MNR: And the Band Played On (Stakes is High)
“…y’all know them stakes is high.”
De La Soul, “Stakes is High”
I could write a thesis on the height of the stakes in the world today. I could write a thesis on the aforementioned bar, the song, and group. I may do all the above in time. Today, I’m going to speak on the stakes of life as we know it in America while blending the song and De La into the discussion.
My perpetual non-bias and aptitude for injecting equity into any type of ethical analysis makes me complete, although I must admit that it is a bit uncanny. My true gift from God is my ability to achieve catharsis through my pen and keystroke. It’s usually how I navigate through all the PTSD from mi vida loca (with the GP lob off the backboard assist from Mary Juana) and the times we currently live in. If not for faith and my gift, I’d be somewhere locked in to keep me away from myself (yeah – think on that). I’m going to beat you to the punch. Before you wonder how I had the gall to admit to something so candid I want to know…how do you achieve apathy? [I’m going to assume that you know the definition of apathy] Because if you care, if you really care, the fact that you’re not on pins and needles daily is extraordinary, and I’d like to know how.
Come take this walk with me…
As a man of true faith and conviction, I don’t want to hear the cookie cutter substitution of faith in place of ignorance. All believers trust and have faith. But I’m skeptical as to how many believers are acutely aware of the things happening in the world in which they exist because if they really are, then they’d be spending every day addressing life in the same fervent manner that De La Soul did a generation ago when they dropped the album and title song. How the fuck can you go about your daily routine singing a Lady Smurf melody and skipping along as if all this shit isn’t in absolute bedlam? This leads me to the question of the day: do y’all MF know what time it is? Man, them stakes high den a MF.
We live in an America that is seemingly split down the middle, although it’s probably more like a 62/38 split. Look, I’m not acting like every white person is palling up with us-skinned folk and adopting our cause, but I am confident that many are decent individuals. Politics aside, they believe in equality and fairness in life. I’m not mad at them for having conservative views. I’m not mad at them for being proud to be white. But that’s not the 38. The 38 are tRump/MTG/Klan Grand Wizard acolytes and meat glazers. They want us in a subservient position or dead, plain and simple. Any veiled or outright homage to the “good ole days” is overt xenophobic code language. The fact is that America is truly a melting pot. Technology has educated, enlightened, and exposed. The revolution was in fact televised. Now, the establishment is on its heels. Their children came up listening to rap music and loving the hip hop culture. They see the world differently. It’s a new day. Their days are numbered, and they know that. The establishment is doing everything in their power to try to stop the rain from falling.
Please don’t ignore or discard what certain states are doing regarding voting rights. Even though tactics like limiting polling hours/locations and reducing or eliminating drop boxes are evil, they can be overcome with communication and resilience. If your gpa or ggpa had to walk three miles to the schoolhouse and chop wood for the fire before beginning class, you can stand your fat ass in line for a couple of hours to vote for the persons who will make political decisions for you. Sorry, but I don’t want to hear it. Shut the hell up and get your tay-tah chip eatin’ ass out to the polls early. And take your chips, granola bars, and water with you because THOSE states made giving out snacks and water to those in polling lines a crime. Smmfh. My true anger is directed toward trying to change laws to appoint partisan entities to review “suspect” elections, elections deemed suspect when blue voters legally vote a person into office (and I’m not a Democrat). That’s outright illegal. There should be no way a person or group of persons can ever have the power to void the result of an election because they “feel” there was fraud/corruption. Laws like that open the door to outright fuckery. If you don’t think another American Civil War (I included American because stupid Americans think that the term Civil War only applies to 1861-1865) is possible, you are dumb AF. This country is more divided than it was in 1860.
50 million Republicans still believe that the 2020 election was stolen. 15% of Americans believe in QAnon. Before you cuss in disgust, do know that I’ve had the Q discussion with more than one of the younger brothers that I know in the community. I’m talmbout everyday 20-something Black men, sports watching, PS4/5 playing, weed smoking, family and community loving individuals. No type of weirdo shit. No brainwashing. Just enlightened young men who read and actually feel that many parts of the Q myth have merit, especially the parts pertaining to celebrities being involved in satanism and pedophilia. I’ll do one better. Case in point: 5G (drops mic and walks off stage). Marinate on that. The commonality in all of this is communication, or better, misinformation. I won’t even get into the numbers of our folk who are saying FUCK NO to the COVID vaccine. I disagree with their sentiment, but I have no right to feel any type of way. Black folk have always been skeptical of anything administered by the government, and for good damn reason. They have every right to say no to the vaccine or anything else they choose to say no to. The same respect extends to the Jewish sects who refuse vaccines and Anti-vaxxers of the country. America is to blame for this. It is what is.
I guess the ultimate thesis of this blog is that it seems that most of you are totally oblivious to how close this world is to derailing at a moment’s notice. I’m not saying the aftermath will be apocalyptic, but it will directly lead to a fast progression toward utter destruction. At this point I’ve all but given up on trying to communicate how much peril the world is in from an environmental standard. The simple fact is that someone who’s reading this blog at this very moment will likely be alive when most of southern Florida and lower Manhattan no longer exist because they will be underwater. No one gives a fuck about the melting of the polar ice caps or fossil fuel emissions. Why? Well, the answer is most likely because we can’t see the ultimate outcome in real time. It’s not like burning a piece of paper. It’s more like sunburn. You may be able to stomp on the piece of paper before it burns completely, perhaps you won’t. But damn it, you could’ve worn sunscreen to prevent the burn from coming. You could have also taken your dumb ass inside to avoid the sun burning your skin cells. It all reminds me of the movie And the Band Played On. There were a few enlightened people screaming MAYDAY to the top of their lungs, but no one really listened. Doctors in Manhattan and San Francisco warned about AIDS in 1981. They saw it (an epidemic) coming like De La. The federal government knew more than enough shortly after. Rock Hudson died in 1985, so even everyday Americans knew what time it was by then. Regan didn’t open his mouth until 1987. He knew, he just didn’t care. Apathy. Sound familiar? Elevate on that. I just took you there. Now add on to it. Keep your eyes open, y’all. All three. Blessings to all who perished defending this country. I’m out like Buster Douglas. Peace to Keith Soda. Y’all know them stakes is high…
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