I’ve been thinking a lot today about unity. Mainly organizations and working with others. I find that I can work with others to a degree. It is like the minute we start getting too personal then it happens. And in the back of mind I’m playing this video of all the times I’ve had to deal with personalities that I clashed with. As the type of person that seems to get his kindness taking for granted, I have to constantly be on the watch for people who like to put boxes around you. Which I tend to believe is very normal, actually. Humans need a high level of repetition to feel comfortable, further we are socialized to be competitive. That creates a situation where people want to size you up, mentally comparing you to people that they have met in the past in order feel a sense of balance. Which is all fine and dandy, but when it comes to manipulation, my tolerance is real low.
Malcolm X states that he looked at Elijah Muhammad as a father. He states that he felt betrayed. Sometimes I revisit that thought as I enter into relationships with people. I once spoke with a brother that discussed leading and following with me. Many feel in order to be a good leader; you have to be a good follower. I tend to agree, however, I also notice that most people telling others that are in the leadership position, and aren’t even trying to follow half of their own tenets. My acquaintance simply related to me that he had reached the point where he simply didn’t want to be harnessed anymore. To “harness” means, “to tie together”. And I understood exactly what he meant. It is quite appropriate to have a vision, and to even seek out those to assist you in carrying that out, as I discuss in my eBook, The Better You. Someone is willing to assist you in bearing that load. I am not as aggressive in my leadership, more of a magnet than a gun, so I have a difficult time accepting aggressive leadership and demands on my time. I dislike being taken for granted, and I don’t like having my identity nullified by what other feel I ought to be doing. Working a job is one thing, pay me to do a service, I’ll do it. At the end of the day, I go home. I don’t like corporate bodies. I’m not trying to be a part of your “professional family” that I can be fired from. I would rather export my expertise, pick up my money, and bid you a fair ado.
I feel the same way with unity. I’d rather say solidarity, but we can interchange them as this thought progresses. I don’t have to believe like you to be working on the same causes as you. I don’t have to wear all black to feel a part of the pro-black movement. In fact, let’s discuss that. I am not black by virtue of anything other than the trading of bodies that occurred during the birth of this nation. The whole notion of race for me is ambiguous, but I understand the social pressure. If you have whites who will toss my application away because it says “black”, then I need to be working with other blacks. In order to ward off the economic and social ills of white power, I am forced to align myself with those who I’ve been categorized with. Although, I strongly believe that in order for a group of people to stay bonded, they should share some cultural norms and ideological percepts, as we say in dominoes…mine don’t fit. And for the most part, I’d rather not have anyone force their beliefs on me, no matter what. Certain sacrifices I can no longer afford.
I am a pretty bright guy. I don’t have to speak to shine. My gifts don’t require me to play in any popularity contest. My personality doesn’t need any extra wattage. What I have seen in the few black organizations I have been a part of, are these very things. I’ve watched people run out of meetings screaming that we need to do this and do that, and upon further reflection, I came to understand that to mean, “since I’m only good at this particular act, it is the most important one–thus you should follow me!!” I’ve heard the whispers in the pews of elder members, “They think they white…” Let me take a moment with that one.
This whole notion of a “real” black person has saturated and in my opinion, tainted the very fabric of every movement it has birthed. What I have found is that most don’t want unity or solidarity of purpose, they want control. In that same vein, those that wish to label you as not being “black” enough, or the new one that has cropped up, you are “too black”, seek to control you as well. In a world of transparency by surveillance, it is often difficult to for one to express their self honestly, because everyone either wishes to put you in a box, or assassinate your character. That is not something I’m always comfortable with.
I enjoy expressing myself a bit too much for the normal crowd. I don’t want you in my business, mainly because I don’t need your judgments. You can barely think without regret, what makes me think I’ll get a good hearing in your courtroom? Many American Blacks are swept away by this notion of white unity. There really was none though. There were blacks and there were poor whites that needed to be harnessed by rich whites. This is your unity. You had landowners that had prospered and no longer wished to be taxed by England. Grand discussions and noble ideas were written in timeless documents, but the spirit was superficial. Unfortunately, for me, symbolic gestures are like masturbation. I say that this is unfortunate for me, because like Obama, you realize real quick how important symbolism means to most of the population of earth. There are way more metaphysicians than scientists. More “healers” than doctors.
Too many con artists and not enough truly skilled at the art of earning and deserving our confidence…