Category Archives: Uncategorized

An Open Letter: Justice for Botham Shem Jean and his Family

September 15, 2018

This Open Letter letter is primarily for but not limited to:

Mike Rawlings, Dallas Mayor
Brandon Birmingham (292), Dallas Judge
Renee Hall, Dallas Police Chief
Dallas Police Department
T.C. Broadnax, Dallas City Manager
Dallas News Media
Texas Ranger Division
Faith Johnson, Dallas District Attorney
Those who act in silence

An Open Letter: Justice for Botham Shem Jean and his Family

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Failed: President Trump and the Leadership Principle Debacle

18363488-18363488Observationally, at least in California, buses and other service vehicles must stop at railroad crossings regardless of a train approaching or not. They also stop regardless of having passengers aboard or not. In addition to stopping, they also open their entrance door once they stop. I learned that opening the door is required so the vehicle operator can listen for a train, despite the crossing rails not being activated or lowered.
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Finding Your Position

Finding Your Position on the Racialized Battlefield: A Brief Examination of Racism, Silence, Fragility, Resistance, and Justice Read the rest of this entry

Hip-Hop and the Creative Influence of a Postmodern Spirituality

AmmarI have not written a narrative in a few months and I thought my next piece would be a personal summation, synthesis, critical reflection, and coming to grips with the nomination of President Trump, but the energy for such a discourse has waned within me. What I previously wrote about him in Elections & the Biblical Text will have to suffice. As an aside however, the shoving of Prime Minister, Dusko Markovic at the NATO Summit is shameful and speaks to a broader issue of climate. While I waited for a spark to get back to writing, angst turned to patience for this literary project. For me writing is medicine, healing, sharing, manifested love, and social justice toward a critical consciousness. I refuse to write until the motivated fire is fully ignited, and then I cannot stop until absolute resolve is reached. The 2017 Kendrick Lamar album DAMN., brings me to this narrative and critical reflection. We will ultimately use the album as a scaffold to juxtapose and assess postmodern influences on a biblical worldview and spiritual motif. Read the rest of this entry

The Divided American Crime Scene

AmmarAs I jumped in my car Sunday morning (7/17/16), headed to preach and teach a word, I turned XM Satellite Radio to CNN or Fox News, hearing the grim report that three additional police officers had been slain in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. After spending all day in church services, meetings, and delivering a sermon regarding faith and its necessary role in the face of racism, acts of injustice in America, and the general struggles of life, it was time to trek back home. Once again I turned on Fox News or CNN and two polarizing quotes were being magnified; one from President Barack Obama and the other from Republican Presidential candidate Mr. Donald Trump. Read the rest of this entry

Less Talk & More Action

f60d23c2-845f-4ed7-a6fa-d4e7e76b5a64I haven’t watched the videos of the two most recent officer involved shootings. I won’t watch them. Why? Because I have already lived them. This will unfortunately forever be a real part of my life and I can recite how the story will go for each family with my eyes closed in my sleep. Kill an unarmed black man, march, rally, don’t charge the officers, repeat. Read the rest of this entry

Police Encounters #6: The Story I Said I Would Never Write

AmmarI never thought I would share this episode in written form, and who knows, by the time I am done I might delete it. It’s embarrassing and humiliating, but might bring validation and/or understanding to someone or a community. Based upon the back-to-back killings of Alton Sterling (7/5/16) and Philando Castile (7/6/16), I am left bewildered and dazed. At this current time my personal anger and outrage has escaped, replaced by trauma-induced dissociation, despair, and momentary hopelessness. See, as a Black man they told me if I did not move or flinch, comply and kept my hands raised, I would live. Tell that to Philando Castile, his girlfriend Diamond Reynolds, and his 4-year old daughter who witnessed the shooting, bleeding, and death of a father and partner. Read the rest of this entry

A Mother Like No Other

13466201_10209400454199030_4316481728389443895_nI was awakened around 6am this morning (6/25/16), to the gentle shaking and rumbling of my bed, generated by the tears and secret cry of my wife. The mother of my wife and her siblings, Sis. Nellie Jean Jones (most often known to many as Sis. Jones), was funeralized, buried, and celebrated in grand fashion yesterday. I can hear my wife right now downstairs, still gently crying and arranging flowers, before she heads to the gym. For my own healing and as a tribute to the blessed life of Sis. Jones, it is vital to my soul that I document a word about this multifaceted wife, mother, matriarch, and Christian spirit. On this June 25th day of 2016, it is calm outside. The sun is shining perfectly, the breeze only blows as needed, and it all seems serene. The current climate and atmospheric texture is one of peace. Read the rest of this entry

Born Into Church or Birthed Into Christ?

147318731The title above is a bit paradoxical, but based upon explanation it should be clear. Some know church but they do not know Christ and what it means to live for Him. Many people are aware of the medical delivery room, but they have failed to connect to or understand the critically necessary spiritual delivery room of Christ. The Bible and time period connected to biblical epochs spans three dispensations: Patriarchal (Adam to Moses), Mosaic (Moses to Jesus), and church-age (resurrection of Christ through the end of time). Through each time period God had a special relationship with His creation. During the patriarchal and Mosaic covenants, there was no real God-choice involved for the people. Being the people of God has always been based on His sovereignty and election, but the church-age process is qualitatively different from the other two. The question stated above is, born into the church or birthed into Christ? Read the rest of this entry

The Called vs. The Chosen

tonyaBy the age of 25 I began experiencing tragedy after tragedy.  By age 37, I had already experienced the death of a child, the death of a sibling, and the death of a mother in law. This had me constantly wondering what would happen next. One day my husband said something to me that hit me like a ton of bricks.  He said, “Some of us are chosen.” This resonated with me in a very bone chilling fashion because it caused me to think, “Am I chosen?”  If I was chosen, then exactly for what had I been chosen. Matthew 22:14 says, “Many are called few are chosen.” Read the rest of this entry