Monday, November 17, 2008

The Tiger Woods President?




I found the following article from Duke University professor (damn I hate to give a Dukie props), Orin Starn, interesting. He draws a unique parallel between O-merica's two race neutral icons, and lays out what he thinks are the possible pitfalls of our ardent fascination with both men.


"It's not that far-fetched to argue that Tiger Woods' popularity helped pave the way for Barack Obama's smashing victory. That legions of golfing white businessmen already idolized Woods may well have made it less of a stretch for them and others to imagine a black man as the country's president.


For that matter, Woods, much like Obama, presents himself as something of a "post-racial" figure, crossing old color lines by virtue of his mixed ancestry.


But whether or not Woods helped some vote for Obama, the superstar golfer's effect on his sport offers a cautionary lesson about the effect of an Obama presidency: There's no necessary correlation between the feel-good symbolism of a racial breakthrough and actual, on-the-ground progress toward a race-blind America.


Many observers predicted that Woods' example would revolutionize the sociology of golf. They thought many more minority kids would be encouraged to take up the old Scottish pastime, and that the sport would shed its ugly racial past once and for all. (The Professional Golfers' Association Tour had a Caucasians-only clause until 1961.) The golf establishment promotes its youth-golf programs with "Kumbaya"-style TV ads showing smiling inner-city kids, as if the game had indeed put the messy matters of race and money in the rearview mirror. Actually, though, golf has gone into racial reverse by many measures. Back in the 1970s, 10 African Americans played on the PGA Tour. A poor Chicano kid from Dallas, Lee Trevino, became one of the era's top golfers.



Today, Woods is the lone black golfer among the 125 card-holding pros, and there are no black rising stars. Two U.S.-born Latinos now play on the PGA Tour, as do an increased international contingent and some exciting new Asian American stars. But the circuit remains overwhelmingly composed of whites from country-club backgrounds.


You don't even see black or Latino caddies anymore, now that carrying the golf bags of someone like Woods or Phil Mickelson has become a lucrative enterprise.


The reasons for the whitening of professional golf are complex. For example, in the age of the golf cart, golfers no longer use caddies, except for the touring pros. This has shut a traditional back door into the game for poor and minority kids. And to train a golf champion takes big money that many black and Latino families do not have.


So does the Tiger Woods paradox really tell us anything about an Obama presidency? I think so. If the visibility of Woods promotes the illusion of race as "fixed" in golf, the very same danger exists with Obama and the country as a whole. His election encourages a fuzzy, self-congratulatory feeling that we've exorcised the demons of slavery and Jim Crow at last. It can be easy to forget the outsize hardships facing so many black and Latino kids growing up in tough neighborhoods, and just how often poverty, marginalization and brown skin still travel together in America today.


And we don't yet have a government that looks exactly like America either. Just as Woods is now the only African American on the PGA Tour, so Obama was the only one in the U.S. Senate.


The important question is whether an Obama administration will make strides toward addressing the old demons of poverty and racial inequality that still haunt 21st-century America. His election was a good opening drive. But we still have a long iron over water ahead."


Yes, and there is a sand trap all around the putting green. But to stay with the golfing analogy; that article was a hole in one.


Article here.

149 comments:

Anonymous said...

The only thing that does not fit into your thoughts is that Woods has not nor does he consider himself black, he is cana-whatever he calls it.

R.J. said...

The Toronto Maple Leafs hockey team has more Black players (Robbie Earl & Jamal Mayers) than the US Senate has Blacks. Now that's sad.

And how many times has Tiger Woods spoken out about social issues? The only times I've seen him speak about anything in magazines is when he gives his monthly golf tips in Golf Digest

Anonymous said...

Tiger is there to make money and get the white babe for a wife...duh.

The traditional minority avenues for upwards mobility are gone or withered.

Mold

rikyrah said...

anonymous and RJ are correct.

Tiger runs away from anything and everything Black. Did you even hear his congratulations to Obama - couldn't even call him a BLACK man, and that's what Obama calls himself.

Plus, Tiger is like every other elite athlete - their talent is like a lightening bolt.

A kid though, can look at Obama - no Daddy, no family name. Who pulled himself up through hard work, and education. A lot more kids can see a path to somewhere following Obama's path, than Tiger's.

Anonymous said...

But Obama actually likes being black,
unlike Tiger.

Anonymous said...

Tiger Woods is absolutely the best golfer ever and maybe he did help pave the way for Obama, but it's wrong to compare the two. Political success is too subjective for that.

szpork

field negro said...

"But Obama actually likes being black,
unlike Tiger."

Well, if his life-mate is how you judge.......

So the general consensus seems to be that the O man is "blacker" than Tiger. Why? Is it because he sorrounded himself with black people in his adult life? Is it because he seems to be more comfortable around black folks?

And is Tiger any different than say Michael Jordan? Michael, the last time I checked, is not multi racial, but he tried harder than any athlete I have seen in a long time (except for maybe Tiger)stay out of politics and making social statements.


Hang with me; I am thinking out loud here.

La ~ Incognita said...

Why are people still calling tiger "black"? (he does not deserve the black title and no capital letter for him) That intra racist - self hating ugly f*cker does not like black people and does not care to be associated with black people. I can't stand tiger woods. White people only like and trust him more because he rejects his blackness. And he even went as far as to flatter them by putting that "cuac" bullshit in front of that delusional dog tag of his. Sorry I get a little annoyed when I hear anything about tiger. I wish he would just put on a long white t-shirt, jeans, hold a brush in his hand and jump in front the police. Spit.

How I look at it, many white people still see themselves as the norm and many are still not comfortable with "blackness" or black people who are proud/happy/comfortable to be in black skin. Obama actually represents assimilation, and that's why so many whites are able to "tolerate" him and others like him. But I still would never ever compare or put Obama near the same trash can tiger's in. Yes I am not upset before bed.

La ~ Incognita said...

Ok, I just read my comment, but I'm a little calmer now.

classical one said...

There's no necessary correlation between the feel-good symbolism of a racial breakthrough and actual, on-the-ground progress toward a race-blind America.



A race blind America is a concept that needs to be questioned. How many race blind countries can you think of? People inantely divide themselves, be it by tribe, caste, ethnicity, nationality and race is one of the biggest divides.

We can certainely hope to mitigate the most harmful side effects of racial and economic inequailty but getting rid of them all together is fantasy land talk.

How many times have you heard Obama talk about poverty? How many about racial inequality? How many about dismantling the war machine? Ending the drug war? The drug war is one of the biggest manifestations of racial and economic inequality and Obama won't touch it with a twenty foot pole.

rikyrah said...

So the general consensus seems to be that the O man is "blacker" than Tiger. Why? Is it because he sorrounded himself with black people in his adult life? Is it because he seems to be more comfortable around black folks?



FN,

When Tiger came up with his own category, that was the road to being done with him.

Mama was Asian....Daddy was Black. Like, his Daddy was the ONLY Black person who had more than Black blood in him..Negro, please.

How the hell did we come as we did looking from West Africa, to the point where we can range from Ace of Spade to Light, Bright, Damn Near, without us MIXING with someone here along the way.

Obama never denied ANY of who he is.

Tiger's been running from Black, from Day One.

Black folks are uneasy with the 'bi-racial' folks, because they always seem to be running from the AFRICAN in them.

But, when you create an entirely new category in order to further suppress the AFRICAN..

Well, Houston, we have a problem.

La ~ Incognita said...

rikyrah, well said.

field negro said...

"Black folks are uneasy with the 'bi-racial' folks, because they always seem to be running from the AFRICAN in them.

But, when you create an entirely new category in order to further suppress the AFRICAN..

Well, Houston, we have a problem."

Got it!

Seda said...

I can't talk much to the Tiger phenomenon, since to me watching golf is less interesting than watching paint dry. However, I think there's something missing in the Tiger/Obama link. It may be true that Tiger's the face of golf, but Obama's the face of the whole country. Minorities have a choice about whether they golf or not (within the limits of economic opportunity and racial favoritism), but all minorities in this country are members of Obama's constituency. Also all us white folks, including those who see their "white" country going down the tubes (halellujah!).

Maybe I'm just optomistic. But Tiger got where he is because of his tremendous talent. Obama has talent, too, but he got there because millions of white folks (like me) voted for him. In fact, I do believe his largest voting bloc was white folks.

I'll leave it to y'all to tell me how many black folks watch golf, 'cause I don't know - but all the folks I've ever seen watching golf were white - I'm pretty sure 100%. I've never had the impression that Tiger is a leader of the black community, or any other kind of leader. I could be wrong, but I'm guessing he is much less a role model for minority youth than for golf youth.

Bottom line? Racism is alive and well in Omerica, but it just got a big whack, and white racists are put on notice that they're for sure the minority. They'll be ugly for awhile, no doubt, and they are freakin' dangerous as a wounded animal (that's what they are). But their kids are gonna grow up with a black president. I think that makes a much more profound effect than watching an athlete on TV.

field negro said...

"How many times have you heard Obama talk about poverty? How many about racial inequality? How many about dismantling the war machine? Ending the drug war? The drug war is one of the biggest manifestations of racial and economic inequality and Obama won't touch it with a twenty foot pole."

classical one, I am still waiting, but I will give him some more time. I understand that he had to get elected before he could scare A-merry-cans with real and serious issues that need to be addressed.

Christopher said...

Tiger Woods seems White to me.

President-elect Barack Obama seems African-American to me.

I can't explain it. It's just an honest, gut response.

tallulahbankhead said...

FN,

Please read William C. Rhoden's
The Rise, Fall and Redemption of the Black Athlete.

I understand what the Professor is trying to do but I'm just reluctant to compare any of today's contemporary athletes achievements to Barack Obama's.

http://www.amazon.com/Forty-Million-Dollar-Slaves-Redemption/dp/0609601202

I respect Tiger's talent but not very much else.

La ~ Incognita said...

"classical one, I am still waiting, but I will give him some more time. I understand that he had to get elected before he could scare A-merry-cans with real and serious issues that need to be addressed."

Field, I was watching Obama and Michelle 60 min interview clip on youtube, and it's interesting to see how Obama dodges the "first black President" question. He still does not openly call himself a black man, he diverts the question. I am so done, I am getting off this mix up planet.

blacklett said...

Sorry Field but that article was paaaainful, like Professor Starn cribbed from some freshman's "free write" exercise. While I don't disagree with the premise there exists a danger for the Obama election to become a symbol for a sweetness and light America that doesn't exist...but to couch the analysis in Tiger Woods. Meh. Tiger did not invent this whole post-racial wink and a nod: 'hey liberals, I'll continue to stroke your smug enlightenment, and conservatives I won't make you feel guilty and verify your up by the boot straps ideology' thing.

