Lady Chisholm bids Adieu...for Now

Monday, January 03, 2005

Congresswoman Shirley Anitia Chisolm, (1924 - 2005)
 Posted by Hello

Shirley Chisholm, the first black woman elected to Congress and an outspoken advocate for women and minorities during seven terms in the House, died Saturday near Daytona Beach, friends said. She was 80.

MSNBC Speaks on Congresswoman Chisholm's death.>

My thoughts...

Too many good people are going home early in 2005. See my homage to NFL's Reverend Reggie White. Tsunami's I can deal with but, the lady and the Rev within seven days--I shudder. I shudder. What's next? Locusts?

Let me just say that Shirley Chisholm is my superwoman hero--the person I aspired myself to become when I ran for highschool and college political office. She paved a way and we need to run through it now more than ever.

Never missing your spirit, we'll meet again in Heaven.

-Running to see what the end gon' be

BlackWords Bids Farewell into the New Year

BlackWords Press is closing their doors. This book publisher has been in existence for ten years, but no longer wants to continue publishing black books.

Kwame Alexander, the founder expressed:

This is simply the best time to get out of a game that has become mired in mediocrity. I love books, but I just don't love publishing like I used to.

You can read more behind the reasoning of the press closing at the link above.

My thoughts...

I understand completely, and, however, I fear a scary trend following. Although we[Black Americans] are publishing more books, we still are not making a huge dent in the industry. The books that get the most attention are the books poorly written, but selling out in black bookstores.

Some people tell me that they love these baby mama drama/street fiction books because they understand it better and that it is not as boring and long winded as a Toni Morrison novel. I nod my head, not because I share my sentiment, but because I empathize. Somewhere down the line our community teachers have taught us that being the best at your craft is no longer important, that the people who died so that we could attend public school and learn that good diction is imperative in English literature, Affirmative Action law, and reading the Bible, that a good education has far more less to fdo with inding a good job, then defending your right to be black in a black hating world. I shake my head that these poorly written books make the Essence bestseller list not because the people that read them don't know that the man that wrote the Count of Monte Christo was a black man or that William Shakespeare was mulatto, but that we[african american community teachers] have failed at our jobs or that there are better--more richer--books available. The moment we got a security clearance to work for the Coca Cola Company(my old stomping ground,) the moment we were accepted into ivy league colleges(my alma mater,) that we never in our wildest dreams would imagine that someone would fork over more than five cents to read a fifth grade gossip column turned novel.

I am saddened that Black Words Press is closing its doors. I shudder at the the thought that others will follow suit, tha they all will disappear before the next bright-read steps through their doors. What voice have we suppressed, because no one wants to hear great written words spoken at a library book reading? What voice are we suppressing that can tell us more about ourselves as black people? What voice are we suppressing because she writes about the world at large and not just the hood she grew up in? What dreams are we festering because we continue to accept mediocrity writing, good book publishers closing, and you never getting your chance to be heard?


2009 ·Dee Stewart by TNB