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Bridging the past and future sharing stories of Black Indians and many more. "Who is afraid of Black Indians?"

#NinaSimone Talks #Blackness #BlackisBeautiful

(Source: youtube.com)

17 hours ago
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Why is The Term #Redskins Harmful to many Native Peoples? #ChangetheName #ChangetheMascot @Redskins

To many American Indians, the term “Redsk*ns” is associated with the barbaric practice of scalping. The record in this case is replete with evidence of bounty proclamations issued by the colonies and companies. 

These proclamations demonstrate that the term “Redsk*ns” had its origins in the commodification of Indian skins and body parts; these “Redsk*ns” were required as proof of Indian kill in order for bounty hunters to receive payment and these skins of genitalia (to differentiate the skins of women and children from men, in order for bounty payers to pay on a sliding scale for the exact dead Indian) were referred to as scalps (while hair from the head was referred to as top-knots).

“In his desire to defend a name given to his team by an avowed segregationist, Dan Snyder can continue to try to attack me personally, but his strategy will not work because this is far bigger and more important than any one person or group,” Ray Halbritter said. “This is an issue that underscores what it means to treat people with respect and to stop causing them pain rather than continuing to insult them with a racist epithet.”

Check us out! African Native American

18 hours ago
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Hopi girls, Arizona. ca. 1900. #IndianCountry #Native #Hopi #HopiTribe 

"Remember who you really are, trust yourself, and open your eyes to the beauty of a new Earth unfolding before you as we breathe." —Hopi proverb

The Hopi People are a federally recognized tribe of American Indians, who primarily live on the 2,531.773 sq mi (6,557.26 km2) Hopi Reservation in northeastern Arizona. The Hopi Reservation is entirely surrounded by the much larger Navajo Reservation.

»>————— Idle No More —————«<

"Like a seed, your future is only beginning to emerge out of the darkness." —Hopi proverb

Photo by Frederick Monsen. Subscribe to I Love Ancestry eNews: http://eepurl.com/CLJan

Check us out! African Native American

18 hours ago
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#BeautifulInEveryShade BLOOD, SWEAT, & TEARS -a personal story by Gabs shared in partnership with @50ShadesofBLACK for our Bridging the Gap series.

As a young woman of a more slightly reddish-brown complexion, the way I was acclimated into society was being told that my brother was well-liked or more approved of than I because his complexion is more of a caramel brown or, in other words, plays slightly more to the “high-yellow” side of the fifty shades by my peers of my childhood days. I was told I was pretty, but then my peers didn’t seem to like me very much. They picked fights with me a lot; the Caucasian boys were always trying to touch me in explicitly sexual ways … it was a very confusing, frustrating, and (at times) painful childhood for me, to say the least. 

I did try to adjust my outward appearance by relaxing my hair at age twelve (which is not uncommon, but it is certainly not healthy), wearing the clothes that I saw other Caucasian girls wear such as short shorts and tight tops, and I leaned more toward that crowd of people than those of my own race and background. Unfortunately, changing my outward appearance did nothing to improve my situation; instead, it brought more trouble, more confusion, more frustration, and yes, more pain.

Presently, I have cut off my relaxed and conformist hair, and I proudly wear my natural afro. I love the skin I am in, because I no longer let the words and actions that those girls and boys threw at me define who I am today and who I would like to be in the days, weeks, months, and years to come. While it was an arduous challenge to accept the fact that there is no changing the reality that comes with my skin tone, the breath of fresh air and pure joy of being genuinely happy with who I am was worth the blood, sweat, and tears (and I do mean those in the most figurative and literal sense of the words) it took to get here.

~Gabs
(chapter 4, page 53)
50 Shades of Black Coffee Table Book Vol. 1
Photo by: Chris Charles of Creative Silence
PLEASE ORDER YOUR COPY TODAY http://www.50shadesofblack.com/shop 
—- 

BRIDGING THE GAP: Contemporary Realities, Our Ancestral Past, & Our Liberated Future

This is the fifth of our weekly series of posts curated by the creator of 50 Shades of BLACK in partnership with I Love Ancestry called BRIDGING THE GAP featuring contemporary stories of people like YOU from around the world.

Each week we will feature one of YOUR stories about your ancestors, your heritage, and/or your coming to understand/celebrate your OWN identity.

We personally invite you to join us on this journey of discovery and healing. Share your stories, find your voice, speak your truths.

Share YOUR Story: 
http://www.50shadesofblack.com/share-stories
 

Check us out! African Native American

2 months ago
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I’M A TOAST SHADE OF YELLOW IN THE SUMMER -a woman reflects on misconceptions of skin tone in partnership with 50 Shades of BLACK for our Bridging the Gap series on I Love Ancestry.

