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Black Women

So Sad: Mother Beats Son to Death for Wetting Himself – She’s Devastated

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, BlackLikeMoi.com A mother in Houston is facing years in prison for beating her four-year old son until he was dead.  The boy wet himself in the car, and his mother was so angry that she beat him until he stopped breathing. Vastie Coleman, a 27-year old woman, is accused of beating her son Kyron Barnes with a cord in the bathtub.   She beat him 20 times, after which, he died. “I did it, I beat him, it’s all my fault and I don’t care what happens to me,” Coleman allegedly told EMS workers who arrived at her house. Coleman beat her son with a cord because “the belt was broken because mom kept whipping the kids so hard it broke into pieces,” said one of her other kids. “I figured there’d be a sign or two—there was nothing, it was always quiet,” said a neighbor, Robin Dawson. “I never heard them kids getting a whooping. I got a couple kids myself. They be out there talking to them and I sent my kids out there. They be all eating popsicles together. They popped fire crackers on the Fourth of July.” The other two children, both girls, are going to be sent to foster care until a judge decides where they are going to live.  Agonizing over what she did to her son, the boy's mother is on suicide watch after the incident. From everything I am reading here, this woman is clearly distraught from the implications of her horrible mistake.  She doesn’t sound like a terrible mother or a wretched human being.  Instead, she sounds like a mother who allowed anger to enter into her method of punishing her child.  Any of us who grew up getting “whoopings” knows that anger only makes the situation more dangerous. This incident also reopens the question about corporal punishment.  My mother told me that the most important thing in the world for her was that her children grew up with discipline.  If that meant that she was going to get arrested for spanking me when necessary, then so be it.  At the same time, there are those who can rightly argue that there are other ways to discipline your child in an equally effective manner without using a belt or any other weapon to make your point.  At the very least, as I said in a conversation with Dr. Drew on the topic, you want to ensure that your child understands that love is a critical component of any method of discipline that you use. This case is not a blanket indictment against parents who choose to spank their kids.  It’s a warning that when discipline becomes about anger or ego, someone can be hurt or killed.  Call me crazy, but I truly believe that this mother loved her son and she received a death sentence the minute he stopped breathing.  So, this is a horribly sad situation for everyone. Dr. Boyce Watkins is a Finance Professor at Syracuse University and founder of YourBlackWorld.com . To have Dr. Boyce commentary delivered to your email, please click here . The post Tragic: Mother Beats Her 4-Year Old Son To Death Because He Wet Himself appeared first on Black Like Moi . Read More »

80-Year Old Detroit Woman is a Hero for Raising the Kids that Nobody Wanted

If you’re looking for the kind of hero that holds a community together, you need to look no further than 80-year old Ruby Dunson.  Ms. Dunson is being held up by the city of Detroit for spending the last 42 years taking care of children that no one else wanted.  According to the Detroit Free Press, Ms. Dunson started her career of watching kids by babysitting for a neighbor. "She said, 'Will you keep her for me? I want to go to a concert.' And she never came back," said Dunson.  Ms. Dunson went on to raise the girl into adulthood. This was just the first child that she raised and loved as if it were her own. Ms. Dunson has raised 10 children in her home, which is on Detroit’s West Side.   Eight of those kids were abandoned at birth or abused. Personally, she's my hero," said Theresa Dunson, a child that Dunson brought home as a two pound abandoned newborn. "She saved me from -- I don't know -- a life of the unknown." Dunson got attention in the media after it was revealed that she lives in the childhood home of US Attorney Barbara McQuade. "She is an inspiration," McQuade said. "She is a quiet hero who saved children and guided them to become highly productive citizens." Dunson said that raising the kids was her job and that had no choice but to do the right thing. "I believe God was testing me," she said. "He put those kids at my door and said, 'What are you gonna do?' " The post A Superhero Among Us: 80-Year Old Woman Raises The Kids that Nobody Wants appeared first on Black Like Moi . Read More »

