Big things planned. Remember it is better to miss an evening meal than miss the Evening-Whirl. On sale every Monday.
When I heard that Dr. Art McCoy was suspended from his position as the superintendent of the Ferguson-Florissant School District I did not know what to make of it. I had known Art as a teenager: but was unfamiliar with his work as an educator. I know that Florissant, like the rest of North St. Louis County is in a period of great transition. North County was built and grew as blue-collar industrial suburbs and our national economy has changed and factories have closed. TWA is gone, Ford is gone, the GM parts plant is gone, Lambert Airport is nowhere near what it used to be, and McDonnell-Douglas has long since sold to Boeing costing the district tens of thousands of taxpayers ( the district logo is the old company logo) . There has also been a massive white-flight out of the district towards St. Charles and Lincoln Counties which has caused property-values to decline. Indeed Florissant and other parts of the district were hit very hard by the sub-prime meltdown. Harder than anywhere else in the state of Missouri. Kinloch now looks like a ghost-town, Robertson no longer exists, and parts of Ferguson and Cool Valley are downright ghetto.
I believe the district does has some issues. Like many schools with a large population of kids from broken homes you will be dealing with fighting, drugs, gang-activity and behavior problems. But that’s nothing new. I went to McCluer North 20 years ago and participated in all four. Those are cultural and spiritual issues that can’t be solved in the classroom or by any educator. To lay the blame on any one person is unfair.
What is clear to me is the divide over Dr. Art McCoy is all about race. Everyone I heard speaking against him was white. Yet they didn’t say much. Art has clearly pissed a lot of white people off but why? The black attendees spoke at length about their support of Art. Why the secrecy from his detractors? Not trying to be funny. I really wanna know. Did he have Farrakhan Day? Substitute pumpkin pie for sweet potato pie? Or is it the whole Normandy and Riverview schools issue?
Again we come back to race. Florissant integrated slow and unenthusiastically. The courts merged the white Ferguson-Florissant schools in the 1970′s with the African-American districts of Kinloch and Robertson. Berkeley soon became majority African-American afterwards. Ferguson began integrating first with apartment-complexes like Wyndhurst in the late seventies. Florissant held off the longest.
White Florissant officers were ordered to harass black motorists for years . A former drunken chief once confronted a black man at a party and yelled “get this in your head Florissant is not an integrated city”. My sister once managed a local eatery as a teenager where she was told to put the forms of black applicants into the “do not hire” drawer. In the 1980′s McCluer North football star Dan McKeon was killed in a racial-fight at a house party by a black kid from Kinloch. I personally witnessed numerous racial fights attending Desmet Elementary, Parker Road Elementary, Cross Keys Middle School, and McCluer North. While there were cross-racial friendships and dating for the most part the schools were divided based on race.
The classic liberal logic is integration creates friendship and understanding. I’m not so sure. Most of the white kids I went to school have said they don’t want their kids going to the same kind of schools they went to and moved out to St. Charles, Lincoln, and other counties.The numbers speak for themselves. The white student population of McCluer North for example has dropped by almost two-thirds since I was a student.
I am not saying all of the problems are on white people and black students are blameless. I am saying that racial issues that go unspoken about and lead to private actions with public consequences can never be good. For sure there are real issues: but deal with them in a public manor.
I am not a pessimist. Normandy held a big meeting last year about the problems in their schools. Almost nobody showed up. 1500 people showed up last night at the school board meeting! Several-hundred students in the narcissistic Nikki Minaj Instagram era protested yesterday in support of Dr. Art McCoy! That is the sign of a healthy community that cares about education. The crowd represented the new flavor of the district. Hard-working black families. If they show up to vote this change will be reflected at the school board and other elected bodies.
The district has a great future. Not all whites are leaving. Look at what is going on on Florissant Road in Ferguson. Restaurants, coffee shops, a micro-brewery, a farmers market and what is developing into a North County version of the Delmar Loop. Not all white Florissant residents are mesmerized by what is going on west of the Missouri River either. Families are maintaining neighborhoods like Old Town Florissant and local businesses like Old Town Donuts, Fritz’s, BJ’s, Cugino’s, and Mattinglys are still thriving.
