Tag Archives: black girl speaks

Up In Arms

Talitha
Feeling Full of Life

I stay woke
Like for real
It’s 3am
And I can’t sleep
Because I feel my son
Kicking and swirling
Flipping and shifting
Readying himself for this world
And, fear has me wondering
If it’d be easier for him
If he was a girl.
If he wasn’t seen
As criminal before human
As violent,
As a threat,
As a suspect,
As a target
In Wal-mart,
As a nuisance
On the BART,
As a thug
In his ‘hood-ie,
As an animal
To choke,
As a disturbance
To silence,
As a reason
To provoke
His own murder,
As a weapon
To disarm
when his arms are up
In surrender.
I wonder,
While he’s cradled in my womb,
Unseen and unheard,
As it will be until he makes his presence known
By birth and simply living,
If it’s the safest place for him.

#blackgirlspeaks #JohnCrawford #TrayvonMartin #OscarGrant #EricGarner #JordanDavis #MikeBrown

Part I: The Holy Argument

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(In this article, I’m addressing  those who care about the plight of black people and humanity in general. I have no interest in entertaining or trying to enlighten the weight of bigotry and ignorance at perilous times such as this.)

“Where is the outcry when black people kill other blacks?”

It’s happened again. Another black male, Michael Brown of St. Louis, has been slaughtered with his blood running cold in the streets by a person who has taken the oath to “protect and serve.”  And, once again, the murder has been met equally with enraged outcries and dismissive arguments trying to absolve the action by shifting the focus to the violence by our own hands, without offering any solutions. The problem is that this argument has as many holes as the lifeless body of Michael Brown.Michael Brown

I hear this retort every time, and there are many, a black person unjustly loses their life to someone in “authority” over them. And by “authority,” I mean anyone who expresses or has been given the power to express superiority over the disenfranchised; which would includes the George Zimmermans and Michael Dunns of America.
The similarity in cases of violence where black people are the victims in America is that black life is not valued when it is deemed “free;” certainly, a relative term. It is only valuable to those in “authority” when it is incarcerated. The lesson of self-hatred and black criminality is on the curriculum of American citizenship from birth for African and European (or non-African) descendants respectively. We have lost the will, the desire, the value of living, especially in areas where poverty outweighs opportunity.  And, those of us who  have been granted such amazing opportunities,  point pious fingers at those of us who haven’t and bellow misnomers like “black on black crime,” which exists only if “white on white crime” does also.  (Every ethnic group kills within their own racial demographic more than not. However, white Americans have killed both within their own race and overwhelmingly more than any other groups outside of it historically in America.  Coin a phrase for that. )

I am certainly enraged when one broken black spirit takes the life of another. I weep for those who are dying in Chicago, NY, LA, Minneapolis, & all over the country by our own hands. I weep for those I’ve loved and lost to the hands of violence by their own reflections. I also weep for the black hands that pull the trigger who will inevitably meet the fate of death or incarceration.  The fate that many in “authority” will never meet when they have the same offense, which further embeds the message that our lives don’t matter. Is that not a reason for outcry? Is the state of our brokenness and impoverished spirit not a reason for outcry?  Is the justifiable murder of unarmed black lives by people in “authority” not reason to galvanize, organize,  and reestablish our communities and outcry?  Perhaps just making it “their”  problem and cloaking ourselves in righteous indignation and superiority, excusing one murder with another, will help.

Who should be leading by example on  how to value black (all) lives: those in “authority” or  who have been given lessons in value and self-love,  or the broken-spirited?  How dare we expect more from those with less than we’re willing to give. If you’re ready to stop sitting on the sidelines echoing baseless arguments, start by implementing the list below, as much as you can, in your community. It’s time for more action and less argument. #TheBackToBlackList

Stay tuned for “Part II: Armed With Blackness,” & “Part III:Black Criminality vs. White Mental Illness.”

(Please post all comments directly on the blog post by clicking on the “comment” button above the article.)

