Tuesday, September 8, 2009

"Beck-heads," and thoughts on how they get that way

Now that my little bout of schadenfreude is over, I want to go back to Van and some of Beck's narrative from that previously posted video wherein, peppered with long pauses and emphatic statements for effect, Glenn mightily whips adoring fans into a feeding frenzy of epic proportions:
"But let me go back to the czars...They don't answer to anybody, they don't go through a confirmation process - They are advising our president! Who are they? What do they believe?" (Read: We can't have that HNIC and his other lawn jockeys not answerable to - us white people!)

"...he showed up wearing combat boots and carrying a Black (short pause) Panther book bag" (O-o-oh! Who's afraid of the Big Black Man??? Didn't Charles Barkley write a book with that title?)

"The verdicts, which cleared the cops of beating Rodney King came down in April of that year....by August, I was a communist!! (Let's keep the "Red Scare" going! Time for a new and improved HCUA! Can't you just see Glenn clapping his hands while doing his impersonation of Eddy Murphy? (Hercules!! Hercules!! We got it in his own words!!)

"...trying to mobilize for the release of convicted COP KILLER." (Now we know that always works in our land of law and order!)  "He has since relinquished his nationalist views for ENVIRONMENTALIST issues (Like Van can't be an environmentalist! All feelings of betrayal aside - What?? I don't really know the damn man! - I think Van the Man may be way more dangerous from outside of the Changeling's little front fiefdom, than within.)
In an ominous tone, the narrator says, "He's still considers himself a revolutionary, just a more effective one." Then, Bam! Preying on their greatest fear of all - Blacks violently taking them over and making them pay for hundreds of years of mistreatment - he exposes the dreaded, "Plan" - in Van's own words:

Then, for the grand finale, he ties those fear panties up in all kinds of knots, ending with, "And Jones - Yep, still a revolutionary now just a more effective (pause for effect), and dare I say, (pause for effect) powerful one." (all emphases above courtesy of the narrator).
"We need to be about the Whup-A--. Somebody's F-ing up somewhere. They have names and job descriptions. You have to be creative about how you engage the enemy. Because if you do it on his terms, the outcome is already known." (That's the ticket! Raise the spectre of Nat Turner, planning and scheming to kill all their innocent selves in their sleep.)
And Ta-da!!! Instant Beck-head! Of course the foundation had to already have been laid - which it was - hundreds of years ago.

Let's just take a look at one example of some of Van's "Revolutionary-speak" in Video #1 below (you can listen to the others if you choose, but I'd advise against it. Glenn's Manson-esque indoctrinating tone is pretty creepy!):

It's stuff like this that's got the Beck-heads shaking in their boots. Well, not really. It's that accountability thing.  Beck-heads keep trying to act like Van was lying, when all it would take, is for them to Google the shit and READ the information readily available (here, for example) instead of letting Beck fill their heads with craziness - if they wanted to. They don't. Just read the comments after the video, you'll see.

When I entered, "dumping toxic waste in minority communities," this Michael Grunwald piece on CommonDreams.org (published in the The Post January 2002) was one of the results the search returned. It's about a small town only 25 miles from where I got my undergraduate degree in the late 70s - Anniston, Alabama: Monsanto Hid Decades Of Pollution, PCBs Drenched Ala. Town, But No One Was Ever Told.

Just a few lines - in defense of Van:

Monsanto enjoyed a lucrative four-decade monopoly on PCB production in the United States, and battled to protect that monopoly long after PCBs were confirmed as a global pollutant. "We can't afford to lose one dollar of business," one internal memo concluded. (emphasis mine)
The Anniston lawsuits have uncovered a voluminous paper trail, revealing an unusually detailed story of secret corporate machinations in the era before strict environmental regulations and right-to-know laws. The documents -- obtained by The Washington Post from plaintiffs' attorneys and the Environmental Working Group, a chemical industry watchdog -- date as far back as the 1930s, but they expose actions with consequences that are still unfolding today. (emphasis mine)

Opal Scruggs, 65, has spent her entire life in west Anniston..."Monsanto did a job on this city," she said. "They thought we were stupid and illiterate people, so nobody would notice what happens to us."
And people like the Beck-heads still seem to think exactly that.

A 40 - YEAR MONOPOLY folks! Now you know - Poor Pookie, and nobody else who looks like Pookie had a hand in "poisoning Black people" like Opal Scruggs who lived, and continue to live in Anniston, Alabama over those 40 years!

