Category Archives: Life

Joel Osteen A Fat Cat In Skinny Goat’s Clothing

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It is Sunday morning and we are up and watching a little television when we just happen to come across this fellow in a huge mega church preaching about how God wants to bless you with prosperity etc. Now I am interested in what this humble sounding fellow had to say as I am constantly curious how people could actually listen to these prosperity preachers on a constant basis. It turns out that his name is Joel Osteen and I remember seeing him on Larry King not to long ago. He has a new book so I guess he was on the book whore, I mean tour circuit to push his goods.

Now I don’t subscribe to these prosperity pushers such as Creflo Dollar, T.D. Jakes, John Hagee, Joyce Meyer, Pat Robertson, Juanita Bynum, The Tower of Power Schuller, Benny Hinn, Paula & Randy White, Oral Roberts, Mike Murdoch, Robert Tilton and Peter Popoff. Osteen and these preachers are pulling down money that would make the riches Pharaoh or Sultan blush. Yet God has specific scripture denouncing the rich lifestyle such as Mathew 19:24 “Again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” Let Osteen and the other modern day swindlers tell it and you too can get to heaven by helping to line their pockets and bank accounts to overflowing.

Osteen was preaching today about not having a skinny goat mentality which he equated with a poor person mentality. You need to think big and know that God wants to make you prosperous with blessings. All you have to do is pray, OH and don’t forget to say the Amen. The Amen part is like sealing the prayer and blah, blah, blah. Now I am not a Christian by any means and know that God isn’t waiting in the wings to give me anything for giving these con artists one thin dime. In fact I think that just the opposite will happen, if I pay my hard earned money to this and the other thieves I will be even more destitute. It is like a fool calling the psychic hotline (which I worked for a short time) and what do they always ask? Why don’t I ever have any money, and will I get some money soon? I always wanted to say you have no money and won’t get any because you keep paying two dollars a minute for these phone calls. Why don’t you hang up and save your money then I could pop them on the head like a V-8 commercial.

Joel Osteen isn’t interested in my spiritual or any other part of my well being. He constantly talked about the fact that he also has a skinny goat mentality yet he grew up in the cradle of money as his father was also a preaching money maker. So where exactly did he get this skinny goat mentality. All he talked about for the entire time was building this mega church and how he felt that they could only afford to keep the old broken tiles and jacked up bathroom stalls etc. And when his cousin whom works for him said they should get all new things which prompted Osteen to wonder where his cousin got this fat cat mentality from. Well probably from the fact that through Osteen’s nepotism and cronyism he too is benefiting off the backs of Osteen’s poor stupid parishioners.

This mega church they built cost somewhere around seventy million dollars, damn that’s a lot of money. Yet he is a humble country preacher, “don’t know nothing about money matters,” is what he said when he had to go to Bank of America for a twenty five million dollar loan. Banks don’t just give that kind of money to people without a plan, no knowledge about how things in the real word work. He knows full well how money and the like work, like I said earlier, this guy was born to a money grabbing preacher. I don’t want to rag on anyone’s religion but I don’t believe that this preacher’s actually preaching about religion well maybe the religion of money. This guy and the others only seem to have one goal in mind and that is to separate you and me from our income and that is my problem.

I can barely look at these prosperity doctrine preacher’s let alone listen to the garbage they spew. I heard one preacher Paula White look into the camera and ask people to send her their first paycheck of the month. What! Is she crazy, most people are living paycheck to paycheck so who can afford to just send off a whole check to that cretin. She claims, just like Osteen and all the rest that you will get that back two fold or better. Gee if I send my hard earned money away how will I get this money back, is she going to pay my bills? This is another one of those “you got to have blind faith” things. I guess I am too inquisitive to just follow anything on blind faith. But, until others show more of a questioning nature instead of blindly following the pack like a good little sheeple.

