THE WRITER SAYS ; WE ARE COWARDS

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In light of the recent decision by a professional basketball team, comprised of mostly black players, to respond to their boss basically saying “I hate niggers” by turning their shirts inside out the next day at work, I have come to the decision that I agree wholeheartedly with the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, and I too do not want black people invited to my events.

It’s not for the same reasons that the Clippers’ owner doesn’t want black people invited to his events. To be honest I don’t really know what his reasons are. Perhaps he recently tuned in to an FM “hip hop” station and after hearing song after drug, sex, and violence-laden song decided that it might be a good idea to keep some distance. Perhaps his media conditioning spans beyond music, encompassing the gamut of stereotype-enforcing media, (media championed and praised by blacks, where the most rich and famous coons are praised and idolized as examples of black “success”). Maybe he’s been hanging out with George Zimmerman, and they’ve been watching Love & Hip Hop, and Basketball Wives, and the Tyler Perry collection, and Katt Williams and Kevin Hart performances (anybody catch that Kevin Hart movie with the ex-rapper who used to have a song standing up against police brutality playing a police officer? Where Hart delivers the line that Zimmerman had no doubt heard a thousand different times in a thousand different ways, shifting his psyche to the point where he could be authentically terrified of someone just because they were black . . . “you’re white. You don’t fight.”)

No, I’m lucky enough to spend enough time with black people to recognize that we’re not the base form of human life that we continue to support ourselves being portrayed as (though admittedly, it definitely rubs off on us. A lot. So much so that it’s very puzzling to comprehend how we could blame anyone who doesn’t get to spend much time with us for fostering a wildly skewed perception. What can people know but what they see?). No, I don’t want black people to stay away from my events because I believe them to be uncivilized, or ignorant, or anything like that.

I don’t want black people at my events anymore, because black people are cowards.

In all the history I’ve ever studied, in all the fiction I’ve ever read, I am hard pressed to find an example of cowardice to rival the modern day black American, and nobody wants to be surrounded by cowards right?

What if lions break out of the zoo and start trying to eat everyone? What if aliens attack? What if the police department decides that they want to grab their batons and blow off some steam? Are cowards really the type of people that you want to be surrounded by?

Not me.

Black People Are Cowards
That’s why I don’t want black people at my events anymore. Athletes that could refuse to perform until a killer is arrested, even until a killer is convicted, who instead opt for taking a picture where they all have their hoods on and then carrying on with business as usual: I don’t want to be surrounded be these clowns. If you’re black, or white, and you go back to work after finding out that your boss is grossed out at the idea of being in the same vicinity with any black person except for the cutie he’s sugar daddy to, I’m pretty sure you’re not who I want in my corner during crunch time. Real crunch time. Life crunch time.

The most common excuse I’ve heard for today’s cowardice is “they need to feed their families,” which of course is a euphemism for “for the money.” You know, the blacks that sold other blacks into slavery, there’s a good chance they used some of that money to feed their families too. So, that makes them cool with all of y’all? Here’s a question, is there anything that we won’t do for money? Is getting paid an excuse for everything? It’s an excuse for looking the other way when innocent people are killed. It’s an excuse for supporting racism by trying to win a championship for an openly racist owner. With regard to hip hop and media it’s an excuse for purposefully, and most often deceitfully, representing yourself and your culture as pretty much scum who can only be validated by money. Thanks in large part to the exceptional (it’s sad just how exceptional) bravery of Michelle Alexander, (author of The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness) we live in a society where each day more and more people realize the obvious truth that the goals of the criminal justice system have way more to do with black enslavement than rehabilitation or keeping people safe. Facing the reality of modern slavery, we continue to allow ourselves to be enslaved day after day. (Granted, fear of death is a far cry from fear of lack of wealth, but they’re both fear, the currency of cowardice.) As KRS-One (whose “Sound of Da Police” was actually the theme song for the trailer of that ridiculous movie I referenced earlier, which all but brought a tear to my eye), pointed out on his classic “Black Cop,” many policemen and policewomen are now earning paychecks for gathering up their own brothers and sisters, on charges that perpetually lead to a slap on the wrist for whites but somehow manage to be the first domino in a lifetime of enslavement for blacks. These cops get to use the “feeding my family” line too. We accept it, and go about our day, meek, bullied, and afraid to assert authority against anyone but each other, and amongst each other asserting authority with a ferocity that could only be explained by the rage of hundreds of years of being bullied by everybody else. In New York City, where infiltration and displacement are referenced using the the thinly veiled insult “gentrification” (look up the root word. “Gent.” If we accept and use a term the very definition of which suggests that communities are becoming more noble and graceful, what does that say about the people being pushed out?) natives know better than to display any aggression towards white newcomers, but are as quick as ever to stare down an unfamiliar black face who isn’t from the neighborhood.

