Inside the Mind of An Angry Black Man
“I’m an Israelite, don’t call be Black no more” – K.
What does it mean to be Black? In the context of identity in America, is Black a nationality? With all the various races of melanin rich people in this country Black couldn’t be a skin color. Where the land of Black on a world map? Just who gave birth to the concept of being Black in America?
Jeremiah 17:4 – And thou, even thyself, shalt discontinue from thine heritage that I gave thee; and I will cause thee to serve thine enemies in the land which thou knowest not: for ye have kindled a fire in mine anger, which shall burn for ever.
The colored people of America, the so called Black, Brown, and Red man are the descendants of the nation who had their history, culture, and identity stripped from them by their oppressors. We are the children whose foremothers and fathers were murdered, robbed, and enslaved in the Western Hemisphere. The lost children of the Most High struggling to survive under the cruel bondage and harsh oppression of a tormenting, unapologetic master.
I first became aware of what blackness meant for myself when I read W.E.B. DuBois The Sociological Souls of Black Folks. A book which consists of a series of Essays written at the turn of the 20thcentury, by a black man attempting to explain and express the ways in which former slaves had adapted mentally, physically, and spiritually to life after the abolition of slavery. The evidence of these observations made over 100 years ago are still present with us today.
James 1:8 – A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.
Who understands the double mindedness of the Black man? DuBois explained that within the former slave existed two distinct persons, his true self, and that person who could be accepted, tolerated, and appreciated by his former masters. The true self, is who comes out at the barbershop, amongst family and friends, the real you when are free to be yourself. Then there’s the “professional” you that the people at work interact with, the you that conducts business, shows up in court, is in Church on Sunday and is a Good American.
In America today the evolution of this double mind has resulted in two types of people. Those who have well adapted to living, being, and embracing the self that is acceptable to the master, and those who refuse to hide or let go of our true self. A clear depiction of these two types presented itself this past week in the form of Kat Williams and Kevin Hart.
Kat Williams did an interview on an Atlanta radio station and described how he is the sole proprietor of all his intellectual property. Meaning he owns all the masters to his stand up comedy specials, and funded all of his nationwide tours without signing a deal with a prominent Hollywood agency or relying on the oppressors money and resources to grow his brand. He then told some truths about some of the Black actors and actresses who are being pushed and promoted by Hollywood have sold out and appeased the master to get on. Kat kept it real.
A few days later Kevin Hart went on the Breakfast Club with Tiffany Haddish promoting their new movie Night School and responded to the claims that Kat Williams made. Hart began his criticism of Kat by saying he was wrong for blaming the white man(taking up for master) and brought up smoking weed and being late for promotional events as the reason Kat Williams has been ostracized by Hollywood. He also brought up Kat Williams highly publicized history dealing with the police. Kevin a Hart rejected the idea that he sold out and instead put the blame on Kat Williams for the people he’s attempted to elevate in the industry for their lack of success.
Jeremiah 2:14 – Is Israel a servant? is he a homeborn slave ? why is he spoiled?
The struggle of the black man against himself is one that is born out of ignorance. Our culture, our way of life, the manner in which we deal with ourselves and one another was all taught to us by our oppressor. The only solution to the double mind that plagues us today is understanding, acknowledging, and accepting the truth about who we are. We aren’t Black, Brown, or Red. Negro, Latino, and Native Indian along with the names given to the lands where we were enslaved are surnames given to us by our oppressors. We are the lost 12 Tribes of Israel, the Israelites of antiquity. We have our own culture, our own laws, instructions on how to love one another, build a society, and free ourselves from oppression. We no longer have to be Christians or convert to Islam, vote Democrat or Republican, profess ourselves to be pan African or proud Americans.
The title of this entry comes from Kendrick Lamar’s song “Yah.” The revelation to the masses that K Dot identifies himself as an Israelite is just another step in a process that began in 1969 with the founding of the ISUPK. The more we understand who we are, where we’re from and how we’re supposed to live, the less we’ll have to battle within ourselves between being true or being who our oppressor accepts. Let us no longer be confounded, confused, or unsure about our position in this world. I’m an Israelite, don’t call me black no more. That word is only a color, them ain’t facts no more.
Win My Nigga, Just Win. – Jeezy
Eight years ago in October of 2010 is when I first found myself sitting in an ISUPK class. At the school which still sits in Brentwood, MD, I came into the truth a beaten, broken, and defeated man who had given up on the world. At that time no one could convince me that my life wasn’t about shit. If the fabled King Midas had the power to turn anything to gold with just a touch, you couldn’t prove to me I wasn’t the opposite of that nigga. I was tired of trying to do things my way and failing, drained from all the L’s life had dished out, no longer willing to strive to be great just to suffer another setback. At that time I didn’t know the bible, had already tried going to church only to find myself getting further away from God, but I knew that the Most High was against me.
