Homeless Man Votes For The First Time During The 2019 Midterm Elections

by Carjamin Scott on August 6, 2019 at 9:30 p.m. CST

Roosevelt voted for Gicola Lane, a Nashville Metro Council at-large candidate. Lane shared that this was Roosevelt’s first time voting, he didn’t even vote for Obama! Although Lane did not win, I hope that both first timers remain actively engaged in the process. I hope Roosevelt is able to improve his situation and Lane will continue to fight for a Nashville that represents all of us rather than a few.

Politicians win because they serve the people who vote for them. Johnnie Turner once said, “Politics and politicians control every aspect of our lives.” Let that marinate for a moment. You might say, duh, I know that. But let’s truly marinate on this. Again, politicians win because they serve the people who vote for them. So, which politicians are serving the Roosevelts of our community?

Most of us are not members of the upper class and the Pew research center reports, “since 2016, income disparity between the classes has grown.” At one time, I blamed myself for what I lacked, like most working class and poor people do. I thought that maybe I needed more education, maybe I needed to work harder, maybe I needed to leave my community behind and befriend only people who appeared to have more than me. I figured that lack of money was bad and it was my fault that I did not have any. The last thing I was concerned about was midterm elections.

Midterm elections? Really? Why would a policy maker care about me? Why would I waste my gas money to go to a voting booth? Why would I give away my time to stand in line at the polls? And what 18 year old, would dare ask their boss for time off to go vote? I had no idea that voting was my right and that I should request time off to honor my civic duty.

Plus, I hate to admit this; but, I didn’t know who was truly responsible for securing my neighborhood. And even if I did, I never thought that the person would care about what I thought about their leadership or lack thereof.

However, I’ve grown from my limited thinking and learned that I need to educate the people who come from the community I’m from. It’s our responsibility to hold our leaders accountable and tell them what we need.

I am no Roosevelt and I do not know his story. But what I do know is, we need to stop blaming poor people for being poor. We need to work together to restore hope to our poor and marginalized communities. These voiceless communities need our help more than others. We need to collectively vote for politicians that exhibit high moral character, integrity, and opportunity for all. No matter your socioeconomic class, it’s all of our responsibility.

Photo Credit: Gicola Lane here

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Carjamin Scott can be reached at carjamin.scott@gmail.com and you can follow her on twitter @scottcarjie, instagram @carjiescott, and facebook at Dr. Carjie Scott.

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The 5 cries for help and healing.

by Carjamin Scott on July 24, 2019 at 7:30 a.m. CST

There is nothing wrong with a good cry. I’ve always been a crier. Not a cry baby but a crier. The difference between a crier and a cry baby is cry babies don’t want their cries solved. I used to be ashamed of crying, especially in front of others. But I’m learning that it’s necessary to show emotion.

According to Medical News Today, crying helps to relieve your pain and the pain of others around you. Research has found that, “In addition to being self-soothing, shedding emotional tears release chemicals that make people feel good and may also ease both physical and emotional pain.”

I appreciate fellow criers because it takes courage to be our authentic selves. We have a sense of empathy that is demonstrated through our tears. I’ve summarized my five cries for help and healing.

1. Empathy Cry

When I was younger, I would cry because I wanted the people around me to feel the sadness I felt. I think children have perfected this cry. It’s how they get our attention and beg us to get them what they need.

2. Passion Cry

When people ask me my true motivation for what I want out of life I tend to develop tears in my eyes. This is usually a simple cry. A glass of water or a few blinks can clear this cry up. This is one of the cries I used to be ashamed of and would try to hold in. I would apologize to others for it. Nowadays, I just let it happen and thank people for allowing me to share myself with them.

3. Gratitude Cry

I had one of these recently. It was over something that I felt I had no control over. This cry is a feel good cry, a thankful cry. This is probably my favorite cry because, as a believer, I feel God’s presence upon me during this cry. I know God has true control over everything and the cry is how I worship the goodness of the Lord. I’m at peace during this cry and I feel that like I’ve surrendered to the situation that caused the cry.

4. Angry Cry

This is a cry because I’m tired of something occurring that I can’t fix. I have this cry when I’m triggered about something. It could be a news story, or something that happened with my kids, or just someone that ruined my day. I have this cry the least of them all and it’s a short cry. It helps me to clear my thoughts before I act.

5. No Tears Cry

This is the cry when I just want help and I’m full of emotion but no tears seem to flow. It’s the cry that makes me wonder if I’ve lost all emotion towards a situation. I used to have a cry type for nearly everything and recently I’ve started having the no tears cry. This is the sick and tired of being sick and tired cry. It’s the, I’m tired of saying and doing the same things over and over without any results in sight cry.

No matter what you are crying over or crying from, understand that you are not alone. With the political climate, relationships we are in, and responsibilities we have, it’s ok to cry every now and then.

