Saturday, April 29, 2006
A friend of mine said he was browsing the web when he came across an article by a gentleman named Cobb. The article was posted on a conservative blog known as Booker Rising. Throughout the article, the gentleman took great exception to my views on Darfur. He went on to take some personal shots at me while quoting extensively from my article. Well, I checked it out for myself, and my friend was right. But rather than respond in kind, I will attempt to, once again, state my position on this issue--and especially as it relates to the house Negroes among us and why they think the way they do.
"If the massas house caught on fire the house negro would fight harder to put the blaze out than the massa would. "Massa got sick house negro would say :what's the matter boss, we sick? "We sick" he identified himself with his master more than his master identified with himself"
The debate that is now being waged about Sudan is a classic one. On one side of this issue is the intellectual house negro who wants to protect massa's house and his stake in it. He wants nothing to rock the boat or upset the apple cart--nothing that would take him away from such a happy and (in his mind) fulfilling existence. To him, the only thing that matters is keeping the status quo in tact,--thus, insuring he will remain in the house for a long time. This is the crux of the black conservatives position and simply stated, it goes like this: We can and should do nothing in Darfur, because they are Africans and we are Americans; and other than similar pigmentation we have nothing in common.
I subscribe to an opposite school of thought and the other side of the argument. I think it is fair to say that I am in the field negro camp on this issue. His life on the plantation is not so great, and he does not see what belongs to massa as his own. He realizes that his very existence is tied to something larger. He views his race as a collective of all black people and not just those on the particular plantation on which he resides. His position cannot be suncretized with the house negro. The people of Darfur are not on our plantation, but we should care about those other field Negroes and refugees who are going through hell right now. Additionally, we should realize, that but for the grace of our creator we could all be in that same position. Unlike the house negro, we don't see this as their problem, we see it as our own, because we look at them and see ourselves.
Of course this entire field negro, house negro predicament is a very interesting one for most African Americans. It's a constant struggle for identity and a sense of belonging--grasping to achieve that American dream that was not meant for us in the first place. The field negro does a better job of dealing with it because he knows that this is not his dream. This so called melting pot was never meant for him, and he accepts that. The house negro can't juxtapose that position, because after all, things are going so well for him. He absolutely believes he was meant to be a part of the American dream and he belongs in the melting pot.
Nothing could be further from the truth. However, I do understand this is tough for you--the house negro--to deal with. After all, this is the country of your birth; but most of your ancestors wanted no part of it. They were brought here against their will, yet they helped to build it and make it what it is. NOW you want a stake in it if only because of what your ancestors have contributed. But there is a problem.... those in the majority population do not embrace you as one who should be celebrating this great experiment in democracy called America. Unfortunately for you, they consider you to be just a part of the experiment--a kind of human lab rat if you will--whose contribution had nothing to do with the actual research and science that made it successful. When they see the house negro with his social and financial success, they say, ' wow look at all that we have done! Look at how far we brought the negro. We gave him civil rights, and we have made the American dream attainable for him.'
But here is the question most black Americans should ask themselves: Do you really have a stake at the table, and is this great democracy called America your democracy? Does massa fully embrace you as one of his own, or are you just some lab rat that helped to make his experiment a successful one? Individuals of Cobb's ilk would scream in the affirmative; yes I am an American, and yes I have a stake in this pie. So therefore, why should I care what happens to a bunch of Africans in Africa? After all, I am an American now, I have no connection to Africa and Africans. My pie after all is right here. It's the same silly argument many black West Indians use when they came to this country from the various islands. I am American now, and don't you dare call me black American because I am from Jamaica, or Barbados, or fill in the blank. No, your black ass is black, period! Not West Indian, American or whatever you want to call yourself because you want to identify closer with white Americans. That's how they see you, and that's how you should see yourself. To black conservatives who want to turn their backs on Africa, I say, your black ass is African whether you like it or not, and that's how massa sees you, even if you are living in the house with him. When you say, why should I care about a bunch of poor Africans half way across the world? I don't think you realize just how ignorant you sound.
But I will tell you why you should care; just remember that no matter how successful the American experiment seems to be, there is always the possibility of side effects, and the chance that one of the ingredients used in the experiment will have a negative result down the road. Just remember, that the people of Africa and the rest of the world are watching how we treat our brothers and sisters in Dafur, and how much outcry we can generate against the atrocities being committed against our own people. If we act like we don't give a damn about our own, why should anyone else care about them or us for that matter? Don't we realize that when we dehumanize and marginalize these people, we are doing the exact same thing to ourselves? When this is allowed to happen the rest of the world devalues the black life, and there is no separation between you, the house negro, and your refugee brothers and sisters in Africa. It's no accident that thousands of women and children were slaughtered in Rwanda while the world looked away. It's easy to look away when what is being slaughtered has less significance and is less human to you. By the way, those Africans doing the slaughtering suffered from the same self hatred that has manifested itself in this debate.
Anyway my house negro brothers and sisters, you just keep thinking that somehow you will be viewed differently because you are a black American and not a black African. At the end of the day, you will be in for a rude awakening. The Jews know it, and you will never see an American Jew not support Israel one hundred percent. They know that their existence is inextricably linked to that of Israel. We should know that about Africa too, but unfortunately we are too busy trying to impress each other with intellectual mumble jumble, and living comfortably in the house to see it.
Now if you will excuse me, I gotta head down I95. I have a rally to attend.
