October Rising

“Words”

 

I became intimate with “Words,” during my infancy… “

Words” became my first playmate, my best friend, my confidante…

Tottering around my childhood home, I learned to utilize “Words” expeditiously, speaking in phrases, bypassing the seemingly nonsensical, monosyllabic utterances rendered by other youth in my age demographic…

I strung together sentences beneath the exuberant tutelage of my professionally educated mother. My fascination with “Words’s” intricate design, graduated quite expediently from oral regurgitation to verbal origination.

I developed my own form of cuneiform, with a toddler’s flourish, patiently perfecting the tenuous link between that which is “said,” and that, which is “written.”

I become the author of my life, ostensibly mastering my fate.

Sculpted letters became sound, to which I attached meaning, that metastasized into paragraphs, which elongated into pages that became rudimentary expressions of my talent.

I watched others struggle to conjugate verbs, while I entertained invitations to join Advanced Placement Literacy classes.

I wrote my first book at five (unpublished), and continued throughout my childhood into early adulthood, regaling eager listeners and readers with unpublished pieces of authentic literary work that gained me notoriety as an innocuous, yet brilliant, burgeoning authorette.  

I preened at their commentary, reveling in the knowledge that my Purpose in life was birthed from my kinship with “Words.” Be they spoken or written, I was never without them…

Until… …My daddy died, and “Words” failed me.

The betrayal was as instantaneous as it was crippling. How to adequately put into “Words” my shock…? My anger…? My disgust…?

How could I aptly convey my desolation…my fear…the sense of abandonment that now blanketed my security?

The absence of “Words” was noticeably offensive because of the devastation left in its wake…

We were no longer in tandem, because I NEVER gave permission for “Words” to bring into the corporal plane that which I would not even entertain through errant thought.

I never sanctioned my father’s death!

“Words” must be spoken into existence so that THAT which was NOT could be brought to fruition!

I didn’t give “Words” my permission…

My life force, intertwined with “Words” since my beginning…stuttered, abandoning me to a confusing emptiness that would not allow my to shape sound beyond the metaphorically silent scream of my transfixed lips.

My somber mien did not reflect my new reality…

Because the day my daddy died I lost more than my father; I lost my connection to the Son…

My identity, my self-expression, the salve for every anguish I’d ever sustained, lay in my ability to express myself thru “Words.”

Through “Words” I connected my soul to the spiritual plane.

Through “Words” I accessed God…

As I gazed at my father’s inert form, lying so achingly prone in his hospital bed, I tried to process that his body was not the only one in the room suddenly absent a soul…

I, too, had become an untenanted shell of what was once whole.


October Rising – I am a former aspiring author who decided to parlay a hobby into a profession.  Teaching is what I do; writing is who I am…

Taylor Hall

Where Were You? A Response to the Women’s March (and My Facebook Friends)

On the day of the women’s march in Washington, I could not hold my grievances so I aired them out. After seeing video footage and photographs from the march, I took to my personal social media pages and shared the one thought I couldn’t let go of:

There were mad amounts of white women at the march, as if they weren’t the reason Trump won.

As expected, as a black woman speaking up about the march, I was met with everyone’s favorite claim: I was being divisive. I was met by two non-black people of color telling me that I shouldn’t discourage anyone from marching because, and I quote, “We’re all in this together.”

Honestly, at this point words like, “Unity” and “We” cause me so much irritation that it makes my ass itch.

I even had someone I’ve admired for years throughout my college education make a similar point, quoting that Ella Baker wouldn’t have asked, “Where have you been?” and instead responded with a, “Glad you’re here.”

Well, it’s 2017 and I am a black woman still marching and fighting for my rights. My feet hurt. My back hurts from shouldering all of this pain and struggle inherited from the people who marched and fought before me. My damn head hurts from always being there to clean up the mess white women make and offering them a hand and forgiveness. Black women have always been in this together with everyone, from the black men that consistently refuse to acknowledge their ability to oppress us, to NBPOC that rarely show up and out for us like we do them, to white women that always, always, always want to know, “Why we make this about race.” because they still can’t wrap their minds around our simple request to be seen for all we are.

I can’t be Ella Baker. I can’t look at you and lie and say, “I’m glad you’re here.”

It DOES matter where you were before this moment because I know that your involvement here, right now, is rooted deeply in self-interest and completely half-assed.

