Mr. Kapernick…how long I’ve wanted to speak with you regarding your decision to not vote in this past election. Citing reasons, that it didn’t make a difference because of the state you lived in. Yep…That’s what it is right there. It’s symbolic of a condition that has plagued Black America for the longest time. It’s something that blacks all over America are just ashamed of. It’s the disease of APATHY. A great Apathy at that.
Apathy is defined as a lack of interest; lack of concern; indifference; lack of enthusiasm
And my problem with Kapernick isn’t necessarily because he didn’t vote, because I’m not quite sure that we cared about that. It’s more about the hypocrisy behind his NOT voting. He, like many in America talk a good game, as to why they can’t be this, or they can’t be that. Making the excuse that there’s no opportunity for blacks to successful, but when given an opportunity to change things, they do exactly what the rest of country expects a black man to do…NOTHING…And by that I mean in a way that says, I don’t care about anything, but what benefits me personally. Although, I’m smart, and have some great ideas on how we can turn this country or what not around, I’m going to ruin my point, by doing the one thing that will keep me disenfranchised. That will keep me bound. I’m going to not exercise my right, because for some reason or another, it doesn’t make sense for me. The right that my ancestors fought tirelessly to get. Something that I should’ve had from the start, but because I grew up free, I can take that same right, for granted.
Now I don’t want anyone to get me wrong, this blog is not about Colin Kapernick, even though one might say that it could be (and I just don’t wanna waste my keystrokes on talking about him). It’s about Blacks, African Americans, colored people, etc. (whatever they are calling us this year). It’s about us, not doing what we know we need to do at the most crucial of times. Like I said, it’s not that Colin didn’t vote. It’s that he brought all that attention to himself and to the issue of not being treated fairly to the forefront. And in doing so, he allowed a spotlight to be on himself. Everyone clowns Bill Cosby for telling blacks that they need to get off their couches and behinds and educate themselves. I can’t defend Mr. Cosby for everything he’s ever said, but at least he was going out to the schools and talking with people. Donating his time and money to schools as well. He also voted. But his point too was marred by the fact that he was accused by 50-plus women of sexual assault. It doesn’t mean that he did it, but it does cloud your points, gentlemen. Yes, the blacks are treated unfairly in this country. By whites, by other races alike. In this graduating class of race, we win most of the negative superlatives. A few categories, such as Most Likely to Be Stopped by the police for no reason. Most likely to be judged before we speak. Also Most likely to Be Killed for no reason other than the color of our skin. We are presumed guilty before we walk in the door. Even before we go to trial, and it’s a shame. But when we do get the chance to show what we are made of, some of us don’t even show up to the party. We have this attitude of, well it doesn’t even matter, it’s not made for us. It’s the system and It’s rigged. (That sounds quite familiar doesn’t it.)
My basic point is this: How effective can we be, if when given the opportunity to prove what we can do, we just lay down or not even show up. As if it doesn’t matter to us. The people who do that are the same people you will hear complaining about the injustices of he world for the next 4 to 8 years, especially given the fact that half the people out there protesting Trump didn’t even vote.
Now I will say, that every experiment has to have a control, so here’s the other side of the argument:
I’m not saying that this justifies inaction, but there are reasons why some blacks choose to do nothing. There’s a reason why blacks can come across so apathetic. It’s partially because there have been so many attempts to block our basic unalienable rights (You know those rights given to everyone COUNTED as human in the Declaration of Independence), that some of us, have quit fighting. That’s what you (the rest of America) wanted anyway. Slavery was a time in which many blacks/Africans fought for their freedom, only to have it beat out of them… And it worked. For those who don’t think slavery was that bad. Imagine being a soldier in a war, and then being captured by the enemy. Imagine, them torturing you on a daily basis. Them asking you what your name is, and then getting beat when you say a name that was actually given to you at birth. Being waterboarded for hours, nearly drowning, until you give up on everything you held dear, because you didn’t wanna die. Because you hoped that one day you’d see your family, or friends again. Then coming home and not even understanding who you really are anymore, or carrying this latent guilt that you aren’t even good enough to live. That your life is worth nothing. I honestly don’t know if there will ever be a way to adequately describe what those innate feelings are like. I guess some could describe or equate it to PTSD from a historical standpoint. Yeah, I’d say that at times it’s that serious. Like you don’t matter when it all comes down to it, because of the way you’ve seen your parents, or grandparents treated historically. It’s literally the definition of being an oppressed people.
I think that’s what makes it so difficult for me. The apathy is extremely serious among African Americans. So serious that we almost do all of the distress that our ancestors had gone through a disservice. I’m sure if Martin Luther King would’ve known he was gonna die for us to choose not to vote, he might’ve had a different dream. After all, he was jailed, beaten, hosed down, and later assassinated so our people could be free. It was his dream. Not only his dream, but the dream of all of those who marched, black and white, for us to have the ability to do the things we all dreamed of or desired. It’s just (and I’m gonna keep it real) a slap in the face. It’s a real problem with our community . When I see the numbers of this past election and realize that over half of us registered to vote didn’t get out there, it just makes me sick. No wonder other races don’t take us seriously. Because we won’t even honor our own struggles throughout history. We are becoming just as entitled as everyone else. Only difference is, we’re the ones that will continue paying for that entitlement. Other cultures will go on living their lives, with the laws that were designed for them to succeed, and we won’t even stand a chance. When it’s all said and done, we’ll still be living in the ‘hood’, or tenements that were designed to keep us down in the first place. We will have to live with them voting every 50 years on the Civil Rights Act, because it’s a law that actually expires (CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT SH#@). We will have to continue being oppressed, not because of the majority of blacks that are out there making a difference in their communities and homes. But by the minority of us, that don’t give damn, because of all their conspiracy theories that believe white folks are STILL the cause of us being held back. Yeah…they will be, if we remain lazy, keeping our mouths shut, and ourselves out of the voting booths when we should be casting a ballot.
