black-graduates

10

I live, breath, and survive only at the thought of liberation for my grandchildren.

I attended my alma mater, Bowling Green State University’s graduation on May 9th. On this day I needed to show to my family who were freshmen and sophomores when I was a senior that they mattered.

I needed them to know that they inspire me. I keep working hard and stay energized because of them.

I’m not fighting for my life. I’m fighting for every life that comes after me. I’m fighting for my grandchildren.

This is no longer about righting a wrong that was done; it’s about creating a new right for our future melanin filled spirits who will inhabit and inherit this earth.

I labor and take the verbal beatings so you don’t have to.

I scream “Black Lives Matter” so that you will already know as you grow.

I achieve so you can achieve greater and so that I can help you throughout your journey.

I show up unapologetically black, queer, and radical so you can show up even more.

Congratulations to all Black and Afrika graduates. The world is yours.

Black People Foolishly Believe that Obtaining Degrees and Employment is a Symbol of #BlackExcellence.

Every year we post pictures of thousands, tens of thousands of Black college graduates who pose after ceremonies or as they walk across the stage to accept their certification of completion, and we act as if it is an accomplishment.  We Behave as if it is an accomplishment because we believe that White’s sole purpose is to deny us an Education and the validation of said Education in order to control our access to resources.

Honestly, this was true 40, 30, 25 years ago when the number of college graduates was still small. However, whites discovered two things in a failing economy. 1) They discovered that Student Debt is it’s own industry.  The number of college graduates with astronomical debt is stupid. A population of people saddled with 30, 40, 50 upwards to 100k in student loans have to quickly obtain employment just to pay back those loans.  Black people are among those numbers.  It’s beneficial to the system of White Colonial Racial Aggression and Capitalism to have a large body of people in perpetual debt, and working just to pay off the debt. 

SO now Black college grad, you’ve finished your 4 or 5 , 6 or even 8 yr journey and you are immediately hit with debt that binds you to this system, and you must interface with this system, cooperate with it in order to be gainfully employed to pay those monies, because credit.  Now you must support Capitalism.  

2) White have also discovered that they can share space with Black people without sharing Power.  This is really what racism is about, Power.  Whites want to maintain their grip on the power they coalesced over the past 500 years.  Whites can award or decorate Black with all the degrees and Magna Cum Laudes and Summa, Master’s Phds, MD, MBAs and it won’t change the dynamic because Whites still control the institutions.  Blacks still go to institutions that are Primarily White or to Black Institutions that are accredited by White Institutions.  Then when you exit to the real world, these College graduates with varying levels of certification find themselves hustling and competing with one another for spots in Primarily White Institutions. In order to remain employed by these institutions, Blacks must abide by White codes of conduct to A) keep their job or B) advance their career and salary within said field. So you often find that these Blacks within this field either fully capitulate, submit and attempt to acculturate and integrate into this White Institution.  They adopt philosophies and practices that allow them to exist and be psychically shielded from the brutal realities.  They often mention things like pulling oneself up by the bootstraps, they adopt a whole host of respectable negro-isms.  The other side are Black people who know what the system is, but they don’t believe they can beat it so they “just play the game”  They smile in the face of white coworkers, and then gather around water coolers or lunch tables to talk in whispers about how their white boss or coworkers aint shit. 

These Blacks are stuck in primitive Survival conditions, simply getting along to get by.  They teach their children these same mannerisms either in words or actions. These Blacks who graduated from prestigious universities with honors and enough knowledge on subject matters to fill libraries, are reduced to the same methods of communications as their enslaved ancestors; shucking and jiving in a honkies face, then talking mad shit from the safety and confines of their slave quarters.  And both parties still have to be on the lookout for sell out negros who back trickin to the massa on who said what.

Similar to these slaves, the contemporary Blacks find themselves begrudgingly performing the duties required to earn their keep and for payment a mere fraction of the net the Plantation brings in from their labor.  Like the slaves, contemporary Blacks are forced to support and proliferate the very system that enslaves them. 

Black Excellence is not really Black Excellence, it is White Excellence with a Black face because we spend 20+ years being indoctrinated by White Propaganda only to be certified and work in institutions that Impose the same plights on people here and abroad. 

This is how insidious Capitalism is, you are conditioned into relying on it for your daily sustenance and for all your luxuries, so by default you promulgate the system and keep it moving. 

It’s why Black people can shamelessly root for Obama even tho he has signed off on some of the worst atrocities on African soil.

BlackExcellence is reduced to mere symbolism.  We just happy to be at the party no matter what role we play. It truly is infantile. 

10

It has been a crazy journey. My mother fell ill my last two semesters and she passed away in Nov. Even before this time I have went through hell and survived. I give Lord the glory, I look at my ancestors and I look at the sweetness that Oshún has brought to me.

My parents worked so hard to make this day happen for me. Mommy couldn’t be their in flesh, but as my ancestor she was there in spirit. My father, grandmother, sisters/brothers and boyfriend were so proud. My family and friends supported me 100%. I am so blessed.

More photos will be coming soon (professionally done lol) but yesterday was unforgettable. I was Black Girl Magic. I’m African and I promise to always do for my community just as it has always done for me.

I am because we are! Ubuntu! Asè.

When I was a sophomore in college, I failed an orgo test and when a friend and I went to ask the professor about our grades, he literally told me that I should change my major from chemistry to something more suited for “someone like you”. But my white friend who did worse than me on the test could of course bring her grade up and go on to be a great chemist.

I was the only black female to graduate with a chemistry degree from my university last year. But there were 6 others when I started. I wonder if he got to them too.

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