All Articles Tagged "class"
Arrested Emotional Development: The Real Reason So Many Female Teachers Are Having Sex With Students These Days
By Mary Jo Rapini
There has been a series of news stories about female teachers having sex with their students. Almost every state in the United States is reporting similiar cases, and everyone is asking the same question: Why? In 2004, the United States Department of Education reported that 40 percent of perpetrators of unwanted sexual attention toward children were women and that number has steadily risen over the past nine years.
To understand why a female teacher would become sexually involved with one of her students, you have to understand what is going on in her head. Most of these women appear to be vibrant, normal, healthy adult women, but they may feel like teenagers themselves inside. Many of them have arrested emotional development; they giggle and carry on very much as a teenager. What’s strange is that they choose one aspect of the student they focus on and they idealize that aspect into being one of honesty, integrity and innocence — separate from the jadedness of the adult world.
Soon they see this teenager as being their age, like a peer. In psychology, this is frequently seen and is called “counter-transference”. The teacher focuses on one aspect of the child and idealizes it romantically; she then projects that on to her distorted reality. No one else realistically sees what the teacher has created in her mind. It becomes so bizarre that soon the teacher is planning her married life with kids after her student finishes high school.
One thing to consider is that we — as the public — tend to focus on the sex part of this relationship because that’s what ultimately leads to the arrest of the teacher. However, an emotional relationship usually develops long before sex take places. That is, the grooming, the meeting up, the numerous texts, the cute hand-written love letters and the sleepless nights. If an intervention is made at this time, you can end the relationship before sex takes place — getting help for the child and taking legal action against the teacher.
Read more on YourTango.com.
Damali Elliott, the young entrepreneur behind Petals-N-Belles, an organization dedicated to the mentorship and guidance of young woman said,
“There’s a point for [boys] when they’ve ‘reached manhood’ and can say, “I’m a man.” There’s no definitive moment where a girl becomes a woman. Except a Sweet Sixteen which isn’t really womanhood. I think that’s something that needs to change. We need to teach girls that there are times when you have to become more serious about things. How to handle yourself in business. How to present yourself, just in general. Women stay in remedial positions and seem to accept that. They don’t reach for anything higher. No one really ever says, “You’re a woman, go for it! I want to help my girls [in Petals-N-Belles] to make decisions that will prepare them for that transition.”
I agree with that sentiment immensely. In observing girls, women my own age and even myself nowadays, the general consensus among many young women (black or otherwise) seems to be that in order to be a “grown woman” you need to have a few ideas of your own, any amount of income (stable or not) and a “relationship.” It’s funny to me because I never thought of myself as “grown” until I reached college, living outside of my mother’s household, making many more of my own decisions than I ever had to before. But looking back on those college years, I can see how ill-equipped I really was to deal with love, life and all the intricate matters in between. I thought I had it TO-GE-THER, honey. But I couldn’t balance a checkbook, had low self-esteem, didn’t know what my capabilities were in life, and had issues that prevented me from being functional within a relationship. I was a hot mess, but I thought I was “grown” and was just glad to be living on my own. Hmph. Life sure taught me a thing or two.
It’s fair to say our vision has been skewed, perhaps by the lack of examples. Or maybe society’s about-face toward materialism has stifled the standard that once was. There was a dignity and class about women back in the day that is absolutely RARE today. But perhaps it’s time to redefine what “grown” looks like and hop on the good foot to get back to it.
“Grown” has nothing to do with having your own place or engaging in sexual intercourse. “Grown” isn’t contained in how many men can buy you gifts and how many clubs you can bounce around to within a week’s time, or simply how many bills you pay and that you pay rent on a little somethin’ somethin’. “Grown” is a much more internal thing that can’t help but to be manifested outwardly. If you know your worth, that’s where it all begins. If you know and accept your responsibilities, that’s another step on the continuum.
I can’t allow my home to go lacking so I can purchase this season’s Louboutins. That’s not a “grown woman.” I can’t watch every trash reality show and comment on each character but refuse to find the time or will to finish my degree. That’s not a “grown woman.” So many young ladies whom I have mentored within past years have had grand ideas and flowing declarations of what they were going to do with their lives and also what they refused to do. I had to sit back in awe as I recognized so much of my younger self in them–a lot of brass but little brain to back it up. Becoming a “grown woman” demands that we count up the cost, get our ducks in a row, think ahead, be prepared, do the little extra, because in its very essence, that’s what it means to be a good woman, a GROWN woman. Grown women do what they can where they are even when they DON’T FEEL LIKE IT and they work to become whatever they need/want to become. We revel in our femininity but do not use it to seduce. We nurture and cultivate. We know and uphold our priorities. We go the extra mile and enjoy a few pleasures as a reward for their efforts. We choose the road less traveled when we’ve reached true “grown woman” status because we know that our lives are unique and we need to shine a light for those who come after us.
