Thursday, March 29, 2012


I'm changing the subject.  It feels like a really good time to talk about love.  LOVE!  It's spring, the weather is picture perfect, and I am in love with LOVE!!  The Stallions are officially back!!  The countdown to Matthew Stallion's story is almost in the single digits.  Book club readers will soon see their copies in the mail. Books stores will be stocking SEDUCED BY A STALLION on their shelves.  And I am so excited that I am about to bust!  And I want my fans to be excited as well.

Matthew Stallion is a man on a mission for love.  As I've noted before, Matthew is the most conservative of the four Stallion brothers.  I hadn't thought about it until now but he may very well be a Republican.  With his Harvard law degree he's a man with high expectations and is accustomed to doing things a certain way.  He's like a 25-year-old scotch, refined and proper without being too stuffy.  If he were music he'd be old school slick like Otis Redding, Al Green, Bill Withers and Sam Cooke. 

And the man is foine! Back in the day I would have done Matthew Stallion and gone back for seconds.

If you haven't done so already, pre-order your copy HERE.  It'll be in the mailbox before you can blink good.  Then write and  let me know what you think about my guy.  And most especially, let me know if I got the love right!

Saturday, March 24, 2012


“Dear parents of Treyvon Martin, As a white mother of a white son, I do not pretend to know what you must be going through right now. I respect and honor our differences. My neighbors and I have taken these pictures because we want you to know that you are not alone. We have all wept for your son. ..We dress our children in hoodies because we want them to grow up to share the burden we feel.  We want them to know that if a child or a group of children are not safe in this world then we are all responsible.  We want them to know that today, at this moment, we are all Treyvon.  May God bless you and bring you comfort.”

The above image and open letter to the Martin family was posted on someone's Facebook page.  I reposted it there and here because it simply spoke to the core of my heart and spirit.  Much is being said about Treyvon Martin’s attire the night he was shot down while walking home from a convenience store with a bottle of tea and a bag of skittles in his hand, doing nothing but talking on the cell phone to his girlfriend. 
The all-intelligent (and I say that facetiously) Geraldo Rivera weighed in that had Treyvon not been wearing a hoodie he probably wouldn’t have gotten shot.  As a woman who lives in her hoodies during the winter months I doth protest.  A hoodie is my comfort top of choice and it should not get me shot no more than wearing my high-heeled Louboutin shoes and mid-thigh length skirt should get me raped. 
The Klu Klux Klan made hoodies their wardrobe of choice but you didn’t see many of them getting shot for no reason at all.  There has been a national outcry over the mishandling of the Treyvon Martin case and saluting the wearing of a hoodie has become the non-violent movement where people of all ethnicities are demanding that there be justice for Treyvon and fairness for all.  Even my seventy-seven year old uncle, an ultra-conservative, khaki and polo shirt kind of guy, broke out the one and only hoodie in his wardrobe to protest and make a statement.
And as my beloved uncle emphatically stated, any attempt to offer any justification for Treyvon Martin’s murder is as weak as water.  So I will continue to wear my hoodies proudly.

Monday, March 19, 2012


More times than not I am usually able to rant about something that has struck a nerve with me and then move on.  Every so often a subject becomes the exception.  My post about seventeen-year-old Treyvon Martin is now the exception.

I appreciate the many emails and comments that have come and I have great respect for everyone’s opinion, whether I have agreed with them or not.  What I value most is the dialogue that has been opened because folks don’t like to discuss subjects that can provoke rancorous opinions, and talking about issues with any kind of racial overtones can bring out some truly acrimonious viewpoints.

One anonymous reader in particular took issue with my post and the perception that the murder of Treyvon Martin was racially motived, questioning my “evidence of racism”.  This person was, and I quote, “sick do death of this hatred of white people that causes you and your ilk to play the race card at every turn, regardless of whether it applies or not,” unquote.

At first, I took issue with the writer’s comment, the assumption that I had a “hatred of white people” because I commented on my experiences as a woman of color, or my father and son’s experiences as black men.  They were, after all, our experiences and when taken in context with the experiences of other men and women of color, fit a pattern that many, not all, might define as “racist”.

But I also understood that this writer was visiting this blog for the first time and didn’t know me from Adam.  They didn’t know that I was raised in a very white, New England community; that I attended a predominately white (me being the only black child) school; that for most of my adult life I was married to a man who was considered white; gave birth to and raised children who are biracial and range from very light and bright white to richer, warmer browns, and that in the black community, I have been seen as more of an anomaly than not. 