Posted by field negro at 11:44 AM
Friday, April 28, 2006
I have been getting beaten up a lot lately, both for my handle -field-negro and for referring to some other blacks as house negroes. I mean no offense, but as one of my heroes and fellow countryman, Bob Marley, said in one of his songs; "who di cap fit, let them wear it"
So for all the people I offended, let me say this from the bottom of my heart; I don't really give a damn! Like I really care about a house negroes feelings. Some of you weren't really sure if you qualified as a house negro or not, and I want to help those people find themselves . So with apologies to Jeff Foxworthy for stealing his lines, I am going to tell you just a few things to help you know if you might be a house negro. Ready? Ok, here goes:
If you know what GOP stands for; you might be a house negro.
If your child gets nervous around other black kids; you just might be a house negro.
If you actually think old blue eyes-Frank Sinatra- was a better singer than Luther; you might be a house negro.
If you think Halle Barry is hotter than Lisa Raye; you just might be a house negro. (male version)
If you still call Muhamed Ali Cassius Clay; you might be a house negro.
If you think end zone celebrations in football are out of control; yep, you might just be a house negro.
If you think an HBC is a bank; you might be a house negro.
If you know someone who went to Bob Jones or Liberty University; you might be a house negro.
If when you hear of a Jaguar mascot in sports you think right away of Jacksonville and not Southern University; well you just might be a house negro.
If you think Rodney King deserved to get his ass kicked; you might be a house negro.
If you watched "Friends" and not "Living Single"; you just might be a house negro.
If you think the gipper was a great President; whew, yep you might be a house negro.
If white people tell you;" when I see you I don't see black or white, I just see a person." Well guess what, you just might be a house negro.
If you go to Starbucks for the ambience; you just might be a house negro.
If you think Armstrong Williams is an intellectual; you might be a house negro.
If you watch Fox and Friends; you might be a house negro.
If you think Roots was a black musical version of Hair; you might have house negro issues.
If you are over forty years old and have never seen "Cooley High"; you might be a house negro.
If you are under thirty and never saw "Boyz n The Hood"; the same applies.
If you actually watch Webster re runs on television; you might be a house negro.
If you think The Bayou Classic is a famous book by a Louisiana author; you might just be a house negro.
If you just love Montana in the spring ; you might be a house negro.
If you have to travel over thirty minutes to get to church; well you might just be a house negro.[You have to think about that last one]
If you are sure that the last police officer that stopped you was just making sure it was your car and someone wasn't stealing it; well your dumb ass might be a house negro.
If you are a grown ass man or woman and you call teenage white kids sir and mam; well you might be a house negro.
If you can see why O.J. killed Nicole-cause heavens forbid he was about to lose missy-then your ignorant behind might be a house negro.
If you got mad and quit the country club when you found out another black person was joining; your snooty ass might just be a house negro.
If you can sing the words to one Toby Keith song; you might be a house negro.
If your kids play lacrosse; you might be a house negro with house negro kids.
If you know the rules of Polo; yeah buddy, you just might be a house negro.
If you have ever cried during one single episode of Oprah; you just might be, just maybe, a house negro.
If you get the entire Paris Hilton thing; well your black ass might be a house negro.
And finally, if you think Tupac is a video game; well then your dumb ignorant behind, might just qualify for house negro status.
Now I gotta go, I hope I didn't offend you house negroes out there. After all, I need scraps from massa's table sometimes, so I can't afford to piss you off.
Posted by field negro at 12:05 AM
Tuesday, April 25, 2006
What's not to like about lyrics like: "If I wasn't in the rap game I'd probably have a key knee deep in the crack game Because the streets is a short stop Either your selling crack rocks or you got a wicked jump shot." [Notorious B.I.G., Things Done Changed]
I have a confession to make; I love hip hop music. Maybe it's my Jamaican roots, and growing up listening to toasters (The precursors of rap) like U-Roy, Stitchey, Dillinger, and Yellowman.
Not to mention the booming sound systems of King Tubby's Hi Fi, and Channel One. Somehow rap is in my blood. Even if now, as a forty something I am officially -as the young kids call it- an old head, and therefore not supposed to like rap, because people of my generation should be more into Frankie Beverly and Marvin Gaye, than say, Jay Z and Juvenile. But as proof of my devotion; right now in my ipod hip hop makes up at least half of what's in rotation. From old school stuff by Masta Ace, and Supercat, to newer stuff by Bun B, and Beanie Man.
Now I say confession, because loving hip hop lately (especially if you are in my age group) is like admitting that you have a secret vice like smoking, or gambling. And to be fair, hip hop and the industry that controls it, is partially to blame for the negative perceptions that often follows the genre.The beefs, the ignorant behavior by some posse members, not to mention the violent and misogynist lyrics by some of the more popular stars; has brought a real black eye to the art form and the life style it represents.
The irony is that rappers who the industry chooses to promote -insert 50 Cent here- are not even as talented as many struggling rappers with much more positive messages to bring to the fore. I would much rather listen to The Roots or Common, than say, Fiddy-As white suburbanites love to call him, or Nelly for that matter.
