The Boondocks: In Hindsight

Season 4 of the Boondocks was probably one of the best examples of Seasonal Rot, where a show gets progressively worse with each season. Which is sad, because the show had some of the cleverest writing, most beautiful animation, and likable characters I’ve seen in a long time.

For me, seasons 1 and 2 are perfection of comedic satire. While season 2 was more outlandish and less grounded in reality than Season 1, it captured the feel of the comic strip perfectly. The show constantly caused controvery from having Dr. King say the N-word to directly calling out BET in two episodes. Season 3 lost the social commentary, but not the humor.

Season 4, neither profound nor funny, was panned.

Aaron McGruder, the creator of the season had suddenly left. And once season 4 was announced, his lack of involvement was announced soon after:

“As the world now knows, The Boondocks will be returning for a fourth season, but I will not be returning with it. I’d like to extend my gratitude to Sony and Adult Swim for three great seasons”.

“I created The Boondocks two decades ago in college, did the daily comic for six years, and was showrunner on the animated series for the first three seasons. The Boondocks pretty much represents my life’s work to this point. Huey, Riley, and Granddad are not just property to me. They are my fictional blood relatives. Nothing is more painful than to leave them behind”.

“To quote a great white man, ‘Hollywood is a business’. And to quote another great white man, “Don’t hold grudges”.

“What has never been lost on me is the enormous responsibility that came with The Boondocks – particularly the television show and it’s relatively young audience. It was important to offend, but equally important to offend for the right reasons. For three seasons I personally navigated this show through the minefields of controversy. It was not perfect. And it definitely was not quick. But it was always done with a keen sense of duty, history, culture, and love. Anything less would have been simply unacceptable”.

“As for me, I’m finally putting a life of controversy and troublemaking behind me with my upcoming Adult Swim show, BLACK JESUS”. –

Source

In my opinion, either 1 of 2 things happened:

1: He lost the rights in a dispute.

2: He sold the Boondocks to move on to other projects.

Either one is unfortunate, but based on his “don’t hold grudges” comment, I’m guessing he lost the rights to his show.

The Boondocks was a property that could’ve been handed down to the right people, and could’ve gone in so many different directions.

Take the concept is that Huey is in love for example. Whether it’s with Jasmine or another cynical radical revolutionary remains to be seen. Perhaps, never to be seen. There are probably hundreds of writers slamming their heads on the keyboard. A show that had so much more to dive into.

There were entire arcs from the comics that could’ve made great material for the show, yet were completely abandoned. Like when Huey and Caesar (who was never introduced in the TV show) tried to create an alternative media outlet.

Or Jasmine’s struggle with racial identity.

Or day to day racial prejudice.

I haven’t even bother to watch Black Jesus, not because I think it’s bad. But because it truly seems like this one gag of “how funny would a black Jesus be?”. Same with Black Dynamite, while hilarious, it’s often void of the social consciousness that the Boondocks has (or had). And because it’s a period piece, you don’t get to see much outside 70’s African American culture. Whereas the Boondocks is the something where you can comment on African American culture, history, and progression as a whole.

This is why, personally, I’m always wary when people of color decide to sell off their ideas and brands. Like when the natural hair company and African American owned Carol’s Daughter was bought by L’Oreal Monpolizes and cooperate is something that can screw over anyone of any ethnic background, but in a country where minorities already own so little, for once, I’d like to see this trend end. Something becoming mainstream and then taken over.

On the bright side, these rights can be bought back,

But for now, the Boondocks has become a parody of itself.

Sources

http://colorlines.com/archives/2014/03/aaron_mcgruder_sorta_explains_why_he_left_the_boondocks.html

http://blogs.indiewire.com/shadowandact/aaron-mcgruder-finally-explains-why-he-left-the-boondocks

http://www.okayplayer.com/news/aaron-mcgruder-not-involved-boondocks-fourth-season.html

http://www.npr.org/blogs/codeswitch/2014/10/24/358263731/a-black-cosmetic-company-sells-or-sells-out

Bear with me!!!

MLK MLX Sincere Ignorance 6 I’ve been trying to carry the site on my own mostly and trying to branch out even further. I don’t want Sincere Ignorance to simply be a brand, and I want it to go beyond verbal discussions. I’m heading to New Jersey, New York, and Philadelphia to do just that, so this will be my last post until Tuesday or Wednesday. I have so much for you guys and ladies, that I think you will appreciate. I also want to thank those who have already decided to follow Sincere Ignorance, and I promise I will do better. I’m trying to build a team of ambitious people who leave excuses by the waste side. If anyone is interested, please contact me at doctanian.latti@gmail.com and I will respond immediately.

