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Should it Matter Who Pulls the Trigger?

I have a question that I am certain cannot be easily answered or resolved. However, I am going to ask anyway: “What’s the difference between black youth killing black youth and white cops killing black youth?” I know that may ruffle some feathers but it is really something I want to know.

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Yes, both are tragic, yet only one gets the Black community in an uproar. I know that I will get a lot of slack for saying this but I constantly hear about black-on-black shootings (none of it makes the major headlines) and it amazes me how it has become the norm. Yet, when anyone non-black does the deed it is time to rally, riot, and ‘come together’. Understand that I am devastated by the loss of innocent life (Michael, Ezell, and the many others) caused by overzealous cops; but I am also tired of hearing sirens and helicopters –in my own neighborhood- chasing down black youth who have just murdered one of their own.

I am an avid viewer of The First 48 and many of the crimes shown are of young black men killing their blackpeers -some of whom they grew up with- for senseless reasons. As I watch the detectives piece together the crime it saddens me to see how close some of the culprits were with their victims. “Yeah, he and I used to play in the schoolyard together.” or “His mom took me in when I was little but the drug hustle tore us apart.” are some of the quotes I recall hearing from the ones who pulled the trigger. What has created this climate within the Black community? When did the tide change and what can be done to get it back on track?

White cops killing Black youth: Tragic. Black youth killing Black youth: Tragic. Black communities settling on one and being radical on the other: Tragic.

A friend and I shared a meal last night and he was able to attend a rally in Leimert Park -a section of South Los Angeles- for Michael Brown. I could not make it due to work but was interested in hearing how it went. He shared that it was mildly organized with good intentions. However, there was one thing he shared that raised my eyebrow. He stated that a young college student got on the microphone and exclaimed “We need our elders to guide us on what to do?” I was taken aback by that statement. I was unclear on what type of ‘guidance’ is needed. But, on the other hand I can empathize with what he is saying. There is no present day Martin, Malcolm, Bayard, or Medgar (at least not to my knowledge) that can muster the people together in a sustained, focused manner.

The Rodney King experience pulled us together…for a moment. Travon Martin pulled us together…for a moment. Michael Brown and Ezell Ford have pulled us together, again. What needs to occur is that we get together and stay together. We cannot let the smoke clear until we are certain that a change has come. We need to unite on all fronts and make a stand against a machine that has been working against us for decades. We need to create a beacon that will sound a reminder enforcing love, unity, and community. The senseless murdering of our own needs to come to a swift end; and the work of establishing ourselves as an organized force for change needs to begin.

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The season of being content with the way things needs to cease. It is not going to happen overnight. It may not even happen in my lifetime. But, we need to give our kids an opportunity to live safe in their own community and not fear faces that look like theirs. Racism and prejudice will always be present, but killing ourselves does not have to be. Yes…RALLY…PROTEST…MAKE NOISE…but we must also come together as one for the purposes of changing the scope of our own landscape. We need to instill the value of life into the minds of our youth. We need to teach them how to ‘fight’ with their minds and not guns. We need to remind them of where we came from and challenge them to progress us forward. My prayers are definitely with the families of the victims, but they are also with the youth who have no idea how to get off the misguided path they are currently on.

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Spotlight: Derek Chase

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NameDerek Chase

Location: North Hollywood, CA

Company: The Chase LA


What inspired you to create a clothing line? There was definitely a need for interesting well made clothes at an affordable price.

How would you define your style of fashion? All over the place (laughs). My style goes from Jordan’s and a SnapBack to tapered slacks, mesh shirt and wingtip shoes. Hence why The Chase LA is so diverse in look and anyone can find an item they would love to wear. My line represents style and spontaneity while pushing the envelope to inspire change. The Chase LA is more than just a clothing line it is a movement and a constant reminder you should never stop chasing your dreams. Whatever they may be.

