Birds That Don’t Fly

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Why do certain birds have wings
and do not fly,
and when they do,
they don’t do so very high?

I don’t know.

Why do some animals have mouths
and do not speak,
and when they “do”,
all you get is a tiny, little squeak?

I don’t know.

Why does a woman have a womb
if she does not birth,
if she doesn’t attempt to,
if it’s not attached to her sense of worth?

I don’t know.

All I know, is that some birds do not fly,
because they don’t have to;
they don’t find food in the sky.
Many animals do not talk;
nothing has to be said,
to learn from a hawk. 

And lastly, now firstly, the woman.

Some women do not birth
because it’s not why they are on earth.
It doesn’t come up in their thoughts of romance;
wombman isn’t just child-maker, by any chance.


So, there are several children in the world who are suffering because their mothers are either late, or they were abandoned immediately after birth. That a child has a present mother isn’t even enough proof that they don’t suffer as a result of her horrible parenting approach. Some women gave birth because they were pushed to think that they just had to, and since, deep down, they never wanted to, the end results turned out to be horrible, almost catastrophic.

If you are so concerned about children, if they really mean so much to you, and that’s your motivating factor, why are you pressuring this one woman who doesn’t want to give birth (and not necessarily because she can’t), instead of worrying about the ones that the earth already has, that are dying constantly, due to inadequate care.

There are at least two approaches that people have to seeing a bird that is not flying. They think- well, she’s either in a cage, or she doesn’t know how to. Why don’t we go out of our way to teach her, and if she still doesn’t fly, we throw her in the air anyway, so she can break her leg. Better still, we cage her. Why should a bird just be on her feet, not flapping her wings, not singing, if she’s truly free?

Therefore, sir, ma, to whom this may concern, how can we best support you, so you can aspire to (at least) be sensible in the nearest future?

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Hello, Ma!

Family

“Hello, ma.”
“We think of you as a foolish girl.”
“Helloo, ma.”
“Plus, we do not like you very well.”
“Hi, ma.”
“Hello, ma!”
But if we pretend, you’ll never tell.
“Hello, ma.”
Listen to the silent ways we yell.
“Helloo, ma.”
“Have a seat in this fake-love cell.”
“Hi, ma.”
“Hello, ma!”
“And welcome, to Hell.”

Loyalty is Not “Not Cheating”

loy·al·ty
ˈloiəltē/
noun
  1. the quality of being loyal to someone or something.
    “her loyalty to her husband of 34 years”
    • a strong feeling of support or allegiance.
      plural noun: loyalties
      “fights with in-laws are distressing because they cause divided loyalties

“I pledge to Nigeria my country. To be faithful, loyal…”

I am loyal to Nigeria but I am not in Her. I have not, and will never, renounce Her as my home country, or do anything to hurt Her, but again, I am not in Her. I’m going to use this as an analogy for what I’m about to discuss- the concept of loyalty in relationships.

The term “loyal” or “loyalty” doesn’t really do justice to what people expect in relationships, in the sense that, they expect their partner or significant other to show them firm and constant support- which is as far as the dictionary meaning of “loyalty” goes, but they do not expect that partner to show firm and constant support to anyone else that is marriageable (especially), whether or not the support their partner is offering involves activities that are sexual.

So, even if you feel your* lady is talking too much with a man, or your* man is spending too much time with a woman, whether or not it conflicts with the love that she has for you, how much he cares for you, and how fast her heart beats for you, the term that comes to your mind is “disloyalty”, although it really isn’t, because nothing has changed about how much she or he is dedicated to the relationship that you share.

You can be loyal to a country you don’t live in. You can be loyal to a friend and still have other friends. You wouldn’t chat your friend’s private business to the other friend(s) or leave the first friendship, or withdraw your support, and that would be loyalty.

Family

I don’t know if you’re following me here, but what I’m saying is, there has to be a firmer word, something stricter than “loyalty” or “faithfulness”, because they do not insist that the qualities they contain have to be restricted to one person, and one person alone. 