I have something I’ve been battling with and it’s my desire for you all to see me completely. When I speak up, you condescend and play victim, you only reply when you want to berate me for my very valid opinion and I’m tired. Suddenly, all of you want unity, but you’re late as hell to the party.

Where were you?

And even now, after all of this, where are you? Why aren’t you comparing and contrasting how police officers respond to groups of white women protesting and how they react to groups of black people arguing against injustice? Why can’t you notice that you sound exactly like men when you hit us with that, “Not all white women.” response and show us how you feel when you aren’t as quick to shut that down when you hear it. Did you stop those women that took pads and wrote on them instead of just donating those items to less fortunate women? Did you tell that woman at the protest with the “No pussy, no power!” sign how exclusionary that was?

I want you to know I see you.

I’ve seen, or rather noticed how absent you were at protest, how silent you were when we were organizing. I see you.

I see you and I raise you nothing. Not a finger or fist.


 

Young, broke and fabulous is how writer Taylor Hall describes herself. On any given day you can catch her on twitter or at your local bar ranting about the world. You can read more from her at her blog, Whattaysaid.com where she documents the many trials and triumphs of life as a young, black woman in America.

Dennis Black

How the Hell…

 

How the hell did we get here? Trump is president-elect, the GOP has arguably the most power ever in the history of this country, and my personal favorite President-Elect Trump has appointed to him a special advisor who in the most recent interview has said “Darkness is good…Dick Cheney. Darth Vader. Satan. That’s power.”
One second while i take a step the fuck back. Trump, his administration, and his entire kkkrew represents the banality of evil, the epitome of hatred, and the ultimate indifference towards tolerance. Again how could we have possibly gotten here?

First it requires us to revisit the very formation of the United States It begins with the middle passage, coterminous with the the genocide of the indigenous peoples of this land; it were these conditions that forged the ethical backbone of U.S civil society. The extermination and torture of over a sixty million people over the course of  centuries paved the way for a Trump presidency. It was the trillions of dollars in free labor via chattel slavery that positioned the United States as empire. Think about chattel slavery as the ultimate tax break for white folks. The conditions of chattel slavery financed the first industrial naval fleet in the world, positioning the United States as a critical player in the Allied victory of World War I. The war brought on the “Roaring 20’s” and subsequently brought on the Great Depression. Before we know it the country is in another World War which determines international relations and global power dynamics for the next century.
Aided by the mutant beast of capitalism, the United States becomes a global warring empire from 1945- Present. Just as important to note, is that the United States, since its inception in 1776 has been at war with at least one foreign country 93% of the time.  Chattel slavery financed a war machine and now neoliberal capitalism (self-interest veiled by good intention) dominates the modern power relation between nation, corporation and people.

 

  Second, Hillary was a piss poor candidate and should have never received the nomination. I challenge anyone reading this to afterwards google search the leaked emails from Hillary herself where she explicitly calls for her campaign to invest energy in a Trump nomination in the primaries. Hillary did this, more than any single voter or media outlet could have. Hell, she worked with the media , a former CNN correspondent , Donna Brazile, who was also a moderator for the first Democratic debate in the primaries, was recently fired when more emails came out of the woodworks that detailed the incident where she sent Hillary debate questions before the debate, to give her the leg up on Bernie Sanders.

You simply don’t just get a Trump presidency out of nowhere,

…61 million registered voters thought Trump was not only qualified to be in command of 15,000 nuclear warheads, but also took an effort that approximately 50% of the registered voters in this country did not do, and that was vote. Despite all of his comments rooted in racism, sexism, and classism, he still managed to win the hearts and minds of 61.2 million U.S citizens. That’s because the hearts and minds of a solid quarter of this country’s population is equally racist, sexist, and classist. Even if they’re among the group being oppressed and discriminated against.  The exit polls of this election has determined that at least 53% of white women voted for Trump. This is not meant to be a pissing contest of who’s more to blame for this rise in fascism, but it is completely embarrassing for a competitively financed candidate to lose their own demographic. What would we say about Obama if he lost the Black male vote to Mitt Romney? Hillary seemingly offered no change, no inspiration, no way to fire up the base that could have and  would have led her to victory.

Facism did not win, Hillary lost,

in presidential elections there is a general strategy to win midwest states most often referred to as the Rust Belt. In the last 100 days until the election Donald visited key swing states almost 3 to 4 times than Hillary. In a post election interview, President Obama also mentioned that Hillary didn’t work hard enough. Whereas Obama visited 87 counties in Iowa, Hillary visited less than 40.