This post is in support of Therafund, helping individuals pay for mental health therapy.

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Carjamin Scott can be reached at carjamin.scott@gmail.com and you can follow her on twitter @scottcarjie, instagram @carjiescott, and facebook at Dr. Carjie Scott.

xoNecole: 4 Women on How Mentorship Changed Their Lives.

Mentorship matters. In The Impact of Being a Mentor, by Brittney Oliver founder of Lemons to Lemonade, four women discussed how mentorship has influenced their lives. Each answered four questions:

  1. How is mentorship important to you?
  2. When and why did you first become a mentor?
  3. What has been the biggest reward of mentoring?
  4. How has mentoring changed your life?

On how mentoring changes lives, below are the responses.

Manessa Lormejuste

Mentoring has changed my life as I have been able to connect with many young women who would not have known about a career such as mine. Mentoring has also allowed me to be more confident in myself and stick true to my beliefs. As I continue to pour into my mentees based on my own experiences, I realize that the life I have chosen to pursue was not a mistake, but what I was destined to do.

Manessa Lormejuste, Cosmetic Chemist at L’Oreal USA
Nekasha Pratt

I am a better person and leader because I’m a mentor. My listening and communication skills have improved, and my patience and empathy have increased. I enjoy helping others achieve their goals, so I also have an increased sense of personal pride from seeing a person I mentored succeed.

Nekasha Pratt, Director of Marketing, Tennessee Department of Tourist Development
Carjie Scott

Mentoring has made me a better person, and I think it has made others better. It has increased my relationships with others and allowed me the chance to encourage others to do their very best. It makes me live a purpose-driven life because I know that people are looking up to me. I understand that I can’t give the shirt off my back if I don’t have a shirt on. So, it makes me take care of myself, so I can care for others.

Carjie Scott, Higher Education Administrator
Crystle Johnson

Mentoring has given me a sense of purpose and accomplishment. We don’t have to fly to the moon or cure cancer to be extraordinary. Through empowering, supporting, and sharing with those who need it — we are extraordinary.

Crystle Johnson, Sr. Consultant, Inclusion, Diversity & CSR at Electronic Arts

Read the full article, courtesy of xoNecole, here.

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Carjamin Scott can be reached at carjamin.scott@gmail.com and you can follow her on twitter @scottcarjie, instagram @carjiescott, and facebook at Dr. Carjie Scott.

7 Ways to be Mindful and Pursue Gratitude

by Carjamin Scott on July 8, 2019 at 9:00 p.m. CST

A number of years ago, I read The Secret by Rhonda Byrne and it completely changed my life. I learned that our thoughts attract what happens in our lives, both good and bad. This notion made me become critical about what I spend time reflecting on. Byrne says, “Your life is in your hands. No matter where you are now, no matter what has happened in your life, you can begin to consciously choose your thoughts, and you can change your life. There is no such thing as a hopeless situation. Every single circumstance of your life can change!” Below are seven ways to be mindful and pursue gratitude.

1. Every morning, spend time reflecting on everything you are grateful for.

Instead of unlocking your phone and checking emails, practice mindfulness. The very first thing you think about will shape the rest of your day. Start with thinking of three things you are truly grateful for, like, your health, family, and career. Then, add to the list every morning.

2. Welcome all of life’s challenges and learn from them.

There is very little you can control in life. In fact, the only thing constant is change and challenges. Embrace it all, learn from it, and teach others. Be grateful for setbacks, roadblocks, and detours. These moments are preparing you for something greater.

3. Assume that others are inherently good and do not want to harm you.

Yes, of course there are people who do not have your best interests at heart. Yes, there are those who want to see you fail. So what! Live your life with courage and never compromise. Treat everyone well even when they don’t deserve it. Life is just so much easier that way.

4. Appreciate the differences in people and find ways to complement those traits.

It’s very easy to be a member of a group where everyone thinks and looks alike. However, it is more fun to take the time to get to know people who are not like you. Discover the strengths of other people, we all have them, then work to highlight those strengths. Be grateful for what others have to offer.

5. Look forward to routine tasks in life by finding ways to make them fun.

Sometimes life can become routine and mundane. Spontaneity makes life more fun. A friend told me about the Waze app. It’s a driving app that alerts you about traffic delays, route shortcuts, and more. You can also text other people using the app on the road with you. On your next road trip, let your passenger use the app on the trip and test all of its functions. It’ll make a routine ride more fun.

6. Create opportunities to give more than you take.

It just feels good to give. Is your co-worker having a baby? Host a diaper shower. Did your friend graduate college? Send a celebratory card. Is someone having a bad day? Give them a hand. Never underestimate the importance of a good deed.