Also, this phenomenon of pointing to the few or the one to dismiss/ignore/forget the plight of the many is nothing new in terms of race. The senate example is actually a good analogy. For years now the composition of the senate hasn't seemed to raise too many hackles because, Hey! We have the congressional black caucus comprised of Representatives! And Representatives totally get to ride the little underground Capital Trolley too!

I mean my God, Hannity and his ilk spent a good part of the Prince Regent's first term pointing to Rice and Powell and Bush's Latin nephew as an example of how the Republican party supposedly changed. And Prof is giving me Tiger. Naw. Not feeling this article.

classical one said...

Field,

Change comes from below and not from above. If Obama will embrace change on important issues it will becuase his supporters force him to do so. People like yourself and others will have to keep him on point. After all, we don't Obama, he owes the people and that is something almost no politican ever remembers without a forceful reminder.

hennasplace said...

Field:

I agree with you about Michael Jordan. Who decides who is black and who is not? Tiger Woods made a decision to identify himself as a man and not ignore his mother's or father's culture. People are comfortable in the place they are. Woods may not be political, but has created a nonprofit organization to help kids. That is focus. I remember when Michael Jordan and 14 other so-called NBA stars that included our Charles Barkely gave a total of $15,000 to help re-build the churches that burned down in the south in the mid to late 80. $15,000? That amount wasn't enough to clean up the debris and put in the foundation for one church. One of the churches that burned was in Jordan's home state of North Carolina. Unbelievable, it's a wonder that they could spare it. That means each person gave $1,000. They could have at least gave enough money to rebuild one church. I consider that as Field would say house negro behavior. Then I think of a person like Curt Flood who had audacity to stand up to Major League Baseball because he did not want to be traded and wanted the choice to stay or leave the Cardinals. Many professional sports player do not know that Flood v. Kuhn was the beginning fight for the free agency. He did lose when the case came up before the Supreme Court. However, if wasn't for Flood, there would have been free agency and multi-million contracts, and when he died in 1997 pro-baseball players didn't know who he was. Field, it's probably one of the reasons why I am not a fan of modern day sports. Then I watched McNabb this morning who did not realize that a football game can end in a tie, hell I knew that and I don't watch the sport.

Today players are not the Bill Russells or Muhammad Alis of yesterday, they took the money and ran. I do not have much respect for many of sports professionals today.

40 years, one could have made the case about sports and politics because they interconnected with the civil rights movement. Bill Russell would play in the south, and could not stay in the same hotel with his teammates. He played in the Boston where they cheered on the court, but broke into his house and placed human fetus in his bed because they did not want to live in their neighborhood. That does not exist for today's professional athlete, now we hope that do not get arrested for sexual assault.

404Kim said...

Tiger is a clown and that article is foolish... NEXT!

Kat said...

Tiger is out to make his millions...period. He ain't black. He doesn't call himself black or even part black and He's definitely NOT Barack Obama nor should he be given any credit for Obama's rise.

Hathor said...

It was having a black president on 24 that paved the way for Obama.

If Orin Starn thinks golfers think of Tiger as post racial, he evidently doesn't listen to the banter in golf.
He has the status of Michael Jordan, but no one in sports thought of Jordan as post racial. There is a strain to not sound like Fuzzy Zoeller.

The more I watch the Asian American players, the more I tend to think of Tiger as one.

field negro said...

tallulah..,I read Rhoden's book. And I,like you, admire Tiger for his talent and not much else. But I do think the good prof. made some good points. Many of you don't want to compare Tiger to Obama because you love and admire his O ness but not Tiger. But here is the thing: As someone who appreciates how hard the game of golf is, and the amount of talent and discipline that it must have taken Tiger to reach where he is in the game, I can see a certain parallel with his O ness. He ran a very disciplined and focused campaign, and he certainly is a talented politician. And to deny that to most A-merry-cans he does not transcend race,-- like your boy Tiger-- would be turning a blind eye to the obvious.

And let's keep it real here. Tiger has accomplished quite a lot in his sport, let's see if his O ness can be as succesful in his chosen field. Although I know that one could argue, that just getting elected President is all the accomplishment he will ever need.

And no matter how hard Tiger's black ass tries to run away from his race, A-merry-ca won't let him. A-merry-ca still sees him as a black man first. Inspite of how he sees himself.

GrannyStandingforTruth said...

"Tiger Woods seems White to me.
President-elect Barack Obama seems African-American to me."

"Racism is alive and well in Omerica, but it just got a big whack, and white racists are put on notice that they're for sure the minority. They'll be ugly for awhile, no doubt, and they are freakin' dangerous as a wounded animal (that's what they are). But their kids are gonna grow up with a black president. I think that makes a much more profound effect than watching an athlete on TV."

Christopher and Seda I agree with both of you. And Seda hit a nail on the head that some of you seemed to miss.


Tiger Woods is an athlete, and Obama is a leader. Comparing Obama with an athlete is an insult in a sense. Is being a black athlete the only thing that a black man is capable of being in their eyesights? Or is this only position that some feel comfortable assigning him to? How about comparing him to an entertainer, will that be next? I'm just asking, because curious old minds wants to know. Maybe, some of y'all need to go back and read Maya Angelou's speech she made while she was still a child that caused such an uproar so that you'll understand what I'm saying.

Granny tiptoeing to the corner, holding her pointer finger up facing the sky, her head bowed down to take a seat next to the silent folks, and zipping her lips. But I'm just saying think about it.

Anonymous said...

Feild said "So the general consensus seems to be that the O man is "blacker" than Tiger. Why? Is it because he surrounded himself with black people in his adult life? Is it because he seems to be more comfortable around black folks?"

I also agree that Obama is blacker but I think it was goal of his after college. Barry became Barak. Tiger has always been Tiger, wanting to be the best. Obama has a fragile ego because he demands to be accepted and he has had very good luck with that. Who knows what will happen when he's not though.

szpork

field negro said...

"Tiger Woods is an athlete, and Obama is a leader. Comparing Obama with an athlete is an insult in a sense. Is being a black athlete the only thing that a black man is capable of being in their eyesights? Or is this only position that some feel comfortable assigning him to? How about comparing him to an entertainer, will that be next? I'm just asking, because curious old minds wants to know. Maybe, some of y'all need to go back and read Maya Angelou's speech she made while she was still a child that caused such an uproar so that you'll understand what I'm saying."

Yes granny I hear what you and seda are both saying...but. Let me ask you this? What was it that broke the ice between Mr. Morton and the O man today? I will tell you what. Sports. Talking about the Bears losing on Sunday. In A-merry-ca, sports and entertainment is still the only thing that many of our friends in the majority population feel comfortable relating to us about, or comparing us to.

Sad but true.

So I am not as put off by the analogy as some other folks seem to be.

Soapbubble said...

Golf is corny and Tiger Woods is too.

Sugar said...

That's all we need is another half-black, long-legged unqualified, macdaddy in the whitehouse.

GrannyStandingforTruth said...

szpork:

"Obama has a fragile ego because he demands to be accepted and he has had very good luck with that."

Are you really sure that he has a fragile ego and is demanding to be accepted? Because for some reason, granny don't think so. No Lawd, Barack played basketball and they have a lot of moves when it comes to playing that game. Me, myself, and I prefer chess.

GrannyStandingforTruth said...

sugar:

Whelp, what we do know is that we don't need is another con artist in the white house. That game is so old, weak, and ancient. Maybe, it's time for some fresh game that comes with some 24/7 thinking abilities.

grinder said...

Golf is a Republican sport, and most people don't give a shit about it.

Anonymous said...

I think it's bull that multi-racial people shouldn't embrace all of their ancestors. Why should a person choose one side of their family's heritage and claim only that side? The one-drop rule is ridiculous.

-Jazz (Proudly African-Japanese-Chinese-Dutch American!)

Anonymous said...

I think Michelle has alot to do with his Oness seeming black....Michelle gives him "street cred"... had he gone and married a white women, i think we would view him differently....I know I would...LR

Seda said...

I like chess, too, Granny. Maybe we should play a game sometime...

With apologies to all you golfers out there, f*%k a buncha golf anyway. Barak is gonna be in our faces every day for years, making decisions that affect our lives. We'll see how he makes out. I don't know how appropriate the athlete/leader comparision is, but Obama's impact is going to overwhelm Tiger's and bury it completely.

Anonymous said...

Granny said.. "Are you really sure that he has a fragile ego and is demanding to be accepted? Because for some reason, granny don't think so"

It appears to me that he has thin skin but that's just my impression. It looks like he's surrounding himself with good people and that should fix that. But Hillary for Sec of State? That is so wrong.

szpork

sharon in ct said...

"What was it that broke the ice between Mr. Morton and the O man today? I will tell you what. Sports. Talking about the Bears losing on Sunday."

Yeah, but that's a guy thing. ;-) Put any two random white men together and they'll likely start off talking about sports, too. It's a comfort zone. Put a bunch of black, white, brown, yellow, and red American women together and I guarantee we'll find something to talk about besides sports.

StillaPanther2 said...

Brother Field... Sports have been a double edge sword for the Black race. It seems after so many years we could have ventured in many other arenas. The NCCA has grown filthy rich from the Black athelete. There are some that will state how much money some atheletes enjoy by their presence in the arenas/courts...but their labors have created more wealthy peanut vendors (concession moneys} than managed millions. 10 men having 100,000 dollars generate more social wealth than one with 1 million if he is not money savvy-{that's that socialism in me). Put it like this I would rather have 100 Black males pursuing a medical/legal/honest profession, than to have 100 trying to make the Redskins roster. Change-up.. It will take a while for the impact of President Obama to filter down to the Black masses. We still got some things in the closet to bring out and really deal with. Unfortunately, we are always in the catch-up mode. Maybe we can create some indexes to measure the influence of Bro. O> This might be a time for our leaders to address our issues for a change....now that we have the leader of the world as a cuz. HeHe

Anonymous said...

Why this need to be black identified? How easy it seems for so many to vilify Tiger Woods because he refuses to identify or associate with his "blackness". Obama is President for all Americans - and today's America IS multi-racial - like it or not. BTW, I think the tens of thousands who turned out at the rallies; the millions who voted for BHO have spoken loud and clear that we are - like it or not - prepared to transcend race identity and get on with larger issues like the economy; and when that's done, Al-Quaeda's jihad.
Parochial, small-minded ignorant bigots and misogynists, like poor people, are part of the human condition.
Americans were ready and accepting of Scott Joplin; Branch Rickie was ready for Jackie Robinson; professional golf reluctantly accepted Tiger Woods; and now, finally, America seems ready for "BI-RACIAL!" Barack Obama. It is curiously difficult to resist race-neutral, pure and simple talent and merit.

