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Briana

Briana

Spelmanite & Creativity Addict. I get my daily fix through writing, acting, vlogging, & dreaming of an idealistic future, one for which I frequently advocate.
Briana

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Stop Telling Women To Smile

“Bitches these days can’t take a fucking compliment!” I’m told.

I didn’t see his face

but he sounded like

the scratch of a fingernail on a rough patch of a scab not quite healed over

the sound it makes when you

pick over and over

till the skin pulls back

and you’re bleeding

again

 

when I first got to the city

a stranger hit on me

and my first instinct was to say thank you

so I said thank you

 

the stranger

surprised

smiled wide

and invited …

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Shades of Roise

#ShadesofRosie is a campaign that seeks to start and maintain a conversation about intersectionality in our movements and in our lives. Through the feminist icon, Rosie the Riveter, we want to show how diverse women are and thus how diverse our movement has to be in order to truly fight for them. Feminism is evolving and this Women’s History Month, #ShadesofRosie is finding ways to highlight that evolution through a figure that has already seen her meaning change as society changed.

Fun Fact: Rosie the Riveter wasn’t created …

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Recently, three students filed a discrimination complaint against their teacher because her lecture on structural racism made them uncomfortable. They felt, as white men, they were being attacked. In fact, they thought many of their classes where re-hashing the same thing, where white, heterosexual males were made out to be the bad guys or at least were being unfairly singled out.

When I read that story, I immediately thought of times in my academic career where I was uncomfortable. One in particular stuck out in my head:

One of …

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I am a nineteen year old African American female and the murder of Renisha McBride is yet another reminder that I am not safe.

In what is fast becoming the newest trope, Renisha McBride is yet another young black life lost to a white man “standing his ground”. It is safe to assume Renisha was disoriented when she entered Dearborn Heights, a suburb in Detroit, Michigan. Her cell phone had died and it is generally believed she was looking for help. What she found was the home of Theodore …

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DonLemon

#BlackTwitter has long been a facet of social media that many have found incredibly interesting. It seems to be mainly associated with the remarkable ability black users have to create interesting, entertaining and trending conversation on the platform. It’s latest project, #DonLemonOn, shows all the signs of other extremely popular #BlackTwitter hashtags: It’s funny, snarky, disarmingly enlightening, and users have made creating the best tweets a highly competitive game of wits.

 

It all started when Don Lemon commented on the highly controversial stop-and-frisk policy, partially defending the law …

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To all the White Women who took #WhiteGirlsRock seriously:

Look. I get it. Women are conditioned very early on that other women are our competition. We are taught to evaluate and judge each other and to constantly jostle for eyeballs like we’re living advertisements and the world is a never-ending Super Bowl Game. Under these conditions, you may have been brainwashed into thinking that #BlackGirlRocks is a threat to your domination of the patriarchal male gaze you mistakenly believe is admiration.

I understand.

But let’s get one thing straight: …

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Happy National Coming Out Day! Here is a poem to all my claustrophobic LBGTQIA fam that don’t feel safe enough to come out the closet.…

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Happy National Coming Out Day! Here is a poem to all my claustrophobic LBGTQIA fam that don’t feel safe enough to come out the closet.…

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Miss America

I don’t watch beauty pageants. I have no idea what happened last night and I don’t have time to YouTube it. What I do know I’ve learned from the Internet.

We all know what that means.

Welcome to yet another edition of “The Internet Explodes” lovelies! Can’t say I’m happy about it, but here we are.

Yesterday Miss New York, Nina Davuluri, was crowned Miss America. Nina is of Indian descent.

Yes, ma’am, Miss America is brown. The woman we have deemed most beautiful in all the land is …

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Wrecking Ball

In the overall scheme of things, Miley Cyrus is Lindsey Lohan is Brittany Spears is I don’t care anymore, why are we still talking about her, seriously?

 

In the context of contemporary news, she is, interestingly enough, a segue-way for so many conversations. Why is black culture automatically associated with hyper-sexuality? Should the appropriation of ratched culture be a concern to the African American community?

 

Is nudity automatically sexual?