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How I’m Coming to Terms With My Husband’s Mistress

In-all-the-world-there-is-noToday marks twelve years of friendship with my husband, and eleven years of dating (much more on than off that is). We began hanging around each other my last year at Florida A&M University and started dating exclusively a year to the day later when I was graduating. We have literally grown up and spent our twenties together. We look back on it now in complete disbelief honestly, because to many (even us at one point), we were the unlikely couple, “Dwayne and Whitley” from “A Different World.” But, it works, literally and figuratively.

Throughout this decade plus, we’ve had many of the normal challenges relationships engender, and some uncommon ones as well. We’ve weathered many changes and storms, and so far we’ve made it through each one stronger, wiser, and closer because of it. So far….

This past year of transitioning as wesep_26_oct_16_2007_sin_ewr_sin_us_garmin moved from the U.S. to Singapore certainly came with a few bumps in the road, but nothing we couldn’t handle, and the shift definitely showered us with more blessings than burdens. So far, in terms of our marriage, living abroad and being exposed to so many new opportunities and people has been nothing but beneficial and blissful for us. That is, until she came along.

He told me he wanted one years ago. When we were younger and discussing our dreams and goals and fantasies, he told me, in so many words, that he’d be as faithful as his ambitions and desires allowed, and that eventually he’d have to have a little something on the side. I didn’t discourage or dismiss the idea, because I wasn’t sure if I’d ever want a little something on the side myself, and I knew when we had a family, he would no longer be my only relationship focus. He could possibly need a distraction I thought.

We were striving to build something like we’d never seen and that would likely require different compromises and concessions. It was an agreement and understanding we made long before we took vows. We would never hold the other person back from whatever could bring them their full happiness and fulfillment, and neither of us would settle for unhappiness in the relationship. So, when he mentioned her a few months ago, I wasn’t as surprised by the fact that she was coming into our lives as much as I was by who she is and what she represents.

The Back Story

12016153-black-girl-speaksIn 2005, I began a company called BGS Productions, Inc. that produces my original theatrical performance Black Girl Speaks, along with a lecture series, a host of spoken word products, and a curriculum for adult and teen workshops.  The whole premise behind the company and the movement is to love your authentic self, embrace who you are fully and naturally, and heal by SPEAKing your truths in whatever form you’ve been gifted. At the debut performance, I revealed the dismissal of my relaxer and my newly shaved head to the shock of a full audience, and I’ve been echoing the power of embracing your natural beauty ever since.

My husband was and has been my most devoted supporter, companion, cheerleader, investor, mouthpiece, etc.  He has worn the banner for Black Girl Speaks at times when I was discouraged, has led projects under its umbrella successfully and fully and completely believes in its mission, purpose, and impact. Black Girl Speaks was truly our first born, and we have nurtured her together throughout our entire relationship.

Yet, it has never been my sole focus. I’ve never robbed time or attention from my family to devote to Black Girl Speaks. It’s a shared time. It’s a part of the fabric of our family. Our daughter is even a part of it. I juggle it along with the roles of wife and mother as opposed to putting one down to pick up another, (which could be why its growth has not been consistent.) I see it figuratively as a child for these reasons.

My husband, on the other hand, has to focus solely on one thing at a time.  We learned through counseling early in our marriage that men tend to be more concerned with things and are task-oriented, while women tend to be more relationship-oriented and better multi-taskers. Of course, this is generally speaking as men and women can manage both, but each gender tends to lean more towards one than the other.  My husband is certainly one of those men. He is driven by his ambition and less by relationships.

For example, I asked him recently why he worked so incessantly. I wanted to know his joy factors, his push to always do more in every facet of his life. Mine are to please God, spend quality time with my family, and to help and bring joy to others. It took a little while for him to answer because he never really thought about it, but his big payoffs were going to football games & concerts (he wants to have enough money to travel to go to any game or concert he wants anywhere in the world), and providing for his ailing mother, because “every ghetto boy wants to eventually be able to take care of his mama.” Every one of them is a task that requires his sole focus to complete.

black-man-with-two-womenI knew, if I was going to be dividing his time, attention, energy, and focus with another, I wanted it to be with one I approved of or at least could see myself in a little bit. But, this one is not what I expected at all. There have been others who were equally disappointing to both of us, and they didn’t stick around for long. This one, however, appears to be the one; the one that’ll be woven into our family and seen as respectable even. This one is the one who beckons his call at all odd hours of the night, keeps him from sleeping with and “entertaining” me, and for whom he’ll travel to devote time to on our anniversary. This is THAT ONE, ….and I’m actually happy he’s found her.