In addition to that the district is becoming home to a lot of Arab, West African and Latino immigrants. The 1950′s aren’t coming back: but if everyone works together the next decades can be the brightest for the district. However, for this to happen, a transparent board that can deal with the changing demographics is needed and what I saw last night from the board is far from transparency. Fighting hard to hold on to yesterday will not create a better tomorrow.
Having a hard problem posting these videos for some reason but you can view of Redditt Hudson, Chuck Henson and school board member Robert Chabot at my Youtube Channel
Now that the pain of the World Series loss to Boston is over allow me to say a few things:
- if you are the Cardinals fan who smiled and said “aww that is cute” because the Red Sox placed an ad in the St. Louis papers congratulating St. Louis for getting beat you are probably the kind of guy who likes watching his wife get banged and a born loser.
- I said from the beginning Jose Oquendo should have been hired as the manager and the Tea Party Cardinals fan base would not accept it. Can Mike Matheney get the Cards to the finish line? Time will tell but he has had the tools two years in a row and came up empty.
- David Freese is a degenerate alcoholic. Alcoholism and athletics do not mix. This West County frat boy is a disgrace to the team. 2011 was 2011. I don’t wanna see him in a Cardinals uniform any more than I want to see him puking on a Central West End sidewalk again. His addiction has eroded his skills.
-Joe Buck was not cheering for the Red Sox. He just watched Big Papi and gets excited anytime a Dominican goes deep.
- I will say it again. Boston is a soft ass yuppie city second only to maybe corny ass cities like San Francisco or Seattle. On no day is Boston ever stronger than St. Louis. Check the numbers. STL is Murder City.
-Other than that the Cards are in pretty good shape for next season.
Abdi- A Somali refugee living in South St. Louis torn between the deen and the streets
Abdullah-A white convert living in North County also struggling with being in the streets or the deen
Will- A brother from Brooklyn who comes to St. Louis to get clean only to find out there is just as much drama in the STL
Mustafa- A more mature African-American Muslim brothers who mentors the other three as they hustle in the “Milk game”
Set in 1994 the year of Newt Gingrich’s Republican Revolution, the deen is on the rise, gang-banging at it’s peak in St. Louis and the last years of the crack-epidemic this is a story of brotherhood, the realities of the St. Louis police, and what brothers will do to cover up a crime.
Four Muslim brothers in St. Louis form a bond of brotherhood while hustling in the “milk game”. When one of the brothers, a young refugee from Somalia, commits a brutal murder in the Shaw Neighborhood on the South Side, the other brothers have to help and cover it up. A tale of brotherhood, race, the streets of St. Louis, city cops and Islam.
Available at the Amazon Kindle store here for just 99 cents.
Growing my hair back after all these years. this for the motherfuckers that said I was bald.
Wasn’t thinking about the government shutdown till the guy I asked to borrow money told me he’d been furloughed…..dealing with addicts takes patience….small town lawyers in small town junior-circuit for a reason….Sam Bradford a bust now you believe me….Chuck Liddell is an old skinhead with a glass jaw…I respect MMA and love wrestling but hate the right-wing skinhead culture of the UFC Plantation…Not interested in Chavez-Vera II in the corrupt state of Texas….why do ugly girls wear niqaab? Saw a group of niqaabis looked a herd of retired NFL lineman crossing the street the other day….speaking of niqaab been told to beware of the con-artist Umm Niqaab out of Orange, NJ who has ripped a lot of Muslims off….Lena Headey Queen Cersei the baddest woman on Game of Thrones she single-handefly got me liking whitegirls again.. Whiteboy yuppie rapper tries to lecture Brand Nubian on hip-hop man go ride your bike to the kickball game and shut the fuck up…don’t hate procreate if the bed break use some duct tape. Go Cards!
Interesting night so I will share a little.
