Is Black Joy Magic? Absolutely [Op-Ed]
This year has been an experience most definitely. Most conversations had about 2020 result in a lot of sighing, COVID-19 mentions, and an overbearing blanket of dread. While this is true for all, 2020 for African Americans, has been nothing short of psychologically traumatic.
Since about February with the tragic murder of Ahmaud Arbery, images and debates about black bodies in the streets have haunted us. It’s exhausting, I’m exhausted. To be completely real I really am trying to figure out the necessity of rehearsing my trauma just for it to fall on deaf ears, blind eyes, and closed minds. That is where the grace of God comes in however because to love my neighbor as myself also means to love my neighbor who doesn’t love me.
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Fatherhood advocate Beleaf, rapper, and collective owner Jon Keith, and filmmaker George Coletrain, partnered with Youtube and made in 22 minutes, what being black in America has been like our whole lives. The finished product? “Black Joy is Magic.”
From driving down the streets and “Back the Blue” flags telling me good morning, to driving to college and having an array of confederate flags as land markers, it’s hard. Why do I have to keep seeing symbols and signs that remind me of this nation’s pure hatred of my kind?
How has anything related to Naziism, illegal in Germany, but in 2020 Mississippi has just removed the confederate from their state flag? There is a steady trend of performative activism, but a lack to forget the racist ways of the past, enforced by keeping white America comfortable while trying to appease Black America. I’ve had enough routine but I don’t think the routine has had enough of me.
Even today in the workplace we still suffer the effects of living in two different realities. When Devontae was just trying to get through his day, he was met by his coworkers and bosses with open displays of being disconnected and tone-deaf to his daily struggle. I won’t go too in-depth with this because I want you to experience this for what it is. Real-life, my life, my black life, and my black life that matters. Black Joy is definitely magic, and I hope you learn something.