Wednesday, December 17, 2014

I'm Black Y'all


I'm Black... not African-American.

I live in the US, but I'm a Black American.

Oh Serenity! I thought you was conscious!
How can you say that?
Are you a sell out?
Do you just don't know your history?
Did you fall in love with the devil?

No.... I'm clear on who I am... and what I am. And that is a Black person living in America, with American citizenship.

I get that the US has no love for the people of color. It's not that they have no use for POC's; they just don't love us. They need and want us to be their servants... cook their food, clean their homes, cut their grass, raise their children, etc. they just don't like for us to have ambitions and aspirations of better lives. Devils seem to think that we aspire to be like them. That's not accurate. We aspire to have nice things... that is a normal human desire to do better than you were previously. It's evolution. Their problem is when left to our own devices, we CAN achieve these things on our own... then we breeze right passed them. You can't outdo Black people. If you research race riots in this country the story is ALWAYS the same. Black folks, with no aid from white people had a lifestyle that poorer white people felt was undeserving. Not because the Black people didn't earn it, but because they, the white people, hadn't. Never mind Black people paid for it themselves... built it themselves. American mentality is that Black folks should never be in a better position than any white person or the white people will attack.... and get away with it. Let that sink in.

Remember that scene in Roots the 2nd Generation, when white folks broke into Haley's father's home he shared with Irene Cara? White folks were shocked that a Black man... even though educated and hard working... had possessions that surpassed their own. And I mean something as simple as multiple sheets on the bed. Those people trashed the house not because they were mad with Haley's dad. But because they recognized that he was more civilized than they were. Ala 8:14.

When I say I'm not African... well... I'm not. I have researched my genealogy and realized that at least 10 generations of my family on both sides were born here... worked here... died here and are buried here. That makes me an American. When I was a resident, I would never call Black people African American on rounds. Every time I said something like, “44 year old Black male presents with....” All of the non-Black people would cringe a little. I never noticed (because I didn't care) until someone asked me why don't I use the designation “African American”? I said because I'm not African. The said “Well your people come from Africa.” I replied, “Don't all people eventually come from Africa?” Then a whole lot of arguments ensued to convince me to accept the label. I listened... really the nerve of folks who want me to accept who they say I am.... Finally all I had to say to end the conversation was, “My grandmother's grandmother was born in this country. Who else in this room can say that?” The only person in the room to raise their hand was the other Black woman in the program. Apparently my 'American Express' card has more 'member since' years than their did.

People who live in Africa don't see themselves as Africans first. Africa is a continent. They see themselves as members of the country they are from/live in. People from Nigeria are Nigerians. People from Kenya are Kenyans. People from Ethiopia are Ethiopians. There is no country called “Africa.”

Contrary to what's hot in the streets, American Black people cannot pinpoint where we are from. Because bloodlines where not kept pure during slavery or since. People from all over the CONTINENT of Africa were mixed. Slave holders didn't say, “I only want slaves from Nigeria!” or “My plantation only works Ghanaians.” Once slaves got off the ship... They were just slaves. White folks didn't care. Well maybe the rice growing plantations did care. They wanted slaves from Sierra Leone, because they were already familiar with growing rice and making dyes. When folks do that DNA test to find out where they are from, they find out they are from a lot of places.

This is a profound reason for me declaring that I'm not African.... Why are Black people in this country? Slavery. It pains me to say that the white man wasn't solely responsible. (And I really want them to be) Oh they get plenty blame, but they have to share it with many many African rulers. Google “Cudjo Lewis.” He was Nigerian cargo of the last ship to bring slaves to the US in 1859. Slave shipping had already been outlawed and this was bootleg mission. Once here, the government found out and put these people in a state of permanent immigration limbo. So there was a community of people in Mobile Alabama just living and chilling. Lewis got interviewed several times. The interview I like best is from Zora Neale Hurston in her book Dust Tracks on a Road. Reading the 1st hand account of how slaves where captured by their Black neighbors whose only motivation was to get wealthy. Those aren't my alikes. Their descendants aren't my alikes either. I'm not going to pretend that I'm cool with how that went down. I'm not claiming them as my own. I've seen documentaries where African descendants were aware of how their families came to have money of the backs of their brothers and fell no kind of way. Just because we share the same skin color, doesn't make us cousins.

So there you have it. I'm not telling you that you have to feel like me. I'm just saying you have the right to answer to... and call yourself... whatever you like.