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The Unfinished Business of The First Black President

Pete Souza/White House Photo via Getty Images

 

There’s a huge difference between having a President that’s Black and having a Black President.  With Barack, we thought we hit the jackpot and were finally gonna get both, but boy were we wrong.

Almost eight years into the Obama Era and we’ve still not grappled with some of the vexing issues of negritude and resolved some of the more serious quandaries facing our community.  I mean, yeah, President Obama’s done a lot, but has he really done enough to help solve black folks’ concerns?

Let’s take a moment and explore some of the most glaring failures of leadership from the Obama Administration.

10.) What room can we sit in?

When the Barack Obama took office, we were in the midst of a failing real estate market in which African Americans were disproportionally exposed to risk based on shady loans and exploding rate mortgages.  Through initiatives like the Home Affordable Refinance Program and an expanding economy that’s made homeownership an option for African American families again.  And that’s all well and good, but yo…

Can we sit in that front room (pronounced: “frunchroom”) if we don’t have company?  Can we lamp on the good sofa, maybe lounge about on its fine plastic cover while we run our toes ever-so-gingerly across the carpet with its perfectly vacuumed lines?  Can we admire the knick-knacks and brickabrack collected over the past 50 years of domestic vacations and family reunions in peace, or do we have to take our “little friends” to the other room, or worse, down in the basement like we’re some animals? The Black President could’ve given us the opportunity not just to keep or own our homes, but to truly enjoy all of our homes unencumbered by Big Momma’s rules.

9.) What do we do with our copies of “Gifted Hands” now?

Upon his inauguration, Barack Obama faced determined resistance from the Republican Party which, in its haste to appear diverse and inclusive, embraced African Americans like Michael Steele, Herman Cain, and Ben Carson.  Lawd, lawd, lawd, Ben Carson…

When I was 15 or 16, someone got me the book “Gifted Hands” the Ben Carson biography.  It was, at the time, an inspirational tale of a black man who came from beginnings like mine to become a world renowned neurosurgeon.  It let me know I could do or be anything.  But now, they got them shits on Amazon for damn near free and,  turns out, Ben Carson is a strange amalgam of medical genius, pathological personal narrative fabricator, and Droopy.  So we need the Black President to let us know if and when it’s okay to dispose of these copies of this book (and the movie) and how me might be able to do so in the most environmentally friendly yet personally disrespectful way possible.

8.) What are we gonna do about R. Kelly?

Having appointed the first African American Attorney General in Eric Holder, President Obama made reforming the criminal justice system a priority.  From the disparity in sentencing between powder and crack cocaine to ending solitary confinement in federal prisons and even commuting sentences for non-violent drug offenders, this president has made it his mission to begin rolling back the damage done from the war on drugs.  That’s cool and all, but let’s be real for a sec…

 Look, for all the clemencies and commutations of black folks in our prisons, there’s one black guy that clearly needs to be locked up; R. Kelly.  Seriously.  Yeah, we all enjoy his music and making fun of his marginal literacy can be quite the hoot, but if we can get real about Bill Cosby then we can be honest with Arruh.  He’s a pedophile and a predator, we have it on tape and if there’s one person who can be the impartial arbiter of justice here it would be the Black President.  No more talk about how he might’ve been framed or victim blaming or shifting the discussion to how dope TP2.com was, nah.  Just an edict from the Black President to finally clear this mess up since we can’t seem to agree amongst ourselves.

7.) What about these grits?

With the passage of the Affordable Care Act (see: Obamacare) many African Americans were able to access healthcare and health insurance that they may have been prevented from receiving due to excessive costs.  One of the leading drivers of the high uninsured rate among black Americans was preexisting conditions, especially chronic illnesses like hypertension and diabetes.  Man, that’s really awesome.  It is, howsoever…

How are we preparing these grits, man?  Are we doing sugar and committing to diabetes or are we doing salt & pepper and doubling down on that high blood pressure?  We got coverage now, so we can go either way with this, we just gotta know.  This is a dispute requiring an executive action that only the Black President can order.  From the White House to the Waffle House, his word would be bond and we could end decades, if not centuries of brunch disputes once and for all.

6.) Are we allowed to actually hoop in Jordans?

Speaking of Obamacare, one of the hidden perks of the ACA is that it covers behavior that are considered preventative care like yoga and gym memberships.  That’s right, you can get a discount on your monthly fee at LA fitness and then use all that dough you’re saving for a fresh pair of Jordans.

But does anyone outside of Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook, or Jimmy Butler actually play ball in their J’s?  I mean, $200 for some shoes I can’t hoop in, I might as well buy some peanut butter Timbs and use the rest on like three tanks of gas (thanks, Obama!).  We need the Black President to make the call; Jordans, gym shoes or dress shoes, once a for all.

5.) How long are we supposed to keep this grease?

When it comes down to environmental policy, Barack Obama has taken positive stands on affirming science backed claims of climate change and taking steps to curb emissions and manmade activity that may contribute to the deterioration of the planet.  Great, but hey…

We’ve been saving our cooking oil in a Chock Full O’Nuts can on top of the stove since like 1987.  Tell us, Mr. Black President; is keeping this old dusty ass tin of grease good for the environment or what?  How are we supposed to dispose of our collective canisters of aged cooking oils in a manner that won’t turn the back of Aunty Alfreda’s house into a Superfund site?

4.) Can Puerto Ricans use the N-word or nah?

While often maligned for his inability to get cooperation from congressional Republicans, one piece of bipartisan legislation Barack Obama was able to pass was the Puerto Rican debt-relief bill.  The bill, while imperfect, provided the island protectorate with the breathing room it needed to renegotiate its debt, restructure its finances, and save itself from a future of economic doom.  That’s good, but yo…

What’s up with out Boriquen cousins and the N-word, man?  We’ve been wondering this for a while.  We need to know if the Black President will exercise the Fat Joe Exception Clause and make it official outside of New York or if those folks have been grandfathered in and we’re not accepting anymore N-word licenses.

3.) Are we ever gonna get another Fugees album?

Barack Obama brokered an historic deal to limit nuclear weapons with Iran, insuring relative peace for the coming decades and abating one of our greatest Middle Eastern regional adversaries.  And that’s cool and all, buuuuuut…

Can we get the Black President to get the Fugees back together?  Hell, we’ll even settle for the Black President just getting Lauryn Hill to her show on time.  We’ll let him ship Wycelf and Pras to Gitmo for a chance to live out that dream.  If Barack Obama can get the Ayatollah to back down on the nukes, the Black President can get Lauryn on stage before last call.

2.) Is Scooter fitna pay me my money?

Unemployment on the day Barack Obama was inaugurated was 8.3%.  Today’s unemployment rate is 4.8%.

Word to the Black President, if Scooter ain’t payin’, it’s ‘cause you weak, dawg.

1.) Is Tupac still alive?

Because Barack Obama killed Bin Laden and opened up Cuba which means he knows how to find people who are supposed to be dead (and make them dead) and now, he has unfettered access to the last bastion of Cold War isolation in the western hemisphere.  I’m just sayin’…

If Tupac Shakur is, then the Black President knows where he’s at.  If he ain’t, then he knows who killed him (I’ve seen the second National Treasure movie).  Either way, the black community needs some closure with this and the Black President owes it to us to finish his term out with the unvarnished truth about the African American Bigfoot.

Barack Obama may have had two terms full of accomplishments, but the Black President has left us all hanging.  Here’s hoping that our citrus and basketball brethren and sistren aren’t as disappointed if we elect our first orange president.

Corey Richardson

Corey Richardson is originally from Newport News, Virginia currently living in Chicago, Illinois with his wife and two daughters. Ad guy at work, Dad guy in life, and whiskey enthusiast, Corey spends his time crafting words, telling bedtime stories, and working hard at becoming the legend he is in his own mind. You can read his paternal musings at FatherlyNoir.com where he chronicles his life doing battle with all of the women with his last name.

