Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Thanks For Nothing

So I was walking my neighborhood and saw by my local skateboard shop that they put a sticker up and it had a picture of former president Bush. On his forehead it said Slave. Underneath his head are two bones crossed by each other, and under that is said thanks for nothing.
$lave is a skateboard company along with other black box distributors. $lave is owned by Ben Horton. I say that this sticker is very symbolic, because if the skateboard industry is noticing that there was something wrong when bush was president it can raise some speculations. The speculations it raises is that the world can obviously notice that Bush had a horrible term as president.

There were many memories that we will never forget and will stay scared in the USA while Bush was president.  First was the september 11 attacks. As we know its a day that will live in infamy. With 9/11 it lead to many more problems. It started a global nuclear war. Bush went on an declared a war against Afghanistan, Also Iraq. Those events lead to many more death. Many soldiers died over seas while in service to the country.

The sticker has a lot of significance. The picture reminds me of the poison sign with the two crossed bones. I like the way they combined it with a picture of Bush. I think the reason they made it this way is because with all the people who died under him being the leader of the country, perhaps they are trying to say that he is just dangerous for other people.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Swine Flu by Hadeel Ramadan

january 1st
3 a.m.
swine flu
fruitvale bart
& cracked open the levees of an epidemic
we have been fearing
since before
the sickness made Kings perish into the nothingness that is past.
as we carry their bodies
in body bags
strapped with the heat of a thousand suns
see we don’t want the sickness
cuhs these pigs are far more deadly than any swine
holding my breath each time I stroll across police stations
cover my ears
at the sudden sound
of sirens
see their songs
suckle on society like the stained lips
of rape children to their wavering mothers breast
we nurture them despite the fact that we see a shadow of our attackers face in theirs
as if the cure is unattainable
we continue to take and take
allow these nothing more than common people to bear the flesh of the gods on their simple bones
packing heartbeats in their clips
see this isn’t on no overreacting liberal kid spitting left politics bullshit
this is us giving a Grant
to the policeman who had Oscar
execution style on his knees.
you tube videos blaze from my monitor
making corpses resurrect from shallow graves
see Oscar Grant relives his death with each viewing,
as i watched his back crack as if Gaza was in its arch
& all I could remember was a photograph
i came across for the first time in high school
of a Vietnamese man crouched on his knees like a beaten dragon surrendering to mortals
It took all the way until my senior year in high school for me to learn about Hiroshima and Nagasaki
& that they are not just one of the easier genocides to talk about.
For 12 grades of my education each year the only massacre we were ever in depthly introduced to was the holocaust
Because in WW2 the U.S. fought against Germany and Japan
& in order to show the sinister ways of our adversaries
we brought one massacre to the light
& went on to crumble the disintegration of Japanese citizens into the dust we have swept under our patriotic rugs
not realizing that the U.S.A & Germany were only looking at a distorted reflection of each other
We continue to teach our children
To be U.S. Citizens before they are human beings.
Only mourn your people and their allies but disregard the flesh that lies on an enemies bones, see these borders are brainwashing
But the 2nd time I saw this photograph it broke me out of the trance
Because the artist Bansky’s spray can had revolutionized it
to depict
the same man still as a beaten dragon
but no pistol to skull
instead a bouquet of graffiti encrusted roses emerging from
his assassin’s hand
a portrait worthy of bringing new life from ash
recreated insanity into humanity
& I have strived to do the same for Oscar Grant with this very poem
Because we are the artists of the movement,
are trying so hard to bring lost souls back to life,
trying so hard to reshape history
With our paint stained fingertips
But I have learnt to start working on right now
& so I will use these graff battered roses
& place them on the grave of the rape fetus
our society finally decided to abort
because we are DONE, nurturing the genes of our oppressors
will mold together each struggle I have come to know
Find Palestine in every foreign
Counterpart working class back bent 9 to 5 barefooted barely making ends meet
See this is the only way peace can prevail
When the good do something
To stop evil.
From Oscar Grant to Hara Tamiki
& Once we realize are pain is universal that is when we can bring the orbit of divinity back to our world
So our globe no longer has to rest on an axis of evil.
Let the voice of our deceased demi-gods rumble through our vocal chords
& I am starving for your humanity!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!.

-- Hadeel Ramadan, San Francisco, California

This poem by her was soooo great! gave me chills as she said it, choose to share it with you.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

sources for paper

So for my paper I am writing about Graffiti. Specifically about this one piece made by Skeme in the mid 80's. This piece is very symbolic cause of the time period in New York, there was a lot of graffiti going on at the current time. This time frame raised the question amongst plenty New Yorkers whether Graffiti is considered a form  of art or crime.

One of my sources that I will use is a documentary called Style Wars. This documentary is in the mid 80's and is about graffiti, in views of a political perspective. As well with a writers perspective. This documentary has many great graffiti pieces. It shows you the history on how time changed through out New York, as well with what graffiti writers had to go through in the process of doing there art.

My second source I have is from All Aboard the Night Train.  Which talks about what new york was and has maps about the graffiti routes taken, still currently reading this.

My Third source I am going to use is another documentary called Infamy which takes you into the life of your average graffiti persons life and what they want to achieve with it and how it has helped them in the long run.( for example we have Claw who is a female graffiti writer, who is very well know around the world for her graffiti, as well for her clothing line.)

