small brush shouldn't fuck with big timber

Death's Door, the view from the Spanish announcers table: blast from the past...........pickaninny shuffle

Monday, January 23

blast from the past...........pickaninny shuffle



Last night was the Wednesday night Boardroom at the Hurricane. We’re all sitting around on the couches when one of the guys mentioned the word “Pickaninny”. I don’t remember his exact usage of the word but I told him he’d better be careful who he uses that word around. He was genuinely shocked when I told him that to black folk the word Pickaninny was considered a racial slur. Pickaninny means “small black child” and it was a favorite of black slave owners. So to a race of people this “cute” sounding word is offensive. Nobody got made or upset, it was just one of these things that comes out when friends are hanging out.

I started talking about the old movie I watched the other night and how offensive it could be to black folk. The movie was the “Al Jolson Story”. Al Jolson was a famous performer who did his thing in the beginning of the twentieth century. At one time he was considered the most popular performer in the country and sold out wherever he went. But all this is diminished and pushed to the back because of a habit he had as a performer. Al Jolson preformed a lot of his shows in blackface. Black face is a by product of the old Minstrel Shows. These shows were preformed by white actors and singers who rubbed their faces and hands with blackened cork and acted out plays and songs and "caricatured" slaves from the “Old South”.

The first Minstrel show was supposedly in 1843 in New York. Some historians will argue the fact that early Minstrel shows offered up a faithful representation of the singing and dancing and speech patterns that Black Folk of that day engaged in. I kind’a think that more then a few Black people would find argument with that. But watching the movie was like watching part of our history if not for better or worse. Some people say that love and understanding is the greatest tool in fighting Racism. That’s all good, but I think education’s the key. You can love the enemy all you want but you’ll never understand the enemy until you learn all you can about the enemy. Because once you forget history and the things it’s taught us, there’s no future. Keep the stinkin masses educated.


"and the monkey flipped the switch"

2 Comments:

Blogger Nightmare said...

You must be busy.

All this "copying and pasting" I'd say you were just phoning it in nowadays but I don't need another ass whipping.

7:53 AM  
Blogger Viqi French said...

excellent post. this reminds me of that spike lee flick, Bamboozled, and how powerful the montage of "black memorabilia" at the end.

watching spike's amazing montage made me sad, but sure opened my eyes, WIDE. these arrogant mofos considered our great-great grandparents the biggest, stoopidest jokes on the planet.

so now that it isn't P.C. (or safe) to just LOL at us, the sentiment seems to have turned to resentment. guess i'd be upset too if someone took away my favorite funny little toy.

7:17 AM  

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