Thursday, July 28, 2016

Hold Up! Before Hillary Clinton, There Was Shirley Chisholm

Art by Kadir Nelson
Source: U.S. Congress and Wikimedia
While many feminists are rejoicing Hillary Clinton's historical nomination for the presidency, I want to remind folks that she's standing on another woman's shoulders. Pres. Barack Obama is standing on this woman's shoulders as well.

In 1972, Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm became the first woman to run for president in the Democratic party. She also became the first African-American woman to run for the presidency. And she's the first black woman to serve in Congress. President Obama and Former Secretary of State Clinton were able to reach the ceiling they cracked, because they stand on Shirley Chisholm's shoulders. Pres. Obama honored her posthumously last year with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

The Brooklyn native's campaign slogan was, "Unbought and Unbossed."

I was disappointed, but not surprised, that Clinton didn't mention Shirley Chisholm. She has not received her due props and accolades for the doors she opened for women and people of color in politics. I read that people tried to assassinate her when she ran for the presidency. Can you imagine being the first and only Black woman in the U.S. Congress in the 1970's during Nixon's presidency???

Chisholm didn't get the nomination. But more people will know about her because Anika Noni Rose is starring and producing a biopic about her.

In her public announcement of her candidacy, Shirley Chisholm said she was a proud African-American and a proud woman. I didn't read about her in U.S. history. I read a little about her in Black history. I had no idea she was a feminist because so much discourse on feminist history leaves out contributions by women of color. We would not have the Obamas, Hillary Clinton, Geraldine Ferraro,--heck even Sarah Palin if weren't for Shirley Chisholm willing to make people think that women and people of color can lead this country.

"If they don't give you a seat at the table, bring a folding chair."
--Shirley Chisholm

"The United States was said not to be ready to elect a Catholic to the Presidency when Al Smith ran in the 1920's. But Smith's nomination may have helped pave the way for the successful campaign John F. Kennedy waged in 1960. Who can tell? What I hope most is that now there will be others who will feel themselves as capable of running for high political office as any wealthy, good-looking white male."
--Shirley Chisholm


Are You With Her?: Hillary Clinton Makes History

Pres. Obama and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton
Source: Instagram
I hope I'm looking at the photo of the first African-American president and the future first woman president. Like her or not, she made U.S. history this week as the first woman nominee of a major political party.

Every election I think about how I was lucky to grow up in a politically divided family. On my father's side some of my relatives are liberals and some conservatives. Holiday dinners and family gatherings were always something else. But it made me be a good listener to people whose opinions I don't agree with. It made me see where the other sides are coming from. And so I don't get worked up over people who politically disagree with me. I've volunteered for campaigns. I've been to a Republican convention and had a great time.  I'm not a Trump supporter, but people have a right to support him.

This election feels like a long, dramatic Thanksgiving dinner where there's no more sweet potato pie and I'm tired of people fighting. I hate our country has become even more divided. Hatred has always been an issue, but I don't like this rise of overt hatred either.

Hillary is not perfect. I take issues with some things the Clintons have done and their resources. But Trump's xenophobia, sexism, racism and lack of experience concerns me. I've noticed some liberals and Dems say they're not excited about this election like when Pres. Obama ran. And it's because they don't fully trust Hillary. Racism, sexism and class are important issues to me. For me, I know no matter who becomes president, they're not going to end instutionalized racism, stop sexism and our rape culture or give every poor person in America opportunity. They're not. So I don't fall hard for politicians. I need to be extra hyped about a candidate to vote for them. Politicians are not the sole answer to fixing our problems. They're key, but the not the sole answer.

For me, Hillary Clinton is the best candidate. She's smart, experienced, not divisive and a strong woman. Is she perfect? No. Do I support everything she has done in her career. No. But I think she has what it takes to make a good president. This is a very important election. So whether you vote for Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump I hope you vote.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Help! The Photo Library On My iPad Has Taken Up Most of My Storage

Jenee Darden aka Cocoa Fly reading for Lyrics & Dirges
at Pegasus Books in Berkeley

I'm not a techie and I rarely cover tech stuff, but someone in cyberspace saved me.

See that picture above? That's me performing a reading. I had a 10 minute set that I was excited to record for you on my iPad mini. I tested my iPad before I left, and noticed it would only record for four minutes because it didn't have enough memory. I deleted photos, videos and thought the problem was solved. I set up my tripod (I LOVE MY TRIPOD) at the bookstore, hit record on my iPad and performed. I returned to my iPad. It recorded less than four minutes of my performance. NOOOOOOOOOO!