The time for kneeling is OVER. At this point, the only thing kneeling can do for us, is make it easier for a Slave Owner like Trump to strike us with his trusty whip!!! The time to Stand is Now!! If you want real Change, start by coming up with a new work ethic. A movement that says we will no longer stand for the injustices of the world or our own back yard for that matter. That will be United in exercising our Civil Rights!! That’s the type of Change that anyone would and should be willing to die for!!
D day…The shot heard ’round the world. Did y’all hear it? That sound of an alarm clock ringing in your ear. That bell that says the election of 2016 for the President of the United States of America is over? Yeah, it’s over all right, and there’s a new President-elect. And the name is…wait for it…wait…patience…Donald J. Trump!!!
Didn’t expect that one did you? Trust me, nor did I. If you would’ve asked me six months ago whether the nation would be electing Trump as it’s next leader of the free world, I would have laughed in your face. I would’ve said that you’re amazing, because you are so naive. Even if you had asked me a week ago, I would’ve most likely said, “yeah, it’s close, but there’s no way he’s getting elected. We’re not that stupid in America.” There’s no way a nation as free and liberal as ours could ever elect someone so closed minded. So ignorant. So, so…DONALD TRUMP…I guess I’m just glad that I didn’t bet the farm on this one. I’d be homeless.
Nevertheless, Donald Trump IS going to be our new president. And maybe it hurts because we had one of our Greatest, classiest, and coolest presidents we’ve ever had in President Barrack Obama. And to think, afterwards, it will be him. That GUY!!! I was with you Hillary, but you lost, and there goes everything. I’d say you let us down, but that’s just how politics work, right? You win some and you lose some. And while it is disappointing, I realize, it’s not the end of the world as I know…Not yet, at least…
So, for the past two days…I’ve been sitting here trying to get myself together. I, like a bunch of other people, have been sorely depressed of the news that racists, misogynists, and basic idiots have taken the country back, to make America, what it once was…”Great Again…” David Duke sent out a tweet congratulating Trump and saying that we’re going to take this country back to it’s greatness. As a black man, as a father…as a working class person, you can see how one could be a bit concerned over those remarks, coming from a “former” Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan. Yeah…exactly. If America has been great for the past 50 years, it’s because we’ve tried to distance ourselves from the days, of lynchings, blown up churches, and segregation. I actually do believe the country has in fact, worked to get better. The only thing that we’ve proven this week though is that we have such a long way to go.
And I’ll be quite honest…with some of my statements above about someone being crazy to elect Trump as president, you might say that we as Americans, have become a bit complacent. We’ve allowed ourselves to think that all this will be handed to us. We can definitely see that Hillary’s camp thought so. They knew after the rousing speeches at the convention and after, by Michelle Obama and others. After the women that came out to say how terrible Trump treated them. After all the workers that said how Trump had stiffed them for services rendered, that he was just not gonna be the guy that America lifted up to be it’s fearless leader. As far as people believe this country has come in the fact that anyone who loves someone can get married to that person (man or woman). Or receive health care they so desperately need. Now all of that could very well be endangered because of a man we don’t know to be truly liberal or conservative.
But wait…There’s more…there’s something else that we have not considered…
If I haven’t beaten a dead horse with this, I want to point out the fact that Racism is still there. It still runs rampid. Some would say, but Barrack Obama, was president. We had a black president. Yeah, we did. And what did we do to honor that black president? How did we treat that black president? That’s the question that should be on everyone’s minds. He spent a majority, if not all of his two terms fighting with Congress, and dealing with racist people like Trump asking to see his birth certificate, on top of the disrespect that was shown to him and his family on a daily basis.
And this is my point. If you’re disappointed that America, didn’t elect it’s first female president, that’s fine. You should be. History was about to be made, but instead, she took an @$$ whoopin’ at the hands of those 60 million Americans who would rather see someone who has no idea how to be in public office, than to see a woman running this country. Ooooh…I get it, the only place a woman has in the White House, is the bedroom, or the kitchen, or the background in general? She needs to be quiet and know her place, right? I guess so, because that’s what America wanted right? Like I said, while we’ve taken great strides in becoming one of the most free and diverse countries on the face of this earth, we have still taken for granted how many people there are out there, that don’t want that type of change to take place. We underestimated the power of the ‘Good Ole Boys’ club. We forgot that just because we feel like there is injustice in the world, that social media will be the thing that gets us through. That will automatically get the votes in.
To the people that decided not to vote, because they’d rather have Bernie Sanders in office. Or because you didn’t think either candidate was viable. Or because you wanted to protest the injustices of this nation. Do yourself a favor, SHUT THE F$%() UP!! He didn’t make the cut. America voted on that one too! You have people in the streets protesting, that Trump is not your president. Yes, he IS…and you’ll move on, just like the rest of us. Question is…how will you move on?
No matter what we think, the process can’t and won’t ever work, if we don’t get out there. For those of you who did get out there., don’t stop thinking that your vote counts. But next time, let’s do a little more. Let’s each one talk to someone and help them to understand that these changes are going to come by posting “Get out and Vote” on Facebook, or putting a nice 3 minute video on Instagram. It doesn’t work that way. There’s another election coming up in 2 years, and that will be even more important than this one. You want women in office. Let’s get some in the Senate, or the House. Let’s get some in city council, or in the governor’s office. Find a way to make things happen.
So much more to come…