It's all making it much harder to defend the industry and the artist that are a part of it. The other day I was with a group of thirty something and forty something black professionals, and for some reason, the conversation turned to the sad state of rap music and its negative effects on our young people. Every one in the group was getting their two cents in, and although I hate to say it; were all making good points. Slowly one person, and then the other, noticed I wasn't saying anything; (highly unusual for me) and so of course, they all looked at me right on cue. At that very moment my hip hop dilemma was crystallized. I mean, how could I knock something which I love and have loved all my life, but at the same time defend something that have sort of betrayed me? Now I knew what mothers felt like when their children did wrong, and I really had no answer. "Well I like hip hop, and I think it's just a few bad apples making it bad for the rest of the artist.." I hoped that was good enough, but of course it wasn't. "What about the way they degrade women and call us bi****s? Or the ignorant glorification of materialism, and violence?" Every group has one, the mouthpiece and the confronter, that just didn't know enough to let an uncomfortable moment pass. She was right of course, and the truth is, I didn't have an answer for her. "What about it?" I said; clearly losing an argument I did not want. "Why do you listen to that crap, and support those companies that push all that negative stuff into our communities?" She was now bordeline angry; and of course, every one in the group was waiting for my response. "I don't know I grew up with it, and it's kinda in my blood" "But I thought you were from Jamaica?", every group has one of these too, the curious who wants to learn, and who will engage you whenever they see an opportunity to get some knowledge. I took my opening like Walter Payton busting out of the back field. "Well yes, let me explain that to you; you see rapping really started in the dance halls of Jamaica..."
So I got out of an uncomfortable situation with some friends. But those annoying questions stay in my conscience, and unfortunately, I know that a lot of what the confronter was saying is true. Rap and hip hop has to change directions fast, because it's getting to that tipping point where it's starting to do more harm than good in our communities. I know it has made a lot of people wealthy, and has even given some who previously didn't have hope a chance to be a part of a bigger movement. But the ignorance and violence has got to stop. And these young bucks have to start learning to respect their craft and its history. This will at least make it easier for this old head to defend hip hop to a bunch of other old heads, who just don't happen to have it in their bloods.
"I seen hoop dreams deflate like a true friends weight to try and to fail the two things I hate Succeed in this rap game the two things that great" [Jay-Z, H.O.V.A.]
Tell em Jigga!
Posted by field negro at 8:32 PM
Sunday, April 23, 2006
Hi again everybody, it's Sunday morning out here in the fields.
As usual, massa has thrown away his copy of the Sunday paper, giving the field-negro a chance to read it. Shhhhhh! Can't let massa know I can read, he might take away some of my privileges.
OK, so let's see what we have in today's news:
"Nagin and Landrieu Runoff In New Orleans Elections"
This was easy to call, these two guys were the only real politicians in the race. Honestly, I know a little bit about Louisiana politics, because Louisiana is my adopted home state. The choice here is a toss up for me. Landrieu is from a political linage that has a fairly good history with blacks. -His sister is Senator Mary Landrieu who would not have gone to Washington without the black vote in Louisiana. And Nagin was actually put into power by the white business community in New Orleans. He was a Cox Cable executive who lived in the house until Katrina hit, then he saw first hand just how much massa cared about his black a** and the other field-negroes in the 9th ward. The irony is that his chocolate city remark might have turned white New Orleanians against him. If he had not made those remarks, he would not have been in a run off situation with the white candidate. A white candidate by the way, who has run a clean and dignified campaign so far. If Nagin loses so be it, I know Jessie has some issues with how the voting went down, but at the end of the day, former house negro Nagin will be no better for blacks than Landrieu.
"Breakthrough In Political Deadlock In Iraq"
Yeah right, one hundred years from now the headlines will be the same about the political climate in Iraq. There is a reason that it took a dictator to keep that country together for so many years. There are so many groups and religious factions in that country that it's almost impossible to have a western style democracy there. Yet frat boy and the brilliant neo cons who hijacked his presidency actually thought they could stabilize things over there, and ultimately, the region. What a recipe for disaster that was, an intellectual light weight like frat boy calling the shots,while slick ideology driven people around him were whispering in his ear. Combine that with 911, the perfect excuse to go kick some Arab butt, -any Arab will do, and you have the Iraq war; almost 3,000 dead and counting, and 500 billion dollars out of the pockets of hard working people. Yeah frat boy, I got your axis of evil right here!
"Hestert Frist Want President To Probe High Gas Prices"
Nice to see the repubs actually care about the high cost of driving these days. -$3.03 a gallon in Philly- But I suspect, the mid-term elections coming up has something to do with it. Although, to be fair, I don't think we can blame frat boy for the oil companies greed. Did you hear the one about the Exxon executive who retired with a 500 million dollar retirement package? That will buy alot of Hummers.
"Second Duke Stripper Speaks Out"
I swear I am not going to say anything else about this case until the trial -if there is one- is over. Word to Al. Sharpton, stay away from this one. Jessie you too, although I think it's a bit too late for that.
"Osama Bin Laden New Audio Tape"
America's most wanted would have done a better job of capturing this guy than frat boy and his administration. All those resources in Iraq, when we know Bin Laden is somewhere on the Pakistani border. Frat boy keeps saying he is on the run, yet every time I turn on the T.V. I see Osama's bearded mug telling the world how evil America and the west is. And what's the reward now? Thirty million? The guy is 6"7" for crying out loud and no body has any informaton about where he is. I guess those tribes in that part of the world don't value our money. Or maybe they don't think we will keep our word and pay the reward once he is caught.
"CIA Officer Loses Job Over Post Leak"
What is she crazy, doesn't she know that only the White House is allowed to leak sensitive information to the press?
"Tony Snow Considering White House Press Secretary Job"
Geeez, I thought he was the White House press secretary.
Does this mean that we are going to get fair and balanced reporting from the White House? What a joke, those people at FAUX News have no shame. I would like to meet one person in America who actually considers that a news station. They give opinions, and I suppose they have some entertainment value. But news; not by a long shot.