  • I’m currently sitting about a half mile from Ben Carson High School. I can feel the shame from here.

    • Brown Rose

      I am still trying to figure out what was wrong with the man? Was he always that crazy?

      • Hugh Akston

        QNA

        • Brown Rose

          Well I guess…shame…shame…

      • Tambra

        The Trump effect.

      • I believe so. My Podiatrist actually had him as a professor in Med School, and as bright as he was, he was always a touch off.

        • My wife is in med school and I’m surprised at how many idiots she deals with on a daily basis. Your primacy care physician can actually disbelieve global warming. I don’t understand how people can compartmentalize like that.

          • Medical school rewards a particular sort of intelligence in recall. It’s necessary for the job, but it doesn’t apply well outside of that context.

            • Kylroy

              This comment explains how idiot savants function in any specialized field. And neurosurgery is a *very* specialized field, where any number of flaws (like the inability to open your eyes beyond a squint, or a good connection to reality) are forgiven when you’re good at it.

              • Lea Thrace

                “like the inability to open your eyes beyond a squint”

                flawless yet TRUE shade. *round of applause*

            • Brown Rose

              I agree with this. I’ve never understood the vaunted status of doctors as philosophical renaissance men/women. To me I see them in the same vein as a car mechanic, they are bio mechanics whose only function is to make sure that the body is tuned up to not completely lose all gears before the expiration date.

              • Kylroy

                Key difference being people tend to value their lives over their automobiles, so folks wax poetic about doctors.

                • Brown Rose

                  I’ve seen the opposite. I have seen too many bad doctors in action. its actually refreshing when you meet one who is empathetic and cares.

                  • THIS! I had a job that required me to deal directly with doctors…and I grew to understand the natural health movement as a result. When you watch a doctor be a complete a$$hole with patient after patient, I can see why a patient would check for a naturopath that isn’t a complete jerk and who is often a decent human.

                    • Brown Rose

                      Indeed. If not a naturapath then it was the chiropractor picking up the slack.

              • Brother Mouzone

                Nice analogy.

            • Negro Libre

              It also helps that people understand that science is different from philosophy. Two people can be geniuses and still believe in completely different things. Tesla for instance died thinking that Einstein’s theory of Relativity was nothing more than witchcraft.

              • Hugh Akston

                One thing that I learned watching debates between top scientists on philosophy ethics is that they make bad philosophers

                • Negro Libre

                  Prime example is Sam Harris. Anytime he gets asked a question about “ethics” he can’t help himself from admitting that he has a little totalitarianism in him.

                • NomadaNare

                  Really scientists are bad at everything

                  • Hugh Akston

                    lol I wouldn’t say everything but definitely philosophy

              • Blueberry01

                There’s also different types of intelligences as well, such as Howard Gardner’s theory.

            • Agreed. Smartest dumb people I’ve ever met.

            • PinkRose

              I think the “recall” based was old school. Most schools these days have adapted their curriculum (i.e Problem Based Learning) over the past 10 or so years to emphasize more critical thinking.

            • Spychiatrist

              Keep that in mind next time you need an ER doc to make that differential diagnosis in order to determine whether to give that life saving treatment or not.

          • Negro Libre

            Americans have too much faith in how smart, people in science and technology actually are.

            • miss t-lee

              It’s because folks like to tout the STEM fields as the end all be all.

              • Tambra
                • *Scans the horizon again for lies*

                  • Tambra

                    There are some things I prefer to read and move along. The ig’nant genes aint that strong.

                    • I know people who work in surgical wards. They have more than a few stories about doctors and such.

                    • Tambra

                      Yup. Drs are right up there with lawyers. A next insufferable bunch.

                    • Kas

                      Some of my good friends are lawyers.

                    • Tambra

                      That doesn’t mean they aren’t insufferable.

                    • Kas

                      They really aren’t, but I know some that are exactly as you describe. Nothing worse than dealing with someone who thinks they are the smartest person in the room.

                    • Tambra

                      My campus is the smallest of the 3 of my University, and for a long time it was where law was concentrated. So we got a bunch of bougie well off persons as well as some pretty racists Indians who flocked to the law faculty. For some reason they thought they were the smartest so were demanding special amenities. Actually, they told them they were better than the rest of us, though all they frickin did was regurgitate.

              • Negro Libre

                Honestly, my dad pointed something out to me a couple years ago, that if it has to do with education and it’s being advertised as such, it’s because it’s not needed as much any more. Think about Ivy League commercials vs. ITT commercials.

                It’s the same thing with programming, there’s a whole lot of hype about how kids need to learn how to program, this and that, those of us who are in the field, who know where the trends are going, are simply shaking our heads: the country doesn’t need programmers.

                But that’s how the economy works, when supply and demand isn’t enough, inflate values with media and psychology (aka the Wall Street Bubble Formula)

                • miss t-lee

                  Just saying, everybody doesn’t need to be pushed into these fields. If that’s their passion sure. Otherwise no.

                  • Leggy

                    The Nigerian in me severely disagrees with you. More black people need to fu ck passion and go into STEM.

                    • miss t-lee

                      Yeah no.
                      If I had to work in STEM I’d jump off the nearest tallest thing I could find.

                    • Leggy

                      But you’ll be able to use your money as a spring board. Honestly, more black people need to fu ck passion and go into professional fields in general.

                    • miss t-lee

                      Everybody is not about making money to be happy.
                      I’m all for folks doing a job they actually want to do, not one they were forced into because of their parents, society, etc.

                    • Scorpiogoddess??

                      Exactly!

                    • Leggy

                      thats very American of you.

                    • miss t-lee

                      Well…I am American so…there’s that.

                    • Leggy

                      Yup!

                    • miss t-lee
                    • Epsilonicus

                      People also behave as if the only way to financial security is through those fields.

                    • miss t-lee

                      Bingo!

                    • miss t-lee

                      So many ways to win out here.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      And folks can only see one way… welp sucks to be them

                    • miss t-lee

                      Indeed.

                    • PinkRose

                      There are no absolutes in life, no “only” way to do anything, and I don’t see “people” saying STEM is the only way.

                      But it’s a certifiable FACT that the highest paying jobs in the last 50 years almost all require STEM education. Can you make 6 figures without being in STEM? Of course, but its about how fast you want to get there.

                    • Scorpiogoddess??

                      Another Fact doe is we can’t all be Stemmy’s. I hate the sciences with all of my heart, especially biology. The only thing I know is osmosis, with the potato and how to make a baby.

                    • PinkRose

                      Nor should we all be Stemmys (that’s a cute phrase, BTW).

                      My point (which seems to blow by those in their feelings about their non STEM degrees) is that avoiding a career or major because it’s hard/requires a lot of work, is something Black (Americans) folks just need to STOP.

                    • Scorpiogoddess??

                      Understood your point fully and agree.

                      I have no problem with Stemmy’s I love ya’lls. It’s just not my calling.

                    • miss t-lee

                      Hated that I was forced to take it. Have I used it since? Hellz nah.

                    • Blueberry01

                      Not all subjects have direct application to your life. But they all force you to think critically (within their own respective fields) and this trait is invaluable no matter what you end up doing in life.

                    • miss t-lee

                      Thinking critically…true. Let’s just say I’m glad i’ll never see a chemistry class again. EVER.

                    • Blueberry01

                      What? You mean you’re not making that Angelina Jolie in your basement?

                    • miss t-lee

                      Hahah. Nope!

                    • Scorpiogoddess??

                      Glory!!! Testimony. Testify. Preach.

                    • pls

                      They kind of used to be, though. Seems like now they are making everybody think they need to study STEM while still exercising their preference for Asian hires

                    • Epsilonicus

                      Not really.

                      Imma use my fam as an example. Here are the careers that allowed my cousins (Gen X) to move from poverty to middle class.