I check my storage under settings when I get home. My Photo Library used up 4 Gigs of storage. How the heck did that happen??? Most of my photos and videos were deleted. I go looking for my Photo Library on the iPad. I can't find it.  Makes no sense.  Now I wonder where the hell is the Photo Library and how do I erase 4 gigs of stuff that I can't find. I know my techie friends are laughing at me, but whatever.

I went online searching for answers. Most articles and people in Apple Support forums said to sync the iPad to iTunes, then unsync or sync it to a empty folder. NONE OF THAT WORKED for me. It worked for some people, but not me.

Finally, after a long night of Googling different phrases for an answer and circles around my eyes, cyber angels rescued me. Thank you SEOMama and TxtForever!!!!!!!

The solution was something I try not do in my personal life, look back at the past. Change the date on the device a few years back and notice that most of your storage is restored. They break down clearing your Photo Library here.

Now I can take photos and video again.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Unleashing at Beast Crawl, Getting in Formation & Going Naked: My Past and Upcoming Live Performances


Jenee Darden aka Cocoa Fly performs
at Beast Craw.
Photographer: Ed Shady 
This past weekend I began my birthday celebrations with friends and powerful womanist/feminist prose. It was truly a blessing to perform at Beast Crawl, one of the largest literary festivals in Oakland. Thank you to Liminal for inviting me to join their troupe. The spot was small, many were standing but people stayed. Thank you to those who came out to support us. Thank you to those who stood for the entire hour.  Each of us shared our stories of our experience with femininity. The event was filmed. When I get the video I will post and share with you. It was truly an honor to read with such passionate, strong and talented women. By the way, people loved my dress. I got it at Salvation Army for $5!

The Liminal Troupe
Photographer: Ed Shady

If you missed my Beast Crawl performance, there's more to come. This Wednesday, July 20th I'm reading at Pegasus Books in Berkeley for the monthly Lyrics and Dirges. I haven't seen these writers perform but I've heard of how great they are. Come out, support a local business and local talent. When host/AMAZING writer Mk Chavez  told me the theme is Formation, I couldn't turn down the invitation to read.  I've been seriously feeling Beyonce's Lemonade and it has inspired some of my writing.





Then on Thursday night I take on the challenge of a story slam at Books Inc. in Alameda. It's hosted by the To Live and Write in Alameda. The theme is Naked and the stories are all non-fiction. This is their first story slam where they challenge writers not to use notes. Which is common at slams. I will be clothed. Although I think reading from notes in the nude sounds easier. LOL 
I'm excited to be sharing my story. Come out. These events are free and the writers are amazing. Again, it's a great way to support independent bookstores. The flyers have all of the information you need. 






Friday, July 15, 2016

Playboy Bunny Dani Mathers Needs to Worry About Her Own Body and Mind Her Damn Business

Photo from Snapchat 
Playboy's 2015 Playmate of the Year Dani Mathers is a jerk. A sick, perverted, mean, insecure, arrogant, body-shaming jerk. Trust me, there are others words I want to use to  better describe this woman. You've probably heard the story already. But I'll briefly rehash it. Mathers is in a LA Fitness women's locker room. Instead of minding her own damn business and focusing on her own ass (literally), she secretly photographs what looks to be a nude,  older woman, posts it on Snapchat with the caption "If I can't unsee this, then you can't either. "

Mathers apologized for getting caught, and said she is new to Snapchat. She thought the photo she posted was for private eyes. That's not the point. Why the hell is she taking photos of other nude women?! Why is that woman's body any of her damn business?!

What infuriated me about her actions was that she posted that photo out of arrogance. For many, Dani Mathers is the ideal beauty--young, thin, blonde and white with big boobs. She was Playmate of the Year for goodness sakes!  Whether her blonde hair and boobs are natural or paid for is another discussion. She knows she represents the ideal beauty. She knows there are women around the world busting their ass at the gym and on hiking trails, eating salad and quinoa, putting their fingers down their throats, feeling guilty after eating a sprinkled doughnut because they want her body. And her beauty-privileged, cold-hearted ass insulted another woman's NAKED body on social media because she didn't fit our culture's beauty standard.

Many people don't like undressing at locker rooms because of fear of judgement. Dani Mathers judged this woman in front of the world. She's a pervert for secretly photographing a naked woman in a locker room. She needs to be criminally charged.

I'm glad L.A. Fitness banned her from all of their gyms. She deserves to be suspended indefinitely from her radio gig at KLOS in Los Angles and all of the anger people are throwing at her. As the women elders in my family say, "God don't like ugly."