The most important distinction that cultivated this reinvigorated atmosphere which propelled Trump and the GOP to victory is the rise of the Movement for Black Lives  and the backlash, whether silent or vocal  it received. In a July 2016 poll, it reported that approximately 60% of respondents disapproved of Black Lives Matter and the Movement for Black Lives. This country has structurally and ethically remained the same since it’s inception and at the very least 61 million folks want it to stay that way . The birth of the 13th and 14th amendment marked the death of chattel slavery but prompted the afterlife of slavery through the prison industrial complex, sub-prime mortgage lending, crack, heroin, privatization of water systems and school districts, all are intricately tied to the legacy of chattel slavery and the domination of Black folks living along the margins.

 

With everything aside, it would almost seem like a common sense choice to choose anyone, not Trump to be president. Well that’s what kind of happened, but didn’t. Currently,

as of November 22nd Hillary has 62.5 votes to Trump’s 61.2 million.

Currently Hillary holds a 1.3 million vote lead. I’m not the only one that has been saying it, but Hillary and her campaign team developed and deployed the most piss poor political campaign that I’ve ever seen. This is considering the resources she can muster and bring to bear. From 2000 to 2008 she practically controlled the democratic party and from 2008 to early 2016 she controlled the party through the former Democratic Party Chair, Debbie Weisserman Shultz. Never have I heard or seen of a campaign, where the only coherent statement coming out is that you’re not as awful as the next. I bullshit you not there are leaked emails that have Hillary herself agreeing with staff to indirectly support a Donald Trump nomination by Republicans because he seemed to be a “weak outlier”. This country has always held the potential to elect Trump, but it  literally took the help of the Democratic Party to make this nightmare a reality.

Trump quintessentially reflects white masculinity and the greater part of the U.S citizenry. While it is easy to compare Trump to Adolf Hitler, Trump kept Hitler’s autobiography, Mein Kampf on his night stand, he pulls from Adolfs charismatic leader playbook, as he mimics a famous phrase of Hitler  “Make Germany Great Again”, although reminiscent of Hitler, Trump finds his pedigree in the U.S white nationalist before him. He is Thomas Jefferson, Andrew Jackson, and George Washington. Trump and his ilk have always existed, but never in our generation has there ever been a president so uniquely unqualified.

This isn’t to say that I’d prefer a Hillary presidency, it is more of a question that you have to answer for yourself. Do you want to see the collapse of this country, or do you want to see the country repair itself?

Do you uphold the legitimacy of the constitution,or do you undermine it at every corner and turn possible? The future of this empire is foggy and  one thing is for certain; Trump is not an anomaly, he is a product of U.S civil society and a direct reflection of the public’s intolerance to tolerance.

Nedah Odin

 A word from wusgood.black- Urban black folks are who are making your memes , inspiring
your facebook stats, helping you cleverly word your tweets— get into us — and deal)

A Facebook Status

Ok look here MethAnne, what you NOT gon fuckin do on today is whine all up on a black woman’s page on this lowkey but really highkey micro-aggressive as fuck bullshit about wanting to cultivate her strength.. guess what, Becky..? You and your oily sociopathic people are the reason we’ve had to build up these deep wells of resilience in the FIRST motherfucking place.. if ya’ll had stayed in ya’ll’s irrelevant filthy backwards ass lanes instead of building a fucking global empire in the backs of black people [[ how the fuck you gon name us one of the most negative words in your fucking language you sociopathic fucks..? Degrade our continent on the world stage and rape it for hundreds of fucking years, throwing dirt on everything that it is to be African and then expecting us to feel bad for your ass now that your sky is falling..?! ]] there wouldn’t be an assumption/perception of endless boundless magical fucking strength.. stayed filthy and stinking and diseased in your small sad cloudy lil corner of the damn world and left all of the rest of us on this planet the fuck alone.. but ya’ll fucking couldn’t, and now we’re trapped up in this ugly corrupt ass system with ya’ll stank asses, and there isn’t even anywhere we can go to escape it because ya’ll spread it to the whole fucking world.. you got us fucked up, Gertude..

