The Divided Minority: Black America
In an interview with Prensa Latina that focused primarily on Michael Moore, Cuban-American activist Andres Gomez made an interesting observation about Black america:
We can say that the black caucus is mostly liberal, although there is a strong black middle class that does not respond to the interests of the black poor and divides that minority.
This is sad, but unfortunately true.
Having a middle class is a
good great thing. It means that people in that class [for the most part] have the things that they need and are able to get the things that they want. It is the product of tangible social mobility in a society.
Unfortunately, as we increase our comfort, we often decrease our level of observation, action, and/or dissent. Sometimes a little cash and a few nice things cause us to lose touch. Middle-class people are less likely to outwardly critique their employers or governmental leaders/policies. We (since I would consider myself middle class) have “something to lose.”
So let me get this straight G: having a middle class is both a good thing and a bad thing? Well, not really. Having a middle class is a good thing. Having a disinterested middle class is a bad thing. Having a middle class with no connections to its upper/lower class counterparts is a bad thing. Having a socially inactive middle class is a bad thing. What I’m saying is, the type of middle class you have is important.
What Gomez is implying in his quote is that the Black middle class is the wrong kind of middle class, at least if the goal is uplifting Black people as a whole. Is that true? I think I have a responsibility and an obligation (some people don’t like those words!) to do a whole h*ll of a lot more than I do today. Why not use class “status” as a chance to take a risk instead of a reason not to? What I want is to be able to play a part in positive change, which is all revolution really is. I think we all need to take some more chances for the sake of ourselves and our people.
I have read that the way to stifle revolution is to give a little bit to a few people so that you have just enough individuals that don’t care enough to act.
One Love. One II.
P.S. I hadn’t looked at Black Electorate in a long time, and now I remember why I used to look at it almost daily.