Ain’t that bouta…

By now, you may have read the story of Kamilah Brock. If you haven’t, click here.

There are many reasons why this story is terrible and tragic and racist and sexist. Many. But that is not why I’m here today.

I’m here today because, as usual, the police have provided a bullshit scenario in an attempt to justify kidnapping, drugging, and traumatizing this woman. The story they used is so preposterous and bullshit filled that it is yet another example of how few fucks they have about justice, the truth, Black life, and public perception.

These sons of bitches claimed they detained her, tricked her into thinking she could recover her car, had her drugged and carried away to a mental health facility in an ambulance because…they didn’t believe the car was hers. Come dafuq on!

Almost every squad car in the country has a laptop in it. Assuming some still don’t, they can call dispatch to run a vehicle’s tag. They can find out your name, last known address, arrest history, whether you have outstanding warrants, previous names, credit score, blood type and browser history. I may have made those last three up (never can tell with the NSA), but you get the drift. They can find out all the pertinents either from their car or with a radio/phone call.

But they didn’t believe the car was hers.

Let’s say for the sake of argument that all the computers in the entire precinct and in each cop car crashed that day and the next several. That didn’t happen, but let’s play make-believe. This woman is a banker. She is driving not just a car, but an expensive one. At the very least she has to have the vehicle registration or proof of insurance in the vehicle with her.

But they didn’t believe the car was hers.

Just for kicks, let’s play make-believe again. So they pulled her over. Their computers do in fact work so they run her name and plates. Either one of three things will be discovered. The car is in her name, it isn’t but she hasn’t stolen it, or it’s stolen. Unless it is stolen, she is apparently authorized to be in possession of it. You hand her back whatever documentation she’s provided and go your separate ways.

But they didn’t believe the car was hers.

I could go on, but I think you get my point.

Let me tell you what this suggests to me. This suggests that cops are SOOOOO accustomed to having the support of their supervisors and fellow cops that they know they will not be questioned. No matter how ridiculous the lie. No matter how tragic the circumstance. The formula goes like this. Cop does fucked up thing, up to and including murder. Cop lies about what happened and why they did what they did. Police get the full support of the department, and the white community, especially if victim is Black. Life goes on with a minor hiccup if they are caught in the lie. Each and every time.

Now that I’ve demonstrated that there is no way they kidnapped, drugged, and traumatized this Black woman for eight damned days for the reason they put forth, I will tell you what I think happened. I think they believed this Black woman had gotten above herself. How dare she be a professional Black woman driving a car like that! She probably complained about their accusations. She was probably offended. And they felt the need to teach her a lesson. They felt the need to show her who’s really in charge.

There will probably be a cash settlement of some kind eventually. At least I hope she plans to sue. But no dollar amount will ever be enough for the indignities she suffered. And no dollar amount will prevent them from abusing their power in the future.

I’m glad she lived to tell the story though.

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White Supremacy Is Frustrating

Last weekend, Black social media got together to #Blackout the internet. It started on Tumblr and quickly spread. The point was for Black people to share selfies, encourage each other, and celebrate our beauty and diversity.

White people were livid.

As if ALL media isn’t dominated by celebration of all that is white. As if in so doing, white media hasn’t created the conditions that require Black people to look to each other for validation.

The white tears flowed abundantly.

White tears

There were cries of “reverse-racism”. We were said to be too exclusive. There was an attempt to silence us with white selfies tagged #whiteout which QUICKLY became the most racist circle-jerk imaginable with confederate flags and racists insults aplenty. Of course it did.

Mind you. Black people weren’t trying to prevent white people from taking selfies. We weren’t trying to keep them from doing anything. We couldn’t if we wanted to.We were only choosing to focus on ourselves and requesting that they give us room to do that. You know, like white people have done since they first came to America. But somehow not actively including them is far worse than the many and sundry ways they have excluded us. Slavery, Jim Crow, redlining, white flight, lynching, sundown laws, the creation of ghettos, etc. These things pale in comparison to black people taking and sharing selfies all out in the open and shit.

Meanwhile, over the course of the last several days, at least 4 Black people have been murdered by police. A video showing white bros chanting about lynching niggers before allowing them into their frat surfaced.

The white response?

Silence

One “news” program said that rap music was to blame for this white fraternity, founded under the confederacy with a long white supremacist history which included the creation of their chant, even singing this song in the first place.

Really Dude?

The Black extrajudicial executions have been reported the same as every other. Black person was a threat, though unarmed. Though naked in one case. Cop shot in self-defense. Wash, rinse, repeat.

I’m so tired of being expected to show empathy and deference to a group of people who get more outraged by Black love of Black self than they do over the senseless loss of Black life. I’m tired. I’m tired of being tired.