J. Cole: Someone Who Does More Action than Talk

One of the most endearing aspects of J. Cole’s 2014 Forest Hills Drive release was the rapper’s willingness to both literally and figuratively invite fans into his childhood home. Now, Cole is apparently taking it a step further and recently announced plans to use the house as a rent-free haven for single mothers with multiple children.

http://theurbandaily.com/2015/01/27/jcole-2014-forest-hills-drive-single-mothers/

Team BackPack: Ruby Ibarra, Ryan Nicole, True Jones, Kri$$y Blvnko and Prod. M-Jaf

3 Years Ago!!!!! Where are the support by the community?

Team Back-Pack Channel

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCI5Sn4UBWZG-jarsmyBzr3Q

Africans and The Making of the Americas: Part 4, Agriculture

There was a desperate need for African agricultural skills in the Americas.

Diverse groups of Africans from the coastal regions were highly skilled at clearing and cultivating forest land, an expertise that was unknown to Europeans at the time. One African technique involved burning delineated sections of forest and later using the ash for fertilizer, this had to be done carefully. Many also knew how to raise crops in semi-tropical and tropical soils; high temperatures and heavy rains cause nutrients to seep out more quickly than they do in temperate climates.

The complex art of rice cultivation practiced by West Africans for centuries rescued the U.S. The technique and technology used for rice cultivation was unknown by Europeans outside of southern Italy at the time. Rice cultivation was one of the most difficult types of work one could do, working in knee-deep water every day. By 1750, South Carolina became the rice-growing center of North America; rice was the colony’s major export. Other crops introduce by Africans include, black-eyed peas, pumpkins, sesame seeds, kola nuts, cotton, yams, sorghum, muskmelon, and water-melon.

The agricultural skills of Africans and African-Americans garnered extraordinary wealth for the Americas and Europe.

List of Crops Introduced by Africans/African-Americans

black-eyed peas

pumpkins

sesame seeds

kola nuts

cotton

yams

sorghum

muskmelon

water-melon

okra

tania

kidney beans

lima beans

millet

red peas

Source:

http://www.nypl.org/locations/schomburg

http://slaverebellion.org/index.php?page=crops-slave-cuisines

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2014/03/140301-african-american-food-history-slavery-south-cuisine-chefs/

 Part 1: http://sincereignorance.com/2015/01/27/africans-and-the-making-of-the-americas-part-1-exploration/

Part 2: http://sincereignorance.com/2015/01/27/africans-and-the-making-of-the-americas-part-2-mining/

Part 3: http://sincereignorance.com/2015/02/03/africans-and-the-making-of-the-americas-part-3-herding/

Africans and The Making of the Americas: Part 2, Mining

Mining

The first great source of wealth for the Americas came from gold, silver and diamond mines of Mexico, Peru, and Brazil. Their products, when shipped to Europe fueled the growth of a mercantile capitalist economy. Many of the Africans coming to the Americas had lived in gold mining areas such as Bambuk, Bure or the Akan country of the Gold coast, and they had considerable experience in shaft mining and panning for gold in waterways. Though they were usually outnumbered by Native Americans in the mines of Mexico and Bolivia, African miners were in great demand and were granted special privileges. In the Minas Gerais region of 20,000 in 1710 to 100,000 in 1735-in the 1750’s, about 60% of the Africans arriving in port of Salvador de Bahia were assigned to work in the mine of the interior. Work in the mines were brutality hard and few men survived more than a dozen years. On the other hand miners were often allowed to prospect on their own after meeting a specified quota; in this way, many Black miners were able to accumulate enough capital to purchase their own freedom.

In the U.S, coal from eastern Virginia became an essential commodity during the late 18th century, and much of the mining was done by African Americans. A French traveler who visited a Virginia mine in 1796 reported that the owner knows very little of the operation and depended on 500 enslaved miners to make the venture work. The Black Heath Pits, which produced the highest quality coal in the region, employed large numbers of Black men, who were often entrusted with the most difficult and complex tasks, such as operating the steam engines at the pitheads.

In 1858, a company of 600 African American gold miners made some successful strikes in California, only to find that new legislation deprived them of the right to own property or to give evidence in a court of law against Whites, while requiring them to wear special badges that identified them as “Coloreds”. These newly wealthy miners organized an emigration society and moved to British Columbia, Canada, where the governor guaranteed them the rights and protection of all the other citizens.

Sources

Book: Schomburg Center For Research in Black Black Culture, African American Desk Refernce

http://www.wvencyclopedia.org/articles/25

http://www.workers.org/2006/us/black-miners-0202/

Africans and The Making of the Americas: Part 1, Exploration

The greatest majority of the Africans of the diaspora are in the Western Hemisphere, scattered among the Spanish, French, and English-speaking countries of the Americas. The role played by the people of African descent in the building of America was not merely substantial, but indispensable, prompting, the historian Frank Tannenbaum, in his classic 1947 study Slave and Citizen. Describing the creation of contemporary American culture as a “joint Afro-European enterprise”.

