Archive for Janks Morton

“Hoodwinked,” “Black People Don’t Read” and The World According To Janks Morton

Posted in African Americans, Black America, Black Interests, Black Links, Black Men In America, Movie and DVD News, Racism with tags , , , on August 18, 2012 by Black Man

By Gary A. Johnson, Black Men In America.com

My main man Janks Morton and I will be getting the band back together next week to promote his new movie “Hoodwinked,” the much anticipated and long awaited sequel to the movie “WHAT BLACK MEN THINK.”  Janks Morton is one of the best storytellers in the business.  He is to many, the voice of the unheard.  Janks is part of a growing underground that is beginning to surface and gain more attention.  He’s his own man and is deserving of wider recognition.

This is where guys like me come in.  People who own and control their own media who work together with other media owners to collectively educate our community and facilitate a constructive dialogue.  Black Men In America.com has a wide reach in the Black community.  Janks and I living proof that black folks can come together and work toward a common goal.  We’ve done it for years.  Do we agree on everything?  No!  However, we agree on the IMPORTANT things.  Actually, we agree on most things.  Janks Morton is a “submarine deep” thinker who works tirelessly doing the work of others to help dispel myths and stereotypes about Black people.  He is not to be taken lightly.

For those of you who don’t know about Janks Morton read the information below from his official web site and watch the movie trailer for “Hoodwinked.”

Here’s some of the thoughts and logic that drive the behavior of my friend Janks, who I affectionately call, “The Man from Mars.”

For over four-hundred years, the majority white society has used many tools to reinforce a message that the peoples of African descent are less-than, not-equal-too or not-good enough. In this modern era of information, the media, government and special interests use statistics to further promote the message of Black inferiority. What troubles me most, is that we as a people have internalized the misinformation, embraced the myths, and perpetuated the stereotypes, sadly reinforcing a collective misperception of our own identities.

Here’s a quick test of how we perceive ourselves – Excluding athletics, entertainment or religion, name a positive stereotype about African Americans. I’ll wait…

Most African-Americans have a challenging, if not impossible time summarizing our collective experience into one positive statement of group-worth. Sadly if I were to ask you the same question about other racial groups, you would rattle off quickly “smart,” “hard-working,” “and “good with money.” This is a testament to how we have allowed Black identity to be twisted and maligned, while also adopting this societal defamation of character as our own belief set.

WHAT IS HOODWINKED ABOUT?

Hoodwinked will be an exploration of the most recent data being released by the US Census, DOJ, DOE, DOC and the CDC to highlight strides and achievements in the African American community. It will feature expert contributors, man on the street interviews, anchor desk headline reporting, and the return of Janks Morton and his “Board of Education” to examine further the symbiotic relationship between media, government and special interest, as they exploit imagery, statistics and data that too often presents a skewed perspective of the modern era African American experience.

BLACK PEOPLE DON’T READ is a comprehensive summary of Data and Statistics from the most recent US Census Bureau, Department of Justice, Department of Education and other agencies around the state Blacks in America. BLACK PEOPLE DON’T READ is a tool to not only refute the plethora of misinformation that exists about Black Identity, but also as a conversation starter around many positive data points, too often missed by the media and seldom discussed at the barbershop.

Click here to learn more.

The Bridge: Dirty Black Secrets, Part 2—Countering Lies & Deception

Posted in African Americans, Black America, Black Interests, Black Men, Black Men In America, Guest Columnists, The Bridge - Darryl James, Women's Interests with tags , , , , on August 14, 2012 by Black Man

By Darryl James

Last week, I discussed a powerful dirty Black secret: Many Black women are a huge problem for Black America.

One of the reasons is that they are the strongest perpetrators of feminism in this nation. We saw in the 2008 election a powerful rejection of Hillary Clinton by older white men and younger white women who know she represents feminism. They know what the propaganda has done to American relationships and the roles of men and women. Yet, Black women act out the feminist propaganda on a regular basis, while many of them claim that they are not feminists.

According to Joseph Goebbels, Adolf Hitler’s propaganda minister, “Propaganda works best when those being manipulated are confident that they are acting out of their own free will.”

And of course it’s propaganda. Otherwise, we would have to believe that Black women simply woke up and decided to become “independent,” and to proclaim loudly and prolifically that they “don’t need men.”

If it smells bad, it’s usually rotten.

But it’s not just Black women. Black people in general view every aspect of life from a deficit model, which begins with the assumption that something is wrong.

Both Black men and Black women have been inculcated with some of the most horrible propaganda about Black people, particularly about Black men. And they pass it around faster and more prolifically than any venomous racist ever could.

The dirty Black secret is that when it comes to propaganda, the enemy is Black.

Any given comedian would have the world believe that whites are perfect and, based on their punch lines, that Black people are everything that is wrong with the world.

This explains why we hear the “more Black men in prison than college” myth, and a host of other lies which paint the Black man in a horrible light.

According to the U.S. Census, there were around 17,945,068 Black males in the nation. Around 6.3 percent are in college and 4.7 percent are in prison.

My friend and colleague Janks Morton has updated the anti-Black Myth machine with a new book called “Black People Don’t Read: The Definitive Guide to Dismantling Stereotypes and Negative Statistical claims about Black Americans,” in which he illustrates that “The remaining 89 percent of Black men have already graduated from college, already served a prison sentence, have a life trajectory that does not involve college or prison, or are too young for either to apply.”