I see Barry hit one last night, go Barry go! That's 709 and counting. You know how I feel about this subject, I want Bonds to shatter the Bambino's record and retire before he can break Aaron's. Why? Because Ruth did not hit one single home run post integration of the major leagues that's why. But Barry, please stop crying on national television, it's not going to get you one ounce of sympathy from these people out here who hate your guts.
I am watching the NBA playoffs, and King James just dropped a sick triple double to beat the Wizards. Yep, he is the real deal, and a nice big man away from about three rings. Having said that, it pained me to watch former sixers Eric Snow and Larry Hughes in this series while AI is sitting at home. I have to say it, I love Mo Cheeks, and he is an icon in this town, (Philly) but I don't think he would make a very good coach on the high school level let alone the NBA.
Hockey playoffs are on the way too. Now us field-negroes don't see ice too often, but don't get it twisted, they are some of us in hokcey too. Check out the number two goalie for Ottawa, -Ray Emery- a field- negro with some serious game. Anyway, I am backing the Red Wings in the west and the Fly boys in the east. Should be fun.
The best sporting event no one outside of us track and field virtuosos have ever heard of is about to start this week again in Philly. It's the Penn Relays and I can't wait. I never miss it; great crowds, great fans, great athletes, and of course, my Jamaican schools always right at the top.
That's it for me folks, but before I go, I want to say thanks to Dell Gines, one the great young thinkers and writers out here, for recognizing me on his blog. Dell has a great blog and is one of the reasons I got into this thing. (Who said we don't look out for each other?)
Now I gotta go, I think I hear massa coming.
Posted by field negro at 1:28 PM
Thursday, April 20, 2006
I have often suspected that African Americans are the most insular and most selfish of all the African people in the world. Given what's been happening in Darfur and the lack of interest and out cry from blacks in this country, I believe that my suspicions were correct. Part of the problem of course is that unlike Africans in other mostly Third Workd countries, we have it too good here. After all, we live in the greatest country on earth, and we are often sheltered from many of the world's problems. This, coupled with the fact that we just don't give a damm- primarily becuase we are too selfish and busy with our own lives accumulating material things and keeping up with the Joneses- makes it all too easy to look away. But that's black America for you, if it isn't happening in good ole USA, it just aint happening anywhere. But let's consider what has been happening in Darfur for a minute.
Darfur is in the western region of Sudan, and what has been happening there is a tragedy of epic proportions. Thousands of black people have been killed in the name of ethnic cleansing by Arab millitiamen. They have attacked villages, burned, mutilated, and raped women and children by the thousands; all with the blessing of the Sudanese government. The situation is so bad, that one report says that 40% of the people in that region between the ages of 15-49 have died at the hands of violence. It's a fact that over a million Sudanese have been forced to flee their homeland and have become refugees as the genocide continues.
One of the dirty little secrets from that region is this: Many Arabs look down on black Africans , and in fact, the Arab colonialist to that continent were as, or even more brutal than those who came from Europe. To this day, the Arabs view black Africans as Kaffirs or slaves, and as a result, what has been happening to these poor people in Dafur has had the blessing of President Omar-el Bashir; a man who has used Sudanese troops, and armed militias to carry out his ethnic cleansing. The situation there is similar to what happened in Biafra in 1967-68 when armed Nigerian thugs tried to illiminate the Igbo tribe. And what happened in Rwanda in 1994, when Hutu extremist unleashed a genocide in which over 800,000 of their fellow countrymen were slaughtered. The general consensus is that the people of Darfur do not have a constituency here so there is no one to speak on there behalf. But that's not true, they do have a constituency and it's every black person in this country.
These atrocities against our people take place in other parts of the world, while African Americans choose to do nothing. We go to Durham North Carolina and speak out against the Duke lacrosse team for allegedly raping one of our sisters, or to Mexico to confront their President for making derogatory remarks about us, but there is silence while thousands of black Africans are being slaughtered on a daily basis. Where is Jessie, where is Al, where is the CBC? To his credit Colin Powell did speak out about Darfur and has taken the issue to the UN on behalf of the United States. But it was frat boy who said nothing like this would happen on his watch, and yet, it's happening. But I am not going to get on frat boy about this issue, this is about black folks here at home, not about the President. This is about black folks not having a clue about what's going on in the world and not realizing that we are part of a larger world community.
I have seen more white people involved in this struggle, and trying to bring this issue to the forefront than blacks. And for that, we as black folks should all be ashamed. The UN called this the worst humanitarian crisis in the world, and still black folks in this country remain silent. No outcry, no marches in Washington organized by black leaders, no ink from the black press, nothing; just silence.
There is finally a march being sponsered by the American Jewish World Service and other religious groups. And the Jewish community has raised over two million dollars towards the effort in Darfur. Also, I would like to give some props to New York Times reporter Nicholas Kristof who is the only journalist in the world who seems to be trying to keep this story alive. -The last time I checked he was a white man- I understand that the Jews have a unique sensitivity to this issue, but so should we. Unfortunately, we are too busy being entertained by UPN and BET, and too busy washing and waxing our cars to care.
The march takes place on April 30, 2006 in Washington D.C. between 2-4 PM on the National Mall.
You can help organize by hitting this email address: MillionVoices@SaveDarfur.org
Or you can hit the web site at: http://millionvoicesfordarfur.com
Posted by field negro at 10:16 PM
Monday, April 17, 2006
The only thing a field-negro despises more than a house negro is a cooning negro.
