Today marks an entire century after one of the biggest racial massacres happened in America. The sad part is most people didn’t learn about this event in school.
Feel free to check the link in the post for more information especially with the recent news about the survivors speaking trying to get the government to recognize this event.
For those that don’t know, I’m referring to the Black Wall Street Massacre. This involves a neighborhood in Tulsa, Oklahoma called the Greenwood District. Side Note: Greenwood is what the G means in The GAP Band who are from that same city. The thing is that in the 1910s-1921, Greenwood was a Black-only area due to segregation and Jim Crow. However, this Black enclave consisted of businesspeople, doctors, lawyers, etc. It got the nickname of Black Wall Street because Black people were making Wall Street money at the time. This was due to them starting their own businesses as well as getting into the oil business which was booming at the time in the Sooner State. Crime was negligible at worst, a dollar could circulate 100 times in the community before exiting Greenwood, and some of these businesses involved grocery stores, banks, jewelry stores, fashion boutiques, hospitals, and other establishments. You even had people moving from as far as New York City and Chicago just to live in this neighborhood.
Unfortunately, things became hostile in 1921. There was a false sexual assault allegation against a Black man by a Caucasian woman in an elevator which enabled there to be a mob who became deputized to ransack Greenwood. They were deputized, killed Black people, burned down businesses, looted whatever was there, and even bombarded Black Wall Street with an airplane to raze the community. Several people died even though they only reported over thirty in the news. However, there were mass graves revealed just a couple of years ago. No one was ever punished by this massacre and you even had Tulsans who’s families have been there for generations who didn’t even know about this atrocity happening.
I didn’t learn about this until about a couple of years after I graduated college in a DJ Vlad interview of Immortal Technique of all things (this is before I knew Vlad was a culture vulture, so please forgive me) mentioning it in passing. I didn’t get really in-depth with it until I saw the documentary Hate Crimes In the Heartland which features the remaining three survivors who are all now centenarians. My blood froze when one of the women who lived through that massacre said her mom saw these mobs wearing American flags while armed while telling her “Your country is shooting at you!” while breaking into tears. I strongly recommend anyone to watch this to really get details of Black Wall Street and how there needs to be justice and reconciliation.
Hearing about Black Wall Street was both fascinating in how the people thrived while establishing their own businesses while at the same time infuriating me with this gross racist injustice that happened. The stories of people owning their own airplanes, getting rich from their own means, and succeeding even in Jim Crow-era Oklahoma was inspiring. At the same time, hearing about this brutality made my blood boil. Keep in mind, the Black Wall Street Massacre was the FIRST airstrike on US soil. Unlike Pearl Harbor twenty years later the fact where a foreign country (Japan, obviously) attacked them, this was an attack by Americans to Americans. This piece of history also reveals racist hypocritical rhetoric that still happens to this day. The “bootstraps” argument is null and void. These people in Greenwood DID pick themselves up by their bootstraps, but their homes and businesses were razed. The complaint about people looting businesses during some of the BLM protests for example, falls flat (note: people shouldn’t be looting anyway) when a white mob looted and destroyed businesses and never got punished for their actions. This is still American history that needs to be talked about and taught. Tulsa wasn’t the only example (Slocum, TX and Rosewood come to mind) when it comes to these situations.
This didn’t even get mainstream attention to the best of my knowledge until the Watchman 2019 TV sequel of all things where it was a plot point in the show. You had people who thought it was wholly fictional until they did a basic Google search. One of my older paternal cousins didn’t even know about Black Wall Street until she saw the Watchman HBO show when she told me when we were on Zoom (she lives multiple states away from me). The other example I can think of even though this involves something very political was the backlash against Donald Trump’s rally in Tulsa. It was originally going to be on Juneteenth until they changed the date due to the ramifications and symbolism of it being a double whammy of having an event on that holiday in the same city where this massacre happened. I was shocked that mainstream news channels talked about that even if it was brief when news broke out about the rally.
I thought this would be very important to share. People need to learn about this and other cases in this country. I want justice to prevail and for there to finally be healing going on. Several people regardless of race or ethnicity didn’t know about this until fairly recently. I’m not doing this to shame others. Is this an uncomfortable part of American history? Yes, and I don’t dispute that. I don’t want this history to repeat and I hate seeing racist hypocrisy going on in this country. There needs to be reconciliation. Never forget.
I really feel like talking about this subject again.
