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Network television is changing. They are reshuffling the deck to appeal to larger audiences. They are getting rid of liberals, but they are really getting rid President Barack Obama’s musings and anyone who can’t appeal to the dominant political mass.

People will be moved whether it is Melissa Harris Perry, Al Sharpton, Toure, Joy Reid, Ronan Farrow, Alex Wagner, Jose Diaz-Balart or anyone else. That is just business, but why didn’t these brown faces see the writing on the wall?

 

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Melissa Harris Perry walks off her show after pre-exemptions

 

Why…because these brown face head shots were pretending that influx of brown faces on big screens, small screens and network news wasn’t due to Barack Obama’s presence. As his term winds down these people should have been reflective of the process that gave rise to many of the brown faces we seen daily. Reflective that Barack Obama’s travails allowed these brown faces to provide better for their families, to change zip codes to create viable platforms.

Even though some of those brown faces took their benefactor to task for two terms and eight long years, thanks is still due. They have yet to thank him for the paychecks, the raises, the platforms or the notoriety. Without Obama these brown faces would have kept the marginal outlets they had before his candidacy.

 

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Race and Identity Polices personified

I get it; you earned this position on merit…right. Unfortunately, America seldom works like that—hardly ever. Many of these brown faces did great jobs with their shows and platforms, but no great job a brown face does would be as great as someone with a white one.

                                          Dear: Melissa Harris Perry,

                                          This is not about you. This is about President Barack Obama.

I know Melissa Harris Perry and her audience, didn’t like the repeated back and forth cuts between her segments and election coverage. A lot of people are ‘stanning’ for Melissa, Nerdland, and for a show that featured race and identity politics and Melissa never did get that Beyonce interview. Ultimately, Melissa’s insistence on discussing of Beyone’s video “formation” instead of the political race may have been the last MSNBC straw.

 

 

The cycle is changing and Melissa Harris Perry has an audience, a following and agendas behind her…she’ll be fine.

 

 

MG Hardie

 

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The Force Awakens is full of pomp and circumstance and it is not a particularly good movie but it is a good Star Wars movie. The Force is out of balance in this one. The CGI gets a B-, the diversity angle gets and A, the feminist angle gets an A+ and those angles weren’t thrown in the audience’s face. Everything else was rather sketchy the plot, the pacing, the dialogue, even the damn secrets.

Where to begin…Kylo Ren. This badass can freeze a laser blast with his back turned. He can sense his father’s presence when he lands on a planet, but he walks blindly down a scaffold searching for his father who is hiding 20 feet away from him. Ren spends half the film literally throwing tantrums while wearing a vocorder mask that he doesn’t need. Darth Vader had a mask on because he had asthma; Ren wears it try to be something he’s not. Even Han Solo says “Take off that mask, you don’t need it.”

The fact that Kylo Ren abilities allows him to kill Luke Skywalker’s Jedi pupils, but he battles the kindhearted storm trooper in a 5 minute lightsaber battle, should be enough to make any righteous Star Wars fan vomit in their mouth…just a little bit. Then Ren is bested by Rey, who may be strong with the Force but has never used the force, never been trained and who moments earlier said that the force was all a myth.

I know those are but minor quibbles…right, we finally got a good Star Wars film…just be happy. You could just be happy with your mediocre job, your mediocre car and your mediocre love life or you could want more, you could want better or you could just settle. That’s not all of the flaws you could take every major character and write a paragraph or two of WTF’s on them…really.

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The Star Killer base took forever to fire, and I mean forever. It was probably the longest 15 minutes in science fiction film history. A legend dies and their love ones just move on, you don’t even feel the loss.The dedicated Captain Phasma the platinum boss storm trooper just lowers the planet’s shields because, ex-storm trooper, Finn points a blaster at her while he asks her to.

After Han and Leia find each other Leia shows more warmth to Rey and Chewie than to her husband. Every scene Han with Leia seemed forced even that one tepid hug. Their chemistry is colder than the Hoth planet.

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Midnight: Rise of the Black Vampires is Part Novel, Part Graphic Novel, All Vampire

If the Republic was reorganized after Episode VI, then The First Order would be a ‘terrorist’ organization, and referred to as resistance. In The Force Awakens there are two separate resistance groups, one affiliated with the dark side of the force which can build starships, huge planet destroying machines and amasses great armies, the other affiliated with the light side of the force, which in 30 years haven’t changed the X-Wing fighter much, nor have they developed a missile, bomb or any other large scale weapon, also they seem to like to hide in jungles and dirty caves… So why are make a film about them again?