Even “cheating” is meh, because a love relationship is not a game or an examination. It’s an (ideally) voluntary union of two people. They don’t get marks for it or win medals for it, so even the term “cheating” is “reaching”.

Now, before you think of me as the advocate of everything you detest, I am only stating that the words are not powerful enough to encompass the STRICT BINDING, which would be more accurate, that most people expect in relationships. Even asides religious and cultural expectations, does love come with sole possession? Does “I love you” automatically equal “I love only you” to you? What exactly is it that leads to hurt feelings when a third party is involved? My best guess is that when we get vulnerable, since true love (requited or not) makes us somewhat vulnerable, we want a kind of “ownership”, possession of sorts, to whoever it is we’ve gotten vulnerable with. 

In-form-ation

technology-leon-zernitsky.jpg

Painting by Leon Zernitsky

Information is good;
information is bad.
To be informed is one thing,
to be wrongly informed is another.

Be mindful of what your brain consumes.

Inaction is the Right Action

pablo picasso

pablo picasso

Sometimes, all you have to do is nothing,
because if you do something,
everything you do will result
in what you should have done-
your actions will give you nothing.

You have to be patient enough to let things unfold on their own.

My mum bought lots of magic towels years ago. You would put them in water and watch them unfold/increase in size.

Many things are like magic towels. If you try to stretch them out or assist them in the way that they develop/turn out, you’ll “tear” (destroy) them, ruin the magic (and hurt yourself).

Get your bucket of water- do all that you think is right, sit, and be patient.

Control-versy

ControlversyEven among three friends, a friend could turn the second friend’s back against the third friend, and the third friend’s against the second. It’s not impossible to report that someone has done something they haven’t done, or they mean something they don’t mean, by changing the narrative(s) to suit one’s interest.

Public and private interests have used controversy as a means of control many times in history- turn the light-skinned blacks against the dark-skinned blacks, turn the Caucasians against the Africans, by pushing a narrative that promotes one as the enemy and the other as the protagonist, especially in the media. Call it “control-versy”. What does it all result in? Xenophobia, discrimination, racism, hate, irritability, and fear.

That way, the people turn against one another, not the elites who really are in power, the 1% who have 99% of the wealth on earth (while many starve to death; isn’t it a shame?), who would take jobs to other countries (rather than create employment in both countries) so they could pay the barest minimum to their workers, who are more interested in gaining more wealth, more power and/or more fame, to suit their interests.

How much money is enough money? If your goal in life is to make $1 billion, if you can’t really think beyond the fact that life is futile, you will die at the end of it all, and the well-being of the people that are not in your position matter too, matter just as much, you would discover that the $1 billion would not give you as much satisfaction as you hoped after a while, so you’ll begin to seek means of making $2 billion, even if it means cheating others, destroying the lives and withdrawing the comfort of your fellow human beings, and directly/indirectly controlling others, while portraying a “good man” narrative.

Two “powerless” black and white members of the working class turn against one another, because one thinks the other is responsible for his unemployment, and the other for his oppression. While they do so, the person who is really responsible for their problem, who has pushed the narrative that the white is superior and he ought to fight for “his place” over the black, or that the black should not be hired because he is not trustworthy (and so the black is forced to do illegal things for survival) is sipping a well-made smoothie in Sun Valley or Cancun, living his best life.

Control-versies are created and promoted everywhere, even in entertainment, to keep the people busy, to get people riled up against one another, while ignoring the real issues, the real factors, and the real actors. It’s a crying shame.

How I Look is Not Subject to How You See

Tim Okamura - Fort Greene Girl from Bushwick Walls Serie Women in White - oil on wood panel - 20x16 in - 2007

Painted By Tim Okamura

“How do I look?”

Before I ask you that question, my first question to you would be “how do you look?”

If I don’t know how you see things, how you see me, how you think, why you choose to think the way you think, your opinions would not matter so much to me. Your opinions on how I look would be just that, your opinions, not what really is, and I would not react to it like it is the all-in-all truth about me.

If you think a well made up face makes a woman attractive, or very long hair, or an hour-glass shape, and I don’t have any of those, I’m never going to be up to standard to you. 

