Listen to Kimberly Jones

There’s been a lot said lately about the Black Lives Matter movement, police brutality, the militarization of police forces, rioting, local budgets allocating absurd amounts of money to police departments instead of social services, education, the arts, etc etc. But the clarion call above all others, for me at least, came from author and Black Lives Matter advocate, Kimberly Jones.

As a white person I don’t feel I really have much to say here except that black lives matter, black lives are equal to white lives, black lives have value, black lives have power, black lives have purpose and black lives should have their voices heard. The fact that I’m writing this is, to me, an insult just as it was an insult when it was deemed newsworthy that gay lives mattered, that gay rights were human rights.

So I’m not really going to say anything more on this and instead let Kimberly Jones use her voice. I get chills every time I replay her words through my head. Watch to the end. Listen to Kimberly Jones. 

And they are lucky that what black people are looking for is equality and not revenge.

On Saturday May 30th filmmaker and photographer David Jones of David Jones Media felt compelled to go out and serve the community in some way. He decided to use his art to try and explain the events that were currently impacting our lives. On day two, Sunday the 31st, he activated his dear friend author Kimberly Jones to tag along and conduct interviews. During a moment of downtime he captured these powerful words from her and felt the world couldn’t wait for the full length documentary, they needed to hear them now.

Source

How Can We Win

By Kimberly Jones, author of “I’m Not Dying with You Tonight

So, I’ve been seeing a lot of things, talking of the people making commentary. Interestingly enough, the ones I’ve noticed that have been making the commentary are wealthy black people, making the commentary about we should not be rioting. We should not be looting. We should not be tearing up our own communities. And then there’s been an argument of the other side of, we should be hitting them in the pocket. We should be focusing on the blackout days where we don’t spend money, but I feel like we should do both, and I feel like I support both. And I’ll tell you why I support both.

I support both because when you have a civil unrest like this, there are three type of people in the streets. There are the protesters, there are the rioters, and there are the looters. The protesters are there because they actually care about what is happening in the community. They want to raise their voices, and they are there strictly to protest.

You have the rioters who are angry, who are anarchists, who really just want to fuck shit up, and that’s what they’re going to do regardless. And then you have the looters. And the looters almost exclusively are just there to do that, to loot. Now, people are like, “Well, what did you gain? Well, what did you get from looting?”

I think that as long as we’re focusing on the what, we’re not focusing on the why, and that’s my issue with that. As long as we’re focusing on what they’re doing, we’re not focusing on why they’re doing it. And some people are like, “Well, those aren’t people who are legitimately angry about what’s happening. Those are people who just want to get stuff.”

Okay, well then let’s go with that. Let’s say that’s what it is. Let’s ask ourselves, “Why, in this country, in 2020, the financial gap between poor blacks and the rest of the world is at such a distance that people feel like their only hope and only opportunity to get some of the things that we flaunt and flash in front of them all the time is to walk through a broken glass window and get it? That they are so hopeless that getting that necklace, getting that TV, getting that change, getting that bed, getting that phone, whatever it is that they’re going to get, is that in that moment, when the riots happen, and if they present an opportunity of looting, that’s their only opportunity to get it?”

We need to be questioning that why. Why are people that poor? Why are people that broke? Why are people that food insecure, that clothing insecure, that they feel like their only shot, that they are shooting their shot, by walking through a broken glass window to get what they need?

And then people want to talk about, “Well, there’s plenty of people who pulled themselves up by their bootstraps and got it on their own. Why can’t they do that?” Let me explain it to you something about economics in America. And I’m so glad that, as a child, I got an opportunity to spend time at PUSH where they taught me this, is that we must never forget that economics was the reason that black people were brought to this country. We came to do the agricultural work in the South and the textile work in the North. Do you understand that? That’s what we came to do. We came to do the agricultural work in the South and the textile work in the North.

