Saturday, January 14, 2006

Still walkin' that road....

I just came back from seeing the movie "Glory Road". Now for those who know me, I am not one to usually go and see a film that I feel I might choke myself halfway through due to sappiness and clich├ęd attempts at forced moralistic conclusions, but my little sisters wanted to see the thing and I, being the big brother, was all but required to take them. In three words, I was surprised. Sure it had a rough start in the beginning, the dialogue was choppy and the talk between the coach and the recruits was a shade dodgy, but after all of the necessities were out of the way... the magic happened, and it was because of this that I began to think.

I've tried to avoid it thus far in posting. I figured that my skin held a story in and of itself that required no testification (I have a habit of creating words), but here I am, banging away at the keys, trying to write down my view on this before I loose the nerve. Needless to say, I'm black. I've been this way from the moment of my conception and I will bee this way until the day I die. I've skirted around this topic for the sole fact that I’ve held the mentality that being black is not the sum total of who I am. I was raised with this mentality and sought to essentially overcome the stereotype of the close minded, militant, gun toting, durag wearing (despite my profile picture) African American with a chip on his shoulder the size of this 300+ year old country. In doing this however, I have (in this journal at least) been a Judist to a part of me that is as important as the air I breath.

Many times people of my color seem to believe that to be educated requires an individual to downplay and even ignore their ethnicity. When accomplishments of success garners congratulatory proclamations that originate from surprise that is rooted not only in the overcoming of obstacles, but also in the color of ones skin, we, as a country, fail. Yes, I said it. I've heard the assurance of equality given time and time again by those who have never seen the bad side of a day. I've witnessed the puzzled faces of those who believe this to be a free country, as they hear of individuals who, in living life within a racial profile, strike as blindly as a cornered animal at anyone who shares the same majority of their accusers. I've felt the tension in the air of a classroom mixed with blacks and whites as the topic of discussion faithfully landed on disparities in American society. And I felt that it was high time that I acknowledge this in this Journal.

I've purported to share what was on my mind in this journal, and I for the most part have done so. But, in watching that movie I finally came to the realization that my socialization has been through the eyes of one who is part of a race that has, for the better half of past few centuries, not been allowed to and has been seen to be incapable of even possessing the ideas that I have shared in this journal. That is something that I can hardly wrap my mind around. The fact that a few decades means the difference between being strung up from a tree for trying to read and being an honors student at a research university is almost incomprehensible.

This journal won't now become the rantings of a racially embittered black teen. I don't harbor enough anger or patience for that. I just wanted to throw into this stockpile of thoughts something that hints at the corner of my mind at every glance in the mirror. I believe James Brown said it best...