Songhai Concepts

Media Literacy/Digital Archiving Instructor

Monday, March 05, 2007

What Exactly Is Black Enough?

What Exactly is "Black Enough" The myth, the truth or the fallacy? The question has sparked a lot of discussion around the world - even at the high school level due largely to Illinois Senator Barack Obama, a black man, declaring his candidacy for the presidency of the United States of America.

Can you even imagine what it means to be the President of the United States? The manager of America - America the beautiful, with her spacious skies and her amber waves of grain?
Can you imagine having to remember the names of all the governors, all the senators, all the foreign presidents and dignitaries. Can you imagine having to deal with all the war zones, the poverty zones, the drug zones and the kid zones.

Imagine being the boss of the nation's economy, the ecology, the energy policy and the space program? Any man or woman who would put everything on the line and gamble to win that job must have thick skin and nerves of steel. Add race, sex, class, name and religion to that equation and you're juggling dynamite.

Nancy Giles, in my opinion, is one of the sharpest commentators on American television today. It's just too bad we only get to see her once or twice a month on the CBS Sunday Morning Show. Last Sunday Giles asked her viewers "What does not black enough mean?" She posed this question alongside some recent footage of Senator Obama on the presidential campaign trail. Senator Obama has been taking a beating in the media for either being "too black," "not black enough," or "straddling the fence." Most recently the Senator was criticized for talking with a southern drawl while speaking to supporters in Alabama. That's nonsense!

That said, on Sunday, Giles asked a dozen or more of the more important questions concerning "blackness" - questions that many of us would rather avoid.
These are important questions not only for democrats and republicans but for anyone who is unsure about what it means to be black on the planet earth in 2007. It is especially important for every man, woman and child who watches television, listens to the radio, watches movies, surfs the internet, and has a cell phone with camera and video capabilities. Did you see the video of the black teenagers giving a two year old marijuana to smoke? Close to 3200 people have watched that video (online) since it became public over the weekend. That's how quickly sound and image can spread today.

All NMTCS Students
For this activity please take the survey ----> What Exactly Is Black Enough.
ALL STUDENTS please post your answers directly on the survey and also post your survey responses on a Google Document.
Please e-mail the Google Document to me.

All students please type your name on the first survey question so that I know you took the survey.

The survey questions are drawn directly from Nancy Giles' commentary on the March 4, 2007 edition of the CBS Sundy Morning Show.

H. Songhai


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