Anonymous said...

And, if we haven't "exorcised the demons of slavery and jim crow", damn, we in bad shape.
As long as 'race' gets pimped, our Senate will continue to look like it does.
BTW, who has actually stood in Obama's shoes for five minutes; has the audacity to question how he "identifies himself"?

Bob said...

Golfers fantasize about being pros, but very, very few aspire to it. Golf is a game for amateurs, played by amateurs, & the pro tour is staged to entertain & sell product to amateurs. Kids know golf isn't a way up or out, & it's expensive. On the other hand, a decent high school basketball or football player will get a scholarship offer from a Div. III school, that's a practical matter. I had a girlfriend went to college on a field hockey scholarship. The message from the Obamas: "An education made us successes long before you ever heard of us."

GrannyStandingforTruth said...

szpork:

President Elect Obama does not need people to prop him up, he has stood up pretty good all by himself for years. At Harvard he became the first black president over the law review. He graduated with honors. Obama ran for state senate and succeeded. He gave an electifying speech at the DNC back in 2004 as an unknown. After that he became the only black Senator in Congress, and went on to win the position of President of the USA just a couple of weeks ago. He beat the Clintons and McCain who were so-called more seasoned than him in politics.

So, all I'm saying is that he doesn't need any smart people as you call them to prop him up or for a crutch, his accomplishments speak for themselves. Therefore, no matter how people try to downplay his accomplishments or abilities, Obama is not weak or lacking in the intelligence department. God gives him credit, even though some refused to do so.

Kayos said...

There were some very good points made in the article as well as the comments. One that really sticks out is the fact that Tiger doesn't associate himself with the black race. Well, Tiger doesn't associate himself with any one race. He carries himself as an American first and foremost which was the emphasis of Obama's acceptance speech. He's an American first and foremost. His race is irrelevant. He's in it to change the nation's operations not to play mediator of race relations. He was elected to do a job.

I do feel the author was correct, though. Tiger may have laid the path for President Obama to make history. I think this country's big wigs are tired of this country being made a mockery and feel that he was a better man for the job. One thing is for sure, no matter how hard the GOPs tried, they couldn't find a thing wrong with his past. Nothing. He's led a very dignified life where the American Dream worked for him.

Any free thinking, intelligent person voted for Obama because you want to have someone representing America's values with diginity, intelligence, and class. Between the two, McCain just doesn't inspire confidence.

That's just me though.

Anonymous said...

anon 12:49
Why this need to be black identified? How easy it seems for so many to vilify Tiger Woods because he refuses to identify or associate with his "blackness". Obama is President for all Americans - and today's America IS multi-racial - like it or not. BTW, I think the tens of thousands who turned out at the rallies; the millions who voted for BHO have spoken loud and clear that we are - like it or not - prepared to transcend race identity and get on with larger issues like the economy; and when that's done, Al-Quaeda's jihad.
Parochial, small-minded ignorant bigots and misogynists, like poor people, are part of the human condition.
Americans were ready and accepting of Scott Joplin; Branch Rickie was ready for Jackie Robinson; professional golf reluctantly accepted Tiger Woods; and now, finally, America seems ready for "BI-RACIAL!" Barack Obama. It is curiously difficult to resist race-neutral, pure and simple talent and merit.

Real talk. I just hope when the repukelicans and the rednecks really start gettin up in that ass about that "got dam nigger" in the white house, we'll have more people like you to remind everyone that he isn't black, he's BI-RACIAL.

Ernesto said...

Looking at this in terms of historical perspective, Jack Johnson was the first real pioneer in terms of a Black athlete but he was a little too audacious for the tastes of "A-merry-ca" 100 years ago (going after White women back then was a definite no-no). Then it was Joe Louis and Jesse Owens in the '30s. That was momentous because for once the Black man was seen not only representing this country, but as a hero for defeating foreign rivals. The symbolism was powerful and the spontaneous celebrations of Black Americans when Joe Louis knocked out Max Schmeling in 1938 (ask your grandparents) were probably not replicated until the night of November 4, 2008.

Tiger Woods has no real meaning as a pioneer because he fails to fully acknowledge the history of his sport and his country. Barack Obama acknowledges it, although he can't afford to give it too much play. That's cool, because a large part of Presidential politics is symbolism and there is nothing more powerfully symbolic than Michelle Obama as First Lady of the United States.

The other part of the job is getting a legislative agenda passed, and to that end I hope he is less accomodating than Bill Clinton was with the purveyors of deregulation, outsourcing and inequality.

GrannyStandingforTruth said...

Let me ask you folks a question. When Obama was running for any of his offices, did he sign his name as black, biracial or even white or did he sign his name as Barack Obama? Did he put down for his gender male or female or leave it blank or did he put down MALE? You know what I mean, did he put down MALE as in MAN, and man meaning just another HUMAN BEING or human race. With that granny is going to bed, and tomorrow I plan to rest for most of the day, so I won't be back until, maybe, later on in the evening depending on how I feel. Granny is exhausted and needs some rest. Goodnight and I pray that all of you have a peaceful night and very blessed and victorious day!

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

Of course Tiger should not ignore his mom's culture. I personally don't care who he is married to. We all knew there was not way Tiger was going to marry a black woman. Please.

Tiger has never identified with the black community. Period. I do think that is weird. Yes he is a mix of cultures as are most people in America so what? Stevie Wonder could see that Tiger is black. If he look looked like Mariah I could understand the confusion but he doesn't.

Tiger is rich and well known so I guess he is shielded from some of the racist nonsense other black men in America have to go through.

That said he is a very gifted athlete.

Geneva Girl said...

I agree with one of the Anonymous' comments: Marrying Michelle gave him cred. Had he married a white woman, he wouldn't have gotten my vote, much less the vote of many black women. Tiger Woods married the hired help. (She was the au pair.) Could you imagine a top, white athlete marrying the black babysitter?

I heard Tiger speak years ago at my former company, Amex, who sponsored him. I can't actually say "speak", because he said nothing. The company paid him a whole heap of money to stand there and mumble. He couldn't have paid somebody to write a few notes on a 3x5 card for him? I was through with him then and dislike the comparison to a man not ashamed of his heritage.

Tiger at least knew his black father well and yet was too ashamed, or I don't know what, to align himself with his people. Barack was raised by white people and, for a while, by an Indonesian man. He seems to have no problem embracing his roots - from both sides.

I respect Obama and scoff at Tiger. Tiger represents only himself.

NSangoma said...

~
Mama Asian: Black Thai,
Negrito (Spanish, little Negroe)

Mama ain't not one of those high caste Chinese-Negrito hybrids; Mama low, real low, that is why she married the North American Negroe.
http://www.andaman.org/BOOK/
chapter36/text36.htm

Yall, igNut.
`

Black Diaspora said...

There's no necessary correlation between the feel-good symbolism of a racial breakthrough and actual, on-the-ground progress toward a race-blind America.

Perhaps. But it's a beginning.

Jackie Robinson represented that "symbolism," which eventually became "on-the-ground progress toward a race-blind" sport, Major League Baseball.

And there have been others.

The writer's premise falters a bit by the use of golf as his primary example, rather than basketball, tennis, and football (the inclusion of which would have refuted his argument)--three sports that have shown a fair sampling of black progress in what were initially all white sports.

It's not that far-fetched to argue that Tiger Woods' popularity helped pave the way for Barack Obama's smashing victory.

That's giving Tiger, I feel, too much credit. There are, and have been, other bi-racial athletes of the stature of Tiger popular with "white businessmen."

The Tiger connection, if it had an impact at all, cannot be measured against all the other variables--Obama's appeal to women, young people, the angry voter, and blacks.

All of these things assured "Obama's smashing victory." To give Tiger's appeal to "legions of golfing white businessmen" more credit, or as much credit as the other variables, seems a bit over the top, but offered a sexier premise.

The important question is whether an Obama administration will make strides toward addressing the old demons of poverty and racial inequality that still haunt 21st-century America.

I don't think that that should be the question at all. The question hearkens back to what many have said about this election: If Obama is elected, blacks will expect him to address all their grievances as some kind of black savior out to stick it to the white man.

All we can realistically expect from an Obama administration is that he makes America once again the land of opportunity for all its people, and, by example, show the futility of holding back someone simply because of color.

I believe that a successful president Obama--successful in delivering the change he promised (healthcare, education, a green economy, energy independence, a balanced budget, and a government accountable to the people)--will go a long way toward dispelling the racial demons that have long beset us.

More than that he can not do, more than that we shouldn't expect.

Anonymous said...

Granny said... "So, all I'm saying is that he doesn't need any smart people as you call them to prop him up or for a crutch, his accomplishments speak for themselves."

President are like CEO's or General Managers. They absolutely rely on the team they build to succeed. There's just too much information and nuances to do it all on your own.

szpork

field negro said...

nsangoma, you have a unique way of making your point, but I get your drift.

Didn't Tiger date Tyra Banks for awhile, and then she dumped him? I am just saying.

And sharon, that was a good observation. Maybe it was a guy thing (talking sports) as well.

"Why this need to be black identified? How easy it seems for so many to vilify Tiger Woods because he refuses to identify or associate with his "blackness". Obama is President for all Americans.."

Anon.12:49AM, maybe you should try telling that to some of these republican and former McCain supporters out here. I bet there are a lot of A-merry-cans who do not believe that Obama represents them.

ZooPath said...

I think that people can identify as however they like. I also think that Tiger has shown disdain for black people and the black part of his identity. That's fine with me. It is possible to identify as biracial without thumbing your nose or flipping the bird at half your identity, Tiger just isn't someone who is able to strike that balance. Whatever. If he doesn't want to claim us then we shouldn't try to claim him. Obama, on the other hand is able to identify as black and biracial because he is both. It doesn't seem that he identifies as white, even though he technically is, at least partially. Ahhh..... social racial constructs...such a pain in the ass.

Anonymous said...

did you know the majority of the jones kool-aid drinkers where black???

hennasplace said...

