Monday, March 13, 2017

News in March 2017 (Commentaries)

In the 21st century, the film Get Out has been popular among many people. It has been loved, hated, debated, and discussed by people of every background and from those from across the political spectrum. I took my time to study the film before making my view of the movie. My critique will be controversial, but the truth is the truth (and I won’t apologize for showing the truth). The film Get Out shows in public many of the secrets that pertains to the evil system of racism and oppression that exists globally. The movie was produced, written, and directed by Jordan Peele, who is a biracial comedian. He knows about situations in society. The film deals with many ironies as Peele’s film shown an unfaltering look at an interracial relationship and he is married to a white woman in real life. The film is a horror film and it has a resonance among many people, because it exposes many truths that tons of black people have mentioned for a long time and these truths are uncomfortable for many human beings (especially to white people who have conservative views on racial matters). The film is a reminder that truth is not only humble and peaches and cream. The truth can be very hardcore. To get the gist of the film in a comprehensive fashion, I like to show information about the movie chronologically. The film has sold about $100 million worldwide on a $4.5 million budget, which is incredible. First, the movie starts with a black man named Chris Washington (played by Daniel Kaluuya). He's a photographer. He is dating his white girlfriend Rose Armitage (played by Allison Williams). They are visiting Rose’s white parents. Chris has concerns, because Rose didn’t tell her parents that Chris is a black man. Rose reassures him that everything will be fine. They accidentally hit a deer via a car. The deer dies slowly. Chris feels guilt about this, because his mother died when he was very young. They go into the Armitage family estate. The Armitage family acts bizarre. The groundskeepers include black people like Walter (played by Marcus Henderson) and Georgina (played by Betty Gabriel). Chris has a smoking habit. Rose’s parents are Dean and Missy. Chris declines politely to use hypnosis to end his smoking habit. Missy is a psychiatrist. Rose’s brother is Jeremy. During the night, Chris notices strange behavior from Walter and Georgina. They act brainwashed. Missy wants to hypnotize Chris. He was hypnotized by Missy during the nighttime. He can’t move. Later, he wakes up in the bed. Things get stranger. There is a get together and an older white woman asks Chris an inappropriate sexual question. The blind art dealer Jim Hudson is there. Logan King is a black guest with an older white wife. Chris' best friend is TSA Officer Rod Williams. Rod finds out that Logan has been missing and his actual name is Andre Hayworth and he’s from Brooklyn. Logan acts bizarre too. A camera flash awakens Logan temporarily and he tells Chris to leave or get out. Chris wants to leave. Rose agrees, but she is part of the plot to get him. Later, Dean held an auction for Chris and Jim wins the bid. Chris is about to leave and then Rose’s family blocks him. Chris finds images of Rose’s black boyfriends and pictures of Walter plus Georgina. Rose admits that her and her family are part of a kidnapping ring. Missy uses hypnosis to stop Chris. Rod tries to get to the police to try to find Chris after he doesn’t return his calls. Yet, the police officers don't take him seriously. Chris is kidnapped, and trapped to a chair. He learns that Dean is a neurosurgeon. The Armitage house is a place where black people are kidnapped and the brains of his older friends and family are placed into the bodies of young black people whose minds have been conditioned for the procedure by Missy. Jim plans to use Chris as a host so he can regain his sight, and Chris will be doomed to exist in "the sunken place" for the rest of his life as Jim controls his body. Dean starts the surgery Yet, Chris escapes by knocking Jeremy out. Chris runs and kills Dean, Missy, and Jeremy. Chris hits Georgina while dialing 911. Chris tries to save Georgina’s life by placing her in his car. Georgina is a vessel for Rose’s grandmother. So, she awakens and Chris crashes his car into a tree.  Rose uses a rifle to try to capture Chris. Walter fights Chris. Walter is a vessel of Rose’s grandfather. Chris uses a flash of the phone to free Walter from his hypnosis and he tries to tell Rose to give the rifle to him. Walter shoots Rose in the stomach while Walter later commits suicide. Chris is gone and Rose sees a cop. Rose thinks that she can lie to the cop and claim that Chris shot her. Yet, the cop is Chris’ friend Rod. Chris and Rod drive away while Rose dies from the gunshot wound. The movie touches on so many subjects.