Psalm 78:49 He cast upon them the fierceness of his anger, wrath, and indignation, and trouble, by sending evil angels among them.
At 24 years old some people may say I had my whole live ahead of me. But where I grew up, and the conditions that molded me just being alive or free at my age meant you lived damn near 2 lifetimes. For sure by the time a nigga made it to see 18 or 19 you was counting your blessings and pouring out liquor for all the niggas who didn’t get to see life past 17. See because after High School, instead of going to college and wasting a couple semesters of student loans partying and bullshitting I enrolled in an Electrician Apprentice program at IBEW Local 26. So while the niggas I grew up with was struggling in college working minimum wage jobs, eating noodles and shit for all 3 meals; or back home around the way hustling, ducking drama in the streets, I was stacking bread.
By the time I was 23 my hourly pay was up to $32 an hour. Getting paid weekly, with medical benefits, money going into a retirement fund, and 6 months away from a $10 increase and completion of my apprenticeship, a nigga couldn’t tell me I wasn’t winning. I had started a record label (never sold shit), was VIP in the club every week (popping bottles fucking groupies), stayed fresh with the gear (Coogi down to the socks), had my own wheels, and I stayed with a bad bitch. At the same time though, I was miserable as fuck. What I now know was depression, at that time was eating me alive.
Yea I had money, but I had to take shit from crackas everyday on that damn job. The last company I worked for in the Union based out of VA and every job I was on was full of West, VA backwoods, the movie “Deliverance” fuck they cousins and sisters type of devils. While I wasn’t going to let them fuck up my money, I got to a point where I began living for the weekend. I took shit all week just so I could stunt and get fucked up on Friday and Saturday. See but when you living your life balling out, you can’t never let niggas see you falling off. So every week it had to be a new outfit, every night it had to be VIP, at the end of the night you wanted it to be a different bad bitch you was taking home. But when that becomes your culture, it gives rise to hatred and insecurity within yourself.
In my mind, I worked so hard for my money, I hated niggas that was always broke. Naw I ain’t want to put up on a bottle (smart niggas in the club split a $300 table between 5 of them cuz what 1 nigga gonna drink a whole bottle by hisself?) I wanted to buy my own. Naw I can’t get you in the VIP, (you can’t be fake stunting nigga you gotta pay your way) even though that 1 bottle could grant 6 VIP entries I wasn’t paying a niggas way. And if a bitch was choosing me that night I was taking her home, smashing, then kicking her out for being a gold digging hoe. See because it ain’t no way she came home with me cuz I was a nice guy, or she liked me for who I was, all the bitch seen was bottles popping, bands in my pocket, and designer names on my shit. If the hoe knew me for anything other than that I wouldn’t have been fucking, so fuck that bitch once I got my nut.
Then Sunday came and I checked my account, and saw how much I’d spent, read the details of where all my money had went, and lamented myself for being such a dumbass nigga for wasting all that bread just to fuck some hoe and be back broke. Monday came and it was back to taking shit from crackas again. Luckily for me in August 2010 that vicious cycle of slaving and self deprecation came to an end. Getting laid off, from my 3rd company in 5 years, triggered an automatic review of my status in the Union’s Apprenticeship program. Even though THIS time my lay off was simply due to lack of available work, I still had to sit before a panel which consisted of 3 other apprentices, a union representative and a rep for the contractors.
It was in that meeting that I had one of those Chappelle Show “When Keeping it Real Goes Wrong” moments that forever changed my life. This meeting should’ve been cut and dry. Hey Mr. Thompson we’re here because of your 3rd layoff, oh this wasn’t a violation the company just ran out of work, no worries we’ll get you back to work in no time have a good day sir, is all I expected to hear. I just remember the rep for the contractors asking me about two days that I had missed work about 4 months before the layoff and explaining that I had court over some traffic tickets that I contested. He asked me why I didn’t just pay the tickets and I told him because the tickets were issued to me wrongfully. Then he told me I made enough money and should’ve just paid the tickets to avoid missing work, and I expressed that while that may be the way he handles tickets I reserve the right to handle MY business MY way. Then the devil asked me if I had a problem with authority, to which I replied that he had my entire work history sitting before him in a folder, if I had an issue with authority surely he could find some evidence in my file. A couple days later I received a letter explaining that I had been terminated from the Apprenticeship program and that while I didn’t have to leave the Union I could stay on as a residential electrician for a $12 pay cut. I’ve never formally worked as an electrician since.
