An Op-Ed to all the Black men who Voted for Trump

Trump made gains with Black voters in some states. Here’s why.

I tried to stay quiet…I promise I did. But I’m two glasses of wine in and there are too many Black men who need to hear this. So here the f**k we go…

To the Black men who voted for and support Donald Trump: For you, this is not wasted breath. To you, I write the following Op-Ed. 

Bro,

In these closing days of the 2020 presidential campaign, a remarkable and surprising measure of campaign attention is falling upon African American voters — specifically a small and typically overlooked segment: young Black men. Several recent polls have found that Trump actually has more support from Black men now than he did in 2016 — an estimated 17% compared to the previous 14%. (The Hill).

I have seen your posts, your comments, your memes. I have seen your support for this man. So rampant, so passionate, up and down my newsfeed, like a true Karen. But it’s not Karen. It’s you. My Black brotha, my fellow millennial. It’s YOU!

At first, I was too infuriated to listen, too pissed to try and understand your point of view. But, I’m ready now. For you, I’m ready to listen, to learn. And thus far, this is what I have gathered: 

You Don’t Like Kamala Harris – Or better yet, you don’t think she likes you, a Black man in America. And let’s be real according to her track record, you have good reason not to be a fan. Given her early departure from the Democratic Presidential ticket, her record, in some senses, escaped a thorough vetting. And even though she is now on track to be our next VP, we are still waiting for answers. And here come those Democrats, urging you to push aside your feelings on her record to VOTE! “Vote like your life depends on it!” a popular phrase that Kamala has coined. But as far as you’re concerned, you are! So let’s talk numbers. Let’s talk facts. FACT: During her time as San Francisco’s district attorney, the conviction rate jumped from 52% to 67%. FACT: From 2002–2005, during her tenure, Black people made up less than 8% of the city’s population but accounted for over 40% of its police arrests. FACT: While she was attorney general for the state, her office oversaw over 1,900 marijuana convictions— convicting people on marijuana charges at a higher rate than under her predecessor. FACT: One of the biggest criticism of then-Attorney General Harris was in 2011, when she  openly defied U.S. Supreme Court orders to reduce overcrowding in California prisons and argued against expanding an early parole program in court. FACT: For many of these reasons, she was not my Democratic nominee either homie! I wanted Buttigieg, but ya’ll ain’t ready for all that! LOL! But seriously bro, I hear you. I do. But let me ask you this: Why is it that time and time again white men have been able to sit behind the Resolute Desk in the Oval Office for more egregious offenses in their past? Why is it that they can be forgiven for their past transgressions with an apology? An apology, that in most cases, wasn’t even asked for?! Most importantly, why is it that when these things happen, they are so quickly dismissed as just politics? Why is it just politics for him, but not for her? 

I’ll tell you why. It’s because the most disrespected, unprotected, neglected person in America is the Black woman (MalcomX).

You think Trump’s got your back on criminal justice reform? The man who is all about being “tough on crime” and “the death penalty” ? And sure bro, it’s played out, but for good reason…his role in “The Central Park Five,” sends chills down my spine every time I read about it. And please! Take a look at his First Step Act. Which rather than reforming the system itself, mostly involves backend reforms that affect those who are already incarcerated. It does not address frontend solutions to the issues that funnel people of color (YOU AND ME) into the justice system in the first place. Issues such as over-policing, bail reform, racial profiling, mandatory minimums, all of which are left unaddressed. And don’t get me started on Mike Pence and House Bill 1006! Which he only agreed to sign after lawmakers made changes to make the bill tougher on offenders convicted of drug crimes. Forcing them to serve 75% of their time opposed to the original 50%. So now Black residents in 23 counties in Indiana are three and a half times more likely than white residents to be arrested for marijuana possession, despite having similar marijuana usage rates. FACTS. 

So if you truly think that Trump and Pence are the ones to lead us toward real criminal justice reform — let alone govern for the next 4 years with us in mind, you got it all the way twisted bro… (Level – Why Black Men Don’t Like Kamala Harris — And How It Can Stop). 

To be continued… 

BYE- BYE TRIBE.

“TRIBE” – A word that I know I used very frequently when referring to my Fit4Mom mom-friends. But recently, I got called out on a post for using the term “tribe”! And the mama who called me out did so in the most respectful and sincere way, that I was able to put my pride aside and truly HEAR what she had to say and to LEARN. And after doing some more research on my own, I wanted to pass on this knowledge in efforts to eradicate this word all together. The following comes from my favorite teaching magazine, Teaching Tolerance.  

