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Opinions of Saturday, 25 July 2009

Columnist: Pryce, Daniel K.

The Incessant Retrogression of Black Folk

In days of yore, Moderate Melanin had an idea: to roam the Earth and subdue it, but was it according to instruction or instinctiveness? If instruction, who gave it? A still voice in the mass in front of his occiput? The mushy matter beneath his pate? Or instinctiveness? If the latter, where did the power come from? And why was it not Massive Melanin who conquered the world? Did Massive Melanin lack instruction or instinctiveness? But why? Same mushy stuff in front of the occiput and beneath the pate, so why the cavernous difference? Men have attempted to understand this mystery for centuries, but to no avail. It behooves each person to examine, if one has never done so, why Moderate Melanin was so much better at many things. A curse on Massive Melanin? A congenital blight? A consanguineous anomaly? What then is it? I need to know because I need to understand.

Ages past, under the aegis of cerebral efficiency, Moderate Melanin embarked on a journey, the end of which he probably knew not at the time. But Moderate Melanin did embark on the expedition anyway, setting aside his reservations and apprehensions and making a move that Massive Melanin may have found utterly unfathomable and/or downright emasculating. But why did Massive Melanin lack such foresight and power? Why, really?

So, Moderate Melanin constructed a dinghy; learned how to follow the stars to his destination; and left behind family and native land to seek adventure and fortune, knowing that he may never return. But he did not vacillate – he pursued his goal with unrelenting fierceness. Would Massive Melanin have done the same? History has shown otherwise. But why?

Then Moderate Melanin landed on the shores of Massive Melanin. Moderate Melanin, by design or accident, presumably had a message of peace for his counterpart. But how did he do it? How did he overcome Massive Melanin's massive suspicion of a stranger in his backyard? Not just an ordinary stranger, but one who looked so different. Powerless and exposed, Moderate Melanin could have been slaughtered like a lamb, but he had brewed a plan, albeit in the teapot of contempt, to win the trust of Massive Melanin, which the former miraculously did! So, how did Moderate Melanin effectuate his hegemonic plan? What did Moderate Melanin say to convince Massive Melanin that both could become friends and partners in subduing the Earth, only for the former to renege on this agreement later? How did Moderate Melanin do it? How, really?

Then Moderate Melanin gained ground on the grounds of Massive Melanin. Moderate Melanin would eventually subjugate Massive Melanin and become his ruler. With a far smaller population, Moderate Melanin would soon have power over Massive Melanin. Actually, Moderate Melanin would soon make the laws of society – Massive Melanin's society. But how did Moderate Melanin do it, knowing that he lacked the numbers to stand up to Massive Melanin, in case there was trouble? I need to know because I need to understand.

Then Moderate Melanin went to the leaders of Massive Melanin and said: Accept our gifts, but give us your most able-bodied men in return, who will go with us to our own land. (The purposes of this request were initially unclear to Massive Melanin.) Strangely, Massive Melanin agreed! And where there was no cooperation, Moderate Melanin savagely carted away Massive Melanin's progenies, no apologies rendered.

No one has enunciated better the epitomic denunciation of what Massive Melanin had to endure than the great Jamaican-born lyricist, via these words: "Ev'rytime I hear the crack of a whip, [m]y blood runs cold. I remember on the slave ship, [how] they brutalize[d] [our] very souls. Today they say that we are free, [o]nly to be chained in poverty." But how was Massive Melanin so easily hoodwinked? Because I genuinely ask myself today: How could someone come to my house and suggest to me to trade in my boys for silver and gold and expect me to oblige? How possible is that? So how did Moderate Melanin do it, and how did he do it for so many decades before his own conscience – or was it rather the conscience of the world? – made him stop the human degradation? How did Moderate Melanin carry out his nefarious plan for so long? I need to know because I need to understand.

Then Moderate Melanin, somehow, gained knowledge to invent all the great machines of this world. Moderate Melanin has invented machines that Massive Melanin can only refer to as astounding. And Moderate Melanin keeps reaching for the frontiers of advancement, with no end in sight, whereas Massive Melanin continues to remain on the fringes of technological advancement. So, why the great dichotomy? Is it instruction or instinctiveness or both? Then Moderate Melanin convinced Massive Melanin to surrender his natural resources for exploitation, but Moderate Melanin will determine, in the process, who gets what from the exploitation and exploration. But why was Massive Melanin so gullible? What sort of insanity had bedeviled Massive Melanin? A congenital blight? A consanguineous anomaly? What then was it? I need to know because I need to understand.

Today, Moderate Melanin controls everything: power, wealth, education, technology, natural resources that they do not naturally own. So it appears that Massive Melanin will remain in the shadow of Moderate Melanin for ages to come. So, why are things this way? Is it a lack of instruction or instinctiveness in Massive Melanin? Has it always been the case of an unmitigated penchant for self-indulgence, an insatiable desire for dominance, or a hardnosed willingness to crush the will of all who stand in the way, as far as Moderate Melanin is concerned? I need to know because I need to understand. So, if you have the answers, let me know, because I need to know and I need to understand. Once again, as the Patois-tinged lyrics of that great songwriter reveal, "Didn't my people before me slave for this country? Now you look me with that scorn, [t]hen you eat up all my corn." And the scorn is everywhere – when applying for a visa to go to Moderate Melanin's original abode; when seeking employment in Moderate Melanin's original abode; when attempting to make great strides in Moderate Melanin's original abode.

So, when will the humiliation and dehumanization end for the sons and daughters of Black folk? Could it be when they really come together to advance their own schemes? When their leaders start thinking about the welfare of the ordinary man in society? When their leaders demand that they be appropriately compensated for their natural resources? I need to know because I need to understand!

The writer, Daniel K. Pryce, holds a master’s degree in public administration from George Mason University, U.S.A. He is a member of the national honor society for public affairs and administration in the U.S.A. He can be reached at dpryce@cox.net.

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