My Analysis of The Black Vote part 1: Why do Blacks Keep Voting Democrat?

The white conservatives aren’t friends of the Negro either, but they at least don’t try to hide it. They are like wolves; they show their teeth in a snarl that keeps the Negro always aware of where he stands with them. But the white liberals are foxes, who also show their teeth to the Negro but pretend that they are smiling. The white liberals are more dangerous than the conservatives; they lure the Negro, and as the Negro runs from the growling wolf, he flees into the open jaws of the “smiling” fox. (Malcolm X’s God’s Judgement of White America aka The Chickens Come Home to Roost)

The very outspoken American television personality and radio host Steven A. Smith never holds his tongue. Smith has angered people on many occasions with his unpopular views. Not too long ago, Smith was suspended by ESPN for controversial comments he made regarding the Ray Rice scandal. Recently he’s been coming down hard on Black America and blames the black community for many of its woes.

Back in March of 2015, in front of a large audience at the Impact Symposium at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Smith stated that the Black community disenfranchises itself by being too loyal to the Democratic party. To quote Smith;

“My point is, when you go buy a house, do you look at one? When you go buy a car, do you look at one? When you wanna buy some clothes–when you wanna buy some shoes–when you wanna buy anything–you’ll shopping around… Do you know what you are saying to somebody? Let me see what you got to offer. WE DON’T DO THAT WITH POLITICS!”

Therefore, Smith proposed that, “for at least one election, every Black person vote Republican.” The ESPN host believes that this would send a message to both parties that the Black demographic is not under any one party’s control. (Click here to see full video)

In my opinion, many Afro-Americans and Progressives took what Smith said out of context.  Many of us don’t see how mixing things up a bit will help us get our voices heard. From Smith’s perspective, he feels as though the Dem’s control too much of the Black vote and his proposal would loosen the Dem’s grip on Black politics as a whole. Also, it would create a seismic shift in the political landscape that would result in political parties focusing more of their attention on Afro-American related issues than ever before.

Smith isn’t suggesting that every Black American should join the GOP. He is simply suggesting that Black America should start thinking more strategically when playing the:

All Smith is doing is applying an age-old military strategy called: DIVIDE-AND-COUNQUER. In other words, Black America should use the Republican party against the Democratic Party to FIGHT EACH OTHER for our votes. By both major political parties fighting for the Black vote, it forces BOTH PARTIES to pay more attention to Black American issues. However, when Black America continues to consistently vote for one party during every major election cycle, overtime one party will neglect our needs, while the other party will take our needs for granted. To quote Smith:

“What [voting for one political party means], is that black folks in America are telling one party that we don’t give a damn about you. They’re telling the other party, you’ve got our vote. Therefore, you have labeled yourself disenfranchised because one party knows they got you under your thumb. The other party knows that they will never get you. THEN NOOOOBODY COME TO ADDRESS YOUR INTEREST!”

Lets put Steven A. Smith’s comments into perspective. What are OUR needs? We want more jobs, better pay, better schools, better safety and a better quality of live overall. Guess what? OUR NEEDS ARE NO DIFFERENT FROM 90 PERCENT OF AMERICANS.  Whether they deliver or not, both political parties do have a vested interest in improving ALL their constituents quality of life. What each party fundamentally disagree on is how to properly do it. These disagreements are usually based on silly ideological views that go along the Right-Left political paradigm.

Many of us already know that politicians on the Right end of the spectrum have more conservative views, while politicians on the Left has more liberal/progressive views. Each party typically creates legislation along these philosophical lines. However, the only way bills make it out of Congress is when both parties come to the CENTER. Nevertheless, many politicians are usually pulled away from the center by their larger, more EXTREME conservative or liberal factions. Thus, makes it becomes more difficult for politicians from both sides to get anything done. This is the depressing political landscape ALL Americans are under at this moment.

While the Right and the Left are fighting over the little things, they are leaving millions of Americans behind. If most Americans are left behind Black Americans are usually kicked to the curb. Therefore, where do Black America fit with all of this Left-Right nonsense? The truth is Black America will never get their voices heard with these stubborn-ass politicians playing these childish-ass games. If we continue to wait on each party to squash their school-yard beef. we will never get our voices heard. Therefore, while our beloved democrats continues to go back and forth with Republicans, how about we start going behind their backs and see what the other side has to offer?

Before you continue reading, think about any political issue and ask yourself these questions: Do my beliefs go along liberal or conservative lines? Are my overall views more liberal, more conservative or neither? Regardless of political affiliation, does this candidate have my best interest? Black America’s best interest? And even America’s best interest?

In a previous ItsBiggerThanRacism article, titled “Is Gay the New Black?” I made case for why it should be in Black America’s best interest to separate the gay rights agenda from the Black agenda. The separation of Black and gay rights would be in Black gays best interest because they too need a platform to address their needs as Afro-Americans. The gay community couldn’t possibly address Black cultural issues effectively. With that said, it also is in the best interest that the Black agenda separates itself from the liberal agenda because they too are really incapable of addressing all of Black America’s needs.

I’m not suggesting that Black America should completely cut ties with the Democratic party and jump on the Republican. What I’m suggesting we do during each election cycle is place each one of our issues on the table and see which party will serve our best interest. Maybe conservatives have a better political solution for some of our issues, while the liberals may have a better solution for other political issues. If neither political party is capable of helping us, then we should start looking more inward for the solutions.

Why continue to push OUR agenda with the broader Liberal agenda when we have our own problems to worry a about? The Liberal agenda is too broad and cluttered with other voices for OUR voices to be heard. Therefore, we shouldn’t keep putting all of our eggs into one basket.

We are classified as a minority, but WE ARE NOT THE ONLY MINORITY. The Dem’s serves other minority groups, women, gays, handicap, and etc. You cannot possibly expect Liberals to answer everyone’s grievances. Whose needs are met first? More importantly, why are their needs considered more important to tackle than others? Therefore, lets start giving ourselves more political options and stop closing the door to other political power-players who may be able to actually get something done.

Political party and a political ideology are two different things. Black America’s political ideology should be different from our political affiliation. And the entire fate of our race/culture should not be in the hands of outsiders who don’t understand our problems. Therefore, the Black Agenda should be its OWN POLITICAL PARTY that goes along its own philosophical paradigm. This will help to open up a new door that will help to better serve our people’s interest. Plus, our leaders will have MORE OPTIONS- political allies and more tools to their disposal that will help better address the people’s needs.

Lets look at Smith’s comments from a more strategic perspective. With Black America only being 13.5% of the population, we are a large minority, but still a small fish in a large ocean. If you look throughout history, the only way a smaller army can beat a larger army is through divide and conquer. Black America is primarily being used to strengthened the Dem’s number and push away more conservative/moderate democrats further to the right. As a result, Black America’s undying loyalty to the Dem’s only serves to strengthen both political party’s. If we want our voices to be heard, we are going to have to separate ourselves from the Democratic party. Therefore, instead of using OUR voting power to strengthen one political party, we should use it to weaken both political parties.

We can’t continue cater to one political party and exclude the other. It will only serve to strengthen the segregated side. In a previous ItsBiggerThanRacism article titled, “What went wrong with integration?” I explained that segregation overtime only strengthens the segregated factions and forces them to come together under one radicalize umbrella. Therefore, when Black Americans, who has historically been isolated by Southern white conservative, start isolating ALL conservatives and conservative thinking people, we only move them further and further to the right and swell the Republican party’s numbers.  We also drive away many of our conservative brothas and sistas to the right as well.

This argument can also be made for Conservatives.  The more conservatives isolate gays, abortion rights advocates, atheist, global warming supporters and…well…BLACK PEOPLE, the more they force these factions move further and further to the left.

Nevertheless, as I mentioned in a previous article titled, “What Exactly Is Black Enough” I made the argument that Afro-Americans are more than just a race or a color, we are a FULL-FLEDGED CULTURE. Like most cultures, all of our problems can’t be solved politically. Yet, we rely too much on politics and government to solve most of our issues. I know this may sadden many Progressives, but the GOVERNMENT DOES NOT ALWAYS HAVE THE ANSWER! Therefore, relying totally on government for everything only works against us because it closes the doors to potential allies outside of government. Ergo, our reliance on only one political party only makes things worse.

From a political perspective, Black America is a reliable Democratic voting bloc. However, from a cultural perspective Afro-Americans have conservative and liberal opinions on a variety of national issues such as separation of church and state, taxes, gay rights, education, unions, crime, welfare, the war on terrorism, etc. The reason why many of us vote Democrat is because, as Steven A. Smith previously stated, we are under the false belief that the Democrats were the only party who supported the Civil Rights movement and Republicans were against it.

In reality, both parties center around the idea that an independent Black movement would jeopardize both parties (the Dem’s in particular). In the article I mentioned above titled, “What Went Wrong With Integration?” I explained my reasoning behind the push for integration by liberal politicians (from both parties). I came to the conclusion that the push for integration was an attempt to cripple the growing Black nationalist movement that was growing more and more independent. Don’t believe me? Just take a look at this documentary, in which former FBI agent and provocateur, Darthard Perry, spoke on how it was his mission to break up this growing independent movement in the Black community.

In the end, politicians weren’t trying to divide the black vote; their intentions were to CONTROL THE BLACK VOTE through voter consolidation. This actually makes it easier to use divisive political tactics such as gerrymandering. To get a better understanding of what I’m talking about, listen this speech by Malcolm X.

