Letter to T.O. and Those

Hey my brother,

Firstly and foremost let me personally acknowledge and congratulate you brother on what has been an outstanding and stellar world of fame career as one of the most prolific and premier wide receivers to ever play in the NFL. You have no doubt established your place in the upper echelon of professional athletes and in the annals of NFL history as one of the best to have ever played the game. Personally I am enormously grateful to have had the privilege of witnessing your astounding athletic talent and contribution to the game…. So I ask, what do you need the NFL Hall of Fame for? 

Secondly, I have been trying to figure out for the longest time why some of the most highly accomplished African/American (Black) athletes as well as actors and entertainers have this incessant need to be recognized by white America for their achievements and success? What the heck is that all about? Is it because they have been conditioned to do so and don’t really recognize it or is it just ego? More than likely it’s a combination of both!!!

Why do folks need these white established/invented institutions to serve as an acclamation and final exclamation point on ones professional career and level of greatness? What purpose do they really serve?

As far as I’m concerned, these institutions are another form of mental and emotional enslavement (although they weren’t intended to be) for our brothers and sisters and others. Since when does any person (esp. one of color) need the affirmation of another to rate or validate their contributions or the level of their performance? Whenever a person buys into that type of mentality, they have placed themselves at the mercy of those who have invented the process as well as those who vote ( most of whom are white). These puny pompous people with their nomination/induction process and ceremonial event revel in the thought that their otherwise meaningless existence at this particular time has some relevant power (it does not). Only if you subscribe to the process and recognize it as valid.

White folks created these institutions of so-called prominence, acclaim and fame so that they can decide who meets the standard of excellence (something they’ve also have manufactured) and who has the honor of gracing its walls and corridors for folks to gawk at in wonderment. It is a part of the conditioning process that occurs very early in one’s life.. Rewards for Excellence.. Man it is all so pretentious and subjective and actually when it comes down to it, it means absolutely nothing in the grand scheme of life, the world and the universe…

For most, I guess it serves as the final stamp of approval and recognition (from a select group of people who have probably never played a down) and just maybe one last widely publicized and nationally televised stroke for the ego. Oh please, please, please I need some stroking…What do you mean, I’m not worthy to be inducted into the Hall of Fame? Really???

Well, most of us seem to need a pat on the back for a job well done.. Although it’s gotta be a huge disappointment when it doesn’t come through. But hey, that is exactly what one has to expect when one relies on others to validate who they are and what they have accomplished.. You are now at their mercy and most of them are recklessly intoxicated with that notion… It’s gives them what they perceive as the power to validate or not. Which I guess can be a crushing blow to most. Personally, I wouldn’t give a crap or give them the pleasure…Just my pennies worth!!

Just a final note; I am all for excellence. Yes, be the best that you can possibly be. Do not settle for mediocrity and let your body of work speak for you,  not someone else’s standard of excellence..

Written by Alton T. DeVeaux Jr. (Africafifth)

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