Nate Parker is the Unrepentant Abuser We Know Too Well

As the Friday debut of his Nat Turner inspired film Birth of a Nation approaches, filmmaker and actor Nate Parker continues to field questions about his 1999 rape trial involving his co-writer Jean Celestin and a young woman who died by suicide in 2012. Sadly, his most recent interviews suggest that he still sees his abuse as secondary to his film-making. Once again, an abuser has centered himself in the trauma of someone he has traumatized. Continue reading “Nate Parker is the Unrepentant Abuser We Know Too Well”

The Trouble With the Commodification of Athletes’ Labor

Protesting is hard. It is also isolating. But, it gets even more complicated when money is involved.

At several points in my life, I have found myself unsupported by others who had previously indicated that they were fed up with the unjust treatment they were facing. When I took a risk by speaking up about those conditions, they clammed up, lied, and completely abandoned me out on the limb I had climbed for them. That usually resulted in the whole protest becoming my cross to bear when those who shared in my concerns couldn’t speak on it for fear of repercussions. This is precisely the conundrum facing 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, his peers, and his protest of the national anthem, just on a much grander scale. Continue reading “The Trouble With the Commodification of Athletes’ Labor”

I Might Be ‘With Her’ For Now…

I am reluctantly writing this piece. Both because I am still unsure about my exact sentiments on Hillary Clinton as the preponderant answer to our nation’s lingering political issues and simultaneously dissatisfied with the notion that her candidacy has been reduced to what lies “between Donald Trump and the presidency.” But, I think its time to move beyond that. Continue reading “I Might Be ‘With Her’ For Now…”

Colin Kaepernick And Our Collective Denial That Football Is (Already) Political

When San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick refused to stand for the “Star Spangled Banner” during a preseason game, he didn’t “bring politics into football.” Football – like most things in this country – has always been political. We’ve just spent an inordinate share of our lives trying to ignore it. Continue reading “Colin Kaepernick And Our Collective Denial That Football Is (Already) Political”

Four Ways Patriarchy Became The Norm In My Romantic Life

I recently watched a video where trans men explained the idea of male privilege. In the video, they talked about how, after transitioning, they experienced a sense of freedom when walking down the street and moving in public spaces. They noticed that people stopped cutting them off when they spoke. In essence, they were shocked by the ways that their perceived manliness made people treat them like humans. Continue reading “Four Ways Patriarchy Became The Norm In My Romantic Life”

Black Girl Magic and the 2016 Olympics: The Water and Oil of Black Athleticism

Over the past two weeks, I have watched Black girl after Black girl medal in the 2016 Summer Olympics. Simone Biles has dominated gymnastics. Simone Manuel did the same in swimming. Michelle Carter won gold in shot put. And, while I felt immense pride watching each of them claim victory in their respective sports, I can’t lie and say that I wasn’t conflicted about it all. Continue reading “Black Girl Magic and the 2016 Olympics: The Water and Oil of Black Athleticism”

‘Zootopia’: Disney’s Feeble Attempt At Discussing Racism Without Discussing Racism

Disney’s new film Zootopia has been universally praised by critics and watchers alike. Some have even called it an “instant classic.” The film features a slew of characters dealing with structural oppression and the politics of fear, but the title should clue you into the fact that they are all animals. And while that is a major problem for me, I was more concerned about the film’s handling of race, sexism and misogyny, police brutality, and a host of other very serious issues facing communities of color. It took the same preachy, white-washed, tone-deaf tenor that just isn’t going to dismantle any oppressive institution in the United States. Continue reading “‘Zootopia’: Disney’s Feeble Attempt At Discussing Racism Without Discussing Racism”

Let’s stop bothering Meagan Good about her clothes

Folks have been concerned about Meagan Good’s clothing choices for what feels like forever. A few years ago, she was in the news for wearing a revealing dress (that she looked absolutely stunning in) as a Christian woman and a reverend’s wife. The concern was that her attire didn’t match up with her faith. Now, video footage has emerged of yet another person who identifies as Christian maligning Good and telling her to “cover up.” Continue reading “Let’s stop bothering Meagan Good about her clothes”

Why Aren’t the ‘All Lives Matter’ People Outraged About Ethan Couch?

In December 2013, news broke that a young, well-to-do 16-year-old White male named Ethan Couch had been sentenced to probation after mowing down four people in a drunken stupor, killing them all and injuring two others. The claim: he suffered from something called “affluenza” – a problem which kept him from truly understanding the consequences of his actions because he had grown up never really having to answer for anything. Now, Couch is defying those orders and evading capture by police, and even the FBI and US Marshals.  Oddly though, there seems to be a deafening silence coming from all those people shouting “all lives matter” at the protestors and demonstrators all over this country who have been speaking out against the murders of innocent Black and Brown people. I wonder why… Continue reading “Why Aren’t the ‘All Lives Matter’ People Outraged About Ethan Couch?”