What is not so curious is that it happened during Black History month, but that nearly all of the articles regarding Malcolm X’ legacies are dominated by the soap opera of their lives. The same is true of Dr. King and all prominent black leaders. The dominant culture, particularly with the proliferation of partisan talk radio has sought at every turn to defame and delegitimize these leaders.
I won’t go into those soap operas, or any issues that might or have been used in the dominant culture media regarding the private lives of these leaders and their families. If you haven’t heard them, and just can’t bear not to know, it’s all out there. But just know that those salacious stories are there only to degrade the legitimacy of black leaders in the community. Far-fetched? Shabazz is a prime example, as article after article dwells on a tragic incident that occurred when Shabazz was 12. Now 29, it becomes a daunting task to find anything that does not use that event as a central or primary theme. Most pieces include a description of his mental health, rendered when he was a child.
Shabazz said in a recent interview:
“People often describe me as troubled. I’m not going to say that I’m not. But I’m not crazy. I have troubles. A lot of us do. But you need to understand where I’m coming from and why I am the way I am. Considering what I’ve been through, it’s a miracle that I’ve been able to hold it together. I’m just trying to find my way. [I’ve read newspaper stories about me that] say, “Experts testify [that boy] is psychotic.” The way they describe me is wrong — bi-polar, depression, pyro, whatever. I know I’m not at all. Some of the things I’ve been through, the average person would have cracked.” http://newsone.com/181711/malcolm-x-grandson-breaks-silence/
There is a notable lack of interest in the dominant media, particularly for this year’s Black History month. An ample amount is sarcastic, belittling, deeply ignorant and mocking. Or, as I touched on in a previous article, the media offers this all too simple treatment of
Simply the name Black History is, for the white community a non-starter. To many whites, all too separate from the black experience, and robbed of a comprehensive understanding of American history that would properly put black, latino, minority and immigrant contributions to this nation, there is no relevant context to their lives. That is a perception of course, and the line drawn quite purposely between the white community, the black community and other minority communities, and issues of gender as well.
What is the term? Divide and conquer. We are divided because we don’t know one another, and because we succumb to fear in attempting to bridge that gap. From one pasty-neon, ex-redneck white guy, we absolutely need, at the very least a black history month, at least until we correct the gross injustice that creates a nation that separates black history from the heritage we all share.
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