Flippant Remarks about the “mass exodus of African American male tourists to Brazil”


 Daniela From Rio de Janeiro(Niterói)
My introduction to this “mass exodus” comes from “African American Male Tourists’ Exodus to Brazil: Should We Care?” at blackprof.com. This leads to an Essence article by William Jelani Cobb, “My (Uncensored) Brazil Travel Diary.” Cobb writes, seething with anticipation:

The next woman to run the big-strong-handsome line on me is 5 feet10 inches tall with flawless skin and so fine I can’t stop staring. I’m in a club that works like a supermarket. A series of women dance onstage and you essentially pick the one you like. One minute I’m drinking with Chris, the bartender, and watching her, the next she’s off the stage, walking over and introducing herself. She says she saw me from onstage. The thing is, she doesn’t speak much English, so her introduction involves kissing me on each cheek and grabbing my hand.

Intoxicating? Absolutely.

I’m starting to think it’s not just sex that lures brothers here. It’s not just about how many women they sleep with or how responsive or skilled the women are. It’s also about being in a place where they’re surrounded by limitless sexual options. I’m told that men routinely pick up two or three women a night, which the rate of exchange makes affordable. Ain’t no brother in the States rolling to his crib with three women unless Pharrell produced the first single on his album or he just scored 41 points against the Lakers. Which is to say, this is not about my being big or strong, but about the dollar being big and strong. Now whether the brothers want to admit that is another thing entirely.

William Jelani Cobb then goes on to remind us that:

I just saw a group of 10-to-12-year-old girls on the strip. They’re glue addicts. They have sex with tourists. They don’t require condoms. There’s real poverty here, and shit ain’t always pretty.


ciclica
It takes the typical Roman dominator ignorance to pretend you don’t see this poverty and concentrate on the upscale commercial companions (unless you are into straight-up Roman domination). And I have to ask myself, ‘Bryan can you do this?’ Is it possible for me to, say, rent an apartment (with female companion) for a week, enjoy sensuality and leave?

According to “Sex, Brazil and the Brothers” by Richard Prince we must remember the ‘official’ facts:

The State Department has Brazil on its watch list for human trafficking. The department said in its 2006 trafficking report: “Brazil is a source and destination country for women and children trafficked for the purpose of sexual exploitation, and for men trafficked for forced labor. Women and girls are trafficked for sexual exploitation within Brazil and to destinations in South America, the Caribbean, Western Europe, Japan, the U.S., and the Middle East.”

“Approximately 70,000 Brazilians, mostly women, are engaged in prostitution in foreign countries; some are trafficking victims. Child sex tourism is a problem within the country, particularly in the resort areas and coastal cities of Brazil’s northeast.” The department put Brazil in its “Tier 2” category, meaning the country is not fully complying with minimum standards for fighting trafficking.


Bahia - carnaval em Brotas
One thing that is certain about me is that even my ego, I, do not enjoy engaging in sex while other people (apart from my, one, female sex partner) know that my intercourse is taking place. Gang-related sex, where a group of males share a single partner (at the same time or across days, weeks or months) was never my thing—because I come from the nerd camp, not the jock/soldier camp. These comments do not suggest my “moral” superiority over the jocks and soldiers. I’m just telling you what happened and how my thang is set up because of what happened.

What would be very, very interesting to me is to read a report from a tall, lean, stunning Brazilian woman with strong African features who is a working professional (in a field unrelated to the oldest working profession) trying to live her life in such a tourist culture. Does she have stories about being mistaken for a prostitute? (When my father went on vacation in the Bahamas in the 1980s he was mistaken for a gigolo by female sex tourists.) Does she prefer Black men (in spite of her professional education) because she knows we make “strong love”? Does she have a relative that chose a life of sex working and can make startling comparisons and contrasts?

Careful Remarks about “Her Banana” by Mari Inukai

Mari Inukai, Her BananaNo other visual artist in my history of seeing has inspired me to write about them based on a single photograph—not the actual artifact but a photograph of it. My obscure personal history is not impressive across a gulf of life in the big city, so Mari Inukai should be understandably nonplussed. Her lack of knowledge of me does not stop me. Heck, your lack of knowledge of me does not stop me. This work deserves my attention. Throw my two cents on the pile. It adds up.

