Archive for the ‘RANTS & RAVES’ Category

Doing It Yourself (a.k.a. A Call to Creative Action; a.k.a. Sh!t or Get Off the Pot)

December 15, 2011

A little over 15 years ago I unwittingly embarked on a journey that would forever shape who I am. For those of you who have been following my work for any length of time, you’ve probably heard this story—or at least bits and pieces—so I’ll try not to be too boring in recounting it for those who don’t know all the details. The story really starts in 1994, when I decided to make a documentary about blaxploitation. I had spent the better part of ‘94 and ’95 doing research for the documentary, which included watching tons of movies. After a while, I’d seen so many movies that I started getting confused. I couldn’t remember which Pam Grier movie had better nudity, Foxy Brown or Coffy. I knew Speeding Up Time was one of the worst movies I’d ever seen, but kept getting plot details confused with Nigger Lover, which was almost as bad, and The Bus Is Coming, which was terrible and boring, but in completely different ways from the other two. There were so many details to so many movies, and I needed to keep track of so much stuff, that I decided to start taking notes. (more…)

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Afrocentricity vs. Ghettocentricity (a.k.a. In Response to 'Boycott Black People')

December 11, 2011

I recently watched a video on Youtube entitled Boycott Black People that had been posted by a young black man deriding other black people. Many of the people I know who watched the video disagreed with this guy, but to be honest, he was spot-on with about 85% of what he had to say. The problem was how he was saying it—his message was not all that well articulated, and he seemed to be struggling with the larger point he was trying to get across. Here is a link to the video, which you should seriously consider watching before reading any further. (more…)

In Support of President Obama (a.k.a. The Well-Done Negro)

November 22, 2011

After watching the video Not Disappointed by President Obama by Jake Lamar, I was motivated to write some of what has been long-developing in my mind. Despite some policies and actions that I have not agreed with, I still support President Obama. Lamar, who I have been a fan of for many years, succinctly drives home my feeling about Obama, and gives voice to much of what I think and feel. But at the same time, Lamar has not addressed one of the key issues surrounding Obama’s presidency that to me is obvious, but not exactly something people want to tackle. Some might argue that it is a topic best left for historians to address, though I would disagree. History is riddled with inaccuracies, and is often written purely to make the reader feel good. I, however, am not interested in making anyone feel good. Instead, I would much rather talk about what so many of us are thinking about, and perhaps discussing in small conversations amongst our close friends, but not coming out and actually saying. (more…)

Casting a Black Actor as 007

October 5, 2011

There was a bit of a buzz floating around on the Internet a few days ago, regarding the possibility of Idris Elba (above) assuming the James Bond mantle after Daniel Craig leaves the role (read it here). This was based on comments made by Craig several years back, and it opens up a long-running topic that I talked about for many years.

Since the film debut of James Bond in 1962, six actors have played 007 (provided you don’t count the early versions of Casino Royale), and many more have been mentioned and considered for the role over the decades. In 1973, Roger Moore replaced Sean Connery as Bond in Live and Let Die, blowing the perfect opportunity to cast a black actor as the secret agent. (more…)

Slavery + Rape = Two-Parent Households, According to GOP

July 13, 2011

Presidential candidates Michele Bachmann and Rick Santorum both recently signed a pledge that had been authored by a conservative Christian group called Family Leadership. Among the things listed in this pledge were promises to work to end same-sex marriages, stop pornography (which by the way violates the First Amendment), and a statement that promoted slavery as something positive. Here is what this pledge said: “Slavery had a disastrous impact on African-American families, yet sadly a child born into slavery in 1860 was more likely to be raised by his mother and father in a two-parent household than was an African-American baby born after the election of the USA’s first African-American President.”

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The Eyes Have It

June 28, 2011

Few living people on this planet scare me more than presidential candidate Michele Bachmann. I could spend hours going off on all the things wrong with her, but for now, I will simply present this bit of photographic evidence, which should speak for itself.  If the eyes are truly the window into the soul, what does it say about her that she’s got Helter Skelter eyes?

The Batman of Africa?!? Gimme a Break!!!

June 13, 2011

DC Comic has recently announced the revamping of their entire line of comic books. This has cause much heated debate amongst fans, and I haven’t felt the need to weigh in, in part because I don’t care, and also because I don’t care. Did I mention that I don’t care?

But all of that changed when I read about a new title called Batwing. I’m not going to get into the details of who Batwing is, because it would be a long, complicated story that involves how DC creates these ridiculous events to sell tons of books. Instead, I will quote from a recent interview with the writer of the upcoming Batwing series, who describes the character as “the Batman of Africa.” (more…)

LESSONS IN BLACK HISTORY – LaWanda Page

February 9, 2011

LaWanda Page – Born Alberta Pearl and best known as Aunt Esther on television’s Sanford and Son, LaWanda Page was a professional comedian and performer known by many for her foul-mouthed stage routine. Growing up in St. Louis, she was childhood friends with Redd Foxx, who’s show Sanford and Son would make her a television star. Foxx had insisted that Page co-star on the show as his Bible-thumping sister-in-law, despite producers who didn’t want to use her. But before TV, Page honed her comedic talent on the comedy/burlesque circuit. Known as the “Bronze Goddess of Fire,” she was known for her fire-eating act and a trick that involved lighting a cigarette with her fingertips. She recorded several comedy albums during the 1960s and 70s, including Mutha Is Half a Word. Page continued to perform live throughout the 1990, and appeared in several films, including Friday and Shakes the Clown, which included a line she often used in her stand-up routine: “I got one of them peanut butter pussys: it’s brown, smooth and easy to spread.”

LESSONS IN BLACK HISTORY – Nancy Green

February 3, 2011

Nancy Green – Born a slave in 1834, Nancy Green became one of the most famous black women of all time when she was chosen to be the model for Aunt Jemima, the character used to market pancake flour and syrup. The character of Aunt Jemima goes back to minstrel shows of the 1870s, and some historians speculate that the original Aunt Jemima was actually a man performing in drag and blackface. In 1888 the Pearl Milling Company began marketing pancake mix, and appropriated the minstrel show character as their company mascot. A year later, the company was bought by R.T. Davis Milling Company, which hired former slave Nancy Green to pose as Aunt Jemima. Green portrayed the character in a variety of ads and even made live appearances, playing the role until 1923, when she was killed after being run over by a car. Although the character of Aunt Jemima is steeped in age-old stereotypes, Green was well compensated for her work, and became an outspoken advocate in the fight against poverty.

The Words & Wisdom of Me

January 30, 2011

For reasons that that I can’t fully comprehend, people have been wanting to know what’s on my mind lately. In January 2011, I was interviewed four times (once for a radio show and three times for websites). If you have the time, check out any and all of these interviews, which are far more interesting and engaging than I am in real life, and somehow manage to make me sound intelligent. World of Hurt is the website of the greatest web comic on the Internet. Jay Potts is an amazing artist and writer, and in addition to the comic he posts some great articles.  Scott’s Introspection Section has a two-part interview with me, which shows how long-winded I can be. This is a site I only recently discovered, but there is some great pop culture content and insight (including a new interview with rap legend Kool G Rap). KBOO radio’s Lisa Loving is an awesome journalist and even more awesome person.  We had a particularly insightful conversation. Last but not least, there is YNET, an Israeli website that among other things asked me some interesting questions about “Jewsploitation.” For not, this interview is only up in Hebrew, but there should be an English translation soon. And if anyone is interested in hearing me on a weekly basis, don’t forget that I’m a guest every Tuesday morning on the Cort and Fatboy Show, where I manage to talk about nothing on a regular basis.