Tiki Barber Gets the Wife He Actually Wanted

Former New York Giants football star Tiki Barber has married Traci Lynn Johnson, the former intern that he met while working at NBC.  Barber made headlines when he dumped his pregnant wife to be with Johnson.  The move gave Barber such horrible PR that he ended up getting fired from The Today Show as a result. The 24-year old Johnson exchanged vows with the 38-year old Barber in a ceremony at the city Marriage Bureau in lower Manhattan. “Many thanks to the NYC Clerk’s office, especially James Mitchell who married me to my love Traci Lynn Johnson!” Barbar tweeted. “Excited for the next chapters . . .” At the time of their affair, Johnson was working as an intern with NBC sports.  The two didn’t keep their relationship a secret, showing up in public together, much to the angst of the public and NBC executives.  This led to Barber being dumped by the network, with his sweetheart being shown the door as well. Barber went through a down period afterward, not being able to find work with high heavily damaged public image.  He tried to return to the NFL in order to make money, but there were no takers on a running back in his late 30s. Barber’s wife of 11-years, Ginny, filed for divorce.  She is now the proud mother of twin girls.  Ginny allegedly banned Barber from coming into the delivery room when the babies were born, so he had to wait outside. Tiki joined the NFL as a second round draft pick back in 1997.  He has a twin brother, Ronde Barber, who plays for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.   Tiki was heavily criticized by teammates for speaking out against his coach and his quarterback, questioning the abilities of both in public.  So, there was no interest from the Giants in bringing Barber back when he went broke after retirement. Karma’s a bitch.     Read More »

Lt. Governor Carroll: Actually You DO Look Like a Lesbian

Writing for TheGrio.com, Nadine Smith talks about the peculiar case of Florida Lieutenant governor, Jennifer Carroll.  Carroll is caught in a controversy after one of her former staffers claims that she caught the Republican in a “compromising position” with another woman in her office.  Carletha Cole made the allegations after she herself had been arrested for illegally taping conversations and giving them to the media.  Cole has no criminal record and she passed a lie detector test, making her story tough to fight against. But Carroll didn’t rise to the top of Florida politics by not being a fighter.   She defiantly spoke against the allegations , stating that black women who look like her don’t get caught up in lesbian scandals. Carroll’s remarks led to Smith taking offense to her remarks about women like her not looking like lesbians. There is no way for  Carroll’s story to have a good ending . Either her accuser is using homophobia as a political weapon, or the lieutenant governor is abusing her power with a subordinate, or she is living a huge, sad and complicated lie. I was content to steer clear of commenting, but then the Lt. governor went on TV and spewed her rebuttal:  “Black women who look like me don’t engage in relationships like that.” I’m not sure what kind of extensive research she has done to come to that conclusion about black lesbians but perhaps she’ll publish her findings. Smith is concerned that Carroll would engage in gay bashing to protect herself from a political and personal mess of her own making.  She is a married mother who rose to the top of the ranks of the GOP.  The last thing she would need is for her constituents to find out that she is yet another hypocritical Republican. Smith goes on to describe the manner by which comments like those of Carroll can be very dangerous.  She says that they render black lesbians invisible to society.  The health and well-being of black lesbians can get ignored when women like Carroll, who could likely be part of that group, engage in stereotyping in order to protect herself…from herself. We live in a culture that continues to ignore the lives, needs and health of black lesbians by rendering us invisible. Carroll reinforces that invisibility by perpetuating the misconception that all lesbian and same-gender loving women look and act the same, virtually erasing the diverse array of Black lesbians.  And if lesbians look a certain way, Lt. Gov. Carroll, tell us, what do straight black women look like? In putting a fence around what lesbians are supposed to “look like” she corrals acceptable black heterosexual womens’ appearance as well. To read more of Nadine Smith’s essay, please click here.   Read More »