I love to sit in a quiet place and study my surroundings. When I went shopping with my mom as a little girl, the sales ladies would look at me strangely. My mom is a smooth dip of chocolate, and my dad is a bright shade of red with a brush of white. So, I am a toast shade of yellow in the summer and a pale shade of crimson and white in the winter months. So, I would see how they would watch my mom and then me. When I would call out to mom and say “Hey, Momma” they would frown and look shocked. 
I have had employees in a work environment tell me “my mom must have jumped the fence,” not knowing that was an insult. I shared that with my family at dinner one Sunday, and my older sisters and mom were furious. I was like, so what does it mean? My oldest sister, who is a least eighteen years older, then said it meant my mom has not slept with a white man…. I was hurt and felt stupid. My dad is black and so is my mom. The shades of color range from a dark to a bright red—but in my heart I love the different shades of color our heritage has. 50 Shades of Black should have a trilogy that continues on and on until we all understand that no matter what shade we are, we should love each other as a whole. We should help each other up and not put our feet on each other’s head to keep us down.

~Tammy Gilbert
(chapter 3, page 41)
50 Shades of Black Coffee Table Book Vol. 1
Photo by: Chris Charles (Creative Silence)
Model: Nia Florence 

PLEASE ORDER YOUR COPY TODAY http://www.50shadesofblack.com/shop 
—- 

BRIDGING THE GAP: Contemporary Realities, Our Ancestral Past, & Our Liberated Future

This is the 7th of our weekly series of posts curated by the creator of 50 Shades of BLACK in partnership with I Love Ancestry called BRIDGING THE GAP featuring contemporary stories of people like YOU from around the world.

Each week we will feature one of YOUR stories about your ancestors, your heritage, and/or your coming to understand/celebrate your OWN identity.

We personally invite you to join us on this journey of discovery and healing. Share your stories, find your voice, speak your truths.

Share YOUR Story: 
http://www.50shadesofblack.com/share-stories

Check us out! African Native American

2 months ago
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#BlackEdu #BlackHistory John Arthur “Jack” Johnson, The 1st Black American world heavyweight boxing champion (March 31, 1878 – June 10, 1946)

Nicknamed the Galveston Giant, Jack Johnson was an American boxer, who—at the height of the Jim Crow era—became the first Black American world heavyweight boxing champion (1908–1915). In a documentary about his life, Ken Burns notes that “for more than thirteen years, Jack Johnson was the most famous and the most notorious African-American on Earth.”

On July 4, 1910, in what would be billed as the “Battle of the Century,” Johnson finally fought and beat Jeffries in Reno, Nevada to retain his title. Newspapers warned Johnson and his supporters against gloating over the victory. Nonetheless, scores of African Americans and some whites died as a result of the race rioting that broke out in cities across the nation in response to Johnson’s victory. In fear of more race riots, the Texas legislature banned all films showing the black fighter’s wins over any of his white opponents.

Johnson also attracted considerable condemnation because of his unabashed sexual relationships with numerous white women. In 1913, Johnson fled the United States because federal officials charged him with violating the Mann Act, which prohibited the transportation of women across state lines for prostitution, debauchery, or immoral acts.

While in exile in Cuba, Johnson lost his title in 1914 to little known white boxer Jess Willard. Failing to get other matches abroad, Johnson returned to the U.S. in 1920 to surrender to Federal authorities. He was tried and convicted for violation of the Mann Act and sentenced to a year and a day in the Federal penitentiary at Leavenworth, Kansas. Ironically, Johnson was appointed athletic director of the prison while still an inmate. Upon his release from prison in 1921, he returned to the ring, participating only in exhibition fights. Promoters never again gave Johnson another title shot.

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"I’m black… They never let me forget it. I’m black alright…I’ll never let them forget it." ~Jack Johnson (March 31, 1878 – June 10, 1946)

2 months ago
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Change The Mascot Name Washington Redskins: End Racism in Sports

(Source: youtube.com)

17 hours ago
2 notes

Celebrating the wiping out of #GeneralCuster 138 years ago at the #LittleBigHorn #Native #IndianCountry

"Custer is said to have boasted that he could ride through the entire Sioux Nation with his Seventh Cavalry, and he was half right. He got half-way through." ~Vine Deloria Jr. (1933 - 2005)

"The USA to this day maintains a legal, economic and political oppression on the Sioux Nation based on the doctrine of discovery which is a complete religious-legal fiction enforced by fear, poverty and military-police state.” ~@LastRealIndians