What do you call people who walk quietly to slavery? Who allow themselves to be insulted without standing up for themselves beyond wardrobe adjustments that in reality are nothing but a public show of shame? What do you call people that pretend that these ridiculous gestures actually hold some weight rather than face the fact that we are the laughing stock of the entire planet, and as long there’s the chance that someday maybe we’ll be rich there’s nothing that we’re going to do about it?

I call us cowards.

It’s almost as if people have forgotten that struggle includes struggling. You might have to lose your job. You might have to lose your life. That’s what it takes for change to happen. There’s no easy way to do this. If you’re scared to stand up for yourself, for whatever reason, all I ask is that you stop pretending. Stop with the Facebook posts. Stop with the meaningless conversations. Just stop. Be honest. About how you behave. About your part in all this madness. About what you are. A coward. Just a coward. No need to put on an act for the rest of us. We can all see right through each other.

One last thing . . .

For those of you who have made it this far without stopping for how furious at me your shame has made you, I want you to know something. I don’t really think black people are cowards. I think humans are cowards. Most of us. I think that regardless of where one’s phenotype places them within the imaginary concept of race, that the majority of us are content to live on our knees rather than die on our feet.

The problem is, we, us, black people, can’t afford to be like everyone else anymore. Not if we want to survive. I don’t know how we got here, but everywhere you look we’re at the bottom of the global totem pole. We need to make history. We can’t be cowards like every one else, not any more. In fact, we need to set a new standard for heroism. For bravery. For courage. Maybe a standard never before seen in the history of humankind. Extreme situations call for extreme measures, and in modern times our inferiority is ingrained in every single aspect of our lives, from our media, to our religion, to our science, to our public education, to our higher education, to Africa appearing to be the same size as Greenland on all of the maps despite the fact that in reality Africa is 14 times larger. It’s harder to see our enemies than it’s ever been. Our enemy isn’t white people. It’s people who value greed more than human life. Racial division is one of their oldest weapons, and media is their latest. We mustn’t forget how young this weapon is. I didn’t grow up using the Internet. The television itself isn’t even 100 years old. The idea of global celebrity, and global transference of ideas and perceptions of culture, has never existed the way it does today. Just as Howard Beale prophesized in Network in 1976, we’re up against “the most awesome God damned propaganda force in the whole Godless world.”

We’re going to have to step it up.

If you’re down to step it up, let’s step it up. Let’s boycott. Boycott was the foundation of the Civil Rights movement. Do you believe that a cable network exists solely to manipulate the perception of black people? Stop watching it. Don’t put up a post one day praising the episode of Boondocks that never aired and then spend the next day tweeting the entire BET awards. That doesn’t make any sense.

Let’s step it up. If every NBA player who wanted to stand up against racism vowed not to play until the Clippers’ owner resigned, it would be announced that he resigned before you were finished reading this. If he didn’t want to, someone would make him. If we boycotted every night spot that spins music about how much we love killing each other and taking and selling drugs, every single one of them would have new DJs by next week (don’t even get me started on these new DJs. The new drug dealers. Admitting that they know what they’re giving people is bad for them but caring more about getting paid). I went to DJ Spinna’s Michael Jackson/Prince party at SRBs last night and there was more dancing and mirth and free love in that place than every hip hop party in NYC in the last 10 years put together. So when people tell you that we need ratchet nonsense to dance, they’re gaming you. Don’t be so gullible. Don’t act like black people only found out how to have fun when we lost our connection to our own human decency.

Let’s step it up and not buy magazines pushing music designed to glamorize a lifestyle certain to land our youth in prison.

