Note: There are three parts to this Op-Ed the third (conclusion) to be posted shortly.
Ten days ago, I wrote a piece entitled “Blackism: The Experiment(s)”. It was an addendum to several other Op Ed’s that I had done under the “Blackism” banner. I use/coined the term “Blackist” because there is a type of racism directed at black Americans that is as unique as them being the only “involuntary immigrants” in this nation’s history. I absolutely refuse to allow anyone, especially white Americans, to get away with homogenizing Blackism with racism. The picture below is, to me, the quintessential graphic illustration of my point. “Nigger Head Stove Polish” was a nationally popular product, complete with registration by the Unites States Patent Office, that graced American grocer’s shelves until well into the twentieth century. The tin which contained the product, featured a monkey-like “Nigger” with huge ears, a big round face, huge lips and a mouth like a chimpanzee. There were dozens of nationally purveyed products (including movies) that depicted grotesque caricaturizations of black people and also featured the word “Nigger”. You see, we have to understand where we have been to understand where we are at. It is what is.
Nigger Head Stove Polish’s motto was “My Black Will Not Burn Off”.
Since the “Experiment(s)” article, I have observed many attempting to speak for me; to interpret. I have always thought that I communicated with brutal precision, both verbally and in writing, but clearly that is not the case, to my admitted chagrin. So, let’s try it again: straight from the monkey’s mouth.
Long ago, it was strongly suggested to me that I not read “comments”. So, for the most part, I refrain from doing so. However, several people have contacted me and stated that I needed to read the comments on the aforementioned piece; and I have.
I was neither astounded nor thunderstruck; and though I would like to say I was amused, there comes an extremity where amusement and tragedy intersect. William Shakespeare knew this well. The amusement is that some white Americans were/are so filled with a sense of superiority that they will deny anything that is uncomfortable for them, or does not comport with their stereotypes…especially when it comes to black Americans; men in particular. The tragedy is (knowing this when I conducted my experiment(s), those very same “liberal” and “progressive” whites bristled at the assertion of my black manhood and, thusly, validated my experiment(s). If this was manifested in a Thom Hartmann environment (arguably the minority of overall “white thought”), what must the discussion look like at Glen Beck’s forum? Hannity? O’Reilly? Or Fox chatrooms and sites? Or Rush’s site?
Yep, NPR, too.
The question, obviously, is rhetorical for impact; as I have experienced first-hand the reality of the environments referred to. Full of white supremacy and racism; both veiled and unveiled.
During the course of this necessarily lengthy piece, I will provide several examples of the unfortunate reality to which I refer. The good (great) news is that a significant number of white Americans understand that from which they came; they have been gifted with a humanity that transcends their race and/or gender. They understand the Human family; this gives me great inspiration as I shall refer to them, too. However, first we need to do some proverbial “housekeeping”.
The outline for this article took me about an hour. It has taken me almost two (2) weeks to write it, for it may be the most difficult I have ever done in this forum; I am unsure as to exactly why.
During the protests in Ferguson, Mo. subsequent to, and resultant of, the Michael Brown murder, I called into the Thom Hartmann show for the first time. I started listening to Thom about three years ago on KPFK listener supported radio. Having had my first experience with blatant Blackism when I was nine years old (many, many would follow), I was completely blown away by a white boy with so much depth, intelligence and understanding about things Blackist that he could not possibly understand (first hand). Yet, there he was. Everyday… telling it like it is. Black people can yap all day long about their condition in this country, resultant of the history of this country, but they will never have the power to move white folks like other white folks can.
