Friday, October 2, 2009

Black "Royalty" fools no one at the IOC

I know, I know.  I said there'd be a Part 2 to the last post - and there will be, right after I get this off my chest so I can sleep tonight!

Yes, I do lay awake some nights pondering why, in the hell, people can't or won't see, that when it comes to "competing loyalties" for the Changeling, there never seems to really be any competition.  At least not when it comes to a choice between what to do for money, prestige and perceived power, versus what is, and always should have been - right!

Two things happened that had "the voices" going in my head all night long (and spawned this brief diatribe, I might add).  First, as I sat at the kitchen table yesterday reading blogs, I could hear the 6 o'clock news, but I wasn't watching it.  I heard it go to the sportscaster and his piece on Denmark and the Olympics.  I looked up, because just the other day, I'd asked Pips over at Cinie's World, about Danish reaction to the Paul Revere-esque, "Obama is coming!  Obama is coming!"   I wanted to see what she'd described.

And at that very moment, he was running videos of Michelle Obama, Oprah Winfrey and David Robinson respectively, during various stages of arrival and introduction in Denmark, adding, "And the president will be there too!"  All of a sudden, I had the strangest damn feeling - in my heart!  It was a sadness combined with a deep disappointment that I just could not reconcile the Black pride that I should have been feeling - as the faces of my skinfolk (in Denmark!  Representing America!) flashed across the screen - with the nauseating feeling I had in response to the charade-parade being perpetrated before my eyes.

The local news guy was excited though. He could barely contain his glee, saying how, with all these "heavy-hitters," Chicago was lookin' good for capturing those "5 Rings" in 2016.  Putting that "glee" into perspective, however, let's just remember that even in the "belly of the beast" that is Texas - gettin' those "dollar bills ya'll," trumps e-e-e'rything else).

I looked across the table to my youngest, sitting at his laptop, and said, "Damn!  I really should be feelin' so proud, right now!"  He looked at me with that, "What you talkin' 'bout Willis??" wrinkle in his brow, and looked up too.  Then, he slowly shook his head, knowing what was coming next.

I was at once, angry and hurt.  Angry because, the charade-parade was truly a vision I'd long hoped to see in this country.  That of strong, smart, beautiful Black people, doin' the damn thing  - and doing it well!  Hell, doing it better than it had ever been done before, because we were doing it - right!  And hurt - because that so-o-o wasn't the case (Yeah that's my shit, I know.  Still workin' on it).

I couldn't hold it in though - that  "quiet riot" had already started  rumbling deep in the pit of my stomach. 

"I can just hear my people right now, chests all swole 'cause of this shit on TV!  I bet you, not many of  them see, or even connect this charade-parade to that other charade-parade of him sending Eric-damn-Holder and Arne-ain't-never-taught-a-single-kid-Duncan to Chicago to meet with school officials and kids about youth violence  - next week, after that 16 year-old boy got beaten to death - last week!  I tell you, he gets on my last nerve!"
After the rant, I realized both my son and husband were smiling and just shakin' their damn heads (they've come to expect my "sharing" on topics such as these).  I calmed down - for a minute.

The youngest left, and the oldest came home from work while the husband and I were in the bedroom having a conversation on Skype with my nieces and nephews in the hinterlands (I must admit, I'm so glad I'm still  alive to see the Jetson-esque way technology has made it possible for us to sit, see and talk to one another in our respective living spaces - in real time!).

After catching up since the wedding in July, and talking about  various and sundry things, somehow or another, the conversation turned to the Changeling and Yep, you guessed it!  The rant was rewound and I hit play all over again!  My nephew (I wrote about his email in the last post) started laughing, because he knew, I'm sure, just what I was going to say.  And I did  - no need to rehash the whole thing here, except to say, where was he then???  Finished, I said, "Okay, I'm going now," as I went to the kitchen to get a glass of wine.  There was none.  (That didn't help!)

I tossed and turned all night, struggling with the feelings I was having:
Voice #1:  "Can't you just accept that we've come this far???"

Me:      " No!  Because we haven't  - come this far!"  We just look like we did!  And everybody else, but, us, knows it!!!"

Voice #2:  "Just look at that cast of characters tonight!  You gotta admit now, that was something!

Me:  "More like somethin'-damn-else!!  First of all, we have the Queen of Daytime talk who opened a school for South-African girls, while Chicago girls are still dodging bullets and beat-downs!  And, just  stop!  Don't say one damn word!  I know it's her cash to do with what she chooses, but come on, now!  You're grinnin' in the face of the IOC Chair, a part of the beggin'-to-bring-the-games to that same city where you didn't give two shits about looking out for the safety, education and well-being of girls!  And don't start me on Michelle Obama and her husband!  Derrion Albert was but one, of the many children who've lost their lives to violent crime in Chicago since - and way before - they moved into the damn Big House!  Of those I saw, only "The Admiral," seems to be walkin' that talk with his Carver Academy!  Hell, it's in the decidedly Black, East side of San Antonio, AND, 98% of the student body is on scholarship!

