Thursday, December 18, 2008

The End Of An Era

"The strong take from the weak, but the smart take from the strong."
- Princeton Basketball Coach, Pete Carril

The battle is not Black vs. white. The battle is wrong vs. right.
According to authorities at the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) - more than 200 hate related incidents were reported in the first month following the election of Barack Obama as our next president.
Citing the fear of a Black president, illegal immigration, and a poor economy - The SPLC states that the number of hate groups rose about 5%, to nearly 900, in the past two years. The number of these groups is up 48% since 2000.
Jack Levin, a criminologist at Boston's Northeastern University, estimates that there are fewer than 50,000 people who have memberships in white supremest hate groups.
Don Black, creator of the Stormfront website, states that his site has close to 150,000 registered members.
When we look at a country with a population of a few hundred million people - these numbers are relatively low. SPLC spokesman Mark Potak once stated; "We are talking about a tiny number of Americans who are members of these groups - I mean infinitesimal."
Viewing all whites by the actions of the (relative) few is the same as all Blacks being judged by the actions of those who appear on our nightly news.

It's a business.
Pharmaceutical companies and doctors conspire to diagnose new maladies and their treatments on a regular basis.
Drug addiction and obesity are now classified as illnesses.
ADHD? We had belts in my day to solve that problem.
Mid-morning television is inundated with ambulance chasing lawyers, in an effort to get more people to litigate over an ever growing number of workplace or product injuries or ailments.

Jessie Jackson and Al Sharpton are small time street pimps compared to the real race/hate traders.
The real money and power is to be had by the established entities like the SPLC and the Anti-Defamation League (ADL). Each institution boasts annual budgets of more than $30 million. The SPLC has control of over a $136 million war chest.
As long as hate is in the news, these people will always have a job.
For these people - what's the benefit of reporting any good news?

We're focusing on the wrong issues.
Safe neighborhoods and good schools are social issues.
Low (well... fair) taxes, evenly administered justice, good jobs and health care are social issues.
None of these are "Black" issues.
We just seem to get a lower level of service in these areas.

"Everybody has to step up. Parents need to pay more attention to their children. ..."
Barack Obama - Ebony Magazine

Sure, the problems with institutional discrimination (or oppression) need to be addressed.
But while many problems are beyond our individual abilities - a productive model of personal responsibility can be achieved by all.

No rights were given to us through the Civil Rights movement.
These inherent human rights were always meant for all people.
The courts just more fully recognized (or acknowledged) that Blacks were human too.

I can't jump on the decriminalization of drugs bandwagon just yet.
The system is biased and we all know it.
If I were to rub bacon all over my body and run naked through a pack of wild dogs - I shouldn't be surprised when one (or more) bites me.
I shouldn't complain if I ride around town with a bag full of weed, playing my music too loud, in a pimped-out car - I shouldn't expect to be treated the same as someone in a nondescript car who has no guns or drugs.
Most cops are under trained and frightened. You know that they're going to over-react, so don't put yourself in that possition.

The problem with our legal system isn't that laws are enforced. The problem is that these same laws are not enforced evenly.
With more than 1.5 million Black adult males in the prison system (most for non-violent drug charges) - more than 10% of our voting base has lost their right to vote.
(Since there is to be no taxation without representation - do these men become exempt from paying taxes?)
Author Cletus Nelson states; "...even the most diabolical Klansman couldn't have dreamed of a more repressive policy to disproportionately punish minorities.".

A Time For Change
Just let it go.
We're not getting 40 acres and a mule.
Have you ever known someone who was waiting on a large settlement check?
They don't usually work and by the time they get their money - they owe more than they get.

To equate Obama with a moment of change is more accurate than one might think.
It's not that Obama is going to produce sweeping changes in the way America functions on a person to person basis. He may not even be effectual on a national level.
What changes is what people expect. What changes is that parents now have a highly visible role model to balance the hero worship of the stereotypical Black athlete or rapper. What changes are the colors of the faces of his cabinet choices. What changes is perception.

Black quarterbacks and coaches were always competent. But winning made them more visible. It's no longer a rarity to see a Black professional football coach or quarterback. (Okay, Willingham got shafted while Wies got an extension. And don't get me started on Turner Gill. But that's college.)

Power respects power - and right now a Black (Let's not argue over whether he is Black. He is perceived as Black.) man has that power. What changes is that so many racists are livid because some n***** is in a position that they could never dream of.
No, he's not the Messiah (My Moses post was meant in jest - some didn't get it.). But he does mark a certain point in time.

Many of the Jews who were waiting for their Messiah were disillusioned when Christ came on the scene. Many thought that Jesus had come to overthrow the Romans and create a world where the Jews ran everything. What Christ did was to set the process in motion. (Some anti-Semites argue that the promises of Abraham are even more true today. That the Jews are to blame for everything. That the Jews own everything.). What Christ did was so important that we mark time (A.D., B.C. or B.C.E.) relative to his estimated birth.
Many Jews thought that the change would be instantaneous.
It took Constantine to take Christianity from a persecuted sect to the national and favored religion.
What Christ did was to change the way people thought.

Our conditions won't change overnight - but how we choose to deal with them can.
It's time for the "Era of the Victim" to end.
"The Era of the Victor" is just beginning.
Success is a choice.


ecom said...

color and race should not matter as we all are humans

Anonymous said...


brohammas said...

OK what topic didn't you cover? Just had to get it out there?
What can any of us add to that?

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RunningMom said...

Amen to that. Nuff said.

Citizen Ojo said...

straight fire!!! This is the true end of the year wrap up. My favorite is "We're focusing on the wrong issues." Fire!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I wonder when MLK died did people think we were going to change? I think things have been so bad for so long we pen our future on hope. So while I hope Obama inspires change and the like I personally am not going to wait around for this massive change of mind. Even the story of Jesus was not as big as it was at the time it took hundreds of years for it to become what it is today. If Obama is Jesus like in inspiration then I know I won't see it in my lifetime so just like the Jews I think we should plan just in case he is not the messiah and we need to continue our group through this ish!

uglyblackjohn said...

@ Black And Single - Race matters. People see race. But race is rarely THE thing that matters.

@ GDAWG - Thanks.

@ brohammas - I was feeling tired of everything being about race. Most people have common issues - that's all i was trying to say.

@ Melissa B - I'll check it out.

@ Running Mom - And Amen.

@ Ojo - What are you still doing down her in the hood? Thanks for dropping by.

@ FreeMan - MLK? Yes, I think so.
Christ groomed his disciples to be future leaders. When MLK was killed, his followers had the same debate over who would be the greatest. The thing is - none of them were.