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Black Community Responsibility

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I agree that there are some things that the black community themselves need to own and take responsibility for, but they differ greatly with what people like Bill Cosby and such are spewing. I never hear anyone asking white people or the white community to take responsibility for any of its actions. The fact remains that every community has problems; I don’t think that you can find one that is devoid of them. So why this push to force blacks into accepting this fallacy that our community is somehow the worst one, or we somehow have failed where others are excelling? Well, you know the answer, just more propaganda to keep blacks feeling inadequate.

The Bill Cosby’s of the world will have you to believe that we are in such a state of disrepair all by our own doing. But, is it really our own doing that has put us in this predicament? I say yes and no, the issues are too complex for his simpleton explanation that if we only showed some responsibility everyone would be college graduates and on the cover of Forbes. When we all understand or should understand that college isn’t for everyone and America as a whole has only allowed 10% of the population to reach Forbes cover standards of living. We have to come to a realization that what we need as a community differs from that of America as a whole, that our needs don’t parallel that of the white community.

 

One of the things we should own is the fall of black neighborhoods; it is us who left our brothers and sisters in the hood as soon as we make a little dough the motto seems to be “see ya suckers.” As the higher income makers move to join their idea of equals in some white neighborhood, the tax dollars that helped to keep the area up goes with them. But I want to live in an affluent neighborhood, you hear these money makers say. Well what makes the area their moving to affluent, the type of houses, the landscaping, business or the fact that they are full of whites? I don’t have a problem with wanting more, hell, that’s what America is all about, but why can’t you want more for your people. Why can’t you stay in the neighborhood and make something nice there? If more blacks who get a leg up were to stay and gentrify our own neighborhoods we wouldn’t need to run to white neighborhoods like country cousins beggin’ at the big house for a nice area to raise our kids.

 

Black neighborhoods would be better off if it were diversely populated with blacks of all socioeconomic classes. With the money sticking around, so would businesses, and the schools would be a whole lot better; all of which means that everyone as a whole would be doing a whole lot better. The black owned small business inside the neighborhoods would help a lot with unemployment and so on. Sounds a lot like a trickle down effect, but my naïve nature is showing again. I don’t believe that blacks care about the black community as much as they care about impressing their black and white counterparts as well as those beneath them, with the look what I have and where I live syndrome.

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Racial Analysis Paralysis

We need to open a dialogue about race is what I keep hearing when some type of racial travesty such as the Jena 6 happens. A dialogue about what, is what I am asking. We have dissected, dialogued, ranted, raved and analyzed racism to the point of analysis paralysis. We are virtually paralyzed by racisms affects and unable to move past this sense of pseudo equality. Sure we have Blacks who have “made it” does that fact now make everything equal, so let’s just hold that above the heads of the masses that haven’t.

On the news you hear reports about how Blacks now make “only” 20% less pay than their White counterpart and that is an improvement over the last 10 years. Wow, should I be smiling and slapping my knee at the fact that we’re almost there by golly. If anything we should be outraged and infuriated about this news, obviously something needs to be done. Do you think we should open a dialogue about it, will this somehow convince the employers to pay the Blacks they hire the same as their white counterpart? Of course it won’t, because if it would then the pay would be equal right now. Since we have been discussing and analyzing unfair wages, hiring and firing practices of the White dominated business sector for years.

Whites and Blacks have been discussing in some form racial disparities in all its many facets since slavery. So what more is there to say about it and how long do we have to continue discussing the same old thing before we decide that action is necessary? A call to action isn’t a call to violence. We have sat in the passenger seat long enough waiting for Whites to somehow be the ones to drive us to equality, when it is obvious they have no intentions of doing that. Would you sit in the passenger seat and beg for your attacker to drive you to the police station or a hospital? Absolutely not, that would mean certain death, obviously your attacker would more likely be planning to continue to victimize you rather than help you.