                      – naval intelligence officer
                      – college guidance counselor
                      – logistics manager at UPS
                      – worked at Social Security
                      – accountant
                      – clothing designer
                      – photographer
                      – consultant for nonprofits.
                      – Mercenary

                      A wide variety of careers that allowed them to all stack paper and move into DC suburbs, send their kids to college, and save for retirement.

                    • Val

                      Clothing designer and mercenary? Interesting.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      My clothing designer cousin sells most of her stuff out the country. She has very few sales in the USA.

                      The cousin thats a merc… he is an interesting guy to say the least.

                    • Samantha

                      Hi… I’m interested to know more about the designer. Why are most of her sales out of the country? Where and to who does she sell? Is her business online?

                      I have a friend who is attempting to get her clothing business off the ground and any helpful info I can pass her way would be awesome. Thanks in advance.

                    • Question

                      …but how many people are shooting for middle class? Isn’t THAT the problem – what people are aiming for…especially when you talk about young people? 3 weeks of paid vacation a year, kids through school and a decent retirement is failure, yet popular culture tell it…

                    • PinkRose

                      Middle Class = working for some other (usually racist m*f*) for the rest of your life?!? To h ell with that! Not only that, ONE lay off/serious injury and you could very well end up in poverty.

                      Entrepreneurship is the best way to create generational wealth and THAT is what Black folks should be shooting for!

                    • Question

                      I agree with your message in theory, in reality, its a recipe for failure or financial stress for the majority of people. Everyone isn’t cut out to own/run a business. Most people aren’t nearly as good at _______ as they think they are. Some people aren’t interested in really doing ALL of the work. And some businesses shouldn’t even be started.

                      Yea, I agree, businesses are a great path to generational wealth. But it isn’t for everyone, and businesses aren’t necessary for generational security. More of us need to be pursuing generational security.

                    • PinkRose

                      I think “security” is a myth. People thought real estate was “secure” then the market crashed.

                      I also tend to think life is stressful, so what can you do?.As I’ve gotten older, I’m more selective about the stress I’m going to deal with career wise.

                      IMHO, people count on (Black) people thinking they aren’t “made for business” when we actually are nd always have been i.e the barter system. One of my grandmothers sold flowers by day and moonshine by night, thus was an entrepreneur. But I’m sure many people never “looked” at her as a business woman.

                      That’s why I no longer laugh at the dude selling his “goods” like fake Guccis at the beauty shop, ’cause at least he’s doing his best to be his own boss.

                      And outside of lottery who do you know built generations wealth that did NOT have a business, and I ain’t talking about that half milli to milli wealth, because IMHO, that won’t last much beyond 1 lifetime.

                    • Last Word

                      Security isn’t a myth, and assets such as real estate can always be sold or rented to have secondary income to stay afloat and maintain wealth in situations like a recession. If a half mili to a mil is invested properly it can and should triple beyond that 1 lifetime. The problem is that many people simply do not have the business knowledge, skills, and drive it takes to obtain and sustain wealth. I also know plenty of folks calling themselves Ceo’s and executives who are NOT earning CEO’s or Executive pay or benefits, and some are even operating illegally and off the books. Furthermore, I wouldn’t worry myself about whether or not my wealth last beyond 1 lifetime, your kids could marry a white person who spouse raises their kids to be completely different from what you think and believe entirely.

                    • PinkRose

                      When I say security is a “myth” I mean that having it today is NO GUARANTEE of having it tomorrow.

                    • Last Word

                      I’m aware of that but the game hasn’t changed over the decades, only the players. Security is never 100% infallible, but there are plenty of things you can do to secure yourself. And to comment from a post you made earlier, I think its important to keep in mind that Middle class ranges from approx. $50-250k and depending on which state and location you’re living in that’s more than enough to live and create and comfortable amount of wealth in your lifetime, IF you live within your means AND invest properly. Also, working for someone else isn’t a bad thing at all, especially if you love your job and it has excellent benefits. You can always create a business on the side until you’re ready to go full time, without risking all or nothing on the being a full-time entrepreneur. Being financially wealthy usually means you have different streams of income, and having a diverse portfolio is a necessity for sustaining long term wealth.

                    • PinkRose

                      I think technology has changed the game substantially, creating a bigger gap between the haves and the have nots. As an example, many progressive schools are teaching programming these days which I think is to more fine tune critical thinking skills than actually prepare for a career endpoint as a programmer. But not one of the inner city/low income schools I occasionally volunteer at teach it and I don’t think that’s a coincidence.

                      Yes, the middle class has been designated to be 50K-250K but I hope we call all agree that that depends on too many factors to name in one comment. But the bottom line is that 50K is pretty much squat no matter where you live, generally speaking.

                      And as a Black person with a technical background, the idea of working for other people indefinitely is the absolute worst thing ever, long term. Turns out that stepping outside of society’s “place for a negra gal” i.e maid, grade school teacher, nursing, human resources, ect, didn’t turn out to be the panacea I thought I would be based on my talent, grades, and work ethic. But I also get that working for others works for some people too.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      I also wanted to add that Black Americans are more likely to start a business than anyone else. Our struggle with entrepreneurship has more to do with access to capital and other systemic issues than us actually attempting to start a business.

                      For example, the folks I went to private school with had access to capital in so many ways. First, many of them were able to leverage funds from parents. Their parents would give them money from savings, from equity in the home, or co-sign loans. Secondly. they were in circles with folks willing to loan 10k to help with start up. 3rd, they could get money from financial institutions. And we know many of our financial institutions still discriminate.

                      I am not saying it is impossible. I am saying that Black folks still attempt to be entrepreneurs more often than anyone else even with all the institutional barriers in our way.

                    • PinkRose

                      Black WOMEN are the leaders in being entrepreneurs:

                      http://fortune.com/2015/06/29/black-women-entrepreneurs/

                    • Blueberry01

                      They would co-sign loans?!? Yikes!

                    • Epsilonicus

                      When you have the money it’s not that risky

                    • Epsilonicus

                      Half on the list work for themselves but they are middle class. I meant incomes, not necessarily jobs.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      Everyone thinks they are gonna be rich. They are not. USA does not have the social mobility it used to have. Just does not. UK has better social mobility and they have a landed aristocracy.

                      I am not saying do not try to hit it big. I am just saying that it is a good chance it may not happen. Like they say, shoot for the moon and if you miss you just might land in the stars. Have a back up plan just in case you miss. Hope for the best but prep for the worst.

                    • iphone300

                      Mercenary!?

                    • Epsilonicus

                      I don’t know the details. Some “security”/Blackwater-esque firm that operates in M.E. & East Africa.

                    • Cleojonz

                      Close family friend does the same. Works on contracts. There a few months, home a few. Gives VERY few details about what he actually does. I think a certain personality trait is shared by those that do that kind of work.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      My cuzzo is the boot on the ground. His last mission was he saved someone who was kidnapped. No idea where though

                    • pls

                      I don’t think we are arguing the same thing. STEM majors/careers were imo “elite” a decade ago. I wasn’t saying STEM was the only way to get money.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      Ahh I get it. Yeah. If you want “status”, STEM is a way to go. If you care less about status and want just the money, there are tons of options.

                    • miss t-lee

                      Many ways to skin a cat.

                    • brothaskeeper

                      Mercenary? That’s dope!

                    • Epsilonicus

                      Started after the military

                    • brothaskeeper

                      I mean, it’s dope if he’s not one of those mercs sparking coups for the CIA to empower a despot sympathetic to deleterious organizations and regimes. By the way, Ep, you never agreed/disagreed with my BOBS/Stankonia parallel.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      Who knows. The fam never gets enough details to actually determine that. He is getting out the business though. He like 45 and his knees ain’t what they used to be.

                      What was the BOBS/Stankonia comparison again?

                    • brothaskeeper

                      I said that BOBS somewhat begat Stankonia.

