Two Strikes…

My mind is all over the place, and I’ll probably come up with other thoughts, but here’s what’s on my mind right now.

  • “Some people in the world will see you, a Black woman, and count those as two strikes against you.” My dad told me this once. It sounded harsh, and he acknowledged this, but I understood. My father is also an Air Force veteran (loved Canada, but hated MS as he was called “boy” down there) who was a Black male adult in Frank Rizzo’s Philly, and can remember when cops would raid parties and proceed to beat & humiliate Black men & women for kicks. Not even an exaggeration.
  • Speaking of Philly history, how many of you know about the MOVE bombing? City officials bombed a house which caused a fire that spread to 65 houses. Growing up here, I’ve just always known about it. It’s just…there. Read here, here, and here, and then find out more.

Aerial view of the MOVE bombing on May 13, 1985.
  • I feel hopeful for those who are learning and catching on, but I feel like some just want this to be a flashpoint, and not a critical moment in our craft culture.
  • I did not watch the video with Kristy Glass. I respect GG, but I couldn’t. It felt too soon for everything to be smoothed over, for the smiles, for the hugs, and…I couldn’t.
  • I didn’t even want to say anything about it for fear of coming across as having an axe to grind since I posted about Glass previously. I also didn’t want to speak on the video for fear of breaking the Black woman code: Thou shalt not disagree, especially with your elders, in front of white people. I mean, it’s not like I’m dragging out family business. Everybody who knits? ALL YOUR BUSINESS IS OUT THERE.
  • I’m not the only one who felt that the video didn’t read the room, so to speak.
  • It still feels like there are gatekeepers in this community. I started designing, but it became inconsistent. Even if I’d stayed at it, I wonder what kind of presence I’d have, where I’d fit. I never fit. I’m always too much of this or not enough of that. I’ve become more comfortable with that. It is more difficult to move forward when nobody’s cleared that path for you.
  • The good thing about the path not being clear is that you can make it however you want. That’s something, right? (This could also be me trying to make this be “okay” right now.)
  • That little ass in the MAGA hat who taunted Nathan Phillips? I wanted to slap somebody when I saw that he did an interview with Savannah Guthrie. What morning news show would’ve had an interview with Trayvon Martin? Oscar Grant? Mike Brown? Jordan Davis?
  • I could have kept right on going with more names. See if you can find an extensive list of those who have died after/during interactions with police.
  • Look up the cop who raped and preyed on Black women who were marginalized further (sex workers, drug addicts, older women) and then cried because he got convicted on his birthday. He had the unmitigated gall to ask the judge, “How could you?” I’d have said, “LIKE THIS, CHUMP!”, did the Law & Order *CHUNK chunk*, and Electric Slid my ass right off the bench and skipped myself to somebody’s happy hour.
  • Take notice if someone who has any hint of being biracial commits a crime. Note how white people will deny the white part to distance their whiteness from the criminal’s whiteness. People will bring up the 7/16ths Iroquois, the 1/4 Ashkenazi Jew, and/or the Black maternal grandmother. Bonus points if they use the word “quadroon”.
  • “George Zimmermann is actually part Mexican, so….” AND?!? Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin still don’t have their son.
  • STACY ABRAMS WAS ROBBED; VOTERS WERE DENIED THEIR LEGAL RIGHTS TO A FAIR ELECTION.
  • How many Appalachian love-story pieces is the NY Times going to do about voters/supporters of Dolt 45?
  • Somebody come and get your girl, Gina “ALL women” Rodriguez.
  • Black women are allowed to disagree with Kamala Harris’s record without it being seen as an non-supportive stance of our “sister”.
  • Get your pets spayed or neutered.
  • The yellow snow is not lemon-flavored.
  • Watch The Black Power Mixtape if you haven’t.
  • Watch the PBS documentary on the Black Panthers. Guess where your free school meals came from?
  • Please don’t bum-rush the BIPOC at Vogue Knitting Live and do the reparation-equivalent of a 400m hurdle showing in the Woke-lympics. We can tell. We know what you’re doing.

