Den of the Cyphered Wolf

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Are Humans Bastards?

I am considering changing one of my main core beliefs. Up until now I've held that people suck. In high school and especially middle school, I was an outcast and people treated me accordingly but most of my post-high school observations on the nature of man have been positive.

Up until recently, the biggest compliment I could give someone was, "You know what? You're alright." But now, I find myself saying and thinking that to the point of redundancy. I'm almost starting to expect it.

The rate of dickishness between middle school and now has gone from about 70 percent to 15 percent. Every now and again I write something about how people suck but now I think I'm starting to mellow on that. And then, I think about the 15 percent, the frackin' 15 percent and go back to thinking that yeah people really can be assholes.

The question I find myself asking is do I really still believe that humans are bastards or am I just afraid of changing my original position which also fuels quite a bit of my writing. Eh, I write better when I'm pissed. If I don't write for a couple weeks it's probably because there hasn't been anything in my life I've been pissed about, but you know what gets me right back to the blogosphere? A good asshole.

The first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Should I post "I'm tired of Trying to Prove my Blackness AKA the Sterotype Lightswitch"

Okay, It's been a while since I posted anything and I was thinking about doing what I always do when I am out of ideas. Just post my old stuff. One of the things I am considering posting is a very candid very inflammatory treatise on race in America I wrote about a year ago.

The overall point is if I don't start jumping up and down about Obama it doesn't make me less black and if I reserve the right to still be pissed about slavery it doesn't make me a radical militant.

I honestly think its one of my best pieces of writing. I feel myself being a little hypocritical. One of the major points I made in the essay is they we as a society can not afford to completely ignore racial issues and have to have the courage to hit them dead on. We can not fall into the delusion that America is a racial utopia because, it's not.

And here I am a year later pondering the fact that even though I still agree with everything I said in it I won't post it out of fear that someone down the line 15 years from now will be calling me a racist or an Uncle Tom (I called out both Blacks and Whites) for things I am honestly proud I said.

In the second paragraph I said, "Do not cower and beg forgiveness for being the man you long ago decided to be."

The man I decided to be is someone who is unafraid to speak the truth even if it's the ugly truth, and now I want to renege. The more I think on it the more I want to post it, like I said both in content and voice I think it is one of my best.

You know what? Screw it. I'm posting it.

I am tired of trying to prove my Blackness... And for that mater my Nonblackness A.K.A. the stereotype light switch.

Note: I actually wrote the majority this in mid to late 2009. I am breaking my general policy of dating things when I wrote them because I want this and my decision to post this to appear together.

In the first week of my senior year, my parents visited me. My father came to my new home and he then said to me, “Why don’t you have any posters of Dr. King?” Of the posters in the room most of them were of video games or movies I liked. Honestly I prefer Sin City to Superfly.

I am tired of having to prove my blackness. I live my life by a simple code. Within reason, be who you are and do not apologize for your identity. Do not cower and beg forgiveness for being the man you long ago decided to be. I, like a damn fool, tried to bring up examples of black books and movies I brought with me, rather than just saying I am black and proud, but do I need to say it loud. I feel a furious searing rage about slavery, the lynchings, the hoses, and the dogs, but the trials and heroes of the previous generations are not mine. I am a new beast entirely.

You see folks, we here in America have a new race problem, on our hands. One I think is more important. You see we as a nation will at least reluctantly admit that those other problems exist, and might even try to make progress on them. It’s not fair that cops can and do pull over black people for no real reason. Yes, there is a wealth disparity between black and white that is partially due to the 200 year head start they had in legally owning property, which by the way included us. Yes black people receive little to no credit for the stuff we do relative to white people. Yes the light bulb was invented by a black man. (To be fair, every mad...eccentric scientist and his uncle was experimenting with the light bulb damn near simultaneously but Edison gets credit. In all honesty Edison, was more of a businessman than a scientist and generally gets way more credit than he deserves about "his" various inventions.)The Chuck Berry/Little Richie vs. Elvis King of Rock and Roll thing still sticks in my craw. (Again this is mostly because Elvis generally gets way too much credit for the birth of rock and roll. His style had been done at the time by several artists and both Blue Suede Shoes and Hound Dog are covers. All that said I generally like Elvis.)

