What Does Ghetto Mean to You

What is ghetto to you?
Like, what is it?
A characteristic?
A diss?
A place or area?
I don’t even think I know what it is to me?
For some odd reason (not odd, but, for the sake of word placement…odd)
I don’t like that word
It’s almost like when white folks don’t have another adjective in their vocabulary to describe us so they say “you people”
It’s like when people say “in the ghetto” and “that place is ghetto”
What’s the difference…you know? You do know.
It has such a negative connotation
and while
Disenfranchised peoples and communities are not a positive…why are we so quick to just blanket them all and call it/their existence …ghetto?
I just never hear it being used correctly
Too much to ask? No….

I had a teacher in 7th grade
She was from the Philippines and she was smart as hell
She never took her work as an educator for granted
She taught some disenfranchised and some the complete opposite and still unaware
She never let us forget the difference between the ghetto and the ghetto
She reminded us, at times directly and other times not, that her ghetto was cardboard boxes for walls
Shacks made of tin for the “floor”
Fearing the rain for it might cave in the roof
but she needed it
because it was not moist enough out for her plants and only source of food to grow
“You think you know ghetto? I came from the ghetto! I am the ghetto!” is what she used to shout to us when we tried to make microscopic of the things that mattered and make huge of less than trivial events in our adolescent lives

That taught me something

Because something doesn’t work…it’s not ghetto
Because someone or someplace is not what you’re used to and it therefore confuses you as to how someone existing can exist there …it’s not the ghetto
Because you’re unaware of a better solution …it’s not ghetto
Because someone’s dialect is a litter heavier and their lips swing lower when they talk…they’re not ghetto

Here are some alternatives instead:
A) “Economically disadvantaged”
B) “I just shouldn’t say what I have to say unless I have a better vocabulary”

I was told enough growing up.

Screen Shot 2017-05-16 at 10.26.41 PM
See the full article here.

Please, really, read that article^

When I use it (I try, I am human)…

I use it as this:







Not the other. Which I don’t see the point in downloading a picture for, because we all know where I’m headed with this one.” Case in point.



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