Mama, I’m Gonna Cross The Edmund Pettus Bridge


I woke up this morning excited like a little kid headed to Disney for the first time. I dreamed that my flight was delayed and I wouldn’t make it in time for the bridge crossing. I laugh because I only live about 90 minutes from Selma, so a flight for me isn’t necessary. There’s so much I’m looking forward to about the commemoration of Bloody Sunday and crossing the historic Edmund Pettus Bridge.

I want to go stand on that bridge, the Edmund Pettus Bridge and celebrate the courage and sacrifice of hundreds of people who proudly faced their Jim Crow oppressors and were terribly victimized. When I view photo’s from that day, chills go through my body and tears form in the wells of my eyes knowing that on that Sunday 50 years ago in Selma, AL the world saw just how ugly and damn right ridiculous the racist and oppressive institution of Jim Crow was. The world changed that day when images of those who were to protect and serve were punishing and senselessly abusing their power, were shared with the world.

Standing on an oppressor... Marcher's of Bloody Sunday upon the Edmund Pettus Bridge

Standing on an oppressor… Marcher’s of Bloody Sunday upon the Edmund Pettus Bridge

It wasn’t until last year that I learned who Edmund Pettus was. I wasn’t surprised that he was a celebrated confederate leader, after all I’m a southerner and I realize that many places and things throughout the south are named for confederate hero’s. I believe my immediate reaction was similar to the laughing cry face emoji… I was literally laughing and in tears. WHY? It’s simple, the steps we (our elders) took in March 1965 over the Edmund Pettus Bridge were literally and figuratively steps to say, “We aren’t afraid of you and we gonna stand up and show the world just what kind of coward you are and how evil your agenda is and has always been.”

There’s a push to change the name of the bridge. I think it’s endearing that “Students Unite” have organized to change the name, but I believe they’re foolishly mistaken if they don’t see the power in keeping its name. It’s about more than the notion of Edmund Pettus rolling over in his grave, though I imagine if he could he would. Crossing the bridge in March 1965 with the world watching, literally displayed the ugly racist institution which is very much woven into the history of America. To change the name would erase the so much sacrifice made that day not to mention the “bonus points” of standing on your enemy like our elder’s did in March 1965.

Crossing the Edmund Pettus Bridge is symbolic to so much victory to me. I imagine if I’m lucky enough to get a picture in front of the sign, I’ll quote Puffy and say, “Take that, take that!” Take this smart, fearless, Black woman standing on top of your bridge celebrating Blackness and her American freedom’s when your life’s work was for her to never have such an opportunity and definitely not such an audacity. Yea, Edmund Pettus, I’m LAUGHING OUT LOUD with my head up, chest out and fist in the air and proud and I know you hate it.

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July 2013 was the last time I posted to this site, even letting my domain name expire. I’ve considered buying it back, and launching the site all over. I still may do it, but tonight… Tonight I just want to express thoughts.

Here we are nearly two years later and I am remembering Trayvon Martin and understanding who he could have become had his life not been selfishly stolen from this earth. This week marks 3 years since that devastating night in Sanford, FL. The night where Trayvon seemingly understood that his skin was a problem to the “Creepy Cracka” that was following him as he returned from the store carrying candy, a drink and his cellphone.

Today, marks 6 months since the devastating afternoon in Ferguson, MO where Michael Brown, Jr. was gunned down and where his body remained for HOURS in the smoldering summer heat, reminiscent to lynched bodies. In fact, there are many moments where I consider it just that… a lynching.

