Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Wake Up!

Surprising to some but common to many, hair is still a taboo subject in the African American community. Black women judge each other by their hair and single ladies wonder if a natural style is limiting their dating potential.

My freshman year in college, I came up with this half permed/half natural curly afro thing that I tied a scarf around; I kinda became natural by accident. There wasn't an epiphany one day to connect with my African roots as a byproduct of my HBCU experience. It wasn't that deep.
I wasn't confident in my new 'do and allowed certain people's comments to dictate how I wore my hair. Several times, I went from getting a virgin perm one month to cutting it all off the next. Finally in November of my senior year at Clark Atlanta University, I cut the relaxer out for good!

There are so many issues connected to this natural hair debate-
-What is good and/or bad hair?
-Have the tables been turned and now people with striaght hair are being shamed by people with natural hair?
-Are you really natural if you straighten your hair?
-Why does Chris Rock call relaxers creamy crack?
-What is a faux natural?
Too much to explore in one blog post. Stay tuned for the rest of the discussion and weigh in!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

How Many B*tches. . .

Dear Ms. Deloris Tucker

 keep stressin me

 f*ckin' with a muthaf*cka's mind

 I figured you wanted to know

 you know

 why we call them h*s b*tches

 and maybe this might help you understand

 it ain't personal

 strictly business baby

 strictly business

~Wonder Why They Call You B*tch, 2Pac

My last blog post expressed my conflicting emotions about rapping alongside inappropriate lyrics at a concert held at an old church. That tête-à-tête sparked another internal debate.
The “B” word; I hate it. I’m not talking about bossy, bling or Beyoncé. The “B” word I am talking about is now used interchangeably with woman, lady, or girl. Not to mention, the FCC has determined that it is okay to use on public radio and daytime television.
I understand that some women have reclaimed the word so that it no longer has a negative connotation. I have not jumped on that bandwagon. I still cringe when I hear the word; I do not feel empowered when people use it.
Unfortunately, some of my favorite artists use the word in their songs.
Feeling nostalgic, I have been listening to 90’s Southern rap on Pandora lately. Admittedly, I overlook the derogatory word if I like the song well enough. That is discriminatory, right?
How can I judge? How many B*tches is too many? Two, three? Do I judge it by tone or context clues? Should I stop listening to all of it? That would be like throwing the baby out with the bath water.
How do you feel?

Thursday, July 17, 2014

"Green Eyes"

“Humbly seeking to hear God when he's speaking”
~ Goodie Mob, Beautiful Skin 

I was so jealous of my Facebook friends' pictures of the Jayonce “On the Run” concert in Atlanta. I’m not a fan of The Carters, but I seriously thought about becoming one after all the hype. Trying to fight off my green envy of Blue Ivy's parents, I went back to my memories of my favorite group, Goodie Mob’s reunion concert a few years back.
It was held at The Tabernacle in Atlanta, GA. The Tabernacle sounds like a religious dwelling, doesn’t it? It’s because it is or at least it used to be. Some of the concerts there can be likened to a religious experience. I’ve seen greats like Lauryn Hill, Jill Scott, Nas and Mos Def perform there.
“Put some fire on the ass end of that weed cause in the SWATS red hots don’t drip or bleed.” Conviction abruptly stopped me from dancing and rapping in mid-verse to this song, somewhere around- “on the ass end of that weed.” The other concertgoers continued partying as I stood in the midst of the standing only crowd in a daze.   
I was beset with unease, “Would the Lord be pleased with this? What would the teens at church think if they saw my hands up and head bouncing to these lyrics?” I felt convicted but not condemned.
I decided I didn’t have to make a decision in that moment and continued to enjoy Cee Lo’s verse on Beautiful Skin as scantily-clad women danced behind a frosted screen.
“And I, was attracted to your class, I couldn't see all yo' ass...,”