To be young, gifted, and black.

Photo-on-24-10-14-at-09.34Maynard Hearns,
Santa Cruz, CA.

The black story in america is very simple: we were slaves, and then we weren’t. We were never given freedom, or equality. When we begged for it, we were lied to. When we Marched on Washington and pleaded our case, we were shot in the back of the head. When we sang for it, we were passed over it for those who could sing it whiter. When we wrote about it, we were left out of the american canon. When we exhibited moral character and “married up” we were called rapists. When we created shows that displayed to our intelligence without compromising our reality, we were sneered out in editorials.
When we cultivate our own beauty, we are ignored, or worse: “exoticized.”

When we dare to like ourselves and not be subservient out of reflex, we are shot in the walmarts, in the streets, and our killers are rewarded with a paid vacation.

Success for blacks in america comes with punishment. Nothing is more dangerous than to be unapologetically self-loving, yet able to go toe-to-toe with your white peers. They have magazines telling them they’re beautiful, stories saying they’re courageous, and smart, and funny, and thoughtful. They have a culture that tells them that they are, in a word, perfectible. To be black in america is to be faced with the notion that you are naturally imperfect.
And to succeed while black in america is to succeed in spite of your society, in spite of your nation–not because of it.

Keep the conversation going - comment and discuss with your thoughts

16 Responses to "To be young, gifted, and black."
  1. Brian Jr. says:

    You were never a slave. You born with the same rights and freedoms as everyone else in this country. If people of color are treated so poorly here, why do more keep coming while none ever leave? If you think you would be better off somewhere else, what’s stopping you from leaving? People of color enjoy a higher standard of living in the US than any other country in the world. No one alive today was a slave in America and no one alive today owned slaves. Its time to move on.

    • Brianna says:

      It’s so lame that all your comments have to bash on anyone’s posts if they aren’t Caucasian. That’s your purpose on this website. You aren’t spreading truth or constructive criticism, your comment here wasn’t even necessary or relevant. There is nothing wrong with white pride, but you’re not white and proud, you’re just an arse. Even other white people look down on childish behaviour like that. Go ahead and play the guessing game on my race and cry about what you’re really doing. No one cares. There’s a fine line between being realistic and being a pessimist. Go be unappreciated somewhere else.

      • Brian Jr. says:

        None of what you just said is accurate. I am not going to “play a guessing game” on your race. I couldn’t possibly care less. I wasn’t even talking to you. The post was about the ddifficulty of black people in America. I replied that people of color enjoy a higher standard of living here than anywhere else in the world. How is that irrelevant?

        • barry irving says:

          …because you don’t know African peoples from all over the world and therefore you can’t say that. How would an idiot like you know what to look at?…much less where to go to find out?

    • barry irving says:

      … what evidence do you have of “more keep coming while NONE ever leave?”…sounds like a judgment based on vapid opinion!

      • Brian Jr. says:

        So I guess the rising percentage of minorities in this country is my opinion and not a fact? Nice try crybaby.

        • barry irving says:

          …look White Pride World Wide, David Dukes unborn son son ( get it? ) Lil Sniper Rabbit look’in for trouble…

          ..Molded Dough Boy, Casper the Friendly Snot Bag….

          …you said “more keep coming and none ever leave”…none?

          …how moronic is that?…or would you prefer to be called an Idiot?…I left, others leave all the time. Some stay, some come back because they have family and lives ( unlike you…Brian Sr.’s dead right? You probably don’t know your mother, um, you know the “V slot” owner that dropped you back then?)

          …you know nothing, as I said…just ANOTHER avowed Racists son of a Racist, who has nothing better to do than to spew venom!…GOOD JOB CASPER!

          • Brian Jr. says:

            And what do you spew jungle bunny? You are a race hustling crybaby. Im casper? You are antique farm equipment. If your ancestors weren’t brought here you’d be in the motherland sitting in a mud hut with a chicken bone through your nose. Now get back on your mop before the boss sees you spearchucker.

          • barry irving says:

            …thanks for the compliment Casper – “BOO” …just doing my part to keep the Freaks in Rare From..

            …such White Pride is rare and must be cherished…Brian Sr. must be amazing…LOL!

          • Brian Jr. says:

            I’m sorry but that was not even slightly funny

          • barry irving says:

            …Brian, I PITY YOU…SO WHITE BRED…such a special kind of stupid. You actually think that I’m toying with you…that’s pathetic.

            …it’s not your fault Sonny. This race card page is doing nothing but giving people like you a sorry chance to vent and dig shydt to mash and throw with your tiny brain and others to think that they can actually say something clever and get a vague message across in six words and no explanation. Please understand one thing ( and no response is necessary )

            …My responses to you have only the cruelest intentions. It doesn’t matter whether you think I was effective at it…it is what it is. The fact that you look for the humor as if I am entertaining you is just really sad.

            …BTW, LOL is laughing out loud “AT”CHA”…not with ya!

            …G’bye Sonny, I won’t bother you any more!

          • Brian Jr. says:

            Another dud, nice try boy

          • Brian Jr. says:

            Another corny post. Just let it go sambo.

          • barry irving says:

            …yup, OK Casper, good advice, Slip a disk in ya neck,
            and maybe ya head will slump to one side and you won’t be able to talk!

          • Brian Jr. says:

            Are you still bumping those big lips together?

  2. barry irving says:

    …all true my Brother….but take every thing you wrote in reflection of the pain, hate or the frustration of ignorance trying to block your way and now reflect just the warrior and his conquests of spirit…some will call you whatever, but it will wake them and you up to the fact that if we are not warriors in life, we settle always. ( maybe you don’t need waking up and you’re just being honest ).

    … No apology is necessary for achievement and the road blocks or attempted roadblocks that are smashed in fairness because they try it! Life is competitive, Racially or not!

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