Morton agrees with me that Blacks have to stop talking about how poorly we are doing as a people for two reasons: First, because when we speak negatively, it affects our self-esteem and accordingly, our ability to succeed and Second, because many of the things we say simply are not the truth.

The dirty Black secret is that Black people—not white males or white women—perpetuate the myth that Black men are somehow a “dying breed.” Yet, in “Black People Don’t Read,” Morton illustrates that “according to the U.S. Census, since 1970 there are 3.9 million less White Males and 2.5 million more Black Males, age 15 to 25, in the U.S. population.”

And Black women do not escape the negative hype.

Any given moron will spout teen pregnancy as some epidemic causing Black women to drop out faster than flies. But if the moron did some real research, he would realize that, according to the Center for Disease Control, Black Teenage Pregnancy rates have been reduced by 56.42% from 1991-2009.

And while Black college enrollment could always be higher, Black men are not dropping out of high school and simply failing to garner a diploma. There is no 50% dropout rate. Again, according to the US Census, 83.43% of Black men over the age of 18 have a high school diploma, but when stats are negatively manipulated, we find that Black men who switch schools before graduating (from another school), or who miss a semester but finishes, or who test out before their class are not included because the focus of the negative statement is on Black men who graduate from 12th grade with their 9th grade class.

The dropout rate for Black males is 9.5%. Slap yourself.

Black men and Black women have been inculcated with some of the most horrible propaganda about Black people, particularly about Black men. And they pass it around faster and more prolifically than any venomous racist ever could.

Any give comedian would have the world believe that whites are perfect and, based on their punch lines, that Black people are everything that is wrong with the world.

Another dirty Black secret is that many of the institutions that were originally designed to help Blacks uplift themselves are in fact, the cause of Black misery in many cases.

Next Week: Dirty Black Secrets, Part 3—Alphabet Soup

Darryl James is an award-winning author of the powerful new anthology “Notes From The Edge.”  James’ stage play, “Love In A Day,” opened in Los Angeles in 2011 and will become a feature film in 2012. View previous installments of this column at http://www.bridgecolumn.proboards36.com. Reach James at djames@theblackgendergap.com.

What Black Men Think Hits The Documentary Channel

Posted in Black America, Black Interests, Black Links, Black Men, Black Men In America, Movie and DVD News, Racism with tags , , , on May 22, 2012 by Black Man

Our friend and a favorite filmmaker Janks Morton’s groundbreaking film “What Black Men Think” will be featured on the Documentary Channel.  Click here for more details.

THE FINAL SOLUTION?

Posted in African Americans, Black America, Black Interests, Black Men, Black Men In America, Guest Columnists with tags , , , on August 11, 2011 by Black Man

By Janks Morton

“If I can convince you to buy into a problem, then you have to purchase my solution.”  — Janks Morton

At this point in my life, I have grown quite weary of the dysfunctional and symbiotic relationship between special interest, media and government. What I have found is that too often, especially as it relates to the African American community, stereotypes, mischaracterizations, hyperbole, myth, and just out right unsubstantiated claims are not only tolerated but often encouraged in our public discourse. Regardless of the mechanism that is utilized to launch this misinformation, mostly, unexamined claims about the status of blacks in this country woefully compound and exacerbate an all-ready debilitating, if not denigrating dialogue .

This past Sunday morning proved to be no different, as sadly, I saw the Wall Street Journal make its entree into the swirling cesspool of unverified, anecdotal and inflammatory assertions, as well as a retread postulate based on faulty analysis and the skewing of statistics. What was most disturbing was the author’s attempt to ratify a timorously inadequate social proposition with flawed logic and poor statistical interpretation.

In the article by Professor Ralph Richard Banks titled “An Interracial Fix for Black Marriage “ Prof. Banks’ states that “ the most unmarried group of people in the U.S.:   Black women. “Black women confront the worst relationship market of any group…and they have needlessly worsened their situation by limiting themselves to black men.”

On the surface his claims may seem to be valid. Especially if we cross-pollinate his thesis with the statistics advanced by former stand-up comedian turned relationship guru Steve Harvey. In a national media campaign, Mr. Harvey claimed that 42% of African American women have never been married. Mr. Harvey, was fully endorsed by ABC News, Tyra Banks, Essence Magazine and the Godmother of them all –Oprah Winfrey.

Subsequently, after a series of Townhall meetings, radio and television appearances, Mr. Harvey summarily outlines what he believes to be the underlying pathology and true causality of the plight of the unwed African American woman–the African American man.

In a similar narrative Prof. Banks’ article utilizes varied social, education and incarceration data to identify further the culprit in the dire quest for marriage of African-American women. Through his analysis, the responsibility rests squarely upon the shoulders of the unemployed, under-employed, overly-incarcerated, under-educated, immature, white woman lusting, secretly homosexual, emotionally unavailable on the verge of extinction African American male. I may have taken some artistic license with the previous descript, however an examination of the commentary around this issue will validate my comments as a non-embellishment.

What I find most peculiar about this ongoing debate, was not once have I ever heard anyone mention through this national crisis of coupling, the one counter-balancing statistic from the same data set (American Community Survey: US Census Department-2007.)

