Decades of segregation and inequality in Ferguson, as well as most American metropolitan areas, have fostered a racial inequality exacerbated by the criminalization of not just poverty, but the criminalization of black and brown bodies. Too many whites are too willing to believe that a black body poses a threat.
It's hard to continue. I wish it was my kids' bedtime. I wish the dishes were done. I wish the house was clean. I wish America wasn't racist. I wish Mike Brown was in police custody. I wish Darren Wilson admitted guilt. I wish America admitted guilt.
My daughter and I were standing in the middle of the baseball field in Inwood Hill Park, looking up at the stars, when something told me to check to see if the decision was finally announced. "NO INDICTMENT" stared back at me, taunting. I fell to my knees, crying. Yet again I was that kid watching an injustice occur right before my eyes and feeling helpless to do anything about it.
The gradual ground we have gained regarding our civil rights should not be confused with the literal stalemate we have had with the U.S. justice system regarding our human rights for more than 200 years.
Having failed so miserably earlier this month to express our justified anger at the ballot box, this Thanksgiving weekend, along with its Black Friday promotions, throughout the holiday season, and for whatever necessary days or months to come, we have been given the opportunity to express our justified rage, anew.
I don't think the fate of Darren Wilson as a human being really means anything to the ruling class. At the end of the day, people like Bob McCulloch aren't protecting Wilson so much as the system that he stood for.
This is a sad day. All of America's fathers, mothers and children should stay outraged and in motion for progress until we are finally what we say we are: One Nation, Under God, Indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for All.
Last year, Mazy was aware and confident enough in herself, after coping with a lot of self-shame and bullying, to share with her family, second grade class and elementary school that she had always known she was a girl.
We are in a state of emergency, a time of challenge and controversy, but not because of the protestors. That state of emergency will continue until we stand, become uncomfortable, and demand a justice system that addresses the manifestation of pain in protest, the further chipping away of respect, and the real state of emergency our country faces.
This is consistent with the cultural logic that makes it okay in America to use brutal force when confronted by a Black villain. Thus, how can a grand jury indict Officer Darren Wilson when he was battling The Hulk?
We now all have the chance to examine the evidence -- released last night -- in the grand jury's decision not to indict white police officer Darren Wilson, who fired multiple bullets into Michael Brown. But the verdict on America's criminal justice system is already in for many Americans: guilty, for treating young black men differently than young white men.
I can't speak. My country has scarred me once again. How can I go to work in the morning on a train full of people who care not? At a workplace of people who missed the story because of football or reality television?
Perhaps the call to examine this one case would be understandable if justice came more often, but we've seen these unjust acts in communities of more color for far too long.
On March 22, 1991, a visibly shaken and angered President George H.W. Bush said he was "sickened and outraged" by what he saw on television. That was the beating of black motorist Rodney King by a swarm of LAPD cops.
The convenient spectacle of "violence in the streets" obscures the perpetuation of "structural violence" everywhere.
These things happen all the time, right? They will happen forever, right? It's nice to think they won't. It's probably best to think life won't always be like this. Optimism is good. But I know I'm going to have to tell my future children about this country. What should I tell them?
The tragedy of Michael Brown's death, unarmed and shot by a member of the Ferguson police, is now followed by the tragic failure of the local courts to force the policeman to stand trial. This cannot stand without a measure of accountability. And on that score look no further than the prosecutor's office.
Deep down, whether I want to admit or not, I know the truth. The racism that James Baldwin knew and ultimately made him leave the country isn't really gone. It's just changed its form.
To understand this moment, we have to understand that Ferguson is yet another unraveled thread in the closely woven fabric of racism that has cloaked this country for 500 years.
When Phylicia Rashad said she was going to take it off, she meant it.
The Tony Award-winning actress, who decided to share her weight-loss plan with the world when she signed on as the new spokesperson for Jenny Craig, has reached her weight-loss goal of 35 pounds in just eight months.
"The most rewarding thing about reaching my goal weight is that I feel so much lighter," she said in a released statement. "There's just an overall sense of well-being. And there's the increased jenny craigenergy as well. It's nice to have people say you look nice. Who knew losing weight could be so much fun?"
The 61-year-old Houston native, best known for her role in the groundbreaking sitcom 'The Cosby Show,' will reveal her new figure in a commercial titled 'Uphill Battle,' set to debut on Aug. 29.
Jenny Craig, known as one of the world's leading weight-loss management programs,couldn't be happier with Rashad's accomplishment. "We are so proud of Phylicia's success," marketing executive Steve Bellach said. "As the public saw her journey unfold on television, Phylicia remarked that the one part of the Jenny Craig program she didn't think she needed, a personal consultant, turned out to be the key to her 35-pound weight-loss success. Phylicia exemplifies what is achievable, and for that reason she is truly inspirational."
With such a hectic schedule, Rashad credits her success to enlisting a Jenny Craig consultant to personalize her program, which was based on eating 1,200 calories a day and 30 to 40 minutes of workout activity up to four times per week.
Rashad told Essence magazine that she did the program for "health reasons," after she had difficulty walking up three flights of stairs. She said that "was a sign that things were not good."
"It had nothing to do with appearance, especially with the roles I have been playing," she continued. "It had to do with the way I felt and the way I was feeling inside."
Now, Rashad is focused on paying attention to "the integrals of when I eat and my portions."
Earlier this year, the Howard University graduate appeared on Broadway as the star of 'August: Osage County.'
This fall, she has plans to reunite with her 'Cat on a Hot Tin Roof' cast members (including fellow Tony Award winner James Earl Jones) to reprise her role as Big Mama for a London run of the play.