January 6, 2021 will forever go down in history as one of the most egregious, deleterious, and ignominious displays of white supremacy and tackiness. The attack on the Capitol due to the fallacious statements voter fraud over the 2020 presidential election was the United States of America on full display. The savagery we witnessed live was the epitome of what happens when white people see their power being stripped awey (*in my Zuri from Black Panther voice*). White supremacists be BIG MAD (typed it the way I meant to type it) when change is near because they believe they will no longer be in control. Well…good. It’s been time for a change.
One thing that most Black people in this country agreed on yesterday was that the display of filth had nothing to do with us (their anger and destruction that is) and we were happy to mind our business and drink our water. But the election had everything to do with us and every other marginalized group in society. Yesterday was the feature film of what happens when we use our right to vote. Voter suppression has been a long standing blemish in the U.S. purposely designed to keep us from having a voice and having agency in the decisions that directly impact us the most. Let’s be clear, Stacey Abrams and her team in Georgia deserve all of the flowers for helping get Black people out to vote in Georgia after the governor election was stolen from her in 2018.
Not going to lie, while yesterday’s circus was one for the history books, – just like the whole year of 2020 – I still felt a sense of anger, fear, and sadness about what I watched. I remembered the peaceful protests this summer after Ahmad Aubery, George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Jacob Blake, and countless other unarmed Black people who had their lives taken or permanently altered and how law enforcement and the shitty 45th clown-in-chief handled the protests. Heavy riot gear, tear gas, rubber bullets, and lethal force were all brought out for peaceful protesters this summer. The entire world watched protesters beg the government and law enforcement to stop killing unarmed Black people, give us the right to vote, and charge & indict the police officers/civilians who committed these heinous crimes. The entire world watched inciters loot Targets and Walmarts and watched how law enforcement, state and federal government officials called actual Black Lives Matter activists everything but children of God. But yesterday, the entire world watched as domestic white terrorists destroy federal property, trespass and fight police all because of fraudulent accusations of election dishonesty…and they saw no consequences. This is what really had Black people pissed. No consequences but if these rioters and thugs were Black, they would have been shot down instantly. No one would have been able to get through police barricades and gates.
Although Black people are used to experiencing tragedy at the hands of white supremacy in this country, it is in our nature to laugh to keep from crying. As you can see from the screenshot tweet that is the cover photo for this blog post, “Black people making a joke out of every serious event>>>>,” social media and Black Twitter has a field day with what was going on. We knew deep down how bad yesterday was but we still found a way to make light of the situation.
It’s what we do. Examples of us making jokes out of fucked up situations are as follows:
- Coronavirus Pandemic: Black people nicknamed it “Lil Rona,” “Rona,” and “the Rona.” When speaking of just the pandemic, Black people call the pandemic everything but a pandemic: “we’re in a pandemonium,” “they partying like we ain’t in a whole panoramic still,” “it’s a whole polaroid outside.”
- Stimulus checks: The first round of stimulus checks in 2020 was $1,200. This time, the checks were $600. Because the amount was significantly lower, Black people nicknamed it “Stimmy.”
These are just two instances of our humor but we’ve done much more. Yesterday was no different. The memes and GIFs were raining down from Black folks to provide us an alternate form of entertainment.
Please note: WE DO NOT TAKE YESTERDAY’S THREATS OR THE THREATS ON THE LIVES OF THE DC COMMUNITY MEMBERS LIGHTLY. That is not what I am trying to say. We know that this situation is NOT a game and that the attack on this nation, Black folks, and other POCs should be taken seriously. And we do.
You may not understand why we use humor. Well, it’s a mechanism we’ve adapted across generations to survive. It’s our way of staying resilient when the world and society harms us. Without humor, I’m unsure how we would get through the tough times. Our humor during times of unrest isn’t taken lightly. This is how we support and show love to each other. It’s imperative to our longevity. We know how to come together as a collective for healing just like our ancestors had to do.
An interconnected community of people who understand your pain and struggle is why we as Black people will not succumb to the wombs white supremacy has left us with and why we haven’t since we were brought to this country.
So, keep laughing brothers, sisters, and non-binary Black folks. We need each other. It’s been inherently clear for centuries that we live in two different countries: One for the people and one for white supremacy.
As we once again figure out how to heal from this tragedy, check out this piece, “Let Freedom Reign” written by Ca$h, mindfulness practitioner and official contributor of The Crowned Series blog ❤
Let Freedom Reign
Let freedom reign.
Two Americas. One divide.
Two different experiences. One side.
Two constitutions. One brother.
Two races. White and other.
Two perceptions. Liberated and free.
Two Americas. You and Me.
Two Nations. First and colonized.
Two liberties. Justice and Justified.
Two voices. Shut up and privileged.
Two households. Verses and village.
Two Americas. Your truth and mine.
Two fights. Moral and unkind.
Two tears. One reflection in vain.
All the while shouting: Let freedom reign.
❤ Queen T and Ca$h, official contributor of The Crowned Series