“Tribe” promotes a myth of primitive African timelessness. Under U.S. law, “tribe” is a bureaucratic term. But away from the law, Native Americans often prefer the words “nation” or “people” over “tribe.” When Africans learn English, they are often taught that “tribe” is the term that English-speakers will recognize. In English, writers often refer to the Zulu tribe, whereas in Zulu the word for the Zulu as a group is isizwe, meaning “nation” or “people.”  When we see that the same term is applied indiscriminately to Native American groups and African groups, the problem of primitive savagery as the implied common denominator only becomes more pronounced. The idea of tribe we have today cannot escape these roots. – The Trouble with Tribe” by Chris Lowe.

I recently found the most awesome blog post from Gemma Regalado, “Stop using Tribe in your Marketing,” in which she states the following: 

I am addressing white people in business in particular: stop using the term “tribe” to mean your fucking email list. What you think you’re using it for: A cute buzzword for a close-knit community of like-minded people. But it doesn’t mean that. It’s a term to describe a familial, cultural, and historical group who often live close together….So how is it easy for us as white people to take a word that we know has racial connotations and make it about us and our marketing? When we use this term, we are effectively profiting from cultural appropriation. It’s your fucking email list, not The Maasai. This is white privilege in action. Stop using this term.

TERMS YOU CAN USE INSTEAD? TRY:

Society. Circle. Squad. Kindreds. Crew. Pack. Team. Community. Club.

So, there you have it friends! Some food for thought! And if you want some further reading, please see my list down below.

FURTHER READING

Using “Tribe” and “Tribalism: to Misunderstand African Societies – David Wiley 2013

Is using the word ‘tribe’ or ‘spirit animal’ offensive to Native Americans? – Curated by Dr. Kiona, 2018

Why you might want to rethink using the word ‘tribe’ for your business community – Eli Trier, 2019

The Trouble With Tribe – Chris Lowe, 2001

Stop Using Tribe in your Marketing – Gemma Regalado, 2020

10 Must Haves for a Family Road Trip!

Hey guys! Here is my latest vlog! 10 of my faves and must haves for a family road trip!

Check out the links below on where to get everything!

10 Must Haves for a Family Road Trip!

Links:

1. Travel Tray – Modfamily Travel Tray for Kids-Lap Desk Organizes Snacks and Activities for Car, Airplane-Compatible with Any Car Seat/4-Sided Sturdy Walls, 2 Large Storage Pockets, Wear As Messenger Bag Or Backpack https://www.amazon.com/dp/B071FY5Q2X/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_WcNhFbHM4WETY

(Bonus) Tegu blocks – Tegu 8 Piece Pocket Pouch Magnetic Wooden Building Block Set Toy Blossom (Girl-Boy Educational STEM Gift For Ages 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6+ Years Old) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01N39OSCC/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_feNhFbFSX2P8

2. Hydroflasks – https://www.hydroflask.com/12-oz-kids-wide-mouth

3. Jetkids by Stokke Bedbox – https://jet-kids.com/shop/product/jetkids-bedbox/View

4. Master Classic – https://www.worldmarket.com/product/view+master+classic.do?sortby=ourPicks&from=Search

5. Crew backpack – https://jet-kids.com/shop/product/crew-backpack/

6. Bentgo Box – https://bentgo.com/products/bentgo-kids?variant=898776159

7. Window shade – Car Side Window Sunshades – 2 Pack. Universal Roller Blind to Protect Baby, Kids, Pets and Passengers in the Back Seat from Harmful UV Rays and Heat. For a Cooler Car. Easy to Install. By Barucci https://www.amazon.com/dp/B074S9TL18/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_hnNhFb64B0Q2V

8. Travel potty – 3-in-1 Go Potty for Travel, Portable Folding Compact Toilet Seat,Potty Training Toilet Chairs for Toddler Boys & Girls by BlueSnail (blue) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07XWXJMH2/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_boNhFb2N3Y209

9. Sleep Headband – Accmor 2 Pcs Baby Carseat Head Support, Head Band Strap Headrest, Stroller Car Seat Sleeping Head Support for Toddler Child Children Kids Infant(Blue) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B075R3SRJ8/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_-oNhFbF02X1BY

10. Kid Friendly Headphones – Minnie Mouse Headphones for Kids with Built in Volume Limiting Feature for Kid Friendly Safe Listening https://www.amazon.com/dp/B006XA7JY6/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_OpNhFbHNTB1G2

The 10 Must Have Toys/Activities for your playroom!

Hey guys! Here is my latest vlog! 
Below are the links to all the Toys/Activities! Enjoy!