"[T]he understanding of the racial question does not ultimately involve understanding by either blacks or Indians. It involves the white man himself. He must examine his past. He must face the problems he has created within himself and within others. The white man must no longer project his fears and insecurities onto other groups, race, and countries. Before the white man can relate to others he must forego the pleasure of defining them." —Vine Deloria Jr. (1933 – 2005), "Custer Died for Your Sins: An Indian Manifesto"

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Check us out! African Native American

17 hours ago
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Celebrating Beautiful @Aranesa Turner of Pomo and African heritage. #Multiracial #Biracial #MixedRace #BlackIndians

"I sing for empowerment." ~Aranesa Turner

Aranesa Turner is a member of the Big Valley Band of Pomo Indian. Her mother was born and raised on the Big Valley Rancheria reservation, and her father is Black American. She is believed to the second American Indian to be selected for the main competition of American Idol (Charly Lowry, being the first). 

Aranesa wasn’t born on the reservation, but it kind of stopped at her. Everybody else was born on the reservation: her mother, grandmother, aunty, uncles, and even though she wasn’t raised on the reservation she has always visited as a young girl. 

They’ve always gone to pow wows, always gone to the rez; her great grandma’s house is there, so she has always been connected to her rez. 

"And just seeing reservation life is, you know, pretty much poverty stricken and all the drug abuse and all the alcohol abuse and all that stuff — it really, really has tugged on my heart since I was a little girl. I’ve always had a heart for people, especially my people. In singing, in having the gift of singing, I feel like I have to use it to give back, I have to use it for my people because we’re hungry, we’re starving for positivity; we’re real-life hungry for change. So [being American Indian] definitely, definitely plays a big part in what I do."

Her father who’s Black American actually went double platinum in the ‘90s for his single. He was in a group called D.R.S. and they went double platinum for the single entitled “Gangsta Lean.” … He was a singer. 

"I feel like that’s why I maybe have this natural love for it. It’s definitely genetic, but I also think that it’s a gift. I feel like my influence is my heart. People keep me going. My heart for people — that influences me to keep doing what I’m doing."

Now that Aranesa has been [unfortunately] eliminated from American Idol, we’d like to congratulate her for putting herself out there and for celebrating her heritage. We wish her plenty of success.

The Pomo people are a linguistic branch of American Indian people of Northern California. Their historic territory was on the Pacific Coast between Cleone and Duncans Point, and inland to Clear Lake.

Stay informed about our work. Subscribe to I Love Ancestry eNews: http://eepurl.com/CLJan - Our strength lies in collective action. Join Us NOW!

Check us out! African Native American

18 hours ago
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Celebrating #OliverLaw (1900 - 1937), 1st Black Commander of an American Army #BlackEdu #BlackHistory

Oliver Law Takes Command (1937) by William Katz. General Colin Powell was three months old when Oliver Law, at 33 a tall, broad-shouldered Texas African American became the first Black Commander of an American Army. The exact date was June 12, 1937, was 76 years go. Law was selected by a committee of three white officers to lead this integrated army.

Heard of Colin Powell but never heard of Oliver Law?
Hardly surprising. Law’s not mentioned in school books or social studies classes, and has not found a place in most college texts or history courses. But Law made his mark on world history in June 1937 and he had very good reasons. 

Oliver Law was among a brave band of 2800 American men and women (including 90 other African Americans) who rushed to help the Spanish Republic Spain during its Civil War (1936-1938). Their aim was to stop Hitler and Mussolini from using Spain as a springboard for their march across Europe and a warm-up for World War II.

These brave Americans were joined by 40,000 other men and women from 52 countries who also volunteered their lives to save Spain’s Republican government from being overwhelmed by Hitler and Mussolini and General Francisco Franco, their Spanish fascist ally.

For the only time in world history a global volunteer force left their homelands to defend democracy in a distant land. Though few volunteers had any military training their goal was prod their own governments to stop fascist aggression then and there. England, France, the USA and other democratic governments did nothing about fascism – except encourage it. So, as one American said, “some one had to do something!”

Among the US volunteers — known as the “Abraham Lincoln Brigade” – military experience ran a low fourth to enthusiasm, commitment and sheer guts. But Oliver Law was different. In Texas he had served six years in the Buffalo Soldiers, “US Colored Troops.” This was the long night of US segregation and lynching that lasted through World War II and beyond. So US War Department policy prevented Law from becoming an officer or reaching higher than corporal.

