The Art of Revitalizing a City on the Back of an Old Woman
Recall the movie ‘The Ten Commandments‘ (directed by Cecil DeMille (1956)? Remember the scene where Joshua had to rescue the old woman who was about to be ground up underneath the huge building stones, and he ended up getting flogged for it until Moses rescued him?
Well that scene may have been a work of Art taken from a legendary story, but sad to say life now imitates Art in a peculiar way. The building stones this time around are the blocks of housing projects called ‘condominiums’ that are carpeting Washington, D.C. I am the unwitting Joshua. But instead of being literally flogged to death by a taskmaster, I have been blacklisted to oblivion by civil and finance servants. As for the Moses character, that may be some imaginary lawyer or elected official or judge, who could step forward to rescue me while I try to rescue the old woman who is being laced up not with a cat o’ nine whip but with nitro-glycerin – the same compound that White Supremacists used to fire-bomb Tulsa, Oklahoma back in 1921 when it was Black Wall Street. But unlike Joshua for whom that old woman was just an old woman, for me, the old woman on whose back Washington, D.C. reestablished the financial prowess to usher in the current urban renewal – Negro removal – Gentrification – Black Devitalization scam, that old woman is my mother. But much like the taskmaster who tried to whip Joshua to death, for much of these lawyers, judges, public officials, and business men what is the loss of one old woman? For them it is no great loss.
For most of the public, particularly many who may find Findings, INTELLEXAE Reports and Digests, and even this new “Letters” e’Zine too exhausting to read, it must be that I am the problem, not the thieves, and not the biased public servants. Why else would it all take so long?
Well, at least I am not dead – YET – but as for some other man – some proverbial Moses closer to God than me coming to rescue me so that I can prevail against the thieves and become – along with what’s left of my mother – rich beyond our wildest dreams, since I do not have the lung capacity of a blue whale, I don’t think its wise for me to keep my mind in worship and search mode searching for some liar to be my salvator and bottom-dwell that way wile holding my Rodney King breath.
But while the thieves grind us into bits and bitterment, Blacks in American are expected to continue to toil in the absence of economic parity. That’s kind of like making bricks without straw. A lot of you are okay with that.
Radcliffe B. Lewis