Monthly Archives: November 2014

NFL Player Puts Ferguson Reaction Perfectly!

NFL player Benjamin Watson’s Ferguson post on Facebook goes viral

Posted: Nov 26, 2014 12:42 PM ESTUpdated: Nov 26, 2014 12:42 PM EST

KHQ.COM – Benjamin Watson who plays for the New Orleans Saints posted the following on his Facebook page and it has since gone viral:

“At some point while I was playing or preparing to play Monday Night Football, the news broke about the Ferguson Decision. After trying to figure out how I felt, I decided to write it down. Here are my thoughts:

I’M ANGRY because the stories of injustice that have been passed down for generations seem to be continuing before our very eyes.

I’M FRUSTRATED, because pop culture, music and movies glorify these types of police citizen altercations and promote an invincible attitude that continues to get young men killed in real life, away from safety movie sets and music studios.

I’M FEARFUL because in the back of my mind I know that although I’m a law abiding citizen I could still be looked upon as a “threat” to those who don’t know me. So I will continue to have to go the extra mile to earn the benefit of the doubt.

I’M EMBARRASSED because the looting, violent protests, and law breaking only confirm, and in the minds of many, validate, the stereotypes and thus the inferior treatment.

I’M SAD, because another young life was lost from his family, the racial divide has widened, a community is in shambles, accusations, insensitivity hurt and hatred are boiling over, and we may never know the truth about what happened that day.

I’M SYMPATHETIC, because I wasn’t there so I don’t know exactly what happened. Maybe Darren Wilson acted within his rights and duty as an officer of the law and killed Michael Brown in self defense like any of us would in the circumstance. Now he has to fear the backlash against himself and his loved ones when he was only doing his job. What a horrible thing to endure. OR maybe he provoked Michael and ignited the series of events that led to him eventually murdering the young man to prove a point.

I’M OFFENDED, because of the insulting comments I’ve seen that are not only insensitive but dismissive to the painful experiences of others.

I’M CONFUSED, because I don’t know why it’s so hard to obey a policeman. You will not win!!! And I don’t know why some policeman abuse their power. Power is a responsibility, not a weapon to brandish and lord over the populace.

I’M INTROSPECTIVE, because sometimes I want to take “our” side without looking at the facts in situations like these. Sometimes I feel like it’s us against them. Sometimes I’m just as prejudiced as people I point fingers at. And that’s not right. How can I look at white skin and make assumptions but not want assumptions made about me? That’s not right.

I’M HOPELESS, because I’ve lived long enough to expect things like this to continue to happen. I’m not surprised and at some point my little children are going to inherit the weight of being a minority and all that it entails.

I’M HOPEFUL, because I know that while we still have race issues in America, we enjoy a much different normal than those of our parents and grandparents. I see it in my personal relationships with teammates, friends and mentors. And it’s a beautiful thing.

I’M ENCOURAGED, because ultimately the problem is not a SKIN problem, it is a SIN problem. SIN is the reason we rebel against authority. SIN is the reason we abuse our authority. SIN is the reason we are racist, prejudiced and lie to cover for our own. SIN is the reason we riot, loot and burn. BUT I’M ENCOURAGED because God has provided a solution for sin through the his son Jesus and with it, a transformed heart and mind. One that’s capable of looking past the outward and seeing what’s truly important in every human being. The cure for the Michael Brown, Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice and Eric Garner tragedies is not education or exposure. It’s the Gospel. So, finally, I’M ENCOURAGED because the Gospel gives mankind hope.”

Here is the link to his Facebook page: http://tinyurl.com/oo9szxv

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Where Do I Begin… Thoughts on the #FergusonVerdict

 

Where do I begin.

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Ferguson, Missouri. Mike Brown. Black lives. Gone.

I want to say now that if you are sensitive about the Michael Brown case or ANY case dealing with the loss of a black life at the hands of law enforcement…this post might irk you. If you are combative and defensive when it comes to calling out African Americans for their lack of responsibility on the culture side of things….this post might irk you. If you’re someone who doesn’t believe in the Father God or the Son Jesus Christ…this post will REALLY irk you.

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As many of us know, last night November 24, 2014 the grand jury decided not to indict Officer Darren Wilson on charges of any kind in the murder of 18 year old Mike Brown. A laundry list of reasons from the case was given, but nothing changed the fact that this child (like many others) was gone when he didn’t have to be. A stream of thoughts, revelations, truths and reasoning flooded my mind as I basically sat there conversing with God, ignoring the sound coming out of my television.