But in Spain life was different for African Americans. “I can rise according to my worth, not my color,” Law said. This volunteer army included Black and white men and women who at home united during the Great Depression to fight for unemployment insurance, union rights and social security, and to end to segregation, discrimination and lynching.

After the Lincoln Brigade’s first battle at Jarama, Law’s courage was rewarded with a promotion to lieutenant. Next he was placed in charge of a machine-gun company. Then Lincoln Brigade Commander Marty Hourihan recommended him for officers’ school.

When the position of Lincoln Brigade Commander became available on June 12th, a committee of three white Brigade officers voted to make Law a Captain and their Brigade Commander. One of the three, Steve Nelson, who had worked with him in Chicago, told why they picked Law: “He had the most experience and was best suited for the job.” Further, he was “the most acquainted with military procedures on the staff at the moment … he was well liked by his men … .” 

Nelson continued, “When soldiers were asked who might become an officer — ours was a very democratic army — his name always came up. It was spoken of him that he was calm under fire, dignified, respectful of his men and always given to thoughtful consideration of initiatives and military missions.”

The rest of the story is sadder — for Law, the Lincoln Brigade, the International volunteers and the world. At 10:00 AM on July 9th at the battle of Brunete Commander Law insisted on leading his men against a fortified fascist position at Mosquito Ridge. Law, his runner New Yorker Harry Fisher recalled, was “running to the top of the hill,” waving his men on. Law did not “attempt to protect himself, and in a matter of seconds, machine-gun fire ripped into him.” Law’s other runner, New Yorker Jerry Weinberg, crawled across the battlefield to pull Law to safety. It was too late: “He died less than an hour later,” Fisher recalled.

Oliver Law’s comrades buried him under a sign that proudly declared him the first Black commander of a US military unit.

Hitler, Mussolini and Franco defeated democracy in Spain and five months later, Nazi Germany’s marched into Poland and began World War II. Had the democracies heeded the warning of the 40,000 volunteers, the story of World War II might have been different.

Though Oliver Law and a majority of the Americans died in Spain, survivors returned home to again fight fascism after Pearl Harbor. After the war veterans of the Lincoln Brigade continued to battle racism in the United States and oppose imperialist wars abroad, some into the 21st century. Now only a handful in their nineties are left.

[This article is based on my book, THE LINCOLN BRIGADE: A PICTURE HISTORY now updated and reissued in 2013. The book’s pictures and information are based on interviews with Brigade veterans Steve Nelson, Harry Fisher, Sam Walters, and many others during two trips to Spain with these daring veterans and their families, and research.

William Loren Katz is the author of forty US history books, including Black Indians: A Hidden Heritage. His website is http://williamlkatz.com/

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Check us out! African Native American

19 hours ago
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How Racist is Australia? Pretty Damn Racist.

aamerrahman:

This is my response (originally published in Crikey) to Mark Sawyer’s article ‘How Racist Are You’ published in The Age and Sydney Morning Herald last week (http://www.smh.com.au/comment/how-racist-are-you-20140611-zs43h.html)

Dear Mark,

As a comedian I very much appreciated your…
2 months ago
1,436 notes

#BeautifulInEveryShade WHAT IF BARACK OBAMA WERE THE SAME SHADE AS WESLEY SNIPES? @50shadesofblack -a Haitian male reflection on the complexity of skin tone in partnership with 50 Shades of BLACK for our Bridging the Gap series on I Love Ancestry.

I would like to provide my own perspective as a Haitian man when it comes to the whole “lighter” versus “darker” skin tone issue, which is a subject that it is known in most black cultures whether it be African, American, or Caribbean. Let’s face it, any society with a history of racism or slavery is affected by this issue because it is engrained in the society. For Haitians you can trace this back with the emergences of free slaves that were coexisting with a higher privileged minority mulatto class. However, that’s another story for another time. 

From what I have experienced in both the United States and Haiti, generally Haitians hold views similar to African Americans and Africans. When it comes to men, the whole light skin versus dark skin issue is not too much of a big deal. Moreover, darker-skinned men are looked more favorable in certain professions, because there is this perception of these men as, for lack of a better word, more durable. However, the same thing is not true throughout the spectrum; in the Haitian entertainment industry, lighter-skinned men are more favored. However, colorism in the Haitian entertainment industry is less obvious than in American culture. I think this is due to the different histories and media of the two nations.

Since Haiti became an independent nation, powerful positions have been exchanged between both light and dark-skinned Haitians, so there isn’t a power/value imbalance based on skin tone. On the other hand, in the United States, the power/value imbalance seems to be more obvious when you mix in a history of Jim Crow, commercialism, capitalism, and corporate marketing where individuals of lighter skin tones are favored. Colorism in the United States is a deep subject—one I could see myself going on a tangent about. But an example that highlights colorism in the United States is the complexion of President Barack Hussein Obama. Imagine him the same shade as Wesley Snipes….

