The traditional narrative of Blackness in America is driven by the Black bourgeois; a class of Af-Ams who've been imbued with a sense of noblesse oblige toward 'Black' culture, generally speaking. As Af-Ams fought and died to be respected as equals in American society, this narrative focused on showcasing the best examples of Black culture -- or more accurately, those which 'Whites' would not find objectionable. The intent behind the production and distribution of positive Black imagery was certainly well-meaning and innocuous, if not invaluable to a minority culture coming to grips with the realities of self-determination.
The Black Power movement of the 60's ushered in a militant variation on du Bois' Talented Tenth hypothesis. Confrontational in tone and deed, this buppie militia represents a dissonant political vision. Essentially, these would-be Black neo-culture warriors fuse romanticized versions of Malcolm X, Kwame Toure, a young Jesse Jackson, etc., with a nihilistic, cynical take on 'Black' culture into a counter-narrative intended to effect the wholesale socioeconomic advancement of Af-Ams. In an odd twist, the many bits and pieces that make up this counter-narrative aren't of, or from within Af-Am culture, but its exterior. And... they're much like long-dead corpses exhumed by crank scientists bent on answering questions never asked. The buppie militia makes a habit of subjecting everything to a phony 'Black test'; an exam with no correct answers or cogent questions. Ask one of these signifying monkeys what's the point of raking, say, The Cosby Show over the coals for allegedly being inauthentic, and they'll respond by dissembling. Some of the more intricate scenarios involve wholesale conspiracies befitting a summertime Hollywood blockbuster, complete with decontextualized factoids for an air of intellectual authenticity. In example: Welfare was a program conceived and implemented for the purpose of continuing the subjugation of Af-Ams -- destroying its individuals' sense of dignity and purpose, and therefore destabilizing its families. Hackumentary filmmaker Janks Morton, Jr.'s What Black Men Think went so far as to indict established Af-Am organizations and politicians as co-conspirators in the nefarious plot.
A favorite term of the negroscenti is 'irrelevant', as in, 'So-and-so is irrelevant; nobody's buying what they're selling'. Alternative Negro culture employs 'irrelevant' as a generic put down of the Black establishment on every issue to which members of the former arrive, uninvited, and on C.P.T., to volunteer their post-mortems. I find their conceit ironic being that the same Alt.Blacks are conspicuously absent when the shit goes down or hard work needs to get done.
I came across the latest Black Spock-With-a-Beard outrage at The Root, where a number of aspiring Designated
Negroes were (again) pronouncing the NAACP 'irrelevant' for challenging the Hot Trailer Park Mess, AKA the "Tea Party", to disavow itself of racist elements. In overlooking the proverbial forest of Ben Jealous and the NAACP's (1) commanding the attention of the country's largest media outlets and, (2) causing the Hot Trailer Park Mess to collectively blink by publicly tossing one of its affiliate organizations under a big assed interstate coach, the negrorati B-squad saw as trees the NAACP's resolution. I'm willing to bet money that the pseudo-progressive talking points that take root on The Root (pun intended) are undoubtedly parroted throughout the Afrosphere on sites that feature 'Black' politics. These self-righteous, self-appointed Knights of the Black Table wield their swords in the air at the NAACP, National Urban League, Congressional Black Caucus, etc., for not being Mr. Goodwrench to every problem affecting Af-Ams. I believe they'd criticize Jesus Christ for turning water into wine rather than sugar-free energy drink. Only then they'll add to the conspiranoia next week by explaining rappers' sugar-free energy drink endorsements increase Af-Ams' collective dysfunction. Ergo the ultimate contradiction in Alt.Blackness: there can be no winners. Ever.
Neoliberal Identitarianism - Race Discouse Displaces Political Economy - nonsite | Black political debate and action through the early 1960s focused on concrete issues—employment, housing, wages, unionization, discrimination...