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THOUGHT #1

The statement “liberty and justice for all” is simply not true. There have been MANY white-on-white mass murderers and serial killers who have been sent in jail to cope with the terrible decisions they’ve made. Just about all of the recently highlighted white-on-black or other-on-black murders have gone on with some of the triggermen not even smelling the scent of a jail cell. Why is that? “Liberty and justice for all” seems to hide its face when it comes to victims like Trayvon Martin, Mike Brown, and Oscar Grant. All in all, IF these young people were suspected of anything, major, don’t you think they deserved to be taking downtown instead of shot dead? There is not a coincidence that this is happening to BLACK people. I know some “new aged tree huggers” may say, “We are so far past racism, will live in a world where equality exists. The only people concerned with race are black people. If we stop agitating issues, we can truly heal”. NO. That is not how it works. The reason SO much injustice occurred during Jim Crow and the early 1800s is because the revolution was not televised. There was no mass media outlet around to shine a light on the black lives that were being stripped daily from the earth. NOW that we have social media, we are able to see, regardless of where we live, that injustice is still going on SOMEWHERE in America. On August 15th, Ferguson Police Chief Thomas told reporters in a press conference that the **”robbery [did] not relate to the initial contact between [Officer Wilson] and Michael Brown.” YET when Prosecuting Attorney Bob McCulloch read the verdict last night, he stated that ***“Wilson was aware that Brown was wanted for stealing cigars from a convenience store minutes earlier.” I’ll leave that there to let things simmer.

**http://www.cnn.com/2014/08/15/us/missouri-teen-shooting/

*** http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/bombshell-evidence-laid-death-michael-brown-article-1.2022689

 

 

THOUGHT #2

IMG_20141124_214921I will not omit the fact that Michael Brown WAS apparently partaking a crime despite the fact he was off to college. I don’t know why he thought it was okay to do that, but what’s done is done. So many black boys and men are turning to crime because they are immersed in a culture that doesn’t accurately reflect who they are, and they fall victim to the prison system and subject themselves to situations where they lose their lives. They are KINGS, but never truly know it because of the disastrous state of music, television, schools, and social media. Erik Walls of LA posed the though online “Aren’t some of the people that protested in wake of the Mike Brown situation the same ones that will turn around and party to Bobby Shmurda’s “Hot Ni**”? I’m confused a bit! We as the black community have to address injustice from both sides.” Black people need to wake up and realize what we’ve allowed ourselves to become as a whole! You can’t let tv or ringtone rap raise your kids. You can’t excuse your kids’ bad behavior at school, but blame EVERY teacher. You can’t let white parents be the only ones showing up to their child’s games, PTA meetings, and events. You can’t keep dropping your kids off so you can turn up at the club every other week. You can’t think it’s “cute” when your kids mimic your cursing and buffoonery. You can’t keep allowing your little girls and boys to be ‘grown’ and be surprised when they bring home babies at age 13. You can’t spend your last bit of rent money on a All White Affair or Black Party, but won’t go to a FREE panel forum discussing problems in the black community. Every black person needs hold at least one other black person accountable and charge them to stop SAYING they want change while waiting on someone else to enact it. We need to be PROACTIVE so we don’t get to the point where we are now – where we have to be reactive to a tragic murder or injustice.

 

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The Christian church needs to continue stepping up. I’m not going to be ‘Debbie Downer’ and say the church does NOTHING, but so much more has to be done. The church is fighting a battle within itself so I understand how difficult it may be to spread your attention and time but black people need it. What happened to the Civil Rights days where community leaders could meet in churches and pray over and lift up positive members in the black community so they can have the strength to run for local office and go off to school? As members of the Christian church, we can’t exhibit the same fear and hopelessness that everyone else in the world experiences. 2 Chronicles 7:14 (ESV) reads, “If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” This Word is still relevant today more than EVER! We need to help one another stay on the right path and stop sugar coating stuff as not to offend people. The Word of God REBUKES! Meaning, just like when our parents told us some heavy truths, it’s not going to be pretty all of the time. Look at what pity-patting has gotten us ya’ll! We can’t condone people’s reckless living (because in essence that’s what we’re doing by not giving them godly council) and then weep when the consequences occur. We need to make sure the PHYSICAL church body is a place where people feel welcome to come in as they are, but also a place where they don’t STAY as they are.

