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Black Infants, Black Babies, and Black Toddlers

BlackParentSpeaks wakes up thinking about — and troubled about — the safety of our younger Blacks and the Black babies still to be born.  How does a parent, a caregiver to the Black youth of our nation, lessen some of the many everyday dangers found in our homes?

First and foremost, if something — some toy — strikes you as UNsafe for an infant, a baby, a toddler, remove it now — get rid of that toy!  You as an adult must always operate from a position of ‘it is better to err on the side of safety’ when it comes to our young folk’.  That said, let us look at just a few of the everyday dangers to our Black infants, Black babies and Black toddlers that are in our homes today.

Mobiles and hanging objects above your baby’s crib and bed should only be done with caution and after thorough examination by YOU.  As cute as some of the mobiles seem and are, some can be harmful and/or dangerous.  Also, ask yourself — Is your child’s  constant eye fixation on the object or objects healthy, unhealthy or…?  Does your child’s eye-fixation on the object or objects create a trance-like state?  Think about your child’s brain development and do as wisdom leads you.

BlackParentSpeaks contends that it is far better for our babies to have ‘eye freedom’ to explore the world around them without the blockage of mobiles and/or hanging objects over their cribs.  Remember that eye fixation is often used as a tool in hypnosis….  This is just one of the reasons BlackParentSpeaks cautions you — the adult — with respect to mobiles and hanging objects on and/or above your baby’s crib.

Is it a plus for caregivers to give their babies and toddlers a plethora of toys?  No, no, and no!  And, be aware of the safety and UNsafe nature of many of the toys that are out there.  Examine the toy visually first.  Is it ethnically representative of your Black child?  Is the toy positive — is it educational — is it healthy, stimulating and fun!  Does the toy have removable parts?  Is the toy put together/assembled in a SAFE way?  Are the outer edges of the toy smooth and safe to handle without fear of getting cut or being poked?  If there are removable parts to the toy, make certain that those parts are LARGE and way-too-BIG for your baby to squeeze into his or her mouth!

If there is a battery compartment to a toy given to your baby or toddler, make sure the battery compartment is securely closed and use STRONG adhesive tape to better secure the closure.  Remember to continually inspect that area of the toy regularly and re-tape that area of the toy BEFORE the need arises.  Try to keep  a roll of adhesive tape available and handy in your home.  If you observe screws, etc. on the outside of the toy, rub your finger over the areas to make sure that none are protruding or have sharp or jagged edges.  Examine all sides of the toy — including the underside.  Remember that it is ultimately YOU who must take steps to best assure your child’s safety and well-being.

BlackParentSpeaks functions from the position that ‘forewarned is forearmed’. That said, it is preferable to let all know that you — the adult — are ethnically conscious.  Accordingly, do NOT give a Black child a White doll!  Black children need to see themselves reflected in the dolls and other toys they are given … even the items they receive from other adults!

If a White person (or any other person) asks YOU — the parent, the caregiver — beforehand about buying your Black child a gift, be clear and state emphatically that if the gift is going to be a doll, that doll MUST reflect your Black child — the doll must be Black.  Do NOT hesitate in your response.  And, if that person turns around and buys your Black child a White doll and gives that doll as a gift to your Black child, know that that person has zero respect for you and/or your Black child.  Know that and REact accordingly….  (As a side note:  Been there, done that!  When BlackParentSpeaks’ children were young, BlackParentSpeaks had such an experience with her middle child’s White teacher. Needless to say, BlackParentSpeaks quickly and EFFECTIVELY handled the situation…..)

Recognizing and respecting that change is a constant, today’s children are inundated with far more complexities in toys than the children of yesterday.  Parents often are inclined to give their children the latest gadgets on the market.  Think BEFORE you make that purchase!  Be both conservative and wise and learn to say ‘no’ when you feel inclined to buy buy buy.

Recognize that both babies and many toddlers have a tendency to put inappropriate things in their mouths.  Gently and patiently train your child to NOT continue such habits.  Refocusing the child’s attention and playing hand games are just two ways to hopefully lessen such tendencies.  Children learn from their environment so be aware of your choice of words and your actions and your own behaviors.  Know that mistakes are a part of learning;  be both patient and loving when and if mistakes are made.  And. remember to say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ as appropriate.  Teach yourself and teach your child.