HEADLINE: 44% of African American Males have never been married either. A statistic that if juxtaposed against Prof. Banks assertions, completely invalidates the proposition that African American women are the most unmarried group in this country. Moreover, this statistic opens up a more expansive conversation as to why are (blacks, if you must) and Americans marrying later and at lower rates than generations prior. But that conversation won’t get you a seat on any talk show or make your book a best-seller. I wonder if the Wall Street Journal still has an assignment desk dedicated to fact-checking?

Prof. Banks, as well as other social commentators, in their myopically skewed perspectives and continual “analysis” of modern-era black relationships, have found themselves a comfortable niche’ in the ongoing plight of African-American women. An over-simplified and too oft quoted narrative, that in no way gives a fair representation of the African-American community. The problem with Black marriage is always African-American men.  A narrow minded, divisive and over-generalizing ideologue; flawed in its inception. misleading at a minimum and malicious at its worst. So if Prof. Banks precursory presumptions are flawed (which an unbiased examination of the facts reveals), then I propose the solution Prof. Banks advances must be as equally flawed (if not preposterous).

“If more black women married non-black men, then more black men and women might, in time, marry each other.”

I would love to see the editorial response column to an article summarily recommending that Caucasian Women should consider marrying outside their race in order to address the declining marriage rates in the White community. As my grandfather use to say, “That dog don’t hunt.”  The backlash would be overwhelming.  Unfortunately, this is the Black community and media, government and Prof. Banks have been given latitude to propose any fool-hearty postulate because “we” are in such a “crisis.”

As a law professor I would expect Prof. Banks to know the fallacy of post hoc ergo propter hoc. (after this therefore because of this) and to try to propose that increases in interracial marriage rates will in turn positively effect intraracial marriage rates is absurd . As an academic I would expect at least an opinion removed and more objective analysis of the social evidence. As a black man I would expect you to have an interest in providing viable solutions for a people desperately seeking answers. But in the end, maybe I expect too much.

Prof. Banks as well as others in this discussion are utilizing a biased methodology, to further launch an unfair and unrighteous smear upon black male identity, while simultaneously insulting the intellect of African American women.  Prof. Banks is misusing partial information as an emotional appeal to Black women, manipulating a circumstance to capitalize on the fracture in modern-era black relationships.  A fracture that has lead to ratings, print articles, Internet blogs, talk shows oh and Prof. Banks’ latest entry into this discourse. “Is Marriage for White People?” Published by Stanford Law School, due September 2011.  Another caretaker exploiting the misinformation, proposing the tag-line of a book as a solution, for the betterment of his checking account.

Janks Morton is the founder of iYAGO ENTERTAINMENT GROUP, LLC, a multimedia production company.  He is a groundbreaking filmmaker and one of the “New Jack” messengers for Black America.  Wake up people!  Janks is a social, political, and spiritual activist coming to a church, theater or auditorium in your neighborhood.  He may even show up in your home.  You can learn more about Janks by visiting his official web site:  What Black Men Think.com.

Dr. Boyce Watkins, Michael Eric Dyson, Steve Perry, Marc Lamont Hill Sign on For New Film

Posted in African Americans, Black America, Black Men, Black Men In America with tags , , , on July 10, 2011 by Black Man

By Gary A. Johnson

My friend, Janks Morton called me last week to announce that he had secured an agreement with Dr. Boyce Watkins, Michael Eric Dyson, Dr. Steve Perry, Marc Lamont Hill and other leading black male scholars to take part in his film “Hoodwinked,” a documentary about the state of the black male in America.  This was a long time coming.  Good things come to those who wait.  I know that Janks has been working hard to (these are my words) “re-frame Black America’s reality,” when it comes to the image of black men.  I have always said that my role as Publisher of Black Men In America.com is to maintain a “truthful balance” when it comes to the image of black men in the media.  People like Janks, Dr. Boyce, Steve Perry, Michael Eric Dyson, Marc Lamont Hill and countless others like them, most of whom are NOT household names, makes my job easier.

Listen up America.  Janks Morton is on a mission.  He will not stop and you cannot hold him down.  Like Morton’s groundbreaking film, “What Black Men Think,” “Hoodwinked,” is designed to challenge many of the prevailing myths about black male underachievement and incarceration.  Here are some of the statistics that Morton presents as an alternative to prevailing perceptions:

There are more Black Males in College# than in Jails, Prisons, Private Corrections, Military Jails and Institutions for the Criminally Insane combined#

(1,236,443 in College/841,000 Incarcerates – regardless of age)

4 to 1: The ratio of 18-24 year old Black Males in College# vs. Jails, Prisons, Private Corrections, Military Jails and Institutions for the Criminally Insane#.

(674,000 in College/164,400 Incarcerates)

32.3% (1 in 3) Black Males ages 18-24 are enrolled in College#

(674,000 in College/2,082,000 Total)

1.37 to 1: The ratio of 18-24 year old Black Females enrolled in College to Black Males#.

(930,000 Black Females Enrolled/674,000 Black Males Enrolled)

6.3%: Black Males (age 18-55+) enroll in College at a higher rate by sex than White Males and Hispanic Males and are surpassed only by Asian Males#.

(Black Males is 6.3%, White Males is 5.8%, Hispanic Males is 4.7%, and Asian Males is 9.7%)

25.1% of Black Males (age 25 or over) have either an Associates, Bachelors, Masters, Professional, or Doctoral Degree#.

