On The Front-line With The Gender-Conscious Black Male
This one tells the story of the gender-conscious black male. Nothing is special about these individuals, but the universal disregard for womyn ensures problems in recognition. The people that we showcase, that we respect or esteem at high levels, reflect our understanding of society. What makes us proud of other people is our comparison of their swagger to what everyone else does. Since womyn are invisible in almost every circle of the black community, the black man that cares about the womyn’s experience will be recognized as exceptional. As black folk headed in the direction of a new experience of America it helps to pay attention to who we think are cool.
Aren’t making the same mistake? You’re certainly no gender-conscious black male. How can you make the black man the necessary force behind womyn’s liberation? I only wish to show y’all the interesting figure of the gender-conscious black male. You’re right, there’s something wrong: our experiences with the American blueprint for a nuclear family takes away from womyn’s special character. Despite the fact that womyn have become more vocal politically, their invisibility complicates their ability to be cool.
Just by aspiring to build nuclear families—in light of the American dream, the alleged universal—we reproduce the invisibility. Someone should do a history of the black housewife: our old fathers made sure that his womyn never worked; our fathers of the future still think womyn don’t belong in the outside world, where change happens. Given the gender-conscious womyn aims to deconstruct the blueprint, they are still born into positions for males. The other layer of liberation requires black consciousness to wake up from the dream. That’s why the gender-conscious black male is important, but it’s not that he is superman.
Think about it. Comic books have superheroes, yet they are always supported by a community of other benevolent folks. Transforming our experiences as the invisible demands our dependence on other invisibilities that can penetrate the blueprint. The same dream that makes hard-working womyn incompatible is the same dream that sees intelligent black folk as violent. Although black folks struggle with transforming American racism, the black male can speak to black sexism.
Womyn speak, but black men won’t change as easily in light of the black womyn; we still have it in our minds that womyn are there for us and nothing more. Therefore, the black womyn speaks through the gender-conscious black male. He challenges black patriarchy from the inside, and the inside is what we are raised to lock away from everyone. I guess that’s why our relationships fail, yet that’s the key to America’s precious order of things.