older black men


The many of faces of me.

“Stop acting like a girl!” (Fuck You)

“You can’t be gay and Black.” (Tell that to my deceased Butch lesbian aunt)

“You grew up with a father in you’re home?” (As a matter of fact I did. He greatly influenced me to be STRONG)

“Yes, this is a gay establishment but I need three forms of ID please.” (We will take our money elsewhere)

“Black people are always angry.” (Because y'all keep pissing us off)

“I would date you but you’re too open about your sexuality and HIV status.” (This is NYC, do you honestly think I’m the first guy you’ve met who is poz? But, hey, your loss)

“How can you only be friends with a girl and not fuck her?” (Because I’m gay, and I don’t believe in having sex with my friends even if I were straight)

“I ain’t gay, but I like gay dudes like you, to mess around with.” ( Thanks for your honesty, but I’m looking for a relationship)

“I find Black men so attractive.” ( Me too, excuse me as I find one to talk to at this party)

“He infected you with the HIV virus on purpose, told you that he was HIV negative when he knew for 7 years that he wasn’t ,and knowing you were naive and younger than him. When you were diagnosed you were on your death bed. Yet, you’re not angry. Why?” (Because being angry kills me , not him. I’m better and not bitter. As well as I let “love” cloud my better judgement)

“Being in love with a man and you’re a man is not African” ( Tell that to the Nigerian, Ugandan, Ghanaian, Ethiopian, Somalian and Kenyan men I know: born and raised in Africa-all of whom I DATED only, not have sex with, because I know how you homophobes think.)

“I have to return to Africa. My mother has found me a wife. I want to take you with me because I love you.” ( I don’t share my man)

“You’re gay because you were molested as a child” ( Ummmm no, I wasn’t molested, no adult or child ever touched me inappropriately, but I’ve counseled countless heterosexual men who were.)

“He plays for the NFL but you want to break up with him?” ( He did not tell me he had a fiancé. I saw it on the news; boy, bye)

“ There’s a gay demon in you!” ( No it’s not, I had too much Taco Bell)

I was born in 1967. I have lived, and still am!

Because HIV Positive Black, gay men 50 years old, like me, fuckin’ matters!

Older, wiser, and undetectable ! I was diagnosed with AIDS over 20 years ago!

anonymous asked:

genuine question: why do you not like people refering to lucio specifically as "boy"? tumblr tends to call every character boy/boi especialy since the mcelroys became popular so what is it about lucio in particular that isnt good to call him boy

The short answer: it’s because he’s black and the people doing it are largely white and there’s cultural baggage surrounding white people using the words “boy” and “son” to address black men. 

The long answer starts out with the idea of tonedeafness and a fandom phenomenon that crops up when predominately white fanbases are exposed to dimensional, compelling characters of color. The same thing happened with Star Wars and Pacific Rim and so many other diverse franchises lately. 

A lot of the time, white fans are genuinely not trying to be racist, but most of their faves up to this point have been white, and they haven’t considered that perhaps the way they write and talk about those faves would take on different implications when the characters’ race is considered. 

For instance, and I get in trouble a lot for bringing this up, but a few months ago there was a Disney AU fanart of Finn and Rey from Star Wars as Tarzan and Jane. Now, in the movie, Tarzan and Jane are both white, but in the art, the impact changes because Finn is a black man and the artist drew him as an animalistic ape-man who meets a delicate high-class British woman who “civilizes” him. Obviously the Tarzan/Jane dynamic has a very VERY different meaning if Tarzan is depicted as black and Jane is depicted as white, and it is in fact racist to depict Finn that way even if it wouldn’t even be the smallest problem to draw, say, Iron Man and Pepper Potts in the same exact situation. (Also if anyone is Tarzan in that pairing, it’s Rey, but I digress)

So you get these situations where people are trying to do the stuff they always do for all characters, only their faves have mostly been white up to this point so they’ve never really had to consider the racial implications of the stuff they say and write about those characters. That’s why they draw D.Va as an infant without realizing that the infantilization of East Asian women is actually a harmful racist practice, and then when informed of this fact, instead of saying “oh shit, I didn’t know I was contributing to that! Thanks for telling me, I’ll stop doing it,” they get defensive and claim that actually it doesn’t matter if the end product is 100% identical to racism, because they didn’t intend for it to be racist, that’s not what they were trying to do.

