I’ve seen some posts going around that pretty much say let white people steal Black people cultures because years from now, when we’ve move on to bigger and better things, they’ll still be stuck on jazz and hip hop.
White people didn’t invent rock? Elvis jacked that from us and made it popular with whites. What do Black people say two or three decades later? “Rock is white”
White people start using Black english terminology? “Oh shit y’all, we gotta come up with a new word now, white people using that one!” [Do white people reinvent their lexicon every time we use English words?]
Why is everything “Oh no WHITE PEOPLE HAVE CAUGHT ON!!! LETS ABANDON SHIP!!!”
Let’s not even talk about anything that predates America.
Now here’s what I don’t understand:
How are Black people ever supposed to have a solid legacy if we keep abandoning our culture/Black art forms to every other race’s co-opting and appropriation? Who’s going to teach us what once was so we don’t have to keep reinventing the wheel and keep changing every time a white person, like, touches us?
Everybody knows that white people are the masters of stealing shit that doesn’t belong to them, setting up shop, and putting a price tag on it—that includes other people as merchandise. They have no respect for what many Black people view as sacred or important.
So we only want the cultural stuff that’s “relevant”? Fuck everything else???
No wonder “the Black identity” is so confusing. Black folks will never have anything, especially not a future or culture, for as long as we’re only concerned with what’s popular and catchy.
Because, if we keep on like this, two hundred years from now, some white folks or [insert non-Black American race HERE] gone say they invented jazz, hip hop, and rap, that they wrote The Color Purple, Gaddy Douglas was half Asian and half Latina, that Zoe Saldana was a perfect Nina Simone.
And you know what the Black folks who these people will listen to are going to say?
“Who cares—that was two hundred years ago. This is what’s now.”
Just ask the Egyptians, who, of course, have always been white.
Because everybody but us has a right and desire to fight for their culture, legacy, and history. Because everybody except us can make, write, and edit history as they please. Its not like they’ve never tried to write us out of history and context before…right?
[ADDENDUM: I do believe that whatever Black people create is golden, we are the originators, they are the imitators–they can’t really take or own what doesn’t really belong to them. And at the same time, I this post poses a valid question in terms of the way Black youth seems to think about Black culture and appropriation.]