Hatred in my Heart

I looked over at the table that my manager told me I needed to clean and saw an obnoxious amount of food and beers that were left from the couple before. This is not in my job description, I am a bartender, not a server. After putting on some gloves and removing the crap off of the table, I met up with my coworker who had an intense look of disgust on his face.

” I am starting to hate white people, and it hurts my soul. I am a damn Buddhist for peeds sake, hatred is like completely opposite of my teachings.”

This guy isn’t just my coworker, he is my 16-year-old Black brother who is working his first job alongside of me, serving middle class people over-priced barbecue and getting paid minimum wage to do so. “Those people didn’t even tip. Their bill came to above fifty dollars and they didn’t even tip. I feel like a slave.” he said as he filled up the sweet tea container.

I know how he feels. I worked here a few weeks before he did, during the time period when a White guy walked into a historical Black church, sat with them while they prayed for love and guidance, and when he was done…killed 9 people. Not only did he kill 9 people, he left a little girl to live so that she could tell the story. Essentially this White man ruined at a minimum ten lives, that is not even including the families and friends of these people. I followed the story all morning on CNN, waiting for them to capture him, secretly hoping that they would kill him in cold blood and leave his body to sit in the street for four hours, or put him in a chokehold so that he could not breathe. I hoped that maybe they would have a chance to feel an emotion that does not have a word. As I looked into the White guys in their ties and slacks, sitting back drinking a beer on their break because they need to get away for a little, I wondered….do you want to shoot me? Do you want to kill the young black man in front of you, whose pants are not all the way on his hips, whose nappy hair is something that peeks your curiosity, whose caramel skin is a little darker than their wives after a long tanning session? Would your gran pappy have hung me, not because I was a thief or a murder but because I was a….Negro?

I felt the hatred growing in my heart, like the way food coloring spreads throughout a clear glass of water, eventually the entire container is tainted with some of the added color. It doesn’t change the water from being water, but it doesn’t look like the water that it was prior to the food coloring being added. That is how my heart feels. Hatred and confusion because I know what it right and wrong. I know that the only way to peace is through love. I am starting to hate white people, and the more that I look into my brothers’ eyes, I see the hatred grow.

I looked between my brother dumping water on the concrete after a White man spilled barbecue sauce on the ground, and the gray clouds darkening above us. My brother was doing pointless work, something that nature could do, because he must listen to authority or risk losing his job. And yet the coward who ruined ten lives only risk losing his freedom for not listening. Welcome to my world…except I listen. There is no positivity or love that could reasonably be found in this situation, making it a breeding ground for the hatred in our hearts.

5 Things Cis People Can Actually Do For Trans People (Now That You Care About Us)

“Transwomen are either models of cisnormative beauty, or they’re dead. Trans youth are either models of cisnormative beauty, or they’re dead. Transmen are either models of cisnormative beauty, or they simply don’t exist”

The (Trans)cendental Tourist

It’s been a weird year for trans people.

Allow me to be more specific: It’s been a heated, daring, tumultuous, graphic, specularizing, aggressive, pointed,contentious, highlyfatal, and really, really complicated year for trans people.

Here are a few examples: Kristina Gomez Reinwald, Ty Underwood, Lamia Beard, and many othertranswomen of color have been brutally murdered at the hands of lovers, family members, and strangers.Meanwhile,Laverne Cox and Janet Mock have come to fame and exhibited incrediblefeats of grace, articulation, and poignancy under the gaze ofan eager media. Blake Brockington, Leelah Alcorn, Taylor Alesana, and many other transgender youth have committed suicide afterenduring endless bullying and systematic brutality. Meanwhile, Jazz Jennings became the new face of Clean & Clear and published a children’s picture book about her life, and teen trans couple Arin Andrews and KatieHill (best known for “Can You Even Believe They’re Trans?!” types of headlines) wrote and published individual books…

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Reason I Love Happy By Pharrell

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Cuz I’m happppy,! Clap along if you feel like a room with out a roof!! Cuzz I’m happpppyyyy! Happy by Pharrell is one of the most positive songs that has been played in mainstream media in…a really long time. Maybe that is because it is Pharrell. Who knows. But we are not here to discuss the awesomeness that is Pharrell. We are here to discuss how “Happy” cause us to be deviant to society.

The way society seems to work, dancing in public for no reason is something that is not supposed to happen. Think about it, how many times has “Drunk in Love” come on and you wanted to dance like a stripper but you had to hold it in because people were looking? Only drunk people and children are allowed to dance in public without people questioning their mental stability. (Interestingly enough, drunks and children are also the most honest individuals) Even then you still risk being put on vine without your knowledge.

