Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Wild Card Wednesday

The Overview
ENDGAME: AIDS in Black America

Last evening Frontline presented the documentary, "Endgame: AIDS in Black America" which took a in depth two hour inner look at the complexities, challenges, barriers and "bone headedness" that has been apart of the history of this health dilemma which will be book ended with a Live Chat, Today at 2 p.m. EST. Featuring guest questioner Jessica Cumberbatch Anderson, a reporter and lifestyle editor for the Huffington Post’s Black Voices, she will continue the dialog and discussion about why the Black community has been slow to respond and react to this possible internal genocide. You can leave a question in a chat window at , and join the live discussion later. If my schedule allows, I'll surf over to check it out.  For myself It was another reminder that for more than half of my life, I've encounter the impact, overarching affects and legacy that this disease continues to weave. Dr. Marsha Martin, Director of the Urban Coalition for HIV/AIDS Prevention Services plainly yet eerily painted the picture that the disease has become a ever present ribbon that has found it way into the cracks and crevices of the Black community despite many sounding the alarm. Yet as I watched the program, it seemed that much of what was presented is what I've seen, heard and lived all before. I've heard Phil Wilson who has made several appearances here in Little Rock including one such appearance sponsored by the group RAPPS when I personally acted as his chaperon. As I've moved through being an advocate and activist the program demonstrated to me how many national mover and shakers that I've encountered and embraced their work. From Patrick Packer to Sister Love's Dazon Diallo, there are so many in the struggle whom like myself are trying to determine the best practices  needed to discover the "endgame" of HIV and AIDS. Yet as this work continues to address rising rates, this documentary produced and directed by Renata Simone again explored the hidden history and personal impact of one of the country’s most urgent, preventable health crises that has been supported by President Obama's National HIV/AIDS Strategy which has also has been prioritized across all levels of the government. However within all of this, what has been missing and was prominently stated in the piece was the holistic approach to dealing with an individuals "day to day" issues of housing, education, food, treatment and employment as heralded by local community based organization, The Living Affected Corporation. In my opinion its become a "evidenced based" fact that linking and retaining individuals in a care continuum must contain these social determinants. It's Wilson's striking statistic that "every 10 minutes, someone in the United States contracts the AIDS virus and Half of them are black." is a stark reminder that we need to check out "game face" before we can get to the endgame. If you want to find out how you can make a difference, contact or call 501.379.8203

Pride in the City:

Well the questions keep coming and I'm still perplexed that "Pride" continues to live on in numerous factions and mash-ups. I've had inquires about "who is Little Rock Black Pride," or "What is Arkansas Black Pride?", "Is Little Rock Gay Pride connected to others" and ultimately there's some other entity that's getting its act together to address "black pride" from points unknown. Enough already as far as I'm concern. All of this boils down to local or regional or whatever "entertainment" types cloaked in their versions of making a buck on a pride platform. Hey, them Republicans say "do what's American!"

Although I'm sure there are good intentions with some some sort of "community come to Jesus" aspects attached, but I'll just have to accept the fact that "it is what it is." From the line up, it appears that there are some interesting options that might be worth a take look over. There is to be an Awareness Luncheon, not sure exactly what entails but I have to assume at least a lunch offering.  Then, there's a boat cruise that could be enticing on a warm summer's evening with friends or that special love one and certainly a pool party if done right could help a person deal with the heat.

However, it has been my past experience that these events don't subscribe to my Five P's formula, but perhaps there have been lessons learned and events will move smoothly. What I find very fascinating is the fact that if these events are "community builders" the why didn't all this planning be enjoined with the pride events that took place last month to give the city a true celebratory vibe. I'm not sure if its "ego's" or attitudes that keeps folks from the table. In the past I've come to various tables with unequal outcomes but I tried to make the best of it. Yet if we are really interested in defining community then why does it seem that its problematic to "agree to disagree" in a adult and professional manner?  So with that point put out there, if all this about bringing folks into community awareness then why is its clearly emblazoned as a "club Goodtimes promotion."  Promoting what? Community or directed certain segments of the community through your doors? From what I keep hearing and of course there's always two sides, but from what I know I have never felt as if I was ushered into a welcoming feeling of community through those doors. Yet as I've lived and learned, all things are not for all people. My closing caveat, is let's hope for best but watch out for the hot mess.

Breaking FAST

In our attempt to bring you news first out the shoot, COP 24/7 has been made aware of a few opportunities on the horizon that will be coming to the community. At post time, confirmations are underway and details being clarified. This forums has championed alternative venues, options, events and choices that will forge positive, empowering and gratifying teachable moments.When we party with a purpose, it takes the event into a sphere where many possible can reveal themselves to all who are in attendance. Everything that's percolating sounds like they could be beneficial on so many levels. Stay tuned because as soon as all the information is released, it will break fast on COP 24/7!  If you've got a scoop, tidbit or observation come share it with us at  Don't forget that, if you're thinking about it, then most likely we're going to talking about it!  Come follow us today! 

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