Showing posts from 2011

Herman Cain: Why His Candidacy is an Insult to Black America

Allow me to share a secret that is often said in black and brown communities. Parents often tell their children that in order to be successful and rise up in America, they must aspire to be better than white people. And when I say better I mean better in every way. Better in intellectual ability, better in style of dress, better in mannerisms, simply better. This edict is told across socioeconomic lines, from the barrios of Los Angeles, to the projects in the Bronx, to the shacks in Alabama. It is a clarion call for black and brown people to strive harder and push themselves further than their white counterparts. Then and only then, it is believed will they ever be able to be on equal footing. This being the case, Herman Cain is an insult to every black and brown parent who has told their children to be better.

During President Obama's rise to the presidency there was a feeling amongst many people, regardless of race, that there was something intrinsically good about his candidacy.…

Homicide Rates Jump for Blacks in NYC: What does that mean?

In today's edition of the New York Daily News it was revealed that for the 2010 year the homicide rate for black people jumped 31% while the homicide rate for whites dropped 27%. There is a lot in this data that is shocking on its head. One of the main things that shocked me is the fact that 25% of NYC's population is Black while 67% of the victims wee black. Even more shocking was that black males between the ages of 15-29 make up 3% of the city's population but a whopping 1/3 of all homicide victims. Having this data is sobering and informative but the larger questions we need to answer are why is this data so and what do we do with it?

It is clear by this data that black people killing black people is an epidemic. The fact that the Centers for Disease Control labeled gun violence and deaths amongst each other as a national epidemic, not unlike cancer and AIDS is sobering. I believe that the economic downturn that occurred over the past few years has acutely affected the …

Vybz Kartel and the Deeper Impact of Skin Bleaching

Now I am sure that all of you who follow dancehall music have been paying attention to the recent controversy surrounding dancehall artist Vybz Kartel and the images of what appear to be lighter skin that have circulated in the media. There is so much that can be said about these images but what I want to focus on is the larger message that is being said by Mr. Kartel's actions.

Now let's be clear. The idea of bleaching one's skin is not new to the black community. Since slaves came to the new world there was a systematic way that blacks were brainwashed to believe that white skin is better. Whether it was the story of Ham that were told to blacks to justify the institution of slavery in a religious context, to the clear favoritism that was shown to lighter skinned slaves, often referred to as house slaves, much of that impact filtered down through generations of black existence in this world. It's of utmost importance to remember that the reason slaves had different sk…