Matthew 6:33 – But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
But yea like I said, I came into the truth beaten, broken and defeated. It took two months being a broke nigga before I gave up and decided that I couldn’t amount to nothing if I didn’t serve the Most High. My head was so fucked up that I couldn’t imagine getting a regular job at foot locker, a warehouse stacking boxes or even take the $20 an hour the Union was offering. After 5 years of training and balancing the tight rope in that Apprenticeship as a black man from the city, I had accepted that I was either going to be paid what I was worth or just be a broke nigga. As I sat in classes night after night and learned about Christ, his disciples, and other prophets in the bible I convinced myself that the Most High had taken everything away from me so that I could learn righteousness. If I was broke, I couldn’t have sex with women who only wanted me for my money and throw them away. If I was broke, I couldn’t live to stunt on niggas and make brothers who didn’t have the money I did feel like they were less than. If I was broke, I wouldn’t have to take shit from devils on a job so I could use that as an excuse to get high and do evil.
The more and more I learned the truth, the further away I fell from needing money to validate the importance of my existence. As I began to taste how refreshing obedience and righteousness was I realized for the first time that this is what I had been thirsting for. For 24 years of my life I had shit backwards. I thought making money, having nice things, keeping a pretty woman and looking nice is what made a man, but now I was realizing that being a man meant you were who you were with or without the money and nice things. People’s thoughts or opinions of you didn’t mean a damn thing if the Most High approves of your ways, and I fully embraced that understanding. As I grew in the ISUPK and remained focused on serving the Most High and increased in righteousness, the Most High saw fit that I wanted for nothing.
So for almost eight years I hadn’t held down a 9-5, needed to punch a clock, yet and still I kept a roof over my head, clothes on my back, and food in my belly because of the work of the Most High and Christ in the ISUPK. Over the past few months events that have transpired in my life have me reevaluating my perspective and asking myself some new questions. What is the line between contentment and complacency? Where is the line between having enough and settling for less? When does a man begin to accept his limitations vs pushing himself to be all that he can be? I believe the answers to these questions are different for every man.
Proverbs 6:6 – Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise:  Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler,  Provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest.  How long wilt thou sleep, O sluggard? when wilt thou arise out of thy sleep?
What am I to do when there’s things that I want that my present resources cannot provide? Do I just accept that it isn’t meant for me to have it? Or do I grind and go get what I want? What happens when the people I’ve allowed myself to depend upon are no longer as stable a foundation as I’ve grown accustomed to? Do I allow my stability to become weak and shaky, or do I go about establishing a solid foundation for myself to stand firm on? Unlike the first set of questions every man I know in the ISUPK has the same answers here. If there’s some shit to be gotten, I’m going to go take it, and if the people that’s been riding with me stop riding then I’m going to keep this bitch pushing by my damn self. This is an attitude and a mentality that is forged by a culture of “No Cowards and No Excuses.” The perfection of manhood is seeing to your responsibilities and handling your damn business no matter what. Some men aren’t built like that, but they can be made that way. I wasn’t built like that, but I’ve been made that way. Brotherhood has allowed me to see that in this life, you only can have what you work for, and though everyman doesn’t have the same gifts, everyman has the tools that he needs within himself to get the job done.
The title of this entry comes from the hook of a Jeezy song called “Just Win.” I know for a fact I heard this track before but as it popped up on my Pandora yesterday while I was at my slavery it left me stuck in my tracks. There’s a sample in the song from motivational speaker Les Brown, in a speech he gave titled “Birds of a Feather,” and although I know the desired effect of that speech is to inspire, damn it the shit inspired me. There’s a vision that I have for myself, a place in life that I want to get to, and when I came into the truth, in my ignorance and immaturity I believed that vision and that place couldn’t coexist in the same life as a servant of the Most High and Christ. On some real shit I’ve been afraid of trying to find out. My experience in the world having things and being at the top of my game making money made me afraid that if I ever was in that position again I’d revert back to that same unhealthy lifestyle. But that’s just some shit I told myself to make me feel okay about NOT getting shit done.
Ecclesiastes 9:10 Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest.
Webster’s Dictionary defines potential as existing in possibility : capable of development into actuality
I no longer want to live my life being a nigga with potential. I’ve been hearing that shit my whole life and my whole life I haven’t done shit worth mentioning except join the ISUPK. Even with that though these past eight years I’ve remained more potential than actuality and I refuse to be complacent with that. Procrastination, complacency and settling are all demons sent to hold those they attack back from being who they have the potential to become. Say what you want about the hustlers on the block, or the oppressors ruling over us, shit even the athletes, entertainers, and sell outs among our people, those 3 demons are ones that they’ve overcome.
I’m thankful for the truth, and forever grateful to Commanding General Yahanna, the Generals, Captains, and Officers in the ISUPK for their hard work and dedication. Being apart of this, the body of Christ and Home of the Truth has provided me with knowledge, wisdom, and understanding far beyond what I thought was necessary in order to find my way in this life. I owe it to them, my family, and myself to no longer accept what it is, when I know that I’m capable of making more into reality. I’m about to pimp this pen like never before, cuz this is my tool, my gift, and with it I’m gonna “Win my Nigga, Just win.”