Archive | January 2015

RACISM and why White Folks Can’t Catch a Break

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So I have to warn you.  This might seem a little long, but there is actually a method to the madness if you continue to read…

The last couple of months have definitely been some for the books. The history books I mean.  And to be honest it’s been so much to process and think about. From the decisions of the Ferguson and Staten Island grand juries, coming with a finding to not indict police officers for their blatant abuse of power. Like I said, being a black man in America has absolutely been tough the last couple of months. It’s also brought about the question of whether or not America really cares about me at all.  It appears they certainly care about the color of my skin.  They base a lot of what I’m capable of according to the color of my skin.  And it just (for some reason or another) doesn’t feel right.  With all that said though, Does America, actually care about my concerns???  That’s mostly why it’s been so tough for me to decide whether or not to actually share my opinion. OK, not really, I have plenty to say I’ve just been trying to figure out how to go about it. The truth be told some of you may agree with what I’m about to say and others well, you may not. But that’s never stopped me before and it won’t stop me now.

So first things first. Okay, white folks. If you’re new to the blog I’ve said this about the Trayvon Martin case, and I’ll say it now. Please stop acting like you’re surprised that racism still exists in the world.  As long as people do bad things, as long as there is evil in the world, racist behaviors will still be relevant to this world.  Especially when you’re black.  It’s not about how many black people went to your school, or how many black people are listed on your contact list.  It’s about the fact that blacks are generally and I do mean generally more discriminated against than any other race in the United States.  Funny that it is that way, when we don’t even really make up more than a quarter of this country.  I’m not saying that blacks are the only people that are victims of racism because that would be pretty short sighted.  However, since I am black, I believe I speak from more of an expert’s point of view for this particular thesis. The next fact I want to share with white people, is that there is actually no such thing as reverse racism. Hate is hate, no matter what color you are.  If a black person doesn’t like you because you’re white, they ARE RACIST.  You can be black or Asian or Hispanic and still be plenty racist contrary to what most might believe.  I know what you’re thinking. Jason, I don’t know if I can believe what you just said. Well, that’s okay with me because it’s still the truth. You’ll just have to trust me on this. And no having a black president does not mean we’ve progressed. It just means that we had a decent voter turnout for the one we wanted. That’s just a sign of democracy.

And now back to my point. These cases from this year have shown us so much about our society and to be honest, it makes us look bad as Americans.  As people who believe we have the best country in the world, we’re not exactly showing the world how well our system works.  I’m 35, and still not sure that I’m actually getting a fair go of things in this country. Not even sure if my children will either at this point. That’s so sad. It’s so so sad. I was gonna talk about Ferguson and I will but I think the NYC situation was worse. It was actually on film. I don’t know where you grew up, but in my life I’ve never seen 1 person “resist ” 8 officers so strongly. Whatever man. It just doesn’t happen. As far as Ferguson is concerned I don’t have all the facts but the fact that the cop resigned doesn’t necessarily look good for the kind story he told either. I’m on the fence about Ferguson. But other issues. Not so much everything else.  Other than that I would say that there are so many conflicting stories, that I guess we’ll never know.

So here we are white people.  2015.  Yet I still have so many questions…  Why do SOME of you not like us?  Are blacks, or other races for that matter still inferior in your minds?  Is it because of the black people who actually do wrong that have left a bad taste in your mouths?  Or could it be that white people in general are inherently racist, or what some would call entitled?  Why are white cops killing kids with toy guns?  Is it fear for their lives, or lack of proper training?  It’s as if there are so many questions that you have to answer.  That should be required that you answer.  It ultimately doesn’t matter to most if you indict a police officer or George Zimmerman (who might I add we were probably right about), or whomever.  The damage has been done.  That’s why I say you can’t catch a break.  I personally don’t think all white folks are evil, or the devil, or whatnot, but unfortunately some do.   DON’T GET ME WRONG NOW:  FOR THE WHITE PEOPLE THAT LOVE EVERYONE, NO MATTER WHAT COLOR, I SAY WE LOVE YOU BACK!!  I will say this though:  Just as some feel that blacks haven’t set enough of a precedent for whites to have that good feeling, NEITHER HAVE WHITES.  We don’t believe that you won’t turn on us.  We don’t believe you’re trustworthy.  Nor do we believe that White POLICE won’t come to arrest and possibly kill us when we’ve done nothing deserving of such an act.  That’s the thing.  Criminals definitely deserve punishment.  But not always death.  And this past year seems to show that it’s a much bigger problem that whites are willing to admit.

The ultimate point of it all is that conversations about race, MUST be had.   Yes, they are not always comfortable, but it’s that way for everybody.  It’s like having that conversation with the spouse about finances.  It sucks, because in those conversations there will be differences of opinion and we may find out what you really think of how I do things, but unfortunately it has to be done.  You have to know that it’s okay to talk about color, and joke about our differences.  It really is.  Most of us like ‘somewhat racist’ humor, as long as it’s actually funny (which most of it is not).  Stop acting as if all blacks are raised by the same person, or that we all are up to no good.  Most of us, follow the law.  Most of us want to be successful, and not bother others.  Most of us, don’t go out killing, or stealing, or looting.  We are, for the most part peaceful.  There have been whites that have helped blacks make it.  That have helped blacks get jobs, and civil rights, and be free from slavery.  To those that are good people, again I say, thank you.  But there’s so much more that can be done.  Just as blacks have to stop committing crimes, white folks must indict their own.  They must “police” the officers that are crooked and corrupt.  It’s the only way that justice can actually be served.  That’s what I like to call a step in the right direction.

