Tag Archives: Understanding

Yasmin Mogahed’s position on the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict:

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Yasmin Mogahed pic

Author’s-Note:
Yasin Mogahed’s spin on the issue takes us to a place that we ca all relate to: it sets us up & forces us to truly reflect upon the different scenarios that she presents, and how we would view them, had they been in place of the Palestinian-Israeli issue.

I used to wonder why some Palestinian people would engage in actions that could only provoke the aggressor further. Then I realized that to ask a people to live quietly, while they have no justice and no freedom, is to ask them to live “peacefully” as slaves. “Peace” without justice or freedom is slavery. It’s like asking a battered woman to live “peacefully” with her abuse. We all want the bloodshed to stop. But what about the daily humiliation and institutionalized oppression?

I was reminded of a part in “The Hunger Games” when Katniss considers abandoning the resistance against the oppressor, in exchange for “safety”. Gale’s response was telling. He said: “Safe to do what? Starve? Work like slaves? Send their kids to the reaping?”

Consider this: If a woman is being raped, things would be a lot more “peaceful” if she didn’t resist. But, asking her not to resist–just because her attacker is physically stronger–is asking her to accept her own abuse and oppression for the sake of “peace”. This is what the world is asking Palestinians to do.

And sometimes what seems to the world as just ineffective tactics, like throwing a rock at a tank, is in fact an act of resistance. It is a powerful statement to the oppressor–and the world–that they refuse to be enslaved. That dignity and self-respect are even more beloved to them than their own lives.

It is a statement that you can take their lives. But not their freedom.

Yasmin Mogahed/2014

For more info. about Yasmin Mogahed:

http://www.yasminmogahed.com

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My Love-Letter to the one who refuses to love me back:

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I’m not in despair, and I no longer care.
You really didn’t want me at all anyway.

I now see who you really are, it’s clear.
You just wanted to pass the time of day.

You knew in your heart that you didn’t want me; but, you kept it going.
You already had it in your mind that I would be like the others, coying.

There was this mythos within me that you were looking to explore.
But, then you got attached, then, you realized that I wanted more.

Then, you used the excuse of your family to say that it wouldn’t work.
You only compared me to every other man, whom to you was a jerk.

You prejudged me even before you knew me.
There’s so much to me that you refuse to see.

To you, I was just some regular Nigger from the hood, with no culture.
I was just some Revert-Muslim, without any past & without any future.

You were too hasty to wait for me to get things established.
You let haters you know make your decisions, it’s so tragic.

But, it’s okay, you’ve decided to run away.
After you had nearly sent my heart astray.

I wanted to do things right, and you just wanted a good-time.
Then, apparently, you just get this epiphany, that is sublime.

You want to run away from me, all because you’re afraid of how I would be perceived.
You’ve allowed others, who only look at the surface, decide who you want to be with.

The whole thought of you actually letting these people control you cannot be conceived.
But, then again, this is how you’ve wanted it; you yourself hadn’t ventured for any depth.

But, where is your own stance, and resolve; you need to stop letting people control your life.
If you would actually call it quits, because of only perceptions, then I need you not as a wife.

Now, I will never claim that I did nothing wrong.
And, I wouldn’t dare sing the blame-game song.

I know that I’ve sinned and brought sorrow to my own soul.
Now, my heart has dark-spots, the hues of mountain coal.

But, it’s a 50/50 split whenever things in relationships go wrong.
You knew in your heart you did not want this to go on very long.

You said that you would wait; yet, you are not displaying any inkling of patience.
You’re ready to just pack-up & go when things don’t go your way, at an instance.

You said that you would rather not speak to me or see me instead.
Now, if this is at all true, then why are you still my Facebook friend?

If you’re really serious about no contact with me, why not just cut me off?
Just release me, as the Lungs release dust & particles through a cough?

Gareth Bryant/2012

My thoughts on the word “Nigger”:

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Author’s note:
People, very often, have asked me why I’m so comfortable with the word “Nigger” being used around me. They just can’t understand, why an African-American would be so “not angry” when this particular word is used. I’ve honestly been thinking about this for a very long time, how to officially throw the word “Nigger” to the waste side, meaning take the power of meaning away from the word itself. Ironically, most people, especially African-Americans, really have no idea that the word Nigger, and the word Negro, for that matter, actually come from actual words in Latin. The word “Nigger” is derived from the Latin word “Niger” (just like the name of the country, in Africa…yes), which literally means the color “Black”. The word “Negro” is derived from the Latin word “Negro”, which means “To blaken/To make black”. However, the connotative meanings of both these words are exclusively, historically, meant to degrade & dehumanize anyone who is either Non-White, or even Non-European. And, occasionally, this term was even used against other Whites, like how it was used to dehumanize the Irish, during the 19th century, as droves of Irish immigrants came from Ireland, as a result of the historically infamous “Potato-Famine”. The following poem is my way of expressing how this word does not describe me.

A Nigger, I am not:

There’s just no way that I could ever be someone’s Nigger.
Allah is my Creator, it’s He who fashioned my noble figure.

He’s made me a Human being, higher, brighter, and better than the rest.
He has chosen me to be ahead of all creation; my status is the very best.

Never am I lower than an animal; my existence has great value & is substantial.
I’ve been guided to Islam, the noble path of many; I carry a very heavy mantle.

Allah doesn’t favor people because of their ethnicities, colors, nor races.
It’s only through believing in Him & doing good will we attain His graces.

This word Nigger has kept so many people back, from truly elevating to their rightful stations.
They have, unfortunately, bought into the lies that they are nothing & have given justifications.

Self-belittlement must come to an end; we are the ones whom Allah has created, with His own hands.
He has molded the bodies of our parents, Adam and Eve, from all different types of the Earth’s lands.

He has given us something that no one can take from us, no matter what they do.
It’s called the Soul; I’ve been given one, directly from my Creator & so have you.

So, the next time that you have the urge, to use this hateful word, think about what you’re really saying.
You yearn to take someone’s Humanity, with the utterance of just a single word, it is spiritual maiming.

Gareth Bryant/2012