A cooning negro is dangerous becuase he (or she) let's massa off the hook by letting him think that we are all happy and content. The massa wants us to coon; heck, it was a white man that mastered cooning in the mid 1800's by doing black face routines to mostly lower working class whites in the north. Mel Watkins wrote in his book; "On the real side, a summary of African American humor" that this form of entertainment codified the public images of blacks as the prototypical Fool or Sambo.
Now sadly, the white man doesn't have to do black face anymore, becuase we as negroes are all too willing to coon for him.
The most famous coon in American history is a man by the name of Lincoln Theodore Monroe Andrew Perry. -If you guessed who this is, you might be a coon- This famous coon is also known as Stepin Fetchit, and in honor of him I have a list. Yes, it's the first annual Stepin Fetchit Awards, and the nominees are: Drum roll please!
1. Nipsey Russell-Have you ever watched those reruns of game shows? Nipsey was the brother with the big afro and the pearly whites cooning for the game show audience.
2. Jimmie Walker- AKA JJ from Good Times. Sorry JJ, your cooning was not DYNOMITE!
3. Sherman Hemsley-AKA George Jefferson. George you might have been moving on up, but you were cooning all the way. And why were you stuck with big Louise while your neigbor, the white guy, had fine ass Roxey Roker for a wife? Anyway, like the two coons above you, you are still in syndication so you qualify.
4. Eddie Griffith- Have you ever seen this negro and he is not smiling? I swear this negro must smile in his sleep.
5. Ted Lange-AKA Issac from the love boat. The white man's favorite bartender and happy black guy.
6. The Tom Joyner Morning Show (All of them)- These negroes grin and coon so much on their morning show, that it's a miracle that they can even get a song or commercial on the air.
7. Cuba Gooding, Jr,.-Show me the money! No, show me the coon. Ever since Boyz In The Hood, it's been all down hill to coonville for my man.
8. Three 6 Mafia- Did you see the Oscars? Nuff [sic] said.
9. Cedric The Entertainer- I kinda like my man, but he coons just a little bit too much for my liking. Now I know white America loves those bud commercials, but at some point he has got to get more serious.
10. Martin Lawrence- Seems like my man can't get a role in Hollywood unless he is cooning, no wonder the poor guy turned to drugs.
11. Al Roker- Yo Al, is the weather always sunny in your world? Geez, could you cut down on the cooning just a notch?
12. Snoop Dog- Yeah Snoop, you're a rapper but you are a coon. You single handedly brought pimping back in vogue for crying out loud. Just when us black folks thought we had seen our last pimp.
13. The Management at BET- All coon T.V. all the time.
14. The Ad. agency that does the McDonald's commercials- If you don't get it, I can't explain.
15. Mother and daughter on the Parker's- I don't even remember their names.... oh forget it.
Honorable mention goes to: Shuffling Sammy Sosa- He was a coon but he is gone now.
50 Cent and the entire G-Unit for being gangsta coons.
Chris Tucker-His bug eyes alone gives him coon credibility.
Fonsworth Bently doesn't get on becuase he is just a slick negro with no talent using the coon game to get paid. My good friend Tony the prosecutor doesn't get on becuase he isn't national news just yet. [But make no mistake, he is a coon -inside joke]
AND THE STEPIN FETCHIT AWARD GOES TO..... you know what, I think I will see what type of feed back I get via emails and posts and make my decision then.
Gotta go back to the fields now; whether we coon or not massa still wants us field-negroes to work.
Posted by field negro at 9:25 PM
Sunday, April 16, 2006
Good Friday was a good day for me. I hung out with a a buddy of mine from law school and his cousin from red state Texas. We drove down I95 to the nation's capitol to check out the sites, and to satisfy my red state friends hunger for all things American. Did I mention that he is fiercely patriotic, and a card carrying republican to boot? Yes, this former military man, personal fitness trainer, and fellow Texan like frat boy, was darn near foaming at the mouth to see where his leaders live and play.
Once in DC, we headed straight for the mall area and the Lincoln memorial. If you are a tourist to DC, this is where you go. Of all the monuments in DC the Lincoln memorial is the most historic and holds the most significance to Americans. It is where Martin Luther King delivered his "I have a dream" speech on a hot August day in 1963. It is, in fact, where most protesters gather when they go to the capitol to bring their grievances to their elected officials. It is also where, on good Friday, April 14, 2006, I saw pretty much all foreign visitors and white Americans celebrating America and it's history. "Hey, where are the black folks?" My friend -the lawyer- kept teasing me. "I thought DC was supposed to be chocolate city?" His constant heckling made me defensive, "heck I don't know, just because I live on the east coast, doesn't make me an expert on black folk in DC." And so it went all day, we could actually count the number of black folks we saw on one hand. Lot's of foriegners, but no black folks.
Of course my red state buddy was so beside himself with glee, he didn't have time to notice who was and who wasn't there. -As maybe he shouldn't have- He was acting like a kid who had just been told his parents were buying Disney World. I mean we couldn't keep up with the guy. The Korean war memorial, the World War II memorial, the Smithsonian, the Jefferson memorial, and finally, the Lincoln Memorial. What we all basically come to see in the first place. There he was, staring intently at honest Abe, and listening with rapt attention as someone described all that honest Abe has meant to the republic. He was no doubt feeling proud to be an American, and even more so, a republican, just like honest Abe.