When it comes to women and colorism in society, the United States and Haiti do share some similarities. In the professional Haitian world, there is not a prevalent power/value imbalance among women of different skin tones. However, in the entertainment industry, women of lighter skin tones seem to be more favored. Yet, even colorism among women in the Haitian entertainment industry is hard to compare to colorism affecting African American women in US society, where this subject is fueled by an unyielding media, capitalism, and systemic racism deeply embedded in the society. 

~Ernst Melias
(chapter 6, page 90)
50 Shades of Black Coffee Table Book Vol. 1
Photo by: Carlton Mackey 
PLEASE ORDER YOUR COPY TODAY http://www.50shadesofblack.com/shop 
—- 

BRIDGING THE GAP: Contemporary Realities, Our Ancestral Past, & Our Liberated Future

This is the sixth of our weekly series of posts curated by the creator of 50 Shades of BLACK in partnership with I Love Ancestry called BRIDGING THE GAP featuring contemporary stories of people like YOU from around the world.

Each week we will feature one of YOUR stories about your ancestors, your heritage, and/or your coming to understand/celebrate your OWN identity.

We personally invite you to join us on this journey of discovery and healing. Share your stories, find your voice, speak your truths.

Share YOUR Story: 
http://www.50shadesofblack.com/share-stories

Check us out! African Native American

2 months ago
1 note
image RED BONE WITH BLUE EYES -a reflection on my journey for personal self-identity by photo-culturalist and 50 Shades of BLACK International Project Coordinator for our weekly Bridging the Gap series on I Love Ancestry.

Does the lack of melanin in my skin make me any less black? Does the absence of a darker pigment in my eyes distance me from my cultural roots? Who am I?

I was called a “reverse-oreo" cookie growing up. The kids in my middle school told me that I was white on the outside and black on the inside. Even though I wore urban clothing and cut my hair into a "gumby," I was still ostracized by my black brothers and sisters. I was searching for my identity as a "red-bone" as I was called on the basketball court and in the black community. I felt that the color of my skin made me both intriguing and an outcast in different situations. It was depressing, and I can still clearly remember when the color divide was evident from grade school inclusion to high school segregation. I still sat on both sides of the cafeteria. No one noticed. Especially when I was wearing a hat. 

By the time I made it to college I learned to be more political with the color of my skin and the color of my eyes. I felt that getting jobs was easier because I was seen as the “safe” choice. Or better yet, the “lighter face” of diversity. If I went into a marketing department at my internships, I was always chosen as the “racially ambiguous” poster child. Back at my HBCU campus I met more people that looked like me from all over the world. It made me wonder even more about my roots. Jamaican? Italian? German? African? French? Still, there was the ultra “black power” crew that told me I was only 10 percent black. They made it certain that the lack of melanin in my skin made me inferior to them. They said that my lighter skin diluted my intelligence, and their darker skin tied them closer to the Motherland and to black culture.

Today I fully embrace the beauty of my culture and mixed ancestry as well as others’. Furthermore, I feel a deep appreciation for diversity both within my own race and outside of it. My experiences as a youth planted a seed in me, a desire to understand the commonalities of the human experience despite the outward differences of culture, upbringing, appearance, and origin. I am a photo-culturalist who travels the world documenting the pinnacles of joy and the depths of sorrow in people’s lives. As I continue to grow as an artist, my professional experiences coupled with my past, help me to understand the complexities surrounding identity formation from a global perspective. 

~Ross Oscar Knight
(chapter 3, page 47)
50 Shades of Black Coffee Table Book Vol. 1
Photo by: Yvonne Lin for Ross Oscar Knight Photography 

PLEASE ORDER YOUR COPY TODAY http://www.50shadesofblack.com/shop 
—- 

BRIDGING THE GAP: Contemporary Realities, Our Ancestral Past, & Our Liberated Future

This is the 8th of our weekly series of posts curated by the creator of 50 Shades of BLACK in partnership with I Love Ancestry called BRIDGING THE GAP featuring contemporary stories of people like YOU from around the world.

Each week we will feature one of YOUR stories about your ancestors, your heritage, and/or your coming to understand/celebrate your OWN identity.

We personally invite you to join us on this journey of discovery and healing. Share your stories, find your voice, speak your truths.

Share YOUR Story: 
http://www.50shadesofblack.com/share-stories

 

2 months ago
3 notes