Juxtapoz.com posted a photograph of the Mari Inukai painting “Her Banana” to document a four-woman show, with Amy Sol, Audrey Kawasaki, and Stella Im Hultberg, at Compound Gallery in Portland, Oregon. This painting, by the way, is now sold. Now, I’m no Sister Wendy, but when I see “Her Banana” my first reaction is that this is an expression of personal identity. My assertion is that the banana represents to East Asian Americans what the Oreo cookie means to African Americans. I’ve just sent an email to Mari Inukai to see how this assertion works out… My being wrong about this assertion means that you should not read the rest of this article.

The name of the Compound Gallery show is “Four Dreams” and the lavish, sensual dream vision of Mari Inukai delivers. We see a young girl mounted on a huge phallic banana equipped with kinky leggings and flight goggles with matching choker.

According to North American modern wisdom, the symbol of the banana for Asian Americans means white on the inside and yellow on the outside. (The “opposite” of this symbol is the egg, white on the outside and yellow on the inside.) Mari Inukai takes command of the banana and changes the color—she redefines the meaning of this slur with far more charm and subtlety than my hip hop kids and the n-word. “Her banana” is not yellow (according to her Blog, it is pink)—this immediately makes me assume that the inside of the banana must be a different color as well.

nandomokurikaesuThe whole concept of this political meaning of the banana is of Western “thought.” The presence of the campy and charmingly anachronistic flight goggles (and the stockings/leggings) reminds me of the hokey quality of this Western “thought.” The day-dreaming expression on the face of young woman decked out in her costume reinforces the cute goofy regard we should have for these Western things. The image of this young woman is a recurring character—possibly representing Mari Inukai’s daughter, Sena, (or the “spirit” of her generation). My ignorant guess is that this use of recurring characters is of the influence anime character design has on young artists all over the world. Mari Inukai’s painterly and sketch-mark ways are appealing to me and differs from others influenced by anime who are bound by antiseptic spot colors in two cartoon dimensions.

According to the biography of Mari Inukai, she was born in Nagoya, Japan and did not appear in the United States until 1995. So the assumption here is that her geographic-time distance from North American suburban culture makes it ‘easy’ for her to treat the banana in such a dreamy way. This does not imply that “Her Banana” is a self-portrait. It does imply that the painter is capable of being playful with a symbol of an experience that many native-born Asian Americans may find quite painful. My sympathies are for Mari Inukai (according to my interpretation of her intent). To me, she represents the Asian future—these instruments of the West are designed to be superficial tools and should be played with as such. This comes from my bias because of my “ghetto” or ethnic background into high education. My formative years were with large groups of people with strong African features—so being the banana or the Oreo, to me, takes quite a bit of work… This is a far cry from the one—or the handful—of colored young people surviving (and some proudly thriving) in a sea of white suburban homogeneity.

For those Negroes who also play with these Western themes, seeking to “redefine” them, your leader in this ‘field’ (actually it’s the house) is Kara Walker. My preference is for Mari Inukai, her subtle, distant style of playing. Kara Walker’s intimacy, quiet ways and excellent arts training nurture a sick soul at the core (a core that is religiously bound to Western philosophies)—and more of this “negative” talk we all should know is in my poem for my interpretation of Kara Walker’s work.

Closing Capital One: “A lost customer is difficult to replace.”


Buy this DVD at Amazon.com!
Is my Capital One account closed? It has been so long since I have closed a credit card account that times have changed. My memory of this is mixed with emotional pain so its very fuzzy but I am almost certain that there was a time in credit card history when an account was closed it was closed almost instantly. The account closed so fast that any charges bounced when you tried to make any new purchases.

Well, this is how it works according to several telephone representatives at Capital One. Your account closes 30 days after you request to close the account unless charges appear on the account. When charges ‘appear’ the policy gets confusing to me. What’s clear to me is that it took over 60 days to close my Capital One account—and I am still not completely certain that it is closed until I see it on a credit report. This was because Dell took too long to ship Windows Vista disks for which we paid 10 bucks with our credit cards. Dell took too long to ship the disks because Microsoft took too long to get Vista on the market. But I’m not going to blame Microsoft for Capital One’s policy. The scenario should have gone like this: Dell never sends me Windows Vista because my credit card account is closed. I am certain that I requested my account be closed before Dell charged me and shipped. But that 30-day window left me open for charges to ‘appear.’