Also, generally speaking, they don’t do the same thing to white characters. While jokes at the expense of Soldier: 76 and Zarya are usually things like “he’s old and grumpy” or “she’s really strong,” jokes about Reaper are more like “he’s got a huge dick and he’s abusive and a rapist” and jokes about D.Va are usually “she’s a dirty and mischievous subhuman creature and the white guy is like her dad.” The fact that a lot of people make all these jokes and think they’re roughly equivalent speaks to how much unconscious racism they’ve got to purge from their system. 

Alright, so now that we understand that, let’s get into a little more of why “boy” and “son” in particular are not the sort of thing you should not call Lucio. 

The first and main reason is that he’s a grown man, aged 26, but more importantly, he is a black man. Historically, the words “boy” and “son” have been used on black men for two reasons: 

  1. Because even grown black men were to be treated as childlike under white supremacy, esp. under slavery, and even after the abolition of slavery, the words “boy” and “son” are still used in order to talk down to black men. You will still frequently catch younger white people address black men older than them as “boy” or “son,” especially in a service capacity (i.e. a black waiter or employee at a store). Under slavery, the dominant white supremacist narrative was that even the smartest black people were only on the level of white children, which is obviously a complete falsehood fabricated to justify their continued subjugation by saying “they’d be lost without us.” So, by referring to black men as “boy” or “son,” that’s the message that was being communicated, that even though any given black person is grown, they’re still viewed as roughly mentally equivalent to children. 
  2. A lot of slaveowners didn’t feel it was worth it to learn the individual names of their slaves, so they would simply address them as “boy” or “son” (or “girl” or a variety of other degrading names for women) and this practice continued even after the abolition of slavery. Again, calling back to the “black waiter” situation I referred to earlier, you still sometimes see white patrons referring to black employees as “boy” or “son” in this way. For older people, they would use the terms “Auntie” and “Uncle” as a way to deny them honorific titles such as “Mister” and “Miss,” which is where we get mascots like “Aunt Jemima” and “Uncle Ben,” both of whom were derived from this practice. A similar example is how a lot of white railroad passengers wouldn’t bother to learn the names of their car’s porter and would simply call them all “George,” which again sort of demonstrates my point: the name “George” isn’t inherently racist, lots of people have that name, but to call a black guy doing their job that carries different implications even if you “didn’t mean it that way.”

So generally, there’s nothing wrong with the words “boy” or “son” most of the time, but when you address a black man this way, it carries a whole different implication. I’m not trying to condemn anyone morally or say “you’re evil if you’ve ever used these words about Lucio” or anything, but back to the beginning of this:

I am assuming you all have positive intent, that you are all well-meaning and that you are definitely not trying to be racist. Because of this, I feel like it’s my responsibility to tell you when a thing you’re saying carries meanings that you maybe didn’t consider and definitely didn’t mean to imply. I know I would feel foolish and guilty if I found out something I’d been saying casually actually had a racist meaning that I wasn’t aware of, so I just want to say that if anyone reading this is (like me) a white person who’s really truly well-intentioned and doesn’t mean to be racist at all, your response here should be “oh wow, I didn’t know that Boy and Son are names you generally shouldn’t call black people, I’ll be more conscious of that in the future,” and if your response is to become defensive and try to prove that it isn’t bad because you didn’t mean it “that way,” it either means you aren’t well-intentioned and do mean to be racist OR it means you didn’t read the post. 

That being said, I’m happy to inform where I can, but I’m also not black, and a lot of black writers have explained this a lot more eloquently than me. I suggest you do some googling and research what they’ve said on the subject, because I’m sure they’ll give you a clearer picture than I possibly can. 