When are we Blacks going to get tired of acting like the country cousins begging at the big house for the scraps from White society? I don’t have the answers on what we need to do, all I can say is that in my opinion we have tried to assimilate by marching and pleading to be let into the massa’s house but we all know that not everyone can be the house slave. What else can we do to gain acceptance? And why would you want to “force” someone who doesn’t want you around to let you hang around anyway. If the Black community was a child you wouldn’t tell them to continue hanging around a bully who makes fun of them, is violent towards them and won’t let them play in the game. No you would tell them to stand up to the bully then stay away from them and play with someone who appreciates them.

So in the words of Martin Luther King Jr. “I sit here deeply concerned that I suspect we’re leading our nation on an integration trip that has us integrating into a burning house.” This is what I am feeling, I am not saying that integration is wrong and should be stopped, but before we continue on the same road that seems to be leading us to nowhere we should stop for a moment take a deep breath and survey the map.

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Post Traumatic Racism Syndrome

 

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Working in the medical industry I constantly have to keep up on new information as well as update my skill set. So while looking into a few disorders that come up from time to time with different patients of mine, I stumbled across an article written Sid Kirchheimer for WebMd way back in 2003. The article titled “Racism is harmful to health” got little if any play, neither in the media nor on the health care circuits. Now something this provocative should have gotten beau coup air time on your national nightly news, but that would be assuming that someone cared. In all actuality this flies by under the radar because “hey, it doesn’t affect my family or I have never ‘seen’ any racism.” Since this is the mindset of the majority why would this be big news or even just an interesting side story?

The article talks about how Blacks who we know for a fact suffer at the hands of racism are more likely to have hypertension (high blood pressure), heart disease which is linked to that hypertension and other stress related ailments. Now this part is no surprise since we all know that twice as many Blacks suffer from these well known illnesses, the interesting parts is how it is linked to racism. Two different studies which were done by a British group and by Harvard shows that normally blood pressure and stress go down at night but for Blacks who have suffered from racism it remains high thus leading to heart and other problems. According to Camara P. Jones, MD, MPH, PhD, research director of Social Determinants of Health for the CDC and a leading specialist on the health impact of racism “There’s a kind of stress, like you’re gunning your cardiovascular engine constantly if you’re black that results from dealing with people who are underestimating you, limiting your options,” and “By the time you get into the 25-44 year-old group, you start to see changes. We have evidence that in white folks, blood pressure is dropping at night, but not in black people.”

This information should be in the hands of doctors who can in turn educate and try to do preventative medicine instead of it becoming chronic problems. But unfortunately doctors are another cause of the problem of stress induced from racism, according to a recent report by the National Academies’ Institute of Medicine (IOM) numerous studies show that racial and ethnic minorities tend to receive lower-quality healthcare than whites — even when insurance status, income, age, and severity of conditions are comparable. But doctors would never admit to showing bias nor that there was any truth to the discrepancies in health care on a racial basis. Even though it is widely known that minorities receive bad to just downright sub standard care from hospitals, clinics and doctors.

Even after these studies get published and the news took the information and gave it willingly to the public you would still have a majority of the people claiming that racism doesn’t exist and both these medical findings is just another attempt at excuses for Blacks period. The stress caused by racism can be comparable to that of post traumatic stress syndrome. So maybe we can call what Blacks suffer as post traumatic racism syndrome since according to surveys Camara P. Jones conducted, she finds that whites rarely think about their race in the course of a day. “But 22% of blacks surveyed said they constantly think about their race, and 50% said they think of race at least once a day — they are constantly reminded of their blackness,” she says.” That has a profound effect on health.” But we know that the outcome would undoubtedly be the same, low or sub standard care and doctors who deny, deny, deny plus a public Blacks as well as Whites who also deny any claims that racism is more damaging than just lost jobs, housing and status.