James Craig Anderson: Beaten and ran over by pickup truck in Mississippi, June 2011
Oscar Grant: Handcuffed and shot on BART platform by BART officer in California, January  2009
Anthony Hill: Shot and dragged down highway for 10 miles in South Carolina, June 2009
Eric Garner: Choked to death by NYPD officers using illegal chokehold in New York, July 2014
Tamir Rice: Shot in less than 3 seconds by cops upon the arrival in Ohio, November 2014
Jordan Davis: Shot while in car with friends at a gas station in Florida, November 2012
Ezell Ford: Shot while walking home by LAPD in California, August 2014
Jeremy Lake: Killed by 2 cops for dating a white girl… their daughter in Oklahoma, August 2014
Amadou Diallo: Killed by NYPD shot 19 times in New York, February 1999
Sean Bell: Killed by NYPD in New York, November 2006
John Crawford, III: Killed by cops while shopping in Walmart, August, 2014
Omar Abrego: Pulled over and shot in front of his home in California, August 2014
Dante Parker: Tased after being suspected of burglary in California, August 2014
Victor White: Shot in chest while handcuffed behind his back in police cruiser in Louisiana, March 2014
KENDRICK JOHNSON: Found dead inside a rolled up wrestling mat in Georgia, January 2013

These are the names of several seeds destroyed and snatched away… Only a few. Each one belonged to a family. Some were fathers, brothers, cousins, uncles, mentors, colleagues, classmates… None of them deserved to be murdered.

Message…


The George Zimmerman trial for the murder of Trayvon Martin began 23 days ago. I’ve followed this trial just as closely as I’ve followed the “story” since it broke in 2012. Similarly, I’ve followed the murders of other Black Men around this nation, from my piece Race Matters (June 2010) to the piece covering the murder of Jordan Davis just this past Thanksgiving weekend.

photoI’ve sat back and watched some interesting conversations be discussed on social media which have revealed to me that our community, THE BLACK COMMUNITY has a large amount of numbness when it comes to young black men dying. I believe this numbness occurs because we see it so much, we choose to ignore it as long as it isn’t happening to us directly.

Yes, cities such as Chicago have seen an extremely alarming murder rate which expands daily as does the rates in many other cities and communities around this nation. But Chicago isn’t on trial. Please stop infusing your frustration over the ills of certain communities into this trial when MANY of you are doing very little with your energy to work to stop those ills. Don’t belittle the battle that the family of Trayvon Martin and the community of Sanford, FL have fought and brought to the front pages of America’s newspapers.

The Martin family could have just buried their son and grieved privately and let this go like so many families do because they feel as though there is nothing they can do to get justice for their loved ones, but they didn’t, and I commend them for it.

There are thousand’s of mothers watching this trial who have buried their sons and daughters like Mrs. Fulton (Trayvon’s mother). Don’t tread on their hope with your bitterness and hopelessness. Be inspired by her fight and her audacity to stand up for her murdered son and begin working in your own community… Yes, be the change you want to see in the world.

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Birthday Wishes!!


HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! For my birthday this year, I am asking for all my readers to give $5 to the Cory Booker Senate campaign Mayor Booker is committed to improving lives. I’m inspired by his leadership. So click the link on the line above and donate NOW!!!

Here’s a peek at his current TV Ad via YouTube 

Thanks y’all!

Cancer Doesn’t Care


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Birmingham radio personality, Sly King

Sylvester (Sly) King is a radio personality in Birmingham, AL. Sly has never been directly affected by a blood cancer disease neither has anyone in his family, yet he has been inspired to fight against blood cancers by raising funds for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS).

When I first read he was a candidate for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s 2013 Man of the Year I was like, “I have gotta feature this on my site.” As many of you know, I loss my father to Leukemia 14 years ago this month. Like Sly, I know cancer doesn’t care about race, gender, age, finances or religious affiliation. Although cancer doesn’t care, I do and so does Sly.

About The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS)

The mission of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) is to cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. LLS is the world’s largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. LLS funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world and provides free information and support services. The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society helps blood cancer patients live better, longer lives.

Statistics show that “approximately every 4 minutes one person in the United States is diagnosed with a blood cancer disease” and “approximately every 10 minutes someone in the U.S. dies from a blood cancer.” That person could be King, his wife, his 3-year old daughter, or it could be you. He has chosen to be proactive. Before this life-altering disease affects the live of someone he knows and loves, he has chosen to join forces with The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society to raise funds to ensure continued research, Approximately every 4 minutes one person in the United States is diagnosed with a blood cancer.provide financial assistance to those in need, and deposit back into the lives of those young and old who deserve the best care available. Cancer does not care, but King does. Be proactive and join him in this fight.

