Life As A Black Baltimorean After The 2015 Baltimore Riots

Waking up on April 28, 2015 was the most surreal feeling I’ve experienced in my 23 years of living. To open up my eyes at the crack of dawn after tossing and turning caused by the Baltimore riots happening blocks away from where I laid my head that night, how could anyone feel any other way?

Two days prior to probably one of the most shocking riots to ever happen in history, I spent 7 hours writing about my frustrations towards the riots in Downtown Baltimore. In opinion essay on Doc’s Castle Media, “The ‘Real’ Revolution Will Not Be Televised. #ILoveBaltimore,” I speak from an emotional standpoint on the ways I believe Blacks should move forward after the major breakthrough of riots on Saturday, April 25th. I’d hope it’d be a message to calm people down from seeking to destroy more of our city as my blog reached over its average viewership.

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My words may have reach quite a bit of individuals but as this week started, I see that my efforts may have not made much of an impact. Monday morning at Mondawmin Mall in West Baltimore, only 5 minutes away from my job, was rioted by a huge group of young people immediately when dismissed from school and lasted for hours that day.

Rioting eventually turned into looting and destroying of historical neighborhoods. People who once had jobs along North Avenue and Mondawmin Mall are now without employment, and as riots made it across East Baltimore later that night, near Monument Street, again around the corner from where I stayed that evening, a senior center was burned down, leaving older people who were anticipating to move into a new home suddenly without one. To top it off, our mayor grounded the entire city. So we have to be in our homes by our 10 o’clock curfew.

Baltimore is a mess. The city I’ve known all my life is scorned from which the world believes is because of police brutality against 25 year old African American man Freddie Gray. But our story is deeper than the surface. It is now that we use everyone’s cameras as a tool to let you in on the scoop.

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Words cannot express how I feel about what happened in my city. I’m not a fan of the media like I once was before, especially as I’ve watched events that day come to pass. There’s a media circus in my backyard reporting from Penn-North subway station, now internationally famous for our CVS that burned down on its corner.

Come on, now! Just the other day I bought a chocolate Snickers bar out of there. I’ll never be able to do that again.

We’re never getting some of those shops back. It’s hard to have hope for the restoration of CVS or any of those other buildings due to the the reputation of reconstruction in Baltimore. We’ve waited YEARS for our government to rebuild the hundreds of vacant buildings and shops damaged from the Martin Luther King Jr. riots in 1968. The only reconstruction we’ve ever seen has been to our pothole infested streets, and I swear, we can’t improve the pavement on Charles Street anymore than it is.

Geeze! Does all our tax money go to that street?!

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In the minds and hearts of many people here, it’s second nature for citizens to want to walk outside to see what’s happening for themselves, rather than to watch the news nowadays. The world’s painted picture on television is far from what we’re experiencing. A trust barrier is broken for many who relied on national news stations to give us the 4-1-1 on events occurring during the week. So the local news and social media is our only best friend during this time.

The media from outside of Baltimore lacks an understand of the type of people who live in Baltimore and the lifestyle that we see on a day to day basis. It’s like the media’s way of looking at us is similar to viewing through a microscope. They’re looking to find where all these horrid problems and rioting behavior could be stimming from. But the people who experience the lifestyle of living in here will always have a better understanding and a better way of explaining what’s going on.

Poverty is one of the hardest struggles a person can try to shake in Baltimore City. With a phrase like “The struggle is real,” which is often recited in Baltimore’s Black communities, it models the hard knock situations we see as being seriously rough to live through. When we say this phrase, almost everyday nonchalantly, we as black Baltimoreans adopt an “It is what it is” attitude, learning to also desensitize and quiet ourselves from what’s really happening. Well, Baltimore’s tired of being quiet now.

People who are publicly judging my city worldwide are failing to understand. Even I feel uneasy each time I come into the realization of what’s happening to us sometimes. Tuesday evening, I walked passed a reporter from Russia and another from London. Like whaaa?! These people don’t even know that just 2 weeks ago I was frustrated from fighting to be heard because of Baltimore’s crab in a barrel reputation.

