February 11, 2010

Reflections and resolve

From now on, I will no longer publicly engage in discussions about race. I've been burnt too many times, and this week has been too damn much in this regard. I'll post to informative links, and I'll be available to talk via e-mail or 1-on-1 via Google Chat, but that's it. After nearly 3 decades of dealing with the same old shit, I've had it. I can't do it anymore and remain functional.

It's taken me a lifetime to start to build up my self-esteem and confidence - work I had to do as a direct result of the careless cluelessness of well-meaning White people. It's a lot bigger than this latest blow-up, something that many people, including people who agree with me, don't understand. Partly because I haven't told them, and partly because thinking about just how deep and vast the problem is . . . is really fucking depressing.

It gets to me, and it's still getting to me right now. The only way it won't get to me is if I stopped caring. I'd be less vulnerable, but my writing will be less true. And I refuse to do give that up for the off chance that somebody's finally going to get it. If something I said got through to you, I'm happy for you. Yet, while it's heartening to believe that I've made a difference in someone's life, I cannot live for other people.

"Well, duh!" some would say. But it's not so straight-forward as all that, especially when it comes to Black people (particularly Black women) talking about race with most White people who walk the middle road between outright bigotry and solidarity with people of color. To a certain degree, I blame Hollywood. But that shit doesn't come from nowhere, and it's related to a very fucked up pattern - one that I personally no longer have the fortitude to deal with while attending to more important and immediate things in my life right now.

So, this is going to be it for a good long while.


  1. I'm sorry it's been so shitty. I hear that there is no easy choice here, but it sounds like you're making the healthiest one that you can. That alone takes courage and strength.

  2. I didn't know where to post this where you'd see it:

    Submission Deadline: April 15, 2010
    Announcement of Six Festival Participants: June 15, 2010
    Festival Dates: August 15 - August 22, 2010

    Submission Guidelines:

    * There is no restriction as to subject matter. Victory Gardens hopes that a diversity of perspective will inform the plays, but the plays do not have to deal
    specifically with race, ethnicity or identity issues.
    * The initiative is open to all playwrights of color under 40 years old.
    * Playwrights must not yet have received a full production at a major regional theater.
    * Submitted plays must unproduced and must be in English or primarily in English.
    * Playwrights may only submit one full-length play.
    * Plays must be submitted by mail, not electronically, and should not be permanently bound.
    * Please include a biography or resume.
    * Please include a return addressed postcard if you wish to be notified that the script arrived.
    * All scripts will be recycled after reading and will not be returned.
    * There is no submission fee.

    Submit to: IGNITION
    Victory Gardens Theater
    2257 N. Lincoln Avenue
    Chicago, Illinois 60614

  3. I noticed that mine was one of those helpful links you posted, and I wanted to thank you for that. Reading this post I'm sorry to have not discovered your blog sooner, but rest assured I'll be digging through the archives, and I wanted to thank you too for having been one of the voices, even if you feel that for your own health you can no longer be such. It's good to make time and space for ourselves, and I hope to read more from you if/when you begin engaging again.