Opinion

Since May 30th, our global society has been transforming itself into a chaotic wake up call with the issue of police brutality and the continuous evidence of minorities not having the same equity of life as those who fall under white privilege.

I’ve had my share of unlearning the white man’s knowledge of American History, and growth over the years when it comes to American History, and I continue to put aside my own trauma and issues to sit and radically listen to my peers to hear their stories and allow them to provide me facts and evidence of their reality, while I proved my own radical listening, empathy, and understanding.

Right now they are tired. They are tired of talking without anyone listening. The are tired of the questions from those who simply have a hard time comprehending. They are tired of the “All Lives Matter” debacle that goes against the reality of blacks being 3x more likely to be shot and killed by police. They are simply tired.

I have a responsibility of a film maker and a film lover, to take the time to put together my top ten favorite strong black lead films and/or series that provide legitimate educational value for those who want a better understanding of the systematic oppression our fellow Americans have suffered through for the past 400 years, as well as, some of the greatest icons in black history that may or may have not been in your history textbooks growing up.

All I ask from this list is be aware of the fictional aspects of the films and take the time to dig into a deeper research of the events within the topics and figures provided with each film. I am asking, for those willing to listen and learn to do with empathy, while watching these stories, and don’t forget the Kleenex, because you will need them.

  1. Roots (Hulu): An adaptation of the 1977 mini-series, Roots chronicles the history of an African man sold to slavery in America, and his descendants. 

  2. Harriet (Rent/Vudu): The extraordinary tale of Harriet Tubman‘s escape from slavery and transformation into one of America’s greatest heroes, whose courage, ingenuity, and tenacity freed hundreds of slaves and changed the course of history.

  3. MalcolmX (Netflix): Biographical epic of the controversial and influential Black Nationalist leader, from his early life and career as a small-time gangster, to his ministry as a member of the Nation of Islam.

  4. 13th (Netflix): An in-depth look at the prison system in the United States and how it reveals the nation’s history of racial inequality.

  5. I Am Not Your Negro (Amazon Prime): Writer James Baldwin tells the story of race in modern America with his unfinished novel, Remember This House.

  6. Selma (Amazon Prime): A chronicle of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s campaign to secure equal voting rights via an epic march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama, in 1965.

  7. The Hate U Give (Rent/Vudu): Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Now, facing pressure from all sides of the community, Starr must find her voice and stand up for what’s right.

  8. DETROIT (Hulu): A gripping story of one of the most terrifying moments during the civil unrest that rocked Detroit in the summer of ’67.

  9. Just Mercy (Rent/Vudu): World-renowned civil rights defense attorney Bryan Stevenson works to free a wrongly condemned death row prisoner.

  10. When They See Us (Netflix): Five teens from Harlem become trapped in a nightmare when they’re falsely accused of a brutal attack in Central Park. Based on the true story.

    Honorary mentions: Marshall (Netflix), LA92 (Netflix), Teach Us All (Netflix), Ali (Amazon Prime), 12 Years a Slave (Rent)…

Even though my adjustment to civilian life has been a struggle, due to being consumed in today’s society by so many political opinions, and truths being revealed… it certainly has been a hard pill to swallow…

Working DFac (fDining Facility) Guard

While most people gather, illegally and legally, I’ve kept my distance and silence, as well as decompress my mind, to gather my thoughts over this weekend as it reminds me of two things…. 1) my best friend at the time being KIA on June 3, 2007 (three days before my 21st), and the fact that tomorrow is legitimately my fifth year anniversary from being medically retired from the military.

Yet, there is still a pride in me for serving this country for the purpose of the bigger picture and not for myself, but for ALL the people in this country who chooses not to or simply can’t for medical purposes…

I continue to look at the positive things of serving like having the opportunity to embrace and experience so many various cultures and individuals through the battle buddies I’ve met over the years and the various global contractors and local people that I had the opportunity to befriend and worked with while in Iraq.

Local Interpreters, Taji 🇮🇶

Also, without serving, I definitely wouldn’t be where I am today nor accomplish the things I’ve accomplished over my adult life…

While the mass crowd defines us a basic stereotype of typical sheep and murderers, I will not let those voices define me nor the good-hearted people I have come to serve and meet, who take the call to risk their lives for their own beliefs of serving…

What comes down to my reality vs. their reality, is that we all have a story, we all have educational value to share through our livelihoods and experiences, and we all can learn from one another… we just need to be able to have an open mind to learn from those who haven’t experienced a similar life than our own and that’s where empathy comes in…

Unfortunately, the majority of us, as humans, struggle with having empathy for the rest of the world, if not, our own country and that’s why we are in the “Divided States of America” we are currently in.