Contrary to popular belief, African American history did not start with slavery in the New World. An overwhelming body of new evidence is emerging which proves that Africans had frequently sailed across the Atlantic to the Americas, thousands of years before Columbus and indeed before Christ. The great ancient civilizations of Egypt and West Africa traveled to the Americas, contributing immensely to early American civilization by importing the art of pyramid building, political systems and religious practices as well as mathematics, writing and a sophisticated calendar.

The strongest evidence of African presence in America before Columbus comes from the pen of Columbus himself. In 1920, a renowned American historian and linguist, Leo Weiner of Harvard University, in his book, Africa and the discovery of America, explained how Columbus noted in his journal that Native Americans had confirmed that “black skinned people had come from the south-east in boats, trading in gold-tipped spears.”

Exploration

Africans traveled with some of the first European explorers of the Americas. Some even becoming famed explorers themselves. Although the Spanish Chronicles indicate that numerous Africans accompanied the Conquistadors on their expeditions throughout the Americas, many of their names have been lost to time and rarely recorded.  Among the exceptions was Esteban also known as Estevanico or Little Stephen. He was an African man from the interior of Africa, captured by North African slave traders and lived in Morocco before reaching Spain. Esteban was gifted at languages spoke more than a dozen Native American tongues.

 One of the first explorers of the Southwestern among other territories in the United States (outside of Native American people of course). His tales of the fabled Seven Cities of Cibola led to the famous expedition of Francisco Coronado in 1540.

After being shipwrecked Estevanico and 3 other survivors lived on the Isle of Misfortune off the Texas coast as slaves but after a year escape to the mainland.

Estevanico was viewed as a medicine man by the Avavares tribe.

In 1536 Estevanico was given his freedom.

Coronado later discovered that the so called 7 cities of gold were actually Zuni pueblos that shone like gold when viewed from afar.

 Of the 44 settlers who founded pueblo of Nuestra Senora de Los Angeles, at least 26 were of African descent. By the end of the 20th century, nearly 20% of California’s residents were Black. As our country started to move Westward, African Americans were the vanguard. People such as the African American trapper Peter Ranne (Member of first U.S party to reach California), Moses Harris (First non-Native American to explore the Great Salt Lake), legendary mountaineers like James Beckwourth, and Edward Rose (traveled much of what is now known as Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, and Colorado). Beckwourth was also an adopted member of the Crow People who were located a pass through the Sierra Nevada and lead the first wagon train through it. The pass now bears his name. Of course there is much more to learn, think of this as a gateway.

Let us also not forget the original founder of the Americas; the Native people themselves. 

http://www.wlcsd.org/Loonlake.cfm?subpage=1499981http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1G2-3404702043.htmlhttp://www.rense.com/general43/before.htm

http://www.globalresearch.ca/before-columbus-how-africans-brought-civilization-to-america/5407584

http://www.nps.gov/ethnography/aah/aaheritage/SpanishAmB.htm

Sources

Which One Is Your Favorite Portrait of a U.S President?

Barack Obama

Abraham Lincoln

George Washington

Bill Clinton

Richard Nixon

Teddy Roosevelt 

John F. Kennedy

Thomas Jefferson

Franklin D. Roosevelt 

Ronald Reagan

From the artist Sharp Writer

http://sharpwriter.deviantart.com/

Sergeant Sues Police Department Over Training Video That Depicts a Black Cop as A Monkey

Arthur Scott, a San Diego police sergeant, is suing his police department because he believes that a cartoon that was shown during a training event was “racist” and depicted an African American officer as a “monkey,” KGTV reports.

Scott says that when he tried to communicate his concerns about the video, he “was transferred to a different division,” KGTV explains.

The cartoon at the center of the lawsuit was made in the early 1900s, KGTV reports, and depicted San Diego’s first African American police officer, Officer Frank McCarter, as a monkey. The cartoon reportedly also featured “derogatory comments about Asians.”

http://www.theroot.com/articles/news/2015/01/san_diego_sergeant_arthur_scott_sues_department_because_training_video_depicts.html

Black Smokejumpers Helped Save The American West

One group was charged with dismantling — and, if necessary, battling the forest fires caused by — the incendiary balloon bombs: the 555th Parachute Infantry Battalion, known as the Triple Nickels or Triple Nickles. Like the Tuskegee Airmen and others, the Triple Nickles were pioneers in a severely segregated U.S. military.

“We were the first and only paratroopers of color in 1944,” says Triple Nickle Association President Joseph Murchison, 84, from his home in Tampa, Fla. “It was the proudest period of my life, being in the Triple Nickles and doing something that nobody else was doing.”

Read more

http://www.npr.org/blogs/npr-history-dept/2015/01/22/376973981/how-black-smokejumpers-helped-save-the-american-west?utm_source=facebook.com&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=npr&utm_term=nprnews&utm_content=20150122

http://www.triplenickle.com/

http://triplenickle.com/history.htm

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