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

"All you see is CRIME IN THE CITY"

    Skeme's is a very know name in the graffiti world. One of his greatest art pieces is one he did on the side of an elevated train. when you saw it go around the city, all you see is Crime in the city passing by on the side of the train. To me i think this piece is very symbolic. I say its symbolic because of the time period graffiti was a big hit amongst a lot of people. However with all those lovers of the art, there was a lot of hate towards it. The argument is that graffiti isnt considered art, but an act of vandalism. The thing is with so much controversy up in there who can one believe. So that's why I picked this piece its sort of an ironic piece in a way, because he wrote crime in the city. I think he wrote that because the fact that there will always be a debate that its not art it will be a crime and it will be all around the city. That will be a big debate going back and forth that will never end. Everyone has their own opinions to what they believe. However I personally think that the graffiti that Skeme did is considered a masterpiece, because it takes so much talent to be able to write letters and draw characters with a spray can. Not many have the artistic ability, and all that artist want to do besides do what they like is to have their work be viewed.

Thursday, October 7, 2010


Bob Dylan

    Well before i get into Bob Dylan's Song " Only a Pawn in Their Game" I am going to take about Medgar Ever So you can have a better understanding on who Medgar Evers was.

Medgar Evers
  Medgar Evers was an African American Activist from Mississippi. He was assassinated on June 12, 1963. Ever's was a member of the NAACP.

   The purpose of Bob Dylan's song I believe is to make the people aware of Medgar Evers assassination and The main point is about the shooter on how it wasn't his fault. This song was for the whole world to listen and to take in and view it the way they choose.
The arguement there is in the song is that Dylan  is saying that its not Byron De La Beckwith's fault on him shooting him. It is trying to point the Finger away from the person who shot Evers. It doesnt change the fact that he pulled the trigger, neither the less it has to do with the way he was raised; their still human and they have to deal with the guilt and he has to use his own discretion in the end.

However Bob Dylan being a white man and writing and have performed this song about a colored man and saying its not his fault for killing him seems like a typical thing. Its a typical thing cause it seems as if he is backing up the killer by saying its not his fault and saying " He is only a pawn in their game" suggesting that the government is behind it all.  It shows struggle as it always  does among Colored people at that time of period. I do think that Dylan's song had an impact on everyone who listened be they white, black or any ethnicity. It has definitely been a success because his doings is still kept alive through media throughout the years.

Monday, October 4, 2010

The importance of music in the civil rights movement.

      2) What is Reed's argument about why music was so important to the Civil Rights movement? What are some of the specific roles it played in the movement? How does this relate or compare to your own experiences of the role of music in everyday life, or the relation of music to politics?

        Reed's primary view of music was used to help the black community fight off their oppression. Also so they can show of their emotions on how they felt at the time and to portray how they were treated to the people. Reed says "first the traditional gospel song and spirituals provided a  feeling of continuity over long periods of time. Another role that it played was instant historicizing,  which took old songs and re-mastered them and altered them. This would tell stories about the movement through music. Music became a big hit while protests, sit-ins were in progress so they can tell there stories out. For example at Albany they would start of  the meetings always with songs about freedom.
        I personally look at music as an inspiration. It helps me out every time, where ever I am or anytime I need it. The way it helps me out it sort of helps me escape reality, for those 4-5mins of the artist singing I feel free as if nothing can hurt or stop me. In a political aspect some politicians use certain songs to try and reach out towards a certain age group or towards a specific race. Politician would go to any cost to make an impact on a person so they can get their vote. 

Monday, September 27, 2010

Eyes on the Prize

Emmet Till

   The film Eyes on the Prize is a documentary that opens your eyes to what African Americans had to go through. A lot of the things that the African Americans had to face were harsh. The film shows a great quantity of racism, specifically towards the African Americans they had to deal with a whole lot like segregation, lynchings. Eyes on the Prize also shows you the key facts that attributed to the civil rights movement.

Rosa Parks
     As I viewed the film and through previous classes I came to think that some of   the key facts where the killing of Emmet Till. Emmet Till was a 14yr old  African American boy who was killed for supposedly whistling at a white woman. Till's body was found Tallahatchie river, it was severely beaten, tortured, eyes gouged out, and then was shot in the head. Till's mother had a funeral for her son and had a open casket, so everyone can witness the brutal beating he received for whistling at a white woman. I would say that this is one of the main points in the leading of the civil rights movement. Another big important factor towards the civil rights movement was the BROWN v. BOARD OF EDUCATION. Supreme court decided that it was unconstitutional to have separate school, because it was an equal learning opportunity. This over ruled Plessy v. Ferguson which was for segregation. The next person who also influenced the civil rights movement was Rosa Parks. She was a big influence. She stood up for her rights, she choose not to give up her seat on the bus. The biggest known face of the civil rights movement is Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
     The things i have learned from the film Eye on the Prize, was that Rosa parks was apart of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) when she was arrested. The NAACP is one of the most influential organization of the civil rights movement at the time. Parks was not the first to get arrest for refusing to give her seat, but she was the most notable one because she worked for the NAACP.
  I would like to further my knowledge on how much more obstacles the civil rights movement had to endure. As well many other important people who main role throughout that time.