Nevertheless, Smith is right, if Black America wants to stop disenfranchising ourselves Black voters need to stop being so predictable every time we go to the polls. To quote Smith:

“ALL WE HAVE TO DO IS UPSET THE APPLE CART BY NOT DOING THE PREDICTABLE AND IT WILL FORCE EVERYONE TO PAY ATTENTION TO US BECAUSE THE DEMOCRATS WILL BE AFRAID TO LOSE OUR VOTES AND THE REPUBLICANS WILL SAY, ‘wait, we might have a chance to get it. Then, all of a sudden, everyone will cater to OUR needs like the cater to Jewish folks, to White folks, and to the young and suddenly we won’t be disenfranchised anymore. “

We can argue all day whether Smith’s tactics would work or not, but reality is that we have to be more strategic with our vote if we plan on getting anything from our politicians.

Politics is not a game of chance, its GAME OF STRATEGY. Politics is Chess, not Checkers. It’s poker on a world stage. You don’t win with votes alone, you win with a strategic game-plan and a damn good poker-face. The less predictable you are, the harder it is for your opponents to figure out your next move. However, if our political opponents know that all we do is march, protest, rally and start a million-man and continue voting Democrat, then we play right into their hands. What I and Steven A. Smith are really trying to say is, like any game of strategy YOU NEVER LET YOUR OPPONENT KNOW YOUR NEXT MOVE.

———————————————>STAY TUNE FOR PART TWO<—————————————————-

Do Black folks really care about what happened to Sandra Bland or do we just wanna see a White man hang?

Before the Civil Rights movement, at a time when Jim crow and Black codes laws ruled the South, Black America had no rights that white men were bound to respect. Even though the federal government ratified the 14th and 15th amendments to grant all former former slaves (future Afro-Americans) full constitutional rights, many White Americans used all of their power to prevent these free men from exercising their new rights. This resulted in nearly a century of Black American’s fate being placed in hands of their former masters. Not to long after that, White America went HAM on our people..

A white man had to respect another white man’s right to due process. However, when a white man wanted justice against a black man, they didn’t have to wait on a judge and a jury. All they had to do was kidnap him, hang his body on a tree and call it a day. White folks didn’t care about black folk’s probable cause, right to due process, fair and speedy public trial by jury, ability to confront the accuser and obtain witnesses, retain counsel (lawyer), and equal protection under the law. In other words, before the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the white man was black folks judge, jury and executioner.

Fortunately for us, all of that changed with the Brown vs. the Board of Education decision and the passing of the Civil Right Act of 1964, which finally upheld the constitutional rights of Afro-Americans. Black folks finally received the legislation that would give them equal protection under the law. This act dismantled all Jim Crow and Black code laws across the South and the White man no longer could be the judge, jury and executioner. For the first time since the Dred Scott Decision, free black men and women had rights that “white men were bound to respect” whether they wanted to or not.

If you want to understand the legal basis of racial segregation, I suggest you start to familiarize yourself with Dred Scott vs Sanford. After the Supreme court made their decision on the fate of Dred Scott, it affected all of Black America. Luckily for us today, when Black folks are dealt with cruel and unusual punishment by Whites or anyone else for that matter, we can now seek justice through the proper channels.

What does this all mean for Afro-Americans today considering that we seem to be facing the same problems that our ancestors faced a few generations ago? With all that is going on today, why should we still care about a piece of paper when the government isn’t upholding their end of the bargain? The difference between today and yesteryear is that, believe it or not, white folks are held much more accountable for their actions towards us. Even if the system is still biased, White America still will not get off as easy as Emmit Till’s murderer. They will at least face the court of law and even receive some punishment. Now, if we feel that their punishment is too light or no punishment is given at all, we can always take matters into our own hands. However, lets stop acting like we are brand new to the injustice of American society.

As many of our people know so well, the government can be cruel and biased and it’s been known to have dropped the ball on many occasions. The Founders understood this when they created the legal framework for this country that all governments are flawed. This is why the checks and balance system law was developed in the first place. They understood that the victim and the criminal equally had rights and that every man is innocent til PROVEN guilty. The problem I have with Black America is that we don’t want to fully accept that.

Yes government has the responsibility to protect everyone’s rights. This doesn’t only apply to Sandra Bland; this also applies Officer Brian Encinia as well as the correctional officers who were responsible her while in their custody. This means- even though we may feel in our bones there was foul play, we have to remember that we live under the rules of law and order. Also, even though the government has an obligation to protect our constitutional rights, the government will not always be able to come through for us. Therefore, there are certain obligations that Black America has in protecting their own well-being.

Every man and women has the right to protect themselves and express their opinions, but a traffic stop isn’t the best time nor place to get militant. I’m not saying that we should bow down to the police, but would rather fight law enforcement alone or with and army of people? In order for us to effectively combat police brutality, we ALL need to be on the same page. Vigilante justice is only for the movies.Therefore, we have to be much smarter, more unified and plan strategically when dealing with the government. The government is too DEEEEEP. We won’t win alone. It took our entire race to collectively fight for Civil Rights, somewhere down the line, we have forgotten that.

Instead, our people resort to race-baiting the government into fighting our battles for us. We do this by jumping to conclusions without looking at the facts first. Then the media pushes the race issue even more and further clouds our judgement. When blacks, such as Ms. Bland, dies while in custody of white law enforcement personnel, we focus too much attention on the fact that Officers are WHITE and Sandra Bland is BLACK. When we start to think like this, we won’t even bother looking at all of the facts. And the media knows it.

Well here are some of the facts. While media has been focused on the Officer Encinia, who pulled Ms. Bland over for failure to properly signal a lane change, it had nothing to do directly with her death. I repeat the Officer Encinia was bogus to arrest Ms. Bland for something petty and lied about it, but he was not directly involved with Ms. Bland’s death. People need to understand that Officer Encinia is a Texas state trooper. Ms. Bland was arrested by him, but she ended up in Waller County Jail, which is an entirely different law enforcement agency. During the time of her death, she was in the custody of Waller county, who was responsible for holding her until she saw the judge.

I doesn’t excuse the behavior of the officer because he did violate Ms. Bland’s constitutional rights. And for that, he should be fired and never allowed to work as an officer again. However, when we throw in racism before we get all of the facts together, we draw people away from the subject matter. Racism is real, but today’s racism isn’t as obvious as it was 50 years ago. Racism is more subtle, covert and way harder to prove in a court of law. What is easy to protest is the officer’s foul play caught on video and the jail not properly monitoring Ms. Bland while in custody. We are better off sticking to the facts now and placing judgement on the officer at a later time.  We need to hold back our feelings for a moment and first allow the system to take its course. I understand what white folks did it to us in the past, but they had the system on their side. We are going directly after the system. Do you think it will be 100% on our side? Therefore, we have to be smarter and think more strategically.

First we have to understand the law. Because our people experienced hell, we never understood how the law is supposed to work. We see law and order the way our oppressors treated us versus how they treated themselves. They treated themselves fairly and treated us like shit. However, just because the law only applied to whites along time ago, doesn’t mean that the law itself is bad. At one point, the law didn’t apply to Native Americans, non-landowning whites, the working class, the Irish, Mexicans, Chinese, Japanese the disabled, women and children. Once each group secured equal protection under the law, they allowed the law to take it course. Now if the law continued to violated their civil liberties, then that’s when they turn up the heat. On the other hand, our people turn on the heat before the government make their decision. We think that we can highjack the justice system and force them rule in our favor, like our oppressors did. Well, in a real democracy it doesn’t work like that. Hell, it didn’t always work like that back in the day.

Back in the day when lawlessness plagued the South, many court of laws would actually try to do things the right way and give our ancestors a fair and speedy trial. However, the white folks at the time disregarded our constitutional rights and grew angry at the justice department for trying make things fair. Instead of White Southerners allowing the system to take its course, they took matters in their own hands and demand that the jail release the black prisoners at once. If the jail refused to release the black prisoner to them, these White folks would start rallying, marching, protesting and even causing a little mayhem. If that didn’t work, they would use the local media to put even more pressure on the courts to speed up their guilty verdict. If the courts was still taking too long, then White folks would panic and start creating bigger lies and making up conspiracy theories in order to rile up more Whites in the communities. What usually worked the best was conspiracies involving WHITE WOMEN. Nevertheless, if the courts still refused to give up the Black prisoner, the Whites would eventually get completely fed up and start storming the jail. When they finally got a hold of the brother, they will take him to the nearest tree and…well….you know the rest.

What makes our actions any different from those racist White folks? Instead of being satisfied that the media and government is paying more attention to these matters of police brutality, we would rather push them to send the federal cavalry into all police stations and go gangbusters on so called white supremacist cops. Like it or not, we have become the people we despised the most. We have mastered the art of lynching, but instead of using the rope, social media has become our judge, jury and executioner.

We too automatically assume every white cop is racist and guilty. We too start rallying, the picketing, the marching, the protesting and start an occasional rioting in hopes that we put more pressure on the courts to hurry up and find this white cop guilty. When they don’t move fast enough, we then turn to the media who usually don’t mind the ratings boost and start race-baiting the hell out of this story. If the courts still don’t move fast enough and find these white cops guilty, we then turned to social media and post the most asinine memes, corny hashtags, and pointless catchphrases that do nothing but dilute the facts. Resulting in making black folks angrier and creating divisions within the black community. If the courts still don’t find these so-called racist guilty, then we resort to scare-tactics such as posting the most extreme cases of historical racism of the past 500 years that’s not even connected with this case…#RememberBlackWallStreet. If we still don’t get what we want, then we really become desperate and start creating the most ridiculous conspiracy theories imaginable.

