Sunday, April 13, 2014

African-American Women: Here's Some Of The Fruit That You've Earned With Your Knee-Jerk, Rabid Support of “12 Years a Slave,” Part 3

I'll keep this relatively short because the point is [should be] self-evident. {smile}

A lot of y'all got mad when I originally questioned your knee-jerk, rabid, UN-reciprocated crusades in support of 12 Years a Slave.

I've been keeping track of the many bitter fruits y'all are going to reap as a result of this entrenched knee-jerk behavior pattern of constantly throwing on your Superwoman cape in support of any and all random Black-skinned faces. All without ever asking the simple questions of:

(1) What's in it for me and African-American women like me to support this?

(2) Who benefits from this [movie, TV show, record deal, etc.]?

(3) Who benefits the most from this [movie, TV show, record deal, etc.]?
Well, let's see . . .

So far, there's the Vanity Fair magazine cover I discussed HERE. There's the growing bad feeling some of y'all are belatedly experiencing that I discussed HERE. And now there's this:
Carmen Ejogo has been cast to play Coretta Scott King In Ava DuVernay‘s MLK Biopic Selma,’ reports The Hollywood Reporter. The London native will play opposite David Oyelowo, who’s playing Martin Luther King Jr. Already cast in the film is Tom Wilkinson, who will play President Lyndon B. Johnson.
Here's a photo of  Nigerian-British actor David Oyelowo and his wife:

Right. So, two foreign Blacks (one of whom has a White wife) have been cast to play Coretta Scott King and Dr. King in a biopic about Dr. King. Right.

Before some of y'all try to draw a [false] distinction, keep in mind that the AAs who participated in (and/or accepted) these casting decisions with the upcoming Selma flick only did the SAME thing that a lot of y'all African-American women consumers did with your rabid, knee-jerk support of 12 Years a Slave.

Namely, all of these decisions were made by African-Americans who were so fixated on various emotional considerations (oh, such as desperately looking for validation of dark-skinned beauty, showcasing White women's cruelty, etc.) that they didn't notice that they're economically cutting their own throats in the long-run.

You teach people how to treat you. The same applies to consumer behavior. Y'all taught Hollywood (and the AA slaves looking to catch a crumb in Hollywood) that the winning equation when it comes to movies about AA history is to cast foreign Black actors as AA historical figures.

Since you've shown that you're comfortable with financially supporting being replaced by foreign Blacks, you will be replaced. Across the board.

Regardless of whatever you thought you were doing by blindly running out to support this movie, this is the REAL message you sent with your rabid support of 12 Years a Slave.

Bonus Commentary. I've had multiple email conversations about the dynamics underlying all of this. Here's part of what I've said during several of these conversations:

AA women's fanatical caping for Lupita is a microcosm of a larger dynamic:
(1) BM happily accept gullible AA women's support and then kick AA women in the teeth (and to the curb) when these BM get where they think they're going.
(2) Latinos happily accepted gullible AAs' political support; and then kicked AAs in the teeth (and to the curb) when they no longer needed our support for their illegal immigration (now that they've overtaken AAs as the largest minority demographic).
(3) Foreign Blacks are mid-way through this same trajectory. Once foreign Blacks complete the process of replacing AAs in American universities, the American entertainment biz, and so on, the bulk of them will totally kick AAs in the teeth (and kick us to the curb). It's like Lucy and Charlie Brown and the football. {rhetorical question} I wonder how many times do AA women have to see this pattern played out? [A savvy former blog reader replied that AA women will have to repeat this lesson until they finally learn from it, and stop engaging in knee-jerk muling for other people.]

Friday, March 28, 2014

Charity Begins At Home, Part 4

This will be an extremely long post that you might want to read in portions.

Let me start off by saying that I've been delighted to see the discussion in the comments section to this excellent blog post. I've watched the shifts in African-American women's online conversations since 2007. Praise God, a critical mass of African-American (AA) women have finally learned how to put our own ethnic group's interests first and foremost. And many of us have learned how to follow the money and resources trail. All of which is the way every other ethnic group on this planet behaves.

Hopefully, the correct predictions I've made over the years has earned me a bit of patience from the reading audience. Recently, I've done several posts talking about the bitter fruit that AA women will continue to reap from their knee-jerk, rabid, unsolicited support of the 12 Years A Slave movie because it parallels some other catastrophic trends. Trends that are catastrophic for the masses of AAs, while creating material, monetary and career benefits for foreign-origin Blacks, Latinos, and other non-African-Americans.

I'm talking about multiple trends (in various fields of endeavor) that are rooted in reaping the benefits created by AA civil rights martyrs while simultaneously leading to the displacement and erasure of AAs. I'm talking about the displacement and erasure of AAs in higher education, political representation, and the American entertainment industry.

Having access to higher education is important. Follow the money and resources trail. Access to higher education has traditionally provided the only ladder up and out of poverty for AAs. Well, we're (and by "we," I'm talking about my own ethnic group, AAs) being replaced by foreign-origin Blacks in many elite American universities. I talked about this during my first month of blogging in September 2008:

Charity Should Begin at Home, Part 1: "Study: Universities prefer foreign black students"
Common sense and a healthy instinct for self-preservation dictate that charity begins at home. And it does. For everybody except African-Americans. We're too busy sharing what we don't even have, and putting other people's interests before our own. Before I get too far into this topic, let me make it clear that I am not advocating resentment against any other group of people. It is perfectly natural (and fair) for people to look out for their own interests. I'm simply pointing out a trend that is not in our long-term interests; and the fact that we need to do a better job of self-preservation.

Let me also make it clear that when I refer to "African-Americans" in this post, I'm exclusively referring to the people who are descended from those Africans who were held in slavery here in the United States. In the context of this post, I'm referring exclusively to the people whose struggle and dead martyrs paved the way to progress during the Civil Rights Movement. Before somebody says "us too," I'll note that there were others who participated. Like Panamanian-born Kenneth Clark (who conducted the doll study involved in the Brown v. Board of Education case). However, the overwhelming majority of the people who created, supported and died in this struggle were African-Americans.

We engage in self-oppression when we refuse to look out for our own interests. This is a large part of why African-Americans continue to suffer as a group. Our self-defeating behavior is part of the reason why other ethnic groups, including foreign Blacks, have been able to advance while we fall further behind. The only thing that remains constant is our position at the bottom of almost every measurable social index.

The core problem is our general refusal to properly understand our unique history, our unique struggle, and our unique situation within this country. Many African-Americans refuse to understand that other so-called people of color (including many of our foreign Black cousins) are actually RIVALS for many of the resources and opportunities that our people's struggle created. We want to believe that we are in "coalitions" with other people.

Umm. . . No. What has happened is that other ethnic groups have harnessed our energy and resources in support of their agendas. When African-Americans participate in coalitions, we allow others to capitalize off of our unique history and the unique debt that is owed to us. Resources that should go to us as restitution for the specific harms that have been done to us in this country are siphoned off by other groups. The African-American Civil Rights Movement created resources that should have been used as restitution for the centuries of slavery, followed by the century of official Jim Crow segregation that our people have suffered right here. Instead, these resources have been converted into vague "diversity" programs that benefit everybody else.

There's a story entitled, "Study: Universities prefer foreign black students" from the March 7, 2007 issue of The Daily Princetonian. Here's the link:

The story describes the current situation. Here's the money quote:

"Blacks at Ivy League schools are over three times more likely to be immigrants than blacks in America's general population, a study published in February's American Journal of Education and coauthored by Princeton researchers suggests. Within the United States, first and second-generation black immigrants make up 13 percent of the total black population. In contrast, data from the National Longitudinal Study of Freshmen found that international black students---either first or second-generation---made up 23 percent of blacks attending public universities and 41 percent of those attending Ivy League schools." (emphasis added)

This is just the beginning stage of this trend line. I could compare it to the point in the 1960s when the Moynihan Report came out warning about the rise of single-parent Black families. We ignore this situation at our own peril. Many of us depend on set-aside programs to either pay for, or to get into, much of higher education. If these resources created by our civil rights martyrs continue to be systematically diverted to other people, then we're in a lot of trouble as a group. Any future depends upon access to higher education.