When understanding that this individual has no idea that my own ethnicity and degree of blackness has been questioned more times than I care to count, that I have experiences with racism across a very broad color spectrum, my chagrin with this reviewer’s words was quickly squashed.  Because I know that I don’t hate white people.  In fact, my list of things that I do hate, is exceptionally short, and include no race of people whatsoever.  My personal sensitivities with race come only when trying to understand the mindsets that so readily integrate the word “hate” into their opinions and comments about such, them perceiving that is how someone else must feel.   But this person doesn’t know me just as I don’t know them so how could I be offended that they might not know that I have friends and family who are white and all that I feel for them is love and respect?

But my personal opinions aside, whether anyone views the murder of Treyvon Martin as racist or not, there can be no disputing that the vicious crime that was perpetuated against this young man should not be ignored.  I can say most assuredly that George Zimmerman’s malevolent actions deserve the world’s attention to keep other young Treyvon Martin’s from suffering the same fate.  As a parent I don’t want to bear witness to any other mother having to bury her child when such can and should be prevented.

The release of the 911 audio tapes is chilling.  Eyewitness reports and hearing Treyvon Martin begging and pleading for help as he lay on the ground and then hearing the explosive gunshot being fired that ended his life, should have raised questions and been enough probably cause to dispute George Zimmerman’s account that he was acting in self-defense.  George Zimmerman was duly advised to stay in his car and wait for police, but George opted to get out of that car and engage young Treyvon in a combative manner.  Treyvon didn’t initiate contact with George, suggesting that it was Treyvon who was acting in self-defense.  But George walks free today, a young boy’s blood on his hands, and Treyvon’s parents have to bury their baby boy, every dream and hope that they had for his future gone.

A week after the incident, ABC News uncovered questionable police conduct in the investigation of the fatal shooting, including the alleged "correction" of at least one eyewitness' account.  Florida police have stated that Zimmerman was not arrested because he had a “squeaky clean” record, which we now know is not true, the overzealous gunman charged in 2005 with battery against on officer and resisting arrest, charges that were later expunged.  As Treyvon’s mother has stated, all any of us want to see is due process and justice for Treyvon.  Allow the evidence to be presented in court and have a judge and jury determine George Zimmerman’s innocence or guilt.

There is a reason that anger over the handling of this case is intensifying and there is a reason I and others of "my ilk" are outraged.  If Treyvon had been white or red or blue, and George, black, brown or green, I can say with most certainty that I and all those of "my ilk" would be just as outraged and just as heartbroken.  But they weren’t.  Treyvon was a young black male and George was a much older, much whiter adult, and whether you think this crime was racially motivated or not, it is definitely a tragedy of magnanimous proportions, a crime that should never have happened. 

And whether you agree with my opinions or not, there is no disputing that not one of us, no matter what our views, who can bring Treyvon Martin back to his beloved mother’s empty arms. 

My prayers go out to Treyvon’s family and friends.

Thursday, March 15, 2012


Seventeen-year old Treyvon Martin was walking back from a convenience store to his father's home, when he was allegedly accosted and shot dead by a community watch captain.  Heading home put him in a “gated” community where he clearly wasn’t welcomed.  Treyvon was black and his presence in that “gated” community was a source of consternation for the man who shot him dead as evidenced by the 911 telephone call that was made just minutes prior to the deadly shooting.

The media reports that George Zimmerman, a white man, called for police assistance, reporting that Treyvon was “a suspicious person".  Despite being advised by the 911 dispatcher to not follow the young man and to wait for police, Zimmerman felt that he had the authority to approach and confront Treyvon instead.  That confrontation has now left a family to bury a child who once had a bright and promising future.

The central Florida police have yet to levy any charges against Zimmerman and it is unlikely that this man will face any consequences for his actions.  Treyvon was, after all, just another young black male viewed as a threat.

As a little girl I learned early how to behave and not behave when accosted by police or persons of authority who questioned my presence where they believed I had no business being.  I learned from watching my father and my godfather, black men who were readily stopped and  questioned about their activities and presence in the bright white community where they owned real estate, paid taxes, sat on community boards and participated in numerous neighborhood activities.  Despite the green of their wallets and their very active presence in community affairs, they were still black men viewed as a threat to somebody.

The same lessons I learned I passed on to my boys, reminding them every time they left our home that not everyone knew them, knew our family, or even cared that there was nothing malicious in their intent to simply go about their daily activities.  I reiterated the black parent's mantra over and over again, that if they were ever waylaid by the authorities that they were never to be disrespectful, never to mouth off, to always keep their hands where they could readily be seen, and to remember that even if they were not at fault and on their very best behavior, that not everyone had their best interest at heart.

