Sunday, October 28, 2012

Greetings from (soon to be) Stormy New Jersey

So we've got a state of emergency, many places are shutting down starting tomorrow thanks to Hurricane Sandy, also known as Frankenstorm. While I'm not worried for our family too much, I have friends and extended family members who live by the shore and/or low lying areas. So, prayers are very welcome!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Want to know why I don't support either party?


This. The lovely Erin of "And Sometimes Tea" has an excellent post breaking it down.

First up, I highly recommend this piece by Jack Hunter at The American Conservative, with the provocative title Pro-Life Means Anti-Drone:

Barack Obama has never claimed to be pro-life. As the Washington Examiner’s Tim Carney writes: “President Obama has killed hundreds of civilians, including women and children, in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia through a drone war aimed at exterminating the suspected terrorists on his unprecedented and ever-expanding ‘kill list.’”

The drone strike program that was controversial during the Bush administration has grown dramatically under President Obama. The logic behind drone strikes is plain—the ability to eliminate terrorist targets with unmanned aircraft means we don’t have to endanger U.S. military personnel. But the grim reality of these strikes drastically undermines any good intentions. The method has quickly become an everyday nightmare for average Pakistanis. In September CNN reported that a recent study showed that drone strikes “are too harmful to civilians, too sloppy, legally questionable and do more harm to U.S. interests than good.”

Indeed. For every terrorist killed, the number of civilians killed continues to mount—and the question of who is actually a “terrorist” has become even more vague.

This week, MSNBC “Morning Joe” host Joe Scarborough explained that America’s drone policy basically says that: “if you’re between 17 and 30, and within a half-mile of a suspect, we can blow you up … They are focused on killing the bad guys, but it is indiscriminate as to other people who are around them at the same time.” Scarborough continued: “Instead of trying to go in and take the risk and get the terrorists out of hiding in a Karachi suburb, we’re just going to blow up everyone around them.”

When Scarborough brought up how drones have indiscriminately killed many innocent children, Time columnist Joe Klein replied: “The bottom line in the end is—whose 4-year-old get killed? What we’re doing is limiting the possibility that 4-year-olds here will get killed by indiscriminate acts of terror.”
Read the rest here.  And don't forget that there is wide bipartisan support for drone warfare, which would undoubtedly continue under a Romney administration.
 She also writes on how American citizens could also find themselves as targets of warfare- drone or otherwise. I love her closing:

Not long ago Rod Dreher posted from France about things left behind by Jewish children in Paris rounded up by the Nazis during World War II.  People commented, predictably, about the horror of French Christians turning blind eyes to this sort of thing.  Well, today many of us turn blind eyes, or even write words of excuse or justification, concerning the children of the Middle East who are being killed, maimed, and otherwise harmed by our policies of drone warfare and disproportionate civilian attacks.  That's on us--and future generations may well wonder how American Christians paid so little attention to the atrocities being committed by our leaders, in our names, in our day.

 I refuse to turn a blind eye to this, no matter if it's a red or blue politico pushing death by remote.

Honey Boo! Booooo!

Confession, I might be one of the few Americans left who has not bared witness to the degradation of childhood, innocence and television entertainment known as "Honey Boo Boo". In fact, I hadn't even heard of it until a few months ago when my friend Aja mentioned it in an email (I didn't even get the reference).



So the following excerpt, penned by a fictional Honey Boo Boo and published by The Onion, is for all of you who watch, week after week. Smh, people, smh.

"So as me, Mama, Glitzy and eleven-fingered baby Kaitlyn gear up for the next chapter of Piggly Wiggly and pageantry, I want to take a moment to thank all of our fans out there and to remind them that this charade is, of course, going to end very, very badly.

You know that, right? That my whole life is, sooner or later, going to wind up being a complete and utter train wreck of delusion and misery? Just want everybody to be clear on that.

Again, I’m glad people are enjoying the show. It is definitely good that people enjoy gathering around the television and laughing at my chubby cheeks, and my tacky family, and all of our hysterical antics. Just so long, of course, as people are aware that there is no possible scenario in which I will grow up to be a functional human being who is healthy and psychologically well-adjusted. Or successful. Or anything but a sick punchline, or worse. Because viewers should already know that. I mean, I’m a 7-year-old girl who regularly consumes a combination of Red Bull and Mountain Dew, for God’s sake. And who loves constantly mugging in front of a camera at an age when a human being generally shouldn’t be doing that kind of thing.

But, then again, what am I saying. Of course people know this! Of course people understand implicitly that I am going to one day in the near future develop serious health problems not limited to massive weight gain, type II diabetes, and likely drug addiction as a result of emotional maladjustment and years of unrestricted access to dangerous substances provided by television producers and sponsors. You’d kind of have to be a willfully clueless idiot not to realize that, after all. That’s something anyone who’s watched even one second of my show, particularly any moment that involves me or my family eating or speaking, would realize.

So, assuming you all understand this, then that means you are all totally okay with gleefully laughing at me and my family, even when there is a pretty darn good chance that an act of horrific violence may very well lurk in my not-too-distant future. An act of violence that, say, 10 or 15 years from now will make people who once watched my show say, “Oh my God, that’s awful. What a sad and f---ed up little life she had. Well, that’s what happens when someone is given that much attention and exposure at such an early age. It warps their mind and makes it impossible for them to develop into normal adults.”

Those are words you will speak one day. And you’re okay with that, right? You should probably be okay with that if you want to keep watching my show."

So, are you ready to find out what else is on? H/t: Rod Dreher

Friday, October 26, 2012

Author Interview: Angelica Perez


One of the sweetest people I have yet to have had the pleasure of meeting, Angelica Perez, has experienced enough in her life to have left her bitter. She's a veteran of the Marines and is disabled. Due to her injury, she has had a number of surgeries and still battles chronic pain.

In spite of these trials, or maybe even because of them, she creates. She is the author of "Mentality Listens: In A World Where Art Screams," a blogger, artist, and photographer.

She is married, loves animals, and has a deep love for Christ. She was gracious enough to open up about her childhood, surviving boot camp and where she find inspiration.


AD: Tell me about your self... Where did you grow up? What was your family like? What did you want to do when you grew up?

AP:  I grew up in Bensonhurst, New York.  I went to High School in Medford, New York (Strong Island).

AD: Were you always into writing? What about reading? Drawing? Painting? Dancing?

AP: I think a journal came out of my mom before I did...Lol.  I kept a lot of journals when I was young.  I would write a lot of short stories, poems, songs.  I also kept a journal about who I had a crush on at the time...I think my mom still has those somewhere in the garage...Lol.  She's not giving them up.