Super Bowl Party. |Chicago Vs Indianapolis|
Go Manning Go!
🏈

The relief of today was fulfilled with distractions and productivity while distancing myself from the crowds and social media, while I regain my attentiveness and confidence with my purpose and knowledge in the world during my five-day weekend and I’m only half way through.

Goofing off before meeting
the Iraqi Army General. 😳

Also, what helped me through today is having one of my battle buddies that I relate to reaching out to me today with his music playlist and amazing descriptive reflection of his day, because he knows how much music and storytelling gets me through difficult things.

Thank you, Deneen, and stay well. 👍🏻

mystery-blogger

Guess what? I got nominated for the Mystery Blogger Award! I was nominated . Thank you so much!! Our opening conversation was very meaningful and substantial within the comments of my various blog posts.

I never done anything of this matter, nor have I been nominated for a blogger’s award, so I appreciate this honorable nomination beyond words and it will bring me a new motivation to keep writing, while appreciate my writing reaching out to those that truly matter. Thank you again.

So without further ado, I’d like to continue onto this blog post, display the rules, answer the questions provided by Ospreyshire, and nominate those that I follow and/or my followers to shine appreciation onto their craft as well.


The Rules for Mystery Blogger Award:

1. Put the award logo/image on your blog

2. List the rules

3. Thank whoever nominated you and provide a link to their blog

4. Mention Okoto Enigma, the creator of the award and provide a link as well.

5. Tell your readers 3 things about yourself.

6. You have to nominate 10 – 20 people.

7. Notify your nominees by commenting on their blog.

8. Ask your nominees any 5 questions of your choice; with one weird or funny question (specify).

9. Share a link to your best post(s).

Now to Answer the Questions from Ospryshire:

1. Where would you like to visit that you’ve never been to before?

There are a lot of places that are on my list to visit in my life from Morocco to Greece to Spain to Kenya, etc. Where I’ve been (Canada, Mexico, Iraq, Kuwait) is just a small taste of the world that should be experienced and lived within.

2. What is one movie, TV show, and/or book that you can’t stand, but everyone else likes?

Hmmm… This is a tough one. I don’t think there isn’t anything that I can’t stand, but there are plenty of TV shows and movies I try to avoid sometimes that I seem to not be drawn to like everyone else during the actually moment they’re released. For example, never watched an episode of “Doctor Who”, “Orange is the New Black” or “Walking Dead.”

OK, wait… I lied. I can’t stand reality shows. Boom!

3. If you could invent a language, what would you call it and how would you teach it to the world?

I struggle with speech on a regular, so my roommate jokes about how I always have my own language and he sometimes has a hard time translating it. So come to think of it, I wouldn’t want to invent a language, if I could. Instead I would work towards fixing my own speaking issues at hand and continue to educate and grow within myself on the Spanish and French education I already know in the foreign language.

4. What is one interest or hobby that you never thought you would get into?

Great question! A lot of my interests and hobbies have been multiple therapeutic tools for me since I could remember, except culinary. Growing up, I struggled to be willing to do the gender norm roles in general, and so I would put massive effort to refuse to do anything that would remote to the feminine gender normality that use to be assigned in the house hold. It wasn’t until I was in my early 20s that I would fall in love with the Food Network channel and Travel channel and see an equal representation of men and women on these channels being bomb ass chefs and culinary geniuses.

5. How do you want to improve as a person?

Everyday is a work in progress on a regular basis for me considering of my mental health issues I carry with me daily. I guess the things could work on more is to not react emotionally to majority of the shit that comes at me in life and rely on individual’s broken words and promises, I’d be in a better place soulfully & wholeheartedly. Also, I wish I learned how to not put so much shit on my plate (figuratively) and be at peace with it without wearing myself thin and learning the hard way every time.

Three Facts About Me:

1. Wisconsin native w/ a Californian heart.

2. My very first publication was before my 17th birthday in Spring 2003 and it was in the “Celebration of Young Poets” collection. My poem was called “Life.” I knew then and there writing was one of my callings.

3. I served a total of ten and a half years in the United States military between the Wisconsin Army National Guard and the United States Reserves. I also have one deployment to Iraq on my resume. I was suppose to go on a second tour to Iraq, however I was sent home for symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, and was ordered to be treated at the local VA.

