Black and Queer are not Trends

•August 14, 2019 • Leave a Comment
2006 with lil4Tay

Rapper Lil 4Tay and author Sumiko Saulson. Black and queer.

Black and queer
Are not just trends
Fashion or make-up
You share with your friends
You feel persecuted as a goth?
Are you for real?
The identities of the marginalized
Are not for you to steal

When they said put away
Childish things
I didn’t know they meant
Childhood friends
When achieving dreams
For your community
Means your childhood ends

When you love and you care
But there is nothing there
That can replace the fact
That you have been back and forth
And here and there with them
To find in the end
You gotta stay black

Gotta stay black,
In the face of injustice
You gotta fight back
They tell you to use
Your inside voice
And feel under attack

They don’t understand
Your motivation
And you gotta know why
When they see racism
And social injustice
They just turn a blind eye

Black and queer
Are not just trends
You appropriate for a season
Until your need for them ends
They are on you for life
With out any choice
Your skin-deep
Your soul-deep
Your kin-deep
Your voice

Debut in SF BayView Newspaper Writing While Black

•August 6, 2019 • Leave a Comment
As a Charon Dunn said, “Sumiko Saulson usually writes horror fiction, but sometimes reality is even more horrifying.” This is my debut into the world of hard-hitting journalism after 6 years of writing upbeat puff pieces praising the arts and culture scene for the Examiner.com (since 2013) and Search Magazine (since 2017), 3 years as a music critic writing for the rock magazine RockHEAD (1988-1991) and two years on my high school newspaper The Daily Bugle. I am so proud to be working for the award-winning nationally acclaimed Black Community paper the San Francisco BayView. This is my piece on the connections between a series of recent mass murders, white supremacy and certain bigoted internet forums where racists congregate.

I will also have a series on the writing convention scene called Writing While Black (about the Hugo Scandals and more) coming out in the SF BayView.

 

Following in Mom’s footsteps

•August 4, 2019 • 2 Comments
mom black renaissance
I made a decision not to try to be someone I can never be, and just to follow in my mom’s footsteps and do all of that homey-ass Chitlin Circuit level stuff my mom and her community organizer friends like
Doris Rowe, Sharen Hewitt and Bobbie Webb did. My mom and a bunch of the elders are gone now, and I was always trying to make everything “professional” and address all of that criticism about all the weird homey stuff the black community did but now I am 51 and I realize I do all of this shit that they did.
 
SFBayview SFBFF
Why do people who are involved in Grass Roots Community Organization do all of this sometimes disorganized shit we did and I still do? It is because we are poor. We are poor as fuck and doing community conferences like the African American Multimedia Conference and the San Francisco Black Independent Film Festival or Iconoclast Black Film Festival on a shoestring budget, with some food we got donated from a pantry somewhere.
 
When your events are neighborhood block parties with volunteers cooking up pantry food, that’s who you are.
 
black renaissance kay davey miki
I am past being ashamed of who I am. I am past apologizing for getting foodstamps at Eastmont Center. I am beyond pretending to be from some elevated, higher and more bougie class than I am. I am through being ashamed of our BBQs and our block parties and our free furniture off of Craigslist that we took home and repainted or glued together. I am going to be proud of who we are.
 
I love and I miss my mom so much.
SF Board of Directors 1997 tech committee
 
All I can do now is to honor all of the things we have built together, our little empire.
 
On her last birthday – the last one before she died – mom turned 70 and she stood up at Vik’s Wheelhouse in Vallejo and sang Deacon Blues by Steely Dan.
 
“They got a name for the winners in the world. I want a name when I lose.”
mom 4tay miki
 
Well, I would rather make sure my mom is remembered than to try to win whatever contest you guys are putting on, with so much put-on and pretense. I know a lot of you who are openly classist – mocking the homeless, the disabled, the poor, those you step over in your constant climb to the top. But we love each other and our lives and our families are real.

Writing While Black coming in August

•July 31, 2019 • Leave a Comment

Starting in August 2019, my column Writing While Black will start to appear in the San Francisco BayView. The San Francisco Bay View National Black Newspaper, founded in 1976, is a communications network for the Black community worldwide

Bestselling author Sumiko Saulson writes award-winning multicultural sci-fi, fantasy, horror and Afrosurrealism. Her monthly column Writing While Black follows the struggles of black writers in the literary arts and other segments of arts and entertainment. From #HugosSoWhite to #OscarsSoWhite, black novelists, short story scribes and screen writers are constantly up against an industry that excludes them and pays white people to tell black stories. How do black writers navigate a Convention and Conference Circuit that is so vital to up and coming writers but often has glass ceilings and exclusionary practices?

Writing While Black logo

Writing While Black – I have a racist MRA stalker

•July 31, 2019 • 1 Comment

I am living my best life as a black writer, it seems… having attracted my very own MRA trashfire, 4Chan forum troll, racist, sexist, and transphobic wannabe edgelord shitty stalker. Fortunately, he’s such a huge fucking wingnut the other trolls don’t take him seriously and his campaigns peter out quickly.

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It has come to my attention that racist, sexist I am now learning transphobic MRA trashfire wannabe edgelord Chuck Stegall and his friends have been hassling black and/or trans women who post supporting comments on my posts. I apologize to anyone who has been harassed with crank calls, crank emails, and Russian trolls and other gross and disgusting behavior by racist Chuck. Chuck may have sockpuppet accounts so I am not sure how effective preemptively blocking him will be. Please feel free to spread the word.

Chuck, a racist cishet white male of the gothic persuasion, has been cracking up ever since the girl of his dreams decided not to be with him, but instead, to marry a black man. Chuck hates race mixing, black people, and a lot of other things and is a sexist pig. Some people don’t block him because they like to troll him. He is pathetic.