Let your Black child know that he/she matters.  Respect your Black child.  Allow your child to have his/her own space; do NOT allow others to invade your child’s space.  Be aware and prepared and do not let others touch your child’s face or hair, etc.  (BlackParentSpeaks mentions this because of the tendency shown by Whites to randomly reach out and touch a Black child’s cheek and/or hair without warning….)

Be familiar with the books that you give to your Black child — read the books for positive content and look at the pictures and graphics.  Make certain that the books are age appropriate; cardboard books with a few short sentences per cardboard page and colorful graphics for ages 0 to 20+ months, etc.  Let reading be fun, entertaining, and interesting.  Be flexible and patient and share and enjoy with your Black child.

Although this post by BlackParentSpeaks has barely touched the surface with regards to parenting our Black infants, babies, and toddlers; hopefully, it will help all to think about what we do and do not do.

Don’t forget our reparations!  Do YOU know what time it is?

Feel free to share this BlackAngryWomen blog with others.  We are all works in progress.

Undying love for Black People

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Food for ‘Black’ thought:

(a) If you want to die, go to a hospital.

(b) It is often wiser to be proactive as opposed to reactive.  However, it is sometimes better to do and/or say something than to go away and wish later that you had done or said something.

(c)  Click the Donate button at the top right of BlackAngryWomen and donate now if you are so inclined.  Remember to forward BlackAngryWomen posts to others. 

(d)  It is NOT okay for adults to whip or beat children.  Adults should be creative, loving, and patient when motivating and interacting with children.  An adult should never verbally or physically abuse a child.

(e)  Pick an opportune moment to turn off and put out-of-sight your phone for a minimum of 5 to 7 hours.  If you are able to do this, you may experience a true sense of relief and accomplishment afterwards.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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‘Black’ Mrs. Lurene (Dixon) Campbell ‘Gives Up The Ghost’….

Once again, BlackParentSpeaks is experiencing a ‘moment’ of sadness and loneliness and anger….
My sadness and loneliness is due to the ‘passing’ of a dear dear friend and co-patriot — Mrs. Lurene (Dixon) Campbell.  My anger is due to the continual presence of racism and discrimination that ‘Black’ Mrs. (Dixon) Campbell faced while working in Portland (Oregon) Public Schools specifically.
BlackParentSpeaks met ‘Black’ Mrs. (Dixon) Campbell many years back (c.1990) by way of Portland (Oregon) Public Schools.  Lurene was transferred to work at Portland’s ‘racist and White’ Grant High School and became Integration Specialist at Grant.  Almost immediately, we became ‘Sisters-in-the-struggle’ to hold Portland’s ‘racist’ Grant High School accountable to its ‘Black’ and other ‘marginalized’ students.
UNsurprising to both of US, racist ‘White’ threats and acts against our comfort and safety ensued.  In at least one instance, a ‘White’ teacher at Grant attempted to recruit students in his class to harm both Lurene and I and particular Black students present at the school.  Immediately upon ‘learning’ of the violent nature of the teacher’s ‘intent’, I and Lurene personally ‘encouraged’ the teacher to both privately and publicly back off!
Near the end of my/our confrontation with the ‘White’ teacher, the teacher expressed emotional remorse, apologized tearfully, and both privately and publicly called-off his ‘recruitment’ of students to do US harm, etc.  That incident is but one of the many many many racists situations Lurene, I, and other Black adults, and Black students dealt with and/or handled at Portland Public Schools Grant High.
My words to Mrs. Lurene (Dixon) Campell are simple –
(Mrs. Dixon) Lurene:  YOU fought and fought for US throughout your years with Portland (Oregon) Public Schools.  Many establishment folk who ran — and continue to run — this inherently racist school system tried to shut you down.  You remained strong and determined and did NOT give in.  Instead, you continued to remain true to your Blackness and to our ‘Black’ young people and other ‘marginalized’ students in spite of the costs to your career, etc.  I will always and forever love you.  WE fought the ‘good’ fight and we won….
*************
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We are all works in progress. Do YOU know what time it is? http://BlackAngryWomen.com/

Undying love for Black people!

