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Published by thesoultown, 2020-02-19 21:51:25

TS OCT 2019

TS OCT 2019

Oct. • Nov. 2019


Oct. 201w9 •wTwhe.tShoeusltoouwlntoInwtenr.ncaotmional Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •




Hello, Beautiful Readers of The Soultown!

Welcome, October! There’s so much happening in our communities and The Soultown Digital & Print Magazine
is ecstatic to be the platform used to disseminate the information.

In What’s Really Good? Chaveevah informs us about the 1619 Project, by Nikole Hanna-Jones. East High
Graduate and Female Advice Columnist shed light on the life of a flight attendant. Leave It Up to Steve! If you
want the truth. Our exclusive is about the importance of having close friends in the workplace. How it increases
the production of oxytocin -- the hormone that floods our bodies when we’re happy. The Soultown’s very own

Dear Big Q & Queen Gabby give their sound advice on what and how to behave to keep solid relationships.

As always, our Innovative Extraordinaire, Chillin continues to be the voice for the voiceless, The Sankofa Vow
reminds us to never forget the lives lost, nor the officers responsible for their deaths.

I am Priscilla Culp, Guest Editor-in-Chief for The Soultown Digi & Print Mag., and I thank you for having


Priscilla Culp is a vehement social justice educator, who was born and raised in Waterloo, IA. She is the proud
mother of two sons and a beautiful, inquisitive granddaughter. She is currently an elementary school assistant
principal, loving every second of her calling, who is a candidate for her Doctorate in Education.

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •


Publisher/ Innovative Extraordinaire: Digital & Print Magazine
Cherie “Chillin’ da Conscious Poet” Kabba
Editor-in-Chief: Haisan 2X Inside
Authentic Advisor: Tyra Nelson-Reck this
Editor-in-Chief: Issue
Priscilla Culp CHILLIN’ -
Phone: 319.505.4020
Website: Subscription form ............................................................... 5
Email: [email protected] OR Contributing Artists ............................................................ 6
[email protected] What’s Really Good? .......................................................... 7
Design & Layout: Feature ............................................................................. 8-9
Cherie “Chillin’ da Conscious Poet” Kabba Leave It All Up to Steve ..................................................... 10
Director of Photographer: Michael Muhammad Million Dollar ?..............................................................12-13
Illustration: Tammy Laughlin - Laughlin Out Loud Cover Story ....................................................................... 14
Sales Reps: Mack Gunnerman Puptown Stories ................................................................ 18
Postmaster: Faith Enthusiast ................................................................. 26
Send address changes to: The Griot ........................................................................... 23
The Soultown c/o Kabba Kreations LLC Big Q ................................................................................. 24
Address of Publication: Dear Gabby ....................................................................... 25
505 Walker Dr. Suite 7 The Sankofa Vow ................................................................31
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Kabba Kreations LLC • All rights reserved

© 2017 The information on website and in print
form is for information purposes only. The Soultown Magazine or
Kabba Kreations LLC assumes no liability or responsibility for any
inaccurate, delayed or incomplete information, nor for any actions
taken in reliance thereon. The information contained about each
individual, event or organization has been provided by such
individual, event organizers or organization without verification
by us.

The opinion expressed in each article is the opinion of its author
and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editor, authors,
publisher, or any other party associated with The Soultown
Magazine or Kabba Kreations LLC. Therefore, The Soultown
Magazine or Kabba Kreations LLC. carries no responsibility for
the opinion expressed thereon.

Comments are welcome, but they should be on-topic and
well-expressed. Abusive, antisocial or off-topic comments will
be deleted by layout and web administrators. All comments,
suggestions or concerns should be sent to [email protected]

Any form of reproduction of any content on this website without
the written permission of the publisher is strictly prohibited. The
Soultown Magazine or Kabba Kreations LLC is a trademarked
company; all rights reserved. ,

Contact The Soultown Magazine:
[email protected]

The Soultown Digi & Print International Magazines are
recognized by the Library of Congress.

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •



Visit to view complete schedule

Talk Live

w/ Deb Berry
Dr. John Berry
Rev. Abraham Funchess
& Sauya Ammar

FRIDAY @ 10am

THE TALKING DRUM Friday & Saturday Jazz for the People
11:00pm-3:00am w/Carrizozo Joe
w/ Dr. Pierre-Damien
Mvuyekure Monday-Thursday
11:00am - 2:00pm

11:00am - 1:00pm

Parents Love Saturday w/ DJ Commando
Your Children
6:00pm - 11:00pm Monday - Friday
w/Elder T.E. Sudduth 3:00pm - 7:00pm
10:00am - 11:00am FM 88.1 Waterloo

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •



Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebratin50g5 W2ALyKEeRaDrR.sSU•ITCE #o7n•nMeOUcNtTiAnINgVIOEW,uCrA 9C40u43ltures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •




The Soultown’s October 2019 Contributing Artists

The Griot Puptown Stories Faith Enthusiast


Truth Seeker Guest Editor What’s Really Good?


Big Q! Leave It All Up to Steve! Dear Gabby!


Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •



WATERLOO, IA - Hearing noted New York Times that garners respect. As a reporter with the New CHAVEEVAH
investigative journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones York Times, her investigative writing has focused FERGUSON
deliver UNI’s Constitution DayAddress on Monday, on racism and racial injustice and in the tradition
September 16 was a revelation. She spoke openly of Ida B. Wells, Hannah-Jones’ work compels What’s Really Good?
and honestly on the topic “Separate and Unequal” society to look at things it has grown accustomed
at the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center, to ignoring. Her journalistic achievements are _______________
laying bare many truths about America’s historic
disregard for the role slavery played in this notable in a society that marginalizes Black Learn more about Chaveevah Ferguson
nation’s development — information that many people in general and Black women in particular. at
of us either did not know or were not comfortable Nikole co-founded the Ida B. Wells Society for what-s-really-good-.html
acknowledging. Hannah-Jones talked about her Investigative Reporting, with the idea of training
thought-provoking initiative, The 1619 Project, and mentoring other Black women in the field of Email Me: [email protected]
which presents an honest and more inclusive investigative journalism.
narrative of American history. The 1619 Project is outstanding, as it not only
commemorates the 400 years since slavery began
Supported by facts and research, Hannah-Jones in this country; it also provides an unflinching,
traces a time line that reveals brutality and human realistic look at our history rather than an idealized
rights violations that have plagued this country since version that conceals far more than it reveals.
before its inception. She asserts that revealing and The 1619 Project may be accessed at the New
acknowledging what has been omitted from our York Times website. Also, a 1619 Project podcast
history will help address the inequity that prevents series and 1619 Project curriculum are available
this nation from living up to its ideals. It was a online for educators and anyone else interested in
pleasure listening to the clear connections she made challenging, reshaping and broadening our view
between past inequity and present injustice as she of history and African Americans’ contributions to
engaged the capacity audience. this society.