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Our youth isn’t afraid to make a change. I think of how some of those kids who were rioting were doing so to scream out they were fed up. Some of those kids had no home before they rioted. Some of them go to school everyday to get away from their daily worries of not having something to eat once they leave school. Some of them were angered because they were stranded without transportation to get home due to the police shutting down the bus lines and subways before school let out. (But that’s another mystery in itself I won’t get into.) And I admit, some of them were just following the crowd. But to see our kids act this way, hurts the most because they are innocent. They’re the one’s we’re trying to protect from “the struggle.” But we can’t.

Baltimore needs change and everyone knows now. I’m so proud of us. We made a stand for so many things this week. We’re fighting police brutality, racial profiling & systematic racism, bad publicity and corrupted governmental policies not only for us, but for our entire country, we’re making a statement. My feet are suffering from it and I don’t mind it all. I have a bigger hope for my city, though I may doubt our government’s follow-up as an African American woman who’s part of the working force striving for success and a better Baltimore. But I’m glad to have seen a better side, finally! I can’t wait to see what the future holds.

Rest In Peace, Freddie Gray. You’re gone, but you are not forgotten. Your name will be in history books along with our city. Change will surely come for us and our country.

#OpinionEssay: The “Real” Revolution Will Not Be Televised. #ILoveBaltimore

Special Note: This post will be my least uniformed blog post due to the built up emotions from recent events caused by the death of Baltimore black man, Freddie Gray. It’s my duty as a Baltimore writer to talk about this the way mainstream media does not want us to. PLEASE KNOW THIS FIRST WHILE YOU READ THIS: I AM NOT A JOURNALIST, now. I AM WRITING AS A BLACK WOMAN FROM THE CITY OF BALTIMORE!

Words pour onto paper as I’ve become a part of American history today while I write about what my eyes have witness on April 25, 2015, a day which I thought I would never see my city be the forefront of America for something so severe and extremely civil. I thought it was a part of mankind’s inhumane struggle that Black people conquered, or at least scratched the surface of overcoming. But we haven’t and it’s obvious to the world now.

America is governed by a system corrupt that uses the very people who help build this very nation as a stepping stool to bringing the world back to square one by embarrassing my whole race through provoking us to move; by tormenting Blacks unfairly.

As a Black woman, myself, and a blogger who lives in Baltimore, it is my duty to talk about the problems my city faces in the eyes of millions, nationally and internationally, who are watching my town react to police brutality towards yet another African-American male, who met his end in the most unfortunate and unfair manner society could ever grant, death by the very people meant to protect him.

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Who is Freddie Gray?

If you don’t know by now, get the fuck off my blog. You don’t care enough. This post isn’t for those who rather sit in their ignorance while we are at war. This post isn’t for the people seeking to view how “ratchet” and “routy” my city is to confirm our “home of The Wire” reputation. This post is not for people who go on major media outlets social media pages to read and participate in the racist comments. This post is to wake you the fuck up! This post is meant to make you realize from the eyes of a Baltimore writer that something really messed up is going on. So open your eyes.

Baltimore, what are we doing? No, let me redirect my concerns to the correct group of individuals… America, what are we doing? No, no, no. WORLD, what the fuck is going on?!

These last two years of my life has been about watching a massacre of black men, AND black women, being slaughtered by a system who prays on a culture who isn’t united and hasn’t been since we were active in the 1960s US Civil rights movement. The way that I feel about it, I have no words for what’s going on in my heart. I have no words for how I see my country being portrayed. I have no words for how my race is being treated. I only feel a fire burning within me from how close to home Freddie Gray’s death has hit thousands and thousands of hearts around this country, and I’m in awe because I would have never thought something this relentless happening in front of billions of people watching is happening in my very own backyard.

I CANNOT BELIEVE MY EYES! This shit happens everywhere else, not in my home.