                    • Leggy

                      What is the average salary for say…a photographer? About $32k a year. It’s fine that your family could make money off of it but it’s extremely disingenuous to make it seem like most people are making money off of being photographers. And it’s a fact that the median pay for STEMs are higher than most of these jobs you’ve listed. Fact is nobody on this thread is saying that nobody else but STEM is making money but it’s a fact that most top paying jobs require a stem degree that you can get right out of college.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      If you play the game right, you can turn your passion into a living instead of doing STEM to “pay the bills”. Thats what I’m saying. STEM aint the be all and end all of earning a good living.

                    • Leggy

                      What you’re sharing are anecdotes. No one said STEM is the be all and end all. Everyone isn’t meant to study that but more African Americans absolutely should! And not all passions should be pursued and most passions aren’t going to be realized and most passions are not going to make you money. Most people are not special. So to think you’re going to be the special one to make more than the average salary of the career you’re going into for the passion is a pipe dream. The chances of that happening is low.

                    • Blueberry01

                      Wow, Leggy. You seem negative.

                    • Leggy

                      I’d just rather deal in facts.

                    • Blueberry01

                      Well, you seem negative about the facts.

                    • Leggy

                      Lmao.

                    • Blueberry01

                      Exactly. Your talent will male room for you.

                    • Blueberry01

                      “Everybody is not about making money to be happy.”

                      #THIS

                      That’s why most of us have been or are on therapy now. We valued acquiring things (e.g. wealth, status) and forgot to nurture our souls in the process.

                    • miss t-lee

                      Indeed.

                    • That’s so Nigerian of you..lol

                    • Kas

                      But I really like illustrating comic books.

                    • Blueberry01

                      And I bet if you really did (I’m assuming that you’re sarcastic nature is showing, again), you’d have an untapped market for AA comic books.

                    • Kas

                      But would I make as much money as a nice electrical engineer (favorite major for non-american poc)?

                    • Blueberry01

                      Honestly, Kas. Don’t sleep on these untapped markets.

                      I believe that your gifts/talents will make room for you.

                      I also believe you’re being sarcastic again. Lol.

                    • Scorpiogoddess??

                      Completely disagree!

                    • PinkRose

                      See I kinda disagree with that. Get that paper FIRST, then USE IT to pursue your passion!

                    • Leggy

                      And I agree! Side hustles exist for a reason but make sure you invest in a sure thing first.

                    • Question

                      Like the Mormom’s say “even God takes a back seat when you’re broke”.

                    • Right in front of a train.

                    • Tambra

                      Now you see my original response. I actually expected a particular someone to pipe in by now.

                    • PinkRose

                      I wonder who?

                    • Tambra

                      No name, no warrant!

                    • miss t-lee

                      You feel me?!

                    • Kas

                      I always crack up when Africans/West Indians respond to some foolishness about letting their kids find their passion.

                    • Tambra

                      Hey! Why the West Indian slander?

                    • Kas

                      My comment was not meant as slander.

                    • Tambra

                      Aite.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      It is not slander if it is true.

                    • Tambra

                      I had hope for you. Not today satan, not today.

                    • Blueberry01

                      Probably because they have African descendants

                    • Scorpiogoddess??

                      On the basis we need more black folks in STEM. Other than that, follow your passion and find a way to make it rain in $$ or bitcoins. You don’t want to do something you are passionless about. Trust.

                    • Leggy

                      Sometimes a job should be just a job. This notion that you have to love what you do is extremely American. Sometimes a job is just about the money and a secured future.

                    • Scorpiogoddess??

                      No. It is not American.

                      There is nothing as depressing as being in a soul sucking job in the name of money. Phakkk that. It should have a time limit. Can’t be doing it for the rest of your life. I don’t care that the yester year generation did that.

                    • Question

                      I think we’re missing the middle ground. Its also soul sucking to be in a career that wears you out and refuses to pay you more than $50K a year. I also wonder how many of us make informed decisions about our career choices generally (not speaking relative to other communities, just toward Black folks in general).

                    • Scorpiogoddess??

                      My point is, find your pa$$ion and make it happen, financially. Passion is not just wetting a canvas with paint and having obscure ‘art’. You can have well thought out passions.

                    • Question

                      But for a lot of people, having a passion is wet paint and obscure art because they lack the ability to be self-critical. I guess that’s why I advocate for the middle ground. For a small group of people, being laser focused on a passion is the way to go because they have the skills, knowledge and self-awareness to make it work.

                      For the rest, I feel like passions could actually be well served by balancing out skills with disciplined life experience. And no one is saying you have to get that disciplined life experience through some soul-sucking, unrelated job working in Viagra’s call centers. There’s a middle ground.

                    • Scorpiogoddess??

                      Gotcha.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      I would like to add to what you wrote.

                      The issue is that we often say having a passion is good and or bad. However, no matter what we never teach people the business side of passion. So yes, paint all you want. Being highly skilled is important. But you need to understand the business side of the art world and how it works from creating a piece to it selling in and auction or gallery. That would help a lot of people out.

                      This fits for STEM people. A lot of them know the science but do not understand the business side of what they do. And you need BOTH.

                    • NomadaNare

                      “But for a lot of people, having a passion is wet paint and obscure art because they lack the ability to be self-critical.”

                      Woo child

                      Social media has made everybodys shallow real deep

                    • brothaskeeper

                      Because they’re being enabled. On 60 Minutes last night, there was a segment on advertising, and the interviewees were all young people who post generally 5-second blurbs on their IG/SnapChat/FB of absolute nonsense (one of them strictly did splits at different locales all over the globe, another interviewee was Kim K.). Ad agencies run algorithms to tabulate the amount of likes and views that these people receive and based on those numbers, they solicit them to promote their product in some of their vignettes. A day’s work can earn them $300k.

                    • Leggy

                      This notion that not doing the only thing you love is depressing is a big lie. Education is a big investment. You’re paying a huge ton of money for that degree the returns better be fu cking worth it. You can’t plop down 100s of thousands of dollars for a degree that you know that the average income in the country you’re in is barely over minimum wage. It’s just math.

                    • Scorpiogoddess??

                      I’m not advocating for you to study the history of restless leg syndrome to go back to Africa and be jobless oo. There has to be logic somewhere.

                    • Last Word

                      If its a field you love then why not? We often times forget that there’s plenty of successful people in every field of study. Creativity, work ethic, and networking are always three essential things to becoming successful regardless of the degree you have. Chasing a high profile law or doctor’s degree because you “heard” it pays well has end badly more times than good.

                    • Leggy

                      I think most people go into fields they love by looking at people who are successful in that field and forgetting that that might not be the norm. I don’t know why “heard” is in quotation, a lawyer is more likely to make money than say a writer (very few writers are able to live off their books) so yes you can look at the averages and make a learned decision. and this notion that you can only be passionate or knowledgeable about one thing is bs. I just think more black people need to start treating college like a business investment, until black people are in an economic position where they can decide careers solely based on “passion”.

                    • Last Word

                      Some people pursue careers because its pays well, and some people pursue their careers because they love doing the work. My mindset from the jump was that I would be successful regardless of what I studied, so to be in full control of my life it was a no-brainer for me to pursue a field that I loved. And I agree that college is a business investment that’s all too often overlooked until cap-n-gown day.

                    • PinkRose

                      And I wonder why so many Africans/Caribbeans “get this”, while others don’t.

                      Actually I don’t wonder. EVER!

                    • Question

                      Its messaging. Think about the messages that Americans are inundated with. “American dream”. “Rags to riches”. Dr. Dre orbiting billionaire territory based on recycled beats and recycled Beats. And in many ways, its why Africans & Caribbeans who “get this” come to the US to pursuit It.

                    • PinkRose

                      OMG, the “messaging”, I could speak on that ALL day.

                      No one ever stops to think about why with the exception of the Fast and Furious movies series, Black Americans aren’t featured in a major way as masters of STEM. And you cant be what you don’t see. They tried with City and Abgels and that lasted what, 1/2 season?

