Scientist say the color black is as such because it absorbs all of the spectrum of light.
Dear Black People,
I love you from the top of your nappy head to your forward marching feet. I love those of you with curly and straight hair too. I love your brown glistening skin. I love the way your light-skin shines like the morning sun, and the way your blue-black, dark-skin sparkles like diamonds.
I love everything about your brown wide eyes and your blue and green ones too, like those of Senator Cory Booker.
I love your creativity and your ability to make fresh new things with a snap of a finger. Last night, I laughed as the players on the Celtics’ bench stirred an imaginary pot to symbolize that Isiah Thomas was cookin’ as he made 53 points in game two against the Wizards. Wish we could immediately obtain a patent for these creations, which will surely be copied.
I love the way you make royal, purple prom dresses in 15 minutes before you’re whisked away, hopping on a white convertible to snap a few pictures to share. And the way you placed a picture of Trayvon Martin in the middle of another, making the pictures of it go viral.
Because I love you so much, I hurt when you hurt. I cry every time one of you is shot down or when you think you can’t have what you want because of the color of your skin.
You master any activity in which you engage from golf to tennis to basketball to creating formulas for NASA to shoot rockets to the moon. You lead companies, make movies, start a network. You dance on your tippy toes to the top of the best ballet company. Your comedic brilliance showed others the sunken place of being marginalized while spending five million and getting a 100 million in change.
You swaggered over to the White House and had the whole world eating out of the palm of your hands, while averting a financial crisis, restoring the auto industry, and more. You left by hopping on a yacht, not worrying about the lies that would be told in your absence. You know that you will go down in history as the best President to ever live. Finally, the United States of America has health care for all its citizens. Thank you, President Barack Obama.
I love Auntie Maxine Waters and her loose lips, spewing the truth on anyone who will listen. She’s lived, and, therefore, doesn’t prop up others with lies. I love the preachers willing to speak the truth on Sunday morning, so eloquently that old ladies have to shout amen and organ chords bend in harmony.
I love all the Big Mamas making greens, yams, cornbread, and fresh creamy corn. I’m surprised that every cooking show doesn’t have a Big Mama with food seasoned to precision, using Big Mama’s metrics, a pinch of this and a pinch of that. I love all the big and tall black men, who wrap a towel around their waist so well as they shave in the mirror, getting ready to wake the kids to take them to school.
And because I love you so much, I hurt when you hurt. I cry every time one of you is shot down, or when you stomp your toe, or when you think that you can’t have what you want because of the color of your skin. I watched Big Mama wail when Dr. Martin Luther King , Jr., was assassinated. Afterwards, I hoped and prayed that those days would end, and I must admit there have been some wonderful years. But there have been decades of sleepless nights.
Starting with the happy days, there have been many celebrations when Black people moved up and did all the stuff that I mentioned above. Clapping hands when white people loved on black people, extending a hand, inviting them to come on in and take a sit. Smiling faces when Blacks moved next door to Whites and no one started a fire. Change has occurred, but there is still darkness in America that is not the shadow cast by the darkness of our skin.
Dear Black People, we must accept that some people just don’t like the color black and there’s nothing we can do about it.
Ending with the decades of sleepless nights, killings and assassinations of black men and women have continued, too many for me to name here. Shooting black bodies in swimming pools where those same black bodies used to be forbidden.
I’ve been keenly aware of those in Los Angles although I don’t say their names nearly enough. Latasha Harlins was the 15-year old black girl whose head was shot off for allegedly stealing some orange juice. (But from what I heard, she had returned the juice and was just being sassy and stomping out the place like any teenager.) If my memory serves me right, years earlier, Eulia Love was a black woman who just wanted to keep the gas company from turning off her gas for not paying a $22 dollar bill. Some reports said she was mentally disturbed and that’s why she had a kitchen knife when they (A Black and a Hispanic officer) knocked on her door. The two stopped her from ever moving again with a deluge of bullets.
Sometimes, it’s not about race. It’s about me feeling sad because I love Black people, and I hate it when they’re harmed for any reason, especially for a bottle of orange juice or for a $22.00 gas bill. I hate it when they’re killed for no reason and police aren’t charged, like today in Louisiana.
Twenty-five years ago was a bad year in Los Angeles. It was a defining moment in my life. I was called to write. Rodney King was beat down and kicked nearly to death that year. Then later, the city almost burned down to the ground when the police officers were found not guilty. I was in Beverly Hills in a Penthouse with a view of the city when I heard the verdict. When I looked out south over Los Angeles, there was an eerie stillness. I immediately told my boss, I had to go home. I had three little boys, and I sensed that an explosion was about to occur.
So, I picked them up and stopped at the 7-eleven on the corner near our house to make sure I had milk and food for a few days. And as I drove off, I could see a billow of smoke in my rear-view mirror. The store had been torched and was burnt to the ground. Black people were mad.
We should use our energy to love on each other. We must show each other that Black Lives Matter.
Racism, understandably, infuriates us. Although the color black absorbs all things, it is so painful for black people to absorb racism, again and again and again. I understand this, although, honestly, I think we should just get over it because as sure as the sun rises, there will be racists among us.
Getting over it doesn’t mean we deny its existence. It means we talk about it in healthy ways. Get out and Dear White People are great starters of the conversations that need to be had. Thank you, Jordan Peele and Justin Simien. Thank you Netflix. Thank you, to Yvette Bowser, DWP’s Executive Producer, a black woman who has been making television for decades and is now showing the next generation how it’s done.
We must use our gifts to help Dear White People with open hearts, the majority I believe, understand the nuances of racism so that it can be ameliorated. It pains me to say this, but I don’t think racism will ever disappear. But, at least, if we talk about it, America won’t keep sliding backwards like we did on November 8th.
And so I write, Dear Black People, we must accept that some people just don’t like the color black and there’s nothing we can do about it. It’s a fact, like paying taxes, like the sun rises in the East and sets in the West. No one debates about two plus two equaling four. There should be no more debate.
We should use our energy to love on each other. We must show each other that Black Lives Matter instead of writing it on signs or saying it in a speech. The term is for us.
Blacks must vote and have a say in the political process. It’s a shame that after Mike Brown was gunned down and all the people marched, Black people in Ferguson didn’t vote and elect a black mayor. We must never let this happen again.
And blacks who sit in prestigious positions, must stop thinking they’re better than everyone else, instead of looking for a black hand to grab and pull from a sunken place . If all the blacks in your profession can fit into one room, then make sure you grab at least five black hands of five black people and pull them along. If all the blacks in your profession, can fit into a broom closet, then you need to get some binoculars and search out black people to join you. You should never be proud to say that you are the only one in the room or at the table.
We must teach blacks to love other blacks. That way those in high places won’t be afraid to pull them along. I know from experience, that there’s no pain like being hurt by one of your own. But we must get over it. Blacks mustn’t be afraid that they’ll be stabbed in the back and lose favor because they help other blacks. Because when you do good, no weapon formed against you can ever prosper.
Stop worrying and start loving on your people. Right now. 2017 is a defining time. What will you do for the rest of the year?