Reflecting on Denice Frohman’s Spoken Word “Accents” piece.

Photo by Bogomil Mihaylov on Unsplash

As a Slam Poet, I know the power behind this platform in getting a message across to an audience. I found Denice Frohman’s “Accents” poem through a Race and Ethnic Studies class I took this past spring. But my attachment to Frohman’s performance piece goes past artistic kinship. I related to the content of her poem and with the celebration of her mother’s accent. While my parents aren’t Latinx, they speak English with an accent that deviates from the white American norm.

Denice Frohman — Accents. Live at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe.

Growing up, I never noticed it. The first…

How should American universities handle inflammatory speakers on campus?

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Two years ago, the Berkeley College Republicans invited Ann Coulter to speak. She presented her views on immigration in Berkeley’s Wheeler Hall Wednesday, November 20, 2019. Her speech, “Adios, America, ” argued that mass immigration harms American culture. Much like her book with the same title, her lecture aligned with anti-immigrant ideas.

It was a hostile Wednesday night with students polarized by her presence on campus. Some came out in support of Coulter, citing that she had the freedom to express her ideas, no matter the offense. Other students, however, vehemently protested the event. They believed Coulter’s views were dangerous…

I held on, for far too long, to the faith and community that kept me complacent. It was time to let go, to experience life without my safety net.

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“Any real change implies the breakup of the world as one has known it, the loss of all that gave one identity, the end of safety…”

James Baldwin, Nobody Knows My Name

As I reflect on my past, the deathly fear of change remained a constant struggle. I had this inexplicable urge to play it safe and stay within the confines of what I knew, the Christian church.

I grew up in a religious home. Every night after dinner, my Nigerian father read from the same thick tattered burgundy New American Standard translation of the Bible he owned since…

What does it mean to engage with Black consciousness during and after Black History Month?

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“You cannot enslave a mind that knows itself, that values itself, that understands itself…”

Wangari Maathai

For the last six years, my approach to Black History Month has been one of introspection. Of course, one doesn’t need a national holiday to self-reflect. But the focus on Black achievement lends itself to take a hard look at Black identity and thought.

Examining my identity as a Black man was, and still is, a journey towards mental liberation. “Free your mind,” I recall hearing from a college friend who joined the Nation of Islam. That was right around the same time…

Photo by Alex Green from Pexels

Finding Love — An Anthology

And an accessible hub for privacy information

Photo by William Krause on Unsplash

Social media has been both a gift and a curse in the face of COVID-19. While quarantining from home, users have been able to stay connected to their loved ones. Businesses have innovated new ways to reach their customers through social media marketing. And unique online platforms, like Clubhouse, sprung forth to support freelancers and creatives. But every reward comes with some form of risk. We risk the safety of our personal information as we use Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Privacy violations and data leaks abound in the digital realm.

Late last year, The Wall Street Journal reported on Twitter’s…

How E-Books could change the way students learn inside and outside the classroom.

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E-books, more than printed literature, permeate the current landscape of the book industry. With the harsh realities of COVID-19, the resulting shutdowns, and industries forced to close or shift to online platforms, the spike in e-book sales doesn’t come as a surprise. Bookstores closed their doors in early spring, and dedicated readers responded by purchasing e-books to fight off boredom while following their state’s stay-at-home orders. Readers also worried about the risk of infection as physical books passed from person to person. Instead, buying e-books was a much safer and healthier alternative.

Even before COVID, the last decade has moved…

Enough is enough. When will white evangelicals stop coddling the white supremacists in their midst?

Photo by Erin Schaff/The New York Times

ON WEDNESDAY, January 6, 2021, an angry mob of Trump supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol, motivated by their ringleader and his claims of a stolen election. Many news outlets have described Wednesday’s events as treason and an attack on American democracy. Trump’s delusional devotees believed this to be the beginning of a revolution. However, I saw it as the inevitable consequence of building a platform on white supremacy and Christian nationalism.

WEDNESDAY’S TERROR ATTACK came not as a surprise to me. With a cynical tone, I tweeted, “Trumpism is reaping what it sowed…none of this should be surprising.” I had…

When a God-fearing father came face-to-face with his unbelieving son, the differences between them were unavoidable.

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“It’s not an easy time for any parent, this moment when the realization dawns that you’ve given birth to something that will never see things the way you do…”

Richard Russo

I imagine this is what my father felt forced to realize three years ago when we spoke about my disbelief in the religion he raised me in. He never saw it coming. I don’t think anyone in my family anticipated such a dramatic shift. How could they? I went from preaching in pulpits about God’s salvation to speaking like a cynical skeptic. To me, my deconversion from Christianity…

Anger and love compel my return to activism. And empowering the black community is my top priority.

Banner by Dread Scott

“A Man Was Lynched By Police Yesterday.”

A painful reminder of the past. A sharp critique of the present. A banner meant to make bystanders flinch. The original phrase, “A Man Was Lynched Yesterday,” stood out in bold letters for all to see in 1936. It forced onlookers on Fifth Avenue to face the ugliness of the lynching of Jesse Washington.

And in 2015,

Chicago Artist Dread Scott pricked the conscience of apathetic Americans with an updated version of the flag. He forced Manhattan spectators to deal with the public execution of Walter Scott at the hands of North Carolina police officer Michael…

Kelsey Ogbewe

Essayist | Poet | Activist “You cannot enslave a mind that knows itself, that values itself, that understands itself…” — Wangari Maathai #WEOC

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