                      But that housewife series and all the others like it? We Black Americans FULLY support that triflingness so much so that it’s now ingrained in our culture.

                    • Leggy

                      Preach!!

                    • Blueberry01

                      And I’ve personally witnessed Africans and Caribbeans chase the American dream/keep up with the Joneses, only to be house poor or severely in debt.

                    • Negro Libre

                      Yes and No.

                      My uncle once pointed out to me that it’s only in third world countries that are poor, where every one wants to become a doctor, lawyer or engineer. The more robust an economy is, the more options it has for people. Granted those are “secure” fields of study though, sheed, that’s where I’m at, so I get it.

                      That being said, the STEM fields are severely overhyped right now, the push by government and the media doesn’t match up with the actual economic demand, since the labor cost on the global market that Americans demand is too high. It’s like colleges, all the market forces say that the price to go to school should have dropped massively, but the bubble is being propped up.

                      The best advice is to understand the industry you’re going into as a business person would, regardless of if you’re an employee or not. If there’s one thing our economy needs, it’s people who understand the fact that we are in a global economy, and plan out their careers and economic decisions with that in their back of their minds.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      Good explanation

                    • That last paragraph is true. I don’t think STEM is overhyped per se as much as the structure is out of whack. We need more community college STEM types, where it’s not-quite a trade, not-quite a university degree. It takes a certain unique sort of mindset for those jobs, but our education sucks at that kind of stuff. Also, there’s a lot of money for people with STEM education out there, but it’s not necessarily stuff that is taught (and one can reasonably argue if it should be taught) in school. Heck, there’s no class that teaches what I do in college, but once you pick it up, the world’s your oyster.

                    • Negro Libre

                      Let me clarify a bit:

                      I don’t think STEM itself is overhyped, I think the current push for it is. Wall Street does this all the time, when an upstart public company is surging, the media barely covers it, and wall street ends up investing loads and loads of capital into it. Then all of a sudden, messages start coming out on bloomberg and CNBC that this stock is hot, and everyone should start buying (in reality, those who got in early are trying to sell their shares).

                      You can say the same about the STEM fields, for instance, the most valuable and probably highest paying field out of college right now, is a degree in Statistics, because of Big Data. I’ve talked to recruiters recently, and they’ve been telling me that companies are willing to train statisticians how to program, they don’t care for it as much as they used to. The current trends of Machine Learning and Increasingly A.I. are more reliant on understanding probability models than understanding programming languages. Not that they don’t matter, they’re just secondary.

                      I do agree though, the major problem with STEMs is the fact that they are designed to produce researchers (usually the research of the professors), not necessarily to teach people for the sake of business or careers. One of my favorite bloggers in Psychiatry was pointing out that a big problem in our educational system as a whole, is you’re trained in a feudal manner to be a part of a corporation (despite the fact that corporations are increasingly in decline), rather than being taught how you can build or leverage your knowledge into something more independent (Consulting, Entrepreneurship, Investing etc).

                      That being the case, it’s like I learned about the field of Medicine before I called it quits: there’s still money in it, but the money is nowhere, where it used to be. If you’re going in, you should know that before jumping in.

                    • Blueberry01

                      “educational system as a whole, is you’re trained in a feudal manner to be a part of a corporation (despite the fact that corporations are increasingly in decline), rather than being taught how you can build or leverage your knowledge into something more independent (Consulting, Entrepreneurship, Investing etc).”

                      #FACTS

                    • iphone300

                      What do you do, if you dont mind just curious

                    • Long story short, I’m the guy who makes sure all the tests that are done in the lab work, do what they’re supposed to do and are done the right way. You need a scientific background to do it, but unless you’re lucky or resourceful enough to get on a project to teach you how to do it, you aren’t going to learn how.

                    • Helga G.Pataki

                      Agreed. There are SO many careers in STEM that aren’t mentioned to high school and college kids. Unfortunately a lot of kids are led to believe that STEM only leads to a generic engineer, lab rat, or medical career and there needs to be more promotion of the actual possibilities.

                    • In fairness to the college counselors, they don’t even know what they don’t know. There’s so many different ways to flip a career in STEM, but most of them you don’t find about until you’re in the field for a few years.

                    • Helga G.Pataki

                      Very true. My experience in undergrad as a biology pre-med major- it wasn’t until I realized I did not want to go to med school anymore that other STEM options became more visible to me, and I credit that to my advisor in the TRIO program getting me an internship with a clinical-translational program. Before then I thought my only options were doctor, traditional lab work, or teacher none of which appealed to me.

                    • Blueberry01

                      I concur. The primary and secondary US educational system is not set up for mastery of topics (just “touch and go”), nor does it a foster a community of learners.

                    • Leggy

                      I live in America and I’m for professional courses. You should look at education as an investment. The 100s of thousands of dollars you’re plopping down for that education better be yielding returns. The whole passion thing is very extemely overrated imo.

                    • NomadaNare

                      I think this is interesting

                      To me a *global economy* means that all the standard of living gradients that foment cheap labor and delineates skilled positions versus those of unskilled laborers are disappearing as knowledge becomes democratized and more easily accessible

                      I think we are somewhere in the late stages of capitalism where the worm starts to eat its tail

                    • Blueberry01

                      I would also like to add that your ability to come (and stay) in the US is based on a valid reason, such as school, and your overall benefit to this country.

                      So, one would pick a profession that Americans deem as noble AND require a long time to complete.

                  • O

                    This house clearly doesn’t have a lot of scientist in it ??

                    • miss t-lee

                      Y’all STEM folks are a sensitive bunch.

                • NomadaNare

                  Youve seen commercials for Ivy League programs

                  • Negro Libre

                    Nah, not ever.

                • Blueberry01

                  Interesting perspective.

                  Also, I may add that the Calculus that you learn at ITT (or any non-Ivy League school) is the same Calculus that you learn at Harvard.

                  Just $30,000 cheaper.

            • Scorpiogoddess??

              It’s NOT just Americans, the world over. Let’s be real.

            • CHURCH! There are a scary amount of smart idiots out there.

              • miss t-lee

                I work with plenty and yes…scary as heyll.

            • Question

              That’s cuz people conflate specialized knowledge and wealth with intelligence and societal worth. Hence Donald Trump. You want to see the Left’s version of the same cult of the personality; let Elon Musk or Richard Branson (if they could) run for Office and see what happens…

              • NomadaNare

                You are so smart

            • NomadaNare

              OMG THIS

              No one has any idea of what theyre actually doing

              • Question

                And that’s what I dont like about all these “case studies” of success. They never mention the influence of luck and timing or the fact that most of them started out with a completely different idea…and were willing to change course when they realized ________ wasn’t going to work they way they thought it would.

            • Blueberry01

              #FACTS

              Also, we haven’t made as many techonological or scientific strides as other countries have, so our educational system pales in comparison.

          • PinkRose

            The medical profession is FULL of them, but the Black folks tend to be much better about this.

            Except Dr. Carson of course.

            • I agree. It’s probably because in order to be Black and in med school, you have to excel at all subjects, period. Twice as good means you are not a fool by the time you’re done with undergrad.

              • PinkRose

                I think the standard for STEM PhD’s is quite similar or even worse, especially if you’re in a field dominated by Asians.

                At least with medical school, you have a standard 4 year curriculum, longer depending on passing those USMLEs on time. However, I knew one young Black woman that took 12 years just to get her STEM PhD, and that’s absolutely insane! But she hung in there!

          • NomadaNare

            Its because medical school is a professional school which trains you for a specific job not how to think critically

            • PinkRose

              Bingo! PhD programs teaches people how to think critically.

          • Spychiatrist

            Maybe she should work with primary care physician instead.

            PS: I hold a degree in engineering and mathematics, and I would dispute the assertion of man-made global warming and/or climate change from here to eternity. It’s completely contrived BS to take more or your tax money and give it to a global super-state.

        • A touch off…bruh, he is batshyt nuts!