Treyvon was allegedly shot because the bag of skittles and bottle of Snapple in his hands and pockets looked like weapons and were a threat to his aggressor.  I have no doubt that when this young man was unnecessarily detained by a man who had already deemed him suspect, he himself felt threatened.  I know that my father and my godfather felt threatened by law enforcement more times than not.

Despite my frequent admonishments to my baby boy to be mindful when he was out and about he still had to learn his lesson the hard way.  His first encounter with law enforcement came when he was seventeen, lean and lanky much like Treyvon; features still more boy than man.  Sonshine and his two best friends were playing basketball in the rear lot of a sports center within walking distance of our home.  It was night and the three boys were shooting hoops beneath a single light in the parking lot, something the previous property owners had readily allowed them to do without complaint.  With new owners came new rules and the boys were visited by local police who questioned them first and told them to move on home, that they were no longer welcome there during the late night hours. 

As they turned to leave, friend number one, blond and blue-eyed, had something rude and sarcastic to say.  Sonshine, thinking that he too could mouth off and wanting to defuse the seriousness of the moment with a cheeky comment, interjected with, “What’s the worst thing we can do…steal the pool water?”  Before he could blink John Law had Sonshine jacked against the side of the patrol car, his manner threatening as he unholstered his weapon, clearly not finding anything funny about my child’s remarks.  In that moment my son was clearly reminded that he was a black male in a world that saw no value in his presence and would sooner see him dead before they would see him President of the United States.  The incident shook the boy to his core, him discovering that he would always be singled out from his white friends because as a black male he’d already been labeled a threat, even when he wasn’t.  It is only for the grace of God that the incident went no further, that my baby boy did not become another statistic, just another black mother’s son cut down in his prime for what someone feared he would do, and not for something he had actually done.

Treyvon’s mother now has to bury her baby and my heart breaks for her and their family.  Sadly, George Zimmerman couldn’t see past his own fear, the man wanting to find trouble where there truly was none.  George Zimmerman's feeling threatened, by a kid allegedly minding his own business, has been the justification for him needing to defend himself with a 9mm semi-automatic against a boy with a bag of candy.  And as the mother of amazing and accomplished black men, I find that absolutely appalling.

Monday, March 12, 2012


It’s early Monday morning and I have been up most of the night writing.  This is not necessarily a bad thing. 
My astrological forecast for today says that there are planets aligning up for the first time in some twelve years and that my friendships and relationships will benefit from the experience.  There was also something about powerful alliances converging and communication being the glue that will hold everything together.  It read better than I was actually feeling for a Monday that will have me starting my day with very little sleep.
Typically I ignore my horoscopes until they say something I like, but since the past month has forced me into a very reflective, very introspective mood, I was hoping the stars might help me put all things Deborah into perspective.  Lately, I’ve been so consumed with all things everybody else, I’d lost focus on my wants and my needs.
And because I’ve lost focus I can feel a storm brewing and I anticipate that the next few weeks will be life altering.  Trusting those feelings I am motivated to prepare myself accordingly.  I don’t know what’s coming down the pike but I’m determined that it will not sweep me off my feet or knock me off balance without one hell of a fight.  I’m determined to remain upright and standing with not an ounce of regret. 
Lost in my writing and reflecting on the experiences that were fueling my words, I was reminded of a quote by an author I am unable to acknowledge.  This unknown author wrote, “In the end we will only regret the chances we didn't take, the relationships we were scared to have and the decisions we waited too long to make.  There comes a time in your life when you will realize who matters, who doesn't, who never did, and who always will. So don't worry about the people from your past, there's a reason they didn't make it to your future.”
If my horoscope is right, there will be some who won’t make it to my future, but more importantly, there will be those who will.  And knowing this, I am moved to write. 

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Happy Birth Day!!

My maternal grandmother once told me that with death there comes life; that for a soul to come into this world, one must pass out of it.  I have always marveled at the cycle, the truth of it unnerving on one hand and comforting on the other.
After enduring so much loss this past month, it was a joy to witness a new life entering the world.  I was privileged to be with family last night as we welcomed a new baby into the fold, her first cries the sweetest music to my ears.
She’s a beautiful baby.  She came into this world surrounded by an abundance of love.  I can only begin to imagine the bright future that lies ahead for her, a future that has already blessed her with adoring parents and the support of a large, extended family.
She is a little girl who will want for nothing.  She’s our little princess and the brightest joy for us all. 
Happy Birth Day, Joanna Alaina!!  Welcome to your life journey!