Success angers Black folks - EddieFrancisNOLA's Blog
Success angers Black folks
You hear it time and time again these days--"Turn your haters into congratulators!" The term "hater" has become tired and cliche in the Black community, but its relevance will never die. That is because there are so many motivated Black folks who are destined for success, whatever their personal definitions of success are. Whether we are talking individuals, organizations, or institutions, Black folks all over the place are making things happen for themselves and others. And that is a breath of fresh air for those of us who chose to live positively.
And there are "those" Black folks.
Exhibit A. I graduated from a Black, all-boys Catholic high school. We have produced a mayor, judges, elected officials, a Tony-winning playwright, an NBA coach, Super Bowl champion football players, educators, NBA champions, etc. Yet the population that finds our presence most grotesque are Black folks. We're called everything from arrogant to gay to "White-washed" (which is really funny since our efforts opened doors for many a Black high school). Every time one of our graduates publicly makes a mistake, negroes damn near have a party.
Exhibit B. My employer has done an amazing transformation over the past five years. This is the second HBCU I've worked for. True, HBCUs have their faults; but some, like the one I work for, have gone above and beyond to earn the public's respect. Still, Black folks in Dallas insist that our success is some kind of accident.
Exhibit C. How many Black folks are secretly saying that they don't believe Barack Obama will win a second term? We all know that there is a possibility that he won't win; but the underlying belief that he isn't "supposed" to win a second term has been growing among some Black folks who supposedly support him and simply want to be "realistic".
What people truly need to understand is that negativity is tiring. Physically, it's easy, because it takes no effort to be negative. Mentally and emotionally, however, it is nothing short of exhausting to those of us who are simply trying. With positivity comes more physical effort but much sweeter emotional and mental rewards.
That's why mama always said, "If you can't say somethin' nice, don't say anything at all." and "It don't cost a thing to smile." and "Nothin' good comes easy." and all of those wonderful cliches. Mama knew what she was talking about, didn't she? She knew that someone was always ready to talk your joy and it would be the people you least expected. The next time you feel that weird sigh of relief about someone else's failure, ask yourself why it feels so good to you. Then, ask yourself why your success matters to others.