What will we do when the percentage of immigrant-origin Blacks among Black college students reaches 51%? Or 75%? Or 90%?

It looks like we'll do something similar to what we do in terms of Latino immigration. We stand and watch while legal and illegal Latino immigrants work at construction jobs in Black residential areas. Soon, we'll be watching our foreign Black cousins and their children go off to college while we remain behind in our slums.

Here's another money quote from the story,"What to do with the conclusions of the study depends on admission officers' definition of affirmative action, Massey said. 'If the purpose of affirmative action is to redress past wrongs and redress former slaves and people victimized by a century of Jim Crow, then you want to favor native blacks perhaps,' he said. 'If the purpose is to reflect the diversity of American society, then you want to favor immigrant blacks.'"

This ties into why I have extremely ambivalent feelings about Black immigrants who are pushy about claiming the label "African-American" for themselves. Other people re-defining our category to suit their needs helps to obscure situations like the one described in the article. After all, how does one measure or track this situation if immigrant-origin Blacks are claiming to be "African-Americans"? I also start to wonder if some of them are so quick to claim this label when there's nothing to be gained from calling oneself "African-American." Do they call themselves "African-American" just to reap the benefits of our struggle? Or do they do this out of a real sense of solidarity with us?

I've met a number of Black immigrants who stand in sincere solidarity with us. I've met a number who do not. I've also run across those who only claim any connection to us when there is something to be gained.

The story ends with a quote from an African student stating that he doesn't feel that Africans are overrepresented at Princeton. He goes on to add that, in economic terms, African children are disadvantaged compared to African-American children. I see nothing wrong with him saying this. He's just looking our for his best interests. I would be saying similar things if I was of immigrant origin.

When are we going to start looking out for our best interests? When are we going to use whatever influence we have with any of these college admissions officers to ensure that African-Americans get at least a proportionate slice of the resources that our martyrs created? Let me be clear: I'm not interested in blocking anybody else's advancement. I just want to make sure that my own group gets our slice. I've got some phone calls to make. I hope you make some calls too.

As I've repeatedly said: I'm not angry at non-AAs. I expect people to maximize their OWN interests. It's not anybody else's fault that AAs help various categories of non-AAs snatch up the opportunities created by AA civil rights martyrs. My point has always been to help other AA women catch a clue and learn how to look out for their OWN best interests as individuals and as African-Americans.

AAs have also slit our own throats politically. I talked about this during another September 2008 post:
Charity Should Begin at Home, Part 2: Black Folks' Mass Suicide by Coalition
African-American leaders are feckless and foolish. Most of them have an uncompromising commitment to mediocrity and political fantasies. One such fantasy has been the notion of a rainbow coalition. And we've been fools to buy into this fantasy. Most of us never developed the simple (yet life-saving) habit of asking, "What's in it for us [to support x, y, z position]?" Many of us still don't understand that what our (mis)leaders call "coalitions" and "alliances" actually consist of other people capitalizing off of our unique historical struggle.

Our lack of political common sense has already cost us. Dearly. In terms of political empowerment, we've already slit our own wrists. Our (mis)leaders encouraged us to support Latino and other non-White immigration, and to cry copious tears over the "plight" of various categories of illegal immigrants. We were encouraged to assume that non-White immigrants were somehow our natural, and automatic allies in the quest for justice.

Umm . . . No. People generally come to the United States to get paid. Period. There's nothing wrong with that. Like I said in Part 1 of this series, it is normal, natural, and fair for people to look out for their own interests. I would like to see more African-Americans acquire this mental habit. Somehow, we got it in our heads that other people of color are naturally inclined to help us in our struggle. NO. Helping us is not part of most immigrants' mission profile. People come here to find a better life for themselves. Not to join our struggle.

We are now reaping the consequences of foolishly supporting non-White (legal and illegal) immigration to this country. We are being displaced. We are being physically displaced in many areas of the country. This physical displacement leads to political displacement. Many currently Black congressional districts have large and growing Latino populations. NO Latino districts have growing Black populations. I've read reports estimating that this demographic shift will cause Blacks to lose 6-7 congressional seats after the 2010 census redistricting.

One example of this was last year's battle for the traditionally Black 37th Congressional District seat in Southern California. This district covers an area including much of Long Beach, Compton, and Watts. The death of Rep. Juanita Millender-McDonald led to a special primary election. A May 8, 2007 article from talks about this political race. Here's the link:

An African-American candidate ultimately won the seat. See the July 3, 2007 article from the Los Angeles Times entitled, "Racial issues take a back seat in 37th - Multiracial support has Laura Richardson poised to represent a largely Latino district. Her take: 'We are a new America, very diverse.'"

However, it is important to note that Rep. Richardson won a Democratic primary with 10 other candidates running. She then went on to win the runoff election against 3 other candidates. This is not an example of a strong, solid victory. It sounds quite fragile. Decades of believing in a "Black and Brown Together" fantasy helped make this vulnerable situation possible. We enabled our own political disenfranchisement by supporting non-White immigration. We slit our own wrists.

As a side note, Rep. Richardson is half White. She has an African-American father and a White mother. I don't know if she emphasized this fact during her campaign. I also don't know whether or not she self-identifies as "Black" or if she's highly invested in indentifying as something distinct from Black, such as "biracial." The media refer to her as African-American. Her parents divorced, and she was raised by her White mother.

The displacement and disenfranchisement of African-Americans in California's big cities is fairly obvious. What's not so obvious is that this process is being replicated in small towns across the South. Legal and illegal immigrants are overrunning rural towns all over "Dixie." Praise God, some of us are starting to wake up and see this for what it is: NOT in our interests. A Los Angeles Times article from August 31, 2008 entitled, "Immigrant raid divides a Mississippi town" mentions the variety of reactions to an immigration raid.,0,219718.story

The above story talks about the employment angle of illegal immigration. What about the political repercussions? What happens in these towns (and the South in general) if illegal immigrants are given amnesty and the ability to vote? Answer: The same thing that is happening in California. Blacks will be pushed aside in our traditional population centers in the South.

Miami is a sneak preview of what will become of Black folks' political fortunes across this country if we don't change course right now. Looking at Miami, it's clear that living under the heels of Latino political overlords is not a pretty picture for African-Americans.

An article from the Winter 2008 volume of City Journal entitled, "The Rainbow Coalition Evaporates" also describes how some of us are belatedly coming to our senses.

I just hope that this realization hasn't come too late. We've already slit our own wrists, and the blood is flowing freely. There's still time to bandage some of the wounds, but only if we immediately start looking out for our own best interests.

Political offices are important. Follow the money and resources trail. Holding political office leads to controlling lots of "good government jobs." Having access to these "good government jobs" is extremely important for an ethnic group (guess who) that refuses to "do for self" by creating and supporting their own business infrastructure.

This trend line of AAs being displaced, replaced and erased by non-African-Americans is even further along than it was when I first mentioned all of this in 2008.

The way AA women consumers spend their money is important, and creates generational effects. Follow the money and resources trail. I gave the specific examples of decades of entertainment money going from Greg Morris (Mission: Impossible, 1966 TV series) to his son actor Phil Morris to Phil Morris' White wife. And from Michael Warren (Hill Street Blues, 1981 TV series) to his half-Black son Cash Warren, to Cash Warren's nonblack wife, Jessica Alba and their totally-White-looking daughter. The photos in that post tell the story.