 

Miley Cyrus has once again created a controversial musical video and once again everyone is talking about …

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Intersectionality on twitter

By now much of the advocacy community has heard of #solidarityisforwhitewomen, #blackpowerisforblackmen and #F*ckcispeople, started by @karnythia, @JamilahLemieux, and @Stuxnetsource respectfully. Intersectionality (the study of intersections between different disenfranchised groups or groups of minorities) has run rampant on Twitter and I’ve been having a BLAST voicing my grievances, listening to other’s grievances, and fighting trolls with every bit of strength embedded in my keyboard. But not everyone has been having a great time on these tags and I am here to help with a few tips:

 

One: Check …

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Rocked by

Waves

of fear and rage and

Drowning

in incredulity: What happened to democracy? I am

Drenched

in sweat. I can’t watch. There is no

Middle

ground. We cannot let this

Pass

unnoticed as more

Brown Bodies

Repeat history and we are

Imprisoned,

repeat history and we are

Force Fed

“Freedom” as real as plastic tubes shoved down our noses.

 “Stop. Stop it. Please! STOP!”

“Force Fed” by Briana Dixon

            I watched a video three times today. In this video Yasiin Bey (Mos Def) was shackled to …

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cheerios girl

I didn’t comment on the cheerios thing because I felt a lot of people had it covered and I screamed on twitter. But then I wrote this poem so here:

 

Balancing

She is real life cirque de solei

She is heel-toe unpaid acrobat

not quite privileged

not quite disenfranchised

brown skin, straight hair

big nose, blue eyes

she is balancing

if this was black and white tv

she wouldn’t show up on the screen

cause either/or, she’s neither

The sequel to jungle fever

Every little feature is built …

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Go Missin

Rape Culture is when a culture normalizes, excuses, tolerates or even condones rape.

Exhibit A:

Imagine this. I am driving in a car when Go Missin by Usher comes on. The person in the car with me starts singing along.

Harmless right?

WRONG.

The correct reaction to this song is for me to pull the car over and we both hop out, screaming our heads off. Because that song is scary guys. It is pull the car over in the middle of traffic and run away scary. Everyone is …

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Rape Culture is when a culture normalizes, excuses, tolerates or even condones rape.

Exhibit A:

Imagine this. I am driving in a car when Go Missin by Usher comes on. The person n the car with me starts singing along.

Harmless right?

WRONG.

The correct reaction to this song is for me to pull the car over and we both hop out, screaming our heads off. Because that song is scary guys. It is pull the car over in the middle of traffic and run away scary. Everyone is …

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Rape Culture is when a culture normalizes, excuses, tolerates or even condones rape.

 

Exhibit A:

 

Imagine this. I am driving in a car when Go Missin by Usher comes on. The person n the car with me starts singing along.

 

Harmless right?

 

WRONG.

 

The correct reaction to this song is for me to pull the car over and we both hop out, screaming our heads off. Because that song is scary guys. It is pull the car over in the middle of traffic and …

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Recently I came across an article on the Catholic News Agency (http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/cw/post.php?id=713) that presented the argument that marriage can never be gay because marriage was not intended for “happiness”, but for “the good of the other(s). The primary “other” being the spouse, and the subsequent “others” being children who issue forth from that union.” Let me begin with saying that I agree.

Don’t kill me.

            I don’t think that marriage was originally intended for happiness. The author notes that for thousands of years we have all bought into this …

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I am

A miniature of all things else

A microscope of all things else

All things else is being cared for

Seen to

Helped and sheltered but

I am

so small all that won’t reach me

it will barely brush the surface of my troubles

 

I am

All things else when it was new

All things else still unformed

All things else tries to mold me

Shape me

shelter and fix but

I am

Brave enough to walk through fire

Forge myself into creation with minimal assistance

 …

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Stuff

 …

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As a daughter of the South, I’ve been party to the celebration of state’s rights for most of my life.

I have been informed that America is special because it allows the micro-governments in each state to shape its own laws and regulations to best fit the people residing in their area. Every state is different, and therefore they require slightly different legal environments.

But I was under the impression that we decided a long time ago, equality is universal.

So excuse me if I’m a little incredulous at …

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I just found out that one of the rapists in the Steubenville case  is appealing on grounds of mental instability.

To be clear he isn’t saying he is mentally ill. No, he’s just sixteen and therefore is entitled to a few mistakes. After all, most sixteen year olds commit rape! It’s a part of growing up! (This, mind you, is sarcasm.)

