It was cool after the Monday show, but after the Tuesday episode things hit the fan. It was as if everybody in the world was looking at roots. And seeing that folks from around my way were selectively bused to a predominantly white school, the environment during that week was completely different. Prior to this, we all just had a ball, no problems never. But after that Tuesday segment, like I said it was on. See, that was the episode when Kunta Kinta was made, via whip to call himself Tobe.
There was a tension in the air that day. That is all we talked about on the bus. And it didn’t take long that morning before the advents of the prior evening manifested itself in real life form. And it was all started when one white kid called my folk Tobe. There may have been 40 to 50 fights that morning before home room until after first period, causing the principal to cancel school and send us black kids back home. Rocks were thrown at our buses and we would get off and resume the head cutting we had been engaged in all of that morning. It was like we were doing what we felt our ancestors should have done.
Just thinking about this has me on edge, in particular as it relates to the present political environment as proffered by Mr. McCain and Mrs. Palin. When I hear “Joe Sixpack”, I can’t help but think this is a code phrase for not me, or the average American, but rather those that harbor the hatred of the past and the racist beliefs that yielded Jim Crow, and even slavery. For me, the average American is more like Bill Jones. For we all have Bills, and see them going up each day: Light Bill, Auto bill, tuition Bill and Gas Bill. Not no Joe Sixpack. I see a man, somewhere in the woods, with a rebel flag on his truck, with a rifle and one that may pride himself on living in a neighborhood with no black folks, Latino folk, or Asian folk; even taking pride that there may be no kids as such attending the school that his child does. I also see a man that would wear a shirt that says “Nigger Please, it’s called the Whitehouse. True, I love me some brew, and pride myself on my Gat and rifle game, but I too am an Average America, but don’t see myself as no sixpack Joe.
I guess this is the true state of American affairs with respect to out political climate. I know and believe that most Americans are true civil-minded patriots and frown on hate regardless. I just do hope that folks like us, regardless of race and gender or any other contrived difference fall on our commonality as being human beings, and stand against this, for I don’t ever wanna be called Tobe again and if someone like Joe Sixpack does, he best be prepared to take a loss, for real though. I mean its like from Tobe to Joe Sixpack and back again.