As each month unfolds since the death of Trayvon Martin, I started to view my country as the ultimate hypocrite and bully. I use to watch and read about the United States in international affairs while growing up, thinking how phoney we must be to walk into other countries, like Liberia and South Africa, trying to assist with their racial issues when in neighborhoods where I live didn’t match up to the persona America tries to paint for the world to see. It is here, the media hides what’s really happening between blacks and whites, until now. Why? Our country’s own racism was hidden and blocked from mainstream media and majority of this country’s citizen for so long, so we could believe we were past oppression; to make us feel like we could give a helping hand to other cultures around the world. America needed us on the same page so we could be viewed by countries around us as “land of the free” and “home of the brave.”

Black people have fallen by the arms of police officers since forever ago, and white people, and even black people, still want to yell out one of the most irrelevant and most repeated statements recited in recent years as if it’s an excuse for why we shouldn’t make a difference in our law enforcers policies. “Blacks kill blacks all the time.” WE KNOW THIS! WTF DOES THAT HAVE TO DO WITH POLICE KILLING US TOO!?

Black people I need you to listen! I need you to open your eyes because this is what’s real.

Do you know we are being manipulated by national news? Of all things to capture and broadcast to the world, they choose the most uncalled for and offensive images to represent our race at such a delicate moment in our history because they know it will make our uneducated youth move and take an opportunity like protesting as an excuse to “show out” and express their anger, when they don’t even know what to be angry about. Do you know we are being made to have opinions that we’re unsure of because the media knows this will make us angry and ready for a revolution? And why is it that our own news stations WJZ and WBAL are taking a different approach in reporting about Freddie Gray than stations like CNN and the Huffington Post? Nothing’s making sense. This isn’t adding up.

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Do you realize the media’s power, now? LISTEN!

Though we are made to believe the media is not bias, people of Baltimore and black people around the world, we do not have control of the media’s motivation to stay unbiased. Even I am being bias now (and I encourage you to continue to have your own opinions during this time. All I ask is that you realize and watch everything going on)! The media is what’s making police brutality the fuel of our anger ; it’s turning it into something bigger than expected. The media, which is funded by BIG corporations who bank on black people’s money, are making my culture out to be unruly savages and it does not sit well with me. It makes me angry. It’s what made me step up and write how I feel today. Black people I don’t blame you at all. We have a right to be mad, but it is unwise to be so turbulent.

To me, this is beyond race. Racism is being used as a tool to push a bigger motive because it’s the only way to get large bodies of people to move. We have to be wiser. We have to be smarter in our decisions because 10 years ago, we lived in a better peace. But with the media suddenly pushing stories about police brutality incorrectly more often, seems every couple of weeks to days, it’s also corporations that are funding the media’s weapon to wither our peace away and box us in for something we don’t fully understand yet.

So what is real? What is true? We can’t rely on our reporters to be honest and staying away from these stereotypes we’re fighting about.

To all the kids who are reading this, you must choose now to learn your history. You need not act before you are educated. Do you see how dangerous it is to go through this? This entire ordeal isn’t transparent enough, and this anger escalating within us is not good, especially coming from a group like us who can’t get past light skin and dark skin.

Peace, love, joy. Peace, love, joy, everyone.

Why is it that America decides to use my backyard as a war zone this week? America decides to take the city that I’ve spent the last 3 years trying to help put on the map, positively, as a target and guinea pig for a bigger agenda. Can you image how I feel right now? For someone who spends all her spare time trying to help the city become angry with her fellow Baltimoreans. They don’t see the bigger picture, and rather dig a bigger hole for us to climb out of? I’m so disappointed and proud at the same time. This is why I have no words. I’m so all over the place.

I doubt this will be my last post on this. I’ve been awakened.

I ask that anyone who lives outside of my city to turn to the World Wide Web for real accounts of what my city is doing in honor of Freddie Gray and not CNN. I ask you to read about what we are really going through from us. I ask that you empathize for us. I ask that you pray.

#PrayForBaltimore #PrayForMyCity

Scornful men bring a city into a snare: but wise men turn away wrath. -Proverbs 28:9

Let us be wise men. To Be Continued…

Did you participate in the Baltimore Protests? Read “The Current Generation Doesn’t Take Part In Civil Rights Movements Because…” on Doc’s Castle Media.

