Monthly Archives: January 2012

Inspired to Reflect: Poetry Edition

Lately, I’ve come across some interesting and inspiring poetic pieces. These pieces have forced me to reflect upon the language that I use/hear on a daily basis. For instance, I unapologetically listen to rap music. I even nod my head frantically to the lyrics of Waka Flocka on a daily basis (Im a big Waka Flocka Fan. I have every mixtape on my computer). Moving on, I’m aware of negative messages in various songs, but I’m not the one to critically assess the consequences of such language in music or television or movies, on a consistent basis. If I actually do, I’m not exactly sure what the take away message is for myself. I’m not into the business of critically engaging/reviewing various art-forms because it would require me to criticize individuals for their work. This is problematic for because I do not value individuals as representatives for entire groups. However, I do realize that popular images often feed into stereotypes and stereotypes often become descriptive pieces for individuals and groups, whether they be positive or negative. So while individuals may not sign up to be role models, it comes with the territory.

Thats why after listening to the Jasmine Man piece, I decided that maybe its time for me to reflect on how language operates in my life. What do you guys think? Are there any books, articles, videos, etc that have really forced you to reflect on something like language or music in your life? (Note, this is not the first time I’ve had to do some major reflecting. I often reflect while listening to Waka Flocka and reading for my classes. Today, these videos were a different venue that I really enjoyed. )

There are certainly more out there, but here are some of my favorites. Enjoy!

Kai Davis:

Jasmine Man:

Joshua Bennett:

Sonya Renee:

Where do the Candidates Stand?

Primary season is in full effect for the presidential hopefuls. A significant portion of the news reports have focused on how this election will affect certain demographics,  namely Black and Latin@ communities. Blacks and Latinos/as combined make up about 25% of this nation’s population. This is not to say that Blacks and Latinos/as share the same sentiments on various political issues. On the other hand, issues like education, healthcare, and the economy are all areas that are likely to display overlap between the two groups.

In my opinion, while the attention lately has been interesting, we should not settle for primary coverage. This means that we should push all of the candidates and the future president to discuss the issues relevant to our communities for the entire duration of their time in the Oval Office.  Issues that deal with 25% of population should be address regularly, not solely when people need support from us.  For now, we have to continue to push our representatives to advocate on our behalf and to support the groups that work hard for our integrity and personal freedoms. To see what the Republican candidates think about certain issues relevant to Latin@ communities, view the links below.

Mitt Romney:

Ron Paul:

Newt Gingrich:

Where they stand on Puerto Rico:

State of the Union 2012 Follow Up

For those who were unable to view the 2012 State of the Union address last night, click below to read the full text and watch the video. Enjoy and dont forget to tell us your thoughts on the speech!

State of the Union video:

Full text:

State of the Union 2012

Hello all! Today, January 24, 2012 is the fourth annual State of the Union address from President Obama. The State of the Union address is a critical moment that all Presidents use as a platform for reflection and reassurance. Tonight, President Obama will more than likely reflect upon his time in office, his accomplishments, and his downfalls. I could go on about this subject, but the important thing to take away from this post is the relevancy of this annual address. A decent amount of young people are politically apathetic and have  limited knowledge about past and/or current policy. This is not to say that this issue is not relevant for other age groups. It certainly is something that every age group struggles with; the ability to be fully informed and aware. However, instead of pointing out the shortfalls of groups in this nation, the speech by Obama tonight will hopefully be a learning experience. Click the link below for information about tonight’s speech:

For those who want to refresh their memory, down below is the State of the Union transcript and video from 2011. Enjoy!

State of the Union 2011 video

State of the Union 2011 text: