What should horrify Americans is not Kaepernick’s choice to remain seated during the national anthem, but that nearly 50 years after Ali was banned from boxing for his stance and Tommie Smith and John Carlos’s raised fists caused public ostracization and numerous death threats, we still need to call attention to the same racial inequities. Failure to fix this problem is what’s really un-American here.
It all started with a ruined Wednesday morning.
A tweet of mine had found its way into a Washington Post op-ed calling for the dismissal of University of Missouri professors accused of assaulting students at a rally celebrating the resignation of the school president. Normally, this wouldn’t bother me; I’d grown accustomed to journalists using my tweets in their stories without giving me so much as a heads up (which usually leaves me open to trolling), and my Twitter account has never been private. But, as I’d spent the last 48 hours ridding my mentions of trolls wanting to debate First Amendment rights and freedom of the press, I was in no mood to entertain any more, and there was something about this particular post that stunk.
I was introduced to this feature on WaPo through an assigned reading for MCO 494. It has since become one of my favorite weekly reads. The Intersect is also worth adding to your RSS feed.
The image, faded and torn in places, seemed to have come from someone’s desk — and the fate of both owner and subjects could only be guessed at. So Keefe paged through photos of the deceased, looking for someone from the picture. She repeatedly posted the image to Twitter and Facebook, begging anyone with information to respond.
Black Twitter is part cultural force, cudgel, entertainment and refuge. It is its own society within Twitter, replete with inside jokes, slang and rules, centered on the interests of young blacks online — almost a quarter of all black Internet users are on Twitter.
There’s no password. The only entry fee is knowledge. If you’ve spent time steeped in black culture, whether at a historically black college or university or in the company of friends or family, you will probably understand the references on Black Twitter.