What constitutes a “grown woman” to you? How has your perspective changed through the years?
La Truly is a late-blooming Aries whose writing is powered by a lifetime of anecdotal proof that awkward can transform to awesome and fear can cast its crown before courage. La seeks to encourage thought, discussion and change. Her blog: www.hersoulinc.com and Twitter: @AshleyLaTruly.
“A Dollar and A Dream” spotlights low- and no-cost ways to build a better business. The economy may be lagging, but new resources are empowering small business owners like never before. Follow the series to learn how to take your dreams to the next level without breaking the bank.
“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” -Nelson Mandela
We’ve all heard soaring quotes about the value of an education. The poetry of these words has never been more practical. Today’s business world requires entrepreneurs to make education a priority.
More than keeping you on the top of your game, learning improves your bottom line. Whether you take a class in calligraphy or small business principles, growing your expertise will save you from spending money on consultants and cleaning up after your own mistakes.
With the ramifications of the student loan crisis looming, students and institutions alike are looking for better ways to signal knowledge and skills to employers. Educational institutions are rethinking the way they teach and experimenting with technology to democratize education. In the future, a resume may display a digital badge, showing the completion of an online course rather than a degree.
The debate on the future of education is nowhere near settled. In the meantime, entrepreneurs and life long learners can take advantage of the benefits coming out of the discussion. Class is in session with the best minds in the world, and tuition is free.
Online courses lack the intimacy of the classroom. Some websites offer assignments and quizzes to track your learning. But, don’t expect the same experience as an in-classroom course.
Online resources, like those listed below, will you give enough direction to refresh your skills or feed your interest in a new subject. Unlike traditional programs, online study can be easily tailored to your schedule and areas of interest. If you’re really feeling fierce, start a study group within your network to encourage one another and capture that classroom feel.
Coursera is a social entrepreneurship company that partners with the top universities in the world including Stanford, Princeton, and Emory.
Topics: A wide range spanning the humanities, medicine, biology, social sciences, mathematics, business, computer science, and many others.
- Grow to Greatness: Smart Growth for Private Businesses, Part II (Edward D. Hess, University of Virginia)
- Developing Innovative Ideas for New Companies (Dr. James V. Green, University of Maryland, College Park)
30 Second MBA is an ongoing video curriculum, presented by Fast Company, of good advice from successful people in business today.
Style: Short, unfiltered videos
Topics: Business questions ranging from the practical to the philosophical.
By Kendra Koger
I don’t know about everyone else, but it seems to me that there has recently been such a loose usage of words like “classy,” and “lady” in our society. While watching TV there is usually a gaggle of women who not only discuss their classiness with quotes like “I’m a classy azz b!tch…” -Catya Washington of Bad Girls Club but defend it, like my favorite quote, “I am a fucking lady…” courtesy of London Charles, aka Deelishis, from Flavor of Love 2. The debate is so prominent now that you can find women in stores, on the street, or in classrooms spouting out about how “classy” they are.
My husband once told me about a time he took his grandmother grocery shopping and they ran into his old friend, Theresa.* (The name has been changed to protect the ignorant.) She and her three year old daughter were in the checkout lane when she saw a girl that she had been beefing with. The argument covered a myriad of topics, including ugliness, stupidity and promiscuity. When the topic of “hoe-ness” was discussed Theresa adamantly exclaimed, “Whatever, b—-, I’m classy! You’re the one who…” and before she could finish her sentence Theresa, her daughter, and other innocent bystanders promptly got a face full of pepper spray, courtesy of the girl she was arguing with. While her eyes were burning with pepper spray, Theresa blindly swung her fists in the girl’s direction, not checking on her daughter or anything. Classiness at its finest, I suppose.
It makes me wonder, what institutes a woman into having class? Is it dependent on socio-economic factors, like how much money you have in the bank, or having expensive (or expensive looking) things? When these topics of class break out, there seems to be an accompaniment of revealing the names of designers that the woman in question is wearing or how much she spent on such objects. Bragging about “red bottoms” and Gucci paraphernalia seems to come with the territory of identifying class these days. Now, I’m not saying that you shouldn’t buy your favorite designers if you have the money. Just know that buying them doesn’t mean that you’re buying class. You’re just buying material objects. A woman who has a large wardrobe, full of things made by Chanel, Fendi, and Gucci, could be the same woman who abandons her children, or leaves the grandmother to raise them for her while she’s out in the streets. Is that class? Paris Hilton has millions of dollars and is able to afford all the top designers; but honestly, is she typically regarded as a woman who has class?
