Dearest Lone Theorist
On my ‘Black Love, Baby’ post, Lone Theorist said:
“Did you ever perhaps consider that instead of blaming all your problems on black women, you should maybe hold your self accountable for the things you can change?You are not a threat to white people. White people love you, because you do not respect other black people (black women). Instead you have looked at the white man’s definition of beauty and have not removed this socialization. The white man will NEVER respect you, as you have given him no cause to show you respect. YOU obviously don’t love yourself, if you did, you would bed down with women who reflected your phenotype. You would lay down with the women who endured the same struggles with race as you, you would marry a woman who is as angry as you about what this society is doing to black men, women, and children. And you would treat black women with the same respect you would want for yourself. Instead you look up to your white overseers definition of beauty, like a little boy trying to fill out “daddy’s” shoes. Admit you are brainwashed, but stop looking towards the next black woman you see for introducing very valid points about how black men behave towards them.
But you haven’t. If you knew anything about the very Malcolm in your picture (you probably haven’t even read his autobiography or speeches), you’d know that he was against interracial dating, and the pathetic brothers who would run over his own to get a non-black girl. Our ancestors who fought to give us the freedoms you enjoy today are rolling over in their grave.”
Dear Lone Theorist:
You’ve read me all wrong, but thank you, because this is the disease in us that I am referring to. And it is in all of us, though you may think you are immune.
Rage has blinded you, to the point where you can’t see nuance, you can’t even read what I’ve written through your rageful cataracts, can’t understand the process by which we ALL have to free ourselves of the chains the white man has bound us with.
Calm down and listen.
I understand what has led you to this place of overwhelming pain. Who feels it knows it, right? And if you think you’ve cornered the market on hurt, or, that I haven’t experienced pain from being a black man AND experienced pain from the poor choices that I’ve made along the way – you simply don’t know.
I truly hope that, eventually, you will come to know that you aren’t alone in your pain and confusion – I share it – and that you can move out of pain as a permanent emotional state into a place of greater inner peace/awareness/understanding/conviction.
Now, if you know a little bit about Malcolm X, you know that he dated at least one white woman, so I’m in good company. Later on, he renounced interracial dating, pimping, drug dealing – all of which he engaged in. Who and what I fucked in the past is past. (More on that later…)
All of us have unique challenges – Tomism, jungle fever, drugs, alcohol, bling-bling, ‘burnt hair syndrome’, food addiction, obesity, terminal rage – all forms of internalized racism. I can criticize with the best of them: but if my finger doesn’t also point at me, if I fail to look at myself with rigorous honesty and see the ‘disease in me’ then I will likely be a part of the problem, instead of helping create a solution.
You may think that you’re pure, unsullied, blameless, the perfect victim…think again.
My sister, you cannot blame your problems on me and I cannot blame my problems on you, precisely the point that I was making. So we are in agreement on something. That is a start. I didn’t make you angry, rageful: you came here with that feeling. Black women didn’t cause me to date/marry a white woman. I did that all by myself. I did it and take responsibility for it.
I was going to say I regret having done so, but I don’t regret anything because I learned and I am learning from my mistakes. Mine eyes were opened. If it took that experience to learn, so be it. If you don’t like that I had to go through what I had to go through to learn what I had to learn – that’s your problem.
I wonder what you need to learn about yourelf that has NOTHING to do with another human being?
I know one thing: I have seen the error of my ways and continue to try to see. I will continue to pay attention and continue to try to “remove the socialization” of the white man from my being. Removing it is a process, a lifetime process, a process that requires supportive friends.
Its funny. I was just thinking of a speech of Malcolm’s that I saw recently:
“To have once been a criminal is no disgrace; to remain a criminal is the disgrace.”
I have been with white women. Guilty as charged. And I will be with a black woman always and forever.
That vibe, that need to abuse and rake each other over the coals is so anti-‘Black Love,’ so illustrative of what I was trying to say, that I can’t see straight. This is the impediment – this internalized, myopic, unforgiving poison – that will prevent you and I from loving ourselves as a people and as REAL black people.
NONE of us are immune – including me. So climb down off the cross, come down here on the ground and deal with the 30 million different ways that blackness manifests.