Saturday, April 01, 2006

Deconstruction in Action

Alternatives= Alter Narratives

The Best April Fools'

The best April fools' day prank I can remember is when we were living in Chicago and my mother called my cousin Freda, pretending that she was from the Tom Joyner Morning Show, and told her that she had won $10,000. Freda was estatic and it was funny as hell.

Friday, March 31, 2006

What Dessert Am I?

You scored as Plain Chocolate Cake.

Plain Chocolate Cake


Creme Brulee


Chocolate Mousse


Chocolate Chip Cookie


Oatmeal Cookie.


Pumpkin Pie




Chocolate Pudding




Strawberries and Wipped Cream


Ice Cream




No Dessert




What dessert are you most like?
created with

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Black Morality

bell hooks, in her Rock My Soul:Black People and Self-Esteem reports on statements made by Black psychologists, William Greer and Price Cobbs in their book,The Jesus Bag. Taking the title of this post from bell's passage on this, I think that their assessment and pronouncement here is beautiful and should be noted. Grier and Cobbs state,

"Religion lost its hold on some of us and the rage binding conscience was no longer effective. In a fury, we burst into the streets. We had survived the oppression and we now have survived the riots. Where we were once ashamed of the scars we n ow see them as badges of honor. We looked into ourselves and, even more, looked deep into white America. Our flaws, which we were taught to hide in shame, were in the flaws of this nation. The hatred we had of ourselves was minor placed alongside white folks' hatred of us. Were once we saw ourselves as deformed and debased, we now see how much more deformed and debased is the white bigotry that has so hurt us. Black people who all that time had tried futilely to turn themselves inside out have now upened up the festering wound of America and see that it is America which has most need of healing."
I am deeply troubled at this wanton killing on the part of the U.S. military among the Iraqi people. I was deeply concerned and my mind started to race as the media started to report the newest point for Iraqi anger as they are protesting what they themselves state was the murder or innocent people inside of a mosque. Power can always refute, cover up, and pretend that something isnt't so, but that which will never work in their favor and will constantly be a bar against them is that the people of Iraq feel and have been violated and it doesn't matter how many times the U.S. military or George Bush tries to label these people as terrorists or insurgents--these are mothers and fathers and sisters and brothers--and the point is that your killing them and interfering in their lives will always make you their enemy, never their ally or friend.

A Blessing

I am very glad to see that Jill Carroll has been released.

WalkOut-A Must See Film!

Kudos to HBO for its brave and brilliant movie, WalkOut which dramatizes the 1968 Latino student uprisings in L.A. in protest against second-class schools and the Vietnam War. Beautiful film, excellently done. Edward James Olmos is a wonderful man.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Praise for the Magnificent and Courageous Cynthia McKinney:In Profile

Representative Cynthia McKinney, Democract from the state of Georgia is one of the most courageous and magnificent elected officials to serve in public office today. Always taking a constant stand for the integrity and dignity of all people, she has the courage and integrity to stand in the face of power and evil and shout back. The first Afro-American woman to represent the state of Georgia, McKinney was elected to Congress first in 1992. Congresswoman McKinney has been a vocal opponent of both wars in Iraq and a champion of the causes of both the Palestinian people, the peoples of the continent of Africa, aboriginal peoples from Australia, and the people of Latin America. Since her return to Congress, she has heralded efforts to look into the occurrences on September 11th and has advocated for justice for the victims of Hurricans Katrina and Rita. All praises to this beautiful sister! God Black and Be Well Cynthia McKinney!

Don't Fuck With Cynthia McKinney

I cannot believe that police forces in Washington D.C. would try and manhandle Representative Cynthia McKinney from Georgia! She has my permission to kick ass!

How Beautiful!

Beautifully reminiscent of the actions of Latino student activists in the late 60s and early seventies, Latino high school students in L.A. have walked out of classes in protest of the recent immigration policies that have been promoted by various entities inside and outside of government. Kudos and much solidarity!

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

More Uprest in France

I wholeheartedly support the French youth in their efforts against capitalism in their country.

