You can go here to find more info on Vegan Nocciolata Organic Hazelnut & Cocoa Spread.
And if you’re interested in what it means for products to be marked as “cruelty-free” and “vegan” that include non-exploited human labor, you can check out Food Empowerment Project. They engage in food justice and farmworker rights with a vegan framework and have an excellent campaign that asks companies to source their cocoa ethically. I am hoping that Rigoni di Asiago does source their cocoa under non-cruel conditions; maybe they just didn’t label it yet.
UPDATE July 26 2016: Rigoni di Asiago contacted me and they said that they indeed use a Fair Trade source of cocoa. I asked them if they can update their labels to reflect this in the near future!
I’m still impressed that 4 years after Black Lives Matter movement was founded, thousands of white people still have the luxury of being ‘confused’ about something they could simply clarify by going to BLM’s main website to learn about it, as well as access the plethora of publications that explain BLM as (1) an intersectional framing of anti-racism and (2) continuum of liberation from decades of documented systemic racialized oppression that you can easily find in critical race legal studies publications. Instead, they send me nonsense about “Black on Black violence” or tell me, “If Black people just taught their kids to adhere to the law…”
I call it strategic ignorance, as plenty of white people can self-educate themselves about many things they were once ignorant about that have nothing to with the ‘taboo’ subject of race (well, ‘taboo’ to white people who collectively say they have no race or aren’t the problem). How many white people do I know were ignorant about learning computer programming but then educated themselves to become computer programmers? Or, how many white people do I know didn’t know anything about becoming vegan but consciously decided to teach themselves about veganism? And I know countless white people who knew nothing about Buddhism, but they then learned about it through reading, going to a sangha, etc. This syndrome of “pretend confusion” around race, racism, and racialization was articulated brilliantly in the book Race and Epistemologies of Ignorance. I highly suggest this as core reading to “unconfuse” yourselves….
The confusion, the silence, the ongoing years of, “I just don’t understand what you mean by systemic racism” or “Anti-Blackness” are simply strategic and luxuries of whiteness. I have found that those white people who do have brown and black kids (whether biologically or adopted) eventually became ‘unconfused’ once they realized their children were targets of racialized violence (whether it be their teen daughter being stopped for j walking and handcuffed or their brown son punished 3x worst than the white children who ‘act out’ in his elementary schools.) Or, they fall in love with a brown or Black person and witness first hand, clearly racialized violence against their partners when they did the same thing and got off “Scott free.”
The next one is Chris Crass’s book below, Toward the “Other America” Anti-Racist Resources for White People Taking Action for Black Lives Matter
I also am trying to avoid the trauma of constantly listening to white people tell ME that BLM is anti-white, anti-cop, and racist. BLOWN away and enraged by it. The response is a huge indicator of the consequences of growing up with the ‘privilege’ of being racialized as white in this white supremacist racial caste system.
This morning, I was going through NextDoor posts that are about racial profiling and listening to white identified– mostly men– whitesplain that there is no racial profiling in ‘safe’ communities like N. Berkeley and Albany. They are telling the rest of us that are not them, that us asking about racial profiling of not just police, but mostly white people calling the police about ‘suspicious’ activity has ‘nothing’ to do with race. A white man wrote that there is no racial profiling in Berkeley CA– that if [Black] people only abide by the law then there would be no negative consequences. Complete annihilation/dismissal of the reality that they suggest you simply need to be abiding by the law ‘while being black’ to not be arrested, beaten, killed. Blown away by the arrogance and it’s quite scary because he is in a camp of many , mostly white people, who strongly believe this about the USA we live in.
Sharing Journal Entry Excerpt From July 9, 2016:
Wish there were more mental health therapists trained in Frantz Fanon’s type of psychoanalysis (or similar). There are so many of us going through intense emotional pain and suffering, who need mental health care from the ongoing violences of racism (whether overt or micro-aggressive)– both experiencing and witnessing it for 500+ years– but also from the constant violence from so many called white ‘friends’ who remain silent or make ‘excuses’….
