Back in 1995, a little movie came out that at the time seemed a tad far-fetched…imagine a world where Black folks were in the ruling class and well white folks by and large were not with maybe a few exceptions. White Man’s Burden at the time it was released seemed like some sort of fantasy…of course fast forward to 2009.
A world where a Black man is the more powerful man on earth, president of the United States. A world where white men are starting to feel a tad oppressed, a world where a cop in a certain well known academic town answers a call about a possible burglary only to end up arresting a premier scholar who not only happens to be Black but also happens to be friends with the president of the United States. A world where the president of the United States actually takes a second in the midst of a prime time speech to speak out on behalf of his buddy and essentially call the cop who did the arresting stupid.
I know I must be getting old because had someone told me this would actually be a real story and not something out of a movie similar to White Man’s Burden, I would have laughed. Seriously, whether or not you think Sgt Crowley was right or wrong, or that Henry Louis Gates was right or wrong, the fact is that having a Black man at the helm of the United States is going to force us at some point as a nation to start having real discussions about race relations in this country.
Funny thing is that for 7 out of 10 Black Americans upon hearing what happened to Gates I am sure the thought was that’s just business as usual..as my son at 17 jokes, he has already had his first encounter with the po-po for the simple crime of walking down the street while being Black.
Anyway if anyone else is struck with how surreal this situation is I suggest you look up White Man’s Burden on Netflix, it may make for an interesting flick in light of where we are as a nation.