Now all the way down to DC from Philly, my buddy -the lawyer-kept singing a Hank Williams Jr. song. The words went something like this: "Mr. Lincoln I wish you were here the republics changed alot in a hundred years. I don't think it's working like you planned. Mr. Lincoln we sure could use a hand.." or something like that. Now I kept thinking, what does old Hank mean by those profound words, and was my buddy even singing a real song? Well I looked it up, and my buddy was right, it is a song and those are the words. Now I am standing there staring at the great emancipator, with my buddies terrible singing and that song stuck in my head. All the while my red state buddy is clicking away with his camera while I am trying to read the words on the monument. Now I must confess, given what I know about honest Abe, I am not impressed, and I would suspect many other black people feel the same way. So as I am standing there, tourist from India, Japan, and who knows where else, clicking away around me, I am starting to understand the dearth of chocolate in chocolate city.
To some Americans -myself included- Lincoln wasn't the great emancipator everyone made him out to be. Now this might sound like blasphemy to most other Americans, but if we could put down our flags for a minute, and review the facts, maybe we could see honest Abe from a slightly different perspective. Say a field-negroes maybe?
Let's look at the facts for a minute; the great emancipator never publicly called for the emancipation of slaves. James M. McPherson writing in the New York Times said; "Lincoln lagged behind abolitionist, and was last to support the enlistment of black union soldiers. "
Lincoln wrote a letter to Alexander Stephens in 1860 stating; "Do the people of the South really entertain fears that a republican administration would directly or indirectly, interfare with their slaves?" Lincoln went on to write that "There is no cause for such fears." I bet you won't hear that quote from black conservatives the next time they are touting the republican party as the party of Lincoln. You see in my humble opinion, Lincoln was a politician first, and a very smart one, who did what he thought was necessary to keep the union together. Nothing wrong with that, and it doesn't make him a bad person. In fact, of all the politicians of the time, Lincoln probably had the most vision and was the most pragmatic. Does that make him the great emancipator who loved and saw an equal in black people? The answer is no.
Lincoln married Mary Todd who was from a wealthy family that owned slaves. Hardly the actions of a slave lover or a true abolitionist. He also balked at signing the Confiscation Act which had far more teeth than the Emancipation Proclamation, and which sought to punish slave owners who owned blacks at the time. Instead, he signed the Emancipation Proclamation which was based on the president's war powers as commander in chief to sieze the enemies property (i.e. slaves) The Emancipation Proclamation, contrary to popular beliefs, did very little in terms of actually freeing the slaves. Under the act, only 40,000 out of 4 million slaves were freed making it hardly the great document it's made out to be. The fact of the matter is this; Lincoln didn't want the Confiscation Act -which has far more teeth- in place until he could set up a deportation plan for blacks. Yes, a deportation plan. Lincoln believed in the colonization of blacks and actually received $600,000 from congress at the time to put this plan in place. Keep in mind that Liberia was established in 1821 as a colony for freed slaves. Again, I don't think honest Abe necessarily wanted blacks colonized because he hated us. On the contrary, he thought of the political ramifications of millions of freed slaves running around the United States, and thought it would be better if they were some place else. Hey, politically speaking he might have been right. I am sure he was thinking of the strain it would put on the countries resources to teach all these former slaves to read, to find them jobs, land to farm, and to assimilate them into American society. It couldn't have been an easy undertaking, and the politician Lincoln was no doubt thinking along these lines.
Now before you, the reader, think that I have some real issues with honest Abe, let me say for the record that I do not. He did support the 13th amendment which formally abolished slavery throughout the United States, and Fredrick Douglas thought he was an honorable man. And who am I to dispute what a true field-negro like Fredrick Douglas says? So there, I do have some love for honest Abe. But let's not get it twisted, honest Abe could easily have gone in another direction on this slavery thing. Had he done that, there is no telling where we would be now. Maybe old Hank would not have written his song; heck, he wouldn't need to, cause I am sure the republic would have been more to Hank's liking.
"Mr Lincoln I wish you were here the republics changed alot in a hundred years. I don't think it's working like you planned." I don't think so either Hank.
I gotta go to the white house now, my republican buddy would never forgive me if I didn't take him to see where his President and fellow Texan lives.
Posted by field negro at 2:59 PM
Monday, April 10, 2006
Time to update my top ten house-negroes list.
Some negroes will remain and some will move off. This of course will allow more worthy house-negroes to get on the list.
1. Clarence Thomas-Let's just put this out there right now; this negro ain't ever coming off this list, and he probably will never be bumped from his number one spot. EVER!
2. Ward Connerly- Still number two, because like uncle Clarence, this self hater gives new meaning to the term house negro. (See previous write up)
3. Condi Rice-I hated to do this to girlfriend because deep down I kinda like and respect her. But her blind loyalty to frat boy and her narrow minded view of the war effort in Iraq tells me that this negro loves it in the house way too much.
4. Harold Ford, Jr.-Yes congressman you are right at home in the house. In fact, I would suspect massa would have to beg you to go outside just to get some sun. I know you are running for a senate seat from the great state of Tennessee, so you have to track right to get all those red state votes. But enough already. Trust me, they wouldn't vote for your black ass if you gave every voter a life time ticket to the Grand Ole Opry.
5. Rev.Floyd Flake - The good reverend is a former member of congress from New York City.He always went against the CBC when he was in Washington and couldn't wait to get out of congress to start pimping for the man. Well, the pimp game is good. He is now a key member of the National Right Network, and a fellow at the Manhatten Institute. Say thank you Massa, for keeping me from the fields with those other negroes.
6. Oprah Winfrey- I have previously written ad nauseam about Ms. Thing so I won't say too much more here, but America's favorite Aunt Jemima is loving it in the house. So what if it's the kitchen, it's still the house.