I remember when I went to Christian school, which I attended from 3rd grade - 6th grades, our Pastor drove a van from Brooklyn to Staten Island each day, which was where the school was located.  After school, I hung out with Pastor Dave's son, Tommy, and we would watch cartoons and draw war scenes, really small war scenes in our notebooks...Lol.  They were pretty good, actually, and we would tell each other a story about what we were drawing while we were drawing.

I don't remember painting too much as a child.  But I do remember my mom purchasing some of those paint by number boards.

AD: At what age did you enter the military? Which branch? What were your feelings enlisting as a young woman? How were you treated?

AP: I went to the United States Marine Corps boot camp in Parris Island, South Carolina, on September 21, 1998. Oorah!  Yeah, it's something you never forget.  I was eighteen and straight out of high school.  I never really focused on the fact that I was a young woman joining the Military.  I guess it was because of the people I hung out with at the time.

But, once I was in boot camp, my focused was forced to that of being a young woman in the military.  Time and time again, we were reminded of it, reminded of the fact that we can go to war...just because we don't go to combat doesn't mean we don't go to war.  And because we were women, they made us do twice the work the men did.  If the men did a six mile hump (hike with all your gear on), the women had to do twelve.  If the men did a 10 mile hump then the women had to do twenty.  So, they were pretty hard on us and kept throwing that fact in our face.  They said we had to prove ourselves.  I guess we did because when we graduated, General Krulak (Commandant of the Marine Corps at the time) himself pinned on my eagle, globe and anchor and ate breakfast with us.  It was definitely an unforgettable moment.

AD: Where were you stationed? Did you do much traveling? What were your primary duties?

AP: I was stationed at Marine Barracks 8th & I St., S.E., Washington, D.C.   So, in other words, I was in the middle of the ghetto...LOL.  No, it was a privilege being stationed there, being that it is the oldest post in the Marine Corps and it is where the Commandant lives.  I was a Fiscal Budget Technician, or a Financial Analyst.  I loved my job.

AD: Were you with your husband at this time? How did you two meet?


AP: We met in the Marine Corps.  We were together for a year while I was still enlisted.  We got married in 2002 and I was discharged in 2003.

AD: Your Christian faith has been vital to you as you've healed. Were you a Christian when you were first injured? If no, what was the source of your strength? If yes, how did you rely on your faith to get through the initial shock?

AP: I grew up in church so I knew who Jesus was.  At the time I was injured, I owned a Bible, I prayed every now and then, but I didn't have a stable, personal relationship with Christ.  I didn't know Him personally, just based on what was preached to me.  I believed He existed, I believed in God, yes.  But was I living for God?   No.  So, at that time, the source of my strength...was God because He never left me.  He was always there for me.  I was invited for about two years to attend a Bible study at the barracks.  After two years, I finally said yes.  During this time, when I actually started reading the Bible, not because I had to, but because I chose to, I saw how amazing, awesome, powerful, loving...how REAL God was.  That's when my personal relationship with Christ began.  James 1:2-4 says, "My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.  But let patience have [its] perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.

And I came across this (James 1:27): "Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, [and] to keep oneself unspotted from the world."
I got through the initial shock of my physical pain by these two verses.  The first one is self explanatory, but the second...the second was like a slap in the face.  It told me that the very word "Religion" in my mind was all wrong.  But I thought religion is a preference in belief!  What else am I ignorant about?  I got through my pain by diving, head first, into the Bible.

AD: Did you keep a journal during your initial recovery? If yes, so you still have it? Would you ever publish any of it?

AP: Yes.  I filled up a few journals throughout the years, some of which is being published as we speak.  It is a compilation of poems I wrote while in excruciating pain.  The book is called Mentality Listens and [is] available in paperback... on CreateSpace.com and Amazon.com.


AD: When did you start blogging? Why did you start?
 
AP: I started blogging in September [2011].  I had to resign from my job as a church clerk early in the summer because of my disabilities.  I was in a lot of pain.  I was waiting for a certain procedure to be scheduled by my doctor, so in the meantime, while I was at home, I started painting again.  But when my back hurt too much to paint, I would write on the computer.  I started doing a lot of research on the procedure I was about to have and discovered wordpress.com.  I started a blog just to mess around with it.  At the time, I didn't even have a twitter account.  I actually got a twitter account to up my chances for hosting a coffee party through houseparty.com, but anyway....Lol, I started to write about God.  I was having so much fun changing the themes and backgrounds and posting...then I thought maybe if other people see this, they might be touched by God through His word.  So, I started writing poems with verses at the end.  And that's when I started to receive comments.

AD: How do you maintain multiple sites? Do you find it challenging?

AP: Oh, Lord.  Girl, let me tell you something...LOL.  I am so stubborn.  So many people have given me so many different suggestions as to how I should separate my blogs, or put them all together, or get my own domain...I have had so many versions of what you see now, it is just too funny.  I am truly a perfectionist when it comes to any type of art and to me, the way a blog or web page looks, is art.  But, you know what?  I have so much fun doing it.  Well, most of the time, when nothing crashes.  But it is not easy to update each website.  I finally figured it out.  Do not listen to anyone but God.  And that's working out pretty good right about now!  I can't believe I am about to hit 1,600 hits on my DC United site and I am at 1,400 on my main page at Just One voice .  I have linked all my sites to that one.  The most challenging site to keep up is definitely the photography site.  It is challenging because it takes the longest to post something because you have to upload the pictures, place them in an order, add captions, and make sure every picture has a copyright.

AD: Have you done any guest posts on other blogs or websites?

AP: I... had an article posted to Veteran'sWatchdog, one of my short stories.  

AD: When did you start painting? What paint do you use primarily? Oil? Watercolor?

AP: I started with oil painting.  I started to get really serious with my drawing in order to paint.  I took drawing classes and purchased a Bob Ross kit...Lol.  My first painting with the pretty little trees came out...well...like a first painting.  As I mentioned before, I am a perfectionist when it comes to art, and oil is so easy to just wipe off.  So, I wiped off that painting about three times before my husband stopped me before I could wipe it off the fourth time.  He made me sign it and I was so disappointed in it, I signed it with red paint...LOL.  Picture included.  Last year, I switched to Acrylics because they are a lot cheaper than oils and they dry faster, so I figured I would have no choice but to leave the painting alone after I painted. Boy, was I wrong!  I just painted layer upon layer to try to get it perfect.  



 AD: Which artists inspire you? Which writers inspire you?