==========

Teacher and School Leader Remembered

Lurene Patrah Campbell

6/27/2017, 10:52 a.m.

Lurene Patrah Campbell, a retired educator and school administrator, is being remembered after she passed away on May 8, 2017.

Lurene Patrah Campbell
Lurene Patrah Campbell, a retired educator and school administrator, is being remembered after she passed away on May 8, 2017.
She was a native of Texas and graduated from Macedonia High School in Texarkana, Texas as valedictorian for the Class of 1963. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Education from Huston–Tillotson University in Austin, Texas. She also received many certifications and a Master of Science in Education from Oregon State University. She was a member of the Delta Theta Sigma Sorority.
She began working for Portland Public Schools as a biology teacher in 1968 and taught at Marshall and Jackson High schools from 1968 to 1985. In 1986, she worked in the Director of Instruction Office as a science resource teacher for the Franklin-Marshall Cluster. During the years of 1987- 1991, she held several different administrative and teaching positions within the school district.
She was part of the staff involved when the Portland schools carried out Desegregation Implementation Plans. She worked in the school district’s public information and communications office and was coordinator of cultural diversity reports for state and federal compliance. She retired from Portland Public Schools in 2006, but remained active in the community.
She was a long time and active member of New Hope Missionary Baptist Church, serving in a variety of positions. Later she supported the Northwest Voices for Christ Ministries and served as a minister and spiritual counselor.
She was loved by so many people and will be dearly missed.


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Black DC Warrior Dick Jones — 2016 Sendoff….

I been both blessed and protected by a supreme power — a power that is beyond mankind.  And, yes, I am eternally grateful.  BlackParentSpeaks knows that she could not have survived the varied and many attempts to silence her ‘Blackness’ had God not been with her.

Reflecting — accurate reflecting — moves us forward.

BlackParentSpeaks has recently learned that DC ‘Black’ brother Dick Jones ‘gave up the ghost’ in year 2016.  Dick headed up and ran DC’s Concerned Citizens of Central Cardoza (4Cs) throughout my years in DC —  the 1960s and 1970s.  Dick Jones was a fighter and a quite forceful voice who ‘publicly’ worked to hold slum landlords and others accountable in the Washington, DC housing arena.

Dick Jones was a dedicated and true warrior in the DC-based ‘Movement’.  If memory serves me accurately, Dick was born in Philly and moved to DC prior to my arrival in DC.  I met Dick sometime between 1966-68 when he and several other brothers showed up at my DC apartment relative to a matter of ‘Black’ urgency.  Dick expressed that Attorney Florence Roisman (an unwavering and trusted Jewish attorney employed by NLSP in DC) had recommended that he seek my help.

The inhumane and racially-charged horrid situation explained to me that day by ‘Black’ brother Dick Jones sprouted a relationship between us that lasted throughout my years in DC.

DC’s Dick Jones was militantly responsible, brilliant, and a compassionate Black man who was active in the struggle for righteousness and accountability.  Although ‘Black’ brother Jones was publicly and primarily associated with DC housing issues, the breadth of his involvements and actions were unlimited.  Dick was a ‘no limits’ brother who both gave and did….

Brother Dick was a mighty representative for the Black folk who were perceived powerless by others.  Brother Dick was a ‘Black’ man who BlackParentSpeaks intimately knew, worked with, and loved.  He was an integral part of — and a contributor to — the Black Movement.

With undying love and appreciation, BlackParentSpeaks says ‘thank you’ to DC’s ‘Black’ Dick Jones.

‘Don’t forget our reparations’.

Feel free to share this BlackAngryWomen blog with others. We are all works in progress. Do YOU know what time it is? http://BlackAngryWomen.com/

Undying love for Black people!

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BLACK – Can you dig it?

BlackParentSpeaks never chose to attend a ‘White’ high school in Portland, Oregon — let alone one that had a reputation of being racist, snobbish, and privy.  But, in spite of my protests, my Black parents decided that I would attend Grant High School and that decision was final.  1960s Grant High School was not a welcoming place for Black students.