I spent the the last year seeking someone and found one person available– a Black man in Oakland– who uses Fanon based psychoanalysis but does not take health insurance. When I did find those who do take insurance (and there were only a handful in my area), they could take any more clients. Fully booked. (sigh)
I guess a lot of us resort to other ‘therapies’ like our spiritual communities, working out, meditating, etc… but even though these can be helpful, it’s quite telling that there are not enough professional therapists ready to take on these traumas with deep literacy around the emotional consequences of living in a white supremacist racial caste system…Or, if we do have access to them, we can’t afford them because most charge $120/hr or more and/or do not accept health insurance.
I think about the years of trauma that Philando Castile’s 4 year old daughter will endure and wonder what professional therapists will be there for, trained in racialized violence and trauma, to enable healing; to make sure she can blossom and not internalized what happened to her father for her entire lifetime. I think about Alton Sterling’s 15 year old son, breaking down and crying behind the podium at the horrible realization that his father was shot to death and it was video-recorded. These are only two children that have been centered in the USA media this week out of thousands…
What about an entire collective community who is constantly experiencing these traumas with no adequate professional mental health care support that is focused on our real racialized needs? Yes, it takes more than therapy to fix a broken system, but as I re-read Fanon over the last week, I couldn’t believe how applicable his psychoanalysis from decades ago, is applicable now…
My only nightmares, since becoming a mother about 7.5 years ago, were of my children being victims of racialized violence; or my twin brother and parents being victims of racialized violence. In some of these dreams, I get phone calls that they have been killed as targets of racism. Or, there were the dreams I had the other year when my children were swept away into the past, back into antebellum USA and I jumped through some time hole to find them. Probably me reading a lot of Octavia Butler at the time that showed a terrible past (Kindred) but also amazing hope in the possibilities of afro-futurism...(check out Aph Ko’s talk about this here.)
This journal entry is what I can only call “Fanon’s Tears, Octavia’s Hope….”
The same morning I wrote this entry I received an email from a friend. Black. Ivy league educated. Mother of a Black boy. Brilliant scholarly mind. She emailed me that if she were ever killed by the police and smeared as ‘asking for it’ because of being Black = ‘inherently criminal’, that I tell her son that it was all a lie… This is 2016…. I’ve seen a lot of these ‘reminders’ from Black friends being posted on FB. ….This is 2016…
I have a quick tip to share. Nettles is uber healthy. It helps with allergies, eczema, and rich in minerals and can prevent anemia. It’s my essential herb for pregnancy and lactation period as well.
I got my toddler to drink it regularly by making an infusion of nettles and a teeny bit of stevia leaf (to sweeten without sugar) and then serving it chilled. It seemed to help with her eczema. It helped with mine, about 8 years ago, along with my sinus allergies. I no longer have eczema and rarely have sinus allergies. Read more about the benefits here, via Susun Weed.
1 gallon pot should be filled with 80% water. Bring to boil.
I know not everyone has the same path or plan as I do, but I just wanted to put it out there that a vegan dietary pregnancy is possible! I emphasize this because I know food choice and access are PRIVILEGES in this current global system of how food and maternal health care (as well as overall health care, housing, education etc resources ) are not easily accessible to a significant number of the world’s population.
Well, that is all I have to share for now.
About Dr. A. Breeze Harper
Dr. Harper has been invited to deliver many keynote addresses and lectures at universities and conferences throughout North America. In 2015, her lecture circuit focused on the analysis of food and whiteness in her book Scars and on “Gs Up Hoes Down:” Black Masculinity, Veganism, and Ethical Consumption (The Remix) which explored how key Black vegan men us hip-hop methods to create “race-conscious” and decolonizing approaches to vegan philosophies.Dr. Harper’s most recently published book, Scars: A Black Lesbian Experience in Rural White New England (Sense Publishers 2014)interrogates how systems of oppression and power impact the life of the only Black teenager living in an all white and working class rural New England town.
BECOME A MONTHLY DONOR. THE SISTAH VEGAN PROJECT ALREADY HAS SEVERAL THOUSAND FOLLOWERS. JUST IMAGINE WHAT COULD BE ACCOMPLISHED IF HALF OR MORE FOLLOWERS PLEDGED $5-$15 PER MONTH.
