Some men would rather be blackmailed than be a Black male.
Statistics lie. News is skewed. Media manipulates.
By the looks of VH1 you’re all dumb. You’re full of cum and only interested in drinking coke & rum with girls barely 21. And though your woman is the one, you can’t seem to stick with just one – some is more of an adequate sum. And it definitely ain’t no fun if the homies can’t have none. Your only talent is picking up a football to run or picking up a gun to stun someone then proceed to mug someone cause that’s what a thug would’ve done. They say women out-number you in college seats, and you’re so used to hearing the word, “No” that “Yes” sort of sounds like defeat. They’ll keep feeding you this B.S. as long as you’re willing to eat because that’s what they want you to believe.
My soul bleeds when they say you just move keys and smoke weed because in reality you sow seeds. They say our women just sow weaves slowly while we sell trees ducking & dodging the police in our dark tinted SUV’s. They think you’re dumb thieves so they put you on blast, “The First 48” – A&E – for all to see and agree. They think you’re illegitimate … illiterate, can’t read – wear watches for shine, but can’t tell time. That’s what they want you to believe.
It was said that if you want to see a Black man on TV, you’d have to turn to “America’s Most Wanted.” No, no – all you have do is look into the Oval Office. Black men who do wrong get far more attention than those who do right. For the third year in a row, every senior at Urban Prep Academy, the only all-African-American, all-male charter high school in Chicago, has been accepted to college. Where are all the breaking news headlines about that? Black man: Though you’re often overlooked, ignored and underrated, I see you and I appreciate you.
I appreciate you for thousands of years of excellence from pyramids to presidents. I appreciate Master P., Sean Combs & Sean Carter for showing a new generation what Black entrepreneurship & wealth can look like. I appreciate them for showing a generation who understands their struggle that hard work, dedication and hustle can get them out of any ghetto. I appreciate Kanye West for proving that a Black man can be himself and still be loved & celebrated. I appreciate Rick Ross in his song, “Free Mason” where he raps:
“We the lost symbols, speak in cryptic codes
Ancient wisdom, valuable like gifts of gold
I embark on life, my path is all math
I understand the codes these hackers can’t crack
I understand that folks expect me to fold
Community control to violate parole
I won’t fail, but a lot of men will
I’m iconic in the field, like Solomon’s Seal
Free Mason, freelancer, free agents, we faster
Big contracts, big contractors
Built pyramids, period we masters
No caterpillars, it was just a lot of ni**as
A lot of great thinkers and a lot of great inventors.”
You see, Rick Ross even understands the history of a Black man’s excellence from B.C. to A.D. and I appreciate that. I appreciate the great scientific advancement of the Black prehistoric inhabitants of the Indus Valley Civilization, who built flying machines and many of what we may call “modern” conveniences. I appreciate the Negritic African race that entered the Americas one hundred thousand years ago, though Chris Columbus gets the credit. I appreciate the first African slave men for their use of drums and many other traditions to maintain a sense of expression and communication because we were denied the usage of cultural elements like our native language. Black men, I appreciate you.
From effort to excellence, if you don’t hear it from anyone else – Black men, I appreciate you. Grab your skittles, get your iced-tea and put your hoodies on. Walk through any neighborhood you belong to with you head held high. Like all men, you were created in the image of God, so appreciate yourself, and learn to appreciate your neighbor. If you don’t give your brother some time, the system will.
– Enitan Bereola, II
Bereola is the go-to style and etiquette impresario, public speaker and entrepreneur. He is also the bestselling author of BEREOLAESQUE: The Contemporary Gentleman & Etiquette book for the Urban Sophisticate. He is working on his follow-up, Guide to Ladies’ Etiquette from a Gentleman’s Perspective. Check his website Bereola.com and @bereolaesque on Twitter as well as his Facebook fan page.