The Force Awakens foes produce an even greater respect for the first Star Wars films. All of the characters in The Force Awakens just seem conflicted; you don’t feel the evil just oozing out of Ren, just like you don’t feel the love coming from Leia. I don’t know why they needed Andy Serkis to play the Supreme Leader Snoke, he really doesn’t do much. I do know why…name recognition.

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Harrison Ford as Han Solo, Carrie Fisher as Leia and Mark Hamill as Skywalker all perform admirably when they aren’t on screen together…especially Ford. Daisy Ridley’s performance as Rey is strong and vulnerable. The Force Awaken is a remix and homage, perhaps too much, of the original films.

The Force Awakens is one big trailer for the new few films in the Disney franchise anyway. The film is nonsensical, predictable, it’s fun and it moves along quickly, but it’s not enjoyable the way the original “Star Wars” was. The dialogue, comaradery and witticisms are nowhere on par with The Empire Strikes Back. If the producers didn’t want The Force Awakens to be compared with those legendary films, they wouldn’t have borrowed everything this film is from them. After you see The Force Awakens go back and watch Episodes IV and V if nothing else.

The first half of the film is pretty much littered with bullshit and nostalgia. The second half is really the meat of the film. The film gets a solid C because it’s fun and all of the characters have their moments, especially Finn, played by John Boyega and Rey. There is a bit of hope that those two get together but political correctness already has Finn in a coma and Rey rolling around the galaxy with Chewbacca.

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No matter how dire the situation is Rey never really needs any help, think Richard B. Riddick in 2004’s The Chronicles of Riddick. Rey who has never flown can pilot a starship like an expert, Finn can shoot blasters and laser turrets like a pro. Rey can mind probe, mind trick and lightsaber duel better than Yoda…talk about being overpowered.

It will take a few more films for people to realize Luke Skywalker was really just some asshole living on an island planet, playing with people’s minds so he can use them as conduits for the force.

Through the prequels we have come to know the Jedi and the Sith as arrogant, ill-prepared bumblers, cowards and dark cloak wearing idiots… The best thing about The Force Awakens is that none of that exist here. There are moments in the second half of the film that manage to capture the magic of the original film, but even those moments are fleeting.

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Half way through the film Han Solo implores his new companions “Don’t stare!”, when all the director wants the audience to do is stare. This is how easy a mark the movie going public has become. Director J.J. Abrams wants to piss people off, he’s like Quentin Tarantino in a way. They both do things in a movies just because they can, not because those things are necessary. Abrams gives us views of  hollowed out AT AT’s, imperial cruisers wrecked in the desert and a mangled, burned and ripped up Vader mask as message to Star Wars fans; that message… you are boldly going where you haven’t gone before.

After seeing this film, you should realize that those singular Star Wars moments were never meant to be captured again.

 

Midnight: Rise of the Black Vampires

Are you a Vampire fan, a Fantasy enthusiast? Yet you paused when you looked at the new novel Midnight: Rise of the Black Vampires?

While you were reading this novel on the train did you feel as if people were staring at you?

Did you ask yourself…WTF, why black vampires?

Leading up to the release of Midnight: Rise of the Black Vampires, I received emails saying…Why did you have to make the vampires Black… Followed by my standard reply of “Did you send Stephanie Meyer, Ann Rice or any other fantasy authors ask similar questioning email?”

With black people being gunned down by the police, shot down in the street for no reason and being marginalized as second class citizens what harm could a white book with a black power fist in the middle of it cause you on your way to work.

You have movements where the people of color protest at a predetermined time, in an approved park but many don’t want the daily questions that come with being a person of color in America. People of color don’t want to wear blackness on their sleeve, they don’t want the eyes on them, and they don’t want the questions…

“Who taught you to hate the race that you belong to so much so that you don’t want to be around each other? No… Before you come asking Mr. Muhammad does he teach hate, you should ask yourself who taught you to hate being what God made you.”—Malcolm X

That is called hiding in plain sight. It is not pride; it is the psychological effect of centuries of white supremacy. White Supremacy is not limited to individual thought and behavioral patterns, it is something ingrained in the collective psyche of a group.

