Shelbi

Ida B. was a bad B

In Uncategorized on September 30, 2010 at 7:08 pm

I’ve had the pleasure of being able to read a few excerpts from the fearless and talented Ms. Ida B. Wells, and I must say, she is certainly one to emulate. There was a fearlessness in Wells that was so surprising to me, I felt as though I was reading a fiction novel. Could a black woman in the 1900’s have that much audacity to tell a white man he was wrong in a published newspaper? Furthermore, not only did Wells express her deep dissatisfaction with the issues of lynching in the south, she went on to call those same men murders and cowards; and their wives shameless adulters. AND THEN sign her name at the bottom! That is the type of journalism that needs to be seen more on today’s CNN and FOX news station. Everything is so propaganda these days, it is incredibly difficult to believe any one person is telling the honest to goodness truth.

Even more than as a journalist, as a black woman Ida exemplified a will to defend her people, even to her death, and encouraged us all to do the same.

“The lesson this teaches and which every Afro-American should ponder well, is that a Winchester rifle should have a place of honor in every black home, and it should be used for that protection which the law refuses to give. When the white man who is always the aggressor knows he runs as great a risk of biting the dust every time his Afro-American victim does, he will have greater respect for Afro-American life. The more the Afro-American yields and cringes and begs, the more he has to do so, the more he is insulted, outraged and lynched.”

-excerpt from Southern Horrors: Lynch Law in All Its Phases

So why aren’t we seeing this type of journalism anymore? There are definitely enough civil rights issues going on to defend (including the horrible incident at Rutgers. And certainly there are people speaking out there. But I think all the social networking sites and such make it seem like everyone is yelling at the same time and no one is being heard. It’s a shame. I watch the news today and forget about it all tonite because the world is so terribly screwed that there isn’t enough time in the day to fix all its problems. And worst of all, there never seem to be enough people who care. It would make a present day Ida B. throw up her hands to God.

It is my sincerest dream to use my talents and profession to uplift those in this country whose voice seems to be ignored. And though it is a dirty, strenuous job, as they always say; somebody’s gotta do it.

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