While I’m pleased to see those who agree with Phillip Morris and his twisted takes on African-Americans rise to his defense when I labeled him an Uncle Tom… their logic is a bit loopy: They castigated me for criticizing his opinions… by criticizing my opinions. The upside of this is… they’re giving me another opportunity to call Morris out.
Fair is fair: Of course Morris has a right to his opinions (as Tom-ish, twisted and derogatory as they might be) just as much as I have a right to mine: And my opinion is… Phillip Morris is an unreconstructed Uncle Tom.
Now some readers of a more genteel persuasion gasped and exclaimed “Horrors!” at my use of such bold language… for which I in no way intend to apologize. For years Morris has been making all sorts of cutesy veiled negative, racist and sometimes outright brutal comments about his own black race and has been getting away with such treachery unscathed. However, when he finally goes too far and I am forced to respond to check him some see me as the bad guy. Go figure.
Morris is carrying water for an obviously racist and hardball playing new governor who isn’t taking any prisoners, but I’m supposed to play by some dainty Marquis de Queensbury rules? No way. I’m not about to be the one-legged man in an ass-kicking contest; if they want rough I’m going to be serving it up just as rough — straight, no chaser. As for those more genteel readers, I can only suggest they quit reading me if they are so offended by my defending the dignity of my race.
Here’s the argument in a nutshell: While I agree with conservative blacks like Morris, Bill Cosby, Larry Elder, Armstrong Williams and Clarence Thomas (sellouts one and all) that our race indeed needs to do more to help lift our disadvantaged brethren out of ignorance, poverty, crime and despair… I, unlike these Toms, will not grant a pass to the perpetrators of the institutionalized racism that has existed in this country from its very founding… for the establishment and continuation of this vast underclass of people of color. No race purposely puts its members in the disadvantaged circumstances that a full third of African-Americans in this country find themselves in.
The Toms wrongly (and knowingly) posit that we African-Americans have done this to ourselves… when, in fact, nothing could be further from the truth: Something was done to us. The Africans that were brought to America were subjected to the longest running and most brutal Diaspora in the history of mankind. Only in America was slavery carried out on the magnitude and scale that was perpetuated on our forefathers here in the “land of the free and the home of the brave.”
However, when we point out these truths we are accused of wallowing in victimhood, and are told to just get over the past, something that would conveniently let them off the hook for their centuries of abominable behavior — sans a sincere apology.
Believe me, blacks are trying to live down the past… it really is the conservative racists that have trouble letting go of the past in America, because it was in that past they reigned supreme: Women were in the kitchen, gays were in the closet, and blacks were in the cotton fields. It’s only dyed-in-the-wool bigots who want to turn back the clock on whatever racial progress has been made.
The past is important if for no other reason than it defines the present. And, as Condi Rice accurately stated, America was born with a birth defect: Slavery. And while slavery had existed since Biblical times (and probably before) there always were unwritten rules: Families were only to be bought and sold as a unit; children of slaves were considered emancipated; and slaves were allowed to earn their way to freedom and join the majority culture. Slaves were usually the by-product of war, and enslaving your enemies was simply a way of keeping them from rising up against you again in the future.
But only in America were the rules changed and slaves were bred like cattle… with the mother sold here, the father there, and the children only God knows where. Only in America was slavery a permanent condition, from one generation to the next with no exit except escape by fleeing at risk of life and limb. But to enslave a people in such a manner a nation first has to despise them… and some white folks simply don’t know how to stop. And the cowardly Uncle Tom, to escape being despised, says to the white master, “Boss, I’m not one of them… and I’ll do a buck dance to prove it.” Some Toms simply buck dance in print.
And for those who excuse this holocaust by saying “but that was a long time ago” keep in mind that we were slaves in this country for 245 years, and have only been free for 147, and then not really “free.”
How were we freed? Cut adrift without a pot to piss in or a window to throw it out of by a federal government that allowed Jim Crow to be instituted… an unofficial form of slavery that was more brutal by far than the previous condition of servitude. Since whites no longer owned blacks they began killing them with impunity. Just take a look at the lynching history of this country from the end of the Civil War up through the 1920′s.
And I’m supposed to believe these Uncle Toms don’t know any of this, or is it they simply prefer to ignore it, and to allow racist whites off the hook for their principal role in these un-Godly acts that at times bordered on genocide?
You see, racists just love to subtly (often in coded language) suggest that something is wrong with us blacks, that somehow we just don’t genetically measure up to whites… and that’s why a third of my black race is mired in dysfunctional and criminal behaviors. Alternatively (again to escape culpability), it really is our own fault… and if we just tried hard enough we could truly overcome the past, but we’re just too damn shiftless and lazy. Can I get an “Amen” on that Tom brothers Cosby, Morris and Thomas?
An aside: Show me a picture of Bill Cosby at a civil rights gathering during the turbulent ’60s and I’ll eat it. You can see the magnificent trio of Harry Belafonte, Sidney Poitier, and Marlon Brando locking arms with Dr. King and others, but Cosby was a no-show. That’s why this Tom needs to just shut up… I don’t care how much he donates to educational causes, his running around the country bad mouthing blacks is shameful and does nothing helpful. He has no moral authority in the educated black community.
So when Kasich says that he can’t find any “qualified” blacks he is simply perpetuating myths and negative stereotypes. Only white folks are “qualified.” Just like 20 years ago, when no blacks were smart enough to play quarterback in the NFL. Or today, where white trade unions use the same lame excuse to keep black members out. But what about the blacks seen running the same heavy equipment for the City of Cleveland? How is it they are “qualified” then?
Indeed, some folks will tell you that a former governor from Alaska with a resume as thin as a boarding house sheet is more qualified to be president than a black man with a law degree from Harvard. And among those folks are the Tom brothers. And I’m not supposed to pin tails on these donkeys?
Just as Morris’ supporters have rallied to his side, so too have people who feel that my calling a Tom a Tom is long overdue have rallied to mine. Dozens of the progressives I regularly communicate with (both black and white) are absolutely delighted I finally took the gloves off and took this sellout Tom to task.
And every time he opens his yap or writes something I perceive as being disrespectful of black folks I’m going to ratchet up my responses and more forcefully call him out. Bet on it. And that goes for Kasich too.