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You Can’t Outdo Black People: Part One

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This piece was originally posted on Cody’s blog, Reclaiming Anger

 

Like Darell J. Hunt says,

“You can’t outdo Black people.”

This is just a reminder that Black folk can’t be outdone, won’t be outdone.

Won’t ever become undone.

We are otherworldly.

Please enjoy this collection of Black brilliance and Black creation, at a variety of beautiful intersections. This is not meant to be a perusal for one sitting, but perhaps something you can come back to often. This collection is best on a tough day of dealing with institutional -isms. This (collection) pairs well with a cup of hot chocolate, or a liquor of your choosing on the rocks. Please use the comment section to nominate other videos to be added to Part II of the collection (to come at a later date).

Moreover, if you know someone who shows up in the collection below, please tag them referencing this piece. Share. Share. Share!

Big thanks to all of the Black content creators, Anthony & Jameelah for transcribing, and Charlesia for final edits.

*Throughout this piece captions are provided- either embedded in the video or through hyperlinks. Click on TRANSCRIPTION or LYRICS for accommodations.

Just 5 beautiful Black people pondering Black queer and trans futures.

Let’s Begin…

How do we not begin with this hysterical Soul Train commentary from Darell J. Hunt? So many quotable moments. Peep the pure joy in Darell’s voice, alongside a lil shade…just a tad-bit.

TRANSCRIPTION

 

Look at his fine ass- Trevante Rhodes. Damn. Truth be told, I’ve given myself to him several times in the past year…yes, in my very vivid dreams. Important to note, every fantasy encounter included enthusiastic consent. 🙂 Below is one of the best scenes in film history, in one of the best films ever made. FIGHT ME.

LYRICS to Hello Stranger by Barbara Lewis

 

Literally, the only child I like. You won’t find anything cuter…or fiercer on the inter-webs! “Do it for the vine?”

TRANSCRIPTION

 

To love should be this simple…

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Baddass, Nina Simone! Perhaps all the unpaid writers for Ebony should pull a Nina for those lost checks…oops. #EbonyOwes

 

One of my favorite people on planet earth (next to Kandi Burruss). Audra deserves so much more shine for her tremendous talent. And please know that I’ve peeped she’s only an Oscar away from an EGOT (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony). She’s brilliant.

LYRICS to The Glamorous Life: *Audra McDonald singing Glamorous Life*

 

I love when Black people queer white spaces. They are more entertaining (and talented) than most of the performers at this year’s (2017) BET Awards…oops, again.

 

After watching this, I feel….tired. And yes, protect Black children at all cost!

Celebratory shouts and dancing to Wedgie by Taylor Girls- LYRICS

 

 

Just hit play…

LYRICS to Four Women by Nina Simone

 

Just Black children being exceptional…nothing out of the ordinary.

Classic. But lowkey, this was an important declaration for the group, hence this fake CNN opening and closing.

TRANSCRIPTION:

Kelly Rowland: I’m the second lead vocalist for the group.

Latavia: *coughs* I’m Latavia

 

This is the young Black woman who created “on fleek.” I swear creation is the key to our liberation. Pay Peaches here.

TRANSCRIPTION:

Peaches: “We in this bitch, finna get crunk. Eyebrows on fleek, da fuck.”

 

Because Black girls tell the truth. TRUST BLACK GIRLS and WOMEN.

TRANSCRIPTION:

Black Girl with 45: “You’re a disgrace to the world.”

 

Now you know we all have one of these “faux gifted” people in our family. If you don’t know who this person is, then it’s you!

TRANSCRIPTION

Beginners Chorus🎶🎶

A post shared by GotDamnZo (@iamzoie) on

 

Pay close attention to the hand geometry

Dancing to Wet Dollars by Tink- LYRICS

 

Said this to my therapists the other day…

“Because it’s an inner cry bitch”

TRANSCRIPTION

 

Miss Jay is damn good- I could almost believe that this is a real business concept…

TRANSCRIPTION

 

Ugh. Soul melting voice. But why is this song called Redbone tho? (Please answer in the comments)

Sings Redbone by Childish Gambino- LYRICS

 

 

Be mad! Please be mad. This Black girl below is more helpful than most Black adults. read: Black cis het men

TRANSCRIPTION

 

Black Feminist thought in a sea of white feminists…

TRANSCRIPTION

And somehow we still equate talent to success, and success to happiness…

I hate this song, but love his voice.