It was even more pleasant meeting her at I am Chaveevah Ferguson, I thank Nikole
an informal gathering the evening before her Hannah-Jones for having SOUL! ,
UNI presentation and seeing that, while she is
accomplished, nationally-recognized, and — yes,
famous — she is also a woman of the people.
Surrounded by classmates and friends with
whom she’d grown up in Waterloo, she was in her
element sharing food, drinks, laughter, and the
trash-talking that accompanied a friendly game
of spades. In that setting, she wasn’t the famous
writer who describes herself as “the Beyonce of
journalism” and who has appeared on several
nationally-syndicated shows including CBS This
Morning, The Breakfast Club, and VICE; she
was just Nikole. Graciously, she even stepped
away from her limited relaxation time to do a brief
interview with me and Joshalyn Johnson for the
“Ms. Rocki n Chaveevah LIVE!” show.

More than her numerous awards including
the MacArthur Foundation ‘Genius Award’, it is
the content and straightforwardness of her work

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •



East High Grad Flies High in the Friendly Skies

LAS VEGAS, NV - So here I am, a candidate to be a Courtesy Photo abbreviations, more than 100 airport codes, military
flight attendant for an airline. Even though I had been Gabrielle proudly displays her certificate of completion. time, and the safety passages. My time was limited.
at this for a while, I didn’t know that it would happen. I am good at memorizing, so I learned the airport
I had no clue what to expect, I just knew that my life codes first, then packed. I double check to make sure
was changing and that I needed to get prepared. I had everything I needed. Must have items included:
I graduated from East High School in 2006 and a working watch, black slacks, white oxford shirts,
dreamed of being a flight attendant. After informing black heels, a tote bag, school supplies, passport,
everyone I had made it past the interview stage, we and a host of other things.
were all so excited. I was bombarded with questions,
in which I had no answers and wanted to know what The day came. It was time for me to leave the state
were the next steps. of Iowa. I had everything I needed and I was excited.
I made it to Denver nine hours before I had to start
The next step was training. I waited a month for the training.
airline to let me know if I cleared the background as
well as the drug test. I wasn’t nervous, but I wanted I met a fellow trainee on the elevator. She wished
a time line. Finally, this journey would take 3.5-weeks me good luck! I This was going to be a piece of cake
-- training. I had questions. Who was I going to if I could get to my room and go over the safety
train with? Will it be hard? Had I saved enough passage I had procrastinated on learning.
money? What I would miss leaving home? I was
overwhelmed with emotions, We all met in the breakfast seating area in the hotel.
but I had to keep my head in Awaiting the shuttle, we introduced ourselves to one
the game. another. We were a group of 15. On the shuttle, we
all sat in silence not knowing what to expect. The
I worked. I saved, and I rules were solidified before we entered the building.
studied. The study guide
consisted of airline/aircraft “Leave absolutely nothing in the testing room
when you are done, you

“... Immediately, I went back to the hotel at the end
of the day, shut off my phone and studied that safety
passage until my eyes burned. I had one more time
to mess up on a verbal. I had to understand it and
recite it verbatim, otherwise, I would have failed.”

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •


Photo by j on Unsplash

FEATURE can miss one on the written test and one on the oral
Courtesy Photos
Gabrielle takes a practice jump off the plane in case of The rules were clear. There were a certain amount
an emergency evacuation. of points received that could result in termination,
and if we were out of compliance, we would be sent
home immediately. I felt like I was in the military.

The written test was given in one room and the oral
in the other. I wasted no time filling in the answers. I
knew this stuff like the back of my hand. I gathered
all my belongings and headed to the next exam.
One instructor sat in front of me waiting to hear the
safety passage. I got through the 3rd paragraph and
froze. I did not know the rest. I just kept it real with
her and told her I dropped the ball. She assured me
that I would have another chance to redeem myself
tomorrow morning. As I went back into the first exam
room, I noticed 3 people were gone. We were now a
class of 12, and this was not a joke.

Immediately, I went back to the hotel at the end of
the day, shut off my phone and studied that safety
passage until my eyes burned. I had one more time
to mess up on a verbal. I had to understand it and
recite it verbatim, otherwise, I would have failed.
The next morning an Uber was called to pick me up
without the rest of the group. I prayed and began my
speech as soon as I got to the training room. I passed
with flying colors, but ... I only had one lifeline left.

We were given a list of five bases/ hubs to choose
from. Keeping in mind that we may not get our
preferred city. I picked Las Vegas. I was close to my
mother who resides in California, and it was the least
expensive and more exciting than the other 5 cities.
It was also the most junior base for my airline, so I
knew that my seniority would come up quickly and
I wouldn’t be on reserve forever. Everyone in my
class got their first pick. We were excited, but I was
confused at how and why I was moving across the
country again!

I bonded with a woman who was previously a
flight attendant for another airline. I felt like she knew
everything, and she and I became study partners.
Each day we sat in a classroom for 9 hours being
flooded with unfamiliar information. After class, we
would go back to the hotel, study more, and get a
couple of hours of sleep before the next exam. I
called home every day. I needed encouragement
because it had been a while since I’ve had to study
anything. I knew that I only had one written test I
could fail, and I was just hoping that everything else
came naturally to me.

Week one down and another was sent home.
Lucky number 11! Week two got tougher and my

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •



faith in myself began to dwindle. The experience was Courtesy Photo
so hard and every day I wanted to go home. I was Above, class 1905 poses for a quick pic at the fire house after training. Below, Gabrielle learns to put out a fire with
giving up a lot here, and people were counting on firefighter in Denver Colorado to receive a fire certification.
me, but I was losing it. At the start of week 3, I let
loose. I needed some fun, and my friend was coming “Mama, I made it! I was
to Denver to party. I had a test the next morning, but
I needed a drink and scenery outside the hotel. I relieved and humbled
partied all night. The next morning I popped up and
took an exam with 150 questions. I did not miss one. by the experience.”
This was a “get to know yourself “ experience for me.
I can’t stress. I do better when I walk away from work was pass or fail as well. Since I signed up to move
and come back to it later. instead of being a commuter, I had 5 days to make
it all happen. Yes, that’s all, 5 days to move from
Everything wasn’t peaches and cream after this Waterloo, IA to Las Vegas NV.
moment. That’s right… I failed a written exam 4 days
before the final. It was the equipment exam that The next day we graduated! An instructor called
explained the location of safety equipment as well my name, pinned my wings on me and handed me a
as its functions. There was too much information certificate of completion. I was now a flight attendant,
crammed in, and I only could miss 9. I missed 13. and starting a brand new career where I could travel
I was experiencing stress all over again. I had one the world for FREE! Once I returned home, I was
chance to get it all right: I passed my second time embraced by friends and family who couldn’t wait to
and walked on eggshells for the duration of the time. hear about my experience. I even had the chance to
This was not easy for me. encourage some friends to start the journey as well.