AP: There are two students who attend my church that are excellent artists.  One is about to publish his very own first comic book.  This would not be his first book, but first published book.  The other designs houses for fun. They are both brothers, just a few years apart.  I must say that their attitude, their lifestyle, their artistic gift from God, and their obedience inspire me in every way as a writer and a painter.  I wish that parents would teach their kids how they can affect the people around them in a positive way, even adults.

Dead: Picasso, especially for the crucifixion painting he did.  There are so many things in that painting, I can literally stare at it for hours.  

Writers: God, of course.  The bible is God-breathed, inspired by God, written by man.
Stephen King once inspired me when I wasn't so deep into my relationship with Christ.  Since the beginning of 2011, I haven't purchased any of his new books.  But I do own all of his other novels...all of them.  I do think he is an extremely intelligent writer, but at the same time, if I feel like I am sinning while reading a book, then I can no longer read it.  He still inspires me to write because he has never stopped writing.  Even when he got hit by a car and got into that terrible accident which leaded to a very dark room within his life, he didn't let that stop him from writing.
John Macarthur (Johnny Mac) can break down the bible so that there's no way around the truth.

I love Picasso's paintings, especially his painting of the crucifixion. 

AD: What is your dream?
 
AP: To one day be sponsored to go on a mission trip to China with my husband; and to adopt a child.

AD: Where do you see yourself in 4 years? How about 8?

AP: In four years, I see myself oooooooold...LOL.  In eight years?  Very Old!  LOL.  No, for real.  In four years I hope and pray that my husband and I will have a house by then and a child, whether it be our own or an adopted child.

In eight years, I hope by then that my husband and I will have regular supporters that will fund our mission trips.  Even though I am disabled, that doesn't stop me from spreading the Gospel.  I was worse than now when I went on my very first mission trip and God did it all.  I was just a tool he used to share His Word.  There are so many people who know that we are missionaries, but unfortunately, we do not have any regular supporters.  Mission trips are very expensive, so I pray that God will put people in our path that are willing to send us around the world to spread the Gospel.

AD: Tell me Brooklyn Baby: Nets or Knicks? Any memories of Coney Island? Been to Juniors? Jigga or Biggie? 

AP: Coney Island.  That was the chill spot.  The boardwalk.  The games.  the arcade.  The Cyclone.  The Zeppoli's.  The cotton candy.  The funnel cake.  The one inch of sandy rock...LOL.  Ahhhhh, yes.  Coney Island.  I can smell it now.  Smells like Nathans!  And who can forget...the thirty second bumper car rides.  

AD: If you put your MP3 player on "shuffle", what would we hear?

AP: Well, let's see.  Shuffle...and here we go:
  • "On in Here" by Cross Movement
  • "My Everything" by Richard Smallwood
  • "Heart Stops" by Flame
  • "Things Change" by Shachah
  • "Throne" by Lojique
  • "What a friend we have in Jesus" by Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir
AD: Tell me something random about you.

AP: When I was a teenager living in Long Island (Strong Island), I came across this medallion one day on my bed.  I have no clue how it got there.  It was the Star of David.  I have written the first Novel of a trilogy based on this Medallion.  I don't want to reveal too much, but it is a story about an eighteen year old atheist girl being called by God to share the truth (the gospel) to the boss of the Italian Mafia.  With God's help, it will be released this year.

Want to hear more from Angelica? Check out one of her many sites or follow her on Twitter.

Mimicking the mainstream. Music as background patina.


Continuing with the responses I received from "Christian Music Suckage," I'd like to welcome Ben H. Rome (@bhrome), a Washington, D.C. based writer, blogger and game designer (and in my opinion, also a talented photographer, but he gives props to his wife for her photo-taking skills). Here's his take:

AD: How long have you listened to Christian music?

BHR: Almost 20 years. The first Christian music album I purchased after I was saved was PFR's self-titled project and Newsboys' "Take Me To Your Leader." If we're counting mainstream music performed by Christian artists, though, it was U2's "Joshua Tree."

AD: CCM is a broad term. Which particular type of Christian music do you listen to most? Rock? Rap? Worship? Country? Gospel?

BHR: It varies, really. Mostly rock, a touch of metal, a little worship, some contemporary, and a variety of Christian musicians who produce music in other genres. I also have an extensive movie soundtrack folder, as well as techno-pop and industrial metal for when the mood strikes.

AD: I quoted a lot of folks in that post. Are there any points you agree with?

BHR: I agree with Longenecker: "Christian popular music is almost always pretty bad, but  the problem with most 'Christian' music is that it is secular music with Christian words. In any decent art style and substance are supposed to match up. The meaning and the media are supposed to harmonize."

That's more of a fundamental problem that exists in the Christian subculture. Go into a Lifeway or a Family Christian store and easily 75% of what's sold is just "Christianized" versions of what is popular in the mainstream. It's not limited to music; the fiction genre is rife with copycat material, as is the "gift" sections. For a time, it was considered acceptable to slap a scripture or a pithy religious phrase on a painting or coffee mug, making it "christian." Or to publish books that had similar themes (and even covers!) to the top sellers in a B&N or on the NYT lists.

The fiction really irks me even today. (I'm a professional writer.) A lot of it is poorly written or syrupy fluff that avoids deep storytelling in order to mimic the mainstream. (And I'll admit right up front that the mainstream does the same thing within itself: if it sells, it's going to have a copycat soon enough.)


So back to music. Same problem. There's too much focus on paying attention to what's selling on the Billboard 100 and trying to mimic it, rather than finding that unique voice that God intended to speak to the world. I daresay the "giants" in CCM today are those who stuck to their roots and persevered through the calls for mimicry. (Third Day, Jars of Clay, Newsboys, Skillet...)


Epic face palm. Picture provided by Ben, and he own's it! So no stealsies! Link.

AD: Do you listen to secular music? If no, why? Do you believe its wrong or sinful? If yes, who? What do you listen to most, secular or Christian?

BHR: I do listen to secular music. Is it wrong or sinful? Personally, no. But let me clarify why.

The essence of music comes from God; He created it. But just like everything else in this broken world, when you add broken people into the creative process, we tend to get broken music on some level. Is it right for me to listen constantly to music that isn't done fully in the Creator's vision? If you eat enough spoiled meat, you're going to get sick. The same applies to the Christian life: when you watch/listen/read enough broken media (television, movies, music, books, games, and so on), you're going to poison the soul. The danger there isn't a loss of salvation - it's a dampening of the beautiful relationship we have with God thanks to Jesus. The clutter distracts us and pulls us off the path He's crafted.


That's why it's important you make choices in what you listen to (and so on) through reflection with the Holy Spirit. Does the lyrics to this song edify or tear down? Does it challenge Christ's view, or amplify it? Many Christians would be surprised that there are a lot of songs out there that, even though written/performed by unsaved artists, still express God.


