William Lynch: 300 years+
•Who does she think she is? She’s not pretty just because she has long hair.
•You are pretty to be a dark skin woman.
•I’m not dating anymore dark skin women because I don’t want to have any more dark skin children.
•I don’t like my hair it’s so nappy I need a relaxer, my hair is like Africa.
•Give me a red bone any day and I will take care.
•You are blacker than me.
•These old head don’t know anything; they don’t understand what we are going through.
•Shut up old woman and mind your business.
These are all things that I have heard said to myself personally, I’ve over heard someone say or read somewhere that it was said.
“Talking about good and bad hair; Whether you’re dark or you’re fair; “ (Lyrics from a song in School Dayz a movie that showed the issues between dark skin and light skin “black” folk)
“Cuz they made us hate ourselves and love their wealth, that’s why shorty hollering where the ballers at” (All Falls Down, Kanye West)
“Now -- Lauryn is only human
Don't think I haven't been through the same predicament
Let it sit inside your head like a million women in Philly been
It's silly when girls sell their souls because it's in
Look at what you be in, hair weaves like Europeans
Fake nails up out Koreans” (That Thing, Lauryn Hill)
What does all of this have to do with William Lynch? Riding the train Tuesday morning I was speaking to a good friend about Trayvon Martin. She then spoke of a movie ‘Animal’ that she watched and how they mentioned William Lynch. That sparked her to google William Lynch to learn more about him. That conversation sparked this blog. I’ve heard about William Lynch but never took the time to learn more information about him.
So…..William’s Lynch bright idea: “violent method of handling unruly slaves – lynching, though the term is not used – is inefficient and counterproductive. Instead, he suggests that they adopt his method, which consists of exploiting differences such as age and skin color in order to pit slaves against each other. This method, he assures his hosts, will "...control the slaves for at least 300 years."
We must, must, MUST, as a people learn to support one another, love one another and look beyond skin color, age and respect one another. We lack regard for each other, many of us have a me and mine mentality and it stops there. Hearing about violence, crime, or injustice to another of our own causes us to shake our heads and say that is a shame. The fact of the matter is, we were bred to hate ourselves and hate each other.
“….exploiting differences such as age and skin color in order to pit slaves against each other….” William Lynch
Exploit differences such as age and skin color. Age, Americans in general have no respect and regard for the elderly. Our way of taking care of our ancestors, forefathers is to usually put them in a nursing home or elderly facility and rarely visit or check on them. It’s as if they are in a mini prison old and washed up, of no use or value so we cast them away. We being Americans, in most other cultures elderly are respected and revered especially Asian cultures. We as African Americans have lost our culture many, many years ago, that doesn’t mean that it is too late to find it, reclaim it and stop adopting to values and customs that go against Yahweh and our own inner voices that tell us right from wrong. We as a people for the most part have accepted Western culture as our own. Partly because our culture, history and heritage was stolen from us, however, as the saying goes when we know better we should do better.
Skin color, skin color is something visible that we see that can’t be dismissed. Growing up, I told my mom I was black, she was brown, and my sister was white because that is what I saw. A recent episode of the TI and Tiny Show, their son King thought he was white. Now his maternal grandmother is white but his maternal grandfather and his father are black. TI made it perfectly clear to King that he is black and will one day be a black man. So color is something that some children think about simply because there is an array of skin tones and races that are seen on television, in schools, and just being out in the world, but….
Why is there still a belief that light skin makes one pretty, when referring to women, and dark skin women are ugly? I have heard too many times “you are pretty to be dark”. I have asked numerous men that told me that, what in the hell is that supposed to mean? Is that supposed to be a compliment? I don’t know how to take that when it comes to other dark skin women. Beauty is definitely only skin deep. Now what is attractive to one may not be attractive to another and that is ok but to say that dark skin women generally aren’t attractive is a bit much. Every time I take offense to it and let the man know that it is offensive.
I think about how L’Oreal has lightened Beyonce’s skin tone on their campaigns, I think about the lack of representation of African American women period in high fashion and the modeling industry, the lack of representation of us on main stream television and media in general. We are conditioned to hate ourselves. Even our hair texture, we all want and desire for the most part “straight, good hair”. Who the heck said that straight hair is good hair? Last time I checked Caucasians have to wash their hair every day or it will begin to stink and look bad. How the heck is that “good hair” and what constitutes “bad hair” anything with a little “nap?” The words that we use to describe ourselves and others is counterproductive to our own personal growth and upliftment.
My people we have to do better. Growing up, the only reason I wanted a relaxer is because I wanted to get a wrap hair style. I never looked at my hair as being bad. My mom used to straighten my hair and I will never forget I went to the beauty salon and told my beautician not to straighten it. My hair is naturally curly, when you wash it, it curls. So to most, I have “good hair”, again whatever that means. I walked home, my mom looked at me and said what in the world am I supposed to do with that. It wasn’t until college that I began wearing my hair in its natural state again. While I still get my hair straightened from time to time its simply because I desire a different look, not because nap, curl, kink or whatever it is bothers me. Not because I feel like I need to look like what I see in mainstream media. I can truly say I love everything about me just the way I was created. My feet could be a little smaller but anyway…
Not only have I been told I’m pretty to be a dark skin woman, the next question is usually is that your real hair? Once I confirm it is, the next question I’m asked is what are you mixed with? This ticks me off. WE ARE ALL MIXED WITH SOMETHING, BETTER YET, LIFE WAS CREATED IN AFRICA SO ALL RACES ARE A REPRESENTATION OF US IN SOME WAY.
