Monday, April 23, 2012

How watching Hoaders can help heal rather than just disgust

     A friend of mine said regarding my last post that she hates to watch Hoarders because it disturbs her and this was my response:
     It is probably the tapping (EFT, see the free info at I do that helps to heal in me what is disturbing in the (Hoarders) program.  When I see some adults whose parents are obviously acting out their on mental health problems and behaving or speaking in an unloving manner to their children who are just trying to help them...just trying to love them and be loved -- that disturbs me because that's the way both my parents treat/treated me most of the time.  The tapping helps to reprogram my brain regarding that "tape" or trauma and helps to heal me a little.
     When I saw an episode where a hoarder mother's childhood sexual abuse trauma was triggered by the clean up process I tapped because I am a survivor of that kind of abuse and doing my milder/smaller clean ups trigger a milder form of the same.  The same mother spent a lot of time on the 2-day program assisted clean up doing the boys rooms but refused to do the girls' even when the therapist on the scene tried to get the mom to so so and had the older girl ask herself.  Tapping to that helped to heal me from the many times my parents did kind things for my abusive brother just because he was the male child and neither of my parents ever though I, as a girl, deserved those kindnesses, privileges, assistance.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Hoarders -- the A&E Series You Can't Get Enough Of!

Hoarders Series Review
 I watched the Season 1 discs twice.  I only got to see one of the season two discs because the other is missing from my DVD by mail service.  I feel I am somehow helped and healed by this series.  I am an Emotional Freedom Technique Practitioner and I tap all the time while watching these gripping stories.  Watching them also helps me have that extra motivation to get up and wash the dishes before bed no matter how tired I am.  But for the grace of God go I ;-).  Highly recommend for all those with trauma in their early lives who sometimes find themselves drifting toward buying/keeping what they don't need because it makes them feel oddly secure. Deep. I would love to see MORE (of the series…NOT more stuff in my house!) on DVD vs. sitting at a computer viewing from the series website.
You can rent/buy  the 1st season & half of the second from blockbuster here:

Thursday, March 1, 2012

AL SB12 mandating ultrasounds is unconstitutional

Finally, I can agree with something Josh Moon has said in his (Sunday 2/26 Montgomery Advertiser  newspaper ) column.  I applaud him for his sensitivity and old school journalism of social responsibility instead of the vicious but cavalier usual tone of his columns.  I appreciate that he let everyone know that the Alabama legislation (SB12) to mandate ultrasounds for women who legally choose to terminate their pregnancies HAS NO EXCEPTION FOR RAPE VICTIMS whether it’s incestual, acquaintance or stranger rape.

Moreover, this procedure is not medically necessary and is instead merely a political tactic to undermine women's reproductive options and a blatant attempt to legislate morality and emotionally damage women.  It seeks to make ultrasound (transvaginal or abdominal) a requirement and requires the practitioner to share the images with the woman receiving abortion services, even if the abortion is necessary to remove a miscarried fetus or ectopic pregnancy.  Required transvaginal ultrasound amounts to mandatory rape or re-rape of a woman.

In the U.S., we are given the right to refuse certain medical services and this legislation attempts to violate and remove those rights because of the moral objections of others who are not receiving the service. This legislation is unconstitutional and therefore violates the Fourth Amendment. Are AL legislators AGAIN forgetting that AL is still part of the U. S. of A.?

That's why I signed a petition to The Alabama State Senate that demands they withdraw SB12 from legislative debate, consideration, and vote.  Should physicians not comply with this legislation, they could be charged with a Class C felony and/or fined up to $15,000.

If other reasonable, responsible, compassionate Alabamians want to sign this petition they can find it at:

Submitted to the Montgomery Advertiser letters to ed 3/1/12

Monday, January 30, 2012

Red Tails puts Black women in the hurt locker: A womanist critique

Red Tails puts Black women in the hurt locker: A womanist critique
© E-K. Daufin, 2012

            Red Tails, the latest movie about the Tuskegee Airmen, that recently opened nationwide, offers a breath of fresh air for Black men who have been typically so poorly represented on the big and little screen (film and television respectively).  However, Red Tails throws Black women under the bus then stuffs us in the hurt locker, where we are still waiting to exhale…Ironically just in time for Black History Month when the national theme this year is, “Black Women in American History and Culture.”

            The “inspired by a true story” film has been criticized for being inaccurate in several, what to me seem, insignificant ways . . . such as the fantasy of certain flying maneuvers, not showing the airmen smoking cigarettes they all prolifically puffed, but showing another Tuskegee Airman saluting with a pipe in his mouth – a sign of disrespect that would not have been tolerated…Strange that I have yet to see any story about Red Tails that mentions the way Black women were whitewashed from all the airmen’s lives in the film, while a fictionalized romance between the most talented Black pilot and a White Italian woman seemed to absorb a good 20-percent of the longer-than-average 121 minutes of screen time.

            In fact a Montgomery Advertiser story on 93 year-old Herbert Carter, former Tuskegee Airman fighter pilot and aircraft maintenance supervisor, who still travels the country, “touting the accomplishments of his legendary unit,” says Carter thinks Red Tails producer George Lucas “fulfilled his promise to make a realistic movie.”