The Evolution of Thought

I didn’t like her at all at first. Everything she symbolized was in stark contrast to my personal beliefs. I found her to be superficial and self-loathing.  I thought she was needy and a poor example for my daughter. The fact that she’s Filipino was also surprising because I at least expected her to be Indian or Chinese considering our location and that’s what’s most common here. download

My feelings are evolving though. I can see now that she not only brings my husband joy and lights a passion in him that nothing else could, but she actually is a great asset to us and essential to reaching the collective goals we have. She has already broadened our network and is much more savvy than  I gave her credit for in the beginning. She actually is more a tool for convenience than detriment as I thought.

So, I’m embracing her, long weave, high maintenance, and all. I’m welcoming my husband’s mistress into our family because it would be cruel to make him choose between two fantasies; because this fantasy is actually a part of his destiny and every other one before was ripening him for this one. I am not only going to allow and tolerate her existence, but fully acknowledge and support it as he has supported every dream of mine. This is the greatest gift I could offer him on this our decade plus one anniversary.

The Gift 

Today, I am becoming an (unlikely) advocate and spokesperson for my husband’s mistress, his latest and greatest entrepreneurial venture, Madali hair extensions! (If you know me, you knew better.) 

He is a leading pioneer in this industry already as Madali is the premier hair extensions company to exclusively offer the finest quality of 100% Virgin PURE Filipino human hair.  Madali is also one of a handful of black-owned and operated companies in the beauty and hair care industry, which is comprised of mostly black consumers. (Another problem with our economics, but I digress. #TheBackToBlackList) I not only can vouch for the quality of the product and the service, but I can definitely attest to the ingenuity, passion, drive, intellect, and prowess of the company’s CEO.  

If you wear weave, you should be wearing Madali, and this is coming from the “biggest hater” as I was labeled. I realize that not all women wear weave because they hate their hair, but rather for the versatility and to add ease in the transition to embracing their natural hair. Many professional women wear weave to add ease in their corporate matriculation, because sadly, our hair can still be seen as a deterrent and threat. These women just want the ease and convenience of grooming.   In fact, the name Madali itself means “ease” in Tagalog, a language of the Philippines.

I also realized that more than any other role I play, my most important is helpmate, queen to my king. And, to be that, I must offer the most in spousal support, else I could be on the receiving or giving end of it. He needs me to support this vision, or it’ll perish. He needs me to SPEAK in its favor, or he’ll get discouraged. He needs me, and this relationship is the most important one I have, so I’m stepping up to my responsibility.

Madali has been a challenge and benefit, a risk and reward. She has tested our faith and relationship and has actually made me a better wife in the process.  I’m supporting my husband, his dream, his destiny, his vision to empower others through economics, and yes, his side chick, Madali, wholeheartedly. And, you should too! http://www.madalihair.com  logo

Do It For the Vine

ImageAffluent white men in expensive cotton tees or custom suits sit around exclusive cafes in Hollywood and casually create movies about the type of life we’re living here in Singapore. Of course, the characters never look like us because that would make the surreal even more unbelievable, but it’s our stories just the same.

ImageThis year alone, we’ve had non-stop adventures and cinematic experiences every week. If we weren’t traveling throughout Asia and the southern hemisphere, we were attending or hosting some soiree or serving as tour guides for visiting friends. Just last night we were celebrating three friends’ birthdays in a private party, dancing like our feet weren’t killing us on a rooftop terrace, and singing old school R&B jams in karaoke until the cops came knocking three times and finally kicked us out of our friend’s lavish condo. If it weren’t for the drastic difference in our age and economic status now, I could’ve sworn we were back at FAMU! There has not been one dull moment, and we love it! It’s one of the primary reasons
we are not ready to leave our temporary haven in SE Asia.