9 comments

  1. I watched the video.

    I have words.

    Coming soon to an IG feed near you…;)

    And thank you, Gina Rodriguez. Pretty much every non-Latinx I know is asking me about you, as if A) all Latinas know each other, and B) I listen to you anyway. Pick one: extreme eye roll or talk to the hand, because you only get three seconds of my time, and I am being generous. Also, my aunties are narrowing their eyes at you, “hermana.”

    Liked by 1 person

    • So are we not supposed to be telling other people about the secret Latinx handshake?
      On hearing that I am Puerto Rican, a white knitter asked if maybe I knew her daughter’s ex-boyfriend, “a Puerto Rican boy who is in jail on the island”. I patiently explained about the lack of handshake & motherships and that Puerto Rico is an archipelago, thus “islands” not “island”. I was later admonished by the shop owner for being mean. 🤦‍♀️

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Excellent post and thank you for the Black Power video link – I will watch it! My thoughts on those dumb ass white bullies – if they were not white, it would not have ended as it did. And, I am confident there would be dead bodies. But, they were white – so you know, put them on national TV and let the world see how “innocent” they are. I call bullshit – what they did was wrong and they should not have gotten 5 seconds of time to “explain” any of that shit. But, as Childish Gambino said so well… This is America.

    I love Nancy Pelosi, but she does not always “get it” I watched her Town Hall with Joy Reed on MSNBC a couple of weeks ago and she got a very pointed question from a member of the audience asking her if she supported BLM – Nancy said she did support it and then included “all lives matter” and I just wanted to scream at her… oh girl, you don’t get it! Your partial list shows how we all need to be screaming BLM because in a quick google search I found statistics that the police kill about 3 men per day … that would be 3 black men. So, yes… this needs to be something that everyone is focused on.

    As always, your words move me… in a very good way.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I remember the Move bombing (😞)
    didn’t watch the Kristy Glass video (😡)
    just don’t know what to do about Gina Rodriguez (🤦‍♀️), and will hit play on the Black Panther documentary any minute now.
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Finding your blog is my silver lining in the recent Instagram/knitting/diversity flare up.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’ve not watched Ms Glass’s video. I just can’t with her. I don’t even want to click on her, I don’t want to reward her with engagement stats. I have a lot of love and respect for Ceci and GG who I’ve been lucky enough to meet in real life, but this felt like a vein manipulative move on K’s part.

    And then there is those nasty Maga brats- WHERE WERE THEIR ADULTS. The grown ups who were responsible for this situation. Instead of defending their childrens’ nasty behavior the parents should be demanding answers from the school…

    That moment broke me though, suddenly I felt horribly manipulated- it was awful and heart breaking but it was also a distraction, it got everyone to change the subject. Social media feels like Lord of the Flies.I hated that book.

    Everyone’s talking and nobody listens. I can’t think anymore. Everyone declared their alliances and posted their heartfelt response but then what. What are they going to DO about it. What can any of us do about any of the multitude of outrages everyday? I give up (give up social media, not caring, I’m still caring). Taking a break gives me a chance to think about whats happening and check my sources… Actually read to the end of the article… I didn’t know about the MOVE bombings… or the Black Power Mix Tapes doc…

    We need to do more then just reward people for their heartfelt statements with hearts and likes to make this a pivotal moment in our culture and not just another outrage of the week.

    Rant over. Thank you for these posts. There may not be a path ahead but you’re not clearing it alone. You’ve got people with you and behind you ready to get your back.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I love your blog, Jennifer.

    I was in Philly for the MOVE bombing and I will never forget it. Such a terrible day.

    I was so grateful for your original post about the Princess Glass. I think her red dress post with it’s I’m-not-a-racist racism made me more angry than anything anyone said in that whole IG kerfuffle. It did so much damage. And it continues.

    I won’t be watching the video either.

    Liked by 1 person

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