When organizations have the same thought simultaneously and change overnight, I tend to feel suspicious, and I don’t believe I’m the only person with this feeling. Whenever America decides to do something for the minority almost, one can’t help but wonder at the motive. God told Samuel that man looks at the outward appearance but he peers into the heart, and rightly so, He is God after all. The Scriptures tell the reader that a tree is known by the fruit it bears and just like the Scriptures always have, this verse stands the test of time.
Suddenly, companies are sending out email blasts, putting out ads, and stating they support diversity and Black Lives Matter. I point to Propaganda’s ‘Crooked’ album and select the song “Cynical” to let you know how others and myself feel about this. After decades of all white leadership, minimal Black and minority employees, now diversity matters? Armond Wakeup said it best, “These corporations can miss me with their ‘all in this together’ statements. They don’t wanna join, they just want our coin!” There have been boycotts of corporations who’ve been silent on the issues of Black lives, racism, and police brutality. While I believe in scales falling from eyes, I doubt this happened to these companies at the same time.
These businesses now have Black people on websites and in their marketing materials(as if colleges haven’t used PhotoShop to mimic diversity), but I don’t believe Black folk nor the rest of the world will be fooled so easily. Black people have always counted the Black folks in the room and will continue to do so. We’ve learned out of necessity, not to wander into spaces or do so cautiously that have minimal(if any) Black people. I can’t speak for all Black people, but I know I despise being the token Black in any capacity. That’s one of the reasons I didn’t join a white church, I didn’t want to be one of the few Blacks in the congregation for diversity’s sake. I refused to be the token that gets placed into a slot to play this game.
It’s insulting to think American people, specifically Black folks, are going to bite this hook, line and sinker. If you want to see whether a company is truly about that diversified life, all you have to do is scroll through their social media. Go back further than the last few weeks to prior months and years and see what you find. Some companies may have social media teams and deleted old posts but that makes the ruse more blatant. It feels like some businesses want to be on the right side of history but it’s too late. To change now may look good in fifty years but today it looks terrible. Diversity is sexy(and profitable) and these businesses appear to want to ride the wave until some other trend comes along.
This fake concern and apparent realization that people want to be seen where they patronize isn’t a new concept. This shouldn’t be surprising to anyone, but these companies seem shocked. It’s the only explanation for the stumbling, and dare I say pandering, to those who care about Black issues in America. After decades of being shut out of certain opportunities, now Blacks are being invited to the table? We aren’t stupid, we know what it is, but please believe, Black folks will take those tone deaf dollars, use them to pay our black bills and fund our black lives, and still call the company racist. We aren’t fooled in the slightest and can’t be bought, just consider it a down payment on the reparations owed to us.
Some believe the proof lies in the pudding but I submit that proof lies in the fruit. America was founded on stolen land and built by stolen people, our history has rotten roots. This country was built with white men in mind, even revisionist history proves it. We shouldn’t be surprised at America’s struggle with diversity. With origins such as these, what other fruit could fall from this wicked tree?