Friday, January 4, 2008

Am I a Traitor?

I like Barack Obama. He comes off as very clean, chic, genial, eloquent, motivating, concerned -- and just seems like a cool cat, overall (which you'd be hard-pressed to believe after reading this religion-based smear-fest about him). In fact, he looks like that really cool uncle who bought you better birthday gifts than your parents ever did and let you stay up really late.

Did you notice a glaring omission in my observations? I didn't mention that I like him because he's black. Why not, you ask? It's simple -- because I don't give a flying fuck about that. Ever notice how so many women are jumping on Hillary Clinton's bandwagon because she's a woman and NOT because she's an excellent candidate with good ideas about how to turn our country around? Much like when the Jena 6 and Michael Vick were the topics-du-jour, I choose not blindly agree with the masses. So, I have a question for you: does this point of view make me a traitor? Am I in the wrong here? Short answer: No. Absolutely not.

Just because the man's melanin levels rival mine do not make him the best candidate for me. I'm not even saying that I won't vote for him. I'm just saying that I'd like to compare all of the candidates' ideals against mine and choose the person that best suits my own agenda. I want to vote for the candidate who I believe will be most capable of leading this country in the direction that I hope to see it go. I owe myself that much -- especially when considering how much taxes are borrowed from my paycheck by the government every other week.

So where in the Constitution does it say that I'm required to support any and every one that looks somewhat like I do? Which verse in the holy book of your choosing dictates that I "act black" and be "pro-black" at all times? Not that minorities of all kinds don't deserve opportunities to vie for positions of authority just like the majority, but I shouldn't feel obligated to support them for that reason alone. How many of you know someone that would run you down for being black and not voting for Obama, not supporting Vick, insisting that the Jena 6 did a few wrong things prior to that horrific ordeal and refusing to listen to hip-hop? If I shun Timberland or Nike boots as my choice of winter footwear, does it suggest that I may have fallen & bumped my head with concussive force? Do these things define me as an African-American?

One of the most beautiful things about being an American is having the freedom to choose. I can choose to own a gun (don't worry -- I don't want one). I can choose to vote. I can choose to boo anything or anybody -- even the little kids on Showtime at the Apollo. I can choose which brand of deodorant is pH balanced just for me. I don't live in a communist nation and people shouldn't treat me as such. I used to love Limp Bizkit and listened to their music often. Am I crazy for finding Superbad extremely funny? Is it wrong that I've dated a few white women in my lifetime? Is it wrong that I like John Mayer's voice? Should I have my "card" revoked now for conduct contrary to societal expectations?

I refuse to be characterized one way or another because of my skin color alone. Whether I'm listening to DMX or Coldplay, watching Seinfeld or Martin, The Great Debaters or No Country for Old Men -- none of this changes anything. I am who I am and I like what I like. To those who would try to put me in a box and chastise me for attempting to think or act outside of it, I say this: Kiss my entire ass. Just kiss it.

P.S.: Those Senate Auto Insurance commercials are just awful, aren't they?


Music Snob said...

Wait what? You dated white chicks? I'm done!

*stomps out of the room*

ps Great blog my dude! Co-sign! Co-sign! Co-sign!

Your Friendly Neighborhood Skeptic said...

It's sad that to be an affluent black person who finds interest in things other than rap music, chasing women, selling drugs, rims, and pit bulls has to question his "blackness".

As you know, I deal with this sort of thing on a daily basis. In HS it was a problem, but as an adult I could give a figidy-fuck what people think.

Black unity and pride are great things, but does it mean that I have to do everything the "It Negro" of the time does?

I'm not sold on Mr. Obama myself. I"m not sure if he has that "oomph" that I like in my presidents. Would I vote for him? I don't know. Then again, I don't vote. But if I did I damn sure wouldn't say, "Oh shit, gotta vote for him b/c he's a brother." You can do that with American Idol, but not with something marginally more important, like the presidential election.

Cat said...