(2,519,000 with Degrees/10,018,000 Total)

82.1% of Black Males (age 18 or over) have at least a High School Diploma or GED# .

(9,897,000 with HS Diploma or GED/12,044,000 Total)

12.1%: The Black Male Dropout Rate# (ages 16-24) for 2008.

(301,000 Dropouts/2,583,000 Total)#

5.1%: Percent of married Black Men who marry White Women#

(279,000 Black Husband-White Wife/5,654,000 Married Black Men)

88.8%: Percent of Black Males earning income# ages 25-64 (employment)

(7,899,000 Employed/8,893,000 Total)

$23,738: Average Income for Black Males# 15 and older

$19,470 Average Income Black Females

1,812,000 The number of Black Men making $50,000/year or more#

71.6% of Black Men pay their agreed to or Court Awarded Child Support#

(855,000 Payers/1,194,000 Recipients)

$253 Billion: Total Income earned by Black Males# (15 and over)

($262 Billion earned by Black Females)

13,104,000 Total Black Men age 15 or over#

(15,816,000 Total Black Females age 15 or over)

Janks Morton describes “Hoodwinked” will be an exploration of the most recent data being released by the US Census, DOJ, DOE, DOC and the CDC to highlight strides and achievements in the African American community. It will feature expert contributors, man on the street interviews, anchor desk headline reporting, and the return of Janks Morton and his “Board of Education” to examine further the symbiotic relationship between media, government and special interest, as they exploit imagery, statistics and data that too often presents a skewed perspective of the modern era African American experience.

Watch the video below to learn more about Janks Morton.

Hood-Winked

Posted in African Americans, Black Interests, Black Links, Black Men, Black Men In America, Politics, Racism with tags , on May 14, 2011 by Black Man

By Janks Morton

One man cannot hold another man down in the ditch without remaining down in the ditch with him. – Booker T. Washington

For over four-hundred years, the majority white society has used many tools to reinforce a message that the peoples of African descent are less-than, not-equal-too or not-good enough. In this modern era of information, the media, government and special interests use statistics to further promote the message of Black inferiority. What troubles me most, is that we as a people have internalized the misinformation, embraced the myths, and perpetuated the stereotypes, sadly reinforcing a collective misperception of our own identities.

Travel to any Black-owned barbershop or beauty salon on a Saturday afternoon, and you will hear some of the most outlandish, unsubstantiated and unverifiable (statistical) claims about the state of today’s African-American Male. I sit in barber chairs across this country and hear “you know half of em’ been locked up, most of em’ dropped out of high school, and all of em’ are marrying white women.” I sit mostly in silence, because the truth about the great economic and educational strides of today’s Black Male usually starts an emotional and fiery debate. And mostly, the barbershop is a place where truth, statistics and evidence gets trumped by whoever shouts the loudest.

If I can give Black America one teachable lesson, it would be this “Never trust a man (or woman) who quotes a statistic that ends in either a five or a zero.” “25% of this, 50% of that, 75% of these” are usually opinion or conjecture, and seldom if ever valid. Fives and zeros are the numbers of men and are usually flawed (look at your fingers).

This “fives-and-zeros” rule is what led me to my initial research into carving out positive statistics about African-Americans in 2005. Former NPR correspondent Juan Williams in a debate with Dr. Michael Eric Dyson blurted out a statistic that 70% of African-American children were being born out-of-wedlock. Of course I cried foul, and headed to the census.gov to fact-check Mr. William’s claim.  That initial research is what has motivated me to look for positive data about Blacks, and attempt to offset the constant negative messaging etched into our minds. Be it graduation rates, enrollment rates, income or social data, I believe that in our hearts, we all need to hear more “good news” about Blacks in this country.

My research gave me insights as to how 21st century “information overload” can lead to all types of statistical confusion. Too often in our discourse we combine the economic, the educational, employment and social statistics to form a distorted perception of the modern-era African-American experience. Couple that with the constant bombardment by news outlets and entertainment media of the less-than-desirable Black behaviors; consequently you have a people who are ill equipped to stand confident in their own achievements.

Here’s a quick test of how we perceive ourselves – Excluding Athletics, Entertainment or Religion, name a positive stereotype about African Americans. I’ll wait…

Most African-Americans have a challenging, if not impossible time summarizing our collective experience into one positive statement of group-worth. Sadly if I were to ask you the same question about other racial groups, you would rattle off quickly “smart,” “hard-working,” “and “good with money.” This is a testament to how we have allowed Black identity to be twisted and maligned, while also adopting this societal defamation of character as our own belief set.

So with that, I believe that it is absolutely necessary for another message to be forwarded about what is means to be Black in America. WE can no longer depend on any organization, any government or any media outlet to shine the positive light of who WE are. WE can no longer afford to define ourselves by our shortcomings. WE have got to shout confidently, that WE are much more than the incarcerated, the uneducated, or the prime time buffoon.

My final challenge to you, as a Black American, would be this. If XYZ actor gets caught cheating on their spouse, you head right to the local internet search engine to fact-check the story. The Internet has become the great equalizer in this struggle, and your government has made most data freely accessible. The next time you hear any data or statistics about Blacks, anywhere, be just as diligent in your search to confirm or dismiss the story. Because, as I see it, the ratings, the notoriety, and the funding will always promote the negative statistics about Black Americans.

