Part 2: Black Anger and The Nate Parker conundrum

I was just talking about this to an owner at a local bookstore that I patronize, and he told me he was repulsed by Nate Parker’s past, and refuses to support him. I told the owner that I may disagree with his shady past, but I feel that the movie he is promoting is important for the black community. Many people are mixed on this situation, but if I knew the skeletons of everyones hands I’ve placed money into, I would be the most frugal man on Earth.

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Not soon after I finished my last blog post, the Milwaukee incident happened, Cam Newton says we as a nation are past racism, Nate Parker’s murky past got brought up, and United States of America kicked ass in the olympics. So let’s divulge into the topic of race in America and the Nate Parker situation.

 

The Milwaukee Incident 

 

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After reading of the Milwaukee incident that involved the shooting of an armed young black man, burning down of businesses, and vehicles, I have came to the conclusion that I have no idea what actually transpired. I will only go by the facts. Shit went down, and it got ugly. From what I understand is that there were maybe 100 people behind the calamity. The man who was murdered was allegedly armed, and was shot by a black officer who also happened to be a high school class mate of Sylville Smith. Several acts of arson were committed, and 4 officers suffered injuries.

Tensions High In Milwaukee Night After Police Shooting Of Armed Suspect Sparks Violence In City
MILWAUKEE, WI – AUGUST 14: Police officers stand guard as crowds gather for a second night near the BP gas station that was burned after an officer-involved killing August 14, 2016 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Protestors threw rocks and there was gunfire in the crowd as hundreds of people confronted police after an officer shot and killed a fleeing armed man earlier in the day. (Photo by Darren Hauck/Getty Images)

 

Here is the issue, the black community and the police have a real animosity that stems as far back as law enforcement have been in business. The cops have a distrust among inner-city urban minorities, specifically black, because of the poverty and crimes that happen in our community. The urban youths, primarily black, have an issue with law enforcement because they are usually taking someone to jail for an indefinite amount of time. Police brutality has always been ingrained in the black community, this phenomena is nothing new. However, because there is massive amounts of technology available, anyone can be videotaped at any moment with a cell phone. The officer fears for his life when he enters these neighborhoods, because he finds most black criminals have that certain “look”. This look is often glamorized in hip-hop videos by rap artists. The influence by these entertainers  become the trendy look in the poor neighborhoods. Dark skin and a popular hairstyle, such as cornrows, can be misinterpreted as an association with a gang. The cop automatically correlates this ‘look’ with violence and tyranny. The Milwaukee police officer, a black man, had possibly feared for his life and did what he felt was necessary. The body cam footage is not openly available to the public and it is impossible to know what really went down. The black anger that invoked a group of several dozen people to commit these crimes can be attributed to the sour relationship of a segregated city, where the poor and black feel invisible when it comes to justice.  As recent as 2014, Dontre Hamilton, a mentally-ill black man, was murdered by Milwaukee police. This incident caused outrage as the officer was let go, but not charged for the murder. No one can justify the arsons of  the businesses in the community that they live in, but unfortunately this is an issue that will not resolve overnight.

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Another thing is….Why in the hell do media outlets always go to THIS guy when it comes to riots and civil unrest?

I mean, really??….

 

CAM NEWTON

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Cam Newton, quarterback of the Carolina Panthers, had this interview with GQ that I read earlier this week. From what I interpreted in this interview was that he didn’t want to talk about anything too political. If he believes that racism is something that we are beyond, and he is serious, than I would have to disagree. When you make it to a point in life where you make a certain amount of money from endorsements and contracts, you rise to a different tax bracket. Money no longer becomes an object, and people treat you differently. When you have money, and you live in a white neighborhood with friendly neighbors, when you have the god-given athleticism and mental acuity to perform at an MVP level, when you become the face of a city and people of all races revere you in an almost god-like perversity, it is hard to believe that racism actually exists. You start to become like O.J. Simpson, a handsome face, with a docile, friendly personality that major brands can attach their names to. Stepping out of the box may cost you endorsement money, and or fines from his league. Being Muhammad Ali, isn’t politically correct nowadays. It is easier to be Wilt Chamberlain than Muhammad Ali. I am reading a book called “40 million dollar Slaves” that delves into the topic even  more so. The label on the cover of the book is extreme, because no wealthy athlete can honestly be compared to a slave, but  the author exposes the reality of many black athletes disassociating themselves from the black community.

NATE PARKER

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As of lately, all of the talk on social media has been about Nate Parker. Parker, 36, producer of the film “Birth of a Nation”, is under fire for a 1999 case that involved the rape of a woman, which he legally got acquitted of while on a wrestling scholarship at Penn State. The report that I have read — which had court documents of testimony –was really murky. I cannot defend a man or his actions, for I do not know what happened. I will not condemn Nate Parker for having a shady past, because he was acquitted by a jury. However, the court documents are disgusting to read. I couldn’t help but cringe.  What I do feel is that this plan of digging up his skeletons is a deliberate plot by some unnamed force. I have seen an article written by a feminist that ripped him into shreds, witnesses who’ve participated in the actual trial defend him on social media, and liberal outlets bring up his reluctance to play a homosexual character on film. Law is a very technical, yet political entity. Everyone who gets acquitted isn’t innocent, and the opposite is true also. The alleged victim committed suicide in 2012, and another person involved with the case is also a co-producer of the “Birth of a nation” film. I was just talking about this to an owner at a local bookstore that I patronize, and he told me he was repulsed by Nate Parker’s past, and refuses to support him. I told the owner that I may disagree with his shady past, but I feel that the movie he is promoting is important for the black community. Many people are mixed on this situation, but if I knew the skeletons of everyones hands I’ve placed money into, I would be the most frugal man on Earth. Roman Polanski, filmmaker, was infamous for a rape case involving a minor sometime in the 70’s. Woody Allen, screenwriter and actor, had sexual abuse allegations against him as well. Not to make light of these situations, but this goes to show you that it was filmmakers who were placed in situations similar to Nate Parker.

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I still believe that the movie will be released. If the movie does get released, I will definitely go and see the movie. Here is a trailer of the movie.

 

We Aren’t living in a Post-Racial society! Part One (rant)

The issue I have with race in America, is that we cannot act as if race is not an issue because we may not face the same injustices. We are so inundated with the idea of individuality and responsibility, that we lost focus on the ugly realities of racism. Forgetting an issue and glossing over it, is not the same as getting rid of it. If you are diagnosed with a disease, and refuse to treat it, than you must either get on board with solutions, or suffer the dire effects. As Blacks, we need to figure out a salient process of making things happen. The reasons I am here nor there about these presidential candidates, is that they have no incentive to help the black community.

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What is good wordpress family? It has been a minute since I have last posted. As for me I am still going through my dilemma that I previously spoke about. More importantly, there have been many issues that have been impacting the African American community. With the recent technology of body cameras and phone cameras, America is starting to see the racial ugliness that has been taboo come to the frontline. I could post on and on about the senseless killings that have been happening in the Black community, you can see these atrocities in graphic detail on Shaun King’s timeline.

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Things are starting to feel like the 1960’s all over again, with tensions flaring over Trump vs. Hilary Clinton, police brutality, racial tensions are becoming the norm on social media. If you follow some of the trending hashtags on twitter, you can easily see the ocean of internet trolls making racially insensitive remarks. For some people, it has even costed them their job. I am on neither candidate’s side. Whoever wins the election, wins the election. There has been deception on both sides of the politics game. Fear-mongering has become rampant throughout both sides of the media. There seems to be this tacit implication that Hilary Clinton has the poor black vote, the converse can be said about Trump, easily winning the poor white vote below the bible belt. Donald Trump is an overt racist, and Hilary Clinton will do anything to gain a vote. Im still reminded of the super-predator remark that was aimed at young black men in the early 1990’s.

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Police wearing riot gear walk toward a man with his hands raised Aug. 11 in Ferguson, Mo. Renewed calls for police departments to hire more minorities have followed the shooting there of a black man by a white police officer.

I have been reading books like crazy about African-American history and I am finally “woke” to the injustices that happens to my race as a whole. I cannot 100 percent say that I am behind the “BLACK LIVES MATTER” movement as well. The whole movement is great as a vehicle to get the message out, but I feel that digital hashtag protests are not the solution. I have read the mission statement from the original website, and there is a lot of intersectionality going on. If you choose to fight for a cause, it should mirror the civil rights movement. The civil rights movement stood up for injustices that made it to the supreme court and caused incredible changes. BLM is a movement that is strategically flawed. When a non-black person hears “BLACK LIVES MATTER”, they immediately digest the meaning as saying their lives matter less. This title automatically causes a person of a different race to become defensive. The naming of the movement is wrong, if you wish to have laws change in the courtroom. Imagine if the civil rights movement chose to go by a moniker such as “STOP KILLING BLACKS!”. I am quite certain that circumstances may have turned out different. While I support the families of victims who suffer from police brutality, I cannot support a movement that only feels a keyboard will cause change.

