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