Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Black In America 2

I should have watched the second installment of CNN’s Black in America 2 – but after a full day of work and writing I decided to watch our president plead his case for universal health care, have a drink (Bacardi 8 and Coke), and then I started writing again. So, there I was thinking about my day while the syndicated Delilah Radio Show played in the background.

It was definitely an eventful day.

Three minutes into my drive to my office my Jeep Cherokee ran out of gas. This was not a big deal considering I was able to coast right into a gas station. Around mid-morning I got into an argument with a friend. This was disappointing because I think I hurt her feelings. After five seconds of entering my beloved home at the end of my day, I discovered that my electricity was not on. I was initially stunned then I realized that I did forget to pay the bill. Two of the three occurrences did not faze me at all. I took both in stride, and adapted. The argument affected me the most. Nonetheless, I moved on to have a productive day.

Watching another Soledad O’Brien piece would have given me an unwanted energy boast. So, I guess this is why I sent the following question out prior to leaving work:

Are you looking forward to CNN’s Black in America 2? If you are or not, why?

Click on the Comment icon to read the responses.

Shared by Brian E. Payne

The Delilah Radio Show:

Black in America 2:


Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader Response:

i'm vaguely remembering the specifics of the first one, but i do remember that i was extremely disappointed with it and i don't even think i watched the entire show. i was mad i even tuned in and i recall thinking to myself that i should've known better. the problems featured on the last part were not exclusive to black folks, instead they were the problems of poor people---of all races. i remember some of the features were poor housing, unemployment, inadequate health care, and the like. that ain't being black in america, it's being poor in america.

and i see there are several black folks featured on the show tonight and tomorrow, and it's kinda making me wanna take a peek to see what they will be saying. however, cnn is no authority on black people or our plight. i don't get all excited thinking that this is a show that will really express our position in this country. instead, i am extremely leery of any white media telling my story, because i do not trust their intentions and the presence of so many prominent black folks on the show does not offer me much consolation. historically, white media's presentation of us has overwhelmingly been skewed. i'm gonna need to see farrakhan or someone of similar stature who does not bow down to white folks as a featured guest before i'm all in. then i would know that they are serious about talking about being black in america.

furthermore, what message do they send to people around the world about us relative to others in the country? it looks like we just can't get our shit together, which in turn can shift the perspective others have of this country. we look like the blemish on what seems to be a smooth surface. again, i think cnn has told a story of poor people in america in their part one of this series. i hope they don't do the same thing again and call it a black problem.

-A Peaceful Journey

Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader Response:

I was expecting some secret to be revealed........Heck I been Black in America all my dang life........I think I got the hang of it!!!!


Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader Responds to RM: true.


Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader Responds to A Peaceful Journey:

I so agree with you 1000% in that it’s hard for me to accept the telling of our story from this network (or perhaps any) and I was embarrassed after the fact that I sent a notice out to many of my contacts to watch. As you pointed out, the things that they featured weren’t exclusive to blacks. Truth be told, our plight and story is so varied I think it can be summed up in a 2 or 4 part series, nor do I necessarily think that there should be an attempt to. I also agree that a predominantly white media outlet may not have the best perspective because they really don’t know us and Black Celebrities aren’t Black America. I do give them some level of Kudos for even giving a damn, albeit haphazardly presented in that stations that are supposed to cater to the black demographics are too busy showing shows like Tiny and Toya or Frankie and Neffie (2 unwed mothers on one end, and a former crack head/prostitute and her daughter who is an unwed mother). An attempt to define our people would take much more than these 2 hour vignettes but it would hold more validity if there were someone to balance all the fluff, like Minister Farrakhan.

That being said, I probably won’t watch.


Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader responds to DM:

Eloquently said! I agree with you!


Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader RM responds again:

And not to be the eternal cynic, but When did Soledad O'Brien become the "Behind the scenes voice of Black America"?


Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Muata responds:

i can't figure out why so many don't understand why we are still in the 1950's in regards to race. an elite professor gets profiled. black and hispanic kids get sent home from a pool. their "complexion" could have "changed the complexion" of the pool environment. wow! with racism the heart and mind has to change. right? many white folk actually believe that they are better than others which leads to racist views/opinions. some are under this impression because of the way this system operates. for example, the public school system did nothing for the cultural esteem of black folk for decades. still has major work to do. it only degraded never highlighted. in reverse this same system indirectly/directly promotes/ed the 'i am better than you' thinking for white folk. can ya blame them? no excuses for them - but think about it.

we are irrelevant's in the minds of so many. internationally we are a joke. it is time for us to control what encourages opinions to be made. just perhaps, the "new direction" according to Soledad, cnn's black in america is taking will put us in a different light for that villager in Turkmenistan.

just to add something for us to research/study:

look up the Untouchables of India

"The untouchablity feature in the caste system is one of the cruelest features of the caste system. It is seen by many as one of the strongest racist phenomenon in the world."

The racism I witness over in my India neighborhood is unbelievable. I am shocked DAILY. Lord have mercy!


Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Reader response:

Inters ting commentary. I think if a black network would have done it then it would have been seen in a different light, plus I don't think it was for black people solely (which I am sure we are all aware). I think it was us all that the show was intended to reach. I watched some of it but came away with really no complaints. I saw what I expected. I think we all have our version of what our story is as a people. There is so much variety even within our culture that even those stories are different. In 1900 W.E.B Dubois wrote "Souls of Black Folk". He graduated from Harvard back in the late 1800's and he was black. His experience was different from my grandfather whose family I do not know but at that time they lived in Virginia in the Hampton area.

My point is that this could have been produced and created by an all black group and we still would have missed alot of the story. There truth is the story has no ending and the details are vast and not always talked about by either group.

I do disagree that it shows negatively to the rest of the world. The truth is Obama is one of the only leaders of any major power in this world that comes from the Minority population. That is rare even in Europe. I think that at the end of the day it shows the rest of the world that we are not afraid to address(whether they did a poor job is debatable) the issue of race particularly what it means to be black in America. CNN may not be the best outlet to define it because truth be told there is no definition. In most places in the world racism exists. Look at Paris, London, Serbia, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Kenya, China, Korea, Japan. All of these countries deal with the issue and in Europe and Asia they just dont talk about. It is what is. When I was in Paris there was palestinian Protest. I was scared as hell because they knew I was American and they were protesting Israel and US. Our experience is perhaps the most unique in this world but I think the US is far ahead of some places in the world particularly considering that our country is only 400 years old.


Muata, The Shadow, The Black Rebel said...

Muata responds again:

well, dang. i may not watch now. LOL! the show tonight will highlight black folk who are giving back to the community. i think those stories will be interesting. however, i do wish we will be in a position one day to share a varied experience of our stories on a major network. also, if poverty is made an american problem they (those in charge) will have to address it. now, it is mainly a black/latino problem. poverty is needed in the united states. this country must have it or capitialism would not work. right?