Wednesday, January 5, 2011
Authenticity..The Good, Bad and Ugly Of It.
Tonight, I watched the CBS News. I sat and listened to them talk about "sanitizing" Mark Twain's, Huckleberry Finn. A classic amongst all classics. I listened to the white man's rationale. I listened to the black man's rationale. The white man who is promoting the "sanitizing" is proclaiming to abolish racism with his actions. The black man, who is a professor at Morehouse University says, it will not abolish anything. It will take away the learned lesson. The many lessons that can be learned from a book like Huckleberry Finn. On one page alone, the CBS News stated, Mark Twain wrote the word "Nigger" seven times. Is this atrocious? Of course it is. Is it racism? Of course it is, at it's worst. Is it history? Yes, unfortunately it is. Is it present day? Again, unfortunately it is. The book was written at a time in history when such language was used every single day. In public, by the white man to the black man. The Professor from Morehouse University said the "smart" man, will use this book for the positive. Not to erase history, that cannot and should not be erased. Amen Professor.
Freedom of Speech and Freedom of the Press, cannot be dictated. You cannot pick and choose when it suits you. This was a book written for it's time in history. You cannot re-write history or it's injustices. There are books written today, with far worse language. Far worse racist remarks and racist brand names. Names that extend far beyond the African American community. There are songs today, that are not fit to be played on the radio. Not fit to enter any one's ear pathway at all. But they are books written, sold and read. Songs written, played, bought and listened to. I say, surely the white gentleman does not think that by "sanitizing" this book, he will have erased all the atrocities in history or the atrocities in our present day as we know it.
If you take away, erase, try to change, or sanitize the history of this world..how will we ever learn from our mistakes? My children are color blind. They recognize no difference in race, creed, or color. Their generation is so far ahead of generations that precede them. They will be the smart ones. The ones that leave all the bias and judgment behind. If we want to learn from someone, we don't need to take history and sanitize it. We need to take the present and learn from it. Take notes. Take action to BE IT. Be the present..not the past. For the present is superior to anything most of us have ever known. Certainly to anything Mark Twain knew in his time. In HIS time...those are the key words. His time..not ours. Make this our time. Make it your time. Make it the RIGHT time.