January 25, 2015

'Cause Sunday is fa-Soul: Toni Braxton

Before 'Braxton Family Values' I didn't know Toni had sisters and that they at one time were a group. The show, implicitly, shed light on why it was Toni who initially emerged as the solo star. Generally, I find the reality show format irritating (e.g., scene-repeating in each episode). And I sometimes feel that "reality stars" are selling their souls to remain relevant. Nevertheless, the Braxtons are genius for continuing to make their careers a family affair.

The beautiful thing is how there is no "hateration" (as my favorite, Trina, would say) among the sisters and brother of this famous family.



January 19, 2015

Remembering Martin Luther King, Jr.

As we remember the contributions of one of the most well-known, well-regarded, and cherished civil rights leaders in American history, let us reflect on the principles and values for which he stood.

Black, brown, and other peoples of color were not included in the Constitution of the United States. To date, this founding document has not been amended to embrace the dignity and humanity of non-white persons.

How, then, can this nation move forward to ask new and interesting questions about the progress of its citizens as the malignancy of racial injustice metastasizes.

Does the present state of race in America signal a failure on the part of Dr. King? No. Does it indicate that the civil rights leaders of the 60s have failed blacks in America? No. Does it suggest that 20th century activists did not risk all for freedom? No.

What it means is that the perilous march to freedom is an arduous process against a system of oppression that continually renews itself on the resources and spilled blood of the downtrodden.

It means that the sacrifices of yesterday produced a force inclusive of highly-educated, socially conscious, and determined activists who have a strong legacy from which to draw strength, courage, and examples of adaptability for today's challenges.

It means we must build upon rather than dismantle our legacy of audacity in the face of insurmountable odds and brace for what vestiges of injustice may lurk in our future.


December 5, 2014

#WalkingToTheCornerStoreOnTheWayHomeToBuyCandyForWatchingMoviesAfterSchool


#WalkingToTheCornerStoreOnTheWayHomeToBuyCandyForWatchingMoviesAfterSchool  
by 
Z. Hall 


Tendons, muscles, cartilage and bone
On these I depend to get me home
Alive

Poet: Z. Hall
Image with permission by: Patrick Campbell
Patrick Campbell on Facebook

November 28, 2014

Where Art Thou, Obama?


Where Art Thou, Obama?
by
Z. Hall



Where Art Thou, Obama? [Title]

Obama, Obama, where art thou, Obama?
Americans slain in the street
Unarmed, naked to the world
Rights assassinated
Blood pools curdle in the sun
Stains on Main Streets
Here, there
In every state
Mothers bend over in pain
Fathers fight tears of helplessness
Families torn asunder by systemic intolerance
Communities brutalized by the rule of law
Laws long-since divested of their humanity
Justice lies in state
Our children call from the grave
Obama, Obama, where art thou, Obama?

Poem: Z. Hall
Image: BBC News


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