They Hate Me Cuz They Ain't Me!
I am a social commentator. I use a mic and a keyboard to provide commentary about issues in our society. I promote positive change by informing any given audience about a problem we face and try to appeal to their sense of justice to do so. To be completely honest, I am working toward making a decent living off of the things I do and say. Although, unlike most other commentators, the agenda of making the world a better place and having a big enough platform to do so is not centered on me pandering to a specific group or worldview just because they will follow and bolster my name.
In the grand scheme of building an audience and a brand, my approach isn't going to make my goal easy to achieve. If I hired a firm to help build my brand, my philosophy would get laughed out the door. Justifiably so, might I add. If this is the sport I want to play, I should just play the game the way it's played and then try to change it, right? How am I going to build a following, if every other week my followers alternate between loving me and hating me? Even though people say that they just want truth and integrity, when in actuality they pay for bullshit and to be pandered to, I'm wrong for not just doing that, right?
Well, what I believe makes me special and better than those other guys, is that I'm willing to gain experience and learn all that I can about people, their views, and where they get them from, even if I absolutely disagree. Getting to know people deeper than what they say online allows you to hear and understand perspectives you normally wouldn't. So, although there may be something that a percentage of my audience may not want to hear, I'm going to say it anyway, especially if the point is valid. That's the only way I'm going to be able to provide the best commentary possible to do my part to help implement the agenda of a better world. FOR ALL! Not just people who look like me or say and do what I like.
Whenever you put your opinion online for public consumption people are going to disagree with you. It's a universal truth. Just like humans needing oxygen to breathe and Iron Man being the best superhero ever created. If you as a person worry about what people say about you, especially behind your back, you probably shouldn't put your opinions online.
Personally, I love it when people disagree with me. I prefer it. A conversation is where you exchange ideas. The disagreement is where I sharpen my skills and practice being logically consistent. The debate is the place where I'm able to be swayed by better arguments, ideas, and facts, or convince others with mine. Disagreeing with and questioning everything around me is what gave me the confidence to publicly present my opinions and what seemingly qualifies me to be a social commentator in the first place.
The people that grind my gears, but will end up paying my bills and make me famous, are the haters. More specifically, my haters.
Ok, look guys, I know that one day I'm going to piss you off because of something I say, and when you confront me about it, I'm going to calmly and logically disagree with you until you want to stab me in the face. I get it. I've known that annoys people for most of my life, but I've always been this way. There is just something about how people feel about common issues, that ignores other groups or points of view that are also valid and important, that has always bothered me. On top of that, I'm the type of person that has to understand as many sides to an argument as possible to even understand the argument. Because of this, I already have different perspectives and points of view in mind to bring up based on the situation I'm in or who I might end up talking to. So, when it's time for a discussion, my mission is to present an argument that provides a solution, or point of view, for an issue that positively affects as many people as humanly possible, no matter who they are or what deeply held beliefs they hold, by being able to relate to others by showing an understanding of their point of view. And, the cherry on top: I am ready and willing to adjust my message and view point when provided with a better argument or information.
How can you hate on that?
You really can't. But, when it comes to me, for some strange reason (All of this has a point), I'm able to get those fangs out no matter how reasonable my point or logic is and no matter how illogical or irrational theirs can be.
Maybe its because they feel like I'm someone they can bully. Maybe they view me as a threat to what they are trying to accomplish. Maybe their platform sucks and is so boring they try to make a name for themselves by piggy-backing off of other people's platforms and those platforms are also haters of mine. I may have said something about an issue they care about in my blunt nonchalant manner that offended them and now they don't like me on their principles(?). Maybe they were blocked because they were complicit in the cyberbullying of the mother of my child because of her race. I have no idea and honestly don't really care, anymore at least.
Trying to be on the right side of issues and then understanding them enough to be able to eloquently present perspectives that can trigger change isn't as entertaining and shareable as Tomi Lahren, or as emotionally validating, yet completely backwards, as say an Umar Johnson. My haters are a marketing tool. They get my words and voice to people and places I would love to but can't at the moment. They usually frame those words and my voice in a way I wasn't intending or saying at all and then hate share it to try to make their points. What's hilarious to me about it is, they hate me so much and are blinded by that hate, that they actually and usually make my points for me.
Cases in point:
When the Ray Rice videos came out, on the podcast, I repeatedly emphasized that no person should put their hands on any other person no matter the gender, but if that were to happen, and that person decides that she is willing to give their abuser another chance, that is on them. Haters responded by saying I was condoning domestic violence. But did I? I know domestic violence is a hard topic to discuss, especially for victims, but I'm sorry, your pain doesn't trump another person's decisions with their life. Last I checked, Ray and Janay are better than they ever could have been before. So where am I condoning domestic violence?
