Subj: Becoming BlackNEXT: ASHCROFT WANTS SENATORS WITH DOUBTS TO VOTE HIM DOWN
Date: Sat, 13 Jan 2001 5:59:31 PM Eastern Standard Time
From: Robert C.
As the product of a southern Italian father and a Puerto Rican mother, I too have often times wondered if sometime in the dim historical past African blood had mixed into my own bloodline. (A family story has it that my Italian grandmother was worried that I would be born with black features, so convinced was she that Puerto Ricans were half black.) But how else to explain my admiration for the speeches and writings of Martin Luther King, Malcom X, and Eldrige Cleaver? How else to explain my visceral reaction to the music of Duke Ellington, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, James Brown, Bob Marley, or King Sunny Ade?
I hadn't thought about it much lately until your remarkable proclamation last week, and the reasoning behind it. And then I knew that it was true, I do have black blood running in my veins!
How else to explain the crushing sense of despair that I felt the night of December 12th? How else to explain the burning anger that I feel when I wake and take to bed with me at night? How else to explain weeping bitter tears as I listened to the brave members of the Congressional Black Caucus denounce the coronation of George Bush? - a man I will never refer to as President.
Incidentally, my parents feel the same way, so I guess that clinches it - they must be black, too!
So Diva, how does it work? As an accepted member of the black race, can you sponsor me? Is there an official application? Is just carrying the card enough? Please answer, as I need to shed my whiteness soon, so I can freely vent my anger!
Keep up the good work.
Yours truly in resistance to the BBBR,
Long Island, NY
Many of your newly black brothers and sisters have written in, asking me the same question. Somehow, it seems too easy to them, just proclaiming and owning your blackness. They, too, seem to find it difficult to believe that they could be fully accepted into such a fine group of outstanding individuals, without first earning that acceptance.
I understand that feeling. I feel it as well.
I, too, have doubts as to whether or not I deserve the heartfelt welcome which was bestowed on me. I, too, have a desire to earn the black community's confidence and faith in me.
And I think I know just the way to do it.
A family reunion of sorts…
Today, I am calling on all newly black Americans (and BBBR Resistance Fighters of every color as well) to not only protest The Infraudulation (The Coronation, The InaugurAuction -- whatever you choose to call it -- on January 20th), but to stand in solidarity with our community tomorrow, as we march to celebrate the National Holiday honoring one of our greatest leaders, and a martyr to the cause of justice and democracy, Dr. Martin Luther King.
Dr. King, in what I view as one of the greatest speeches in American history, or in human history, said, "I have a dream that my four children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character."
It is the content of my character, and not the color of my skin, which made me claim my blackness a week ago today, and makes me stand now and forever with the black community in its fight for justice and its outrage at the death of our democracy. Dr. King was right -- more right than we perhaps could have imagined, until now.
And so, tomorrow, on what would have been his 72nd birthday, I plan to march in the Los Angeles Martin Luther King Day Parade, to honor him. But I am also marching to show the world my solidarity with my new black brothers and sisters, and my commitment to fight for justice, as they have, during this trying time for Americans.
I don't know if it is customary to carry signs at the march, but if it is, mine will say, "Black Enough to Fight for Justice and Democracy."