“Happy” deconstructs this notion that dancing in public is a deviant practice.  There was a status that came across my news feed that said “If you listen to Happy by Pharrell and don’t do the Carlton at least once, you aren’t living your life right. Don’t fight the urge. Do. Not. Fight. It.” While I wouldn’t say that the Carlton is my choice of dance when this song comes on, this status has a lot of truth in it. When the song comes on, you can’t help but just start dancing. (Whatever dancing may mean to you). Not to mention last week, I was in the gas station when this song came on and a person who would be seen as a nerd or a geek (white, big ol’ glasses, unruly hair, his book bag looks like it has a midget in it, and high pants), was bopping his head like no one was watching. I stood next to him and started snapping my fingers and bopping my head as well. He looked over and said, “Great song, huh?” and proceeded to give me a high five. I don’t know this kid from a can of paint, but we were joined together momentarily by being deviant to a song. Not to mention, there is 24 hours worth of random people also being momentarily deviant !(Click the picture above to see the official video)

One of the many beautiful women in my life told me that she wishes that people wouldn’t be scared to let out the child within. As we get older, society puts our inner child in infinite timeout because what we do as children isn’t seen as adult-like and doesn’t conform to the labels of being a mature adult. “Happy” is the rebellious figment that momentarily pulls our inner child out and allows us to just be us. We need more forms of rebellious  figments to pull our inner child out of timeout. Like a game of manhunt, having a pillow fight after a date with your boo, or even just grabbing some chalk and drawing on the street. (It will rain eventually)

I support this movement of dancing in the public! I would love to see more people dancing to Pharrell, Skrillex Beyonce, Katy Perry and Tim McGraw if you “bout that life”. If the dance bug bites, don’t hold it back;don’t do it for the vine, do it for yourself…DANCE YOUR BOOTY OFF!

Let’s Tie Up Those ChucksAndTies

You Can Get With This Or That

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In one of my queer comedy sessions we talked about the concept of “choosing to be gay” Some say that it is  a choice, while others say that they were born this way *Turns on Lady Gaga*. Here are my thoughts on the choice thing.

We are socialized to see either the red pill or the blue pill, in the process forgetting that there are various shades of purples, violets and I think indigo fits in there somewhere. We CHOOSE to pick an identity that fits us the best. The identity can be gay, bi, straight, man, woman, pansexual, basketball player, chef, turkey eater, hardcore vegan or any of the other identities out there. The thing with us choosing to label ourselves as a single identity, creates this fear of acting on our other desires because we are confined to one identity.

A few examples of this concept. From a queer point of view, I know plenty of gay men who find transmen (Female-To-Male) attractive on a sexual level but refuse to engage in sexual relations because their identity is gay. (This topic will be addressed in a future post). I feel that by doing this, you could be potentially missing out on some of the best sex of your life. You never know, but you won’t find out either because you are stuck in your social identification. It seems as if the “gay” label says, “You are a gay man, therefore you must only have sex with people who have a penis. Anyone who does not have a penis is off limits.” I’m going to tell you straight up (no pun intended) you are limiting yourself and ultimately your heart (or orgasm organ) to one specific type of thing. The same thing goes for people who socially identify as a basketball player. A person who identifies as a basketball player would be seen as weird if someone found out that they play the violin. The basketball player is confined to doing only things that fits in the basketball player category (like being able to run fast) and is socialized to believe that they can’t . What about the person who self-identifies as a vegetarian but after a few drinks, cheeseburgers are her best friend.

All I am saying is that we, as humans, make the choice to identify ourselves, and in some cases it confines us to being only that and nothing in between. The in between though, has so many unexplored opportunities in it. Don’t limit yourself, especially since the sky’s the limit.

Let’s Tie Up Those ChucksAndTies

JazzJ…..JazmineJ….SameThing

My name is Jazmine Jordan. My name is also Jazz Jordan. Jazmine and Jazz are both me, but they’re not the same spirit.

Jazmine is the responsible one of the two. Society would say that Jazmine has the most woman like qualities. Maybe that is why Jazmine goes by the pronoun she. Maybe. She is good with money, living by the concept of opportunity cost. Jazmine is happy when I get over a bad relationship. Jazmine is controlled by logic and planning. “Ya’ll, I don’t think this is a good idea” Jazmine is Ties in ChucksAndTies.

Jazz on the other hand is the one that is responsible for the flipping off of ledges and not caring about the tomorrows. Jazz is kind of sad that I am put in situations that I had to get over a bad relationship. Jazz goes by he and him pronouns. He runs of emotions and spontaneity. “Come on yall, let’s do this!” Jazz is Chucks in ChucksAndTies.

But at the end of the day, Jazz and Jazmine are both me. Together, we are able to take care of children. We can feed and bathe a child but at the same time make learning the alphabet the best time of the day. We are able to make people smile while lending an ear and a shoulder to cry on. Jazmine pushes us through the last reps at the weight machine while Jazz provides the energy to do  the actual exercise part. Both need communication in order to stay sane, without it, I lose my mind. There are rare moments when I will just be either Jazz or Jazmine. The feminine qualities of Jazmine and the masculine qualities of Jazz make me who I am.

I am not just a she or a he but I am me. I am a combination of everything and nothings. I am Jazz. I am Jazmine. I am Me.

 

Let’s Tie Up Those ChucksAndTies