What Happened To Being All About Your Family On The Holidays?

Now that the holidays are over, I can finally ask this question? Is it just me or does the holidays suck now?! Haha

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Christmas feels a little odd since I’ve gotten older. I don’t know if it’s because as a child I wasn’t consciously aware of everything going on around me or if it’s really changing.  I no longer get that merry feeling I once did as a child when the season approaches. This Christmas eve, I literally asked myself, “Am I suppose to feel odd about Christmas, especially the day before on Christmas Eve?”

Everything I do is different from when I use to feel the Christmas spirit. Everything I see is the same, but the feeling behind what I know as “christmassy” is different. Even as I speak to my friends, it feels like another average day. Only thing that’s different is the fact everyone’s giving people stuff, and it doesn’t feel like people want to do it. Christmas feels like a season people must participate in because we’ve been doing it for years. That’s not cool.

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The way I remember this holiday growing up is with pure tenderness, happiness, and love. My family spent every Christmas together. I woke up way before dawn Christmas day, excited to open presents from all the people I loved, with the people I loved, and every evening I saw more people I loved during our traditional Christmas dinner.

This Christmas was weird. I mean, I asked my mom and sister would we be having Christmas dinner this year, and nobody knew. I asked two days ahead of time, too. They couldn’t tell me. That’s was odd and unusual because we usually know at least that. So I assumed I wasn’t the only person feeling odd.

I even had to work Christmas day. That’s nothing new but it puts the icing on the cake when you realize your family’s doing things differently this year.

I came across an article while searching the web from blog site, On Being.org titled “Why I Don’t Do Christmas” by Krista Tippett. I found it while looking for people who might have similar thoughts about the holidays as I. Krista hits it right on the nose with her explanation for why she doesn’t like Christmas anymore.

Krista isn’t participating in the Christmas as we know it for many of reasons this year. To her, the holiday has become senseless. It’s all about money and reward. People are more selfish with thoughts of what they think they deserves during the season and not seeking solely to make someone happy. Days like Black Friday and Cyber Monday represents corporate businesses way of turning Christmas into an economic relief. The ole mighty dollar has become the country’s savior.

Christmas doesn’t seem so sweet and I believe it’s because the meaning is withering away from us. Krista isn’t far from figuring it out for her family.

What Christmas Means To Me

When I think of Christmas, I think of happiness, togetherness, genuine generosity, and love. These are all things I rarely see on a daily basis. That’s why Christmas means more to me than any other holiday. But if the day is suddenly losing its meaning, what’s the point?! Our point should be to celebrate the birth of the world’s savior, but without these principles it becomes really hard to create a better world to live in and its purpose slowly disappears.

As a record for myself and to the many of you who care about Christmas too, I wanted to remind everyone what each principle stands for during this season and why they’re important.

Happiness means contentment and joy. It’s contagious. Someone who is always happy can spark curiosity in someone who’s seeking to be happy. A happy person has to ability to uplift any atmosphere. In the world today, we’re lacking that high-spirited person who’ll promote hope, wonder, and change. Instead, the world rather enforce the harsh truth plainly. Hopefulness should embark in our children’s future but with all this “reality” going on, I fear that if I ask a child about what they’d picture life to be in five years, they’d take what they’d picture on television as a depiction of what will happen for them.

That’s really depressing to hear because I see a lot of ignore ish on TV. *cough cough” (Love & Hip-Hop, Bad Girls Club, and any of the Housewives of such and such).

Ask a child what they’re looking forward to for Christmas, and they’ll probably tell you a new cell phone or tablet. They’re not seeking to spent it with the people they love. The first thing they’re thinking about is their gifts. It’s more common to hear their mom or dad has to work Christmas day, too. Forget about togetherness. They need to chase the olé mighty dollars because they spent their last trying to show their love through buying materialistic things to keep their kids happy.

