Arra, Up Close and Personal

Arra, Up Close and Personal

Aoki, Daddy, and Ming

Aoki, Daddy, and Ming
I'm not spoiled he make me works! Hard too!

Simmons Money!

Russell Simmons has been instrumental in bringing hip-hop to every facet of business and media since its inception in the late 1970s: in music with the co-founding of the immensely successful original Def Jam Recordings; in the fashion industry with the trail-blazing Phat Farm, BabyPhat, Run Athletics, and Def Jam University clothing lines; in film with Simmons Lathan Media Group; in television with HBO’s “The Def Comedy Jam” and “Russell Simmons Presents Def Poetry”; on Broadway with the Tony Award winning stage production “Russell Simmons Def Poetry Jam on Broadway”; in the financial services industry with UniRush and its RushCard and Baby Phat RushCard; in fine jewelry with The Simmons Jewelry Co; in video gaming, mobile communications and other industries utilizing the internationally recognized Def Jam brand through Def Jam Enterprises; and in the community with Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation and the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network. Russell is a sought-after public speaker and regularly addresses audiences ranging from public school children and university students to corporate executives and community leaders.

2010 Dis is Family Business, Mind Ya Business!

Single Mother! Este es Para tu'

Hey people here is something I'd written early '09 during my time imprisoned in the City of Tallahassee. And as always I want to share with you. "Now keep in mind I'm sensitive bout my ish..."- Badu

I was laying in bed thinking about my life and my son and something told me to get up and share this. I originally entitled it "why did he run away". I was thinking about my son and like a lot of other sons and daughters out there that have no Fathers in the home. I asked myself like I would guess many mothers would. "why did he run away?". And instantly my mind took me back to slavery and I know these words may be harsh but its truth. We "people of color, or Negroes" were taught that we were not suppose to have family. We were taught to be servants nothing more or nothing less.

I am reminded of a conversation I had with an older gentlemen in Salt Lake City Utah. The gentlemen asked me why was I there (in Salt Lake City). I began to tell him I was there for flight attendant training and gave a little more information about myself and the experiences of being a single parent. The Gentlemen was a white man in his 70's. He then asked what were my goals in life. I told him I wanted to learn as much as I can about my people "African Americans". He then said "why, they were meant to be servants nothing more or nothing less". I was pissed I think my face turned red. He then went on to say how he was against segregation and how he didn't want his kids going to school with black kids because they were having sex, doing drugs and etc. Well he was originally from Texas, a military man.

I went on to tell him and the other white gentlemen at the table my experiences as a teenager. I grew up in the eighties in Miami, Florida went to elementary school with African American and Hispanic American kids was introduced to white kids when our school went on field trips to other schools. And how I felt I was inferior. Once I entered what we called junior high that's when I made my first white friend, saw kids smoking cigarettes, talking about sex (I mean actually talking about how they had sex, not lying about having sex, Like my friends and I were). I told him things like sex, drugs, and welfare have no respect of person. I told the man African Americans are not the only ones who struggle with those issues. It was happening like that in his day and its the same today. We became good friends after that day. It just amazed me that to know that someone actually thought black people were/are meant to be servants. (I just want to point out after getting to know that Gentlemen, throughout my stay in Salt Lake City, he became one my closest friends we would have dinner together and he taught me a lot about history, the wars, it was quite interesting.)

Sorry Back to Why He ran Away: Fathers and mothers were taken from there homes never to been seen again. The purpose was to keep the black family broken. And this fear has been embedded in some of our subconscious minds to keep that unforeseen nightmare alive. So its not totally His fault ladies. There's many things that's still exist in our culture from slavery. Both positive and negative. Story telling, "Ebonics" the African dialect from slavery, the broken English we speak because our ancestors were not allowed to speak their true languages from the African Cultures. However I say all of that to say this its a new day people. Change starts within and please know that mental slavery still exist in "our people": When I say our people I am not speaking of the African American culture alone. I mean people who suffer from poverty, broken homes, mental abuse, mental oppression any behavior placed on a person to keep them down. Obama has proven it, change is here. There is no need to run no matter what it looks like on the outside. We have the power to change every negative into a positive. We must forgive. Fear is powerful only if you let it control you. I want to take this time to thank those "acting fathers" in my son's life. The Teachers, Coaches, Principals, Mentors, Friends I thank you for taking up your brother's slack. United we stand people. Change isn't coming: ITS HERE!

This pic was taken just before my trip to Salt Lake City, UT. Home of the salt water taffy!!! Mhmmm

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