Mike Yung singing Unchained Melody- LYRICS

 

Reminder from the Lorde.

“There is No Hierarchy of Oppressions” by Audre Lorde: *reading the essay found here*

 

I mean, I guess Sheree had the last laugh with Chateau Sheree, but it definitely was a journey…a long journey…

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One of the best singers ever…EVER…FIGHT ME…I’ll win.

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Because Tituss is SO much more than Tina Fey’s prop #MoreThanTinaFeysProp

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Black, Queer, and Trans People not only on the margins, but at the origins…

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Lowkey…I’m with auntie ‘Retha, this pie is flat out nasty. But I love Patti and this video. Just sayin’.

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Hamilton meets Beyoncé Giselle Knowles…ahem, Carter. Can we ask for more? AND India Carney (in the center) is all things and everything all at the same damn time.

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Listen. And then listen again. Wait an hour, and repeat!

Poet recites the poem “Black Privilege”

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This is what I tell the students I work with…

I include Iyanla’s laugh, but exclude the centering of ashy Black men. Oops.

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Again, we come from a creative people. We’re too damn much. Bahahaha.

TRANSCRIPTION

Cue the tears…and anger, as white supremacy was the root cause for David and Ava not receiving Oscars for his performance and her direction. Tho, white validation can never be a measure of Black excellence.

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I remember.

And how Tasty, or Sweetie, or whomever she is didn’t get up and leave the table is still a loss to me…

TRANSCRIPTION

 

Most of you think this look and performance only took a black trash bag…but look closer (I’m still unsure of what you’ll find).

Dancing to Missy Elliot’s “Rain” (Supa Dupa Fly)- LYRICS

 

The woman’s reaction in the front row is typically my reaction when I realllllyyyy like something. Keep that in mind potential suitors…actually I react that way to good food too.

TRANSCRIPTION

 

Because drunk Crissle is really the best of all of us… #TeamHarriet

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I feel similarly about Red Lobster’s cheddar biscuits. And I’m waiting on someone to remix this with a Nina Simone track. Tew much?

But fo’real, who got this recipe?

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GOAT.

And cold-blooded- sending a message to her competitors, like the Terminator, “I’LL BE BACK…on top. Soon.”

TRANSCRIPTION

 

One of the best television characters to ever flee the paper to the big screen…Rest in Peace and Power Nelsan Ellis.

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Because I love you Janet, I know you would want to be placed near Bey.

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BOW DOWN.

Share. Share. Share! And like James Wright says, “Support Black Businessessss”

This is the work of Cody Charles; claiming my work does not make me selfish or ego-driven, instead radical and in solidarity with the folk who came before me and have been betrayed by history books and storytellers. Historically, their words have been stolen and reworked without consent. This is the work of Cody Charles. Please discuss, share, and cite properly.

 


Cody Charles is the author of Re-Imagining Black LoveGetting To Know Rosa Lee: An Overdue Conversation With My MotherBlack Joy, We Deserve ItThe Night The Moonlight Caught My Eye: Not a Review but a Testimony on the Film Moonlight5 Tips For White Folks, As They Engage Jordan Peele’s Get Out. (No Spoilers)Student Affairs is a Sham, 19 Types of Higher Education Professionals, and What Growing Up Black And Poor Taught Me About Resiliency. Join him for more conversation on Twitter (@_codykeith_) and Facebook (Follow Cody Charles). Please visit his blog, Reclaiming Anger, to learn more about him.

If any of my writing helps you in any way, please consider tipping here =>cash.me/$CodyCharles(Square Cash),@CodyCharles(Venmo), or paypal.me/CodyCharles<=

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For The Culture

Why Voting Is Actually Important…

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I’m mad. And not just the regular mad I’ve been since White people elected their president, I am rabid dog angry, fightin’ mad.

I am angry at the number of Black, seemingly well-educated people who are currently posting these philosophical rants about why voting doesn’t matter, how voting is irrelevant, how voting means nothing, how some radical Black movement is going to come by and save us all.

Side note – The last time a gang of Black people were all on the same page to do some radical shit was the 1955 Montgomery Bus Boycott, and even then, the wayward negro had to be threatened and cajoled to keep it going. I would love to see a radical movement that brings Black people together across skin color, social, class, gender, and sex lines. I would love to see it, but it’s just not feasible.

