• Hey, guest user. Hope you're enjoying NeoGAF! Have you considered registering for an account? Come join us and add your take to the daily discourse.
  • The Politics forum has been nuked. Please do not bring political discussion to the rest of the site, or you will be removed. Thanks.

Black History Month 2017 |OT| - Peeking over Hidden Fences

Not open for further replies.


Sep 19, 2010

Cause it's already February in Australia.

For the third year in a row, welcome to Black History Month!

Black History Month, also known as African-American History Month in America, is an annual observance in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom for remembrance of important people and events in the history of the African diaspora. It is celebrated annually in the United States and Canada in February and the United Kingdom in October.

Why do Black People need a history month?

In an ideal world, the month would not be necessary, because educational establishments and the national curriculum would fully recognise and appreciate the contribution of black people throughout history. Sadly that is not the case.

The Black community uses this history month as an opportunity to share with the world its vast contributions: a time to demonstrate pride in its creativity, respect for its intellectual prowess and a celebration of its cultural identity which is far too often misrepresented, when it is not being ignored, in the mainstream.​

So where can I learn more about Black History?

But I don't see color! We're all just humans!

You're not helping. At all.​

People love to tell me that they often forget that I’m black. They say this with a sort of “a-ha!” look on their faces, as if their dawning ability to see my blackness was a gift to us both.

When I point out that their eyesight had never left them, that my skin has never changed colors, and that they probably did not really forget that I am black, they inevitably get defensive. First, they try to argue that it was a compliment; the smart ones quickly realize that complimenting someone on not being black is actually pretty racist, so they switch gears.

I don’t see race! is usually their next tactic, followed by I am colorblind, though they never give credit to Stephen Colbert. By “colorblind” they don’t actually mean that they can’t see green or red; rather, they are suggesting that they can’t ever be racist, because they don’t register skin color at all.

This ideology is very popular – like a racial utopic version of the Golden Rule – but it’s actually quite racist. “Colorblindness” doesn’t acknowledge the very real ways in which racism has existed and continues to exist, both in individuals and systemically. By professing not to see race, you’re just ignoring racism, not solving it.


TL;DR. You're acting like a child who thinks that no one can see them when they cover their own eyes.​

But what about _____ History?

Well, Trump is gonna-

Happy Black History Month everybody!

try not to get banned.

A bit of reading to help set the mood:

And some video to accompany:

  • Roots
  • Selma
  • Rosewood
  • Fruitvale Station
  • Malcolm X
  • Amistad
  • 12 Years a Slave
  • Glory
  • Beloved
  • The Color Purple
  • The Great Debaters
  • The Tuskegee Airmen
  • Do the Right Thing
  • Menace II Society
  • Get On The Bus
  • Bamboozled
  • Dear White People
  • Mississippi Burning
  • 13th
  • Hidden Figures
  • Hidden Colors
  • Fences
  • Dark Girls
  • Moonlight
  • Zootopia (yes, really)
  • I Am Not Your Negro

Once again, welcome to Black History Month! Oh, and



One last thing:

Everyone wants to be black. There's nothing more punk rock on Earth than being black. We stroll in, all muscle and sinew and cocoa, fucking the game up like dirty edge connectors. We laugh loud and speak bold and emit "I-just-don't-give-a-fuck" with every movement. We have been scrutinized and analyzed in every conceivable way, and still we are mysterious and exotic right down to the kink of our hair to those - surprising, still numerous - people who haven't been in contact with us before. We've created the rhythm and the blues, the rock and the roll, the hip and the hop. We brought in the noise and the funk. We put the soul in food, and pretty much everything else too. We built your pyramids, and we leap over them with our seemingly impossible collective athleticism, borne of mountains, jungles and plains that many of us still live in all across the world. Everyone wants to be black.

