Racism or Engineering Your Life?

Recently I’ve been receiving comments about racism. This blog really isn’t about racism. It’s about walking away from the addictive pull of contiual reaction to racism. I say “addiction” because anything that traumatizes the psyches of MOST human beings, the mind repeats looking for resolution.

I write at a black audience right now because:

  • I am black
  • Black people as a culture are on fire
  • White, Asian, and Mexican/Hispanic youth who feel disenfranchised look to what has become a bastardization of blackness to take their cues on “reacting” to feeling outside of mainstream or dis-empowered.

Are they making horrible choices? Yes! Do you have to? No.

Rather than continuing to be silly by looking at “Da White Man” and pointing fingers to justify our lives and our bad behavior, at the ripe old age of 53, I’ve concluded that it’s a FAR better choice to simply engineer a good life for myself. That means:

  1. It doesn’t matter how much anyone else has … the issue is–
  2. What do YOU bring to the table?
  3. Taking stock (and responsibility) for everything that has happened in my life. Discarding the crazy-making people I’ve allowed to enter it, and owning everything else. Only through such a process can I get on the other side of “being a victim” and move into being a mature “full grown man.”

I yearn for the day we stop reacting to “racism.” It’s become a such a cop-out. YES, racism is alive and well … but if I find myself in a field that I cannot win in … WHY keep failing around, crying about how unfair it all is, instead of picking up my ball and building a field wherein I can win? We don’t have to be against anybody. In fact, the object is to increasingly love as many people as you can… because when you can’t love yourself… that’s when you find yourself hating others (projecting your self hate outwards) and being jealous of what others have. Thank God no one is giving me nothing. I was born with a keen mind … keen enough to see opportunity instead of self destruction when it is ripe. Get some land my brothers and sisters. If you can’t afford to in the city, move out of it and build up your cheap little home, and with the equity you build, you can later buy a dream place anywhere on the planet.

Luke 6:42 “Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take out the speck that is in your eye,’ when you yourself do not see the log that is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out that is in your own eye, then you will see clearly to take out the speck that is in your brother’s eye.” (The Beatitudes)

(By that time… after removing drugs, alcohol, helplessness, criminality, and sex as a mood altering, demoralizing experience, whatever is in his eye probably won’t matter.)


7 comments on “Racism or Engineering Your Life?

  1. exe says:

    People are walking across deserts in order to get in to the U.S. , meanwhile those of us who have been here for generations have not taken the time or put forth the effort to at least own a piece of it. Why should we worry about the club or the weekend, or flashy cars when it is much more important to own our own forty acres.

    When I was growing up in the midwest we knew people who were poor but owned their house and a few acres. These people were always able to eat well, sell what they didn’t need, and house relatives who required assistance. Self suffiency is a critical component of success.

  2. journeyman says:

    Well said … all the more when you factor in this morning’s economic news reports concerning worry (a.k.a. “impending doom”) about a possible upcoming global recession. Who suffers most during economic downturns? Like the depression … how much better it is to have land to grow your food, fresh chickens and eggs, and one or more cows?

  3. Leah says:

    BRAVO. I just found your blog and it is excellent. I have you bookmarked and will definitely continue to read. I am a black female who grew up in rural Pennsylvania and miss it terribly. I now live in the WDC metropolis and boy is it different. I love what you had to say about self-sufficiency. I work for the government and I can’t tell you the number of our folks that I come across on the job who have been living in the same APARTMENT for 20 and 30 years. This isn’t NYC where folks live in apartments their entire lives. They thumb their noses at people like me who don’t dress, have a flashy car or all of the other things, but I own a home and have a masters degree. I was taught that education, home ownership and self-sufficiency were priorities in life.

  4. journeyman says:

    Hey Leah!

    Thanks for the comment … and yes, I resonate with all you said. I lived in DC for 2 years … 2000 to 2002. It wasn’t easy. I should have done it when I was young. I came away feeling that it’s easier for Easterners to move west than it is for Westerners to move east. “Yall more pragmatic back there than we are. If you see a Californian in DC and he or she isn’t in a gang, wave a hand over their “deer caught in the headlights” eyes and tell them to get on a bus and go home. (smile)

    DC … While I remain very impressed by what I saw there … I just never found the code to “get in.” (I’m told I didn’t stay long enough.)

    But the real thing that’s weird about your message is that I’ve been wondering about farms in the rural Pennsylvania for the past 2 days. Can you give me some info on areas that are cool? I seriously doubt that Pennsylvania is as complicated as DC is… but I’m somewhat … shy about getting that close again without more info first.

    Like I say on my blog, this time when I move, I don’t really care about who lives nearby … but I just don’t want to encounter TOO much racial hostility. Benign neglect will be just fine if it’s not friendly.

    I want to put some sweat equity in before I flip it anyway, then move to a nicer place around Jackson, Mississippi. When I look at the crops I want to raise and the animals I want … along with the projects I want to do, Mississippi or another place near a black university seems best.

    Did you see (I never thought I’d be saying this) … but … um … er … did you see “Opra” when she did her special on building that school for African girls?? HUGE time spirit. I’m thinking that it’s all spiritual you know … and if I get a farm… and build it up … WHO am I going to leave it to?

    Might as well adopt a few of those AIDS Orphans from South Africa and put them to work. They’ll never be hungry and they’ll get a good education… and I’ll grow my heart some. That’s why being close to a black university is important. Perhaps some Pan-Africanism can take place.

    There are also ideas about creating a writers and artist colony. There is soooo much work we’re going to have to do as a people to contradict and re-build our co-opted culture.

    So send me some info about rural Pennsylvania. That first one doesn’t have to be near a black university … but it should be within an hour’s drive to an urban center (mid-size or larger.)

    Take care and I hope to hear from yall. Oh … and what’s your Master’s in?


  5. Great website, nice tips, thanks for sharing

  6. Sunrise says:

    All that I can say here is AMEN!

    Because, on our watch. Time is now to move us in the direction required for healing, reestablishing our sense of being, the love, dignity, self-worth and self-respect, we were all trained and embodied.

    No one (African -Americans, that’s who we are talking about here) needs permission, approval or acceptance, in full or part for processes regarding our self-determination and betterment of our mind, body & spiritual well-being. Are you kidding me?

    This is true of every culture and it is done intensely, purposely, yet there is no mention of racism on their part when building & supporting their own cultures. And by the way who do does the hiring and who are they hiring? That’s the point. Keep moving. It’s not what we are going to waste time on…. Life is good!

    Just came across your blog today. Thank you so much for great post we can all learn from & grow with!

    Please excuse double comment post, I posted comment in wrong section previously. Thank you.

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