it, who take severe offense when they are forced to recognize it, who like to construct me as their victimizer when I describe my agendas and they don't understand them...their responses, their secretiveness, their willingness to malign and to contruct me as a maligner should I speak openly about the stuntedness of their approaches to change...speaks volumes about who they are.

As I, utilize this space, to continue to speak volumes about who I am.

So, like...
yeah...
I remembered this post from a while back. I remembered that regardless of who is pissed off with me, regardless of who doesn't respond to my comments on their blogs :), I am, like everyone else, still glaringly human.






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A smile just for Stinkapee...


Stinkapee took this one.






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Uh-oh...he woke up...









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This is the Shmolian breastfeeding and sleeping...












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For anyone having difficulty absorbing what I'm blogging about the white midwifery homebirthing unnassisted birthing rennaissance...

A little "gift", not from me, but instead from another white woman...
"Race is a tie that binds us to men: 'us' being white women and 'men' being white men. If we wish not to be bound in subordination to men, we have to give up trading on our white skin for white men's race privilege. ...if we detach ourselves from reproductive service to white men...the threat we pose is not just to their male selves but their white selves. White men's domination and control of white women is essential to their project of maintaining their racial dominance. This is probably part of the explanation of why the backlash against feminism overlaps in time and personnel with renewed intensity and overtness of white racism in this country. When their control of 'their' women is threatened, their confidence in their racial dominance is threatened.

...for white women a radical feminism is treacherous to the white race as presently constructed and instituted in this country. The growing willingness of white women to forego the material benefits and ego supports available through connections with white men makes us much harder to contain and control as part of the base of their racial dominance. For many of us resistance to white male domination was first, and quite naturally, action simply for our own release from a degradation and tyranny we hated in and of itself. But in this racial context our pursuit of our liberation... is, whether or not we so intend it, disloyal to Whiteness... [but]...white supremacy is not a I law of nature, nor is any individual's complicity in it. ... [We] can set [ourselves] against Whiteness: [we] can give [ourselves] the injunction to stop being White."
by Marilyn Frye originally published in Off Our Backs




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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

A poly misanthrope's meditations on the nature of poly and communication, communication, communication...

I was over at eat mangoes nekkid this morning and found a link to The Polyamorous Misanthrope.

I found a post about communication that sort of knocked me over.

Now keep in mind that I've had the same primary partner with a few open dalliances, kisses, sexings here and there over the years. I don't understand myself as being fully poly at this point and won't until I actually end up having another partner who shares relationship with me as I am in relationship with Papi.

But the post about communication was bitingly clear, concise and to the point. Basically it says, tha a person can communicate as clearly as they like, that doesn't mean that people are going to shift their behaviours or do what you'd like them to do or make better decisions. It just means you done tole them what you think and how you feel, what you'd like to see happen or what you don't want to see happen anymore.

From there, it's up to them whether they agree, whether they will make change, whether they will stay course.

Of course, it's also up to you whether you're going to stick around as they keep doing the exact same thing, basically communicating to you, through their actions, that they don't agree with you and don't plan on changing, don't actually think making a change is necessary or perhaps, don't know how to make appropriate change or negotiate openly for what they want.

Of course, as the post doesn't clearly point out, communicating doesn't at all mean you'll have any control over what they'll choose to do if you should choose to leave, or otherwise choose to limit your interactions with them.

I find that where poly writings tend to fall flat for me. The same with writings emerging out of revolutionary doctrines which tend to be very theoretically based and don't tend talk about the utter messiness and difficulty of engaging with people who seem to share similar views when you have all chosen, in some ways, to live inside very, very, very small communities where often there is really no saying goodbye or fully getting away.

In this sort of enclosed, village-like space, how best to deal with people who take silently fume, steam and generally take major yet invisible offense to your speaking, your challenging, your opting out, your deciding to keep a few leagues between you and them?

How best to deal when simply saying "goodbye" opens the door to a world of hurt, manufactured drama, friendship departures and the like rather than perhaps opening the door to people who want to help consciously, bravely, objectively moderate and help build healthy bridges over which different kinds of communication can yield better results?

