This post will be “UNPOPULAR” but as I was told, I love controversy!! It is lengthy but read it anyway and leave your comments!!
If you are an African-American I am sure you either watched, know someone who watched, or know someone, who knows someone else who watched CNN’s “Black In America” series! This series is the buzz of the internet (outside of Obama’s World Tour and McCain’s attitude about said tour!) I’ve read plenty of blogs over the past few days and the over whelming vote seems to be that CNN missed the mark, are full, of crap, are spreading propaganda, didn’t show Black America in a good light or only spotlighted good stories about Light/fair skinned black people etc. They were also saying that the segments weren’t targeting them, and it is unclear who was the targeted audience. Well frankly I think it could have been beneficial to ANY audience!
I think I may be the only black person in all of the blogosphere that actually found value in the broadcast and I actually enjoyed most of it.
I was not looking for any in-depth education on being black in America because I already live that life! I wasn’t looking for answers to all the plights of the black people because I know that no one human being can do that. Only black people can solve the ills of black people! I was not looking to CNN to solve the problems of incarceration, homelessness, failing educational system, HIV, or Racism in America in these segments. I was not looking for CNN to give solutions to these issues, because frankly who is dumb enough to really believe that a television series can give us the answers to 100’s of years of problems??
I found value in the broadcast because children and teens are very visual so I watched some of the broadcast with my 14 year old and we had various in-depth discussions on the segments. It was great hearing the views on the different segments from the mind of a 14 year old Christian teen in today’s hellish world. Hearing her views and opinions and then having her sit and listen to mine while we “together” discussed being Black in America was time well spent. We need to realize that our youth are going to inherit our current problems and they need to be able to dialogue about these issues.
On the internet the discussions of the brothers, one in prison and one a well known social advocate was largely criticized because the brother in jail was dark and the more affluent, famous brother was light skinned, however as the incarcerated brother said, he is where he is because of the choices he made. By the way, in the CNN segments all the good stories were not only about fair skinned people because the single father with the 2 kids that was about to become homeless was a light skinned man!
The discussions of educational incentives were the most interesting to me because it showed that someone was taking the steps of trying something different to reach today’s youth. Whether you agree with the methods or not is not the issue, the issue is that someone cares enough to try SOMETHING!
It was quite easy for me as a parent and a black mother to take from the broadcast what I could use and discard the rest, after all isn’t that how you live your life? You capitalize upon what is beneficial for you and yours and you disregard the rest.
CNN showed us what we should already know… that black people are tenacious, resilient, long suffering, strong willed, over comers, survivors, and trailblazers! We can do ALL THINGS or we can do NOTHING! But that choice is ultimately OURS! We are not entitled to anything, or owed anything. We are not the only race of people that were used and abused and forced into slavery, but unfortunately A LOT of us are still living with a “Slave Mentality”!
In my humble opinion, I think if black America wasn’t looking for answers or a quick fix to all of our issues they may have found more value in the CNN broadcast…
I know home owners and renters, I have a best friend who is a Doctor, and another friend who does child care, I had family members who died from Aids and family who know more about the prison system than they do about life outside of the prison system, But I also have family members that are lawyers and teachers! I have a son who graduated High School and is now in college and I have a son who dropped out of High School, BUT then went back and got a GED, and is now an awesome father, and husband and a US Military personnel. Point is your life is what you make it whether you are Black, White, Indian, Mexican, Asian, dark skinned or fair skinned. Some may have to work harder at it but if you give up… well that’s all on YOU!
OK! That’s the end of my rant…Back to life as usual…