“I feel like, that we are treated differently than other people… and I don’t like how we’re treated just because of our color…” Zianna Oliphant
I’m sure we’ve all seen the video of little Zianna Oliphant’s heart-felt testimony at a Charlotte City Council meeting calling for Mayor Jennifer Roberts and Charlotte Mecklenburg police Chief Kerr Putney, to resign in the wake of last week's officer-involved shooting of Keith Scott.
Well, this letter is dedicated to little Zianna, because for the first time in your young life you are going to hear the truth about why you are treated differently because of the color of your skin, and it’s not what you have been trained to believe.
Long before you were born in the 1960s, people of color actually demanded to be treated differently than every other citizen of these United States, when they proclaimed themselves to be a Black People with a separate Black culture, identity, and history. This is a fact, and that was the first fatal mistake. A mistake, because you see Zianna; language and culture are inseparable, just as your fingers are to your hand.
If we consider this analogy; each finger is a little different than the other isn’t it? And then there’s the thumb, which is shaped completely different than each of our four fingers, yet they function as a complete unit called a hand. If, through some unfortunate disaster, one of our fingers becomes detached from the hand, what happens? The finger withers away through decay and the hand continues to function, maybe not as efficiently as before, but over time we learn to compensate for the loss and keep moving forward.
You see, there was a time in America when people of color — Negroes were respected as a race of extremely brave, stalwart, family oriented, education first pillars of society throughout the world. Yes, there was racism. Yes, people hated us because of the color of our skin, our hair, noses, etc., but the struggle of our people in the 1950s and 1960s attracted the attention and support of the entire world acting as a complete unit in pursuit of equality. The result of so many years of struggle culminated in what I believe was the disastrous Civil Rights Act of 1964, instead of a class-action lawsuit against the Southern states that had defied the Fourteenth Amendment of our Constitution by enacting the Jim Crow Laws.
This incredible lost opportunity to actually compensate Negroes for 100-years of “abridging the privileges and immunities” as citizens the United States led to what? Complete frustration on the part of Negroes, shortly after the signing of the very Civil Rights Act, because folks realized they had been played. Think about it Zianna, for a hundred of years, various States “deprived a people of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law” and were denied “jurisdiction and equal protection of the laws.”
Yet, our so-called leaders decided a treaty with the one country on Earth that has proven over and over again that treaties are as worthless as the paper they are written on, was better than suing them, and putting money into every Negro’s pocket. The result is we wound up starting from below the bottom rung with no money, having to work twice as hard as our White, Irish, Jewish, Italian, etc., counterparts to achieve even minimal success.
We understood this and we went to work in spite of tremendous obstacles that were put in our way. We demanded our children attend college. We demanded our children ignore the insults and keep their focus on their goals. We demanded our children work their asses off to be better, not equal to our counterparts in society. Perhaps you may think it unfair that we had to over-achieve, but it was the only way. Millions of people of color succeeded in this hostile environment. Those who did not, found themselves living on modern-day plantations dependent on government checks to survive.
So it was from the depths of frustration and anger that the poorest people of color started a movement to collectively become a Black people, believing a separate culture would be the solution to achieving prosperity. Yet, all it has led to is disaster – a withering away of a once family-oriented, education first stalwart tenacity, which evolved into an explosion of unwed teenage mothers using birth as a means to receive bigger checks from the government, and in many cases the complete destruction of Blacks communities from one end of this country to another.
It led to gangster rap – think about it Zianna, a culture of teenagers who identify with murder, selling drugs, bitches, hoes, dogs, niggas, shorties, and a new language that personified a capitulation to failure and the embracement of absolute ignorance called Ebonics. Such a culture, bent on using criminal means to survive, is naturally going to butt heads with the law-and-order community, which then led to the establishment of privatized prison systems designed to earn profits from all the little gangsta wanna-bees. Why? Because Black Culture, by definition, is the sympathetic embracement of white racist ideology designed to destroy a people from within.
Look up the word Black in a dictionary and then try to justify calling yourself such a thing. Of course, the first argument you’ll hear from your peers and old-headed Negroes is; ‘that’s the White man’s definition and not how we define ourselves as a Black people,’ and my response is; what language are you speaking – the White man’s language! Every word you use to describe yourself comes from a culture that believed they were the most superior race on the face of this Earth, and Blacks, the most inferior. Language and culture are inseparable. To the Anglo-Saxons, a Black was nothing more than a slave from the continent of Africa, as well as every other definition you will see in a Webster’s dictionary.
The shameful, criminal behavior in Ferguson, Baltimore, Chicago, and your own city of Charlotte clearly proves the manifestation of the meaning of the White man’s definition of the word Black, has been fully embraced by a people who would call themselves niggas.
So to conclude; why are you treated different than everyone else? Because Black people chose to separate themselves from the rest of America, while creating a false culture using the language of their oppressors, demanding to be treated differently than everyone else through their actions and ideology of Blackness. In other words; they decided it would be better the hand representing our one, collective -- America culture -- operate with a finger missing. Period the end!