Let’s step it up and take off from work and stay home with our kids until these preposterous tenure rules are revoked from public schools and it’s the kids that can’t be fired, not the teachers.

Let’s step it and use social media to rally each other. Everybody knew about that woman who fired a warning shot and got 20 years (I hear she’s been released now. No thanks to us). Everybody knows about that woman who got however many years for leaving her child in the car while she went to a job interview. Every single week all over Facebook there’s a new video of someone catching a beating as bad as the one Rodney King caught, but I never see a post that says, “Share this if you’ll go on strike from work until these police officers are fired.” “Share this if you’ll strike until this woman is released.” “Share this if you won’t spend a single dollar until Troy Davis is released from death row and granted a new trial.” Can you imagine the impact that that would have? Everybody is always trying to act there’s no solutions. There are plenty of solutions. We’re just too cowardly to implement them. Worried about this discomfort or that discomfort, great or small, that might take place as a result. Having to find a new place to party. Or a new show to watch. Isn’t the discomfort of oppression enough? There’s plenty of solutions, just no easy ones, but if we can shift to courage instead of cowardice, there’s more than enough solutions to guarantee our success. Guarantee. Next time you’re complaining about how this country was built on us, take a second to think about the fact that it still is. If we want to, we can shut this whole place down.

So make a decision between cowardice and courage, and if you choose courage, step it up. Step it up in any of the myriad of ways that are available to us. I’ve named a few. Name a few more. Leave a few suggestions in the comments section. Call up your friends. Tweet. Facebook.

Then start doing them. If you can’t convince anyone to do them with you, do them on your own. Start right away because we’re running out of time. I hear some states are fining people for sagging their pants. I’d never sag my pants, but if we begin to allow people to be penalized simply for attributes that we’ve allowed to be associated with being black, we’re going to find the water getting even hotter very soon.

We’ve been cowards for a very long time. We have a lot of catching up to do. Let’s start right now.

For those of you who don’t want to step it up, do me a favor and at least unfriend me.

Homeboy Sandman is a recording artist on Stones Throw Records. He previously wrote for Gawker on the topic of police brutality.
http://gawker.com/black-people-are-cowards-1568673014

0 thoughts on “THE WRITER SAYS ; WE ARE COWARDS

  1. This article is on point in so many ways. Im sick of this so called”Hip Hop” culture. These kids can memorize rap songs but cant get on honor roll or advanced classes. The list goes on and on there sre so many things wrong with black people!!!!!

  2. If this man wants to see a collective cowardly set of black people, he needs to come to the UK. We will never forge as much progress as the African American. Not only do we have the Hip Hop culture, the dancehall culture is entrenched, too.
    When John Terry called Rio Ferdinand a black C**t, I didn’t hear about any boycott. In fact the half black Ashley Cole spoke out in defence of John Terry! Black women queued up in Hamleys to have John Terry take a picture with their black children!
    My memory is long and doesn’t see any superiority within blacks of the disapora. We have dishonoured the “black pride” progressions made on our behalf between 1960-1990.

  3. This article needs to reach every blog site, every news station, every news paper, every everything to which it can be payed forward and get the recognition its very well deserving of….great job author…excellent read!!!!! :rate

  4. I’m sorry but I have to disagree. Everybody saying they would’ve walked out off the team and I call it bs. U are not in these players shoes, they still have to do a job, feed families, live the way they know how to. It is a job. So what if get paid millions doesn’t make the situation any different frm wen we are put between a rock and a hard place at work and want to quit so bad tears run down our eyes or we’re so unhaapy but cannot leave because we have an income to make. Everybody judges and are always ready to talk without thinking logically. I’m not judges these players at all. I know it must hurt to be working for a peace of shit and cannot do anything because he write their checks. I too have had to put up with a boss that I hated, made me feel like I could Neva do my job, everything I did was Eva wrong but guess what I had to stay

  5. Wow!!!! I applaud this post to the utmost highest degree. I can 100% connect with everything the sender has written and my thought and outlook of how black ppl can now be bought n sold with material things is in total compliance to what is being said. “We” have definitely drop the ball in all aspects. Our ancestors must b rolling in their graves in pure disgust and disappointment ….Less talking more action!!!

