Nayyirah, you are a beautiful writer. Thank you for standing your ground on the issue of your style and your art. Inventions are patented. Picasso is credited with his style along with Monet, and many others. Writers are creators and have the same right. Thievery is not a form of flattery..ever. The difference between a thief and a creator is passion. Your passion will always show through. Your self validation doesn't come from anyone other than you. Thank you for knowing that.
thank you for your support, love. as poc, we have been told, and consistently are told, nothing of ours is our own. that nothing is new under the sun. but this is absolutely not true. i come from a peoples who innovate and create magic from nothing every single day. and if there was nothing new, we would not/ could not comprehend the concept of newness. what a ludicrous idea. these concepts are simply the children of colonization that have conditioned us to believe everything we are belongs or can be owned by someone else. the pyramids were new to those europeans first visiting africa. gun powder was new to the europeans who found china using it for fireworks. there were myriads of things new to europeans, but after colonization, now there is nothing new? and isn’t it telling that white people are always credited as ‘being the first. and the best.’ that every time someone seeks to dismantle my boundaries around my work, they bring up a writer/ or artist of white/european descent. and while they are trying to tell me there is nothing new, here they are, directing my attention to a white person ‘who did something first. who is original. who is the best.’ there are a million of things that are new to me. that are not mine. that i have no issue honoring someone or another peoples and culture for. and that to me is part of the complete joy of being a human being, to be wowed and humbled and grateful for the extraordinary genius that other human beings contain and express. for that which is theirs and not mine. thanks for rolling with a sister. and for letting a sister roll, love :))) sending you honey :)))
“You don’t get to tell people how to love you; you get to choose whether or not you want to participate in the way they love. But you’ve got to be loving to them in order to see how they love you back, and that gives you the choice.”—Iyanla Vanzant (via aestheticintrovert)
It's sometimes so tough to get a purchase on life, existence, that one wonders how so many humans have done so. Maybe by not being stuck so much in their own heads; renouncing the weighty inertia of the overwhelming experience of human existence. But it's always there--despite our methods of coping. It's not going anywhere.
It could all just come to dust--it very well may. But what of that? Are we not here? Alive? Moving? Is not now electric? What reason then to eject ourselves from this experience? It might be tragic to consider the ultimate finity of it, but we're here now. That is much more than significant.
“Let us not look for examples, there would be too many of them, at every step we took. By preferring my work, simply by giving it my time and attention, by preferring my activity as a citizen or as a professorial and professional philosopher, writing and speaking here in a public language, French in my case, I am perhaps fulfilling my duty. But I am sacrificing and betraying at every moment all my other obligations: my obligations to the other others whom I know or don’t know, the billions of my fellows (without mentioning the animals that are even more other others than my fellows), my fellows who are dying of starvation or sickness. I betray my fidelity or my obligations to other citizens, to those who don’t speak my language and to whom I neither speak nor respond, to each of those who listen or read, and to whom I neither respond nor address myself in the proper manner, that is, in a singular manner (this for the so-called public space to which I sacrifice my so-called private space), thus also to those I love in private, my own, my family, my son, each of whom is the only son I sacrifice to the other, everyone being sacrificed to everyone else in this land of Moriah that is our habitat every second of every day.”—Jacques Derrida, The Gift of Death (1995), p. 69 (via queertheoryissexy)
An Oxford scholar warns that our outmoded economic model is a “warrant for inflicting pain" first on the poor and minorities and eventually on most of society.
“There are two core doctrines in economics,” Offer said. “One is individual self-interest. The other is the invisible hand, the idea that the pursuit of individual self-interest aggregates or builds up for the good of society as a whole. This is a logical proposition that has never been proven.”
“I cannot respond to the call, the request, the obligation, or even the love of another without sacrificing the other other, the other others. Every other (one) is every (bit) other [tout autre est tout autre], everyone else is completely or wholly other. The simple concepts of alterity and of singularity constitute the concept of duty as much as that of responsibility. As a result, the concepts of responsibility, of decision, or of duty, are condemned a priori to paradox, scandal, and aporia. Paradox, scandal, and aporia are themselves nothing other than sacrifice, the revelation of conceptual thinking at its limit, at its death and finitude. As soon as I enter into a relation with the other, with the gaze, look, request, love, command, or call of the other, I know that I can respond only by sacrificing ethics, that is, by sacrificing whatever obliges me to also respond, in the same way, in the same instant, to all the others. I offer a gift of death, I betray, I don’t need to raise my knife over my son on Mount Moriah for that. Day and night, at every instant, on all the Mount Moriahs of this world, I am doing that, raising my knife over what I love and must love, over those to whom l owe absolute fidelity, incommensurably.”—Jacques Derrida, The Gift of Death (1995), p. 68 (via queertheoryissexy)
“When I go up there, which is my intention, the Big Judge will say to me, “Where are your wounds?” and if I say I haven’t any, he will say, “Was there nothing to fight for?” I couldn’t face that question.”—Alan Paton (via creatingaquietmind)
“Few people are aware that Voudou (rather than “voodoo”) is a faith based on harmony with nature, one that expressly forbids the killing of another being, or that most African faith systems believe in the concept of one God above all other divinities and deities, who function much as a pantheon of saints.”—Cosmic Yoruba at This Is Africa. Decolonising the mind: Traditional African spiritual systems continue to be misunderstood, even as they thrive (via protoslacker)
In 2004, the state of Texas executed Cameron Todd Willingham for the crime of setting fire to his own house, killing his three children. Today, evidence is stronger than ever that his conviction was a miscarriage of justice.
In 2009, David Grann wrote a masterful New Yorker story laying out the evidence that Texas might have killed an innocent man when it executed Willingham. (In short: the case against Willingham was based on faulty fire investigation and faulty, unjustified assumptions on the part of the prosecution.) The Innocence Project has been working for years to clear Willingham’s name posthumously. Now, evidence of yet another serious flaw in the prosecution’s case has emerged.
The main thing that led to Willingham’s conviction, besides the testimony of the fire investigator, was the testimony of Johnny Webb—a convict who was in jail with Willingham—who said that Willingham had confessed the murder to him. At the time of the trial, both Webb and the prosecutor, John Jackson, said that Webb was not offered anything in exchange for his testimony. But a note discovered in recently released case files contradicts that. From the New York Times:
As [a lawyer with the Innocence Project] worked through the stack of papers, he saw a note scrawled on the inside of the district attorney’s file folder stating that Mr. Webb’s charges were to be listed as robbery in the second degree, not the heavier first-degree robbery charge he had originally been convicted on, “based on coop in Willingham.”
If true, this would mean not only that Webb had a motive to lie about Willingham, but that both Webb and the prosecutor did lie about whether that motive existed.
The Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles is currently considering whether to exonerate Willingham. Cameron Todd Willingham himself remains dead.
“What then is truth? A movable host of metaphors, metonymies, and; anthropomorphisms: in short, a sum of human relations which have been poetically and rhetorically intensified, transferred, and embellished, and which, after long usage, seem to a people to be fixed, canonical, and binding. Truths are illusions which we have forgotten are illusions- they are metaphors that have become worn out and have been drained of sensuous force, coins which have lost their embossing and are now considered as metal and no longer as coins.”—Nietzsche, “On Truth and Lies in a Nonmoral Sense” (via queertheoryissexy)