The Price of Freedom?

The price of freedom is the knowledge of the fact that we are not free at all; it’s the knowledge of the fact that we who buy into the concept of our present day definition of freedom are the most selfish, self-interested,… ignorant, hypocritical, and oppressive beings known to man. Needless to say, we’re not paying for freedom because to acknowledge those things will bankrupt us…King was against violence. Period. He was against the international terrorism that we were doing overseas as well as the domestic terrorism that was in fact taking place on our very own soil.

Black on Black violence will be solved when we figure out how to stop human on human violence and we do have some empirical evidence to support the idea that violence and other social ills will be lessened by increasing equality in our societies. So how to decrease Black on Black violence? Answer: stop putting large number of poor Black folk in high density, low resources, unattended to neighborhoods; eliminate the economic disparities in our country and give real opportunities for a satisfying livelihood where one can support his/her family. Black on Black violence isn’t a issue of race; it’s an issue of social conditions.

Granted violence did “free” us poor negroes from the chattel slavery; but let us not forget: it was violence that made America white man’s land (we slaughtered all the natives); it was violence that brought Africans to the Americas (the middle passage); it was violence that kept us in chains for 300 year (slave drivers, whips, RAPE, etc). And it was also violence that kept Black folk from getting ahead once slavery was legally abolished (KKK, angry white folks, militias, etc); and it’s violence today that remind us that we are not equals even today in 2010 (Katrina, Oscar Grant, Sean Bell, the police, and countless other events). So with that said violence might have eradicated the legal chains of violence, but non-violence has done more substantive work to eradicate the conditions that keep us from actualizing our full citizenship.

Love u!
Your favorite niece,
V

The message above was written in response to the message below:

Question niece! Who is it that keeps others from fighting on our own soil? What is the price of freedom? King was against violence but he also never that to keep the peace you must have protection to keep the dogs of violence at bay! The o…ther question is how do we stop Black on Black violence yet it is never discussed? Does it not restrict our freedoms when you can’t even take a child out to play for fear of getting killed even worst the child? So we get rid of all who are willing to sacrifice themselves so that you can make the comments you do and live the life you want in relative peace! Less we forget, it was violence that gave us our freedom, and even though the Civil War was not fought to free the slaves it did produce the Emancipation Proclamation which granted blacks freedom!

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The Wasted Potential of My Generation

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We gotta get it together yall..

“We don’t need another 300 years in the wilderness..”

It’s time for us to get our stuff together. We can’t keep wasting our potential. It saddens me greatly to look at the trajectory of our generation..

“An inheritance gained hastily at the beginning will not be blessed at the end.” Proverbs 20:21.

Yall, all money ain’t good money..

and for Soulja Boy:

“With her (the prostitute) enticing speech she caused him to yield, with her flattering lips she seduced him.
Immediately he went after her, as an ox goes to the slaughter, or as a fool to the correction of the stocks…
…Do not let your heart turn aside to her ways do not stray into her paths.
For she has cast down many wounded, and all who were slain by her were strong men.
Her house is the way to hell, descending to the chambers of death.”
Proverbs 7:21-27


All hope isn’t lost! There’s still some folks of our wayward generation that’s debunking the stereotypes, making changes, and challenging us to get it together and “figure it out”! Check out up-and-coming recording artist:

Jack Freeman

Listen to his new single, “Figure it Out” and regain hope for this generation!

Response to Keli Goff’s Statements About “Nigga”

Recently Keli Goff of theloop21.com wrote an article and made statements on the Dylan Ratigan Show that I disagreed with and thought an alternate view point should be articulated. Ms. Goff attempts to make an argument for why “nigga” should be deaded and I point out that her rationale is flawed and based upon her disconnection from the community that employs the word most frequently. Check out what I have to say in the clip below. A written transcript is also available below. Click here to check out Ms. Goff’s article and the Dylan Ratigan Show feature.

