Wednesday, March 14, 2007

The Silence is Killing us

The Silence is Killing us is a commentary response to our inability to face ourselves and do what is necessary to remove the shackles of mental slavery. The chains are no longer present, but the affects of the chains are. Being that African Americans DO perfectly understand that we are killing ourselves one must ponder if we are capable of SAVING ourselves. I believe we can without the thralldom of religion, but first we must acknowledge that we are catering to the enemy by not accepting personal responsibility and by avoiding the disturbing reflections in the mirror. We are better than what we display to the world!

The culture of silence has regulated us to a culture of personal responsibility avoidance. No one is responsible for their behavior. The “dog did it excuse” is pervasive throughout America. We have become a culture of finger pointing which will ultimately leave us in “bad shape” as Farrakhan has on numerous occasions passionately communicated to jam packed arenas full of black people.

When I was a child my grandmother faithfully stressed to me that my reputation will be determined by two things: the way I conduct myself and how I handle my problems. She told me to behave like I have some sense and to always and I repeat ALWAYS be responsible for my issues, and NEVER blame my neglectful, asinine, stupid, and ignorant behavior on “the system” or on someone else. Her basic message: “Brian, take responsibility. The issues and solutions lie within.”

Whatever happened to this type of child rearing? Where are the parents who feed this to their children? Are there any remaining? What mechanisms are in place in our public school system to foster this type of guidance? More specifically and in line with current events, where was the outcry from our black politicians, the black community, and our civic/religious leaders when two teenagers were caught red handed supplying cherry flavored marijuana blunts to two toddlers {}. I will tell you where we are: We are waddling in our inability to grab a hold of PR: Personal Responsibility. We are too busy waiting on a white person to say or do the “wrong” thing. Once again, our attention is misguided and shameful on every level. Rhetoric? Ranting? It is, but this needs to be said and read repeatedly.

When I heard about this incident I was on the road driving to one of the black community’s leading events. The CIAA basketball tournament is regarded as the premier sporting event for Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Not only is the basketball play entertaining, the action surrounding it is what I call top-notch. Yes, I am referring to the partying and networking, but I want to point out also that these all day and all night long parties are mature in nature, safe, and fun. No teen or early twenties type of drama whatsoever. At the completion of the weekend festivities I felt so proud that some fool did not pull a gun because someone stepped on his sparkling white Air Force Ones.

Anyway, as I drove up interstate 85 this ridiculous crime was shared with me by a teacher. When he finished describing what I later saw on CNN and Fox my immediate question to him was: Were the teenagers black? The impetus to this question is “deep seated” in my desire not to be embarrassed by black people’s trifling behavior. Something I constantly write and talk about with love. Something that makes me want to smack a few of my people. Something that can be prevented if WE do what needs to be done to reverse the tide of self destruction. Remember that song with those two words throughout? I believe part of the lyrics are, “we are headed for self destruction”. This was when hip-hop had a positive message and image.

What I am even more embarrassed by is our lazy and sorry-behind response. We are no where to be found on this issue. But yet, a few weeks ago we were all over the news complaining about a white man giving Barack Obama an accolade. Well, I and a few other black folk took it as a compliment. I suspect my line of thought was way off considering I was blasted by friends who thought I was not down with blackness. One person insinuated that I am recklessly critical of my people. Another friend mentioned that I was selling out.

Selling out? Well, selling out to me is when we are not flooding the internet blogs with condemnation of irresponsible behavior. Selling out is when we remain hush-hush when a black person does something imbecilic. Selling out is when our great arms of “protect the black folk from the white media” i.e. NAACP are no where to be found when devastating events like the one the world has viewed on YouTube over 160,000 times occur. Do I need to list any other examples of selling out? I shall not! I will only be accused of “hatin’ on black folk”. Watch the video and really see who is hatin' on us. Try to figure out what the black community is doing to address this opprobrious act, and you will see whose hatin' on black folk. We are doing the hatin’ as a result of our tight lips.

Back to personal responsibility. But first try to stomach the latest YouTube video that further supports my claim that black folk are becoming more and more reluctant to grabbing a hold of Personal Responsibility.

I have personalized this commentary because I saw the devastation of four black youth last week. The two and five year olds may have been smoking weed for months. Weed heads already! The two teenagers evidently are shiftless and lack the necessary gumption to do something meaningful with their lives. What do we have as a result: the uncle and his boy will go to America’s second home for black men (prison) and the two toddlers are now wards of the state. The Great Savior: White Family will save the toddlers, I imagine. Pathetic! And guess what, the white man had nothing to do with this one. Wait a minute! I forgot the reason for the two young men’s behavior is a result of slavery. Once again slavery is the card we have played. Why not drop down the Ace so we can ace ourselves out of this self defeating culture of... What? I can’t hear the word. Oh! That word is SILENCE.