CPR and Choking training were combined Now here I am living in Las Vegas, that’s right
somewhere between the final. If you did not Sin City! I got an apartment squared away, I am
demonstrate correctly on the dummies, you were 6 months into my career, there are so many more
out. That was a breeze for me, as well as building details about how this job works. Want to hear about
a bomb stack and conducting an emergency exit. it? Stay tuned, I’m going to tell you all about it.
My favorite part was jumping down the inflated slide.
Seemingly, I was pretty good with the physical stuff, I am Queen Gabby, Flight Attendant and I
I even won an award in self-defense. I was nervous thank all of the trainers, and strangers, now
about the written final. I sat and looked at the test 10 friends -- I’ve gained through this experience
minutes before writing anything down. I was going for having SO MUCH SOUL! ,
to sink or swim. Was I going to drown or become a
Flight Attendant?

The instructors made us sit patiently to find out who
had the job. I had nothing really to go back home
to, and I needed it more than ever at this point. On
the projector I saw a list of names pop up, mine was
there as well. I didn’t know what it meant, but I knew
I wanted to cry. The next slide read “congratulations
class 1905!” Oh my God, all the hard work paid off. I
was starting a new career. “Mama, I made it!” I could
not wait to call and text everyone who helped me
along in this journey. I was relieved and humbled by
the experience.

The instructors ensured us that even though we
passed, we still could get sent home from disruptive
behavior in the hotel. I made sure I followed the
rules and was on my best behavior. After we were
congratulated, we were handed a packet with our
IOE information. This was a packet informing us
of when our test flight would take place, and that

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •


LEAVE IT ALL UP TO STEVE [email protected]

Well, Go Fund Yourself!
best life and teach that young buck
Hey Steve, a couple of things! Circle back and
A GoFundMe page was launched to help let me know what happens, I want to
“Gilligan’s Island” star Dawn Wells -- Mary Ann know. If you need me, I’m right here
with medical and tax bills. I couldn’t believe waiting on you to Ask Steve!
it. Every time you look around, someone is ~ Steve
asking for money. This Go Fund Me craze is
driving me crazy! Steve, what makes sense I am Steve, from Leave It All
for us to fund? Certainly not a celebrity’s bank Up To Steve with The Soultown
account. Magazine. I’d like to thank you for
being so compassionate toward
~ Go Fund Yourself! (Las Vegas, NV) others. I’m here if you have any
other questions - just Leave it All
Well Go Fund Yourself!, Up to Steve! ,
I get it! It does seem like GoFundMe has become
the new hustle of donation solicitation. While it Email Me: [email protected]
is unfortunate that you have people who lie and
scam the system, there are so many people who Dear, I Am No Cougar!
do not. This form of funding has allowed people I am kind of torn on this one. While I think
to connect beyond their circles for help in dire that age really is nothing but a number,
times. We have to remember that celebrity does I also agree that where a person is in life
not mean financially secure, stable or even rich. matters. Now if you are just dating, having
Medical expenses are one of the top causes of fun and enjoying some good sex, I say GO
financial collapse, even for those we think are FOR IT. You should enjoy yourself especially
“well-off.” Like anything else, we have to research if he is just as into you as you him. Now
what we give our money. Let your heart and mind if you are looking for a serious committed
engage in your donation choices. If you are only relationship, I say PROCEED WITH
led by one of those, you will often make a poor CAUTION. Twenty years is not only a
decision. I hope this helps! Holla at your boy and difference in age but in most cases,
remember to just Ask Steve! mindset, experiences, exposure,
financial status, and stability. I
~ Steve am not saying that it cannot
work, I am just saying that
------------------------------------------ you will need to be open,
honest and realistic. In
Hey Steve, the meantime, live your
The editor suggested I ask Big Q or Queen
Gabby, but I’m asking you. I met this guy and
we both are attracted to each other. After a few
phone calls, I find out he’s 20 years younger
than me. We are still dating but I can’t help
thinking about the age difference. In your
opinion, is he too young for me? Actually, I
think my question is am I too old for him?

~ I Am No Cougar! (Las Vegas, NV)

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •



In the past 30 days, The Soultown has asked The Million Dollar ? to random readers across the country via
social media. The target ages are 18 and up. The careers vary between business owners, engineers, web
developers, retail workers, teachers, and homemakers. Our research produced the following responses.

Why Would You Leave Iowa?

My son was failing in school and dropped out. Within less than a year of us moving he
finished his GED and became a certified electrician technician through a trade school. Even with
us facing some major challenges. It also helped him to see more people that looked like him
teaching him and mentoring him and showing him how to use his skills to improve his life. No
offense to anyone but there is more to mentoring than sports. Yes everywhere has their issues

but the mindset shift is priceless. And that is something I couldn’t find back home.
I know I saved my son’s life and kept him out of Black Hawk County Jail.

If it wasn’t for my mom I would have been gone To be near my adult children.
a long time ago. But have to take care of her.
When I lived in
I feel I can do better elsewhere. Waterloo/Cedar Falls most of the people I met
said they were looking for an opportunity to
Opportunity and exposure to things that are more leave the area. Here in the Ozarks, most people
aligned with my personal, professional, cultural and are transplants from other states. Their common
intellectual interests. To be fair, I think that may be why I response is, “I always wanted to live here!”It’s a
might leave any state, Iowa is no exception.
nice change.

Why would you stay? Cost of living, crime is low, My daughter left for a few reasons but I think
education is good. The grass isn’t always greener. limited thinking, dirty looks or ignoring her, people

reaching out touching her hair without asking,
segregated diversity, no opportunities for her.

To get a better job and to have more social I left to create more opportunity for myself and
opportunities. my children. So far it is working.

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •


Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •




Parents/guardians of current 8th graders, plan to
attend one of the following meetings to hear about

new high school program options and help plan
your student’s four-year path to graduation!

