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Women History – We Did That!


Earlier this week, so many people were outraged when THAT Polish politician ignorantly declared that women must earn less because they are weaker and less intelligent.  Okay, admittedly, I wasn’t even mad because his statement is so ridiculous that it made me laugh.  Who in their right mind would take him seriously??? Continue reading “Women History – We Did That!”

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What Black History Should Mean

During Black History Month, we normally look to others who many times are so far removed from us personally – through time or distance – pointing to them for outstanding sacrifices. Remember the pictures of the Little Rock Nine in 1957 who were the first to integrate Little Rock, Arkansas’ Central High School? They could only attend the high school after President Eisenhower himself intervened by sending troops no less. Or, I always remember the picture of little Ruby Bridges coming down the stairs of William Frantz Elementary School in Louisiana, in 1960. She too was flanked by the law, U.S. Marshals.

I used to wonder, where in the world did those people get the strength, the audacity to send their child into that kind of situation? It seems so far removed, so far away. Imagine my surprise when I learned that in my own family, there were acts of heroism so close that I could touch it. Seems that I have a second cousin that broke down barriers as well.

In the small town of Olive Branch, Mississippi, she broke the racial lines by being the first African American to attend the all-white high school there during the civil rights period. Wow. The fact that I am just learning of this event in my family history makes me proud and sad at the same time. This is what happens when we don’t keep up with our own personal history or legacy. We need to know these things because these are the things that make us the people we are and that have the power to shape us into people we can be.

The lesson? Black history is about each of our own personal, familial, and communal histories. Let’s be eager students and perpetual protectors. Let’s pass on our histories by doing what our ancestors did – talking to our children by means of oral traditions thereby never letting our stories die.

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Red Toenails is Now Called What Dita Said

Don’t worry. You’re at the right place. This website was previously called Red Toenails. My blog name has changed to What Dita Said. (Next month, April, the web address will be WhatDitaSaid.wordpress.com).
Hey, a little change is good every now and then. Plus, I realized that blogs are about the author’s thoughts, life, interests, and experiences. She or he hopes that what is being said resonates with the audience. And that’s how I feel too. I think to myself, if I feel this way, there’s got to be others that feel the same way I do as well. 
The goal? To continue to be down-to-earth, truthful, and me. If you are new to this site, Welcome! Or if you are an old-head, Good to see ya and much love! Oh, and the new header pic I just had to post. It looks like my 15-year-old niece. She’s kind of a cutie patootie. 
Dat's What's Up

Black History Month – On the Matter of Sojourner Truth

SojournerTruthAs February is Black History Month, I thought it appropriate to talk about Sojourner Truth. Sad to say, the last time I gave this remarkable lady some serious thought was when I had to do a report on her in elementary school. But I purchased her life story recently and have just begun reading it.

Even though I am far from finished with this narrative, I am just floored at the tenacity of humans. Particularly for one that was a slave; a woman; who initially did not speak English – she spoke Low Dutch, the language of her first masters; separated from her family; sexually abused by her female master; and beat mercilessly by the male ones. She rose to be an activist, amazing litigant, landowner, mother, and minister.

All of this and when she had barely obtained her own freedom, had the nerve to fight for her son, who had been sold to slave owners down South and then fought to ride public transportation – way before Rosa Parks, ya’ll. Again and again, she used the court system to win victories for herself and her people. Incredibly, she did not lose her faith in God and would manage to see the good and look for hope in her situation.

Many people talk about her “Ain’t I a Woman Speech” she gave while in Ohio, circa 1827. But I was equally impressed with how she shut down pro-slavery Democrats at an antislavery meeting in Indiana in 1858. The situation went something like this: in an effort to shame her and make a mockery of the antislavery issue, these protesters shouted that she was not a woman at all, that she really was a man. This was a common tactic used by certain men when women (black or white) spoke out against injustice.

In a word, Ms. Sojourner clicked and went off. Basically, she read them the riot act about their own behavior and informed them that her breasts had suckled many a white children while her own suffered. She ripped opened her blouse and asked them did they want to suck them as well!

Oh, snap! No she di’n’t!! But yes she did! Ms. Sojourner was baaaaad –and that was good. I couldn’t let this month get away with me not posting something about this profound lady. I have a renewed appreciation and indebtedness to her.