first let me burst this fucking bubble.. this shit is not fucking endless.. it comes with an incredible, constant strain and pressure on the mental health.. but when we’re fucking sick and angry, you pathologizing us.. but you want our fucking STRENGTH, Hermione..? Please get the fuck out forever and ever and never bring your ass to another black woman’s space to complain about your dim little life and your coddled fucking feelings and your collectively weak ass cinstitutions as hwites.. ok..? We don’t give a fuck.. white people don’t give a fuck about people of color, and they ESPECIALLY don’t give a fuck about Africans.. literally not one single fuck.. almost all of the fucking pain we endure is a DIRECT RESULT of you, and fucking whiteness, and western culture, and globalized white supremacy, and most of all by white people just fucking burdening us with ya’lls presence in general.. AND GOT THE NERVE TO OPPRESS US TOO.. and oppress anyone who is not a straight white cis man, and fight as hard and as strong as you know how to keep these systems intact so they can continue keeping a bloody dirty boot on the neck of four fifths of the global population.. fuck wrong with you..?!

our fucking strength.. how bout you eat a dick Helga..? You don’t want this strength because you’re too much of a coward to endure and survive what it takes to develop it.. you don’t want to bleed and fight and cry and die for this strength.. be tortured, physically and psychologically, for centuries, until we see ourselves as LESS THAN YOU..!! because your lazy unimaginative savage ancestors decided you wanted everything that everyone else had and you didn’t give a FUCK who you had to slaughter and brainwash and enslave and stand on top of to get to it.. gimme a gotdamnit break, okay..? Take a fucking Xanax, ok, and breathe through that shit because I personally don’t care what you’re going through.. you ain’t got shit on my liberation from your white fuckery and your white American shit machine so you can miss me with the fuckin dramatics..

let me go roll this weed up because I have honestly had it all the way up to my gotdamnit synapses with ya’ll motherfucking asses, Helen.. all the way up to there.. ya’ll stay wanting something from us, our fucking bodies, our labor, our asses, our pussies, our dicks, our hips, our slang, our music, our art, our fucking blood, our knowledge, our food, our lips, our melanin, our gotdamnit magic, but ya’ll draw a hard white line between consuming us and respecting us, or seeing us, or recognizing who the fuck we are.. ya’ll came from US, you pale ungrateful dustmite, every flavorful thing you have you stole from us and from our other fucking children and imma need you all to have every seat.. like every one that ever fucking existed.. the newest gotdamnit humans out and ya’ll wanna act like ya’ll made this fucking planet shake.. ya’ll ain’t made shit but mayonnaise flavored damnit suffering.. for every fuckin body who ain’t mayo flavored.. fuck you.. my strength.. get stuffed, Miriam.. we don’t have time to listen to your white ass problems over our gotdamn oppression..

ya’ll already on niggas’ nerves because ya’ll silly asses proved you’ll sink the whole damnit planet to preserve this raggedy motherfucker called whiteness.. don’t come begging us for our sympathy to.. we don’t fucking got it for you.. ask my big momma why.. and her big momma.. and her big momma.. and her big momma.. and hers.. and hers too.. and then when you get done you can ask hers too.. you couldn’t handle this fucking curse, this ‘strength’, and you don’t deserve the fucking gifts either.. Miss Middle Age America lookin ass.. smfh..

 

 another word from wusgood. Black – this status went viral.
As it should have. She deserves to be heard. OVER AND OVER AND OVER.

Essays from the Block

Vampires & White Devils Gone Mad

in the Last Days of Obama

 –By Casey Rocheteau

Sooooooooooo what the fuck is up with people acting shocked about Donald Trump? I don’t know why y’all gagging, America brings racism & misogyny to you every season. The #blacklash game has been strong pre-during-post-Obama, and here we are, at what I hope is an apex of this bullshit. I saw a photo today of a Trump rally where a white man was wearing a t-shirt emblazoned with the phrase “Black Guns Matter”. Da fuq? I think most of us can agree that shit is grimy beyond belief, but it’s not surprising. It’s gotten to the point where my mom, a white baby boomer, said that race relations haven’t been this bad since she was a kid. My mom is more woke than Raven Symone, y’all.

