Culture Commentary: A Day Without Woman

#ADWAW is a point of privilege. I feel its necessary to go ahead and plop that out right up front.

While its intentions are good and wholesome and very kumbaya, it is a point of privilege nonetheless. The woman. The woman who already works more only to be paid less, who uses sick days and vacation days to care of all but themselves. The woman who works … with NO paid time off. The woman who cannot afford to take a day off but is now forced to do so because schools are closed.

I salute each woman who has the mind to participate in #ADWAW. But I remain puzzled about its benefits; its beneficiaries. What good does our absence do when, tomorrow, we will have to work even harder to make up for today?

Absence, like quitting, is easy. The real work of the movement is in presence. The real work is in inviting women into your space who do not look like you, who do not worship like you, who do not live like you do and certainly not where you do. It is our presence that builds, that grows, that lifts. We are beyond the point of ABSENCE.

Resistance cannot only be about what we’re “not gonna do”. Resistance is and always has been about breaking barriers. INSISTING that your child’s school celebrates women’s history; INSISTING that Black history is everyone’s history; INSISTING that a girl’s/woman’s body is her own to control; INSISTING absolutely and on every available platform that Black Lives Matter; INSISTING that your coworker not be unfairly treated simply because her skin has been forever kissed by the sun.

Now is the time to be PRESENT

Now is the time to STAND

Now is the time to SPEAK

Now is the time to FIGHT

Now is the time to ACT

It is wonderful to have a national platform to showcase “solidarity” but the truth, for many/most of you is that the real platform – the place where the real work needs to be done, is WITHIN.

Copyright © 2017 Tamika Brown and TheFynePrynt.com

 

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never.the.less


she toiled 

she labored

she was snatched from her home land

she was torn from her children, 

and they, away from she

she was stolen from her own body,

dispossessed as nonchalantly as you please

she birthed

she buried

she grew angry

she grew weary

she fought 

she {somehow} held fast

she prayed

she cried

she empowered, even those who only love her when it suits their best interests

she screamed

she sought vengeance

she listened

she learned

she grew

she took flight

she keeps pushing, even though they keep yelling, spitting, cursing her to stop

she forgives

she loves

she strives

she teaches

she brings forth

she hands down

she lifts up

she persisted. 

nevertheless.

even before they ever thought that it was a righteous thing to do.

Copyright © 2017 Tamika Brown and TheFynePrynt.com

Image: tijienenetalks

Ours

At what point does yours/mine become ours?
When does our present subsume tradition yet pave the way towards the future?
If it is left to us to share the story, will we falter or rise?
How do we continue to ‘wear the mask’ in exchange for the promise of being accepted?

How do we witness loss upon loss upon loss yet retreat into the depths of silence?
At what point do individuals become the collective.
When do we recognize that the only singularity is the necessity for change?
Will we ever recognize that the urgency is indeed, this moment?

It is not your history.
It is not my struggle.
It is not your pain.
It is not my mistreatment.
It is not your inequality.
It is not my peculiar institution.

It is ours to learn.
It is ours to rememberer.
It is ours to teach.
It it ours to imagine.
It is ours to create.
It. is. OURS.

Copyright © 2014 Tamika Brown and TheFynePrynt.com

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Hue

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Blue is peaceful. | Purple is calming. | Green is life. | Yellow is energy. | Red is passion. | White is purity. |

But somehow the complexion of my skin calls forward a hatred so deep and complex that history books can’t reach back far enough to truly capture the reasons why.

Their words are thick with despise and although they may sit behind shades and stacks of dollars their eyes cannot lie.

Their tongues frequently tell what lies beneath but the tools of today betray them with little warning. Shots fired in the dark, aiming at no one in particular but murdering souls and spirits at incomparable rates.

Taking away anything resembling power or forward movement and aiming as high as removing even the glimmer of potential for reasons inexplicable to the rational mind.

Your vote … regressing.
Your education … resegregating.
Your home … repossessed.
Your job … relegated to the menial.
Your power … removed.
Your hopes … reincarcerated.
Your life ………… TBD

Copyright © 2014 Tamika Brown and TheFynePrynt.com

Image: @thafyneprynt

Thus Saith

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Crusading for good.
All the while doing evil.
Asking for everything.
Giving nothing in return.
Speaking the words that give life.
Acting in ways that cause death.
Wearing the crown of the chosen.
Shedding the mask of the deceiver.
Pretending that all is well.
Wondering why everything is going wrong.

“A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.”

Copyright © 2014 Tamika Brown and TheFynePrynt.com

Image: JDensen

How We Gon’ Get Free

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Chained bodies
Shackled minds
Truths told
Lies accepted
Devastation wrought
Both then, And now.

Systems designed
Oppression in mind
Flight is necessary
Traveling papers are costly
Many aspire
Few obtain
More are caught up
Engulfed by power unseen.

In circumstance
Trapped
Stolen
Herded
Stripped
Caged
Stripped once more
But this time of more than clothes.

Released into a maze
Designed from inception
With no exit in mind
Rejection
Frustration
Denigration
Litigation
And begins the cycle
Once more.

Copyright © 2014 Tamika Brown and TheFynePrynt.com

Photo: @thafyneprynt

Culture Commentary: A Man or A Message?

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I was listening to the radio recently and there was a conversation about the church ideologically versus the church functionally. This, along with numerous other conversations, articles and general “happenings” have brought me once again to the subject of “the church”.

The early disclaimer that I will insert here is this: I have been in and out of church since I was little. In fact, my earliest memory is falling over a pew and cutting my eye {there’s a scar there to this day} but anyway, I digress.

I share that, not as a qualifier but because I’ve seen a lot go on in and around church. And when I’ve had enough, I drop out. No pomp, no circumstance, I just quit.

And therein lies the rub {and the connection to the original point}. How is it so easy to just walk away from an institution whose primary purpose was meant to be connection?

Is it an indictment against the eclesia? Is it the off centering of my own moral compass? I think it’s an interesting combination or perhaps an intersection of the two.

There are some really great churches, preachers and teachers around who are doing great things in peoples lives and in communities. But for the ones that are doing more harm than good, the impact is deep and lasting.

It seems that the pulpit staff is far more interested in attracting masses and money than providing a message of instruction, guidance and healing. And members seem more concerned about the man {woman} and what is happening behind closed doors than learning, sharing and being a better self.

It is interesting because historically the church has played such an integral role in the lives of individuals, families and communities but today folks can barely share what {if anything} they LEARNED during a service let alone go out and actually APPLY it.

The “church” seems always to have a long list of what NOT to do:

Don’t smoke
Don’t drink
Don’t curse
Don’t fornicate
Don’t take the Lords name in vain
Don’t have abortions
Don’t talk back to elders
Don’t miss choir practice
Don’t miss Bible Study
Don’t forget to write your tithes and offering checks

But when it comes to the DO or HOW-TO list???

Do be sure to pay your tithes and your offering … even if you can’t make it to church.

And while that illustration may not be true in INTENTION it certainly is true by PERCEPTION – just Google ‘why people are leaving the church’.

There is very little character building or teaching people how to be better each day; and as people are hurting themselves and others at an alarmingly increasing rate this should be reason to re-shift focus to a Message rather than a Man {Woman}.

Copyright © 2014 Tamika Brown and TheFynePrynt.com