Oh, not all Black people, just the folks of Trinity United 's congregation... they are MINE!
It seems I was just born this way. My very existence keeps them down. I know! I'm as surprised as the next Typical White Person. I was brought up in a home where prejudice against other peoples was considered the height of stupidity.
Unfortunately, I was never taught how much power I had just by the fact of my mere existence; or how harshly I would be judged for exerting that power over the Black Man just by being my cheerful, unassuming White Self.
I never felt any guilt about being white, or any pity about my friends and school mates being black. We just were. The media's insistence on inflaming racism didn't change my perspective about my friends, or give me great traction in the politicized world of racism. I just went on liking or disliking people based on how they treated me personally.
So White. And American. So naive.
All the while, I apparently have been amassing great hordes of Black churchgoers who are convinced that I own them.
Because who is more a slave than the person that allows another to dictate one's inner dialog? I have the amazing ability to make quite a few Black people sad, angry, bitter, disappointed, and consumed with irrational thoughts about their own behavior. I make their life miserable, I guess. I've kept them from succeeding in business, law, the arts, education, finance, politics and science. (The Black people who have succeeded were also owned by me, apparently, and have nothing at all to be proud of. You see, I made their success possible, so eager were they to please me.)
Yep. I am pretty damn powerful and heartless.
Thousands of Black Chicagoans can do aught but think about me and my Whiteness. I drive their psychological bus every day; because whether they believe it or not, they ask me to.
Every time they decide to think the thoughts they think about me, and become angry and resentful... well, they are allowing me to tell them who they are. I am a deep and stubborn unconscious script that owns their identity. They cannot define themselves except against the template of their hate for me. I am the god of their fears, so they mock and curse my immutable Whiteness with brave posturing, to convince themselves that I am powerless over them. Of course, I never actually show up there at their church. I mean, why should I? They've already painted a picture of me they like far better. It suits their purposes, and I don't have to commute from my far-away throne of White.
I wonder at the definition of someone who would encourage them to enslave themselves to that sort of mindset... I wonder what he gets out of it, besides the tithes, I mean?
So, whether I want to or not, I own these poor men and women. Except, I never signed for them, much less ordered them. They were sold a bill of goods in exchange for their own sense of self, and continually keep paying for their chosen slavish mindset. Like some rent-to-own contract of manufactured self-esteem; the resolution they seek is costly and unattainable.
Well, I'm willing to do many things to help you, my fellow human being sitting there in the mega-church in Chicago, but I'm not going to go away in order to prove to you that I am not your problem.
And I haven't plotted to develop hard-won skills in my life just to keep you from your dreams. I've worked hard because the world is a pitiless shark-pool of competition and I don't have the luxury of a conscience that allows me to expect someone else to back off and give me a chance. Because they won't.
You know, the world doesn't just screw Black people over, the world screws everybody over. That's its job. Our job is to not let real or imagined circumstance define us.
So, you can go on blaming me for everything you think, do, and say. But as long as you think I'm your problem, then I'm your master.
It's just all so tiresome.
Oh. Stay tuned. Next week will all be about Black "Survivor" Guilt: Making Whitey Pay Because I Was Spared the Horrors of Racism and Went on to Make Quite a Lot of Money, Which Has Alienated Me From the "Real" and Epic "Black Experience" and Now I Shall Have to Live a Dull and Ordinary Life as a Successful and Happy Person, G-d Damn You, America!