 

While I’d love to keep railing against this shriveled tangerine nightmare, I’m so tired of this honky’s shine. Once he loses and his militiamen try to seize control of America to make it gross again, I’m sure the police will use softcore de-escalation tactics like bribing them with beef jerky to put down their muskets. If these truck-nutted, salt-of-the-underworld lunatics manage to pull off a coup, I’m not moving to another country, I’m sending up a flare into space and getting aboard the next alien vessel to pass over Detroit. The current political climate is one where police can murder black children without so much as having their pay docked, where entire cities can be poisoned, where indigenous people have dogs set on them for protecting water on their own land and the two clowns running for President ain’t finna do a damn thing a bout it.

 

While I could write several books about white devils gone mad in the last days of Obama, what I really want to talk about vampires. Yeah, we about to go full conspiracy rant, but none of what I’m about to say is speculation, it’s cold fact. Earlier this month I saw a bunch of people talking about boycotting Paypal because Peter Thiel, one of Paypal’s founders, dropped $1.25 million into Trump’s pockets next to some Tic Tacs. I fell down an internet k-hole a while back reading up on this guy because his name came up a lot when Gawker shut down. I won’t take you through that fantastic voyage in full, but as background, dude is a gay white venture capitalist who makes more money than the GDP of several small nations combined. He was Facebook’s first investor, giving them $500,000. Gawker Media used to have a website called Valleywag that once ran an article that gave props to Thiel for being gay and rich af. Dude was out, but apparently took offense to this. He then paid for other people’s lawyers so they could sue and subsequently bury Gawker in legal fees. The most prominent case of this happening was with Hulk motherfuckin Hogan, who couldn’t sue Gawker on his own. This bout of Hulkamania happened after Gawker released parts of a sex tape, which was a double whammy because the Hulkster also said some racist ass shit (on said sex tape). Gawker Media got bought out by Univision, and Gawker itself shuddered its doors. Shortly thereafter, Thiel spoke at the RNC declaring that he was proud to be a #Gay4Trump.

 

While people were talking about boycotting Paypal, which Thiel is no longer running, I posted something snarky about how dude was a real life supervillian and that $1.25 to the Orange Menace was barely skimming the surface. My friend then hit me with a link that re-opened the gates to the original Google k-hole by saying Thiel was also a vampire. As it turns out, this dude is basically DiCaprio in Wolf of Wall Street meets Kathy Bates in AHS: Coven meets Mr. Burns. Thiel has dropped yet another $500,00, this time into a company called Ambrosia which studies something called parabiosis. Parabiosis is the study of the effects of young blood being transfused into old bodies. It’s among the many ways in which Silicon Valley’s tech elites hope to live forever. It started out as biologists sewing rats’ veins together to study the effects of what happens when you injure an old rat who shares blood with a young rat, and studies have shown that the old rats heal much quicker when they are sewn together with young rats. They’ve now moved on to humans, and for a cool $80,000 people over 35 can pay to be infused with the blood of the young.

 

Here’s the rub though: parabiosis might actually work. Like, if you out here tryna get booty shots or go to college, you might want to save those dollars and get you some young blood and fix your credit score sometime in the next 200 years. JK this shit is clearly grimy. And there’s an argument that all new innovations in medicine seem crazy at first, Think about convincing someone that penicillin was a good idea: “Look, this moldy bread makes medicine!”.  The issue is that this is something that only crazy rich people have access to, and there’s already places in the world where organ harvesting is an actual thing, so what’s next, blood farming in the developing world? Another thing that Thiel is funding is the seasteading institute, which is trying to create floating colonies at sea that are not under the jurisdiction of any nation state. They want to set up off the shores of colonized nations. I’m just saying.

 

We all know that this election isn’t going to solve any of America’s problems. Shit, we could be at war with Russia 2 years from now. And while that’s happening, the uber rich, the fuckers who actually run this mob are trying to find ways to live forever. And if they figure it out, we are, in a word fucked. The best thing about rich people is the ways in which most of their children are inept, so there’s only so many clever and evil fucks running around at once, and the rich kids of Instagram squander their parents’ money on gold plated uzis and yachts filled with blow. Rich people trying to cheat death isn’t a new idea. David Rockefeller is 100 years old and has had 7(!) heart transplants. My dad was a kidney donor and when he got diagnosed with kidney disease, he had to wait six years for one kidney. Rockefeller basically orders hearts through Amazon Prime at this point. And while rich people gon’ be rich, the thought of somebody like Donald Trump becoming immortal off the blood of the young is terrifying. I don’t know what we can do to fight back against vampires, but if you need me, I’ll be whittling stakes in my underground bunker.

-Casey Rocheteau