In more recent years, it's come to the point that AA women consumers launched crusades in financial support of being erased from their own history (Red Tails).

And now in 2014, AA women are giving fanatical financial support to non-AA outsiders reaping the lion's share of the monetary and career benefits of a movie based on an AA person's autobiography (12 Years A Slave). As a people, we're allowing ourselves to be erased and/or replaced across the board. Even down to allowing outsiders to tell our historical stories in place of us.

We do these sorts of things and then wonder why our group (as a collective) has not, does not, and will not prosper. Like it's a mystery. While other people use our resources to pass us by.

In each case, AAs were worried about "being fair" (meanwhile nobody else worries about being fair to us). In each case, gullible AAs assumed that "we're all in it together" with foreign-origin Blacks, Latinos, and other immigrants from the third world. Umm . . . no. While gullible AAs are worrying about "being fair" to other folks to the detriment of their own interests as AAs, these other folks are focused on looking out for themselves. First and foremost. As any sensible person and group would. 

Hopefully, incidents like the Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman case will break AAs out of the bad habit of reciting that okey-doke "Blacks and Latinos" mantra that Rev. Al "Hot Comb" Sharpton, Rev. Jesse "Baby Daddy" Jackson, and other AA misleaders love reciting.

BONUS COMMENTARY. Our misleadership class really did us a disservice. As I've repeatedly emphasized when talking about inter-ethnic Black affairs, the problem hasn't been foreign-origin Blacks. The problem is with AAs' general refusal to set boundaries with outsiders in general, including with foreign Blacks. A simple thought experiment will show what I mean by this.

Imagine that you made the voluntary and uninvited choice to move to the West Indies or an African country. Can you imagine fixing your lips to tell the native inhabitants that "it's a two-way street" that you don't like the things they say to and about you as an immigrant? 

No, you probably can't imagine doing that because there is NO "two-way street" in that type of scenario. As an *uninvited immigrant, you're on THEIR street in THEIR country! Many of the locals would probably be quick to tell you that if you really have a problem with the people of that country, you're free to take yourself back home to the U.S. And they'd be totally justified in telling you that. Because you're a guest in somebody else's home country.
Well, the AA misleadership class has so many AAs mentally frozen in an oppositional relationship with the U.S. that we've forgotten that this is OUR country!

OUR ancestors' unpaid slave labor created this country's wealth. Claim ownership of your country! There's NO "two-way street" between you and any immigrant. It's YOUR street in YOUR country. That YOUR ancestors built. Keep it all in perspective. I'm perfectly fine with folks who have good manners and are good guests. They're welcome, as far as I'm concerned. I don't know about you, but I don't like it when uninvited guests show up in my house and then want to talk greasy to me.

Keep it all in perspective. For me, the starting point of any squabble with nonwhite, non-European immigrants is the fact that my people’s Civil Rights Movement led to, and influenced, the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965. Prior to African-Americans’ Civil Rights Movement, White Americans were quite clear about keeping non-Europeans out of this country.

One of the few good things about the post-9/11 environment is that it made White Americans rethink their open door policy with these nonwhite immigrants. And considering how many of these nonwhite immigrants are racists with "stank" attitudes, I say “Good riddance to bad trash” whenever they’re deported. This is why I’m less offended by the government’s anti-Muslim crackdown than I ordinarily would be—because I want the racist, "stank"-attitude Somalis, Arabs, Pakistanis, etc. OUT of this country. I’ve seen these people and their attitudes at the mosque. I don’t shed any tears for most of them who are hassled or deported. Most of them can’t leave this country fast enough for me. The same applies to anybody else who's a bad, uninvited guest with a "stank" attitude.

*There's a difference between invited and uninvited guests/immigrants. The UK is an example of a country that specifically invited folks to come there in the modern era (after WWII). From Wikipedia:

As a result of the losses during the war, the British government began to encourage mass immigration from the countries of the British Empire and Commonwealth to fill shortages in the labour market.[13] The 1948 British Nationality Act gave British citizenship to all people living in Commonwealth countries, and full rights of entry and settlement in Britain.[14] Many West Indians were attracted by better prospects in what was often referred to as the mother country.
The ship MV Empire Windrush brought the first group of 492 immigrants to Tilbury near London on 22 June 1948.[16] The Windrush was en route from Australia to England via the Atlantic, docking in Kingston, Jamaica. An advertisement had appeared in a Jamaican newspaper offering cheap transport on the ship for anybody who wanted to come and work in the UK. The arrivals were temporarily housed in the Clapham South deep shelter in southwest London less than a mile away from Coldharbour Lane in Brixton. Many only intended to stay in Britain for a few years, and although a number returned to the Caribbean to rejoin the RAF, the majority remained to settle permanently.[17] The arrival of the passengers has become an important landmark in the history of modern Britain, and the image of West Indians filing off its gangplank has come to symbolise the beginning of modern British multicultural society.[17] See Windrush image "here". .

Now that's an example of folks who were invited to enter a country. Most of the immigrants (of all types) who talk greasy to AAs were NOT invited to come here. Keep it all in perspective.

Friday, March 7, 2014

African-American Women: Here's Some Of The Fruit That You've Earned With Your Knee-Jerk, Rabid Support of “12 Years a Slave,” Part 2

A lot of you still don’t comprehend how reciprocity works. From Wikipedia (with emphasis in bold):

Reciprocity in social psychology refers to responding to a positive action with another positive action, rewarding kind actions. As a social construct, reciprocity means that in response to friendly actions, people are frequently much nicer and much more cooperative than predicted by the self-interest model; conversely, in response to hostile actions they are frequently much more nasty and even brutal.

The key phrase in that sentence is “responding to positive action with another positive action.” In other words, holding back your support and/or other goodies unless and until somebody does something positive for YOU.

NOT throwing on your Superwoman cape in support of Lupita Nyong’o and then HOPING that she’ll throw you some crumbs of appreciation.

NOT African-American (AA) women’s eternal behavior pattern of throwing on their Superwoman capes in support of various and sundry Black males and then HOPING that they’ll throw AA women some crumbs of appreciation.
Imma say some things the rough way.

A lot of y’all keep acting like the needy teenage girls and women who put out sex in hopes that volunteering sex will make men love them. Your unsolicited caping for Lupita Nyong’o follows that same pattern.
Lupita Nyong’o never asked you for your support. And, just like the men who happily accept the “no-emotional-or-material-investment required, no-strings sex” that needy, desperate women offer them, odds are she’ll never do anything for you. Because you were silly enough to “give it up” to her for FREE.

You “gave it up” to Lupita without requiring her to do anything for you FIRST in order to EARN your support.
Just like the needy girls and women who “give it up” in hopes of then receiving love, you “gave it up” in hopes of then receiving validation and support from this Lupita chick.

And just like the needy, desperate woman who finds herself still ignored and unloved after “giving it up for free,” some of y’all are starting to get a residual bad feeling about this whole Lupita episode. That bad feeling is one of many bitter fruits  y’all will reap because of your knee-jerk, unsolicited rabid support of the “12 Years A Slave” flick.
You “gave it up for free” and now you’re starting to grumble because Lupita has reaped the benefit of what you voluntarily gave her (and the rest of those foreign Blacks in that flick) for free, and gone on with nary a thought about you.

In this particular incident that growing bad feeling that you’re experiencing behind this episode is on you, not this Lupita chick. {slipping even further into slang} She didn’t steal nothing from you, because you “gave it up [to her] for free.” She didn’t ask you for nuthin’. She didn’t promise you nuthin.’ That was your silly choice to give her your unsolicited rabid support. And you got mad at those of us who questioned that silly choice from the very beginning.
If you don’t enjoy feeling used, then stop being That Dumb & Needy Woman Who “Gives It Up For Free.” Develop the self-love and self-discipline to hold out unless and until an individual proves by their actions that they’re worthy of your support.