Apparently sixteen year olds don’t have fully developed decision making centres in their brain and so its wrong to hold this boy accountable for his actions.

Funny how that …

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Internet Lesson of the Day: Always blame the victim.

That girl was beaten up by her boyfriend? Well , what did she do to piss him off?

That boy was murdered? Well, why was he walking around in the dark, in a hoodie, in the first place?

That girl was kidnapped, drugged, urinated on, and raped? Well, was she drunk?

Does it matter?

Today we learned that the boys charged in the Steubenville case have been found guilty of rape. The fact that we were worried about …

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As someone who is still suffering from the debilitating revelation that Mississippi has JUST NOW ratified the 13th amendment (the one that abolished slavery) my faith in Republicans in general has been on a serious decline. So when I found out that VAWA got through the House, which has a Republican majority, I was overjoyed! Finally, Congress was making sense.

When I found out that VAWA passed DESPITE the majority of Republicans who voted against it, I was disappointed.

Not surprised, but disappointed nonetheless.

Though I am overjoyed …

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THE INTERNET IS EXPLODING WITH CONSCIOUSNESS and I thought I’d jump on the bandwagon. Warning, this is pretty long. I may do a summarized version for those of you with short attention spans (If you haven’t left already).

First a brief summary of why I’m making this blog post:

Becoming YouTube did a video on “The Girls* of YouTube” (which you should watch first: Girls on YouTube | BECOMING YOUTUBE | Video #7 ) and it was  somewhat controversial.

Hence, female YouTubers responded with mild irritation.

Because of that …

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This is a rant.

Just wanted to clarify that for everyone who is going to disagree with me in the comments so you understand how deeply I DO NOT CARE.

Today I learned that the definition of “growing a pair”, as a facebook commenter so quaintly put it, means “sticking to your guns” when you issue an offensive statement with heavy racist and sexist undertones.

Because it’s satire guys. You can be a total jerk if it’s satire! I mean COME ON.

Thank you Facebook, for yet another enlightening …

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When you say I sound white or act white, you are, intentionally or not, saying 3 things:

  1. White is some optimum state of being that I am trying to achieve through my actions and words, rather than Standard English being a language I acknowledge is necessary to progress in the world.
  2. My attempt to achieve this optimum state amuses/angers you because, as I am an inferior being, my efforts are surprising/uppity.
  3. Ebonics, slang, whatever, a language that evolved out of arguably the most driven effort to SURVIVE that the

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A video about me and why I chose to be pro-choice.…

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December 1, 2012: World Aids Day.

December 27, 2012: I realize the article I wrote for World Aids Day never uploaded….so…HERE IT IS! :)

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

Being young, African American, and female is like being Primrose Everdeen with no Katniss to back you up. Frequently I find myself in the position where the odds are not in my favor, especially when it comes to health issues. Health disparities are a very real thing in America and they suck.

So when someone tells me that it’s World Aids Day the first thing …

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Use.Your. Words!

Here is a video on debating! Enjoy!…

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Urban Retreat was weeks ago and I’m still suffering withdrawals . Unless you have been to retreat, it is hard to explain the energy, the amazingness, that is a roomful of youth activists and their mentors all working together to find better ways to be make the world more wonderful. I was going to write a review of it, but you would have to literally become an empath and feel my feelings to understand.

 

The only downfall of retreat is that reality seems a lot sharper when you …

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At the risk of alienating everyone who hated biology in high school, today we are going to talk about evolution.

Don’t look at me like that. O_O

“Survival of the fittest”, like many simple sound bites used to summarize very complex ideologies, has been taken out of context to such an extreme degree that few know that when Darwin referred to the “fittest” he was not referring to the strongest or even the smartest species, but to the species that was the most adaptable. This biological concept has often …

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Pro-Life. There is so much implied in that word. For example, if you are not pro-life does that make you anti-life? If you’re anti-life, are you a horrible person? These are questions many people have to deal with every day, especially people like me who live in states like Mississippi. There are many things that can be said about Mississippi and its track record with reproductive health (like being number one in teen pregnancy for example) but I truly believe Initiative #26 takes the cake.

"Initiative #26 would amend …