Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Dunce Cappin' & Kazooin'


Peace,

A couple of weeks ago during Civilization Class, a discussion arose regarding the mentality of Black children in contemporary society & the increasing lack of regard for intellect in our community. My brother Shaking (www.yellowseed.blogspot.com) suggested a movie entitled Idiocracy that spoke to some of these issues within society in general. I grabbed the movie & did the 1 to see if it had any relevance to where I saw Black children heading as far as respect for intelligence. While I must say that the movie was pretty funny, the comedy was overshadowed by the cogent & relevant points expressed in the movie. Here are some of the good points that I got out of the flick regarding the general society:

- You know society's in trouble when we accept "scientific evidence" that's paid for by the company over common sense. you want a example, you say? Enter exhibit A: Pork. People know fully well that the pig ain't no good for 'em, b.u.t. in order to fill their desires, they cite reports done by pork lobbying firms.

- When people take tried & tired Clich├ęs (Bush & The Republican War Machine) over actual analysis & evaluation (The Iraq Study Group) as international policy. (For further proof, see conservative talk radio)

- In a world where everywhere changes 180 degrees from how it was, right becomes wrong & vice versa ( See ideas about child rearing & the importance of motherhood in contemporary society)

- As people become conditioned to entertainment, glitz & glamour becomes the order of the day & actually replaces information

How does relate to Black Children? Well, if the larger society is going to hell in a breadbasket, we're going in a gasoline- drenched go kart, as anything that has a negative effect on society usually has a larger effect on us (Joblessness, Poverty, Health Issues, etc..) Due to the structural & behavioral issues that plague our families, Black babies are less intellectually inclined than any time since slavery. Now, I'm not going to go John Mcwhorter on the situation & blame it all on us, b.u.t. the first step to affecting change in any situation is to acknowledge that it exists.

Even during the Crack era, you had young boys & girls who were inclined to learn of their history & culture (courtesy of the NGE & other progressive cultural movements). Remember the Malcolm, Martin, Mandela & Me T-Shirts? Imagine that happening today...

Due to the fact that intelligence doesn't seem to pay off for our children in society, they gravitate towards that which will seem to reward them (Athletics, Music, etc..) Let me give an example: My daughter attends a majority-white school with a fairly rigorous academic cirriculum. In that environment, a voracious appetite for reading is the rule, not the exception. At the all-black after school program she attends, none of the children bring books to read after school, but quite a few of them fancy themselves as future athletes or performers. The diiference in orientation leads to the difference in worldview & activity.

Ironically, the title of the post is from a Clipse song ('Mr. Me Too') that advocates many of the ideas that I've mentioned above. While I am a fan of the Thorton Brothers, I can properly process the song, not have it negatively impact my behavior & activities. There's nothing wrong with dancing, having fun & doing your own thing, b.u.t. the key is to understand the difference between someone laughing with you & someone laughing at you.

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