Know Your Roots
April 8, 2007. I had been waiting and waiting. Yes, it was Easter, Resurrection Sunday and a close friend's birthday, but it was something else. ROOTS came on TV One. Yes!!!! Or do I mean no!!!
I'd written the date in my mental rolodex becase I love ROOTS. I love movies and documentaries about Black people and our history, so it's only right that ROOTS be at the top of the list. I'd seen it numerous time when I was younger. I especially like the segments with Kizzie and Chicken George. So at 7 p.m. last night, my television was on and I was ready. So I thought.
The miniseries started out in Gambia, West Africa. A family is living life, carefree, with a new son, Kunte Kinte. You know the story. The scene switched to the white men talking about taking the voyage to Africa for "good cargo." Suddenly, I hear "we should be able to find some good, hardworking nigger-bitches for cargo." WHAT THE HEEZIE???
This character talked about Africans as if they were "bucks" or "mules," saying "they're really slow in thinking and smarts, but they're strong and can do good work." TERRIBLE!!
I knew it was time to holler at ROOTS tomorrow. It was a bit much, for even me. I don't remember those scenes at all. Seeing them piled into the bottom of that ship like sardines, dogs, like nothing. It was not a good feeling. I'm tuning in today, but this may be harder than I thought. Sometimes it makes me ask why'd all this happen to my people. Slavery has had an extremely adverse effect on African Americans. There are some mindsets, actions and thoughts that equal opportunity and affirmative action cannot reverse. Have you ever thought about how it would be if we were never taken from our homeland? I wonder...