Voice 1 & 2:  Well, you've got a point there.  A few, actually.
And so it went, off and on, until almost morning (haven't refilled my Lunesta since I got here).  Then, the Second thing happened - in two parts.

I subscribe to Earl Ofari Hutchinson at HuffPo (What?  I read everything!  Hell, before Obama won, I thought my boy was on to him!  Not!!) -  Chicago Beating Death Shocks White House -- But Now What?   It began like this:
“There's an outsized map of Chicago on the wall of the office of the Black Star Project. In the center of the map there's the letter "A". The letter is the Chicago home of the Obamas. The "A" is surrounded by yellow stickers that make the map look like the bullseye of a dart board. The analogy is deadly fitting because each one of the stickers represents a child under age 18 who was murdered. 
The victims were all African-American…”
My "quiet riot" was validated.  Please read the piece to see what I mean.  Needless to say, I forwarded the link to my nephew who replied:
CRAZY! Well said!  Awesome "hanging" out with you guys last night!!!!!!!!!!!! We all left happier, gotta love the power of the internet.Love you,
Lar
Then, I sauntered on over to Salon and came upon Joan Walsh and this, Reading "The Clinton Tapes," thinking about Obama.  Predictably, when I got to this line, I lost it - again:

"I have to start by saying Taylor Branch's trilogy, "America in the King Years," is my favorite work of history. He brought the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. alive for me. And to see my favorite civil rights historian -- so far, there are some up-and-comers that deserve a look, too! -- grappling with the president who, until Obama, thought and did more about civil rights than any president before him, well, it's a thrilling combination."

I just had to post this response:

Really, Joan...

"He brought the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. alive for me. And to see my favorite civil rights historian -- so far, there are some up-and-comers that deserve a look, too! -- grappling with the president who, until Obama, thought and did more about civil rights than any president before him, well, it's a thrilling combination."
Joan, if Taylor Branch brought the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. so alive for you, why is it that you cannot see Obama is NOTHING LIKE HIM - except of course, a little brown! Please.

And Joan? Could you please tell me exactly WHAT Obama has done for civil rights??? Except of course, be a little brown!

Joan, is that all it takes for you to feel this country is moving forward on the civil rights/human rights issue??

I am a Black woman who WAS alive when Dr. King fought and died for civil rights in this country. Please, do not sully his achievements with that of your "Paper Tiger."  Sorry my dear, Obama is no MLK - not even close!
The-e-e-en, I stumbled on this and it was confirmed, Karma is a definite bitch:



Not even in the damn running!  Knocked out in the first draft!  The whole charade-parade was for naught -as it should have been.

And don't get it twisted, I'm not all HAPPY that Chicago missed the opportunity for jobs, exposure, etc.  It's just that I know that if they DID get the games, the people who needed it the most would not  have benefitted, all while the Changeling would have been able to happily tell his numerous Chicago backers like, Penny Pritzker,  "I told you not to worry about investing your funds in me, I got this!"

The charade-parade fooled no one on the other side of the pond or anywhere else.  They know - when will we?

(Found the Port....better now)

8 comments:

itsjustmel said...

Deb, your observations are so poignantly clear. Few, if any, whites could ever articulate so well, for both lack of understanding and investment, the depth and width of what's at stake, and few Blacks would dare, for what is being clung to as future progress at stake.

Few, if any of us, Black or White are blind to what is going on. How long can the pillars of ambiguity support this platform of false pretense that we are all standing on?

I don't know. It's the ones that are starting to rub their eyes that worry me. The ones with the highest of hopes, those in the greatest of need and those whose children' futures are clearly uncertain.

Yes. We needed Obama to be everything he promised, and then some, and he was never any of that, but a man on a ladder.

ea said...

¡¡¡¡RRRRiiiooo!!!!

That's all I'm sayin'.

Clifton said...

Hey Deb,
I love this post and I have a follow up question for you. Do you think that after declaring that there was hardly any racism involved in his opposition and the beer session he had behind speaking out on Dr. Gates the president is now incapable of speaking out on things like the Chicago beating in the proper way?

Can he really afford to take that trip to Chicago and engage those young kids at this point?

My opinion is that we made the lack of focus on the kind of violence that happened in Chicago okay during the election when we decided to not get any issues that affect the black community? No one asked him about black on black youth violence during a debate or forum that I can remember.

Deb said...

Hey guys! Had a yard sale this weekend that I had to beat these male-types in here over their heads to help me set up!!! Not 'til they saw the people coming through and actually buying shit, did they really get into it!! Now they wanna "yard sale" every weekend! :-) Apologize for not answering sooner.

Hey Mel! (See you decided. Headin' over for a glass of Port after dinner! We eat ve-e-ery late!)

Thanks so much, Mel. I agree with you, but I'd add there are some whites who don't care to understand or, be invested because, IMHO, they're not thinking beyond what's at stake for them personally - though those "personal reasons" can and do vary (racial purity, NIMBY, greed, not wanting to give up the capitalist patriarchy for (gasp!) socialism, etc.).

It appears, at least to me, that "pesky" thoughts of humanity, One Human Family, all of humankind rarely, if ever, top their "Bucket Lists."