("When outsiders who have never heard of God’s law follow it more or less by instinct, they confirm its truth by their obedience. They show that God’s law is not something alien, imposed on us from without, but woven into the very fabric of our creation. There is something deep within them that echoes God’s yes and no, right and wrong." -Rom 2:14-15, MSG)


So yes, I do listen to secular music. I have songs by Metallica, Skid Row, Linkin Park, 30 Seconds to Mars, Audioslave, Dream Theater, Rush and many others because these particular works speak God to me.


In addition, there are a variety of "secular" artists who are Christian - but are not sold or marketed as "Christian music." Bill Miller and Moya Brennan immediately come to mind - mainly because I absolutely adore their music, and because they are up front about their faith when asked. Others, like U2 and Brian "Head" Welch (formerly of Korn), are equally good.


Who would you like to see collaborate together?
I would love to see a Newsboys/dcTalk supergroup concert for one night. (I know that's sort of happened now, with Michael Tait replacing Peter Furler...) But if we're talking secular/sacred, then POD with Linkin Park, or Skillet with Dream Theater.


AD: How long have you been a Christian?

BHR: "Officially" since March 29, 1995. Unofficially, I think since I was 6. But my journey from that point to my conversion 17 years later was a long, tortured, and painful path.

AD: Do you go to church regularly? If yes, what type of music is sang? Hymns? Praise & Worship?
BHR: As much as my wife and I can, we go every Sunday. They sing mostly modern P&W, with some classics on occasion.

AD: How important is music to you?
BHR: Less than it used to be. During my time as a store manager of a large Christian retailer, I listened and followed CCM news all the time. Since my path has diverged from that many years ago, music has become my background patina; it's there for me during times of exercise and commuting, and for those times of intense writing. I find that a wide range of genres work for me, based on my moods and what's going on at the time.

AD: How do you listen? iTunes? CDs? Radio? Pandora?
BHR: Radio in the car. RadioU online when at work, mixed a little with free Pandora. And my generic mp3 player (it's about 6 years old now) when I'm out and about walking.

AD: Do you have a favorite artist?
BHR: Too many to count. If I *had* to pick, I'd say Third Day because I've been a fan of theirs since the days they first came out.

AD: What would you say to those who feel CCM is weak or lacking artistry?
BHR: They're partially right. The songs that hit you at the moment you need it? It can utterly beautiful. And then bland the next time you hear it because it's not the same moment. 


AD: Do you identify as a particular type of Christian? Baptist?
Presbyterian? Pentecostal? Catholic?
BHR: I am a Christian, a follower of Christ. Religious labels suck.

AD: Are you a singer or musician?
BHR: Nope, just a writer with a lot of life experience on both sides of the Cross.

Very cool, Bro. After reading Ben's words, I couldn't help thinking if only the writers of the CCM mimicry could inject just a fraction of the truth in Ben's last statement, the cries of corniness would be silenced.

Thanks to Ben for taking the time to break it down for me (and so eloquently!), and if you want to add your two cents, feel free to email me at jumpingatthesun@gmail.com.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

My increasing irrelevancy.

Don’t trust anyone over thirty. -Jerry Rubin

If that quote above is to be believed, I've got only a few more months left of trustworthiness. At least to those who are under thirty.

The young. The ones who rock the vote. Or just rock. The ones who watch the MTV Music Video Awards. The ones who only know Ice T and Ice Cube as actors. Ditto, Will Smith, who they watched as the Fresh Prince... in syndicated reruns.

It's strange to be thirty. Not old. Not even middle aged quite yet. I can see some fine lines forming at the corners of my eyes when I smile. My biggest skin problem, though, is still acne. Does Oil of Olay make zit cream? Or Oxy, wrinkle remover?

To Boomers and quite a few X'ers, I'm still a kid. Not to be trusted. I'm a texting, tweeting, pinning, Instagramming kid who updates her Facebook status more in a day then they have the past six months.

I totally get why advertising to me is a waste. I'm too old to get caught up in the whirlwind of buying an outfit just cause Rihanna wore it. Too young to have stacked any real paper for unnecessaries like luxury cars or trips to Asia. So I've got my iPad 2 and will tap away at it until it becomes so obsolete Apple stops making iOS updates that are compatible. Which, at this rate, will probably be sometime next year.

Which coincides with my 31st birthday. We will be irrelevant together.

What's the opposite of "suckage"?

 (Source)


So I did a post about Contemporary Christian Music's (CCM) supposed suckage in the minds and ears of quite a few. It went up, but the views for it didn't. At least that is, until the very cool Matt at The Church of No People kindly retweeted the link.

Quite suddenly, a bunch of peeps in the Twitterverse let me know, in no uncertain terms, that CCM is, if not awesome, at the very least, the opposite of "suckage". At first, I got scared. Really. See, I've found myself cornered by anonymous folks on the Interwebs in the past, trying to converse to no avail. So when I saw all those "@alishadefreitas" comments... I felt a chill.

But I warmed quickly when I actually read through the replies. There was no attack on me, just heartfelt defenses by music lovers. Once the convo got going, I asked two of the Tweeps if they would do an interview via email... and they agreed. Yeah! So please allow me to introduce you to Claire (@claireshegoes) and Ben (@bhrome).

Ladies first, so without further delay, the lovely, bespectacled Claire from Canada:


Claire

AD: How long have you listened to Christian music?

C. I want to say that I’ve been listening to Christian music in some form my whole life. When I was a child my parents played different records. I can’t remember the artists’ names. But I recall that certain artists sang only about Jesus and God's love. 

My parents also sang in church.  My mother often did solos.  I remember crying because her voice touched me so deeply.


AD: CCM is a broad term. Which particular type of Christian music do you listen to most? Rock? Rap? Worship? Country? Gospel?  

C: In the CCM world, I listen mostly to gospel and pop, along with some rock.

AD:  I quoted a lot of folks in that post. Are there any points you agree with? With what did you most disagree?

C: Among the people you quoted, I agreed the most with Benjamin Drew Griffin.  There will be diversity among the sounds—and quality of sounds—in the CCM canon.  I don’t think it’s realistic for people to expect anything else.  

I also agreed partially with a quote you took from Action Magazine. I know from experience that repetition of lyrics can grate on people’s nerves. 

However, I disagreed with the writer later on within the same passage. I remember that he had an issue with people referring to God as “worthy”. When I read his words, I became upset.
I wondered who he was that he felt qualified to criticize someone's diction so closely. All any of us has when we approach any subject is our own humble, human vocabulary. Although the word "worthy' may not do God justice, I don't know how someone could fail to see that someone was using it with the intent of honoring Him. 

