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

(In)Justice, Media Foolishness and Well Wishes
Speak Your Mind

There is so much going on in the world. Between BP turning the Gulf into an oil well, the terrorists attack in Uganda, and the NAACP 's coldness to USDA official Shirley Sherrod I don't know where to start. One thing I have learned, I better not cheat on my husband in Iran. It'll cost you 99 lashes and a stoning if you're a woman. You've probably heard of widower Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani. That's her to the left. Her stoning has been put on hold, according to Voice of America, due to international outrage. The case is so sketchy. Both she and her kids claim she didn't have an affair. While Roman Polanski won't spend a day in prison for raping a teenager because Switzerland won't release him to the United States. Is that justice?

Speaking of Europe and Islam, the French are serious about banning the burka. So far parliament gave a "oui" to the bill. But the bill still has to get approval from the senate. Muslim women who wear the veils are upset. When in France should Muslim women do as the French do? Or is this an infringement on their rights? Justice or not? And the consequences for wearing the veil is $185. Someone forcing a woman to wear the veil could get a
Illustration of women wearing full  Islamic veil ( <span class=
year behind bars and be fined $38,000. Source: NY Daily News

The officer who shot and killed Oscar Grant was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter. Grant was lying on the ground when Officer Johannes Mehserle said he mistook his gun for a taser and accidentally shot him. But was even a taser necessary since Grant was face down on the ground and handcuffed? The day of the verdict a basketball player seemed to be on more people's minds, Tweets and Facebook statuses. Days later Civil Rights Leader Jesse Jackson publicly came to the defense of none other than LeBron James, a basketball player. But Lindsay Lohan is complaining about serving a few weeks to a couple of months in jail for violating her parole. This was after she came to court with the words "Fu*k You" painted on her nail.
The sentencing for Mehserle has been pushed back to November. If this guy gets a light sentence, I fear people are going to seriously riot. But Lindsay Lohan is in jail and judging from the news I should be concerned about her. Oh and Mel Gibson's racist and violent rants.
Was justice served in the Grant trial?

Oh Mrs. Sherrod, Mrs. Sherrod, Mrs. Sherrod. Dorothy Height died a few months ago. So what does the NAACP do months after a female civil rights icon passe away? Leave a sista hanging. Shirley Sherrod was a civil rights activist, lost her father to a racist murder at the age of 17, and witnessed crosses burning on her front lawn in her youth. You can hear this on the ENTIRE speech, not that gotcha edited video from conservative blogger Andrew Breitbart who started this mess. But he didn't start this racial fire that's blazing with sexism. It was always burning in this country and the black community. NAACP president Ben Jealous didn't even have the sense to wait before pre-maturely slamming the woman for discrimination. I could write about Breibart cutting her speech to make the black USDA official sound like a racist abusing her powers against a white farmer 20+ years ago. That was VERY wrong. And I'm sure Mrs. Sherrod's lawyers are on it. But the NAACP's quick reaction to dismiss Sherrod was just cold-blooded WRONG. And don't get me started on her boss and the White House. Why didn't she get the swift, to her defense, Henry Louis Gates treatment? Or what about the Chris Brown and R. Kelly treatment? You know, where people in the community say, "Hold Up! We don't know the whole story." I wonder if she were a man, would someone from the NAACP had spoken up and demanded the entire tape. Some of us in my community are so caught up in this idea of society "keeping a brotha down" that we've neglect to keep a sista up and have her back. Sorry Mrs. Sherrod. You have to be a professional athlete or an R&B singer who beats up your lover for more people to come to your defense.

** Kudos to CNN's Kyra Phillips and Fox News Shepard Smith for wanting to watch the whole tape before rushing to judgment.

I'm sending well wishes to one of my favorite artists--Pink. She injured herself doing one of her acrobatic stunts at a concert in Germany. Pink fell out of her harness in mid-air. Ouch lady, get better. The woman is so hardcore she tweeted from the hospital. Her Funhouse album is so.right.on.

And Cocoa Fly is keeping her wings crossed for Lion King Broadway star Shannon Tavarez. The 11-year-old needs a bone marrow transplant to battle lukemia. Wendy Williams covered this on her show and her cast mates said anyone could be a match. BUT someone who is half-Dominican and African American, like Shannon, may be a better match. A bone marrow drive was held in NYC two weeks ago. Hundreds showed and I'm praying she has a match.