Saturday, May 31, 2014

Veterans Affairs: Why is the system broken?

“In a world of faux outrage,” said Kathleen Parker in The Washington Post, “finally we have something about which to be scandalized.” Officials running the Veterans Affairs Department, the nation has learned, may have systematically falsified records to cover up long, deadly delays in VA hospitals. A backlog of 300,000 veterans have been awaiting treatment for more than four months, and as many as 40 may have died at one Phoenix VA hospital alone while waiting for care. This scandal has caught President Obama flat-footed, as usual, said Michael Gerson in Obama—who pledged to reform the VA while running for president in 2008—rushed to assume his now-familiar role of “outraged bystander” to the dysfunction in his own administration, while leaving VA head Eric Shinseki in his job. It’s the same faux outrage Obama expressed over the IRS and Benghazi fiascoes and the meltdown of Obamacare’s Web portal. When the president keeps insisting he had no idea that his underlings were so incompetent, it’s “more of a self-indictment than a defense.”

Thursday, May 29, 2014

M3 Bear Essentials: Can Porn be Bad for You?

In the past, researchers have had problems when trying get data on the effects that porn has on men because they cannot get a significantly large enough control group of men who don’t watch porn. The Joseph Gordon-Levitt hemmed Don Jon puts in an effort to tackle this subject cinematically while the contributors of Male Media Mind muse on the question… can porn actually be bad for you?

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Musings of a Philosophical Bear: On Realism

In a prior article that I pinned for this blog, I discussed the idea of realism referring to it as cynicism which unfortunately continued an onslaught of heated debates regarding faith that started long before the article was ever published. We prefer an optimistic viewpoint over the truth and I'd like to make a positive argument for realism. I don't like to sugarcoat my words, but I don't want to be an asshole either. I care about others' feelings and even when telling the truth, I like to find ways to do that without antagonizing my audience. I don't like pretending something is true when it isn't and I deeply care enough about the truth to admit when I'm wrong. This doesn't mean I have to make you think the way that I do, but I find a good debate with someone who disagrees with me clarifies and refines my arguments. I try to keep away from getting personal, but many of the issues surrounding realism touches are very personal. But my opinions here are not meant to be offensive, but rather illustrative.

Monday, May 26, 2014

M3 Bear Essentials: Race and Body Image Issues

Insecurity and self-doubt can plaque everyone regardless of size, race or gender. Though being men of color and of a certain size can sometimes augment the more negative aspects of your self-image. Male Media Mind Contributors Malcolm Travers, Trebor Senoj, James Butler and Cecil Davison discuss their own body issues as Black men while Breeze Vincinz muses on a life with “floppy, floppy titties”.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

M3 Bear Essentials: Living Single

In this episode of Male Media Mind Bear Essentials, M3 contributors muse on different states of Bachelordom.  Fielding questions from our viewers, the guys give their thoughts on a query presented by one of our more ardent followers Nardy Shands: “With many gay men being single in their older years, do you see yourself living alone or ‘Golden Girls’ style roommating it?” They also respond to a blog video making it’s rounds in cyberspace the suggests that people who are in the beginning stages of dating should not overreach their efforts in showing their affections out of fear that those efforts will be misinterpreted. 

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Biometric Smartwear Wearable Tech

When you think technology has reached it limitations, it shows us different with the new biometric smart-wear. This type of beta technology has been tested and used by top athletes in their intense training, but OMsignal decided to perfect and enhance the beta wearable tech into something more outstanding.

OMsignal unveiled their biometric wear to the public on May 8 by showing their products on YouTube to rave reviews. People were amazed to see how much a  biometric t-shirt can do and were amazed by the slim and comfortable style. The assumption is that that this type of technology would come with more bulk, wires and confusion, but OMsignal made sure their new product was fashionable and reliable

Monday, May 19, 2014

M3 Bear Essentials: Ratchet Videos and Sterotypes

When we see black people behaving badly in videos online it perpetuates negative stereotypes, but who is to blame? Is it just the fault of those who post and promote the videos, or is there audience already primed to have their biases confirmed? Join in the discussion by leaving a comment and read Malcolm's review of Who's Afraid of Post Blackness by Touré at:

Friday, May 16, 2014

Race, Attraction, and Cognitive Dissonance: Part II

Exposé and Common Tales
Because I believe that the magnitude of this subject matter is so important, please permit me, in this second installment of Race, Attraction, and Cognitive Dissonance, the opportunity to flesh out and create a more contextual and deliberate container, and in the interest of clarity let me begin by sharing a number of passages from one of my favorite life-mirroring essays by Reginald Shepherd where in, at one turn he describes being black and at the next turn, being gay:

Thursday, May 15, 2014

M3 Bear Essentials: Easter and Religious Traditions

This past Easter, Male Media Mind's Malcolm Travers observed an gentleman dressed as Jesus dragging a crucifix along the ground in an effort to raise awareness about the importance and history of Easter. And while his efforts might have seemed obtuse to some onlookers simply wanting their morning java, the image did beg to question what exactly is Easter? Have we misinterpreted was Easter is about? Have we misinterpreted what ALL religious traditions are about? And do the traditions/celebrations really have anything to do with the actual historical events they are based on? Breeze Vincinz, Trebor Senoj, Gerald Hogan, Cecil Davison, Vaughne Smith and the aforementioned Malcolm Travers discuss their personal views on religious traditions and where their morality lies in regards to them.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Musings of a Philosophical Bear: On Being Cynical

As much as I want to think getting older hasn't stolen some of my enthusiasm for life, I believe that it is only inevitable that we become cynical over time. We have certain expectations of the way the world should be, and over time we test those theories against reality. If we're any good at reality testing, then some of those notions will prove to be false. This is ultimately how we learn anything. There is the world as it should be and then there's the world as it is. No one who lives in this world long enough can help but have their ideas of the world changed by what stands in front of them. That can only be good if it means we live in a more realistic model of the world as we get older, but it doesn't make it any less painful to go through that process.