        • Brown Rose

          Maybe being a Seventh Day Adventist hides a multitude of crazy.

          • Tambra

            Uh??

          • Kylroy

            Pretty sure most SDAs don’t have pictures of themselves chilling with Jesus hanging around all over their homes.

      • Probably. People think expertise in one thing lends to expertise in another. He was more than likely an expert in medicine only. Surgeons are known for not having lives.

        • PinkRose

          I’ve met Dr. Carson and I found him to be quite personable and not because I understand a lot of what he says professionally. He also has a wife and kids, so I’m not sure why you think he doesn’t have “a life”.

          Maybe most Surgeons don’t have lives, but all of the Black surgeons I’ve met/know, even the female ones, have families.

          • I mean in the sense that they miss a lot. My aunt is a doctor and told me the pressure of medical school and the specificity of surgery(brain surgery being on of the most complicated) leaves little room for much else for a long stretch of time.

            • PinkRose

              And there IS a HUGE difference between being a Doctor/Surgeon WITH a wife and being a Doctor AND a wife.

      • Jazz G

        (sigh) I graduated from Spelman in 2004 and Ben Carson was our speaker. I was so excited. I had read Gifted Hands as a child and he inspired me to become a physician.

        The speech he gave was the absolute worst. I couldn’t believe it. He started it with, to all the young men in the audience. And then he went on and on about respectability politics. He was the worst… And he murdered my dreams that day.

        • Brown Rose

          My god thats awful! I am sorry. We’ll it’s official, he’s crazy and a s*dist.

        • Blueberry01

          To all of the men in the audience? Lol!

          Was your brother and father there, too?

          • Jazz G

            Lol! They actually were but they weren’t graduating. And isn’t that who most commencement speakers talk to? The graduates. It was just the worst.

            • Blueberry01

              Yeah, girl, I got what you were saying. Lol. You go to Spellman not Morehouse.

              I was just as surprised as you to read that he (hopefully, accidentally) acknowledged the minority of men in the audience.

  • Brown Rose

    I remember that busted copy of Gifted Hands floating around my house as a kid and my mom urging me to read it for inspiration as long as I read it in the Florida room and not on the plastic covered living room furniture. As to grits? Nah, not a grit fanatic. We either did cornmeal mush or farina with sugar.

  • -h.h.h.-

    if you put salt in your Grits, you’re probably grew up a Dallas Cowboy fan, but you lowkey have a Brady Jersey.

    if you put Salt in your Grits, you use Rogaine to connect your goatee.

    https://i.imgflip.com/i4sbq.jpg

  • Yellow Tail

    For #4 everyone says niqqa and I mean everyone…Asian, Indian, white Latino, white Russian, Jewish, etc. This is what I’ve seen all around NYC. It’s over.

    • Yeah… but they ain’t saying it around us….

      • PDL – Cape Girl Shero

        Bet not

      • Yellow Tail

        They are though! I see it all the time when they’re in a group with a few black friends. They say it on the trains and streets too.

        • New blacks don’t count.

          • L8Comer

            I think it’s the new generation of kids…?

            • miss t-lee

              The ones that don’t know any better.

          • miss t-lee

            Bingo.

          • Cleojonz

            It’s really not just new blacks though. It’s just a teenager thing at this point. Once you get past a certain age you don’t hear it like that. Trust me where I am it’s all teenagers girls and boys all nationalities.

            • it depends who is raising them.. my daughter ain’t for the games.

              • Cleojonz

                I hear you, but look who her momma is :) I bet she knows better that to be slick with different language than she would use in your actual presence, not to mention she has to be one of the most aware teens there is.

                • Awww.. why thank you maam! she is extremely aware.. she gives her white teachers he11..lmao

                  She actually speaks pretty freely around me… ironically- I encourage.. no cussing but if she articulates a clean, concise argument- she typically gets what she asks for… She’s a good kid. Turned 15 this past Thursday.

    • dadumdee

      Yeah, I saw 2 White guys fighting on worldstuh, dropping n bombs left and right at each other and I promptly gave up. I overanalyzed the implications of it all until my brain froze.

      • Tambra

        Some people think they have been given a pass, often by other black people.

        • dadumdee

          Passes been stolen since Jay Z been selling out stadiums and every ticket holder was encouraged to sing along with “Jiiiigga”. At the start of the tour, they were pensively looking over shoulders. By the end of the tour they were probably buying tickets just to be able to scream it at the top of their lungs.

          • Tambra

            I have an acquaintance from backwoods Tennessee, nuff said, who sent me a message to say he is part black . So I asked how the got that one worked out ? Oh some black person who probably working with him called him the word, so he is now an honorary one.

          • Cleojonz

            Well they are the ones who can get their parent’s to pay for these tickets in the first place. EYE can’t afford to go to a Jay-Z show, not that I would. My 16 year old Italian-Jewish niece went to a J-Cole show last summer. There were hardly any brown kids in attendance.

            • Two words: Roots Picnic

              • Cleojonz

                Oh has that been white washed too? Or is that one I can actually afford?

        • Can’t be givin out passes all willy nilly and ish.

          • Tambra

            Maybe there needs to be certification in giving out passes, so there is a sort of quality control.

          • Kas

            Can’t be giving out passes. Full stop. I gave out one back in the day but took it back.

          • miss t-lee

            *at all.

        • Val

          And some people think they get a pass because they’re rap fans.

          • Damn I hate when they pull up at the red light, and blast jay z, then look at me like…”yeah.”

          • mr. steal your costco samples

            yo they SCREAM it too. only time 2520 dudes are happier is when they watching the NCAAs and the Princeton offense results in a 43-42 game between Yale and Weber State

        • miss t-lee

          They’ll find out we ain’t all letting it slide when they get boxed in the mouth.

  • I’ll answer these questions…for the people.

    10. Yes. I never liked those kind of living rooms anyway. Plus, the stuff in these was only styling from 1962-1965 anyway. Let the dream die!
    9. I vote for keep it. We need more examples of flawed geniuses. His politics suck, but he’s a medical maestro. He’s a step towards the proverbial Bad Black X that Chris Rock dreamed about.
    8. Unfortunately, dude managed to hire some great lawyers despite his BS. You all know that cousin that you still let come to family gatherings but don’t really mess with like that because You Know How They Get Down? Yeah, let’s treat him like that.
    7. Portion control my people. Grits are fine in moderation.
    6. Your mistake was buying Jordans. #GoNYGo And they’re called WHEAT Timbs, thanks.
    5. Stop cooking with so much fat. We better than that now.
    4. Depends if they can pass the paper bag test. If they can’t, then let them cook, especially since a White person has probably called them that. Otherwise, we go to booth review on a case-by-case basis.
    3. No. L-Boogie has long since beamed off to Scottie. I would like Clef to record another album in English though. Dude has his issues, but ain’t no one caught him with no kids, and he’s incredibly talented. And screw Pras, even though he’s the reason my alma mater has a diamond record.
    2. No.
    1. Tupac is dead, and thank goodness. I get the feeling he’d be insufferable if he were alive. He was already trending that way during his too-short life.

    • Jae Starz

      Thank you for #6 smh peanut butter

    • Cleojonz

      Your #1 – I don’t get this perception of Tupac as the end all be all. Is it just because he’s no longer with us? And you are right he would be incredibly insufferable if he were still with us today. I agree 100% with Chuck D’s tweets. LL should most certainly go in the RRHF before Tupac. He brought Hip Hop main stream.

      • Epsilonicus

        Biggie was better

        • We only care about Biggie because Pac died. Biggie is honestly no different than Big L except he had some hits.

          • Epsilonicus

            Biggie was definitely a better rapper than Pac. Pac was liked because he was supposedly this revolutionary.

            • Lots of people were better rappers than Pac. Biggie only has notoriety because of his beef with Pac though. His legacy gets intertwined and elevated because of his association with Pac. 2Pac actually had a body of work before death. Pac was liked for a variety of albums.

