Archive for April, 2008

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

RUFKM?! ( R U Fucking Kidding Me?!)

jeremiah RUFKM?! ( R U Fucking Kidding Me?!)
When keeping it real goes wrong. Talk amongst yourselves. Im too busy hollerin and throwing up both my hands.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Are You Waiting for a Check?

NSF+check Are You Waiting for a Check?

As I lay in bed last night, tightly clinging to my guns and religion, I thought to myself, why does it seem everyone is waiting on a check?

Now I don’t mean to generalize by using the term everyone, but it sounds much better than “a whole lot of people.” As a public interest lawyer and as a general member of an urban society, I have met an inordinate number of people who are “waiting on a check.” Now, Im not talking about the annual experience that is tax refund time, but I mean really waiting on random checks for their personal sustenance. Let me break it down…

Child Support

What’s up with women using child support as their sole source of income? If that money was intended to support YOU, it would be called alimony/spousal support. You shouldn’t be paying rent, utilities and making up for the fact that you aren’t working with a child support check. I have seen countless times on Judge Judy where the judge asks women what is their source if income and they say child support–I know this isn’t exactly a scientific study but lets call it anecdotal evidence. I mean WTF? Child support is there to supplement your income and replicate the monetary benefits of a two-income household. Its for your child, not you. Its to help support the child, not a revenue stream.

Disability

OK, don’t get me started on all the fake ass disability going on out here. Before you start with your angry comments, I will say that this category of course, does not relate to all the really disabled people out there. Im talking about the fake ass I-got-into-a-car-accident-in-1987 people on the bank roll. I have met sooooo many people on fake ass disability recently. I mean should you really be on disability if you are able to have sex, have children and get into fights in front of your building? Im just saying… People just seem to have no shame in working the system anymore. Whereas in our parents generation no one wanted the stigma of being on the government rolls, but folks today are just looking for a roll to be on. If you can get up and take care of three kids, two of which you’ve had since you were “disabled,” then you can take your ass to work. And its not only women, I met this dude on disability that, by the looks of his body, could have been a personal trainer at the Golds Gym. But he has “back pain” that prevented him from working (although he played flag football on the weekends and made two babies). We are all about getting a check for nothing. I guess its good non-work if you can get it. But after a while, don’t you start to feel like a loser?

SSI

OK, now this one really makes me mad—and before you get on me trust, im talking from personal experience. You will not believe the number of parents living off of their kid’s social security checks. Now there are two instances when parents get SS checks for kids. When the child is disabled and when one parent has died. I have seen so many instances where the parents have actually FAKED symptoms of their child so that the child could be considered for special education and so they could get disability money. It is unreal. I had a parent once try to get me to co-sign that her child had a learning disability even though he got a B+ in geometry. She thought he should be in special ed because he did so poorly in english and history. I suggested that maybe he had reading difficulties and just needed extra tutoring. No, she told me, that could’t be it, she thinks he’s mentally disturbed. That heifer just wanted a check. Don’t they realize that they are dooming their children forever for a measly $600 a month? What in the hell is going on out here?

Next up: the parent that decides to stop working and live off their kids social security checks because of the death of a parent just enrage me. Instead of working and saving that money for expenses relating to the child, or God forbid, college, they use it as their personal income. SICK. Money for your kids is money for your kids. Its not the lottery. Jeez louise.

SETTLEMENT
Oh, the elusive settlement check. Everyone raise their hand if they know someone who is waiting for a settlement? Is it the same settlement or what? Everyone has been in some shady ass personal injury or car accident where they have called one of those lawyers on TV and have been told that the bruise on their thigh could be worth tens of thousands. So 35 chiropractor visits and a 40% contingency fee later, they are waiting for that check that will make all their dreams come true. They don’t have to work because they are waiting on their settlement. They borrow money from you with the promise of paying it back when they get their settlement. Does the settlement ever come?

OK, im done. I had to get that off my chest, because in my job, I couldn’t actually tell people about themselves like I wanted to. Of course, ive generalized like I tend to do, but I just speak from the heart. This aint about any color of people because ive seen it from all kinds. Trifling is not a racial category. What happened to actually working for a living? We need to take an example from Unemployment compensation. That shit is finite. When it runs out, it runs out and you know you have to get your ass to work or start selling ass or something. Whenever you have an end point, you have an incentive. When you have income and benefits forever, what is your motivation to do better? Its why we have three generations of women in public housing. I know the only reason I started looking for a job when I was on unemployment was because it was only 30 days before the last check.

