I. Will. Not. Lose. :: Dr. Cornel West Responds To Dyson’s Ghost

 

 

The escalating deaths and sufferings in Black and poor America and the marvelous new militancy in our Ferguson moment should compel us to focus on what really matters: The life and death issues of police murders, poverty, mass incarceration, drones, TPP (unjust trade policies), vast surveillance, decrepit schools, unemployment, Wall Street power, Israeli occupation of Palestinians, Dalit resistance in India, and ecological catastrophe.

 

Character assassination is the refuge of those who hide and conceal these issues in order to rationalize their own allegiance to the status quo. I am neither a saint nor prophet, but I am a Jesus-loving free Black man in a Great Tradition who intends to be faithful unto death in telling the truth and bearing witness to justice. I am not beholden to any administration, political party, TV channel or financial sponsor because loving suffering and struggling peoples is my point of reference. Deep integrity must trump cheap popularity. Nothing will stop or distract my work and witness, even as I learn from others and try not to hurt others.

 

But to pursue truth and justice is to live dangerously. In the spirit of John Coltrane’s LOVE SUPREME, let us focus on what really matters: the issues, policies, and realities that affect precious everyday people catching hell and how we can resist the lies and crimes of the status quo!

 


 

In the aftermath of Dyson’s Ghost Of West and what one writer described as Dyson’s victory lap, a response from an interesting Twitter user to Dyson sparked my attention. A response to Dyson from not only an active Ferguson Protester, not only a respected member of the Ferguson Family of Activists, but also the Executive Director of Teach For America in St. Louis, as well as a member of the Ferguson Commission, an independent group set up by the state of Missouri to study the social and economic conditions underscored by the protests that followed Mike Mike Brown’s murder by former Ferguson Patroller, Darren Wilson. I’ve embedded, as well as screen captured, their conversation here:

 


 

Ms. Brittany Packyett makes the very widely expressed critique of the piece through her commentary to Dyson that his piece seems to be ill suited to the times, his platform, and his time spent feeding his ego Pacman balls for writing it. This is the sort of anguish that fumes from many in Black America with regards to prominent figures that use the fictive obligation of Black while anchored in Whyte media or Whyte Ivy Towers to push agendas that are not the agenda of the Black body collective. Dr. Cornel West immediately focuses on this lack of focus, and without mentioning Dyson once in the Facebook update, uses Dyson’s words against Dyson. It was all very martial art like. Some sort of brilliant niggamenta-fu, I’m sure. Dr. West basically states that Dyson might be right, but at this present moment, there is much more to consider. Which is exactly what Ms. Packyett attempted to engage Professor Rap-Too-Much with, but he was too busy rapping.