Nevertheless She Persisted

[Credit] One of my former students from when I served on staff with InterVarsity, is a proud multi-racial Native American who has recently taken up the mantle of resistance at her children's elementary school who uses R-dsk*ins as their school mascot. She frequently posts screenshots of the hateful & personal attacks other parents at the school launch at her as they inexplicably fight to keep this word as their mascot name.The ensuing battle has been so intense the local news recently aired a few minutes of the community gathering in which the Board of Education disappointingly ruled to keep the mascot name.  During the video an older white gentleman stood at the microphone with anger & disgust & forcefully told my friend that anyone who didn't like discrimination in this country can leave with his packing assistance. She replied, "we were here first, I'll help you pack." The irony of a descendant of an immigrant so foolish to utter those words to the descendant of an … [Read more...]

Why Don’t You Believe Us?

I am a queer woman. I fear for the dissolution of the legal marriage with my wife.I am an American-born, Arab-American. I fear Islamophobic harassment which almost every member of my American-born family has experienced. I fear the impact of registration on my friends & family.I am a refugee hoping to be united with family. I fear I'll never see them again.I am a Black American. I fear the implications of a white nationalist recently named as Trump's chief of staff.I am a Mexican American. I fear the impact of The Great Wall of Mexico will have on immigrant families & the poor.I am a woman. I fear the implications of living in a country where it's okay for our President to explain away sexually predatory behavior even as he's headed to trial on child rape charges. //// Many of us are legitimately scared. Lots of us are terrified. Some can't stop crying. Others have overwhelm. There is an unrest that has very little to do with losing the candidate of … [Read more...]

My People Motivate Me

As a very little girl I knew my people were beautiful, special...mistreated & hated. I knew I actively wanted to be a part of our restoration, no matter what form that took on. (And dare I say, I knew at 16 yrs old it was my calling).What my youth could never tell me was just how much I myself needed to survive to even begin to have a meaningful impact. Early in my career, I was able to make a small but noticeable difference in the lives of several Black-American college students... I spent 12 years pouring into those lives and it's still my greatest honor & life-contribution to date....though I am ALWAYS humbly grateful for those who my writing has touched.And now, after wading through a divorce & a Time of Trauma NOTHING motivates me more to get my sh*t together than my people and what we currently face. Nothing motivates me more than the thought of joining God in what He's all ready doing to continue to bring hope and justice to my people.I'm learning to … [Read more...]

What Are You Supposed To Tell Your Sons About the Black Woman Chair?

When an international magazine editor sits down on a chair called "the black woman chair," for an editorial magazine......heads are scratched. Pearls are actually clutched.  Swear words are articulated.  Anger is not just in the head or heart, it is felt in the body.  From anger to sadness to despair.Then you remember this IS our reality.  You forgot...since yesterday.You post it on Facebook and every one feels ALL THE RAGE.  And you feel confirmed that it IS -in fact- jarring, awful, perhaps even evil.  A piece of  "art" gone rogue.  A misstep by an editor, a photographer, a magazine editor, a publisher.They apologize, say "everyone is equal" but you know in your heart this was no unintentional misstep.  This chair was made to be intentionally "provocative," they can call it "not racism," and a "piece of art," and you can call bullshit all day but mostly you stuff it down because if you didn't each new instance of your objectification would suffocate you.You wonder … [Read more...]

Have Character? Thoughts to end Black History Month…

I'm guest posting today for Enuma Okoro, author of The Reluctant Pilgrim.  From the post...It’s the last day of Black History month.   Is there anything exciting about ending a month where many of us aren’t even sure what exactly we are supposed to be doing during Black History Month?  Is the month set aside to merely think about what blacks have done?  I have a friend that posted important inventions by black inventors on his Facebook wall every day during Black History Month. I loved that he did that, yet it left me feeling hollow.  Isn’t our black history more than the sum of the scientific and artistic inventors?  It took me a while to figure out why this particular focus on inventors left me wanting.  And then it hit me: leadership.You can read the rest of this post over at Patheos blog.Happy Black History Month, everyone! … [Read more...]

Address Evil.