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So, what are the solutions Eddie? To be honest, there are no solutions, this is a process. Solutions happen overnight, processes take time. Racism is insidious and exists in every human being, whether you admit to it or not. How we respond to these emotions and stereotypes, makes a huge difference. Racism is a quagmire that will exist as long as humans exist. Stopping racism is like trying to stop dishonesty. There is no qualitative approach that will make it change. Movies and T.V shows, continue to show Blacks in an inferior state. If most black men you see on television are either rappers, athletes, or actors portraying drug dealers and slaves – what will you automatically perceive the obnoxious black kid, wearing a hoodie with sagging pants as? How will you view the dark skinned black man with a lean muscular build, dreadlocks and tattoos as? You aren’t technically racist  if you hold these thoughts in your mind, but rarely in public spaces would you vocally admit these things, because that would be deemed “politically incorrect”, it is nevertheless true. The fear of black men has existed since slave insurrections of the past.  To rationalize these claims, many right-wing advocates will easily point to the ill-savagery of black on black crime. Which would be asinine to deny, however, Black on Black crime is an issue that police can’t resolve themselves. This is the rapist blaming the rape-victim for being sexually promiscuous. Not the act of rape itself. The protests have always happened  in black neighborhoods. Go to any funeral of any victim of these senseless gang-related or happenstance crimes, there will be a pastor or bishop screaming at the pulpit for the “young brothers and sisters to get saved, and get their act together, come to Jesus, while the lord has blessed you with another day”. How many mothers, fathers, uncle’s, aunt’s, and strong upstanding black people who told their kids how to conduct themselves when police approach the vehicle? How many black mothers and fathers told their kids not to hang around with “those boys and that crowd, cause I’ve heard about them”? What are the working class citizen black families to do, once their child is a victim of violence? Jump in between the bullets of the murderer and victim, while being 11 miles away at their second job? This is an impossible and unrealistic feat. Being poor in a poverty stricken community, you will confront a reality of desperation and violence. In any country, city, or community where you find poverty, you will find violence, it is synonymous. Blacks are among the poorest race in the nation. Another retort to black on black crime is what about before it existed? Before black on black crime, there were justifiable lynchings of black men who tried to own businesses, accidentally gaze at a white woman, or loiter past 9 p.m. in sundown towns. There were people who looked at Emmett Till and said, “that boy should’ve never whistled at no white woman.” And the justifications for police executions in broad daylight on camera, still happen to this day.

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The issue I have with race in America, is that we cannot act as if race is not an issue because we may not face the same injustices. We are so inundated with the idea of individuality and responsibility, that we lost focus on the ugly realities of racism. Forgetting an issue and glossing over it, is not the same as getting rid of it. If you are diagnosed with a disease, and refuse to treat it, than you must either get on board with solutions, or suffer the dire effects. As Blacks, we need to figure out a salient process of making things happen. The reasons I am here nor there about these presidential candidates, is that they have no incentive to help the black community. Mass incarceration is real, jail recidivism, police brutality, predatory loans, poverty, lack of home ownership, lack of businesses within our community, lack of black support of black businesses, lack of business loans, weak and fluctuating job employment, and inferior educational standards are issues that all need to be addressed. If black people keep voting for candidates who can do a popular dance move, rather than implement laws that will immediately impact African Americans, what is the point of voting. Yes, we should vote for local figures in our community, vote on laws and measures that may impact our community, but the voting out of fear, has no merit in my books. There has to be an incentive for a candidate to wish to do something for the said community. The LGBTQ community are making enormous strides and are forming super-pac’s to make sure change happens.  The Latino community has done the same. The black elite aren’t concerned with the black issues enough to stick together and form a super-pac that will help the less fortunate. They may tweet, or even publicly declare how they will sit down with police officers and have dialogue, some may even tell the black community that we need to “fix” our selves before receiving help, but most of them are invested in retaining the wealth they have earned. Many of them will blame the same communities they come from as victims of their own destruction. Many of their non-black friends will tell them, “look at you man, you are a prime example of someone who started from nothing, and made something happen. You are an example of America and how far we have come.”, buying into this, they easily forget where they come from, and the tactic of using tokenism to hide the hideous realities of black America.

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