So everyone is excited and moved by the latest video released by Childish Gambino. This video, which is four minutes and five seconds long, has been analyzed, dissected, and argued over this entire week.
Social media has overwhelmingly given Gambino’s This is America a gold star for excellent cinematography, hidden pro-Black messages, and overall “wokeness”.
I confess: I don’t see it. And to be frank, I’m completely disgusted with it.
To better express my distain, I have decided to share my thoughts through four questions:
- What America are you referring to? I see you (A Black man) shooting another Black man in the back of his head, while wearing a hood. Where and when does this happen? Sure, it has been said that your sashay dance is a reflection of Jim Crow. Yet, Jim Crow’s character was performed by white men in Black face. Furthermore, Jim Crow laws were designed to oppress Black people. I think your imagery would have reflected the TRUE America had your video cast the real symbol behind Jim Crow…and it certainly was not a Black man. But perhaps, the powers that be wouldn’t allow that. Therefore, in your video, and as always, you (Black man) are portrayed as the victimizer and not the victim that you are.
- Where is Dylan Roof? A Black man didn’t shoot up a church full of Black people. Dylan Roof did. If we are going to talk about America and its dysfunctional, hate-filled dynamic, let’s tell it like it is. Young people are watching this video over and over again and see YOU reenacting events that has really happened in America, yet it is still not a reflection of the truth. Since you seem to be afraid to show truth, I will…
- Why the ambiguity?
“Elvis was a hero to most
Elvis was a hero to most
Elvis was a hero to most
But he never meant shit to me you see
Straight up racist that sucker was
Simple and plain
Mother fuck him and John Wayne
‘Cause I’m Black and I’m proud
I’m ready and hyped plus I’m amped
Most of my heroes don’t appear on no stamps
Sample a look back you look and find
Nothing but rednecks for four hundred years if you check”-Public Enemy, Fight the Power, 1989.
When Chuck D spoke, he said what he had to say and he did it openly and unapologetically. I think it is absolutely ridiculous to see grown people argue and debate over what they THINK you were trying to covey in that video. It seems as though this new-age, pro-Black, music is very much afraid to be UNAPOLOGETIC. If your message is strong, stand by it. I’m still waiting on clarity. From YOU. Not from your social media followers. Don’t leave it to the people to misinterpret or misunderstand your message. Stand by it, and start a dialogue.
4. What exactly are you saying? Here is my bias….I love real hip hop. Full sentences, impactful, thought-provoking, lyrics. What are you even talking about bruh? I listened to the lyrics WITHOUT watching the blood-bath of a video, and I honestly think the song is trash.
Well, boys and girls, I said it.
The problem I have with the video is that it is NOT America. Where is blatant police brutality? Why are you exterminating Black people? Why are you gliding across the warehouse leaving people to think that you are representing Jim Crow when you are really just re-enforcing the narrative that has been created for Black America?
So, I’ll ask again, who’s America are you referring to?
Dr. Lauren Meeks
P.S. Don’t shoot the messenger….considering that seems to be the angle of your recent work.
Confessions Of A Melanated Queen
Confessions of A Melanated Queen: Complexities of the Modern Black Woman, is comprised of controversial and thought-provoking commentary related to life, marriage, and family, through the lens of a millennial African American woman