Togetherness induces warm affection and tenderness. It makes a person feel needed and wanted. Without togetherness on Christmas, the holiday seems much colder and lonely. That also is depressing.

As far as genuine generosity goes, I rarely see it at all. Holidays have turned into a person’s duty. People don’t seem like they’re doing things because they truly want to anymore. It’s like they partake in the festivities because it’s a habit or reward. It’s instinct to do something because someone else will be doing it, too. People buy gifts because others are buying gifts for them. People seek for self first and the holidays are far from being about yourself.

All these notions are connected and each sparks off the other. They all are connected to the final principle, love. The more people become selfish, the less we feel loved. Love is sacrifice. Love is patience. Love is kindness. Love is generous. Love is tenderness and happiness. It’s putting someone before yourself. It’s showing what your soul looks like. So without all these principles we lack a soul, compassion, and all things that are important in making Christmas really feel like the Jesus’ Birthday.

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How can we bring love back?

We have to step away from our selfish needs first and choose to think about others. It can be as small as having a 15 minute conversation with someone we love. Those 15 minutes can be the beginning of sharing togetherness, which could possible spark of working to improve other principles. It starts small then gradually expands into something greater and better. We can work on it together and turn any holiday into a day that’s meant to show pure, genuine love.

Who’s down to do that?

How do you feel about the holidays? Do you think people care enough about the holidays to try to change it for the better? Leave your comments below.

Do you want to change people’s outlook on Baltimore’s Hip-Hop Scene? Make sure you read “#NewBaltimore or #OldBaltimore. We’re All Crabs” on Doc’s Castle Media.

#NewBaltimore Or #OldBaltimore? We’re All Crabs!

It’s official. I’m convinced that the entire Baltimore hip-hop scene is confused about what creating a “New Baltimore” should be about.

This post was originally meant to be a recap of #NewBaltimore2, an artist showcase event that took place last Saturday in Baltimore. But that obviously changed as the event, itself, changed unexpectedly. The event was scheduled to be from 7:30 pm to 3:00 am, but ended up shutting down approximately around 12:15 am, leaving some music fans disappointed that they didn’t see who they were anticipating to watch perform that evening. BUT that’s not what I want to highlight in this blog. I want to talk about the event’s mission and if it was truly met this weekend.

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This was the second #NewBaltimore event. The first event was held around the same time last year and sponsored by the same people, DaCornerStore. I attended both events and have stated my opinion for both via social media. I will NOT be discussing how I’ve been scolded for my opinion on both events. I will say that people’s decision to attack me further pushes me to write why I believe we’re all still crabs looking for an exit from the rusted old barrel.

But as this topic of New Baltimore vs. Old Baltimore starts buzzing in the ears of people here, I want to emphasize my stance on the topic as a supporter of all art that comes from my fellow Baltimoreans. I attend all art events big or small; exclusive to the public or open to the public. I do not look to discriminate. I’m simply there to practice my art like many others who go to these artsy shows. I support everyone because I’m tired of this city’s talent being continuously overlooked. We deserve some recognition!

First, I want to say how proud I am of the turnout for #NewBaltimore2. There had to be around 200 people who showed up to support good music. I was even more proud to hear people in the crowd singing the lyrics to some of these artists music. It was all love and there was a lot of it. That’s something different from what I usually see while attending shows. I applaud the promoters for that.

So what’s circulating about this “New Baltimore,” (& I’m going off of what I’ve heard from talking to other artists on Twitter and Facebook) #NewBaltimore is here to provide a platform for the new, younger generation of artists, in Baltimore, as opposed to the older generations or vets in the city’s scene, who are said to have more chances and opportunities for their music be heard.

All of Sunday, I watched a few of the younger artists in Baltimore expressed their concerns, openly over Facebook, about how they’re not having the opportunity to “shine” alongside veteran artists due to a lack of support from those who throw, plan, and promote hip-hop events. Some say promoters are bias when choosing who to include in showcases and its unfair that they aren’t getting support similar to the veterans. But I say, this shouldn’t be a thought in anyone’s mind, at this point, because we all aren’t shit. (Excuse my French) But I believe it’s this state of thinking that’s causing a huge ruckus about what’s happening today. It’s when people dislike seeing other’s doing better than them that they make this artsy thing become a competition when in reality no one’s even signed to a major record label.