This should apply to every other sphere of your life too. If you are watching the news, for instance, be very conscious of the fact that Fox News would narrate occurrences or explain issues differently from MSNBC. They are not owned by members of the public, and there are private interests who want you to see things in certain ways that benefit them.

Before you take someone’s opinion on how you look, be sure that they can see, that they can really see you, and that they can see beyond whatever is before them. 

Listen to how they think you look, but be conscious of how they look, and how they see.

Is Sex Work Work?

Sex and Sex Work

Sex Work: Rethinking the Job, Respecting the Workers by Colette Parent et. al. and Playing the Whore: The Work of Sex Work by Melissa Gira Grant are a few of my favourite books right now. Why? Well, you’re about to know.

To begin with, they make you question everything you think you know about prostitution. Is it the sex itself that is disgusting, ’cause whether you are sucking dick (I beg your pardon) for money or not, you are still sucking dick? Perhaps, it is the fact that money is often involved, but if you have sex with your boyfriend or girlfriend and they offer you money afterwards or buy you items that you request or do not request for, have you suddenly become a prostitute? Perhaps, it is the sleeping with many men/women aspect that is absolutely distasteful, but many people have sex with many men and/or women for free. As a matter of fact, they have more sex than sex workers themselves. So, what exactly about the job is out of the ordinary? Why then is sex work/prostitution criminalized in many places?

Lady

Playing the Whore briefly mentions how marriage boosts the sex trade, funnily enough. Many men and women get married and feel like they’re missing out on certain things, they feel terribly constrained by societal norms and standards, so they patronize sex workers. Many of them don’t get mistresses because they often anticipate some sort of commitment, and they (the engaged or married men and women) already have partners that they are committed to. A sex worker, on the other hand, would most likely not need any form of structured commitment, or expect their client to leave their wife or husband for them. You get the idea.

It is important to note that sex workers are not just prostitutes- pornography actors/models, strippers, escorts, massage-parlour girls, cam girls, and so on, are all sex workers, providing different kinds of sexual services. So, if you, as a married person, have ever watched a pornographic CD or visited any of the free/premium pornographic websites, perhaps, with your spouse, the aforementioned would include you. Haha!

The fact that people do not pay for their pornography contributes to the precariousness of the actor/model’s work. They get paid once for a scene and never again, they do not own the license to the video that is made, and for many years (or forever), the sex worker continues to please everyone for free, while getting terribly shamed/attacked for it.

Why would a person want to do sex work? Well, why would anyone want to work at all? People choose to work for money, for fame, for connections, for a sense of freedom and independence, and for pleasure. The same reasons apply to sex workers. A person does not need to be a sex worker to be involved in the sex trade- directors, light men, location managers, script writers, make-up artists, and so on, can be involved in the sex trade without performing sexual services.

Sex work is highly precarious, just like many other jobs. In pornography, for instance, if a worker is not constantly trying other sex-trade spheres, and doing new things, they could very quickly be forgotten. In stripping, there would always be someone with a bigger butt, or someone who can dance better. There’s competition and promotion all of the stuff you find in other work spheres in the sex industry.

The authors of the two books expose you to how the police dehumanize women, some men, members of the LGBTQ community, who are involved in sex work. They are abused more by the police than their clients in many parts of the world, even in the United States, and there are oral and written surveys and whatnot in the books to prove it. The police doesn’t come to the sex workers’ aid at all or quickly when they need help because they blame them for choosing to have sex for money in the first place. It is worse for transgender men and women; many members of the police force intentionally pick on them or try to break them for fun. It’s even worse in theoretically non-democratic countries. As the saying goes, “power destroys, absolute power destroys absolutely”.

Although straight men are involved in sex work too, young/old men who work as escorts for sugar mummies and such, or work as pornography actors/models, they are almost never viewed in the same light as women. 

