As you may recall, I have encouraged all you AM and BW interested in BlAsian relationships to sign up with the Black Women Asian Men United discussion group on the Ning network (URL: http://bwamu2.ning.com)
I have served as the group’s co-administrator since it started in November last year and have posted hundreds of times. Certainly, it was a BlAsian site that I felt could rival the Yahoo! BlAsian board PowerCouples_AMBW (which I have moderated for over seven years) in terms of membership volume and volume of posts. What impressed me most with BWAM was the high number of participants involved in thread discussions and the quality of those discussions. I also like that in order to register members needed to post a real pic and commit to certain rules including a committment to particpate frequently. For six months, the site operated smoothly until the early part of May when one member began putting up posts that ranted about offline events of BWAMU members who were out with an underaged member and a complaint about future membership fee. Like many members, I expressed to the moderator my displeasure about these posts because they were lengthy, repetitive and were worded to incite members. Unfortunately, our protests were not heard until several days later after the ranting member had been allowed to cause a significant drop in posts and member participation in various posts. This continued into June and while I was thinking I would stay on, I was starting to wonder if BWAMU’s fate was starting to sound like that of other BlAsian boards (e.g., on AsianAve and DC BWAM on Ning) where the moderators failed to react quickly and effectively enough to drama. But whatever such thoughts were haunting me, I was thinking I would stay around. A development which drove me in the opposite direction happened June 30 when someone put up a post that included a story about the BWAMU moderator/founder’s criminal past which told of his conviction for the murder of a Black woman in 1995. The post was immediately deleted and another post vilifying the member who posted went up and to my dismay the founder failed to address the negative information about his past. While a lot of my work in advocating for better race relations – particularly among Asians and Blacks – involves forgiving people for criminal behavior (you may recall that in May I asked Asians to consider getting involved in issues involving the Black community after a series of Black-on-Asian incidents occurred in Oakland and S.F.), I also believe that one should not hide the past – especially in this context where the BWAMU board membership is over 90% Black women and the person who is in charge of running this Board had been accused and convicted of murdering a Black woman. I believe I might remained a member of BWAMU beyond last Wednesday had the founder addressed the circumstances of his conviction and given his response to the negative information that was posted about him. But to just delete the information and then attack the poster to me seemed to be almost as disheartening as letting that ranting poster in May post numerous times the same garbage even while myself and other members’ dissent was not heard. Instead of saying anything about the censorship of the June 30 post, I decided to leave BWAMU because I feel that an individual failing to address the circumstances of being convicted for mudering a Black woman on a board like BWAMU where mostly Black women are members is too deeply serious to ignore. I value my integrity and respect for Black people who have enriched my mind throughout my life to be immunized by someone’s refusal to explain a past that shows a deep disgust for a Black woman’s life. So, I have no misgivings about leaving BWAMU and would suggest all members do so forthwith or at the very least request that the circumstances of the conviction and the crime be thoroughly discussed by the moderator.