Deciding to leave or to not communicate after having clearly stated how you feel and what you would like to see happen sounds soooo...tidy.

Most ex friends, lovers, allies of mine have been of the messy variety.

If you say: "No thanks, goodbye..."
He'll start fucking your best friend once you break it off and since you're poly anyhoo, they'll both expect you to smile and do a happy dance even though you have not had time to heal from the (stunted little cockroach of a) relationship you had with him (I'm killing myself laughing as I type...loosening iron bands feels good...) and no one actually involved you in the negotiation...but smile that rigor mortis everything's okay smile...
If you say: "No thanks, goodbye..."
She'll make a close confidante of your closest confidante who will all of a sudden not be able to offer support without making sure to chime in about her good qualities and characteristics...
If you say: "No thanks, goodbye..."
She'll subtly communicate to all your allies that you weren't kind to her and that you're divisive to the cause....and they'll sort of back away...slowly...and you'll start to notice that certain people just don't come by to comment as much anymore...

Yeah...communication...
Sometimes...nope...most times, clear communication which is where a person says what they mean and means what they say, is a study in aloneness.

Stinkapee, practicing interacting, engaging and socializing with her peers, has noticed that I don't seem to have any friends to hang out with. I let her know that she's right. Her perceptions are bang on.

Later, I'll explain to her that communication, although working hand-in-hand with setting appropriate boundaries, doesn't always end "well"...meaning: with the clear communicator having any friends or allies.

In fact, communication can be...dangerous and lonely work. Strangely enough, it's also rewarding work that has offered me ample time to reflect on who I am becoming and on who I'm seeking as allies, friends...lover...s. And I am still searching...

Moving along...

While reading about poly, I also found something in Misanthrope's sidebar that should be required reading for any health/education professionals (midwives, doctors, nurses, therapists, professors, public school teachers...) who understand themselves as politicized and interested in creating safe(r) healthcare spaces for a variety of people with all sorts of identities and beliefs...
What Psychology Professionals Should Know About Polyamory
The Lifestyles and Mental Health Concerns
of Polyamorous Individuals
Geri D. Weitzman
gdw@numenor.org

Based on a paper presented at the 8th Annual Diversity Conference
March 12th, 1999 ~ Albany, New York

Introduction

In our culture, we tend to assume that people are monogamous. People generally have relationships with only one person at a time; those who have relationships with more than one person are assumed to be "unattached and dating," or cheating. But there exists a third alternative. Polyamory is a lifestyle in which a person may have more than one romantic relationship, with consent and enthusiasm expressed for this choice by each of the people concerned. Polyamory is distinguished from infidelity by the presence of honest communication between partners and lovers about the existence of each of these relationships in their lives (Hymer & Rubin, 1982).

Not much is known by the psychology field concerning polyamory. Our textbooks on family functioning don't mention it, our diversity literature doesn't incorporate it, and many members of the polyamory community have reported encounters with therapists who are uninformed at best, or biased at worst, about this lifestyle. As a polyamorous woman who is also a psychology professional, I am in a position to try and bridge this distance between the polyamorous community and the psychology profession. This paper will aim to provide psychology professionals with a general introduction to the lifestyles and concerns of polyamorous individuals. It is hoped that this will enhance psychology professionals' understanding of, and ability to provide services to, polyamorous clientele.

I will begin this paper by describing the three main variations of polyamory and the benefits that polyamorous individuals reap from this lifestyle, followed by some demographic data about the prevalence of polyamory within our culture. Following this, I will present a summary of the research studies that have been conducted on polyamory to date. Therapists' views of polyamory will be examined, and empirical data on the psychological and interpersonal functioning of polyamorous individuals will be presented. A brief multicultural perspective will be included as well.

Next, I will describe some of the unique concerns that polyamorous individuals may bring to therapy. The position of this paper is that polyamory is a valid and healthy lifestyle; however, just as there are stressors associated with being gay or bisexual in a heterosexual society, so are there stressors associated with being polyamorous in a monogamous society. The final section of this paper will suggest ways in which a polyamory-aware therapist can help a polyamorous client to navigate successfully through these stressors. It should of course be noted that polyamorous individuals may seek therapy for reasons that have nothing to do with their lifestyle per se; however, the knowledge that their therapist is supportive of their lifestyle as a whole will facilitate a more successful therapeutic rapport.