  6. Good Morning MET, I agree with this article a bit harsh but its the harsh reality. I must say when teh Clippers decided to play I was shocked as hell!! Theres no way I could play for that team which in return gonna make him richer, n those guys has the luxury of walking away and didnt!!!! I saw another article addressing the NBA as MODERN DAY SLAVERY and they couldnt have said it better. A just di other day me a tell u MET so no morales no de bout no more nutten, d world just change n it no change fi d better… THIS MAN HAVE TO SELL THE TEAM – This is unprecedented and unforgivable na lie

  7. exactly what I said after travon Martin killing its open season. on black ppl they see that our memory is very short and the black ppl in position of power eg:black athletes held a bullshit hoodie n skittle remembrance n the nxt day back to business like nothing happened. black ppl have short memory yeah its all about money sex cars n hoes n don’t think white ppl are not paying attention. its open season on black kids they just begun. u see why Zimmermann can walk around a free man n continue to laugh in your face n nothing u can do about it we are the race of laughing stock to whites. roll reverse that n see if a black man would be walking around free after being found not guilty for killing an innocent white kid. even after that not guilty verdict that murderer would have to isolate himself completely from society or leave this country. but of course black ppl leave it all to Jesus to seek justice for their oppression lol

  8. The making of the new generation of heartless materialistic vultures willing to subject themselves to anything just for a dime – has been long in the making.
    Gone are the days of strong black men who felt they had a purpose, a cause and were prepared to fight to further our rights or freedoms.
    No, show them the bling and then bend them over in any position literally and figuratively.

    It’s no coincidence that the very people who boycott the bus for the right to sit anywhere, who had cafeteria sit ins that led to an entire civil rights movement and the very people that brought us the Black Panthers have in 3 decades gone so weak and spineless.
    It’s no coincidence that Jamaican men are wearing skirts and so effeminate at this point in our history, it’s been a long time coming.

    Mission Accomplished!

    1. @Foxxy dem fool black people in to worshiping and bowing to an image which looks just like them, white Jesus!.(de bible describe de man as black) and now the effeminization of the black men, the very men who is suppose to protect his family…tek whey dem masculinity and hail him, big him up, so sad!…big up de writer of this article!!

  9. all of a sudden its a cool trend to be gay and all these lil black boys are coming up gay its all an agenda to feminize the black man. there was always gays around but how come all of a sudden its an explosion of gay black men in the bla k community and HIV rate highest amongst blacks hmm it goes hand in hand everytime a gay black celebrity or athletecomes out the closet he is ccampaigned around as a national heroe n rewarded with all types of endorsements hmm do u see the agenda yet

  10. all the players on the clippers are millionaires already…they already have money to “feed their families”. cowards indeed. lets see what “action” the commissioner will issue now and how we respond to it…in fact i think this will die down faster than we even think.

  11. Everyone needs to read this article. I agree we are so complacent and content with being oppressed that we have adjusted our minds… our communities and our children to adjust to the same form of oppression. The perception of the black family in the media is so tainted and we as black people have still chosen to promote, support and associate with such trash that is put out there. Why can we not support blacks that are bringing a positive gain into the communities and schools.

    As for the clippers, these players are millionaires. Down to the 8th man on the bench not getting any ball time is a millionaire. If they chose not to play (In all reality they are in no position to win the ring, furthermore why would you want to win a championship for a slave master??????) they should have boycotted! Screw the fans who spent their money etc etc etc… They should have taken a stand. Wearing black sock and blk wristbands means nothing!!!!!!! For all we know Sterling has stock in both! Like this writer said, if the teams boycotted the NBA would have Sterling resign within hours. For them it;’s all about money, we need to learn how to fight smart…. White people hate when you hit them where it hurts (pockets) that is the only time you see action taken QUICKLY!!!! We have to step it up!!!!

