Way Back Wednesday- Strange Fruit

As you all know (well if you didn’t before you do now), I work part-time as a beauty artist.  (Yes, I’m a hustler.)  During a conversation last week with my manager, he told me about this song titled “Strange Fruit“, but he couldn’t remember who sang it.  He suggested (almost demanded :)) that I look it up on YouTube that same night.  And I’m glad I did.  The song, originally a poem written by Jewish teacher Abel Meeropol from the Bronx in 1936, was made famous by Billie Holiday.   If you haven’t heard it yet, listen here.

Right, pretty powerful-and horrific-and disturbing.  Just 71 years ago this song was recorded and the lynchings of Blacks in the South was an all too real horror that many of our family lived through. 

Why bring this up you ask?  Well, after the victory of extreme right wingists and candidates of the Tea Party, I started to get a little concerned.  I’m concerned because their goal is “to take America back”.  Back to where?  To the days of President Reagan, when the poor were taxed like nobody’s business and getting poorer and the rich got richer off the backs of others.  And if we keep playing around and allow these people to “take America back” they’re going to take it right back to the days of lynches and open racism. 

So keep thinking your vote doesn’t matter, continue to think you don’t have a voice, become complacent with the status quo and not growing and evolving and making this a better world for you and your family.  That’s exactly what they want.  For those of you that voted last week, thank you for allowing your voice to be heard.  Even if your candidate didn’t win, stay on the person’s ass who did win to ensure that they speak for YOU!  Hold your representative/councilmember/governor accountable for ANY thing that takes place in your city, town, or state.  Your voice matters-make sure it’s heard.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city.

You’ve Got to Be Kidding…

Sanaa Lathan and Simon Baker from one of my favorite movies "Something New"

I normally don’t respond to other writer’s blogs/comments/post in a negative way, because we all are entitled to our opinion, but as Katherine Jackson said to her husband, Joe, “On this, I gotta speak.”  In case you missed it, MadameNoire.com posted an article by LaShaun Williams titled “8 Reasons to Date a White Man“.  As someone who has dated a white guy before and is open to doing it again, I was interested in reading the article.   I’m sure Ms. Williams is a lovely young lady…but her reasons are crazy.

The comment that has most of my friends commenting on Facebook is, “They have no problem turning a hoe into a housewife.”  This corresponded with reason # 7-“Have the Ability to Look Beyond Your Past”.  What I gathered from this comment is that Ms. Williams is implying that ALL black women are promiscous.  Her reason started out stating white men have no problem dating the friends of exes and so forth.  I’m wondering how this turned into an attack on black women’s sexual behavior.  Reason # 1-“They Open Wide Instead of Down Low” REALLY takes the cake.  Don’t get it twisted-white men are on the down low, too.  And if they’re gay, they won’t be interested in dating ANY woman, now will they???  And white people have bad credit, too!  (Reason # 6 is Financial Planning and Stability.)  Being fiscally responsible is not determined by race or gender.  I hope she doesn’t think that we are all so small-minded to believe these stereotypes are going to be true about every white man we meet.  And as someone who is married to “a Black man—dark-skinned, 100 percent cocoa”, I wonder if she believes what she’s written about black men?  And how does her husband feel about what she’s written?

And of course, there is a rebuttal article.  Boyce Watkins, Ph.D provided a response to Ms. Williams crazy list.   In the end, he points out that his list is not geared towards good black women-just those who are bitter, nasty, judgmental, angry, and arrogant.  His list made me chuckle a little, but of course his list reached certain levels of ridiculousness as well.  

I’m not sure how serious Ms. Williams was with her list, but I can tell you I truly hope she was kidding.  Maybe it’s because I’m single, but I’m almost tired of hearing about why we should date this group of people or why we should leave this group of people alone.  I have met enough black and white men to know that being in a relationship and remaining single are not exclusive to any one race.  It’s a personal preference.  Some men want to play the field; others are always looking to be in a relationship. 

What do you guys think of the article?  Was Ms. Williams dead on with all of her reasons?  Or is she completely off her rocker?  Maybe she wrote this article just to stir up some stuff and get people all hyped, like yours truly.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city.