If only we would fall in love with personal responsibility and not the lyrics from the song This is why I am Hot. If only we would as a people stop condoning foolishness. Those of you who believe we do not condone it answer this question: Why aren’t we up in arms when we commit crimes against black humanity?

Brian, there you go again. You are being unfair to black people.’ Okay then, I will attempt to
re-direct my finger. “Grandma Frankie, please forgive me.” Read below.

Last week, actually on the same day as the world witnessed the demise of the African American family again, Dr. Rod Paige, former Secretary of Education was on Fox news giving his progress report on the public school system. When asked what grade he would give the taxpayers school system he responded with C-. When asked what the grade would be if the Department of Education would take away the wealthiest districts of the public school system he responded with D or D-.

Maybe those two black teenagers’ behavior is a reflection of a failing school system. If the system was working they more than likely would have been at school and/or valuing the importance of reading a book. What do you think?

This one was written by a disappointed and embarrassed Muata. Inspired by the teenager who gave the 5 year old a ganja shot gun? Inspired by those black folk who were QUICK to hang the falsely accused white boys from Duke University. Inspired by little black boys who need positive black men in their homes.


Muata said...

Reader Response:

This is a really good commentary. I truly enjoyed it.

I agree with you a 100% about the fact we as blacks need to start taking personal responsibility for our own actions. This is something that I live by and I also teach this concept to my children.

On the other hand Muata, you have to make sure that you are constant with taking personal responsibility for your actions within your personal life as well. As a leader, you have to live by what you preach.


Muata said...

Muata responds to AG:

Thanks for this.

In every commentary where I accuse/blame/complain about us I attempt to stress the “WE”. I include myself. I have my issues like everyone else. I just have decided to share in a way that at times convict people which in turn can be perceived as me being self-righteous. I am not. I have made every effort to be humble in this life. I must admit it is a constant battle. Angeline, I love black people. I truly do. I am so disappointed in us that it pains me each and every day. I am moving in a direction of self cleansing. At the moment I am angry and emotionally disturbed by what we have become. I could say nothing and raise my son to be a no count citizen, but I can’t. I have to keep pushing and sharing in the way that I am. Stay with me. I need support from those who are in my corner. There are so many of you with me, and I want you to “pull my coat” each time you feel it needs to be pulled.


Muata said...

Readers Respond:

Great dialogue. We all need each other for support. As I told Derrick yesterday, our ancestors learned the IT REALLY DOES TAKE A VILLAGE!


Amen twice my brother.

I agree with you 100% on this one. I am sick and tired of black folk blaming everyone except self.

Behavior starts within, and from the upbringing. I always talk to my daughter about personal responsibility.

Keep doing what you're doing. As I said before, we need more like you.

Peace and Blessings, Always!


Muata said...

AG responds to PM and someone else responds to PM and AG:

That’s true PM, but the problem I have with the saying “IT TAKES A VILLAGE” is there’s no one that wants to live in the village. Too often, people are too busy with their own lives or just
self-centered that they do not take time out to help anyone else.


PM and AG:

It did not use to be this way just 35 years ago. Remember, we had this when we were growing up. What’s happen? 35yrs ago is not that long ago.

I think we have bought into their (white folks/governments) ideas of American living. That was a mistake for us. Our situation did not mirror theirs, but yet we followed behind folk who truly dislike us! Integration did not help us holistically!


Muata said...

Reader Response:

Well, you've done it again, yet another GREAT writing that speaks the truth so eloquently. Excuse my language, but I say "phuck you" to anyone who wont understand the truths that you've spoken, or who labels you a sell out. PR is a difficult issue to face, for it forces many to accept the reality that they daily lie to themselves, deceive themselves, and ultimately hold themselves back from the dreams that they're working towards, daily. It's my belief that if we all conquer PR, within ourselves, then our homes/families, then our communities, that we all can experience true peace and rest, true pleasure and relieve, true productivity and reaping of the harvest of our labor. Your grandmother taught you well, "the issues AND solutions lie within".......and those words are my daily motivation.

So my only question is, when are you going to publish your writings on a more visible and public platform? I say this only because I believe a lot of what you write should be reviewed by the masses man!!! I don’t know the traffic that your blog site receives, but I pray that an opportunity presents itself for you to display your words on a much larger frontier........well only if my proposal coincides with your own desires. Keep up the great work!

P.S. "Self Destruction" is taking it back B. I maybe young, but I remember that with KRS, Heavy D, MC Lyte and Ms Melody, amongst others! Now that's real hip-hop. This 21st century rap-crap is just beats and rhymes.