ADDENDUM. I've been having an email conversation with a dear friend who made it even more plain. She just said:
You were actually very kind.

Here is the even rougher way....

Stupid is as stupid does, Ole Lupita ain' thinkin about none of y'all! All that money SHE is going to earn is money that will NEVER make it back into YOUR pockets.  Even small children aren't that stupid, they never willingly give up anything but not y'all.  Too bad, so sad!
And there it is.

Friday, February 28, 2014

This Is Not A Good Picture

I've seen this photo posted at several sites; and I've been horrified to read comments from African-American women expressing what seems like approval of this photo.

I don't know who the sister in this photo is or was, or what was happening (a civil rights protest?) when this photo was taken. But I do know that this photograph is a perfect microcosm of what's wrong (and what's been wrong for a very long time) with the African-American collective.

This photograph shows a Black woman who is totally unprotected by the males in her ethnic group and race.

Men fight other men; and protect the women of their group from being attacked by outsider men. At least that's how things operate among non-African-American ethnic and racial groups that have M-E-N among their collectives. [As opposed to being composed of non-protective males.]

A woman shouldn't be placed in a position to have to trade blows with men. That's not anything to applaud.

Even as a pre-teen, I had negative reactions to photos showing Dr. King and other African-American adult males passively standing around while outsider males beat on the African-American women who were used as cannon fodder during civil rights protests. I had especially negative reactions to photos of adult Black males standing around while outsider males beat the African-American children who were also often used as cannon fodder during civil rights protests.

I didn't understand any of this because I knew my father would never tolerate such things. I knew that my Dad would never allow anybody to put their hands on his wife and children the way these photos showed other Black fathers letting violent racists beat their wives and children. Including if he had to get hurt or killed protecting us.

Most of all, I didn't understand why African-American women and children were put on those front lines to be beaten by racists and chewed up by attack dogs in the first place. I couldn't understand how adult Black male protesters allowed little Black children to participate in anything as dangerous as those protests. I couldn't understand how those Black children's parents could allow their children to risk their lives like that. Adults are supposed to protect children. In particular, adult men are supposed to protect the children in their orbit.

I was blessed to grow up being protected by my father, my uncle the Chicago Police Officer, and other adult (and older teenager) male relatives. So, I couldn't relate to the idea of being on any kind of frontline as a girl/woman. Or the idea of being affiliated with males who would passively stand around and watch while some other males beat me down into the ground. Which is why those civil rights photos always looked "off" to me. As opposed to the old-school Nation of Islam (NOI), which didn't throw their women and children onto the frontlines of potential conflicts. The NOI would have the trained M-E-N of the Fruit of Islam deal with any and all potentially dangerous situations.

Normal M-E-N don't hide behind their women and children.

Nor do they use their women and children as cannon fodder in a conflict with men from other ethnic or racial groups.

This is not a good picture. It's certainly not anything to applaud. I hate that the Black woman in the photo was put through this sort of experience.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

African-American Women: Here's Some Of The Fruit That You've Earned With Your Knee-Jerk, Rabid Support of "12 Years a Slave"

I'll keep this short because the point is [should be] self-evident. {smile}

A lot of y'all got mad when I questioned your knee-jerk, rabid, UN-reciprocated crusades in support of the "12 Years A Slave" flick.

Well, this Vanity Fair cover is one of many bitter fruits y'all are going to reap as a result of this entrenched knee-jerk behavior pattern of constantly throwing on your Superwoman cape in support of any and all random Black-skinned faces. All without ever asking the simple questions of:

(1) What's in it for me and African-American women like me to support this?

(2) Who benefits from this [movie, TV show, record deal, etc.]?

(3) Who benefits the most from this [movie, TV show, record deal, etc.]?

There's not a single African-American actress shown in any of these photo shoots. Not. A. Single. One. The WW appear to be in physical contact with other people in their poses. While the two foreign BW are featured in an inner page while standing or sitting in isolation from other people.

And a lot of y'all are still wearing your Superwoman capes in support of the African actress featured here [and lots of other places]. At the risk of committing blasphemy, I wonder: What has Lupita Nyong'o ever done in support of African-American women to have earned your rabid, knee-jerk support?

What a lot of y'all don't seem to comprehend is that, for the most part, BM actors (foreign and domestic) and foreign BW actresses are rising at your expense.

When you give UN-reciprocated support to BM creatives and foreign BW creatives, you are supporting your own displacement and erasure. This "12 Years A Slave" movie that generated all this "pub" for the NON-African-American Black creatives involved in it was based on the real-life experiences of African-American persons.

There's a connection between sowing and reaping . . .

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Basking In The Victory of BWE

A Critical Mass of “Mainstream” African-American (AA) Women Have Finally Learned To Follow The Money & Resources Trail

I get a good belly laugh every time I see that some BWE-related common sense has drifted over to the AA women at sites like Lipstick Alley. I rolled when I saw this comment about the latest unmasked negro male “Black Love” hypocrite, Hill Harper:
"Re: Hill Harper Vacations With New Girlfriend
I'm laughing my ass off at every black woman who bought his book.

When they look at black women they don't see prospective wife and matriarch, they don't see one half of a power couple, the missing piece to build their legacies.

When they look at black women, they see nothing but a market, a source of financing for their non-black gf's wardrobe and other whims.

Black women might as well open up their wallets to white and Asian women (and their biracial children) directly and skip the middle men, because all the money black women spend on their books, movies and music will end up in WW/AW hands anyway.


Yes, a critical mass of cullud gurlz are finally learning to pay attention to the money trails. God is Good. {gales of laughter}

When most AA women talk about: (1) the general lack of opportunity for AA women in modern day showbiz, and/or (2) the demeaning portrayals of AA women in modern day showbiz, AA women are urged to direct those grievances solely toward Whites in the entertainment biz. However, Whites in showbiz are not the AA woman artist’s greatest enemy: negro male entertainers are at the root of this persistent problem. Let’s be clear about this:
Negro male entertainers have had access to Hollywood-levels of money for at least the past 45-50 years. The door has been open for BM in showbiz for the past fifty years. But unlike WM in showbiz, negro male entertainers refuse to lift up women from their own race. Once the typical negro male entertainer gets access to Hollywood-level resources, he shuts the door behind himself and “makes it rain” for nonblack women. The typical negro male entertainer does not care - at all - about BW being made invisible or being denigrated in showbiz. Negro male entertainers have never cared about anything that affects BW.
. . . I want more AA women to get clarity about how where the typical negro male entertainer’s money goes. And who ultimately benefits from the various resources (money, connections, inside info) that negro male entertainers get their hands on.
Ladies, the money you spend creates GENERATIONAL EFFECTS. Your money has been creating heaven and hell for different groups of women. Right now, most AA women are spending their money to create hell for themselves and heaven for generations of nonblack women. When you support people (including most negro male entertainers) who never give reciprocity to you, you’re creating generations of hell for yourself and the BW who come behind you. Meanwhile, you spend your money to create Heaven On Earth for the nonblack women that negro male entertainers lift up.
This pattern has been going on for a very long time. If you still haven’t caught the hint or noticed this pattern, that’s on you. Choose to support SELF. First and foremost.
I chuckle every time I see “mainstream” AA women speaking BWE-type common sense because AAs have an unfortunate history and behavior pattern of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory. Most AAs have deeply embedded slave programming on top of the everyday collection of human frailties shared by all humans. Most AAs have been successfully programmed to sabotage anything that could possibly enhance or save their lives.
Most AAs will take anything and everything and twist it around into something destructive. AAs take new ideas and superimpose their same old, dysfunctional thought patterns onto the new idea. In the end, the new idea become merely a new slogan that’s used to justify the same old dysfunctional behavior.

