Special Post: Cool Pose, Hip Hop & Black Masculinity

I have seen it time and time again: Black people (especially us men) represent what it means to be cool. To other cultures,  this rings true (Culture Appreciation – New Term!) We are the originators…and that’s were it stops…kind of.

  1. I never considered myself black until I was about 9 years old. When I used to create characters in various video games, I remember giving them every skin color except my own. (My wrestler’s name was Rebellion. The irony..)
  2. I wasn’t aware of my ethnicity until I moved to Florida when I was 12. Nothing more nerve-wracking being called a n***a in a menacing manner..by people of the same ethnicity. 
  3. I grew up like everyone else and realize there’s a double standard on a lot of things.

    How can we say Black Lives Matter when we don’t regard each black life lost similarly in the media? Regardless of race, gender and/or sexual orientation? When we sing and rap along side the toxic values of materialism and jet restless when these things leads to our downfall?

    (July 9th) On a day like today where we haveethe last thing I want to hear As I type this posting I think about the term cool pose. J Cole wasn’t lying when he said no role models. When I look around my community and see Black men opting out of responsibility, even life in general.Seems like everyone has time to party, smoke, drink and hang on the block. Yet, I’ve noticed when it comes to the workforce, we as Black men are few and far between.Question is: By keeping it real, are we disqualifying ourselves from manhood? Unfortunately, all signs point to yes. I have begun to disassociate myself from everyone who isn’t a positive influence in my life. It has been tough. 

    On any given day, it is walking a tightrope. Where identifying with who you are goes against what it means to be a Black man. There is no room for grey at times…

    There is something relatable to my identity as I see the man in this picture for this special post. For the wrestling fans, this is Bray Wyatt. Announcing his arrival is an array of random cult images accompanied by an eerie sound…then it goes to darkness. He comes out with his minions (or family, give or take, depending on the match-up) into a sea of fireflies. He only can trust his lamp to guide him forward to perform. Many see this as a routine entrance, I see it in a different way: 

    • Notice the images in the beginning (Represents Birth and Death to me)
    • Due to different circumstances, The lamp represents a beacon of hope and opportunity. It can easily turn into pride and greed just as easily.
    • Notice the darkness. Every one of my brothers have felt this one way or another living in America. This can mean different things here. The road less traveled will always be the darkest. The fireflies can be support in your time of need or can be relentless eyes watching your every movement, even when its uncalled for.
    • Is it safer for him to walk alone in the darkness, or with his family? It is dangerous either way.

    I’m not for throwing my whole community under the bus because I do things differently. But I’m not the one blind to the hypocrisy either. It is time to show them what you are truly made of.


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