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Cynique

Blacked Out

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From where I sit, observing the world the way I’ve been doing for the last 50+ years, I see one change in particular that is gradually taking place in America. “Political correctness” is receding, and black people are losing their relevancy. Because they no longer fear the stigma of being called racist, having neutralized this term by referring to it as a despicable practice known as “playing the playing the race card”, red state Americans no longer care if their true feelings about Blacks are exposed.  Just check out Twitter and FaceBook.  They’ve repressed their disdain long enough and if this offends Blacks, well they’ve only themselves to blame. "You people" had your chance to earm white favor and you blew it.

 

Also emerging is an acknowlegment of “entitlement”, a birth right Whites weren’t even aware automatically came with their skin color. Just recently Joe Scarborough, a pseudo liberal on MSNBC, who was possibility embolded by Charles Barkley’s rant blaming black “scumbags” for taking Whites out of their comfort zone, decided to make an announcement. Heading up a panel of like-minded individuals, Scarborough decreed what has been emerging as the official white stance on the Michael Brown case. He declared Michael Brown to be a thug, a young man who did not represent the face of black America, stopping just short of saying that this 18-year-old shooting victim got what he deserved. Joe had me at the “face of black America” phrase. Who endowed a presumptuous patronizing Scarborough to decide what is the face of black America, especially since black America has many faces, and considering that none of them are white, they are all subjected to the insidious racism of people like Scarborough. The man of color occupying the office of the Presidency of the United States is a prime example of this, what with how his Republican opponents disrespect and insult him at every turn, their blatant contempt reeking with their aversion to black authority.

 

Adding impetus to this trend are the fall of the revered Bill Cosby, and wife-beating black athletes, all fueling the white suspicion that black guys are “bad news”, just as millions of prejudiced Whites have suspected all along. All they needed were the sins of a few high profile Blacks to prove that there is little difference between them and the ones killing each other in the ghettos.  (The exceptions, of course, are the "good negroes" trotted out on Fox News to scold their  black brothers for misbehaving.)  

 

Even in the music industry where Blacks have long enjoyed great impact, their popularity is now fading, thanks to a surge of white entertainers capturing the ear of their own kind. As Troy recently noted after lamenting the lack of black authors on the national best seller lists, for the first time since it came out 58 years ago, no black musicians were among the Top 10 on Billboard Magazine’s Hot 100 chart. Forget Beyonce and Rihanna and Alicia Keyes. The new “IT” girls are Taylor Swift, Miley Cyrus, and Katie Perry. Forget Nikki Minaj, white Iggy Azalea is the new Rap queen. Forget Jay-Z. Rap is no longer the exclusive domain of  tongue-twisting black rogues. Crooning his soulful love ballads, white singer Sam Smith, has crowded out black vocalists who originated this genre. What's still  holding its own is the type of act Whites have always preferred from Blacks:  Pharell dancing around singing a little ditty about being "Happy". Just as when it comes to the literary scene, the only black book currently making waves is one giving females advice on when to "give up the cookie" by the buffoon of relationship experts, shuckin and jivin Steve Harvey.   

 

Fads come and go, some lasting long enough to become absorbed by the mainstream. Whatever. Blacks have had their day and now they're nothing special. Tokenism and glass ceilings are still what’s available for a chosen few but for the rest, the struggle continues. The Civil Rights movement has been resurrected because integration wasn’t the answer, and apparently diversity isn’t either since it has come to represent putting up with differences that each race perceives as being pesky or even negative. Racial co-existence seems to be the last hope of the “United States“, and minorities can forget about the equality promised by democracy.

 

This is not to say that there aren’t well-meaning Whites who sympathize with the plight of black folks. But the reliable refuge of white entitlement grants them a privilege they can automatically envoke. They have a choice to simply opt out any time being liberal becomes too inconvenient.

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You can run this essay under my pen name, the one used on "The Only One" my new novella that will soon be available.  Connie Divers Bradley.  CDB ;)

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I'll add an excerpt of this my my next Newsletter too.  If anyone does share this please use this URL http://aalbc.it/blacked-out to link back to this page.

 

This too is reminiscent of your editorial days Cynqiue, what I call "Classic Cynique" :-)

 

It is not just Billboard failing to reflect the existence of Black artists, has anyone noticed that there has not been a single Black novelist on the NY TImes Bestsellers List for at least 6 months?  Nope. probably not.

 

I've been promoting the nation's only bestsellers list focused in recognizing the bestselling books written by or about Black people, The Power List, but it has been really hard to gain traction, presumably no one cares least of all other Black people.

 

What kills me the most is what we do get riled about.  Recently at the National Book Awards.  Daniel Handler, of Lemony Snicket fame, told an inside joke about his friend, a Black woman, named Jacqueline Woodson.  Black Twitter went crazy in reaction. The misguided outrage from keyboard activists was swift and relentless in its ignorance.  

 

But my coverage of the event was bolstered by this nonsensical outrage.  I even wrote about it on this website. The problem is that virtually every media outlet covered the dumb joke, completely ignoring everyone's accomplishments.  There were two other Black poets nominated and you'd be hard pressed to find coverage of them--even on Black platform.  However Black platforms, covered the watermelon joke as if it was the most important thing that happened.