I’ve been subjected to fandom shaming multiple times in my life. One thing I sometimes did back then was to “hate” something just to spite the person who shamed me. It usually involved various bands or movies and I would tell them straight up “I no longer like the thing you made fun of me for.” just to get on their nerves. Sometimes it would be a temporary thing where I would like something again. I’ve never been able to get someone to stop liking something, but at most when I know I’m right about something I have made people not look at something the same way again especially if there’s something problematic about a fandom or a piece of media. The most successful attempt even though I was only passing information involved telling people about a VERY certain 2019 Netflix documentary covering a music plagiarism case. If you know me, you know exactly what it is, what song, who was involved in that court case, and what caused it to be the straw that broke the camel’s back which caused that lawsuit to happen. I think some of you will get the answer right. It certainly opened up some eyes and also further proved me right about what was associated with that case.
As I’ve gotten older, I’ve been losing hobbies. Some of it involves me growing out of certain interests, but other times I remembered being made fun of for certain interests where I just gave up. It really didn’t helped that I struggled with committing to certain activities when I was a lot younger even though there were other issues I was dealing with then. Part of me wondered what it would be like if I gave into temptation to get someone to stop liking something and how effective I could be at it. Conversely, I listened to a podcast where someone talked about how you have so many people online tearing others down (Twitter and YouTube being very specific examples in the conversation) and he wondered how anyone could get an enjoyment in doing so instead of doing something else like talking a walk outside for example. This felt like an angel and devil on my shoulder kind of thing where I think if I should verbally attack someone for their fandoms. I’m not going to pretend I’m a saint. There is a sliver of me wanting to do so as an indirect revenge against those who insulted me for having some hobbies. There are even times where I feel like I have to make pre-emptive self defense statements before I say why I like something by finding any counterarguments to defend what I have interests in. This even goes with some of my more serious interests, too.
Sorry for rambling. While there are bigger issues in the world, this is something that is still bothering me. Has anyone else had that issue with giving up certain interests because of fandom shaming or just getting older? Have you ever dealt with similar situations?
This topic has been on my mind for weeks. I know I wrote a poem based on that subject. Yes, I know there are worse issues going on right now in the world and this isn’t me ignoring them. Something about the concept of fandom shaming has grabbed my attention with how it affected me years ago. I’ve been fandom shamed for liking anime, independent music (sometimes for specific bands or singers), and even superheroes at one point like how I used to play HeroClix during my teens. I had the toughest time making counterarguments to the people who insulted me. Maybe this was me taking the high road or maybe I was so stupid and naive to have a comeback towards those fools. It also frustrated me when other people like other things, but never get insulted. I’m not just talking about “acceptable” fandoms like sports, shoes, cars, etc., but for certain bands/singers, movies, or games out there.
I have some questions for you because I feel like I’m the only person in the world who gets fandom shamed.
Have you ever been fandom shamed? If so, what was it for?
Have you ever fandom shamed someone? If so, what was it that the other person liked?
How do you deal with being fandom shamed if it happened to you?
I discovered Breakwater on a whim. When I heard the first few seconds, I realized that Daft Punk sampled this song to make “Robot Rock”. This was a really fun song with the right mix of guitars, bass, and synths. How did I not know about this band even though they were before my time? This song really slaps and I want to check out their other songs and their albums.
Can’t you tell I’ve been on a bit of an old-school kick? I heard the song Rock Steady a few times a long time ago, but this song came to my attention after seeing it used while synching the Sami Zayn dancing meme. I was unaware that The Whispers have been around since the 60s and I have heard some of their other songs before. One such example is “And the Beat Goes On” which I also recently heard while I was shopping one day. Of course for my generation, we mainly know it because “Miami” by Will Smith used the beat for that one. “Rock Steady” is a really fun song that will certainly get one moving.
Technically, I’ve listened to this song before, but not this version. This is the lost band Morella’s Forest who were a gothic rock/new wave band from the 80s. Two of the members would be none other than Ronnie Martin and Jason Martin of Joy Electric and Starflyer 59 respectively as well as their one-time side project The Brothers Martin. Joy Electric would re-release this song in their typical experimental synth pop sound, but I wasn’t aware the song was older than that. It was surreal hearing that song with guitars, basses, and drums though. I also found out Ronnie and Jason were only 18 and 16 when they recorded this album that was lost until this year. It was very fascinating getting into the musical history of the Martins since I listened to both bands starting out in junior high and Joy Electric was certainly an influence on Ospreyshire as a recording project. No, this is unrelated to that Tooth & Nail band that was there in the 90s and early 00s.