“… to be white is to be human and all others are subhuman, savages, beasts of burden to be worked, raped, beaten and robbed – they deserve what they get and little else can be expected of them anyway.”- Bell Hooks

When you look at most urban novels, you see almost naked women and men, guns, drugs, expensive cars and titles like ‘Hood Hoe 17’ and ‘Twerk Momma 7’. If you read those novels on the train there will be no eyes on you, there will be no questions to answer because those images are what American white supremacy has been selling and that is what many have been buying for years.

To this end Midnight: Rise of the Black Vampires was conceived to place characters that are unapologetic, revolutionary and Blacks front and center. This novel may be about vampires but the world is reflected in-between its lines.

Midnight: Rise of the Black Vampires is about a lot more than being a vampire. Shake the bonds of white supremacy by using your detector whenever possible.

ISBN: 978-0-9968296-0-1 (Color Edition)

ISBN: 978-0-9968296-2-5 (Standard Edition)

ISBN: 978-0-9968296-1-8 (eBook)

I was going to marry the mother of my daughter.

I was working a regular nine to five.

I had just got promoted to supervisor and everything.

I came home early one day and there she was, smashing the homie.

The whole time I was fucking dude up, she was saying

“you’re always working!”,

“you’re never home!”

While I was choking old dude I kept thinking “that bitch just didn’t love me!”

I was hurting him, because it was hurting me.

When I was in county jail, she kept visiting me saying “I’m sorry”, this that and the third.

She even told me how much she really needed me.

When I got out I went over to her house and there she was,

pregnant by this other dude and he was kicking her ass and shit.

It almost made the GPS bracket worth wearing.

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Why I Am Gay

My mother and father used to argue and fight a lot, so one day he left us.

My mother got so caught up chasing after

no good,

no account negroes

that she completely forgot about me.

I grew up really wanting her love,

wanting her to love me.

I never got it.

I remember it started long before freeze-tag. I always like to  put on

my mothers shoes.

You remember the Road Runner Show, the one with Wile. E. Coyote–

well that’s all I was thinking about.

I wasn’t even thinking about “hide-n-go-get-it”,

when these so-called men started touching on me.

The whole time they were doing these things to me they were telling

me that it was love,

that it was right.

“If you don’t do it, I’m ah tell your mother.”

I learned and was told shit that I shouldn’t have known or done until

I was grown.

I tried to tell some family members, but they didn’t want to talk about it.

It was like I deserved it,

like I asked for it.

So I grew up afraid.

I hit puberty and my feelings of love for my mother turned sexual.

And all of a sudden

I was attracted to her,

her,

and her,

but anger is what made me perpetuate it.

Somewhere along the line a part of me liked the feelings the sex brought.

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Princess– I know there are good men out there, but people have there own self-fulfilling prophecies. A lot of people are using their spirit to send out the wrong vibe. They are always hanging out with people who talk in a negative way. They believe there aren’t any good men out there for them. They are always speaking of getting dogged out and used, but they still do the same shit that gets them dogged out and used. They go out with a dude and they are really feeling him, the next day they are upset wondering why his ass didn’t call. When a woman likes somebody, we get a little impatient, we be like, “He better call. If he doesn’t call then he’s a dog”. When he does call you are pressing him with an attitude and acting desperate–it’s stupid.

Lance– If a man likes you he will call. It could be the next minute or the next day, but he will call. Sometimes we need a little time processing our emotions, but men do stupid shit too. We tell women that we want them to have our baby, and then wonder why she ain’t spending time with us like she used to? Why does the baby always have to come first? When do I get ‘my’ time? How come we can’t have sex all the time like we used to?  It’s stupid.

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I can’t even explain it, women make fun of other women all the time. They nit-pick, tear down and

just search for something not to like. Some of them are down right messy sometimes. We are

supposed to work together , not nurturing hate. That’s why I feel more comfortable around men. I

had enough of people  distorting my relationships.

I remember being chased home from school being made fun of because of my clothes or my hair.

So you turn to the church, but they preach that you aren’t worthy.

Your friends tell you that you aren’t worthy.

At home you hear that you’re not worth.

The television shows you as not worthy.

The man you picked says that you’re not worthy.

Celebrate yourself, love yourself, own your worth.

You hate on others when you see them changing their world

and you can’t change yours…

and that’s the bottom line.

 

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