CAT’S CRADLE

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The following statement was added to the piece on Octavia Street, but I want to copy it here.

3/20/2016: NOTE WELL: IT HAS BEEN HARD TO STRIP “HH” OUT OF EVERY BIT OF MEP’S LIFE. I ASSUMED SHE DID OWN THE HOUSE AS HH HAD CLAIMED. WRONG. IT WAS BELL’S AND SHE WAS THE HOUSEKEEPER. I WAS BROUGHT UP BY ANOTHER RESEARCHER, SO READ THE ARTICLE, THEN READ THE COMMENTS TO GET IT IN PERSPECTIVE. THANKS J’AIME.

I THINK I GOT THE (mostly imaginary) PART ABOUT HER KITCHENS AND TRUE INFLUENCE PRETTY CLOSE, BUT  ALTHOUGH IT COULD HAVE BEEN A REALLY GREAT HOME FOR A BOARDING HOUSE FOR HER AGING FRIENDS, IT DID NOT HAPPEN THAT WAY. I WAS INDULGING IN SOME ANTI-HH CAT’S CRADLES OF THAT INFO.

(“CAT’S CRADLE” IS HOW I FIRST APPROACHED HH’S BOOK. SHE HAD ALL THE MEP MATERIAL IN A CERTAIN PATTERN. I STUCK MY HANDS IN THERE, GRABBED THE THREADS OF THE STORY AND TURNED IT INSIDE OUT TO REACH MY NEW CONCLUSIONS.) I ACTUALLY WROTE A PAMPHLET ABOUT IT IN 1987 AND PASSED 50 COPIES OUT AT THE JUNETEENTH CELEBRATION IN TUCSON. SINCE MOST OF THE STORY I WROTE IN THAT FIRST TRY WAS A FABRICATION, IT HAS TAKEN ME A LONG TIME TO STRIP THE SLAVERY, THE VOODOO, AND ALL XX RATED MATERIAL OUT OF THE MIX.

MARY ELLEN PLEASANT WAS ALWAYS A PROPER MIDDLE CLASS CHILD, THEN WOMAN, EVEN THOUGH SHE WORKED AS A HEAD OF STAFF FOR HOUSEHOLDS OR BOARDING HOUSES, MOST OFTEN AS AN ADULT.

I AM NOT GOING TO TRY TO REWRITE any of these posts FOR ACCURACY, I WILL JUST WRITE A NEW VERSION, BECAUSE THIS HAS BEEN A REAL PROCESS TO GET ALL THE HH OUT OF MEP’S LIFE. IT’S LIKE BERMUDA GRASS; IT JUST KEEPS POPPING UP, AND WILL, UNTIL THE ALL THE STRIPPING AND SIFTING WORK IS DONE.

ADDED TO THIS POST:

I LOVE IT WHEN SOMEONE HAS THE RESEARCH TO CONTRADICT ANY OF THE LEFTOVER HH IDEAS I HAVE LEFT. I AM NO PRO, I AM JUST DEVOTED TO THE IDEA OF RESCUING MEP FROM FICTION, SO ONLY HER REAL LIFE IS LEFT. EACH TIME I GET CORRECTED ANOTHER LIE IS EXPOSED. I HAVE NO FACE TO SAVE, BY SUPPORTING LIES.

SORRY FOR ALL THE CAPS, BUT I JUST FEEL LIKE DOING IT. I AM NOT A TRAINED JOURNALIST OR HISTORIAN, I WAS JUST SO OUTRAGED WHEN I READ HH’S DISGUSTING BOOK IN 1986 I WANTED TO TURN HER STORY INSIDE OUT AND MAKE HER A HERO. I HAVE ONLY SLOWLY BEEN ABLE TO ELIMINATE THE LIES IN MY OWN BELIEFS.

WELL, SHE WAS A HERO,  FOR HER WORK ON THE UGRR BOTH WITH HUSBAND NUMBER ONE JAMES SMITH, AND WITH HUSBAND NUMBER TWO,  JJ PLEASANT.

JJ WAS HER PARTNER  IN ALL HER SAN FRANCISCO CIVIL RIGHTS LAW SUITS, HIS NAME IS ON THEM TOO, SO WHY HE IS NOT “THE FATHER OF CIVIL RIGHTS IN CALIFORNIA” BEATS ME.

OF COURSE, THAT IS THANKS TO SUSHEEL BIBBS THAT MEP’S  HUSBAND WAS LEFT OUT OF THE STORY, BECAUSE HE WAS SIGNATORY ON ALL THE CIVIL RIGHTS LAWSUITS, SO

JOHN JAMES PLEASANT IS A HERO TOO, ONE THAT HAS REALLY BEEN KICKED TO THE CORNER

BY BIBBS AND CALIFORNIA.

ALSO, LATE SIGNER ON TO THE VOODOO STUFF, LUISAH TEISH, JOINED SUSHEEL IN EXPLAINING MARY ELLEN AS A STUDENT OF  MARIE LAVEAU’S POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY, WITH ONLY THE MOST IMAGINARY THREAD OF RESEARCH TO CONNECT THE TWO WOMEN. I DO NOT BLAME EITHER OF THESE WOMEN FOR CLINGING TO SUCH INTERESTING IDEAS AND USING MEP TO PROMOTE THEM, BUT THEY ARE MISTAKEN. I TOO, WENT ON A 10 YEAR JOURNEY (STARTING WITH TEISH’S BOOKS IN 1987!)THROUGH AFRICAN DIASPORAL RELIGIONS WHEN I FIRST TOOK UP MEP’S CAUSE. IT WAS FANTASTIC STUFF TO LEARN AND I WAS DISAPPOINTED WHEN I HONESTLY COULD NOT FIND A SHRED OF EVIDENCE IN SF HISTORY TO SUPPORT ANY VOODOO AS RELIGION THERE AT THAT TIME, LET ALONE ANY CONNECTION TO NOLA. THERE WERE SOME BLACK FORTUNE TELLERS, BUT THAT IS NOT BASED ON THE RELIGION, IT IS STREET MAGIC, SO TO SPEAK.

I THANK THE WONDERFUL READERS WHO SEEK TO ENLIGHTEN ME!!!!!

 

 

 

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