Will Bryan Stop Bashing African-American MacArthur Fellows?

Majora CarterIt is clear that my record here in the rasx() context on MacArthur “genius grant” winners is dismal in the field of unquestioning praise and mysterious optimism. Distinguished fellow Kara Walker and all 10,000 of her dear friends will never speak to me again. Any self-respecting Jew who worked so hard to make the world forget about 1970s, sadomasochistic Nazi, sexploitation films will never speak to me again. And, of course, Stanley Nelson and all 36,000 of his dear friends (including 90% of the Negro upper classes in New York)—and the billions of people who do not know of the importance of Marcus Garvey, will never speak to me again.

So my captive hope is that Majora Carter can save me from almost certain social death. I look forward to listening to her speak to Steve Inskeep on And I’m using comparisons to the oratory of Frederick Douglas (mixed with the tear-jerking of Steven Spielberg) to describe her presentation at TEDTalks. What saddens me is that I am almost certain that very, very few people will see the sincerity in these words: I am sick of criticizing people of African descent in public but I am also sick of seeing incompetent, ineffective, non-scientific African-descended talents presenting themselves in front of my children (actual and metaphorical) as a holistic universe of healing wisdom when they are, in fact, crippled, smooth-talking, student performance artists of the Western way of war.

Since I loath the irony of inflicting on someone else what is often inflicted on me, I will start at the top instead of grappling for bubonic tales of sub-humanity: I will assume that Majora Carter is the American African version of Wangari Muta Maathai and see how far she takes me from my lofty heights. When self-described African women en masse become what are now called “environmentalists” in a coherent manner with the civilizations that existed before the rise of empire, the world will change forever and the Old Kingdom will be restored. Sorry, to put so much pressure on you, dude. Dude, what did you say? Did you say, “What are ‘self-described’ African men are supposed to do?” Dude! Dude! You have no idea how matriarchy works… Are you still confused about great African men taking command because they follow the lead of great African women? Sounds like bullshit to you? Get off my little mountain. We got sisters on the way from Hebron to Zion, the highest region. We got Moses ascending into the blackness—for in the Blackness of the atoms is The Witness…