Monday, May 12, 2014

M3 Bear Essentials: The Art of Managing “Ratchet-less” Social Media

With a staggering 1.2 billion users worldwide, Facebook has become the consummate prototype in using social media to inform, entertain and sometimes even change society. And as each generation struggles to evolve and create memes that adequately reflect it's specific time-stamped culture, social media has become a magnet in attracting the more undesirable aspects of society in an effort to better encapsulate the full picture. M3 Contributors Malcolm Travers, Cecil Davison, Trebor SenojVaughne SmithGerald Hogan and Breeze Vincinz discuss the difficult task Male Media Mind has in keeping the lines of communication open through social media platforms without turning them into stuffy churches of intellectualism or ratchet selfie ghettos. 

Friday, May 9, 2014

Race, Attraction, and Cognitive Dissonance: Part I

It surprises me how many of the things we experience growing up stay with us 'till adulthood. Moreover, even after considerable effort in digging into the past to route out the roots of our present emotional, psychological, and spiritual disease, we find that weeds have popped up bound and determined to increase the amount of work we still must do.

This is where I find myself.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

M3 Bear Essentials: Exes as Roommates

Couples making the decision to cohabitate can not only present an opportunity further express their love and commitment to one another, but it can also alleviate some of the financial burdens on both parties in arduous financial climates. But what happens when you break up? With the mutual love and commitment gone, is the friendship strong enough to sustain having them as a roommate? And if either of you decide to couple again with someone else, how do they figure into the plan? M3 Contributors Malcolm Travers, Vaughne Smith, Breeze Vincinz and special guest Tony Banks weigh in on dating someone who still lives with their ex. 

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Bear Book Review: 'Who's Afraid of Post Blackness?' by Touré

“If there are 40 million black Americans, then there are 40 million ways to be black.” - Henry Louis Gates Jr

We talk about race a lot on M3. We often disagree about what challenges we face as black Americans. We talk about racism and white privilege, ratchet videos that fuel black stereotypes and the people who exploit them. From my time as editor and moderator of the M3 Weekly Hangouts, I get a real sense that the conversation about race has a lot more to do with identity than we'd like to admit. It seems like we're stuck in the war paradigm, that if you're not on the front lines of black liberation than you should at least be supporting the troops. Whenever a person makes a criticism of black America we have to check his credentials. Is he one of us? What we most often lack in our conversations about race is the question of identity. With all the problems that we face as a race it would seen the question is frivolous, but it is far from it. Touré manages to get a wide range of perspectives by interviewing more than a hundred black intellectuals and public figures about what it means to be black and how it has changed over time. The result is a book that I would highly recommend to anyone who is interested in having a productive conversation about race in America.

"Who's Afraid of Post Blackness?: What It Means to Be Black Now" by Touré (with foreword by Michael Eric Dyson) available at Amazon and iTunes

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Keeping The Faith (Believing In What We Cannot See)

So who would know that a television show could teach you a little something about life? Not that I am saying that they cannot, but let’s face it, most shows today are filled with ill mannered housewives, foul mouth animated toddlers, and soap operas about beautiful women wielding off scandals while humping heads of state. Good old wholesome American entertainment right? With so much excitement going on, there’s no wonder there’s little room for real time epiphany about the human condition.

Monday, May 5, 2014

M3 Bear Essentials: Attraction to Aggression

Generally speaking, men have a propensity to incorporate aggression into our behaviors. In urban communities not only is it a survival tactic but also a sexual fetishism that has long titillated generations of sexually active people. But when does an attraction towards aggression become full blown sadism and/or masochism and is either proclivity wrong? M3 Contributors Malcolm Travers, Cecil Davison, Gerald Hogan, James Butler, Breeze Vincinz and guest Clinton Jolliffi muse on the arousal and danger of gay men fetishizing the more hostile attributes of mens' temperaments. 

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Hygiene Tips From A Nerdy Black Bear: A Well Shaved Head

In yesteryear, being bald was viewed as a negative feature on a man. This is partly due to media's outlook on beauty and staying young. If you didn't have a full head of hair, you were considered an outcast. But things have changed. Today, more and more men are embracing their baldness with men going bald realizing that it may be a disguise. More and more women as well as a large amount of men in the gay community see a well shaved head as sexy. Do you want to join the new age of bald and sexy men out there? Well I can help you with that. In this post I will give you the tools you need to have a well groomed head and ways to maintain your new look.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Brutal Lynx: The Cult of Ratchetness

LAWD... kids these days! They will drive you to madness. Is that what happened here? Was the mom justified? Should the video of this have been uploaded? Were you spanked?

Why are we seeing more and more videos online uploaded by the perpetrator or a 3rd party of our dirt? No matter how you cut it this is violence and may be seen as illegal in many places. Why record your crime and then share it with the world?

Just... watch the video. Be sure to watch the full length video I am talking about first. Links below!

As always, leave your thoughts.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

M3 Bear Essentials: Keeping a Secret

Friendships can be about keeping confidences and sharing things with each other you wouldn't with everyone, but under what circumstances would you refuse to keep a secret for a friend? Is it acceptable for a friend to ask you to keep a detrimental secret for them? Have you had to let a friend know he's being messy for keeping things from others in your group of friends?