News, Uncategorized

Brett Kavanaugh Is the Rule, Not the Exception

As someone who grew up in an elite, predominately white world and attended elite, mostly white institutions, I knew many Brett Kavanaughs. I also know the privilege that they get. I know the world of drunken parties, I know the world of misogyny and I’ve been firsthand witness to the privileged, white male club. Let me tell you, Kavanaugh’s behavior is the rule and not the exception.

I had the misfortune of watching the Senate hearing, which purported to examine allegations of sexual misconduct on the part of Kavanaugh. For those of you who don’t know, a woman has accused Kavanaugh (Supreme Court Nominee) of attempting to sexually assault her while at a party in High school. Kavanaugh has categorically denied the allegations, while the accuser has said that she is 100% certain that Kavanaugh did commit this attempted sexual assault. She also participated in a lie detector test and has called for an FBI investigation. Kavanaugh has not openly consented to an FBI investigation. Other women have also come forth and accused Kavanaugh of sexual assault. Learn more about the situation here.

Today, both the alleged sexual assault victim and Kavanaugh (alleged sexual assaulter and Supreme Court nominee) were “examined” by the Senate Committee on the Judiciary. The hearing came off more as a partisan debate than an examination*.

During the hearing, some of the Republicans on the committee claimed that the Democrats waited too late to present the information about the alleged sexual assault and that the Democrats are merely trying to delay the Supreme Court nomination for political reasons (Merrick Garland?). Some of the Democrats on the Committee called for an FBI investigation and a halt to the Senate Confirmation hearings. In turn, some of the Republicans claimed that an FBI investigation wouldn’t do anything anyway, because all the FBI does is review evidence and they do not draw conclusions. Thus, an FBI examination is not necessary, in their minds. (Side note: If an FBI investigation isn’t necessary, why was it necessary during the Clarence Thomas Supreme Court nomination process?)

I listened to the alleged sexual assault victim present her story and then I listened to Kavanaugh present his story. What stood out to me about Kavanaugh’s discussion was that he constantly interrupted the committee members, particularly the Democratic members and the women. He evaded and circumvented questions about an FBI investigation and when asked if he’d ever been aggressive while drunk, he responded “the answer to that is basically no. I don’t really know what you mean by that. What are you talking about? No, is the basic answer unless you’re talking about something that I’m not aware of.” Raised eyebrows … The gentlemen doth protest too much me thinks.

And back and forth they went all day.

Overall, an FBI investigation would clear up a lot of this, but of course Kavanaugh is a well-to-do, high-powered white man and men like him have privileges that most people, especially people of color, don’t have. He’s assumed innocent.

Five young black boys who were accused of raping a white female jogger in New York, were not regarded with the privilege of assumed innocence when Donald Trump called for their deaths, even after they were proven innocent of the crime. Immigrants and refugees are not assumed innocent when they flee their countries to come to the United States. No, they are presumed to be rapists and threats to the wellbeing of “fine, upstanding Americans,” like Kavanaugh.

I attended a competitive, predominately white school and I remember being accosted by drunken (white) men and boys and these same men went on to top colleges and are now professionals in the courtroom, the hospital and the political sphere. There was a particularly serious incident that occurred in my school community where a young woman (white), who had been drinking, was placed in sexually suggestive positions and photographed without her consent, by privileged, young, white men. Incidentally the only boy in the situation to speak against the mistreatment and report it to school officials was black.

When you are in a predominately white, male-centric environment, men like Kavanaugh are the rule, not the exception. At many of these elite schools, there is a culture of white masculinity, where men and boys are compelled to behave in ways that subjugate women and reassert their dominance. It is acceptable (and sometimes encouraged) for white men and boys to make racist jokes, harass women and drink to their heart’s content. It’s like a super-frat culture where men like Kavanaugh are made to feel invincible because of their position. It’s where all the political correctness of the world is disregarded and men like Kavanaugh can step back in time to the 1940s and 50s and enjoy the notion of being at the apex of privilege. They can go back to a time before there was such a thing as sexual harassment, so touching women without their consent is okay. They can go back to a time where it’s okay to make racist jokes. They can go back to a time where they can get drunk and belligerent because well, who’s going to stop them?

