Friday, September 23, 2016

Classic Corner: "That Looks Like a Bad Dude"

by Da CogNegro

Studies have shown that it takes approximately five seconds for a first impression to be created. Within that time frame, assumptions on a person's social status, intelligence, eating habits, as well as ambition can be constructed.These preconceived notions then dictate the type of interaction that will occur between the parties involved . Now, this internal, social mechanism is utilized by all on a daily basis. At times, it can serve as a protection. Thus, helping ones to evade unsavory individuals and situations. Other times though, it can highlight one's own prejudices that have resulted from previous experiences, or lack thereof, and may cause an adverse or dismissive reaction. Whatever the case may be, our judgments have the potential to be erroneous. Our propensity to give way to our tentative feelings USUALLY does not result in dire consequences. However, more and more incidents involving  the death  of men of color, by the hands of the authorities, is proving other wise.

This past Friday, in Tulsa Oklahoma, a familiar story made its' rounds across the country: Unarmed man gunned down by the police. Though this narrative is nothing new in recent times, the footage of the incident, which I usually avoid mine you, struck a chord with me. In the video, you can clearly hear one of the officers, who was viewing the incident from a helicopter, state "That looks like a bad dude". So, from the sky, literally, you were able to conclude that this unarmed pastor, who was walking "AWAY" from your fellow officers with his hands up, was, as you put it, a"Bad dude"? Well, let's dive into what  may constitute as a "Bad dude" shall we?

Let's  inspect the gentleman's attire. He seems to be wearing a t-shirt, a  t-shirt that you could probably  purchase from any local retailer. There doesn't seem to be any nefarious logos or gang insignia that may give off "Bad dude" vibes. I can understand if there was a weapon screen printed on the shirt or maybe a contentious slogan like "Have a Bad Day" or "The Roof is On Fire,Let It Burn" No, just a regular t-shirt. Now, let's take a gander at his pants. They seem to be brown in nature without any  patches or rips.You see,  rips and tears are clear indicators that the wearer may have engaged in some "Bad dude" activities. But again, nothing!   Now I can't make out his foot wear so maybe that is why the cops felt threatened?  "Bad dudes" have been know to wear suspicious shoes,sneakers,or sandals. How else could they keep their balance when committing all those illegal activities? But on closer inspection, their doesn't seem to be anything noteworthy about what he is wearing on his feet. He's also not wearing a hat or any other head covering . Well, I'm confused! There's noting outwardly glaring that would classify Mr. Terence Crutcher  as a"Bad dude". But yet, this officer was able to make this accurate assumption with out interacting with him . Now it may have taken five seconds for him to judge the character of this gentleman but it took a mere thirty seconds, after additional officers arrived on the scene, to fatally shoot this man. Go figure right?

You know what  I think? Come here, I'll tell you a secret. No matter what that gentleman was wearing, he was always viewed as a threat and worthy of death. There is no amount of training or body cameras that will eliminate the diseased mentality that festers in the minds of these individuals. The notion that an African American male is  suspicious or guilty until killed has been the foregone conclusion that has fueled the actions of these corrupt persons.It is  this mentality that has purposely been  created, and maintained, in order to justify the  dishing out  of harsh courses of actions without facing any reprisals!   Therefore, encouraging this type of behavior to the public abroad!

Am I surprised? Absolutely not! Especially since a 2006 FBI report stated that supremacist groups, such as the Klu Klux Klan, were increasingly seeking to infiltrate law enforcement. That same report also went into detail about an unsettling tactic utilized by  such groups called "Ghost Skins". The following quote explains further what the term denotes

"Since coming to law enforcement attention in late 2004, the term "ghost skins" has gained currency among white supremacists to describe those who avoid overt displays of their beliefs to blend into society and covertly advance white supremacist causes."

Another "Bad dude"

Furthermore, the fact that individuals are more passionate about lambasting an athlete, who by the way is exercising his constitutional right to speak out about such atrocities as these , then the execution of an innocent man ,caught on camera nonetheless, proves that this corrosive way of thought is not confined to your local precinct.   I can go on for pages, which I have already done, detailing the systematic demonetization of the black male  in America and how it serves multiple purposes from being the economic backbone to this country's prison system right on down to the destruction of his role in the black family due to his constant emasculation on various media platforms.  But alas, I feel  like scratched vinyl on a song that has been on repeat for so long. I'm not giving up, and nether should you, but I just need a rest ,to gather more energy, and push forward to hopefully move the needle - CgN 

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Reel Talk: The Magnificent Seven

Director:  Antoine Fuqua

Release Date: September 23rd, 2016

Synopsis:  In the old west, seven gun men gradually come together to help a poor village against  savage thieves

Review: Trappings of typical western affairs are on full display in the remake of the 1960's film  The Magnificent Seven. With no shortage of extended shootouts, wry quips, and reactionary shots,Washington's and Fuqua's  latest team up  doesn't break any molds, as it relates to the genre, but the eclectic consortium of characters and the tried and true revenge plot does its' due diligence in being the type of action flick that you would watch alongside your grandfather while donning some drug store cowboy apparel, thus making the two gun kid  quite proud. Not to mention, that it's been a long time coming for  an African American cowboy to take center stage without it being a complete mockery! (I'm looking at you Boss N*****!!) (B-) 

Join me Friday as we talk in detail about the latest senseless shooting of an unarmed African American male in the entry entitled  "That Looks Like a Bad Dude" - CgN

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Guest, Who! : Law of Attraction vs. Timing (by Jihan "JiJi" Carmichael)

There should never be a monploy on expression. For this very reason, I have created  a monthly platform in which you, the reader, can express yourself . I present, Guest, Who!

When it comes to matters of the heart,the path to happiness and fulfillment can be quite the winding road Often, we may find ourselves looking for the proper navigation due to stumbling into uncharted territory. While others, wind up in a state of bewilderment as they repeatedly succumb to the same pitfalls that hinder their progress. Well fret no longer because I am quite aware that many of you have been... ahem all the wrong places! And  for that very reason, I have acquired the services of  Ms. Jihan "JiJi" Carmichael to assist you with all of your relationship woes. Ms. Carmichael is a dating and relationship Vlogger. She has been featured on OWN Network's Help Desk, with Iyanla Vanzant, BKS1 Radio's Two Guys Know Lies  and  the Southern Soulcast podcast. In other words, she knows her shhhhhhh

Her latest video deals with two contrasting theories as it relates to dating: The Laws of Attraction and Timing! If you are not familiar with these concepts, here's an analogy for you: remember when Forrest Gump told Jenny that he was struggling with the notion that we either (A.) all have a destiny like Lieutenant Dan or  (B.)  life was simply "Like a box of chocolates" because we never knew what we may get? No!? Well JiJi does a much better job of breaking down the intricacies of today's topic. Be sure to sound off in the comments section as well.- CgN


You can follow Ms.Jihan "JiJi" Carmichael at the following media outlets:

YouTube: The Ji SpotHere