The truth is that we have become so used to receiving justice the wrong way that we don’t understand how to go about it the right way. We have been given justice by the wrong people for the wrong reason for so long that we don’t have a clue on how actual due process works. The key word here is PROCESS, which indicates that it may take a certain amount of time. Real justice takes TIME. We push for the government to do their investigation on the Sandra Bland case. Now we are forced to WAIT. Not only do we have to wait on Waller County to finish their investigation (which is already completed as of today), but now we have to wait on the state of Texas, the DOJ, and Sandra Bland family’s independent autopsy.

All of this just for the Texas States Attorney office to summon a grand jury to see if this is even worth taking to trial (which they are not). Even if someone was charged, we still have to wait a few years for the jury to reach their verdict and even that’s 50/50. What I’m saying is that American justice is SLOW. American justice is like heating your food in the oven. If Black America wants MICROWAVE JUSTICE, we have to put the work in ourselves.

***As of 07/23/2015 has ruled Sandra Bland’s death a suicide by hanging.***

Like the White folks who terrorized our communities, Black folks ain’t got not time fo’ this shit. We want justice! When do we want it? NOW!! Then maybe real justice isn’t what we want. Instead of innocent to proven guilty, we want the courts to hurry their asses up and find these officer’s guilty so we can see them hang. Sound familiar? If that’s the case, we don’t want justice at all. WE WANT REVENGE. But unlike those racist white folks, most of us are too pussy to do it ourselves. So you think the government will for us? You think that the US Government will treat their own people like shit for nigga’s sake? Get real people.

Sadly my brothers and sisters, unless your name is Ossama Bin Laden, the government is not in the business of vengeance. If Black America wants revenge for Sandra Bland, Black Americans are going to have to get revenge their damn selves. Don’t expect White America to do it for us. Most of them either don’t care or are only interested in making a name for themselves.

With that said, you can’t expect the United States government to implement Jim Crow-style justice in the Civil Rights age. It just ain’t gonna happen people! We are better off just waiting thing out and plan our next move ( Meanwhile, we need to find realistic ways to better prepare our people for the world that we actually live in and not the world that we dream of. Otherwise, the more we keep running to incident after tragic incident, our struggle is only going get worse and worse.

With that said, her death was unfortunate and unnecessary. Rest in peace Ms. Sandra Bland. Your death will not be in vein. It has definitely sparked something in this country.

What went wrong with integration?

I was talking to a friend of mine the other day about real estate. He suggested that we and other friends who have the means, pull our resources together and invest in a building. I told him that some of us may not have the money. He said that all we need is 5 or 10 or our friends to put in at least $1,000. He told me how a group of guys did the same thing and made enough cash open up a popular restaurant chain. Might I add, these gentle were Arab. Then the age-old question came up: “Why can’t black folks do that?”. Under segregation, we had no choice but to work with each other and work together we did. Now that we are integrated there is no longer the urge for Afro-Americans work together? Could it be Integration?

Whenever I talk to the older members of our community, they always talked about how there used to be more black-owned businesses in our neighborhoods than today. They all said the same thing: “Up and down this street used to be nothing but black businesses. Then all of a sudden they disappeared.” Much of our businesses were effected by the lost of good-paying factory jobs in our communities. However, what integration did effect was our ability to work together and rebuild.

First of all, if you really think about it, SEGREGATION IS THE REASON WHY WE ARE A PEOPLE IN THE FIRST PLACE. If our ancestors had integrated immediately after emancipation, they would have just blended in with the rest of the population in a similar way that Latin American slaves did. Before the civil war, Black America was in no way monolithic. There were slaves, freed blacks, Creoles and other Mulattoes, Native American slaves, the Gullah, West Indians and even black slave owners. Under segregation, with the Dred Scott decision as the foundation, Black people were forced into one population based on the one drop rule.  As far as White America was concern, there were no longer distinctions between this Blacks. To them, ALL BLACKS HAD NO RIGHTS THAT RIGHT MEN WERE BOUND TO RESPECT.

Secondly, when people are segregated, the powers that be are forced to build things in two’s. Men and women technically use “segregated” facilities; therefore every facility is forced to build two bathrooms, two locker rooms, two dressing rooms, etc. The same can be said for racial segregation. Instead of building one water fountain for everyone, now you need to build two water fountains. One for whites and one for coloreds. Instead of one school system, you have to build two school systems. The same can be said for churches, banks, libraries, hospitals and politics. Many of these institutions that were developed out of this dual system still stand in Black America today. Like it or not, segregation laid a basic infrastructure for Afro-American culture to build from. How else did our HBCU’s come to be?

Thirdly, segregation went two ways: Black folks had very limited access to White America and White folks had limited access to Black America. Segregation made it hard for many whites who wanted be involved in the Black community. Even though whites had more freedom, the elite had to make sure that they didn’t use that freedom to cross racial lines. Therefore, the government punished “sympathetic” Whites by taking away their privileges.

Later down the line, two America’s’ were built: one BLACK and one WHITE. Integration was the government’s attempt to turn the two America’s into one. As a result, integration not only gave Black America MORE access to White America, but it also meant that White America was given FULL access to Black America. By White America being bigger, more in control and having a better sense of self, they had the competitive advantage over Black America, who had less control and was unsure about itself. Therefore, Black America simply wasn’t developed enough to integrate each other’s institutions because neither group was on the same playing field. I always like to use the rise and fall of the Negro League Baseball (NLB) as an example of what I mean.

It doesn’t matter if segregation was right or wrong, the reality is this: The Major Leagues was facing some MAJOR COMPETITION from Negro League Baseball. Consequently, it made all the since in the world to integrate baseball.

So why didn’t the NLB last after baseball was integrated? The simple answer is that the NLB players was being snatched up by the MLB to the point where fans became less interested in watching Negro League games. However, it was more complex than that. To sum it up, The MLB still had most of the money, power, fan base and racial leverage. The only thing that made the NLB competitive was the MLB’s own racist policies. Segregation was the main reason why Negro League baseball existed in the first place. Therefore, it made all the sense in the world that the NLB lift the ban on Black baseball players. This wasn’t just about de-segregating baseball. This was about eliminating the competition. The MLB killed two birds in one stone.

Segregation protected the interest of Negro League owners more than the Major League owners. Without segregation, the Negro Leagues would be forced to compete without the relying on racist policies that benefited them. With all of their good players now having a choice of where they want to play baseball, by the 50’s, they overwhelmingly chose the more establish, better organized, wealthier Major Leagues. Once Jackie Robinson found success and popularity in the Major Leagues, the Negro League had no fighting chance.

Whether the powers that be knew it or not, their ultra-racist policies laid the foundation and infrastructure for a new American culture- BLACK AMERICA. Then our people filled in the gaps by developing our own businesses and industries, such as a professional baseball league.  As long as the black businessmen and women was segregated, they had no choice but to invest their money into the Black community. In return, black consumers were forced to support black businesses because there weren’t many option’s available to them. Since “bourgeois” Blacks, mulattoes, creoles and West Indians were also forced to be apart of Black America, they had no choice but to build their world within the black community.

Regardless of where our ancestor’s came from, segregation forced EVERY Black American to live together. Therefore, our ancestors were forced to tackle issues with crimes, poverty and unemployment BY THEMSELVES. And they were forced to pull THEIR OWN resources together.

Under integration Blacks are now given the freedom to choose. I do believe we should all be free to choose our own destiny, however, many Afro-American’s continuously choose White America over Black America. This is the fundamental problem with integration. Now that our people have the freedom to choose where we want to be, most of us (I have been guilty of this as well) chooses the path of less toil (White America). Yeah, some Whites were ultra-racist, but like Jackie Robinson, many Blacks felt that their bullshit was better that our bullshit.

In my opinion, without segregation or something forcing our people to stay together, we are no longer obligated to have a vested interest in our people. Unlike in the past, if things go bad today, now we could just leave. If we see our communities falling apart, we have the option to do SOMETHING or we have the option to do NOTHING. Under segregation, even when we were scared, we were forced to do something because there was NO WHERE ELSE FOR US TO GO. It was either sink or swim. Now that we have a choice, I don’t care how radical we think we are, most of us have chosen the path of least resistance over drudgery and sacrifice.

Therefore, what will compel Black America to pull their resources together and finally build the utopia we’ve wished for since emancipation? The answer is simple. WE HAVE TO BE FORCED TO DO IT; just like it took force for our ancestors to be freed from slavery; just like our ancestors were forced to become a people because of the color of our skin; just like they were forced to pull their resources together to build a world of their own; just like our baseball players were forced to create a Major League Baseball organization.

Black Americans rally together when we have NO CHOICE but to come together. This is why we can only to rally around racism and nothing else. Therefore, experiencing racism is the ONLY common thread we have left. In this day in age, this is a problem for us because race is subjective– meaning that today race is solely based on personal feelings and opinion and has no concrete foundation to reinforce it. Therefore, without race being reinforced by the system, our racial identity no longer has any real substance and foundation. So race only matter’s to people they are threatened by it.

My point is that our perception of color can change overtime, but how do we define ourselves and our people culturally? Afro-American history began with race, but it developed into a legitimate, well-established CULTURE. Somewhere down the line, we lost control our culture, forcing us to hold on the one thing that can’t be taken from us: THE COLOR OF OUR SKIN. Black America is suffering through the same ordeal the Negro Leagues suffered from. We rely too much on racial identity alone to hold our community together. You see what happened to the NLB. What do you think will happen to Black America as a whole? Just look around.

