Black Elitism

I woke up this morning wondering what I would write about, I knew I wanted to write but about what? My semester just ended a week ago and I've been wondering what to do with my free time, how to make this extra time I have count before summer classes hit me square in the face. Write! That's what I came up with, write about anything, write about everything, write about anyone and everyone! So that's what I'm doing. I've contemplated dropping out of college again. Some people will ask, "why?" Why not would be my reply, everything thing that I am learning in college 75 percent of it I already knew. How is that possible, it's possible because I taught myself the things I wanted to learn and my mother taught me the things I needed to know.

This past semester I took 3 classes and I didn't study for one test or one final and I passed all my courses with nothing less than a B. Some will say imagined if you just applied yourself but that's the point, I knew it already...most of it anyway. School to me is about critical thinking and thinking logically unless you're taking Spanish or Math and then it's a different ball game. 

Honestly... I'm only going so I can make enough money to make a decent living for a family someday and that's not even guaranteed. I'm not one of those people who wants to stack up degrees and hang them on my wall to make myself feel more important, I feel that way everyday with the little things I do. A few years back I learned how to love myself, how to appreciate what I bring to the world and that's been enough for me every since. Degrees may bring a sense of inclusion to certain circles, it may even get you more money in life but the thing that I personally hate about the institution of school or higher education is the elitism that it creates, specifically around the black community. 

You've heard me speak on the podcast several times about being introduced to some influential people around the city of Dallas. You've heard me speak about some "characters" I have come in contact with. Some made my stomach cringe and others made me practice the art of swallowing my tongue. I've been in rooms where people don't talk to get to know you, they converse to get to know about you. They approach not asking how is your afternoon? What's your name? But they approach by asking, "What is it that you do?" Why on God's green earth does that matter (I really wanted to curse). I've even been caught up in the net that was casted amongst the crowd to create friendships and partnerships only for them to step up on your shoulders and get ahead. 

I've experienced the broken promises of what looked like great men and women. I've been bit by the venomous tongue of insecure beings and those suffering from depression but wearing a smile that can mask any man's sadness. I've experienced "black elitism!"

What does black elitism look like you may ask? It looks like a group of people that are for the people but it's actually extremely exclusive and very difficult to obtain membership. It's made up of a lot of tongue and cheek promises. It's doing a good deed and taking pictures to show the good deed. "No" it's not a problem to take pictures doing good things, blacks need good representation out in media but when the pictures of one's actions become bigger than the deed that's where the issue lies. Black elitism focuses on your esteemed stance in the community, what titles you hold are "very" important. Sometimes without knowing or knowingly you began to stare down your nose at your own people. Those are just to name a few. 

The funny thing about me writing this article is that I happen to know people who exhibit these behaviors and they are not even aware of it. I don't even believe that it's something that people set out to do, it just happens. That's why self evaluation, self actualization and self realization are so important. Sometimes we become things or we create things with a different vision in mind but the purpose manifest into something much different than we envisioned.

How to prevent these type of events (black elitism) from ever occurring; surround yourself with truthful people, people who are down for the cause, people who are willing to set you straight in a moments notice. Ask yourself, "Do I have anyone around me that's willing to correct me, give me constructive criticism?" If you don't, then that's where you need to start to prevent circumstances like elitism from ever gaining momentum, your society/community depends on it.

"When we give cheerfully and accept gratefully, everyone is blessed."

- Maya Angelou

 Photo Cred: Team Howard Photography, Locaction: Deep Ellum

Photo Cred: Team Howard Photography, Locaction: Deep Ellum