Their “logic” is so ridiculous. Their ability to comprehend the harm they do is nonexistent. Their ability to look at their own thoughts and motivations is shallow at best. The very contradictory way they respond to Black tragedy versus Black celebration just boggles my mind.

I hope one day, and soon, Black people and all other oppressed people reach a level of consciousness that will allow us to confront anti-blackness in all its forms and unite against our common enemies. White Supremacy. Capitalism. Patriarchy. The world has to be a better place once we do.

I Don’t Even Know What to Call This Because It Makes Me So Mad

Let me begin by saying I am not here for Iggy Azalea or any other culture vultures.  White people have a long, storied history of ridiculing Black people and our art. Then one or two or 10 of them will copy said art and suddenly it’s “new” and “edgy”. And profitable.  A white artist making Black art gains fame, money, and other markers of success faster and in more abundance than the Black originators could imagine. And often with less talent.

Despite receiving very valid critiques from Black legends of the genre she’s chosen to mimic, Iggy refuses to have a MODICUM of respect for their legacy or experience. She WILL NOT listen to what is being said or consider whether it has worth.  She dismisses it out of hand and makes herself a victim, or pretends that she is just “being herself”.

She is not being herself.  Her self is Australian.  Her self has an Australian accent.  Yet when she raps she copies the voice of a southern Black woman.  Really?  You’re being yourself when you mimic our voice and phrases? When talking about a life that you have NEVER lived? That’s being yourself?

No!

You are profiting from attributes natural to many Black women. Black women are held in the lowest regard for speaking, looking, and acting the way they do. You are a gimmick. You gleefully pick and choose the parts of our being and our hip hop culture that YOU enjoy and use those for your own gain. You don’t care about any of the issues that effect us, or about the way your caricature affects us. And in a few years, when you tire of putting on this act of Blackness, you will throw it aside and continue reaping all the benefits of your whiteness. Black women can chance the way we speak, look, and behave but we can not change the Blackness that is the root of our oppression.

Recently this woman had the unmitigated gall to disregard the thoughtful criticisms of our Ladies Eve and Jill Scott. Bish what? With all the ways you are stealing from us, you have the nerve to reduce our innovators to merely “haters” who are “jealous”? No one is stereotyping you! You are stereotyping US! When ANYONE dares to criticize you, you have Black men everywhere, especially TI, coming to your defense.  At the same time they defend you and your right to do what you do, they denigrate Black women without hesitation and to resounding applause.  We’re stereotyping you! Tuh! By asking that when you “perform” you do it with your own voice. Girl, Bye!

Miley Cyrus tried on Blackness for a while as a way to separate herself from her child star image.  Thankfully, she has moved on.  I’ll be relieved when Iggy does the same.

Make It Go Away

What is wrong with people? Why would any white person in 2015 think that it is appropriate to design a line of expensive clothing and call it “Last Niggas in Paris”?

“Touitou ushered in a quartet of models wearing three different cuts of a camel overcoat and one check, all matched with gray sweatpants and A.P.C.-designed Timberlands. Then he held up a sign that said, “Last Ni##@$ IN PARIS,” and gave us this exposition: “I call this one look Last N****s in Paris. Why? Because it’s the sweet spot when the hood—the ‘hood—meets Bertolucci’s movie Last Tango in Paris. So that’s ‘N****s in Paris’ and Last N****s in Paris. [Nervous laughter from audience.] Oh, I am glad some people laughed with me. Yes, I mean, it’s nice to play with the strong signifiers. The Timberland here is a very strong ghetto signifier. In the ghetto, it is all the Timberlands, all the big chain. Not at the same time—never; it’s bad taste. So we designed Timberlands with Timberland…” And on he went. Touitou likes to be irreverent. But what he said here seemed ill considered, at the very least.”

There are SO many things wrong with this!  The audacity of a white man living in a white supremacist world so freely using the word nigga! For profit at that! Making reference to Black fashion as “hood”! Referring to a brand of shoes worn by Black people regardless of economic status  as a “strong ghetto signifier”! And he really believes that he knows what people in the “ghetto” wear! As if he has EVER set foot in a Black ghetto! “All the Timberlands, all the big chain” my ass!

He goes on to say that he showed the collection to Kanye, including the name of it, and Kanye liked the “vibe”.  Listen. I can’t say whether Kanye West gave this man a “pass” to use the word nigga.  I can say that whether he did or not is completely irrelevant, because common sense would suggest to a person with any inkling of sensitivity that Kanye does not and cannot speak on behalf of an entire race of people, many of whom are rightfully appalled at the very idea of a white person saying nigga!

Gah! My head hurts.