I really do not have a problem with Tiger Woods. I remember him telling that story when he was kid how the other kids tied up to a tree and called him a nigger and it's perhaps the reason why he doesn't want to be seen as Black, White, Asian, but as human being. I think it's more about having a sense of diginity. Tiger Woods is being the person he wants to be, and not necessarily how we think he should be. Initially, people did not think Obama was black enough and would like for someone to tell me exactly what that means.

Grinder mention that golf is a republican sport, but so is footfall. Many of the pro football players lean republican, and contribute money. Lynn Swann and O.J. Simpson are republicans. Beattis leaned republican until this year when he decided to support for Obama. Pro ball players lean republicans because democrats want to regulate the sport while republicans as you well known want less regulation. Karl Malone, Utah's favorite basketball player is a republican and no one questioned his blackness.

I believe there are times when we as black people have more issues with our color than white people have about us. When Joe Louis defeated Max Schilling, the news reported that Louis is a credit to his race. Louis somehow symbolic represented all of Black Ameria for winning a boxing match, but it was something larger due to the political implication at the time, the rise of Hilter and Nazism. Woods is more aware than anyone about race. White people really do not like him nor do people because he is between two cultural worlds. Blacks do not like him because he is not completely black, and whites do not like him because his not completely white. Do you really blame him because he for himself? He does not owe black people anything because he really didn't support him, but he started an organization to help inner kids in fact kids from all backgrounds. However, we supported people like Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, and O.J. Simpson because we believe they are black, and entire time these guys pretty much said to the black community to fuck off (I'm not on Morning Joe). I do not know, but I believe that we still allow whites to characterized us whether we realize it or not because we are using their model.

uptownsteve said...

"it's perhaps the reason why he doesn't want to be seen as Black, White, Asian, but as human being."

I'd like to be seen as just a human being as well, but when I tried to buy a house in Crofton, MD they called me a nigger.

Tiger Woods is a great athlete but is running away from everything remotely black.

Why is that?

And why are people threatened by expressions of black pride?

I can remember growing up in NY during the 70s and 80s and seeing NY sport celebrities like Billy Martin, Dave Righetti, Mark Bavaro and Rick Cerone regularly appearing and sometimes headlining the Columbus Day/Italian Pride parades.

But Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and Reggie Bush are warned by their agents not to attend such black functions because it will affect their endorsement potential.

Sounds like a double standard to me.

hennasplace said...

Uptownsteve:

Doesn't that depend on the type of black function? Perhaps it's not a good idea to be seen at the Pimp Ball.

The althetes of today are not ones 40 years ago. They really do stand for anything politically and not sense of history of their past. They do not speak out about anything. That might change with the sense of pride of a new black president, but I doubt it. For one reason or another, we look up these althetes and I do not understand why because they do not know anything. Let's set aside the black cultural argument for a moment, they do know anything. I think they have become ignorant as time passes by. At least you could have looked up to individuals like Bill Russell, Karem Adbul Jabbar, and even Jim Brown (although he had a hand problem) because they would speak out injustice. In a way, the althetes today still have a slave mentality because of the endorsements and large contracts. Green trumps everything. However, those althetes are elite because they represent a minority of althetes who are not making that kind of money, but have the freedom to be politically. Some althetes really do not become politically until after retirement because they are free to do what they want.

uptownsteve said...

"Perhaps it's not a good idea to be seen at the Pimp Ball."

Wow.

I was thinking more along the lines of African American Family Festivals which I know are annually held in the major eastcoast cities.

But the mere fact that you would allude to a black gathering as a "Pimp Ball" tells me all I need to know about you.

"At least you could have looked up to individuals like Bill Russell, Karem Adbul Jabbar, and even Jim Brown (although he had a hand problem) because they would speak out injustice."

I looked at old film of Muhammad Ali's refusal to be inducted into the draft.

The black athletes who came out in public support were all basketball and football players.

Kareem, Bill Russell, Bobby Mitchell, Willie Davis, Bobby Bell etc..

No baseball players.

No Willie Mays, Frank Robinson, Hank Aaron, Ernie Banks etc...

They were the Tiger Woods' of their day.

Very tightly controlled by agents and management.

Told to be quiet and not to make waves.

Kills your earning power.

Anonymous said...

I think those of you who are defending Tiger have forgotten how he refused to speak out against the Confederate Flag being flown in S.C. When the NAACP asked him not to play in PGA Tour event in S.C., he said "I'm a golfer. That's their deal, not mine."

When that white, female sportscaster on The Golf Channel said that Tiger should be taken into an alley and lynched, Tiger said nothing. And this was in the wake of Jena 6, when nooses being left around all willy nilly.

Hennasplace mentioned Tiger's story of being tied up to a tree by white kids and called "a nigger", and perhaps that's why he wants to be seen as a human being and not a color. I disagree. I think incidents like that are the reason why the Tiger Woodses of the world seek honorary white status with labels such as "biracial" or "Cablasian", and seek solace in predominately white environments.

And here's another view on Tiger and his choice of racial identity:

"Tiger Woods has a right to blow off the NAACP boycott.

Just because he has a black father doesn't mean he has to kowtow to the organization's anti-Confederate flag line. It's understandable that Woods, who considers himself a Cablinasian - a word he created to describe the mixture of African Americans, Thais, Native Americans and whites in his family tree - might not feel a closeness to the civil rights organization. I've long ago made my peace with that bit of racial ducking and dodging.

What bothers me about professional golf's biggest star is not his attempt to transcend race, but rather that he uses it to his advantage.

Shortly after Woods joined the Professional Golf Association in 1996, he signed a $40 million advertising deal with Nike. The shoe company was intent upon making his race an issue in its advertising campaign, and Woods went along.

"There are still courses in the United States that I am not allowed to play because of the color of my skin," Woods said in an early Nike commercial.

If there was any doubt he was referring to the black ancestry of his father rather than any of his other bloodlines, that quickly was put to rest by a Nike spokesman who said at the time that Woods' words were a metaphor for what "other black golfers" experience.

But when Woods went on the Oprah Winfrey show in the wake of his historic, record-setting victory at the 1997 Masters, he shed the black identity he honed in the TV commercial for the ethnic gumbo of the Cablinasian label he told Winfrey he prefers.

Since then, Woods - leading money winner in golf the past two years - has steered clear of this nation's yawning racial divide. Ironically, he has become a role model for many African Americans who see him as one of them, even as Woods tries to distance himself from the troubled world many blacks cannot escape.

Sadly, when Tiger Woods finally decided to take a public stand he chose to honor the picket lines of actors striking for more money rather than support the NAACP's campaign against a symbol of racial oppression."

Anonymous said...

Anon 12:49am - "Why this need to be black identified? How easy it seems for so many to vilify Tiger Woods because he refuses to identify or associate with his "blackness". Obama is President for all Americans - and today's America IS multi-racial - like it or not."

Newsflash! America has ALWAYS been multi-racial, particularly Black America. The Obamas, Mariahs, Halles...etc didn't just magically appear in last 20 years. Why do you think black people come in so many different skin colors, eye colors and hair textures? Just because you all (white folks) decided to acknowledge mulattos, quadroons and octoroons to fulfill your own Divide and Conquer agenda, doesn't mean they haven't existed all these decades.

hennasplace said...

Uptownsteve:

I was kidding about pimp ball, lol.

Baseball in those days was tightly controlled anyway because the Major League could do whatever they wanted with their players such as trade them without permission, and went with for the white players. They were treated like cattle. It's not until the Curt Flood that would change the world of sports with his case making it possible for free agency, ironically two white players took up the fight and finally won.

The NFL today treats its players like cattle, and many of those players careers ends plague with injuries they endured. You would think that would come together to secure better healthcare insurance coverage so it does not eat up their savings when they retire.

Uptown, sports and politics is a complicated issue because while people do not believe politics and sports do not go together they are interwined. I remember the match between Billie Jean King and Bobby Rigg, and politics was involved with that match. King who did not want to initially have a match with Riggs became to do so when Margaret Court lost to him. She even mentioned in the interview that she had to win because it was more than just a tennis match. I remember when she fought hard for women's tennis to get the same salary than men. It was women like Althea Gibson and King who made women's tennis what it is today. Billie King did suffer some financial blows because she didn't receive endorsements, but Chris Evert did because she was pretty and somewhat benign. That's where sex and politics come into play with sports. Martina Navratilova was the better tennis player, but she wasn't pretty so no endorsements for her even if she kick Chris's ass on the court.

When Tiger Woods won the Master's, it had cultural, social, and political significance. Hell, I even watched the match because I knew it was more than just a golf game. It meant that African Americans could excell at any sport if given an opportunity. I remember a number of black people who wanted to learn how to play. With President-elect Obama, it means that black have the opportunity to be anything they want, but realize they are smart and can work to get there. I think there are times when we tend to box ourselves as well by not looking at all of the opportunities. Now we can more be that just like Mike or Tiger. We can be leaders and figure out what you want to be and not allow others to make that decision for you.

grinder said...

Hey granny, did I see in the comments here that you like to play chess? If you'd like to play on-line, I'd love to do it. I used to play on-line with a former neighbor until he passed away, and would like to find another partner.

There is an on-line chess site called Chess Rally. The software is free, but to play on-line you pay a one-time $20 fee to upgrade your software to "gold."

If you are interested in playing (or if anyone else here is interested), please e-mail me. I just set up a new address for this purpose. It is grinderchess@comcast.net. I'm not some chess whiz. I'd call myself somewhere in the middle in ability.

grinder said...

p.s.: That includes you, field. You can yell all you want on your end. I will play in silence.

uptownsteve said...

"Uptown, sports and politics is a complicated issue because while people do not believe politics and sports do not go together they are interwined."

So why do so many (white) ex athletes and celebrities become politicians?

Jack Kemp, Tom Osbourne, Jim Bunning, Steve Largent, Sonny Bono, Arnold Schwarzenegger etc....

It seem okay to be an athlete with a political opinion as it's conservative (ala Curt Schilling).

Even the few blacks athletes who've gone into politics have been Republicans (Watts, Swann.)

Leftist black celebrities need not apply for political office.

Might offend white folks.

Mr. Noface said...

I don't understand how some on here are getting on Tiger because he's not (or isn't acting) black enough. Maybe the dude is running away from what "black" is, but that is his perogative (he certainly has a lot of other identities to run to). We colored folk need to stop worrying about others "representing" and just stick to "representing", ourselves.

Anyway, in terms of imagined progress in race relations and the reality, I'll say what I've been saying for the longest time now, these events are just the first few steps in a long journey. I know some want to believe that we have arrived, but we have not and we have to keep walking. Event's like America having its first black president are reminders that the journey is not for naught and that the light at the end of the tunnel is not from a train.

hennasplace said...

