Last night I think I had an epiphany about myself while watching Spike Lee’s “School Daze”. First I think I need to say that last night was my first time watching “School Daze” in like more that 16 years (my high school daze), so there were some things in the movie that I understood & noticed that were above my head way back when. The issues of Black Unity, Colorism, Classism & Black Nationalism were things I had no idea about.
What I like most about the movie back then was the music, step show, sex & the banana in the toilet scenes, so that shows you were my teenage my was.
So last night as I dissected the movie while laughing my ass off, I noticed that Laurence Fishburne’s character “Dap” reminded of myself today. Dap was the politically conscious, Black Nationalist down for the cause of uplifting the People (Negroes). During several scenes Dap was a little extreme & I was comparing myself to him & wondered how extreme am I & am I extreme at all.
Then towards the end of the film, Dap & Julian (Giancarlo Esposito) got into a final confrontation that really tripped me out. Basically, if you don’t know or remember, Julian called Dap out for being “all Black” & this Nationalist who could not convince anyone to move back to Africa & even said that he (Dap) knew nothing about Africa. Oh he went off on Dap & I was like damn. Then after the scene, I had a mental pause and said, wait, was Julian talking to my ass? A small part in me thinks that he was.
So today, I am going back & forth wondering if I am too Black/African oriented, is there such a thing & what are the ramifications if any. Maybe my pending name change, which will be complete on Tuesday (03/06/07) has something to do with my feelings.
My friends tease me sometimes about my “Blackness” sometimes & it usually is funny but they get me & a few have even said that they wish that they could be as Black/African oriented, which I always say, well it really does not take much LOL.
As I type this post, I am listening to Gil-Scott-Heron’s “Brother”. I love this song & I as listen, I am feeling better about how Julian attacked me, I took it personal. Brother helps me realize that I walk the walk & talk the talk & most definitely, I am not Blacker than Thou.
If there were more people like Dap & me who acted and not just talked, I think we would be better off but maybe I am dreaming.
I am the Black Gold of the Sun,
School Daze Synopsis:
Fraternity and sorority members clash with the other students at a historically black university in this politically charged musical, which marked the sophomore feature from director Spike Lee. Dap (Laurence Fishburne) is a politically conscious brother who leads anti-apartheid demonstrations and eschews the social climbing of the Greek system. But Half-Pint (Lee), his craven young cousin, is willing to endure any humiliation to join the manly Gamma fraternity. As Half-Pint tries unsuccessfully to impress the Gammas with his inept womanizing, Dap engages in philosophical debates with Rachel (Kyme), his girlfriend. Meanwhile, the light-skinned, straight-haired sisters of the Gamma Ray sorority battle it out in a beauty parlor with their darker-skinned, Afro-headed fellow co-eds. Eventually, Half-Pint gets the chance to join the frat, but only after a degrading episode with Jane (Tisha Campbell), the soon-to-be ex-girlfriend of his house president, causes Dap to lose all respect for him.
Based in part on the director’s experiences at Atlanta’s Morehouse College, School Daze was also written and produced by Lee. Despite production numbers that included “Straight and Nappy”, a dis-fest between the “wannabes” and “jigaboos” on campus, the biggest hit on the film’s soundtrack was the go-go anthem “Da Butt”, E.U.’s ode to shaking one’s backside. Supporting players Kadeem Hardison and Jasmine Guy also co-starred on the TV comedy A Different World, another look at life on a primarily African-American campus.