Beyond that, I absolutely disagree with Father Longenecker, who stated that--regarding CCM, “Too often the audience actually like the crap that is being dished up.” Different lyrics, tempos, and styles of music mean different things to different people. I don’t see his reason for tarring all Christian music with a “crap” brush. 

More importantly, though, I have a question about a declaration that he made, which was echoed in D-Sane’s words. Father Longenecker said, “…the problem with most ‘Christian’ music is that it is secular music with Christian words.”What do people mean when they say this? And honestly, what do they expect? Is CCM supposed to utilize other-worldly instrumentation and lyrics? Human beings are only capable of doing so much.

To be fair, though, I will admit something. A few years ago I caught myself cringing over a couple of CCM artists. When I listened to them, all I heard was a bastardized version of Britney Spears. 

Hence, I'd like to clarify my position. Although I can see the problem with plagiarism and artistic laziness, I don’t object to parallel genres within the field of CCM. The majority of society has been conditioned to listen to music that adheres to certain patterns. 

Which brings me back to my main question: what do critics want CCM to sound like?
If it is supposed to be different from secular music, just how different is it supposed to be? Are there specific guidelines that musicians ought to follow? For all of their complaining, there has been very little explaining.

A great deal of energy is spent insulting CCM and stating what it shouldn’t be. How about some concrete ideas regarding what it should be?



AD: Do you listen to secular music? If no, why? Do you believe its wrong or sinful? If yes, who? What do you listen to most, secular or Christian?


C:  I listen to secular music, probably more often than Christian music.  I enjoy pop,  as well as contemporary and classic rock and soul.  I appreciate artists such as Jill Scott and Jason Mraz.

AD: How long have you been a Christian?

C: I’ve been a Christian since childhood. However I haven’t always gone to church.
 
AD: Do you go to church regularly? If yes, what type of music is sang? Hymns? Praise & Worship?

C:  I’ve recently begun to attend services again. The church I am visiting plays a combination of traditional hymns along with contemporary praise and worship music.

AD: How important is music to you?

C: Music is my lifeline. I truly believe it is one of God’s greatest gifts to humanity. It restores my soul. It helps me to stay sane and focused.
 
AD: How do you listen? iTunes? CDs? Radio? Pandora?

C: I usually find music via iTunes. 
 
AD: Do you have a favorite artist?

C: Currently my favorite CCM artist is Mali Music.

AD: What would you say to those who feel CCM is weak or lacking artistry?

C: Stop whining. There are terrible artists in every genre of music. Get over the idea that the quality of any and all “Christian” music represents you.

Let’s look at another genre. Based purely on stereotypes, I’m supposed to be attached to R&B. But do you think I’m happy with every so-called soul singer that I hear? Absolutely not.

Meanwhile, I actually feel defensive when people say things such as “rap sucks” because I know differently. I don't see the sense in insulting an entire style of music because of a few unimpressive artists.

The quality of any type of music depends on the artist that a person is listening to. I think that it’s foolish to negatively depict an entire genre of music simply because a few artists are flawed.
If nothing else, I think that the critical vocabulary surrounding CCM needs to change. Alisha, your blog post isn’t the first time that I’ve heard that Christian music “sucks”.  I think that those who dislike CCM could do a lot better in terms of how they describe what they dislike.
Over the years I’ve heard a lot of complaining about CCM with very little offered in terms of means of improvement.

Hence, if someone thinks CCM sucks, I say to them, “Fine.”

Write your own material. Record it. Perform. 

But whatever you do, go beyond the notion that CCM is the worst thing ever. Because really, it’s not.

AD: Do you identify as a particular type of Christian? Baptist? Presbyterian? Pentecostal? Catholic?

C:  I think of myself as a non-denominational Christian.

AD: Anything you want to add?

C: Thank you for asking me to share my thoughts with you! I'm really grateful for this opportunity.

You're welcome! Thank you for taking the time to respond and to do so with so much thought, depth and charity! 

If, like me, you find Claire to be smart and interesting, follow her on Twitter or check out her blog. Next up, D.C.'s Ben Rome takes the virtual center stage.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Vitriol & Va-jay-jays


I ran across this post on Jezebel yesterday and I now have insight on how the inside of my head looks thanks to all the eyerolls I kept doing.

"Listen Up, Men: Here's How Romney's Views on Women Will Make Your Life More Difficult" is a basic piece on the evils Mitt will unleash on the fairer sex if elected. It's geared at dudes, though, because as the writer points out in the opening, their is a huge chasm between how many guys and many ladies are planning on voting in a couple of weeks:

This "holy crap do men not get it?" epiphany isn't just me gearing up to be a Cathy cartoon for Halloween; according to God of Polling Data Analysis Nate Silver, if the election were held today and only men voted, it would be a landslide Romney victory. If only women voted, Obama would win like a doped up Lance Armstrong. This election is shaping up to showcase the one of the largest gender gaps ever in a Presidential election — but why? Mitt Romney has made it clear that at the very least, his administration would prioritize limiting women's rights over their own bodies, fight equal pay laws, and have a big male har har har about issues near and dear to women of all stripes.


The writer, Erin Gloria Ryan, then gives a list of five reasons why those with a Y chromosome should back away from the dude with the binders full of women.  And of those five, three could really be summed up in one word: abortion. Here's some excerpts:

If birth control is less accessible, then less women will be on birth control. And so it stands to reason that women, as a population, will become slightly more fecund. This is bad news for a guy who just wants so have a consensual no-strings-attached fun with an of-age woman, as Romney's plan is to limit access to birth control that women can now purchase with their employer-provided insurance and appoint justices that will overturn Roe v. Wade and limit abortion at the federal level. That means that if a woman in Romn-erica gets pregnant, she stays pregnant. And you, young stud, are on the hook for child support for the first 18 years of that child's life. That means a whole world of headache and red tape.

Okay, let me interject. First, straight off the bat, I'm not against birth control. I am against overly dramatic (and extraordinarily long) statements like that third sentence up there. I've suffered through three debates (and it really was SUFFERING), and have read hundreds of political pontificating essays on my iPAD, and somehow, I must've missed Mittens saying a dang thing about "limiting access to birth control". To clarify, he wants to undo the Affordable Healthcare Act (i.e. Obamacare) and is against the HHS mandate, which is the part that specifically ties to "employer-provided insurance". By the way, there are a lot of folks against the HHS mandate, like the U.S. Catholic Bishops , some Evangelicals,and Orthodox Jews.

