Saturday, November 05, 2005

My friend and I...

I mentioned a conversation that we've had earlier, this time we talked a little bit about or actually spring boarded from the topic of the indictment of Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff. I have honestly not really followed this case, I suppose that what I get for following this from the right side of the aisle (they're trying to turn this into a non-issue, we shall see). In any case he claims this could take our government to its knees. I didn't really say anything however, I'm not that sure about it but let's just say if the prosecution really did find some improprieties then this could be disastrous for America.

Now my friend doesn't hate white people but he feels this great connection with the struggle. Probably more than I do. He's a history major and I have no doubt he's done more to study black history. He once mention how a spiritual that came up in one of his classes he already knew was written by a white composer on top of that it was a little differetnt from one composed by a black composer.

Anyway we talked of a number of issues. A little lifestyle, a little politics and history of course. Lifestyle, well we talked about materialism. I talked up this music video that I saw from Destiny's Child years ago (I haven't watched music videos in years or I'm not as faithful). It featured this rapper Timbaland who was rapping about his Lincoln Navigator. I see this as a promotion of materialism and he talked about those individuals who wants those crazy rims on their cars. I may just call it materialism, but he would refer to this as extreme materialism. Though I'll admit I want some nice things my self, but I at least want some land. (Which reminds me, when I finally graduate, I should look into buying me a two-flat when I'm settle back into Chicago.) That's the issue with the youngins, they want the cars before a roof over thier heads.

Politics, well of course we talked about Libby but we go into his belief system at this moment. First and foremost he doesn't believe America is a truly Democratic nation and says he didn't vote. He asked if I voted, I said yes and I saw it as a duty. He agrees it's a duty, however, it just might not count anyway and they'll do what they want to do. I can't disagree perhaps when we elect someone to office we are always taking a big risk.

However he said something else I can agree with. That it isn't always enough to vote for one guy just because you don't want the other guy in office. That's why I believe the Democrats lost last year. Anybody But Bush and the vulgarity and all this other stuff that they made their selling point to Americans didn't sell. And their candidate against Bush wasn't much to begin with. When Kerry won the nomination, the Democrats lost the election.

So I went to the next topic. And J just knew this was a good topic. What does he think about the fact taht 90% of blacks vote Democrat almost without fail? I think this one trend is probably the one which hurts us the most. Why should the Republicans or anyone else include us in their plans if we just won't vote for them? And the other party can play lip service but barely lift a finger because they got our votes and they didn't have to work for it. That's the one thing that I strive to make a change for.

But he used the one word I hear a lot. Consciousness. In my Internation Relations class, consciouness was refered to in a theory specific the Marxist theory. My professor stressed that the proletariats can't rise up against the bourgeosie because they're not conscious. Awareness of what we are doing and the issues that affect us and maybe even a simple solution and to support those who have solution. Perhaps black America needs to be conscious about the possibility that voting Democrat isn't making conditions in black America any better and it is time to change our voting patterns. We were conscious in the 1950s and 1960s. We knew that Jim Crow or any other discriminatory practices were the enemy and we were willing to do something about it. Can we do something like that today?

His solution to black America's political issues is to say we should form our own party. I didn't say anything, but I would quietly disagree. Third parties unless there is general dissatisfaction with the two main partys aren't going to succeed. The GOP is hyped as being a third party today with Abe Lincoln however they came around when the other major party besides the Democrats, the Whigs, was dying as a party. The idea really does look good on paper but I don't see it as holding traction, blacks and other minorites need to have their hand in both parties. And may the best ideas win.

We talked a little history. Rosa Parks has been an important issue this week. We talked about a little boycott that happened in Montgomery. I never understood this until fairly recently because I've been hearing about this since I was a child. When the laws that Mrs. Parks broke on that fateful day were unjust the black community in Montgomery, Alabama of the 1950s decided to take action. Perhaps blacks made up most of the fare paying customers on the city buses but we weren't respected as customers and they decided blacks didn't have the priviledges thereof. So they found otherways to get around the city. They walked, they carpooled, I'm quite sure they found other ways. Ultimately they looked at their bottom line and black Americans one a victory which was a model for more victories in the Civil Rights movement. So my friend gives the example of could the people of Atlanta do this? And could Altanta's MARTA suffer because of it? In most major cities blacks still make up most of the ridership of public transportation so if they give the bulk of their customer a good reason to take their business elsewhere, then MARTA is in trouble.

This was another interesting conversation. I may not agree with him on a number of issues. I'm more conservative, however, he's still a good guy to have an intellectual discussion with.

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