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What is the most exciting part of what you do? Getting positive feedback from customers. I love receiving ‘thank you’ emails and/or text messages from people wearing my creations. I also enjoy seeing how other people rock my clothes. It is always flattering when someone takes one of my items and adds their own personal flare to it.

What audience does your line cater to most? My line caters to the confident dude with swag who wants to stand out. I create eye-catching garments that command attention. If you are poised and ready for the world, grab a Chase LA creation and storm the city.

What was been your biggest challenge in launching your line? Just about everything has been a challenge (chuckles). I was completely green when I entered the world of fashion design and had no idea of what to do; where to start; or what to expect. To be honest, the hardest part was learning how to get out of my own way. It also took me a minute to gain enough confidence to actually put my ideas out there.

Which celebrity would you most love to style and why? Kanye West. He is my idea of fashion. Kanye embodies what The Chase LA is all about; strong, confident, risky and a little cocky.

What has been one your proudest moments in terms of your clothing line? Watching it all come together and hearing my mom and dad say they are proud of me has definitely been the icing on the cake.

What is one fun fact about you that no one would assume? People would never believe how much I love food. I could eat all day while watching Law and Order reruns.

Where can people find your items? The Chase L.A (click here)

What’s next for The Chase LA? Everything! I am now pushing to get into retail stores; style celebrities; and collaborate with other fashion entrepreneurs.

Any final thoughts or comments? Never give up. You can really do anything if you put in the work and just try.

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Spotlight: William Scales

Name: William Scales

Location: Lynwood, Ca

Company: Mr. Scales Productions

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Tell us more about your company? Mr. Scales Productions was started in the beginning of 2012 with it’s first release of the Christian film “The Waiting Room”. The company is designed for all types of filming needs. Also,its a company that create short films, feature films and web series for the upcoming actors and actress that really get overlooked for chances to showcase there talents on film.

What is the most exciting part of what you do? The most exciting part of my job is the ability to be creative. Having a gift to have a vision in your head and then watch it play out on film and people love it, is the greatest and most exciting feeling in the world.

What has been some of your biggest challenges? The biggest challenges that most film makers have is funding. Funding is the key to many things needed on set, such as, locations, catering, equipment, permits and paying the cast. Also taking time away to separate your business lie from your personal life. Sometimes the two do not mix and it can cause many issues.

What are your thoughts on Black Hollywood and the shortage of mainstream Black films? Black Hollywood seems to decrease every year. My take on this issue is that, our people need to really stick together and support one another. Especially the new and upcoming. We have to support each other and that is the key word….SUPPORT!

What audience do your productions cater to most? Anyone that wants to see a great project with great acting. In our everyday lives, we need a release from the world we live in. The film might reach you or your story. In life, everyone needs to either laugh, cry or just spend some family time watching TV.

Do you currently have anything in production; if ‘yes’ please tell us about it? I have a upcoming web series called “What Men Want”. Directed by William Scales and Co-Writers William Scales and Danielle Foster. It will be available on youtube. This series is starring Tray Mcvay, Reyna Joy Banks, Nelson Brown, Pia Days, Jermaine Jacox, Rhonda Morman, Aaron McCarter, Ajia Mumms and Rayshawn Chism. It’s a series hat tells what 4 men go through in life. The issues men deal with such as marriage, dating, career and fatherhood from a man’s point of view. It’s pretty rare we get the men side of things so, if you ever wanted to really know what men want, this is the series to watch.

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Which celebrity would you most love to work with and why? Denzel Washington. He has an amazing spirit and leave it on film every time. He makes you believe who he is portraying. The man can do just about anything.

As it relates to filmmaking what has been your proudest moment? Earlier this year, I won Best Film in the Jamaica Film Festival for my feature film “Life After Divorce”. I really didn’t expect to win and at a point of life, I think it certified that this is what I was born to do.

What is one fun fact about you that no one would assume? I love long drives. Observing Life is such great thing and most of the time, it puts me in a great spirit. Just some oldies and the road is all I need.