Types of Polyamory

There are three main variations of polyamory. In the first, "one relationship takes priority over others," as in a relationship that allows partners to include outside lovers (D. Corbett, personal communication, 3/17/99). Ties with the additional lovers are seen as a source of added joy and enrichment in the partners' lives (Peabody, 1982). There is asense that "sex and love are independent and sex should be enjoyed for its own sake" (Ramey, 1975, p. 518). The original couple considers their relationship to be their "primary" bond, and it is the relationship that they each devote the most time, energy and loyalty to. The emotional bonds with these other lovers may be close or they may be casual, but they are not as strong as the bond between the original partners. One sub-type is the 'swinging' relationship, in which two or more couples 'swap' partners for a limited time under strictly defined circumstances. Another sub-type is the 'open relationship,' in which one partner's taking a lover does not need to occur simultaneously with the other partner's doing so.

The next type of polyamorous relationship is one in which two or more relationships are of comparable weight, but the person's partners do not have a strong relationship with each other. (D. Corbett, personal communication, 3/17/99). Each of these relationships are considered to be of importance in the person's life, and significant time and energy is devoted to each.

The third type of polyamorous relationship is the poly-family: "an inter-relationship of 3 or more people, in which there is a strong relational commitment between all members (which may or may not include sex)" (D. Corbett, personal communication, 3/17/99). The members spend significant amounts of time together as a group, and the well-being ofeach person is a significant priority to each of the others.

This is not an exhaustive list of potential polyamory configurations, but these are the main patterns upon which specific relationships are typically negotiated. What these relationships have in common is a rejection of the...
the rest of this article...

I don't know if Misanthrope will ever see this post. But I'm thanking her for offering some useful links, for jogging memory and ultimately for loosening up some stuff on my end. (wry, melancholic smile...wiser...stronger...)



if what you're reading here grips you, holds you, fascinates you, provokes you, emboldens you, pushes you, galvanizes you, discomfits you, tickles you, enrages you so much that you find yourself returning again and again...then link me.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Please don't use dark children to sell your computers and increase your stocks...

Give One. Get One.

I've seen the advert for these computers in a few different places. I'm wondering if lefties, liberals, progressives, slightly left of center people realize that we're a consumer demographic mined often by right wing capitalists.

They push our buttons so well. They can count on our guilty, bleeding, trying real hard to be conscious hearts for revenue off sales all over the place.

This handy dandy little computer deal? I actually found myself thinking of buying one for Stinkapee. She needs a new computer. And wow! A little black girl child on this end could get a computer and a little black girl child on that end could get one, too.

That simple.

That simple?

Nah. This is not a fair or even exchange. Our children, the children of anyone who could just drop four hundred dollars plus tax on a fun little computer toy aren't the same as children in countries decimated by racism, imperialism and corporate capitalism.

Two for one hunh?
This company is going to make mad green off these cheap little computers that they probably weren't going to make much of a profit off of if they had been sold on an individual basis on the open market.

Why? Cuz they're probably cheaply made and any of those people with enough green to purchase a computer would probably not have bought one of these.

They might have expected to pay less. Or they would have expected more bang for their buck if they were going to pay this price.

But, through the magic of NGOesque advertising, we are offered a two for one deal that no loving person of conscience in their right mind would turn down.

Two for one. Your child gets a computer and another person's child, half way around the globe will get one, too.

Sales will go through the roof as people needing a bit of confessional like relief from the exorbitant consumerist culture they participate in every day, wanting to feel less disgusted with themselves and with their whiny children asking for this and that and this and that, will be able to buy their way into "heaven" masturbatory nirvana where all their sins as soulless, mindless Black friday queuing consumers hoarding more than their fair share of the world's resources will be washed away through this limited time offer.

Help a child with the gift of a "revolutionary" computer sent to a developing country in time for christmas.

What is the gift of a shiny new western toy going to do? Well, for one thing, it will give these children more of a taste for western goods. A craving, a monkey on their back, riding them, influencing their decisions, buying their brand loyalty as they are branded with the logo of any corporation dirty enough to insert itself into their brains like so many merciless nanobotic weevils.