Capital One is not evil. Capital One is very American. You see they did me “a favor” about fifteen years ago when I was subsistence living in Inglewood, California (behind my grandmother’s garage). They used the database smarts of their IT department—led by folks like Gregor Bailar—to make me a sincerely grateful “sub-prime” customer with a secured credit card. Over a decade, that $500 secured card turned into a $6000 unsecured thing—and, when I tried to close the account recently, I felt like I was buying my freedom and leaving the plantation. Like any plantation owner Capital One seemed hurt. Remember that Capital One has a lot of Louisiana heritage. They showed me “kindness” when I was young and sub-prime—and this is how I treat them? My relationship with Capital One characterizes most of the professional relationships I have had in my life so far. The recurring pattern with me is that I get penalized for improving. My improvement is seen more of a threat than a manifestation to welcome and celebrate.

Every American laborer north and south should know that the “tradition” here is that when you do well few need to talk to you—when you screw up that’s when too many people want to talk to you. My credit worthiness means little to Capital One’s profits. Listen to the economics professors in Maxed Out just in case you have trouble with my comments.

Exd 22:25 If thou lend money to [any of] my people [that is] poor by thee, thou shalt not be to him as an usurer, neither shalt thou lay upon him usury.

news from kintespace.com ::: Friday, June 22, 2007

Contents:

  • ::: Home Box Office, Inc.: def poetry six rasx() mix
  • ::: Cornel West: Socratic and Prophetic Approaches to Democracy
  • ::: Ezrah Aharone: Arms, Africa, and America’s Inmate Industry

::: Home Box Office, Inc.: def poetry six rasx() mix

::: ::: http://kintespace.com/p_defpoetryjam0.html

Peoples, peoples, peoples… People all over the world came to YouTube.com and celebrated HBO’s Def Poetry Jam. In spite of my “confused” view of the Def Poetry Jam legacy rambling in a recent Blog post, the work of Russell Simmons, through the auspices of HBO is celebrated here. Using YouTube.com to ‘celebrate’ property licensed (or owned out right) by Home Box Office, Inc. may deserve punishment and censure, but, in the mean time, enjoy!

This kinté space mash up brings you video of George Clinton, Black Ice, Saul Williams, Sonia Sanchez, Ursula Rucker and the great Mutabaruka! When you force me to make a decision right this very second, then let me be pleased to finally get some work by Mutabaruka here in the kinté space! His online presence is far more extensive than what even Home Box Office provides for its poetry so it is a privilege to contribute to Mutabaruka soul in this digitized form.

So you are now invited to participate in the YouTube.com “controversy” here in the kinté space—the clock is ticking and lawyers may be coming… And just in case there is concern about my concern for the economic future of the likes of HBO, it is my pleasure to remind you that my hard work aired on HBO in a show called Beah: a Black Woman Speaks—the nerdy (historical) details are on my company site…

::: Cornel West: Socratic and Prophetic Approaches to Democracy

::: ::: http://kintespace.com/p_cornel_west0.html

On September 18, 2004, at Barnsdall Art Park, an event sponsored by Skylight Books featured Dr. Cornel West in the most refined, rhythmic and elegant display of post-modern, progressive Negritude I have ever heard. His appeal is held in a container labeled “Socratic and Prophetic Approaches to Democracy.” He is careful to repeat that the Socratic approach is a “Greek invention” and the Prophetic approach is a “Jewish invention”—at the end of the speech, struggling for time, he adds the Black invention: the “tragic, comic hope” of the Blues. My use of the word “Negritude” therefore means that Cornel West demonstrates—without doubt—that he is coming from a Negro perspective.

The Negro perspective is not “evil” or “stupid.” When you judge by the social life and economic life Cornel West leads, then clearly this lifestyle is materially superior. However, as Cornel syncopates in his speech, there is Africa in the “backdrop.” The Negro perspective (that is respected here in the kinté space by providing Cornel West’s speech in full) deliberately stops short and stays ‘safely’ in America with its impressive Black inventions—but the depths of this Blackness stays forever “mysterious” and in the “backdrop”—or is even mistaken for “tragic hope”—when the intellectual power of Africa is ignored. Not one African scientist, novelist, playwright, poet, agriculturalist, stonemason or bricklayer—ancient or modern—is mentioned in this one-hour-plus sermon and discussion! And I am more than certain that Cornel West knows the Christian price he would have to pay to recognize Africa’s relationship to Greek and Jewish “inventions.” When you literally have the choice of partying with some of the finest (and smartest) women in the “real” world or honoring your oldest ancestors, most of us guys will choose the ladies and the perils of modern love. That’s just keeping it real—in this “Constantinianreality. It’s not really work; it’s just the power to charm…