Anon: 10:36a

It's not a question of depending Tiger Woods because I am not looking for him to save Black Americans because he cannot. He was honest with his feelings about it and he wants to be a golfer. That's Tiger goal in life to be the best golf player in the world and he is not going to allow anything including race to interfere with that goal.

Anonymous said...

Both of these men are multiracial. It doesn't say anything but maybe we should have had a white or Asian mother.

uptownsteve said...

"Maybe the dude is running away from what "black" is, but that is his perogative (he certainly has a lot of other identities to run to). We colored folk need to stop worrying about others "representing" and just stick to "representing", ourselves."

That all sounds real nice but the media doesn't hesitate to make the worst of us (criminals, gangstas, baby mommas) representative of ALL of us.

Which is why I believe Tiger and some others don't want to be identified with being black.

They've internalized the stereotypes.

I am thrilled that Obama and Colin Powell both strongly identified themselves as black Americans.

Until the day comes when blacks, particularly black men, are not negatively judged on sight, we need more positive black luminaries to stand up and say "I am a proud black man."

What the hell is wrong with that?

Anonymous said...

"Uptown, sports and politics is a complicated issue because while people do not believe politics and sports do not go together they are interwined."

So why do so many (white) ex athletes and celebrities become politicians?

Jack Kemp, Tom Osbourne, Jim Bunning, Steve Largent, Sonny Bono, Arnold Schwarzenegger etc....

It seem okay to be an athlete with a political opinion as long as it's conservative (ala Curt Schilling).

Even the few blacks athletes who've gone into politics have been Republicans (Watts, Swann.)

Leftist black celebrities need not apply for political office.

Might offend white folks.
*********************

Bingo!!!

sharon in ct said...

"Why do you think black people come in so many different skin colors, eye colors and hair textures? "

One of my closest friends in college was a young woman from Newark NJ who had blue-green eyes, freckles, and coffee-with-cream-colored skin. I think her hair may have been lighter brown than mine, too. She was part of a hugely eye-opening experience for this brown-eyed kid from Texas who had led a relatively sheltered life until I arrived in the Big Apple.

hennasplace said...

Uptown Steve:

They become politicians after their acting or sports career are over. Lynn Swann didn't discuss politics while he played.

Kevin Johnson was elected mayor of Scaramento, CA this year, and he is a Democrat. Jerry Bulter, the serves a Cook County Board Commissioner Illnois. Ralph Metcalfe, who co-founded the Congressional Black Causcus was a democrat. There is also Alan Page who serves as an Associate Justice on the Minnesota Supreme Court.

Anonymous said...

It's not a question of depending Tiger Woods because I am not looking for him to save Black Americans because he cannot. He was honest with his feelings about it and he wants to be a golfer. That's Tiger goal in life to be the best golf player in the world and he is not going to allow anything including race to interfere with that goal.
****************

Then please go tell Duke Prof. Orin Starn to stop comparing Tiger to Obama. There is NO comparison between them other than the same skin shade.

I find it funny, when black folks or folks who are part black do something good, they are seen as individuals and not supposed to "represent" but god forbid, they do criminal behavior, then suddenly that behavior is reflective upon the entire black race.

uptownsteve said...

I just heard about Kevin Johnson and am thrilled.

Ralph Metcalf was a track and field athlete (always the most militant. Remember Tommy Smith and John Carlos at the 68 Olympics?) who was elected Congressman from the black South Side of Chicago.

Jerry Butler's constituency is also black Chicago.

When I see a Julius Erving or a Malcolm Jamal-Warner running for a statewide office I'll become a believer.

uptownsteve said...

"I find it funny, when black folks or folks who are part black do something good, they are seen as individuals and not supposed to "represent" but god forbid, they do criminal behavior, then suddenly that behavior is reflective upon the entire black race."

BINGO!!!!

sharon in ct said...

"I find it funny, when black folks or folks who are part black do something good, they are seen as individuals and not supposed to "represent" but god forbid, they do criminal behavior, then suddenly that behavior is reflective upon the entire black race."

And it's just the opposite for whites. Timothy McVey was not held up to represent all white people, for example.

hennasplace said...

Anon: 11:45a

Prof Starn is not making a comparison between Obama and Woods. He is discussing post-racial society and it makes sense to use Obama and Woods because they do not mention race it's just one is in politics and the other plays golf.

The question becomes do you agree or disagree with his theory. His point is that Tiger Woods has not broken the post-racial in golf as he is still the lone black golfer. No other blacks have become professionals in golf, and will it mean be the same for Barack Obama in the world of politics. Will the presidency of Barack Obama finally transcend into a post-racial society? That's the question the professor is asking.

uptownsteve said...

sharon

That's because black misbehavior is racialized and white misbehavior is individualized.

It works just the opposite for accomplishment.

Black accomplisment is individualized and white accomplishment is racialized.

I can remember debating some redneck on frontpagemag.com once who claimed that "blacks were jealous of whites because the white man had all the great inventions and discovery."

I had to laugh at the notion that this knuckle draggin goober was actually trying to take credit for space travel and the polio vaccine.

Anonymous said...

His point is that Tiger Woods has not broken the post-racial in golf as he is still the lone black golfer. No other blacks have become professionals in golf, and will it mean be the same for Barack Obama in the world of politics.
****************

There is a fundamental flaw in the "theory". Tiger is not the lone black golfer. Tiger, unlike Obama, has NEVER identified himself as a black person EVER,(remember he calls himself caublasian or something like that) so the Prof's theory is moot. Tiger has never hinted that he wants to "represent" anyone, let alone inspire any young black youth to believe they can be anything. Obama, on the other hand is a completely different ball game. Tiger is an athlete, Obama is leader of the free world.

Anonymous said...

All sports are cooning you fuckn pigskin worshiping house negroes

fuck tiger he'a a classic sell out,just like all athletes thru out history.


1 fed up brotha

Anonymous said...

If your daddy is black,so are you nigga!Black & asian are the two most dominate seeds on the planet.

Anonymous said...

white boys rape,molest children shoot up schools,go on killing sprees when they loose jobs but nobody ever holds the whole race to the fire like they do everyone else.Pick up any history book & you will see that the white man is everthing & more,when it comes to pure uncutt evil.

Mr Big/trudat/truthspitter.

hennasplace said...

Anon 12:51:

You are making a comparison between sports and politics, the professor is not. It's actually looking at from a cultural perspective. It's about the symbolism. Starn is a cultural anthropologist. Sport is important in this society. As Martina Navratilova recently told Sports Illustrated, "It's like athletes have woken up to what actors and musicians have known forever: I have this amazing platform -- why not use it?"

Etan Thomas of the Wizards has spoken about about the war in Iraq, he released a book of poetry titled "More Than an Athlete", spoke at anti-war protest 9/07 in DC, contributed articles to various magazines and websites and posted on Huffington Post. He even gave a speech as part of the Democratic National Committee's "Register for Change" bus tour http://www.leedems.org/2008/08/16/howard-deans-register-for-change-bus-tour/.

The Professor does have a point that sports does transcend in the context of society. Historian Doris Kearns Goodwin said surverying the crowds in Chicago's Grant Park on election night, "It's almost like the 19th century when politics was entertainment, politics was fun, sports was politics.

I do not how old you are, but I can only attest for my age 43, and being a bit of a history buff in knowing that sports and politics do collide. Sports is a microosm of our society whether you like it or not. The only other time in history when blacks celebrated an event of the one a couple of weeks ago is when Joe Louis defeated Max Schilling. There was a sense of universal pride within the black community because he was now on the world stage for everyone to see. That is a great symbolic message to have before the world in saying that blacks can do great things. For the black community Joe Louis was more than just a boxer, he represented what was good for black people. You can agree or disagree, but that was feeling at that time. Professor Starn is posing a question as with most academics, and it isn't giving an opinion one way or another. We are doing the supposing. Historically, it's something that we typically do with our sports figure in hopes that transcend into a larger context, but may not always work out that way. I am not agreeing or disagreeing with, but just get a greater understanding. It's a question I have to ponder about, and that means I have examine my previous presumptions.

mellaneous said...

Hey Brother Field:

I wish I had gotten here earlier but I see what the writer is trying to say and there are clearly some parallels between Obama and Tiger.

Many of us closed our eyes to some of things Obama has done that should make you say Hmmmm, but it is true that Obama did all that he could to avoid the subject of race during his election campaign. It(race) came up because he is black and because of Rev. Wright. And he is the first democratic presdential candidate that I can recall who didn't bother to make "any" campaign promises to black folks. Yall can look it up. Thats right he made promises to every lobbying group, every interest group in the US except the one that makes up at least about 13 percent of the population.

On some level President-elect Obama is an aberration, much in the same way that Tiger Woods is in golf.His election doesn't necessarily mean that things will change for the majority of black folks (or whites for that matter)in this country; who are catching the kind of hell, that the subjective and temporary fix of a good feeling of a brother in the White House won't solve any of their problems, or heal their deep wounds.

And I disagree with Hennasplace about why black folks don't seem to like Tiger. And it is not because he is half and half, but it is because he doesn't like his Black self and folks despise his efforts to be identified by every other expression but black. As I wrote in a commentary several months ago, "Tiger is more brand than man."

It was already expressed in this same newspaper that the election of Obama was a watershed event, which included the ending of white guilt (whatever that is) and other forms of sympathy aimed at black folks. So yes it has the potential to be very misleading.

The Obama presidency is clearly a potential two edged sword, I mean any thinking person should be able to see that.

Starn's most important point in his commentary was, "the question is whether an Obama administration will make strides toward addressing the old demons of poverty and racial inequality that still haunt 21st America?"

As Malcolm X used to say when someone made an overly optimistic statement about the potential of the system or one of its representatives to do the right thing, "Time will tell."

liberation then peace

Classical one I am feeling you on that change comes from the bottom thing

malik said...

But Obama ain't black. I thought he was Cobala Nation or some shit.

hennasplace said...

Uptownsteve:

You asked the question about what celebrities/athletes who became politicans and I gave examples and it doesn't seem to be enough for you. My question, why are you know willing to run for office? Believe in yourself. If there is something you do not like, then change it. Obama and Woods are examples for you to use to be what you can be in the world. They are just paving the way for you to create your own path.

uptownsteve said...

"And he is the first democratic presdential candidate that I can recall who didn't bother to make "any" campaign promises to black folks."

What did Kerry or Gore promise black people?

uptownsteve said...