Don’t listen to what these intellectuals are telling you online, take your Black ass to vote. Click To Tweet

Yes, gerrymandering, voter suppression, and the dismantling of the Voting Rights Act has significantly reduced the democracy inherent in voting. And yes, those in power have systematically made it much more difficult to vote, especially for people living in low income communities, who often do not have the flexibility to take off work to vote (to learn more about the dismantling of the voter’s rights act, here is a good article), but that doesn’t mean that we have to give up on voting.

Here are six good-ass reasons to vote.

1. Voting is your civic duty.

The first time I voted in a presidential election, the candidates were George W. Bush and Al Gore. For my second presidential election, I had to choose between George (again) and John Kerry. I can tell you that neither of those options gave me wet dreams. I wasn’t that excited to Rock the Vote…but rock the vote I did because, for me, it was important to make my voice heard.

And it sucks because I remember the fervor and passion people had about President Obama’s campaign. People were lined up for hours to vote. Black people, across the country, were fired up in a way that they hadn’t been fired up about voting since Bill Clinton played that saxophone on Arsenio Hall.

Side note: We talked cash shit about Hillary Clinton and that Crime Bill, and as someone who actually lived during that time, I can tell you that most of the Blacks and the Whites were 100% supportive of that Crime Bill. Yes, now we know better, obviously, but I think revisionist history put a stank on Hillary that she didn’t deserve.

A candidate that lights your political fire and gets your panties wet is a rarity, and that’s just real. Voting isn’t usually fun and mostly, you’ll be rolling your eyes as you pull the lever or fill in the bubbles, but it’s like any other chore you have to do – mow the lawn, rake the leaves – you just get it over with.

2. Voting actually does work.

I’d like to pooch on down to Brazil and have a look at their history and current political climate to illustrate my point. First, Brazil was the last country to abolish slavery, is reported to have imported more Africans for enslavement than any other country, and was considered one of the most brutal places to be enslaved (the average life expectancy of a slave was four years). The racism, police brutality, and abject poverty experienced by Blacks in Brazil rivals anything you’ve seen anywhere, including America. The country is currently ruled by President Michel Temer who aside from snatching services from millions of impoverished people, is a blatant advocate of violence as a tactic to suppress social justice movements. The safety of Black life is so precarious in Brazil that most activists have been terrorized into submission and silence.

Who should emerge in the midst of this but Marielle Franco. Marielle Franco, a Brazilian activist turned politician, was an outspoken activist against police brutality and extrajudicial killings, and a staunch supporter of the rights of Black women, and LGBTQIA people. Franco ran for city council and was supported by votes from primarily poor Black women and people living in favelas (these are the poorest of slums). On March 14, 2018, leaving a meeting, she and her driver were murdered by masked gun men – shot down in her car. You know what happened next — 1,237 Black women are now on the ballots for local, state, and federal elected positions in Brazil. These women have been activated to make change. They understand that change begins in the voting booth. They know that’s the place to demonstrate their power. Protests don’t matter because they are ruled by an administration (much like the one in America) that doesn’t give a damn about their little protests and will actually kill you in the street for having the audacity to hold up a sign critiquing the government. Knowing this story, and the story of all those who came before makes it hard for me to understand how people can say voting doesn’t matter. If these Black women, living under the shadow of the murder of their fearless leader can get the courage to not only vote, but to run for office, then I (and you too) can certainly go vote. It is the absolute LEAST we can do. #MarielleResists

3. You do realize there’s more than just presidential candidates on the ballot, right?

After you fill in your bubbles or pull your lever for the President or Senator or House Rep, you have the opportunity to vote for local issues, like allocation of funds for schools, youth programs, or new roads, like sheriffs and judges, like raising the minimum wage which research shows helps everybody. So do you really care about your community or are you just talking about it, because if you actually care, these are the kinds of issues that your vote directly affects, almost immediately?

