A #MeToo story

Today, I just finished watching the 5 Hour, Lifetime docu-series “Surviving R. Kelly”. And folks, can I just say ” W O W” !!!

Limewire

About 12 years ago I remember hanging out at a friend’s house who downloaded the R. Kelly sex tape from Limewire. Shoutout to all the 30 something year olds who remember. If any of you saw the infamous video, you clearly saw the young girl was a minor, give or take 13 to 14 years old. Looking back, I’m not sure I truly understood what I was watching.

Currently, I’m not only angered but it truly saddens me these girls/women had to endure this. I recommend everyone watches the documentary because it opens your eyes to a great injustice. We let men with incredible power get away with murder (figuratively speaking of course); although, I wouldn’t be surprised if some have.

Today’s entry started out as a reaction piece to “Surving R. Kelly”, but as I began writing my mind wanted to tell you a story. The following is based on a true story about how we let men with power manipulate and control the situation.

During the fall of 2013, a friend of mine started working at a new company. She was the Executive Assistant to the Owner of the company. Her boss was very nice and showed a lot of favoritism towards her. She thought nothing of it, to her it was because she was new and he was training her. The owner would often ask her to work Saturdays and stay late to fulfill orders. Sometimes her boss made inappropriate jokes or remarks but they were often swept under the rug.

Soon enough the new quarter started and they hired more staff. Everything seemed normal even with the semi perverted under breath jokes. A couple of month’s in, one of the ladies from the new group brought something startling to her attention. The owner tried to make a move on her. Apparently, it wasn’t his first time either; he tried before with other another former staff member.

There were rumors floating that he’d faced some accusations before and those too were swept under the rug. Another rumor was, he had a tough lawyer that cleared him of the charges. He didn’t even need to settle. The new staff member quit a couple of days later. It wasn’t like my friend trusted a lot of people at work so she stuck to herself.

One Saturday afternoon, the owner asked her to go to the storage space and help him find some products he brought back from China. He showed her several cheap marked down wallets, he needed to take some in for a meeting Monday. She grabbed five of them and he held one. He then, told her “This one is for you,” she nervously said “No, no need; thank you very much that’s very kind of you to do that but I don’t….”. Her boss came in for a kiss and she pushed him off and went back to her desk.

That was the first time in her life someone overstepped their bounds like that. She was unsure how to react and she left shortly after to her house. With only 4 months working there she was unsure how to proceed. She had no job lined up and she was stuck thinking about the sexual assault that just happened.

A month later she left that company and started working closer to her home and at a higher pay. She never told anyone about the situation for the thought of being reprimanded. After the rumors she heard she was too timid to file a lawsuit. It was very humiliating. She felt helpless and emotionally distraught for a very long time till she told some of her close ones.

And now I’m telling you …

Don’t let money overpower or silence women. There are real situations out there that can hurt and traumatize. We should not promote these men with power that use it and exploit it. We need to give everyone a voice.

Speak out and tell your story.

Happy Monday!

Remember to start your weekend on the right foot.

The Corner – Montclair

Pick a cause/Pay it Forward

If you clicked the link I shared on my first post, one of the things I need to accomplish this year is picking a cause I am passionate about.

See link below. https://gentwenty.com/bucket-list-30-things-to-do-before-you-turn-30/

Here’s a little history about my debate career: In HS I didn’t get to debate but while I was in college I tried out and trained for the RU Debate Team. During that time, I was attending NJCU and due to my situation I was unable to join the team. For Rutgers it would have been too complicated to get me involved with RU Debate since I was in a different University. However, I chose to stick around and aide the Jersey Debate League as a judge. For 3 years I spent several weekdays and weekends helping out Newark debaters. I would compare it to a family you randomly visit but look forward to seeing.

Fast forward 8 years later, this weekend I went to the Newark Policy Debate Invitational and to my surprise it was EXTREMELY DIFFERENT. To the point that it the re-occurring question during the tournament was “WHAT HAPPENED TO NEWARK DEBATE?” We went from having 6-7 competitive HS policy debate teams to now 1 debate team (Newark Tech HS) showing face and competing at our own invitational.

It was quite emotional for me, why are we losing debaters especially in such a huge city. Why does NY have to come into our house and sweep our trophies?

People become complacent and conform.

I’m not giving up on the NDA !
(Newark Debate Academy or former Jersey Debate League)

Going back to the beginning of this post. I have picked my cause! I will come back to Newark Debate to revamp/revive/ what ever you want to call it. I will not rest till we are a force to be reckoned with. This will also be my way of “PAYING IT FORWARD.” As my former principal and now superintendent of Newark Public Schools used to say “I want you to learn and succeed here and what ever you do make sure you PAY IT FORWARD!”

The tweaked list

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1. Travel to a different country.

2. Become more committed in my relationship.

3. Start saving and reach 5K.

4. Take a risk: Go bungee jumping or skydiving or swim with sharks.

5. Invest more in the stock market.

6. Volunteer in Newark.

7. Stop holding grudges.

8. Start a collection.

9. Take a cross-country road trip.

10. Pay off your credit card debt.

11. Go see live music you love.

12. Thoroughly read several books.

13. Overcome a fear.

14. Get a tattoo.

15. Join a club.

16. Treat yourself to something really expensive.

17. Be the first person to apologize.

18. Run a half marathon.

19. Work on my overall ego/attitude.

20. Cook for your whole family.

21. Eat really expensive food.

22. Pay it forward.

23. Get healthy!

24. Lose 40-50lbs.

25. Attend a game far away.

26. Pick a cause and be passionate about it.

27. See a new Broadway play.

28. Get a raise. Pending, My boss said I was but nothing yet

29. Become a connoisseur in something.

30. And finally, make a list of 40 Things to do Before You Turn 40.

tenor

I’m nervous!

NOTE: Everything striken out has actually been done.

Welcome to the New Year!

This is my first post EVER!

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About 6 six days ago we started the New Year and like the general population I made a list of things I want to accomplish this year. As I was putting together my goals for this year, I realized I’m currently 29 and in 7 months and 16 days I’m turning 30.

Yes! (THE BIG 3-0)

Well that got me thinking “Have I accomplished / taken advantage of my 20s?” I wasn’t quite sure. So I started looking/researching online and came across many lists from buzzfeed, cosmo, etc about things to do before you turn 30. I decided to challenge myself and complete a list of 30 things before I turn 30 based off the following list. ( see link below) https://gentwenty.com/bucket-list-30-things-to-do-before-you-turn-30/

It is a quite ambitious and wide ranged list but this is one of the many goals I set for myself this year and I intend to complete the list either by my birthday or the End of the Year.

This list will be slightly tweaked. (see my next post)