"You asked the question about what celebrities/athletes who became politicans and I gave examples and it doesn't seem to be enough for you"

Because your list doesn't compare.

The white Republican athletes/politicians are national figures.

Metcalfe represented the second largest black community in America and has been dead for 30 years.

Jerry Butler is local clubhouse pol.

I have high hopes for Kevin Johnson but he is clearly one of a kind.

"Obama and Woods are examples for you to use to be what you can be in the world. They are just paving the way for you to create your own path."

Spare me the condescension okay?

I'm doing quite fine and am merely commenting on a messageboard.

salsa said...

Who cares? All this is the musings of one college professor and will not change the price of beans!!!!

hennasplace said...

Mellaneous:

Actually, I agree with you that Obama and Woods accomplishments does not necessarily bring racial breakthroughs, but I do think they are very strong symbols. Yes, the accomplishments are intangible to the community at large, but we as African American can turn into something concrete within our lives. You are right in sense that Tiger is a brand, and doesn't that brand symbolize something. What does he represent and that depends how the individual sees him. I wonder kind of archetypes Obama and Woods are. How do we go from the abstract into something concrete?

Mellaneous, at this point I having more questions than answers. So do not hold me to my previous thoughts because they probably will change, and have to re-read "The Hero With a Thousand Faces."

hennasplace said...

Uptownsteve:

I am not being condescending, and if you think that I am, then I apologize. I just wanted you to know you probably have the smarts and talent to make changes you do not like and do not have to wait for someone else to do.

bean twn chica said...

Here amerikka is again causing strife, later MSM will blame the Somalis for their misery. amerikkans will blame the evil Somalis or poor afrikkans or treat the story with apathy.. history continues to follow the same pattern and amerikkans wonder why some countries want to do us harm. We must ensure we vote for the right representatives of the country.

Somalian 'ghost city' wracked by war

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/7651776.stm

freedom said...

Great analogy. Point well taken, but, I say, again, that some are jumping the gun. Give the man a chance to settle in before we automatically say "this means nothing". I'm old - this is a great triumph, and I foresee a better tomorrow because of it. "As a man thinketh, so he is". I think that we should continue to think positively, and prepare for the worst, but, not say that it's all in vain so soon. Peace.

ava said...

The only parallel between Tiger and Barack is that they are both biracial, successful black men.

Barack is a REAL brother married to a REAL sister.

NO black woman will ever touch Tiger's golf BALLS!!!

Tariq Nelson said...

Tiger Woods does not call himself "African-American" or "black American" or what have you. Barack does. There is a major difference.

I wouldn't be surprised if Tiger actually voted for McCain

ava said...

Field, I was watching Obama and Michelle 60 min interview clip on youtube, and it's interesting to see how Obama dodges the "first black President" question. He still does not openly call himself a black man, he diverts the question. I am so done, I am getting off this mix up planet.

Oh yes he does call himself black. Damn, he married a BROWN skinned black woman. NO BLACK MAN that is trying to assimilate is going to marry a brown skinned woman. NO self hating black man will dare marry a brown woman when he can pick and choose. His marrying Michelle speaks volumes.

rikyrah said...

I think Michelle has alot to do with his Oness seeming black....Michelle gives him "street cred"... had he gone and married a white women, i think we would view him differently....I know I would...LR

If he had married Snowflake, he wouldn't have even gotten to the U.S.Senate.

Not from the South Side of Chicago, he wouldn't have.

rikyrah said...

How many times have you heard Obama talk about poverty? How many about racial inequality? How many about dismantling the war machine? Ending the drug war? The drug war is one of the biggest manifestations of racial and economic inequality and Obama won't touch it with a twenty foot pole.

10:41 PM


Well, he is creating an entire Section devoted to Urban Policy. And, he has come out for retroactivity in reducing drug sentencing.

But, yes, the Prison Industrial Complex is out there and looms large.

upotownsteve said...

"If he had married Snowflake, he wouldn't have even gotten to the U.S.Senate."

Uh yeah.

Harold Ford Jr. is about to find out that his days in elective politics are over.

west coast story said...

The crabs in a barrel concept is alive and well, isn't it?

How truly pathetic that anybody has a problem with the fact that Tiger embraces all of his heritage and so does Obama.

Reading this topic reinforces just how awfully, almost fatally corrupted a lot of black people are on the subject of race. Tiger Woods doesn't owe anyone black any obligation to deny or marginalize his Asian heritage and likewise for Obama. I can't beleve we are still talking about whether or not Obama is President of the US or President of black folks.

The fact that the color of your skin dictates how you should act, how you should speak, who you should reach out to, or what community you should claim is just pathetic. Equally pathetic is that it dictates what sports you should play, or what music is okay to listen to, or what hobbies you should have, or who you should marry, or where you should live, or how you dress, or what you believe in, or how you dance, or what school you attend, or what career you choose, is all terribly pathetic.

I have a black friend who is extremely light skinned, blonde and blue-eyed. I was with him and his "black looking" wife when a "brotha" pysically attacked him for being with a black woman. Sorry, but too many black people are just border line retarded when it comes to race.

We cling to these narrow views of the world and wonder why our kids only want to grow up to be ballers or rappers. We've drawn this narrow range of what it is to be black and young people have bought into it. Whenever I hear black folks ask where do young folks get the idea that being educated is white and unacceptable, I tell them "from us." How many upper class black folks do I know who just want the world to know how "down" they are? Negro Please.

A whole lot of black folks who are blue/black and embrace the so-called black community have done nothing for black people and yet we just can't get enough of them. Michael Jordan comes to mind. And if the black person in question has been arrested, or served time, or is subjected to an investigation, that seems to make them more black and more worthly of our affection and protection. Black people actually defended Michael Vick who is little more than a rich thug.

Wow, no wonder we are still walking around like slaves with these chains on our brains and that lock up our value systems.

grinder said...

west coast story, your comment is refreshing, and I strongly agree with it.

grinder said...

One of the most tragic things I have ever heard about is a tendency -- I don't know how widespread -- of some black kids in inner-city schools to taunt smart and studious black students with accusations of "acting white." I hope these stories are apocryphal, because if they are true then I don't even know where to start.

Zoda88 said...

Grinder, as a Black woman who has gone through the American school system, I got more discouragement for academics from my white teachers, white counselors, and white students than I ever did from black students. The problem with this country is that education as a whole isn't valued. Look at the stereotypes of smart people in the media. Ugly, socially-inept, "not cool", and other idiocy like that. When I got teased for being 'white' because I liked to read a lot and I was an "honor's" student (don't get me started), the same kind of stereotypical nonsense came from both black and white students. It's not unique to black kids, regardless of economics. One thing I have noticed though is that this "black enough" nonsense tends to come up in environments where the population is mostly white. When I went to a school which was more mixed or mostly black, black students received more encouragement for academics. It wasn't unusual for a black student to want to do AP courses. In fact, they were encouraged to do so so that college admissions would be easier.

bean twn chica said...

grinder- tired of whites bringing up this myth.

One of the most tragic things I have ever heard about is a tendency -- I don't know how widespread -- of some black kids in inner-city schools to taunt smart and studious black students with accusations of "acting white."

west coast story said...

It isn't a myth where I live.

Sharon said...

RE Tiger Woods' wife was an au pair.

It's my understanding Tiger Woods' wife was a model before they married.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/article2615746.ece

Sharon from WI

Black Diaspora said...

west coast story said...Reading this topic reinforces just how awfully, almost fatally corrupted a lot of black people are on the subject of race.

Yes, your observation is mostly correct.

Some blacks do have "fatally corrupted" views on race, as do some whites, some Asians, some Latinos, and a host of others.

Don't forget that those views did not originate in a vacuum. They came about because of the "fatally corrupted" views of some whites on the subject of race.

Placing it all in perspective, I can understand how some, of all races, are going to continue to deal with a racial pathology for most, if not all, of their lives.

Some things take longer than others to overcome. But there is a new wind blowing. And change is coming.

rikyrah said...

Tiger Woods' wife was the NANNY for one of his fellow golfers.

She was THE HELP.

Only after she hooked up with Tiger, did she suddenly turn into a ' model'.

rme.

Sharon said...

Blogger rikyrah said...
rikrah:
Tiger Woods' wife was the NANNY for one of his fellow golfers.

She was THE HELP.

Only after she hooked up with Tiger, did she suddenly turn into a ' model'.


How so? One does not just wake up and just decide to become a model. Just asking.

Sharon from WI

grinder said...

It isn't a myth where I live.

Please elaborate.

grinder said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
grinder said...

Zoda, there is some academic support for what you observed. This Harvard study says that the "acting white" phenomenon is seen most intensely in mixed schools, i.e., those where fewer than 80% of the students are black. In all-black schools, according to the study, there is no penalty for academic excellence.

The biggest victims of the social stigma of high academic achievement in mixed schools are black males, according to the study.

bean twn chica, the study's author is black, so maybe you need to redirect your anger to someone other than me. It's not always a racist plot.

grinder said...

One other thing: According to the Harvard study, the effect is most pronounced among Hispanics.

grinder said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
grinder said...

Lots of typos and false starts tonight. Trying again:

"Even after taking into account many factors that affect student popularity, evidence remains strong that acting white is a genuine issue and worthy of Senator Obama’s attention. Figure 1, which plots the underlying relationship between popularity and achievement, shows large differences among whites, blacks, and Hispanics. At low GPAs, there is little difference among ethnic groups in the relationship between grades and popularity, and high-achieving blacks are actually more popular within their ethnic group than high-achieving whites are within theirs. But when a student achieves a 2.5 GPA (an even mix of Bs and Cs), clear differences start to emerge.

"The experience of black and white students diverges as GPAs climb above 3.5.As the GPAs of black students increase beyond this level, they tend to have fewer and fewer friends. A black student with a 4.0 has, on average, 1.5 fewer friends of the same ethnicity than a white student with the same GPA. Put differently, a black student with straight As is no more popular than a black student with a 2.9 GPA, but high-achieving whites are at the top of the popularity pyramid.

"My findings with respect to Hispanics are even more discouraging. A Hispanic student with a 4.0 GPA is the least popular of all Hispanic students, and Hispanic-white differences among high achievers are the most extreme.

"The social costs of a high GPA are most pronounced for adolescent males. Popularity begins to decrease at lower GPAs for young black men than young black women (3.25 GPA compared with a 3.5), and the rate at which males lose friends after this point is far greater. As a result, black male high achievers have notably fewer friends than do female ones. I observe a similar pattern among Hispanics,with males beginning to lose friends at lower GPAs and at a faster clip, though the male-female differences are not statistically significant."