But he is against birth control, right? Well, no. What he's against is having employers like religious institutions who teach it to be immoral being forced to pay for it. Same difference? No. Explaining these differences does, admittedly, involve nuance, and do not sound great as catchphrases to rally the troops.

But what about abortion? Romney will assuredly get rid of that, right? From The Des Moines Register:
Mitt Romney today said no abortion legislation is part of his agenda, but he would prohibit federally-funded international nonprofits from providing abortions in other countries.
“There’s no legislation with regards to abortion that I’m familiar with that would become part of my agenda,” the GOP presidential candidate told The Des Moines Register’s editorial board during a meeting today before his campaign rally at a Van Meter farm.
... Romney has said he opposes abortion, except in instances of rape, incest and when the mother’s life is threatened.
Now, for a lot of pro-choicers that last part is not good enough. But, it should be noted, for a lot of pro-lifers, it isn't good enough, either. So basically, no one's happy. Which considering the realm of politics, sounds just about right.

But, but what about his appointments to the Supreme Court? Surely they'll undo Roe vs. Wade?! From that same article:

...  Romney has said he would appoint justices who are not activist judges.

Ahem, moving on. Back to Jezebel:
Even if your one life stand ends up giving the child up for adoption, you've still got a kid running around. And one day, that kid's going to try to find you in a heartwarming Unsolved Mysteries reboot that is going to be terribly awkward for you. He'll want birthday cards and shit and you'll have your own family and your wife will be like, what the hell, dude? and your kids will be like, "Daddy, is he our brother?" And you will look to the sky and shake your fist and yell ROOOMMMMNEEEEEEYYYYY!
Wow, way to trash adoption. Didn't know my mom, who is adopted, is channeling Robert Stack just because she wants to know who she is.
Casual dating, the kind where one of you inevitably says "So... what are we?" at 4 am after you two have been watching Game of Thrones and then having sex regularly for a few weeks, will be dramatically different under a Romney presidency. When pregnancy must be seen through to the end, every possible consensual pregnancy-causing encounter becomes less fun and more dire — unnecessary baggage for an act that is supposed to be fun and bond-exploring.
Wait, what? I know Ryan can't really believe this. If R-Money moves into the Oval Office, suddenly it will be the end up hook-ups? BWAHAHAHAHAHA.

STOP IT! Again with the dramatics! Okay, I *get* that this is a satirical piece, and dag nab it, I am laughing. But the sad truth is, from a quick skim of the comboxes under the article, there are a lot of people who believe this. To which I ask, under what other Rethug Prez did hook-ups suddenly cease? Nixon? Ford? Reagan? Bush? Bush II? No, no, no, no and no.

I'd also like to point out that "every possible consensual pregnancy-causing encounter" isn't all "fun", actually IS somewhat "dire" and does carry with it "baggage." Also, I was under the impression sex can be bond-FORMING. Seems there's some science to it, too.

What if your wife/sister/girlfriend/mother gets raped or has a severely health-threatening pregnancy? ... Under Romney, states would have the option to restrict abortion rights until there are no rights left at all. ... a woman you love could end up being forced to give birth to the child of a rapist.


 Referring back to the quotes from The Register above: "Romney has said he opposes abortion, except in instances of rape, incest and when the mother’s life is threatened"  She does raise a good point about  "assclown" state-level politicians. And THIS is where those on both sides of the debate should take note: if you want to see real change, you need to start locally. It's your congressman, your senator that can and does make all the difference in your state.

Crap, this is an epically long post chock full of quotes. I'll start my own wrap it up music here. Blame it on my being a raging moderate. Or thirty. Or a wife (to a small business owner). Or a mother. I'm just not buying into the hysterics that Mitt Zombie (credit, "30 Rock") is going to pull us ladies back to, in Ryan's words, "1860." Which would be epically bad for me being that back then, I was only 3/5th a person. I *do* have a problem with the notion of all "ladies' health problems" being boiled down to my vagina and uterus. I'm far more than a va-jay-jay.

Who thought this was a good idea? (Source)

Sunday, October 21, 2012

The decline of the Black Church.





From The Atlantic:
 
Today, the black church is in crisis, with scholars claiming that it has lost its prophetic and progressive influence. But the black church has also been confronted with a more visceral change: the shifting demographics around the urban black "space," caused in part by people like me.

In cities across America, a new population is moving to neighborhoods formerly occupied by working-class African Americans. Property developers, eager to take advantage of the modest rent, are tearing down buildings to make way for trendy eateries and luxury condominiums to fit the needs of millennials: young, educated individuals, most of whom reside briefly in a given urban area before choosing to settle elsewhere.

This recent physical and cultural transformation has been endlessly debated. According to Neil Smith, a professor of anthropology and geography at the City University of New York Graduate Center, gentrification has changed enormously since the '70s and '80s. "It's no longer just about housing," he told the New York Times. "It's really a systematic class-remaking of city neighborhoods. It's driven by many of the same forces, especially the profitable use of land. But it's about creating entire environments: employment, recreation, environmental conditions."
In Brooklyn's Williamsburg and Greenpoint, for instance, the proportion of residents holding graduate degrees quadrupled to 12 percent from 1990. At the same time, the retail focus has shifted from offering products to creating experiences. "In this struggle," he says, "the interests of private capital rarely lose."

In the nation's capital, black churches have refused to budge amid this accelerated gentrification process, even as they see their communities (and influence) slowly wane. For the first time, African Americans are no longer D.C.'s major racial or ethnic group. Select D.C. neighborhoods are experiencing a verifiable identity crisis, with the black church at the helm. Changing demographics are a daunting challenge for an institution that used to occupy an integral role in the community -- serving as the center of stability and camaraderie, offering potlucks and after-school care along with religious services. To understand this struggle is to understand the changing role of the black church in the American narrative, and what vulnerable communities stand to lose if it disappears.
 Read the whole thing here.

Why are people such jerks?!?




Between the stink of politics, private citizens playing stalkerazzi via Reddit and just all out bad behavior by people who should know better, I've been thinking about jerks a lot lately.

Then I read this piece by Ebony's Michael Arceneaux, and wished people would take his advice.

Take for instance the video of the belligerent 25-year-old woman who was ultimately assaulted by a Cleveland bus driver. It didn’t take long for people to identity both her government name and her Twitter handle. Once people did, her mentions consisted of one crude joke about her beating after another. Feel however you want about the incident itself, make your jokes if you must, but why go out of your way to directly be hurtful? Why did she need to hear these things?

I am not trying to police other people’s sense of humor. No one is completely absolved from guilt with respect to sometimes going over the line. Even so, while I personally can’t get a laugh out of watching a woman be hit by a man, what truly baffles me is why people went out of their way to find her for the sake of further taunting her.