The intellectual courage of this fellow is outstanding were he a Martian, let alone human; but he not only possesses intellectual courage (for it is hard for white folks to acknowledge “white privilege”, however obvious) he is goddamned relentless. I instantly became an admirer; soon, I started to support KPFK in every way I could as I enjoyed a lot of their programming. Ultimately, his program would be televised on Free Speech TV, along with The Big Picture on RT. I became a frequent voice/caller on his program. I also started writing blogs/articles and essays for the Thom Hartmann Community/Site; many of which went viral. I was writing them just because I felt I had to do something. I had absolutely no intent on it ever becoming more than that. I was not going to sit idle anymore and watch white Americans deny their collective culpability in the murder of black Americans, in their blackism, nor their collective apathy and denial; they would no longer define the terms.
And I will not; and they will not.
Nor was I going to not confront black Americans on their culpability in the status quo.
One day, one of the producers of Thom’s show informed me that a person had contacted them and asked how to reach me having indicated she was a movie producer. Thom’s staff is very diligent and, thusly, protective of information about community members. They are also extremely intelligent; no surprise there. We were able to ascertain that the person, a lady, was legitimate. I gave Thom’s team the okay to have the woman get in touch with me. It was during my conversation with her that I realized that I was resonating with a lot of people through the show. In fact, one of the producers of the show told me “you have a fan club”. I was “thunderstruck” by that. I was also inspired and motivated by it. Over time, I would often hear folks refer to me on the air and people started contacting the show to connect with me. To this day, I am confused as to how all this happened…but it did. I am also deeply humbled by it.
So, for the “low information”, envious idiots that have attempted to manufacture this being something other than what it is…it is what it is and you just heard it straight from the monkey’s mouth. Further, neither Thom Hartmann, his show, his affiliates or any entity related thereto has anything to do with my business affairs. Some of the more maladjusted people that frequent Thom’s forum have made attempts at intimidating Thom (because they don’t like my positions) by suggesting some nefarious relationship between the two of us. Both a tactical and strategic error. Thom Hartmann is not easily intimidated. If that were the case he would not have the courage to do what he does.
Me? I am allergic to intimidation.
Thom has found that sweet spot in life where he can make a living doing something he is passionate about. Thom is a person with a soul and a calling. He and I don’t agree on everything (Hillary Clinton is one), but we do agree on many things. As a businessman, Thom has a vested interest in seeing his numbers go up. Hits on the site, Facebook and Google “shares” and ratings for both the radio and television programs. Like it or not (and you know who I’m talking to), my articles have enormous numbers; some of the threads are pages long. Every single one of my articles has gone to the number one spot; some of which have stayed there for weeks. Folks call into the show to give me “a shout out”. My piece called “Freddie Gray, The Human Pretzel” went into thousands of Facebook shares. Thom is a businessman and if my presence helps his business, I am honored to do it. In fact the term “Human Pretzel” (which I coined) went viral and was co-opted/adopted by Bing, CNN and any number of other sites. I have, in fact, received the greatest of compliments (I guess) by having my work plagiarized. So to the few pathetic, envious people that just can’t accept being outdone by a “black thug” I have news for you: I am not only resonating with folks around the country and around the world, I am just getting started and I have Thom and all of you to thank.
Let’s get down to brass tacks.
I have taken great pains to never personalize my articles (other than in a general sense); which is another reason I rarely comment on “comments”. I need not tell anyone that the comments, especially with regard to anything pertaining to black Americans, can get nasty in a way that no other topic inspires. I write the pieces and I am done; if the piece sparks debate I am, by definition, a success.
I am a success.
In the rare occasions where I have “commented” on comments, it has always been pertinent to a supportive comment. I do not respond, one way or another, to my detractors as a rule; especially in a personal, vindictive way. However, due to the level of ridiculousness that has prevailed pursuant to the “Blackism: The Experiment(s)” article, the time has come for me to address a few things because they are relevant to my experiment(s) and the resultant validation thereof. And though I will not (now or ever) specifically name individuals, I will not leave much to the imagination as to whom I am referring.
You wanted my attention, now you shall have it.