First, the movie shows the racism shown by many hypocritical white liberals. Racism isn’t just shown by the alt right, extremists like Steve King, or neo-Nazis. It has been shown by many white liberals too as explained by the great, late Malcolm X. Dean says that he can’t be racist since he voted for Barack Obama, which is a falsity. Many of the same people who voted for Obama voted for a sexist, bigot like Donald Trump (who said on video tape in YouTube that he doesn’t believe that all people are created equal, which is ludicrous and wrong. By definition, Trump is a racist). As other conscious black people have mentioned before, the movie is not revolutionary, but it shows lessons that we (who are black) have talked about for generations. The movie combines legitimate truths about racism mixed with dysfunction (as although, there is no happy ending for the whites in the film, the black people in the film suffer as well. For example, Georgina and Walter are black characters and they experience no positive conclusion). The experiments against black people in the film definitely harken back to the Tuskegee Experiment, forced sterilizations against black people, and other evil crimes that black people were the victims of. During the days of overt slavery in America, black slaves were tortured and abused constantly by white racists. Sister Henrietta Lacks (in real life) was a victim of the exploitation of her body by scientists (who didn’t ask permission to use Lacks’ cells) too. The lust of the white characters in the film for black bodies relates to how many whites hate black people, but are jealous of black bodies at the same time. Many white people use surgeries, tanning, and other actions to try to mimic black people, but they aren’t black. The film showed the whites as very smart (we know tons of black people in real life are very intelligent) while black people being the victims of evil. The hidden truths in the film are many. It shows the truth that interracial relationships are not infallible and interracial relationships alone can never end racism or oppression in the world. It shows the truth that mental manipulation and the human exploitation of black bodies emotionally and sexually continues to exist in our generation. Today, many white women travel into the Caribbean and into Africa for the sole purpose of having sex with black men. Today, many non-black women target wealthy black men for relationships (out of exploitation, a fetish, etc. not out of true love). Today, many of members of our black community suffer from colorism, self-hatred, and other evils. Misogynoir is a serious problem. We must fight those problems. In the beginning of the film, Chris experienced racial profiling as well. The villains in the story aren’t just Rose’s parents. One villain is Rose herself, because she uses slick methods in kidnapping black people and appealing to the insecurities of black males who seek white acceptance. The auction in the film has taken place during slavery. The hypnosis is similar to the hypnosis shown by mainstream society (via television, entertainment, movies, some educational systems, etc.) to try to get black humanity to go along with white racist ideologies and servitude to the status quo. The film uses satire, violence, and shows a modern day take on racism. I like how the film exposed white racism. I disagree with the film on many parts like its presentation of Georgina (which promotes anti-black women stereotypes as black women are the Mothers of Civilization). We know that Hollywood has shown anti-black films for decades. The movie is like a retelling of Peele’s sub conscious mind (and it could show incidents that Peele has experienced in real life). It shows the irony of him showing the viciousness of white racists and the vicious behavior of some white people, but he is married to a white woman in real life. We have a long way to go in forming a society filled with justice. The title of the film makes a point that is self-explanatory. We ought to get out of the status quo, reject racism, stand up for black people, and love our black people too. It is important to promote Black Love too. At the end of the day, we ought to do more constructive and pro-black respecting actions.

The internationalization of basketball has increased over the years and decades. Since the advent of the 1992 Dream Team, many players from around the world has been inspired to play in international basketball leagues and in the NBA (of North America). We live in a new society. We live in a more technological, social, political, and economic integrated globe. About a quarter of the players in the NBA are international players. Ben Simmons from Australia, Dragan Bender from Croatia, and the Pelicans’ Buddy Hield from the Bahamas play in the NBA. Also, countries like France, Germany, Russia, Spain, Turkey, Nigeria, Angola, and other nations have their own basketball leagues and championships as well. Their institutions must be respected just like the NBA. Dirk Nowitzki, Drazen Petrovic, and Yao Ming made huge impacts in basketball and they weren’t born in America. Hakeem Olajuwon was born in Lagos, Nigeria. He is one of the greatest basketball players in history. He won 2 championships in the NBA and had 2 Finals MVPs. He has also paved the way for many international players to play in the NBA and other international leagues.

