Monday, November 10, 2008

a note on the week hence...

The victory of Obama was met with much jubilation and celebration here in Harlem, in the rest of the country and indeed in many other countries, and for good reason. Despite persistent attack ads and the strange appeal of Sarah Palin to a greater number of individuals in quintessential red states, Obama scored an electoral vote landslide and will be the new president come January 20th. How refreshing to see that the course of history in this country has been irrevocably altered, forever.

However, while it may have taken over 220 years for the election of the first African-American president steps must be taken to ensure that the same amount of time does not elapse until there is another colored person ascends to the seat of such power against in this country. How will these events affect the course of everyday events of the average colored person in this country. No longer is there any excuse to aspire to anything less than the highest positions of power and social, culture, and political power in any facet of life. It also lay waste the ability to make excuses and succumb to any sort of inferiority complexes or societal obstacles.

That being said it must be noted that Obama was not elected based solely upon the merits of his race or the country dying for change from the b.s. job that Bush has done overall during these last eight years. He was from a broken family, as many minorities are, but his parents were educated. His mother had her PhD and his father was an economist for the Kenyan government. Obama himself was educated in Occidental College (in L.A.), then Columbia, then Harvard. His wife went to Princeton and then Harvard Law School. She too was from humble economic means growing up on the southside of Chicago. Despite being lawyers they both were community activists and they were educated but not merely for the sake of having degrees but in order to achieve certain objectives.

The point is that too many people of color will get caught up in the jubilation of his victory without realizing the path it took to get there. Too often, our role models had been actors, athletes, and entertainers...bullshit poisonous movies like Soul Plane, images of neo-Samboism. Rappers and music impresarios rapping about nonsense, fully knowing that the path to success was not facilitated or paved with monosyllabic vocabulary and "nome sane" at the end of every sentence. Michael Jordan didn't pave the way for Obama, he only encouraged people to shoot a damn ball, not to go to school or help the community. In fact, there were times when I was in junior high school that I would cut class just to be one of the first people to buy jordans on the day they were released. And neither did 50 cent, puffy, or Russell Simmons. All those a$$holes with reality shows yelling at people on tv and humiliating assistants and making them walk to juniors to get cheesecake didn't pave the way for a man like Obama. The others only showed people how being a persistent jackass works when you are rich.

So next time a child is tempted to watch Kobe play against Boston I hope he chooses to watch MSNBC or youtube Obama at his democratic convention speech and simply listens...take the battery out of his tv remote...and listens. Listens to an inspiring voice, a man who made a difference, a man of the same hue and physical characteristics as the child who they see standing before them when they pass by a mirror. Or next time a woman's good for nothing boyfriend tells her that he is trying to make a demo tape (for the 1000th time), I hope she decides to date the one who is shooting to be the CEO or maybe the broke ass law students from the city university. The one with a lack of a social life, bags under his eyes, book under his arms and coffee in hand. May every child see within themselves a Michelle or a Barack Obama...

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