Ms. Goff,

I understand your rationale behind your article and statements; however, I believe that such an understanding of the situation is birthed out of a disconnect between you’re seemingly middle-class Black experience and the portion of the Black community that one tends to find the use of the word nigga more prevalent (low SES Black folk).

First let me say, The use of the word “nigga” by Black rappers and comedian does not justify Dr. Laura’s use of the word. Period. It is not logical in any way shape or form for this white woman who seems to be very disconnected from the Black community to use a “communal” colloquialism (nigga) or a derogatory term (nigger). The fact that she and other non-Blacks are “chastised” when they say “nigga” does not mean that “Arbitrary rules about who can say the N-word and who cannot simply do not work”; on the contrary, the rules about who can and cannot use the word “nigga” will work if others respected the reality of our social situation and did not feel as if they are entitled to say or do anything just because others do so.; in other words, if whites began to check their white privilege at the door and recognize that there’s things that they just can’t do or say, things would work perfectly. No one wants to admit, however, there are some things that Black people do that whites can’t, and vice verse. But it is what it is…

I agree that the other issues plaguing our communities–AIDS and violence–does not incite as much anger and frustration as it should. But I think the main cause of frustration is the fact that we tend to see AIDS and violence as something that we do to ourselves, while white people using “nigga” seems to be taken as degradation by an outsider. And we for the most part abide by hood rule number 1: what happens in this house, stays in this house, and hood rule #2: it don’t matter how much you and your brother fuss and fight, if somebody from the outside come at one of yall, you better have his back. Period. Now, take those rules and apply them to the larger Black community.  (Please note, we can definitely make a case about AIDS and violence being inflicted upon us by the “man” because of health care and poverty issues but that does require for us to look deeper than the obvious, which I will admit is an issue in itself in our society at large).

And white people using “nigger”/”nigga” is lethal; perhaps not lethal in a physical manner, but it does crush a lil something in you or at the very least cause a lil uneasiness that you rather not feel. I won’t ever forget being called a nigger by a lil white boy named James in the 2nd grade and my white teacher did nothing; that day my innocence was slaughtered; that day my feelings and interactions with white people were forever altered; that day made me conscious of hate; that day probably even shaved off some of the time that I will spend on earth because of allostatic load (stress); that word was and is, depending on the user, lethal.

Furthermore, you ask the question: ‘Are children really savvy enough to grasp the nuances of a word being an alleged term of endearment around certain types of people, but a term of degradation among others?” and I say yes they are. You then go to write: “Is it any wonder then that so many inner-city high schools have nearly fifty percent drop out rates among black boys, when many of them have likely been called the N-word (as a term of “endearment”) much of their lives? ” I say, they are not dropping out at these rates because they call one another nigga; on the contrary, they are dropping out at this rate because the system, society, and the powers that be treat these boys as “contemptible, inferior, ignorant, etc.” And this manner of treatment would occur regardless of if they called one another “nigga”, “homey,” “god,” “son,” “blood,” “cuz,” etc. Why because they are Black males in America.

As far as your Carol Channing example goes, you are totally missing your point. Notice how you had to change Ms. Channing’s normal mode of comportment to make your point. Note, you added “boisterous” and had her speaking in African American Vernacular English (AAVE). Note also you had her saying “What up my ni****?” in setting that the typical Black person wouldn’t say it in. How many Black folk have been on the View and said that? This sentence would be okay if a) it was natural for her, and b) it was an in appropriate environment. In other words, if she grew up using the word in an endearing fashion and it was second nature rather than second thought and if she was amongst other people who were accustom to using the word as well it wouldn’t sound as outlandish as your example makes it.

Furthermore, I don’t think that word “nigga” is used to be funny; only an outsider would see it as such. The word “nigga” is coded and has more to do with familiarity, comfort, community, and identity. The use of the word shows that you are familiar or identify with a certain culture/group/social location of sorts. And for that very reason is why non-Blacks generally don’t get a pass, why some Puerto Ricans, some whites who were born and raised and associate almost exclusively with Blacks, some Filipinos, etc get passes. And it’s the same reason why some Blacks get looked at sideways when they use it; yes, there are some decedents of slaves Black folk who look nearly as bad as white folks using the word “nigga.” But those niggas don’t get checked, they usually just get shunned.