Grant High School was located in a ‘White’ community 30 plus blocks from where my family lived.  White adults who lived in and around Grant did some ugly things to try to dissuade me and other Blacks from walking thru what they ‘claimed’ as their neighborhood as we walked the distance from our homes to and from Grant.  Some of the Whites trained their dogs to attack us, some Whites hollered racist things, and some young White children threw rocks and more in our direction as we neared and/or passed their White homes.  Navigating the Grant neighborhood often meant crisscrossing and jaywalking in order to avoid particular White homes that I knew were more problematic and/or dangerous than some of the other White homes.

The educational staff at Grant reflected the Grant community — overwhelmingly ‘White’ and racist.  Even when a fellow ‘Black’ student at Grant ‘gave up the ghost’, the Grant staff showed no compassion or concern as I broke into tears upon learning of his death that school day.  Instead, I was told by White Grant staff to ‘stop crying’ and straighten up, etc.  The coldness us Black students were shown was truly a harsh lesson for me to bear on that particular school day….

Because I have lived in the belly of the beast, I have an up-front and intimate view of ‘White’ folk.  Example:  White females are often covertly more racist in their actions and ways.

Being ‘Black’ and walking the halls of Grant High School allowed me to hear the racists words coming from the mouths of Grant’s ‘White’ students, teachers, administrative staff, etc.  I remember a school day assembly where a White student called herself entertaining  — she ‘entertained’ in ‘Black face’.

Many many many racial and racist incidents happened during my four years as a student at Portland’s Grant High School.  I remember the ‘F’ I was given in Gym because of the racist and inhumane policy my ‘White’ gym teacher mistakenly assumed I would consent to follow.  Following what happened, the ‘White’ female gym teacher was provided with  a bodyguard and I was rewarded with an ‘F’ grade….

Although I never wanted to attend Portland’s Grant High School, I have concluded that it was quite educational for me.  Going to Grant High School truly helped to better open my eyes to ‘Whiteness’ and racism and discrimination.

“Soldier Boy, Oh my little Soldier Boy…” I often sang the lyrics to that song in Art Class at Grant.  My teacher was White and, of course, the other students in my Art Class reflected Grant’s community.  Soon, one of the other students — an older male student — joined in and we, in unison, sang the lyrics to “Soldier Boy” together on an unplanned basis while in our Art Class.

Within days, I was called aside by my Art Teacher and told that I could no longer sang “Soldier Boy” while in Art Class.  The Art Teacher explained that my singing as a duet with “David” would no longer be allowed because the White females in the class liked David and they were angered that a ‘Black female and a White male’ were permitted to sing together in class.  My teacher expressed that the White females were ‘jealous’ and that they ‘wanted’ David for themselves.

I told my teacher, Mr. Read, that David and I did not have anything going on and that there was no reason for the White females to be jealous of me.  Mr. Read responded that he could not allow David and me together to continue singing in his Art Class because he had to satisfy the ‘racist’ desires of the White female students and their parents.  Mr. Read went on to express that David would still be allowed to continue singing in class because “David is White….”

To make a long story short, I responded telling  my Art Teacher that I too would continue to sing in class.  And, if he — Mr. Read — wanted me to stop singing, he would have to stop David from singing as well.

My defiance led to me being banned from Art Class. I was told by teacher Read and Grant administrative staff that I would be given an ‘F’ in Art and that I was forbidden to go to class for however long I refused to follow the ‘racist’ policy at Grant.  Thus, Art Class for me meant reporting to the Grant office where I would sit and think and do whatever I chose to do.

The day finally came when I looked up from my seat in the Grant office and saw the face of Grant High School Art Teacher Mr. Read.  Mr. Read asked me if I was finally willing to ‘give in’ and to stop singing with David.  I told Mr. Read that I would never ‘give in’….  Shortly after that, Mr. Read ‘gave in’.  Mr. Read spoke about racism and apologized to me for what he had demanded of me and what he had done to me.  He expressed that ‘guilt’ was eating away at him….

I accepted Art Teacher Read’s apology, resumed my studies in Art Class, and continued singing along with David to the displeasure of White female students and their parents.