When my husband first came to me with the news that we would be moving to Hong Kong before I had even completed a year in Singapore, my first reaction was something like, “I ain’t gon’ do it!”Image

I seriously wanted us to consider a long distance marriage where we commuted once a week. I looked for all sorts of ways to create more financial streams to make it possible. It had nothing to do with any feelings one way or another about Hong Kong. I haven’t been yet, so I have no opinion about it. I look forward to living in other countries one day, but I just didn’t feel like our time here was done.

Inevitably, we know this dream will end, but I’m not ready to wake up yet. Practically, the idea of moving to another foreign place in less than a year with a toddler in tow and a baby in the womb is altogether unappealing regardless of the destination. Couple that with leaving the incredible community we helped establish, the learning center I’ve started, and the organization for women of African descent living abroad I founded, and you have an overgrown, full-blown, hormonal temper tantrum!

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There’s something about the power we have to SPEAK our desires into existence. Once I made peace with the idea of having to uproot yet again, I simply let go of any frustration and stress that I was feeling about it. I trusted that we would thrive either way, and just started stating and believing that we would continue to live this amazing life to which we’ve been exposed. I stopped focusing on what I didn’t want and just focused on what I did yearn.  I wanted my family to feel secure, to maintain the community we have, to continue building solid relationships, expand the learning center, lay the foundation for the women’s organization, and still feel as fulfilled and vibrant as I have been.  I made it clear that I wanted it to be here in Singapore for at least another year, but I am completely submissive to the divine plan.

We ain’t going nowhere! (Well, we’re actually traveling again this weekend, but we’re not moving, yet, that is.) Less than a week after I found this peace with the idea of it and begin sharing the news about the potential move with others instead of wallowing in self-pity, the mister approached his team and informed them of our desires to stay and pleaded the case. Instead of giving us thirty days to move as they did before, he urged them to make the formal offer immediately or agree that we should remain in Singapore for at least another year.  They agreed, and it’s done!

I’m most excited that I get to give birth to our sun, (yes, we’re having a little prince just as the kibibi and I expected!), amongst friends in a familiar setting. The sequel to our life here is secure and I couldn’t be more thankful.

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Don’t Pinch Me

I have died and gone to the JW Marriott in Dubai! If this is a dream, let me slumber.

With my king beside me, my kibibi underfoot, and my blessing inside me,  I’ve seen the sunrise and moonlight dance together over the vast view of ornate mosques, galloping horses dark as midnight, African goddesses in stained glass windows anchored by the prodigious statues of African emperors, and a beautiful myriad of people from all over the world. As far as I can see, there are symbols of growth, transition, progress, and pride. The juxtaposition of opulence and reverence is intriguing as I’ve rarely seen these two sides on one gold coin.

After a seven and a half hour flight on Singapore Airlines, (If you’re going to fly economy, then Singapore Airlines is the best way to do it.), we were greeted by our hotel representative standing singly holding a large sign in a leather bi-folded frame printed with my husband’s name spelled correctly in a bold font. This in itself is somewhat familiar, but the fact that we were greeted in the area reserved for distinguished guests before being escorted through the hurried bustling throng of  taxi drivers and less exclusive greeters, as we were led to our private chauffeur of a smaller version of my husband’s dream car, the Mercedes S600, made it a little special.

On the journey from the airport, Salna*, our South Indian driver, was all too excited to boast of the historical and touristic treasures of Dubai. Having lived here for 15 years, he has adopted Dubai as home and donned himself the tour guide and information resource for first time visitors. We learned about the unique attractions like the world’s largest mall and musical water fountain, the Burj Khalifa, which is the world’s largest hotel or man-made structure, imagethe seven emirates that comprise the U.A.E., and how wonderful and safe Dubai is because of their beloved ruler, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed. Despite this not being his native country, Salna* clearly felt like he was an embraced part of it and proud to be so.

