Racism, like many aspects of our society, has evolved or transformed. We often hear that racism is less overt today, more covert and institutional. This is true. But I’m not sure if we are as adept as we should be at identifying the new forms racism takes on. An evolution that I’ve noticed is the idea that if something is seen as “Black,” or characteristic of African-American culture or perspective, it is deemed inferior or “radical.” This attitude makes up the undercurrent of conservative pundits’ professions of outrage surrounding Michelle Obama’s invitation of Common to the White House for a poetry night. This same undercurrent of “Black is radical” appeared when President Obama’s Christian pastor Jeremiah Wright made statements from a Black historical perspective.

Many people consider racism a “stain” on a history of American exceptionalism and progress, a position that makes them comfortable for it allows them to dismiss racism as a temporary anomaly to an otherwise righteous legacy of America. In taking this position of comfort, they ignore the reality that the legacy of slavery and racism is no “stain” but deeply woven into the fabric of America.

So, what exactly is so “radical” about Common? Read on

Advertisements

Dear Republican Brothers and Sisters:

When the word “entitlements” is stated, do you hear between the lines?  When uttered so vehemently by Republicans, I hear the implication that these programs are hand-outs – free, unearned gifts that are taken for granted by the non-rich.  I hear the undertones of Republicans’ assault on the poor and working class – the continued efforts funnel money from the working class to the rich (e.g., tax breaks for billionaires, billion-dollar subsidies for oil and farm companies, huge no-bid contracts to defense companies, and the constant push to deregulate the financial industry). Yes, there is class warfare.  The rich are winning by a landslide. Read on

 Dear Republican Brothers and Sisters:

I’d like to dispel a myth about the Republican Party, a myth that most of you seem to cling to as truth. I know that many of you have strong faith in God, and thus, naturally have a strong faith in your Republican politicians who claim to share that faith. Thus, you may naturally deduce that that shared faith should lead to trust. But let me say this bluntly: Republican politicians do not care about you. By “care,” I mean “willing to put your needs and well-being as working people above their own financial and political gain.” By “you,” I mean “the American people who do not own corporations.” It’s that simple. Republicans are passionate and true to one thing, however: Money. Read on