I tend to steer away from certain topics when I write. Things like religion, sex, and race.
The religion topic because well, it’s taking me quite a bit of time trying to research and decipher fact from fiction. Sex because well, no one wants to hear about my sex life and I don’t talk as much about race because sometimes it feels like we are beating a dead horse on that topic. Besides I feel like there are only two viable options, well three, fight, flight or shut up.
With all of that being said there is something that is related to race that gets to me from time to time. I didn’t realize it until I saw the #WhatBlackPantherMeansToMe hashtag. As I read the responses and saw all the posts from people commenting on how excited they are about the movie I found myself feeling left out. Like, why aren’t I this excited and happy about this movie?
I honestly feel like the kid on the other side of the fence, with my face pressed against it watching a birthday party. Like I didn’t get invited and I’m just watching everyone else have fun.
Why am I this way? I didn’t get excited when the “mixed or black” lady (depending on who you ask) got engaged to the Prince in England, I don’t get excited when a black person wins an Emmy, or Grammy or an Academy award. Hell, I didn’t even feel anything when America’s first “black” President was elected. I put black in quotations because there have always been rumors that President Obama wasn’t the first black President and the inner conspiracy theorist in me has to believe that.
My friends always say it’s because I am cynical or I’m being a hater. Of course, I always disagree because I want everyone to win and I always feel sincere happiness and joy for the person and their family but outside of that I could care less. Like, I don’t view these wins as impactful for me personally. Not to say that I am so narrow-minded that I don’t understand what impact it has on other people. It’s like that’s great for them but the show goes on, I still have things I need to do.
I guess I’m just not a moral victory or symbolism person. That has to be it. Like these are nice, inspirational stories and events but then what? Do these things inspire you to do or be better? Maybe push you to follow in these people’s footsteps?
Some people tell me it’s just a pride or being proud moment and it’s not that deep. I mean I guess so but that’s the thing. I already feel that way. When I see other black people or friends get jobs, married, in relationships or do basic everyday things I feel proud. The fact that I’m able to go to work, pay bills or help the less fortunate out I feel proud. Hell, I feel pride when people use quiet or loss correctly on social media instead of quite or lost. Sounds extra but my point is that I already feel proud so I’m good.
Maybe this is like putting the proverbial cherry on top so to speak. This also could boil down to me just not celebrating or viewing things differently than others. It’s like watching football. There are some players who do touchdown celebrations and others who don’t. It doesn’t mean that one cares more than the other, it just means they express their happiness differently.
So with all of this being said, I don’t want to rain on anyone’s parade. However, I do have a few concerns that I want to address. Often times I fear that we can get caught up in a little bit of celebrity worship. I also feel as if there are times that we can get too complacent and lazy with these moral victories. I also think that there are times that we want acceptance and to be acknowledged so badly that we undervalue ourselves or only give certain things credit when it’s valued by a certain group of people. Was that vague enough for you? Lol.
Let me attempt to explain further. I really do feel that we worship celebrities too much. We monitor every single move and talk about them all of the time. There are people right now who are more invested in Beyonce and Jay-Z’s relationship than their own lol. Goals my ass.😂 Keep setting goals based off of famous people who you do not know and watch what happens.
Moral victories and symbolism is cool but then what? Do you let these things inspire you and push you to be better and do more in your personal lives or you just gonna take this moral victory and count it as your own? Better yet, do we let these things blind us or make us forget reality? It’s nice to see one or two people winning but what about the majority?
Damn, I ask a lot of questions, don’t I? Lol.
Now to my final point. Wanting to be accepted and acknowledged by certain groups of people. I’m not even going to dig too deep into the whole awards thing. Like on some why do people value an Academy award more than a BET award lol. What I will say is that maybe we need to practice a little more self-validation. Clap for yourself sometimes, who cares what anyone else has to say or how they feel? Find your happiness, set goals and stop comparing yourself to others so much lol.
So with all of that being said, eff my opinion on everything lol (but at least give a few of my questions/comments some thought). Go out and enjoy Black Panther and be as extra as you want to be. Watch it multiple times. Enjoy yourself and the moment. I imagine I will have the exact same level of exuberance if Pootie Tang 2 ever comes to theaters lol.