Being A Black Man In America Never Feels Safe

Being A Black Man In America Never Feels Safe

When I wake up in the morning, I tend to toss and turn and try to grab another 30 minutes of sleep. It feels like I never get enough. Today was different. I woke up, looked around at the sunlight finding its way into the apartment, and headed to the bathroom. As I looked at myself, I smiled. LeRon, you are getting old, kid! I thought, as I turned my head and saw the greys in my beard and goatee. Read the rest here

Speakers Who Dare – The Talk

Speakers Who Dare – The Talk

In March 2020, I was asked to give a recorded talk for Speakers Who Dare, a theatrical event held in New York City. My speech called “The Talk: What Black Parents Have To Tell Their Children” is about conversations that African American Mothers and Fathers have with their kids about racism, how to interact with police officers, and being Black. I referenced my Mother giving me “The Talk”, my Father telling me about race as an older man, and when I gave “The Talk” to a young Black man I…

In Death….

In Death….

In my 41 years on this earth, there have only been two times that I was truly afraid of dying. The first was in 1999 when I learned of the death of James Byrd Jr. in Jasper, Texas. The second time was in 2017 when my friend Anh died in a plane crash. These moments are significant for me – Byrd’s horrible murder told me how much America hates the Black man. Anh’s death hit me hard because this was someone who was going after her goals and taken from…

LeRon gives a PechaKucha!

LeRon gives a PechaKucha!

In June 2019, I performed at PechaKuchaSF! Meaning “chit chat” in Japanese, Pechakucha is a story telling format that has 20 images in 20 seconds, so the speaker weaves a tale around that. Pechakucha can be a about many different things, so keeping with the “redux” theme, I spoke about how backpacking through Central America lit my fire and motivated me to change the direction of my life. This was a fun experience! Please check it out –

Kids don’t need to go through bullying #RIPNigelShelby

Kids don’t need to go through bullying #RIPNigelShelby

Thinking of the death of Nigel Shelby, the 15 year old Black kid who committed suicide due to being bullied for being Gay, I used to think that kids needed to be tough. I thought that we “babied” young people and that being bullied was a right of passage. I cannot tell you how wrong I was. In the age of social media, we often don’t understand how bulling has taken a more sinister turn. Instead of whispers in the hallway, cracking jokes, and notes passed around about people, there…

Revisiting The Road

Revisiting The Road

I was talking with a young man yesterday about the importance of travel. In the midst of loud music and sips (or in my case, gulps and stutters) of our drinks, I advised him to leave the country, see different sites. I remember a conversation like this years ago; an older man who I looked to for guidance had implored me to see the world. I liked this guy; he was always in a good mood and loved people. He had a sense of gravitas that I always admired and…

The Minimising of Sexual Assault of Black Boys

The Minimising of Sexual Assault of Black Boys

Growing up, I would hear stories from my male friends about how their baby sitters would kiss them or touch them in inappropriate ways. My friends would talk about making out with a “play aunt” or having sex with a family friend. It was not looked upon as a bad thing; in fact, it was something they bragged about. This was a rite of passage to many of us.