Dealing with principles and frameworks for principled behavior can be more murky in action than in the writing or telling.
As a US Black person, there is a tradition of thought that utilizes the term, “sellout”. The definition of what a “sell out” is exactly, however, probably changes constantly from generation to generation. As each generation of US Blacks pushes and is incorporated deeper in the professional class infrastructure, the less the term refers to US Blacks assimilating. And yet, the term is still put to usage in activist circles, circles wholly financed by Whyte billionaires and trumpeted by appeals to Whyte corporate controlled media.
While I feel my own definitions of “sell out” are also growing lenient, I do also sense a deep annimosity towards anyone using fictive racial obligations to exploit US Blacks. However the majority of the collective can persuade the rest of the body to define and identify with “Blackness”, will be what it will be. It would be nice, from my balcony looking onto the world, if those definitions did not work to force US Blacks into postures and roles as limited as I deem them to be presently. It would be nice to not have to consume the qualifying of purely human or even USAmerican styles being reflected from US Blacks as “Black” this or that. So one ever says Anerd for Asian “nerds”, or Merds, for Mexican ones. I do not see the accuracy in proclaiming one’s identity as “blerd”, when every grouping has their asocial and awkward participants. This need for US Blacks to pronounce their adoption of intellectual pursuits as the Black version of it is shortsighted and a residue of US Slavery conditioning US citizens to define Blacks as inferior intellectually.
I would suppose, the beginning lessons of any system of Trusting, or critical thinking, should be an application towards one’s own internal justifications for delusion of mediocrity. And then a working of the inverse; that is to say, an application towards one’s own internal justifications for delusions of grandeur. Something akin to,”What makes you believe you are less than or not as good as that which you do?” Followed by, “What makes you believe you are more than or better at a thing that you do?”
I do hold strongly that one’s conditioning and training in any hierarchy will embue them with a sense and appreciation of the present hegemony. Children tend to recognize valuable brands fairly quickly, as well as power dynamics. While the ability to articulate these at sophisticated levels will vary from child to child, the actions and reflections that the understanding exists pretty commonly. So, the initial critical thinking assignment needs to factor in one’s own self-trust. How much of an authority does one consider one’s self, and why? One thing we do know for certain about human existence is that we can never actually see the world through each others eyes. We can only imagine alter perceptions, or empathize.
It might help that in our quest for a system or strategy of trusting, that we at least have an honest assessment of our own evaluations of how much we trust our own perceptions. It helps as well, to be able to articulate those ideas that persist within our own thinking that cause to devalue our own faith in Self. So much of success in life depends on discipline, or self-control. So much of trust is the loaning of control to others. It would be a great asset for anyone to be able to have the ability to trust themselves, and when a distrust of Self is deeply felt, at least we can begin to establish anchoring point within our Selves to return back to. Or, an anchor point within our Selves to gauge the reliability of our trust of others with.
Trust is an abstraction when used as a noun, and more suitable as a verb. Trust is an action. And when used as a thing or a condition, it should be allowed to be considered in gradiated measurements. “How much do I trust a particular person?”, is a better question than simply, “do I trust them?”
When we begin to delve further into the concepts of Black Media Trust, this will prove more valuable. In a situation where all of my new information, or news, is gathered under the auspice of profit motivation, it aids me best if I have a way of limiting my trust, or rationing my trust out. I do not have to totally trust my sources of information, I can suspend belief, and just hold that this or that outlet said this or that about xyz situation. Being able to hold that data in memory without having to process it as true or false, yet accepting that it has been stated, allows me time to weigh that data more, as well as not embarrass myself in the reporting of that data to others. I do not have to agree or even believe a thing in order to pass on that it was stated by someone.
This suspension of belief and suspension of doubt also enables me to strengthen my anchor within. I do not react to information as true or false until I return back to my own resources established as credible. In this way, I am always in control of faculties of information processing and not letting the bias we know others have filtered the data through inflitrate our thinking. Even if that bias is unconsciously applied or just applied without malicious intent, as long as I am weighing that data against my needs and desires for self, and vetting it against credible resources, I can remain safe.
But, all of that depends on a very strong sense of trust in Self. In order for me to critically assess at that level, I need to have established my anchors, my goals, my purposes, and a visceral belief in my ability to determine what is best for myself. No amount of math problems solved and riddles memorized can establish the type of belief in Self bordering Self-love I am discussing here. The type of exercises necessary to build that bond with Self will have to be experienced in real world contexts, usually under unmeasurable amounts of pressure. But, life usually provides us with these sorts of tasks fairly routinely. The same amount extraenous circumstances we deem sufficient to refer to others as trustworthy, we need to recognize our own Selves surmounting with our Selves. Before one can accurately be critical of others, they need to have a means of critically assesses their own self. Before trusting others, learn to trust self, could be a simpler way to state this.