The controversy that comes with #NewBaltimore starts with its title as it points to the attention of something new happening within Baltimore. But what’s really new? I didn’t know that #NewBaltimore was meant to be a door for the newcomers to break into the hip-hop scene, rather than being about the attitude of people in this city, which is what we should be focusing on.

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Everyone’s attitude is the same. We’ve proven this Saturday that we’re crabs, still, because why is it that we show up to this showcase and not the other numerous showcases in Baltimore that has new talent each day. Did we really come to hear some good new music or was it the names on the flyer that drew us in? Were we, as artists, really there to check out the competition because these performers have reserved spots in a show while some of us in the audience aren’t? Some of us only get to perform one song at Love and Hip-hop Open Mic Night held at St. Mary’s Restaurant.

The attitude of local artists has to change if we’re seeking to be recognized. ALL artists need to reframe from placing themselves on pedestals and for once, in this hard knock city, and learn to truly support. Aren’t you tired of lagging behind other cities’ reputations as society portrays them to be places of progression when we have an abundance of fresh new sounds right in our backyard and the potential to be as great as the people who come out of Atlanta, LA and New York?

Come on, now. Majority of the people at #NewBaltimore have made some dent in the hip hop scene here. So I asked myself this question when I left. “Taylor, when’s the last time you’ve seen any of these people at an open mic? If they claim they love hip hop so much, why is it so hard to support someone else’s event? Why are they showing up because they know who’s throwing this event instead of celebrating the art?” I have not seen one person that I saw at #NewBaltimore at any other open mic in Baltimore. Eargasim, Monumental Mondays, Be Free Fridays, Love and Hip-Hop, the list goes on and these venues are ghost towns each week. Answer that! We’re not encouraging the artist at these events. We’re not pushing for something new.

I guess #NewBaltimore really opened my eyes to how many crabs we’re dealing with, even with the entire city knowing we’re stuck in a barrel. It’s not people who aren’t artist we should worry about getting to these show. First, we need to worry about living the lifestyles we glorify and speak of. We need to be changing our attitudes and supporting talented people regardless of their names. We need to come together, then encourage others to come out to support.

But I’m just a blogger and my words have no value because I’m not an artists myself. At least that’s what some of these new artist say. I’m just tired of writing about the same thing. Seven months later, I’m still saying Baltimore Is Too “Cliqued” Up to Have Supporters. I shouldn’t be scolded for what I’m observing. My observations aren’t far-fetched. There isn’t a new Baltimore, not yet. We still have time to create it.

But what do you think? Am I wasting my breath? Will we ever escape this barrel? Will the newcomers and the vets come together? Will artist support these other showcases around the city? Let me know in the comments below.

Have you read my last music highlight? Read Music Highlight: Quinn Shabaz’s Day One ft. Jimmy Apoet & Leon Dominick on Doc’s Castle Media.

The Current Generation Doesn’t Take Part In Civil Rights Movements Because…

In the awakening of the protests that have taken place across the nation over the course of these past few weeks, I’ve seen opinions from different people all over the “interweb” about whether people should participate in the cause to stop police brutality. I have some opinions, myself, on such a subject.

At my nine-to-five job, I speak to older people often about the justifications for why younger generations choose not to participate in civil rights movements or protests. They are astonished at my answers but they agree with my assumptions quite often. So I made a list explaining why I feel the younger generation doesn’t put much effort in protesting in causes similar to Michael Brown’s.

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1.) This generation is selfish and lazy.

If we can’t even make the choice to be in a monogamous relationship and stop glorifying side pieces, how are we able to commit to a few protests. It’s sad to say but really, how are we able to be positive if even the intimate situations are left unanswered? If we aren’t loyal to our own culture by not participating in genocide, how are can we march together? We also look for quick solutions because we’re too lazy to search for what will truly help. How can we organize a successful protest without passion for helping someone else, or without the urge to help?

