‘E’/I have always been a socially-observant person. Throughout the years, the observations have caused a myriad of reactions internally. It ranges from happiness to contemplation to inspiration to perplexity to nausea to thoughts of reversible provisional suicide. The main audience of my observations are people of the Afrikan Diaspora. My movements as a so-called Pan Afrikanist would dictate such behaviour.
One of the main behaviours that I have witnessed, indirectly and directly, is the action of disrespect. It manifests as name calling, lack of extension of certain courtesies, negative body language, unwillingness to share, unwillingness to engage in constructive communication and devaluing members of the group in which one belongs. Sad, sad, sad! I am always mindful of brevity and conciseness in my writings. The goal is to hit the points and the supportive readers continue personal enlightenment on subject-matter.
Introspection is mandatory for personal development. One wrong reaction can cost you your freedom or life. Introspection and honest analysis ensure an increase in self-worth. The hurt and pain that many Black people are feeling today manifest as terrible abuses and violence. Words can be just as, if not more, violent as punching or kicking someone. Many of us are left with deeper impressions of hurtful words that were spewed. Usually, the physical strikes heal properly with no sign of existing. An extreme that has become a phenomenon in the Black community is death at the hands of someone you know. Heated arguments, impulse, emotional triggers and low self-value have lead to many murders. Wholly, it becomes a two-sided issue. The perpetrator has little to no self-value and the victim has little to no self-value.
The onslaught of social media outlets and websites like WorldStarHipHop.com, TMZ, CNN, BET, YouTube, Twitter and Instagram have made it more convenient to observe the self-hatred and gross disrespect of Black people towards one another. It is called “entertainment” now. So, it moved from civic responsibility to pure entertainment. Instead of assisting the person(s) that is being physically struck, it is more fun to film the incident. In some instances, at least the “cameraman/woman” encourages the person winning the fight to stop or ask if the one losing is okay. SMH I am perturbed by the level of ignorance and complete apathy towards human life and wellness. About a year ago, I made the conscious decision to not view any fight videos where Black people are fighting each other. Honestly, it is very hurtful to view. I feel the pain as an observer of persons who haven’t embraced self-love. I do understand that self-love could be involvement in a fight to protect self or loved one.
The youth of today are bombarded with systemic racism, multitude of destructive propaganda, poor selection of food products/foods, broken homes and lack of sufficient parental/adult guidance. The most popular way of dealing with the demands of modern life is self-medication. A big part of youth culture is the consumption of alcohol and synthetic drugs. The glorification is psychological mediation of justifying the use of harmful substances. Anyone that knows ‘E’ know I am an advocate of youth development. In many ways, my empathic nature goes into overdrive. The pressures are real and overwhelming. The eyes of the youth’s souls scream “I want discipline!” But, it is rarely offered out of compassion, genuine concern, civic responsibility and pure love.
We are born with a conscience connected to the soul of man. It governs what is perceived as “right” and “wrong”. There is NO immunity for anyone that does not have extensive mental underdevelopment. This includes the youth. We are responsible for our actions (unless there is a lack of true cognizance in the given moment). At a certain point in time, abusing your wonderfully made machine called a ‘human body’ is inexcusable. Yes, Black people suffer deeply in the United States of America (this nation being the primary focus for this post). The list of abuses are innumerable. Yet, our heritage encourages us to call on those who have lived and transitioned from planet Earth. They are referred to “ancestors” or “angels”. Regrettably, the severe disconnect from our ancestral and cultural lineages have made this a foreign concept. Furthermore, our brains must employ unbiased, multifaceted cognitive processing for concise examination of the nuances within the challenges we face.
It is understood that long-term stress and tension cause many undesired results. It ranges from neurological unease, physical disease, social ineptness, interrupted sleep patterns and many other things. In order for the “disregarded” group to learn how to regard the others of same said group, you must think before you speak/act. The cause of blatant disrespectful actions and behaviours is directly linked to compounded stress and tension offered by modern society. The act of projection is not the best way to deal. Help can be sought in discussion groups, physical activities (sports), involvement in reflective verbal and situational (hypothetical) exercise, listening to one’s self as you speak and asking how one feels after engagement in communications with you. Be mindful. Place yourself in the recipient’s place. If you have a “ah ha” moment, then great. Your conscience is still alive and there is hope for personal reform. If you have a genuine “I don’t care” response internally, then more support is needed. We should never reach the point where we genuinely don’t care about someone. I know this is a difficult feat, especially when you live in an urban center like New York City. I have become jaded a few times in my adult life. But, I realized that I had to put in the hard work of freeing myself from jadedness. Now, I have acquired even greater respect for others and Black community at-large.