When I think of classy women my mind immediately goes to women like Dorothy Dandridge and Eartha Kitt. Classiness wasn’t defined by what they had, but by persevering through tumultuous times with a level of grace and elegance. Their behavior was an indicator of maturity and inner strength. A woman who used to walk away from a fight was considered the classy one by society’s standards. But now, we have women who are trying to show class by yelling the words “lady” and “classy” as a battle cry to all who will listen, before they pounce on the offending lady/ladies.
But hey, maybe that’s just me.
But what do you think, readers? Are women using these terms too loosely?
Kendra Koger is a writer, blogger, freelance book editor, and all around life enthusiast. You can follower her on twitter @kkoger.
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Okay, so maybe we’re not looking at the following ladies and swooning, but there’s just something about their big hearts, mad swag and beauty we can’t help but adore (*turns on Prince’s “Adore” to set the mood*). Whether they’re out there saving the world or saving our broken hearts, or better yet, inspiring us with their creativity and talent, we get all boy band giddy when they come on TV or on our computer screens. You go girls!
You know somebody is big when you ask another person the following about them, and you get this response:
Me: “Have you ever heard of Awkward Black Girl? It’s by this woman named Issa Rae?”
Friend Who Never Knows What I’m Talking About: “YES! My sister put me on to that! I’m addicted!”
At the beginning of 2011, I had no idea who or what an Issa Rae was, but by the end of the year, like most women, I was trying to spread the word about the director, writer and editor and her phenomenal web series, The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl to everybody I knew. Whether it was through this blog or straight up word of mouth, I was low-key canvassing. The accomplished Stanford grad did the impossible: she made being the awkward black girl cool (and did so with an awesome haircut!). No lie, she’s kind of like a big deal…
As I look up the word “ghetto” in the dictionary, I find an array of meanings. For instance, according to Merriam-Webster, a ghetto is:
- a quarter of a city in which Jews were formerly required to live.
- a quarter of a city in which members of a minority group live especially because of social, legal, or economic pressure.
- an isolated group; a situation that resembles a ghetto especially in conferring inferior status or limiting opportunity.
Maybe it has to something to do with that last two interpretations (do ONLY minorites live in the ghetto by the way?), but when I look at these random definitions of ghetto, I don’t understand the way the term is being used out in the streets on a daily basis. Or specifically, the way I saw it used the other day. While trolling on Facebook at the end of the night just to see what people were up to/talking about, a former classmate from elementary school and high school was telling the world about a major annoyance that occurred during her day. That’s cool, people vent on Facebook pretty often. However, her comment was so random to me that it bothered me for the rest of that evening. The young woman said something to the effect of, “Why are these preppy girls acting ghetto during my lunch break singing “Bug A Boo” by Destiny’s Child?” And yes, she was white.
Maybe I needed to be there. She didn’t go into details about the encounter, but from the sound of it, because they made the choice to sing out loud, and maybe even because it was “Bugaboo” (and not some Adele), they were behaving in the way it’s assumed folks from the actual ghetto behave. Perhaps it was because she was a white woman, who like me (a black chick), grew up in the suburbs and probably hadn’t ever really had to encounter a ghetto of any kind, maybe that’s why it bothered me so much. But either way, her statement literally brought out one of those horrendously long eye-roll moments.
I think it bothered me so much because ever since college (I went to a predominately black high school in an area hit with “white flight”), I’ve heard a wealth of young white women and men I wasn’t highly exposed to before use the term ghetto to describe people who are black, or non-blacks who have an appreciation for black culture and the likes. Saying that something or someone is ghetto with a negative connotation attached implies that folks who live in ghettos all tend to act a certain way–a negative way. Especially when you throw up that eyebrow, curl your lip and say it with such passion. It has become clear that I’m not the only person who has noticed this trend (remember “Ish White Girls Say to Black Girls”? That was one of them.) Really, what exactly does the chicks singing “Bug A Boo” have to do with people growing up in a place of inferior opportunity or of social, economic and legal pressures? Fill me in if you get it because I just don’t.
