Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Why Heathens Will Save the World

As a long-suffering social media addict, I am often bombarded with opinions from every side. Talking points I agree with strongly or disagree with completely. I mute stupid people; block the ultra ridiculous. Not a bad gig. As I was scrolling through my Twitter timeline, reading about the horrors of Hurricane Harvey, I came across several tweets by different folks that questioned why Joel Osteen's mega church wasn't open to shelter those that Harvey hit the hardest. After 3 days of being rightfully questioned about his motives and Christianity, Joel opened his dry stadium, er church to Houstonians. The whole concept of mega churches opening themselves up to the public brought up a couple things: 1. a conversation that hubs and I had a couple of weeks ago, 2. the thought that modern day churches don't follow the Jesus they are supposed to serve and 3. the idea that it will be heathens that save the world... c'mon and follow this logic. 

A couple of weeks ago hubs and I were gathered in our bedroom, watching the coverage of the tragedy in Charlottesville. I never tell him sappy shit like this, but my most favorite thing about our ever changing relationship is that we watch and comment on the news together. It is refreshing to have a partner that has sympathy and empathy for folks. Anyway. After Orange Julius' press conference there were many people, on both sides (ha ha) who commented "I'm a Christian and this outrages me." Business leaders and artists removed themselves from presidential councils, yet no evangelicals recused themselves. None of them were running for the door. None of them were calling the Tangerine Tyrant out on his shit. BUT guess who did call him out? That is right, heathens AKA those of us who are generally concerned about the welfare of others. 

And isn't caring about the welfare of others the job of the church? I mean, religion, at its very core, is trusting your Lord and loving your neighbor, right? I haven't reviewed ALL religions, but I have read up on a few and that tenet seems to be universal. So, I guess the real question is: when you look at the leaders of your church, do they serve as good examples? I've seen Joel Osteen in person-- at a Night of Hope in Chicago. I have purchased several of his books, but if I'm honest, I unfollowed him on Twitter when he said that the Tangerine Tyrant was a good man (because, eww, hell no). Joel is a "feel good" preacher. He smiles a lot and tells his legions of followers that our merciful God will bring them through their trials and tribulations. He says that... but is he a vehicle for those victories? Does he attempt to make it easier for his followers to turn their trials into triumph? If we use the current flooding in Houston as an example the answer is a resounding no. Once he was badgered, Osteen tweeted out his prayers for the city where he collects millions of tax free dollars every week then he put up a fundraising page on his church's website. It wasn't until us heathens shamed his ass on Twitter that he opened up his almost 17,000 seat church to those in need... TODAY. Uh, it has been raining since Friday. How very Christian of him. Oh Joel... if you know better, you are supposed to do better.

That is exactly what hubs and I talked a couple weeks ago: what is the role that the church should play in the lives of every day folks. Background: we don't live in the hood... but we are (technically) hood adjacent. So I ask hubs: "if you go to the next neighborhood over (like seriously, 1 mile away) what will you see on every other corner?" He had no idea, so I helped him out. You see a liquor store and a church. (Y'all, the truth). Presumably we know the role of the liquor store, but what role should the church play? Why are there so many? Why do there seem to be so many in failing neighborhoods? Most importantly: why do those neighborhoods continue to fail-- even if the churches are doing well? If the churches are doing well... and doing what they are supposed to do, like, I don't know, following the example of Jesus... would there still be folks in need? 

Even this heathen knows some scripture. Christians are supposed to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, visit those in prison, take care of widows and orphans. (Matthew 25: 35-46; James 1:27) We are supposed to be examples-- the light of the world (Matt 5:14). We are supposed to follow the greatest commandment... (Matthew 22:36-40) But if we do that, why are there so many people suffering? Not just in Texas, but in the neighborhood down the street. If you give every Sunday in church... where does that money go? Who does it help? Is your church working in its neighborhood? Does your mens group serve as mentors to the young men in your neighborhood... or do they just shake their heads at the dudes on the corner? Does the ladies group at your church gossip about the pregnant girl in the back pew? Do they have weekly soup kitchen parties to feed the neighborhood's homeless? Since one of our political parties claims to be exceptionally "Christian" why do they not hold strong to the teachings of Jesus? Why does it seem like your resident heathens are the ones lighting the world with love and kindness? Food for thought.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Manic Monday - Change is Coming

I am on the cusp of being an adult. Ok, I know I'm married and have a kid, but honestly, in two months and four days I will be a for real grown up. I'm turning 40. With this new age bracket sprinting toward me, I am trying to do a few things differently. TRYING. 