See, that's my main issue with white folks who would rather tell bold-faced lies in your face - and - in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary, than own their shit!!! Just tell the damn truth!! Then, we can talk about where we go from there. But do not expect, I repeat, DO NOT EXPECT that after all the egregious, hateful, hate-filled, heartbreaking, soul-crushing, psyche-bending, self-esteem destroying experiences Blacks have suffered at the hands of our Eurocentric bretheren in the name of an "American way of life," that I will just get over it and be your new BFF just 'cause you said, "Sorry" - though that's definitely a start.

My grandmother always said, "It ain't what you say Debbie, it's what you do." That still works for me. I'm not suggesting you wear a hairshirt and ashes for the rest of your life (really, what purpose would that serve??). But, you damn sure need to try some of these suggestions - if you want me to believe you:
  1.  Stop lying and own how we got to this place. (I don't know about Van or anybody else, but I'm done "wearing the mask").
  2. Really not like being in this place now and commit to living something new and better (Just a warning, my bullshit meter is always on.)
  3. Recognize that though, as Maya Angelou says, "We are more alike, than we are different" - we ARE different. Drop the whole melting pot thing. Try "tossed salad" instead. It's way more respectful of all our differences.
  4. Abolish all the social constructs YOU put in place and let's ALL start over. (Now that's a biggie I know, but you can do it - if you try!)
  5. Change the way you deal with other human beings. (It took most of a lifetime for most of you to get that way, I know it won't happen overnight).
  6. Stop telling me to forget, get over it, or not hold grudges just so YOU can feel better. After having been our "Decider" for hundreds of years, give it a rest - you don't get to decide what, when or if I get over - anything. That process is singularly mine. Particularly since you've not been overly concerned with OUR feeling better since this country's inception (Sound like a grudge? Okay). It just seems a little forced (or lucrative) to me that now that the resident of the Big House has "skin of tan" versus alabaster and might make some substantial changes to your "American way of life" - all of a sudden you care. No worries on that whole changing your "American way of life thing though," he's not that guy! 
I know it'll be difficult for you, but for this to work, you just have to trust that I am an honest, honorable, intelligent and willing, grown woman with no malice in my heart - just like I had to.

My Unit of 28 3/4 years ---->

(My nephew just sent me this great photo from our visit to the hinterlands this summer for my niece's wedding. I thought it was right on time!)


Cinie said...

Hey, woman! Glad you're back. Missed and needed your nurturing, input, feisty spirit, and point of view. Way too much to specifically co-sign on this Van Jones mess right now, but I just wanted to say, yay!

BTW, do you know when Jones got involved with Center for American Progress? I can find him writing over there as early as 2007, but the online details about his tenure there are vague.

Anyway, really good to read you, again.

ea said...

Righteous rant, sister. Keep it coming.

Deb said...

Aw-w-w-w Cinie, that's so sweet!! I missed you too. Thanks for the "yay!" I'm glad to finally feel like it again.

Yeah the Jones thing was just Karmic to me personally because rarely do I invest that much brain space in believing in other people doing the right thing.

No, I don't know, but I'm sure you, of all people, will ferret it out. I've got to come over and get caught up. I miss your well-researched brand of "Don't you dare shine up shit and call it gold" responses to what's happening in this crazy-assed world! :-)

My focus was pretty narrow when I seredipitously stumbled onto ColorOfChange as a result of Katrina. As I said, it was the catalyst for my volunteering and that volunteering forever changed me.

I'll come over in a little while. Look forward to seeing what you've been saying. Thanks for coming by!

ea...It's been a while. I was/still am quite full! :-)

I promise not stay away so long again. Thanks for being my biggest fan! :-)

ea said...

De nada.

Anonymous said...

And you think this was a good thing?

My focus was pretty narrow when I seredipitously stumbled onto ColorOfChange as a result of Katrina. As I said, it was the catalyst for my volunteering and that volunteering forever changed me.

Color of Racism is more like it.

Deb said...

Anonymous...Yup! That's what "serendipitously" normally means - a good thing. Based on your Color of Racism comment, I see no need for debate. Especially since you sound like your mind's made up - and it's late. Have your own opinion. As you can see, I do. Whenever you want to have a serious conversation about racism - let's talk.

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