The authors don’t necessarily praise sex work itself or deem it a hundred percent wonderful because of the many risks that are involved- being abused by pimps and clients, the fact that a condom can slip off and the worker could get a disease and all that, exploitation, especially with non-independent sex workers, and so on- but they implore you to call off your old, tired ethics. Religion often forces people to see many things and many people condescendingly, especially the major world religions, but call it off, as far as consensual sex work is concerned.

hardwork

By Michael Escoffery

According to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, “trafficking in persons is defined as “the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation.” A person can be trafficked in their home country or across borders- farmers, live-in caregivers, and labourers are trafficked on a daily basis, not just prostitutes, which is terrible.

The face of the trafficked sex worker is often the face of the people who have willingly chosen to provide sexual services to other people for a living, especially in popular discourse and in the media, and it is quite unfair. If you must feel bad for anyone, feel bad for the factory workers who kill sentient animals inhumanly for a living, or for the McDonald’s worker who stands all day, working from 9 am-5 pm everyday for survival, basically, or for the person who moves stuff around all night (food, flowers, whatever needs to be moved in the respective company) in a cold room, shivering and struggling not to fall asleep. If you must save anyone from their work, save those workers. Nobody wants to do those jobs, and they are not necessarily more “respectable” than sex work in essence, but they do them for survival.

No? Are you convinced that there are people who really want to stand and act (like they really, ever so really care about the customers) at McDonald’s or Tim Hortons or one of the call-centers all day for survival? If you are, that a person has chosen to do sex work should not surprise or upset you either, should it? 

Seated-Nude-8-oil-on-paper-

By Michael Escoffery

The authors discuss the fact that sex work is not all about intercourse. It may involve acting and fulfilling fantasies. Many of the married men and women who patronize the industry can get all the intercourse they want from their spouses or boy/girlfriends if they have them; it’s not all about that.

They compare sex work to any other kind of job that requires the provision of a service; they mention that sex work is the world’s oldest profession. Sex workers may not always be victims, and they make us realize that. 

Apparently, sex work is saving marriages; I didn’t even know that before I read the books. Basically, you don’t need to divorce your wife/husband, or be with someone else physically to be with someone else, whether through porn and cam sites or whatnot. You masturbate to another woman or man, for free sometimes, like I mentioned earlier, many times, through the mainstream sites, and you’re good. You love your wife/husband again, and you’re satisfied. You don’t think you’ve cheated on her/him, and you don’t feel as bad. Or, if your wife would not do anal or try something you read about or saw with you, whether or not it involves intercourse, you call upon your favourite strumpet to do them with you, and you go home, kiss your wife/husband, and enjoy your marriage again. Haha! 

Sex Worker

By Michael Escoffery

We love sex work when it’s on our screens. We love Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman and all the stereotypes, especially when the prostitute (or any other sex worker) is portrayed as a strong, independent person in Hollywood movies. As soon as someone proudly describes herself as a prostitute or sex worker or stripper, we go “woah”. The woman of our dreams and fantasies now suddenly becomes a terrible, demonic or disgusting woman. At that moment, we suddenly detest prostitution and sex work.

The word “prostitute” itself is still considered very terrible, and many would sometimes use it as an insult to women who are not involved in sex work. Ashewo, which means prostitute, is used as an insult to women very often by misogynistic men in Nigeria, for instance.   

If we don’t go “woah” with disgust, we begin to feel sorry for them- it wasn’t their choice, they were probably forced to join the trade, maybe they had a bad childhood, maybe they were abused. We really don’t care if they had a bad childhood whenever it’s time to jerk off. For some reason, we care so much about it when it’s time to discuss prostitution in public spaces; some people who have sex begin to look down on other people who have sex. Haha! It makes no sense.

Again, the authors don’t praise or glamourize sex work, it has its own challenges, just like any job- customers/clients may insult you, bosses may look down on you, you could slip and fall to death, or have your fingers sliced off by a machine at the flower factory where you work, someone might report you or leave you a bad review, to mention a few.

However, they did not fail to mention that making sex work illegal has contributed to the harm that sex workers suffer around the world. Sex work, mainly prostitution, is criminalized in many places, and just like any illegal job, the security of a person who is involved is often badly affected.