Hill Harper

rank Eugene Hill Harper (born May 17, 1966), known professionally as Hill Harper, is an American filmtelevision and stage actor, and author. An alumnus ofHarvard Law School, he is best known for his portrayal of Will Beckford in the 2000 film The Skulls.

Harper was born in Iowa City, Iowa, the son of Harry Harper, a psychiatrist, and Marilyn Hill, who was one of the first black practicing anesthesiologists in the United States. He has been acting since the age of 7. Harper graduated from Bella Vista High School in 1984, then graduated magna cum laude from Brown University and also graduated with a J.D.cum laude, from Harvard Law School, and a Master of Public Administration from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. During his years at Harvard, he was a full-time member of Boston’s Black Folks Theater Company, one of the oldest and most acclaimed black theater troupes in the country. While a student at Harvard, Harper befriended President Barack Obama. Harper and Obama met on the basketball court and became good friends during their first year as law students.

Although Harper obtained a J.D. and M.P.A., he chose to use neither and moved to Los Angeles to pursue acting. He was awarded an honorary doctorate in 2009 by Westfield State College. Born Francis Harper, he adopted the name “Hill” as tribute to both his maternal and paternal ancestors

The fear of addressing a Black Man in a not-so-Black space.

Submitted by Anonymous

Last week, I was in Court waiting to pay a fine for a speeding ticket. I sat next to an older Black man, looking somewhat in his late 30’s or early 40’s. He complained loudly about how long the process was taking. Across from us sat a Hispanic kid, no older than 23. Across the room from us, accompanied by his mother. A Black father and his teenage daughter stood, talking over their case with a lawyer. In the corner next to me, sat an Indian girl rocking her Fenty Trainers. Standing next to her, were two middle age Korean ladies, who traded details about a fake Gucci bag one just brought for $360. An obese-looking white Priest (or a white man wearing Clerical clothing) walked in with his wife. The Black Man sitting next to me says out loud “Damn I wonder what he did to be in here, He probably molested someone’s child.” The room went quiet.

I sat next to him, herd every bit of the vile things he was saying out loud. We were in a room filled with people of every race, class backgrounds, education levels and so on. I wondered why no one said anything, or If I should be the one to say something. Three minutes goes by, and he does not stop voicing his disgust at there being a Priest, in a Court house. He must be a molester. The Priest, by this time has reclined to another corner of the room with his wife. They hear everything this man is saying, but says nothing. With every sentence uttered, I can see the priest’s face become a darker shade of pink. Before I could fully think it thru, I blurted out “Would you please shut up, we’re all in here for traffic violations.” He turned to me and said “Who the fuck are you with your bougie ass?” I replied, “I am a Catholic woman and I’m deeply offended by your words.” Now, while I did grow up Catholic, I haven’t been to church in over 10 years. I don’t think I’ve ever uttered the words “I’m a Catholic woman” before. I say this to say that this has nothing to do with religion, but everything to do with the fear I had. The fear of addressing a loud-mouthed Black Man in a space filled with people who simply accepted his bigotry, and decided not to say anything.

After I kindly asked him to shut up, I became his new target. He called me fake for having a weave, and slung other insults my way. He told me he’s happy my boyfriend wasn’t there because he would’ve beat him up. I laughed. The Priest jumped in saying to the older man “How dare he talk to a woman that way.” It was cute he tried to help, but I’ve had years of experience defeating older Black men with my words.

We caused such a commotion, the court officers came in to calm the situation but the priest and I, were left with “hey, it’s freedom of speech.”

Is it normal that I had a fear of “scolding” a Black Man in front of non-Black POC and white people? Calling out a Black person for their ignorance, closed-mindedness and bigotry in the face of non-Black people, when those are the stereotypes we’re trying so hard to curve.

I am a 23 year old Black Woman, sharing her experience in a hope to understand it.