My baby is starting to become a little walking bullhorn, so I am attempting to limit the time I call people out of their names in front of her. That's right, no more calling y'all's grandmas "rude bitches" when they cut me off in the grocery store aisle. I will also stop mumbling about ripping all those bobby pins out of their ice blue wigs if one more of them ask if I am my child's nanny. Yep, you're welcome. 

I'm trying to be a better person so I keep trying to let shit go. Like, when our basement flooded last month, I took a few deep breaths and built a bridge over all those shitty feelings I was having. Why? Because life is too short to sweat the small stuff... or some other cliche shit like that. Listen, I'm trying to be better because I am about to be old, my baby repeats all the inappropriate shit I say at a very high volume, I don't want to raise an asshole, I would NOT do well in jail AND I want to save all my real venom for when I am super old and no one can attempt to correct my bad behavior. 

All three of us were lounging on Sunday morning. Hubs and I were discussing politics, Baby K was running from room to room with nothing but a diaper and a smile on. The animals were hiding from her. Fun times. All of a sudden, this video popped up on my timeline. I immediately started to show my age by 1. knowing all the words, 2. naming all the people singing and 3. knowing who in the video was still alive. What can I say? This is a house full of delightfully corny people, led by yours truly. This song can be applied to SO many things going on in the world and the US right now. By the end of the song I was taking the words to heart (and seriously considering stealing Cyndi Lauper's hair color). Turning over a new leaf starts at home. With you and me. And 1980s icons. 

Happy Monday, y'all. Change is coming. 

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Wordless Wednesday - MAGA

Tuesday, August 08, 2017

If You Know Like I Know

Yesterday a young lady named Quantasia Sharpton, along with her attorney Lisa Bloom, held a press conference. In said press conference, Sharpton detailed her alleged sexual contact with the R&B singer Usher Raymond. Now, I don't know whether or not the sexual contact happened-- though I am leaning towards yes, because why else would she expose herself to the wrath of the prepubescent fans of an entertainer? Honestly, I don't care if they had sex or not. They were both adults at the time and Sharpton has said that she has tested negative for the sexually transmitted disease that Usher supposedly has. If that were the end of the situation... well, I wouldn't be writing about it. 

Nah. The situation couldn't be that tidy. Listen, I didn't watch the press conference, but while it was ongoing, I did log into Twitter and I saw all that I needed to. As soon as Sharpton hit the stage a good 85% of folks watching said that the interaction could not have happened. Not because they had the time to vet her story; not because she had a history of lying, or because Usher is such a choir boy. Nope, folks couldn't believe that Usher fucked this chick... because she is overweight. Um... 

So, are we all out here thinking that big folks don't get second looks? They don't get dicked down? Because of the size of their panties? That idea is laughable. Let me shed some light on those fat shaming eyes... 

If you know like I know: we all have a "fat" friend who has more sex than your "fit" friends; being thick is in style-- know that. Plus, what is that saying? You can be the ripest, juiciest peach on a tree and you will still run into someone who doesn't like peaches. Uh, 100% correct. Only extremely young and/or dumb folks think that smaller built folks are more lovable. 

If you know like I know: when asked, most men will tell you the size of a partner is not a concern. 100 pounds or 250 pounds, when it is about to go down, IT'S ABOUT TO GO DOWN. They don't care. And how many times do we have to see that scenario play out in real life? Uh, some men have a skinny wife and a larger sized mistress. It is what it is. 

If you know like I know, most of us are living in denial of our overweight status (ahem).

Finally, if you know like I know... most of y'all missed the entire point of that press conference. Yep, Lisa Bloom could have dressed her better (because personally, I don't think the color she was wearing flatters ANYone) but I digress. Who gives a fuck if that chick is big? We have an entertainer running through folks in our community and not sharing their STD status. That shit is dangerous, right? I mean, there are incurable diseases out there... right? And you and your little clique are upset because Usher may have had sexual contact with a larger girl-- but NOT upset that he is (possibly) fucking multiple folks with a dirty dick?? I need y'all to come on and get right. 

We have ALL done some questionable shit. I'm not judging that girl for sexual contact with Usher. Because if I was approached by my favorite entertainer on my 19th birthday, there is no telling what I would have done. I'm not even mad at Usher for having sex with as many people as he wants-- I mean, I think that is a perk of stardom. HOWEVER, that shit should be done responsibly. If you KNOW that you have a STD, you should be truthful. And if you don't know your STD status, you should get tested. Immediately. Folks need to realize that a baby is not the worst thing that can come from a sexual interaction. If you have the possibility of giving people a disease, man up and tell them that. There is a reason why it is against the law (in some states) to keep that info to yourself. It is about CONSENT. Consent to take on a possible lifetime of fighting a disease. And really... if you can't tell the person that you are about to be intimate with that you are harboring a disease... uh, your punk ass shouldn't be having sex.

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