Friday, September 30, 2011

Let the Fun Continue

We've come a long way since the beginning of this blog. Us 4 ladies started this blog back on May 2, 2011 with the idea of given our thoughts a place to breathe. We wanted to create an enviornment where we could escape for a bit and hopefully allow others to escape with us. So far so good I think.

With 36 followers, 100 posts, and 10966  hits (as of the writing of this post)- we are well on our way to doing something pretty big. And I couldn't be happier. This blog has been a great motivator for me. I've kept up on current events, have continued to build my friendships with my friends, have matured extensively, and have learned a lot about my friends I didn't know before. It has been a blessing and I hope you will continue to enjoy this blog as much as we do.

Look forward to more humor, political rants, throwbacks, self-reflections, ruminations on life and friendship, and just whatever comes to mind. And if there is anything in particular that you want us to speak on or if you have some comments please feel free to email us And if you don't already follow or subscribe, get on the horse! We're fun ladies and you'll enjoy it. 

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

To Date....or Not to Date

So... I've been busy and confused. Can you relate? Well, first let me update you...

About two weeks ago, I went on my first post-break up date. It didn't work out. Why? Well, nothing too big- I wasn't that attracted to him and we did not have that much in common. I think those are good reasons to not go on a second date...right? I mean, there was nothing wrong with homie.... he was Black, fit, educated, had a consistent job, polite, smart, mature but STILL I just was not into it. Sorry senor, no date number two for you.

Then enter dude number 2. I met a few days ago. As a matter of fact, we had a date earlier tonight but I cancelled about an hour before it was supposed to happen. Why you ask? Well, I don't know, I guess that's why I'm writing this post. Gentleman number 2, is another good looking, tall, even + smooth skinned, long nice dreads dude...attractive, period. Showed me the right type of attention too. But still, my disinterest kicked in. Why?

I guess I'm not ready? Is that what it means? Am I too picky? Too fickle? I'm not sure what it is and I don't think I will ever know. But for now, I'm gonna focus on getting a hobby. Yes. A hobby. You got one? Exactly. What do you do when you're not dating? and How do you know you're ready to date?

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Facing Execution: The Story of Reggie Clemmons

I gather that most of you are unfamiliar with the story of Reginald Clemons and that is okay. I did not learn about his case until earlier today. He is convicted of being an accomplice in the murders of Julie and Robin Kerry. Anti-death penalty activists are fighting his execution on priciple but also because this case involves accusations of serious judicial misconduct, including allegations of police brutality and ineffective counsel.

The following excerpt is an official report from Clemon's report:

Reggie Clemons was sentenced to death in St. Louis as an accomplice in the 1991 murder of two young white women, Julie and Robin Kerry, who plunged from the Chain of Rocks Bridge into the Mississippi River. Two other black youths were also convicted, including Marlin Gray (executed in 2005). Clemons has consistently maintained his innocence. His case illustrates many of the flaws in the U.S. death penalty system.
Shortly after a 2009 execution date was stayed, the Missouri Supreme Court assigned a judge (a "Special Master") to investigate the reliability of his conviction and proportionality of his sentence. Amnesty International urges the state of Missouri to recognize the serious problems with Reggie Clemons' case and to commute his death sentence.
From Amnesty International:

"Reggie Clemons was sentenced to death in St. Louis as an accomplice to a 1991 murder. There was no physical evidence and since allegations have arisen of police coercion, prosecutorial misconduct, and a ‘stacked’ jury in the Clemons case. Despite so many lingering questions, Missouri is still planning to execute Reggie Clemons."
Last week Wednesday, we witnessed another state execute a brother by the name of Troy Davis despite a serious case that could be made for reasonable doubt. Millions gathered either in Georgia or in front of our computers and televisions, standing in allegiance with Troy Davis as he became the victim of our country's cruel and unusual interpretation of "justice." Execution has little to do with obtaining justice and a whole lot to do with getting revenge. It's justice from the viewpoint of a vindictive, thirteen year-old girl.

Unfortunately, people are always going to be wrongly convicted of crimes they did not commit. It's a sad reality. But there is a difference between having a person sitting in a cell for 20 years when wrongly convicted and having him, oh I dunno, PUT TO DEATH! To be honest, I'm not sure if Troy Davis or Reginald Clemons are completely innocent. But isnt' that the point? If intelligent people can debate their innocence then it is reprehensible to execute them.

Since 1973, more than 130 people have been released from death row because of evidence that they were wrongly convicted. And while black people make up about 13 percent of the U.S. population, we make up more than 40 percent of the nation’s death row prisoners. A 2001 University of North Carolina study found that killing a white victim is 3.5 times more likely to lead to a death sentence than killing a black victim.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Angela Winbush: The Voice of an Angel

Mama Chele stopped listening to contemporary rhythm and blues in the 90's. She couldn't get into the genre's continued merge with hip hop so whileI was growing up, tunes from the previous decade were heavily played in our living room. Through the speakers came music from Luther, Whitney, Anita, Teddy and Patti. I know each of these artists' music as well as I know the alphabet but absent from the list is Miss Angela Winbush, the songstress who topped the charts in the 80's, mostly as a part of the duo, Rene and Angela.

Hopefully you all are familiar with this song. With a perfect blend of soul and funk, it's arguably the biggest hit of their career, coming off their breakthrough album A Street Called Desire in 1984. They had a string of hits, including songs from their earlier albums including "You Don't Have to Cry" and "My First Love," the latter was covered and was a big hit almost twenty years later by Avant and Keke Wyatt.
"Your Smile" is my song! Mostly led by Angela herself, I believe it was a dedication to her grandmother. She and Rene wrote beautiful songs and other artists sought the two out for their songwriting skills. They wrote a few songs for Janet Jackson's self-titled album and then wrote exclusively for Stephanie Mills. From their music and videos it appeared as if Rene and Angela's chemistry was as perfect as their talent. However, on TV One's UnSung, Winbush revealed that their relationship began to sour and that Rene even was physically abusive towards her in the end.
Needless to say the two went their separate ways. He continued songwriting, most notably for Michael Jackson. Angela started her solo career off strong with the single 'Angel' where she showcased her amazing vocal ability. Her debut album Sharp happened largely with the help of Ronald Isley. It was his way of thanking her for contributing to the production of the Isley Brothers' album Smooth Sailing. Her career continued to soar for the following years and she even ended up marrying Mr. Biggs in 1993.

But with her success came tragedy. Though she continued to collaborate with the Isley Brothers, Angela and Ron divorced in 2002. A year later she publicly announced that she was diagnosed with stage three ovarian cancer. She also struggled with severe depression. Angela attributes her full recovery to her deep faith in God. Well we are happy to still have her here with us. Her music is a treasure and while she may not be as well known as other artists of that time period, her talents and contributions to the music world were undoubtedly significant.
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