We Have A Perception Problem

Photo Dec 13, 3 40 50 PMToday is the eve of Christmas Eve and as much as I really want to talk about my book and how you should all buy it because it’s on sale, I feel the need to continue to talk about what is going on around me. I find it fascinating that we’re living in a time of sheer division. Before it was about Obamacare, or gun control, or Ebola, or gay marriage, but now it’s about policing and protesting for accountability.

Once again I look at the media and see the dollar signs that sells papers and web clicks. Although I find it to be really interesting that two policeman are killed during a terrorist drill in Brooklyn, I feel bad that people have to lose their lives in order for a discussion to happen or to continue. What I can’t stand is how predictable people are.

The moment that those two police officers were killed I hoped and prayed that it was not going to “linked” to the peaceful protests of a week ago. But, in my gut, I knew that this was going to add fuel to the fire.

It’s shame those cops were killed. It’s also a shame that everyone who stands to gain political capital has taken advantage of that, which means that the sheep who believe everything they read will follow suit. Blaming the protesters for a crazy man’s deed is just as stupid as any police supporter saying we’re blaming all police for the actions of a few bad cops. Which brings us to the real problem… perception is reality.

There’s a real perception problem that is overplayed by the media. There are people who believe, with good reason, that the gangsta lifestyle has been glorified and that these “thugs” want to live that lifestyle (by the way, thug is the new “n” word, think about the that). Sure, you can point to music, movies, and video games for such attitudes but lets think about this for one second. If you’re perceived as person who wont amount to anything and you live in an area where your life means nothing then would you think you had a future? How would you act?

There are also people who believe, with good reason, that bad cops don’t exist. They’re first responders to danger and are sworn to protect and serve. If there’s an incident they respond to that must mean that thugs and criminals are present, which may be true. However, it’s only in the pages of the Batman or in television shows that police do bad things. After all, if Tamir Rice (12 years) had only listened to the police and put down the toy gun he would be alive today.

Maybe that assessment may seem unfair but bad people exist on both sides. What continues to pop up is absolutism. If you’re not with me than you’re against me. If you support Obamacare you’re anti-American. If you’re protesting police brutality then you’re against cops. Why can’t we live in the grey anymore? Why can’t our interests be mutually exclusive?

I know the answer but if I talk about race then I’m a race-baiter or I’m being divisive. We have a perception problem and it will not be fixed until we place the appropriate value on human lives.

If I talk about Mike Brown, someone will say, “he wasn’t innocent.” My response has always been, it doesn’t matter. We’re suppose to have this glorious justice system that can determine that

“Well, he’s this big guy and the cop was afraid so he had to shoot him.” My response has always been, you mean shoot him after he ran? Couldn’t Wilson shoot him in the leg? “Cops are taught to shoot to kill.” Bingo. That’s the problem. Why have a judicial system if that is truly the case?

Again, we have a perception problem because if anyone of us talk about any of these officers in a bad light in terms of history of police brutality, any guesses on the response?

It doesn’t matter they were a cops.

Perception is reality and we need to fix this.

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Tipping the Hat to 2013

2013-12-31 11.32.08Usually I do some sort of year in review post. I think about it now and it may just be a little too self serving. After all, I need to really ask myself what I really did this year. Instead, I thought about being short on this post about how grateful I am for having people support me in all my efforts.

I know that the beginning of the year was bumpy for me and it made me question whether I should even be a writer anymore. I had to take a long hard look at myself to figure out if I indeed was this person that I said I was. Through this personal turmoil, I had friends help me see that I get through the tough times and lo and behold, I started the novel in March.

Since that point, everything has been a lesson for me and I appreciate the encouragement of the people who follow me. My good friends have encouraged and challenged me to get as far as I have. I have yet to figure out ways to thank them.

My family is just realizing how deep this writing game is to me. It almost make me nervous because this book is R rated. Not that we are not all adults here but its not like I have a potty mouth in person. I will have to remind them that they can’t think about me when they read the words and situations. lol

As for everyone else, thank you. I thought the site switch from blogger to word press would have been more of hassle but it turns out that it has worked out well in my favor. I’m glad that this site does get read despite the fact that I haven’t written nearly as much as I should. I look forward to updating everyone on the process of writing and self publishing.

Happy New Year to you all. I hope 2014 provides us all with much success.

The Redefinition

tumblr_mhy4hhQo5j1rl14rno1_500Many lessons learned. I’ve been in New York City for 7 months now and I can honestly say that reaching one’s goals is not enough. Just like sports teams will say that is not simply enough to make the playoffs, achieving goals mean nothing if you do not follow through.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad to be back in my hometown. I’m not lying when I tell people that I love being back here. What I never expected was how hard life can be even after setting all the goals and meeting them one by one. Which then makes me think about how my life has changed and how I need to redefine my life and the things I do.

A move like this isn’t just a physical move. I had been used to a certain life and a certain way of being. I was in Syracuse of 11 years. I was married and divorced within that time. I started at the bottom of the latter and moved up. I started a blog and a help start a community. I built relationships. However, this move is also psychological. NYC is different with a way of life that is at a whole different speed. Adjustment to it may seem easy at first but that is only if you do not take into account the rest of your life.

That is why I need to redefine everything. The definition of friendship is the first thing to change, because this is sad to say, no one is ever really who we thought they are. I’m also pretty sure there are people who feel the same about me, perhaps they thought I was someone that I’m really not and that is ok. More and more I begin to realize that I need people in my life that are about something, even if that something is not in line with my own goals. Most of my friendships have been based on an affinity for one thing or another, but not always on success. Which is why, other people who I have been friends with who share an affinity to being successful seem to be more likely to check in on successes and provide more encouragement and thus I end up doing the same for them.

I also have to redefine my finances. This is something that is more of a life’s work. It is simply not that easy for me to put on my shit in line, however, I have been getting better at it with each passing month. The one lesson that I seem to learn over and over again is that money is the root of all evil. Money may make the world go round but, it can destroy relationships. Getting friends involved with money matter is a dangerous road to go down. It will make you redefine what friendship truly is.

There also come a time to redefine affiliations. I have take steps to make sure that all my affiliations are in order. I have left some and cleaned others up

I just need to focus on myself. This phase of redefining my life comes a time in which I’m being reflective on my past and my future. My journey is far from over and I need to figure out what is best for me and the projects I am dead set on.

I am writing a book and I have been tending to it like a plant. Watering it every day until it is fully formed. I will then clip when it is ready and see how it turns out when all the leaves turn green.