Moved out of our house yesterday, into a friend of a friend’s house a few blocks away. I moved quite a few boxes and other things from our car last night into the house. I was jokingly wondering to myself if I’d look “suspicious” carrying several boxes of things into our temporary home since Albany is 4% Black.
This morning, we get a knock on the door and two police officers say they are responding to ‘suspicious’ activity that some neighbors reported From yesterday. They asked for my husband’s license. He is a white man. As they asked, I was wondering what could have happened if he had gone into work today and I had answered the door. I don’t think I’m paranoid but will ask the question…
Are you a Brown or Black person who has ever moved into a new and mostly white neighborhood, only to have the police come because neighbors thought something was ‘suspicious’?
This is complex, of course, because my husband also carried things to the house EARLY that morning. I stayed at the other place moving and cleaning things. After we moved out of our permanent house that morning, we went straight to a July 4 family event at the park, and then went back to our new temporary housing after 4pm. I had not been to the place since I checked it out 4 weeks ago to see if we wanted to stay there. Anyway, my husband asked that I take all the stuff out of the van because his back was shot, so I went back and forth for about 20 minutes and am wondering if that was the ‘suspicious’ activity they were talking about.
Or, maybe they just have a neighborhood policy in which the neighbors agree to call the police when they see people going in and out of a house that aren’t the family members that usually reside there. As long as they report ‘suspicious’ behavior to police when it involves any person they see, I’m okay with that, but still, this is the place where, last year, when a Muslim woman and her daughters came to pick up some free cycle things from us, a white woman yelled at the Muslim elder, “Go back to your own country” when she didn’t like that the elder had double parked temporarily to pick up some rugs from us.
My husband joked, after the police left, “Who would bring an entire moving truck to a house they wanted to illegally occupy?” Yea, they’d be incognito about it, right?
I write about these situations all the time because yea, it’s emotionally painful to know that there is a strong possibility that people make their ‘sincere’ decisions based on racism… And homophobia….and elitism… Etc. It’s the repetitive things like this that happen– particularly in an increasingly hostile American US climate in which there is documentation of racial and xenophobic profiling (or whatever you want to call it) happening all the time. When I mention it, of course, almost all the time it is white people who need to comment and then me that I’m making big deal about nothing (but how can you have the audacity to say that when there is extensive documentation that shows how racism/white supremacy/xenophobia are weaved into the consciousnesses of most of the mainstream population in the USA?) Yes, I may never know why the police were called, but the mere fact that I have to always be on edge and ‘wonder’ if it’s because I don’t look like Taylor Swift, that that is why.
Ask yourself this: Who looks ‘suspicious’ to you and why? Is it informed by racial bias? Or heterosexist bias? Or elitist bias? (I could go on and on about the list of biases, but you get the ideas)…..
Anyway, other than that, at least we finally moved into a temporary situation for 4 weeks. I am sitting here at the park down the street with my Nina Simone earrings on and lovely Afro, glistening with Shea butter and castor oil. I look haggard and tired. At nearly 6 months pregnant, moving and hauling sh*t for a week straight with minimal sleep was tough… But I survived.
As I sit here at the park, I’m tempted to start a ‘polite’ public dialogue, as the only visibly Black person here, and ask folk under what situations would they call the police if they think someone is ‘suspicious’…. Seems like the USA, in general, lacks these general spontaneous conversations in mostly white spaces like the Albany Memorial playground (or other mostly white spaces in the East Bay area). In general Albany has a diversity and inclusivity problem on many levels. The lack of affordable housing, the ‘No Section 8’ for rentals ads, the horrible rent control, the fact that the Albany Unified School District didn’t have a Black History Celebration event for students until 2016, the Albany movie theater having shown nearly all white movies during the past year (with the exception of a few Asian movies)– really point to a particular type of person that they do want as part of their overall community (whether it is conscious or not). It’s this backdrop that has had me really questioning why the police were called in this morning.