11/03/2008

Change or Die










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I’ve been thinking of how I was going to end this. The most important election cycle of my life (to date), has been filled with the most blogs I have ever written or posted (to date). I have followed each and every up and down, twist and turn for the last eighteen months. It has been serious at times, humorous at others. I have had my doubts and fears, and moments of joy and pride. I have debated the merits of Hillary Clinton and John McCain versus our next President Barack Obama. I have argued and admired with others. I have delved into this process far more than even I would have thought. It is no small event. The historic nature is of course the draw. The possibility and symbolism of a black U.S. president is no small feat. Those that feel otherwise are either fools or closet racist. I do not hide the fact that beyond his words his skin color is the reason why I support him. I did not support Alan Keyes in his 2000 bid and was too young to recognize the significance of Jesse Jacksons ’84 attempt. I could sit here and make a last minute plea for Obama, listing his ideas and proposals, but that’s being done across the board. It’s all out there if you haven’t heard it and I doubt it will sway you at this final night before the world changes. Instead in art inspired by the death of Barack’s grandmother on Sunday I will tell you my story simply and plainly and hope you understand why a man who once planted a fake bomb in a mall and wears proudly the symbols of Anarchy and Chaos on his arms has spent the last year and a half supporting a mainstream candidate for president.

For me this goes back to when I was a child. As a young Negro in Mocksville North Carolina there were very few examples of black success. Locally there were business men who owned black barbershops, or tree clearing services, janky auto dealers, or BBQ joints, but no real examples of wealth and success. On television you either had to shill Jello pudding or run a basketball up and down the court in order to be rich. It wasn’t until after I had begun to consider myself and adult that I believed any differently. I knew in my teenage years that blacks could own magazines and business, but only those that marketed to other blacks. The whole notion that if you grow up, and do what you’re supposed, to and you too could be president, was for whites only. Blacks were shown/not told that even if you grew up and became successful you would still be nothing more than nigger. Your money and position held only on how well you kept your place, how well you bowed and scraped and followed the white man’s way. My grandmother as strong and as independent as she was never once told me such lies. She never once uttered such nonsense. And it was nonsense. By all evidence presented a black man would never become president. Not until some mythical future where Whites were minorities and brown skinned people controlled the economy. Low and behold we are almost to that point. Yellow people are dominating the market and lending the U.S. money, it is only a matter of time my brown brothers and sisters. Not that I am some anti-white Farrakhan loving brother. I have often been told “You’re the whitest black guy I know”, though I am far from it. I cannot deny that my blackness has often been questioned, due to my taste in music, my associations and my choice in women. I was raised in the country not the city. There were very few kids in my neighborhood. I grew up with television as my number one companion, and as stated earlier there was very little blackness on TV. I can still remember when BET started and one of the first videos was Pattie Label and Michael McDonald. I can remember when the most famous black person alive was Sammy Davis Jr. and he was known for what? Tap dancing for Frank Sinatra! There was a brief time when I was in ninth grade I listen to some Nation of Islam speeches and read Malcolm X, watched Roots and thought I hated white people. While secretly I listened to the oldies station as I played Mario 3. That was mainly due to the shock of moving back from nearly all black Washington D.C., to little old white bread Mocksville N.C. That time however served as my education of black accomplishments. I wrote a 48 page Black History month paper that year. I thought I was a sleeper agent for the Black Panther Party. I was just a kid, and as I got older I thought I had worked through most of my race issues. I started to say that I don’t hate white people-I hate all people. I said it just the other day at work, though the reality of even that statement is false. If I truly hated everyone then I wouldn’t want to see this world progress. And whether you believe that Obama is just a puppet of the CFR or whatever there will be no mistaking his impact as a symbol for those of us of color. Even if is elected and begins to institute policies more damaging that George Bush he would have finally shown us that we can do anything. And before you point out that he is half black and half white, let me remind you that less than sixty years ago it was U.S. law that if you were 1/8th black you were black! The history of race in this country is sad and ugly. But what do you expect from a nation founded on slavery and the thievery of land from an entire race of people. Genocide is in the blood of every white American. That’s exactly why the whole reverend Wright episode scared the shit out of people. He wasn’t being un-American or preaching hate. He was in fact simply telling the truth. And they feared that Obama would ascend to power knowing that. Let me tell you I have read both Obama books (one of which was named after a Rev. Wright speech), and Obama does know this. He would have known all those things without Jeremiah Wright. That’s what leads him to choosing that church in the first place. Much like myself and every other thinking black person in this country we have struggled with identity and race issues for our entire lives. The things that Reverend Wright said both in the sound bites and in the full speeches are real and felt by all of us. Obama played the petty game to get elected, but trust me you can pick up either of his books and find the truth. He grew up reading comics like me, and experimented with drugs, not as much as I but I feel his verdict. He moved own however unlike yours truly and decided to fight the system from within. And tomorrow we will find out if it worked. I have faith that it has but if not I hear the Oakland P.D. will be on the lookout for me. According to the Telegraph U.K., they have SWAT teams standing by in case McCain wins to quell any uprising. And I assure each and every one of you if you do not hear from me after Tuesday it is because McCain won and I went on the attack.

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