Join Sly and I in the fight against blood cancers. Click here to Make A Donation

No Greater Love


Recently while at lunch, I was asked by a friend of mine “what is it that makes you love God the way you do?” Without giving it a second thought, I replied immediately that as a very young child I learned John 3:16 and it was the “clincher” for me. Before I knew it I was walking from the seafood bar to my car quoting the scripture.

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son. That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

That’s heavy. To give the world that type of protection and promise (GRACE) because it could not save itself… To give the world HOPE… To give the world LOVE… God loved the world so much in-spite of its behavior and dishonor, he chose to give his son as a sacrifice to save us from ourselves.

Not even the power of all our world leaders combined since the beginning of time could create something that could compare to what God did through Jesus Christ.

As a little skinny, sandy brown from head to toe, hazel eyed lil country girl in central Florida all it took was John 3:16 for me to understand that there was no love greater than the Love God gave to us through his son Jesus Christ.

So as we reflect on the purpose of celebrating Holy Week and the Resurrection of Christ let us remember (daily) that he lived and died for us and he is the ONLY WAY to the father. He is LOVE!

Check out this song, No Greater Love by The Georgia Mass Choir

7:17 2/26/2012


As I listen to the rain beat against my Northern Virginia home while sitting in front of my MacBook, I find it eerily difficult to write this piece. A year ago today on a cold rainy night like this, in a bedroom community like this, a kid was stolen from humanity. This post isn’t much of an article nor an essay, it’s simply remembering Trayvon Martin…

Shortly after 7pm at approximately 7:09 on February 26, 2012 a call was made to the Sanford Florida Police. The caller said there was a suspecting looking unknown male walking around in the rain. The caller went on to describe the suspecting looking unknown male as wearing a gray hoodie, jeans and sneakers. The caller was adamant about something being in the hands of the suspect who he later described as a black kid in his late teens. The police dispatcher tells the caller that they don’t need for him (the caller) to follow the suspect, someone is en route to investigate. The call was then wrapped up.

7:17 Eight minutes later, when Sanford Police arrived on the scene they found the unknown “suspect” (suspect of what) lying face down in the grass. The shooter, was still on the scene and was identified as the 911 caller, GZ. (He’s not worthy of being named unless we call him murderous coward)

GZ was taken into custody. As other first responders arrived, attempts were made to revive the unidentified and unresponsive teen. A short time later, the teen was declared dead.

While GZ was telling his story down at Sanford PD headquarters, the unidentified body of Trayvon Martin was sitting unclaimed at a morgue. His father had filed a missing persons report after the teen never returned from a quick walk to the store.

The senior Martin and his son had been visiting the home of his fiancé who lived in the community where the senseless crime had occurred.

Trayvon Martin was killed by a single gunshot ruled a contact shot according to a Florida Department of Law Enforcement investigation report.

Trayvon Martin’s name and death have gone on to become synonymous with the legal concept of Stand Your Ground, and the social concept of walking while Black.

Trayvon Martin to me is somewhat like this century’s Emmett Till. A young man off visiting family away from home who went to a store only to never be returned alive to those who knew and loved him. His parents like Till’s mother have shared with the world and media his image so that we will never forget what was done to their child!

This death and others like it pain me and take me a place that reminds me that the skin I wear although it is beautiful, strong, powerful and imitated is the most misunderstood and hated hue… James Craig Anderson of Mississippi; Anthony Hill of South Carolina; and most recently the death of another 17 year old teen, Jordan Davis of Jacksonville Florida, nearly 9 months to the date of the death of Trayvon Martin.

Wake up people! Stop sleeping and believing that we’ve arrived as a nation just because the President and First Lady are Black… We’ve only just began to see the hatred that exist towards our people!