Don't Kid Yourselves

 As with everything Ferguson, there are no easy answers. But at this juncture, it's pretty clear Obama's presence would be a very risky political move.

...As we wrote Monday, the issue is already proving to be racially and politically polarizing -- much like the Trayvon Martin case -- with African Americans and Democrats much more skeptical of the police and the investigation and much more likely to believe race was a factor in what happened. Whites and Republicans see the situation in a far, far different light.

So when a polarizing African American Democratic president shows up, it's pretty much unavoidable that it would be seen as a nod to the protesters and their cause
. (Source)
Bar Patrons, I got words. Now, since I got quite a few, let me just do this in a list:

1 - Google "Law Enforcement Reform"

Google it now, and Google it just like that, in quotes.

*nods* I know.


The Bar Loves Brymo

I need to talk about something happy. I know I've talked about Nigerian artist Brymo in the past, but I have to say it again: I love, love, love this man's voice.  Brymo's voice has character; even if his lyrics aren't that deep, his voice alone more than makes up for it.

My favorite track of all.  Nab it here.


Deja Vu in Missouri


Um...If This is How You Handle Civil Unrest, Just Give Up Now

August, 2011, "United" Kingdom

LONDON -- As political and social protests grip the Middle East, are growing in Europe and a riot exploded in north London this weekend, here's a sad truth, expressed by a Londoner when asked by a television reporter: Is rioting the correct way to express your discontent?

"Yes," said the young man. "You wouldn't be talking to me now if we didn't riot, would you?"

The TV reporter from Britain's ITV had no response. So the young man pressed his advantage. "Two months ago we marched to Scotland Yard, more than 2,000 of us, all blacks, and it was peaceful and calm and you know what? Not a word in the press. Last night a bit of rioting and looting and look around you."


Riot in Missouri

On Sunday evening, there were acts of civil unrest in Ferguson, Missouri. These disturbances were in response to the killing of Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager, who was shot multiple times by a police officer and whose body was left laying in the street for several hours. Witnesses to the event reported that Michael was shot without reason. The officer apparently shot him many more times once his body was on the ground. The police, have as expected, concocted a wildly ridiculous story to cover up the misdeeds of one of their own.

In response to the civil unrest, the commentariot class issues the 1) requisite condemnation of the "rioters" and 2) acts as though there is some great mystery for why people would take to the streets, "confront" the police, and "loot" businesses in their own community.

And of course, there will be an obligatory quote from Brother Doctor King that is taken out of context in order to condemn the "bad blacks" in Ferguson, Missouri.

The pressure to follow this public script is especially heavy for black and brown people.

I choose to deviate from those trite rhetorical norms.


The Bar Loves Khalif Boyd (@hey_khalifornia)

Patrons of the Bar, please welcome actor/model/director Khalif Boyd...living proof that God is not only a woman, but every now and again She gives with both hands.

*nods* Let the Church say, "Amen."

I first came across Khalif Boyd while watching David So's comedy channel on YouTube.  At first I thought he was cast because he was a friend, then because he was a friend who happened to be really friggin' pretty...and then I soon realized that main man here has got skills.

Boyd can fluidly adapt to various moods and display impeccable comedic timing.  Some will say, "Well, uh...yeah; he's an actor, K", to which I have no trouble replying that most actors are complete shit, regardless of their status.

Anyhoo, I wanted to share some of my favorite David So skits which feature our dear guest.  And then I'm going to share a bunch of pretty pics.

Shall we?


The Bar Loves Thanhha Lai

So Jules has got me reading Inside Out & Back Again by author Thanhha Lai, and though I've only started it, I'm already in love.  For one, female author.  Two, author of color.  Three, main character is a ten-year-old shero.

And four, the book written entirely in first-person poetic verse, yet each page or so is dated like a diary.

*nods*  Madam Lai's got style.

The story is said to take place over a year, following the fall of Saigon and the protagonist's relocation to the United States.

The reviews speak of the character's humor, which is apparent right away.  Kim Ha ("Golden River") is a rebellious preteen living in a deeply traditional, male-dominated era.  She's told girls can't do this and girls can't do that, and she's not trying to hear any of it.



With love, from a fan

Black women...we're just damned if we do and damned if we don't.

In addition to maintaining several blogs, I also have a YouTube Channel (in case anyone was not knowing).  A couple of years back, I posted the love scene from a very powerful independent film, La Mission (2009), starring Erika Alexander and Benjamin Bratt.  In my humble opinion, it's one of the most tasteful, respectful, evocative scenes I've ever seen.

The film deals with a lot of deep themes, namely Latinos reconnecting with their indigenous heritage (and thereby directly addressing their use of Spanish as a result of colonialism), a Latino father coming to terms with his son's homosexuality, and a Black woman overcoming the trauma of an abusive, prior relationship. It's a beautiful, moving film which portrays brown people well overall and ends well.   So naturally, either folks don't know about it or...it attracts "fans."

Click image to enlarge

I've since deleted the comment, of course. Ain't nobody got time for that.


Bill Burr and Abagond talk Jesse Owens

Jesse Owens (1913-1980), an American athlete and “the world’s fastest human”, won four gold medals at the 1936 Olympics. And he, a Black man, the grandson of slaves, did it at the Olympics held in Berlin, the heart of Nazi Germany. Hitler himself watched as Owens showed the world that Aryans were hardly the master race.
So begins Abagond's excellent post on Jesse Owens. It got me thinking about a clip I'd seen from Bill Burr also talking about Jesse Owens.

Now, I know Burr tends to leave a nasty aftertaste in some folks' mouths, and again...I don't fault anyone for it. Most of his work leaves me deeply concerned as well.

That all being said, here are the rules of engagement:
1) If you're going to join the discussion, you have to watch the clip from beginning to end.  Burr doesn't talk about Jesse right away; he lays a foundation first before building up to him.

2) If you don't want to watch the clip, fine. Try to just lurk on this one because nothing's more irritating than conversing with someone who hasn't brought themselves fully up to speed on a subject.

3) Needless to say, give Abagond's post a gander.