Slander and Discreditation
One of the things that I attempted to ascertain, and thusly validate, was the tendency of many white Americans to either “bend” the truth when it comes to black Americans, or just blatantly lie when they feel a Nigger isn’t staying in his “place”; or is not tap-dancing to their blackist tune. It’s almost like they become intoxicated with rage to the point that no amount of reality will sober them up. For instance: in “The Experiments” there is one particular individual who, ironically, blasphemously uses the initials of a slain black American “Civil Rights Leader”. This same individual also uses yet another name for her posts; and says, under that name, she is a “very close friend” of the initialed one and “will speak for her”. She “will speak for her as her heart is too hurt to go on”. Any fifth grader can look at the poor language skills, syntax and semantic errors and tell it is the same individual; let alone the fact that she is, apparently, so emotionally fragile that a website and/or article can send her into tilt. The fact that this individual spins this tall tale is indicative of the fact that she is deeply mentally disturbed; a fact that she has admitted (to her credit). Yet, she still, mental instability notwithstanding, feels that she is “credible” (along with other white racists). Why?
Blackism, resultant of white arrogance.
Even an insane white person has greater validity than a lucid black American. So be it, however temporal, in the Netherworld populated by white denialists. That world is doomed, and my intelligent white brothers and sisters know it is doomed; that is why they are trying to enlighten the “low information” masses. Now, let us get back to the previous topic.
So, this unstable individual (whom is, apparently, besotted with me) gets to the point where she states “…and the ultimate, R. Kenyatta is a real estate mogul in NYC…wow, a mouthpiece for the underprivileged black man. What a scam” (the spelling and syntax errors were so gross that I cleaned them up as a service to the person in question and ease of use for you as a reader). I can hear my brethren, and those that know me, laughing their asses off. Hell, it’s funny to me…but in a Shakespearean, tragic, sense. This individual is/was so cogniitively dissonant, like many white folks, that she absolutely refused to accept the truth (however blatant) so much so that she resorted to creating a boogey man that she could somehow, in her twisted mind, find more acceptable.
Be mindful that this individual makes a proclamation, a statement of fact.
I live in Southern California and am a native thereof, even an idiot would be able, from my many articles that include Hartmann show clips, to ascertain that fact. I have never been involved in “real estate” as a profession or avocation. I am a single parent that struggles to provide for my child as the white woman that birthed her has never paid a dime of the more than $150,000 she owes in child support. I am an omnipresent figure on my child’s campus, and an icon in my child’s learning environment. I have taken my own money to help provide school supplies for her (mostly white) fellow students subsequent to watching their teachers have to spend their own money to do so due to Republican budget cuts. I have been acknowledged by teachers, principals, a former Governor (The Terminator) U.S. President’s (and their wives) for my parenting skills. I have certificate, after certificate for volunteering my time with students. I have read aloud to them in class when she was younger (regularly). Gave them surprise pizza parties. I have had a dozen little, screaming, giggling girls at my house overnight for sleepovers; and I dare one of the racist pigs to challenge these facts. I have no idea what the “scam” is. In nothing I have ever stated, do I speak for the “underprivileged Black Man”. I speak for myself primarily, but am quite aware that many other black Americans need, and want, me to speak for them whether “underprivileged” or not. And, just for shitz and giggles…what qualifies as “underprivileged”? That could easily encompass all black Americans regardless of education, profession, money or status. “Underprivileged” compared to what?
Upon realizing this egregious mistake by a fellow racist/blackist, another individual responds to the initialed one and states “…you have the wrong guy. He doesn’t live in NY and he is not part of that particular real estate firm”. He/she/it goes on to state: “I’m not going to put any more information about him on here, except to say that he has given his real general location and real first and last name”. Mind you, neither of these cowards use their real names; nor do they tell us anything about them. We have never heard their voice on the Thom Hartmann program, nor in any other venue; and we have never seen their faces. I use my real name, I am regularly heard on the Hartmann Show and I have provided video of myself for all to see.
(continued in Part II)