Thursday, October 13, 2016

You're Only As Funky As Your Last Cut

That title is part of a lyric from an Outkast song called "Rosa Parks".  André 3000 rapped that when he was essentially stating that you're only as good as the last thing you produced.  Live in the past and you'll be a has-been.

That's a very true statement that is just starting to soak into my thick skull.

I have a very, very bad habit of trying to help people.  I know that it looks bad to say that, but hear me out.  Everyone has a purpose in life.  I feel as if my purpose is to uplift others, whether it be through service, encouragement, or just a smile.  Sometimes I will go above and beyond the call of duty to help someone out or try to make their day.  But, what I struggle with so mightily is what happens after you're unable to give someone what they want.

Within the past couple of months, I've had a female friend approach me and ask for help on a project.  Our relationship has always been platonic.  Her brother is a good friend of mine.  This is someone I've done numerous favors for including going out of my way to give her a ride when her car was broken down to helping her work on her resume so she can get a better job.  However, prior obligations prevented me from being able to help her with this particular home improvement project.  When I told her that I wasn't able to make it because I already had other commitments, she got upset with me.

Now this is where I have a problem not getting mad.  If I have a history of helping/being nice to someone, then I feel as if they don't deserve to get upset with me when I can't help them.  Maybe I'm wrong for feeling that way, but that's just me.  I feel that if you help someone 9 times and on the 10th, you're unavailable, then that person shouldn't get upset with you.

However, she did.  She told me that I was "just like everyone else" and I was bailing on her when she needed help.  This infuriated me.  Being lumped into a group of people ("just like everyone else") is insulting to me.  Especially since I'd done so much for her in the past.  Recent past, too, I might add.

And it's not just this one incident that has me salty.  This is just the straw that broke the camel's back.  I could describe at least three or four recent scenarios from where I got dissed by others for not being able to accommodate someone who is used to me doing so.  It's as if I've never helped them before.  Never!

I had an ex tell me once that I "wanted a pass for being a good guy".  I didn't quite understand what she meant then, but it's all too clear to me now.  "You're only as funky as your last cut."  It's not about what you have done in the past.  It's all about what you're doing now.  You can be an "A" student for 7 straight semesters, but what's going to happen when you bring home a "C" after that 8th semester?

I now realize the answer to that question.

All my life, I've prided myself on having a good reputation.  I didn't father any kids out of wedlock.  I didn't go to jail.  I've protected womanhood and promoted manhood.  I went to college.  I've attended church regularly.  I always say "yes, ma'am" and "yes, sir" to my elders.  And I've tried to help people whenever I can.  But in 2016, none of that means anything to a lot of people in today's society.  If you're not giving them what they want at that time, then you're nothing.  Doesn't matter what you did before, you're not doing it now.

Well, you know what?  Society wins on this one.  I'm done.  I can no longer bust my behind to attempt to be something special for a world that could not care less about my track record.  It doesn't mean anything in a lot of workplaces, in the dating game, or even with some family and friends.  It's all about "what have you done for me lately?"

Comment below if you need me to explain this saying.
I'm officially no longer putting myself out there.  If I'm going to be lumped into a category unfairly, then I may as well respond as those people do.  "Sorry, I can't help you."

I can't take any more of this, so I'm forced to take a different approach.  I think that for the first time in my 44 years on this planet, society has officially broken me.  It's a shame that it's come to this, but I'm just worn out.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016


How many times do we have to scream it before someone acts like they care?

Another unarmed black man has been gunned down.  I've lost count of how many have died within the last few years.  If you run, then you get shot.  If you fight, then you get shot.  If you comply, then you get shot.

What does it take to not get shot other than being white?

And don't feed me that garbage about "he looked threatening" or "he was a bad guy".  Or my favorite: "we don't know what he did prior to getting shot".  Uh, did he pull a weapon and attempt to use it on a cop/civilian?  Because that's the only reason he should be shot dead.

I can name some very high profile examples of non-blacks who actually had weapons who went to jail instead of the morgue.  One even got taken to Burger King for a meal after killing multiple black people in a church.

The only way to stop these senseless killings is for:

1) Police to admit that they have a problem with their perception of black men in society.  Acknowledging that black men scare you will get the ball rolling on how to fix it.  Yes, there are some intimidating brothas out there, but if you're scared, then don't be a cop.  That's not the right job for you.  Walmart is hiring.

2) Police need to start going to jail when they kill unarmed black men.  "Oh, I didn't know he was unarmed."  Well, too bad because you're still going to get this jail time for involuntary manslaughter if nothing else.  There has to be a consequence to the action.  Paid administrative leave is not a deterrent to shooting someone.  In most cases, these shootings appear to be cold-blooded murders and should be treated as hate crimes.

3) Police need to stop training their officers to shoot to kill.  This within itself doesn't make a lot of sense to me.  If soldiers overseas have certain protocols that require shooting to kill to be a last resort, then why is it normally the first choice here in the states against our own citizens?  In the latest incident with Terence Crutcher, the cops were close enough to easily shoot Crutcher in the leg if necessary.  But, that's not what cops do.  They shoot to kill.  It has to stop.

4) Police need to do their jobs!  If your job is to put away criminals, then do so.  Even those criminals are within your police force.  Stop turning a blind eye to your "brother in blue" while families are losing loved ones on the regular.  How can you continue to put on a badge every morning that is simply seen as a piece of tin by black communities instead of something that represents integrity?  Show that you're to be trusted by doing the right thing!

It's a shame that I'm 44 years old and I'm terrified to see blue lights while traveling.  The same feeling my dad had in the 50's and 60's whenever he drove some where.  Even if you're polite and accommodating, there is no guarantee that you won't be a target over a "misinterpretation".  Imagine an agitated black youth who may not make the effort to be polite or accommodating.  How do you think his day is going to end up?

Colin Kaepernick is never going to get off the ground at the rate we're going.  I hope that he brought knee pads.  SMH.

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