My terror involved my realization of the nature of the heathen. Thus, I was forced to recognize that, so long as your friend thinks of you as a Negro, you do not have a friend, and neither does he, your friend. You have become accomplices. Everything between you depends on what he cannot say to you, and what you will not say to him. And one of you is listening. If one of you is listening, to all those things, precisely, which are not being said, the intensity of this attention can scarcely be described as the attention one friend brings to another.
James Baldwin, "Take Me to the River," No Name in the Street
A nation will not survive morally or economically when so few have so much, while so many have so little. Just look at the Romans, the Byzantine, the Greek empires--all fell because of greed and poor economic/war decisions.
Most Americans work to maintain whiteness as a powerful conveyor of the natural order of humanity.
At work, in the designated "break" room, if we're lucky to have such a space, for the bulk of ten or fifteen minutes, Americans train other Americans to fit in. Thus, time is the organizing of thought with the viewing of yet another cat video on YouTube gone viral, or another notification about a favorite celebrity on Facebook, or another Tweet by the occupant at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
At lunchtime, after making an appearance in the ironically labeled "rest" room, Americans check on children at school, children with the babysitter, husbands, wives, partners, parents. There are calls to doctors' offices, children's schools. An email needs to be sent to a colleague while, by phone, the cable or the light company must be notified of a late payment, or the need for new service, or a change in service. And lunch for most Americans is 30 minutes. To take time off to run errands or take a sick child to the doctor means time in which most Americans are not paid.
And then there's the second job. The night shift. What if the sickness of a child or elderly parent of the individual herself requires time at home to recover?
Back at work, the countdown begins: check the cell phone, the watch, the clock. Is it nearly time to pick up child from the recreation center or the other younger child from a parent's home?
Other Americans are hard at work to catch you before you fall, prematurely, by their calculations. They'll draw your attention away from the worries about the suspected proposal for downsizing at work, the lack of sufficient books or paper for your students, the man-made fires in California, displacing fellow Americans and destroying the habitat for thousands of wild life, that matter for their and human existence. More homelessness and destruction of homes for all life on Earth. But Netflix or Sundance TV among myriads of channels are in business for you! Never you mind the world out there!
You're not needed until tomorrow morning for the start of work or for school or classes. Another exam awaits you!
And if all this running in circles should stress anyone, Big Pharma has a drug for you. Fellow Americans, trained to study the matter of stress for an annual report on Americans and stress, will come around to you to ask about your stress levels! High? Low? Moderate?
But Americans go back. Some for the health-care plan. Millions return even when there's no such thing. Almost laughable to think about, even. A health-care plan! And, no-no daycare! Americans go back for the salary, income, the something that is better than nothing, that isn't even 15 dollars an hour or for the tips. To get the training. To at least pay the high rent that is the same as a mortgage for a tiny apartment. To pay the mortgage on a house is depreciating in value thanks to drug activity on the corner.
To just pay for the high cost of everything because that's the way it is. Besides, those who are unwilling to follow along, go with the flow, don't want to, do they? Lazy? Aren't they? Of course they are! That's what we've been told for years. And we know who they are, don't we. We know who we are. Don't we?
And yes, blacks and whites have worked together back in the day of union picketing and strikes. But Americans have been divided just as easily too with fear-mongering and gorilla warfare played out in the streets and shown on television as all the news fit to digest for a new America, in a post-racism society. Policies were altered to fit a new mindset while white liberal America was urged to see to their own business and never minds those blacks being carted off to newly-minted prisons in far-away places... To keep you "safe"! Believe it !