Friday, February 05, 2010
Negroes/Coloreds/Black Folks Who Get it RIGHT
It's Black History Month!
Is it just me, or does this lose significance every year? Or maybe it feels like it since I'm so far removed from the days where my classmates and I had to dress up like Rosa Parks, Oprah, and MLK Jr. and write book reports/speeches on them. Some of my friends haven't lost that spirit. Two years ago, one of my fantastic femme amigas donned a Harriet Tubman outfit for Halloween. Pure genius. Maybe I should find something to wear to reconnect me to this time I used to look forward to.
You know, Black folks can get it so wrong sometimes. Wrong to the point of shame. I can't think of three things my generation of Negroes (yes, I said negroes) has produced that carries the torch. I mean, we have Beyonce. She counts, right? (HA!) But really...between VH1 reality shows, MTV and BET we don't seem to get it right too often. Shoot, you can get real-life examples without having to touch the remote control. While media isn't the only reference for all things Black, I believe visibility is important. With all of this 'negative' representation, I think it's time to shed some light on real-life examples I have of "Negroes Who Get it Right".
MY LIST OF "NEGROES WHO GET IT RIGHT":
1. Black Marriage (The Old School Loving Edition)- While there are times where you just KNOW one of them has considered hitting the delete button on the other, they honor their vows and stick it out. They gave us The Spinners, Roberta Flack, Anita Baker, Luther Vandross and even Force MD's love songs. And while the divorce option remains, they are serious about "Til Death Do Us Part". Shouts out to the Parental Unit, JB & Kim, Cousin Wayne & Nina, Babies Mama & Daddy #1, Babies Mama & Daddy #2, The Currys, The Halls, The Bickhams, Shelley Lisa & Bluh, Dena and Ed, The Holmes, Sonia & Wayne, and (if I forgot you, add yourself here).
2. Black Marriage (Leaders of the New School)- Who saysmy generation doesn't marry??? Bull. We do and we will continue to. While I have several homies who have walked down the aisle, my most proud one to date is "My Rock" (because he holds me down!), Eddie Ford. He's already a great guy but he put a ring on it traditionally, and that makes a big impression on me because it's evidence that the younger folks can do it. I have to shout out Mrs. Ford for those dope ass wedding invitations, AND it was a helluva wedding too. They even have a blog they BOTH continue to update after the wedding. Too cute!
3. The Obamas- Not for the politics, fashion sense, or charisma. But for the worldwide visualization of Black family that counters other images that have been introduced. Everyone doesn't grow up like Precious.
4. My Hometeam (of professionals)- I have a straight up arsenal of professionals who double as homies that I didn't realize until last year. Smart as sh*t folks who were once college students and could now be cast in movies we would watch like "The Best Man". It's crazy!
5. Black Enterprise magazine- Let me tell you, I subscribe but I don't read every page. I do, however, like to LOOK at every page because it's inspiring to see so many people from all over the country doing the damn thing! We've got entertainers and athletes for DAYS, I appreciate the spotlight shift.
6. Pastor Marlin D. Harris-
Most of you haven't heard of him but he's the pastor of the church I attend. He isn't very big on self-promotion (which I love). So much so, that after 3 months of attendance, I had the hardest time recalling his name (tack on 2 more months to learn who his wife was)-- you know how Black churches LOVE their "Passas" and 1st Ladies! After college, I really struggled with my Christian faith. Going through 4 years of being taught how to think and process information, the things I believed as a child now ended with question marks. I got resigned that any of my questions could be answered and felt no matter where I went on Sunday, I was looking at either a crook or an idiot in the pulpit. Now? I feel like I grow 2 inches taller after I leave church on Sunday. He's a great teacher and I've grown tremendously in the year I've attended his church. Not every church is predicated in messages of genie-Jesus prosperity, superfluous pageantry, and insincere theatrics. I've got proof:-)
7. Good Parents- Although I continuously raise eyebrows at her (more on this later), my Moooooms!/Moo Mah/Mommy/Ma/Mom is the f'ing bomb. It's indisputable. She's the mother hen that no one can deny. Growing up, she was the disciplinarian. Pops was the enforcer. She was the Christian root. Pops was the supportive advocate. They truly were/are a team. And although none of their kids are perfect, I say they did the damn thing in having us all turn out. They really did their job. I have modern-day mirrors of her in my Babies Mamas 1 & 2, Shelley Lisa, Erin B., and Juel (packaged with supportive husbands!) that make me so damn proud. (Craigory too!)
Shouts out to all of you for real!