Therefore, it makes sense that we start developing a COMMON INTEREST that goes beyond our racial identity and provides us with a higher sense of self and purpose. Regardless of how integration has impacted our communities at large and how racism is still affecting our people today, we STILL NEED TO FIND A WAY TO BUILD OUR OWN INSTITUTIONS. Race has no substance. No real identity. No law. No morals. No values. Its just a label. What we need to do is get back to the basics. Then we can find our true identity.

My friend is on the right track, the best way to rebuild a community that is too divided and self-defeating, is start little by little, family by family and team by team. Therefore, instead of waiting on 40 million people to get their shit together, all we need are teams of like-minded people to pull their resources together to invest in one project at a time. Then each group of Black investors can find a common interest with each other and create a bigger network. The more we NETWORK, the bigger our INTEREST will be come. The more interest we have with each other, bigger our common interest will be. Then we will have a much clearer understand of what’s in our BEST interest.

Is the proof really in the pudding or is the media just saying the darndest things? My opinion on how Black America Should deal with Bill Cosby

In a unsealed deposition from 2005, it has appeared that America’s dad had admitted to what the court of public opinion has already found him guilty of. RAPE. Although he has admitted to using Quaaludes on “consenting” women, he never fully admitted to using the popular date-rape drug on non-consenting women. Nevertheless, the fact that he admitted to drugging women period is guilty enough for some people, except for Whoopi Goldberg.

This a sad way for anyone’s legacy to end. Up until these recent allegations, Bill Cosby was America’s most popular and celebrated entertainer. Bill Cosby and is brand has reached a net worth of more than a half billion dollars. With his trailblazing career spanning more than 50 years, Cosby was the first Black actor to co-star in any prime time drama (I Spy). He has sold out arenas for decades. He has developed a wide variety of movies, comedy specials/albums and TV shows such as Uptown Saturday Night, Lets Do It Again, Kids Say the Darnest Things and the Fat Albert series which earned him numerous Grammy and Emmy awards. Already a household name, by the mid-80’s, it was his groundbreaking role as Heathcliff Huxtable in the Cosby show that made him a global icon and one of the most powerful men in Hollywood. He became a popular spokesman for America’s leading industries, most notably the Jell-O pudding franchise.

If his brand wasn’t already big enough, he was seen by many as America’s biggest role-model and Hollywood’s moral beacon. Not to mention for decades, he has been Black and White America’s biggest philanthropist. He’s given back millions of dollars to various Black institutions, including some major endowments to Spelman College. He has also been the recipient of many honorary degrees from various universities. Before these allegations, Cosby’s brand was nearly untouchable.

His image did take a slight hit after he made some controversial comments regarding the Black community in front of a mixed panel that pissed off many prominent Afro-Americans such as Michael Eric Dyson. Many books were written in response to Cosby’s controversial comments, which states that the Black community is responsible for “dropping the ball” on Civil Rights and Dr. Martin Luther King’s dream. Throughout that famous “Pound Cake” speech made in 2004 at a NAACP awards ceremony commemorating the 50th anniversary of the 1954 ruling of Brown vs. the Board of Education, Cosby preached “self-responsibility” and blamed the failures of poor Black Americans on themselves. Naturally, he has received a lot of negative feedback from the Black community for his controversial comments.

Nevertheless, all good things must come to an end, as his brand has taken a huge blow in the past few years with literally dozens of rape allegations that span more than 40 years. Because of this, Cosby’s reputation has gone down the shitter faster than diarrhea wrapped in a can of prune juice. To make matters worse, his victims not only includes a bunch of no-name women, but among them are a few high-profiled supermodeling legends such as Beverly Johnson and Janice Dickerson.

Therefore, in light of the unsealed court documents on top of 40 female accusers, should the Black community condemn Cosby or should we stick by him? Do we simply look past his multiple rape allegations because of his overwhelming contributions to Black society? Or do we dismiss all that he has done and completely cut all ties with Cosby like many universities have done? Should we forgive him like we did with Marion Berry or condemn him like Hannibal Buress?

I say that we judge Cosby by his own standards. Cosby, like many outspoken celebrities such as Charles Barkley and Don Lemon, have been very critical of the Black community’s lack of self-responsibility. Despite what I might think of him today, I actually agreed with much of what Cosby said in 2004. Afro-Americans should start taking more responsibility for their own problems and SO SHOULD COSBY!!!

Therefore, instead of taking sides, lets hold Cosby to his own standards. Let’s hold him accountable for the damage he has cause to many women, his colleagues, his family name and the Black community. In a speech to the students of Morehouse College Cosby goes on to say,

“You don’t see any politician running on the pillar of law and order. Why? Because [Afro-Americans] are killing [themselves]. Why? Because we are making fools of ourselves. Why? Because we call up radio stations and say that Cosby’s putting out our dirty laundry. What the hell are you talking about? You better clean it up! There are Black people who are afraid to walk around this dirty laundry. There are Black people who are afraid to talk about it…”

Like I said before, I agree with Cosby. Therefore, lets take his advice and speak out against Cosby for letting his dirty laundry be aired to the world and jeopardizing the already fragile Black American image. An image that Cosby himself help to define. Now for people, like Whoopi Goldberg, who needs more proof, lets instead condemn Cosby on a moral basis.

By admitting to these allegations, Cosby has also admitted to CHEATING ON HIS WIFE Camille. Secondly, he’s admitted to be a sexual deviant. Its one thing to be a freak, but using quaaludes is just plain bizarre even if women consented to it.  I understand that its Hollywood and celebrities deal with a lot of temptation on a regular basis. Nevertheless, Cosby is (or was) a participating in a huge way all while being married. Yet, he had the nerve to get on black America for their sins.

I’m not sitting here as a moral beacon for the Black community like Cosby. Like everyone else, I have my flaws too. Nevertheless, I hate when people contradict themselves. Don’t take the moral high-ground, when you know you are doing wrong yourself. Like Berry White said, “practice what you preach“. I understand the message he was trying to convey to Black America. And I don’t disagree with him at all. Still and all, if he knew that he was doing dirty shit behind closed doors, maybe keep should have kept his mouth shut and let someone with less dirt speak on his behalf. I would never tell a person to practice something that I couldn’t practice myself, especially if its highly probable that I may get caught. Cosby was just asking for trouble.

Bill Cosby’s brand is was big, but no one is bigger than the all-mighty media. With the growing power of social media, American media is bigger and more powerful than it has ever been. Whoever thought that the media could take down Bill Cosby? BILL COSBY PEOPLE!! I thought he was untouchable. The media had a harder time ruining Michael Jackson’s image than Bill Cosby. It used to take cost millions of dollars, actual proof by the court of law and years of smear campaigns to sway public opinion. Now it just takes a few memes repeatedly posted on social media, a few soundbites replayed over and over again and…VIOLA!…career is done. What has taken 50 years for Cosby to build, social media has destroyed in less than two years.

As old as Cosby is, he barely knows how to use today’s technology to fight back and is virtually incapacitated, which is probably why he has remained as quite. Unlike the wealthy titans of the past such as John D. Rockefeller, Andrew Carnegie and J.P. Morgan, today’s 1 percent can be rocked to their core. It was Youtube that gave Hannibal Buress the power to knock Bill Cosby off his pedestal. Really? Hannibal Buress? He was a nobody a year ago.

Considering his flaws, if anything, Cosby should have been more careful with his brand, instead acting all high and mighty. His brand is too important for many of his former co-stars who receives royalty checks for reruns, his Alma Mater and various Black universities who has endowments under is name as well as to Black American families who have held the fictional Cosby’s as their standard. Hell, the Cosby’s were the standard for many White, Asian and Latino families.

Regardless of how I feel, I believe that his brand is just too powerful and needed in the Black community to simply allow the mainstream media to destroy it. When Donald Sterling, a member of the Jewish persuasion, was caught with his hand in the cookie jar, his Jewish buddies didn’t allow his empire to be destroyed. It simply transferred over to the next Jewish Billionaire and made Sterling even richer. Therefore, Black America shouldn’t allow his empire to be destroyed and snatched away by mainstream media.

It’s important that we take Cosby’s advice and make him responsible for his own actions, but lets not allow his nearly billion-dollar empire to rot away. If used correctly, the Black media can be just as powerful as any other media outlet. If we can’t use it to restore the man’s image, we can at least help to restore his brand. Therefore, Bounce and Centric TV network, both Black-owned, should stop being pressured by mainstream media and keep playing Cosby reruns. In a few years, people will forget about this mess and will continue to watch the Cosby Show and A Different World. There’s just too much money in it.

I’m not saying that we should give Cosby a pass, but we have to take our emotions out of it and start looking at the bigger picture. We can separate the man from the myth, but we can’t get all of that money back. With that said, now its time for Black America to clean up Bill Cosby’s dirty laundry.

Did the Confederate flag killed those 9 victims or the kid holding it?

Weeks after the mass shooting at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in downtown Charleston, South Carolina on June 17, 2015, the media discovered in Dylan Roof’s manifesto some pictures of the killer burning the American flag and then waving the Confederate flag in its place. Since then, the media and South Carolina officials have decided that it was time to remove the Confederate flag from the state capital that have been up since the 1960’s. Since then, many other states have jumped on the anti-Confederate flag bandwagon and are now pushing bills to remove the symbol from state memorabilia. For example, Alabama’s Governor order the flag be removed from their capital along with all other confederate symbols including on license plates. Of course, there are many supporters of the Confederate flag who feel that the media is misrepresenting their flag. Despite pictures of the killer waving the Confederate flag, they still believe that the flag should be left out of it.

First of all, I feel that we are stepping in dangerous territory with this flag. You may not care about the flag–I sure don’t–, but like it or not, you still have people who are find this flag as sacred as the American flag itself, if not more. Therefore, we don’t have to respect them, but we have to respect the fact that they will not sit by and allow people to disrespect their flag.

