Life, Death and the Freedom to Bring a Steak Knife to a Barbecue

How in the hell is the irony of celebrating freedom, coupled with the looming threat that the NYPD may stop and frisk us for the crime of carrying a steak knife, lost on so many? On what planet is that freedom? Ben Franklin may have been a sexual deviant, but he sure nailed this one when he said, “Those who surrender freedom for security will not have, nor do they deserve, either one.”

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I Went to Prison Straight and Came Out Human

It’s horrifying that in this day and age we are still debating things like gay marriage, whether or not gay people are capable of raising well-adjusted children, or if they even have the right to march in a fucking parade. The fact that we are still having these discussions truly highlights how far we have to go when it comes to our evolution as a society.

Love in the Time of Ebola

From the moment Thomas Eric Duncan made headlines as the first person on American soil to be diagnosed with the Ebola virus, the country went into a hysterical frenzy that could rival even the most ridiculous soap opera. You can’t turn on the news or scroll down your Facebook feed without hearing or reading about…

Daddy Issues

It’s been several years since I have seen my father. He doesn’t live far, mind you–only six states south of me in the sultry country just outside of Savannah, GA. Gregory Nicholas Tarana has been my father for almost forty-two years; sadly, while we both love each other a great deal, falling out of touch is…

Family Tree

Like everyone else on this planet, I was born into a family. While I understand the idea of blood being thicker than water and all that jazz, I have never really considered myself part of a “pack,” family or otherwise. I am quite sure that this is in direct correlation with the fact that my…

An Activist: One Asshole’s Journey

“Empathetic people–dreamers and idealists–have this sort of accidental power. Most spend their early years ridden with self-doubt, insecurity and people-pleasing habits. But their journey is inevitably derailed when this comfortable life gets uprooted by an unexpected darkness.”  – Author Unknown After my mother’s death in 2008, I found myself isolated with a lot of pills,…

Cunt; One Woman’s Perspective

cunt |kənt| noun vulgar slang; a woman’s genitals. • offensive; a woman. ORIGIN Middle English : of Germanic origin; related to Norwegian and Swedish dialect kunta, and Middle Low German, Middle Dutch, and Danish dialect kunte. If you ask any woman what the most offensive word someone can call her is, nine times out of ten…

The Long Redemption

redemption |riˈdemp sh ən| the action of regaining or gaining possession of something in exchange for payment, or clearing a debt. • archaic the action of buying one’s freedom. A little over seventeen years ago, I walked out of Bayview Correctional Facility in Chelsea, Manhattan, a free woman. It’s hard to believe it’s been seventeen…

The Greatest Gift

As a child, like most, I loved Christmas and presents. Even though my mom was poor she always went above and beyond. I remember one year she put a pair of Sasson jeans on lay-away for what seemed like months. When I finally got them I was so happy – but I immediately tore them…

Till Death

by Cynthia Cone . I’m married, thirteen and a half years to be exact. Growing up, I never thought much about marriage. My parents separated before I was three and even my grandmother, the woman who helped raise me, was a divorcee. There were no married couples in my immediate family. Both my aunts were…