Sounds like a win-win for the computer people. They get profits and recognition on this end and future foreigners already sold on the benefits of their products in countries where people might never have heard of them before.

And yes, I'm one of those people who change the channel when commercials like save the children or christian children or pretend you've adopted some of these children come on. It's disgusting the ways that people on this end, the recipients of so much wealth and resources will utilize images of these children to seduce themselves into thinking things are getting better.

Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), Brightstar, Google, Marvell, News Corporation, Nortel, Red Hat, Quanta and SE...hmmm...

There are some big and well know names in this list of corporate supporters of this project. They've got money. Why didn't they just send the fucking computers to the children without attempting to pimp out this child's image in a mass marketing campaign designed to increase brand loyalty among lefty consumers?

Is this child being paid for the use of her image sent around the globe, splashed all over to sell a product?

Or is she just going to get one of the computers?






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She's not posting anymore...

But, this woman's blog description shows she had read something that made what's happening really clear.

Welcome to Gilead, y'all...





if what you're reading here grips you, holds you, fascinates you, provokes you, emboldens you, pushes you, galvanizes you, discomfits you, tickles you, enrages you so much that you find yourself returning again and again...then link me.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

While I was watching birthecology...

I constantly felt on the brink of enraged tears. I watch birth videos to learn about how to bring children into the world...what a colonized ironic abomination, along the same lines as reading the words of white experts (new agies, attachment parents, non-violent/non-coercive parenting advocates...) to find out how to better raise black children.

I watched birthecology, white wimmin birthing in water and thought about the millions dead via genocide littering the waters between Africa and Turtle Island. I watched white wimmin birthing in safety feet and bottoms planted on the earth and thought about the millions dead right under my feet.

I watched privileged white wimmin birthing and thought about white domination and racism.

I thought about the luxury of being the recipients of so much space, so much well being, so much evolved birthing lore, so much space to return to the earth to the water to birth connected, at one, in peace, in safety, without stress, all done with a sigh...

I thought about the experience of ongoing oppression that means so many women of color, so many black women cannot find precious psychological space, cannot find emotional space, cannot find support, cannot access birthing lore that was ours to begin with, cannot connect with bithing lore that was ours to begin with, cannot validate birthing lore that was ours to begin with...

I thought about walking with anger, fear, stress, impatience, frustration, trauma handed down generation to generation to generation to generation from the time when our ancestors met the ancestors of these white wimmin who claim the right, the space to birth smiling, in peace, connected to the waters, connected to the land, connected to the universe...
Even as their birthing experience is fundamentally predicated on their ancestors having so profoundly fucked with our ancestors' abilities to consciously feel deeply enough to consciously procreate, to consciously birth, to consciously parent, to consciously connect with the universe...
And I am still searching...
And we are still searching and raging and defying and resisting and birthing in hope and resistance...
As these wimmin guard white births and speculate about low birthrates, low birth weights, high cesarean numbers, high birth interventions, high birth butcherings among black women and women of color...
As these wimmin, products of industrialized, uncomfortable with nudity and sensuality fearing, christian dominated, shame based societies play at birthing naked, "free", "wild",
"savage", consciously in denial...of their historical, political, social context(s).

The ecology of birth has been profoundly thrown off all over the planet yet these wimmin claim the right to create oases of safety for themselves, their families, their communities and their children.

Will I turn away, driven insane at the sight of their ignorance?
Will I turn away, silenced, refusing to bear witness?
Will I avoid the rage, the pain and the sense of loss I feel when I gaze upon their smugly contented faces?
Will I not watch or strategically gather whatever bits and pieces I can for my own good and perhaps for the good of others like me who are seeking connection with something older than a white birthing rennaissance?

Nah.

I'll gaze consciously, feel consciously and think consciously and, in so doing, defy the primacy and the legitimacy of these (white) birth (gate) keepers.

As a mother and a homebirther I am thankful for the moving images. I am thankful for the examples of birthing.

I am not thankful for an experience of domination so multifaceted and deep that I cannot gaze without squinting or hurting or tearing up.

