The afrosphere is NOT the "black blogosphere"

Update [2008-12-18 20:23:17 by Manic Lawyer]: I've reread paragraph (4) and I have no idea what readers are complaining about there. But, as I suspected, no support has been expressed in comments for Black self-determination, the afrosphere, the AfroSpear or Black bloggers, except support for self-expression in general. I didn't expect any support, but the response makes it clear to Black people why the afrosphere is NOT the Black part of the blogosphere.

I hadn't intended to write anything more at my blog, but something I heard urged me to write again.

I personally hate the term "black blogosphere". "Blogosphere" is a word invented by white people, and "black blogosphere" implies that we Blacks are merely a (minute) part of their white world.

In reality, we have our own world with our own definition of our political reality, and out of that self-definition comes our political action. In the afrosphere, we are not the "black table" in a room full of white people. We are an autonomous black conference, independent of white people, which assures our self-determination (until we are infiltrated by the FBI or the Defense Department).

If we were the "black blogosphere", then every time a decision was to be made about the nature of the blogosphere overall, we Blacks would be out-voted, out-gunned, and therefore could safely be ignored.

That's what was happening until the AfroSpear and the afrosphere came along.  Now, we are independent, with our own unique voices and self-definitions. We are not now marginalized as we were and often continue to be at white blogs, where we usually constitute no more than 3% of participants. Instead, we are at the very center of the afrosphere, aspiring to be the vanguard of the Black online world.  In the afrosphere instead of being numerically marginalized and politically ignored, we Blacks are at the CENTER.  We ARE the afrosphere.

Now, if I publish what I have written above at a white blog, it will be ridiculed or utterly ignored. They just can't understand why Black people per se need to organize independently. "Why aren't white organizations good enough for Blacks if they are good enough for white people?"

The simple answer is, "Because we are not white and white people do not and will not treat us as they treat each other." Whites will insist that this is not true, but you and I all know that it is.  When I refer to myself as "Black", which is my ethnicity, Irish Americans in the whitosphere demand to know why I capitalize "Black," although they capitalize their ethnicities - like Irish-American and Jewish-American - all of the time.  And so if we can't even agree that Blacks can call ourselves what we want, we certainly need separate Black organizations in which Blacks can make other important decisions about our destiny.

Take, for example, the insistence of people like self-acknowledged CIA-trained Markos C.A. Moulitsas Zúñiga of DailyKos that the blogosphere is a meritocracy where the best writing will get noticed, (but, unfortunately, the irrelevant Black niche issues will be ignored). Why? Because the 96%-white majority in the "meritocracy" decides what is important and the issues most important to the 3% that are Black and Latino in the white blogosphere will NEVER, EVER be equally important to the 96% white majority, or even be perceived by the majority in most cases. Tut tut.

For example, thirty thousand Blacks marched on Jena, Louisiana, with hardly a mention by the whitosphere. The whitosphere in general certainly didn't attend the march or encourage any of their readers to do so.

Ask yourself this: Would Alpha Phi Alpha (a Black male fraternity, you know) offer Blacks the same advantages that it does now if it were the Black segment of a white fraternity? Could and would Stevie Wonder ever have offered us the same music and political leadership if he were the Black member of the Greatful Dead?

The AfroSpear and the afrosphere are not the Black part of anything white. We are the Black part of something determinedly Black.

Tags: Afrosphere, Blogosphere, self-determination, whitosphere (all tags)



Re: The afrosphere is NOT

I believe "the" is a word invented by white people.  Be careful lest some of the cooties rub off.

by Steve M 2008-12-18 06:43AM | 0 recs
Paragraph 4

is really flawed. You might want to rethink your thrust there - does anyone "make decisions" about the blogosphere? Outside of some Illuminati-like organization, I'd have to say no.

As far as Markos, he's FOS. The idea that blog success is based on "merit" is as laughable as the idea Fox has more "merit" than PBS - it is certainly more popular. Of course, since he runs a successful blog, success = merit, instead of simple popularity.

Finally, I'm not sure the term "black blogosphere" is anything more than descriptive. While I give you mad props for the term "afrosphere" (love it), I challenge you to come up with a similarly themed term for the LGBT blogosphere, or the military blogosphere, or the liberal blogosphere, etc.

by Neef 2008-12-18 06:51AM | 0 recs
Re: The afrosphere is

If I were white . I would read this and go "when will this get whitey theme end". NO really !

by MumbaiBurns 2008-12-18 07:03AM | 0 recs
The Internet's about freedom of...

...expression. Freedom of organization. Freedom of thought and action, in general.

So be it.

by bobswern 2008-12-18 08:32AM | 0 recs
And, yeah, that paragraph #4....

...that kind of screws the pooch on the diary, IMHO.

For the record, there's a difference between "being ignored" versus "being recommended."

I'm not rec'ing this. Generally speaking, I don't rec rants...regardless of their topic or source. (There have been exceptions to this rule in my blogging history, but this won't be one of them.)

by bobswern 2008-12-18 08:37AM | 0 recs


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