Thursday, March 20, 2008

Saying the 'Wright' thing the wrong way...

I've read Dr. Wright's materials for a while now, possibly for over seven years now. My father, a U.C.C. minister has told me repeatedly for the last 10 or so years "You would like Dr. Wright, he speaks in a manner that would probably get you back into church." I had a chance to hear him as the nation did.....in a sound byte. After listening to Rush Limbaugh for over 16 years Rush kinda' trains one not to listen to a sound byte and make a decision. After listening to The Honorable L. Farrakhan for over 30 years I've learned not to juge one by a sound byte.

I've heard and studied on our nations terrorist acts and support of terrorists in Russia and in other areas of the world. I've studied the documents that link the spread of Aids in Africa to shortly after the mass vaccinations during Jimmy Carter's regime. I've heard others use, and I've used the term United Snakes of America and U.S.KKK-A when describing some of the our nation's most devilish moments. When 911 occurred, during and after my grieving for the innocent ancestors that were made immediately I noted and heard in conversations that "America's chickens are coming home to roost" (a throw-back from Malik El Shabazz) due to some of the acts our government has become involved in. With all of these things people of African and Indian descent in America have always loved and hated aspects of our country simultaneously. I learned years ago that many Whites would not be able to separate the attacks upon white supremacy from seeming to be an attack upon whites. We learned years ago that many Americans would not be able to separate the attacks upon America's difficulties from seeming to be an attack upon America.

Wright is being labeled as a separatist as a member of a Christian denomination that promotes inclusion under Christ. Dr. Wright is being presented as anti-American after serving his country in the military and while he has preached the American values that has made our country the country that it is. I even heard Sean Hannity (incorrectly in my opinion) use the term Anti-Semite when describing some of Wright's statements.

I listen to Sean Hannity almost every weekday (due to Black and Rhythm radio sucking in my area) and any fuel for the "Stop Obama or Hillary Express" is good fuel for hosts such as Hannity; I do realize he speaks for a segment of America who do not feel responsible for past actions, who do not feel necessarily superior or privileged because of their ancestorship and truly don't want anyone to be handicapped or helped due to ones ancestorship. I admire his position against any type of oppression based upon race. I understand how one may feel seperated from and attacked when our use of the word 'Black' peppers our language. Trinity U.C.C.'s honorable usage of "We are a congregation which is Unashamedly Black and Unapologetically Christian... Our roots in the Black religious experience and tradition are deep, lasting and permanent. We are an African people, and remain "true to our native land," the mother continent, the cradle of civilization." may sound like music to my African-centered ears, is also is ear-aching experience to American's who wish to "get past" America's original sin. Hannity and his "a-alikes" (Peace 7's) regard our liberation theology as a slap-in-the-face movement away from the America they have been instrumental in changing. I realize it took both Dr. King (may his memory be blessed) and the reigning President to effect change in the our country. Civil rights legislation needed Black & White decision makers to enact the laws. Making the right statement in the wrong way will undermine us currently. We must, however, ensure that our ferverent speakers and activists are protected, served, and supported. As Hannity might say, we must support the troops ! Tell the agent of change next to you "We got'cha back soldier. We can no more distance ourselves from you than we can from our community. We will beat that tail if needed though !"

As we continue to teach the truth about our experiences and history as people of African descent I encourage us to consider how we say what we say. We have a nation to reach. We cannot allow our messages to be diluted nor misconstrued. We will need to walk the balance. Dr. Wright's substance was reduced due to his stylings. He, however, has built a great membership due in part to his stylings. We do have, more in stake, than membership. We are tasked to improve our world. Let us not be fooled. As we learn from Dr. Wright, Ashra Kwesi, Dr. Ben, and others let us use these 'words of change' (revolutionary) in a manner that will not distract from the change we are making/engaging-in/following.

We have reached another point in America's development where we are the difference that needs to be made to improve the world. This nation follows our fashion, our terminology, and dances, our music, and our values. I am of the opinion that we cannot fully separate ourselves from the history or future of this nation. The old gate-keepers have lost some of their footing, it's time for us to improve ourselves to improve the world. This is the Black Improvement Movement signing on.

May the world be improved by our actions.
May the ancestors be pleased.


Seko VArner
The Imani Foundation

Post-script:
Since this post I've found these videos of Dr. Wright.
Hillary ain't never been called a N-word...
America's chickens are coming to roost...

1 comment:

Brother OMi said...

i agree, i don't judge folks on sound bytes but by their actions. that is a lesson i have to relearn at least once a month

i appreciate OBama for not denouncing his relationship with Wright.

i think we all have sisters and brothers who we disagree with but still love.

but what bothers me is that folks will NOT talk about white skin privilege. that if anything is an impediment to our development. of course a white person may assume that race should not matter when applying for a job or college but it is easier to say that when you are part of the dominant culture.