I totally hear you. It seems out of all the races Blacks have this "presure" to fit into some type of black box. As such people think they have you pegged even before you open your mouth. I am a black woman under 30 therefore- JayZ is my favorite artist, I love Beyonce too, eat scapple, don't need a man/ or am a single mother, have an attitude when I wake up in the morning, am loud, sexually free (while at the same time going to church on the regular), if my hair is long or "good" it is a weave or I am biracial etc etc. Like skeptic, when I deviated out of the box in HS much drama from having my hair yanked without permission to see if its real to being accused of talking like a white person. When will people "allow" us, meaning black people, to be free thinkers to pick and choose our own ways. Let's sing country, let the guys wear rocker style tight pants, let's bang our heads to Green Day, and wear Birkenstocks if you want to (although why ANYONE would I have no idea). Basically- let's really be free!

The Girl From Park Heights said...

Co-signing on this blog. I have always refused to like stuff just cause its represented by blacks.
In fact, if they're black, I may even look at them with a more scornful eye because I want them to step and out even stronger.

Superbad: funny as hell. I'm about to buy my own copy.

I already knew soon as I heard he was running that some blacks are gonna get all excited an vote for him just because of that. Not me. I need to carefully go over his campaign and see if I agree with most.

He's not gonna get by easily caue he's brown (and cute). Although it would be nice to have a brown and cute thing in the oval office, fo sho'. No, I'm going to look at everything before I decide.

And I'm all for stepping out, or now that I really think about it, strampling on and stomping the "black box". I started venturing out myself in college discovering No Doubt and Seinfeld and found there's a whole world full of fascinating things OUTSIDE the black community, and damn it, where do I sign up.

So I will exert my freedom of choice. I can rock it to Jay Z, Usher and TI then chill with Harry Connick Jr., Fiona Apple and Lily Allan.

But those Eastern Motors commercials...are still my joints!!

Erika 2004 said...

Ok, this comment is unnecessarily long. Had a flashback, wanted to talk about it

I hear you. Why do people do this? It's just easier to follow the crowd than to be true to oneself. It's like each race is unionized, following the standard stereotypes. Any one in that race that "crosses" union lines is subject to ridicule. But you know, this crosses any type of group of people.

I went to a private middle school for a spell, complete with the ugly ass uniforms. There would be days, these tag days, where we would have to pay a fee to where our regular, street clothes. One tag day in particular, we were told that in order to get the tag day, not only were we required to pay the tag day fee, we had to buy a hot dog as well. Well, at the time, I wasn't a huge hot dog fan and I just didn't think that it was fair to MAKE us purchase something that we didn't want. I was the oddball. I choose not to buy the hot dog. My teacher at the time (an evil woman) noticed and asked me why I didn't buy a hot dog. I explained that I didn't like hot dogs. She proceeded to tell me that I was un-American, how everyone liked hot dogs, and how I lacked school spirit. All that because I didn't want a hot dog? All that because I was a little different?

In part because of that shitty teacher, I spent way too much time trying to be what other people expected instead of being most true to myself. I'm so glad those times are done.

Not Your Average Male said...

[MS] Thank you. I can only hope that you forgive me for my transgressions one day... lol.

[YFNS] You're right. The day has come for us not to care anymore. It's hard to swallow as a child, but it goes down smooth like Captain Morgan's now that I'm grown.

[Cat] I'm sorry but I have to draw the line at the tight pants -- my testicles need air.

[GFPH] I hate you SO much for referencing Eastern Motors. I swear I catch one every time I go back home, lol.

[E2K4] Wow. I hope you didn't slash her tires or anything. She does sound like a bitch though. Reminds me of my 3rd grade teacher and the day she refused to let me take the bathroom pass and I peed on myself JUST a lil bit when I finally made it there. Talk about un-American. The subsequent laughter should have set off a homicidal rage, but fortunately for her, I was able to compose myself. That or I was too busy crying to kill her. Whatever works.