            The movie was not at all realistic about the role African American women, or White Italian women, played in the lives of our beloved Tuskegee Airman.  Some may blame this inaccuracy on the lack of flashbacks and the time frame in which this film’s story is set, which is after the men were stationed in war time Italy (not a lot of “sistahs’” running around there). Yet Lucas introduced the import of others who were not present in 1944 rural Italy in many ways.  However, none of those “others” were the airmen’s Black mothers, sisters, daughters, wives, fiancĂ©s or girlfriends.

 Lucas had airmen deeply contemplating, or flying off to their possible death with cherished photos of a fictional fiancĂ© White woman, a really worshipped “Black Jesus,” or their State-side Black father in their hands or on their aircraft dashboards.   None of them had a photo of any Black woman, no matter how light-skinned, anywhere in the motion picture. 

Surviving Tuskegee Airman Carter says the movie is, “realistic,” but the character of Joe “Lightening” Little, who is rumored to be based on the light skinned aerial daredevil Carter himself, is depicted as a dark skinned womanizer.   The fictional character in the time of legal apartheid in the United States, must have sexually used many a Black woman back home, but he is turned into a self-sacrificing, loyal, marrying man in the film, only when he meets an Italian woman (“Sofia,” played by NCIS: Los Angeles actress Daniela Ruah, of Jewish Portuguese and Spanish descent).

In the film, actor David Oyelowo (who in real life is married to the White Jessica nee Watson since 1998), who plays “Lightening,” has known legions of Black women in the biblical fashion but exclaims that the White Sofia is, “the most beautiful woman” he has ever seen.  Even though the character Joe can’t speak Italian or Sofia English, he falls in love with her, can share emotionally with her, and by-passes buying smokes for himself so he can buy black market lingerie for her. Soon he falls to one knee and asks her to marry him…shortly before he is killed in action.  He dies speaking words of everlasting love to Sofia’s picture on the dashboard. This happens before tying the knot, though after having had sex with Sofia in the small sitting room of her parents’ home.

Another of the real surviving Tuskegee Airmen, James Al Sheppard, told the Maine Public Broadcasting Network that two things didn’t ring true about the wonderful Red Tails was that the actors in the film were much older and buffer than the young, skinny airmen really were and the story about the Black pilot who gets engaged to a local Italian girl was, “a lot of hocus pocus.”  Sheppard says the military strictly discouraged fraternization in Italy, that had until recently been fighting on the side of the Nazis, supposedly not because the airmen were Black but because they were Americans.

If any love story should have been told, mentioned or at least alluded to in Red Tails, it was Airman Herbert Carter’s storybook romance with Mildred “Mike” Hemmons, who also learned to fly under C. Alfred “Chief” Anderson (the chief instructor at Tuskegee and the man considered the father of Black aviation).  According to CNN, Mildred became the first female pilot of any race to join Alabama’s Civil Air Patrol Squadron in 1942, though racism kept her from ever flying under that banner.  The Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) rejected Mildred during the war because she was Black.  Seventy years later the government declared Mildred a member and gave a medal inscribed, “The First Women in History to Fly America.”  Both graduated from Tuskegee University at a time when fewer than 1-percent of African Americans had a college education.

Herbert Carter has even admitted that Mildred was an even better pilot than he was.  She mentored many other African American female aviators and traveled the world with her husband speaking out for racial equality. Mildred couldn’t join her husband and lifelong love at George Lucas’ “Skywalker Ranch” to help on the fictional Red Tails.  She did consult extensively with Lucas’ staff on the also recently released History Channel companion documentary on the Tuskegee Airmen, Double Victory, so titled for the Tuskegee Airmen’s double victory of fighting oppression abroad and racism at home.

I join my African American female Facebook friends from around the country to praise Red Tails while at the same time bemoaning the fictionalized interracial romance that leaves Black women out in the cold.  We are the least likely race-gender group in American to be married to, or supported by, a partner of any race, in part because the media cripple the imagination of men and condition them to see Black women to be the least desirable of all women…When it just ain’t so. 

Even when the historical truth was of a Black man loving a Black woman, George Lucas chose not make it real for the millions who will see, have already seen his film. So far the film has grossed almost $35 million.  I hope Lucas makes back the $58 million he invested in the film out of his own pocket and then some, because I want other filmmakers and investors to back powerful, entertaining films about Black people.  I just want them, in all future films, to give Black women their due rather than leave us as daughters of the dust.

Those who are still criticizing the fictional Red Tails for inaccuracies that don’t matter much may be surprised to find that the actual incidents of the Black officers of the Tuskegee Airmen being expelled from an officer’s club, actually happened on U.S. soil not in Italy.  But it happened.  And an incredible Black fighter pilot loved, married, and lead a life of service with an astounding Black woman aviator.  Black women and girls who are bombarded by media images of romantic love that seem to leave them out, were again made invisible, not as beautiful, not as loving ,or as good as a White woman in Red Tails.  Lucas could have chosen to be a little more realistic about the Black women the Tuskegee Airmen loved.  But he didn’t.  And for that his tail ought to be whooped until it’s a brilliant crimson red…figuratively speaking that is.