It’s a culture that elicits predatory behavior from privileged men. The fine, upstanding men that you see at work and school could be the same ones who, when they step into this culture, turn into monsters.

We, who are not at the top of hierarchy, know this to be true. We know the Kavanaughs and we know the privileges they have.

There have been many “fine, upstanding men,” who have preyed on vulnerable women when they could. In fact, some of our founding fathers did far worse than Kavanaugh, but the culture of that time permitted them to get away with it, just as the culture of many elite schools permits men like Kavanaugh to get away with it. (Side note: Many African-Americans carry the blood of fine, upstanding white men who preyed upon vulnerable women.)

So just to be clear, Kavanaugh is not an exception. He’s quite the norm and that’s the saddest thing.

 

 

 

 

Disclaimer, this is not about ALL white men. It’s only about privileged white men who use their position to victimize others. In addition, men of color also perpetrate. The difference is how privileged men who are white are treated. Their privilege allows them to be assumed innocent.

*For the record, I am neither affiliated with the Democratic party nor the Republican party. If I had a choice, I would rather not have partisan politics and would prefer for citizens to vote for whomever is best for the job, as unbelievable as that sounds. However, in the current political climate, the Democratic party is a lesser evil, to me.

Uncategorized

Changes

Hello,

I know it’s been a while. I am in a different place today than I was nearly 7 years ago when I started this blog. Things are going to be changing and the blog needs to change with it. I will be restructuring things and I might be moving the blog, but I haven’t decided. I’ll be back with an update and be more intentional about posting in the future though.

Uncategorized

White beans and sausage recipe

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I love beans. They’re affordable, full of fiber and protein and they can be quite good. This dish is called white beans and sausage. It’s easy and can be done in crockpot.

You need:
1 bag great northern white beans
4-5 cups of chicken or beef broth
1 yellow pepper, diced
1 red pepper, diced
1 Celery stalk, diced
1 small red onion, diced
1-2 tsp red pepper flakes
2 tbsp garlic powder
Salt free seasoning
Pepper to taste
Italian sausage
Olive oil

Sort and rise beans
Let beans soak overnight. (Follow the directions on the package)
Drain beans and put in crockpot
Cook Italian sausage on stove top in oiled pan
Dump chopped vegetables, sausage and seasonings in crock pot
Add broth
Cover and cook on high 7.5 hours
Enjoy!

Black women issues, Uncategorized

Black Women: Thrown Off Golf Course for Golfing too slowly…another Black Woman Has Breast Exposed in Waffle House with Police

Story #1: 

Five  Black women at Grandview golf club in Pennsylvania were minding their business and golfing when some white men who ran the golf course told them they were golfing too slowly. The women were paying customers, so they continued to golf. Later, the police showed up. The white men who managed the course had called the police. The police didn’t stay because they determined this wasn’t a matter they needed to be involved in.  Now the golf club is losing business.

source

Story #2:

Ms. Clemens, an Alabama Black woman, was arrested at an Alabama waffle house and had her breast exposed. The police claim that Ms. Clemens threatened the workers at the establishment and that she came in drunk with a man. Ms. Clemens mother said the dispute started over plastic utensils. Clemens and another woman asked for plastic utensils and when the restaurant worker told them it would cost 50 cents, they objected and asked to speak with the supervisor. Then the police were called and the rest is history. Next thing you know, Ms. Clemens is on the ground with her breasts exposed to the world as though she were on an auction block.

source

I have no words.