In closing, here are some verified African American Male statistics on education, economics and employment. Statistics you probably have never heard. Statistics I would challenge you to try discussing on your next visit to the local stylist, academic setting, or community activist meeting. What will sadden you most is to watch the debate, watch the resistance, and watch the denial from people who desire most to hold on to false claims about us… myths, stereotypes and misinformation that only perpetuates the denigration of us all.

·       There are more Black Males in College[1] than in Jails, Prisons, Private Corrections, Military Jails and Institutions for the Criminally Insane combined[2] (1,236,443 in College/841,000 Incarcerates – regardless of age)

·       4 to 1: The ratio of 18-24 year old Black Males in College[3] vs. Jails, Prisons, Private Corrections, Military Jails and Institutions for the Criminally Insane[4].

(674,000 in College/164,400 Incarcerates)

  • 32.3% (1 in 3) Black Males ages 18-24 are enrolled in College[5]

(674,000 in College/2,082,000 Total)

  • 1.37 to 1: The ratio of 18-24 year old Black Females enrolled in College to Black Males[6].

(930,000 Black Females Enrolled/674,000 Black Males Enrolled)

  • 6.3%: Black Males (age 18-55+) enroll in College at a higher rate by sex than White Males and Hispanic Males and are surpassed only by Asian Males[7].

(Black Males is 6.3%, White Males is 5.8%, Hispanic Males is 4.7%, and Asian Males is 9.7%)

  • 25.1% of Black Males (age 25 or over) have either an Associates, Bachelors, Masters, Professional, or Doctoral Degree[8].

(2,519,000 with Degrees/10,018,000 Total)

  • 82.1% of Black Males (age 18 or over) have at least a High School Diploma or GED[9] .

(9,897,000 with HS Diploma or GED/12,044,000 Total)

  • 12.1%:  The Black Male Dropout Rate[10] (ages 16-24) for 2008.

(301,000 Dropouts/2,583,000 Total)[11]

  • 5.1%: Percent of married Black Men who marry White Women[12]

(279,000 Black Husband-White Wife/5,654,000 Married Black Men)

  • 88.8%: Percent of Black Males earning income[13] ages 25-64 (employment)

(7,899,000 Employed/8,893,000 Total)

  • $23,738: Average Income for Black Males[14] 15 and older

$19,470 Average Income Black Females

  • 1,812,000 The number of Black Men making $50,000/year or more[15]
  • 71.6% of Black Men pay their agreed to or Court Awarded Child Support[16]

(855,000 Payers/1,194,000 Recipients)

  • $253 Billion: Total Income earned by Black Males[17] (15 and over)

($262 Billion earned by Black Females)

  • 13,104,000 Total Black Men age 15 or over[18]

(15,816,000 Total Black Females age 15 or over)


[1] National Center for Education Statistics: iPeds data set, March 2011 – reporting Scholastic Year 2009

[2] Bureau of Justice Statistics: Prison and Inmates at Midyear 2009 – June 2010)

[3] US Census Bureau: American Community Survey: Table 1.  Enrollment Status of the Population 3 Years Old and Over, by Sex, Age, Race, Hispanic Origin, Foreign Born, and Foreign-Born Parentage:  October 2009

[4] Bureau of Justice Statistics: Prison and Inmates at Midyear 2009 – June 2010

[5] US Census Bureau: American Community Survey: Table 1.  Enrollment Status of the Population 3 Years Old and Over, by Sex, Age, Race, Hispanic Origin, Foreign Born, and Foreign-Born Parentage:  October 2009

[6] US Census Bureau: American Community Survey: Table 1.  Enrollment Status of the Population 3 Years Old and Over, by Sex, Age, Race, Hispanic Origin, Foreign Born, and Foreign-Born Parentage:  October 2009

[7] US Census Bureau: American Community Survey: Table 1.  Enrollment Status of the Population 3 Years Old and Over, by Sex, Age, Race, Hispanic Origin, Foreign Born, and Foreign-Born Parentage:  October 2009

[8] U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Survey, 2009 Annual Social and Economic Supplement

[9] U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Survey, 2009 Annual Social and Economic Supplement

[10] National Center for Education Statistics: Table A-19-2.  Number of status dropouts and status dropout rates of 16-through 24-year-olds – American Community Survey (ACS) 2008)

[11] 2,583,000 includes individuals reporting Black A.O.I.C. US Census data are individuals reporting Black Alone

[12] U.S. Census Bureau, Annual Social and Economic Supplement: 2003 Current Population Survey, Current Population Reports, Series P20-553, “America’s Families and Living Arrangements: 2003″ and earlier reports.

[13] U.S. Census Bureau, PINC-01. Selected Characteristics of People 15 Years Old and Over by Total Money Income in 2009, Work Experience in 2009, Race, Hispanic Origin, and Sex

[14] U.S. Census Bureau, PINC-01. Selected Characteristics of People 15 Years Old and Over by Total Money Income in 2009, Work Experience in 2009, Race, Hispanic Origin, and Sex

[15] U.S. Census Bureau, PINC-05. Work Experience in 2009–People 15 Years Old and Over by Total Money Earnings in 2009, Age, Race, Hispanic Origin, and Sex

[16] U.S. Census Bureau, Child Support Payments Agreed to or Awarded Custodial Parents by Selected Characteristics and Sex: 2007

[17] U.S. Census Bureau, PINC-08. Source of Income in 2009-People 15 Years Old and Over, By Income of Specified Type in 2009, Age, Race, Hispanic Origin, and Sex

[18] U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Survey, Annual Social and Economic Supplement, 2009.