 I've crossed women like Mathers. They insult other women because inside they don't feel good about themselves. So they put others down to build themselves up. A woman secure in her beauty and life doesn't focus on other people's looks. I lived in LA and beauty is everything there. But this was low. If she truly was confident in herself as a woman, she wouldn't be paying attention to the lady in the gym.

The shade that Mathers threw at this woman backfired. Mathers showed the world who's really the ugly one. And there ain't enough foundation, silicone, Botox, lip gloss, concealer, hair dye, etc. to beautify her repulsive soul.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Black Women Don't Forget About Yourselves #SandraBland #SayHerName



I've noticed Black folks on social media praising Black women activists for what they're doing for Black men in the #BlackLivesMatter Movement. I thought BLM was for Black men AND women??? There's a saying about all feminist issues are about about white women and all Black issues are about Black men. Which leaves out Black women and our struggles.


Today marks the 1-year anniversary of the death of my sorority sister Sandra Bland. She shouldn't have been arrested in the first place. In this video I discuss why we can't forget Black women who have been victims of police violence.



Rest in Peace Sandra Bland and the many other victims whose names we know and don't know.








Friday, July 8, 2016

Black People Take Care of Yourselves During These Violent Times



The murders of Philando Castile, Alton Sterling and the five cops in Dallas are the result of a society too afraid to acknowledge racism is still a problem in this country. People are too afraid to call out the police. Or because of their racial privilege and racist beliefs think all of these killings of unarmed Black people are justified. And that's in part because they assume the police are always right and Black folks are always up to no good. 

I have relatives and friends who work in law enforcement. I've been pulled over for driving while Black. I've had police help me out. There are great police officers, and like any other profession there are bad cops. There are Black criminals and there are everyday Black people just trying to get through another day. 

I made this video because violence and racism can take a toll on our mental health. Many African-Americans don't have access to quality mental health care. This video was a reminder to take care of your mental health and what you can do to take care of your mental health during these crazy times. 

As I posted on Twitter, 7 people didn't go home to their families over racism. I blame their killers and I blame our justice and criminal systems. As long as bad cops are not prosecuted for murdering and abusing unarmed people of color, these killings will not stop. If our justice system cracked down on racist cops and strongly condemned their behavior, maybe Philando Castile, Alton Sterling and those police officers in Dallas would be alive today. Maybe if more people were open to having an honest conversation about race, those people would be alive. Nobody wins with hate. No one. 

Take care of yourselves and make sure you check in with each other. 

Monday, July 4, 2016

Happy July 4th!


I hope you had an amazing 4th of July. Mine was very chill and I spent it with good friends. Remember that not everyone was free on the 4th of July. African Americans were still enslaved and Native Americans were fighting to survive. I know people don't like hearing the hard truth but I love this country. We can heal if we face the past and remember it so doesn't repeat again. 

Our Miss USA is all kinds of beautiful at the 4th of July parade in our nation's capitol. Have a good week! 


Friday, July 1, 2016

Jenee Darden of CocoaFly.com on Sex Talk Tuesday Chat


The fireworks will just be getting started after Independence Day. I will be part of the @SexTalkTuesday Twitter chat on July 5th at 12PM PST/3PM ET. We'll be discussing how erotic romance novels can inspire you in the bedroom...or beyond. Of course I'll be Tweeting about my Black erotica research. Follow me on Twitter @cocoafly or look for the the hashtag ‪#‎SexTalkTuesday‬.

I will say that you can get good ideas for love making and sex play from erotic literature. And it can be fun to read excerpts to a lover. We'll chat about that and more on Tuesday, July 5th. Don't forget!

Thanks to Bawdy Bookworms for letting me join in!

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Check Me Out at Beast Crawl Literary Festival in Oakland



Beast Crawl is one of the largest, if not the largest, literary festival in Oakland. It's kind of like a pub crawl where you hop from one bar to another with group of people. During Beast Crawl, you hop from different locations in Downtown Oakland to listen to writers read their work. If you've ever been to Litquake, they're very similar except this one has Oakland, East Bay flavor.




I'm excited to be reading with Liminal, a feminist/womanist writing space in Oakland founded by Gina Goldblatt. We are going to break shit down and keep it real about womanhood and gender with our storytelling and poetry. What you get on this blog is what you'll get from me in person, but even better.

So come out on Saturday, July 16th at Darling's Elixr in Downtown Oakland, 6:30-7:30pm. And the best part is Beast Crawl is free! You get to hear some of the most amazing writers, in person, for free. I hope to see you there.

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Fly Visitors

blogger statistics
blogger statistics