Finally, once again, I think your lack of understanding and disconnection has caused you to think that most of the users are fighting to keep “nigga” alive; on the contrary, most of the users never knew that it was a battle going on; we don’t fight to keep the word alive, it’s just part of our everyday vocabulary.

Hope this brings forth greater understanding.

V

(btw, I know for a fact that Martin Luther King, Jr. himself used to use the term “nigga” too)

Words to My Young Sisters: A Message for Ms. Kat Stacks

I am not here to cast stones or judgment; I am the first one to admit imperfection and flaws. All I’m here to do is offer up my life story and hope that you (whoever is reading this and about to watch the clips) take something positive away from it. I’m not attacking Kat Stacks; on the contrary, I’m just saying she and other young ladies who are using their bodies as a way to notoriety–whether sleeping with athletes and entertainers, regular dudes around the way, or your boss– may want to reexamine this life because at some point the fame is going to calm down and you’re still going to have to live with yourself.

I encourage all those displeased by the situation to do something about it: Become a mentor! It’s a generation of girls who need you. Be there to offer guidance and support and help prevent them from traveling down this long hard road…

(Click here to read the article)

If a Stanford student and interested in mentoring with my organization, F.O.U.N.D.: Finding Our Undeterred Nubian Daughters, please email me at nubian.daughters.com.

If you like what you hear or feel that you know some young girls who could benefit from hearing this type of message, please click here to listen to selected poems from “Diary of an Ex-Nympho: An Autobiography Written in Verses” by Victoria Shantrell Asbury.

Poetry Reading in Palo Alto

Check out some live footage of your favorite girl enlightening the world with verses.

To click HERE to listen to more of my poetry..

All the Way Trill: A Discussion on “Stayin’ Hood”

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Go read the exchange that take place on allhiphop.com with me and IPROFESSOR on an editorial entitled, “The Decline Of The Conscious MC: Can It Be Stopped?” by Mr. Cedric Muhammad.

Click HERE to get in the dialogue…

Here’s an excerpt from the conversation:

IPROFESSOR Said:

…So You have to stop thinking these are the streets civil rights warriors came from and loved. In Atlanta we had Auburn Avenue which was basically the first black wall street. The same one that birthed the civil rights movements of Mlk and the SCLC AND sncc THE SAME ONE THAT kING AND CORRETTA ARE BURIED ON, AND DOES NOT I REPEAT DOES NOT in any shape or form now embody anything that we held dear to us as a people.

So I say f**k THE STREETS!!!!!!!! MY PEOPLE COME FROM PRIDE AND COMPASSION, NOT ANY FUCKING DIRTY VIOLENT STREETS. The poorest share cropper did not come from any bulls**t ass streets…

Ms_Anomalous Said:

…“The streets” are our communities. “The streets” are present in the most downtrodden of areas and in the nice suburbs. Just because these communities and their members don’t promote certain ideologies, doesn’t mean they still aren’t OUR streets; our people. Back in slavery time, there was a large group of Black folk that didn’t promote Black self-sufficiency. Were those still not our people? Back in the 50s and 60s there were people who didn’t promote direct confrontation of the oppressive system that was (and still is) keeping millions of Black folk oppressed. Were those not our people? Today we have people who NORMALIZE drugs, violence, ignorance. Are those not our people?… Read More…

Is Gay the New Black?

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“It is clear that it is far more advantageous to be black than gay in modern-day American society.. The truth of the matter is: no one, unless they long for battle, would ever choose to be gay.” (Williams)

Is gay the new black? By Edward Wyckoff Williams

What’s your opinion on the matter? Initiate the Dialogue…

(All yall who saw that type-o “Is Black the New Gay?” and ain’t say nothing, yall should be ashamed of yourself! In the future, let me know when something like that happens! Thanks!)

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