The above is merely a glimpse into c.1960s ‘Black life’ in Portland, Oregon.  Can you dig it?

Black Power!

‘Don’t forget our reparations’.

Feel free to share this BlackAngryWomen blog with others. http://BlackAngryWomen.com/

We are all works in progress.

Undying love for Black people!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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Black Fidel Castro

Cuba’s Fidel Castro ‘gave up the ghost’ c.yesterday at the age of 90.

With due respect, BlackParentSpeaks pays tribute to Cuba’s Fidel Castro — a supporter and friend of the ‘Black Movement’ in the United States.   It was doing the ‘Movement’ days that BlackParentSpeaks  came to know and truly appreciate Fidel Castro.  In fact, had it not been for Brother Lester, BlackParentSpeaks  would have travelled to Cuba at Castro’s invite.

Nuff’ Said.

With Undying love.

Don’t forget our reparations!


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Black Is Not White…. 2 November 2016

After yet another very emotional bout with racism and disgust, BlackParentSpeaks feels a need to write and share. My journey is real and it seems that my purpose has always been.

In order to both survive and ‘live’, Black folk must begin to internalize truth. Fact one: White folk do not like Black folk. Fact two: White folk will continue to rationalize their racist words and behaviors as long as they believe they are able to skirt responsibility and blame. And, Fact three: There are significant and obvious differences between White people and Black people.

Essential to ‘Black’ survival is the knowledge that each and every Black life has been impacted as a result of slavery and racism.  Words can never adequately express Black people’s suffering at the hands of White folk.  Both White men and White women are guilty and both should be consciously and actively seeking forgiveness while donating to BlackAngryWomen and/or other entities of racial truth and assistance.

The ‘White’ mindset portends and espouses that we are all one people — Black folk and White folk. The truth is that we are different and a truly ‘Black’ mind is NOT in sync with the ‘White’ mind.  Not only is there difference in our thoughts, there is a difference in how we think.  Our motivations differ and our ‘Black’ values and morals conflict significantly with ‘White’ norms, ‘White’ judgments, and ‘White’ readings.

In ‘Black’ life, it is not okay to address Black men and Black women as ‘boys and girls’.  In ‘Black’ life, it is not respectful for young folk to address elders by their first names without the Black elders extending invitations to be called by their first names.  ‘Black’ life speaks to overstanding and has an ‘undying love for Black people’ foundation.  ‘Black’ life learns from our ancestors and listens to our elders.  ‘Black’ life does not look for — nor does it seek — the acceptance or approval of others’.  ‘Black’ life is about nation building and unity.

I am always aware and conscious of my ‘Blackness’.  I embrace myself with love and appreciation.  I like who I am and I am truly grateful for my journey.  I have seen the beauty of ‘Black’ commitment and loyalty in folk like me.  I have witnessed the strength of Black people and shared in the joys of victory while overstanding sadness and loneliness as fellow warriors ‘gave up the ghost’….

Brother Stokely ‘Black Power’ Carmichael (lka Kwame Ture), Rev. David H. Eaton, Brother Marion Barry, Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., Brother Ralph Featherstone, Brother Halim Rahsaan, Sister Eleanor Matthews, and so many many more.

Food for ‘Black’ thought:

(a) If you want to die, go to a hospital.

(b) It is often wiser to be proactive as opposed to reactive.  However, it is sometimes better to do and/or say something than to go away and wish later that you had done or said something.

(c)  Click the Donate button at the top right of BlackAngryWomen and donate now if you are so inclined.  Remember to forward BlackAngryWomen posts to others. 

(d)  It is NOT okay for adults to whip or beat children.  Adults should be creative, loving, and patient when motivating and interacting with children.  An adult should never  verbally or physically abuse a child.

(e)  Pick an opportune moment this week and turn off and put out-of-sight your phone for a minimum of 5 to 7 hours.  If you are able to do this, you may experience a true sense of relief and accomplishment afterwards.

‘Don’t forget our reparations’.

