LGBT Mag Critiques 9 GRAMS Play

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Activists, Allies, Artists, Authors, Parents, Prisoners, Scholars

The pioneering LGBT magazine The Advocate called 9 GRAMS “heartfelt and often humorous” in a glowing review of the play that appears in both its print and online publications. Writer David Artavia explains playwright Maisha Yearwood “has written a brutally honest and poignant one-woman play…putting on full display the ugly truth of what it means to be a targeted Black lesbian American traveling and living abroad.” Peep the full review here.

Go to 9GRAMS.com more information about the next performance of 9 GRAMS.

9 GRAMS at the Inkwell

Steps from the famed Inkwell Beach on Martha’s Vineyard, prize-winning playwright Maisha Yearwood performs a reading of her work 9 GRAMS. Based on a true story, this surprisingly funny play follows Hollywood screenwriter Ayeesha Freeman as she endures solitary confinement in a Turkish prison because of how she looks and who she loves. A Q&A with Maisha will follow the performance. Sponsored by Oak Bluffs Public Library.

9 GRAMS at National Black Theatre Festival

The legendary National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, North Carolina welcomes 9 GRAMS to its Readers Series. Award-Winning playwright Maisha Yearwood will read her work about a Hollywood screenwriter who endures solitary confinement in a Turkish prison after being racially profiled as a drug trafficker. Based on a true story.

The Color of Crime

Posted on 7 CommentsPosted in Allies, Prisoners, Students, Uncategorized
George Zimmerman. Image Courtesy of The Washington Post
George Zimmerman. Image Courtesy of The Washington Post

One breezy evening last October, I celebrated my one month anniversary of living in New York City with a lovely dinner with friends and by getting mugged on my way home. I didn’t make it very hard for the perpetrator, practically handing my wallet and iPhone to him as I descended the steps into the subway entrance. All in all, it was a relatively painless mugging; I wasn’t hurt, everything he took could be replaced, I immediately canceled my credit and ATM cards and wasn’t held responsible for the $400 charged at Kennedy Pizza and Chicken. As I communicated with family and friends in the days following the attack, the second question they asked, after “Are you okay?!” was inevitably, “Was he Black?”

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After the Verdict: “Where do we go From Here?” Black Studies For Everybody

Posted on 1 CommentPosted in Activists, Allies, Parents, Prisoners, Scholars, Students, Teachers
Black Studies protest, May 1968 University of Washington.  Image by Steve Ludwig. Courtesy of Antiwar and Radical History Project.
Black Studies protest, May 1968 University of Washington. Image by Steve Ludwig. Courtesy of Antiwar and Radical History Project.

Some people can’t understand why people concerned about racism—especially African Americans–are so upset about the George Zimmerman verdict.  Some folks think that there is no evidence to suggest that Zimmerman’s even a racist since he is Latino.  These misunderstandings reveal there remains an empathy gap when it comes to White understanding of Black experiences.

George Zimmerman is a White, second-generation Hispanic who felt empowered to racially profile Trayvon Martin.  His light skin, accent-free English and fear of Black men inspired something in the millions of white Americans who reached out to support him during the trial. His acquittal stunned us because it highlights how some people of color embrace anti-black racism.  Zimmerman’s privilege allowed him to disavow the idea that race was involved in the shooting at all.

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After the Verdict: “Where do we go From Here?” End Racial Profiling

Posted on 1 CommentPosted in Activists, Allies, Artists, Parents, Prisoners, Scholars, Students, Teachers
Image courtesy policymic.com
Image courtesy policymic.com

On a cold, February night last year what inspired George Zimmerman to ignore a police dispatcher’s warning? Why was he sure that Trayvon Martin, 17, was a “suspicious” character in his gated southern Florida community? We’re still reeling from his acquittal, but this is the 5th part in a series that addresses the crucial question that remains on everyone’s mind: “Where do we go from here?”

Racial Profiling is the culprit here. The ACLU defines it as “ the discriminatory practice of law enforcement and private security practices that disproportionately target people of color for investigation and enforcement.” This happens to People of Color everyday in America.  Racial profiling creates a hostile, unfriendly environment for Blacks and other members of communities of color by keeping racism less a relic of the past and more of an incessant struggle.

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