The same can be said of similar attacks done on anyone with notoriety – namely celebrities. Some stars do indeed play an active role in antagonizing others with their tweets, yet more times than not it’s innocent bystanders. Like, you can enjoy or not enjoy Brandy’s album, but neither stance should spur you to make some direct quip to her about a tragic traffic accident she admittedly continues to have trouble with.

If you’re not a fan of Kim Kardashian, so be it. But unless you’re her gynecologist, she doesn’t need your direct analysis of her vagina virtually. And seriously, the woman who was hit on the bus doesn’t need you and yours trying to chin check her once again via computer or cell.


We’re all entitled to our opinions, but not everyone ought to necessarily be subjected to them in such pointed fashion. This is particularly true if that opinion isn’t so much a point-of-view as it is some kind of “joke” intended to hurt someone else to boost one’s own profile.

What does behaving like a prick all-day, everyday on Twitter do for these people? It won’t make up for whatever social awkwardness that happened earlier in their lives. There’s always the chance you might upset the wrong person crazy enough to find you offline to handle it. Worse, it gives you the false idea that being mean is synonymous with being funny.

Read the whole thing here. I agree with Arceneaux. Why are so many people feeling so free to get their jerk on? I know the Internet has given many the freedom (and anonymity) to let their inner ugly out. But why? Does it make them feel better about their own lives?

I just don't get it.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

When the thorn remains.



A few weeks ago, a pastor of another church visited mine and led a special service. It was for the purpose of healing- spiritually, physically, emotionally or whatever. I wound up last in line for prayer. To my surprise, Guest Rector not only laid hands on me but while praying, began speaking in tongues. Of course I know the Charismatic Movement had spread to even the frigid Episcopalians decades ago. It still threw me for a bit of a loop to see a man dressed in fancy schmancy robes and even that little cap bust out like my Pentecostal grandma.

Before he began his prayer, he asked for my request. I told him, and he prayed earnestly. After the "amen", he asked me if I felt any differences. He looked at me straight in the eyes, warmly and full of hope.

"Uhh, well, no. Thank you so very much for your prayers," I stammered quietly, and then asked him to pray for my sister, who's been dealing with a lot lately. He immediately did, and I returned to my seat in the pew next to my pastor's wife.

I felt sorry for Guest Rector, and I've felt sorry for a number of other awesome, Godly, loving people who have prayed for me over the years. They believe in complete healing. They've held my hands, cried, and rubbed little oil crosses on my forehead. They've spoken Psalm 91 over my life repeatedly. They've given me books, highlighted verses and burned CDs of encouraging worship music.

Yet, here I am, unhealed.



My chronic illness seems to make some uncomfortable. It reminds me of my bad knee I injured back in college, long before any of this CIDP mess. I was in a prayer group, and they set about my healing with gusto one Sunday evening. They wound up creeping me out. After putting me in a chair in the center of a circle (which set me right in the spotlight, something I don't like), they took turns praying. It might've gone on fifteen minutes but it felt like forever.

What creeped me out wasn't the excited prayer. Again, I'm use to that. Nah, it was the immediate questioning afterwards.

"You do feel better, right?"

"You claim your healing NOW. If you don't, the devil will steal it! Do you understand?" (Funny, I never read of any of the miracles performed in the Bible coming with possible expiration dates.)

"You can feel heat in your knee right?" (I felt heat all over! It was blazing in there!)

"Thank the Lord for your healing!" (Not a question, but a demand that would've been a lie because I hadn't been healed.)

When I wasn't healed, some speculated on my faith and commitment levels. Others thought another prayer circle should be gathered. Some were just plain old confused.



Such an uncomfortable truth. Sometimes, many times, God doesn't heal. Paul prayed repeatedly for his thorn to be removed.

Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
 
I know of some Christians who so believe in "the power of the tongue", they refuse to admit even when they are sick. Naming it is claiming it. I'm not sure what their response to that bit of passage above is. I do know I refuse to fake a healing in some sort of misguided belief that will make it happen.

I have been told somewhat on the sly that I have wrapped my identity around this illness. That hurts.But it IS part of my life, just as I'm a woman, Black, a mom and wife, a Christian.

There is no testimony without a test.

Some have quizes. Others, we have the SAT, ACT, LSAT and MCAT, all rolled into one.

Monday, October 15, 2012

No, there's no way anyone could see racism here.


From the Daily News:

A New Jersey man who placed a photo of President Barack Obama depicted as a witch doctor in the front of his clothing store says he’s surprised the image has been criticized as racist.
Bill Skuby of Spring Lake, N.J.’s Skuby & Co. said the display simply represents his political position.

He has temporarily removed the Halloween display amid ongoing criticism.
"It always comes down to the race card,” Skuby, 66,told NJ.com of the backlash he's received.
The witch doctor picture shows President Obama naked except for a headdress and loincloth, with a bone through his nose.

“If this is racism, then it’s reverse racism,” Skuby told the Asbury Park Press. “I think they’re as racist as they accuse me of being,” he said.

The anti-Obama sign, which also reads “Obama-Care” with a hammer and sickle logo, a reference to communism, is a criticism of the president’s health care plan.

Read the whole thing here.

All about elections. Okay, not "all".

                                                                   (source)

On this week's episode of On The Media, the focus is all about elections- from the actual physical discomfort of realizing the politician you support is lying, to how independents are not really so independent, to the deceitful cunning of the late Lee Atwater.




Friday, October 12, 2012

Keeping women in "our place".


I read an awesome post on gender inequality by Jenny Rae Armstrong, and I had to share:

"... I would never deny that educating girls is crucial to addressing a wide variety of social issues, and to giving women options–options that allow them to live healthy, fulfilling lives and create a better future for their children. But as much of a no-brainer as women’s education is, I am not convinced that the primary barrier to gender equality is ignorance. I believe the primary barrier to gender equality lies in the depravity of the human heart–in the widespread acceptance of male entitlement, in the desire to control, in the prideful love of power, even if that power over another person’s life is candy-coated and reframed as protection and provision. There’s nothing wrong (and a whole lot right) with protecting and providing for the people you love, but when that protection comes with a tax on the person’s dignity, free will, and development–well, the Mafia offers that, too!
 
It also struck me again how many of these atrocities spring from deeply held beliefs and traditions regarding “a woman’s place,” and how often women themselves propagated and enforced those beliefs. Women circumcised their daughters because “God demands it,” denied their daughters education because her future husband might be intimidated by a well-educated woman, and sent their desperate daughters back to abusive husbands because “she is a wife.” It was the morally correct thing to do, the God-honoring thing, in the eyes of that society.