  12. They turned there t-shirts inside out…big freaking deal…I wholeheartedly agree with this article.

  13. I agree totally with what the article is saying. I am so proud of our race and so proud to be black but so many things has happen to us, so many injustices and we stand up for a moment and then silence. I use to justify this and sey ah African Americans, they are still enslaved and do not stand up for themselves, dem bow to de boss and look dung on other blacks who are not from America and they cannot defend themselves because most of what I saw or heard about was right here in America, I have since then revised my thoughts when I notice my own Jamaican people and Africans accepting behaviors and thoughts not belonging to us (our race of people) and which goes against our moral values and traditional acceptance. They imprison our men, kill our women and children and steal anything we own, and continue to belittle and oppress us, and we accept it. If one brave soul stand up in protest and step on a soap box he or she is killed out rightly or mysteriously. Take a look at South Africa, colonized on their own land by strangers from another land for years and still it continues. Amadou Diallo, Eleanor Bumpurs, Rodney King, Trayvon Martin, Ramarley Graham, Abner Louima and the list goes on, whether it is with victims of racism or circumstances relating to, and de wickedest thing is if ah did eva battyman dem him discriminate against suh, Clippers wudda DONE!!! And him commit suicide when dem done wid him!…this recent situation with Donald Sterling will soon be swept under the rug, it nah go no where…and still it continues..racism…which will never go away!

    1. The author is generalizing too much… Put any race/ethnic group under the microscope and you will see that they have the same issues. So are just to stupid to broadcast their issues.

      When I speak to my Korean co-workers, they say that Koreans don’t work together, hen I speak to my Indian co-workers, they say that Indians don’t work together, the same is said of my Vietnamese co-workers.

      So the other day when this P Rican due said the same of his people, and said that Jamaicans, work together, he was dismayed when stated that we had the same opinion of our respective people.

      As a people, we have much work to do; however, we are not alone. Mankind has much work to do. Our legacy of ailment transcends the past 400 years; however, we would be remiss to discount the impact of the many African invaders…

      Will there ever be a post-White Supremacy era?

  14. First thing, blacks never sold blacks into slavery, it was the Muslims Arabs from the middle east who captured us Jamaicans from north Africa land of Israel… common name for a Israelite in bible times was Joshua, that is the name Mary named her son Yeshua in Hebrew….Yeshua is a black Nazarene…. They have messed us up so bad and weaken us with brainwash education… This Clippers thing is morals and finance it is not an easy option… People of all races face this behaviour daily, but there are other ways of dealing with it than resigning… If U have other options of making money then yes U can resign….

  15. Yes the Arabs enslaved us and sold us to the white man, and wipe out our religion which is Judaism… There are only two real religions which are Judaism fro Israel land of Judah and Zoroastrianism from the middle east. Judah from son of Abraham Jacob, Zoroastrianism from Abraham second son Isaac… We Jamaicans are the original Israelites the sooner we figure this out then we can return to our powerful state and be Kings and Queens again as we are….

  16. Utter rubbish, we are not a homogeneous group; we do not think or function alike. The author of this article has been bitten by White Supremacy and bought into they stereotypical caricature images of the African decent…

    I am not represented by this article.

  17. Evening Met and Met

    Seems Blacks are asleep and will continue to be asleep. I’m tired.. I’m tired physical, spiritually and mentally going through this crap with my race (I give zero about what the other races are going through because every other race oppress we and they don’t have to deal with widespread racism).

    Who do we have to speak for us or who do we have as a role model? check this:
    black movies: about sex, lie, cheating, selling drugs, broken home and slavery
    black comedies: about chasing pussy, cheating, and broken home
    black music: about drugs, sex, and how beautiful other race/ethnicity women are
    black neighborhoods: poverty stricken, filled with people on government assistance
    black neighborhoods: filled with mcdonalds, kfc, check cashing, supermarkets that sell expired goods and government housing
    black clothes/clothing line: oversized criminal clothing with dice and money on it..

    even down to we language, mannerism, dressing is changing…. this is how black boys and girls address each other: “ma nigga” and “this bitch.”
    I don’t see no light at the end of the tunnel so if someone do, please let me know.

  18. Ok! Facts was spoken here. Yes all races have issues, however no race had ever been treated the way black in America has been. Most of us are not out brothers keeper once it’s not been done to us personally it’s all right. The author is right the only way to make white people listen is attach their pockets. If the NBA players all strike he would loose his job. We need to wise up. We spend more money buying LV/Gucci/Prada mine you all white people brand and they care zero about our existence. Shit is sad. Change needs to come.

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