7. Lynn Swann- Yes sir Mr. former Steeler, you are still on the list. By the way, I think the black voters of Pennsylvania are on to you. Did you see the latest poll of the black voters in the state? The white candidate is killing you among black registered voters. So you see, you might be able to fool massa, but you can't fool us field-negroes.
8. Thomas Sowell- You are a smart guy which is what makes your refusal to come to the field so sad. Come on Thomas, it's not too late. They don't need you in the house, there is more work to be done out here with us.
9. Roy Innis- "For me to remain viable in NY I have to remain at least for the time being a democrat" Oh I get it, you are just a democrat because it's viable for you right now. This man has the support of the NRA for his organization, in of all places; New York City. What a pimp. Hey, the guy named his son Niger for crying out loud. That's all you need to know about this self hater.
10. The Williams Boys-Armstrong & Walter- These two knuckle- heads are birds of a feather. None of them have any real intellect, but they have managed to pimp white conservatives into thinking they are actually as smart as other black conservatives, such as Shelby Steele, and Thomas Sowell. Well, nothing could be farther from the truth. Both are mental lightweights, and Armstrong -a so called journalist- recently took money from the white house to push frat boy's agenda. How embarrassing.
Off the list is Wayne Brady (Just not relevant right now),Colin Powell (I like how he came out against frat boy's war effort recently), Alen Keys (Not relevant), Reverend Jessie Peterson (Too clueless), Ronald Christie (He has been quiet lately, I guess he is finished plugging his book)
Posted by field negro at 8:54 PM
Sunday, April 09, 2006
The field-negroes take on the news of the day.
[Massa taught some of us to read]
"Though To Make Case For Blaming Media On Iraq"
I have previously written about this phenomena on this blog. The blame game being played by frat boy and his minions for the public perception of the war. It seems, according to the Kool-Aide drinkers that it's the media's fault that perceptions of the war are as negative as they are. Not the fact that there are sectarian killings every day, we are still losing American soldiers at the rate of at least one a day, and there have been billions of our dollars sent to fund this fiasco.
To hear the neo-cons and their apologist tell it, this grand scheme is working, and history will prove that it was the right thing to do. Well I am living in the present, and the present ain't looking too great. One report says that of the eighteen provinces in Iraq, the overall stability of six of them are serious to critical. That's not some left wing media spin, that's coming from an internal staff report at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad. There is also less electricity, less household fuels, and less oil being produced in Iraq now than when Madman Hussein was in power. How is that for progress? And yet, the right wing talking heads -Oliely comes to mind- would have us think that it is all going to be alright. Just hang in there America, the rainbow is just around the corner.
"Young Black Men In Crisis"
Now this story broke my heart. I knew the statistics were daunting, but reading this report from the Philadelphia Inquirer brought it home. Black males in Philadelphia make up 4% of the population, yet 50% of them between the ages of 15-29 were the victims of violence in Philadelphia this past year. Only 9% of black eight graders scored at grade level or better reading, compared to 33% of white boys.
Here in Philadelphia, the city has already recorded over ninety homicides, most of them young black males. This is an alarming rate even for a large urban area like Philadelphia. And as is always, the usual suspects are being blamed. The schools, the criminal justice aparatus, the man, a lack of funding for social programs, blah,blah,blah.
Here is the deal, as black folks we have no one to blame but ourselves. This is a largely self created crises that can only be solved when we start taking reponsibility for our own actions. Brothers, start spending time with your children, go back home to your families, and start raising these children that are being raised by the streets. If you have multiple families, make more time to spend with your offsprings, and take less time to hang on the corner and play basketball with your boys. I am sick of seeing these youg men being raised by one generation of females after another with no positive role models in their homes.
Many of you-I am still talking to black folks-are in chruch this morning. You are singing, clapping, and giving praise for all that you have been blessed with. Nothing wrong with wanting to be saved. A little insurance policy for when you check out from this life and go to another one is good. But we also have to make sure that our present life right here and now on earth is right too. It's nice to invest in your local church financially and emotionally. Lord knows that the Pastor could always use more members and a new church. But how about investing some of that emotional and financial capital into your communities and homes? Believe me, you will be just as good a Christian for it. I challenge some of these Pastors -who preach a good game, to be more proactive in their communities with their time and resources. Start walking the walk to go along with that nice talk that you give every Sunday morning when you want us to throw something in the offering plate.
"Finger Pointing On Immigration"
I see frat boy is blaming the Democrats in the Senate for the collapse of the latest immigration reform bill. Actually, this is one of the few policies that frat boy and I agree on. As I have stated before, I think his party is xenophobic when it comes to this issue.-Do you really think that if these illegals were from Canada there would be this much of an outcry?- And honestly, frat boy might be taking this position for political reasons and nothing else. The last time I checked Hispanics were still the fastest growing minority group in this country. So I can hear Karl Rove saying to frat boy; let's not piss off those Mexicans we need their vote. Having said that, his position so far in this debate is still the most practical and sensible of all the others that have been thrown out there.
Now on a lighter note I will check my sports page.
Masters: "Cambell Is Facing Fab Five"
Should be an interesting Sunday of golf. Lefty, Els, and the best field-negro in golf are all in the hunt for the Masters. That would be ViJay Singh. Did you think I was going to say Tiger? Heavens no! Tiger is so far in the house that even white people wish they were him.
I could care less how many green jackets Mr. Multiracial wins. Go Vijay!
"Mayweather tops Judah"
Pretty Boy Floyd is the best thing going in boxing right now, and probably pound for pound one of the greatest fighters of all time. So why is he on the back page of my sports page after his win over Zab Judah last night?