Monday, October 28

Noon at the Education Service Center (Board Room)

Tuesday, October 29

6:30 pm at Central

Thursday, October 31

8:00 am at the Education Service Center (Board Room)

Monday, November 4

6:30 pm at Hoover

Tuesday, November 5

6:30 pm at Bunger

Thursday, November 7

6:30 pm at Carver

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •


that continues to grow. “Off the top of my head, I State Representative, Mr. Ras Smith.
believe we are at 70 [entries]”, Williams says. “We The parade will begin at 10:00 a.m. at the
have some AMAZING TEAMS coming to participate
in the parade as well as the Drill Team Competition corner of East 4th and Donald Streets; move south
at East High School later that night.” This year’s on East 4th Street to Sumner St; travel up Sumner
parade proudly presents four parade Grand St. to Beech St.; take a right on Beech St.; turn left
Marshals: longtime civil rights activist and social onto Oneida St.; and end at Ferguson Field, where
justice warrior Mrs. Anna Mae Weems; Waterloo the North End Arts & Music Festival will be held.
Schools Associate Superintendent, Dr. Stephanie
Mohorne; Associate Pastor Chassidi Martin, co- Immediately following the KBBG Parade, the
founder and co-Executive Director of Royal Legacy 11th North End Arts & Music Fest presents its
Christian Academy; and Iowa House District 62 free, family-friendly, community-wide celebration
of music, arts, and culture. The Fest was initially
conceived as a venue where local artists could

present their

I am Chaveevah Ferguson, I thank everyone
who participated in the East -End Weekend for
having SOUL! ,

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •


pos6se0spsyeBorucFeFsnssetuv(ocBecfneewstsitkmosFemfeuyriseletpnonmrdopaosfedererFmsssoosoliirtlikniotedeeanvdlfly.erhiIretnt)aoonipfndabhpsceatihhntv,eeieipannsswcggscaoaoaatrgrnkwdecpdidolnloaargiskcnceetcooy,afnotarnotiuersobrinbu.ejduorvtabiean.vytgSawbufluayoracvrCtbekool,yerm5troe6psahupraaletvsbricnlsyeg,hnioatt wmofathkmaeetsnwhile




Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •
Photo by Maribel

16 Maribel snaps a selfie from her phone from the top of the Grand Can-
yon in Arizona. In front, Maribel, left Ruby and Chillin on the right.


Disneyland Photos Courtesy Photo
The GGs pose for a picture at the Bulls game in Chicago,
From left, Chillin, Ruby and Maribel photos are taken as they enter the Disneyland Park. at the United Center.

The McNeil Family Clubhouse in Menlo Park when I relocated to California on my career, and not Photo by Chillin
(MP), The Moldaw-Zaffaroni Clubhouse in East Palo personal friendships.” Maribel and Ruby leaves Mickey Mouse at home to greet
Alto (EPA) and The Mervin G. Morris Clubhouse his guests and take a spin in his car.
in Redwood City (RC), California are where the “I believe working at BGCP makes it easy to form
friendship of a group of coworkers, Maribel, Ruby, and strong friendships because of the nature of work we
Chillin began. More than 10 years ago, Maribel was do,” Ruby shares, “Maribel and I have spent a lot
the Middle School Director and Ruby was the High of time together both in and outside of work. Chillin
School Director, both worked at the Menlo Park site. and I became close by working the collaborative
Chillin was serving as the Intel Computer Clubhouse events. One day we invited her to join us for dinner
Director at the EPA site. They call themselves the that later led into some off-site adventures. We love
GGs, meaning the Golden Girls. and appreciate that we all come from various cultural
backgrounds and we learned so much about each
These women are significantly older than the other.”
traditional age of newcomers to the organization.
Their hobbies are different from one another, as well YOLO is the acronym of the phrase “you only live
as their nationalities; Ruby is Polynesian, Maribel is once”. Along the same lines as the Latin “carpe diem”
Latina and Chillin is African American. (“seize the day”), it is a call to live life to its fullest
extent, even embracing behavior which carries an
Many times a year, there are trainings, collaborative inherent risk. Research supports that taking a trip
events, and celebrations that unify the clubs. These with friends can actually improve your mental health
commemorative events are where the women often and long-term happiness, so in the spirit of YOLO,
worked together. The work they do at BGCP has the GGs have planned annual excursions that are
played an important role in growing their friendship. fun, but also very adventurous and risky. They have
packed their bags and got away -- for sanity’s sake.
“We model the same kind of friendship we hope to
see in the members. However, it wasn’t until Ruby The most recent was a trip to Disneyland.
helped me to see my view on where I’d meet new Celebrating Ruby’s birthday and Chillin’s 50th
friends had to change,” says Chillin’. “Her reaction birthday, Maribel spontaneously planned the road
to a comment -- ‘I didn’t come to California to make trip to never be forgotten. Maribel gassed up her
friends’ -- helped me realize the error in my words. vehicle, Ruby purchased the tickets, and Chillin
Actually, what I meant was that I was single-focused

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •



Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •



Diquan Richard

Diquan Richard is a Bay Area Native who is currently pursuing an education at San

Francisco State University. He is majoring in Studio Art while minoring in Computer

Animation. Since the age of 13, Diquan has always had a passion to express himself
creatively through his art, music, poetry and his global humanitarian work. He has

dreams of gaining employment at Pixar Animation Studios as a computer animator.

He hopes to help change the lives of children via animation, just as his life changed
after viewing Toy Story for the first time. When Diquan is not hitting the books, or

drawing another comic strip, you can find him donating his time to helping those

less fortunate.

Contact Diquan: [email protected]


The Iowa Legislature passed a new voter identifica- Absentee Voting Register In-person: Black Hawk County Monthly Meetings:
tion bill in the spring 2017 session. Hereʼs what it Courthouse, 316 E 5th St., Waterloo, IA 2nd Thursdays
means for all voters, according to the Black Hawk An absentee ballot may be requested 120 days Cedar Falls City Hall, 220 Clay St., Cedar Falls, IA
County Auditor's office. before the election. Absentee ballots will be mailed Other locations listed at: 515 Beech St.
starting 29 days before an election (used to be 40 Waterloo, Iowa 50703
Be Prepared: days).
Absentee ballots must be received 10 days before a No straight party voting is available in Iowa now. Be •
1. Register to vote in the precinct where you live at general election and 11 days before other elections. sure to vote for all of the offices/ballot issues listed President -
least 10 days before the election. on the front and/or back of the ballot. LaTanya Graves
2. Always take your driverʼs license/non-operatorʼs Absentee ballot voters must include their Iowa Blackhawk County
license with you to vote. driver's license/non-operatorʼs ID number or their Special Groups:
Iowa voter ID card's PIN number on the absentee Branch
Voter Law Changes ballot request form. High School Students - If you are 17, but will be 18
years old by the general election, you can register to Email: waterloonaacp
• Beginning Jan. 1, 2018, registered voters must Registering to Vote vote.
show a driverʼs license or non-operatorʼs ID before College Students - If you are going to school in Cedar
voting. If you are already registered, you do not have to do Falls or Waterloo, you can vote there. You must have Facebook:
If you do not have your ID, in 2018 only, you will be anything unless you move within the county or an ID that has an expiration date on it. A
asked to sign an oath that you are who you say you outside of the county. college/university ID cannot be used. waterloonaacp
are. You can then cast a regular ballot. In 2019 and Online: - Returning Citizens - Those convicted of a felony can P.O. Box 304
on, a registered voter can verify/attest for two request restoring their voting rights after their Waterloo, Iowa 50704
people. ReturnUrl=%2fVoterRegistrationRegister sentence is discharged. Complete the form on the
• If you do not have one of those IDs, you will By mail: Print the form, fill it out completely in Iowa Governor's web sit under Services/Executive
automatically be issued a free Voter ID card. The pen, and mail it to: Black Hawk County Auditor Clemency (
state started mailing Voter ID cards in December Election Department, 316 E 5th St., Waterloo, IA services). Frequently asked questions about
2017. 50703 restoring voting rights are on that same page.
• If you did not receive the Voter ID card or lost it,
the BH County Auditorʼs Office can re-issue one. Call INTERESTED IN JOINING THE NAACP?

