Posts tagged Voice

Be The Change

As I sat here reading the Jemele Hill story and the mounds of equal support and backlash, I couldn’t help but wonder where will this latest public outcry lead to. Let me say this and be very clear, I agree with her statement! What has been demonstrated from the oval office, the highest seat and authority in our country is deplorable and equally laughable. Our most covenant hierarchy has been made into a mockery of disrespect, hatred, and ill will that even the staunchest of constituents cannot deny. And even with that truth, I wish she would have not said it in social media or publicly.

She has every right to voice her thoughts, beliefs, and opinions, but I also feel she has a unique responsibility to use her words to build and uplift and not continue the same rhetoric and perpetuate that very hate and bigotry she is speaking against. I am not a fan of her pundits, but I agree when they say if someone would have made a statement like this against Obama, all hell would have broke loose and heads would have rolled. She has a platform and a powerful voice, and as such, I wish it would have been used to build and not continue to waddle in muddy waters where there is no escape. As true as her statement is and I agree she is right, it does not and will not change the person it is aimed it, the followers who believe in the same backward and shall I see I say, evil doctrine, or those who choose to turn a blind eye and pretend it does not exist.

My hope is for those that are fighting for change, that they educate others who are seeking knowledge and want to understand on a higher plain that differences do not equate to separatism, that opinions do not mean right or wrong, that ethnicity, race, class, gender, sexual orientation, political affiliation, or anything that is deemed to be less than, makes one person superior than the other! That at the end of the day, we are all human beings created to love and be loved! My sincerest hope is that those with a platform concentrate on being a voice for freedom and equality. You cannot change hate with hate.

And for those that believe politics and sports shouldn’t mix, they are the same ones who think church and state are different beasts too. Until we all understand that we are all connected in a woven paradigm that shifts and ebb and flows and we begin working on solutions and not staying stuck in the mundane, superficial, and irrelevant, we will continue the same patterns. If people acknowledged and stood up against the hatred and bigotry to begin with, we wouldn’t be having this conversation now. And as long as we continue to have the same discourse, we will never move past it. It’s beyond time for new dialogue and rhetoric. Time to move forward and to be the change we want to see.

Be the CHANGE you want to see in the world! Today, choose to show love, to be a little more understanding, to forgive and move forward, to be an example of what you seek the world to mirror. If each individual moves in this direction, imagine the ripple effect that could create. In no way am I discrediting or distancing myself from Jemele Hill either. She is a stalwart for the African-American, female, AND journalistic communities and someone I admire and thoroughly enjoy her commentary. I am just ready for the voices of the people to sway the dialogue to solution-based conversations and not continue to perpetuate what has already been done. We learn from the past and then we do what needs to be done to correct where possible and never repeat again.

Dan Abnett is quoted as saying, “I know that words cannot move mountains, but they can move the multitude – we’ve proven that time and time again. People are more ready to fight and die for a word than for anything else. Words shape thought, stir feeling, and force action. They kill and revive, corrupt and cure.” I would say he is mostly right. Words can move mountains and the right words delivered to the right persons in the right way and embolden them to move any mountain, whether it be physical, mental, political, or spiritual. Words are the weapons of the masses and how you use them, will determine not only how you are perceived, but also how you impact others. Jemele is a voice of the people and now is the time to move the people in a new direction; it is time to BE THE CHANGE!

Step Your Game Up

BrotherWord - Hip Hop

Take them rhymes back to the factory,
I see,
The gimmicks…the wack lyrics,
The —- is depressing…pathetic…please forget it,

~ Notorious B.I.G. – Flava In Your ear (Remix)

Music as a whole is just not what it used to be and rap has declined.  Hip Hop is 40 years strong and as bountiful as the genre may be, it is lacking in substance.  I vividly recall the days when a party anthem, conscious provoking, and declaration to arms were all songs synonymous with rap and hip hop.  When a street symphony and thought inspiring melody bridged the gaps and broke down walls.  From the early pioneers, Sugarhill Gang, Kurtis Blow, Kool Herc, to revolutionaries such as KRS One and Boogie Down Productions, N.W.A., and Public Enemy, to wordsmiths extraordinaire, Rakim, Nas, Big Daddy Kane, Kool G. Rap, Notorious B.I.G., to coastal sensations, Death Row on the west, Bone Thugs-n-Harmony and the Lunatics in the midwest, Suave House, Rap-a-Lot, No Limit, and Cash Money in the south, to martyrs and activists the likes of Common Sense, Tupac, Talib Kweli, David Banner, Rhymefest, to business moguls Russell Simmons, Sean Combs, and Jay-Z, trendsetters like Outkast and Kanye West, not to mention a plethora of fem fatales like Lauryn Hill, Queen Latifah, MC Lyte, and the Brat, just to name a few, hip hop has been a melting pot of originality and inspiration.  I am sad to say, much of that is lacking these days.

The aforementioned are a drop in the bucket of the countless artists that defined a movement and paved the way.  There is a glimmer of light though.  Not as often as before in what has become a cookie-cutter industry, a new voice, void of the assimilation and operating outside of the norm, arises with something fresh and yet, reminiscent of the glory years.  Introducing to most and reacquainting with some, I gladly present @PrinceEa.  His #MakeSMARTCool movement has spanned the country and as he continues to provoke thought by creating and nurturing a community of free-thinking individuals under the singular purpose of promoting the ideals of education, intelligence, unity, and creativity throughout the world, Prince Ea is carrying the torch well for his predecessors.  He is a voice of a new  generation and a hope for the often forgotten and lost art of hip hop.  Hip Hop is a culture that stemmed from people needing a voice to express their desire to no longer be oppressed, discriminated against, violated, or forgotten.  Hip Hop was and is the voice of the people… or at least that is what it is supposed to represent.  Prince Ea and others alike are reminding those that grew up with hip hop why we fell in love with it to begin with and shifting the culture and teaching a newer generation about all hip hop truly stands for, what it initially was intended to represent, and everything it can become.

Take a moment to watch this ingenious video.  It is hip hop at its essence – uplifting, captivating, inspiring, and packed with lyrical prowess.  Thank You @PrinceEa for reminding me and everyone why we love hip hop.


Thankful Thursdays!

BrotherWord - Thankful Thursdays!

One of the greatest feelings in the world is to know you’re not alone.  Having someone to confide in and call upon when times are difficult is a comforting and securing feeling that can’t easily be replaced.  I am so THANKFUL to have people in my life who are more than family and friends, but confidants, listeners, and sounding boards.  They uplift and support me and add an element of belonging.  I’m THANKFUL for the ability to speak without being judged, to express without being looked down upon, to converse freely without condemnation, and to express my feelings without them being dismissed.

Communication is the key to life and when you’re able to share dialogue openly and honestly, it is a gratifying feeling.  Take time to speak with your loved ones; more importantly, make time to listen to them.  The best gift you can give to someone is to listen to them and  let them know what they think and how they feel is as important to you as it is to them.  Show them how THANKFUL you are for their thoughts and opinions and they’ll be just as THANKFUL to have a voice.

Are you THANKFUL for those around you and the freedom they afford you to share your voice?  How does communication play a part in your THANKFULNESS?  Share your thoughts with #BrotherWord and THANK YOU for listening.

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