Feel free to share this BlackAngryWomen blog with others. We are all works in progress. Do YOU know what time it is? http://BlackAngryWomen.com/

Undying love for Black people!

http://BlackAngryWomen.com/


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Black Glimpse of Yesterday

Some gifts that are given to us by God should not be played with — at least that is the belief of BlackParentSpeaks.

The ‘late’ Stokely Carmichael — lka Kwame Ture — said that most difficult in life will be the commitment to ‘live for our people’. Brother Stokely expressed that anyone can die. Stokely’s thoughtful question was ‘Can YOU live for our people?’

BlackParentSpeaks has been intimately and honestly ‘involved’ in the Black Movement for what seems like a lifetime and before. My commitment has remained intact and I have, thus far, maintained my integrity. No lures, no temptations, have swayed my commitment to my people nor my commitment to justice and righteousness.

God blessed me to work alongside of such now-widely-known Brothers as Stokely — lka Kwame Ture, Marion Barry, Martin Luther King, David Eaton, Chuck Stone, and others. I witnessed our journeys together as we shared militancy, actions, emotions, thoughts, purpose, and death. Each of us was unique and yet the same. We dealt with entrapments, barriers, threats, detainments, and ever-present dangers to our livelihood, families, friends, and selves.

As part of my unique talent, I was allowed much. I remember my ‘argument of the century’ with Imamu Baraka– eka LeRoi Jones. I recall my refusal to ‘discuss’ with H. Rap Brown. And, I recall my persistent disagreement with some of the positions espoused by most-serious and astute brother Malauna ‘Ron’ Karenga. I well remember the likes of CORE’s Roy Innis and what he did that caused me to feel ‘total’ DISrespect and contempt for him! I likewise remember Andy Young and James Bevel and their ‘betrayal’ (read: “A Black Manifesto on ‘The June 24th Trick Bag’ from The Black United Front of Washington, D.C.” passed unanimously on 25 June 1968).

I think about my times of travel with the son of the Ambassador to Pakistan, the meals and talks at the home of Tanzanian Ambassador Gosbert Rutabanzibwa, my time at the OSOB while working for Senator Stephen M. Young of Ohio, dancing with Representative Charles Diggs, and more. I remember turning down a job offer from the ‘late’ Robert Kennedy and later turning down a job offer made by his brother Senator Ed Kennedy. I smile as I recall my refusal to allow Black actor Robert Hooks to pay for my meal at Ed Murphy’s Supper Club in DC.

And, I smile wryly as I remember law enforcement ‘taking me in’ for questioning because I traveled on an airplane with Dr. King’s brother — give me a break! I think about government attempts to ‘involve’ me in prison breaks and alleged ‘contracted’ killings. I remember the FBI questioning of my parents and others in the Portland, Oregon area relative to my childhood, activities, etc. As my father told me later, my father told the agents that they should be out eradicating ‘White’ racism rather than wasting monies harassing his daughter….

I remember law enforcement agents telling me that there was a contract out on my life and me telling them that the ‘moment we are born, we begin to die’…. I remember UNwanted searches, wiretaps, and more. I recall my response to law enforcement during questioning relative to Brother Muhammad Ali: ‘I knew nothing and could remember even less’.

Today, I think about the Sister who suffered a miscarriage following a scary and unexpected invasion of her home by law enforcement. Officers with guns had busted into her home as she lay in her bed. News of the invasion quickly traveled throughout DC and the ‘Word’ was that I would likely be the next target. Strapped brothers including Rev. David Eaton and Marion Barry immediately stepped forth to protect me from experiencing a similar illegal ‘surprise’ invasion….

I have always been a child of God and God has known me from the very beginning. God blessed me to work with amazing and committed individuals — Black folk devoted to righteousness. Many of the folk who I worked so intimately with have likely already ‘given up the ghost’ and moved on. BlackParentSpeaks, however, remains on earth for whatever God’s reason….

BlackParentSpeaks’ vigilance and commitment to righteousness continues. Whatever the final chapter, it has yet to be written.

‘Don’t forget our reparations’.

Feel free to share this BlackAngryWomen blog with others. We are all works in progress. Do YOU know what time it is? http://BlackAngryWomen.com/

Undying love for Black people!

http://BlackAngryWomen.com/