When we arrived at the dual towers of our hotel, we were warmly greeted by Khatasie*, a beautiful South African young woman who’s only lived here for three months. Our kibibi was immediately enamored with her. She too begin boasting of both her home country and Dubai, urging us to visit again and again. Now, of course, I attribute a great deal of their hospitality to the fact that it is the industry in which they are employed, but there was something refreshingly genuine and kind about them as well. The same could be said about Di*, our chef from Nepal to whom our little one was also drawn. She usually only speaks enough to be polite, if even, but she actually entertained a conversation with Di*, going as far as to mistakenly say she was from Abu Dhabi and “it’s fun.”

We’ve only been here for twelve hours, and it’s already made a significant impression. Now, we’re heading off to explore. The mall must be conquered!

Why We Must Forgive

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I was walking through a parking lot today, and I saw a sign that read, “If reason is on your side, show forgiveness. If justice is on your side, show humility.”

At first, it rattled me considering the state of anger wherein I’ve traveled increasingly since the Trayvon Martin trial, and where I’ve resided since this past week’s Jordan Davis trial. Why must they, (justice and reason), be mutually exclusive? Why does the gift of justice come so sparingly to my people? Why must we always be the strongest and forgive? I had to pray about that thing.

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I was reminded of the power of and that comes through forgiveness. It’s not letting anyone off the hook. It’s stopping yourself from being hung by your own rope. It’s letting go so you can progress in healing. It’s the gateway to productivity, and now is certainly time to be productive.

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So, I am choosing to forgive for my sake and ours collectively.

I forgive those who lay in idle complacency and serve as spectators to our genocide.

I forgive those who offer no alternative and do nothing to aid in our collective struggle other than serve their own individual pool, but who feel authorized to criticize, denounce, and ridicule strategies that are devised for the very people they’ve chosen to neglect or pity.

I forgive ignorance.

I forgive those who are so entangled in their own emotions and feelings that they cannot understand our plight enough to even fathom the thought of a group seemingly excluding them to heal within themselves.

I forgive those who throw baseless accusations and antiquated insults because they are afraid and personally offended that we are personally offended by our plight in this country.

I forgive all who are in the position to do so, but fail to empathize.

I forgive all who are in a position to do so, but fail to help.

I forgive those who look like they are African, but offer no other indication of such.

I forgive our would be leaders who have chosen their comfort, status, and fortune over using their platforms to propel the progress of the disenfranchised.

I forgive those in our community who have fallen victim to self-loathing, and in turn hate and seek to destroy us all.

I forgive those who have had the audacity to take a life that they didn’t birth, love, understand, or embrace with little to no remorse.

I forgive the history of America, though it’s never acknowledged its fault or current effects or asked for or felt the need for our forgiveness.

I forgive myself for not being more forgiving sooner and for putting my faith in anyone other than God and the Spirit of God within us.

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I forgive, because I must; because I need to heal; because we need to progress; because you’re worthy even if you don’t believe it; because we’re worthy even when we don’t see it; because that’s what I’ve been instructed to do; because reason is a gift too.

Because we have work to do, I forgive you.

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#blackgirlspeaks #forgiveness #understanding #peace #progress #TheBacktoBlackList #EmpowermentExperiment #justicefortrayvonmartin #justiceforoscargrant #justiceforalfredwright #justiceforjonathanferrell #justiceforjordandavis #justiceforhadiyapendleton #justiceforjonylahwatkins #reasonforusall

A Message to White Privileged People Who Take Offense to “Black Power” Movements

At our nearby park, there is always a nice mix of people from all over the world.  Parents, mothers or fathers, accompany their children and watch from a distance while mingling amongst themselves. Usually, everyone finds their “own kind” and stick together. “Own kind” will change depending on who’s present. Sometimes it means the same gender, or home country, or expatriates vs. locals. Of course, sometimes it means the same race. That feels very familiar. But, when it comes to race, because there are very few of my “own kind” in Singapore in general, I must infiltrate if I want to engage at all, on the playground especially. home

One day, I happened to strike up a conversation with a congenial French woman, who has lived in Singapore for over six years. It began very mundane at first; how’s the weather here compared to our respective countries; how much more expensive is it here compared to home; where our children went to school and why, etc. We watched our daughters, very close in age, play with their toys in the sand box. One was more practiced in the art of sharing than the other, and one tried to take possession of all of the toys from the other.