Secondly, considering its technically a treason flag, I don’t agree that it should be flown on the state capital. Then again, there are many signs and symbols of our racist past that is scattered throughout the American landscape. If I push for this flag to be removed, I might as well push for the removal of George Washington and Thomas Jefferson’s face from Mt. Rushmore, since they were former slave owners. The White House was built by slaves; should we knock it down and build a new one?

Almost everything about this country began with racism. Therefore, we are bound to find plenty of racial contradictions all throughout this great land of ours with the AMERICAN FLAG being the biggest one of them all. Therefore, if we go after the Confederate flag, we might as well go after the stars and stripes. Most of America’s dirt was done under this flag anyway. Before the Civil rights movement the Ku Klux Klan’s real flag of choice was the American flag. The Texas revolution was basically about keeping slavery intact, but I don’t see people going after the Texas flag.

Thirdly, you can take the swastika away from the person, but you can’t take the Nazi out of the person. In other words, removing one flag is not going to change the minds and hearts of people who were taught from an early age to hate us. Hate is in the hearts and minds of the individual not in the flag that they fly. There are just a many bigots, if not more, who fly the American flag on their front lawn. In my opinion, the majority of racist don’t give a flying fuck about Confederate flag. Does that make them any less racist?

My next point is that not all supporters of the Confederate flag are racist. I know its hard to believe, but many people hold this flag sacred for various reasons. All of it don’t have to do with slavery. To some people, the Confederate flag represents their culture. Their way of life may not have been that great to Blacks, but its the only culture that these White folks know. Like American history, I’m pretty sure that these rednecks are aware of their tainted history, but don’t expect them to throw it all away just because it inconvenienced Afro-Americans.

Furthermore, we have a CHOICE whether we want to be involved with these rednecks or not. Most of us choose not to associate with them or their flag for obvious reasons. However, there are some of us who wave the flag loud and proud, join them in commemorating the Confederacy and even go as far as reenacting the Civil War with them. Plus, there have been plenty of rappers wearing the confederate battle flag in their videos and even put them on their CD covers. Nevertheless, its their choice to make.

Lastly, the Confederate flag represents millions of Americans from all backgrounds. In the mist of its influence are some of the most radical right-wing nutcases America has to offer. These groups are armed to the teeth and are not afraid to use violence to make their point. The recent church burnings across the Deep South are most likely racially motivated and if that’s the case, I believe that they are connected to these Al Qaeda-type rednecks. My point is that messing with is flag can place us in very dangerous territory as there are number of people who will die for this flag. I believe that if we weren’t so concern about their flag, these church burnings would have never happened. Dylan Roof is just one person. This flag represents an entire culture. My advice is not to mess with something that other people find sacred unless you are prepared to fight. And these people have no problem fighting us.

Then again, a part of me can respect the fact that these crazies will go through any means necessary to protect their culture. This is something that our people should strive to do rather than continuing to rely on politicians and the mainstream media who have no real interest in fixing our problems. Nine people were murder inside of one of the oldest Afro-American churches in America and they focus all of their attention on is a freaking flag. Then when these crazy right-wing (and some left-wing) nutbags come out of the woodwork to defend their flag, Afro-Americans are the ones who literally get burnt in the end. Now they have a story and we are left with the ashes.

Like I said before, the flag needs to go down, but it’s not going to stop the next Dylan Roof from emerging. We should make sure that he receives the punishment (preferably the death sentence) that he deserves. In the meantime, we need to find out who is really behind all of these church burnings and send those people a little message of our own. Running to the system every time we are confronted with racism or violence isn’t going to stop it. Neither will taking this flag down. The only way we are going prevent violent acts of racism is when we start protecting ourselves and confronting our enemies face-to-face. This requires us to get our shit in order and stop being so afraid to use necessary violence. It may get ugly, but its well worth it in the end. This is real justice. Not that we-shall-overcome bullshit.

Sorry Dr. King

Why are our so-called Black leaders so scared of the 2nd amendment?

In light of the church massacre in Charleston, South Carolina and gun-violence in Chiraq, the nation is again in mourning over many lives being lost to senseless acts of gun-violence. However, there are other groups, who simply used these isolated incidents as opportunities to push their gun-control agenda.

Back in 2013, due to the “overwhelming” crime statistics coming from his hometown and the high-profile murder of Hadiya Pendleton, our dear President Barack Obama decided to unveiled his plan for stricter gun-control. This proposal called for a universal background check and a ban on assault-style weapons and high-capacity magazines, along with 23 executive orders. As good as this sounds to some people, I can not just sit by and continue to allow people to use our problems to push their agenda. I won’t let gays do it…and I won’t let gun-control lobbyist do it either. All they want to do is use Black-on-Black crime to disarm us so we can’t protect ourselves.

As a big believer in the bill of rights (and I mean ALL of the bill of rights), I’m not going to give up my second amendment rights just because some lunatic decided to murder innocent people inside a house of worship or a bunch of lunatics in Chicago decided to ruin memorial day weekend for some folks. I understand that murder is one of the worst acts of sin imaginable and how it can ruin communities. However–I may sound like a member of the tea-party with what I’m about to say–but there’s not enough murders in the world that will make me give up my guns. If anything, more murders makes people want to buy more guns. Therefore, instead of blaming guns, lets start looking at people who use guns and why.

Lets get one thing straight. Murder has been around since the beginning of time. Murder is in the Bible from beginning to end. Just look at the story Cain and Able. If mankind couldn’t prevent murder with just FOUR people in the world, do you really think that gun-control is going to be that effective? Until 2014, Chicago had the toughest gun laws in the entire country and still do. Chicago also had the highest murder rate of any major metropolitan area over 1 million people. Clearly gun-control hasn’t worked for Chicago. Actually, concealed carry laws may be lowering the crime rate in the city.

Besides guns are just one way to kill a person. Hell, all Cain needed was a good size rock. It was the Bible that proved a little man can kill a giant with a freaking sling shot and we are blaming all violence on guns? Guns or no guns, mankind always find ways to kill people. If we got rid of all guns today, people will go back to stabbing the shit out of each other like we’re locked up. Will we then start pushing for knife-control?…Never mind.

Besides, gun control is not going to solve the Black communities problems with crime, poverty, lack of black-owned-businesses, single-family homes, poor education, mass incarceration, gangs, black-flight, white-flight, jealousy, envy, greed, which is actually the real reasons for most of the murders. Knowing this, why would I give up the best way of protecting myself from impoverished, desperate, greedy, poorly-educated, fatherless, hatin’-ass, gang-banging, good-for-nothing Nii…..thugs? For the bad guys, guns are very violent and very efficient way of murdering people, which is why they love to use them. However, for law-abiding citizens, guns are also a very efficient way of protecting yourself from random acts of violence. Imagine the police fighting crime without guns?

A state of the alarm system, cameras, padlocks, reinforced windows and doors, pit-bulls and the Holy Bible aren’t going to protect you from someone WHO REALLY WANTS TO HARM YOU. Therefore, when all other line of security fails, the gun is the last line of defense. However, if you don’t have one, when people like Dylan Roof bust down your door, then you may be good as DEAD.

Black folks have to understand that, despite how poorly the government has protected our constitutional rights, we are still entitled to those rights. Lets not blame the constitution for our shortcomings. It wasn’t the constitution that infringed upon our rights anyway. It was the American people. Consequently, White people had to be dealt with constitutionally. Constitutional rights really reflects the inalienable rights of mankind entitled to us by #godallmighty, not mankind. Even though the government gave our ancestors civil rights, we are actually entitled to inalienable rights which can not be restrained or repealed by human laws. In other words, after the Civil War, we in control of own freedom. We were just too scared to fight for it so we pressured the government to do it for us. Of course, the powers to be wasn’t going to let Blacks know of their natural rights. This was something we were going to have to figure out on our own.

Theirs a reason why the right to bear arms is the second amendment and not the last. This amendment gives us power to force people to recognize every other rights we have. Now is the time for Afro-Americans to be re-acquainted with the second amendment because it protects every other amendment out there. If we don’t, our ability to protect our freedom of speech, religion, protest, press and assembly will be severely compromised without some way of physically forcing people to acknowledge that freedom. Some day, we may have no choice but to get physical. We had to in the 60’s.

In the 60’s and 70’s, when the police really had their way with the Black community, Huey P. Newton and Bobby Seal (R.I.P.) mustered enough courage to exercise their right to bear arms. Despite the real shoot-to-kill policies of that era, the police marched to a different tune when they saw these well-organized, fearless Negros interpreting the second amendment, while holding rifles and shotguns in their faces. Brotha’ Newton studied the law and realized that the constitution was putted into place to protected US citizens from their own government. Because his Black Panther Party understood this philosophy, they became one of the most feared organization in US history. So much so, that in the 60’s, the National Rifle Association (NRA), today’s leading gun-lobbying organization, were so frightened of Niggas with guns that they helped craft and supported the country’s first federal gun-control laws. Being that gun-control laws are unconstitutional and considering the shit our people had to deal with, many Black Panthers rightfully chose to ignore these changing laws. Maybe we should do the same.

I understand that our people have been dealing with violence since Amistad, but I don’t see how punishing law-abiding citizens will be the answer to stopping gun violence or any violence. I’m my opinion, the answer to stopping gun violence is to buy a gun of your own and don’t be afraid to use it. My experience in life has shown me that most people prey on the weak. Therefore, people with guns mostly prey on innocent, unarmed people. So if a little punk even thinks that you’re armed, they will most likely leave your ass alone. It’s no coincidence that this punk decided to attack Blacks inside of a church, instead of pointing his gun into a trap-house full of heavily armed gangbangers. Trap-houses are armed to the teeth. What’s the chance of person bringing a gun inside a house of worships? Even gangs practice gun-control on Sundays.