I am guessing pretty boy needs a new publicist.
The Phillies are 0-4. So what else is new?
Barry went 1-3 last night with zero home runs. Barry you better start hitting some home runs soon. You don't have much time before the man trumps up a reason to get you out of baseball. Can't have you passing the Babe if you know what I mean.
"Eagles Face T.O. On Christmas Day"
At least I will have some presents to open.
Now if you will excuse me I gotta go, I don't want Massa to catch me reading.
Posted by field negro at 12:41 PM
Thursday, April 06, 2006
"After many weeks of personal prayer,thinking,and analysis. I have come to the conclusion that it it time to close this public service chapter in my life.."
Prayer to who, or what? I think it was F. Scott Fitzgerald who said "There are no second acts in American lives" I sure hope this is the case with Mr. Pest Control AKA The Hammer. I can honestly say, that since Richard -I am not a crook- Nixon, there has not been a worse man in American politics than the congressman from Sugarland Texas.
Tom DeLay stood for everything that was wrong with Washington. Greed, money,power, petty jealousy, and hubris. This little weasel of a man gives new meaning to the term Napolianic complex. Ultimately, it was this percieved sense of power and entitlement that led to his downfall. Now all his republican buddies are running from him like a whore from a vice cop. Well, I say too late, the damage has already been done, and thanks to this pack in Washington, the approval rating of congress stands at about 29% with the American people.
So what are you going to do now Tom? I mean it must be hard to give up all that power and control. But I am sure you will think of something. Maybe you will find even more religion and start pastoring one of those mega churches down there in Texas. Or wait a minute, I know, you could be a lobbyist and peddle some corporate agendas to the rest of your sleazy friends for big bucks. Either way, I am sure you will make out just fine.
By the way, I saw where you accused Cynthia McKinney of being a racist. Now you accusing her of being a racist Tom, is kinda like Al Capone accusing Minnesota Fats of being a cheater. It just doesn't fly. So could you do us all a favor and just shut up and go away? You are a former exterminator so I am sure you can understand, that now that you are out of congress, they really need to fumigate the joint.
Posted by field negro at 9:33 PM
Sunday, April 02, 2006
I am sure every one has heard the story by now. The one where congresswoman Cynthia McKinney from the great state of Georgia almost caught a Rodney King from the capitol police.
I have been reading about this incident in blogger land, and not surprisingly, given the make up of blogger land, every one thinks the congresswoman was way out of line. Many of her detracters have used this incident to point to statements and mis-steps the congress woman has made in the past. They say this is just another example of girlfriend gone wild. The capitol police are even thinking of [Ready for this?] pressing criminal charges against girlfriend for assaulting a police officer.
So let's go over what we know are the facts for a minute. The congress woman recently changed her hair style -this is important- she is in a rush to get to a meeting, and bypasses the metal detector. The capitol police notices this black female whizzing by him as if she owns the joint, and he immediatly gives chase, grabs her, and demands to know just who the hell she is. This is when girlfriend goes Russell Crowe on my man and tags him with her cell phone.
The capitol police want to make an example of her, they say she was not wearing a congressional pin which she is required to wear for easy identification, and she did not pass through the metal detector as required. The problem is, that very few congressmen or women wear this pin while in the building. Like all people who are accustomed to a certain amount of entitlement they expect to be recognized, and pin be dammed. This might have been the case with congresswoman McKinney. That, complicated with her new hair style might have made it hard for the police officer to recognize her. So we are going to give the officer the benefit of the doubt here, let's assume that he really did not know that this was a congresswoman from the great state of Gerogia. My question is this, did he have to grab her the way he did? I submit to you that if it were a white person passing through in this manner -congress person or not- they would not have been subjected to this type of treatment. These officers are all well trained, and part of their training is learning to treat people in a respectful manner. I submit to you, that this officer knew
exactly what he was doing.
Cynthia McKinney has complained about this type of treatment from the secret service and capitol police in the past. She views this as just a continuation of her on- going problems with these agencies, and, she says, it's because she is a black woman. I say, of course it is, so what else is new? Girlfriend do you think because you are a congresswoman you are immune from your Rodney King moments? I think not. You ask any black person out here if that type of treatment is unusual and they will tell you no. Ms. McKinney's problem is that she now sees herself as an all powerful congresswoman that no one should f**k with it. And when some lowly white police officer questions her authority it really sends her over the deep end. This type of mind sent might have been the genesis of many of her problems in the first place. Nobody, -black or white- likes it when someone plays the "don't you know who I am?" game, and Ms. McKinney seems to be one of those individuals who likes to remind others of just who she is.
What Ms. McKinney needs to realize is that although she views this police officer as just some guy paid to protect her and beneath her stature and pay grade. He still sees himself as a white man, and Ms. McKinney as a black woman.[just another n*****r] Being white in his mind automatically gives hm status, something that she will never have because of her color. He is white, she is not. It's that simple and in his mind that's all he needs to know.
The congresswoman is being beat up in the white press, and on conservative talk radio -Neal Boortz called her a ghetto queen- for this incident. Why, because anytime a black person in this country rises to a position of power, the last thing those in the majority want you to do is flaunt it. In their minds laws were passed to give you certain rights, but don't you dare get the big head, and not think we can't send your black ass right back to square one. That's what the congresswoman has done, she has gotten the big head, and all of white America is praising that policeman for introducing, or at least giving girlfriend a feel, of what a Rodney King moment could be like.
Posted by field negro at 11:21 AM