Big Shot Chef: This guy was with a group. He said he flew into cook at the Lumeiere. Had to be a big shot chef. Anyway from the convo with his friends guy must be a celebrity chef might even be on TV. I don’t watch cooking shows ( if I did it would have been Paula Deen). Anyway I told them to check out my man Ben’s fancy joint Olios and Elias. They had already been and were going back. Every time I tell a yuppie Ben is a friend their jaw drops from the thought of how does this grubby and grimy mortal know a guy like Ben?
Theatre Guy: Picked up a guy who said Chicago at the Fox Theatre is “my show”. We talked New York and women. I promised him I would see the show.
American Dream: Chinese-American guy. Grew up in a rough neighborhood on the South Side of Chicago working in his parents ghetto Chinese carry-out. Worked-hard, graduated from college, has a good job as an engineer, supports his family now. Good guy. The American Dream. His job though? Helping to make drones. A dream and death intersect. Life is complicated.
Project Trip: Who knew there are projects in Collinsville,IL?
Cheerleaders: Picked up a group of girls who said they worked for the Rams. All hot. Assumed cheerleaders. We argued about the Rams and Sam Bradford in a friendly way. One left a shoe in the cab. Too bad I don’t have a foot fetish. Rex Ryan would have had a field day.
International Business: Group of international young businesspeople. Uruguay, France, India, Spain and one very blessed Argentinian-British sister. I got skills. Trip started with me threatning to kick their asses. Ended with them begging me to be their regular driver.
Inspiration: Lady said “been clean four years. Just got tired of running around being a dopefiend”. God Bless fiamanullah.
Policies like Partition authored by Morticians/ Poof there goes your land like a magician/23 shot in one Chi night project tower fall fight/before you call the narcos blame Chapo/lost all my CD’s fucked up like diabetes/my man only mess with gals on eight section dick stay in a state of infection at the clinic reception/ Holy Hawaiian sends drones to Paki homes arms their homies in Homs/Once made salat at a Jack’n The Box with a pocket full of rocks/now I sleep through rakats/ Warsh Ave cool but I miss Gus still hot enough to make you cuss/no man do I really trust been burned too many times like crust/Canelo smoked like a Cigarello/Machine malfunctioned like a court injunctuon/ Grand Theft Auto I-Phone masterbaters mind going nowhere faster/World Star twerkers and Suburban home jerkers/Color of royality fuckin up mentalities/purple hood communion parole reunion/ transubstansiation on Sam’s Plantation/ bulletts miss like the A-Team like attemps to mainstream/King Solomon locs collapse the temple gentrification/ Dirty Harry Colt 45 too drunk to drive taxi arrives/ Indian better like Vinny Paz internet tough-guy/ dissed Phillies own Angel to rythme yuppie in Bed-Stuy/ Rest in Peace Ken Norton punished Ali’s jaw brother was too raw/
There are maybe like 5 people that keep me on twitter. Probably more like two. Boxing writer Dougie Fischer and a young sage soul sister out of Chicago if you don ‘t include some young St. Louis journalists I like. My old Twitter had 500 or 600 followers. My new one (@STLAbuBadu) I can’t seem to pick up steam. So, I basically just use it to talk shit about my passengers, rant and follow boxing news.
So the sister gave me an idea. I told her I don’t go to jummah anymore. I aint gonna lie. I don’t answer my phone during jummah and I don’t engage in social media. People think im at jummah. I say I was. But I aint at jummah. If I do go it is to meet a brother.
Why? You may ask. You know and I know the imam ( or whoever they let give the khutbah) aint talking about shit. With all the problems in our lives, all the pain, all the social problems in our society, all the wars and the imam talking about some irrelevant b******* or quoting some medieval scholar. If the imam even speaks English. Half the congregation is fighting off sleep. The other half thinking about paying the bills or what they want for lunch. seldom do you get a good khutbah. Now if you are blessed to live in Brooklyn, Philly, North Jersey, DC, ATL, the Chi or the Bay you may have some good options. other than that you’re pretty much f*****. In St. Louis im better off talking to myself or listening to a YouTube lecture. Or reading a book. that has to be more beneficial then going to a place where half the people hate each other and the imam uses the khutbah to talk s*** about his enemies. Or you are told it’s hopeless and you are going to hell!