The truth is that when you allow gun-control laws to be passed, you are only hurting yourself and empowering the bad guys. Gun control laws work in the favor of gangs and organize crime syndicates because it eliminates law-abiding citizens from forming militias (which is also in the second amendment) to protect themselves. Gun-control is a major reason why many Chicago gangs have turned into an unstoppable force. The average criminal doesn’t abide by the law, so gun-control policies do not apply to them (neither does any other law). They simply buy guns out of the same black market they buy drugs and stolen goods from.

Ironically, gun-control laws forces law-abiding citizens to buy their gun through the same black markets. Therefore, gun-control policies become ineffective because it forces innocent people to commit a “crime” to protect themselves from crime. Its not a coincidence that gun possession, not gun-violence, is one of the leading causes of incarceration for young Afro-Americans. Your stance might be that “the law is the law and no man is above it”. However, in my opinion, no man-made law is above natural law. Therefore, no law is above mankind’s need for survival.

The only reason why most outsiders even care about our issues is so special-interest groups and other lobbying groups can promote their agenda. This is why the media and politicians love using Blacks as the poster-children for everything wrong in our society. Therefore, we must be very skeptical when the media finally decides to put our issues at the forefront. Instead of applauding to the media for finally recognizing us, we should be asking ourselves, WHY NOW? Nine times out of nine, when a politician mention tougher gun-laws, harsher penalties or gun control, they are really pushing for modern-day blackcodes that disarms every Black citizen in this country.

If you really think about it. Whether you are pro-gun or for gun-control, we are in the largest gun-manufacturing country in the world. Therefore, guns aren’t going anywhere anytime soon and guns will always be easy to find. Mexico and Brazil has the toughest gun-control laws in the world. They still have some of the highest murder rates in the world. I rather be in Englewood, Chicago then Juarez, Mexico or City of God in Rio De Janeiro? You know Mexicans get most of their guns from the US, right?

We are looking at this gun issue all wrong and allowing our emotions to get the best of us. The powers that be wants their citizens to think with more fear than with common sense. If we learned anything from the Bush administration, fear leads people to give up more of their freedoms. The powers that be have always feared a Nigga with a gun. And now Niggas fear other niggas with guns. This is the reason why we shouldn’t let them use these senseless, random acts of violence to trick us into giving up away our right to protect ourselves. If we are going to protect ourselves from our oppressors, the police and…sadly…OUR OWN PEOPLE, we are going to have to get re-acquainted with the second amendment.

Don’t be fooled by the Black face in the oval office either. Our politicians are powerless against the agenda of the real wealthy and powerful and are too damn scared to stand up to them. Therefore, gun-control is our decision to make and ours alone. So rather than listen to everyone else, we should do what best for us. Nevertheless, if I’m in the hood, you best’ believe I’ll be strapped. I’m not saying guns will protect us from everyone or solve all of our problems, but it will definitely show people that we mean business.

What exactly is black enough?

Rachel Dolezal was born a White woman, but felt like a Black woman on the inside. Realizing she was too White-looking to be Black, she instead went for the bi-racial-sista-souljah look. Her journey began at Howard University, the most prestigious Black university in the country. However, she ran into some cultural clashes with the administration, who thought they were helping a poor black girl for Mississippi. Realizing that going to a HBCU wasn’t enough, she then figure marrying a black man would work. However, her and her husband soon divorced (he probably thought he was marrying a White woman).

Realizing that being white wasn’t going to give her the extra street cred she was looking for, Ms. Dolezal-in-distress decided to make an overall transformation. Therefore, if she was to be taken serious by Black America, she felt she had to become Black. Then she decided to tan more than ever, wear darker make up, wear Afrocentric wigs and change her accent a bit. This would be enough for most people to “pass”, but Ms. Dolezal didn’t want to be on the sidelines faking Blackness. No. she felt she need to take her Blackness to the next level.

So she became a professor of Africana studies at Eastern Washington University and rocked some of the most natural Black hairstyles that would make Lauren Hill look like Martha Stewart. She could have stopped there, but her devotion for being Black was so strong that she felt that she had to prove she was down for the cause. Therefore, what do most black people do to prove their Blackness? They join organizations like the NAACP.

You would think that the charade would’ve ended here. However, the Lincoln County, Montana native, with her PhD. in Africana Studies, decided to take on a leadership role in the NAACP. From there, she quickly moved up the ranks to become president of the Spokane, Washington chapter. By becoming the head Nigga in charge of our nations leading civil rights organization, she has now entered the upper echelon of Afro-American culture and now no one could question Ms Dolezal’s blackness. Well, accepted for her parents.

Its one thing to pose as a Black person. It’s another thing to allow that lie to reach the highest level of Black America. Did anyone do a thorough background check on this woman? I know as a brother of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc., I can tell if a person is lying about being a Sigma by asking a few questions and making a few calls. Why couldn’t they do it? Even the White NAACP members couldn’t recognize their own kind? You mean to tell me that looking ethnically Black and showing some damn pictures of black people was sufficient enough for them? If that’s the case, then maybe I should squint my eyes, show a few pictures of my day in Chinatown and use it to prove to the Chinese Consulate I’m Blackenese. It’s sad when its harder to become a Greek than it is to become a Black woman.

My point is that if our people had a stronger sense of identity outside of our physical characteristics, than this charade would’ve never went as far as it did. The Spokane Afro-American community would have been able to better spot her fraudulent identity a mile away. They would have been able get past her look and would have focused more attention on the cultural differences. Yet, all this woman had to do was look Black and she was in.

I don’t know if I’m more mad that she lied about her race or mad at the fact that no one was able to challenge her authenticity. The fact that just looking black is enough for Afro-Americans to accept her as one of their own is very problematic to me. In my opinion, this creates a huge flaw in our culture making us very vulnerable for exploitation by other groups. I’m my opinion it was just to damn easy for this White girl from Montana to become a Black woman. And its our fault. While we are spending so much time demonizing her in social media, we should be seriously asking ourselves this question: What is does it really take to be Afro-American?

Ms. Dolezel has shown us how simple it is to become Black, but was does it take to be Afro-American? Is Afro-American just a race or are we actually a culture? Do all one person needs is a big butt, full lips, African ancestry and a “black” or “ghetto” accent? Or could it mean light skin, curly or straight hair, alpine nose, light eyes, and thin lips with a standard American accent? We do have to both categories in our culture you know? Truthfully, there are just too many combinations of physical attributes and cultural influences to just simply define ourselves so one-dimensionally. All blacks come from Africa, but that isn’t enough to make me Zulu, Akan, Xhosa, Amharic or Swahili. I couldn’t go to Nigeria and claim that I’m Igbo, Yoruba, Ife or Nigerian. If Afro-Americans moved to Africa tomorrow, racially we’ll still be black African, but culturally we’ll still be American. If we were in Ghana, we would be called Obruni’s or foreigner/White. On the other hand, if a Ghanaian comes to America, they will just be considered Afro-American and have full access to our cultural legacy.

I will admit that Black immigrants, such as Marcus Garvey, Claude McKay and Shirley Chisholm have made a tremendous contribution to Afro-American culture. For that we should be forever grateful and indebted to them. However, the Italian and Swiss built much of St. Petersburg, Russia, but that don’t make them ethnic Russian. For a long time, Afro-American identity was only confined to race and was not truly accepted as a culture until the Civil Rights movement. Today, with the increase migrations of black foreigners, our people began to see the development of new Black ethnic enclaves. What we found was that the members were more loyal to their culture than their racial identity. I have no problem with increasing the number of Black people in this country. However, foreign Blacks are a more tightly knitted community than we are. Yet, they have to ability to gain access to our culture by simply checking Black/African-American on their applications.

This is very problematic considering that many of these groups do not move into traditional Afro-American communities and/or create their own separate communities. In Chicago for example, most of the Ethnic Black communities are on the North side, which is far away from the traditional black enclaves of the South and West side. Although, that trend is beginning to change, if Afro-Americans think they will have access to other Black group’s resources, they can think again. We might all be Black, but we are not the same. Even if we do work together economically, sooner or later our cultural ideologies will clash with one another. We shouldn’t take this personal or look at our foreign Black brothers as enemies because most first-generation immigrants operate in this manner. Their main objective is to build their world in America, not enter someone else world. They will use any resource imaginable to accomplish this goal, even if it requires them to cooperate with us for a little bit. Our own people do need to take a page out of their books and start thinking a little more selfishly. However, if we don’t look out for ourselves first then we would be even more vulnerable for exploitation.

Race doesn’t mean a damn thing to the rest of the world the same way it matters to Americans. Black, White, Hispanic and Asians only go along with racial identity for political reasons and sheer numbers, but they separate into their own ethnic enclaves for economic and survival reasons. Its time for Afro-Americans to recognize the fact that we are different culturally from not just Whites, but Blacks as well. We are as different from other Black immigrants as we are from any other immigrant group. We also have to admit that we are more Western than we are African. Because our African heritage was stripped away from us during slavery and forced into isolation, we developed a uniquely American culture. As individuals, our ancestry comes from Africa, yet our culture did not develop in Africa. No matter how you look at it, our culture is American born and American bread. In other words, Afro-Americans are as American as apple pie (with a bit more flava’). If we just see our experience simply as an extended sentence in complexion-oriented captivity, we will never reach the fullest extent of our cultural development.