 

I'm also tired of "diversity" this term has contributed more to our being "Blacked Out" more than anything else.  What does "diversity" mean to Black people when one can completely exclude Black people and still be diverse?

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Instead of taking the post away from here I used the Share button beneath it tweeted it out. The share button is the best way to keep the content and people who would possibly read it on my site coming back to where the original post was created and helps to build the brand. 

 

You both are right. There are so many points made that we have to analyze each one to get to the core of the problem. I even wrote a curse filled blog post yesterday because of my frustration.

 

Cynique, at least I now have a name to cite on my site when I use any of your content. Troy, your work is of the utmost importance and clearly the primary thing I would use in discussing how our choice of words in discussing what happens to Black people is not really a systemic issue as much as it is personal choice. My wife and I were talking yesterday and she made the most poignant statement in regard to "SYSTEMIC" problems for Blacks in America. Her statement was, "If racism and slavery created the systemic issues that opress Blacks in this country why weren't Blacks wiped out during slavery, sharecropping and Jim Crow? Blacks should be like the Native Americans, broken and in small pockets. Instead we came together and broke through all of the racism and struggle to form our own communities and economies and we eventually created the Civil Rights movement. If the systemic forces in place didn't break us then, how can we blame it now?"

 

I added to that statement something I've always stated. Blacks don't have the privilege of anonymity. We are the group, the group is us. We are not distinguished one from the other. Which lends itself to everything Cynique said above. Bill Cosby's problems are a reflection on us all. One kid gangbanging is every college kid banging. Because of this our perception will always be negative or associated with negativity. Giving that much power to the systemic issues is a waste of time and fixes nothing. The perception of who we are should be dictated by us and our acceptance of it. The problem is we don't control any media and we (this is a general we) don't care. It's not racism that creates our problems, it's the lack of support and interest in us that creates our problems.

 

Tavis and his Covenant was the closest thing that came to the idea of empowering Black America. The Minister's current Blueprint is another attempt but will fail because no one will give the minister 25 cents. Our kids get gunned down not because of racism, but because we lack the financial ability to make things happen in the political and judicial system. We have no financial reputation and there are hardly any black faces owning the businesses where most of these incidents happen. It becomes a lot harder to kill black boys when there are black faces watching from those windows and Black people supporting and serving the neighborhood. I compare Black people to those people who allowed Kitty Genovese to be stabbed to death.

 

We can see everything happening and instead of coming together to go out and stop ourselves from being murdered, we expect someone else to do something and we close the blinds. We come back to the windows and see that we are being attacked again and we wait for someone else to stop it so we again close our blinds. When we end up dead on the street nothing ever happens and nothing is resolved. It's disheartening. 

 

Our need to continuously blame it on the system is our downfall. I'm with my wife, if the system didn't destroy us during slavery, sharecropping and Jim Crow, how is it doing such an effective job now?

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I'm glad my words resonated with you guys and inspired your own relevant thoughts on the subject.  What I had to say was something that had been on my mind for a while as I noticed how white people vent about race when they can hide behind the anonymity of social media forums and how they are giving our music do-overs .  Finally I sat down in front of my computer, put my hands on my keyboard, and the thoughts just flowed. 

 

Troy, I revised a few things in the essay and inserted a short reference in regard to black authors on national best-seller lists.   

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I copied the revised copy and will share it with a pingback to this forum on CBP. This is how we begin to create that complex styled connection. I've added you as an author on CBP Troy so you can share whatever you like on the site. I'm still waiting on you to hit me with that revised Power List button for the sidebar also. Great op ed Cynique, it definitely pushed the right buttons and could be the starting point I've been looking for in connecting CBP and AALBC more.

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 AS   BLACK MALES    ARE BEING   GUNNED  DOWNED BY     RACIST    POLICE, STREET GANGS    GUN DOWN   BLACK PEOPLE,.THERE IS  NO  BLACK UNITY,NAACP,POLITICIANS   AND  CHURCH  PREACHERS       ARE  UNABLE  TO  HAVE    BLACK UNITY   OR  DO  NOT  CARE  ABOUT   TRYING TO  HAVE  UNITY,,.BLACK REPUBLICANS     SUPPORT  BLACK  MALES  BEING     SHOT DOWN,,DR. BEN   CARSON'S,3    SONS, ARE NOT BEING  RACIALY   PROFILED    AND   GUNNED DOWN////DR. BEN CARSON  CAN  TALK  HOW  BLACK  MALES DO NOT   RESPECT  THE LAW.////

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My parents told  me as  a kid if you fail you fail as a Black Person if you suceed you sou suceed as an individual. What they were talking about was outside perceptions.Eddie Murphy tells a story about when he went back to Roosevelt Island, He was in the parking lot at a mall. Was getting into his car and some white guy said hey nigger. He turned around then they white guy says he Eddie how's it going. Eddie Murphy said I went from being a nigger to a star.

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Black people, can indeed, make it as individuals if - they are twice as good as the competition. Super negroes have always impressed the star struck. Especially if they are athletes or entertainers.

 

But wealthy, old money Whites, will still discriminate when it comes to the noveau riche among Blacks.

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