About the Author:   JANKS MORTON is the founder of iYAGO ENTERTAINMENT GROUP, LLC, a multimedia production company. He states “the company came into existence to reflect both the consciousness and the unconsciousness soul of Black America.  Janks is an award winning filmmaker who shook up the world with his movie “What Black Men Think.”  He’s also the author of the book, “Why He Hates You.”  Janks has been in the entertainment industry for more than 20 years

Guilty Until Proven Innocent

Posted in Black America, Black Interests, Black Men with tags , , on October 6, 2010 by Black Man

“These Men Want To Be With Their Children”

Click here to watch our exclusive interview with the film’s Director Janks Morton.

Why He Hates You

Posted in Black America, Black Interests, Black Men, Women's Interests with tags , , on December 4, 2009 by Black Man


By Janks Morton

THE BOOK THAT WILL FOREVER CHANGE THE CONVERSATION IN BLACK AMERICA!

Brother Janks is a rare mix of thinker and doer! His commitment to showing us, to us, to improve us inspires me.

Dr. Steve Perry: CNN Educational Contributor

I can already hear the shackles falling from those who are already bound and those (shackles) set up for the next generation.

Dr. Melva Green: Motivational Speaker, Radio Personality and Psychotherapist

If we as a people want to be what we were created to be, Why He Hates You reminds us that hurt, anger and pain is just as hereditary as those beautiful eyes that somehow skipped four generations, and landed in you.

Kym Hampton: Former WNBA All-Star

I believe wholeheartedly that if we are going to save the next generation of young, black men; Why He Hates You must serve as a guidepost and a roadmap

Ingrid Shanklin: Pastor New Life Fellowship International

Why He Hates You is a book about us, for us and by one of us; written with brutal and unvarnished honesty in the plain talk of the people, in language that is intense, humorous and tender.

Kelly Alexander: Journalist

After reading Why He Hates You, I had to apologize to my 12-year-old son!  I apologized for the screaming, fussing, badgering, hitting and constant anger he experienced with me on almost a daily basis…Thank you Janks Morton for saving my Son from Me!

Gloria Howard: Mother

Janks Morton challenges mothers in a way that is raw, unnerving and honest.  I was uncomfortable reading this book because I could relate to portions of it.  This book is not about blame, it is about change.

Gary Johnson: Founder-Black Men In America.com

www.WhyHeHatesYou.com

EXCERPT FROM WHY HE HATES YOU

I began to realize that this young man gripped by the pain of his own anger and hobbled by his resentments, marginalized and noosed by his own fears, was no longer an obtuse case study for dissection. This mass of damaged goods that was the subject of his dissertation was indeed me.

“You need to talk with your mother,” he explained in a subtle yet firmly directive voice. The intensity of his focus was so penetrating; I had only one option remaining to temper the impending lacerations of what was sure to be the most adversarial moment of my life, a candid conversation with my mother. With this impending confrontational crisis looming and the loathing discomfort I was feeling by the dissections of this man of faith, I had to come up for air. I had to do something! It was time to deflect, change the subject or at least change lanes because I wasn’t ready to drive in the fast lane.

At the first available opportune moment, I interjected. “Reverend,” hoping to derail and diffuse the sting of his insights, “While, I agree with you and your assessment of my situation, the approach you are recommending…well…it may be just a bit too abrasive. Would it be better if I started the conversation with, “Momma, I love you, BUT there’s something we need to talk about?”

With a slight exhale, his eyes turned downward, not with a look of contempt or disgust, but more that of a fatherly disappointment. He spoke abruptly, foiling my scheme to maneuver away from a potentially hostile maternal confrontation. He spoke ten simple words that still rattle me to this day. “You do not love her, and that’s a coward’s way.” In my mind I thought, did this man of faith just call me a coward? I paused and took a step back to assess his remarks before getting ready for an all out verbal assault.


JANKS MORTON is a groundbreaking international and award winning documentarian. As founder of iYAGO ENTERTAINMENT GROUP, LLC, he states “the company came into existence to reflect both the conscious and unconscious soul of Black America. JANKS MORTON has been in the entertainment industry for more than 20 years and is a much sought-after teacher, lecturer, commentator and motivational speaker. He has convened workshops, seminars and served as panelist and keynote speaker at colleges, universities, prisons, conferences, churches and community centers around the world.

Can I Burn A Copy Of Your DVD?

Posted in Black Interests, Movie and DVD News with tags , , , , on August 20, 2009 by Black Man

(Or, How The ” I Got The Hook-up Mentality” Is Killing Black Independent Filmmakers)

janks2

By Janks Morton

August 19, 2009

This evening I finally decided to set aside an evening to blog.  It’s not that I don’t enjoy expressing myself through this venue; it’s just this one little obstacle I have to get over every time I sit down to hunt and peck at the keyboard (yep, never took a typing class)–I HATE WRITING! No exceptions, no quorums, lots of complaints, but at this stage in life, I’ve come to accept it as  just one of those things.