Sweet Thing

Chaka Khan

I will love you anyway
Even if you cannot stay
I think you are the one for me
Here is where you ought to be
I just want to satisfy ya
Though you're not mine
I can't deny it
Don't you hear me talking baby?
Love me now or I'll go crazy

Oh sweet thing
Don't you know you're my everything?
Oh sweet thing
Don't you know you're my everything?
Yes, you are

I wish you were my lover
But ya act so undercover
To love you child my whole life long
Be it right, or be it wrong
I'm only what you make me, baby
Don't walk away, don't be so shady
Don't want your mind, don't want your money
These words I say, they may sound funny, but...

You are my heat
You are my fire
You make me weak with strong desire
To love you chile my whole life long
Be it right, or be it wrong
I just want to satisfy ya
Though you're not mine
I can't deny it
Don't you hear me talking baby?
Love me now or I'll go crazy

You're my heat, you are my fire
You're not mine, I can't deny ya
Don't you hear me talking, baby?
Love me now, or I'll go crazy
bell hooks tells that MLK warned against the conservatism of the Christian Church, as it would be dangerous for freedom. In her book, Rock My Soul: Black People and Self-Esteem,, she records his statement that:

"Nowehere is the tragic tendency to conform more evident than in church, an institution which has often served to crystallize, conserve,and even bless the patterns of majority opinion. The erstwhile sanction by the church of slavery, racial sgregation, war, and economic exploitation is testimony to the fact that the church has hearkened more to the authority of the world than to the authority of God. Called to be the moral guardian of the community, the church at times has preserved that which is immoral and unethical."

This is Scary and Needs to Be Paid Some Attention

Joshua Bolton, former director of the Office of Management and Budget and a strong right-wing presence in Washington D.C. is taking over as Bush's new Chief of Staff, replacing Andy Card...I am not sure what this means, but I have a bad feeling about it.

Do You Know Where You're Going To?

Diana Ross

Do you know where you're going to?
Do you like the things that life is showing you?
Where are you going to? do you know?
Do you get what you're hoping for?
When you look behind you there's no open door
What are you hoping for?
Do you know?

Once we were standing still in time
Chasing the fantasies that filled our minds
You knew i loved you, but my spirit was free
Laughing at the question that you once ask me

Do you know where you're going to?
Do you like the things that life is showing you?
Where are you going to? do you know?

Now, looking back in all we pass
We've let so many dreams just slip through our hands
Why must I wait so long before Im free
No one found the answer to that question for me

Do you know where you're going to?
Do you like the things that life is showing you?
Where are you going to? do you know?
Do you get what you're hoping for?
When you look behind you there's no open door
What are you hoping for? do you know?

Monday, March 27, 2006

Second Blog Carnival

This second blog carnival is a little short, but oh well. The only offering for this round is a very well-written essay called, The Ultimate Solidarity, offered to us by barb of Lucky White Girl about the relativity of our suffering. I think it is an excellent piece. I will mention that I almost forgot to do this as I spent the whole day preparing a lesson on the rhetoric of race in the United States for my class--collecting information on Quadroons, Octoroons, and Mulattoes which I used to build an interesting study around the "Nappy Hair" scene from Spike Lee's School Daze. I think that, especially since there aren't that many submissions, this carnival will only post every so often.

Do You Know the Broadway Star Anne Wiggins Brown?

This is definitely an interesting story, one which I am just picking up on. From a family of light-skinned blacks--perhaps octoroons, Anne Wiggins Brown was a very talented singer and actress, lending her voice to George Gershwin's Porgy and Bess. She married a Norweigan philosopher and, escaping American racism, she and her husband moved to Norway. There, she staged a Norweigan production of Porgy and Bess. She and her children stil reside in Norway.
Recently, my thoughts also turned towards my cousin Mary wright. mary is my grandmother's second cousin. Her grandmother, Aunt Jenny, was a daughter of Caroline Roper and a sister to Mattie Roper. Mary Wright's mother was our Cousin Maldocia. Mary used to live in Chicago, not far from us and we always spent a lot of time with Mary, her daughters and their families. She moved back to Alabama the same time we moved down there, and she basically moved usdown there. My father designed them a very nice house that sits out on their property. What got me to thinking about Mary Wright was Uncle Lawrence--and thinking about the people that I knew with his kind of tempermant. Mary is one of those people. Mary is nobody to play with. One of the absolutely most hilarious stories that ever I have heard was when, in the late eighties, Mary laid a whooping on her son-in-law, daughter number one's husband. Daughter number one had married herself a real male chauvinist thug and he thought he was the baddest shit on the block. He used to beat daughter number one and everybody was wondering as to why she was with him. Well, now he is a Reformed Man(after first getting beaten by Daughter number two, Mary herself, and finally Daughter number one herself).

