I don’t have very many memories of my childhood. One of the few things I seem to remember very vividly are the colors and Afro-pride culture of the early 90’s.
Black people everywhere were rocking their Afro’s and braids unapologetically, symbols of black unity alongside the colors of the African flag were all over clothes, bold colors and attitudes could be found anywhere you cared to look, and there was representation everywhere. We had TV shows like A Different World, The Cosby Show, Malcolm and Eddie, Sister, Sister, The Parker’s, Moesha, Martin, The Fresh Prince, and Living Single to name a few. All of the shows careful to portray us as diverse as we are. Then it seemed as if out of nowhere everything vanished.
During the time of our most represented presence in society I also remember there being a lot of protesting calling for racial equality and the end of police brutality against black people.
What I remember being one of the hot button issues for our race then, was the police administered brutality against Rodney King, a black man who was dragged from his vehicle and beaten by officers of the L.A.P.D. at the end of a high speed chase on a California Highway in 1991.
The outrage then was the same as it is now.
The police not being held responsible for heinous crimes committed against black people. Protests were being held, while rally’s and marches took place all over the country. During this time was when black people were most represented, but it seems as though as soon as the protesting and in your face demanding of respect and decency stopped so did our representation.
Fast forward to 2012 where the tragic story of Trayvon Martin seemed to spark a new cause for black people all over the world. This time it wasn’t a black man being beaten within an inch of his life, it was a young black child shot down in the street by a white man who deemed him threatening just because he was black and walking down the street. Since the highly publicized murder and trial of Trayvon Martin it seems black has been on the rise again.
All of a sudden I began to see more black peoples faces across television and media. The news shows I had been watching for years were pulling their black people from wherever they found them and putting them in anchor chairs. Beauty brands that normally only boasted images of white women enjoying their products were now making and promoting inclusive lines, and the culture as a whole was being more widely accepted.
I have been doing a lot more “junk” reading since I’ve started blogging. Participating more than I normally would in keeping up with the gossip blogs in an effort to remain up to date on the current hot topics. You know, trying to figure out what I want to talk to you guys about, when I started to notice that Black is seriously trending.
During fashion week I ran across articles stating textured hair was “in” while promoting images of black men with Afro’s on runways, I noticed more women with natural hair being in the forefront of magazines and commercials, even big corporations like AT&T have started to use hip-hop music in their commercials and most recently Nike has launched a campaign using people of color.
Coincidentally this is all happening again at a time where black is under attack. So it makes me wonder why that is. To a less skeptical mind I suppose it could be chalked up to being a coincidence or a way for ally’s to show support for the culture. To me, however, I wonder what other forces are at play when it comes to the correlation between increased media coverage of racial injustices towards black people and the sudden spike in representation.
Could it be that the media, police departments, and even levels of our government are all in cahoots. Is it too far off base to wonder if this is all designed as a way to get black people to calm down when things have gone too far. As if by putting more black people on TV and in the public’s eye serves as a way to calm down the hysterical masses responding to tragedies that continue to happen over and over again in the same communities. Distracting us by presenting us with the most minimal of our requests for acceptance. Could it really be this simple?
The police fuck up too badly, let’s put some more black people on T.V. until they forget they are in danger. Could this be it?
Please don’t take any of this as gospel, I am simply presenting a different way of looking at what is happening in the world right now. Keep in mind these are all the ramblings of a person who frequently gets lost down the rabbit hole watching conspiracy theory videos on YouTube. For real guys this is just a theory that crossed my mind while I sat at work and thought would make for an interesting read. Please don’t come at me with your soap box in tow ready to rip me to shreds over an off the cuff observation.
Until next time…
Don’t judge me, you don’t know my life!!