Category: Family

If My Liberation Is Bound To Yours…

“White friends, from a basic to do list standpoint: displace. Sit in the pain. Invest in one relationship. Give. Share. Retweet. Read. Listen. Get to know the heart language of Black Americans. I cannot imagine how different the Ferguson protests would look if even half of the Ferguson police force took this advice.” ~Grace Sandra

Today, a friend of mine linked to a Deeper Story blog authored by Grace Sandra, in which she – a Black American – asks her white readers to do this simple thing: Sit, listen, invest, and “learn the heart language” of our black neighbors. She implores us to displace ourselves, to get beyond our privileged lives. To understand the systemic injustice at the heart of the causes we are often quick to champion (and even quicker to forget or abandon).

This comes on the heels of having just learned from our next-door neighbor that last week, just half a mile down the street at our local laundromat, he was handcuffed, maced, and booked by local transit police for having “stood too close to the sidewalk” while waiting for his wife to finish up a load of laundry.

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I Am Pro-Life*

(*actually, wholly, totally, 100%, not-just-anti-abortion)

I AM PRO-LIFE.

I am anti-violence. Anti-death penalty.

I am against anything that would create an enemy of my neighbor – even my violent, criminal neighbor – and make him a monster deserving annihilation, rather than the beloved of God needing desperately to be reminded of who he is to whom he belongs.

I AM PRO-LIFE.

I am against the weaponizing of people, and especially the church. Our war is won and the Victor is Christ, who achieved victory through His own shed blood and no one else’s.

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Happy Birthday Jesus! Love, The Slaves

(c) Paul Kuczynski . Via http://twentytwowords.com/2012/07/06/13-dark-pieces-of-satire-to-make-you-stop-and-think/

(c) Paul Kuczynski . Via http://twentytwowords.com/2012/07/06/13-dark-pieces-of-satire-to-make-you-stop-and-think/

So here’s my rant for the day.

I’ve seen a blog floating around, proclaiming that those who shop on Thanksgiving Thursday “are part the problem.”

I agree. Whole-heartedly.

But the idea that we can separate Thursday from Black Friday is absurd to me.

Because in both cases, we’re not merely interrupting the holidays of our friends who now have to work instead of eat more turkey; we’re not merely contributing to and bolstering a wholly consumerist culture. No, in any case – whether shopping on Thursday, Friday, or throughout the month for red hot deals and steals from standard retailers – we’re contributing to the global slave trade. We’re burying our heads in the sand and pretending that Wal-Mart and Target employees are the only ones who warrant consideration in this sordid tale of stuff hoarding, all in celebration of the Sweet Baby Jesus.

Even when we bypass Thursday’s sales “on principle” and shop Black Friday instead, we’re almost certainly purchasing things produced by slaves around the world.

I cannot emphasize this enough: If we’re shopping for deals and steals, demanding cheaper stuff, we’re not shopping with a conscience.

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Dear Birthing Mothers: On What Not To Say Out Loud

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Dear Birthing Mothers,

I’ve wanted to write this letter to you, to us, for a while. But until this moment, it’s been a thing of anger for me. I’ve read your comments, your Facebook statuses; I’ve read of your wishes and dreams and hopes and losses, and I’ve seethed with anger at your ignorance.

But right now, in this moment, I’m not so much angry with you as I am sad and hurt for those you unknowingly wound.

Like me.

Like my hyster-sisters.

Like all the mothers who’ve lost their babies before they were born, or in the birthing suite, or long before they were ever unborn beauties and were only plans.

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Respect? That’s My Son’s Job

IMG_8674I’ve read a LOT of blogs lately. Blogs about how girls should dress, how young ladies should protect young men, how the way a girl dresses defines her. I’ve read about how a girl is responsible for the looks she gets, for what goes on in a boy’s mind, for if and how much he lusts after her. I’ve read blogs from mothers of sons, who’ve warned girls of the impending Facebook block, should she show up too scantily clad on one of her son’s Facebook feeds (I applaud her, and I think I might want to try this). 

As the youngest of four girls belonging to a pastor, I was very much raised to dress modestly. Constantly aware of the length of my shorts, the tightness of pants, the thickness of the straps on my tank tops, the cut of necklines, and the openness of dress backs. And Lord knows, two-piece swimsuits were simply out of the question. 

And I don’t disagree. We women were created with a unique and curvy beauty, designed specifically to appeal to men’s physical and mind’s eyes. Knowing it, we have a responsibility to dress ourselves both in clothing and in dignity. For our own sake as much as anything else. 

But here’s the thing: As the stepmom of a 16-year-old young man and mom of a 2-year-old toddler (whose world-in-14-years will undoubtably make me cringe in new ways), I’m annoyed. 

I’m annoyed that all the preaching to “keep a boy’s mind pure” seems to be aimed at girls. Because that’s my sons’ job. 

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