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Conversations About Race

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To his credit, Dallas Mayor, Mike Rawlings has taken up the mantle from Councilman Dwaine Caraway concerning “Conversations about Race” in Dallas. There is a set of events over the next few months that will attempt to address a subject that is always just below the radar or front and center in our city. The first event was deemed a success, by opening the door with local media outlets and their role in conversations about race and more to come with business, youth and veterans of the race wars.

However, I recently watch the movie “12 Years A Slave” that was produced by Brad Pitt that told the story of a black man, who was kidnapped in the mid 1800s and put in slavery, even though he was living the life of a “free black man”. There are many messages in this movie that apply to the circumstances today that we live in. It is based on a true story and the multiple story lines lead to a conversation about race throughout the movie and it is something I encourage all to see and then let’s have a conversation about race.

It is a hard movie to watch because of the graphic nature in which it portrays the way life was in America for some people. It sets the tone for why things maybe the way they are in 2013. It’s not a blame “the white man” movie because it’s clear without “the white man” some things would have never changed, however there is enough blame to go around on both sides of the color line, as well as both genders and that’s where the conversations about race come in. This movie gives the 2013-14 citizens a glimpse into the American history that most want to go away or not talk about.

Councilman Caraway has said in some of  his statements about this series, that we must first admit that “it did happen” and “12 Years A Slave” tells that story. I believe the untold story of the black woman goes unnoticed today, but not in this movie and thus would create a dialogue today that could be very spirited. It also address the scorn of the white female for the black female and that’s something we rarely talk about. It’s depressing, revealing, reflective and a charge to change for some who have seen this movie and again that’s on both sides of the color and gender line.

The series, “Conversations about Race” is not about black and white, but all cultures and races, however this movie, I think sets the tone for why black people have gotten the brunt of the racism in America. See it and then let’s talk about race.

Just my thoughts…

  • amikegreen2

    Discussions of race go hand-in-hand with discussions of poverty. The effort to exploit black people for free or cheap labor while maintaining a system of an uneducated or under-educated populace ensured control over the means of production and distribution and wealth. The control over institutions of policy and influence (i.e. media) also ensured black people would be portrayed in a way that reinforced ugly stereotypes and maintained a cultural chasm between black and white Americans.

    Today, that cultural chasm continues to exist despite the glacier-like evolution of institutions. On the surface, we see many more anomalous success stories that reinforce the myth that America has moved beyond the era of deliberate degradation and targeted discrimination. Beneath the veneer of that guilt-driven storyline is a multitude of evidence that cries out for our attention.

    The responsibility of delving into that mass of minutiae will never belong to the white population, given its privilege of living in isolation from the past. Ironically, it is the black man and woman who have cried the loudest in the past, yet have the weakest voices today. The irony is today’s technology has crumbled institutions to a shell of their former power, introduced enormous capacity into the hands of the ordinary citizen and disrupted business models, even education models, that heretofore were strongholds that kept black Americans from competing with any measure of statistical impact in this capitalist society.

    Yet, today, black media focus on entertainment, gossip and sports. The lamenting ongoing across black America lacks sufficient research and fails to address the current paradigm of tech-based entrepreneurship and private equity that fuels nearly all net new job growth in the nation. We lack perspectives on net worth and few of us can hold a credible conversation on economics in America.

    At the end of the day, we don’t (or won’t) tell our own story of living in America today and over the past five decades since a courageous generation put lives at risk to transition a hostile nation from the overt sins of a past society to the current paradigm of covering those sins and hope the fallout from them dissipates over the next few generations in the shadows of ignorance.

    It is our responsibility to remove those shadows and cast light upon the truth of an inexplicable bond between racism and poverty. And, it is our responsibility to address Dr. Martin Luther King’s poignant declaration in 1963 when he said: “100 years after slavery the Negro finds himself living on an island of poverty surrounded by vast oceans of material prosperity.”

    Sadly, we are 150 years out of slavery today and the change that has occurred over the most recent 50 of those years has been a quiet reversal of many of the economic and educational gains made through the previous 100.

    We own the responsibility to bring these issues to light in a responsible way. And we also own the responsibility of accepting that we have also played an ugly complicit role over the past 50 years in our own degradation.

    Let’s have that conversation. And let’s not converse for the sake of hearing truth come to light, but for the sake of understanding the problems of our society at their most fundamental, and use that understanding to seek collaborative solutions.


    Glory to GOD. I don’t need another movie about Slavery and Racism to understand my State. Movies does has some usefulness, but it can carry some deceptions when it comes to real world life today. Once I attempted to do a series entitled ” THE BLUE EYE DEVIL” during a Dallas City Council meeting, It was not received by the Council Members, neither race, black or white.

    In today’s world, it all depends on who you are and what’s your status. Status has many facets, like many depths to the Game.
    The series was to address and enlighten a people of the many different M.O.- METHODS of OPERATION of the evil and wicked ones. Problem is that, everybody has become a player.
    Once the black man was freed, reconstruction took on a very cruel deceptive operation to maintain for some to maintain power. Even today it is still in full force, and the band plays on.

    To continue discussing racism is an intellectual things to do, but it plays right into the hands of the power that want to be, God.
    This type of deception is how we as a people are controlled. They do this to show as if they are really concern, but if nothing changes, nothing changes. What it really does is expose those that oppose the oppressors, to identify them and single them out for to alienate them.
    These are the ones who are willing to sacrifice and fight for change. Those that are pretty well off, just rides thru fronting as leaders. They don’t want to risk what they have, being money and status. It’s about choosing sides, and being passive toward injustice.
    If you really desires the Truth about it, ask me,
    The Trinity Reunion
    Thanks be to GOD, for another opportunity to shine His true light in dark places.

Average Joe
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