 The genocide in Darfur is deteriorating.  As, I looked at my 8 month old this morning I felt heavy-hearted as I considered what it would be like to not be able to feed him.I'm in awe of the women who love their kids so much but have to watch them starve. These women have relocated to displacement camps but still live with the constant threat of rape.The situation there is awful, and I admit even my prayers seem like useless act of service amidst such great distress.My challenge for us today is to take a few small steps toward being part of the solution.Why?~People are suffering tremendously and they need our help.  I get ancy when I have some small & insignificant problem and people won't help.  I can't imagine what the suffering & dying are wondering about why the world has continued to allow this to happen for 7+ years.  (If it were up to me I promise you I would have Sudan's tyrant of a President killed on the spot though I know that would onl … [Read more...]

Britney, McCain & the Biskies

I read somewhere the other day that The McCain Family -mom & pop- gave $1,800 in charitable giving out of their estimated $280k they made last year.  I think that sucks.  It's less than 1% of their income for the year.  And this is the dude most of evangelical America wanted for their prez?  Shame on us.  If our presidential hopeful can't even write one check for more than $2k to a single organization who is doing good in the world -and there are soooo many to choose from- that's a doggone shame.  And yet, we believed that he was God's man for the job?  I just struggle with that, I'll be honest with you.  This is not my shining example of a Jesus follower I tell you that much.  Jesus loved justice & gave all he had pursuing it.  (I believed what Jesus was about more closely aligned with Obama's office & so I didn't vote for McCain).I'm proud to say that Dave & I went through great efforts to give a little more than 13% of our total income. Not because I wanna be all … [Read more...]

Inauguration Day

I thought our new President's inauguration speech was fantastic!  As a follower of Jesus, I felt that he actually addressed so many of the things that I care about.  (Not only that but also was extremely inclusive to those who follow Islam, Hinduism, Athiesm, etc.)I love that he addressed all of us as part of the mess we are in.  The government, our greed, the media --no one is innocent.  Which I think is mature given how everyone loves to hate on Bush.I love that his dreams includes a challenge to all of us to be more self-sacrificial, for us to consider the needs of the poor -the world even- as we think through what we consume.  I love that he brought up the world so much.  I love that he understands the interdependency of the all human beings on the planet.  I love that he challenged Americans -of all people- to think about some one other than ourselves.I love his confidence & I love that he addressed our enemies and allies alike.  I appreciate how much hope he is com … [Read more...]

The Obama Election

For reasons I'm not quite ready to share yet I haven't been able to bring myself to blog.  Not due to busyness, -though life couldn't get any busier- but I sort of feel like maybe I was a lead actress in the movie, Gigli & I got a 10 (out of 100) on the tomato-meter on rottentomatoes.com & on top that I got voted worst dressed at the premiere.  The jist: the shame of rejection!  I will share about it.  But not tonight.I wanted first to break my longest blogging silence ever by commenting on one of the most tremendous accomplishments by an African American male: Mr. President, Barack Obama.As I've mentioned before I've been taking a class on African American history.  A very complete and thorough look at our years here on American soil & this election in the context of that history and all that has been fought for basic human rights for so many years leaves me... astonished, amazed, proud, humble, overjoyed, excited and overcome with emotion and tears.  This isn't … [Read more...]

Does being Evangelical mean being Republican? (or Democrat)

  No.But, like Forest Gump, "that's all I have to say about that."Instead I'd like to refer to you a great book on this very issue.It was written by a friend of mine actually.  Lisa & I worked on a National leadership team for InterVarsity a few years ago.What I know about her is that she is brave, wonderful, God-fearing, highly intelligent, passionate, a visionary and one of the most respectable human beings I have ever met.  For example, she created this organization in New York City to end all poverty in NYC through the exsisting institutions & structures in partnership with the church.  I mean, how cool is that?  It's called "New York Faith & Justice."My husband, Dave read the book in 3 sittings & has been raving about it ever since.  In particular the things that the church never talks about & it is fascinating.For example, did you know there were more abortions under the Bush administration than Clintons?  She gives a whole chapter to explai … [Read more...]