Thursday, December 29, 2011

A Time to Fight

In less than a week, my son's IEP meeting is scheduled. I dread it while, at the same time, anticipating it. I have things I need to say, and I've been trying to build up my courage to say them. I don't won't to be caught up in anger or frustration either. I want to speak calmly and truthfully about what I want and what my son needs.

I may fail.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Restless Spirit Syndrome

I'm so not in the "Christmas spirit" or whatever that is. I can't concentrate. I feel restless. I have Restless Spirit Syndrome [RSS].

What I want to do and be is at cross purposes with what the world is trying to force me to do and be. It is a dark era, full of discontent.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

A Stripped Down Life

And I say "Holiday Season" not because I'm trying to be politically correct (what a useless concept), but because I'm including Thanksgiving.

This year I'm not decorating the house or giving presents that I haven't made. I'm not in the Kwanzaa spirit, nor am I rebelling against the materialistic system that turns a holy day from being about the celebration of The Emmanuel who has come to Save us to being about buying a lot of gifts for people who are barely liked and going into debt.

Yay, holidays?

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Who Do Anime Characters Represent Ethnically?

Cardcaptor Sakura

I love to watch Japanese animation. The first two I ever got into was Yakitate Japan and Akagi. One is about a baking bread competition and the other, mahjong competition. I guess competition is my thing. Since then I've watched many anime shows from all sorts of genres, hundreds of episodes, but something has started niggling in the back of my mind. When I see a character that is Japanese but has green eyes and blonde hair, it makes me think. Why is that character portrayed like that?

I ask this because the problem seems to come to a head when the anime is being adapted by a studio. An American studio. Then who's going to be cast comes into play. Do the cast directors ask for and choose the actors who look like the characters? Do they choose Japanese actors and tell them to dye their hair and wear contacts? Do they choose Japanese actors and let the character look however the actor looks?

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Portrayals of Characters of Color in Cartoons


I wasn't going to write about this topic, but as I "researched" (meaning I googled the topic for 40 minutes), I can be silent no longer.

My husband and I were thinking about how when our daughter draws herself she insists on using just the right shade of brown. This brought memories of my experiences with Crayola crayons (early 90s) and how I only had two choices: brown and "burnt sienna." If a child had fairer skin, she had the choice of "flesh," peach, tan, pink, and beige. The problem back then was the only way I could color my loved ones was to vary my pressure with my brown crayon. Lighter-skinned black people were out of luck.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

A Letter to Black Hollywood

Dear Black Filmmakers, Screenwriters, and Producers,

Please stop remaking films into Black-centered comedies. They turn out bad and make people not want to see movies featuring Black people. Stop it.

Sincerely yours,


Monday, May 2, 2011

A Rose by Any Other Name: The Problem with 'African-American'

How do you know in any given place who are the marginalized, the oppressed, or the minority? Look for the groups who change titles every five to ten years or call themselves something different than what outsiders call them. What does that have to do with anything? The ones in power decide what the ones without power are named.

And that does not even need to be directly. A marginalized or stigmatized group will eventually have its name associated with the negative things people think of that group. It's gonna happen. They're marginalized. No power means that people won't know very much about them. They won't be seen as individuals because they are segregated to their own communities, e.g. mental hospital (In this case, even where they live has a name change). The majority does not have any contact with these people unless one or more of them does something newsworthy, and that usually means something negative. A black man is arrested for drug possession. A special ed child soils himself in class. A mentally ill woman harms someone else. So that's how the entire group is labeled. Addicts. Stupid. Violent.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

The End of the Search

Write for at least 400 words about an agreement, a shop, a full moon, and a note.*

A tubby man waits in the shadows. His head is cocked to one side, his body in a stiff pose in contrast to his soft nature. He twists a band with a yellow stone around his third finger. The sound of sharp footsteps echo. The man takes a step out of the darkness and is revealed in the glow of the full moon which cast dark lines underneath the remaining hairs slicked to his shiny pate. The footsteps draw closer until their owner stands in front of the man. His eyes widen and his brows draw down. Before him, a slight black girl in dark green cloak looks up at him.

"This is no place for kids."