Having My Say: Ramblings of Professor Marsha
AUGUST 2014 ARCHIVE
August 29, 2014 12:49 PM PT
I recently relocated to the San Diego area to fulfill a lifelong dream and also better manage my scleroderma. When I arrived, my brother Kyle gave me this awesome "housewarming gift."
No, I'm no where near retirement so I could not quite understand the intent... unless he was telling me that I LOOK old enough to be retired (as brothers do). Then, I noted the author. It is the work of my first cousin, Duane Filer, chronicling his first year as a retiree. He shared a story involving a trip to see one of Kyle's hometown friends perform at the Troubadour Nightclub in Beverly Hills. While the entire experience is engaging, I was struck by a passage in which Duane describes his fondness for natural hair:
I just thought how terribly nice to have such a wonderful affirmation of the natural beauty in women. And I happen to know Duane; he is a highly intelligent man who has devoted his entire life to family and community service. Ladies -- this is male advice we can trust!
Original post, Mothers Day 2014;
My mother was a Family Matriarch. Like most women of her day, she felt it was important to “tow a line” and that line fell to the woman. Sure, she believed that men were the heads of the household but it could not be achieved without the assistance of a woman who had a vision and sense of purpose, usually enough for both! One of her favorite jokes was a fond description of Eve’s beginning: “Sure! The Good Lord took a rib from Adam to create Eve; it was the very first miracle because that rib immediately turned into a BACKBONE!” She was the planner, cook, housekeeper, hostess, family organizer, keeper of family secret’s, family policy and law holder, homework director, and wielder of the switch, referee. She was WISDOM. If others cast stones at her mistakes, she would take those stones to build stronger foundations in her children. However, if someone cast stones at her children, she came out swinging. She used family issues to build her family stronger; creating a fortress of solitude necessary for children to flourish. She kept it impenetrable from all outsider predators. All children knew they could trust one person in the family, the Family Matriarch. I’m sure you all know a Family Matriarch whether she (or he) has been given that title or not.
AUGUST 15, 2014 7:47 PM ET
#Ferguson #TrayvonMartin #EricGarner #MichaelBrown
Some people always overlook the blood, tears, and loss of life that have paved each path to such desperate acts. No matter what injustice happens in the Black community, there are still those who find a reason to somehow see nothing but a few unruly folks getting out of hand and make comments alluding to the fact that our mistreatment is somehow warranted because, as a community, we do not know how to behave when wronged.
Do not be deceived. The media may not show it but there are people of all backgrounds, races, cultures, and faiths supporting the #Ferguson community and protesting against the local law enforcement brutality. Many are waking up.
But to the few who seem to see "looting" and "rioting" as the greatest difficulty here, then let us review a few truths:
Suspicion of a crime in the Black community often leads to the death of the unarmed. I, for one, would rather see this trend stopped now as it IS spilling out to other areas of society. But it is MOST PREVALENT in the Black community.
Suspicion of guilt (OR JAYWALKING) does not warrant a gunning down in a street (and being left like an animal -- this is someone's child).
For decades, issues related directly to the Black community have been pushed aside and ignored, especially since many felt the election of President Obama signaled a perceived "end" to racism issues. The disorder you see is the result of waiting too long on a justice system that never seems to get it right with us.
Can we not all agree:
A child gunned down walking home from a convenience store is wrong..
I know Facebook serves to give us a shameless 15 minutes of fame, but every year at this time, I am reminded of how terribly blessed my life has been. Through all the challenges of “the now”, we often forget about all the people who helped nudge us back to the proper path when the journey got more than just a little rocky.
With each name read on my wall, I recall how you have touched my life in some unique way. To be able to have so many wonderful people take time to consider me on this day is truly awesome! I am especially grateful to have been able to reconnect with some childhood friends who gave my spirit a chance to reflect on the feelings of youth. You know me best and have held steadfast through valleys, mountains, feast, famine, tears, and laughter. Best birthday present was spending time with everyone in California in July!
My Facebook prayer for the coming year is that I am able to offer a prayer, comforting words, or just support when it is needed. I believe that we owe it to each other to make sure our meetings always touch the lives of others in some positive way.
I’m so thankful that God loves me, I’m happy and blessed to reflect it in return, for as many more birthdays as He allows! Thank you for your birthday wishes!
“Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.” 1Peter 4:8
August 7, 2014
Jennifer Msumba is suing Judge Rotenberg Center following shock therapy
Electric Shock Therapy Used on Autistic Students at Judge Rotenberg Center in Cambridge Massachusetts.
When I first became aware of this story on CBS, I was immediately reminded of the movie Frances, the story of Frances Farmer played phenomenally and unforgettably by actress Jessica Lange. As one diagnosed with depression as a teenager, I was once asked if I would consider electric shock therapy. The news of this story caused the very same chill to rise on the back of my neck. I have to believe that we have come far beyond the antiquated and obsolete mental disorder treatments of the 30s and 40s AND EARLIER. As some of the most dependent members of society, mental health patients should find comfort from others not a dangerous threat of pain in order to curb what is perceived as offending behavior.
Autism is a neurological disorder that cannot be SHOCKED away. Many autistic children cannot even communicate how painful the treatment is. This is why I applaus Jennifer's decision to champion this issue even more. As an educator and parent, I would NEVER treat a child in this manner. I know that we are constantly seeking ways to help children find success in the classroom but THIS is NOT it.
Lavender essential oil burning gently in the background, hugs, praises, a calm voice -- these are all techniques that can positively affect behavior in the classroom. I am hoping this treatment is banned.
Join the conversation on my Facebook page: Education Coffeehouse: Encourage, Engage and Educate
Marsha Burson Bass, ABD