----

bean twn chica, did you notice that an obscure senator going by the name Barack Obama was mentioned in this paper as being concerned about the "acting white" phenomenon? Maybe you need to complain to him about spreading the "myth," huh?

Dark Moon said...

The crabs in a barrel concept is alive and well, isn't it?

I don’t think that the Tiger/Obama in this instance is a crabs in a barrel mentality, especially, when Tiger Woods has made it quite clear on several occasions that he does not relate to or truly want to be part of the Black race. He is only using a new form of Passing that many mixed race and ambiguously Blacks used to escape the Black community and become exotic or White. That is where the disappointment and contempt comes whereas Obama despite his mixed race heritage seems to acknowledge and appreciate his ancestry even though he does not have a Black American connection genetically, he adopted part of the Black American intelligentsia. He did something which I think is frankly radical in that he met and married an unambiguously Black woman even though some see it as political expediency. Colin Powell as an example married a White woman and it certainly did not hurt his perception in the Black community despite his right leaning politics. Pioneers such as WE Dubois and Frederick Douglas are of a mixed racial background yet they had no problems identifying with Blacks and using their considerable intellectual capital to uplift the race.

In addition, I am quite aware of the problem in the black community of uplifting wastrels as opposed to academic professionals, however any kind of success in the Black community is lauded even though it is often misguided, because it is perceived by Blacks and Whites on a quantum level that Blacks cannot acquire legitimate success outside entertainment and sports (although I know many blacks who know of and are proud of Mae Jamieson) because of the belief that we are genetically stupid. Naturally I think the definition of Blackness has been quite flexible enough to encompass those who have a mixture other than Black, which is where the disconnect comes in. Black Americans know our history is mixed, often times it has shameful elements of slavery and Jim Crow and lacks the connection that many Whites have as to where their ancestors come from—most Blacks in the new world do not have that, which is why being Black to me is an amalgam of many races and influences.

Nevertheless, many Whites also have their never ending fascination and respect for celebrities-which is a multi-billion dollar industry, and they certainly uplift wastrels and are fascinated and laud their success as can be said with the likes of Hilton, Downey Jr, and the near reverence for some on the negative bike culture (doesn’t add anything of merit either yet rap culture is the only form of music that is universally vilified) and heavy metal music. I am sure most White Americans have no idea what NASA is doing or cares about new what new element was artificially created, thus I will agree with the other poster that there is a strong anti-intellectual strain in America period and it crosses all racial groups. The populist movement that exists and Sarah palin’s astounding popularity (and how bush got elected a second term)with many White Americans, shows that pure intellectual prowess is often treated with suspicion and disdain. The culture wars between the rural and big city which has ignited people in red states and some blue rural outposts attest to this. Critical thinkers on America’s education system have been lamenting the "Dumbing Down of America" for years and the fact that despite America’s first world status, children of all races are near the bottom in performance in math and science. That cannot be solely attributed to Black people’s anti-intellectualism and disdain for legitimate big brain success.

Lastly, I also agree with another poster about Whites low expectation about Black performance. Anecdotally, I was not a gifted student, but I was still dismissed by my White professors whereas the white kids who were only marginally curious received lots of help and encouragement. Often times, unless a Black student is marked as gifted or a prodigy, they are often ignored by both races.

Again, I am aware of the disconnect with the Black community—I have noticed that we are far more aware of our problems, but its only been 45 years since we have gotten equitable rights in this country , therefore I think it will take a couple more generations to iron itself out within the community. I think that our mobility and success in America is actually rather astounding, considering we are a small minority and the perceptions of Blacks worldwide—what we have accomplished, thus far, is commendable.

grinder said...

Tiger Woods has made it quite clear on several occasions that he does not relate to or truly want to be part of the Black race.

That's interesting. I will admit right up front that I haven't paid much attention to Tiger Woods. I don't wish him ill by any means, but my interest in athletes is limited, and I don't much care about celebrities unless their celebrity is a function of their brainpower. To me, we pay far too much attention to athletes, and far too little attention to brilliance in the arts and sciences.

I do have a personal theory, and I'd be interested in some reaction, especially if it can be delivered without spurious accusations. My theory is this: If you come from a disadvantaged group, i.e., if you are black, and you achieve a great fortune, then you are obligated to plow the vast majority of the money back into your community.

I actually think this is true with respect to all great fortunes regardless of who achieves them. But if the winner happens to be black, then my theory is that there is a special obligation.

So, when I saw that Bill Cosby (who was one of the very first entertainers I liked -- I'm talking from about age 5 or 6, mind you) plowed a bunch of money into Spellman College, my heart took a leap of joy. When I see this or that athlete help his native village in some fourth-world hellhole, I cheer.

When I see this hip-hop artist or that black athlete piss it away on bling, I have an intensified version of the reaction I have when I read about Hollywood megamansions and personal jets. Intensified because, with white moguls, well, maybe the white masses aren't in as bad of shape. But with black moguls, christ almighty, there's a daily crisis and when there is a daily crisis and you have money -- especially if, as in the case of hip-hop music -- it came from that community, then in a sense it's really not your money at all.

Sure, have a nice place to live. Get some toys. Make sure the people in your life are well taken care of. But live discreetly and with humility, and then take the rest of your money and do some good with it. This is how all of the other ethnic groups have made it in America, in particular the Jews and the Asians. For them, it is all about family and education. For too many black celebrities, it's all about the bling, and it pisses me off mightily.

Again, this is NOT always the case. Cosby and Spellman is a shining example. But when Oprah Winfrey gave away some automobiles, I wanted to shoot her. Oprah Winfrey, under the laws of this country it's your money and I recognize it. But do something really useful, or nothing you've achieved really matters.

That's my 2 cents after a couple jolts of French Roast this morning. Now, want to hear what I really think?

grinder said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
grinder said...

Two more things.

First, in case I haven't made it clear, my attitude about the Paris Hiltons of the world is exactly the same as it is toward other good-for-nothing, drug-addled shitheads, black or white or anything else. A certain amount of publicity froth and craziness is always going to be out there, but in recent years it's gone out of control. Throw their skinny, drug-addicted asses, and their facelifted faces, in jail. For a long time. And take ALL of their money.

Second, I suspect that there's a lot I don't know about the charitable activities of various black celebrities. Maybe there needs to be more effort to publicize it. This would set an example for people in general, and it would put pressure on those celebrities who haven't done their part. Life should get more difficult for the wastrels, whoever they are and wherever they might be.

Oh, and don't get me started on white looter C.E.O.s, because that's a subject I'm well acquainted with. It's a good thing for them that I will never be made emperor, because if it ever happened this country would have a series of show trials that would knock everyone's socks off.

grinder said...

doesn’t add anything of merit either yet rap culture is the only form of music that is universally vilified

As someone who has worshipped at the throne of Saint John Coltrane for virtually his whole life, it pains me enormously to see hip-hop become the contemporary black signature. If I were black, it would drive me crazy.

ali said...

.Re: But when Oprah Winfrey gave away some automobiles, I wanted to shoot her. Oprah Winfrey, under the laws of this country it's your money and I recognize it. But do something really useful, or nothing you've achieved really matters.

I watched Oprah Winfrey with my own eyes, give 5 million dollars to Morehouse College. And that was not her first time giving to Morehouse. Just thought I'd let you know.

Anonymous said...

One of the most tragic things I have ever heard about is a tendency -- I don't know how widespread -- of some black kids in inner-city schools to taunt smart and studious black students with accusations of "acting white." I hope these stories are apocryphal, because if they are true then I don't even know where to start.


THIS IS A REPUBLICAN FAVORITE URBAN MYTH,BLACKS USAULLY PROTECT THIER BRIGHTER STARS I HAVE WORKED WITH BEHAVOIR DISORDER & AT RISK KIDS.& have seen non of this white people bullshit.

Sharon said...

Dark Moon: Colin Powell as an example married a White woman and it certainly did not hurt his perception in the Black community despite his right leaning politics.

Alma Powell is African American, not white.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alma_Powell

Sharon from WI

grinder said...

THIS IS A REPUBLICAN FAVORITE URBAN MYTH,BLACKS USAULLY PROTECT THIER BRIGHTER STARS I HAVE WORKED WITH BEHAVOIR DISORDER & AT RISK KIDS.& have seen non of this white people bullshit.

You haven't seen it, you say. I say that people often see what they want to see, and don't see what they'd rather not see. And it's usually what people would rather not see that is exactly the thing they need to see.

grinder said...

I watched Oprah Winfrey with my own eyes, give 5 million dollars to Morehouse College. And that was not her first time giving to Morehouse. Just thought I'd let you know.

Thanks for telling me that. Seriously, I appreciate it. In my rant above, I wrote that there was probably a lot of black philanthropy that I don't know about.

Sharon said...

Anonymous: THIS IS A REPUBLICAN FAVORITE URBAN MYTH,BLACKS USAULLY PROTECT THIER BRIGHTER STARS I HAVE WORKED WITH BEHAVOIR DISORDER & AT RISK KIDS.& have seen non of this white people bullshit. <<

Unfortunately, I've had my own kids tormented by others for "sounding white" when they talk. Adults in the community may very well protect their brighter stars, but kids have been known to give grief to good students.

Sharon from WI

Anonymous said...

Brother Field... Sports have been a double edge sword for the Black race. It seems after so many years we could have ventured in many other arenas. The NCCA has grown filthy rich from the Black athelete.


Thats why it's SUPREME COONING sports/entertainment should not be the only way out of poverty for black men all you coons in your sports gear are pathetic. Trudat that makes me a player hater lol!

Anonymous said...

As someone who has worshipped at the throne of Saint John Coltrane for virtually his whole life, it pains me enormously to see hip-hop become the contemporary black signature. If I were black, it would drive me crazy.

Yeah lets celebrate a black herion addict geeeez Trudat

grinder said...

kids have been known to give grief to good students

This is by no means exclusive to black people, as the study I mentioned showed. And, at least according to the study, it's a lot worse among Hispanics than among blacks. But, as a rule -- one that is certainly broken -- among whites the high achievers are rewarded by their peers, not penalized.

Given the crying need for high achievers in minority communities, I think it's especially tragic to see the so-called "acting white" phenomenon play out there. It's even worse to have people denying that it exists. If you run away from your problems you will never solve them.

grinder said...

Yeah lets celebrate a black herion addict geeeez

I was wondering how long it would take for someone to mention this. Life is a paradox. Great people sometimes do tragic things, and it seems that it's especially the case with artists.