Dr. Boyce: Why Do Men Cheat? A New Movie that Landed in my Facebook Inbox

by Dr. Boyce Watkins I received a preview for the new film, “Why Do Men Cheat” in my Facebook account today .  I thought the title was interesting, since it asks one of those questions that nearly every woman in America has asked 10,000 girlfriends over the years.  I enjoyed the preview, and I am always happy to support a project being done in the city of Detroit, one of the most creative and talented (yet troubled) places in America.  The dating market in Detroit has become one where too many people have been taught to make war where there should be love, and male/female interactions are unlike anywhere else in the United States. With that being said, I’d be remiss not to mention this new film without giving my top five thoughts on why men cheat.   Again, I am not a relationship guru, but if Steve Harvey can give relationship advice then so can I.   Here it goes: 1) If you want to understand why men cheat, be prepared to hear the truth.  Accept the fact that men and women are biologically different, and there are simply certain things that men and women will never tell each other.  Women usually lie about how many men they’ve been with, and men lie about how many women they are thinking about right now.  But if you open the door for truth, you can get it, just make sure you can handle what you see. 2) Human beings are mammals. Mammals have mating patterns, whether they are deer in the woods or human beings in a corporate office.  If you want to figure out what lies in the hearts of man, just watch bears in the woods on the Discovery Channel.  Bears do what they do without worrying about what society thinks, what their pastor is going to say or what is socially acceptable.  They simply do what comes naturally.  Most human beings do all the same stuff and have all the same impulses, we just lie to one another about what we’re thinking. 3) Women who want to understand what men want and think should ask close male friends their thoughts, so they can get an honest assessment.  Your boyfriend does not have the proper incentives to tell you everything he might want.  But a male friend or a brother can give you the information you need.  You can also learn a lot from a book.  I learned a great deal about women by reading the book, “What Women Want Men to Know,” by psychologist Barbara D’Angelis.  What I read both traumatized and enlightened me, for I learned there that men and women really are from different planets.  As you go down the rabbit hole of understanding, be prepared to accept the truth and stop thinking that life is a fairytale. 4) Younger men are more prone to cheating than older men, mainly because higher testosterone levels lead to sex drives that are through the roof.  Unfortunately, for some men (say, an alpha male like Kobe Bryant), even the most beautiful woman in the world (i.e. his wife Vanessa) may not be enough to keep him entirely focused (hence the whole nasty situation with the girl in Colorado back in 2004 after everyone warned Kobe not to get married so young).  What’s really odd is that even though he’s cheated on Vanessa incessantly, Kobe believes in his heart that he loves her.  That’s largely because for many men, their hearts and their sex organs work in different departments and have very little to do with one another.  He shows his love for Vanessa by paying her bills, taking her with him in public and raising kids with her.  These are the sacrifices that men make when they love a woman; his penis manages about 2% of his life. 5) Accept the fact that you can’t control everything in your relationship.  Going through someone’s phone, email account or text messages only makes you nuts.  If you think your partner is cheating and you can’t handle it, then just leave.  What I did learn a long time, ago, however, is that you gain very little comfort by spying on every aspect of another person’s life.  The truth is that there are always going to be things that they do and think that you’ll never know anything about.  The best assessment you can make is whether or not your instincts tell you that the person loves you and makes you their top priority.  If someone loves you, you’ve got something valuable.  How you deal with the cheating is up to you, but the reality is that most couples that have been together in those 50 years marriages you might fantasize about have typically overcome some form of infidelity. Once again, life is not a fairytale.  Lasting relationships can be ugly and difficult work. The video trailer is below: Dr. Boyce Watkins is a Finance Professor at Syracuse University and founder of YourBlackWorld.com . To have Dr. Boyce commentary delivered to your email, please click here . Read More »

Dr. Boyce & Nomalanga: Are You Attracting Poison in Your Relationships?

