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Est. April 5, 2002
November 22, 2018 - Issue 765

Was the Begining of the End
Folks of Color


"Thanksgiving is honestly, at its core a controversial and
convoluted symbolic holiday which celebrates not just
religious freedom and liberty . . . for some, but also
ushered-in colonialism. T Day equates into  and represents
the latter creation of a society which sanctioned
oppression, repression and forms of genocide"

Though you may not drive a great big Cadillac, Diamond in the back, sunroof top Diggin' the scene With a gangsta lean . . . Gangsta whitewalls TV antennas in the back You may not have a car at all But remember brothers and sisters You can still stand tall Just be thankful for what you got.

William Devaughn - Be Thankful For What You Got

I may not have shared this with you, but I’m a bastard, born to a unwed 18 year old mom living with her mother in the projects somewhere in Decatur Alabama, she picked cotton while 8 months pregnant with me. My daddy was a GI Joe, a Redstone Arsenal MP - they never married, his parents, may the gods bless them, took me when no one wanted me, raised me in a 1960’s South Central LA middle-class bubble (spoiled rotten) . . . tree-house, plane trips, summer camp, tv and phone in my room - they kept me pretty isolated and insulated from Western Ave., Slauson, Vermont and Van Ness Ave. - mean-ass streets which had transformed my dad, my uncles into Black Panthers and was crafting my buddies and cousins into Bloods, Brims and Crips

When it came time for me to head to then brand new Crenshaw High, I was shipped off to Aurora Colorado.

Personally, individually I’m grateful and thankful for what was a much better shot at life: I’ve got all I need - a loving family, a comfortable roof over my graying head, food on the table, “Desi-ware” on my back . . . and some of what I want: a well used US Passport, a German sports car and a hot tub. Look, a slightly overfed/ long haired leaping gnome like me cant ask for much more - that’s my personal micro-life in a nutshell. However my little life has played-out within a larger picture. I’ve grown-up and old in a country which has had to be dragged, kicking and screaming into the modem times, a nation in which the slight majority wants to return to yesteryear when folks like you n’ me had very little to be thankful for.

Thanksgiving to me is akin-to the 4th of July, a reflective time where we’re supposed to bask in the “American Exceptionalism” of this decadent empire.

I beg to differ, being coerced and pressured to honor a day, a particular event which was in all reality the beginning of colonialism compels me to harken back to Frederick Douglass, who said: “What, to the American slave, is your 4th of July? I answer: a day that reveals to him, more than all other days in the year, the gross injustice and cruelty to which he is the constant victim. To him, your celebration is a sham; your boasted liberty, an unholy license; your national greatness, swelling vanity; your sounds of rejoicing are empty and heartless; your denunciations of tyrants, brass fronted impudence; your shouts of liberty and equality, hollow mockery; your prayers and hymns, your sermons and ‘thanksgivings,’ with all your religious parade, and solemnity, are, to him, mere bombast, fraud, deception, impiety, and hypocrisy — a thin veil to cover up crimes which would disgrace a nation of savages. There is not a nation on the earth guilty of practices, more shocking and bloody, than are the people of these United States, at this very hour.

There no Americans of color who should honestly celebrate Thanksgiving beyond a small, personal level, anything beyond that constitutes not merely nievenity but rather treason.

My assertion? Thanksgiving is honestly, at its core a controversial and convoluted symbolic holiday which celebrates not just religious freedom and liberty . . . for some, but also ushered-in colonialism. T Day equates into and represents the latter creation of a society which sanctioned oppression, repression and forms of genocide! Thanksgiving in America is representative of more than merely Coke, Corvettes, Oscar Mayer Wieners and mom's apple pie, but also Indian Reservations, Slave plantations, Japanese Internment camps. . . Thanksgiving condones and dismisses the day to day reality of this country - Thanksgiving reduces the fact that we dwell in a nation where police brutalize and over-police Americans of color and specifically African Americans? Is the brutality claims by Blacks fake? Are Blacks deserving of such heavy-handed treatment?

One has to ask; Is it fair, logical and predictable that a large slice of the American pie contends that America isn’t the land of freedom, liberty, justice and equality for all Americans? Is it illogical that those who contend mainstream US society is bias and bigoted to its Constitutional core just happen to be the undeniable victims of European Colonialism? The victims of “Manifest Destiny?”

My conclusion is, if nothing else this charge of barbarism manifesting itself in genocide has been leveled against American culture - its values, norms and standards consistently and constantly since Columbus stepped ashore in 1492 and the assault against Natives began, since 1609 when the first African slaves were sold like dogs . . .

The original Thanksgiving is allegedly the celebration of brotherhood, the native Americans looking beyond the looming imperialism and saving the Europeans, enlightening them to survival and farming tactics which might save them . . . but to little avail, the favor was quickly forgotten as a mindset of “the world is mine” would wage genocide against the native people.

Brotherhood, sisterhood call it what you like but I contend any conception of “humanity” is lacking from within White American culture.

Trump’s reign reflects a nation-wide, hell global Caucasian mentality which screams - “I’m not my brothers keeper!” Instead it’s survival of the fittest!” “I got mine . . . you get yours!” “Women and children first!” Please this tyrant and his backers are locking-up babies at the southern border, threatening to have soldiers shoot at kids throwing rocks at them. Gee “all for one, one for all?! This demographical portion of America dosent grasp this adage should be applied to folks who ain’t white.

There's no denying it -White America turns a blind eye to cops beating-up black women of all ages.

The hate is evident and the Klan is riding again.

That unchecked naked abuse emboldens King Trump to insult and berate Black journalist and politicians at the drop of a dime. Forget this idea of every news source sending black women to the White House Press meetings to protest, send Black men with a button that says “I wish a mofo would!’ No Man of color should allow this punk-ass clown to belittle black women again without challenging him, confronting him and protecting her.

I’m tired of watching white men insult our women, that shit needs to come a screeching halt right here n’ now.

Trump’s America doesn't see black women as women, they simply see them as the “females of the species . . .” Obviously if they struggle with the notion Black and brown people are fully human, then surely they reject the thought that our daughters, mothers, sisters and wives are women, let-alone ladies. 

I’m sorry but between history and current events there's just no legit reason Americans of color should celebrate Thanksgiving beyond the personal, micro level . . . just no reason at all. And I ain’t eating no traditional turkey . . . nor no slave food, no chitterlings for me . . . I’ll take a feast of BBQ ribs, a 22-ounce rib eye, a grilled Lobster tail and my grandmother's Tamale pie . . . .

Power to the people!!! Columnist, Desi Cortez, who also writes for &, was hatched in the heart of Dixie, circa 1961, at the dawning of the age of Aquarius, the by-product of four dynamic individuals, Raised in South-Central LA, the 213. At age 14 transplanted to the base of the Rockies, Denver. Still a Mile-Hi. Sat at the foot of scholars for many, many moons, emerging with a desire and direction… if not a sheep-skin. Meandered thru life; gone a-lot places, done a-lot of things, raised a man-cub into an officer n' gentleman, a "man's man." Produced a beautiful baby-girl with my lover/woman/soul-mate… aired my "little" mind on the airwaves and wrote some stuff along the way. Wordsmith behind America's Ten Months Pregnant . . . Ready To Blow!: Even Trump Can't "Make America White Again." A New, More Inclusive, Diverse 21st Century America - Love It . . . Or Get The Hell Out!Contact Mr. Cortez and BC.




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