When Rachel Dolezal was the talk of the town, I repeatedly emphasized that what she did was wrong, unacceptable, and deserving of her loss of employment and roles. But, I wasn't going to dismiss the work and progress she had made for the communities and students she worked for and with. Also, some of the reactions and feelings from black people, mainly black women, was based on hatred towards white people, specifically white women, and that we need to be more honest and mindful of our own prejudices because they get in the way of our progress as a group and subsequently as a country. I even privately called out a very popular activist that I was acquainted with for her bigotry, because if you changed black for white in her rants, she would have called that person a white supremacist. So, naturally, I hate black women and want to silence them. But do I? I would argue that my love for black women is so strong that I don't like to see them so emotionally and irrationally wrapped up in their justified, yet regressive, feelings of distrust, anger, and sometimes hatred of other women or people. I've given that specific black women a place to come to promote her platforms and events on my show in the past, how am I silencing her? And, I thought social justice was about eradicating bigotry and making an equitable society, so she tries to destroy my name, brand, and show because I checked her on her own bigotry? Who's trying to silence who in this situation?
I still don't understand that one.
Lastly, when a Columbia University student walked around with a mattress all school year to protest a sexual assault she says the school ignored, I was on her side. But, as more information came out from many sources that were involved in the matter, the story started to fall apart, and even if she was assaulted, the way she handled the situation was the reason why no one could do anything about it. This led me to publicly talk about a situation I dealt with in high school where I would have been falsely imprisoned for a rape allegation that I, in no way, committed. My point was, to make sure we have as much evidence and information about a situation before we prejudge and ruin innocent people's lives. I was subsequently “outed" as a men's rights activist, and upgraded to hating all women. Seriously? Like, at this point I'm getting concerned on what these people actually want or if they even know what they want because these labels I get hit with make absolutely no sense.
When I go back and self access, mainly because I've been on a really long hiatus, I don't regret anything I've said. I regret how my show was formatted. I pigeon-holed myself into being a “blacks only” voice and that's not what I'm about, but that’s what my show reflected. I wanted to change that, so I took... a really long hiatus. That's not anything for you to worry about, but it kind of clued me into where my haters were coming from and why. When I started to lay it all out in my head, it all came together.
My tried and true loyal haters are people that I've worked with, or considered a friend, in this journey to becoming a mainstream social commentator. They all seem to want to be the next Shaun King or Deray Mckesson or Franchesca Ramsey and will tone police or social media drag and silence anyone in their way. They all seem to mean well, most people with platforms usually do, but go about pushing their message as aggressive as a "toxic male" in the parking lot after ladies free night at the club! They have a following of other people who also mean well, but like their messages to be simple and absolute with no wiggle room because that keeps them warm at night, or something like that. And, sadly, they're BLACK! All of them! Well, almost all of them.
What I think their problem with me is, they aren't me. I don't mean that they want my life and brand because I'm doing oh so well (Because I'm not at all where I want to be for myself). What I mean is, they want my mind. Not in the trying to blow my own head up way. I'm just saying that I challenge them to do and be better by challenging their arguments directly and they can't take the heat. So, they come at me, and I never buckle. They don't phase me. They are like the cool kids in school, and I’m the “blerd" who doesn't back down from them. So instead of beating me up and looking like a bully, they make me out to be some monster so YOU can beat me up for them (Which is still bullying!) All you have to do is read my words, understand my intent, and don't be afraid to change what you believe when you hear points and perspectives you've never heard or understood before and you can make your mind up about me yourself and not from these sensitive ass adult children.
Sure, I've gotten mad and reacted when I shouldn't have, like they continue to do. But, my points and reasoning goes unchanged because they are going unchallenged. They don't care about what I'm saying or trying to say. They are trying to challenge me as a person directly. They don't even really know me, who I am, and what I do and have done for people. Hell, you guys don't even really know. That's why it's so strange, yet stitches busting hilarious, that they attack my character like they do. Which shows more about them than it does me. If wanting a better, more equitable, just, and progressive world means attacking and destroying people who have valid points and arguments, that can and usually do make their arguments even better, then I don't want to be a part of that world. That's why I call them Social Justice Super Villains. I see no difference between them and Lex Luthor or the Joker.
At the end of it all, I'm still going to do me. I try to be a good person and make myself better all the time by learning things about and from everyone I can to be more understanding and nuanced. This gets in the way of those who use racial and social issues to emotionally make SJW terror cells with these easy to understand but wrong and garbage logic. Then they use those cells to get followers and try to become social media famous as the next person who says ridiculous shit to make a point that's actually is important. When I call them out on it to try to make the message better and have more perspective behind it, they get mad and attack, because I'm better at this then they are. They may have more followers than me and good for them, but I have more perspective and a way better, more inclusive message. That's more important at the end of the day.
With them hate sharing (And subsequently watching and listening. YouTube videos and podcasts coming very soon guys!) my work, they are giving people they are trying to control a chance to see better points and arguments. This might even help me to get more followers and numbers to be the social commentator I will eventually be and they wish they were. My success isn't as important as the changes that need to be made in society, but the people you listen to that are trying to spur that change is. Hopefully, you can see and feel my honesty and sincerity. In the meantime, watch this space and enjoy the show!
Oh... and wave. You seem them over there? Those are my haters.