Racism In The Work Place

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“Dear Mr. Nigger”,

“I hope you don’t break the Babe’s record. How do I tell my kids that a nigger did it. But it took, more at bats, live ball, and other nigger tricks. I wish you the worst at any thing you do nigger! KKK (forever)”.

How does one conceptualize the ideas of death when it looms over them like an omnipresent dark cloud of terrorism? The relentless tirade of exhaustive torment in knowing that your mere presence at your place of occupational labor would require FBI protection, all but speaks epic volumes about the deep seeded venomous plague that is racism in America. This letter in particular was addressed to baseball legend Henry Aaron during his campaign towards eclipsing the longstanding all time home run record test was then held by the iconic Babe Ruth. This was one of many poisonous darts spewed in the direction of Henry Aaron during this era of social injustices and social unrest. Henry Aaron would also receive countless death threats, one famously known as the “Man In The Red Jacket”, in which a man described in a letter written to Henry Aaron that he would shoot him during a random game and that Henry Aaron would know who he was because he would be wearing a red jacket. This prompted Henry Aaron to tell his teammates not to sit next to him while in the dugout for fear that they too could be victimized by the looming threat of an assailants bullet meant for him. As we are once again amidst yet another racially fueled social matter in the realms of sports with the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers Donald Sterling; I find it extremely shocking that people are actually shocked. We can skip his well renowned history that could be a recipe for Bigotry 101 and go straight to the bigger picture. The bigger picture is one simple ponderous: “What has really changed in America?” We can retort by saying that economically we are afforded greater opportunity of financial gain, however that still does not sever the root on the tree of woes that has existed some 500 plus years. And what has existed for more than 500 years is the tradition of racism. Now have we moved forward from an ancestral perspective? The answer to that question is yes. But is the war over? The answer to that is a resounding “hell no!”. This issue of Donald Sterling was a necessary wake up trumpet for not only African-Americans, but for America as a whole. The money, the fame and the comfort continues to pacify and tranquillize the dragon that has pillaged this great nation for ions with flames of inequality and inhumane treatment. And dare I say that the African-Americans have been part and parcel in contributing to this with minstrel television and minstrel music acts all for the sake of selling out for the almighty dollar. There is a responsibility to educate and become more proactive in our plight towards abolishing racism and moving towards a better tomorrow. It is not just a certain culture or race’s responsibility, it is an American responsibility. In an era that elected the first African-American president only to see a constituent contemporary wag her finger dismissively in his face like an unwanted child, speaks strongly of this country’s temperament and the fact that our work is far from being complete. The Donald Sterlings and the Daniel Snyders of the world need to be made examples of. How racial epithets as logos and plantation mentalities continues to exists in this day and time falls on the lap of Caucasian Americans as well. To remain silent is to accept, your voices in these matters need to come to the forefront as well. #we are a work in progress

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