Ok… So I wasn’t going to write about this and just let this experience roll off my back and go about my day. I have been busy chasing my dream so I have been pretty occupied these days. But I was almost dared into it, so here we are.
Last night while I strolled through Kroger after my yoga class to find something to eat, I found myself in the middle of a heated debate on why having Black Pride is important. My frustration came from the fact the friend I was speaking to is a Black women raising young Black men.
I was floored that she was debating that having slogans like “Black Power” or “Black is Beautiful” or any “Black” was counterproductive. Her argument was that if Black people quit trying to distinguish ourselves, then we could get rid of the racism. It doesn’t always has to be about Black and White, saying that Martin Luther King never protested with “Black Power“.
When I explained that “Black Power”, though that is not my personal choice of slogans, is meant to remind Blacks that they don’t have to follow the narrative that was given to them. Black people are more than former slaves, in Africa we invented math and science, agriculture, I mean I could go on and on. Unfortunately here in America, many of us are in the poverty level and have been there for generations, not knowing where we come from. Those, more than anyone, need a reminder that you come from more and you can do more.
Her response was that is their choice. They have the same opportunities for education like everyone else. They can go to school and better themselves just like everyone else, instead of hanging out on the corner.
At this point I realized that this debate was not going anywhere. As much as I love her, she is either not aware of the systematic oppression of Blacks from housing, to education, to the judicial system. Or she doesn’t believe that it’s real. Either way it she wasn’t getting my points, and I was just stunned that this is how she viewed our world.
As my readers, or anyone that knows me personally, I am Pro-Black! I am proud to be my beautiful shade of chocolate, and I am very unapologetic about it. I am “woke” to the injustice. I see where my community fails and also where there we can rebuild. I am not ashamed to care for those who look like me, who have a similar struggle, who come from the same place as me. I have love for everyone, including myself and my people.
So one more time for the folks in the back, especially my brothers and sisters who are just not getting it… “Black Power”, “Black Lives Matter”, “Pro-Black” are all movements that are calling to equality for Black people. We just want to live normal lives like everyone else. We want to be treated respectfully by the police, the lawyers, the judges. We want to give our children equal and proper education, not underfunded schools. We want to be able to grow our companies to be competitive within the market. The same damn thing that we have been talking about since The Civil Right Movement. I mean come on! Same stuff, just different names!
This is a prime example on why we must educate ourselves. Read about our history, Black history did not start when we landed on the shores of America in chains. Keep current with national and more importantly local events. Get out and vote for your local representatives. Teach your children that they are more than just niggas. Lastly help one another. This whole mentality of “I gotta get mine, so you betta get yours” is tired. We all have a duty to one another.
I hope that conversation sparks something in her, maybe she will wake up… or maybe she wont. Either way I still love my sister, and I will still strive a make things better for her and her boys. But by reading this, if you feel just slightly interested in Black matters, please educate yourself. It take just one spark to create a fire! We can create the change!