This Freedom Day reminds us that only by confronting what is wrong can we make things right. To see ourselves as part of the struggle is to empower ourselves as part of the solution.
How do you retain a sense of dignity when people treat you as a second class citizen? Do you laugh it off, walk it off, or fight? When do you make that decision, and why? This may substitute for violin lessons in the regular Tiger Mom curriculum.
As Kanye's latest album, Yeezus, invades our eardrums, it's a good time to reflect on his many, many head-scratching quotes. Yet buried under the rapper's bravado and considerable megalomania are genuine bits of career wisdom.
Predatory mortgage lenders aren't the only ones under fire for racial targeting -- the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is now probing auto lenders for allegedly discriminating against Blacks and Latinos.
This is not a "who had/has it worse than whom" or a "which trait is more deserving of equal rights" contest. This exploration is about the systematic tactics employed by racists and homophobes to instill a negative self-perception in others and how strikingly similar they are.
One million babies born HIV-free. This achievement would have been unimaginable ten years ago when the U.S. Congress passed the legislation that created PEPFAR, yet today, we can celebrate this momentous milestone.
Black unemployment is still double the national rate, and research has shown that, even when controlled for factors like education and experience, Black job seekers still face hiring discrimination.
Of course, the events that are celebrations will receive the greatest visibility, especially if they seem to reinforce the public's notions of who we are, but there are deeper sentiments that need to be expressed about Pride and what it means to us.
Nobody should be denied the right to vote, or face additional hurdles because of a strategic method to disenfranchise them. Just as no one should be racially profiled, no one should be racially blocked from the voting booth.
You Can Touch My Hair was a way of telling those who have stolen a touch how it makes me feel -- like an object put on display. But I also wanted to use it as an opportunity to further understand why someone might think that act or solicitation is okay and why black hair is such a novelty.
You would think that Eric Holder, the first African American Attorney General, and Barack Obama, the first African American President, would be vigilant that there was no racial discrimination in the Justice Department of their Administration. You would think.
There is no political correctness in my rant. Just facts. Without diversity, there is no hip-hop, even if you choose to call it that. Hip-hop is not a reality TV show. Hip-hop is not a pair of pants sagging. Hip-hop has founders, innovation, and purpose.
With legitimate lethal terrorist threats that the U.S. faces, the FBI must play a front line role in monitoring potential terrorist activities and nipping them in the bud. But the history of over reach and outright law breaking by the FBI and other government agencies still looms large.
While school system governance, school choice and school closings have dominated recent discussions about school reform, the beginning of summer break is a perfect time to highlight the impact summer learning loss has on efforts to close achievement gaps.
I live in a world where I didn't hear someone romantically call me desirable until I was 26. I live in a world where either body privilege or racial privilege is always against me. So I point my camera at my face and I click. I am what some would call ugly, but I don't see it.
Black history deserves to be regarded highly as well as we would anything else sacred in our society... let's please start treating it as such.
As our world changes, it will be important for us to expand our ideas and expectations of leadership, leadership models and who we see as leaders.
If you want to go the unveiling of the Frederick Douglass statue this Wednesday at 11 a.m. in the United States Capitol Visitor Center's Emancipation Hall, don't bother: You're not invited.
While more students generally attend racially and economically diverse schools, it is no secret that our schools are anything but unitary.
I was introduced to Dominican salons approximately two years ago while in Silver Spring, Maryland. I ventured into Mary's Stylists with no appointment and really no expectations. I left with a head full of bouncy hair and self-confidence. I usually play my own stylist but when I do put my hair in the care of professionals I head primarily to Dominican salons.
So what's the difference between African American salons and Dominican salons?
I was raised in black salons and I have my good stories – and my bad. The one defining difference between the two is how your hair is managed and what you pay at the end of the visit. For example, when I visit traditional black salons I usually get a wash, wrap and bumped curl on my ends. The process is quite simple and my hair is usually treated with products such as Dudley's, Mizani or Paul Mitchell. A heavy oil such as Kemi is applied to my hair at the end to soften the curl and I always get a coat of Finisheen to keep my tresses glossy as I walk out the door. Does this sound familiar?
Now onto the Dominican salon. If you're smart you will arrive early because most have a walk-in policy and we all know that Friday and Saturdays are busy. It's like hitting the mall on Black Friday. When you arrive there's a whole process – much like ordering from the Soup Nazi on Seinfeld. You nod at the person behind the front desk to be sure they've acknowledged you, you take a seat and you wait for someone to come by and get you.
You're usually greeted by a person who takes you to the back and sits you down – very little speaking is done. Your hair is washed with products usually with no labels. I've since discovered that some salons use products by Salerm, Lacio Lacio and Alfaparf. Unfortunately, you won't find these labels at your local beauty supply store. Yet, I've managed to find one online store that carries most of their products (click on 'Beauty and Health' then 'Hair Care').
Once you're washed and conditioned then comes the rollerset. This is where it gets tricky. You're usually spoken to for the first time and asked which color rollers you want. I go with the medium size rollers (gray) so that I have some curl to my hair. Once you're rolled up under the hood dryer you go. Depending on the length of your hair you could be under for one hour or nearly two. The heat is so strong and powerful and yet I've sat under the dryer for ninety minutes.
Once you're dry, it's time for the infamous blowout.
The rollers are removed and out comes the round brush and blow dryer. This is the process I've been unable to duplicate at home. The stylist is literally using the roundbrush and the heat from the dryer to straighten your roots and bend your ends. Each section of the hair is treated until your entire head is done. For me, the latter takes approximately twenty minutes and if you're tender-headed I suggest you grab some aspirin. During my visit, I winced in pain every time the dryer came near my scalp but wouldn't you know it I couldn't get over the results once she was done. My hair is usually coarse and rarely holds a curl but she managed to do in one day what I had been trying to do my whole life and I had the nerve to gasp when she said I had to pay $40. The amazing part is that the curls lasted two weeks (yes, I had the nerve to test this) and dare I say it, I didn't wrap my hair not one night.
So, if my story hasn't scared you I've got a great link to a database with Dominican salons across the U.S. put together by a DS fan. She's adding to the list so you may want to bookmark it in case you don't see a salon in your city just yet.
I'd like to hear your experiences with Dominican salons – both good and bad. Some of you have already posted your thoughts in the Hair Talk board.