Is Facebook Racist?

After yet another incident of White people calling the police on Black people, my husband, Michael, recently wrote the following on Facebook: Everyday I hate WyPipo more and more. It's because of how these incidents have increased threefold and how so many of you still refuse to be an ally and speak up. This is on you. We've stopped being listened to. This is on you. Every time you choose to not say anything to a friend or relative. This is on you. This is on you. Someone reported this as hate speech and he was kicked off Facebook for 30 days. This is the fourth time in two or three years. I responded with the following... Dear Person Who Keeps Getting My Husband Kicked Off Facebook, I have a scenario for you: Michael and I are driving down the interstate in separate cars. The cars are identical in appearance, we are traveling at the same speed, in fact, the only difference is Michael’s gorgeous brown, African American eyes reflect back in his rearview mirror, while

Coming out of the Shade

It was 89 degrees when I picked up my beautiful daughter on the last day of H2O camp at the Rose Bowl Aquatic Center.  I envied her her day; frolicking in cool waters while I whiled away my hours in a house with nonexistent air conditioning. I pulled up and saw my beautiful daughter sitting with her new friends on a grassy knoll eating an Otter Pop lookalike. It was the quintessential image of carefree summer life. Ah, to be a kid!!! She said her goodbyes, collected her stuff and buckled herself in the car. As we were leaving the Rose Bowl grounds Max rolled down her window, causing a backdraft of unwanted heat which interfered considerably with my much desired climate control. I looked back and noticed that the wrapper from the Otter Pop lookalike was gone. I slowed down the car and asked accusatorially, "Did you throw that out the window?" Maxwell gets very sheepish when she's caught in a no-no. She's mostly a very good girl. So, as she was babbling some sort of

The Sesame Seeds of Life Sometimes Get Caught in your Teeth

This happened... Maxwell was trying to explain to me that there is a commercial on TV with a catchy tongue twister. This gave me the perfect platform for me to enthusiastically recite  "Two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun."  (For those of you living the Amish lifestyle that's the 1976 McDonald jingle for the Big Mac.) MAXWELL: (Flabbergasted)  That was on TV when you were a boy? MOMMY WITH A PENIS: You don't have to make it sound like that was so long ago. Dinosaurs weren't roaming the earth. But, yes, that was on TV. MAXWELL  (With mounting frustration) : How do you remember that when you can't even remember that I wanted sushi after school today? Point taken.

We've All Encountered Trayvon

I get George Zimmerman. Now, before you go all gooseshit on me, take a gander... A young white man walked down an uncommonly deserted New York side street at one AM. Approaching him from the other direction were three black youths. The closer they got the more the white man felt discomfort. Whether this could be attributed to the time of night, the lack of fellow New Yorkers about, the dark clothes the young black men were wearing, or the conspiratorial air they were giving off, the white man couldn't tell you. However, he  became keenly aware of the hairs on his arm standing at attention and the wallet in his front pocket banging against his thigh every time he took a step. He  cursed the fact he didn't take the longer route on the more brightly lit, more densely populated thoroughfare.   Just before the youths passed, they spread out, causing a wider birth for the white man to skirt around. Even with that obstacle, the white man took a larger-than-necessary sidestep to

Parenting in the Extreme

I wrote this piece almost a year ago for an online magazine that never published the article. On Thursday night, July 18th, at 7:00 pm PST, I will be talking with Christopher and Amanda at LNR Radio about this article and being an anti-attachment parent. Click on  LNR Radio  for the link. And you can  share your own thoughts by calling in live 10PM EST/7PM PST (718) 766-4652 or leave us comments on Twitter (@LNRradio) or on Facebook. It's certainly no mystery that parenting styles have changed since my parents' generation. In their day, if the kids weren't bleeding profusely or suffering from a fractured limb, then everything must be peaches and cream. My parents ignored the fact that mine was the generation of growing pot in the basement and pocketing Quaalude, instead they released us unto the world and then turned a scotch and soda blind eye, muttering blithely to themselves: no news must be good news. Now, as if to brutally combat the previous generation's

American Girl, Take My Checkbook Please

Perhaps you'll say I drank the Kool-Aid, and quite possibly you would be well within your rights to do so. And I'm sure if you are child free, or only have boy cubs, on the outside looking in, you'd probably jeer, "If I had a girl I would  never  succumb. What losers." But I'm telling you, when you happen upon that impressive storefront this unimaginable tide washes over you, and you can't think of anything else that would make your little girl (or fem boy) happy. And this has nothing to do with peer pressure. It's not like all of Maxwell's friends taunted her with  we got ours, when are you going to get yours?  No, this sickness belongs to the parents. And it's insidious, and pernicious, and very, very  real.  The Kool-Aid from which I have sipped is American Girl. And I'm not the only flabbergasted parent with a drained Dixie cup in my hand and a Black Cherry moustache on my face. No, this last holiday season, many family members and c

Downton Parenting

A scene played out between Maggie Smith and Penelope Wilton on Downton Abbey  last night, and the subject, parenting . For those of you entirely out of the know, Smith (right) plays the Dowager Countess, a woman who doesn't mince words and sounds and acts as if she just walked off the stage of an Oscar Wilde play. Wilton's Cousin Isobel is less well-to-do, but equally steadfast in her beliefs. These two hens cluck and spar with each other every chance they get. DOWAGER COUNTESS: One forgets about parenthood. The on-and-on-ness of it. COUSIN ISOBEL: Were you a very involved mother with Robert and Rosamund? DOWAGER COUNTESS: Does it surprise you? COUSIN ISOBEL: A bit. I'd imagined them surrounded by nannies and governesses being starched and ironed to spend an hour with you after tea. DOWAGER COUNTESS: Yes, but it was an hour every day. COUSIN ISOBEL: I see, yes. How tiring.