Starting today, I'm going to take on some of my heroes to determine if they merit my attention. And the first I'm going to deal with is Stanley Crouch. Now Crouch is not an active hero. He is one of memory. He wrote Notes of a Hanging Judge and I couldn't wait to get my hands on it. That was almost 20 years ago and now I have an opus that's big enough to compile a similar work - except that I'm working in a different medium.
I have recently been challenged to be more productive with my writing talent, and I am indeed working part-part time on a couple of works.One is an autobiography called 'Up from Freedom' and one is something of an instruction manual on being a proper American. There are others, but both of these relate to Crouch.
You see if you asked me the black American men I would like to be most associated with, by dint of the reputations they have attained in public (not that I know them to be true or not) they would be the cultural conservatives Marsalis, Crouch and Murray. I see them as representing the Old School on the cultural side, whereas I am doing a new bit of exposition on the political side.
Now there's some aspect of political populism that I cannot stand and from what I'm seeing of Crouch's latest hip shots at the GOP it appears to me that he's not engaging anybody but barrelfish. It's his column, and it's possible that I misread him. But I'm going to try to understand this man well enough to build him up or take him down. Or maybe find that he's not worth the effort, or perhaps that I'm not up to the task. Either way, his triumvirate is where I'm aiming, and I'm trying to see how it is that they might be so blind to what political Conservatism is even as they fight to preserve the best of African American literature and music.
My gut tells me that they, like so many other New Yorkers, are assuming that the Black Swans are going to come to them, and that because none have been provided, they don't exist. The Black Swan in this case would be me, and others like me in the Conservative Brotherhood who are a little bit smarter than the average wingnut television news junkie.
I'm not trying to move the crowd. I'm trying to preserve what's right. And when Crouch suggests that the American Right is wrong on principle because of what some of their loudmouth propagandists say, I wonder if he realizes the blackness of his kettle.
I'm raising the profile of the conservative Brotherhood. That needs to be done, with some commercial animus. So I'm noodling on that because I think I have to be the man to do it, my way. There are others whose independence I would not attempt to co-opt as a 'black thang'. So I say more power to the Hiphop Republicans and the John Langston Forum, Project 21 and all the rest of the crowds. But there is a level of discourse that needs to be maintained and addressed - even though I'd rather be playing volleyball. I am cutting way back on my gaming, so there is more time for me.
Oh yeah and I'm turning comments back on. 2010 is ON.