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •



JUMP FROM PAGE 17 Courtesy Photo
The GGs pose for a photograph while standing on top of the Grand Canyon, with beautiful scenery in the background.
designed and printed the t-shirts that symbolized the
2019 GGs Trip of the Year. During the 6 hour drive, “It’s cool working for the same organization. Our my husband who loves me unconditionally and
we discovered more truths about each other ... Ruby friendship automatically makes us stand in volunteers accepts me with all of my flaws. He has influenced
is the biggest kid of all and her favorite place in the if needed at events ... and we are welcome in any my ability to be of service to anyone within reach and
world is Disneyland. Chillin, hailing from the Midwest one of the clubs at any time,” says Chillin, “Last constantly uplifts me to be a better person each day.
had never been to Disneyland and she doesn’t ride summer for Maribel’s birthday, Ruby brought her The GG’s provide me with varied perspectives based
the rides. Maribel is the sole GG that will do whatever cupcakes and I led the happy birthday song with the on their culture, values, and life experiences. I love
it takes to make others happy -- just as long as she K-5th graders in the gym. Those kids had no idea that with my husband and GG’s, we can even agree
can listen or watch the 49ers on the radio or any who we were, but because we were dressed in our to disagree and still respect each other’s opinions
mobile device. “I thought we were going to be the BGCP shirts, they knew we were family. because of the admiration and respect we have for
only ones dressed alike at the park”, says Chillin. “I each other. I am truly blessed to have family and
was wrong, there were couples, families and other Ruby shares, “I rely heavily on my spiritual faith to friends like these in my life.”
groups of women on Girls’ trips, just like us.” get me through all of life’s challenges. I appreciate

The GGs have traveled all over the Peninsula / Photo by Chillin
Bay Area, Vacaville, Reno, Las Vegas, Chicago At Disneyland, almost everyone
and once during a road trip, stopped to admire the that travels in a group wears
Hoover Dam before they climbed to the top of the similar t-shirts. The GGs
Grand Canyon, then rode a helicopter to the bottom. grabbed a quick photo of the
Maribel and Ruby -- both Californians -- are die-hard ‘Sisters With Different Misters’
Golden State Warriors fans, and Chillin -- born and and their like t-shirts.
raised in Chicago -- is a Bulls fan. This has never
been a problem. Annually, the female fanatics gear
up and head to a Warriors / Bulls game. This year the
game is at the New Chase Center in San Francisco.
The GGs tickets have been purchased and they’re
ready to go Nov. 27.

“Our next adventure includes joining a gym and
a trip to Hawaii,” says Maribel. Ruby chimed in, “I
hope us GG’s will take a trip to Hawaii together so
they can learn a little more about my Pacific Islander
Heritage and understand more about what shapes
me.” “Well,” says Chillin, “I want to do all of those
things, but I also want to go to Atlantic City. None of
us have been. It’s where one of my favorite movies,
Beaches was filmed. We need to explore more of the
East Coast.”

“I believe what connects us three -- in addition
to working for BGCP -- is that each of us brings
something very different to our friendship, says
Maribel. On the other hand, Ruby believes “what
connects us deeply is all of the good and bad
experiences we have shared at BGCP in our growth.
The challenges we faced individually and collectively
have shaped us for the better, forever. I knew the
GGs were more than just co-workers when they
came to my family’s home to check on me after my
older brother passed away.”

Despite the differences of the GGs, they plan time
to check-in and hang out with each other. Maribel
is single with no children. Chillin is divorced with 2
children and 2 grandchildren and Ruby is married
with 1 daughter.

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •


Disneyland Photo Illustration Photo by Ruby
Anything can happen at Disneyland. The GGs pose for a scary photo illustration. Ruby holds a fire breathing pumpkin In Downtown Chicago, Chillin pretends to hold The Bean
that scares and surprises Chillin and Maribel. up -- The bean is a large public sculpture in Millennium
Park - while Maribel photo bombs her with the Authentic
Warrior towel in the background.

The GGs appreciate their supervisors, Mike Jones, Photo by Ruby
now retired, Richard Washington and their CEO, In a helicopter, the GGs wave and before they take the trip of a lifetime to the bottom of the Grand Canyon, in Arizona.
Peter Fortenbaugh for making the work environment
welcoming and conducive for the staff to have fun
while developing the youth.

It is no secret that hanging out with friends feels
great, but what makes it special is understanding
the science that explains why. In 2016, researchers
discovered that hanging out with friends, also known
as “peaceful associations,” increases the production
of oxytocin -- the hormone that floods our bodies
when we’re happy. When oxytocin is released, it is
proven to make more people trusting, generous, and
friendly during positive social bonding experiences.

The GGs are an example of a friendship developed
at BGCP. The next time you’re headed to lunch with
a coworker, it may not just be lunch, it may be the
beginning of a new peaceful association with your
new BFF.

On behalf of The Soultown Magazine, we
would like to thank the GGs, the Sisters With
Different Misters, BGCP, Mike Jones, Richard
Washington and Peter Fortenbaugh for having

