The Black man’s burden
DR. SEAN MCMILLAN | 2/8/2018, 6:14 p.m.
But now, ironically, it would seem that the egalitarian sensibilities we helped to legitimize have made Black men (and all men really) the object of their adjudication. In so many ways, the blade of wisdom has turned against the wise, testing to see if our commitment to equality can survive the interrogation of our masculine foolishness even as it continues to compel us to fight for the expansion of opportunity in a nation of great wealth.
All progressive movements in this country owe their genealogy to the spirit of the African-American cause. The rise of the women’s movement, the LGBTQ movement, the #metoo movement, the Occupy movement and whatever else is to come, are only able to do what they achieve because Black people wrestled with the idea of equality until it included more than just rich white men. The fact that sexism is dying in our culture is a good thing. And because white supremacy and male hegemony are both servants of the same lie, we should rejoice at the demise of one—as the other is sure to follow. No Black man of good conscience can seriously be committed to freedom and think otherwise. The task of every African-American man in this era is to maintain his democratic cheerfulness even as he dares to lick the lightening, as it were. Black men must resist the urge to be intimidated by the #metoo phenomenon. We need not see it as a threat, because it is not. It is an opportunity. And perhaps more importantly, the highest compliment a culture can pay to those who have for so long, sacrificed so much, in the effort to push a nation forward.