On Jazz, The VRA, the NSA, and Paula Deen . . .

Read my book A History of African American Jazz and Blues. Nicholas Payton wrote, “If Black Americans don’t start making a stand in this country for who they are and recognize and celebrate their culture, we can expect to see more of a decline within our community. To be clear, I never said we should rebrand Jazz to Black music. They are not the same. Jazz is racist. It was from the beginning and still is. It was stolen from Black music, but Blacks don’t control the economics of the business. We don’t run the majority of the festivals nor the clubs. It’s not just marketing, Jazz marginalizes the music from its culture.”

Nicholas Payton

If it wasn’t obvious before why the #BAM movement was necessary, the recent decision by the Supreme Court to strike down Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 should serve as an example. This is the basis of what I speak about in terms of race relations in this country. The fact that we have a Black President doesn’t show we’ve evolved, but to the contrary, it validates those who wish to believe we have finally overcome racial discrimination.

A Dream Deferred . . .

As much as I respect the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, I feel Malcolm X’s idea for the Black American was/is a better solution. I am convinced that we will never absolve racism, whose roots of White privilege and supremacy lie too deeply embedded in the American psyche. The idealist dream that one day racism will just pass and die off like…

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