Over the past couple of years my posts have devolved from social, artistic and political commentary, to a “cut, copy and paste” of interesting articles followed by some pretty weak one line zingers. And good lord help me since I’ve discovered re-tweeting on twitter.  My seldom written and overreaching diatribes have been pretty much non-existent.  Not to say I haven’t been busy shooting off at the mouth in pretty much any forum that would have me, but enough of the rambling and on to the story…

So this past weekend I was having a conversation with a dear friend of mine some of you may know. Lamar Tyler of BlackandMarriedwithKids.com is also an up and coming filmmaker and between his website and the film, is becoming a force to be reckoned with.  Check out a sample of his work.

(I’m going to have to really keep my eye on him, his movie “Happily Ever After “just passed my film on AMAZON.com.  My competitive streak is kicking in and I will win!) Well Saturday morning, early in the conversation, he proudly announced on the phone, “Man, we just passed 10,000 fans on our Facebook fan page today!” Point for celebration correct? Maybe.  In a very cynical tone my follow-up question to this moment of reserved jubilee  was. “So how’s the DVD sales going?’  After a downturn of his emotions and a slight pause, Lamar said “…..well” at this juncture…” I interjected and saved him from having to express his frustrations and finished his sentence with “Yeah, you know how we do…”And therein lies the premise of this blog and the ongoing saga of the trials and tribulations of independent filmmaking.

The back story and underlying support for this blazing generalization of “you know how we do” are two fold, and while I have a lifetime of experience and perceptions to assert this negative stereotype, I will reference two recent incidents to make my point.

Incident #1:  After a stirring and heart-felt presentation at a very large mega church in Prince George’s County Maryland (a suburb of Washington, DC), a fine and upstanding member of the highly visible law enforcement division, walks up to me with the following statement. “Brother (I immediately begin to wonder if I paid those 4 parking tickets), I just wanted to say that your documentary and presentation is one of the most important messages I have ever seen, and the DVD would be a valuable resource for the young men we work with.”  (Whew!) The officer continued and asked:  “Would you mind if I burned a couple of copies for some of my team members so they can use them at their respective facilities?” Hopefully you can hear the sound of tires screeching in my head, or that scratching noise old record needles use to make.  And while the proper english, and professional demeanor of this gentleman was impressive, the logic seemed to escape me.

Fortunately I no longer swear in public because in my mind something along the lines of “Motherf%#@, don’t yawl arrest people for that stuff ?” (Feel free to insert your curse word of preference anywhere in the previous sentence).  Considering we were in church and he was carrying a firearm, I simply replied:  “C’mon brother, I ain’t got Sony pictures behind me, it’s just me, so can you….”  As I was speaking I could see the look of, “Oh yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah” coming across his face as to have an epiphany and close the conversation with “Oh dag, my bad.”

Incident #2:  This past weekend at another church another heart-felt, passionate member began to speak.  This was right after I was trying to compose myself.  (My session on the topic of  forgiveness almost always brings me to tears.) Now I just delivered an inspiring message to about 100 members and had one of the best home cooked sausage eggs and home fry deals I’ve had since I’ve been on tour.  I don’t want to give a “purchase product” lecture after just had a free meal, a free movie screening and a free sermon. During the Q&A segment, a brother stands up in front of everyone and says:  “Brother, I love what you have put together here.  I got this (so and so)  hook up in Chicago, with these brothers that are doing (such and such).  Can I burn a copy of this to send to them to help you out?

I stopped and looked out into the audience.  The audience members looked at me.  I grinned, tilted my head with a “deer stuck in the headlights look,” and replied “Are you kidding me?” Once again, good fortune prevailed.  The audience was amused, and the gentleman made sure to come after the program and apologize profusely about his error, and of course I replied, “It’s cool, you know how we do…”

So back to my conversation with Lamar. Several days prior I realized that between all the YouTube, MySpace, FaceBook and other web outlets, I have over 500,000 views of my videos, and God only knows how many hits to the BlackPlanet, Washington Post, CNN and all that other stuff out there. “Man if I could just get 10% of these fans to buy the DVD I would be straight!” stresses Lamar. My final reply was “Man, if I just had one dollar from just the views on the PSA it would be over.  I would be set.”

“But you know cuz, it’s just the way it is. you know how we do…” I continued. Black people, you gotta love ‘em, but we missed the memo that seems to be circulating amongst a lot of other groups throughout this country. I hate to play the whole slavery card, and the subsequent socialization process of making something out of nothing, however on the topic of the intrinsic value of supportive commercewe seem to miss connecting all the dots. “I’ve been thinking about writing a blog about this for a very long time but it’s such a touchy subject and a very fine line to walk, I think it could tick more people off than inspire” was how I finished the conversation with Lamar.

So at this juncture I’ll do what it is I always do, provide a couple of case studies for your amusment. Exhibit A.  that dog gone Jeff Foxworthy (or the Caucasian version of the chittlin circuit). This dude basically drops these series of stand up comdeianic self deprecating, culture denigrating narratives, that are so uniquely, well, redneck, I have difficulty following the humor most times.  It took me two whole days to catch this joke about matching salad bowls and cool whip containers, but I digress. My point, self-described rednecks ate that stuff up, and the intrinsic value of supportive commerce we began to kick in. In other words, they began to support their own through purchases, word of mouth and other mechanisms. The other examples I would defer to would be Van Halen, Master P, and MC Hammer, but want to use them as a point of differentiation because they are musical entertainment (one of the few durable goods you’re allowed to consume, entirely, prior to purchase).  Point being, that these acts probably were supported by as little as 20,000 followers at the time of their “big record deals” and commanded high percentages and millions at the table.