This is why AAs have turned every past solution into a new catastrophe. There are almost endless examples of this. We collectively did the “bait and switch” with many past solutions. We took desegregation and turned it into a pretext for engaging in a permanent, undeclared boycott against all Black-owned businesses (with the partial and dwindling exception of barbershops and hair salons).

We took the language of multiculturalism and turned it into a pretext for maintaining our racial self-hatred and internal colorism. And there’s usually a sophisticated and fundamentally dishonest discourse surrounding each “bait and switch” episode.
I was afraid of a similar “bait and switch” takeover happening to BWE. History has shown that whenever a social justice movement becomes successful, there’s often an incoming rush of latecomers who run in with the sole purpose of profiting from that movement’s success. This is what has happened with the Black Women’s Empowerment social justice movement. There’s been a crowd of latecomers who want to wrap themselves in the BWE banner, yet refuse to practice BWE values.
I thank God these fake-BWE opportunists-saboteurs have not been able to destroy the authentic BWE message of AA women practicing self-love and seeking reciprocity.
The fake-BWE opportunists-saboteurs have tried to destroy the authentic BWE message.
Now that the BWE movement has succeeded in awakening a critical mass of AA women who are in the process of escaping from Blackistan, the overall dynamics of anti-BWE trolling has changed. The “battleground” has shifted because of BWE’s success.

Unlike before BWE's victory, the anti-BW saboteurs are no longer fighting over the idea of BW and girls being entitled and empowered to live abundant lives. The anti-BW saboteurs know they've already lost that particular battle. Increasing numbers of BW got the BWE memo and are escaping from all manifestations of Blackistan.

Anti-BW Opportunists, Saboteurs, & Confused Latecomers Want To Substitute DIS-Empowering Activities For True Empowerment For BW.

What the anti-BW opportunists and saboteurs are fighting for is the definition of empowerment for BW. Anti-BW saboteurs want to substitute DIS-empowering activities for true empowerment. Anti-BW saboteurs want to redefine BWE into meaninglessness.

Anti-BW saboteurs want to claim that BW can be all for BWE and still spend their money to support Tyler Perry, Michael Ealy, Terrance Howard, Quentin Tarantino (who apparently loves to fill his movies with frequent and/or non-stop use of the n-word), Kevin Hart, etc.
Anti-BW saboteurs want BW to believe that they can be empowered by financially supporting people who hate them!

Anti-BW saboteurs want BW to believe that they can be empowered by fixating on BM and what BM are saying and doing!

Anti-BW saboteurs want BW to believe that they can be empowered by supporting TV shows and other media that eternally portray BW as dysfunctional, unattractive, and ultimately expendable.

Saboteurs With Mostly Good Intentions

What’s truly dangerous is that some of the saboteurs are well-meaning and have mostly good intentions. They want you to stop talking about escape strategies to leave Blackistan, so you can keep going in circles protesting the endless list of outrages committed by BM. (Here’s looking at you, What About Our Daughters.)
Well-meaning saboteurs want BW to believe that they can be empowered while still living and socializing in Blackistan! (Here’s looking at you, What About Our Daughters.)
Well-meaning saboteurs want BW to believe that collectively the AA family is generally doing just fine. (Here’s looking at you, What About Our Daughters.) They want BW to believe that the men from the Arceneaux family are representative of the males in modern-day AA families.
In terms of the Arceneaux family, I saw the various “Let’s celebrate this purple unicorn incident as if it’s the norm among AAs” blog posts and comments across the Black internet. As if most (or even many) AA women have BM relatives who are ready, willing and able to perform commando operations to rescue them. {side eye at the dishonesty involved in this}
Old-school AA men from previous generations used to respond like that. But that’s not how most AA males “roll” nowadays. Due to a number of causes, mostly revolving around the effects of mass fatherlessness. If AA men were still protecting their female relatives, we wouldn’t have the volume of murders, rapes, and beatings of AA women and girls that goes on day in, day out among AAs.
If it was still so commonplace for AA men to defend their female relatives, then a known child molester who has racked up multiple Black girl victims like Ar-ruh Kelly wouldn’t be walking around unharmed. Like nothing ever happened. For over a decade. He’s racked up a LOT of Black girl victims over the past few decades. Including urinating on at least one Black girl victim’s head. If so many AA men were interested in protecting their female relatives, wouldn’t at least one of those many little girls’ fathers (including Aliyaah’s father), uncles, brothers, cousins, etc. have lifted a finger to avenge their BF child relative? Even a little bit?
And, really now . . . we all know that. I feel that at this point in time, anybody sincerely pretending that a purple unicorn sighting is the norm is in line for a Darwin Award. Given current circumstances among the AA collective, it’s just that ridiculous.
One blogger asked why do so many people encourage AA women not to give up on the [dead] Black community. I’ve given this question a lot of thought. And I’ve concluded that this sort of “BW, you should keep hope alive for the [dead] AA community” is about sabotage at its core.
Some AA women are addicted to Sista Soldiering, and are afraid of being left to fight alone in the trenches as more sensible AA women walk away from the entire mess.
Other AA women want to make sure that very few other BW are living well—or God forbid, living better than they are. So they knowingly give bad advice to other AA women (including this “Keep hope alive” mess). To trick other BW into taking themselves out of life’s competition in search of the good life.
And then there’s the traditional “Misery loves company” motivation.
Sensible AA women and girls will simply keep heading for the exits.

The Confused Latecomers

There are the anti-BW opportunists and saboteurs. And then there are the confused latecomers. Many of whom think that as long as they have a nonblack boyfriend, then that one fact—by itself—automatically means that they’re empowered. Just like the Mammy Mules and Sista Soldiers, many of these confused, interracially-dating and married BW latecomers have been spending their money to support BM (and others) who HATE them. And spending their money to support people who NEVER give them reciprocity.
These BW latecomers have not bothered to read the archives of the pioneering or early BWE blogs. Instead, they’ve been getting a very distorted view of what BWE is about from lightweight, 3rd and 4th generation, sorta-kinda BWE-ish blogs.
Or, even worse, they’ve been getting their info from fake-BWE blogs that claim to be about uplifting BW, but still support anti-BW movie mess from Tyler Perry, Quentin Tarantino, Steve Harvey, Michael Ealy, Kevin Hart, and so on. The fake-BWE blogs talk empowerment but encourage AA women consumers to keep giving their money to entertainers who verbally or literally piss on BW (Kevin Hart, Ar-Ruh Kelly, for examples); erase BW from their own history (Red Tails, for example); or pimp BW consumers for their money while lifting up nonblack women (Hill Harper and his relationship advice book directed at BW, for example).
God is Good. Despite the opportunists and saboteurs promoting confusion about what empowerment means, a critical mass of AA women have caught a clue.