And, yes, let us ‘play fair’ and stay in America and look for indigenous contributions to democracy: again Cornel West gave more time to gender-bending politics and no time to the indigenous people of the Americas and their democratic systems. Does Cornel West find the Iroquois Confederacy out of style with the current fashion trends? Can’t he at least mention for a few rapid-fire seconds the “new research” that supposedly undermines this “Red Indian” theory of non-white democracy? Wasn’t there at least one cute Iroquois woman in the audience? And, yes again: let us bend over backwards to fit in the Cornel West disco and dance with Socrates. So now let us ask, ‘Why was Socrates killed by his own people?’ Cornel West could have explored that one for at least a few sentences—or is his obligation to be fair, inclusive, liberal and balanced so strong that he can’t even go there? Is not this a “truncated dialog” or are the words you are reading now coming from a “sad” place of “dangerous nationalism” and deifying certain “slices of humanity”?

My words come from a place so old that the concept of nation and the concept of family are one and the same. My words come from a place so old that the very idea of “slicing” humanity sounds like science fiction from a post-apocalyptic world of unimaginable violence and egocentric neurosis.

::: Ezrah Aharone: Arms, Africa, and America’s Inmate Industry

::: ::: http://kintespace.com/kp_aharone3.html

What do Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms have in common? Well, to start with, they have a clear connection to crime and violence, which is why the U.S. government ATF bureau exists. Beyond that, all three were primary commodities of the Triangular Trade for slaves. In addition, all three have since remained chief factors that inordinately affect the health and lives of Black people across the globe.

Ezrah
Aharone is a Scholar of Sovereign Studies and the author of Pawned Sovereignty: Sharpened Black Perspectives on Americanization, Africa, War and Reparationshttp://www.1stbooks.com/bookview/18126. He can be reached at EzrahAharone@juno.com.

Today’s .NET Links

“How to run PowerShell scripts from C#”

The Code Project’s “How to run PowerShell scripts from C#” by Jean-Paul Mikkers: “This article contains a bare-bones sample on how to add powershell scripting to your C# programs.”

“Everything in Active Directory via C#”

The Code Project’s “Howto: (Almost) Everything In Active Directory via C#”: “This article attempts to tie together the most commonly used elements involved in Active Directory Management in the simplest, most clean manner possible.”


Buy this book at Amazon.com!
“The most complete C# Webbrowser wrapper control”

The Code Project’s “The most complete C# Webbrowser wrapper control”: “A C# (.NET 2.0) control which creates, hosts, and offers advanced customization such as dragdrop, file downloads, HTTP/S header viewing, and much more.”

“Syntax of the Res: Protocol”

Yet, again, the temptation to resort to the res: protocol came and went. This temptation is unnecessary in the world of WPF.

“Writing a raw web service using an HttpHandler”

Mike Hadlow: “It’s pretty straightforward to write a web service using an HttpHandler to grab the raw SOAP envelope. The IHttpHandler interface is the core endpoint interface for anything that handles a web request in .net.”

Windows Environment Variables Manager

Vladislav Setchin at CodeProject.com: “Environment Variables Manager (EnvMan) is a tool written in C# .Net intended to handle the administration of Windows Shell Environment Variables. It is designed to replace Control Panel System Environment Manager and easily manage long variable values.”

“XML Options in Microsoft SQL Server 2005”

This one needs to be printed out and filed for reference.

“Application Management Overview”

This one (for Windows Presentation Foundation) needs to be printed out and filed for reference.

Styling and Templating in Windows Presentation Foundation

This one needs to be printed out and filed for reference. This issue is important to me because OverridesDefaultStyle, Setter Property="Template" and ContentPresenter were all needed to make an image button with a transparent background.

“New “Orcas” Language Feature: Anonymous Types”

From Scott Guthrie: “Anonymous types are a convenient language feature of C# and VB that enable developers to concisely define inline CLR types within code, without having to explicitly define a formal class declaration of the type.”

IIS 6.0 Needs

The following IIS 6.0 links are removed from my del.icio.us account and stored here for a possible future need (IIS7 should make this moot!): “Configuring the .NET Framework 2.0 Using IIS 6.0,” “David Wang : HOWTO: Enumerate IIS website configuration (VBScript using ADSI)” and “TechNet: Security Guidance for IIS.”

Silverlight Developer Resource-a-rama

Back in May of 2007, Robert Burke showed interest in Silverlight: “I’ve been absorbing Silverlight from the perspective of a developer who wants to use .NET code to build Silverlight applications.”