Sharon said...

Grinder, re John Coltrane's drug issue

Well, I'm with you. Such imperfections have not diminished my enjoyment of Lady Day or Ray Charles. :-D

Sharon from WI

grinder said...

If you threw out all the drug addicted artists, there'd be a shortage of great art. But guess what? Paris Hilton, Britney Spears, and that girl who died of the overdose in the Caribbean, they weren't artists.

If you look at the great artist addicts, I think one rule would apply pretty much across the board. They used the stuff in private. They fed the monkey but they didn't parade their addiction in public for all to see.

I've been privileged to know a couple of artists, and a few other highly accomplished people. The ones I've met are usually humble almost in proportion to their talent. In the art world, it's not too often that you see arrogance and greatness hand in hand. It does happen, but it's the exception that proves the rule.

Anonymous said...

who are white people to be equal to?

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, I've had my own kids tormented by others for "sounding white" when they talk. Adults in the community may very well protect their brighter stars, but kids have been known to give grief to good students.

Thats to bad i would hate being compared to whites!

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, I've had my own kids tormented by others for "sounding white" when they talk. Adults in the community may very well protect their brighter stars, but kids have been known to give grief to good students.

Thats to bad i would hate being compared to whites!

Anonymous said...

shortage of great art. But guess what? Paris Hilton, Britney Spears, and that girl who died of the overdose in the

i meant true artist these hoes are phonys

west coast story said...

" Anonymous said...
As someone who has worshipped at the throne of Saint John Coltrane for virtually his whole life, it pains me enormously to see hip-hop become the contemporary black signature. If I were black, it would drive me crazy.

Yeah lets celebrate a black herion addict geeeez Trudat

3:33 PM"

You need to study your history so you don't embarrass yourself again like this.

Anonymous said...

" Anonymous said...
As someone who has worshipped at the throne of Saint John Coltrane for virtually his whole life, it pains me enormously to see hip-hop become the contemporary black signature. If I were black, it would drive me crazy.

Yeah lets celebrate a black herion addict geeeez Trudat

3:33 PM"

You need to study your history so you don't embarrass yourself again like this.

WHAT?the man was an addict,& his horn play showed that hopless despair in it's junkie tones.Its like whites who think blues is great since they provided the stress to create it.you all kill me.

Trudat

Anonymous said...

So crackheads are ok as long as they entertaine us Trudat

grinder said...

WHAT?the man was an addict,& his horn play showed that hopless despair in it's junkie tones.Its like whites who think blues is great since they provided the stress to create it.you all kill me.

I've got two words for you: So What

Dark Moon said...

I do have a personal theory, and I'd be interested in some reaction, especially if it can be delivered without spurious accusations. My theory is this: If you come from a disadvantaged group, i.e., if you are black, and you achieve a great fortune, then you are obligated to plow the vast majority of the money back into your community.

I actually think this is true with respect to all great fortunes regardless of who achieves them. But if the winner happens to be black, then my theory is that there is a special obligation.


This obligation is not unique to just minority groups or in particular Black people. White Jews have been reinvesting in their community with money and human capital for centuries and they have a history of academic achievement that goes back to the memorization of the Talmud when they were wandering around the desert. The Chinese also have an ancient tradition of meritocracy with the civil service examinations, thus their reverence for education is built into the culture as well as their belief that one Chinese achievement enhances the success of the group. Social psychologists have been following the group ethos of Asian societies for years and how they will often (in most instances) subvert their individual interests for the support of the group. In addition, Europeans have always lauded the successes of their heroes because it enhances their group. European history is littered with ethnic wars and the purposes of overtaking land and territory and filling up their state or country’s coffers at the expense of other groups they deemed as Godless or inferior. Of course modern whites in general keep their money within their community and will stay true to their ethnic heritage by supporting Kiwanis, the Italian American Association or whatever.

Naturally, Black Americans come from a tradition in which Education was difficult to achieve and only the most gifted and determined were up to the challenge. In addition, many Blacks were born into an agrarian culture (blacks in the north if they were lucky had manufacturing job—but this was back breaking labor with little pay) and with the exception of the likes of Thomas Jefferson, many slave owners were not even that literate or scintillating conversationalists, therefore education in general in the South and even in the north were not high of a priority. It was only after Reconstruction, in which it was possible to pursue education, but efforts were limited due to segregation and sharecropping—in which once again an agrarian lifestyle does not encourage book learning. With the establishment of separate black townships, HBCU’s, the tradition of education and upwardly mobile blacks began to take root, but as noted before, compared to Jews, Europeans, and Asians who can fall back on centuries of education as the path to upward mobility and the fact that having a strong culture and home country to fall back, gives them far more leg room, in which Blacks for the most part as still in the nascent stage.

So,it just goes back to the general point that Ameerica's nature is hardly intellecutal or dominated by technocrats and wunderkinds. if you look at all the President's elect who supposed to reflect American values, there are very few that were High IQ wunderkinds. Most were regular white guys, becuase that was what Americans wanted to see.

So an obligation to the group is certainly not unreasonable or farfetched. It has only become problematic in which a stringently capitalist culture emphasizes the needs of the individual at the expense of everyone else. Since Black Americans lack a clearly defined identity and what we do have is deemed inferior by majority, it becomes less important to invest in Black Americans as a group, if the danger can mean that altruistic efforts may siphon away your individual survival. Obviously as has been noted before, wildly successful blacks such as Oprah and Cosby have given generously to Black organizations such as HBCU’s, the United Negro College Fund, as well as establishing their own organizations, etc. In addition, however much people condemn the NAACP as being anachronistic dead weight to a bygone era, they have also given generously and used their political clout to assist Black Americans. But not enough is reinvested in the community because we have, in this instance, adopted many capitalistic principals all too well.

grinder said...

This obligation is not unique to just minority groups or in particular Black people.

I agree with you. If I had written it differently, I'd have written that blacks ought to do what every other ethnic group has done, which is reinvest. To use financial terminology, a profitable enterprise has two choices with respect to its profits: reinvest in the business, or pay dividends.

This is a complicated subject, but at one level you can say that the investment v. dividends decision is one of confidence: Do you think that the enterprise is worth further investment, or would you just as soon withdraw the income and use it in a different way?

Now, I realize that, say, a 24-year-old sudden multimillionaire isn't often going to see it so clearly, given where he started and where he is. Not only that, but he's typically surrounded by "advisers" who are better understood as lamprey eels.

So, I'd put it this way: Whether that sudden multimillionaire knows it or not, the decision to piss away the money on current consumption of bling bespeaks a basic lack of confidence in his own people.

How do you fight this? In the ideal, some wise head would approach the young multi-millionaire and impress upon him the realities. But the world isn't ideal, so maybe a simpler approach would work almost as well, which is to get it across to newly minted multi-millionaires that: It's not your money.

I know how oppressive that is, but if you're a multi-millionaire I'm not sure there's a whole lot of cause to shed a whole lot of tears for you, either. Or, to put it differently: From whom much is given, much is expected.

Anonymous said...

Actually think this is true with respect to all great fortunes regardless of who achieves them. But if the winner happens to be black, then my theory is that there is a special obligation.

This obligation is not unique to just minority groups or in particular Black people.White Jews have been reinvesting in their community with money and human capital for centuries and they have a history of academic achievement that goes back to the memorization of the Talmud when they were wandering around the desert. The Chinese also have an ancient tradition of meritocracy with the civil service examinations, thus their reverence for education is built into the culture as well as their belief that one Chinese achievement enhances the success of the group.
****************

Every other minority group helps their own community without question or complaint. It's only black people that seem to bitch and moan about it. DAYUM, do we really hate each other that much? Get our millions, spend it on dumb shit and fuck everything else.

Dark Moon said...

I agree with you. If I had written it differently, I'd have written that blacks ought to do what every other ethnic group has done, which is reinvest. To use financial terminology, a profitable enterprise has two choices with respect to its profits: reinvest in the business, or pay dividends.

This is a complicated subject, but at one level you can say that the investment v. dividends decision is one of confidence: Do you think that the enterprise is worth further investment, or would you just as soon withdraw the income and use it in a different way?


As noted in the second post, a strongly capitalist individualist bent pervades Black Americans as a group, in which there has never been a need to reinvest in the structural integrity of the group to further its interests, because not only has the interest has been divergent—and blacks have never been able to adequately merge those divergent interests into a coherent united front, but also the very foundation of black cultural identity has been molded along a defective, debilitating and insidious meme of White racism and entrenched inferiority.Therefore, what loyalty do successful Blacks need to uphold if they can recreate their own mythology (hoepfully by assimilating in such a way that they escape a black event horizon completely and become something other than Black) and fashion it in such a way that doesn’t taint themselves with the overall stench of Black pathology.

Despite the near phoenix successes and gains of Black Americans in this country, our culture is rooted in subjugation and doesn’t have the unifiers that Jews, Asians and other Whites can rely on when their respective communities are in crises. This crisis in identity can explain why some Blacks hold to a Afrocentric thought in which Whites and other non blacks have vociferously claimed the sub human and inferior quality of Blacks by citing lack of culture, tradition, language, intelligence and of course genetics. This explains why Blacks have a a preoccupation with racism, because this is directly related to how we fashion our identity and the unwillingness of many whites to see some blacks as human continually impedes blacks ability to true upward mobility and applying a healthy group ethos.

Therefore, it is remarkable that some Blacks are willing to do any kind of investing into the community however facile, but X-er’s and younger are far less beholden to the altruistic reflex and desire to assist the group when they have not only processed and applied the rugged individualist myth to such an extreme but non-blacks reward them for their disavowal to Black culture, since as noted before, it is considered a poor approximation compared to the dominant culture anyway.

The point is that to other non-blacks, giving back to their community is not oppressive because their already pride for their respective community and they will be able to see, in due time, the rewards for their sacrifices. Blacks have come a long way, but I see the lack of desire to use a Black cultural identity as a means to help one another. Once the Older Civil Rights baby boomers and the ones before the WWII die out, I believe that Blacks will have to rely on their individual efforts to make it. The odd thing is that Malcolm Gladwells newest book Outliers actually refutes the myth of single individual effort as to why geniuses and other exceptional indivudals became who they are and shows that community involvement and assistance from society is the surest way to ensure individual and thereby group success.

Agree anonymous. Although I am hoepful--and obama symbolic victory may raze apathy, I am not sure that as a group there is a real desire to help and support each other in a coherent manner. We've made unbelieveable strides--but the future as a group is less certain.

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