So last week, I wrote a column for my day job over at AL.com about “the new black.” I said it’s time to send this label — which denotes a “new generation” of African-Americans who would rather pacify white folks than speak about injustice — to our collective spam folders. My piece talked about the need to work just as hard to eradicate long-standing issues black communities (specifically, crime and violence) as we do to combat racism and disenfranchisement perpetrated by those outside our community. But sometimes, black folks like me who are willing acknowledge shortcomings in our community are suddenly typecast as Uncle Ruckus.
My bad for caring about my community enough to want it to do better.
I’m not losing sleep over the criticisms, especially when most of the complaints come from people who aren’t doing a single thing of substance in these streets. Posting MLK memes and To Pimp A Butterfly lyrics on Instagram don’t count, boo boo.
Despite that, there’s one “new black” comparison that some of y’all have been making that must be stamped out right now:
I am not riding for Raven-Symone.
Cliff Huxtable’s favorite fake daughter has become social media public enemy No. 1, with comments like these:
“I never said I wasn’t black, I said I wasn’t African American – to me that’s a difference,” she stated. “Thank you to ancestry.com for sending me my DNA test. I am from every continent in Africa except for one and I’m also from every continent in Europe except for one.”
Thoee comments were in response to these made a few months earlier:
“I don’t know what country in Africa I’m from, but I do know that my roots are in Louisiana. I’m an American. And that’s a colorless person.”
This chick needs to take several hundred thousand seats.
Her comments aren’t new black. They’re the same old stupid.
First, let’s overlook the fact that Dora the Explorer has a better grasp of geography than Raven, who doesn’t even know the difference between a continent and a country. I guess this is the result of spending all of your childhood hangin’ with Mr. Cooper.
Raven’s claim of being “colorless” is cute and wonderful and sparkly if you live in the Atlantic Ocean and your neighbors are jellyfish. But we live in the real world, Spongebob.
America was literally built on the diversity of its cultures. And those cultures are represented in the different hues of the millions of faces that call America home. Those cultures bring different ideas, experiences and perspectives.
It’s the diversity that makes us stronger, Raven, not assimilation.
Now sure, there are plenty of idiots out there who use color to divide, but I’m not going to stop pretending to love my culture and background just to make insecure racists happy.
I haven’t seen Raven’s Ancestry.com results, but she claims to have descended from all 54 of Africa’s
continents countries (except one) and all 50 of Europe’s continents countries (except one). Playa please, if you expect me to believe that, I guess I’m supposed to believe that’s Raven’s real hair on Empire.
This chick is drying up like an old bag of potpourri.
If she’s so proud of her diverse ancestry, why can’t I be proud of my African-American heritage — men and women in this country who rose from chains, pimp-slapped Jim Crow, won the right to vote, created music and cultural advances that influenced the globe, and conquered the business world, all while turning table scraps into the best meals you’ve ever tasted?
The leader of the free world is probably playing Spades on Air Force One RIGHT NOW. Sorry playa, but I’m proud of that because it’s MY heritage. And as much as she’d like to forget, that’s Raven’s heritage too. If she’s too dumb to be proud of that mighty lineage, that’s her business. But that won’t stop me from standing strong for my people.
Labeling people New Black Uncle Toms because they want the black community to improve from within is counter-productive. But I will agree with the anti-new black crowd on one thing: Raven’s asinine comments are very destructive because they overlook the power of the black community. Lord knows we have issues — poverty, crime, Young Thug — but we’ve proven we can beat them. We’ve done it in the past.
That’s why we should want more from our community, and less from delusional actresses.