We Never Stopped Being Slaves

December 6, 1865.  A day that should be important to every American of African descent.  It’s the day the 13th Amendment was added to the US Constitution.   Why is that important to us.  It’s the day that slavery was officially abolished.  It wasn’t actually the Emancipation Proclamation that came two years before.  This made it official.  We were free.  We didn’t have to attempt to escape slavery anymore.  It no longer existed.  Or so we thought.

July 2, 1964.  Another day that should be important to Americans. The day the most current Civil Rights Act had gone into law.  Amazing that somehow, after fighting in multiple wars for the country that blacks were finally able to have the “perks” and “privileges” that we believed white folks everywhere had taken so for granted.  It took 100 years, and then 300 before then to really be called free.  With all that said, I would like to pose multiple questions:

1. Are we really, truly, “free”?

1a. If so, what have we actually done with that so-called “freedom”?

2. What is it that makes us so “free”?

You know, I, along with many people I know have been very busy watching a lot of TV as of late.  I’ve been checking out the different specials on television, such as the OWN network’s ‘Dark Girls’ and ‘Light Girls’, ‘Black and Blue: Black in America’ with Soledad O’brien and more.  Different shows, different movies, all of which have peaked my interest as a black man.  And when I watch such shows, I tend to ask myself, “Have we truly made it, in America?”  It’s sad, because I honestly don’t know if I can answer that question with a definitive “YES”.

Now I could go and blame white people for all the travesties that have happened to black people over last 500 some-odd years.  While part me believes there’s justification for that, I just can’t help but see the other side of it as well.  I tend to think more about the side that belongs to us as a race.  As a people who were once enslaved and beaten.  Treated as animals, sprayed with fire hoses, and even lynched, just for looking the wrong way.  What am I getting at, you ask?  Well, I’m getting at my point.  That it seems like we (and by ‘we’ I mean black people), have never seemed to fully get over that “slave mentality”.

I mean, don’t get me wrong, I’m not speaking about all of us as a whole. For those wondering, YES, we have made great strides in becoming better, yet we still have so far to go. I’m speaking mostly about that group of us that makes the rest of us look bad.  Okay, not true, I’m speaking about us as a whole, because that’s generally how we are categorized.  As a group.  A race of people.

I almost would go as far as to say that since we’ve been free, black people have done a lot to find ways to essentially re-enslave themselves.  With things that the TV specials I mentioned above such as issues of “color-ism” (division between a race because of the shade of their own skin).  We also have issues with us committing crimes against each other and the once called “crab-mentality”. We create shows like Love and Hip Hop and diss the positive shows that show us in a positive light.  And while shows like Love and Hip Hop are somewhat entertaining, we forget that this is what is actually on TV and that white people are seeing this depictions of us, and believing it to be who we actually are.

Now concerning the “crab-mentality”, it seems as though we don’t want to see our fellow man prosper.  Like we are somehow jealous of one another.  It’s the issue of “color-ism” or the slave mentality, where we saw the light skinned blacks treated better than the darker ones.  Again it’s created an envy among us, that makes us want to out-shine one another.  Believe it or not, there’s enough prosperity for all, some of us just have to work harder than others.  Even Bill Cosby got taken down by someone who was black. A black comedian who gained mass media attention off of what he said about Bill Cosby. We even slammed him for telling us as black people to clean up our own mess. That makes sense even if he is a “rapist”. I’m not saying that everything would be better, because it will take more than just us.  The thing is we haven’t really even started to do our part. Most of us who live in poverty let everyone else know. They tell us the neighborhood made them the way they are. Question is this: how can an inanimate object or place make you be someone that breaks the law. They say that’s how I learned love. Yeah I get it. If your mother taught you to steal and kill people, okay. But If she busted her behind to feed you then there’s no excuse for the behaviors you show. Another thing. The black people today buying guns aren’t buying them because of white folks. They are buying them to protect them from their own kind. That’s a fact. And we as a race should really deal with that. I’m not at all absolving white folks from their crimes against humanity and different races as a whole. But I m not gonna blame them for the things that we can control.

For example:  If someone said to you, ‘you have to live in this roach infested home for 3 years and then you could move in to a mansion after that, but you had to endure this 3 years’, What would you do? Would you sit there and just complain about the infestation or would you do something about it and call the exterminator to get rid of the mess. They said you had to live there but they didn’t say you had to wallow in the situation. There’s so much that can be done when we pick ourselves up. And there will still be battles to fight, but at least we’ll be fighting the enemy and not ourselves. That’s what I call unified. That’s what I call freedom.  When we finally make the decision to be better, things may actually begin to get better.  Then the laws that were made to shows give us freedom, may actually become significant for all of, in this “LAND OF THE FREE”.

Been So Long

Man…It’s been at least six months since the last time I wrote.  I don’t even know if I could sum it all up.  All I can say is that I’m back now.  I’ve learned a lot in that time.  Made so many mistakes, and did a few things right as well.  I don’t wanna bore anyone with all the details, just wanted to give a reintroduction to the blog.  This is me, my blog, my world.  And there will be times where you’ll want to stop reading.  There may even be times, and I actually hope for this, that you can’t put it down.  This year, I think I wanna talk about more everyday things, and share them a little more frequently.  That may make for shorter reading, but who doesn’t enjoy a good short read.  I know I do.

If you’ve been keeping up with me, I started on a weight loss journey.  I lost a nice bit of weight (in my opinion), and have gone through a few changes on how I look and think about things.  Overall, I’ll say that it helped me to become more consistent in my lifestyle, and what I do.  So the stats, I started at 276, and almost a year later, I’m down to around 243-245 give or take 2 or 3 lbs.  Basically I’ve lost about 30 lbs, and I have about 10-15 to go to reach my ultimate goal.  Hopefully that will happen.  If it does, I want everyone to be there with me, so they can see that I can be done.  Either, way, I’ll see you in the blogs….