Bask In The Victory, But Remember That There’s A Potential “Oliver Twist” Experience Waiting In The Wings

A few months back while listening to an older relative tell me about my grandfather’s early life, I had an epiphany: A lot of AA women are living lives from Oliver Twist, while modern White Americans are living out an episode of Friends.
Many (if not most) mainstream White Americans growing up in the 1800s had very, VERY difficult lives compared to those of modern-day mainstream White Americans. There wasn’t much of a safety net for them due to widespread illness and the early deaths caused by widespread illness. All of which created a lot of orphans and other children who were forced to take on adult worries at very young ages.
Modern-day AAs don’t talk about this much, but it’s shocking to realize how many (if not most) of our grandparents grew up dealing with that 1800s-level of hardship in the 20th century. A lot of my AA friends’ grandparents and my own paternal grandparents had to deal with the early deaths of their parents.
For example, my paternal grandfather’s parents died when he was in the 4th grade. He and his sisters were split up and placed with different guardians. My grandfather started looking for work—for real—as a 4th grader to help support his sisters. He also started worrying—as a 4th grader—about how he would ever be able to reunite with his sisters.
My grandfather never went to school past the 4th grade because he started working after his parents died. Years later after he had married and was working as a chef on the railroad, my grandmother had to help him read the menus for the meals he cooked. That kind of childhood situation is unimaginable for modern mainstream Americans, thank God.
Quiet as it’s kept, most current-day AA women are living under circumstances that are more akin to those very harsh conditions faced by White Americans in the 1800s: a similar lack of a safety net. In the 1800s, that lack was caused by early deaths of parents and other close kin that modern medicine has mostly eliminated. For 20th and 21st century AA women, that lack is caused by the family- and community-disintegration factors discussed by the BWE blogs. The causes are different, but the effects are very similar. Meanwhile, mainstream American WW (and WW in other industrialized countries) are mostly living essentially carefree 21st century lives.
Here’s my point in mentioning all of this: Even as more of us escape from all manifestations of Blackistan lifestyles into living in an episode of Friends, we should remember that a potential “Oliver Twist” type situation is waiting in the wings to bring us down. American WW have several generations of family-created safety nets backing them up. Most of us [AA women] don’t. For all the reasons discussed on BWE blogs, our biological families don’t and won’t function as effective safety nets.
If something goes wrong with our Friends-lifestyle marriages, Friends-lifestyle jobs, etc., there won’t be any safety net coming from our biological families. We have to consciously prepare our own layers of safety nets. It seems to me that Debra Dickerson’s mistake was that she forgot that she didn’t automatically have the type of bulletproof safety net that similarly-situated American WW have. She apparently forgot that there was an Oliver Twist-type situation waiting for her if something went wrong with her Friends-lifestyle.
Ladies, continue to enjoy living the Friends-lifestyles you’ve found in the outer world away from Blackistan; and make preparations so you won’t drop down into Oliver Twist if something goes wrong.
Wherever you are in your journeys, here’s a resource that will keep you encouraged: Motivational writer Orison Swett Marden overcame growing up in very difficult circumstances in the 1800s. His books are still current in the 21st century and very helpful.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Points Of Friction—A Peek Behind The Scenes At This Blog

I’m going to do something slightly different for this (long) blog post. When writing blog posts, I normally write in a way that’s similar to what I did as a trial lawyer: I tried to avoid saying very much about my personal emotional reactions to various issues. This time, I’ll do something different, and specifically mention how I feel about several issues.

I’m Not A Controlling Parent Who’s Trying To Keep Rebellious Teenagers In Check—You’ve Always Been Perfectly Free To Do Whatever You Want To Do—Even When It’s Self-Defeating

When I was actively engaged in BWE blogging, I recognized several unpleasant and time-wasting dynamics with many of the AA women readers that increased as the BWE social justice movement became successful.

The safer and freer many of the readers felt (due to the work done by the early BWE bloggers), the more they started playing the role of Rebellious Teenager while casting the early BWE bloggers in the role of Controlling Parent Who’s Ruining Their Fun By Pointing Out The [Rape-Related] Dangers of Getting Sloppy Drunk.
One reason why I stopped blogging is that it was too much of a time sacrifice. I’ve got plenty of other things to do. Another major reason why I stopped blogging is that I dislike the traditional dynamics of how AAs treat other Black folks who try to be helpful. When it comes to dealing with each other, most AAs take kindness for weakness and an invitation to mistreat the kind AA person. This Taking Kindness For Weakness garbage, combined with the Oppositional/Defiant Teenager behaviors many AAs get into with other AAs who try to be helpful, adds up to an extremely unpleasant dynamic.

Why be bothered interacting with that kind of garbage? That’s why I turned the comments off after retiring from active blogging. I got tired of having “gaslight” types of online conversations with AA women who were pretending to be dimwitted. All I had wanted to do was “pay it forward” for how the BWE pioneers’ work enhanced my life. I was never interested into falling into the trickbags that happened to previous generations of AA activists. I had mentioned these traps in a comment on another blog:
Non-AAs and nonblacks tend to put their time, energy and other resources where their mouths are. Nonblacks generally don't use up, bleed dry, and sometimes ultimately destroy the people from their collectives who try to serve them.

By contrast, this is what AAs usually do with/to the sincere workers among us. AAs have an established pattern of using and then discarding and then totally forgetting about the other Black folks who act in service to them. We use up the Black folks who are idealistic (perhaps naive?) enough to try to serve our collective interests.
Let's just recall how many AA activists from the 1960s that we collectively and completely forgot about. We allowed many of them to languish in prison for their activism while we totally forgot about their sacrifices on our behalf.

Let me mention an incident from law school that made a deep impression on me. I decided to attend a National Lawyers Guild meeting about political prisoners in the US. Needless to say, most of the activist-prisoners from the 1960s were Black. And from what I could tell, the only people who had bothered to remember them and organize support on their behalf were White leftists!

White leftists appeared to be the only ones writing letters to Amnesty International on their behalf, etc. Meanwhile, they had been totally forgotten by the masses of AAs and by AA/Black activist organizations. AAs were more interested in following the exploits of rappers.

AAs didn't just forget about the now-obscure AA political prisoners from the 1960s, we forgot about and ignored “big names” like Rosa Parks and Fannie Lou Hamer in their later years. Aside from AAs invoking their names during Black History Month, Rosa and Fannie Lou (and many others) were for the most part (if not totally) on their own in their elder years.

AAs forgot about and left Dr. King's widow and children (and Malcolm X's widow and children) to fend for themselves.

I learned from all of that. I learned that AA/Black activists have to VERY careful to not let Black folks use them up. And bleed them dry. And leave them flapping in the wind as an empty husk. And to be very careful of folks who might be following the AA/Black tradition of leaving Black activists hanging after making a lot of suggestions about what extra things these activists should do (in addition to whatever they're already doing).

Speaking for myself, after seeing how Blacks used and then discarded previous generations of Black activists, I'm very skittish of folks who want to give me what feels like additional homework assignments while they're doing nothing themselves. If the historical context was different, and if AAs didn't have the established pattern of using up our activists, then my reactions would be different (and less skittish).

To my way of thinking, some of the activist reactions to suggestions (from nonparticipants) [another commenter described] aren't about defensiveness or hostility. It's about self-protection, self-care, and self-love.