In this video, Dr. Boyce Watkins and Nomalanga Mhauli-Moses speak about the need for healthy relationships in our lives.  The two talk about the concern within the black community that the definition of normalcy has evolved to the point where African American children are not quite sure what a normal relationship even looks like.  The conversation goes into the value of remembering that you receive what you reflect and that developing your own dignity is one of the critical keys to getting what you want out of love and life. Nomalanga Mhauli Moses is the reigning Mrs. Botswana and founder of the website SuccessfulBlackWoman.com.  She gives advice and commentary to women on issues that relate to marriage, family and career.   Dr. Boyce Watkins is a Professor at Syracuse University and founder of The Your Black World Coalition.  He is an advocate for intellectual growth within the black community and personal development as a path to community and individual leadership. The video is below: Read More »

Beyonce Goes to Work for the Obamas

“If Beyonce loves them, then so do I.”  This is the slogan that the Obamas are relying on, as they use the star power of Beyonce and others to get support from the African American community. Obama is receiving support from Beyoncé , who recently appeared in a campaign ad for the president. Beyoncé  is featured along side with other black celebrities who have pooled together their support in an effort to get the president reelected. The video features Beyonce praising the first lady, Michelle Obama, who Beyoncé  believes is a role model to all women. Beyoncé  posted a note that she had written about the first lady on her new website Beyonce.com. The singer wrote that, “Michelle is the ultimate example of a truly strong african american woman… Michelle thank you for every single things that u do for us – I am proud to have my daughter grow up in a world where she has people like you to look up to.” In the campaign ad, Beyonce says that Michelle Obama encourages her to support the veterans and live a healthy lifestyle. Being an amazing black leader while remaining humble leaves the “Girls Run the World”  singer in awe of the first lady and her impact on the world. Beyoncé’s ad does not follow in the line of negative ads that both the Obama and Romney campaigns have been throwing around recently. The Romney campaign just tried to use the images of several television personalities to boost support for his campaign. Unfortunately that backfired when the campaign used celebrity images and clips from shows without their permission, aggravating the figures themselves. Beyoncé’s ad is a tasteful and short video that supports the strongest part of the Obama campaign – first lady Michelle Obama. Although people will take the time to question the president and his various roles, the public has shown great support of Michelle. Her strength as a mother and as a humanitarian has not only inspired Beyoncé , but as the singer says, the first lady inspires the world. This support from Beyoncé  comes at a great time. As the Romney campaign deals with the heat of their celebrity campaign and their use of negative ads, the Obama campaign picks up momentum using such widely-beloved celebrities like Beyoncé .  The Beyonce message also times precisely with the release of a new film, “The Obama Effect,” which stars Charles Dutton and Katt Williams.  The use of celebrities and emotional imagery works well for the Obamas, especially on the African American community.  Some critics, however, have claimed that the focus on flash over substance has led to millions of African Americans ignoring policy and focusing on how much they like the president. No matter how you feel about it, the strategy appears to be working.  Obama is in a tight race and Romney is going to outspend him, but there are many indicators that he has a strong chance to be a two-term president. Read More »

15-Year Old Girl Allegedly Murdered Her Friend with an Afro Pick to the Skull

A 15-year old girl is on trial for killing her enemy with a steel afro comb.   The girl allegedly attacked the other young lady because she was spreading gossip about her, according to police.  Authorities are saying that the girl stabbed the comb into the skull of Julie Sheriff, a 16-year old girl who happened to be the daughter of a sheriff. The girls lived in London, and Julie was in a coma for 19 weeks.  She never regained consciousness and eventually died in the hospital.  The girl’s family moved to London from Sierra Leone, West Africa, where her father was a police officer. “What lay behind this antagonism, the crown cannot say with any certainty,” said prosecutor Jonathan Turner. “But there seems to have been a row brewing between them over certain allegations that Julie had been making about the defendant, and some boyfriend or boyfriends of hers.” Police say that the alleged killer saw the other girl in her territory and confronted her.  That’s when the incident took place. The noise when the girl allegedly hit Julie was “like the noise it makes when we kill a goat back home,” according to a boy who witnessed the killing. “He described [the 16 year-old] as reaching into her bag and pulling out a pin-tail comb and stabbing Julie with it not once but twice,” Turner said. “The first one was to Julie’s collarbone, but it barely penetrated, and it was the second blow that went into her making a noise, he said, like a noise it makes when we kill a goat back home.” Right after the attack, Julie said that her head was sore, and that’s when she collapsed.  Her brain had begun to swell and she fell into her coma.  She went through several surgeries and succumbed to cardiac arrest on September 21. When police came to arrest the girl who allegedly committed the crime, she is accused of giving them a false name. “Is it about the fight yesterday? I don’t think I did anything wrong,” she said. Police then searched her bag and found the metal comb that was allegedly used in the murder.  The comb only had her DNA on it. “This does not necessarily preclude it from being the murder weapon,” said Turner. “After all, she had a couple of days to wash it clean.” The girl on trial has stated that she feared her for life and that the other girl was trying to attack her.  But it’s hard to tell if prosecutors or jurors are buying it.  It’s her word against a dead girl. Read More »

