Monday, August 10, 2009

[A Negro in Black America] Acting Black

While on the phone with a friend of mines, he made a statement to me that I found very troubling. He stated that he told his friend, who is Caucasian, that he was “acting black”. When I asked him what that means, he told me that his friend was unmotivated, becoming increasingly lazy and not doing anything with his life but using drugs and having random sex. This shocked and offended me greatly. My friend, who is a dark skinned African American, just belittled his own race and he couldn’t understand the repercussion of what he said and why I was so upset with him.

I asked him: “Do you do any of that stuff?”

He promptly said: “No.”

I followed up with this: “Then why are you stereotyping yourself and as being the things you told him he was being?”

He replied with: “Well look outside and that is what you see!”

I was disappointed with his replies to this and other questions I asked him and we argued for quite some time about what “acting black” really means. With that one phrase, he stereotyped every African American, including himself as trash. That to be black is to be the lowest in society.

In a previous blogs on other sites, I talked about how education and success in some urban areas is not seen as an accomplishment, but a person who endlessly trying to be something that they are not, which is Caucasian. They are called Uncle Toms, Oreos and a whole host of other names, by people that share there own skin color. So why do we divide ourselves along the lines of race? If you act white, then you are a sellout and not respected… If you act black then you are ghetto and will never amount to anything…, but can a person really act a skin color? You can’t help but to shake your head at the acceptable racism and self hatred that still dwells in our society and this time I am only talking about those in the African American community.

Who should be blamed for this? The government? Anyone who is Caucasian? Our own selves? In fact is there anyone to blame at all?


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