Somehow the topic of race and white privilege ensued, and honestly I wasn’t the one to present the subject.

“I suppose I can’t help but have white privilege. I’ve never had to think about it.”

She stunned me with this simple truth. I’ve never heard anyone personally say to me that they were equally aware and ignorant of this benefit. She went on to share a story explaining when it first dawned on her that SHE was treated differently than her “African friends.”

A small group of them were on holiday (vacation) together, and went out for a leisurely night. Two in the group were of African descent, but all were French and none of them ever vocalized there being any difference amongst them. When they were denied entry into a pub most of them had frequented many times before, she initially thought that it must’ve been closed even though it didn’t appear so. It did not dawn on her that she had witnessed discrimination until her “African friends” brought it to her attention. They had been denied entry many times in many other locations, even France to her surprise.

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This sole experience allowed her to take notice of other instances where she’d taken her rights for granted and, you could tell, there were revelations happening even in our conversation. Perhaps this was just a French problem she pondered. I assured her it was not and adduced my own examples. She repeated her initial comment about it being out of her control, and expressed disbelief that there could be anything done about it by anyone. She said this as we observed her daughter continue to snatch my daughter’s toys from her. My daughter eventually took her toys and played somewhere else after all of the play negotiation tactics I’d taught her had failed.

I have come to see, even more blatantly here, that the intoxication of white privilege affords one an extensive list of rights or entitlements  far beyond the scope of those who lack such a luxury.  One of which is that it allows one to feel well within their “right” to comment on, analyze, criticize, and belittle the sentiments of those seen as the inferior (whether conscious or subconscious) , all while trying to impose their views upon the perceived wayward thinker. It goes beyond freedom of speech. It’s freedom of control and authority to admonish that which is seen as contradictory to the majority view. This gift of white privilege is inherent for anyone of European descent, even in America, (though it does not have to be consumed to the point of intoxication), and has also been dispensed sparingly to the “passers,” people of color who could very easily be mistaken for otherwise either in appearance, social status, self-identity, or parallelism in thought or actions of superiority. These are the white privileged people.(See Wide Awake Parts I & II)

This particular “right” has been exercised incessantly in the U.S., but much more noticeably in recent years. With the public upset over the disputatious verdicts in the Trayvon Martin and Jordan Davis cases, which really have crossed all racial lines, there has been an influx of contending commentary from offended white privileged people expressing their abhorrence of the vocalized disgust with the trial’s outcome. How dare anyone question, challenge, or protest the results of the U.S. justice system? The gall of any group to express disdain for the norm, (exonerating white privileged people), in America is unfathomable and met with great resistance.  (See aforementioned explanation of “white privileged people” as it relates to Trayvon Martin’s killer before you exercise your “right” here.) And, therefore, any discussion of making changes that could prevent such outcomes or such actions in the first place are seen as inflammatory, threatening, exclusive, “racist,” and vile. This idea of change and “black power” must be spawned from a spirit of hatred towards the unassuming white privileged people. It just must.

But alas, I must inform you, that pro-black does not mean anti-white. Black people also struggle with understanding this. Yet, I do understand your confusion. You are perplexed by this because, as historically evidenced, the reverse is not true. Pro-white has meant anti-ANYBODY else. When members of white supremacy groups bolster their views with the term, “White Power,” it is certainly laced in hatred and disdain for anyone other than they.

downloadThe implementation of “white power” in the United States of America has been and is systemically in opposition of any non-white person. It has been since the seizing of this country from the native peoples that already dwelled in and cultivated this land.  I certainly understand how and why many project the sentiments of their ethnic predecessors on the rest of the world, but it is simply inaccurate and false.