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •


Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •



A Master’s Degree Thesis Blues

Call me a Survivor. Ndi Uwarokotse. I survived the Rwandan Geno/Cide. He was reading an excerpt from
I survived the Rwandan Geno/Cide. The Rwandan Geno/Cide Black Hawk’s autobiography:
The Rwandan Geno/Cide Against Rwandans. Life of Ma-ka-tai-me-she-kia-kiak, or Black
Against Rwandans. But I’m neither a Hutu nor a Hawk.
But I’m neither a Hutu nor a Tutsi. Nor am I a Twa. Gerald Vizenor calls this Native American
Tutsi. Nor am I a Twa. That’s for humans to be ethnic. Survivance.
That’s for humans to be ethnic. Survivability, according to Ray Young Bear, a
I am an Umurera born in Murera region, in Meskwaki bard who specializes in “Word
I am an M.A. Thesis titled Nyakinama County, south of the volcanoes, in Collecting.”
Ideals and Absolutes in Herman Ruhengeri Prefecture, in northern Rwanda,
Melville’s Fiction by near I, too, am a Survivor. Ndi Uwarokotse.
Mvuyekure Pierre-Damien, Mukungwa River, on the Ruhengeri Campus of I survived the Rwandan Geno/Cide.
Ruhengeri, Rwanda, June 1986. Université Nationale du Rwanda— The Rwandan Geno/Cide
My Pen Master left me in his Monsignor Georges-Henri Lévesque, a Against Rwandans.
Mother’s house at Kirwa Dominican from Quebec, founded it in 1963, a But I’m neither a Hutu nor a
Hilltop in Mugambazi County in year after Tutsi. Nor am I a Twa.
Buliza Region, Kigali Prefecture. Rwanda recovered its Independence from That’s for humans to be ethnic.
Mvuyekure Pierre-Damien, son of Belgium—
Bisama Jean—Umupfumu a Dr. Bruce E. Fleming served as my I sleep and wake up in my Pen Master’s office
Sorcerer according to Rutongo Parish Literary “gynecologist”—Thesis Director— Atop Neo-HooDoo books by Ishmael Reed--
White Missionaries—and Fulbright people sent him to the “jungle” with UncleIsh invented Neo-HooDoo Aesthetic
Mukagatare Marie Thérèse— Indemnités de brousse, special grants for living Based on African Vodun from Benin, Togo,
a Medicine Woman Herbalist—Both in the Ghana, Nigeria, and Congo--
Root Doctors-- Bush of Rwanda. He enjoyed jogging and One time Max Roach’s drums giggled and
visiting proclaimed
Left me for Buffalo on a Fulbright grant to Dian Fossey (a.k.a. Nyiramacibiri)’s Gorillas on
Study American Literature at SUNY Buffalo. Karisoke Volcano— JUMP TO PAGE 27
He left me in a brown box to mice, They became Gorillas in the Mist.
Cock/roaches, book/worms, damp/ness, Orphaned.
War, Inkotanyi Tutsi fighters, Interahamwe
Hutu militia, Geno/Cide, Post/-Geno/Cide I am happier now but worried: DR. PIERRE MVUYEKURE
Trauma. I now live in Ioway--the so-called
Mvuyekure, my Pen Master, left me for a Hawkeye State--in Black Hawk County. The Griot
Ph.D. in Buffalo, New York. Yaransize I once caught my Pen Master reading about
Mvuyekure ngo agiye kwiga Dogitora i Buffalo. how ________
Left me alone in lonely solitudes with/out a President Andrew Jaclson--
Room of my own. I got so Founding Father of The Trail of Tears--’s Learn more from
Sorrow-stricken, jealousy-ridden U.S. Army fired at Chief Black Hawk, even as The Griot at:
I wished him to swim in Niagara Falls for/ever. He was waving a white flag. They captured and
Imprisoned Chief Black Hawk in the East.
I am a Survivor. Ndi Uwarokotse. I once spied on my Pen Master: Email Me: [email protected]

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •



Get In the Car and Go!
own medicine. If you want to be extremely petty subscribers with a makeup bag of five deluxe
DEAR GABBY ... LEAVE HIM! Yep, get in the car and go. Be on cosmetics samples. The products include
your time, not his. skincare items, perfumes, nail and skin
Female Advice Columnist products, and makeup. I love it and want to
~ Gabby pay it forward to a friend girl. What is a decent
----------------------------------------------- ------------------------------------- trial period -- as a gift -- that doesn’t make me
Dear Gabby, look cheap?
Learn more about Queen Gabby’s advice at This blind date life is for the birds. I went out to a club and this clingy guy appeared as if ~ Ms. Giver
he had on eyeliner and kept calling me ‘gyrl’. Las Vegas, NV
Email Me: [email protected] I don’t want to make any assumptions, but
what’s the best line I can use to remove myself Dear Ms. Giver,
Dear Gabby, from an uncomfortable situation? Hey girl, I love IPSY! Love it so much that I
I am not ashamed to admit it, but I have a low, upgraded mine. The way that it’s setup makes it
short haircut and my man has long dreads. ~ IJS easy for me to answer this question. IPSY allows
When we go out, it takes him a lot longer than Davenport, IA you to pay for 3 months. It’s only $30, and that
it takes me. He blames it on his locs. I would allows your friend time to figure out if this is
not be seeking advice if it was not excessive. I Dear IJS, something she wants to continue or not. If she’s
am not jealous and I love his swag, but is there Okay, wait…he had on eyeliner sis? Did he keep into makeup, skincare, or even hair care, then I
a way I can help him decrease his prep time? calling you gyrl? RUN! Don’t even search for the am sure she will love it. The price is not expensive
right words just haul a**. We are living in different at all, and she gets a surprise every month. Good
~ Short & Sass times, and it’s hard to find a manly man. I am on idea, I think you should go for it. Do make sure
Waterloo, IA the dating scene now, and I am more honest than you remove your card information right after your
what I use to be. Honestly, I would look at him like purchase because they will automatically bill you
Dear Short & Sassy, there was something on his face and say “what for the next three months. Paying it forward is
Dreads are easy, there should be no reason he is is that?” Once he tries to figure it out, ask if it’s always a nice gesture, just in time for Christmas.
not ready first. Take it from someone who has dated eyeliner. I don’t think he would take offense to it.
men with the same hairstyle. Locs are simple, I mean if he wears it he’d want to make sure it is ~ Gabby
especially if they have already been retwisted. not running. If it’s not eyeliner then ask yourself,
All he has to do is get up, shake them out, and do I want to be with a man whose eyes are prettier -------------------------------------
go! You could be dealing with a perfectionist, but than mine? I would think not, but hey whatever Dear Gabby,
name the last time you dated a man who took floats your boat. Language is big for me. If a man I have always had problems with my acne. In
longer than you to get ready ... I’ll wait. Let him is using terms that my homegirls use as well, that’s school, they called me Rocky Road. I do not
know that he takes too long, and maybe give him a red flag. As far as the eyeliner… you stumped have delicate skin or eczema, but I’m not that
time to be ready that is an hour before he needs me with that lol! Maybe he does broadway and consistent with cleaning products. Your skin
to be. Also, you could be proactive by having all didn’t have time to wash the makeup off. Maybe looks clear and blemish-free. Can you suggest
his stuff set out, therefore it’s all right there and he’s bisexual. Maybe he wanted to create some a sista? Thank you, Queen.
accessible to him. I hate it when a man moves depth to his eyes. Truth is … we may never know,
slow. If you want to be petty ... wait until he has an so run before you wake up one morning and he’s ~ Bad Acne
important event to go to, and take your sweet time using your pencil. Mountain View, CA
getting ready. He could just need a taste of his
~ Gabby Dear Bad Acne.
------------------------------------- Girl, I had the worst acne in high school. I know
Dear Gabby, it’s uncomfortable because it was for me. When
My auntie got me an IPSY subscription last Proactive first came out I used that, but I noticed
Christmas. Ipsy is a monthly subscription
service for $12 per month which provides JUMP TO PAGE 25

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •



He’s Not The One For You!