4. I know you know this, but Black people died for this right to vote, and we shouldn’t forget that.

Listen, I know it’s been said to death but I feel compelled to say it again — Black people died, literally died, for the right to vote. During Reconstruction when Black people were trying to figure out how to survive in a country where they had nothing and no rights to get anything, one of the first demands was the right to vote because they recognized that their power was in their collective vote. Their collective vote was probably one of the only things they had during that time of deep, overt racism, aggression, and subjugation. Their collective vote was the only way they had to demonstrate their humanity. And if you don’t have some reverence in your heart for that, well, that’s a damn shame.

5. If the Supremacists and Republicans are working so hard to suppress your vote, it must be powerful.

Bruce Carter, who founded Black Men for Bernie, was seduced into the Trump campaign and paid good money by Trump and ‘dem to convince Black people to vote for Trump or not vote at all. According to Charles Blow’s op-ed, Russian interference in the 2016 election included direct attacks at the “woke” black vote. And it didn’t help that several prominent voices in the Black community – Colin Kaepernick, Mark Lamont Hill, Killer Mike, Michelle Alexander, J. Cole – were either dead set against Hillary Clinton or publicly denounced the act of voting. During one of Trump’s rallies, he is reported to have said in reference to the huge reduction in Black voters, “They didn’t come out to vote for Hillary. They didn’t come out. And that was a big — so thank you to the African-American community.”

Side note – I think we can all agree by now that Hillary Clinton, 1994 Crime Bill transgressions and all, would have been a far better leader than who White people elected. I think we can also agree that Black men who either didn’t vote or decided to vote third party like stupid ass Marc Lamont Hill, let misogyny outweigh their good sense.

Have you noticed that the same rhetoric used by supremacists to deter Black voters aligns with the rhetoric of the “I’m Black and too woke to vote” crew? If your argument against voting aligns with the arguments of Russian bots, you need to sit down and re-think your entire life because it went very, very wrong somewhere.

6. For now, with this current administration, voting is the most radical thing you can do.

They don’t want you to vote – their policies, their rhetoric, their rejection of your political needs proves that. That makes voting that much more important. Have you noticed that the fervor of the Black Liberation Movement has died down since Trump has been in office? By no fault of their own, their movement doesn’t matter in the same way it did with President Obama in office because these current dummies in office don’t care, at all, they aren’t even pretending to care. However, your local politicians who need your votes to stay in office, they actually might care a little, and the way the world is going, that sliver of possibility is enough for me.

 

Don’t listen to what these intellectuals are telling you online, take your Black ass to vote.

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Lena Waithe and Halle Berry Join BET for Boomerang Sequel

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Beloved screenwriter, Lena Waithe, will be joining Halle Berry in the BET 10 episode comedy series of Boomerang. The network wants to be clear in saying that this is a sequel and not an adaptation or reboot. Waithe will be co-writing the pilot with Insecure’s showrunner, Ben Corey Jones. The series is set to follow the children of Jacqueline Boyer and Marcus and Angela Graham as they try to create their own legacy away from their parent’s shadow.

Waithe commented on the goal of the project and said,

“This is less of a reboot and more of a continuation of the original story. There’s no point in trying to remake a classic. It can’t be done. So, we want to create something fresh that speaks to a new generation. We hope people will come to the show with an open mind and ready to embrace the new world we’ve created!”

Oscar-winning actress, Halle Berry, is also excited for the upcoming series saying,

“I’m thrilled to team up with Lena on this project as she is without a doubt a leading voice of her generation and a trailblazer in her own right. I’m truly excited to be a part of bringing this iconic and beloved film to the small screen.”

Boomerang is going to be one of the first projects announced for BET since former president, Debra Lee, left the company. The new president, Scott Mills, is equally enthusiastic for the collaboration of Berry and Waithe and says, “Partnering an icon such as Halle with a disruptor like Lena is a perfect blend for the creation of a project that tells a classic tale in a relevant voice.”

What do you guys think? Are you excited for the sequel or should they just leave it a movie? Let us know in the comments below.

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The Diversity JUMPED out: Savage x Fenty Fashion Show Gave us all the Inclusion we Needed

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Last night Savage x Fenty by Rihanna ended New York Fashion Week with a bang! The lingerie brand had an array of women from different skin tones to body types. Rih wanted to show the world that ANYONE can wear Savage x Fenty and feel sexy. There were even pregnant models featured in the show. Yes, pregnant. Get into the models and event down below:

 

Rihanna is taking the fashion industry by storm. Let’s hope other fashion brands can follow suit.

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