So, the sister said, why not just have jummah at your house? Invite four or five brothers?
I think it’s a brilliant idea. Not just for me. Not just for brothers. for anyone left out. Anyone not being served by the community.
Brother coming from the streets who need love and support. Instead of some FOB or Madkhali masjid giving you the latest from the KSA why not just invite a few brothers over going through the same struggle and have jummah in your living room?
The young Muslim brother who grew up here whose parents came from Egypt or Pakistan who is not feeling the uncle’s khutbahs. they not even addressing whats real to him. Just have the brothers over for jummah.
The sisters who don’t wanna be shoved into a basement or closet by some imam or administration talking about women’s rights and yet they are told to be unseen unheard. Why not have the sisters over for jummah? Why does some man who doesn’t know your struggle have to be preaching to you?
you don’t need buildings, budgets, boards and bureaucracy. You just need a living room or a basement. you are the community.
Somewhere to go without all the hypocricy. Somewhere you don’t have to lie. You have a girlfriend or boyfriend. OK, let’s talk about it. Bring them too. You like to smoke. Pass it to the right. You saw an interesting documentary. Let’s watch it together. How do I reconcile deen with secular knowledge and modern society? Who knows: but lets discuss. You hate Obama, love Obama, want revolution, in the damn Tea Party, that’s cool.
Are our masjids open like this? Our sisters, on balance, are smarter, better read and have more to offer. Yet their voices are not heard. A sister steps in the dunya and has a boyfriend, a phase, a love, a whatever, she is done in the community. Allah can forgive. The community won’t. They always worried about some girls p**** and what she doing with it. Worry about your own damn p****? They act like it’s a loaf of bread with an expiration date. Most of these niqaabied or supersunnah sisters not really about that life anyway. The shit just hidden. A lifestyle of sexual hypocricy. Oh brother estafurallah I bumped into you. Oh, my niqaab slipped, you saw my nose can you control yourself? And she textin the imam nude pix dying to be his deuce. Not all. Not a few.
The brothers f****** everything that walks Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Zorastian, Caucasian heathens then go hysterical when a sister not wearing “proper” hijab. let’s just meet together. talk with one another. be real. you like girls, you have girlfriends, but you really wanna be a good Muslim family man. You want love. Nobody ever showed you how to love or what family is. We in the boat together let’s talk about it together. You think the imam married to his cousin has something to offer to this conversation?
You don’t pray, you drink, you can’t f****** stand your mother, you are s*** as a father, but you have to lie about all these things at the masjid. Just say mashaallah, alhamdulilah, yeah yeah. Naw akh, let’s talk real. You got HIV we can talk….you aint seen your kids in years we can talk….you high? Still come. addicted to video games. addicted to pornography. Don’t come to lie. Don’t come and tell me you don’t listen to music. You don’t know who Jay-Z is. Come and be real. Come and tell me the feds are f****** with you because you are Muslim. That you are black and don’t wanna be treated like an abd. That you are white and don’t wanna be a mascot. That you a Desi but don’t know s*** about Pakistan. That,when you were young and dumb you thought of blowing yourself up. That you went to ISNA and were bored by the lectures but fiended for the Desi girls. That you dropped a body years ago and it still stares at you in your sleep. That you feel death is near. That you don’t make plans because you don’t plan to live. That the jones is too sweet. That you cry in your car to sad songs. That sometimes you felt more at peace in prison. That you drank 40 ounces, smoked one more and then read 40 hadith. That you love Rasulullah but you love Nietzsche. Or Kafka. or brother George Jackson. Or Howard Zinn. Or Russell Kirk. Or Ayn Rand. Or Pac. That you think like Lupe but act like Beanie. That you wish Ramadan was all year. That you love oud and the smell of the masjid but hard to stay on deen poppin codeine. Got Allah to thank but high off the purple drank. The Sunnah smell sweet like a rose but the browngirl going up your nose. That you came to the masjid to be close to Allah and got further away. That you don’t have the answers. We don’t either. It’s an idea. maybe your living room. maybe mine. maybe under a tree. maybe at the beach. maybe at a park. maybe we can just talk……