I read the Huffington Post. Most of the time its on point, humorous and gives me a chuckle. That was not the case when this article: Two Black Role Models done in by Hubris went up.
The author is not a woman of color, nor does she seem to understand that her article is patently offensive and racist. A summary for those that don’t click. She posits that these two black men were brought low by their hubris. Woods for his extramarital dalliances and Obama for failing to deliver on his campaign promises in his 8 months in office so far. Um, what? I didn’t appoint her my savior and decider of who gets to speak for me as a black person to the world at large.
When readers call her on the idiocy of linking these two men based on skin color alone, she gets quite defensive in the comments to her own piece. I notice that she trips over herself basically calling herself out and back pedaling on what she did and didn’t actually say in the piece. Critical thinking fail here people.
Here’s my comment in case anyone is interested:
“That you even think their race had anything to do with their failure means you can’t read.” If that’s the case, what was the point of your article in tenuously linking two famous black men? What hubris can you point to on the part of the president? You really need to step back, untangle the straps of your invisible back pack and realize the issue people are taking with your “article”. Let me clarify for you.
You, as a white woman are attempting to tell us people of color that we ought to be ashamed of these two fallen role models of our “people”. No one assigns my role models. No one famous person of color should be held up as the monolithic example of what POC should aspire to, and none of us should be told by journalists of any race, creed or color that the “failures” of famouse POC are doubly problematic and just such a disappointment for the race.
This is condescending, patronizing and yes, it is a racist action. You can commit racist actions and not even realize it. Reading your commentary back to posters here, it seems as if you are treating people’s responses to this poorly written attempt at connecting two famous black men as personal attacks.
Your closing line is very telling on yourself, you should read it and let it sink in because its exactly what you are doing by jumping up and down screaming but I’m not racist! online.
“A Message from the Average Black Person”
Via the Huffington Post (Would love to hear what you guys think – Sorry about the cut IT WONT WORK. And if you enjoy this please DIGG it - http://is.gd/1ev4T – and feel free to pass the link along!)
The closing benediction as given by Reverend Lowry on 20 January 2009 after the swearing in of Barack Hussein Obama as the 44th President of the United States.
God of our weary years, God of our silent tears, thou who has brought us thus far along the way, thou who has by thy might led us into the light, keep us forever in the path, we pray, lest our feet stray from the places, our God, where we met thee, lest our hearts, drunk with the wine of the world, we forget thee. Shadowed beneath thy hand may we forever stand — true to thee, O God, and true to our native land.
We truly give thanks for the glorious experience we’ve shared this day. We pray now, O Lord, for your blessing upon thy servant, Barack Obama, the 44th president of these United States, his family and his administration. He has come to this high office at a low moment in the national and, indeed, the global fiscal climate. But because we know you got the whole world in your hand, we pray for not only our nation, but for the community of nations. Our faith does not shrink, though pressed by the flood of mortal ills.
For we know that, Lord, you’re able and you’re willing to work through faithful leadership to restore stability, mend our brokenness, heal our wounds and deliver us from the exploitation of the poor or the least of these and from favoritism toward the rich, the elite of these.
We thank you for the empowering of thy servant, our 44th president, to inspire our nation to believe that, yes, we can work together to achieve a more perfect union. And while we have sown the seeds of greed — the wind of greed and corruption, and even as we reap the whirlwind of social and economic disruption, we seek forgiveness and we come in a spirit of unity and solidarity to commit our support to our president by our willingness to make sacrifices, to respect your creation, to turn to each other and not on each other.
And now, Lord, in the complex arena of human relations, help us to make choices on the side of love, not hate; on the side of inclusion, not exclusion; tolerance, not intolerance.
And as we leave this mountaintop, help us to hold on to the spirit of fellowship and the oneness of our family. Let us take that power back to our homes, our workplaces, our churches, our temples, our mosques, or wherever we seek your will.
Bless President Barack, First Lady Michelle. Look over our little, angelic Sasha and Malia.
We go now to walk together, children, pledging that we won’t get weary in the difficult days ahead. We know you will not leave us alone, with your hands of power and your heart of love.
Help us then, now, Lord, to work for that day when nation shall not lift up sword against nation, when tanks will be beaten into tractors, when every man and every woman shall sit under his or her own vine and fig tree, and none shall be afraid; when justice will roll down like waters and righteousness as a mighty stream.