 

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The Racist Bone

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The toe bones connected to the foot bone and the foot bones connected to the leg bone and the leg bones connected to the racist bone… Wait – A – Minute. Is there a racist bone? I don’t know but I have been reading a lot of articles where people are constantly throwing out the “he/she doesn’t have a racist bone in their body.” I even read one where a guy was saying that Bush didn’t have one of those bones either, now that was a barrel of laughs, yep, sure he nor they don’t. My philosophy has always been, if a person has to start off a sentence denying the obviousness of the racism/racist that it probably is racism/racist. Like how people usually start off their racists rants with “I’m not racist but…” It never ceases to amaze me that in this country which was literally built on racism, classism, sexism and any other ism you can think of, people would actually deny that racism still exists. Racism and racists exists people and those racist bones are riddled throughout most of their bodies.

Now I am not going to claim that only White people are racist because racism permeates all cultures, countries, continents and probably planets (if I read Brotherpeacemaker’s post correctly even “Andorians are racist”). The problem I am having is that people want to tout that they have no racist bones or they are not racist when they say these things which are usually aimed towards Blacks, but the question is how and when did they lose this racist bone? Just because Blacks have come a long way doesn’t mean that everything is equal game over, no it is just the opposite, and we still have a long arduous road ahead to continue until we get EQUALITY. I know that people are probably thinking, but Blacks do have equality, that is what was being fought for during the civil rights struggle. I also know that things are far from equal. You can see this in daily life but please remove any rose colored glasses first. We have disparities in all facets of our lives, housing, employment, education, healthcare and the justice system or for all the Blacks who are reading then it’s the in-justice system.

This world in which we live has been twisted toward the views of White people in general, we call this white privilege. When a person is born into a world where they are receiving clues and propaganda that they matter more than other races of people, they will grow up to have a feeling of superiority toward other races. The clues and propaganda come from a variety of sources, television shows – almost everyone on television looks like them and shows them just how special they are; news – when all viewpoints are told from their perspective and just how evil or bad other races especially Blacks are on a continual basis; businesses – businesses that they frequent or their parents workplace are 99% the same race as them, it lets them know that people like them are obviously more qualified; government – the people who run the country they live in look like them and make laws to protect them and their family interests; cities – is full of people who look like them and those that don’t live in a crappy part of the city they avoid just deserve the best life has to offer; friends/family – make comments about the negativity of other races, they are learning that these other races are in fact inferior because Grandpa or whoever doesn’t have a racist bone in their body.

Ruby Bridges, the first black student at the formerly all-white elementary school William Frantz, November 1960, in New Orleans, is now only 53 yrs old. So it wasn’t all that long ago that this poor little girl was getting death threats, spit on, yelled at and cursed by all manners of racist White people who if you asked them today would tell you that they don’t have a racist bone in their bodies. How can anyone think that pictures of such hatred could have disappeared just because laws were passed saying that the hatred was no longer going to be tolerated. When unfortunately hatred though now disguised in the form of all those disparities I listed before is still tolerated. It is tolerated that a person who is totally qualified for a job will be passed over because “ah you know you just don’t fit in with the company image”. Or maybe you go out for a Sunday drive and whoop, whoop the sound of sirens and “you were going 4 miles over the speed limit,” as you proclaim your innocence “uh are you rolling your eyes at me, you know I could give you a ticket?” Maybe you want to walk around the store looking for just the right gift, when you notice you are being followed, don’t worry it’s just store security trying to keep you safe while shopping.

But yet these same people who are passing Blacks over for employment, pulling racial profiling, following around innocent shoppers or any number of rude treatments that Blacks receive on a daily basis are being committed by the Moms, Dads, Grandmas, Grandpas and friends that everyone keeps saying doesn’t have a racist bone in them. All I am trying to get across is that no matter what people are saying racism/racist still exists. And whether or not it is in the bones, the heart or the brain is still up for debate but the fact that it exists is absolutely not.

 

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Curing Dysfunction With Dysfunction

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Should the merit of everything that happens to a person depend on whether or not someone else believes or has the same experience? Would someone tell a victim of rape that “well you know I have never been raped myself nor do I know anyone who has and men have treated me and all the ladies I know with nothing but respect, so you know if you are looking for rape then you undoubtedly will find it.” Of course not, that would be insensitive and extremely hurtful. So then why is it acceptable for people to say this to people who have been discriminated against or been the victim of racists and racism. It is as if in order for your encounter to have any weight or credence it must be verified by all who hear about it. Not to mention if racism doesn’t exist as these people love to say, then no matter how hard you look; it would never be found.

