(Readers: The assumed chronological date for most of the entries in this blog is after the expected 5th revolution in the US.  For more background about  the expected revolution – labeled the Revenge Revolution – and author, please view entry #01.) 

Scene: Jordan and RockMan continuing conversation over coffee.

Jordan:  “You know what bothers me?”

RockMan:  “Only one thing bothers you?  When did things get so good for you?”

Jordan:  “You know what I mean.  Even with all the progress you seem to be making, you know what bothers me about the effort to get blacks off the bottom rung economically?”

010114_1941_20RockMans1.pngRockMan:  “I’m game, what?”

Jordan:  “Why do we…you know the collective we…make such a big deal about understanding each other?”

RockMan:  “You talking about whites understanding blacks, and vice versa?”

Jordan:  “Yes.  And what’s the benefit of understanding each other?”

RockMan:  “Shouldn’t whites understand blacks?”

Jordan:  “Oh, give me a break.  Tell me how that’s going to happen?  I am not black, never been black and in all likelihood never will be black…at least in this lifetime.  And you’re not white and aren’t ever going to be white.  Let’s quit pretending.”

RockMan:  “You know, I’ve lived most of my adult life in white communities.  I admit there are things about whites I do not understand.”

Jordan:  “Think about this.  Whites who grew up north of the Mason-Dixon Line cannot civil warunderstand the South’s obsession with the Civil War.  It’s been more than 150 years.  You lost.  So get over it.”

RockMan:  “Spoken like a true Yankee.  Now, what about understanding someone’s religion?  I do not understand a lot about Judaism.”

Jordan:  “Trust me, Jews don’t understand a lot about Christianity.”

RockMan:  “Like what?”

Jordan:  “I think it’s called the holy trinity.”

RockMan:  “What’s not to understand about that?”

Jordan:  “Of the three, who’s in charge?  Seems like a bureaucracy.”

RockMan:  “That’s funny.  But I see your point.  By the way, what prompted this sudden revelation about not understanding another culture?”

Jordan:  “It’s not been sudden.  Several years ago — late 2014 or so — there was a series of articles in the NY Times with the title ‘What Whites Don’t Get about Blacks’.”

RockMan:  “Sounds interesting and very true.”

Jordan:  “OK but so what if whites don’t understand blacks?  The author, Nicholas Kristoff as I recall, outlined a lot of what whites don’t understand but few, if any reasons, why whites really need to understand.  So what if I don’t understand blacks?  So what if you don’t understand whites?”

RockMan:  “You keep saying ‘so what?  You sound like me talking to some black groups.’”

ladderJordan:  “You know why you and I keep saying ‘so what?’  Because that’s exactly what we mean.  Here’s a real simple question, ‘If the Black Community wants to improve its economic and social status, whose responsibility is it?’”

RockMan:  “The Black Community?  And that’s what I’ve been trying to tell them.  No more Al Sharpton or some other high-profile dude.”

Jordan:  “Now we see the same the picture.  You need to keep hammering home the idea that the Black Community needs to take charge and start making changes.”

RockMan:  “You’re saying, ‘Not my job.’”

Jordan:  “You got it.  and you know it.  Not my job.  Your job.”

RockMan:  “You want to keep the burden on those responsible.”

Jordan:  “Remember the sign President Truman had on his desk?”

RockMan:  “I’m not old enough to remember but I’ve read about it.  The sign was very simple and easy to understand. ‘The Buck Stops Here.’”

JHarry Truman's The Buck Stops Here Signordan:  “Well, my friend, please keep reminding the Black Community the buck stops with the Black Community.  Not with the White Community.  Not with the Federal government.  It stops with the Black Community.”

RockMan:  “Seems as if we keep having the same conversation.”

Jordan:  “A version of it.  Think of this as ‘Ground Hog Day’ with Bill Murray.  With each session I am probably less diplomatic.  But let’s not lose sight of who can make change.  Every ethnic group has faced barriers.”

RockMan:  “None as difficult as blacks.”

Jordan:  “Let me shed a tear.  Now time to move on.  OK, OK, blacks had some bad breaks.”

RockMan:  “Some?”

Jordan:  “But the Black Community has received more government help than any other group.”

RockMan:  “True.  But…”

Jordan:  “…but so what?  From what you’re telling me, your line to the Black Community is to start putting on their big-boy pants and quit acting like whiny little children.”

RockMan:  “Any other ideas?”

Jordan:  “Next time you have a session ask them to first start looking in the mirror.  Who do they see?  Who do they want to smirror-clipart_jpgee?”

RockMan:  “Even with some progress, still not very pretty right now.”

Jordan:  “Not it’s not.  But they have an example of who they should be.”

RockMan:  “In New Orleans terms, ‘who dat?’’

Jordan:  “RockMan, you know I think you are the perfect example for blacks.  Parents who were dirt poor.  Yet they managed to send 6 kids…”

RockMan:  “Try 8 kids.”

Jordan:  “Even better.  …send eight kids to college.  White families can’t claim that, even those with a lot of money.”

RockMan:  “It is amazing when you think about it.”

Jordan:  “Then you change schools because it is not tough enough academically.  I mean, how many 19-year olds do that?  What a role model.”

Rmortar-boardockMan:  “You like to lay it on thick, don’t you?”

Jordan:  “But your story is a great one and needs to be told.  Are you telling your story to these people?”

RockMan:  “Not really.”

Jordan:  “You should.  Your story might help get some in the Black Community off dead center about whose problem it really is.  Theirs, not mine.  Am I going to suffer if the Black Community stays at the bottom?  No.  But many of your colleagues will.”

RockMan:  “OK, so you’re telling me to crank it up even more.  Is that what you’re saying?

Jordan:  “You listen well.  And I would be a lot more blunt that you might have been.  This is no time for subtlety.”

RockMan:  “And you going to be around to help or do you just give advice?

Jordan:  “You know I’ll be around to help.  And I will offer advice, whether asked or not.  Keep up the good work.”

RockMan:  “Alright.  I’m out of here.”