A few weeks ago, I wrote an article about how exploitation works. As I mentioned before, Afro-Americans are easily exploited because the criteria for being apart of our culture is so weak that people can just jump in and out of it whenever they want to. It’s mainly has to do with the draconian laws of the one-drop rule that we still practice today. Instead of the one-drop rule being the only criteria, maybe we should go by our standard rituals, rights of passage, holidays and celebrations or maybe create unified code of conduct and philosophy outside of the construct of race and racism. Maybe we can add some symbolism and iconography that we all can identify with. Culture is what really distinguishes people, not race. Culture is what should distinguish us from every White and Black cultures in the world. If Afro-Americans want to start acting like a real culture, we first to have to establish some real cultural standards so that people like Ms. Dolezal can’t easily infiltrate Afro-American culture and become apart of Black high-society by simply tanning their skin and changing her hairstyles. Otherwise, we will never be safe in this world. Even though it was based on a lie, Ms. Dolezal appeared to actually care about our people. However, other infiltrators won’t be so kind.

American slavery may be a good place to start distinguishing folks. Only people who are descendents of American slaves should be considered Afro-American. The one-drop rule is the reason why our people possess a plethora of physical attributes. However, we can’t continue to be defined by this rule alone. One of the reason why Rachel Dolezal was able to pass for Afro-American was because of the technicality of the one-drop rule that only requires a person to look Black. We can get mad at Rachel Dolezal all we want to. However, I say we should use this moment as an opportunity to think about what it means to be Afro-American and actually create some general prerequisites. Therefore, it won’t be so easy for the next person to pass as one of us. Depending on how we define Afro-American, Negro, African-American or Black American culture, if Ms. Dolezal is actually serious about being Black and prove that she’s not self-serving (or crazy for that matter), maybe we can actually welcome her into our culture like we sort of did with Tina Marie (RIP)… Or maybe not.

Some food for thought

First of all, I think its important that we understand the difference between race, nationality and ethnicity. Even though Germans, Austrians and Swiss people are all White and all have the same cultural roots and speak the same language, they still do not consider themselves to be the same people. Race is a social construct based on the color of ones skin and geographical origin. Nationality is simply one’s country of origin. Ethnicity, though more complicated, is the culture a person belongs to. To simply put it. All Igbos are Nigerian and all Nigerians are Black African. However, all Black Africans are not Nigerian and all Nigerians aren’t Igbo. Therefore, why should all Black American should be Afro-Americans? We can still be involved in the Pan-African movement, but there is nothing wrong with distinguishing ours culture from rest of the pan-African world.

Secondly, I’m appreciative for the President showing us that a Black man can reach the highest level of office. However, it is important to note that his background is White American and Kenyan. Plus, he also grew up in Hawaii far away from traditional Black cultural centers. If there were 10 million Kenyans in America, would Barack Obama still be the first Afro-American president? We know he will still be the first American president of African descent. However, which ethnicity would Barack Obama belong to more: Afro-Americans or Kenyan Americans? My guess is that he would be considered the first Kenyan American president. If you think about it, as diverse as his background is, he has more of a legitimate case for not being Afro-American than Tiger Woods does. Yet, he still choose to incorporate hisself into our culture. When he made that decision, sort of had to integrate into our culture. He first married a Afro-American woman, lived in an affluent Afro-American community, attended a predominantly Afro-American church, do something positive for Afro-Americans and navigated his way through the traditional Afro-American political structure. In other words, he kind of did the same thing Ms. Dolezal did, except he didn’t have to lie about his race.

Is gay really the new black?

The most polarizing movement in recent years has has been the gay-rights movement. It has appeared to have completely overshadow the Black Liberation movement. Of course, with many gays being overwhelmingly successful and having a tremendous amount of control over media and entertainment, it is no wonder why their struggle has become the civil rights movement of our day. With many of our Black institutions in decline and the moral in our communities at an all-time low, it is no wonder why our struggle gets very little attention in the media unless we start burning some shit down. Sometimes it’s the Black gay community who, ironically, have to remind people of the Black struggle. Of course, many Blacks don’t like for the LGBT community to interject their movement into the Civil Rights movement. Whether you want to call it Civil Rights or not, gays do have a legitimate struggle in regards to marriage inequality and social acceptance. Now when gays try to equate homosexuality with being Black, that’s where I draw the line. My argument is that all Black homosexuals are Black, but all blacks aren’t homosexual. Even if one is “born” homosexual, they can still discriminate against homosexuals of another race. So where is the comparison?

I could just leave it at that, but then this post would be very boring. Playing devils advocate, why can’t both movements unite, since both Blacks and gays experience a large degree of discrimination? Then maybe they can create a super-Civil Rights coalition? This makes sense for civil rights overall, but gay’s issues are much more complicated than just the color of ones skin. First of all, being black is just more noticeable than being gay. Unless you are Stevie Wonder, it was pretty obvious that Jason Collins was Black when he came out. The big shocker was that he was gay! The average Black person struggles with fitting into society as a whole. However, the average gay person struggles with their sexuality, morality, fitting in with their own family members, as well as fitting in with society. In that instance, I would agree with Wanda Sykes, who said in an interview with CNN that its harder being gay than Black. Its one thing to be rejected by the outside world. It’s another thing to be rejected by your own family and friends. Therefore, despite my feelings towards homosexuality in general, I can understand their struggle. Yet, that still doesn’t make the two struggles the same. Now forming coalitions between the two struggles make sense if each group is trying to gain support for some very specific forms of discrimination. However, on the grand scheme of things, it makes no sense for the Black community to unite with the LGBT community. For starters, Black gays are also struggling to find an identity within the Black community.

Gay or straight, we are all still Black. A person may or may not know you are gay, but unless you can pass for something else, it’s pretty freaking obvious you are Black. Therefore, if two gay men decided to go into a department store and kiss each other in the mouth, if the store owner is racist, the store owner is going to notice they are black before they notice they are a couple. They don’t have to announce to the store owner that they’re black. However, if the store owner is homophobic, by the time he or she figures out they’re gay, they’re already making out at the counter. During the sit-ins in the sixties, imagine how awkward it would have been if a black person had to announce that he or she was black? Half of the time, society doesn’t know if a person gay until they say something.

This is why many Blacks have a problem with homosexuality taking over the Black struggle. Race and sexual orientation are just two different things. You can be one or the other or you can be both, but as a movement, you have to pick one or the other. If anything, their is a gay-pride movement within the Black community. I think people forget sometimes that, despite Blacks having to struggle with their own identity, we are still a full-fledged culture with cultural norms and values that don’t always align with popular opinion. Like many other cultures, we are able to differentiate our cultural behavior from our individual behavior. There nothing wrong with the Black community viewing homosexuality as a life-style separate from our actual culture and it shouldn’t make us “homophobic”. In fact, our more progressive brothas and sistas see homosexuality as a sub-culture no different from Black Greek fraternities and sororities, hip hop, gangs, Mardi Gras Indians, etc.

One major problem, in my opinion, are black gays who fail to remind the larger LGBT community that we are not the same. Just like many people can’t see homosexuality past it being a life-style or a choice, I believe that the many members of the gay community only see Black America as just a skin color. They don’t give Black American culture the same respect they might give Italians-American or Jewish culture. This ideological difference is why the LGBT community like to compare Black American identity with their own. I find it very disturbing that gays take Chick-fil-a more serious than Black America.

But I’m not going to put this all on our gay brothas and sistas. I’m going to put this one on the Black community. The reason why this country, including the first Black president, has placed the gay struggle over the Black struggle is because the gay community as a whole is too wealthy and powerful to ignore. They control a good chunk of the media, politics, fashion and public opinion to the point where society has no choice but to take them seriously. I applaud them on that end. However, the reason why the gay community finds it hard to take the black community serious is because we don’t have the same kind of power and influence to make this a fair fight. At least other cultures have more ways to control the gays-rights from overshadowing their core issues even if they have to fearmonger. Do you think Latinos would let the gay-rights agenda overshadow immigration-rights? I doubt it. Yet, many members of the LGBT community feel as though they can recruit our soldiers to fight their agenda, while totally dismissing the fact that majority of Black Americans are Christians who don’t condone their lifestlye. Blacks aren’t the only minority who have issues with homosexuality, yet we seem to be the most targeted. I don’t see the LGBT community targeting Mexican, Arab, Native, West Indian or Chinese Americans nearly as much as they come after Black Americans. The truth is that the LGBT community know they can get away with targeting the Black community because we are nowhere near as united as other minority groups. Therefore, without a strong infrastructure to reinforce our cause, the LGBT community can get our gay and straight brothas and sistas to fight their cause over our own. When the Black church, the cornerstone of black political thought, decides to jump on the LGBT bandwagon, we might as well call our movement a rap.

The weakest of all institutions in most of our communities is the Black household. Without structure and discipline in our households, our children will succumb to any kind of lifestyle, let alone homosexuality. Even for our brothas and sistas who have known they’ve been gay since they could say the word will be led astray if we don’t provide any structure for them as well. Black churches have to stop catering to politics and public opinion and start creating a blueprint for Black morality, even for gays. We know that there are gay members of the Black church. How do we normally deal with them? Half of the time we don’t. We usually treat them like human beings and leave it up to god to decide their fate. Then in return, their not force to throw their lifestyle in our face.