But I am conscious and politically aware that the ecology of birth is not uniquely white.
Natural birth is not a white northern european lore.
The labour of white wimmin birthing white children are not examples of birth around the world, not examples of universal birth.
The ability to deal in an emotionally grounded and responsible way is not the unique terrain or white wimmin.

I am aware that these are examples of birth as imperialist, colonial experience.

I am thankful for any images of birth...
But I am conscious and politicaly aware that the ecology of birth is not uniquely heterosexual, monogamous or partnered.
Natuaral birth is not a heterosexual, monogamous, married experience.
The labour of ecstatic, sighing wives/wimmin mimicking the sounds of being fucked by their husbands/men are not universal birthing examples.
The ability to deal effectively with the emotional challenges of birthing is not necessarily associated with the presence of a genetically related male who is partnered with the labouring woman.

I am aware that these birthing examples are skewed in favour of wimmin who are wives, wimmin who are heterosexual, wimmin who fuck men, wimmin who choose to partner with men, wimmin who choose to birth in close proximity to men.

I am aware that these birthing examples are not even close to representative of birth practices and experiences around the world.

My feeling that red hot tears are coming has abated as I reflected on my rage, reservations, understanding and agenda.

I don't want what they have. I want what their ancestors collectively along with other europeans took away from more deeply pigmented peoples around the world and redistributed among themselves and their descendants.

I want truly conscious birth.






if what you're reading here grips you, holds you, fascinates you, provokes you, emboldens you, pushes you, galvanizes you, discomfits you, tickles you, enrages you so much that you find yourself returning again and again...then link me.

There's something here...

6:07 Sunday morning.
Shmolee woke up for a breastfeed around 5. He went back to sleep with Papi.

I felt bloggish and googlish.

Who told me to google barbados, poor, oppression?

Via the multiracial activist I found this article by L.E. Salazar. Blew the top off my head, it did. Official histories of Barbados always say that there were no Native people on the island by the time the colonizer arrived. I understood that this was not so. But reading this article and poking around some more is yielding ... interesting ... results.

Don't wanna take the "fun" too far, but this article could also explain a few things about how my mother's family understand my great grandmother (no one can remember her name, but everyone agrees she had freckles and hair you couldn't do anything with because it would just fly away...) and another reason why some of the babies just come out looking "different".

Barbados and the Melungeons of Appalachia
Written by L.E. Salazar
Friday, 01 February 2002
"For the past 375 years Barbados has been anglophone. Due to its position as the most easterly island in the Caribbean, it was early recognised to be of strategic naval and military importance and with the popularity of sugar which was introduced to the island by the Dutch from Brazil, the tiny island loomed large as Britain's most prosperous colony. The spread of sugar plantations precipitated migration to the other colonies as those bondsmen who were to be paid in land at the end of their service were unable to secure the ten acres that was their due. May Lumsden states that from 1650 to 1680 nearly 30,000 of the 80,000 original settlers of Barbados moved on to the North American mainland or to other islands and credits this outflow to the North American colonies with the introduction of "ideas, capital, agricultural know-how, a gracious life-style, as well as a determination to work and prosper."1 Today, many of the descendants of early settlers of America can trace their ancestry to Barbados so that as a foremost colony with unbroken records of its English speaking inhabitants since 1637, Barbados' history cannot be discounted in any study of the English speaking Americas and its peoples.

Familiarity with those records of Barbados settlers indicates that there were small endogamous groups of non-English peoples who anglicised their names in order to bring then in line with English domination of the island. This practice of accomodation by adjustment of surnames in Barbados is the precedent for the mystery to which Brent Kennedy points concerning Melungeon surnames and the Melungeon claim to be other than English..