After posting “The Back to Black List,” we were met with a few comments of discourse. Some were well-meaning and sincere; some were malicious and irate. We were told this list would be viewed as “racist” if it were reversed, and therefore was racist because surely we did not have a right to avoid such a label when the privileged did not. We were asked if our list still included them; not that they wanted to be a part of it or help in any way because they were very content in the utopian land of equality and diversity as they saw it. They just wanted to ensure that no “right” had been stripped from them. Others expressed how hurt they were that we felt a need to “further divide.” There must be another way they admonished, but offered no alternatives or suggestions or assistance. They just wanted us to know that they were disappointed in us for hurting their feelings by developing an action plan without their permission that didn’t directly include them. Still others, and these were by far the most amusing because they looked “black” but were clearly intoxicated, expressed they had absolutely no interest in living among other black people, supporting black businesses, or  “helping black people because they don’t want to help themselves.” This was in response to our action plan to help ourselves. The list has been viewed as “racist,” unGodly, pretentious, and unattainable, and of course, “anti-white.”

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But, there’s that little thing called history. Our ancestors did not enslave, oppress, and enact genocide upon their European counterparts. The opposite is fact, and it was not so long ago in the context of world history. It is in your ancestral lineage to hate that which is different from yourselves. Those who do not, and there are many, are an anomaly. Therefore, I understand why you would want to project that reflection on others. But, that is not who we (most of us) are. The source of our declaration of “Black Power” is one of love and desire for such. You have always had power within this structure; there has never been a need for you to voice it or cry out for it. We’ve known. We’ve always known.

Your declarations of such were to serve as affirmations and intimidations, not demands or requests. And, they were always stemmed from your self-view of superiority and your disdain for everyone else. That is why a list in the reverse of “The Back to Black List” would be racist and unnecessary because it already has been written, but “The Back to Black List” itself is not. It cannot be. Wait for it…..here comes why.

white-privilege

Only those in power,(economic, political, social, etc.), have the power to actually be racist. The rest of us are simply the pawn in the malicious enterprise of racism, and every other “ism” for that matter. Anyone can have prejudice, but only white privileged people can be racist because we were the prize, never the participants in the race. The only ones that benefit from racism are those in power. The only ones who are adversely affected by it are those who are oppressed. It is very clear who serves the former and latter positions in terms of race, this man-made divisive factor created long before we adopted “The Back to Black List.”

So, I denounce your baseless accusations that we are racists for having the audacity to love ourselves despite all that’s been done to teach us to do otherwise. I denounce the notion that we are racists because we recognize the importance of healing and restoring ourselves before we can fully and lovingly embrace anyone else. I denounce the accusation that we are racists because we decided not to wait for anyone to show up in a cape and save us.  I denounce the idea that we are racists because we have the brazenness to envision ourselves economically empowered. visions_of_black_economic_empowerment I denounce all claims that we, the educated and empowered few of us, will worsen the problem by restoring the economy, infrastructure, educational access in the already segregated impoverished black communities by moving there. They are actually quite humorous. It tells me that you actually feel somewhat threatened that we are empowered enough to SPEAK against the centuries old social structure that has been steeped in enmity and xenophobic practices in this country, and throughout the world.

Otherwise, you would show absolutely no interest in the messages of black empowerment. You would not engage in debate about issues that absolutely do not concern you or affect you and your general way of life. If you did not feel threatened or personally offended, you would not try to exchange racial epithets or hurl insults masked by the elocutionary critiques of your intelligentsia.

You would simply keep scrolling pass our posts, comments, websites, channels, etc., because you’d be confident in knowing that your quality of life will not be disrupted by ours improving, which is true. Yet, your privilege and fear make you feel a bit froggy.

So, jump, but after this post I will not be engaging in any further discussion with you on the matter, and I encourage other “Black Power” activists to take the same stance. This is a joint course in “How to Deny My White Privilege in Matters of Black Empowerment,” “How to Mind My Own Business,” and “How to Share in the Sandbox.” You either pass or fail. Class dismissed.

(I must state some of my “givens,” so it’s understood that I don’t take them for granted. We know that the term “white privileged people” is not a sweeping generalization to describe every caucasian person. Though, every caucasian person can and does benefit from white privilege, we are aware that not all adopt the mentality of the those who become intoxicated by it. We know “well-meaning white people” exist. This article was not to discredit those of you who support the cause of restoring the basic rights of humanity to all. No need to exercise your right in this forum by declaring your decency. We know you exist. We’ve always known.) 

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