Coffee and a Sandwich!
An Excerpt: “When I think of the disparity that exists concerning the black man in America; I am hurt, ashamed, appalled and angry.”
It would be easy for me to sit back on my female laurels and judge him but without the Spirit of Truth leading the way, I would get lost in the myriad of reasons why this 50-something man would be standing in front of the 711 today blurting out “Coffee and a Sandwich!” to each blank face that came his way.
Before full-time ministry, I enjoyed a vibrant career working for mostly white men who were not threatened by my melanin blessing. They loved my care and skill and I was always rewarded handsomely with a big check each week. It is something about a black man though and his virility that can cause women of every ethnicity to want them yet conversely be a threat to their white counterparts. Their manly brown skin made them an unlikely candidate who would likely stain the white-collar world and throughout my career; they were indeed few and far between.
About an hour before the 711 encounter, I was in Trader Joe’s and in front of me in the checkout line were two police officers in full uniform. No wonder there was such evident giddiness among the women throughout the store. When I stepped up to the female cashier who was still blushing (obvious through her caramel skin), I advocated for all the ladies and said “it is something about a man in uniform,” she squealed, “girl, yes!” and it dawned on me that it was not just the uniform, it was their “chocolateness” that made them look like candy delectable indeed. When I mentioned that, Miss Caramel Blush agreed wholeheartedly! I thought…my Goodness; there is something about a black man for sure! Such strength and so glorious in that dark skin, almost mysteriously so...plus they were both bald which added to the masculinity of it all…oh my! The cashier confessed that they came in often and often made her and the other ladies’ day.
Black Pearls on American Swine
When I think of the disparity that exists concerning the black man in America; I am hurt, ashamed, appalled and angry. He represents the head of the family and the leader of our race yet here he is asking for a hot drink and any kind of sandwich will do. If I however fight for the black man, will that rub his delicate ego against its grain? That male ego by the way, is one of the many things I find ever so delightful in a man. If I advocated for him though, would I be giving into some sort of masculine energy? If I wept for him and told him how deeply I longed for him to walk in his legacy royal, would that draw too much of the wrong attention and further siphon his dignity?
When I was a very little girl and as some of you already know, I used to fight a lot. One day, I was standing outside with my brother who is the oldest of us three (I am the youngest and only girl). He was on his bike and I was standing next to him just talking. We were startled by two boys who came up to him, hit him and then just ran off! Instinctively, I ran after them yelling probably some little girl expletives. I wonder what I would have done had I caught up to them? Probably with all my heart try to beat the absolute crap out of them, but we will never know. When I got back to my brother, he was sitting on his bike crying -- not because he was a wimp but because he was just a little boy and they really hurt him for no reason…we spoke of that incident not too long ago that happened so long ago; neither of us could really remember the year.
Today, I want to run after the disparity and beat it down to a pulp. I want to weep over such gloriousness that is minimized in their own weary eyes stained from crying within.
If I were to provide statistics here that would show the percentage of black men in America and compare it to the percentage of those incarcerated, homeless and/or mentally ill; it would be shocking but hardly anyone would actually be shocked. This is part of my frustration today, it is far too blankety-blank normative (pardon my grown-folk expletives) for the homeless begging dude on every other urban street corner to be a black man whose glory has dimmed behind the “can you help a brotha out?” I don’t think it matters who we are, we need to fight for the black man. He is hurt and he needs us to care enough to run after the oppressor and advocate accordingly. We need to fight in our own world, in the way we are best heard to those who hear us best and we need to love them with a love that respectfully understands that they are an endangered species. One who deserves preserving and requires the deployment of every conserving strategy in existence. I am clear that black women (me) also experience racial disparity but if there were that strong man standing in front of her, that evil would not have any reach. I fight for the black man today with my pen and always with prayer…these are two of my most powerful weapons!
Years ago, film-maker, writer and public speaker Stacey Evans Morgan wrote “The Poetic Love Letter to the African American Man.” It was arresting and disarming; it opened up a whole new world concerning what it might look like to romance a man in such a God-breathed manner. Not in an idyllic sort of romance that is inappropriate for a woman who is designed to be pursued but in a deep, abiding true respect that sees him for who he really wonderfully is and releases the hunter in him. In her authenticity, she handled the male ego delicacy with the skill of a master chef and her work was so genuine and so saturating that she was pursued by such a man who came to meet her as a direct result of that love letter. They have been happily married for years and have a beautiful daughter. That alarming tribute comes to my mind so often and has clearly made a deep impression upon me. But, how do we keep that “difference making” sentiment resonating today in this black-male hostile society and what about tomorrow and tomorrow?
I believe if a black man in America is holding down a decent job, caring for himself, his family and his fellow human being; he is accomplishing an enormous task against insurmountable odds and he should be applauded. Many, especially all the real men would say that they are merely doing what they are supposed to do and, that’s true. You do what real men do but you beautiful Afrocentric supermen do it in spite of tremendous opposition on the daily. Therefore I believe that we need to have a day that is dedicated to honoring, saluting, celebrating and encouraging the black man. And, let me just roll with this and propose that it be the first day of Black History month since he is the frontrunner in our world. A national day perhaps for a Coffee and a Sandwich in honor of those black pearls like the one I encountered today.
©Pastor Stine McDonald
The Scented Word
For more on Stacey Evans Morgan, go to https://about.me/SEMorgan