What is the reason for the constant barrage of people acting as if you have to prove to me that this happened? When I wasn’t even aware that it was necessary to prove my experiences? My thoughts go to how in the world can you criticize racism and say things like well “I don’t see it…” What rock are you living under that you don’t see or hear the news? You have Black men being shot the night before their wedding in a hail of like 50 bullets and the cause was contagious shooting by the cops. Please. You have a man go to get a job who has graduated with a Masters degree with honors and just because he is Black with locs in his hair he gets the inside name of “ghetto dude” by the staff assigned with hiring or not hiring this man. And yet who really thinks that this young man or “ghetto dude”, as the company so lovingly referred to him as, will get a fair shake in getting the job.

It is much easier to look the other way or basically just deny seeing anything at all. One reason is that the same people who do this are guilty of subtle forms of racism themselves on a constant basis. This isn’t just for White people because all races do this and yes this includes other Blacks as well. I read a Blog earlier in the week about racism etc. A person replied that the racism was terrible but the Black people who were complaining about it should stop wasting time thinking about or calling attention to racism and just go get an education. Now what makes this person assume that all Black people are uneducated especially those that bring attention to racism. All the people whose Blogs about racism that I like reading right now as well as myself are all pretty educated people; all having attended various colleges.

Not to mention this person would have Blacks stop complaining about or calling attention to racism. Am I supposed to think that this will somehow end racism? Well I guess that person would feel a lot better since then they would never have to hear about it and we could go on getting discriminated against in peaceful silence. Now is this person also for letting the police and the nightly news know that we should stop solving or reporting on crime because then that wouldn’t exist anymore as well. I guess we could all live in silent terror of the hordes of criminals that will be roaming the streets. But at least we won’t have to hear about it anymore. This is idiotic at best, advocating dysfunction to cure dysfunction. This is typical of how people think about racism since it doesn’t affect them then it is not on their radar.

I don’t have to convince, persuade or sway anyone’s opinions about racism. Think what ever you will about whether it does or doesn’t exist. Base your feelings on the any fact you want such as, you don’t know anyone who does it or had it happen, what difference, is it going to make to me. Are any of these things going to somehow keep me safe from someone who decides to discriminate against me? Is it going to stop racism the world over? No, racism and discrimination whether I ever see them again will undoubtedly continue on well into the future because like a bunch of ostriches people will continue to stick their heads in the sand or maybe stick them somewhere else.

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What Does It Mean To Be Black

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What does it mean to be black was a question posted by another Blogger who then promptly took the post down saying that “I was a little naive when posting this article in hope of starting an intelligent dialog.” So “I am going to close comments in light that no one today has answered this question.” I guess he was basically looking for this, now you need to clear your throat and in your best really super smart scientist or professor sounding voice say “Well to be black would mean that you derive your ancestry from northern to well um sub-Saharan Africa or well actually that you derive your ancestry from one of the many indigenous people of the continent of Africa. Yes that is what it means to be Black.” Come on that is what it means to be of African descent or to have Black skin.

But we all know that actually “being” Black means so many different things to so many different people. How can one give an intelligent answer to such a personal question? I am pretty sure that this guy did not in fact want each and every person to come to his Blog and give him “their” personal what it means to be Black to me story. What it seems this fellow wanted was basically for people to approve of his assessment on what it means to be Black, which was to not be Black at all.

Since this man didn’t want to be Black he couldn’t or wouldn’t even refer to himself as a Black man; it was always brown person or my brown skin. He told me it was because his skin color was not black it was in fact brown. How absurd, when he prominently refers to his wife several times in the post as White. Now by his logic or better yet by his illogical thinking shouldn’t he have referred to her as a peachy pink woman? Hell, if we are now using the Crayola School of skin color descriptions white was way off. But we all know that his skin color isn’t the real reason he doesn’t want to be called Black; it is that black conjures negative emotions and thoughts especially when referring to racial identity.