Dear Big Q, fit for you. Goodluck Ms. Lady.
Why do men waste so much of a woman’s
time? Why do men play so many games? ~ Big Q
Why can’t men just be honest about what they
want? Why don’t men already know what they ---------------------------------
want? Help!
Dear Big Q, BIG Q
~ Sick & Tired My mother doesn’t agree with how my wife
(Redwood City, CA) and I are dividing the house chores. My wife Male Advice Columnist
doesn’t cook and hates doing laundry, so I
Dear Sick & Tired, take on those duties, however she will empty -----------------------------------------------
Hold on now sweetheart. Sounds to me like you the trash and clean the bathroom. Do you
trying to blame men for every bad thing that has believe in gender roles? Learn more about Big Q’s advice at
ever happened to you in life. For starters, you
have to change that attitude if you want to have ~ Equal, but Unequal Email Me: [email protected]
a successful relationship with the opposite sex. I Redwood City, CA
do understand that there are many men out here believe in gender roles, but what I do believe in
that play games with women and take their love Dear Equal, but Unequal, is a husband and wife sharing the responsibilities
for granted. But there are still some good men Let me start off by telling you that I love my momma around the house. What those responsibilities
that are out here looking for their soul mate. You from the bottom of my heart bro, but one thing I try are really don’t matter to me as long as the
might want to be careful that you don’t scare that not to do is get her involved in my relationships. couple is working together and they agree on the
man away once you encounter him. Sometimes Not only have you managed to do this, but you arrangement. In your situation I don’t really think
women get this “all men are worthless” mentality have gotten her involved in your marriage. Now it’s you that has a problem with cooking and doing
and end up letting the good ones get away come on man, you know better than that. Usually laundry, I think it’s your mom. So my advice to you
because of their negative attitudes. If a man this never turns out well at all. Bottom line is would be to continue doing what you have been
wasted your time, played games with you heart, that it’s really not your mother’s business about doing and keep your mom out of the situation
or lied to you repeatedly, then that man was simply what goes on in your marriage. Now please don’t before you cause your wife and mom to fall out
not the one for you. But please don’t forget that misunderstand what I’m saying to you about this about you. Good luck bro.
your husband is still out there waiting to meet you. situation. I do think that you can go to your mom
Just do both of us a favor and stop putting all men for advice or a person to vent to, but you must ~ Big Q ,
in one category. Keep a positive attitude and open be careful that you don’t cause conflict between ---------------------------------
your heart to someone who you feel that you are your wife and your mom. Because once your wife
compatible with. No man is perfect, so all you can and mom don’t like each other you got even more Learn more about Big Q’s advice at http://
do is be patient and wait for the man that is a good problems on your hands than who is cooking and
doing laundry. To answer your question, no I don’t

JUMP FROM PAGE 25 lightweight moisturizer after my face is washed. (something not too harsh, and unscented, and a
Of course, as the day goes on I am super oily, but lightweight moisturizer. Wash your face twice a
when I would stop using it the acne would worsen. I use blotting pads, and matte foundation to help day, and be consistent. Occasionally try a mask
As I got older it faded away, but I also paid with the excessive shine. Pay attention to your as well. My favorite is the Bentonite Aztec Clay. All
more attention to my skin and started reading skin and find out what kind you have. Also witch you have to do is add apple cider vinegar, and you
ingredients. I know that I have combination skin, hazel is perfect for removing any scars or dark are good to go.
which means sometimes it’s dry and other times marks. A great routine you should try is a soap
it’s oily. Because of this, I make sure I use a ~ Queen Gabby ,

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •



‘let the lord have his way’

WATERLOO, IA - So What Do You Have (Hallelujah!)”

to Say About Kanye? Every living thing under the heavens has

There has been much talk about Kanye received the very Breath of God, the breath

West, the release of JESUS IS KING and of life. The Psalmist is not merely suggesting

the cities where Kanye is holding “church but commanding the earth realm to praise its

services”. Creator. To give back to God that life-breath

Both church and secular are having in the form of praise and worship. That

heated discussions on the authenticity of praise is not to be limited but only directed to

it all. Some church leaders are coming out DR. RAINEY the very Throne Room itself.
in full support while others are rejecting his Jesus made a bold declaration when

approach and appeal. Faith Enthusiast the religious leaders of His day attempted to

I remember when Kanye exploded onto Learn more from our Faith Enthusiast at: rebuke a crowd celebrating His arrival in the

the scene with JESUS WALKS! city and the testimonies of the impact of the

Kanye’s musical endeavors has covered faith.html preaching of Gospel.

genres ranging from hip hop, pop to gospel. Email Me: [email protected] Luke 19:37-40 (KJV) “And when he was

He has never shied away from controversy come nigh, even now at the descent of the

on award shows (open feud with Taylor “Dr. David Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the
Swift), social media, talk shows on subject disciples began to rejoice and praise God

matters from politics to race. Rainey with a loud voice for all the mighty works that
For those who are familiar with Kanye, they had seen; 38 Saying, Blessed be the

you are quite aware of his marriage to what do you King that cometh in the name of the Lord:
television personality Kim Kardashian and peace in heaven, and glory in the highest.

all that goes along with that. have to say 39 And some of the Pharisees from among
With record sells in the millions and the multitude said unto him, Master, rebuke
thy disciples. 40 And he answered and said
multiple industry awards, Kanye has

become a cultural force in the 21st century. about unto them, I tell you that, if these should hold
A producer, performing artist and business their peace, the stones would immediately

mogul seems to be only the beginning for Kanye’s cry out”.
him. So, you might be asking, “Dr. David

“Jesus Walks” exposed Kanye to a vast Jesus Is King” Rainey, what do you have to say about
audience because its central theme was the Kanye’s Jesus Is King?”

matter of faith and in particular the Christian I say, “Step back and let the Lord have

faith. Despite objections by music industry be made again. His Way!”

executives (and some of his peers) because Listen. I am Dr. David Rainey, Faith

of an open declaration of faith, the recording Psalm 150:6 Amplified Bible “Let Enthusiast for The Soultown

Oct. 2019 hit the radio airwaves and made history. •toCelebraoetfvienlrigfyet2hpiynregaaitsrhesat•thhCaeosnLbnoreercdat!tihnPagrnaOdisueerveCthruyelbturLeroearstdh!to Our International Magazine. I’d like to
• ThIebSeolieuvlteowthnatInmteursnicaatliohnisatlorMyaisgaazbionuet Cybtheran&kCGoondscfiooruhs aCvoimngmSuOniUtieLs!•,


