"An unbearable tension seized me upon reading Baldwin's critique of the Nation. Though his insistence om love---not a feebke thing to be granted easily, but a tough-minded understanding that insists on accountability for America's wrongs---moved me, I also possessed a perspective that Baldwin dismissed out of hand as naïve & morally bankrupt. I grew up in Los Angeles as a member of the Nation of Islam." - Ismail Muhammad
"In 2018, a world home to both the Movement for Black Lives & a president that identifies white supremacists as fine people, we are given a movie about black empowerment where the only redeemed blacks are African nobles. They safeguard virtue & goodness against the threat not of white Americans or Europeans, but a black American man, the most dangerous person in the world."
"An Unbearable Tension: On James Baldwin & The Nation of Islam" by Ismail Muhammad & " 'Black Panther' Is Not the Movie We Deserve" by Chris Lebron are two pieces of criticism that moved me on varying levels.
Muhammad's piece moved me, because like Tayari Jones did with "An American Marriage," it read me. It read me because this book that I hold in high esteem & champion all the way from the mountaintops is dismissive towards the Nation of Islam. Lebron's piece moved me for him being so passionate, even when some of his points are wrong, yet I know he is on the right side of history & who his loyalties are with. He truly is someone rooting for everybody black.
I post these articles because I think if you have read "The Fire Next Time," & have gone to see "Black Panther," & have enjoyed both you will appreciate these critiques. We can all be blinded by art which we consume that we enjoy immensely. How can we enjoy it so much, that we completely ignore or ot even notice these seemingly obvious flaws? Credit it to human nature I suppose.
It also shows the importance of re-reading/watching art that you love. Also the importance of being vocal when correcting former mistakes in judgment.
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