Sorry for the aside but I'm a music nut. Anyway... (By the way the last three asides and youtube inserts are 2010 edits.)

But you know what we won’t admit? There is a stereotype light switch that works on both sides. Now to be fair I think that this transcends being black and is a problem for every minority. I read a book called No- No Boy written by a Japanese American for my lit class and had the revelation while trying to think up a thesis for my lit paper. The guy was pulled a part because he felt he couldn’t be both Japanese and American.

You see America, yes that is me proving my blackness with a Bernie Mac reference, you can be black, and you can be a part of white… ahem mainstream America, but you can not be a part of both Black America and mainstream America. Ask Dave Chappell.

When I am around Black people, if I exhibit any opinion, or habit that conflicts with Black America, but adheres to White… I mean mainstream America’s culture I am an Uncle Tom.

In an attempt to keep the white man from giving us an identity we have given ourselves a group identity and any individual who deviates from that group identity will be called an Uncle Tom.

I hate Obama, mind you not the man, not the president, I actually think he’s doing an okay job, but the racial myth that he represents. You see the guy exacerbated the problem. I was kind of apathetic during the campaign. As long as Bush was gone I was happy. But that wasn’t enough if you were black, nooooo. This guy is the first black president. The sign that we finally made it. You couldn’t just go into the voting booths and silently vote for the guy. You had to be ecstatic and God help you if you weren’t.

You know whats worse. If I happen to conflict with the negative sterotypes about black Ameica even slightly I’m all of a sudden put on a friggin’ pedestal. I’m not perfect and don’t expect myself to be, and I do not appreciate all the friggin’ pressure of being the poster child for the entire friggin’ race. That is so not fair to me. You know what I want. I want to be a guy with a regular job who makes just enough to scrap by because otherwise I wouldn’t have time to enjoy myself. I do not want to be an engineer, lawyer or doctor. I don’t want to be the perfect Cosby father figure, mostly because I know I can’t stand the dependency needs of kids. Daddy, could you take me to the bathroom? But sweetie Daddy is on the last level of Halo, you know the part where you have to memorize and then execute a fairly complicated escape plan in 5 minutes. Interruption means certain failure. But Daddy.

Okay so I’ve talked about Black America’s self prejudice but as the Animated Huey Freeman said. “I can’t blame this one on the white man. What am I saying. Of course I can.”

White people are fine and willing to believe that not all the stereotypes about black people are true, until they see one of them. They see you playing basketball of course you have to be awesome at it. You become slightly pissed off and all of a sudden you’re the angry black guy. Which brings me right back to Obama.

You see people, Obama doesn’t have the liberty of being black. He can look black but he can’t be black. Do you seriously expect Obama to give a serious and candid speech on race relations that’s not scripted? He tried … a little, yes it was stupid, and we all know how that turned out.

See black people talk about America’s racial history all the time. Sometimes I want to take my dad, shake him and go “all the slave holders died at least 2 generations before you were born. Isn’t hell, eternal pain and eternal torment enough. (I thought when I said hell I was being clear that I wasn't exonerating slave holders. People who read this on paper didn't get that message so let me just flat out say it. I believe there is a very special and by special I mean agonizingly painful place in hell for slaveholders and treasonous traitors i.e. confederates. Johnson presidential pardon my ass. If you bear arms against the U.S. government especially if you are a citizen or former citizen of the U.S. I say get the rope except for maybe John Brown. Okay I'm a history nut too. History aside over) Sure sometimes I want to go all Nat Turner, or more like granddad’s version of Catcher Freeman with the machete to be honest, but there isn’t anyone left to go all Nat Turner on.

If I decide to publicly say slavery was wrong, lychings were straight up murder, and America still has some racial issues, whit… ahem mainstream society labels me a black radical screaming for reparations.

Ultimately I’m pissed at both sides. I’m tired of hiding who I am, because of racial politics. I am who I am, and I will not cower or apologize for being the man I long ago decided to be. And at the end of the day that’s what all those previous generations were fighting for, for me to have the freedom to hold my head high and say this is me and I will not kowtow to anybody to assuage any racial crap they may be feeling.

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