Now, if I, right now, if I right now, decided that I wanted to play Monopoly with you and for 400 rounds of playing Monopoly, I didn’t allow you to have any money. I didn’t allow you to have anything on the board. I didn’t allow for you to have anything. And then we played another 50 rounds of Monopoly, and everything that you gained and you earned while you were playing that round of Monopoly was taken from you. That was Tulsa. That was Rosewood. Those are places where we built black economic wealth, where we were self-sufficient, where we owned our stores, where we owned our property, and they burned them to the ground. So that’s 450 years.

So for 400 rounds of monopoly, you don’t get to play at all. Not only do you not get to play, you have to play on the behalf of the person that you’re playing against. You have to play and make money and earn wealth for them, and then you have to turn it over to them.

So then for 50 years, you finally get a little bit and you’re allowed to play. And every time that they don’t like the way that you’re playing, or that you’re catching up, or that you’re doing something to be self-sufficient, they burn your game. They burn your cards. They burn your Monopoly money. And then, finally, at the release and the onset of that, they allow you to play and they say, “Okay, now you catch up.”

Now, at this point, the only way you’re going to catch up in the game is if the person shares the wealth, correct? But what if every time she shared the wealth, then there’s psychological warfare against you to say, “Oh, you’re an equal opportunity hire.”

So if I played 400 rounds of monopoly with you, and I had to play and give you every dime that I made, and then for 50 years, every time that I played, if you didn’t like what I did, you got to burn it, like they did in Tulsa and like they did in Rosewood, how can you win? How can you win? You can’t win. The game is fixed. So, when they say, “Why do you burn down the community? Why do you burn down your own neighborhood?” It’s not ours! We don’t own anything! We don’t own anything.

Trevor Noah said it so beautifully last night. There’s a social contract that we all have, that if you steal, or if I steal, then the person who is the authority comes in, and they fix the situation. But the person who fixes the situation is killing us. So the social contract is broken. And if the social contract is broken, why the fuck do I give a shit about burning the fucking Football Hall of Fame, about burning a fucking Target?

You broke the contract when you killed us in the streets and didn’t give a fuck! You broke the contract when for 400 years, we played your game and built your wealth. You broke the contract when we built our wealth again, on our own, by our bootstraps, in Tulsa, and you dropped bombs on us. When we built it in Rosewood, and you came and you slaughtered us.

You broke the contract, so fuck your Target! Fuck your Hall of Fame! As far as I’m concerned, they could burn this bitch to the ground, and it still wouldn’t be enough. And they are lucky that what black people are looking for is equality and not revenge.

Image courtesy Johnny Silvercloud.

This Infomercial Defines What’s Wrong with America

Every night at 10 o’clock I have a button I click in Safari. The moment I click this button, my browser is begins loading around ten “daily deals” websites. Woot.com was the start of it all but it seems to grow by a few sites each year. Most of the deals on these sites aren’t so much great steals as they are “turns out this thing sucks and we’ve gotta liquidate it” deals. Like the time I bought “OEM Apple Ear Pod Headphones” which translated to “OMG how could these sound so horrible” headphones.

But something you get awesome legit deals, like the time I got a sweet vacuum for 80% off. Yes, I have a thing for vacuums. It’s hit or miss and after a while you get an almost religious understanding of how these sites, and their wine compatriots, work things. To me it’s worth checking in at 10 o’clock, midnight CST, to see what’s new.

Last night I clicked and saw something I just couldn’t un-see; partly because my vibrant imagination went directly where it shouldn’t. Remember “Batter Blaster!”? Think along those lines. It’s the Rollie EggMaster Vertical Grill, and I assure you, this is the real deal.

Rollie_Vertical_Cooking_Set_for__29.99___Free_Shipping_on_1Sale.com Continue reading

How I Used Social Media to Buy a Car

Wow, my first post since moving to San Diego and it only took 52 days to do it! That’s pretty horrible, I must admit. Here I thought moving to a new city would inspire me to be more active in my photography and blogging. Nope. Turns out moving and starting a new job means you have next to no free time. When you do find yourself void of responsibilities, all you really want to do is relax with your iPad and new season of Nikita on Netflix. Perhaps I’m projecting a bit… Clearly I really love that show.

