Starting Your Dreams Later In Life and Embracing the Detour

Jenee Darden speaking at Creative Mornings I know it's been a while since I've posted anything but that's because of my job. I'm working as a reporter covering Oakland and I host an arts segment on the radio where I get to interview amazing artists from around the Bay Area. Plus I'm publicizing my book  and building my speaking career!  You know what's funny? I thought this would all happen by the time I was 27-30.  Nope. That wasn't God's plan for me. I'm finally beginning to do the things I've wanted to do and I'm almost 40 years old. Some people reading this who are 40 will say 40 is still young. But some younger people reading may think 40 is nearly ancient. But I'm writing this post for those who like me, thought their career and personal dreams would come true much early in life. I'm here to tell you not to give up.  You know, death inspires life. A number of my relatives and friends have passed away, ranging in

Pick Your Movement
Fight the Power or Burn Your Bras

I haven't blogged much about the Chris Brown alleged beating of Rihanna because the rumor mill has been in full force since the news broke. From what I've read over the last week in other black blogs, some people in the comments section are saying Rihanna probably brought on the beat down. They've bought into the stereotype of the "typical" Caribbean woman saying Rihanna was probably acting like a, feisty, hot-headed West Indian woman who doesn't know when to keep her mouth shut. And that justifies her beating? It's not just men blaming Rih Rih, women too. Surprise, surprise. For years black women have been in the middle of this racism/sexism tug of war. We either fight for the black community or fight for women's rights. Standing for women's rights means calling out all men, including brothas on their sexism and male privilege. We saw this with Mike Tyson, the OJ Simpson trial and Kobe Bryant's rape case. Do you defend the woman who's crying out rape or physical abuse? Or do you stand by the black man who you think is being attacked by society and the media because of his race? Some black women wont report their black abusers because of "racial loyalty," which Howard Professor Tricia Bent-Goodley describes as a black woman's choice "to withstand abuse and make a conscious self-sacrifice for what she perceives as the greater good of the community but to her own physical, psychological, and spiritual detriment." So once again the black woman is putting the community before herself, her life even. What good is the black community if the black woman is unhealthy, unhappy, or dead? Supporting women shouldn't automatically equate with abandoning your race or being anti-black man.

I brought all of this up because Chris Brown, his father and Rihanna's father made comments over the weekend. Rihanna's father Ronald Fenty, told People magazine that his daughter has some bruising. Fenty said," I hope she will stand up for women all over the world."As for her relationship with Chris Brown ,Fenty told People, "If it were me, I'd move on."

Good advice Mr. Fenty.

Chris Brown says he's "sorry" and "saddened" over what transpired. Brown's father Clinton, who is ironically a correction officer also spoke to People magazine. He said, "This is unfortunate, this stumble, this situation," Brown continues. "Hopefully, he will get past it. We all have our shortcomings. We all trip."

No Mr. Brown, tripping is snapping at your best friend because you had a bad day or cussin' out the waiter for bringing you blue cheese instead of ranch dressing. Allegedly beating a woman is more than just "tripping." It's a serious problem that can land your son in jail.

The saga continues. In the meantime I've picked my movement. Maybe I'll wear my Malcolm X t-shirt to a "Vagina Monologues" show.