I’m Not A South Carolinian; I’m the Rebirth of the Black Radical


When I was growing up in Columbia, South Carolina, I was awoken by one singular task from my mother. “Get out of South Carolina,” she would sermonize. This would be repeated to me regularly and in different ways. “Get out of South Carolina and don’t come back.” Sometimes she would say, “Don’t get trapped here.”

My mother, who birthed me at 14-years old, and was the first to graduate college in her family, pushed me to pursue college outside the state and to never return because, she would say, South Carolina would trap and kill me. Maybe it was the way my uncle was coerced to admit to a crime he didn’t commit that resulted in him being sentenced to 14 years in prison. Maybe it’s the way South Carolina unapologetically praises its racist history by flying the confederate flag on the state grounds. Or maybe it was the way my guidance counselor suggested I go to community college because “that’s all you’ll probably get.”

As a black boy growing up there, South Carolina was never my home. I’ve felt more at home at Howard University, when I could share a similar sentiment of displacement, pride and fury for the way in which black people like me are treated in America. I realized I was not a South Carolinian (nor did I want to be) when I recognized South Carolina didn’t care about me or anyone who looked like me—nothing had changed for black life since I was kid. Black children are shipped from poverty-stricken neighborhoods to sub-par schools with little to no resources and excess police that patrol neighborhoods, some of which have a curfew. If you’re black and luckyenough not to be arrested, you may get a service job and be able to make minimum wage. My mother wanted to break that cycle.

When I recognized this trend, I began to believe I had no home and was seemingly alone. It turns out I was only partially right: I am not alone—the Charleston massacre is a stark reminder of that.

See complete article at Colorlines.com

The Beauty of Complaining


  How can people respond to “How are you” by saying they “can’t complain?”  Why on earth would you not want to complain? Complaining is probably one of the few gifts as human beings we have. Complaining incites change, empathy, … Continue reading

Why Net Neutrality or “Preventing Cable Company F*ckery” Affects You

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The discussion around “net neutrality” has probably become one of the most perplexing for common consumers to join. Yet alone not knowing what it means, many people still don’t understand how doing away with net neutrality on the internet will impact … Continue reading

ADVERTISING WEEK is almost upon us. Ya Ready?

While y’all are attending New York Fashion Week, we’re over here getting ready for Advertising Week 2014!! For the Official Guide, this year I spoke with Dentsu Aegis CEO, Nigel Morris, on innovation in the mobile world and how “convergence” is changing the way brand connect with consumers. Take a look.
Substance Of Innovation-ADVERTISING WEEK
Advertising Week is September 29-October 3 2014. Find out more here.


28 Reasons Why Saturday Night Live Wins

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It’s February again and like clockwork, we’re bound to see a plethora of marketers invoking the success and aspirational elements of African American culture. Bring in the MLK, Malcolm X, and Harriet Tubman shirts and tributes.

Some content may even draw attention to the plight of African Americans throughout history–que BET’s ongoing run of Alex Haley’s ROOTS.

However, there are some cases where a brand will conjure up just the right sentiment needed and wanted to open up dialogue about Black History Month–and that award goes to Saturday Night Live.

This past Saturday, February 1st, SNL featured Jay Pharoah, Kenan Thompson (who I grew up watching on ALL THAT–good times), and newcomer Sasheer Zamata in a sketch that was both funny and refreshing.

“28 Reasons To Hug A Black Man”

I’m pretty sure, reflecting on my own grade school experience in good ole South Cackilacky, there are classroom situations just like the one portrayed in the video. The Black students are asked to give a presentation on Black History Month and an awkward silence blankets the air for the duration of the class.

I’d take the content on SNL with a grain of salt. They’re not trying to be society’s intellectual elite with their content. They’re trying to make you laugh and boost ratings. Period.

With that said, they did well. The main reason to hug a Black man today, the video said (considering the Black man is one of the most if not the most disenfranchised and undervalued person in America) is that “We deserve a chance.” Reasons 2 through 28 include slavery, slavery, and only slavery. It made me chuckle. Not only because it reminded me of arguments by noble columnists harping that Blacks should “get over” slavery. But it added laughter to a conversation that usually sends uncomfortable ripples down a forgetful and nonchalant America’s back.  In an ideal world, it wouldn’t be taboo for Blacks or Whites to talk about slavery.

Of course, this obviously wouldn’t suffice for a BHM tribute. It’s SNL; why would it? But props to the writers and comedians that pulled it off.

Poem – Lead Down The River

I’ve been experimenting with different structures as of late. Here’s a piece I originally called “Chopped”


begin. body. touch. push. lie. scratch. blend. go. move. no. river. slut. cry. cream. might. warrant. me. fly. bleed. end.

begin. be. grow. friend. friends. gone. pick. pull. red. flaunt. sit. eyes. mine. flow. thighs. brown. black. blow. lying. backs. pulling. thick. throwing. it. sticks. arm. strong. bend. end.

begin. kiss. forget. struggle. missed. miss. enemies love. fresh and blood. ending. whole. chopped up. missing. falls. shit you saw. sold. drip. cut. free. fuck. sad. strut. trust. end.

quickly, in the dark.
penetrated future of running water,
running down my mouth?
no, down my stomach.
Can see it in the dark.
Run Run Run.
Confused by the tree roots, come from no where.
Run past there,
over. under. through
quickly, in the dark.
Lead down the river.
Lead down the river.

Masked Man Fallacy – Short Story


23 Crippled little mind of mine. Always playing tricks on me. The first time I ever set foot in this building was three years ago. It was my first day at Kilders Graduate School. I was timid and worried, nearly … Continue reading



Fear. the shivering cold that replaces the warmth you feel under blankets of safety. Where did you find this fear, eh? Locked in between your thighs? Etched on the skin of your back? Imprinted in the veins of your brain? … Continue reading

7 Quotes From ‘Black Fish’ That Speak To More Than Whale Captivity & Torture


Since coming back from Europe, my sleep has been all over the place. I’ve been going to sleep at midnight and waking back up at 4am–without going back to sleep. Even though it’s likely I may be slowly encouraging a … Continue reading

3 Rivers – 3 Paths Everyone Chooses Between

photo by: Williams-Cairns Photography LLC

It’s a very peculiar mindset you live in when the tumultuous times that you go through are used as a strategically placed stool for your personal or professional prosperity. What is that called? I’d have to believe it is called … Continue reading