Here are My Favorite Posts:

We Can’t Heal Alone: A special someone in my life told me last night that, “We can’t heal alone…” and that’s been sticking with me all day. He is right, so for those who sincerely been loving and supporting me, if it seems I am taking you for granted, I deeply apologize. I promise, I am not.

La Femme Nikita Fan Fiction: Currently a six-part series of my all-time favorite television series growing up with a spin off in the mix and other posts related to my fan experience with the series and its cast and crew. This is the very root of my blog and healing process, with the privilege of meeting my role models. For the fans still tuned in, I will release part seven very soon after a multiple-year hiatus.

The Road to Healing: This was a very powerful and personal poem I wrote that is also the title of my best-selling self-published self-help/poetry book, “The Road to Healing: An Equestrian Journal.” Revision edition coming soon to Amazon paperback & Kindle.

Philosophical Vision: Ethics: One of my favorite subjects and food for the mind is philosophy. This is just one of a few essays I have made into a blog series on my philosophy on life since my introduction on the topic in college.

Sneak Peak into my Closet: My main outlet for art therapy for my PTSD/depression/trauma is my free verse poetry. Here is just a sneak peak into my closet. Enjoy the rhymes and reason of why I write.

I hereby nominate:

Twoblondekids.com
At A Glance Magezine
Jewels of a MAGNOLIA
Anonymous Scribe
Rain Alchemist
Mathias Sager
Lucid Being
Author Jodi Ambrose
The Art of Blogging
Gehal Gamal

My Questions for My Nominations:

1. What is one thing you would like your readers and followers to get out of your blog and writing?

2. What inspired you and/or drew you to blogging for a social media platform?

3. If you could teach the world one thing, what would it be?

4. What is your all-time favorite television series/movie/book to resort to in order to calm your mind from this hectic world?

5. If there is one thing you could change about yourself as an individual or an artist, what would it be?

2db2aa9b-ca54-43e2-8fe5-0bdf3df5cce6A special someone in my life told me last night that, “We can’t heal alone…” and that’s been sticking with me all day. He is right, so for those who sincerely been loving and supporting me, if it seems I am taking you for granted, I deeply apologize. I promise, I am not.

Survival mode is a pain to climb out of after decades of fighting demons alone. Figured I switch up and express my gratitude, instead of allowing my mind to resort to the worse case scenario in my position. You are appreciated beyond words.

…and for those who are trying to take efforts beyond measures to ensue my accomplishments and success, I am trying to open myself, but the leap of faith is my current biggest fear in my life, especially of having crashed and burned by someone I took a leap of faith on fairly recently. I’m still healing…

JUST IN CASE SOMEONE NEEDS TO HEAR THIS:

Some days are very frustrating in the healing process and forgiving yourself for your past. Especially when you are alone or feel you’re alone in this life.

I frustrate myself most as my own worse enemy.

It’s easy to fake happiness when in reality everything in your life is on fire. Friends and family become strangers, therefore you’re not sure if you are capable to trust those who simply want to love and care for your heart. You work day in and day out to extinguish the flames around you.

Why alone? Cause most people don’t give a shit about your life or your story. Point, blank. However, as I grow older and continue my healing process, I come to the realization that it doesn’t matter. You cannot heal yourself on other’s expectations and other’s schedules. Why do I know this so well?

I grew up and still experience an environment where my emotions or my lifestyle doesn’t matter. I grew up where nobody has ever put me first or respect my voice.

Results in this are: one, I also have never put myself first, and two, I’ve crashed and burn like a broken record repeatedly by putting everyone else before my own.

For majority of the people in my life, walls and boundaries are set and I use two personalities (Yay, Geminis!), the strong, quiet personality and/or the goofy/high energy personality to help deteriorate any possible negative energy disguised in human form.

The consequence, genuine people in my life could easily come and go by misunderstanding me as a spiritual being.

As a spiritual being, I’m training myself to a different resolution. I’m learning to read people’s energy, rather than resort to the assumptions that everyone is bad juju.

It is a challenge for your heart and mind. Especially for those who travel a similar path like mine, but trust me when I say it gets better as you start creating a barrier that’s actually healthy.

You slowly learn to not put up with the bullshit that’s toxic and the genuine people see you for who you truly are as a beautiful, gifted soul. Most importantly, you start loving yourself and finding your confidence.

But how do we know we are progressing in our self healing and self love? Life starts to magnify you towards your goals and dreams in life and love.

💜🦄🖤