2.) They don’t see protesting as often as previous generations so it’s hard to justify the reason for why they should do it.This generation is sort of “privileged” because we never had to march for the chance to be including in something “white america” has for themselves. Racism is still prevalent today but the difference between then and now is racism is a secret to majority of the white culture. It’s so secret that white people who look past color differences often look at black people’s complaints about racism as “nagging.” This generation turns a blind eye to racist acts, and when they do that, there isn’t further action for stopping hate crimes when they do happen.

3.) There isn’t a civil rights leader to lead this generation.

Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X are icons of the past. This generation looks up to Beyoncé, Jay-Z and Kanye West to be influenced to do something. I have yet to see either one of them do anything in support of the people protesting in Ferguson for Michael Brown. I think it sucks that what these artists think can influence other people’s thoughts and actions, especially when it comes to Kanye. People feed off this man’s negativity more than the positive. Now tell me, how would this country react if Kanye decided to be a civil rights leader. We need someone to provoke greatness in our culture, not meaningless idiocy.

5.) They’re unaware of what’s happening in the community.

This generation doesn’t read or watch the news unless it’s about entertainment. To add to that, the media also pushes the same stories 50 times like people didn’t hear it 30 times from a different media outlet. What happened to promoting awareness. I think we’re well informed about how great the 2014 VMA’s went. Let’s get back to what’s tearing this country apart.

6.) They don’t believe that anything will change.

Majority of this generation thinks negatively before looking at the positive in a situation. Just look at our Instagrams. There are thousands of memes that are used to describe our feelings about certain things. I see majority of memes that have negative undertones. I have people on my social networks who live by “twitter logic.” If they keep pushing negativity,  who’s to say they’ll change?  It takes strength to change. Can we say this generation is strong?

I don’t participate in every movement created in remembrance of Michael Brown. Not every cause is in favor of everyone. This week I was invited to participate in a protest that, in my opinion, doesn’t support the cause  for equality at all. Have you heard of the Blackout Monday protest?

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Blackout Monday is doing the exact opposite of fighting for equality! How are we working to become a better nation if we’re telling people not to support businesses because they are in support of “the system” (whatever the hell that is). Last time I checked, all of America owes other countries a piece of our shares. Everyone needs a little money to support their love ones. Why jeopardize how someone survives based off what’s currently happening? What is the reason for seizing shopping at stores that employ blacks or other minorities? What is one day shopping at Black own businesses going to do? If you’re going to support blacks, why let it be for one day?

So if I don’t shop at Best Buy or Wal-Mart on Monday, September 8, 2014 and support black businesses in America, we’ll be better as a nation? Somethings wrong with this logic. We should be pushing for EQUALITY and not aiming to be further SEGREGATED.

It wasn’t too long ago we chanted how we wanted change while Barack Obama ran for president. One man can’t do it. Let all generations come together to change. Let all people come together to change. Let’s stop talking about change and really change this time!

We should all be leaning on the proposition that we need a leader to point us in the right direction for making a change. There are too many people with multiple opinions inflicting their morals on others. Not everyone’s morals are for the good. We need someone like Martin Luther King Jr., someone who’s going to speak of protesting in peace and unity because the rioting in Ferguson is doing the opposite of what we’re expecting to change.

What do you think? Why do you think the younger generations don’t participate in protests? Leave your comments below.

Did you participate in the online protest in honor of Michael Brown? Read The Online Protests In Honor of Those Mistreated By Law Enforcers: #IfTheyGunnedMeDown on Doc’s Castle Media.

Freedom of the Press? NOT! Is This The Beginning of Losing Our Freedom of Speech?

What’s going on in America!?

