Black History Month Conference Keynote Michael Eric Dyson – UTSC
John River – hope city – opened up the keynote with great stories through spoken word of the lived experience of a youth in our city
Michael Eric Dyson was beyond amazing! Below are my notes I was trying to scramble down on my phone as he was speaking!
These are his words and opinions below. Although I agree with many of it, this is notes I took from him speaking!
We need transformation of the world that we live. Many aspects are part of our identity: colour, race, sexual orientation etc. We are in evolution and becoming who we are meant to be.
We all are wanting recognition of our humanity where society punishes us for our differences
Man kills a youth because the youth’s very identity provoked fear.
Another young man was gunned down because he provoked suspicion.
His very own identity has provoked this.
People are allergic to difference
People are uncomfortable with difference
Move to a radical preoccupation where all of gods children should be treated equally with love
When we talk about the 3rd world it is actually 2/3 of the world. They look like most of the people in the world
Difference is what challenges the norm, the narrow cookie cutter norms.
We live in a world where people are incapable of acknowledging difference.
They try to justify their homophobia on their racial identity. That isn’t blackness! They are ostracizing another group
He spoke of jealously of freedom struggle. How do they take our freedom struggle. Where is the copyright on freedom struggle. Would Martin Luther king pay royalties to Ghandi? Ghandi is a internationalist and globalist.
Give the life you have had and repurpose and repackage so it has a broader and deeper impact
People of colour are getting upset because their stuff(stuggle) is getting taken over
We go to church and then have to be homophobic again
This homophobia we nurture in the womb of our identity, that those practices of justice are what it is to be black or brown or yellow.
We got to challenge this
Sexuality is one issue
Shades is another
No racism but colour coordinated oppression going on!
Darker people are catching hell.
Indian people have shadism
The currency of acceptance is the demonization of colour!
Colourism is real within and between groups. It has to be challenged, we must celebrate all beauty
It’s hard to be a youth, older people are mad a young people
The older people paid the price and suffered so you can have it well.
Dying for freedoms they could never enjoy. Wearing the military uniform could get you beaten up (referring to American history where first black soldiers servered the US and came back to America, would be beaten up for wearing their uniform).
How do we talk about the N word. He first heard it from the pastor It’s not their privilege
Can’t call women bitches either
Snatched the chain of oppression, Nigger VS nigga
Its Linguistic appropriation
Sell out for that day. If you trying to get a job pull your pants up and sell out for that day.
Hip hop has issues but so does church: Misogyny, homophobia etc
Hip hop is judged the most. There is variety within the art form. Some is great and other is whack
Christopher Wallace (Notorious BIG) – famous philosopher
Listen to the pain in hip hop
Sean Carter – teachers couldn’t reach me
Conscious rap – Mos Def and Talib Kwali
Issue of gender
We saw we want to protect women from gangster rappers
They are the objects of lustful desires
Learn some other women! learn something new about the women you already know!
Real men aren’t afraid of real women
Systemic issues and disproportionate number of coloured people in jail
People from their own groups will replicate and duplicate harmful beliefs about their own communities.
People of colour think of abuse as love
Black church has to stop beating up on minorities within minorities. Having same faith is fine but you don’t have to have same religion
We try to get god to sign onto our bigotry
Below is advice he gave to a youth
Read as much as you can. Learn new words, read the dictionary, and learn a new word each day. Speak and listen to people you admire.
Words he gave to an adult on how to speak to youth