In response to this Oppositional/Defiant Teenager dynamic:
I’m not your mother. There’s no need for you to “defy” me because I’m not your mother; and I’ve never sought to have any control over what you do.
I’m not trying to ruin your fun.
You’ve always been free to accept or reject whatever people (including me) have been saying.
You’re totally free to get sloppy drunk [and other fill in the blank behaviors that I believe are self-defeating] if that’s what you want to do.
I point out certain things because I’d rather not see you get hurt or suffer.
I find it curious that you save your resentment for the people who care enough about you to look out for your interests. Somehow, you never feel the need to “rebel against” and “defy” the people who are looking to take advantage of you. Like the many people who encourage you to do things that are the equivalent of getting sloppy drunk around guys.
I never tried to control what you do. That’s why I put “rebel” and “defy” in quotes. There was never any need for you to “rebel against” what I’m saying because I’m not trying to control you.
Meanwhile, there are some other people who DID control your actions by pressuring you into acting against your own interests. You know, like the Black males who pressured you to make excuses for toxic BM, lower behavior standards for all BM, and enable BM dysfunction. Before the BWE pioneers, you were too scared to tell those Black males “No.” Much less publicly disagree with anything they were saying.
You know, like the gangs of AA Sista Soldier “mean girls” who shrieked at you and told you that you better get in line and “support BM” with whatever these men are doing, whether it’s right or wrong. Before the early BWE bloggers, you were too scared to publicly say “No” to those Sista Soldier “mean girls.” Before the early BWE bloggers, you were also too scared to publicly say that you found certain nonblack men (especially WM) attractive.
I notice that many of the AA women commenters who are talking the loudest now, and complaining about how they feel as if some of the BWE bloggers are trying to dictate their actions didn’t have any voices at all back in 2007-2008 when the BWE movement began.
The bulk of these women didn’t say a single word “in defiance” or “rebellion” against the online gangs of  BM and Sista Soldier “mean girls” who shrieked at them and other AA women. Not. A. Single. Mumbling. Word . . .
A lot of you were too scared to even comment anonymously at the early BWE blogs. And you had rational reasons to be scared, because back then the Internet Ike Turners were out in full force cyber-stalking and harassing early AA women bloggers. Especially cyber-stalking and harassing the early BWE bloggers.
On the one hand it’s a victory that now a lot of y’all previously silent and intimidated AA women have found your voices. I’m happy that you’ve found your voices. Even when you use your new-found voices to rag on me and other BWE bloggers. Because I remember how silent and scared the vast majority of y’all were just a few years ago.
More than a few of today’s loudest voices were too scared to leave comments at the early BWE blogs. Instead, some of them would privately email the early BWE bloggers in hopes that we would write blog posts saying the things these readers were too scared to say themselves. Too scared to say even as an anonymous commenter. But they did reap the benefits of the work that early BWE bloggers did. Which was the point. BWE bloggers want AA women to be free to live life to the fullest.
I’m happy that you feel free enough to speak now, but when I see some of you griping about the BWE bloggers now, I do wonder:
Where were you back in 2008 when vicious and menacing Internet Ike Turners ran more than one BW blogger off her own blog?
Where were you back in 2008 and 2009 when I had to invest in IP-address tracking software so that I’d have documentation to give the FBI about some particularly nasty and menacing Internet Ike Turners?
Where were you back in 2008 and 2009 when some other BWE bloggers and I had to exchange IP-address information about several nasty and menacing Internet Ike Turners?
The early BWE bloggers took the heat from the Internet Ike Turners, pushed back against them (sometimes with the assistance of law enforcement), and made it safe for a lot of other AA women to start talking online.
Because of the self-defense actions taken by the early BWE bloggers, many Internet Ike Turners learned the hard way that it can be unwise to cyber-stalk and harass BW.
The early BWE bloggers made it safe for you to talk publicly about how you plan on being an ultra-feminine woman who’s a stay at home wife and mother. Most of you weren’t talking like that online before BWE. You were too scared to talk like that within earshot of other AAs. Because you knew if you said anything like that in most AA online spaces, you’d have to deal with a hurricane of hatred and harassment from cyber-gangs of Good BM™ and Sista Soldier “mean girls.”
The early BWE bloggers made it safe you to get online and talk and blog about how some of you have always been attracted to WM. Most of you weren’t talking like that online before BWE. You were too scared to talk like that within earshot of other AAs. Because you knew if you said anything like that in most AA online spaces, you’d have to deal with a hurricane of hatred and harassment from cyber-gangs of Good BM™ and Sista Soldier “mean girls.”
Another reason why a lot of the current bold voices were quiet back then is because they literally were still children in 2008 and 2009.
Most of the young’uns don’t realize that BWE was started largely in response to two things: (1) The ever-growing number of dead AA women. And (2) the typically BW victim-blaming discourse among AAs about BW who are beaten, raped, and killed.
They don’t know about the news stories from that time. Such as the stories about the Dunbar Village Atrocity, or the multiple BW who were shot by BM because they refused a BM’s advances. A DBRBM shot Mildred Beaubrun in May, 2008, for refusing his advances. Ms. Beaubrun, who was 18 years old at the time of the shooting, died the next month.
In August, 2008, a DBRBM shot Vernice Morris twice after she refused to give out her phone number. Ms. Morris survived. A DBRBM shot two women who refused his advances in May, 2009. He shot one woman in the face and the other in the chest. They survived. (Rejected man shot two women, police say,‛ The Atlanta Journal Constitution, May 21, 2009).
The young’uns don’t know that even Good BM™ engaged in blaming the Hovey Street Murder victims and other BW victims for their own murders. It wasn’t just the overt Internet Ike Turners that created the pre-BWE pervasive online atmosphere of fear-based conformity among AA women. Good BM™ online . . . including politically aware, so-called “conscious” Good BM™ also contributed to that atmosphere of fear on mainstream AA blogs.
These atrocities were happening non-stop to BW in what’s now referred to as “Blackistan.” And nobody was saying anything except a handful of BW bloggers. Pre-BWE, if anybody made the common sense recommendation that BW run for their lives out of such areas, cyber-gangs of Good BM™ and Sista Soldier “mean girls” would rush in to scream at the top of their lungs that anybody making that suggestion was a “sell-out.” Some of y’all have forgotten about what the AA online atmosphere was like pre-BWE. Others of y’all are too young to know what it was like pre-BWE.
On one level, it’s a good sign when I hear comfy, privileged AA women clucking about how “extreme” and “paranoid” some of the terminology associated with BWE sounds to them. Like DBR (“damaged beyond repair”). It’s good that there are AA women who are free enough, safe enough, and comfy enough to be oblivious to the very real atrocities and oppression that created that “extreme,” and “paranoid”-sounding BWE terminology.
On the other hand, I’m annoyed at how callous and dismissive these BW Special Snowflakes (many of whom live in glass houses and are one bad experience away from becoming future Debra Dickersons, but don’t know it) are of other BW’s suffering. Lord have mercy on Debra Dickerson. I didn't care for her or what I felt was the “stank,” Special Snowflake attitude that emanated from her essays when she was living high in what turned out to be a glass house. But, my God, I hate to see a BW suffering like this.
Anyhoo, all of the above is the typical pattern when social justice movements are successful. The people coming behind the pioneers quickly forget what things were like before the movement succeeded. They forget how un-free and afraid they were before the victory was won. If they came on the scene after the major battles were fought by somebody else, they take the benefits of that victory for granted. This is human nature; and it’s to be expected. It’s an offensive behavior pattern, but it’s to be expected.

It’s Not About Dogma, It’s About Keeping Track Of The North Star & Not Getting Off Course