Lord, in the memory of all the saints who from their labors rest, and in the joy of a new beginning, we ask you to help us work for that day when black will not be asked to get back, when brown can stick around — (laughter) — when yellow will be mellow — (laughter) — when the red man can get ahead, man — (laughter) — and when white will embrace what is right.
Let all those who do justice and love mercy say amen.
REV. LOWERY: Say amen –
REV. LOWERY: — and amen.
AUDIENCE: Amen! (Cheers, applause.)
For anyone who may be a frat or soror at/alum of an HBCU. Any thoughts on this topic?
Diverse Web Chat
Please join us for an exciting Web chat discussion about the state of Black Greek Letter Organizations at 1 p.m. EST on Wednesday, Nov. 14. Read more…
Ok… I get “Diverse News in Higher Education” daily. Most of the articles are good and make sense for academia. But the article below made my brain itch. The gist of it is this: Dealing with and avoiding racism makes black folks crazy (sorry meant to say-creates “mental health issues”).
Lauredhel posts about some breast surgery that isn’t breast surgery according to the docs who invented it.
2049live posted about the Twin Towers Alliance Interview [he's working on their site]
Karnythia posted some interesting thoughts about other IBARW posts she’s seen around the net
Angelsscream’s IBARW posts are all here
*All links will open in a new window
I’m almost done with this book, I highly recommend it to anyone who thinks that one person can’t make a difference. Doctor Maathai is an inspiration, and I’m glad I recieved this book. Makes a great gift too. Below is a review from Amazon that sums up what I’d like to say, but its much better written
A well written review from Amazon’s site:
Perseverance and hope, April 5, 2007
By Friederike Knabe (Ottawa, Ontario Canada) – See all my reviews
When Wangari Maathai was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2004, questions were raised regarding her choice by the Nobel Committee. Why should an environmentalist receive a prize that was identified with peace and human rights, voiced the critics. Reading Maathai’s memoir sets the record straight, and justifying her selection for the award. In this fascinating and very personal account, she paints a vivid picture of her life, embedded in the realities of Kenya before and since independence. Her experiences during the Moi regime, in particular, demonstrate the challenges a young educated woman confronted in the face of traditional prejudice as well as political oppression.
From Diverse Online
Best and Brightest’ Scholar’s Promising Future Ends Tragically
By Margaret Kamara
Jul 12, 2007, 01:24
Devin Gaines, who became one of the University of Connecticut’s most noteworthy 2007 alumni when he graduated with five degrees in five years, died early Tuesday morning.
Gaines was featured in a Diverse series on the “Best & Brightest” minority college students shortly after earning bachelor’s degrees in computer science, theater studies, cognitive science and linguistic psychology. His fifth degree was in an individualized major: cinema, culture and cognition.
The Harford Courant reported that Gaines had gone for a swim with friends to Blakeslee Pond in Deep River, Conn., and drowned in the abandoned pit that forms the pond. The pond, which is 100 ft. deep in some places, has been closed following a swimming accident in the mid-1990s. Security frequently patrols the pond to prevent people from swimming there.
Though toxicology results are still pending, medical examiners classified the death as an accidental drowning.
“My brother is not a swimmer, he was not athletic, he was a book worm,” Gaines’ sister, Netosha Sumter, told the Courant.
Gaines, who graduated in May with a 3.2 GPA, had been working as an information technology associate for Pension Associates, a tax consulting firm.
A message posted on the firm’s Web site reads: “Our prayers go out to the family and friends of Devin Gaines, a recent Uconn grad and our employee for the last one and a half months. He will be sorely missed.”
Gaines’ extraordinary academic journey began 12 years ago, when his father introduced him to the world of computers.
“My father brought home a broken computer, and I was able to put it together. When he saw that I did that, he decided to take me to a community center. [There,] I met up with a woman who became my inspiration in life,” 22-year-old Gaines said in a May interview with Diverse.
The woman was Kathryn Murdock, the executive director of the Yerwood Center, located a few blocks from Gaines’ home.
For more information on Gaines’ life, see www.diverseeducation.com/artman/publish/article_7325.shtml, where his friends and family members have posted messages about the scholar.
- Margaret Kamara