 

To be continued….. I’m just getting started. – Joc

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12 Years — Still Slaves…

Earlier this evening I watched ‪#‎12YearsASlave‬ (not my first time) and couldn’t help but cry. To see clearly that the hate and injustice slaves endured at the hands of whites back then still in effect today is BEYOND TRAGIC! But guess what, the reason it hurts is not because whites today inflict this pain on us…IT’S US inflicting pain on US! African Americans break down each other almost as much as whites ever could.

The way the word nigga is “justifiable” because it’s “us” using it — the way we degrade our black QUEENS, brainwashing them into believing they’re nothing more than butt and thighs…..we kill each other over “debt owed” which ultimately breaks up families. I know it’s nothing that will change overnight, but it still hurts.

This past Sunday, a former classmate and I organized a peace rally on the steps of our local county courthouse. During this ‪#‎Commitment4Change‬ rally, a wise community member walked off of the streets and kicked some knowledge to us that was profound to say the least! She spoke of growing up in 1960s New York where black men greeted black women as “queen”. With the world still finding it’s love for brown skin, and Jim Crow slowly transitioning in the South; blacks only had each other. They supported each other. Black woman knew the value of a strong, black man; and black men desired the love and enduring support of a black woman. This angel of a woman went on to proclaim that we (as African Americans) need to teach our children their HISTORY! We can’t keep cycling ourselves in a system that doesn’t care about us. We can’t depend on television or movies to depict blacks in the correct light 100% of the time…..we need teach kids AT HOME that they are kings and queens. If we do this as a black community, when they step out in the world, they will know WHO and WHOSE they are.

After speaking this mind rocking truth, she disappeared into the freezing rain and no one knew who she was. I believe she was setting me up for tonight. We won’t always have movies like “12 Years A Slave” played on the big screen to remind us of where we came from. Did you know that there are actually kids in middle and elementary school who believe the Civil Rights Era was in like the 1800s?!?!?! There are some who don’t realize what blacks had to endure until looking at an educational video in class. That is PITIFUL and there is NO reason this should be a reality.

It’s no wonder they exhibit and overwhelming sense of helplessness and disregard for human life. It’s no wonder they war with one another yet cry out when a black is killed by a cop. It’s no wonder they choose the streets because they’ve never seen a man, let alone one making something honest of himself.

We have work to do black America. These are just my reflections. There are too many emotions to continue — I’ll just sleep on it as I hope you do.

Be Blessed – Joc

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A Woman’s Heart

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November 12, 2014 · 7:10 pm

In What State Does Your Heart Live?

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While checking my messages and updating my Facebook business pages, I came across a post that simply asked “which one is your heart now?” You can imagine how many varied responses flooded the comments section. I was almost tempted to respond with whatever immediately came to my mind, but then the Holy Spirit ( yeah it tends to make you really think about some things) told me to pause. The following breakdown was revealed to me:

HEART #1 – WHOLE & HAPPY         HEART #2 – ONCE BROKEN, BUT PATCHED        HEART #3 BROKEN

A no brainer right? WRONG. I’ve been healing over the past several years from a few traumatic experiences and bad relationships — so my impulse was to choose 2. But the Holy Spirit opened my eyes a bit to notice that the heart was mended by band-aids; which means the heart is not TRULY healed. Just covered up. I’ve worked hard and have been through hell and high waters during the process of God healing my heart. Even though my love life is not PERFECT and a few ’emotional scabs’ are drying up….I can honestly say that my heart is #1. Yes I’m single. Yes I’ve been through a lot.  But it’s not enough to simply patch over your emotional wounds with a band-aid.

As a Christian, and a human being; a wound (especially deep a deep one ) can never properly heal if you don’t medicate it, give it fresh air, and treat it. Throwing a band-aid on it and keeping it there doesn’t allow the healing process to truly take place; it only creates an atmosphere for your wound to sit in the same residue that caused it in the first place!

When I allowed God to spiritually and emotionally heal my heart, that didn’t totally erase the fact that bad things had happened to me. Those terrible relationships DID happen and DID hurt me. Allowing Him to heal me meant giving Him access to the depths of my anguish. These past few years HAVE BEEN A CHALLENGE, but just like any wound that gets a little disinfectant and air — discomfort is part of the process. Now for the first time in a while, I’m exuberantly and wholly happy in being single! My heart is whole and healed for the man who will never demolish it.

So take a little time to really think about your current emotional state and how you would describe your heart. If you say #2 or #3, start opening up yourself to the healing process by letting go of unclaimed baggage, forgiving, renewing your faith in love, and most of all loving yourself.

– Joc

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