And as horrendous as that seems to us, watching Half the Sky from the comfort of our homes, the truth of the matter is that mindset is not as far removed from our reality as we would like to believe. We kowtow to male ego and entitlement. We affirm hierarchies that keep women beneath men. And while we certainly don’t practice female genital mutilation, we have no shortage of writers and speakers who profit from painfully slicing God-given traits they feel are undesirable in women off their feminine souls, stitching them up tight, and calling that biblical."
 
Read this excellent piece in it's entirety here.

Friday Funny




Pastor and comedian Brodrick Rice on TBN doing impressions of Bishop Jakes, Bishop Eddie Long, Pastor Joel Osteen and more. It's hilarious! Check it out!!




Thursday, October 11, 2012

Ripping up the brown paper bag.



I was thinking about Clarence Thomas, Colin Powell, Condi Rice, Mia Love and yes, Stacey Dash (now I'm thinking, 'Which one of these do not belong?'). They got me thinking of other Black folks who break rank in their own ways, determining to do their own thing.

For example, while most Blacks in this country are Christian or Muslim, many aren't. Like Shirley Woodard who has been a practicing Buddhist since 1974:
"What attracted me to being a Buddhist was that I tried it and I saw it working in my life. It’s something that I just said, “Let me try.” And once I tried it and I saw how it was something that I could use for my daily life, that I didn’t have to die and go to heaven — ‘cause your heaven and your hell exist right here — it made me very conscious of causes. Whether it be verbal, mental or whatever type of causes you may do, you get an effect from it.

... I don’t believe in a God outside myself, like the Baptists. In Buddhism, there’s no beginning and no end, it’s a continuous cycle. And when you chant and you fuse with the gohonzon [wooden planks covered with Chinese and Sanskrit that detail the life of the true Buddha, ‘Nichiren Daishonin,’ and function as the object of worship], you develop the Buddha nature within you, and therefore it leads you to enlightenment. And this is for your daily life. You don’t have to worry about somebody outside of yourself as a god making decisions for you. You’re responsible for your own self. You don’t pray outside of yourself for the knowledge and stuff that you need."

Then there's Mark Hatcher, who despite being raised Catholic, is now an atheist:
"What really clicked for me was when I started learning about — I hate to say it — evolution and the origin of the cosmos. [It] was, I think, the last thread holding the whole God thing in place for me. Look around. Why is there something rather than nothing? With the very elegant solutions that evolution by natural selection provides, it’s a very simple, very natural way of getting from point A to point B. Then we have to think about the origin of the cosmos. We can explain how there’s zero total energy in the universe and how things can’t have come from nothing, because nothing really isn’t nothing but a boiling, bubbling brew of a bunch of stuff. At that point I thought about it and I said, “You know, if there’s a God up there, then he’s bored. He got nothing to do.” He’s redundant at best."
There are even Black Scientologists. Really!:

"Patricia Gore, 63, is the director of community relations for the Washington Church of Scientology. She has been a member for nearly 30 years...

Scientology is an applied religious philosophy, so it’s ‘How do you use this in your daily life?’ It’s not a belief system. There were things I could do, and after I started doing it, I could see the results. I think I was a little bit taken aback by the fact that there were so many white people, and so few black people, as I saw it. I still had my antennas up just to see how this could relate to me. I kept looking for [racism], and I kept expecting it ... but I didn’t [experience it], and that was kind of weird ’cause I grew up with it, and here were these happy people that were treating me very, very nicely, and I was like ‘Okay, what do they want? They’re still being nice to me...’ So it was pretty cool..."
There are Black Rockers. Black Country singers. Black Opera singers. There are Black Irish singers. Black ballroom dancers. Black Mormons. Black nuns. Blacks in NASCAR.

My point is, there needs to be an end to this reverse brown paper bag test whenever a Black person seems to break with the perceived (or real) pack. There is strength in diversity.

THE Debate of 2012...



... occured last week and featured a candidate representing the left, and one speaking for the right. Neither heeded the moderator much, but did come prepared with conflicting data and viewpoints.

There were slams.

There were laughs.

There was a mobile platform.

"THE" debate was The Rumble in the Air Conditioned Auditorium between Fox News' Bill O'Reilly and The Daily Show's Jon Stewart, and it is awesome! Go here for some free clips. Or pay the five bucks for charity and watch the whole thing.

Haha!


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Trashing Dash




While I was surprised that actress Stacey Dash came out on Twitter in support of Mitt Romney as president, I wasn't surprised by the heated backlash she faced once she did. After all, I've learned from the Mia Love criticisms, people can be disgusting towards those on the other side of the political aisle. It can turn downright vicious when you share the same color. From Twitchy:

Dash called "House Negro," "Uncle Tom," and "Oreo" by Obama supporters

Dash accused of not being Black enough

Dash urged to kill herself


Really? Really??? Okay, so yeah, these comments are coming from random folks on Twitter. Oh, and by the way, Twitter users, please know your 140 characters are not invisible. If you really want to put yourself out there, be ready to have your words, name and picture be permanently up for any random website to screenshoot and share. Anyway, there were even some celebs who decided to trash her. 

Smh. As I wrote regarding Love, "Folks, time to realize that everyone is different. Yes, even immigrants, Latinos, Blacks and women... I find it deeply offensive that in 2012, people still believe all Black people must vote, dress, act, think and be the same. I find it most offensive that almost all of the people doing the smearing are Black." Again, I know it's hard to conceive, especially from the preternaturally beautiful Dash, but not all Black folks are Democrats, even when they've been hanging in Hollyweird for decades.

When I wrote about Love, FAR reader E-Love commented, "I AGREE with Your Premise but in REAL-LIFE Your Premise is LOST on The OBVIOUS (As FAR As Black Folks TRADITIONAL Political Thinking...) ." And yeah, we are definitely seeing this with Dash. Step out of line, get ready for the firing line. On a good note, this has gotten Dash a whole lot of publicity. And in Hollyweird, any kind of PR is still PR!

There was an error in this gadget

Picture of The Week

Picture of The Week
K and Z enjoying the Christmas tree.

Pray for Our Nation

Got A Burning Question? Ask Me Here!

Featured Blog Of The Week

Featured Blog Of The Week
Afro-Europe Blog

What I'm Listening to Right Now

What I'm Listening to Right Now
"Food & Liquor 2: The Great American Rap Album" by Lupe Fiasco

What I'm Reading Right Now

What I'm Reading Right Now
"Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets"

Twitter

Far Above Rubies's Fan Box

If You Like What You're Reading, Share!

Share |

They Like Me, They Really Really Like Me!