Believe it or not, during the first half of the 20th century, Black America’s opinion of homosexuality was very progressive for its time. In fact, communities such as Harlem was a major attraction for Black and White homosexuals. This comfortable setting allow many gays of the Harlem Renaissance to voice their opinion of homophobia during a time when the rest of America was ultra-conservative. Yet, Black gays still felt apart of the overall black movement without feeling left out. Therefore, didn’t feel a need to mix their agenda with ours. They knew that being Black was the bigger issue. Another reason why they held back was because our community’s morality, business, political and media infrastructure was just too strong back then. They definitely didn’t want to but heads with the leaders of that era, who were much more influential.

Nowadays, with a weak infrastructure overall in the Black community, our leaders have sold us out to the LGBT community. Whether our struggles are the same or not, without strong black institutions, #blacklivematter, Black nationalism, Black feminism and any other Black movement will continue to be swallowed up by the LGBT movement. Therefore, when gay Blacks, succumb to racism within the LGBT community, they’re not going to have a place to run to. Consequently, if Black gays can’t find sanctuary in the Black community, they will simply make the movement more Black. Making the movement more Black simply gives them more numbers. You can’t teach an old dog new tricks so you know who they will go after first.. our very misguided, sexually-active, not-quite-comfortable-with-their-identity-yet youth and try to convince them to be more “open-minded.”  If we allow our future generation to cater to homosexuals more than their own people, then GAY will be the new Black soon enough.

Why do we still take racism so personal?

Why do we still get mad over racism? Every culture in this world has someone who either they don’t like or has someone who doesn’t like them. I understand many of the people who don’t like us also controls the system. However, it hasn’t stopped any other group from achieving some level of prosperity in this country. Before you say that immigrants experiences don’t compare to ours, let us agree on at least this one point. Their experience was so bad that it forced them to leave their family behind for a foreign land that’s very hostile to outsiders. Immigrants are very aware of how badly White-Anglo-Saxon-Protestants have treated Native and Black American. Yet they still take the risk to come here. Why do Black immigrants risk everything to come here when they know they will have it bad? To simply put it, the rewards greatly outweighs the risk.

After all the years that our people have been in this country as either slaves and free people, if we really feel that this country is bad then we would have left a long time ago. Hell some of us have. So I ask again, why are we still here? The answer is simple. Despite the hardships we endure, the rewards still outweighs the risk. We tell ourselves that there aren’t better places in the world for us to be. However, believe it or not, there are opportunities for us elsewhere. Yet, because there are still more advantages than disadvantages in this country, most of us would rather stay put. So if we are not going to leave this country, then its time to start taking advantage of what this country has to offer. However, we have to first get past this race thing. Race is only a small part of why we are here in the first place. Our being here has everything to do with GREED.

The elite wanted to exploit our ancestors agricultural knowledge and physicality. So all they had to due was go to Africa and buy this highly skilled and adaptable labor force. This proved to be much cheaper and profitable than having to teach their own people who to grow rice, indigo and cotton. To simply put it. If elite could simply purchase doctors and IT professional from Indian merchants the same way could with Africa, Silicon Valley would be nothing more than a high-tech version of the Candyland plantation. If we understand exactly how exploitation works then maybe we could have a better understanding of what our problems are.

Exploitation is the opportunity for one group of people to take advantage of another group for economic gain. Exploitation is not based on racism. Its based on greed. Racism is a problem indeed, but greed is what fuels it. Exploitation is practiced all over the world regardless of skin color. Despite race being one reason for exploitation, there are other reasons our exploitation that we have a tendency of overlooking. First of all, some people are so desperate to eat, that they look forward to the opportunity to be exploited by someone.

Immigrants are a perfect example of that. They start off by taking what ever job they can get. Then they look for better opportunities. It may take them some time, but eventually they find what they are looking for. The most poorest members of our society will do the same thing if it wasn’t for many of their so-called leaders preventing them from doing so. Even when companies are willing to bring jobs to us jobs, our leader, with all their great wisdom, thinks that some of these jobs and wages are beneath them. Then they try to force the companies to pay better wages. These companies don’t comply simply because they know they could find group of workers in the same area who won’t complain. Then they decide to look somewhere else and no one gets employed.

We shouldn’t look at our position at the bottom as any personal attack on our people or as an embarrassment. As long as we are not in chains and shackles, we should look at it as a starting point for where we want our communities to move forward. Instead of focusing all of our attention on what “white folks” have, we should be more concerned with finding opportunities at our current level and use that as a building block for better opportunities. This is exactly why immigrants do so well in this country. When they arrive in this country with nothing, they don’t see it as some sort of handicap. They see it as an opportunity to start over.

Why focus so much focus on being equal with people who are steps ahead of us economically? Our more disadvantage brothas and sistas only need to be concerned with taking the first step towards opportunity. As long as there is greed, there will always be inequality. Also, as long as there are people who are desperate, their will always be equality. In my opinion, exploitation can go both ways. One man’s nightmare is another man’s opportunity. Just look at how Arabs, Koreans and Greeks have gain by investing in our most blighted communities. So when we deprive of our people of opportunity, regardless of how bad it looks, we are actually holding them back more than the greedy capitalist. At least these greedy capitalist are providing jobs. What are our leaders providing us? PRIDE? Pride alone can’t put food on the table. Sometimes you just have to humble yourself.

I don’t care how racist a person may be, GREED trumps racism every time. What many immigrants know and understand is that White male laborers are too damn expensive. The more greedy white employers are the less willing they are to hire their own kind.  That’s why so many jobs have left this country for third world nations. Therefore immigrants work for cheap in order to undercut these White workers out of the labor market. We believe that they are being exploited, I say that they are being smart.

I’m not saying its right, but sometimes we have to suppress our feelings towards the “1%” and see things from their perspective. The main reason why Black Americans are in this country is because the elite planters wanted the cheapest labor possible. The same can be said during Jim Crow as well as the great migration. Do you think that we would’ve been invited to work for Northern industries if we forced them to pay us above minimum wage? If we tried that then, they would’ve sent right back to the cotton fields. Back in the day, black laborers biggest advantage over White laborers was their willingness to work for lesser pay. We had a much lower unemployment rate when we practiced this strategy. Today we unite with Whites for better pay, and while their unemployment has settle, our unemployment is through the freaking roof. Then we turn around and blame them. They tell us to blame company. The company says blame the system. I say, instead of blaming a flawed system, maybe we should start blaming a flawed strategy.

The blame game has never benefited the greater good of our race. It only benefits those few who find opportunity in exploiting our ill will. The great Booker T. Washington warned us of this kind of strategy over 100 years ago. He said:

“There is another class of coloured people who make a business of keeping the troubles, the wrongs, and the hardships of the Negro race before the public. Having learned that they are able to make a living out of their troubles, they have grown into the settled habit of advertising their wrongs — partly because they want sympathy and partly because it pays. Some of these people do not want the Negro to lose his grievances, because they do not want to lose their jobs.”

While many of us have the ability to compete successfully with any group of people, there are too many of us who simply can’t compete. Therefore, for their sake, we must have plan that is more practical and well within their abilities. Therefore, in the spirit of Mr. Washington, instead of trying to be like Whites, maybe we should start outmaneuvering them. His reasoning was based on the same philosophy that many immigrants adopt. This strategy always seems to work for them…HARD WORK AND INDUSTRY. Hard work meant that, instead of focusing so much on matching the White man’s dollar, we outwork and out-perform them for lesser pay. Don’t worry about the pay cut. If more our family members are working, the more streams of income the household will have. Once they all find work, then each family can put their resources together and buy property and build industries. Hard work and industry is why we are in this country in the first place. It is hard work and industry that going to get us out of our plight. Our people will continue to be lost if we don’t get back to basic economics. Racism may make it difficult for us, but it is our lack of hard work and industry that’s killing us today. To quote Washington,

“It has been necessary for the Negro to learn the difference between being worked and working–to learn that being worked meant degradation, while working means civilization; that all forms of labor are honorable, and all forms of idleness disgraceful.”

The first step to recovery is to first admit where we went wrong. The first error we made was allowing our emotions to cloud our judgement. The more we complain, the few doors we open for ourselves and the many doors we open for people to take advantage of us. If we could ask Booker T. Washington, he would advise us to exploit people’s greed more than their guilt. People can earn more of a living off of someone’s greed than off of someone’s guilt. I wouldn’t worry so much about being mistreated. We have plenty of time to get back at our enemies. Lets instead focus on how to turn our disadvantages into more opportunities. This is how Washington saw things. He was looked at as a pacifist by his peers, but I see him as one of our most underrated leaders who had a very ballsy plan of action. The Black folks of his day just didn’t understand strategy. Or maybe they did and they just didn’t want to loose their position with Massa’. These leaders were more concerned with agitating the beast, while Washington was trying to awake a sleepy lion. He would not have advocated trying to change things through the system because, by the time they respond, we would have already solved our own problems.

Since we are not leaving this country anytime soon, then we should devise better plan of action, which starts by looking in the mirror first. Instead of focusing all our attention on injustice, lets start weighing the pros and cons of our own exploitation so we can react more intelligently. If the pros outweighs the cons, then it may be worth taking the risk. Yet, if cons outweighs to pros, well… you already know the answer to that one. When we are confronted with difficult decisions, we have to learn how to read between the lines. Automatically assuming the worse only makes things worse. Then we will miss out on some great opportunities to better our situation because we couldn’t get pas our own emotions. This country is full of problems, but it still full of opportunities. Unfortunately, there are a lot more people full of shit. As long as we continue to let them play with our emotions, we will never get out of our slump. However, if we can get pass the fact that there will ALWAYS be people who will try to prey on us, then maybe we can start doing some preying of our own (not praying, but preying). Then maybe we can be the predators for a change. As the old saying goes…It’s business. Not personal.