Firstly, for all those who frequent this Blog and downloaded my e-book 'Revering Revolutionaires'; I'd like to apologize about that book's formatting. I didn't know the first chapter, 'The legend of Wesley Snipes', would have so many gaps in the text, and I intended to have the book's 'table of contents' directly linked to each of the book's chapters.
I'm still getting acquainted with the software I'm using to publish e-books, so hang in there with me; 'cause I promise the next book will be formatted better.
For those of you wondering what the book's about, it's basically chronicling the trials and travails of Wesley Snipes, Kat Williams, Dave Chappelle and Robert Mugabe in their pursuits to break the binds of white western fascism. Also, this book is an anthology of sorts; in that, it's comprised of four of my past Blog posts on these celebrities. And even though the book's formatting is not the best, I think it's definitely still worth a read.
Also, I'd love to hear some feedback on whether or not you think my book's a good read; so, feel free to make some comments on this Blog, or on the 'Smashwords' website where this book is published; thanks!
Now, let's get into this post...
Just when I thought I'd seen the last of the cavalcade of stars minstrel show/slave movies like: 'The Help', 'The Butler', '12 years a slave', etc.; I saw a trailer for the latest, and what seems to be the most upper-scale of these films, 'Belle'.
Belle is loosely based on the life of Dido Elizabeth Belle; she was the offspring of English Navy Admiral Sir John Lindsay and his slave mistress. And out of the kindness of his benevolent white heart, after abandoning her, he finds her and takes Belle to his palatial/ancestral home were she's raised by her great-uncle, Lord Mansfield.
Belle is basically tolerated in the upper-scale Mansfield household and is afforded certain privileges because the family begrudgingly, acknowledges her as some sort of blood relation.
While Belle's cousin Elizabeth considers male suitors for marriage, she's cast out of aristocratic love connections and wonders if she'll ever find a husband; and sure enough, a vicar's son who's a bit more liberal than the anglophiles in his social circles, courts Belle and they attempt, probably unsuccessfully, to help Lord Mansfield attain the position of Lord Chief Justice to help end slavery in England.
Now that you've got the gist of this story; let me break down what this nonsensical flick really is...
This is basically the Sally Hemings story on steriods (google Sally Hemmings if you don't know who she is).
The difference is Sally was
Thom Jefferson's secret bed maiden; while Belle is actually acknowledged by the white slave owner's family; again, begrudgingly.
This story and Sally's is screwed up on so many levels, I can't begin to fathom them all, but let's start with this fact: no matter how you spin Sally's story, the bottom line is, she was raped repeatedly by Thom Jefferson; and as much as people wanna' believe they carried on some blissful love affair, people don't know Sally was in her mid-teens at the time.
Also, people don't know that Jefferson's trysts with Sally weren't consensual; that's why Sally Hemings got the nick-name 'dashing' Sally Hemings; she was running from Thom's pedophilic advances.
And, the movie Belle is yet another attempt by whites to show how humane they were to Black slaves. Like I've said in the past, whites don't want to think of themselves as the wicked, cold-hearted, torturing beasts they were to our people. And Black people's very presence in america is a constant reminder to whites of how insidiously cruel they were to us when they brought us here; that's why whites cop an attitude whenever there's a lot of them and there's only one or two Black people.
This movie is also another mental trigger for Black people to remind us we're descendents of slaves, and with that understanding, we should know our place and not aspire to too much of what white people have. 'Cause in an age where we have a Black president, they don't want us thinking that we're equal to them in any way.
Another message conveyed by this movie is, Black people should always seek the closest proximity to whites as possible. Because we have to be kept thinking the closer we are physically to whites, the safer and more opulent our lifestyles will be; even when whites are torturing and murdering us and our children.
There was a book that came out in 2009 called 'The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family'; it won a National Book Award and a Pulitzer Prize in History for chronicling the story of Sally Hemings and her siblings.
Now, this was another attempt by an anglophilic Black person, in this case, a woman named Annette Gordon-Reed, to make the slave trade of Black people in this country more palatable to a mainstream (i.e. white) audience.
But there was a problem; a lot of whites say they couldn't finish this book because as much as she wanted to, Annette couldn't help but chronicle and channel some of the anger she felt, and other Black people feel towards white people, for putting us through this. See, with this book, white people wanted and were suppose to be given a pass for their horrid treatment of us, but sistah Annette couldn't let our ancestor's suffer in silence; and kudos to her for not holding her tongue.
Now recently, I wrote a post titled 'The cult of the curly-haired, light-skinned, bi-ethnic looking Black girl', where I elucidate how I only see this kind of girl representing Black women in the diaspora. And guess who's playing Dido Belle? You got it...a curly-haired, light-skinned, bi-ethnic looking Black girl (Gugu Mbatha-Raw).
And in the comments of the aforementioned post, a Black woman bought up Lupita Nyongo's oscar win for playing a slave in the movie '12 years a slave'.
This Black woman said she was proud of Lupita for getting the oscar; and when I disagreed with Lupita playing a slave to get that oscar, this woman was adamant about how I was in the wrong for not seeing how progressive Lupita's win was.
I then thought about how long it took for me personally, to get out of an anglophilic mindset enough to recognize the insult(s) inherent in Blacks having to be in self-debasing movie roles to win oscars.
So I was like, maybe it'll take the sista some time, but hopefully, this cover will be the catalyst for her to look outside of her white supremacist mind state and not seek the further approval of white elites.
But when our people are in these roles OVER AND OVER AGAIN, I can't turn a blind eye to the Black Diaspora needing to not only boycott '12 years a slave' but 'Belle' too.
Ultimately, what I'm saying is this; if you're of the opinion that Lupita's oscar win is somehow positive for the Black Diaspora, or Belle is something that Black people should run out and see, this Blog isn't for you.
Please find another, more ethnically-neutral Blog to visit that will cater to your delicate anglophilic sensibilities, as I don't have time to debate you and yours on the finer points of being an admirer of white people.
Again, my message isn't for everyone; it's for Black people who really want to be about the work of ridding the Black Diaspora of our self-hatred; consciously and subconsciously.
And since every second of our lives is precious, let's spend them pursuing how we can heal the rifts in our community and how we can value and love ourselves again...without having to play a butler or a slave.
Addendum: Just when I thought I couldn't get any more offended by this film, I viewed this long trailer for 'Belle'. And if this doesn't explain why the Black Diaspora should boycott this film, I don't know what will!
What a piece of trash!