The First Lady Gives Parenting Advice: Is She Qualified?

First Lady Michelle Obama Discusses Parenting The gleaming First Lady sat down with the writers of  Parenting magazine for the August 2012 issue to discuss how she and President Barack Obama raise their beautiful daughters Sasha, 11, and Malia, 14. Here’s what she said regarding health and cooking:  “I think it’s the simple things that hold true regardless of income or location: eliminating sugary drinks, cooking a little bit more. It’s hard to do. I struggled with it as a working mom myself. But thinking about it once or twice a week even, sitting around a table, getting to know our kids more, is a good thing.”   The First Lady makes a great point, as parents have become disconnected from their children because they don’t make time to sit at a table and exchange dialogue with their children. Michelle gave a very interesting perspective on the importance of placing children in organized sports and the life-lessons they learn from it. What’s even more interesting is she and President Barack Obama place the same emphasis on sports as they do their children’s academics. “We set the expectation that sports are as important as homework and friends. It’s important to learn how to compete, to develop a skill,” she said. “I want them to learn how to sweat, how to win gracefully and lose with dignity. I want them to learn what it feels like to get better at something that you didn’t think you were good at.” Lastly, the First Lady shared the importance of she and President Barack Obama’s support for the girls. Despite their busy schedules, they always make sure they’re in attendance for important functions. “We go to all the important school functions,” she said. “At least one of us is there. It’s important to get to know their friends and teachers and to understand what they’re going through on a daily basis.”  If one of the busiest couples in the world  can make time for their two children, there is no excuse as to why we can’t make time for our children; to check homework, to cook dinner, and to attend extra-curricular activities. Children grow up fast! Don’t allow a career to be the reason why you miss out on some of your child’s most memorable moments. I can assure you they’d much rather have you in attendance cheering them on than to be wearing $600 worth of clothes on their special day and not have you there to share their special moment. Read More »

Do Some Black Women Love Having Relationship Pity Parties?

In this video, Lydia Cotton discusses the fact that 72% of black women are single mothers.  She also talks about movies like “Waiting to Exhale,” where it appears that women enjoy the grief of complaining about the men that they are with.   Cotton calls for accountability on the part of women who continuously find themselves in relationships with deadbeats. She says that “no percentage of these women” (single mothers) got pregnant by themselves.  She says that it doesn’t make sense for a woman to sleep with a man who is not worth having sex with and then complain that the man is not a good father to her child.  Cotton says that if you’re choosing the people you’re having sex with, and they all end up being terrible fathers, what does that say about you? Right after seeing the film “For Colored Girls,” Cotton says that there is an on-going national pity party for black women occurring, where women are encouraging one another to feel sorry for themselves.  She says that “you allowed him to treat you like this.   You did not demand respect from the beginning,” leading to the outcomes that you later experience. Cotton believes that “on some sick twisted level, we enjoy pain.  We almost enjoy creating this drama in our lives.” Is that true?  Do black women deliberately seek out drama or is it that they simply have the cards dealt out to them poorly? Cotton says that many women are convinced that they don’t deserve the love that is good for them and instead feel that they are only worthy of “chicken sh*t.”  These are strong words, but if you go to many events like the Essence Music Festival, you are more likely to hear sad stories than happy ones.  Maybe it’s time to take control of our own destinies. The video is below: Read More »