I’ll closed out with my other, not so favorite Tyler (Perry), and how long he was on the scene as a playwright in the church circuit before he got any type of nod from Lionsgate. Both Lamar and I use a documentary style format to advance socio-political-spiritual ideologues, i.e. restoration of black families, or positive images of healthy black marriages, and while it may not be as dramatic as say, a grown man in a dress going to another family reunion, with the latest gospel track kicking at the climax, our works are actually capturing the heart, mind and souls of what is happening today in our community, and hopefully, about a 100 years from now, these films can truly be looked upon as documenting what the deal really was from our own lenses.

So what’s all the fuss about? What’s to stop us from continuing along our respective paths?

Let me give you insight to the world many of independent filmmakers live. Tim Alexander, Eric McKay, Andrea Wiley and a whole slew of “up and comers” are doing some things absolutely groundbreaking, totally unheard of, and by Hollywood’s standards, a little bit crazy.

What we do is pay for our own stuff. No backers, no financing, no grants, no foundations, just us. I think the challenge is making the general public understand what goes on behind the scenes to take on these efforts. The blood,the sweat and the tears I have seen most of us go through in order to deliver a quality product to market. I’ve seen 2nd mortgages, foreclosures, pawning of cameras, bankruptcies, and a slew of financial worries, to make most thankful for their 9 to 5’s. Hell I’ve even had to start plucking more gray hairs monthly because of these endeavors. And please let us NOT begin the narrative of early morning chest pains that jump up until that first cup of coffee.

My point, you may ask again? You gotta love my people to do what we do. We all have always heard the clarion call of support our own. From the Black Buying Boycott day (still ticked at whoever came up with that idea, zero units sold for 2 days on AMAZON) to the Black Shopping Network, to the “I’m down for supporting Black products, Brother (fist raised) ” I meet no matter what city I’m in. The challenge is that more often than not, our attitudes just don’t seem to translate into actions when it comes to specific independent efforts outside of music. I know probably one of the greatest spoken word poets ever in Taalam Acey.

If talent equated to compensation for your efforts, this man would make Donald Trump look poor. Gary Johnson, of BlackMenInAmerica.com and author of book 25 Things That Really Matter In Life,” an inspiring book, should be part of your daily read for like a year. And finally Lamar Tyler with his 10,000 fans on FaceBook. What do we all have in common? All struggling to keep the electricity on, thinking about disconnecting the phone lines because of that HELOC loan that slipped behind, or dang, “If I could just manage to get 20 of the 100 people at this event to understand if they loved this so much, and you want to see more of it, you kind of have to buy something to support it.”

I know this is touchy with us, and I KNOW HOW WE DO, with that being said, I wanted to give anyone out their some direction around this whole deal; in the Jerry McGuire diatribe of “help me, help you”. This is a tough line to walk, I don’t want to instill guilt to manipulate. I don’t want to appear to be grumpy and definitely don’t want to seem like we’re begging. With that being said, here’s a stab at a specific course of action that will ensure that this art form doesn’t turn into, well, MC HAMMER, here today, gone tomorrow, and back in 20 years.

In bullet points, and summary:

  1. While you may see us on CNN, CSPAN or any MSN outlet, I have never met an independent (non-major studio associated) artist who is just out right looted.
  2. Most of us out here are self-financed in debt up to our necks and struggling to continue to advance this medium.
  3. We love what we do, and if everything was right with the world we would do it for free.
  4. We all are probably as guilty as the next guy of the “hook a brother up mentality,” by lifting free cable, downloading from Napster, or coping a bootleg at the barbershop. (Now I’m feeling guilty ~ sorry all of you 80’s stars like D-Train)
  5. I know right is right and wrong is wrong, and this instance, we need a “do the right thing mentality”. To sustain the lifeline of an emerging and necessary outlet, help us break the stranglehold that studios, networks and MSM have about the necks of the black community, this includes you Blacks Embarrassing Themselves.
  6. Please support your local independent filmmakers by more than kind words on a twitter entry. While we love and appreciate the encouragement, really hook a brother up, BUY the dag gone movie. And if you’re feeling super generous, send a dollar! Really it’s a simple best bit of encouragement we can get.
  7. And instead of burning a copy for your boys, please insists that your friends get their own.
  8. And if you really want to help us out, send out one of those emails that says “if you don’t forward this to all of your email friends, you’ll have seven years bad luck, and your dog is going to get measles.

Thanks, we love you, and truly appreciate the hook-up.

Jynx

About the Author: Janks Morton is an award winning and critically acclaimed filmmaker responsible for bringing us “What Black Men Think,” and Men II Boys, two of the most talked about documentaries of the past two decades.

Reconciliation

Posted in Black America, Black Interests, Black Men, Politics with tags , , , , on August 4, 2009 by Black Man

From the producer of the award winning documentary “What Black Men Think” and “Men II Boys ,” comes the next installment in the ground breaking series. “Reconciliation” will be a series of free online webisodes demonstrating the ability of two parents to finally make the correct sacrifices for the benefit of their children in order to bring closure, redemption and reclamation to a generation scourged by the division in the modern era Black family.


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