If you are reposting, commenting on or otherwise supporting my campaigns please do me a solid and preemptively block Chuck Stegall so as to discourage his harrasment of black women and transwomen on my timeline. Aforementioned harassment includes harassing email messages, harassing phone calls, and super distorted MRA “see? women are just as men” bullshit sexual harassment charges erupting from the MRA sewage tank he dwells in.

He and his friends are tenter bullies and will also post vague shitty double entendre posts that are supposed to be clever to bait you in the comments sections on your posts. These are irritating and a form of gaslighting.

I apologize to anyone who has been hassled by campaigns from this nasty person and his friends due to commenting on my posts.

Mourning: 6 Months In

•July 25, 2019 • 6 Comments

50074633_10156917366647246_3557325762631565312_nIt’s been a little over six months since my mother died. I am finally slowing down a bit to process my grief. During the six final months of her life, I spent a lot of time at her bedside – the whole family did – and battling with doctors. The night she died I was vending. I got the call an hour before I started vending, while I was bringing in my vending set-up. And there’s this beautiful picture of me just smiling that night, with this wig like my mom’s hair and this hat my mom gave me and this gold dashiki on. It was taken two hours after my mother died.

Sometimes it looks like racism because it is

•July 15, 2019 • 3 Comments

In the modern society, people are quick to say that it is not racism. I have been bullied by two young white women and their clique for about four years now. Their forms of bullying are numerous, and they often recruit other people from their popular group of young, mostly thin, predominately white 25 to 33 year old “mean girls.”

This is a screencap of one of the ringleader’s comments from SFGoth Group on my politely worded petition:

Untitled-1

Death Guild is an organization that was started by personal friends of mine back in 1993. Although a lot of them are attached to the logo, and are angry, they are actually personal friends of mine. This is not a crusade against Death Guild, it is a crusade against racism in the club. This girl and her friend are directly responsible for a number of racial microaggressions, tenter bullying, smear campaigns, shunning, ostracization techniques, completely false or blatantly exaggerated rumors, and other bullying techniques directed at me, an up and coming black writer who regularly vends at the aforementioned goth club.

This girl and her friend created a hostile environment, tripping me when I was loading equipment out of the club, intentionally hitting me, and speaking in extremely fallacious and loaded terms about me. Their longstanding bullying and character assassination attempts are all directed at me, a 51 year old African American goth who was one of only two black folks on the first night the club was in operation to the best of my knowledge, and is the only one of those still attending.

The woman this quote comes from was involved in a bullying campaign back in late 2015 that culminated with my attempting suicide. The nature of this bullying attempt is particularly heinous. Here are the details:

  • My former fiance Gregory Hug, who has since passed away (May 26, 2017) was standing outside of the club, Death Guild, telling everyone he was HIV positive, and that I was his exgirlfriend.
  • This woman and her friend were hostile towards me due to my association with the other woman’s exboyfriend.
  • In order to “troll” her exboyfriend, they created an elaborate lie to convince him and his new girlfriend that I had exposed him and his new girlfriend to HIV
  • When he was single, he dated a lot of women, and I was one. As far as I know, the only black one out of seven or so girls. I had spent the night with the guy and made out with him in morning before he got in his car and when to work.
  • The guy was/is an alcoholic. He passed out in the car and threw up earlier in the night. They created an elaborate timeline in order to “teach him a lesson” about drinking and hooking up. As I didn’t know he was still sleeping with his exgirlfriend at the time. They were going to “teach him a lesson” by “trolling him” about how he probably had HIV from me.
  • I was attacked by groups of people who were bumping into me and hitting me and talking loudly about my HIV status as a result. This is a very serious allegation and a very serious matter. I did not have sex with him at all, but in order to sell the idea that he might have contracted HIV, they fabricated tales of sex in the period of time where he had been unconscious. What actually happened during those hours was that I spent 2 hours drunk-driving him home because I wasn’t very sober. This was over 4 years ago, by the way.
  • I attempted suicide over these false allegations, over the loss of the relationship with the young man in question, over the bullying, the lies, my ex-boyfriend’s HIV status, and my mother’s cancer, as she had been getting chemotherapy twice a week. She died in January.
  • I am HIV negative and had not had sexual contact with my HIV+ ex in about 5 months on the night in question.

After a while, the young man in question straightened people out and told them that we didn’t have sex. In fact, we were petting and didn’t have any kind of contact that would have had ANY percentage chance of passing along HIV at all.  Every time the rumor clears up, they restart it, and they fabricate more and more details that are false, they take other things and blow them out of proportion.

They also used the fact that they have ruined my relationship with him to keep it up, as I have to wait for word of it to get to him so he can clear my name YET AGAIN every time. I heard they have threatened him. Starting a false rumor that he has HIV is definitely bullying him. Trying to break him up with his new (Latina) girlfriend of the time by insinuating he has HIV is bullying him. He’s Asian. These girls have bullied and vilified and slandered both of us at various times, although the one in the message above isn’t always on the same side as the people bullying him.

For instance: Once I was going to a dungeon (that is. S&M) and had a back of floggers and whips with me. The other young lady and a friend started running around the club telling people I was armed and dangerous and had weapons, which related to the kink toys.

Just to clarify, I am not boycotting the club. I am not going there because these girls have created a hostile environment. Since I work or vend their, they have created a hostile workplace environment. I would not be going public if I wasn’t constantly being gaslit by these popular girls, their friends and associates, and more of my friends than I would have liked. It is very painful for me.

The logo is a lynching scene. These girls are forming up something like a mob to bully me, a black woman. It is like something straight out of Jim Crow. I almost killed myself over their bullying. Something needs to be done. I don’t know what will be done, if anything, because insular communities hate it when you “snitch” or tell outsiders. But I feel like a domestic violence victim who is being told its all her fault.