Tuesday, August 29, 2006

My Mouth is Dry

I really want to talk about an incident I endured this past Sunday. However, it would take so much to explain it all that I think you might get bored. So in a nutshell. I went to an impromptu meeting of some Black Gay men who wanted to discuss our concerns and struggles in the world today and how we might be able to help each other. The overall consensus was that Black men period are invisible. I know you've all heard that before and surely felt it, that is if you are a Black Man.

There was one brother at the event who simply floored me with his arrogance. It was that type of arrogance that is subtle and masked by a command of the English language that can sometimes fool you into thinking that one is saying something of great importance. Well I am a good listener, however not such a great speaker. This brotha was basing the activities of 3 young black men and using their behavior to characterize most young black men. He then questioned why won't young men take opportunities given to them such as the one he was providing.

I was disgusted to say the least at the way he described one situation. I was to the point of stuttering. When I'm upset I have difficulty getting words out and at times can't form an intelligent thought successfully. I tried though. Probably my 1st mistake. I should have just ignored him. But I felt he would go on and on.

My comments to him were along the lines of: What did you do to help him understand the opportunity that you were giving him and how he was jeopardizing it? Why were you questioning him as if you were law enforcement.

From that he went into that I really don't know the situation or him so I should not be able to accurately assess the situation. My mind went to then why in the hell are you using that as an example. I said it too.

I told him that I found that in many situations when there is a Black man in a position of power they sometimes do not appropriately mentor those in positions below their own. In fact sometimes expect that one should just know. One guy summarized my words succinctly by quoting something he read. Many times those enslaved take on the characteristics of the enslaver.

Well the arrogant brotha didn't get it and continued to speak to me as if I was clueless as to what he was talking about. Actually I wasn't responding to what he was talking about I was responding to his attitude. Was he really interested in the success of these young men. Why wasn't he able to talk to them to find out what it was that they needed or why their behavior was less than exemplary? With that his face changed as he looked around the room and continued to make comments as if I had completely missed the boat. Since he was better known within this group of men he was successful to a certain degree in bringing a couple of other brothas to agreeing with his point of view.

One brotha even commented and asked me if there was something that I needed to talk about because I seemed like I was hurt. This made the steam in my mind puddle and boil.

No I don't need to talk about anything and there is no need for be condescending to me. Their eyes bugged and they looked around like this man is nuts. At least that was my impression of their behavior. Maybe I was being sensitive at that point...Nonetheless I didn't appreciate it.

My mouth was dry and I was shaking inside trying not to show it. Like I said. I should have just ignored him. Have you ever been made to feel as if what you are saying is absurd? Like your comments seem to be coming from a location in the universe that hasn't been identified as a planet yet?

One of the 1st things I learned in my psychology classes was, The hardest thing to prove is that you are not crazy. Simply put let 2 people say that you are crazy and see how crazy you sound trying to convince them that you are not.

1 comment:

the other trent said...

I definitely understand your post. Quite a while ago, I visited the message board of a popular gay black blog where the topic was black men loving other black men. When I last visited, the comments were so nasty and disillusioning that I promised myself never again to visit the board.

Like the guy in your post who held "position" within the group, between the lines and underneath the well written comments of the regular posters to the site, even the moderator, these brothers didn't want to examine there own faults leading them to repeatedly seek the wrong partner. Not one wanted to admit that they were seeking partners with the head in their pants instead of the one on their shoulder.

There was so much "self-hate" by these men who wanted nothing more to do but to cast wide net saying "all" or "most" black gay men are no good ,or, aren't viable as perspective soul mates or life partners. One poster tried to show the unfairness of the prevailing opinions, but he was made to look stupid, silly, and all. It was heartbreaking. It was so heartbreaking! When even the moderator joins in chorus of putting down black gay men, what do you do?