Again, I am asked those questions because of the perception of our people that if you have “good hair”, are lighter skinned or have any qualities that resemble the Caucasian race you must be mixed. As if it is impossible for someone of African descent to be lighter or darker skin, have light eyes or “good hair.”
My own son learned about race relations by watching Everybody Hates Chris. He used to say things like white people get everything, or why is that white person on our block they shouldn’t live over here. I corrected him gently and we speak about different colors and races and more importantly, we were ALL created in the image and the likeness of Yahweh. Your skin color, hair, fake nails, arched brows, fake lashes, booty injections, and skin lightening creams are not going to get you any closer to heaven. More importantly if you don’t love yourself from the inside out, none of those outside factors matter.
Looks like we have William Lynch and others from slave days to thank for all of this foolery but the question is how do we rise above it? I was raised and told that I was beautiful and to love my dark skin and I 100% do. Unfortunately, there were people raised to hate their dark skin. Any one darker than a brown paper bag is simply too dark. Oh and make sure you relax your hair or get a weave to “fit in” with the rest of society. How do we reach those who want to bleach or lighten their skin to fit in, those that want to straighten their hair to fit in, those who despise the color of their because they’ve been called darkie, little Africa, black as he!!? How do we teach our children to love themselves just the way Yahweh made them?
Imagine how the world would be if we look at people through the eyes of our hearts to theirs down to their very souls! More importantly how can we as “African Americans” overcome the many stigmas placed on us through society? One great way, are you ready for this……..THROW AWAY YOUR TELEVISION! We are under and misrepresented on TV to a point that if you don’t truly know who you are the TV will define you as just about nothing. Not only that television were not named idiot boxes for no reason and they also use programming as a form of mind control but that is an entirely different subject.
Next, educate ourselves and our children, buy books and teach them about a wealth of things starting with African and other brown nations that exist and our people that have had an impact on our history outside of Malcolm, Martin, and Rosa and also about those in their own family. Our children’s role models should live in their home and or be related to them!!!!!!
There are bigger issues in the world then to be concerned with who’s lightest or darkest, who’s hair is the longest, whether or not to respect someone based on age. However, because these things were engrained in our forefathers and unknowingly passed down and sometimes knowingly and have in many ways become generational curses, we are still bond by a slave mentality.
I will end with a song by Nas, ‘Black Zombies’ (these lyrics do contain profanity):
Yo, you believe when they say we ain't shit, we can't grow?
All we are is dope dealers, and gangstas and hoes?
And you believe when they be tellin you lie, all on the media?
They make the world look crazy to keep you inside?
Why you listen when the teachers at school
know you a young single parent out strugglin, they think you a fool
Give your kids bad grades and put 'em in dumber classes
Killin shorty future, I wonder how do we last it
Underground in they casket? Ancestors turnin
I'm learnin somethin every day, there is no Lazareth
Words like God is Greek or Latin
So if you study Egypt, you'll see the truth written by the masters
My niggaz is chillin, gettin high, relaxin
Envisionin, ownin shit, yo it can happen
What do we own? Not enough land, not enough homes
Not enough banks, to give a brother a loan
What do we own? The skin on our backs, we run and we ask
for reperations, then they hit us with tax
And insurance if we live to be old, what about now?
So stop bein controlled, we black zombies
Walkin talkin dead, though we think we're livin (black zombies)
We just copy-cat, followin the system (black zombies)
Walkin talkin dead, though we think we're livin (black zombies)
We just copy-cat, followin the system (black zombies)
Aiyyo we trapped in our own brain, fuck behind bars
We've already gone insane
They've already gave up, cut our own heads offs
Stab our own backs and dream too much
without fulfillin reality; too greedy and
can't have one or two chains, we need three of dem
Can't have one or two guns without squeezin 'em
on our own people and, fuck black leaders
cause whites ain't got none leadin them, the rhythm is cosmic
Nas is divinity, the deity's prophetless
All get down and get up
Victims walkin 'round with Down's Syndrome, all stuck
Faintin, shoutin, catchin Holy Ghost in church
Scared to do it for ourselves 'less we see somebody doin it first
We begged, we prayed, petitioned and demostrated
Just to make another generation - black zombies
You scared to be yourself, cause you in a trance
Feel free, hear the music and dance
If you cared what they think, why wear what they wear, just for you
Dumb niggaz with long beards like they Arabs or Jews
or from Israel, (?)bish'meal Allah, el-rachman, el-Rahim (?)
Islam's a beautiful thing
And Christian and Rastafari, helps us to bring
peace against the darkness, which is unGodly
So what's the black man's true religion, who should we follow?
Use your own intuition, you are tommorrow
[roaring] .. that's the sound of the beast
I'm a Columbia record slave, so get paid
Control your own destiny, you are a genius
Don't let it happen to you like it did to me, I was a black zombie
Wake up! Black zombies in a spell for more than fo'-hundred years
Ghetto niggaz won't have it no mo', can I get a witness?
Why listen to somebody else tell you how to do it
when you can do it yourself; it's all in you, do it, do it
Do it niggaz..
Be a blessing and be blessed,