We have all heard the dismal words that are associated with black such as blacklisted, blackballed, Black Tuesday, Black market, blackmail and the list goes on and on. Even if we take the news and other media sources into account, they would have you believe that the Black race is out of control, all the Black on Black crime, Black athletes gone wild, and all the statistics to support every negative fear that most people associate with being Black. Regardless of this I think that he was extremely hypocritical such that it was almost laughable. It was fine to call his wife White and to clearly state that he has “assimilated FULLY to White culture” but he doesn’t want to refer to himself as black because his skin is brown. But, once his duplicity was called out he started back pedaling. Unfortunately after seeing his own blatant hypocrisy he started changing the wording in his post to lessen the off-putting representation of his mindset.

To me once you post something short of grammatical or massive reporting errors, I say leave it and face the music, love it or hate it these are my thoughts. I don’t write posts for people to come and shower me with love and acceptance, sometime my posts and those of the people I read most often get some pretty negative raunchy comments. Hey it goes with the territory when you are writing about racial issues. So for my man to start changing the wording of things because they hit a sour note with his readers was such a cowardly act and the beginning of the end.

His account of assimilating fully to the white culture somehow mutated into his having assimilated to humanity not exactly white culture. As if to be Black is to be separate from humanity. What the (insert expletive). That doesn’t even make sense. We are all a part of humanity and anything dealing with the human condition is part of it too. His wife makes a comment on the post stating that she doesn’t identify herself as White, yep sure, right, and this just after her husband called her White about two or three times in his post. I guess they don’t exactly see eye to eye on what her skin color or identity happens to be. She says that she has German and British ancestry but she doesn’t identify with either of them as well. But here in America being White is her identity regardless of what she wants to identify herself as. They can both identify their skin color as that of humanity or whatever but the fact still remains that when either of them walks out of their house they are seen as a Black man and a White woman. This is nothing new, surprising or horrible, it’s called life.

Anyway, the whole thing was like watching a train wreck in progress. You see the train you see the car on the tracks then bang a big ole crazy mess. Yet you can’t go back and take the car off the tracks all the inner nuts and bolts of their life philosophies were already out, the proverbial cards were on the table so to speak. It was foolish to think that by changing the wordage it would somehow alter the course that he had already established. If this post is any indication changing the wording or deleting his post didn’t do anything to stem the discussion.

The problem for this Blogger wasn’t that he didn’t get any answers to his supposed intelligent dialog starter it was the fact that he had been ill prepared to deal with the objections to his choices. Unable to recant what was previously said the poor guy folded like Superman on laundry day and packed that post up. This is just the ugly side effects of putting your unadulterated thoughts out for the world to analyze then pick apart. But as long as you open the dialog then you should feel that you have accomplished a goal of sorts.

So what does it mean to be Black well as I said before to be Black is a personal journey that no two people will travel the same way. Now the question this guy should think about is what it means to be Afrocentric. I can give him MY thoughts on the meaning. It means to have your main focus in life and mind centered on Black or African heritage; doing things that will further advance you and those of your collective heritage, while building strong and lasting family, friend and community bonds with those that share this heritage.

I know that this will not satiate this guy because this doesn’t encompass his lifestyle or that of his rainbow coalition of friends and family. But, I am sorry, this is how “I FEEL” and I don’t care if he or his wife or any one else in the world agrees with me. Because I don’t have to support, acquiesce, approval or give my endorsement to a persons lifestyle choices just because they feel that it was right for them. Now undoubtedly there are those people including this guy who will say this is a racist point of view. I don’t advocate for segregation, separatism or any types of violence against any group, I don’t hate any other groups but, hey, you are entitled to believe whatever you want.

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