              • JusticeNotServed

                “Biggie only has notoriety because of his beef with Pac though.”

                hahahah. no.

                • He dropped 1 album before dying. Come on man. If Pac and Biggie never had a beef but both died at the same time would we really hold him as high as we do?

                  • JusticeNotServed

                    definitely because quality >>> quantity always. Jay was on point on so appalled with “dark knight feeling, die you be a hero or live long enough to see yourself become a villain”. Biggie went out before he had a chance to “fall off”.

                    • mr. steal your costco samples

                      Biggie’s got the best narratives.

            • Kas

              Biggie was a better rapper, Pac’s lyrics resonated more. IMHO

          • That’s burying the lede though. Biggie was one of the few freestyle kingpins of that era to smooth it out and make radio friendly hits. Notice that no one talks about Lifestyles of the Poor and Dangerous outside of the backpacker crowd.

            • He was one of the most amazing well rounded rappers ever. He had no legacy before dying though

      • LL Cool J developed the modern hip hop song structure (with some assistance from Rick Rubin) of 16 bars-chorus-16 bars-chorus-16 bars. Without him, the modern hip hop song doesn’t exist. I agree with Chuck D. In Tupac’s partial defense, a lot of people like charismatic types, and he was definitely that type of person. Still, the streams show that the Cult of 2Pac is weak these days

        • Also he was dropping Gold/Platinum albums for 20 years.

        • Conrad Bess

          To this day I don’t understand the hate LL gets. Everybody’s fav rapper got a love song because of this man. His name rings out whenever you talk about the upper echelon of battle rap pioneers. He is one of the few legit MCs that WILL put hands on you if you take it there (broke a man’s jaw that broke into his house couple years back). At minimum, he has to be in the discussion of top 10.

          • I agree, but I do understand the case against him. While he wasn’t the first one to try to cross over with love songs, he was the first dude to do it big. It’s unfair, but real. Also, his bad songs are unlistenable. For every bold decision , he’s had a bad one.

      • miss t-lee

        I mean I love Pac, but let’s call it what it was. His best music was before he went to Death Row.

        • Kas

          The comment section came for E-40 last week, Tupac this week, I guess next week ya’ll coming after Too Short. Where will it end?

  • Kas

    Great article.

  • Freebird

    Grits with….gravy, salmon coquettes, sardines, cheese….just grits. I want some now.

    Folks still waiting on the Fugees this far gone from Dave Chapelles Block Party? I thought there were no more questions about how talentless anyone not named Lauryn was in that group.

    • miss t-lee

      dayum. I want some croquettes now.

      • Val

        One of my grandmother’s specialties.

        • Kas

          Mine as well.

        • miss t-lee

          Mmmmm.
          I haven’t made any in a long time, might make that happen this week.

    • `Abdu’l-Karim Ewing-Boyd

      I was just listening to How Many Mics in the car this morning, thinking about how far the talent dropped from one verse to another. It was drop dead gorgeus and then just got worser and worser. By the time we got to Praz it sounded like sugar grits taste.

    • Val

      Don’t forget shrimp and grits, FB.

      • Brown Rose

        Wait a minute. Shrimp and grits? I may have to reconsider my distaste for the hominy.

        • You should!

        • miss t-lee

          Yes. It’s heavenly.
          See also fish and grits.

      • I’m a textures person, and just holding grits in my mouth was like “yuck” as a kid. Then I dropped a ladle or two in a hot skillet, like a fritter – boom.

        • Val

          Fried grits? I think I’ve heard about that but I’ve never had any.

          • Pretty damn tasty seasoned up right.
            I refuse to say what seasoning, lol.

      • TeeChantel

        Replace shrimp with fish (not really a shrimp person) and we’re good.

        • Val

          As long as the fish is fried catfish. :-)

          *waits on the catfish haters*

          https://media.giphy.com/media/1iZH0VC67L332/giphy.gif

          • Who would EVER hate on catfish?

            • TeeChantel

              NARCs. And Trump supporters.

              • And Kanye.

                • Tilapia got them fooled

                  • miss t-lee

                    frankenfish.

              • Kas

                Facts

              • -h.h.h.-

                catfish? ugh.

                *hides Make America Great Again wallpaper*

                • mr. steal your costco samples

                  you 100% correct. trash fish for trash pallettes

              • brothaskeeper

                And people who put sugar on grits.

            • miss t-lee

              Plenty folks.

            • brothaskeeper

              People who tuck in their sweaters. And Wale.

          • Kas

            Who hate fried catfish?

      • Lawd shrimp and grits!!!

        • brothaskeeper

          Almost touched myself in a special way.

      • Freebird

        You know it V!

    • Cleojonz

      Wyclef saved a show I went to waiting on trifling a** Lauren Hill. She was a latecomer even back then. He just played guitar melodies of all the current hip hop songs. The crowd was really into and it was enough to not dissolve into anarchy until Ms. Hill arrived 90 minutes later. I have no use for Pras though.

  • PinkRose

    Ok Val, I’m waiting on your comment disguised as a post about this one! https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/dad279ef1e5ffb56d06822da91f87ec0e674ed51b57d4be52145c1dc8a9b6629.gif

  • To this day I’m still trying to figure out wtf are grits and the difference between salt and sugar.

    • Kylroy

      I’m hoping you’ve figured out the difference between salt and sugar *apart* from grits…

      • TeeChantel

        ……..

  • OSHH

    Totally off topic but i have watched two episodes of Insecure on Hbo, Issa joint, ep 1 and 3 a lil bit of 2.
    I have a question. Do millilenials, good women friends really talk to each other like that?
    Funny show a lil crude but the only time i call someone a b is when they are one, and or i dislike the personality.

    • Amber

      I really enjoyed the ABG webisodes and an generally very supportive of the other online shows but i wasn’t really feeling the HBO show. I’ll keep watching and hoping it’ll catch for me. I can’t answer your question. I don’t talk like that with my friends but i know others do so it ain’t fir me to judge i guess.

      • OSHH

        Thanks for the feedback.

    • miss t-lee

      I haven’t tried to watch it yet. I got bored with ABG early and haven’t looked back.

      • Thank you. I didn’t want to be the naysayer. And I want her to win.

        • miss t-lee

          Girl…everything ain’t for everybody. She’s got an audience, but the audience ain’t me. And, I’m okay with that.

          • Welp.

            • miss t-lee

              These are the same folks who think liking trap music and being educated somehow makes them special.

              • That’s why we’re peoples! I’m like folks been walking ratgchet intelligent lines since we been here.. Shutcho mochalatte Boones Farm ayus up.

                • miss t-lee

                  Amen.

                • Blueberry01

                  Please let them know ratchet music didn’t start with Future and Two Chains…

              • Troof.

              • OSHH

                Well…

              • Scorpiogoddess??

                Lol. Finish.

                • miss t-lee

                  What?

                  • Scorpiogoddess??

                    It’s a phrase meaning. No more needs to be said.

                    • miss t-lee

                      Ah! Thank you. :)

          • Amber

            I think the audience is mainly mid to late 20s. Maybe I aged out which is fine. Larry Wilmore is also on the writing team and I don’t find him particularly funny. I’m happy for her and it’s good that there’s more black variety out there.

            • miss t-lee

              I like Larry Wilmore, but it’s not enough to get me interested. You’re right, age definitely plays a factor I’m sure. However, I’m only a few years older and I’m just like…alrighty then.

              • Amber

                Yeah I’ve been hoping for a VSB post about the show. Alot of the folks I follow on twitter love it. I haven’t felt compelled to keep watching.

                • Can we not? lol

                  • Scorpiogoddess??

                    Nooo. Let’s can.

                • We have Atlanta.
                  Let them Twitterers be.

                  • Thank you!

                  • Kas

                    Saw the invisible car episode finally. I don’t say this lightly. The show is amazing.

                    • A dude in a sitting position.
                      People flying through the air.
                      I can die in peace now.