1. Puzzles! The World of Eric Carle Alphabet Floor Puzzle https://www.amazon.com/…/B00CG4148A/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_7K…) Crocodile Creek 4076-4 Busy Airport Observational Jigsaw Floor Puzzle (36 Pieces), 27″ x 20″, Blue/Green/Orange/Red/Pink https://www.amazon.com/…/B07BSXWWZ1/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_KL…
2. Magnitiles https://www.lakeshorelearning.com/…/magna-tilessup-…/p/DG546
3. Find it Games – Kids Version – The Original Hidden Object Search Adventure https://www.amazon.com/…/B0006HB9G6/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_0M…
4. Felt Board – https://www.discountschoolsupply.com/…/felt-flanne…/p/40947… Books for Felt Board- https://www.lakeshorelearning.com/…/lakeshore-stor…/p/LA955X
5. Bristle Builders – https://www.lakeshorelearning.com/…/toddler-bristle…/p/LA591
6. Tegu Magnetic Wooden Block Set, Tints https://www.amazon.com/…/B00GJC4HC0/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_mT…
7. Straw Constructor STEM Building Toys 300 pcs-Colorful Interlocking Plastic Enginnering Toys- Fun- Educational- Safe for Kids- Develops Motor Skills-Construction Blocks- Best Gift for Boys and Girls … https://www.amazon.com/…/B01DLKCCBU/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_1T…
8. Plasma Car – The Original PlasmaCar by PlaSmart – Blue – Ride On Toy, Ages 3 yrs and Up, No batteries, gears, or pedals, Twist, Turn, Wiggle for endless fun https://www.amazon.com/…/B000GUGY1S/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_rW…
9. Moonsand (Kinetic Sensory Sand) https://www.lakeshorelearning.com/…/kinetic-sensory…/p/SE201
10. Snap N’ Glow Race Tracks https://www.amazon.com/…/B075XSXV4N/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_SW…

The greatest advice I can ever give my daughter is “to be persistent…”

And here is why …

As a woman, I’ve learned that when searching for a soulmate, there will be heartaches and disappointments along the way, so much so, that I felt like giving up on love all together, (or settling for what felt close enough)…but in the depths of my despair I dreamt of what could be, and I persisted…

And when the time came for my womb to be filled with the gift of life once more, we had a pregnancy that never lead to labor and delivery, in these moments of deep sorrow and sadness, still, I persisted…

And after becoming a wife and a mother, I felt that I had a Master Degree that was just collecting dust, because since I don’t “need” to work, how selfish would that be of me to still continue to chase my career goals & ambitions? But even still, in the midst of these feelings of guilt and uncertainty, I persisted…

Because of persistence, I gave love another chance and met the love of my life. And for the first time ever, I felt like an equal, I felt like he was bringing out the best in me just as much as I did for him. For the first time, love wasn’t exhausting, it was exhilarating. I felt humbled to be his and grateful for all my past heartaches and disappointments, for it all lead me to him.  

Because of persistence, I slowed down and truly gave my body the time and attention it needed to heal, we tried again and became pregnant. And from that, came the most perfect, independent, happy and confident baby girl I’ve ever known… the little lady who completed our family…our rainbow baby…

Because of persistence, I took a leap of faith, and applied for a dream job, and got it…

So, I say to my daughter, persist baby girl, for persistence conquers all things…

Confessions of a Full-Time Working Mom

Me as my best self…

This is the boss lady I want to feel like everyday, all day. She is beaming with confidence, more organized than Marie Kondo, always on time (if not 5 mins early), and she’s a cool, calm and collected leader like Barack Obama back in 09! Lol! But most importantly, she’s a mother who knows how to leave work at work and how to be truly present when she’s home with her family (I’m talking personal and work phone off, emails on do not disturb!) … I love this woman!!! I obsess over her sometimes because all I really want is to be like her every day, all day!! Because in all reality, I only see glimpses, bits and pieces of her through out my work week…I’ve learned fairly quickly (and harshly) that it’s not easy to be like her…But, you know what? I still try! And I accept that despite trying my best, sometimes “my best” is missed deadlines, or running 5 minutes late for an important meeting, or leaving a desk full of work because I need to race across town to get a sick baby. I accept that sometimes, even after hours of work, “my best” is simply adding even more items to a never ending, ridiculously ambitious “To Do List.” Why? Because this is the real life of a working mother, or at least this is my version of it. I strive for my best self, but sometimes, I fall short…But still, I’ll continue to keep this image at the forefront of my mind, even if I can only be like her a few moments a day, or a few times a week. This wifemomboss will take that as a win and keep on pushing to do better! This is me as my best self, she is who I strive to be, she is my #goals ….