And don't get it twisted, I know there are Blacks too, who've come to have those "personal reasons." The difference though, is they "came to have," rather than assumed a birthright, or some such foolishness (remember "The Agreement?"). That, to me, is equally as problematic, not to mention pretty damn insidious! (That's why "Pookie" can't get a damn break every time the Changeling wants to wag his finger at the Black community! The Obamas, Valerie Jarret, Oprah, Cosby, etc., have all "come to have" those "personal reasons" IMO).

But then, there are those who, as you said, wouldn't dare, "for what is being clung to as future progress at stake. Think about it. If a Rep. John Lewis can't cling to "future progress at stake," what's his whole life been about since he got into Congress?? I'm bet it was clear what his life was about before Congress! It was about "The Struggle."

When he was marching, getting whacked in the head and locked up - I'm sure it was perfectly clear to him what his life was about. Now? Not so much. So he clings.

Fortunately, I am invested because I do understand what's at stake. My before and after are the same, despite some of my young brothers at G'town insinuating I'm not an "authentic Black person" because I'm married to a white man (Lo-o-ong story! One of those still-sitting draft ea!) :-) They're the same, because I still see the same shit happening to my people - and other people too! And no matter what my "station in life" - certainly nowhere ne-e-ear that 1%! - I cannot shine up shit and call it gold!!

But the "pillars of ambiguity will support this platform of false pretenses" for as long as "they" want it to, or, are allowed to - by us.

Yes....just a man on a ladder.

Deb said...

I feel you, ea!!! The husband said, "If I'm going to the Olympics, I'd sure as hell rather go to Rio than Chicago!! I second that emotion!

Clifton! Hey-y-y-y-y!! Long-time-no-see (for both of us I know!)!! How are you? Working hard, I know. How's the family? Does your daughter like the school? I thought about you as I drove through NOLA to TX in July! I gotta you something! No, really!! (I'm not cyber-stalkin' you or anything! :-) It just hit me this'd be perfect for you! Email me a PO Box or work address if you're scared!) :-)

Back to your question. MY answer's a big NO! Right's right, an wrong's wrong when it comes to that shit! There's never an inopportune time to talk about injustice/justice if that's what you're about.

Even though I believe he's never spoken up for Black folks before, or now, I could probably find some inkling of respect for him, if he'd spoken out about the wrongness of "the kind of violence that happened in Chicago" - AND DIDN'T JUST BLAME POOKIE!!! 'Cause Pookie ain't got jack to do with why no cops showed up until Derrion was dead - or why conditions such as those in that neighborhood, are mirrored in inner cities all over the country!

Now politically-speaking, you're probably right. His puppetmasters might just advise him against "engaging" those young kids at this point because he really can't afford it - he's not gotten any their shit done yet!

"My opinion is that we made the lack of focus on the kind of violence that happened in Chicago okay during the election....

Cliff, you can own that shit if you want to, but "WE" didn't have a damn thing to do with what they asked him/talked about during any debate/forum. Hell! The damn Congressional Black Caucus hosted the SC debate! Gwen Ifill moderated the the VP debate!

CNN I think, put a poll out there telling people to click on the things they wanted the candidates to address during the SC debate. They even had a Katrina question Cliff, remember? ColorofChange worked non-stop to get all their subscribers to vote for that question. It never came up. (Interesting piece on that very thing: http://www.alternet.org/media/75404

But you're right, "WE" the people let that shit slide. The real question is, Why did we? We already know what they're doing (or should). What the hell are "WE" doing collectively, other than clinging, as Mel said, to "future progress at stake?"

Clifton said...

I am not scared. Send me an email to clifton611@gmail.com and I will give you my address. I thought I had your email address but I can't find it.

itsjustmel said...

Deb:

I love it when you expound on my efforts! It brings the deeper layers of sediment to the surface - I truly, truly love that and thank you for your experience, delivered with compassion, passion and a true commitment to me as your sister! (I refuse to put quotes around sister, because I know that we both know it is true.)

Deb, an excellent comment emerged from an exchane between me and okasha skatsi over at Cinie's blog.

okasha touches on the Marxist, Socialist, Democracy vs "a true Democracy"... which is something I explore, up front, in my own work that too often gets dismissed as pure "socialism".

(A True democracy would have no need for manipulation nor passivity, thus, it would thrive beyond measure).

I wish I knew how to isolate just her comment, but you can scroll down to the box that begins with:

"There’s a lot we haven’t overcome as a culture. What’s worse, there’s a lot we show no signs of wanting to overcome."

http://cinie.wordpress.com/2009/09/28/barack-obama-bores-me/#comments

itsjustmel said...

Deb:

"When he was marching, getting whacked in the head and locked up - I'm sure it was perfectly clear to him what his life was about. Now? Not so much. So he clings."

The "Struggle" followed by "lets' trust the process now, they get it".

Who got it? The ones that didn't want it in the first place? The one's that were reluctant for fear of change? (On both sides) Or, the ones that said, 'let our government take care of it - them - now?(On both sides)

"Trepidation" has never produced much of a result in my life, just a longer suffering in failing to reach my highest level of an authentic self, via the path of, "to thine own self be true"

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