In Kennedy's history of the Melungeons, there is a marked pattern, a parallel, to be found in Barbados, not associated so much with the love child who was incorporated into the plantocracy both in North and South America and in Barbados but with the ones who were referred to as "abandoned people", a name which aptly describes what Kennedy translates from Turkish as being "melun-can" - a lost soul. Together, "lost soul" and "abandoned people" convey the sense of dispossession and of alienation from mainstream society in a period of history when in this hemisphere persons were forcibly removed from their homelands and left to fend for themselves in unaccustomed environments.2

On the other hand, melungeon may be, as Kennedy also offers, simply the Portuguese word for mixed race and this would tie into their claims to be Portuguese, which then leads us to yet another group of unsettled people, in search of land, a new identity and acceptance, and these would be persons connected with Jewish communities who had become conversos. Jewish emigres from Brazil migrated to Barbados in 1654. According to Shilstone, by the end of the seventeenth century there were about 250 living on the island and "although mainly Portuguese, were gathered from all parts of the world". There was also reference to Jews in Barbados since 1628. This figure of 250 most likely can only apply to practising Jews.3 Under the Inquisition Jews had been persecuted for their religious beliefs so that fleeing from Mexico and Brazil, some of their households would have accepted christianity as a protection and, in so doing, would have stressed their kinship with the Christian nations rather than with Judaism. Cromwell offered asylum to the Jews of Europe to settle in Barbados and a synagogue has been in existence in Barbados since 1664. Mixed race persons from Jewish households might therefore have found it preferable when removed to another colony to identify with the culture from which they had sprung. For instance, in 1729 Jacob Valverde made a bequest to his daughter of the "Indian Wench Sary" and to his son, "the negro Woman called Esparansa." Esparansa was no doubt an anglicisation of the Spanish 'Esperanza'.4 When such mixed persons escaped to a better life it would have been more politic to stress their Spanish heritage to account for their darker skin.

Since Barbados was at the centre of English colonialism, in this article, therefore, I would wish to give a brief outline of Barbados history and draw the parallels between the Melungeons and the poor whites and poor coloureds of Barbados - the red people, because they are brothers in poverty and the love child is their sister.
Displacement and the Melting Pot
In the midst of later conflicting evidence as to the number of persons settled by Sir William Courteen on the island of Barbados, the Sloan Manuscript 2441, recorded in the Journal of the Barbados Museum and Historical Society, sets out an Account of His Majesty's Island of Barbados and the Government Prepared about 1684 which describes the first ship load of settlers from England thus:

"In 1626 Courteen settled 1850 men, women and children - English, Indians and others."5

It is to those "Indians and Others" that historians and genealogists must now turn our attention as it demonstrates the genesis of the relegation of certain peoples to a non-existent status because even though there is some evidence of a lively slave trade between North America and Barbados in Native Americans, as taken from the American accounts unearthed by Jack Forbes and Barbara Olexer, it has been the official position in Barbados that only a few Native Americans, mostly from South America, were enslaved here. Yet, as pointed out in Love Child, there are references to slaves whose names are re-echoed in North America.6 Chief among these is Cumba/Coombah which Kennedy attributes to the Lumbee/Croatan of North and South Carolina,7 as well as Buckor.

In Barbados, the term "abandoned people" was used to describe an endogamous group of poor, white-skinned people who were also called "poor backras or buckras", a name not far removed from the epithet "buck" used to describe male North American Natives and Natives of Guyana in South America nor much different from Buckor or Bucco as it is sometimes written in some documents. This reference to abandonment was used by the upper classes, the high whites and the high browns, and even though this community which has sister communities in the Grenadines and St. Vincent appeared to be Cauacasians they were yet called, by visibly African people, "red", the same term used to describe Native Americans, as opposed to the Europeans who were always referred to as "white".

Added to this mosaic were the victims of the African slave trade moving from Africa to Barbados and on to the American colonies together with the aforementioned hidden trade in Native American slaves moving from the colonies to Barbados and other islands which is yet to be fully documented; but it is crucial to understanding the history of those light-skinned persons who, having been born outside the pale, whether separate or of combined Native American, European and African origin saw a chance to remove themselves from the taint of slavery by transferring to the North American colonies, those among them who had the means being assimilated into frontier society and those without, being cast out..."
the rest...

Back to bed. Stinkapee is going to wake up any second now.




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Saturday, November 24, 2007

Via starchildwitch - gen X paren'ts from hell...

Starchildwitch sent me a link to this article today.