BlckM

Sex workers are often harassed by the police for having condoms, and for that reason, many do not move around with condoms while soliciting for clients, so they won’t be charged for an offence. The clients may not have condoms, and so the sex worker is left with no choice but to have raw sex with them, many times, to their own detriment, and that of their clients, as far as the spread of sexually-transmitted diseases is concerned. The client may infect the sex worker. If the client or worker then becomes ill, the state spends money on them- money that would have been diverted to other things, if that situation was prevented, if the police had treated the sex worker with enough dignity and respect to let them have all the items they need for their work.

Those who have condoms hide them in their wigs and private parts to avoid being arrested; that’s inhumane.

New

There are grey areas in morality and societal standards, and it’s quite interesting. It’s okay to be in a pant and bra in a Victoria Secret’s collection [for money] but it’s not okay to wear just those on your Facebook profile. The society is highly hypocritical when it comes to the body and what is to be done with it.

I can’t possibly cover everything that was discussed in the books, so I’ll stop here. Some of the points that I have addressed are additions to the ones mentioned in the book. I barely covered the books; I could go on and on. A must-read for every feminist (especially second-wave feminists who tend to condemn sex work more than the third-wave feminists) or person who is interested in the facts regarding sex work, is what those books are. I read both books simultaneously.

THIS IS NOT A PAID REVIEW.

Godisnowhere

“A psychological word puzzle, which changes meaning depending on where you choose to put the spaces. People think your first understanding of it shows your true view or belief about God”, which is obviously, not necessarily true.



1. God is nowhere
2. God is now here

How Do They Destroy the Blacks?

“I have been gravely disappointed with the white moderate. The Negro’s great stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate, who constantly advises the Negro to wait for a ‘more convenient season’.

Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will.”
-“Letter from a Birmingham Jail”, Martin Luther King Jr., 1963.

Green Nose

The elites know what they are doing with the African-Americans, and you have to think beyond man-made laws and policies to understand. A President sits in his office, snorts coke and smokes pot, and it’s totally fine, but not for everyone.

It has been really hard for Michael, an African-American, to get a job because he is often profiled as unsuitable for certain positions, not just because of the colour of his skin and the way he speaks, but because he’s just not disciplined and ambitious enough to push against  and through societal stereotypes. His priorities in life are his Jays, his chains, his grillz, and some cash, so he results to selling marijuana and some drugs.

Why? Well, he grew up in a dysfunctional home. He has had very little or no contact with his father because his father is in jail, and his mother’s focus is mainly on survival than on Michael’s psychologically well-being. Michael did not realize as a child that his purpose in life did not revolve around making mixed tapes, playing football, buying sparkling trash and hitting the club.

Michael has been arrested, and he’s on his way to jail too. He already has a son. His girlfriend is now a single mother, and his son, in a few years, wouldn’t even know how to describe his father.

Michael will die in jail. Micheal’s son, Chris, will not learn the average family values, like discipline and the need for ambition. There most likely will not be a proper dad or dad-figure for Chris to look up to.

sunflowers

The rich get richer because they make themselves and their descendants rich. They teach them the importance of maintaining dominance, of saving. They give their sons small loans of a million dollars or positions at Goldman Sachs after sending them to the best schools. The poor will get poorer; Chris’ mother will be too focused on survival than on training Chris. One thing will lead to another; Chris will replace his father in one of the correctional institutions. The cycle will continue.

“C’est la vie”, but it shouldn’t be. This is just one scenario. Robbery, murder, abuse/molestation, and all sorts of vices often stem from the disruption of Black families. When you disrupt the family, voila!

Dysfunctional families are so functional for the very few who have it all mapped out. That is just one of the means to the desired end. Even when he does nothing wrong and he simply minds his business, the Black man could still be killed. The Few in charge are ruthless. By any means necessary, they cling to power and control, and they’ll make sure that it never slips out of their hands. Slavery was once legal. That something is legal or illegal doesn’t mean it is so for the well-being of everyone involved.

There is more to any society than you can see on your televisions and radios. Enough said.