How Can You Love Ole Miss?

I am a black woman who is an alumna of the University of Mississippi. There is a saying that says you never leave Ole Miss. Seeing this quote on the library wall my Freshman year, I never understood why this made sense. I do now. I did my post – graduate work there. Best seven years of my life! I lived Oxford so much that I lived and worked there three MORE years because it is a place that gets under your skin. I love my school. My time there is really why I am the way that I am. However that is challenged on a daily basis.

On Sunday, someone draped a noose and a Georgia state flag around a statue of James Meredith, the first black man to attend Ole Miss. Today people say, “there’s Ole Miss being racist again.” Today I am tired. I am tired of having to defend my school anytime that any thing remotely racit happens there. Am I saying that this type of behavior is okay? Absolutely not!! It hurts me to no end, especially with where my mind is about the Jordan Davis case and others like it. I’m just tired of the school that I love in the state where I grew up being a poster child for racial misbehavior. There are bigots everywhere and I am tired of my school having to take a 20 year step back every time someone wants to be stupid. Are we the only school to have a racist past? No, but our football team doesn’t always win and we don’t send dozens of black men to the NFL……so our penance isn’t quite paid yet. (READ: Alabama).

At work (where there is ALWAYS something red and blue displayed on my desk), I will inevitiably be asked why I love a place that is so racist. To them, I will reply:

  1. I went to Ole Miss because it made my parents and grandparents proud. I am only a generation removed from when black people could actually enroll without getting shot or coming up missing. II could go there as my first choice and not be scared to death. To go there and thrive, made the sacrifices and struggles they went through seem worth it. They told me so.
  2. Because I went to Ole Miss, I can feel comfortable in an atmosphere where everyone doesn’t look like me.
  3. It challenged the way that I look at the world. When your school has a past, you talk about it. A LOT. No professors shied away from it and I think to look at race relations as critically as I did, as young as I was, gave me a foundation in the way I look at things.

 

I challenge people to make a concerted effort to fight against racism and racist threats. Correct those that step out of line. Challenge the world. It’s everywhere. Not just Oxford.

Yea My House Burned Down & My Nephews Died…..But Is My Food Stamp Card Okay?!?!

Video

Yep. You read that title right. I try my best not to get into conversations about food stamps and government assistance in mixed company because it NEVER turns out well. AT ALL. I know that there are people out there that really need government assistance. They get up and work hard at jobs that don’t get the job done financially. Those people need a little help. Hell, we all need a little help sometimes. What I have an issue with is people who know they only have .49 on their EBT card and run up and get $700 worth of groceries because of a glitch like it’s okay. So the day the machines went down, it was grocery day for everybody? And the cupboards were bare? Okay then. ┬áThen you get this tragedy in Memphis:

SERIOUSLY?!?!?!?! You don’t regret leaving a 2 and a 3 year old at home by themselves (though I am sure this is some sort of child endangerment), but you want to hurry up and get in the house to see if your purse made it because the food stamp card is in there?!?!?!?! WHAT?!?!?! No concern for two young lives, but I gotta get my benefits. This makes me sad. This is why I question things. I get mad because I (like many other people I know) work long hours at a stressful job that barely makes ends meet sometimes. Then we all know someone that has never worked or barely works that lives better than you with what i perceive to be the money missing from my check every 2 weeks. This is a problem to me. Help those who need it. I have no words.

Grief…..

There have been a lot of changes going on in my life over the past two months. Every time that I try to blog more reguarly and get excited about things that are going on I experience a shift of sorts that takes me clean off the path that I was headed on and down another road that I have never ever seen.

Two months ago, (9/5/12) I went to my 24 week OB checkup. Boo Thang and I were excited. We were going to get another ultrasound to check and see if the baby’s growth had improved since the amniocentesis. Unfortunately, we found out that the baby had no heartbeat. I had just gotten out of the hospital that Friday before, so I was devastated to know that my baby had died almost a week after I was assured everything was okay. I gave birth to my angel baby Gerry at 2:26pm on September 6, 2012. Small but perfect in every way.

I know that God doesn’t make any mistakes and that everything happens for a reason, for for some reason I can’t seem to bounce all the way back from this one. This is grief in a way that I haven’t felt it before. I think it has everything to do with the fact that there is so much guilt involved. When I first got pregnant, I wasn’t that excited. I was actually sad about it for 3 whole days. It was unplanned and I didn’t feel like I was ready. I wasn’t married. I hadn’t acheived most of the goals that I had set for myself before becoming a mother. However, I quickly got attached to the life that was growing inside of me. I feel guilt that my own health issues were what basically ended the pregnancy. I know that I shouldn’t feel this way, but I do. I am definitely on a road to rediscovering myself and what it is that I want.

Have any of you experienced this or any other life altering event? How did you deal with it?