Revisionist History

I guess if the people who looked like me had a history of genocide, oppression, subjugation, discrimination, terrorism, etc., I too might try to suppress the past.

“If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth.” 1 John 1:6 NIV

Inhale Fact, Exhale Fabrication…
Inhale History, Exhale Hatred…
Inhale Reality, Exhale Revision…
Just Breathe

#JustBreathe

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American Violence

The powers that control America WANT angry white men to have guns. Violence is how Europeans gained and their descendants maintain control in this country. The elites who foment fear in those with whom they share skin color only, need foot soldiers for the race war they keep trying to start.

And, if some white kids get shot up, well apparently that’s collateral damage they are willing to accept…

“Guns made us free and have kept us free, one side says; the other side rejects guns as instruments of domination, lawlessness, and terrorism. The conflict rages on because both sides are right.” ~ Jan E. Dizard, Guns in America

Inhale Freedom, Exhale Domination…
Inhale Freedom, Exhale Lawlessness…
Inhale Freedom, Exhale Terrorism…
Just Breathe

#JustBreathe

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Treason?

To suggest that members of the most powerful branch of our “equal” branches of government should sit idly by while their wishes are ignored and American laws, customs and traditions are trampled … THAT is treasonous.

“To announce that there must be no criticism of the president, or that we are to stand by the president, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public.” ~ Theodore Roosevelt, 26th President of the United States

Inhale Patriotism, Exhale Pandering…
Inhale Power, Exhale Impotence…
Inhale Strength, Exhale Servility…
Just Breathe

#JustBreathe

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Irony Deficient: Part 2

The enslaved in colonial America did not miss the irony of their oppressors’ protests against oppression by the British…all while keeping them in bondage.

“Until we are all free, we are none of us free.” ~ Emma Lazarus

Inhale Freedom, Exhale Oppression…
Inhale Freedom, Exhale Bondage…
Inhale Freedom, Exhale Slavery…
Just Breathe

#JustBreathe

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Irony Deficient: Part 1

It is endlessly ironic to me that the descendants of those who often escaped religious persecution in their countries of origin are so intolerant of other religions in this country.

“So when a nation of immigrants starts putting up travel bans, you have officially lost the plot [of the Bible].” ~ Rob Bell

Inhale Freedom, Exhale Persecution…
Inhale Freedom, Exhale Intolerance…
Inhale Freedom, Exhale Hypocrisy…
Just Breathe

#JustBreathe

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Be the Light

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

Be the light, see yourself in others and show them love.

Inhale Light, Exhale Darkness…
Inhale Sight, Exhale Fear…
Inhale Love, Exhale Hate…
Just Breathe

#JustBreathe

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American Exceptionalism

This summer, I participated in a curated discussion exploring the black experience through television. After watching ‘black-ish” the exceptional creation of Kenya Barris, one of the white male participants voiced his objection to the Johnson’s acting white. When pressed, he couldn’t quite explain how they were acting white, except they live in a nice house, in a nice neighborhood, drive expensive cars and wear fabulous shoes.

I saw his reaction as a demonstration of the way Americans equate wealth with whiteness. So ingrained in the American psyche is this idea of white wealth and, conversely, black poverty, that whole black communities have been destroyed by whites, indignant that blacks would possess material wealth reserved ONLY, they believed, for whites.

Today, that same sentiment is expressed in the extra security for people of color shopping in swanky stores, the harassment, even arrest of non-whites trying to deposit big checks and of course, the consistent assumption that people of color couldn’t possibly afford first class.

And since we know that any escalation will probably end badly for us…’cause racism… we resort to recording the woman who thinks she should board the plane ahead of us.

Inhale Deeply, Exhale Anger…
Inhale Slowly, Exhale Hostility…
Inhale Fully, Exhale Escalation…
Just Breathe…

#JustBreathe
Reflections with Renita

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American Rights

I spent the entirety of my last visit to the National Museum of African American History and Culture in the art gallery on the 4th level. The relentless nature of racism so palpable throughout the museum is present in this space as the catalyst for uniquely American art.

The piece that haunted me, “Increase Risk with Emotional Faith” by Kevin Cole, looks innocuous enough: wide, colorful ties intertwined in a haphazard even whimsical fashion. But the chilling inspiration for the piece was the artist’s grandfather’s story of a lynching tree in Tarry, Arkansas and the memories of black men, lynched for trying to vote, their ties wrapped around the noose as a warning to other black men.

Especially in the states of the confederacy, people of color fought and died for the right to vote in this country. I pray it’s a right we take advantage of before it is lost to all Americans.

“You have to tend to this garden of democracy, otherwise things can fall apart fairly quickly. And we’ve seen societies where that happens…so pay attention and vote.” ~ President Barack Obama

Inhale Commitment, Exhale Complacency…
Inhale Vigilance, Exhale Complacency…
Inhale Action, Exhale Complacency…
Just Breathe

#JustBreathe
Reflections with Renita

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Messy Democracy

Democracy is messy, never more so than when it’s in disarray. Democracy is fragile, especially when it’s under attack. Democracy is inefficient, particularly when its participants are so polarized.

Yet the democratic ideas espoused by our founders, as yet unrealized for all in this country, remain a shining beacon of possibility for people all over the world…and right here in America.

“Despair is not an option!” ~ Senator Bernie Sanders

Inhale Disorder, Exhale Dictatorship…
Inhale Fragility, Exhale Fascism…
Inhale Democracy, Exhale Destruction…
Just Breathe

#JustBreathe
Reflections with Renita

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We Woke Up Like This…Flawed

I write a lot about the grand experiment that is America. It was and is a great idea that was flawed from inception. We keep working on it, we keep trying to reach perfection, we get closer and sometimes, some of us believe we have arrived.

Then we have a 2016 election.

And those who thought we were close to realizing the ideals written in our foundational documents realized we were not. And those who knew we still had a ways to go recognized the relentlessness of the racism, sexism and violence rooted at our foundation.

Yet we persist in resisting complacency and accepting the unacceptable. And in 2017 elections, Americans who believe in what America stands for are fully engaged.

“A patriot must always be ready to defend his country against his government.” ~ Edward Abbey

Inhale Challenge, Exhale Complacence…
Inhale Resistance, Exhale Silence…
Inhale Courage, Exhale Cowardice…
Just Breathe

#JustBreathe
Reflections With Renita

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