THE GRIOT When my Pen Master leaves his office, Note to the Editors: Rarely do we imagine
I become lonely, anxious, and afraid of ICE. that tragic events such as the Holocaust and
JUMP FROM PAGE 25 Afraid U.S. Immigration and Customs Genocide not only affect humans, fauna, and
Enforcement will storm the building, flora, but they also affect inanimate objects.
Ishmael Reed, “The Charlie Parker of Break the wooden door and burst it open, Through personification, this polyglot and
American Fiction.” In Flight to Canada, a Handcuff me as an Illegal Immigrant--An multicultural poem explores this issue and
Neo-Slave Narrative--a term coined by Ishmael Alien. Un clandestin--and more: Survival, Trauma caused by the Rwandan
Reed-- Deport me back to Rwanda-- Genocide, Cultural Idenity, Immigration, just
Raven Quickskill wonders about fiction-- When my Pen Master’s brother put me in a DHL to name a few. Through the process the poem
“Fiction, you say? Where does Envelope and mailed me to the U.S., pays homage to European, Euro-American,
Fact begin and fiction leave off?”-- I did not receive a U.S. Visa at the port of entry. African American, Native American, and
Ishmael Reed saved my Pen Master: Who am I now? Am I a Caribbean writers or artists: Virginia Woolf,
Mumbo Jumbo decolonized my Pen Master’s U.S. Citizen? My Pen Master is a Herman Melville, Ishmael Reed, Bob Kaufman,
Mind at the University at Buffalo. U.S. Citizen. Am I his child? Gerald Vizenor, Ray A. Young Bear, Black Hawk,
“Fiction, you say? Am I gonna make it in the cornfields of Aimé Césaire, Max Roach, Charlie “Bird” Parker,
Mumbo Jumbo became his Ioway? Beyoncé (Destiny’s Child), and other unnamed
Cahier d’un retour au pays natal-- Maybe there is hope: Africana storytellers.
Aimé Césaire returned to hi native land-- I am a Survivor. Ndi Uwarokotse.
NEGRITUDE. AFFIRMING BLACKNESS-- I survived the Rwandan Geno/Cide. I am Dr. Pierre Mvuyekure, Griot for The
From Herman Melville’s Ishmael to Ishmael Queen Bey says “I’m gonna make it.” Soultown International Magazine. I’d like to
Reed’s Jes Grew-- thank the African storytellers for having SOUL! ,
“Jes Grew is the delight of the gods”--
He returned to his blackness and Africanité.

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •



Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •




Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •




THE SOULTOWN, USA - If I can remember

the names of the African Americans who have
died by the actions of law enforcement, then I
will forever remember the infamous names of the

officers responsible for their deaths. This is the
promise I whispered to my deceased sisters and
brothers whose names have been immortalized

-- yet bodies laid to rest -- after experiencing an
unplanned, uncalled for, unfortunate day of death.

Remember Johannes Mehserle, he was

the Bart Police Officer that killed Oscar Grant
in Oakland, California in 2009. Allegedly, he
reached for his gun and thought it was his taser.

He received a 2-year sentence for involuntary
manslaughter. He was freed 7 months after he
was sentenced.

Daniel Pantaleo killed Eric Garner. Pantaleo
placed Garner in a choke hold on Staten Island
when Garner tried to resist arrest. According to

an article in The New York Times he was being
arrested for allegedly selling unlicensed cigarettes.
He suffered cardiac arrest and died leaving 6

children fatherless. Five years later, on August ATATIANA JEFFERSON FORMER OFFICER Courtesy Photos
2019, Pantaleo was fired. A city medical examiner AARON DEAN
argued that the pressure on Garner’s neck, as
well as the pressure on his chest, played a role in
his death. In memory of Garner, I will forever wear
the t-shirt that reads I Can’t Breathe, but I will also

remember former Officer Daniel Pantaleo.
State Trooper Brian Encinia is responsible for

the current trauma that lives in every Black woman

who remembers 28-year-old Sandra Bland. State
Trooper Brian Encinia claimed he feared for his
safety, during a traffic stop where Bland was

accused of failing to signal while changing lanes.
He used abrasive behavior that led to her arrest.
Three days after being arrested, she was found

hanging in a jail cell in Waller County, Texas. Her
death was labeled a suicide. After Bland’s death,
Brian Encinia was also fired.

Amber Guyger, former Dallas Police Officer FORMER OFFICER BOTHAM JEAN
was the sentence to 10 years with days of Botham AMBER GUYGER
Jean’s 28th birthday. She shot and Killed Botham

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •





Jean in the chest -- she claimed she feared for “Why is it important to I am Chillin’, Innovative Extraordinaire for
her safety -- after mistakenly entering the wrong The Soultown International Magazine. I’d like to
apartment. Guyger lived on the floor below Jean. remember the names? thank Oscar Grant, Eric Garner, Sandra Bland,
Botham Jean and Atatiana Jefferson for having
Then there is the Fort Worth, Texas Officer Why not? SOUL! ,
Aaron Dean. Two years after he graduated from
the Police Academy and 18 months on the job, It’s the least we can do.” Learn more about the Sankofa Vow at
he shot and killed 28-year-old Atatiana Jefferson.
She was playing video games with her nephew. and over again.
A neighbor called the non-emergency police Why is it important to remember the names?
number for a wellness check due to the door Why not? It’s the least I/we can do. The lives Email me: [email protected]
being left ajar for several hours. According to NBC
News, The response to the wellness check by of Grant, Garner, Bland, Jean and Jefferson are
Fort Worth police was “the equivalent of SWAT” just a few from the very long list of deaths. Those
-- involving several officers “prowling” around responsible for their deaths will never forget their
the property before opening fire without ever wrongdoings and neither will I.
identifying themselves as police. Officer, Aaron
Dean resigned. The body camera reveals than The Sankofa Vow is The Soultown’s promise to
an officer shined a flashlight through Jefferson’s our ancestors; to return to the Motherland and retrieve
window and yelled, “Put your hands up and what has been stolen from my ancestry via the trans-
show me your hands,” before firing a single shot Atlantic slave trade. Our forefathers intended to leave
at Jefferson seconds later that killed her. Her seeds for us to return to gather, plant, cultivate and
nephew witnessed the killing. grow. These seeds can be reclaimed and retained
by reading, watching, and discussing with
If I can remember the names of the African our elders and also by traveling to our
Americans who have died by the actions of law native
enforcement, then I will forever remember the continent of
infamous names of the officers responsible for Africa, the
their deaths. I will say their names over and over Motherland.

Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •


Oct. 2019 • The Soultown International Magazine • Celebrating 2 years • Connecting Our Cultures to Our Cyber & Conscious Communities •


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