We need to be more like the Latinos in the Home Depot parking lots, those eses are waiting for a job, not a check. Que paso papi!!! So, if your income strategy is waiting for checks, do us all a favor and become a productive member of society. There is a big world out there, beyond your mailbox. You can meet new people, learn new skills and show your children what it means to see their parent actually leave the house in the morning and come back in the evening with a check for services rendered. I worked in a community where so many people are raising kids who aint never seen ANYONE working. So how do they ever develop a work ethic or understand the importance of education and a global economy? Kids do what they see, not what you tell them.
If you don’t have one already, get a damn job. The check will be there when you get home…FROM WORK!

I just say what y’all are thinking…

Peace People.

Friday, April 11, 2008

It Takes A Village My Ass

EE  You Gotta Love It It Takes A Village My Ass

Can I just talk to y’all one villager to another? I know the saying, “it takes village to raise a child” sounds all good and profound in that wise-old-African-man kind of way, but I’m a little confused about its practical application these days. I think there seems to be a bit of confusion as to who are the village children and who are the village elders. For example, I was walking my dog Albert in the neighborhood when I came upon some kids walking down the streets towards me. They were singing “Kevin and Nikki sitting in a tree, F-U-C-K-I-N-G.” Now while that is pretty appalling, as these were 9 and 10 year olds, it isn’t as appalling as the fact that they were willing to say this right in front of an adult.
See, that’s the difference I see between kids today and when I was growing up. Im certainly not going to sit here all holier than thou like I was never a bad ass kid in my life. I played all the freaky games, tripped up other kids, and developed a shocking affinity for profanity around age 8. However, I would NEVER have considered using profanity around adults or doing any of my mischief in their presence. What happened to adult authority? What happened to kids being afraid of adults? The fact that these kids could care less about what they were saying and who heard them was really scary. And I’m sure we all have our similar stories. We’ve all been on the bus or subway with young people who have no qualms about loudly using cusswords or n-words or openly discussing their sexual exploits, both real and imagined. And whether it’s the elderly, women, children—they could care less who hears them.
However, that leads me to the “It Takes A Village” paradox. Don’t think this is just about the kids. A part of the problem, and likely the main part, is that us adults, the village elders, see all this going on and don’t do a damn thing. Just like those kids I heard singing today, I didn’t stop and chastise them and tell them that they should be ashamed of themselves, that they are bringing shame to their family, or that I was going to tell their daddy on them. I just kept walking shaking my head and being disgusted. But ultimately, like the passengers on buses and subways every day, I did nothing.
If it takes a village to raise a child and the village is afraid or indifferent, then aren’t we fooling ourselves? But on the other hand, I cant be too hard on myself and the other village elders because the first time you attempt to correct a village child, their village mama is likely gonna beat your village ass.
I have a friend who was a teacher for a while who would speak of children whose parents never came to parent-teacher conferences, but let little Jamal get into trouble, then they’re the first ones up there ready to defend their child and say why everybody is wrong except little Jamal, when little Jamal probably just needs his ass beat. I remember in elementary school there was this one student’s mom who would come up to the school and beat his ass in front of the other students with her slipper. You can bet he didn’t get in trouble too often.
After seeing that shocking video of the student beating up her teacher in Baltimore as the other students watched and recorded it their cell phones, I am more certain than ever that we are in deep trouble. I wish I knew the answer. Is it because we’ve abandoned corporal punishment? Are we too busy being our children’s friends and not their parents? With so many single parent homes, are parents just too busy to raise these kids right? Is it the lack of fathers in children’s lives? (cause I know I was scared shitless of mine) Or maybe its our eternal catch-all scapegoats, hip-hop and BET? I just don’t get it. What happened to so drastically change the child-adult dynamic in just one generation?
There have been instances in my city where parents have come to the school and gotten into fist fights WITH STUDENTS. The lunatics are running the asylum.
I just saw a Dr. Phil episode about out-of-control kids and he was talking about this technique of negotiating with children to get them to do what you want. I was like, “negotiating”????!!!!! What happened to, “because I said so”?
I admire you parents that are doing your job because it cannot be easy. These kids have influences and access that we didn’t dream of 20 years ago. Keep up the good work. But by the looks of most kids these days, a lot of parents have dropped the proverbial ball. To you I say: Raise your damn kids!
So village, what is we gon do? Its like Lord of the Flies out here. The kids are running the show and we are scared to death of them. And I don’t know what to do. I don’t know what the answer is (which is nothing new). But what I do know is, for better or worse, I’m steering clear of these little fuckers before I end up getting my ass kicked on Youtube.
Peace Villagers.