No one wants to be black. There's nothing more terrifying than the knowledge that we exist in every way but individually to everyone - even other black people. We can never be judged by our own merits; we carry the weight of the race's progression with every step into the future like Atlas, and even he shrugged...but we can't, because it's considered weak and selling out if we do. Every bit of slang, every bit of clothing that sits the wrong way, every head nod and hand gesture can and will be taken in the wrong way, a universal "there-goes-the-neighborhood" by everyone that can do so, which basically consists of everyone that doesn't want the social association with black people. That group, naturally, consists of everyone that is able to pass as "non-black". We live in a world where we were kings until we were cattle, and then we were weapons, and then we were like aphids, sprouting up where we weren't wanted, corrupting non-black youth, and the reason for everything from crime to lowered test scores or property value. Nobody wants to be black.

My blackness offends infinitely.
I want to be black.
Natural's Law - is a humorous observation made by GAF poster MWS Natural in 2011 which is becoming an Internet adage. It states: "As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving black people approaches 1. In other words, Natural put forth the hyperbolic observation that, given enough time, in any online discussion regarding any form of conflict someone inevitably criticizes some point made in the discussion by comparing it to discrimination faced by blacks.
Racism is weird. Everybody knows it totally exists, but when you look at any specific situation, racism is never involved. You can know that it exists, but when you look for it, it turns into something else.

Racism is quantum locked. It doesn't exist when it's being observed. The moment it is seen by any living creature, it freezes into a coincidence.
And while we’re at it, let’s talk about another thing that has been pissing me the fuck off recently. Lately, in the pages of liberal bastions like Atlantic, Slate, and New Republic, there has been this movement gaining steam largely because nobody wants to give it a name. So let me name this mofo: The Liberal Limit. You know it— in fact it’s been the view of many liberals and leftists, but particularly old white liberal men (yeah I said it), that progressiveness has gone too far, so far that even their privilege now feels attacked.

They’re tired of learning new gender pronouns. Tired of hiding that nigger joke book. Tired of having to figure out how to respond to a Rihanna video. Tired of feminists of colour pointing out fissures in whatever wave of feminism we got right now. Tired of black kids on campus whining all the time. Tired of everybody being so angry because without their alliance all you coloured folk would be doomed. Liberal but up to the point where it scrapes on privilege.

But here’s the news. You’re a progressive. You’re supposed to progress. You’re supposed to be more liberal today than you were yesterday. Yes, we’re supposed to passionately debate (not tear down) even the stance of our allies, even those who agree with us 60% of the time. You’re supposed to keep changing your views on race because even the most positive view is inherently flawed and needs work. The whole point to being liberal, to being progressive is to continuously evolve, continuously question, continuously debate, even continuously knock down and build up, sometimes even ripping everything apart to start again. My views on trans people are different in 2014 that they were in 2004. And you can bet your ass it will be even better in 2024 than it is now, because that's what makes me not conservative. The point to being a progressive is to fucking progress.
I live in Los Angeles, and the tension between police and blacks is still pretty thick. I always freeze up when I have to interact with a cop, or if one pulls me over for whatever reason.

My best friend, he's white and Persian (but looks white), was telling me about this one time him and his friend were driving on the freeway (his friend was black, my white friend was driving), and they got pulled over. When the officer got out of the car, he approached the black passenger and demanded that HE get out of the car, then proceeded to slam him against the car and cuff him, demanding answers to questions. My friend was like, "What the hell, dude, he wasn't even driving the car!" at which point he was told to shut the fuck up by the officer, and he continued to harass his friend. Fucking unbelievable, but it happens regularly.

My mom also has plenty of stories about how the cops used to harass her when she was younger, and she worked at Warner Bros. studios before I was born. Granted, that was in the 70's, but sadly, not much has changed when it comes to how we're perceived by non-blacks. We're always treated like wild animals that have been caged for too long and can pop off at any moment.

Most black kids in America have been grilled time and time again by their parents about how they should behave and act when around white people. It sounds awful, because it is, but it's true. I had more than a few sit downs growing up, where my mother would drill into me how important it was to "not give them a reason" to think less of you. I grew up trying to be the most perfect black guy I could be. I did everything I could to show non-blacks that we were nothing like the people they saw on TV, or read about in the newspaper. I had no idea at the time that it really doesn't matter how polite I am. How intelligent I am, how "well spoken" I am. To a lot of them, I'm just an uppity nigger with a chip on his shoulder.

Even then, I still continue to be the best person that I can be. Not because I'm afraid of white people, but because it feels good to not be a douche canoe to others, and ideally, I'd hope the same courtesy would be returned to me. Unfortunately, this country has a real fucking hard time seeing black people as equal humans. Centuries of dehumanization and demonizing has done a fucking wonder on our PR, so to speak. Even other countries are afraid of us because of what they've seen and heard in the media or news reports that choose to highlight the worst of us more often than the best of us.

I'm a short, light skinned black/Samoan guy that most people don't realize is black. The shit I've heard some of the nicest people in the world say about black people in my presence is disheartening. The look on their faces when I tell them, "Well, I'm black too, you know," is fucking priceless. And it wasn't just white people saying those things about black people to me, thinking I wasn't black. It was people of all ethnicities and backgrounds going on and on about how horrible, filthy, disgusting, and deplorable black people were, and how they were a hopeless race of people that no good ever comes out of.

Generally, they'd stammer a "Well, you're not like them" rebuttal when I'd out myself as a black guy. I was "one of the good ones." The sad thing is that, when I was younger, I used to wear that like a badge of honor. "I'm one of the good ones! The other blacks are bad!" I bought into the same institutional and systemic racism that leads to tragedies like this. The type of institutional racism that has black men and women that have managed to ascend higher than their peers to tell them to "pull their damn pants up." I'm not sure what you'd call it, but it's a shame that such a divide between our people has been allowed to propagate. I'm thankful that, as I got older, I realized how insulting and disrespectful being called "One of the good ones" really is. It's even sadder that, even to this day, it's still said to me by non-black friends, or family of friends. It's sad and frustrating that no matter what level of good blacks do in this country, we will always be judged by the actions of a few, and treated with the highest levels of fear and distrust.

Here's the thing.

Don't want to talk to your family about them being shameless racists or unapologetic, conspiracy-guzzling fuckshit morons? Fine, do you.

But DON'T assault me with your bullshit. Because if that's the case, then you are NOT my ally, and I'm liable to cuss YO ass out.

It's just...its a feeling that goes beyond just offensive at this point. It feels like an assault. It feels like you're using me as your personal, emotional social justice cumrag. Like you get some sick fucking pleasure out of waxing poetic to me about how bad you feel, how embarrassed you feel, how terrible this is for you to sit at the family table, or be present at the family function, and occasionally be subjected to the racist hate that I already know about because it's my motherfucking life, you dumb trick. And now, it's my job to stand there, look conciliatory, pat you on the fucking back and comfort YOU. Because apparently this is now all about you, and how bad YOU feel being briefly exposed to the very hate I have to be in fear of every day of my black ass life. Congrats, what a motherfucking feat.

And of course – oh, of course – when I go to ask, "so, what did you do?" here comes the bullshit excuses about why you just couldn't stand up for the things you desperately want me to believe you give an actual fuck about.

So, I've already put all my non-black friends on notice. If you can't speak up and speak out about what's right unless you're in a fucking march surrounded by likeminded people with your dumb-looking pink pussy hat and your witty signs, if that's all you got...then you can miss my succulent black ass with your pleas for a pity party. I don't want to hear about your racist family dinners, or your racist cookouts, or your racist family reunions, or your racist hookups, or your racist office break rooms when I'm not present, or your racist D&D groups. Unless you want to tell me about how you almost flipped a table telling them about themselves, then shut the fuck up talking to me. Because I'm not here to make you feel better about your silence, and your inaction.

And that's on dubs.

Now, let's get it going.


GAF celebrates BHM 2017:

Please put "Black History Month:" in BMH 2017 threads and post a link in here so I can add to the OP.

4 is a cutie

Jul 7, 2016
I'll attribute more than likely. Hopefully to this thread. I'll start with this.
Shit like this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=imY-vSn0b18 is not ok nor is it relevant.
We don't need to ask each other these questions.
These are questions white people asked through black people and made a video.

The "Why cant white people use the n-word???" thing was corny but I think a good chunk of these topics are let by without introspection


May 17, 2006
Fantastic OP, and great thread title. Subbed. I'll be sure to read through at some point, thanks for putting this together OP.


Jun 6, 2004
Great OP Malyse.
I will finally get around to making the Jim Crow thread I was supposed to make last year.


Oct 9, 2010
Are we free to post history from different parts of the Diaspora in this thread? If so I might do a few posts.


May 21, 2011
Great OP.

I have a very strong feeling that this is going to be one of the most important Black History Months in recent memory.

The people who seek to dehumanize us, have crept out of the shadows and have assumed control of our government.

No, matter how hard they try to re-define us, we most hold strong and do whatever it takes to protect our individual and collective identity.


Oct 24, 2016
Great OP!

and as a side note, why Menace II Society and not Boyz in the Hood?


Feb 6, 2014
Dig the OP. Thinking of something insightful to write and all I can come up with is we about to have an even greater fight on our hands. Hope the importance of our culture doesn't fade from the forefront after the 28th. We have to make sure they hear us...constantly.

Maybe I overlooked it, but I thought the documentary 13th should be something they, who want to learn and those who deny, should look at.

double jump

you haven't lived until a random little kid ask you "how do you make love".
May 7, 2012
Good ot.
I watched that wire gif three times straight.
Great info, I cant wait to comb over it in detail later.

Maybe I overlooked it, but I thought the documentary 13th should be something they, who want to learn and those who deny, should look at.

yeah I need to watch this. Its been sitting in my netflix list for months.


Apr 14, 2015
Bakersfield, CA.
Amazing OP. Good stuff.

Also to mention movies, Hidden Figures is a really great film.

I'm West Indian so on a good day people assume I'm white, on a bad day a cop will assume I'm black. Truth of the matter is I'm a mix of dang near everything.

I've seen how people interact with me depending on that initial "decision" of my race and it's straight up bullshit.

Also the inevitable "So... what race are you?" question comes up and I think I've met about three people who realized it was a bad question to ask and dropped it.

BHM is so important for numerous reasons, if nothing else to make people uncomfortable about how awful the US has treated Blacks.


Sep 19, 2010
Best selling black history documentary and its not in the OP list of films?

Always room for additions. TV, Movies, Miniseries
Are we free to post history from different parts of the Diaspora in this thread? If so I might do a few posts.

I'm not stopping anything. All I ask is that you link threads in here and put "Black History Month:" in the title for uniformity.


Aug 8, 2010
Can someone explain the history behind this quote for me? Was it used in a way to express frustration or how to benefit from it?

Also the inevitable "So... what race are you?" question comes up and I think I've met about three people who realized it was a bad question to ask and dropped it.

To tell the truth I sometimes I can't tell between Arab and Indian, especially if the Indian person has lived in the area for a long time and has such a perfect accent.


Jan 14, 2013
Interesting time of year given the fallout of the election, curious to see how things go this year.


Jun 8, 2013
Loved the The Wire gif. African permanent resident living in the US. I sometimes think about the naive 16 year old I was when I first moved to this country. I love it here despite all its flaws and black culture has shaped me significantly during my here. Makes me really appreciate what the folks that participated in the civil rights efforts did to pave the opportunities I have and receive now.
Dec 8, 2008
Miami, FL
*sets up law chairs*

*grill coals turned white*

aiite, ya'll want chicken, steak or hotdogs?

where's the damn kool-aid? it's hot as hell standing over this grill. shit. oh and tell Slay to get off the court and bring me my dominoes.
Not open for further replies.