Navigating the heart: a journey marked by pseudo-political correctness, inclusion, misplaced ideology, and misdirection. This ain’t “Pokémon Go.”

The “rope-a-dope,” the baseball player’s ball hidden in the glove to pick off someone on a base, inflated or deflated footballs, doping…throughout human endeavors there have been and continue to be sleight of hands trickery, nefarious schemes to cheat or win influence, or just hiding behind the concept that “all is fair in….”

While one national political party convention presented a dark assessment of America; cautionary warnings of dire straits ahead, and the only solution being a righteous return to the “good old days” under a single leader who will re-position the country on the right track, the other meeting is approaching closure projecting a different, somewhat Ronald Reagan influenced portrayal of where America is at this point in time.

The "one left standing" national political gathering now sits at a supposedly “common ‘unified’ table,” and continues to be impacted by thunderous and repetitive external misconceptions addressing the meeting's political correctness, [which has become a mantle for those who do not want to embrace the truth.] With critical thinking, it is clear that there is a quiet, insidious subtly that this one national party is steadily drifting towards becoming “black.” And while there are ongoing statements and insinuations about that party’s direction, which appear to be permeated by mistruths [fact checker confirmed] and ongoing appeals to the basest instincts of the American electorate, there is one single issue that we all have to make a decision on, right now.

Do Black lives matter?

If we are honest with our hearts, we inherently accept that white lives matter.

We understand and embrace that police lives matter (and sanctioned by the legal system to impress that singularity on us even more.)

We embrace the fact that other lives matter.

But black lives?

Notwithstanding the recent outcome of the Freddie Gray cases in Baltimore, I was struck by the Democratic National Committee’s (DNC) pivotal decision to give a platform to some of the mothers whose black children lost their lives as a result of interactions with police. Of course, this action was judged as being another example of political correctness since the DNC did not offer its national and worldwide stage to the wives of slayed and murdered police officers even as the stories of those losses were keenly articulated by other platform speakers who were active men in Blue and first responders. After the mothers spoke in unison, the stadium filled delegates chanted “Black lives matter,” over and over again.

I suspect America’s racial history of enslavement, segregation, discrimination, Jim Crow, dogs, water hoses, beatings, lynchings, castrations, rapes, cross burnings, hooded faces, bombings, assassinations, and legal statues to restrict and not expand voting rights tend to systematically block a national understanding of and appreciation for the depths of despair and hurt when black lives are lost, perhaps, unnecessarily. If we turn away from these realities, we will never comprehend current realities.

Ponder this sharing from a concerned American:

The day after I watched Alton Sterling and Philando Castile murdered on television and on the internet, I trembled all day long. Non stop. Like an internal vibration throughout my body. I have fear. Intense fear. I was petrified of leaving the house to go to work. But I did. I have tears, a multitude of them. Staining my face, and wetting my shirt. I can't really explain, the depth of pain I feel. The grief. The hyper vigilance. I can't really put into words my emotional state. I've been traumatized by this. I’m forever changed.

As a result of Castile’s loss of life, a company named Pollen, located in Minnesota, issued a call for art for Philando Castile. That same night, an aaduna contributor wrote a poem that was published on Pollen’s site (

Tyeastia "Tye" Green (photo provided)
Tyeastia Green’s poem was published on July 19th. She states, “I’m very proud of this piece, and I am inspired to speak up and speak out as a person of color who have myself experienced harassment by the police, and guilty of driving while Black.”

She shares her poem with aaduna’s readership and blog followers:

I am Philando Castile

“Thug: noun
a cruel or vicious ruffian, robber, or murderer.”

I’m not a thug. My dreadlocks hang on the nape of my neck
There’s a halo of pride
A glow of esteem, built upon by all of those who came before me.
My people, who have long since passed
Leaving their legacy.
As we continue to search for the cultural identity stolen
When we mounted ships for the land of free. I’m not a thug.

Education won’t spare me.
Money won’t refrain me
The love of my family, can’t keep me in safety.
For there are too many who fear me.
Too many who see me, threatened by my physicality.
Because I was born into a country
That never meant for me to be free. I’m not a thug.

Thug is code for the N word you don’t want to speak.
Thug is code for the cowardice you feel, unfoundedly.
As my blood spills.
Apparently, too much to ask not to be killed
In a country my ancestors built.
Their chains traded for our graves. I’m not a thug. 

They search for any hope of derailment.
Any sign that my appearance meets their suspicions.
To justify the unjust.
They look for a record, a felony or two.
In hopes of attaching truth
As they have named me, thug.
When they can’t find it, they finally embrace me.
White tears spilled
On the ground that bears my memory.
A moment too late, just before my family buries me. I’m not a thug.

I want to return home safely.
But in fear, trembling hands, and a pounding heart beat
As I look at my loved ones when the suns peaks.
Kiss them goodbye, and I love you is said, as our eyes meet.
Never knowing if this is the day
My see you later, meant goodbye.

I’m not a thug.

I’m not a thug.


We say, “How do we make America's communities safe again for every citizen and person living in these "united" States of America, regardless of one's political persuasion, age, gender identity and orientation, religion, cultural background, race, profession, chosen career, or how the media has wrapped each State in either blue or red? Are Americans defined as a specific category or are we more than that?

You decide.

And then act with an open heart, sense of purpose, heart-felt understanding of the needs of others, and an acceptance of America's racial history. Just know...

Our actions must be collective and not driven by any single person, doctrinaire, or dictatorial intent.

Tyeastia Green’s work in aaduna can be reached via