Monday, October 15, 2007

This is the latest ridiculousness. This announcement's already from last week, which I know, in the popular imaginary is ages ago. And, normally I don't even like to think about reproducing images/events such as this in my sphere. But, I was so shocked with the racist, colorist, sexist implications of all of this that I had to. It just resonates so deeply with how racism plays out in the Caribbean. I also had to include brilliant responses, like the "news article" (fictional) written by Francine Harris, posted below.

Francine Harris's response

DETROIT – Following a party promoters' call for "light-skinned Libras" to populate a night club for a dance night, protestors across the metropolitan area today dumped tens of thousands of paper bags at local dumping grounds and filled a barge that sailed the Detroit River this afternoon.

"The paper bag test is dead here" said local hip-hop legend and party promoter, NightRise, referring to the admittance policy among African-Americans. His venues have blown up lately for their decision to add other nights to Ladies Night, including: Gentlemen's Night for the ladies, Poet's Night where freestylers get in for free, GenderBender Night where people of both sexes come in drag, and Family Night which are alcohol free and kid friendly. "Overall, man, we're just brown-giddy. Brown folks coming to my clubs down here – automatic superstars!"

The youth in Detroit are also voicing their concerns. "I just hate that people think we don't love ourselves" said Novena Derrick, a 13-year old ninth grader, posing with a ripped up paper bag and a Macintosh apple in her mouth. Derrick is best known for her tri-color Blacker Berry flag, a spoof of the Michigan flag. The traditional elk and moose in the Michigan flag bear a banner of an armed man defending his land, under the word Tuebor (latin for "I will defend") and stand protected by the United States Eagle.

Derrick's version of this flag still features the elk, moose and eagle, but the animals frame a banner of a happy clan of African-Americans, of various shades, laughing in the sunshine. As Derrick likes to point out: "We took it back to its original black color …plus the diaspora replaces the mean man with the gun".

Color-struck promoters were unavailable for comment on the protests.

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