For all the years I lived in San Francisco I never owned a car. It just wasn’t necessary. I walked almost everywhere in that city, and loved it. It was a healthy way to get around and it allowed me a little time to myself. When I needed to go further than a say a mile, I’d take the Muni. And despite what many of the locals might say, we have a stellar mass transit system.

My apartment had a Walk Score of 98 and a Bike Score of 95. My office had a Walk Score of 92, a Transit Score of 100 and a Bike Score of 89. Basically I had the world, just steps away. San Diego, well it isn’t quite the same here. Continue reading

Nokia is at it Again Misleading Consumers

Remember last year when Nokia released the Lumia 920 and they just wouldn’t shut up about the new PureView camera? They even put out a video to show off how good it was at optical image stabilization and wow, was it good!

Oh yeah, it was also faked. If you look closely at 27 seconds in, not only is this video being shot from a box van driving next to the girl, shot by someone else from a bicycle, as it implies, it is also being shot with a full DSLR video rig. Turns out the Nokia Lumia 920 video was actually shot with a DSLR, not with the PureView camera with optical image stabilization (OIS). Continue reading

Rethinking the Ike’s Place iPhone Application

If you were to ask ten San Franciscans for the best sandwich shop in town I wouldn’t be surprised if they all exclaimed Ike’s Place as the best sandwiches. Ike’s menu is absolutely astoundingly huge with eighty listed sandwiches and many more secret sandwiches that only the cool kids know about.

Ike_s_Place-3

I’m a bit spoiled to be honest as I live just one block away from an Ike’s. I found myself tempted to eat one of their gargantuan sandwiches just about everyday back when I worked from home. Thankfully I had the willpower to know better. Their sandwiches range in price from $10 all the way up to $20 (though the average price is $10.60) and they’re famously large with The Kryptonite sandwich clocking in at 5,700 calories!

Those same San Franciscans that would have suggested Ike’s Place would also add the caveat “But be ready to wait in a long line or order ahead.” Ike’s Place is so popular that they’ve been kicked out of their shops at least twice (?) since I moved to San Francisco. Neighbors pushed them out due to the extremely high traffic. Ordering ahead of time is absolutely essential with some wait times exceeding an hour!

Thankfully Ike’s Place has an iPhone app for ordering ahead of time (no online ordering through their website which bewilders me). It’s made by mCommerce Innovations Group and it’s pretty horrible. Look Ike Shehadeh, I LOVE your sandwiches. I just want the best for you guys which is why I wrote up this post. It’s full of criticisms, corrections and the like but it’s also full of solutions and love.

Disclaimer: I’m not a real designer, I’m not a UX/UI expert for some big dev company, I’m not a real programmer or a guru at any of this stuff. This just what a casual user, who has a touch of OCD, observed when trying to order a sandwich from his favorite sandwich shop.

Continue reading

Chill Out Y’all, it’s Just Instagram “Ruining” Itself Again

All this talk today about Instagram adding video and how that is going to ruin it reminded me of all the talk about Facebook acquiring Instagram and how that was going to ruin it. It didn’t just in case you were wondering. Also it reminds me of that Instagram added Android devices and how that was going to ruin it. Hell, remember when people remarked that Instagram changed some filters and how it was going to ruin it?

justex07 Justin Scott on Instagram

Let’s go over that again.

  • Did filter changes ruined Instagram? — No
  • Did adding Android ruin Instagram? — No
  • Did Facebook’s acquisition ruin Instagram? — No
  • Will the addition of video ruin Instagram? — No

Instagram adding video is not an Instagram decision. It isn’t about expanding features within the app answering a feature request from its 100 million users. It’s simply about Facebook’s continued battle with Twitter as the dominant social network.

Instagram-Is-Not-VineThey battled over acquiring Instagram, Twitter lost. Twitter births Vine as a response (6 seconds long video service, no filters) so Facebook’s natural response is to add video to Instagram (3 to 15 seconds long video with filters). This just a week after Facebook added hashtags, a Twitter staple, to their network. Don’t even get me started on URL shorteners, Google+ and “firehoses.” Continue reading