I wrote the recent Follow The Money Trail post regarding the 12 Years A Slave flick because I was worried by some of the behaviors of more than a few AA women real-life acquaintances. Just like the knee-jerk crusade AA women launched in support of a movie that erased them from their own history (Red Tails), these women were launching a crusade in support of a movie that brings them no benefit (as far as I can tell). Just like the knee-jerk crusades some of these same women did for various TV shows (in which the writers later on messed over the BW character and BWs’ image on the show).
These women launch these knee-jerk, UNRECIPROCATED crusades without thinking through a single common sense question before working as unpaid shills for these media projects.
This deeply entrenched behavior pattern is a large part of why AA women as a collective are in the condition that they’re in. AA women love to pour money and other resources into other people who don’t give much of anything back in return for their support. We keep doing this, and then wonder why so many of us are so poor and totally lacking in safety nets. As if it’s a mystery.
It worries me to see that so many AA women have serious problems with “staying neutral” (as another BW blogger describes it) when it comes to anybody who’s not an AA woman. We’re so quick to jump onto other people’s bandwagons. And we jump on hard with both feet.
We don’t say, “Oh, you might want to see Movie With Black Faces X.” AA women on these crusades say, “You’ve GOT TO go support Movie With Black Faces X.
If you don’t support Movie With Black Faces X, then [fill in the blank dire consequence to the future of movies featuring Black faces].” The crusaders act as if other AA women are somehow obligated to join the crusade.
For those who doubt this, just try telling your AA female relatives that you refuse to support Tyler Perry movies and see what happens. If you’re really bold, try telling your AA female relatives that you don’t support Policy X (pick one, any one) that Pres. Obama is doing. Don’t tell them that you generally don’t support Pres. Obama. That can get you verbally lynched among most AA women (who are rabid Obama-bots).
The only time many AA woman are truly comfortable with “staying neutral” is when it’s about supporting other AA women. THAT’S when AA women ask the zillion and one questions about evidence, proof, and benefits for them that they should ask–but somehow never ask–before making knee-jerk decisions to support various BM’s projects, nonblack women’s projects, and so on.
I’ll repeat some of the responses I gave during in-person discussions with crusading AA women about this 12 Years A Slave flick.
Just because Director X (in this case Foreign BM Director Married To A WW Steve McQueen) did one movie that lifted up one AA actress*, doesn’t mean that I’m obligated to be in his hip pocket for life. Or that it’s somehow inappropriate to raise questions about whether or not one of his future projects is worthy of my financial support. I’m free to support or not support things. Just like everybody else.
[*I'm not so sure of that. “Beharie” looks like it might be a Haitian-origin surname; and the actress was apparently born in Florida.]
To me, it makes more sense to evaluate these projects on a case-by-case basis. What’s that old saying about having permanent interests, not permanent allies?
It’s probably not a good idea to decide that one will launch crusades on Director/Celebrity X’s behalf now and forevermore because he did one helpful thing one time. Or two helpful things twice. Or whatever number of helpful things whatever number of times. What if Director/Celebrity X’s future project is something absolutely toxic?
It’s not about being dogmatic, it’s about evaluating each thing on a case-by-case basis. If Foreign BM Director Married To A WW Steve McQueen does a future project that I feel serves AA women’s collective interests by normalizing our image (the way other women’s images are normalized), then I’d be willing to financially support it. Because there would be some sort of benefit coming toward me and other AA women.
When there are commercials or print ads that feature BW in a wholesome-looking IRR, then I go out of my way to financially support the company that placed that ad. And I write the company to let them know why I’m supporting them. For all I know, it could be a BM executive who’s married to a WW who was responsible for the ad. When it’s something that brings benefit to me and other AA women like me, then I’m willing to support it. Because the benefit is mutual. Instead of my resources flying out to somebody else without any return benefit for me or other AA women.
Reciprocity isn’t a hard concept to understand.
Or, in the alternative, if this slave movie wasn’t “biting off of” AA history, then I’d feel differently about it. If he wants to sell his own people’s history and then give the proceeds of that sale to his White wife, I wouldn’t care. That would be his West Indian folks’ business and not mine. I’m annoyed with this flick because it feels like yet another episode of non-AA outsiders ripping off AA history and cultural artifacts to make a buck. With very little of that money and career-boosting “pub” ever flowing back into AAs’ hands. Just like the long list of nonblack artists who made their fortunes off of AA musical styles.
So, for any AA woman who wants to support the 12 Years A Slave flick:
I’m not your mother. There’s no need for you to “defy” me because I’m not your mother; and I’ve never sought to have any control over what you do.
I’m not trying to ruin your enjoyment of the movie (not sure if “enjoyment” is the right word to describe that type of movie, but you know what I mean).
You’ve always been free to accept or reject whatever people (including me) have been saying.
You’re free to support this (and any other movie). You’re free to launch campaigns in support of this movie or anything else, if that’s what you want to do.
I pointed out certain things to explain why I’m not supporting it. You’ve always been perfectly free to do whatever you want to do.
I never questioned any AA woman’s honor or integrity regarding this flick. How many times do I have to repeat the phrase “reasonable minds can differ about this” to get that message across? It annoys me when folks twist repeated statements about how reasonable minds can differ into some sort of effort to control others. That lets me know that those individuals aren’t really reacting to what was actually said or written. They’re reacting to some other internal stimuli.
I point out certain things–the things that serve as core BWE values for me, such as reciprocity issues–because I’ve watched the AA collective get totally off track.
The saddest “movement” photo I've seen is one I recently ran across online. It's a good example of what happens when AAs stop following their chosen North Star (sticking to some core values) and follow anything. The photo shows how far off course the NOI has gotten since Min. Farrakhan sold his deluded followers to the $cientology racket. All because they didn't keep track of their original “North Star” (which was Elijah Muhammad's ideology).

The Perils Of Presuming To Do Cross-Cultural Preaching

It’s always dangerous for a doctor to prescribe medication when he or she does not know much of anything about the patient’s history. What works as medicine for patients with one type of medical history is often deadly poison for patients with another type of personal medical history.
This “mismatched medication that poisons the patient”- type of situation is what often happens when non-African-American Blacks wade into conversations among African-Americans (AAs) that are specifically about AA issues. Let me give an example. Non-AA Blacks  are often mystified by many AAs’ current knee-jerk response of supporting Black criminals.
Non-AA Blacks are often mystified by these dysfunctional behaviors because they and theirs did not live through the historical experiences that created these dysfunctional responses. Things like the Scottsboro boys, Emmett Till, other lynchings, and Rosa Parks. These things are just stories in history books for non-AA Blacks. By contrast, these sorts of events are part of the living memory of my oldest relatives.
These things are also stories in history books for younger, new school AAs. But younger, new school AAs tend to still carry the overall collective world view that was formed by their elders living through these experiences.  For the most part, AAs haven’t taken a step back to see whether those old, hand-me-down world views are still accurate in today’s world. And so the Arrested BM Automatically = Emmett Till assumptions are still carried forward into the 21st century. Which is dumb; but this view didn’t just drop out of the sky.
I would never presume to lecture West Indians, Africans (or anybody else) about the dysfunction that exists among their own cultures and in their own home countries. Or about what they need to do to make their home countries the sorts of places that large numbers of other people from around the planet will literally risk their lives to get into. [The way large numbers of people risk their lives to bust up into the United States in order to enjoy an apparently better quality of life.]
I can see certain types of cultural dysfunctions among various other (Black and nonblack) ethnic groups. But I just don’t know anybody else’s culture well enough—or intimately enough—to feel comfortable lecturing them about what I think they need to do. Not only would that be arrogant, but the historical pattern is that lasting solutions to embedded toxic cultural practices only come from within.
When I discuss these sorts of inter-ethnic issues, non-AA Blacks often assume that I dislike them as a category, or some other such. That’s not what’s happening when I talk about inter-ethnic issues among different Black ethnic groups.
What’s happening is that I’m simply doing what every other ethnic group does; which is looking out for my own group’s collective interests. For me, these inter-ethnic Black issues aren’t really about immigrant-origin Black folks. It’s about my own ethnic group’s consistent and idiotic failure to set healthy boundaries with other people. That’s our problem. Not anybody else’s.

Another note about the widespread experiences that created and reinforce that “extreme,” and “paranoid”-sounding BWE terminology: A negro male panelist attacked a BW panelist at a Brecht Forum public discussion about allies that was recently held in Brooklyn. In addition to being doused with water by this negro male panelist; this negro male lunged at her and was eventually removed from the room.

THIS POST and the many crazy comments in response to this incident is a good example of what AA women can expect the reaction to be from many self-described Good BM™ when BW are threatened and attacked by other Good BM™. HERE'S a video of the “conscious” Good BM™ panelist who menaced the woman panelist at that public forum.

See Gina's POST about this incident at What About Our Daughters.