There are many lessons learned in basketball. It is a team game, therefore one person can’t win a team game alone. There must be teamwork in order to make one team the victor. Also, basketball is fun. It requires not only athleticism and physical skill. It requires practice and patience, because practice can make anyone a better basketball player. Anyone needs patience in order to concentrate and make a game more interesting. Also, basketball is more than a game. It has given opportunities to so many human beings from the poor to those who work in other fields too. We have issues too. Many big corporations want to exploit athletes for the sake of increasing their profits and growing their portfolios. Many athletes have been the victims of bad contracts and other complications. This should change. We also know about the legacy of many players displaying a social consciousness involving basketball. Bill Russell and Kareem Abdul Jabbar are well known human beings who have advocated for social justice and standing up for civil rights. They stood in support of Muhammad Ali in defending his right to oppose the unjust Vietnam War. Today, many athletes give much of their money to help the minorities and the poor. Also, some athletes are selfish and refuse to help the inner city, which is a shame. The fundamental point is that we have work to do. Basketball is an international game that has helped so many people. Yet, basketball alone can never save us. Social activism, the development of our consciousness, and real work can help society in comprehensive ways. Basketball has sent joy into the lives of many. It has united societies and developed cultures. It is a game that is part of the expression of humanity. We love the game and we cherish it. Also, we have the responsibility to use basketball to teach us the lesson about making the world better.

After the Civil War, the evil Confederacy was defeated. Traitors (who believed in the evil of slavery) were not showing the rebel flag anymore. This was the time of Reconstruction. Reconstruction was an era of monumental changes in American history. It gave to life much progressive legislation. For the first time in American history, black people were elected to state and national offices in a real scale. Still, white racists in the Ku Klux Klan, the Red Shirts, etc. continued to terrorize black people and their supporters throughout the South, etc. With the 13th, 14, and 15th Amendments, legalized slavery would be eliminated. The Freedmen Bureau gave black people educational opportunities. The Ku Klux Klan Act of 1871 or the Civil Rights Act of 1871 allowed the federal government to use federal troops if necessary to protect the human rights of Black Americans. HBCUs grew during Reconstruction from Fisk to Howard University. Black people migrated to other parts of the nation in order to achieve a better life. Robert Smalls, Hiram Revels, Blanche Bruce and other heroic black leaders were in the political realm to fight for social change. Many black people organized more institutions and businesses. Yet, black people still didn’t have total equality in America. Women were deprived of the right to vote until the 1920’s. After the 1877 Compromise (which was the end of Reconstruction), Jim Crow grew into the next level in the South and the Midwest. The Era of Jim Crow was an era of terror, murder, lynching, and other atrocities. Pregnant black women were murdered. Children were murdered by racists. Lynch mobs would terrorize black people in pogroms (from the Massacre in Memphis in 1866 to the Tulsa murder of black people in the 1920’s. Black Wall Street was a prosperous community and it was destroyed by racist terrorists). Many black people were forced in de facto slavery in the peonage system until the 20th century. The May 12, 1896 Plessy v. Ferguson Supreme Court decision legalized Jim Crow nationwide under the guise of “separate but equal.” Also, during the late 19th century and early 20th century, black people resisted evil. They formed groups like the NAACP, the UNIA, the African Black Brotherhood, etc. in order to fight for black liberation. During this time, many black people have shown music, artistic expression, and ideological diversity. Not every black person back then or today agreed on everything. Leaders like WEB DuBois, Marcus Garvey, Booker T. Washington, Mary McLeod Bethune, Ella Baker, and other black people would voice their views in public. A Philip Randolph advanced labor rights. That era from 1865 to 1954 included turmoil and courage. It included defeats and triumphs and it presented the world the great courage, strength, and resiliency of black Americans. It was a time where many black people formed many organizations and institutions that desired black self-determination and a growth of power. Ida B. Wells was a great black woman who fought lynching and defended black human rights throughout her life. Unsung heroes like Charles Hamilton Houston helped to end Jim Crow apartheid once and for all. Jim Crow wasn’t just about a violation of human rights and the freedom of association. Jim Crow involved lynching, the deprivation of voting rights, rapes, the denial of democratic freedoms, and terrorism. Black folks experienced terror under Jim Crow. From Reconstruction to the Board V. Board of Education decision (of 1954 which banned segregation in public schools), we see unique changes going on in Black America. Still, we rise.

By Timothy

No comments: