Color Commentary

Jose Vilson Jose, Race

Michael WilbonThe problem / blessing with being a blogger of “color” is that, because of our natural tendency to discuss politics, we’re instantly labeled and constricted to a certain type of writing i.e. we’re looked at as racial polemicists. I suppose that’s fitting seeing as how I’ve been doing this type of writing since 2K4, but on the same end, I don’t necessarily feel the need to discuss it. The Afrospear Bloggers seem to do a pretty good job of it already, but more importantly, it’s because the world has so much more to offer than racial discussion.

If I was in college at this point and time, I might have gone into the Jena 6 discussion more thoroughly. I might have told you how excited I am that Mychal Bell isn’t getting tried as an adult, and how atrocious this judicial system is that it almost turned a blind eye to the whole situation (if not for the hard work of the thousands out there). I might also have told you how much of a dimwit Jason Whitlock is for his views on the Jena 6, and how quickly he shuffles his feet and claps his hands for people above him. I’d also comment on how I’ll definitely be wearing Black on September 20th with the rest of the (eclectic and united) group of men and women who will protest the Jena 6 madness.

I might also talk about how O.J.’s a disgrace to people of color, and how there’s no way anyone who he once considered his “people” should support him. I might say how, because the denominator representing us is much smaller, when one person messes up, the fraction (or infraction) is that much bigger (math jokes tickle me). I wonder how much OJ Simpson’s memorabilia even costs, as I imagine that the value of his stuff has to cost much less than that of a steroid-abusing black baseball player. I might even say that, unless Johnnie Cochran rolls up out of his grave in a black and white pinstriped suit, there’s no way in hell Simpson gets away with this.

I might even discuss this whole “Read a Book” madness, because I would have supported it back in my college days support the spirit behind it. G_d forbid that we actually pick up a good read from excellent authors, as there’s a plethora of hot trash that people confuse for intelligent Black literature. The fact that BET finally did something right by putting that video up for the masses is ironic in that over the last decade, it’s deteriorated into a very small snippet of what it means to be Black in this country.

I might go into how the blogosphere outside of maybe Guanabee and The Unapologetic Mexican dropped the ball as far as reporting on Elvira Arrelano, the Mexican immigrant who was quickly deported from the United States after speaking out against the government’s immigration policies in a church in a Los Angeles church. I would then react by speaking on the weird relationship with Blacks and Latinos that the outrage for the the Arrelano story wasn’t nearly as big  as the Jena 6 incidents (or in some cases, not even mentioned). There’s a lot of factors in that, but it still makes me wonder.

Then again, the first thing I noticed when I started to circle the blogosphere is the lack of blogs that at least generally fit my experience. I got it in snippets here and there, but in general, I couldn’t just find a blog that discussed a Black Latino’s life. I know enough of them, and there’s a growing faction of them in the media and such, but in the blogosphere? Not exactly.

So I’m usually focused on everything else, because I see value in discussing it all. Hmm …

jose, who has 4 artists on heavy rotation: common, talib kweli, kanye, and chuck mangione (which of these is not like the other?)