Well, in this particular incident, Mary had broken her arm and was in a cast for several weeks on end. So, son-in-law decides, I suppose, that now that Mary is in a cast he can show her what he was made of, so one night he decided to hit her. That was the worst decision he ever made in his life. The story is that Mary used that broke arm and had him up against every wall in that house and laid a whoopin on him that lasted him a good few days. That news spread like wildfire, and the story still circulates. Mary was absoluetely nothing to play with. In another incident, Mary got good and hot and told one of our mutual cousins just who exactly her daddy was and had that poor girl going home in tears.

I was always scared of Mary. I saw how she handled her grandchildren and I wanted none of it. It was always fun to ride around and visit with Mary, but I always stayed on my Ps and Qs because I definitely did not want to feel the wrath. Mary Wright is a favorite though.

In Profile: Uncle Clarence

Uncle Clarence, my grandmother's foster brother, was the ninth child of John Archie and Sadie Mae Goodson DeRamus--and one of the many, many children that they helped to rear. Not actually my grandmother's brother, Uncle Clarence my great-grandmother's nephew, my grandmother's first cousin. His mother, Betty, died during her labor with him. She had been an undertaker and schoolteacher in Kentucky and the doctor's advised her that her work as an undertaker would not give her an easy pregnancy. When she died, they sent Uncle Clarence, sill a newborn, to my great-great grandmother, as she had the child closest to his age, my Aunt Sadie being only just a couple of months older than him. They reared him in their home til he was fifteen years old when he ran away and joined the military, giving a false age. He never felt too comfortable I believe, as certain of the Deramus children(and I can guess which ones) would always pester him about not really being one of them.

Uncle Clarence would always come around, showing up at my grandmother's house late in the night. He went for bad, dealing in all sorts of gangster business--and he and my mother used to have kncokout-arguments when he would show up at my grandmother's house and she would be there. One time he came there, and he brought with him a suitcase full of money--and made the mistake of showing it to my mother. My mother told him that he and his suitcase full of money had to get out of her mother's house immediately. he now lives in south Alabama, sick, but still trying to run for bad.

Aunt Carolyn

Aunt Carolyn was Uncle Archie's wife. After my post of him I thought about her quite a bit. Aunt Carolyn was a very stylish woman, very chic and tasteful. My recollections of Aunt Carolyn was of a very refined woman with very expensive tastes. When Carolyn DeRamus showed up, she showed up in style: it was a site to behold when Aunt Carolyn would come out strutting in her fur coat, and she knew how to work it. Aunt Carolyn came from the Rich Negro Neighborhood, otherwise known as Morgan Park. She went to Kentucky State University and lived a nice,full life from all that I know. Every year she and my mother and Aunt Johnnie would go to the Kentucky Derby. Aunt Carolyn had a sister, Aunt Bea. Aunt Bea was a fabulous woman and she once gave a fabulous luncheon, which was a beautiful affair, one that I haven't seen the likes of since. It was a great time.


Both Uncle Archie and Aunt Bertie's funerals were grand affairs. There were several hundred people at Uncle archie's funeral. It was held at his home church and it was preached by Farrell Duncombe,one of the Bishops of the A.M.E. Church , and that eulogy was one to remember. he started off talking about his rememberances of Uncle Archie, and how when they were little boys they woudl go climbing up in my great-granddaddy's orchard trees, picking apples. It was a sombre occassion.

Sunday, March 26, 2006


"There are too many people in government making history that have never read history."--Former U.S. Congressman, Andy Jacobs, Jr.