What’s next for Mr. Scales Productions? The company will be releasing 2 more web series entitled “Uncle Lewis” starring Clark Lewis and “Big Men Living” starring Nelson Brown & Rayshawn Chism. Also we will be releasing another Christian feature film entitled “The Potters House” starring Andre Jefferson, Rayshawn Chism and Danielle Foster and next year, the stage play entitled “The Curse Is Broken”

Any final thoughts or comments? We are running a gofundme campaign for What Men Want. The project still needs help in finishing the last few episodes and for post production and festival entries. This is something you really should support. Anything Helps! Go to www.gofundme.com/whatmenwant

 

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The Butt of Conversation.

confused3I was talking with a friend the other day and he shared a story that I found quite comical. We were discussing sexual health and how so many people fail to get tested for HIV, or go to the doctor if something down there is not quite right. He talked about an experience he had with a doctor after going in for a check-up prompted by a fear of STD infection. Nervously, he disclosed to his doctor that he felt a tingling down there and believed he may have contracted something. After hearing his sexual orientation she proceeded to hand him a swab and requested an anal culture. Confused and bewildered he asked “Why do I need to do that?” Her response, “Didn’t you say you are gay?” There clearly is an assumption that all gay men engage in receptive anal intercourse. But why is that?

What is it about being gay that really strikes a nerve with most straight people? Is it the fact that sexually they do something that goes against the ‘normal’ scope of how the status quo believes sex is supposed to occur? Yet, when you think of it, what is the ‘normal’ way to have sex? Of course we all know that male-to-female penetration is the standard practice, but what about anal sex between heterosexuals; or even oral sex? Are those abnormal practices? I would say ‘no’ but I am a tad more open about sex and discussions related to it than most people. I think it is because I have accepted that everyone has different likes and triggers when it comes to sexual gratification. For example, there are lots of heterosexual men who find great pleasure in having their P-spot massaged. Although not as erogenous as the female G-spot, the P-spot on men can be quite erogenous and satisfactory.

I am sure that many of you may be wondering what the P-spot is. In a nutshell (no-pun-intended) it is the smooth, small -walnut shaped- bump that you feel after passing through the sphincter area, moving towards the bladder, byprostate_massage_summary completely inserting the index finger. If the male relaxes it is quite easily accessible. It usually has a soft texture, like a foam ball. Stimulation of the P-spot is made with light pressure from your index finger, as if you’re giving it a massage. For the desired results, keep it gentle – especially if this is new for you (while in your private time), or your partner. Slow and sensual is best.

Ladies: If your man shared with you that he has a very sensitive P-spot and would like it to be included in your sexual explorations, would you instantly pigeonhole him as being gay…gay-curious…or bisexual? I think that would be an unfair categorization based upon an erogenous zone that has nothing to do with sexual orientation. Believe it or not there are lots of straight men who keep this fact to themselves for fear of being judged. Hence the reason for secret drawers filled with pleasure devices targeting anal stimulation.

Men: Would you be embarrassed if you experienced the most explosive orgasm of your life because she meticulously manipulated your prostate? Did the moans and quivers caused by her strategic fingering push you to a place of shame? Would you question your masculinity, or just accept the fact that receptive anal pleasure is not synonymous with homosexuality?

o-COUPLES-SLEEP-facebookAre we limiting our levels of sexual gratifications because of what we have labeled as experiences designed for ‘those people’? Yes, there is a difference between what homosexuals do sexually vs. what heterosexuals do; however, that difference has to do with gender and not pleasure. A straight man who likes his ‘private vault’ explored is still 100% heterosexual; same as a gay man who does not like his ‘private vault’ broken into is still 100% gay. One has nothing to do with the other and we need to learn to be respectful of that.

To those of you who used to believe that all gay men enjoy being anally penetrated let this be a lesson to you. And to those straight men that are now curious about the P-spot, do yourself a favor and try it at least once; with a female who can handle your reactions (moan, squirm, high-pitched scream, etc) without judgment. Enjoy…relax…and release.