                    • Kas

                      The slap that had to have been heard around the world.

                  • kolakola

                    I don’t know, Atlanta, can give me the same type of vibes as well as far as who its made for. Or rather it gives me a Black Tumblr and Black Twitter had a baby vibe. I still like it though.

                    • Blueberry01

                      Did you say Black Tumblr and Black Twitter had a baby?!? ?

                • miss t-lee

                  It’s a whole love fest on twitter.

                  • Let’s keep it there!

                  • Amber

                    I think it’s cause in general folks want Issa to win. You know the talk for so long was how we were seeing her white peers doing so well and why didn’t she have a show like the Girls girl lol. So now she has something and I think people don’t want to be too critical.

                    • miss t-lee

                      I can dig it. I mean it’s good to have someone make it, but don’t be scared to be critical.

                    • Sigma_Since 93

                      People get all in their feeling and forget just because someone is critical doesn’t mean they don’t love you or want the best for you.

                    • miss t-lee

                      Truth.

          • Miss T, you’re singing my whole life with your words lol. I keep seeing people saying how the show speaks for us all. I’m like.. Us who??

            • Kas

              Us you or is her character too dark to speak for you? Happy Monday. :)

              • …Huh?

                The show and the writing lacks enough nuance to speak for me, if I’m being honest. But that has nothing to do with Rae’s complexion. I don’t get what you’re talking about.

                • Kas

                  Just starting sh*t.

                  • Sigma_Since 93

                    Kas is channeling his inner Silky Johnson

                  • Not your best work.

                    • Kas

                      In the spirit of Monday, I won’t take that as a personal challenge.

            • miss t-lee

              HAHAHAH. *daps*

            • **admiring Saw’s Lando Calrissian tee**

              • Tambra

                Hehehe.

      • OSHH

        Well…

      • ladyfresh

        I’m giving it the whole season like empire and HTGAWM just to support. After that you on your own

      • Blueberry01

        The second season just wasn’t as good as the first.

        Speaking of “First”, THAT is a good webseries!

        • miss t-lee

          I’ll have to look for it.

    • cakes_and_pies

      So much “n*gga, b&*^ch, and f*uck” every 3rd word. It’s off-putting.

      • OSHH

        Im like are they doing that just cause its HBO or is that how folk really roll?

        • Cleojonz

          She did this on the web series too though so I don’t think that’s it. If anything its a little less.

          • OSHH

            I don’t memba the profanity on ABG.

            • Lea Thrace

              it was definitely there. It was a pretty big turn off for me too. Cause as much of a potty mouth as I have, its mostly in my heard. Hearing it out loud is kinda jarring.

              • OSHH

                I was like am I getting old or what? Now i do use a few choice colorful words still, but i don’t call my bestest hey b”t$h or refer to her vag but esp as the p word etc

            • Digital_Underground

              It was there. That’s the reason I couldn’t get into it when so many others were hyping up the show. For me it gets in the way of the writing. But everyone has their own preferences.

              • OSHH

                That my thing. Vulgarity for vulgarity’s sake is trite.

                • Digital_Underground

                  Yes! People don’t realize that cussing is an art. The late great Bernie Mac had that down. I could listen to the man cuss like a sailor and it all fit together. Not to knock Issa or the show, but you get the feeling they are “smart” people trying to cuss to show they are still hood. It comes off a bit forced.

                  • mr. steal your costco samples

                    mac so good.

                    I AIN’T SCARED OF YOU

            • miss t-lee

              It was definitely there.

          • Blueberry01

            It wasn’t so gratuitous, though.

            • Cleojonz

              It does seem more gratuitous on insecure doesn’t it. It felt more natural on ABG.

              • Blueberry01

                Exactly! Hey, mothaf*uck sh*t, b*tch! How are co*kicking doing?

                Unnecessary…

    • Cleojonz

      I didn’t think it was as funny as it could have been. I only watched the first episode. I really want her to win but I don’t know about this one. It’s like a watered down version of ABG.

      • OSHH

        Agree.

      • Blueberry01

        And the thing is, she wanted to have total creative control so it WOULDN’T be watered down. SMH.

        Apparently HBO initially wanted to replace Issa’s character with a well-known light-skinned actress.

    • I wondered that too after watching this weekend. Most of us don’t, I think… I might talk down to a dude that way, ’cause they be shoppin anyway, but never a girl friend. I dunno what relationships theirs is modeled after, I have no frame of reference from personal experiences.

      • OSHH

        The language had me :-/

    • Val

      I only saw the first episode and I just hope that the whole series isn’t about Black women losing in relationships, work, etc.

    • Her friends at the party seem to be a**hats.

      • OSHH

        Thought it was just me.

      • Julian Green

        …….They’re Greeks.

        • Don’t think that has anything to do with it. I went to college with a lot of non Greeks who think that way.

          • OSHH

            That classism elitism rubbish. Don’t believe the hype

    • kolakola

      (Out of touch) Millennial here, it didn’t turn me off but I expected the jokes to hit better and they haven’t so the vulgar language doesn’t help. My friend group has never talked to each other like that cause we didn’t find it necessary but *shrugs* different strokes or different folk. I loved ABG but not compelled to watch Insecure as much although I want it to flourish.

    • Julian Green

      I’m a millennial. Most of my female friends talk exactly like Issa and Molly do in the show.

      • OSHH

        Interesting.

    • I only saw the second episode. Outside of the conversation with the Blood I didn’t find the episode very funny.

    • chazb

      I talk to some of my friends like that. I don’t know about anyone else but my language and behavior changes according to who I am socializing with. I have my friends I call the b word in jest and vice versa, the ones who are more comfortable talking about dirty things, the serious ones who I can talk about world issues and politics. Everyone is different so the relationships are all different. And I am not a millennial, a few years past that generation.

      • OSHH

        The everyone is a diff audience part is true. You do have diff rapports with diff folk. The friendly calling people b’s or sl5ts tricks etc was never my thing.

        • chazb

          I look at it as very similar to the N word. I use it in very rare circumstances and even then never towards someone I am know. It’s not my cup of tea to have it in my vocabulary on a regular basis. So I totally feel you on that.

      • Blueberry01

        Code switching?

    • Epsilonicus

      As a Millennial I see it, but it is not the rule. Tbh, I see only bougie black folks doing this.

      • miss t-lee

        “Tbh, I see only bougie black folks doing this.”

        These fresh facts.

        • Epsilonicus

          Calling someone a B is gonna get you the hands.

          • miss t-lee

            I know it doesn’t flyy here. That’s not a compliment.

            • Kas

              Yes, ma’am. I am all the way straightened up after our previous conversation.

              • miss t-lee

                LOL!
                I’m just saying.

            • OSHH

              At all

      • pls

        The hood is the first time I encountered it. I’d say the bougie black folks are about a decade late to the “bish let me teeeeeellll you” circle.

        • OSHH

          Even back in the day could not get with b as term of endearment. Even with the g@y boys .

      • ladyfresh

        yeah feels like over compensating

    • Medium Meech

      VSB should do a write up on that show. I liked the first episode but next two were ok. It’s trying to do a lot of things that could be really good if executed correctly. I hope they expand beyond just Issa and her friend. A group of friends like the show Girls would help. For some reason I really want this show to do well.

    • LegallyClueless

      I didn’t even notice the “vulgarity” because my friends and I talk to each other like that. But I also think curse words are just regular words that got a bad rap. I only don’t cuss at work and around my elders (because my momma ain’t raise no fool).

    • RaeNBow

      not this millennial good woman friend. i don’t call my friends the B word. i call them “sis, bestie, GURRRLAA, homie” or i’ll call them their name or some appropriately silly a** nickname. but nah. the B word is out.

    • ladyfresh

      not everyone. i’m old though and prefer clarity in communication if i’m mad then all the curse words come out other wise it calling you by your name, a nickname, sweetie, mi amor

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