I hope you’re keeping up with what’s happening in Ferguson because it’s definitely becoming a huge eye opener for me. Reporters Ryan Reilly and Westley Lowery, who were once onlookers for the rallies happening in St. Louis, are officially victims to police brutality of the protests. What’s happening to the first amendment? What’s happening to freedom of speech.firstamendment3

As a journalist, the attacks and arrest of these two reporters mean something to me. When I decided to start Doc’s Castle Media, my purpose was because it gave me a voice. My opinions were heard because people genuinely cared about what I had to say. I viewed the ability to put words on paper as something powerful because it can provoke actions in others. So the first amendment means the most to me because that’s my protection for the power I have to voice my opinions. I should be able to do that without the betrayal of my government. I’m aspiring to cover stories as big Michael Brown, some day. What happens to my future if incidents, like those that Reilly and Lowery find themselves in, started happening on a regular basis?

This is obviously a serious matter. Cities all over the nation are participating protest to send messages to police forces over the country. As these protest were held in cities big and small, photos were shared on our social media sites creating an ongoing online protest, as well. We are really trying to get our points across, and we shouldn’t stop until we know that our voices are being heard.

We can’t keep brushing what’s happening around the United States off. Since the people in our country has a sudden interest in internet challenges, I challenge you to a new one. If what’s happening in America is deeply hitting you close to home, I challenge you to get up and do something about it! Whether it be creating a basket for those who’ve lost someone due to police brutality or writing a positive message on your Facebook, share good spirits and a kind heart during this time that our country needs us the most, and believe that what you do can make a difference. Spreading positivity and love is the only way to save our country from all this pain.

We need ideas to help create a better America! What can we do to spread positivity to those who are hurting right now? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

Are you participating in the popular hash-tag IfTheyGunnedMeDown on your social media sites? Read The Online Protest In Honor of Those Mistreated By The Law Enforcers: IfTheyGunnedMeDown on Doc’s Castle Media.

The Online Protest In Honor of Those Mistreated By Law Enforcers: #IfTheyGunnedMeDown

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People have taken to social media, again, to talk about concerns revolving what’s happening in the news and on our timelines this week. Popular hash-tag #IfTheyGunnedMeDown brewed up controversy as folks participating in an online rally/protest against the media’s decision of choosing an image that negatively represents the characters of black people. It kick off with the misrepresentation of Michael Brown, a young black male who was fatally shot in St. Louis by police this week.

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The story of Michael Brown is a very sad one. A young man, who did nothing wrong at the time of his attempted arrest, was slaughter in front of a community and left in the street for hours before officials decided to clear the scene. The police decision to leave Brown hours after the shooting nearly provoked a riot between people in the neighborhood and the law enforcers. As the week continues to play out, protests emerge as  All I have to say about this is why are blacks still having this battle to be treated fairly?! Why do we continue to be labeled as a group of people who don’t deserve the same level of respect as whites?! We’re all human.

Growing up being black, I can’t help but ask “why does the media choose to publicize our worse?” There is so much good that’s being done by black people.  But we have to dig deep into the underground media to see those who are doing good deeds. We have to go out of our way to hear positive things because what’s flashing in front of us doesn’t tell the truth about what’s happening in our communities. As the world watches these videos of police brutality acts towards black people, blacks must remember that they aren’t what society portray them as. They have the potential to be great no matter how much the world tries to manipulate their thoughts into believing they can’t. It’s pure ignorance to allow the media to choose the worst in deciding what will represent us a group of people. You see what they’ve done with Michael Brown!

This hash-tag is something everyone should take part in as were watching what’s happening in St. Louis. What will the media portray me as if I was shot?

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I’m more than judgements. Everyone deserves to be heard. So if you’re more than what on the exterior and more than what people judge you as, post a picture using the hash-tag #IfTheyGunnedMeDown to show the media that they must stop making us look ignorant. Stop treating us like we’re derogatory creatures. We help build this country to be what it is today like everyone else who lives here. We shouldn’t have to remind the world about it.

Share some of your #IfTheyGunnedMeDown posts with us. Post them to our comments. Leave your mark as someone who deserves a chance.

Will we have a voice?! Read Will Blacks Have to Wait Another 100 Years? on Doc’s Castle Media.