To coincide with the age-old observance of Christmas in July, I’m revealing the cover of new book Christmas Is: Mischief and Merriment in Manhattan (Constant Rose Publishing, 2017). My fourth book and first foray into fiction, is a comedic, madcap love letter to New York, its inhabitants, and the city’s holiday traditions. The story drops the reader in the middle of the Big Apple just as the Christmas season kicks off and carries him/her on to Christmas Day.
Known to those of us in English speaking countries as Bastille Day, the National Celebration is their equivalent to our Fourth of July.
July 4, 1776. King George of England versus Washington, Franklin, Jefferson, Hamilton, and a band of patriots. Back then, the game was a fight for our independence. And America won its freedom from England, a world-class superpower. Decisively.
The problem isn’t so much that some white people don’t understand “white privilege.” The problem is potentially two-fold. First, they may not understand it by that specific name. I’d never heard of the term “white privilege” until a few years ago; but growing up in the south, I knew it when I saw it exercised … even with my eyes closed. Everyone in these United States recognizes the concept of white privilege when they see it. Don’t believe me? Take a look at this 1-minute video from educator, Jane Elliott.
Here we are again. Another heaping of social injustice served up at the expense of another black life snuffed out with impunity. (Correction: expendable black life snuffed out with impunity.) That in the 21st century, groups of people find it acceptable and enable others to trample upon the humanity of others is a disgrace. These situations beg the question: why is it that some white people can easily grasp what Black Americans experience in the United States and others find it nearly impossible? The reason will not surprise you.
For some, it’s hard to believe issues of race, discrimination, and privilege still need to be addressed in 2017. But all anyone need do is have an in-depth conversation with a Person of Color about their direct experience in these matters to realize that racism is alive and well. With today’s polarized political opinions and rising numbers of hate crimes, it’s more important than ever that these conversations
For me, viewing televised reports of mass murders and terror attacks had become, dare I say, commonplace. Yes, a detached sadness accompanied watching those tragedies, but those types of events happened in other cities. Disasters like that could never happen in my hometown. But on June 12, 2016, that all changed when forty-nine victims were brutally murdered, the gunman killed, and scores more injured at Pulse, an LGBTQ nightclub five minutes from downtown
If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.
— Romans 12:18
For Vanessa (or anyone else) interested in Paris.
Vanessa, congratulations on your upcoming trip to Paris! You’ll have a wonderful time. It’s one of my favorite cities on the planet (the other being New York). I’ve had the pleasure of going a couple of times. Here’s a few of my favorite things to do with links for more information.
A lot people say they want change, but a lot more people aren’t willing to do what it takes to bring about that change. I’ve seen this play out in a reality TV show and in my own community over the last week, each with markedly different results.