He Never Was A ‘Tiger’

 

Image result for tiger woods medal of freedom

I remember when Eldrick ‘Tiger’ Woods really became a household name. I remember during my high school years just how cool it was to know there was dude that was Black, golfing! GOLFING! And was like, GOOD at it!

I remember the Masters Wins. I remember the ESPN interviews. I remember when he didn’t call himself Black, but Cablasian. I remember when ‘Fuzzy’ Zeller said he hoped he didn’t bring fried chicken and collard greens to the Master’s Dinner.

Catch that.

I remember how my Dad would make off-hand comments about Tiger, and him not wanting to admit that he was Black. I remember how that irked him. I remember how he never really would say that he was Black. I remember that troubled me, but I couldn’t identify how. It was as if Tiger thought he could transcend race because he played a game better than a bunch of old White men that lust after their exotic maids.

As much that is said about Jackie Robinson, you must give him this. No matter where Jack went, according to accounts and his widow Rachel (now in her 90’s), he was Black. And unapologetic. He was Black in Cairo, Georgia. In California at UCLA. In the Negro Leagues as a Kansas City Monarch. He was Black in Montreal in the MLB minor league for the Brooklyn. He was Black as #42 (2B) in Ebbets Field. He never had the gumption, or the option, to deny any part of him that was Black. Or Black and male. His college education, speaking ability, military record, speed in cleats didn’t diminish the fact he was Black.

So, why did Tiger think this wouldn’t happen with him? How did game change–for him? What really made him think these stodgy, old White men would change–for him? We know that some White athletes disassociate themselves from the plight of their non-White teammates:  see Tom ‘Eptiome Of Mediocre White Male aside from my former brother-in-law Rob Bilbruck’ Brady. He is on record, with a MAGA hat in his locker said this (taken from The Intelligencer in December 2015):

“I haven’t paid attention to politics in a long time. It’s actually not something that I really even enjoy. It’s way off my radar.”

Now, to be fair, I have linked the article for you to see the entire exchange. But, I find it interesting that he wouldn’t go to visit President Obama after a Super Bowl win. However, got mad at his predominately Black teammates when they didn’t want to visit the White House to see Orange Thanos.  Then, he wanted to invoke the responsibility of his teammates to go.

Herein lies the disconnect.

My problem with Eldrick ‘Tiger’ Woods, whom is the son of a Black man, is you do not get to disconnect your Blackness from your social awareness. Your Blackness is your social awareness! I can take–nay, expect!–stupid, vapid comments from athletes who are better suited to be QB’s on the latest version of Madden! I can handle that, because his privilege is an insulator–impervious to logic.

The fact that Tiger Woods, went to the White House to accept the Presidential Medal of Freedom from a man that  is misogynist, clearly xenophobic, and a sympathizer to a/the white supremacist cause?

That let me know that he has no longer decided to rent a room in the Sunken Place. He bought property! Funny thing, though.  This same award that was given to heroes and artists, is now given to him. I can only see as a a noose he can wear and show off to people. Sometimes, it be your own people, man.

I said what I said.

[images from fox8.com and nymag.com]

From The Facebook Mental Health Help Desk

 

 There was a post that came across my Facebook timeline that said the following:

 

 

 

 

When I saw this, my heart sank.  All I could think about was my own childhood, and when I was telling people as a 10-year-old girl that I was depressed, no one believed me. I thought about the increased number of little Black children that are ending their lives. Yet, everything on this post was something that I had either heard or heard second hand be said when it relates to the feelings and emotions of Black children.

Black children are consistently told their pain, their trauma, their emotional well being doesn’t matter. That is is trivial. Ergo, they are trivial. They are not taken seriously even in the face of evidence to the contrary!

Look, I get it. I had parents that worked all the time to take care me and my siblings. I had a grandmother, whom was sometimes less than warm, and aunts that worked because they had families too. Everyone is so busy trying to make it and survive you don’t have time to see what may be going on around you! Previous generations didn’t have the luxury of calling their anxiety ‘depression’. They didn’t have the luxury of admitting their minds were playing tricks on them, and the world had gotten so dark that suicide became an option.

Live. Work. Take care of kids.

“If they ain’t dying, starving, dirty or bleeding to death, they’ll be alright.”

With the rate of suicide among African-American children on the rise, posts like this–even in jest–make me wince. They make me uncomfortable because it peels back layers of Black culture we don’t discuss–and use humor to cover up. I remember hearing things like, “Only white people get depression!”

Pause.

No. We get depression too, but we don’t get the luxury of a diagnosis. The goal of a diagnosis is to point a clinician in the  right direction in order to help their patients. That means medication if need be or the most blasphemous term to Black folks:  therapy. We don’t get the justice a diagnosis grants. We, especially Black women, are told to keep going. We get told little Black boys only get to be tough or happy.

Black people are not allowed to be totally human. If we are allowed to embrace all of ourselves, even the broken parts, perhaps these generational traumas can heal. Instead of  being things to laugh about on social media, and whispered about at funeral repasses.

 

 

 

 

[image from comicartfans.com–Lucy is a creation of Charles M. Schultz, creator of Peanuts]