7. Show your appreciation when accepting compliments and credit.

If you are someone who has a hard time receiving compliments, now is the time to begin to change that behavior. Accept the “thank you’s”. When earned, take the credit. Gratefulness includes being grateful for what you do for yourself and for others.

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Carjamin Scott can be reached at carjamin.scott@gmail.com and you can follow her on twitter @scottcarjie, instagram @carjiescott, and facebook at Dr. Carjie Scott.

This is why I volunteer with The Equity Alliance

by Carjamin Scott on June 25, 2019 at 9:00 p.m. CST

My Equity Alliance story is simple. It’s my responsibility to give back to the community I came from. I was looking to make an impact with an organization that valued my talents, allowed me to bring my whole self, and was led by Black women. I wanted to feel valued and appreciated in my own skin. I was looking to serve alongside people who truly care about the poor and the marginalized and are doing great things for them. I’m grateful to be with people who build me up, hold me accountable lovingly, and expect excellence from me at all times. And I got tired of the critics saying that Black women can’t lead, Black women don’t get along, Black women aren’t good enough, and the like. So I had to support this organization. I’m here, we’re here, to prove all the haters wrong, serve our community, and build a coalition, all while wearing a dress, heels, and a smile.

Join us at the Black Women’s Empowerment Brunch Saturday July 20 from 11a – 1p at Rocketown in Nashville, TN.

Honorees:

Pioneer in Politics: Johnnie Turner – Retired TN State Representative and Civil Rights Leader

Unsung She-ro: Freda Player – Senior Legislative Advisor, Office of the Mayor of Nashville

Live Music by: Jason Eskridge and Band

Spoken Word Performance by: Tia Smedley

Live Performance by: Sankofa African Dance and Drumming Co.

Hosted by: Sissy Brown, 92Q Radio DJ

Event Production by: Phoenix Forrester Events

Keynote Speaker: Kristen Clarke, JD, President and Executive Director of the Committee for Civil Rights Under Law

from the bottom of my heart thank you Charlane Oliver and Tequila Johnson

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Carjamin Scott can be reached at carjamin.scott@gmail.com and you can follow her on twitter @scottcarjie, instagram @carjiescott, and facebook at Dr. Carjie Scott.

Six Ways to Celebrate Juneteenth

by Carjamin Scott on June 19, 2019 at 9:00 a.m. CST

Today is Juneteenth, African American Independence Day.  On this day, we celebrate one of the most revolutionary events in our history designed to dismantle the enslavement of Blacks.  In 1865, General Order No. 3 was issued by Unionist Major General Gordon Granger to inform Texans that slaves are no longer the property of their masters. 

Although, the Emancipation Proclamation was issued on January 1, 1893, Texas was exempt from the rule which made June 19, 1865 the official African American Independence Day.  As we celebrate this day, let us recognize where we, as Americans, have come from, how we can keep our history alive, and what we should do moving forward.  Here are six ways to celebrate Juneteenth.

1.Document Juneteenth with an elder or child.

Consider this perspective, Juneteenth happened 156 years ago.  According to the United Nations, our lifespan is 72 years.  This means, that we are only about 3 generations removed from the establishment of Black slavery.  Find a great grandmother or grandfather and ask them what they know about Juneteenth. Talk with your children about the history of Juneteenth.  Document these stories to keep the memories alive.

2.Host a party and register your friends to vote.

Our vote is our voice.  If we want to continue progressing towards freedom for all in America, we will need to be sure our voices are heard.  Host a house or block party, invite your local elected officials, and register your friends to vote. 

3.Attend Juneteenth celebration events.

Here in Nashville, there are many organizations hosting Juneteenth celebration events.  At Fort Negley Park, Mayor David Briley, The Equity Alliance, Kwame Lillard, Gideons Army and others are gathering tonight from 5-8 pm for a Juneteenth celebration hosted by Juneteenth615 and the African American Cultural Alliance.

4.Go to a local school and complete a Juneteenth lesson.

I remember the Emancipation Proclamation history lesson; however, I did not learn about Juneteenth in school. Did you? Contact a principal at your neighborhood school and ask if you can deliver a Juneteenth history lesson. 

5.Volunteer and give money to Black led non-profits.

Nashville has over 100 non-profit organizations working to create opportunities and restore hope for marginalized communities. Which causes are important to you: healthcare, education, fair wages?  Non-profit organizations need money and volunteers like you to further their vision and help to create freedom and equality for all.

6.Patronize Black owned businesses.

Replace your everyday items with Black owned goods. Try and buy new products. Shop at Black owned restaurants and bookstores. If you do not have any businesses in mind, it’ll only take a quick google search to find Black owned businesses in your area.

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Carjamin Scott can be reached at carjamin.scott@gmail.com and you can follow her on twitter @scottcarjie, instagram @carjiescott, and facebook at Dr. Carjie Scott.