Halloween Controversy

Halloween is one of the most controversy holidays. Some people say it’s the devil’s day and those who celebrate Halloween are celebrating him and showing him reconization. It’s understandable why those people associate Halloween with the devil, because this holiday obviously represents evil.

Then there is the group of people who think Halloween is a chance for kids and adults to be someone else for a day. It allows kids to have fun and go Trick or Treating. Then there’s the people who believe only irresponsible parents allow their children go Trick or Treating. ‘You tell your kids not to beg or take anything from strangers 364 days a year, but now it’s okay?’

What are your opinions? Do you allow your children to enjoy this holiday? Did you enjoy this Holiday as an child? If you don’t celebrate Halloween, is there something else you allow your children to partake in? But if so, isn’t that still showing reconization to Halloween and all it represents?

Kansas Plane Crash Leaves At Least 4 Dead

Photo Courtsey: Eyewitness News

Photo Courtsey: Eyewitness News

A  plane lost power after takeoff and crashed into a building on Thursday, while attempting to go to an airport in Kansas. The pilot was the only in individual on plan and is said to be okay, but at least for people have that was inside the building has died and five others were injured. There are still an additional four people who are unaccounted for, but Wichita Fire Marshal Brad Crisp promised that they’ll continue once they’re positive the building is safe for them to reenter.

Rumors & Ebola

I Am Not My Hair?

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Nappy, short, long, curly, bald, wavy, natural; these are some of the many words people use to describe their hair. Remember back when India Arie said “I Am Not Hair?” It seems as if over time, that quote has proven to be false. Most people whether they’re Black, White, Asian or Hispanic, male or female values their hair. It’s a way of expressing themselves, it’s a form of art. Despite what India Arie said about eight years ago, they are their hair.

“My hair matters and I love my hair. I believe hair matters to everyone; mainly women. I believe to some of us, hair is a contributor to self-definition, but to others, hair is a contributor to society’s acceptance of women. Sadly, some women add on extensions etc., because of the absence of acceptance of their type of hair,” this is what Brikayla Hardy had regarding her opinion on hair. She believes natural hair on certain women represents self-love. “Some Native American and African American women were oppressed because of our hair. I believe natural styles for some minority women represents rebellion and self-love.” India Arie would most likely agree with Hardy. To refresh some memories in her song she also said; “Good hair means curls and waves. Bad hair means you look like a slave. At the turn of the century it’s time for us to redefine who we be. You can shave it off like a South African beauty or get in on lock like Bob Marley. You can rock it straight like Oprah Winfrey. If it’s not what’s on your head it’s what’s underneath and say hey…” It should be true what India Arie is saying, but the truth of the matter is to live up to a certain standard in society, your hair plays a huge role. In the black community, women often take their hair to the extreme by adding various colors and unique styles.

In more recent years it isn’t rare to see a woman using her hair as an art canvas and using it as a way of expressing herself. Is this their prerogative? Yes. Will she be judged for that? Yes. Joselyn Ellington knows the workforce is judgmental, so she choose her hairstyles carefully. “I think hair matters a lot, especially in the work force. I didn’t take a risk wearing kinky twists when I first began my job (Massage Envy) because I did not want people to think I was ghetto.” In other words, a woman with bright hair colors and unique and/or will hairstyles won’t last in the workforce. No one wants someone like that representing their company, even if their hair is a form of art. Ms. Ellington agree; “In the work place, and in a professional setting I think big colorful weaves get you treated with less respect. I would not hire a lawyer with big, colorful weaves, it’s just not professional.” This can go for any race; more recently women of several different ethnicities wear weaves and bright colors in their hair. No one can say for sure if these women are expressing themselves or if their mocking someone whom they admire hairstyle. Despite their reasons for wearing these styles, society will still most likely judge them.

To some people like Sareena Mitchell, hair is just another stereotypical where people can judge one another. “People judge, and this whole ‘I’m natural so I’m better than you,’ thing is annoying. I use to be natural and I changed my mind, as I’m entitled to do so, but people act like we have to pick I can be natural one day relaxed the next.” Mitchell is correct, natural hairstyles became popular again a few years ago and it’s very common on college campuses. There is no doubt that women with natural hairstyles are beautiful and many of them use that as a way of embracing their culture and ancestors. That does not give them a reason to judge or look down upon those women who choose to get perms, sew-ins, braids or any other hairstyle involving weave. Hardy, who is natural and expressed how much she loves her natural hair, still choose to wear weave. “I love my natural hair, but my plaits are convenient because straightening my baby takes up a lot of time, I workout, and I’m always on the go.”

Both Hardy and Mitchell believes hair is just something else people get stereotypically judged on. Mitchell says “I think hair in the black community has always been a big thing natural vs relaxed is almost like; ‘light skin dark skin’ just another way to oppress and separate us as a community we always want to pick sides.” As far as Hardy and feelings toward hair, well let’s just say she doesn’t judge women with weave, but chances of seeing her with extensions are slim to none. “My job is not to judge other people, but I have my own limitations of extensions in reference to my personal opinion. I believe hair can be art! I’ve seen it, and to each their own, you know? My hair (plaits or natural curly afro) are a part of who I am, and I wouldn’t want another coarse of hair ever.”

A Piece of History: What Happened to our Tunes?

Photo Courtesy: 365 Voice

Photo Courtesy: 365 Voice

“Lift every voice and sing till earth and heaven ring, ring with the harmonies of liberty.” These words were written by James W. Johnson in the early 1900s as poem and were later made into a song when Johnsons’ brother added music to the poem. This song quickly became known as “The Negro National Anthem.”

Lyrics and music once meant something in our community and had a significant meaning to it. But, that was a long time ago…before we met artist like Khia, Lil Wayne, Beyoncé, etc.

During the 17th century, when blacks were slaves and unable to get an education, they relied on doing everything orally. They would make-up folktales/songs to make the time go by, and these were passed down from generation to generation. They [folktales] were very popular within the African-American community. These songs would be about life, religion, becoming free etc. But, our music has changed dramatically since that time. Now, whenever I turn my radio on, the lyrics I hear are about sex, disrespect to women, curse words, and several other things that would cause our ancestors to roll over in their graves. Several people in our communities don’t know anything about the genre of music that was once called “Negro Spirituals.”

Negro Spirituals were religious songs sung by slaves. But, when exactly did music stop being about life and start being about sex?

“Rhythm and Blues” (R&B) originated in the 1940’s. There were bands such as Tympany Five and Wynonie Harris; their lyrics were backed up with different instruments: trumpet, tenor saxophone, piano, bass, etc. Some of their popular songs were “Beans & Cornbread”, which isn’t about food, but the food identifies “friends”. Saying that friends are like a good meal – they go hand in hand. Harris recorded a song, “Good Rocking Tonight” (remake), which was about having a good time with a loved one and enjoying the rhythm and blues. These songs still had a connection with Negro Spirituals.