(Washington Post) — Most District residents — black and white — see socioeconomic class, not race, as the primary source of a stark divide in the city, according to a new poll by The Washington Post and the Kaiser Family Foundation. And when it comes to their outlook on the city, their own neighborhoods and certain aspects of the economy, higher- income African Americans have more in common with similarly wealthy whites than with lower-income blacks. But in many other important areas, the differences between blacks and whites persist, regardless of income level. Blacks with household incomes of $100,000 or more express significantly more sour views of the District’s economy than do whites with similar incomes. Higher-income African Americans also are less secure than whites about their own financial well-being, more apprehensive about the spreading effects of gentrification and somewhat more critical of the state of race relations in the District.
It was a bone-rattling cold night in NYC, me and some friends had just left a lounge in the Meat Packing district of Manhattan. It was time to grab a cab and head back home. A male friend of mine was the chivalrous type and went out to seek our yellow chariot. Cab after cab after cab passed us up. Ten to be exact. He became increasingly frustrated, he hit one cab’s trunk and screamed, “I’m an effing doctor! We’re not going to the damn ghetto!” It was one of many nights reminding us that although we were all professional folks, we are all still black folks.
Once safely ensconced in a taxi, my friend went into a familiar tirade. He hates getting lumped in with “hood” black folks “who don’t know how to act right.” I cringed. It was nothing new from him. He often brags about how few black people live in his city and apartment building. He loves to call working-class black people lazy and he distances himself from any behavior that could be termed, “ghetto.” Always one to get a conversation going, I challenged my friend. I asked him why it should matter if he was a doctor. Doesn’t he believe that everyone deserves a cab home on cold night including someone from the hood? He answered that he understands why cabbies wouldn’t want to deal with ghetto people, but they should assume every black person is from the hood. I pointed out that unless he finds a way to staple his MD to his head, a racist has no way to know that he’s a doctor. That’s why EVERYONE deserves to be treated with respect regardless of educational background, income, or what neighborhood they come from. My friend and I just had to agree to disagree.
His perspective is not uncommon and it comes from a place of frustration. He’s not a bad person. He just lives in a world where he is forced to prove his worth before he gets respect due to the color of his skin. A white person dressed in jeans and a T-shirt can walk into anywhere and get respect. We can’t. A lot of black folks who work in corporate America feel pressure to be on their best behavior and not to “show their color.” So when a small minority of black people from “the hood” are loud and unruly, some bourgeois black people get angry at them for confirming stereotypes. However, racism is in the bones of America and no matter if black people all woke up tomorrow and were model citizens, it would still exist. Look at all the racism directed at our President and First Lady who have lived accomplished, principled lives. Racism is directed at all of us. And if racists lump us all together, that is the problem of the racist not the people who conform to their stereotypes.
The prejudice between bougie black people and folks from the hood runs both ways. There are working-class black people who think that bougie blacks who speak English and not Ebonics are “talking white.” This is also a messed up attitude. I had a friend who was the first person in her family to go to college. She became a successful lawyer. However, whenever she went home to visit her family, they tore her down. They said she had “changed” and “thought she was better.” Instead of celebrating her success they would say she was trying to “act white” Just because someone is trying to climb the corporate ladder, doesn’t mean that they are not proud that they’re black. While there are bougie people like my friend who look down on people from the hood, most don’t. Sometimes, they are glad to get away from their schools and jobs and let their guard down around other black people.
So, whether you’re a Harvard alumna or from around the way, we’re in this together. Let’s act like it.
Opera singer Angela M. Brown is trying to bring her passion to her people. Brown has developed a recital program called “Opera…from a Sistah’s Point of View” where she hopes to encourage appreciation for the classical music sound. The Indianapolis-born singer was inspired to create the program after repeatedly looking out into the audience and seeing “a sea of monochromatic people.”
But it’s not just about color, Brown wants to debunk the myth that opera is something only older, rich people enjoy. She says she’s especially passionate about letting children know the world of opera and classical music is not closed to them.
“I needed to be able to step up my game and at least let people know I’m here, especially kids. It’s my way of contributing to the cultural atmosphere and letting them know, I’m here and there are people who look like you here.”
You can read the rest of Brown’s story over at Black Voices.
Have you ever been to an opera, you enjoyed?
One thing that ‘girlfriend-centric’ shows like “Living Single,” “Sex and the City” and “Girlfriends” all have in common (besides the four ladies formula) is that each woman in the group fits a particular type. In general, you have the loose one, the uptight one, the career-driven one and the wild card (airhead/golddigger/etc). Part of the fun with those shows was knowing just how each different character would react to particular situations. How fun to figure out which one you are most like and which of your girlfriends seem most like the others!