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  • Writer's pictureAuthor T.D. McLaughlin Talks

Black America's Civil War

In the midst of the cacophony of political rhetoric and societal debates dominating the airwaves, there exists a silent civil war within the Black community—one that is seldom acknowledged by mainstream media but fiercely discussed in the sanctuaries of Black culture. This war is not one of physical violence but rather a battle for the heart, soul, and reputation of Black America. It's a war to dismantle the misconception that Black Culture and Ghetto/Hood culture are synonymous. While the nation gears up for elections, positioning it as a battle for its soul, the Black community finds itself in a parallel struggle to preserve its essence amidst the distortion of its identity. The narrative perpetuated by mainstream media and its propaganda machine often equates Blackness and Black culture with the caricatured portrayals of ghetto life and ratchet behavior, proliferated through music, television, and film. However, this portrayal couldn’t be further from the truth.


Black culture is a timeless and priceless piece of art work created by the brush stokes of  resilience, creativity, and dignity of its people. It's a celebration of the diverse shades of brown that form the brown rainbow. It's a homage to the ancestors whose sacrifices paved the way for the past, present and future generations. Black culture is synonymous with progression, aiming to uplift and empower individuals and communities. 


In stark contrast, ghetto/ratchet/hood culture thrives on regression. It is a culture that belittles, demeans and utilizes invisible chains to bond the minds, hearts, and spirits to a master culture of degradation and ignorance. It celebrates the glorification of lifestyles characterized by lack of awareness, hope, education and or resources all while perpetuating stereotypes that hinder the advancement of Black people and true Black culture. The master culture of ignorance is not exclusive to Black America; it permeates various races, creeds, and ethnicities. However, Black America often bears the brunt of its stigma.


The propagation of ghetto culture serves as a tool in the silent war against Black progress. It undermines self-esteem and consciousness, perpetuating a cycle of intellectual enslavement. While mainstream society may purposely remain oblivious to this internal conflict, Black people have long been aware of the battle for our cultural integrity. True Black culture finds its expression in the works of intellectuals such as Maya Angelou, Langston Hughes, and W.E.B. Du Bois—individuals who championed knowledge, wisdom, and self-awareness. Black culture is not merely survival; it's about thriving and fostering prosperity within oneself and the community as a collective.


To equate Black culture with ghetto culture is to overlook Black cultures richness and depth. It's a disservice to the legacy of resilience and excellence that defines Black history. As the silent civil war rages on, it's imperative to recognize and affirm the true essence of Black culture—a beacon of hope, progress, and dignity amidst the noise of misinformation and distortion.

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