Thursday, August 15, 2013

While You Were Sleeping - Harriet Tubman

It is almost 1 AM. I NOW have a day job. I was so ready to go to sleep, until I saw references to THIS:

Ok, First of all- this shit is NOT funny. At all. In any form. Second- the fact that not only were they able to find Black actors to downplay the real rapes and savagery that took place during slavery as a JOKE... AND the fact that this appeared on Russell Simmons' All Def Digital YouTube channel- is astounding. Absolutely unbelievable. Third, and here is the true tragedy, there will be more Black people who see NO problem with this video. They may even chuckle. They will not correct others who DO laugh at this. They will be silent.

Now listen, I am not one to jump on a soapbox at the drop of a hat. This blog represents my personality in small snapshots, on topics that I choose to write about. Lately, the subjects are somewhat frivolous, but this is serious. As a lover of history, I have to say... The United States has had a sordid past- that is no surprise to anyone. The history of slavery in this country (and around the world) is no laughing matter. There is no denying that some people's reality has been shaped by the atrocities of 400+ years of a horrid system of buying and selling human beings, of split up families, of beatings and rapes that took place for no other reason than having the ability to do them without repercussion. There is no denying that America, is NOT in fact, post racial anything. We have all held onto stereotypes that began in the infancy of our country-- and some of us hold those stereotypes as truth in 2013.

What I hold as truth is as follows: I will not, ever, support Russell Simmons. Not ever. The fact that he, as a Black man in America okayed this... video... shows me that he does not have my interests, or the interests of a strong Black community, in mind.

Another truth (and I have held this one for decades- I have said it before and clearly I need to say it again): I will not support entertainers, movie "stars", producers, people on the street or relatives that use the N-word. I don't care if you are Paula Deen, Paula from high school, Paula down the street or Auntie Paula- there is NO excuse for anyone to use that word. Black people kill me trying to take back hurtful words- that one in particular. And non-Black people kill me when they try to explain why they should be allowed to say it. You will not disrespect me, my momma, my community, people who have died for the cause, no matter their race or humankind in general, by uttering that word in my presence. I do not care who you are. Father so and so, Pastor so and so, rapper so and so. Listen, Poppa Hot, Black and Bitter says whatever the hell he wants and EVEN he does not say that word in front of me. If I ain't taking it from him... You surely will NOT get a pass.

The truth above all truths: I am a proud, strong, capable woman who knows the history of the country that she loves. I respect my history as a Black woman and the history of others. If I made a video about how much Jews really loved the Halocaust--how Hitler was actually a savior to the Jews he confined in the ghettos of Europe; or, how much Native Americans really loved marching the Trail of Tears and being forced to give up all they knew by outsiders who wanted more resources-- how they appreciated helping the English survive the winter on the East Coast, only to have those same people take everything that they had. If I made a video that somehow poked fun at the war crimes that are going on right now against POWs and others being held against their will. If I trivialized someone else's well noted struggle-- how would that be taken? Who would reprimand me? Someone would, right? So where is that someone NOW? Why is it that no one is standing up for the Black community when ideas like this are being thrown around the production room? Why didn't Russell Simmons see a problem with this mess BEFORE it made it to YouTube? Before there was outrage? WHERE WAS HIS OUTRAGE?? Why didn't the two Black actors in this skit say to themselves "hmm- this really is NOT funny, maybe we should try something else?" What made anyone think that this was okay? Why, when I do defend the Black community I am pegged as out of touch, or too sensitive? And for God's sake WHERE are the rest of the Black people who have a problem with this???

I am so tired of this. Here is the lesson that we (Black) people need to learn: the only way that the ills of our community can be cured is if we, as a community, stop putting up with substandard behavior from our members. We can't blame other people. We have got to nip the nonsense in the bud, all over. So that means, I have no love for Russell Simmons--- or his offspring. I don't live for making his pockets fatter. I have no love for all these rappers that are making it seem as though we are all fools who can't speak English and have thousands of babies without marriage. I have no love for the drug dealers and ridiculous petty criminals in our community. I draw the line and supporting EVERYTHING just because it is Black. Putting up with craziness is not my forte-- no matter who is bringing the crazy. People, we have GOT to expect and receive better from our own community, because I can't have another night like tonight. I can't watch another Black person acting like a fool for a few inappropriate laughs. I'm so done with this bullshit. So done.



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