Or is it all just 'dreamscape' fantasy?.
I remember coming across a book that said that immigrants often have fantasies of returning home. It keeps them sane and helps them face life in new lands, and many eventually never return and not suprisingly, because these dreams are never really actioned in any way. Indeed concrete steps and plans are never made to make these fantasies reality. I believe that the 'strong community /black unity', idea may occupy this position in many black women's minds, something to think about fondly and escape to, but never really actioned. Which makes it a dangerous notion for black women pinning real life hopes to it.
When you want to build anything; say garden a shed even, you first find out what it will take in terms of materials, labour, even time. Next, you take stock of what you have for the project. This is how you know how serious an idea is. Now have you ever heard any of the 'black community/black unity' activists/aggitators lay things out in these terms ie, what do we need, what do we have, what steps do we take to get the rest of the needed things. There isnt even a 'movement' towards black nation building (yet we could mobilise for Jena six), only people doing their pockets of activities 'here and there', crossing their fingers that it will feed into some general effort of black unity, and nothing to measure wether it is indeed effective and not cancelling out somewhere down the line. Nothing showing it as a practical idea.
Apparently this strong black nation is supposed to just spring forth at some point! Incredible.
Indeed, we have all sorts of tools and frameworks for achieveing goals these days, for instance the 'SMART' frame work which stands for 'Specific, Measureable, Achievable, Realistic and Time based. You will never hear these folks showing any kind of organising of the idea of 'strong black community' in meaningful terms that can be 'grabbed hold of' piece by piece and worked towards.
Now in terms of black nation building, this is what transpires with black women:
Black woman sees black man in the street, black woman says to herself 'thats a black man, there are men to build a strong black community with'.
Nothing considered about the type of black man he is, if he is even willing to build this black community (in deeds of course not lip service and 'i love my sistas' speeches), secondly if he has the right ideological perspective for this black nation building work. Nothing asked about 'what is his mentality?'.
Do black women realise that, There is a critical absorption of white supremacy in a significant portion of black men that renders a very large portion of them ineffective in the efforts towards black advancement.
In addition, the self-serving persepctive and politics of black men is so plain to see (me me me, serve me, cater to me) its also 'through the roof' at this point. This is directly opposed, to the level of self-sacrifice that will clearly and undeniably be required from them for any such black nation building. As I mentioned in the last post, you only need to look at the fact that black men are displaying all the wrong priorities in terms of black nation building; they have a well known and documented problem with black female achievers as a clear example. Yet these are the women black men should have been queueing round the block for, if black advancement was strongly on their mind. Consider this: If black nationhood was a priority for black men, do you think 70% of black children would be born outside wedlock with the attendant poverty, and lack of safety these children are more likely to experince? I can assure you that men who know the central position black children have in the races future would do everything in their power to be with their kids and complaints will mount to heaven if black women try to deny black men access.
Now there is a thing called 'entry level requirement'; for instance in order to study Engineering you must at least know basic maths, that is an entry level requirement. Now how possible is it to have a strong black community without strong black families. The basic or entry level requirment for black men who are really linked into the black nation building agenda would be a keen interest in marryimg and setting up home with black women. Yet black men are not even coming in at that 'entry level' to any note!
In terms of other indications, the incaceration rates of black men would be halved and the college rates would be doubled.
But yes I know black women are not supposed to go deep and ask these critical and crucial questions. We are supposed to gloss over the details that are necessary to get to the destination, and just flow along 'in the spirit' to the wonderful kumbaya idea of a black nation that is going to happen. ie I will get there, I will get there somehow....
Since any black man qualifies for this 'nation building' in our calculations and is just right for the job regardless of his mindset and perspectives on core black issues, many of us black women will have to build a black nation with colorist bm who dont care to give the archetype black woman a chance. This is what it will boil down to. Yet isnt this totally contravening the basic premise of building a black nation? Or maybe we should adjust the idea, since we always have to tailor things to fit around whatever way black men choose to go.
If it wasnt so sad how essentially black women are clamouring to build with men half who really have no interest in such grand schemes for the race (because they cant think beyond self-indulgence), and another 1/4 who might just be tempted to commit, provided the bw is light enough, it would be a good commedy. The very simplistic way in which black women look at the whole black nation building project, just shows that it would be better confined to the realm of daydream or 'fantasy', that bw might flee to in their imagination every now and then, while simply getting on with the reality of life.
About building with colorist black men. Marcus Garvey. He wanted to build a strong black nation, 'Africa for Africans' and all that, but he wanted to do it with the lightest black woman available, at his side as the symbolic black queen lol! And he had black women with the same ancestral looks he had, throwing money at him nay taking him very seriously. I repeat Marcus Garvey was in favour of building with the lightest of us black women.
Do you know that the trend spread because black men took their cue from him, as he was a man of influence. He reinforced and endorsed their views of seeking the most euro looking black woman. If you think I am joking pick up a copy of Autobiography of Malcolm X and see how his father, a staunch garvyite was married to a woman that could pass for white. I mean it could well be a coincidence of course but I wouldnt put it pass the fact that he copied his mentor right down to the woman he choose as bride. The white men at that time must have been laughing their asses off with the antics of these 'freedom fighters', and the joke was defintiely on the black women who choose to reject the clear, 'in your face' statements being made against them in the choices of men like Macus Garvey so much so they handed over money and financed his enterprise.
Have any of you ever seen pictures of Marcus Garvey? I mean he is the archtype of black, non apologetic looking black.
One of my favourite activities is to come up with analysis and frameworks which speak to and perfectly delineate the situation for us black women(as I believe that all the analysis of isms and oppression out there do not and were not 'made' for black women and black women need to come up with their own analysis), and one of the most 'ground breaking' analysis I have come across in blogosphere was written by an internet personality called 'Sangraneth' who wrote that, what we often rush to refer to as self-hate in black men is actually more accurately an ideology of black=male and white=female A black man that expresses hatred for black women is NOT expressing SELF-hatred
Read this analysis and see that what we rush to label 'self hate' is actually black female hate. And when black women 'mis-define' issues (as they are often encouraged to do), they end up with the wrong solutions. I have said this before and say it again, that unless black women accurately identify and pin down what ails them and their issues they will never be able to marshall an effective defense againt the attacks that are raining down from every angle.
So in summary 'Are we are building a black community?' If we are we would know first to take stock to find out if the necessary materials are assembled. We would get a road map to the goal. There would be an understanding that there is a calibre of black men in particular required to take forward the vision. Sadly we would realise that there is a standard required beyond what todays black man is offering unless something drastic happens to change mindsets (and dont hold your breath because I know many want to make this an issue of 'faith', but it isnt, it is a practical issue)!
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