San Francisco's Gen X parent boomers need to get a grip
"...thanks to a surge in results-oriented fucking among the white, heterosexual ruling class, this city has become overrun with decaf-latte-sipping, thousand-dollar-stroller-pushing, CFO–Noe Valley–ish, overly together supermoms who will tear you multiple assholes if you even think about stepping near their two-legged petri dish specimens. One might be tempted to label this phenomenon a baby boom. That assumption, however, is incorrect. What we are witnessing in San Francisco — and everywhere else inhabited by Gen Xers with money — is a parent boom.

In the past, parents were simply identified as people who raised children. That era, which lasted roughly 200,000 years, has ended. Parents now practice the rarified art of parenting. Parents who parent must adopt a specific parenting style — one that's far more complex than a hairstyle and infinitely more expensive. Parenting requires ongoing investment in sleep and breast-feeding consultants, childproofing contractors, European-designed gear, six-week courses, endless manuals and magazines, and, depending on one's sacred style, couture bedding and nursery decor that can run well over five grand. This is quite a change of direction for Generation X, to which I belong"
the rest...





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From Listening for Change...another take on the "insane settler theft of the land celebration day" that just passed.
"I went to a report back a few months ago from a workshop called Allies to Native Americans and the Native woman who led it (who asks not to be named due to fear of being visible) pointed out that even if racism ends today, it wouldn't affect Indians here because they are and have been targeted by genocide which is different than racism.

And she said that everyone here who wasn't orignally descended from the Indians who occupied this land before Columbus showed up, everyone benefits by genocide of Native peoples by living here. It was mentioned by the African-heritage speaker that possibly those who were brought here forceably don't agree with that statement but that it is definitely worth thinking about."
the rest of this post





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Was Malcolm X sexually assaulted in prison?...

This I found online quite easily while googling...
"About 10.4% of the entire African-American male population in the United States aged 25 to 29 was incarcerated, by far the largest racial or ethnic group—by comparison, 2.4% of Hispanic men and 1.2% of white men in that same age group were incarcerated. According to a report by the Justice Policy Institute in 2002, the number of black men in prison has grown to five times the rate it was twenty years ago. Today, more African-American men are in jail than in college. In 2000 there were 791,600 black men in prison and 603,032 enrolled in college. In 1980, there were 143,000 black men in prison and 463,700 enrolled in college."
This one I found in a paper commissioned by health kkkanada while surfing with Paps...
"Male Prison Rape and Sexual Assault
The most overlooked form of sexual assault in our society happens to males in
the form of prison rape. Studies concerning the prevalence of sexual assault never
mention this form of sexual violence. In fact, there is no research available that
documents the sexual assault of teen and adult males in prisons or closed custody facilities, though it is thought to be a common occurrence. It is easy to dismiss the plight of these males because of their diminished status as “offenders.” It is all too easy to be without compassion for these males until you consider that many are victims and survivors of all forms of childhood abuse and maltreatment."
As with the history of African slave men being sexually mounted by slave masters in order to enforce white, alpha male dominance already being collectively suppressed by most if not all freed descendants, prison rape impacting probably huge numbers of incarcerated black men, is another really fucking huge and untouched/untouchable issue...it's not glamorous enough to end up being part of a politician's "please like me black people, please vote for me black people" speech.

But, just think about it...
"
10.4% of the entire African-American male population in the United States aged 25 to 29" incarcerated as documented in the early 21st century...probably more by this time
and
an undisclosed, vast number of men being raped in prison...
cross-referencing.......

Well, according to my calculations, that pretty much means that a vast majority of black men, already going into prison as survivors of various kinds of assault, emotional trauma, physical abuse and neglect, are coming out of prisons also extreme sexual trauma survivors.

I was reading the invisible boy (these are kkkanadian stats, mind you) with Papi, reading about young boys being left to deal with all kinds of abuse mostly on their own because many believe that violence will toughen them up. I think Papi feels vindicated as if someone sees him finally.

I felt all kinds of tears and rage well up as my mind started exploding and making links...
yeah...
that's how I ended up here talking about Malcolm X, the incarceration of black male populations, prison rape and the resounding sound of silence.




if what you're reading here grips you, holds you, fascinates you, provokes you, emboldens you, pushes you, galvanizes you, discomfits you, tickles you, enrages you so much that you find yourself returning again and again...then link me.