Can We Talk? Some More?

I know, I know. I promised the next Can We Talk? segment would be about the black lady killed in DC when she tried to ram the White House. And maybe we will get to that one day. There are a lot of issues involved I wanna deal with on that matter

But something just came up. Mostly it came up in my mind. Its a busy place in there so when something sticks its head up, I try to whack it then before it goes back….

When I was a little boy growing up in Alabama, seems there were two narratives about black folks (come to think of it, there were two narratives about most non white groups), in the collective minds of white people. There was all them N—–s are sorry, lying, no good and stupid and lazy. Alternatively: all those black folks are good folks, they treat us so good, they love us more than they love themselves.

I admit I lean towards the later, because that is what I saw, as an entitled little white kid, and given only these two socially acceptable narratives, I do find the latter to be more believable. As I have grown up, I have realized that both lines are traps, for not only the mind of the white person, but for whichever minority one is discussing.

And while I will admit there is a thug subculture that leads a lot of young black and other minority males into a wasteful existence, by and large, I see minorities, while not as blindly devoted to the white overlords as the childhood narrative would have us believe, to be solid, “go get the job done”, be it mucking out a stable or running the country.
And I have heard the Saturday “barbershop talk” the bemoaning of the stupidity of The Man, but come Monday morning, those same complainers are back on the job, with shovel or pen and clipboard, or whatever tool of the trade, going about their work.

In fairness, most white folks are about the same, but for some reason, maybe the centuries of entitlement, even when the entitlement meant controlling your own little hovel on the King’s land, white folks are more likely to stand on the overpass waving a flag protesting things they don’t even understand. White folks are more likely to pull out a gun and shoot half the workplace or school. White folks are more likely to stand up and say, “No!”

Not that some black folks haven’t and don’t continue to this day to stand up and try to stop the train, but more often I have found the Black man (or brown, or woman), might do a slow burn, might even mutter something under their breathe, but they unload the truck, pour the concrete, teach the class, go to court or make the rounds on the floor, make the dinner, clean the bathroom, or run the country. They more often than not, see there is work, and they do it.

Mr. President, I am glad you are exhibiting the “Work to be done” attitude. I hope my white brethren in congress will get out of the barbershop on time to get some work done on Monday…..


About anthonyuplandpoetwatkins born in Jackson, The United States August 04, 1959 gender male website genre Poetry, Historical Fiction influences James M. Lancaster, Brenda Black White, Gertrude Stein, William Carlos Williams, and Al Filreis member since March 2011 About this author edit data As one of the most public lives ever lived by a private citizen, there is little about me that isn't already available at Facebook or Shelfari and countless other places. Poet, writer, construction worker, salesman, truck driver, climber into the attics of total strangers, father and husband, and all around one of the luckiest men on the planet. My luck continued with a win in the June Goodreads Newsletter Contest! What an honor! http://anthonyuplandpoetwatkins.wordp... Additional Influences: Bob Dylan, William Faulkner, Barbara Kingsolver, Gloria Naylor, Eudora Welty
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4 Responses to Can We Talk? Some More?

  1. Alice says:

    I tend to agree; however, I think the “black folks” have also been extraordinarily heroic in how they have handled being viewed as “second class” and not being recognized as worthy of the rights the rest of us enjoy. They, instead of lashing out in violence and hating America, have placed their hope and trust in the idea that someday they also would be recognized as “created equal and endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights…” I saw the Jackie Robinson movie last spring. Robinson was an example of what millions of African Americans, and other minorities, throughout history, have put up with, demonstrating grace and dignity, holding it together in hopes that freedom and equality would come. Some would call that “Uncle Tom-ming”, but I think it’s something a lot bigger and better: It’s an example of the kind of character I would like to have.

    • Alice, cant disagree with you.

      Though my concern is offsetting the stupid racist view you and i were raised around with an idealic over compensation, but by and large, i think the average Black person has shown a good deal more restraint than i think i would have.

  2. willow rose says:

    Your comment about white folk standing on the overpass waving a flag about things they don’t understand is on spot. Most people are too busy trying to eke out a living to really keep themselves well informed about anything. All the average person gets is snippets on the radio going to and from work and then maybe a bit of information before being claimed by exhaustion and so it goes…a little knowledge is dangerous and that is just what happens when no one has the time to research required to really know what is going on.
    And that is just the way those who hold the reins of power like it. We bemoan the disappearance of the middle class, and well we should. Why? I have to get ready for work right now or the lights get turned off. I promise to be more informed when I have the time.
    Good post. It is amazing what one can find out on certain web sites such as “Stopping the New World Order” and other tools; believe me there are plenty of shovels to dig up the facts on the Internet, it is critical we make the time to use them.

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