Related post: Black Men Arrested for No Reason In Starbucks 

Uncategorized

Juanita Jackson Mitchell: First African-American Woman to Practice Law in Maryland

Juanita Jackson Mitchell was an African-American woman who was monumental in challenging segregation in public schools in Baltimore, MD. Born in segregated Arkansas in 1913, Mitchell grew up with a love for poetry and film.  She was the daughter of Kieffer and Dr. Lillie Mae Jackson. Her family often showed films in their home because African-Americans were segregated or barred from attending theaters in the south due to Jim Crow laws.

In the 1920s, Mitchell’s family moved to Baltimore where Mitchell graduated from Frederick Douglass Highschool and attended Morgan State University (today Morgan is an HBCU). She then finished her degree at the University of Pennsylvania where she graduated with a B.S. in education. She also earned an M.A in sociology from the University of Pennsylvania. A few years later, she became the first Black woman to graduate from the University of Maryland Law school, which had earlier denied her admission for undergraduate studies due to her race. She became the first African-American woman practice law in the state of Maryland. She married Clarence Mitchell Jr. in 1938, who was active and later held leadership in the NAACP.

Juanita Jackson Mitchell worked to advocate for voting rights for Marylanders through the NAACP. She also co-led a march to Annapolis, the Capitol of Maryland, to advocate for Civil Rights. She started the “City-Wide Young People’s Forum,” to train African-American youth about Civil Rights. During the Great Depression, Juanita Jackson Mitchell also organized a campaign to encourage African-Americans to only support stores that were desegregated.

She worked with Thurgood Marshall and The Afro-American newspaper,  to challenge the separation of Black and White children in Baltimore public schools. In 1935, Baltimore County did not have any high schools for Black children and there was only one high school in Baltimore city for children, Frederick Douglass. Not until 1939, did they increase the number of Black schools in the city. In addition, teachers in Baltimore who were African-American earned less than similarly credentialed white teachers. Black schools in the city were also very crowded, so crowded that at Douglass highschool, the children had to study in shifts. Jackson and Marshall brought several lawsuits against the Baltimore City schoolboard to challenge segregation up until Brown v. Board of Education was passed.

It is probable that Juanita Jackson Mitchell’s passion for education and equality came from her family. Her mother came from a line of educators and was a descendant of  Charles Carroll of Carrollton, who was one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. Her mother, Lillie Jackson, was also a Civil Rights activist and a teacher. Lillie Jackson played a vital role in expanding the NAACP in Baltimore, which had been founded in 1912, but remained inactive until 1935. Juanita Jackson’s father was born on a plantation in 1836 and learned to read “by women in the big house” (Baum, 34) and later led the African-American schools in his county as a commissioner.

 

Baum, Howell. Brown in Baltimore. Cornell University Press, 2010.

http://www.blackpast.org/aah/mitchell-juanita-jackson-mitchell-1913-1992

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juanita_Jackson_Mitchell

News, Uncategorized

Race: National Geographic

Thank you Abagond! National Geographic has put out a race issue to make amends for their past racist portrayals of Black people and other people of color. National geographic routinely showed nude Black women and other women of color and displayed them as though they were not women, but animals.

See here. 

So, to make up for their racist past, the April 2018 issues of National Geographic displays a photo of two mixed-raced siblings, one who can pass for white, the other who cannot. The caption reads:

These twin sisters make us rethink everything we know about race” 

As Abagond said,

“Huh? One of the sisters could pass for White, but that stuff has been going on for hundreds of years. Who is this “we”?

The bottom line is Black people have known about the whole passing situation for centuries because we’ve lived with it. MOST African-Americans have European ancestry and most of us have stories of relatives who could pass for white and others who could not. There’s nothing to rethink on the part of Black folks…we’ve been knowing National Geographic’s racist editorials were wrong.

For decades Black people dealt with the reality of race, we knew white men were sleeping with and producing offspring with Black and mixed women, so most of us have always known that the lines of the race were more blurred. Duh…

Here is a classic story of a woman whose mother passed for white, so National Geographic you’re about a few centuries too late on this one:

 

 

via National Geographic’s racism