Category Archives: Health

Celebrating Success

Celebrating SuccessControl by the media and lazy group think which promotes the idea that it’s easier to accept the official version than to question things on our own. Too many people take a negative approach toward men incarcerated as if by virtue of finding yourself in a adverse legal situation automatically reduces you to a less than.

Perhaps this is one of the side effects of runaway capitalism — the tenet that if you not producing or at the very least fully engaged in the rat race, you’re no good and a waste of time. One of the reasons the first question most people ask when they meet you is what you do. And if it seems you don’t do nothing, at least nothing significant to that person or society then you are nothing.

So every chance I get I want to trumpet the success of formerly incarcerated men. Nothing spoils the doomsday sayers day more than a fat dose of success.

Exactly what K.B. Webb, one of my former cellies who I co-authored a book with back on the Wynne unit is doing — succeeding on a grand scale. In a mere six months, the brother has started his own business Chiselers Fitness, found employment as a truck driver, reestablished a relationship with his son and is diligently rebuilding his life after spending 8 years locked in a cell being treated as less than.

I wonder what all the talking heads who seem to only want to increase penalties for this or that, while labeling every man in prison as a current or future Charles Manson. Which is nothing but a bunch of hogwash and propaganda that politicians and wannabe TV personalities spread to make a living, seem important, and keep a job.

A real success story like this will never make it onto the nightly news shows that are only interested in scaring the people with horror tales to increase their ratings. Yet somebody has to tell the world “the rest of the story”, and since they won’t, I will!

Check this brother K.B. Webb and Chiselers Fitness out on Facebook and Instagram because he’s the truth. When you’re in the Houston area, look him up so he can help you drop a few pounds, mention the “Prison Griot” and he’ll probably give you a discount. Real talk.

Please Help Save Baby Ethan’s Life

The little handsome curly haired Cherub faced baby boy in this picture is 1 year old Ethan Richards-Ethan who currently resides in Texas Children Hospital in the medical center desperately needs the very organ we use to symbolize love: a heart.

Ethan is the first child of Sean and Regis Richards a young married couple outrageously in love who were overjoyed when on September 6, 2011 they welcomed their 7 lb,6 oz bundle of joy into the world. Not long after being born at around 10 months with a mother’s intuition Regis noticed that something was wrong with her baby boy. The baby was losing weight and his lips didn’t look right.

Several trips to their family doctor failed to turn up the cause of baby Ethan’s illness. Eventually the family found themselves at the Pediatric Cardiovascular ICU of Texas Children Hospital where it was determined that little Ethan was experiencing severe heart failure and without a transplant his young life would be cut short.

While he was immediately placed on the transplant list-This tragic news rocked this young couple to the core and turned their happy life inside out. Regis quit her job to remain at her young son’s hospital bed side. While Sean took over the responsibility of being the family’s sole bread winner on top of emotionally supporting his wife and son.

On top of this, the young family was left with the daunting prospect of trying to pay for a transplant operation that cost upward of a million dollars. Now you already know that unless you happen to be blessed with the last name Knowles or Carter, not too many young newlyweds have a cool million just sitting in the bank for a family emergency.

That’s why several members of Houston’s black   community including yours truly have banded together to get the word out about the Richards’ and baby Ethan’s plight—with the hope that you will help save his life.

To do so you can go to www.youcaring.com and enter Team Ethan to donate, or at any Wells Fargo by donating to, “Team Ethan Heart Donation Account”, account number #3881481901.

We all shook our heads with sadness in our hearts about what happened to the 20 innocent kids at Sandy Hook Elementary. As much as we would like to none of us can do anything for those kids who God saw fit to call home. But we can all do something for baby Ethan.

PLEASE SUPPORT THIS CAMPAIGN TO SAVE HIS LIFE!

My First Brush With A Killer

Back in 2006, I struck up a correspondence/friendship with a Ebony bachelorette by the name of Crystal Brown-Tatum, who, in addition to owning her own communications company and being a published author, had also been named one of Houston’s top female executives.

As our friendship blossomed, I cheered as she went from a most eligible bachelorette to a happily married woman, and aspiring actress. And was frequently overjoyed when she would write me about her latest exploits in the movie industry, or send photos with her newest celebrity pal.

Therefore I was caught off-guard when I received a letter from her informing me that she had discovered a lump in one of her breast and her doctor had diagnosed it as cancer. I reread her letter a second time to make sure I wasn’t tripping because I’ve been known to get things twisted.

But there it was in black and white; Breast Cancer. How in the world could that be? Here was a beautiful, college-educated woman who seemed to be on top of the world. And here she was saying that she had been diagnosed with a potentially fatal disease.

As much as I pride myself on being well-read and having at the very least a cursory amount of knowledge on a wide variety of subjects, I am still a man, and like a lot of men I had paid scant attention to this disease that seemed to mostly affect women.

But now I knew someone who was personally stricken with breast cancer. It was no longer just an article in a Essence magazine encouraging women to get mammograms. Here was my wonderful, dynamic, successful friend telling me that she was scheduled to take chemotherapy and daunted by the prospect of losing all of her beautiful hair, and asking me if I would pray for her.

Of course I would. But what else could I possibly do? In addition to praying I tried to keep her encouraged with uplifting letters and by sending her positive articles from other breast cancer survivors .

I also became a breast cancer supporter and began to pay much more attention to this health menace that was affecting women of all races, but especially black women at a alarming rate. I learned that when black women are diagnosed their cancers tend to be worse, more difficult to treat, which results in a higher mortality rate.

It was these alarming and dismal statistics that I believe led Karen Jackson to found her organization The Sister Network (sisternetworkinc.org), a national organization dedicated to black women and breast cancer.

For me the more I learned not only did I become more concerned, but I eventually arrived at the realization that breast cancer wasn’t just a woman’s disease. Simply because if Moma, wife, sister, daughter, niece, or girlfriend is affected, then it affects all the men in their life just the same. Making the fight against breast cancer and the race to find a cure all of our problem, both male and female.

Fortunately for my friend, God smiled on her and after 12 weeks of chemotherapy, she’s completely cancer-free and living life to the fullest. She has even gone on to write a book about her experience to encourage and help other women by sharing her story.