Written by: Chris Mattox
1. You know you done messed up right: Rep. Ron DeSantis may have lost the governor’s race before it began in earnest. DeSantis is a Trump acolyte and true to life he’s followed his guru’s teachings from the book of dog whistling, chapter and verse. By now you’ve heard DeSantis and his “monkey it up” comment in regards to his opponent, “My Man” (Denzel voice) Andrew Gillum.
Like most blatant Dog Whistlers, DeSantis denied any malevolent intent, and you know what, at first I was gonna let it slide. Maybe he was trying the Sara Palin colloquial charm charade? Because the idea that a speech writer tactically placed that phrase during the man’s first interview as the Republican candidate on Fox News, was almost too sinister to contemplate. Then I remembered the times we live in and said to myself, “duh”.
But anyway the point I’m making is that nearly everyone I spoke to about the comment heard the dog whistle and replied (and I paraphrase) “@ me next time, hoe!” Some of the same people who told me they didn’t vote in the primary then told me they were definitely showing up in November.
This is a national race, and the hefty weight of Black Twitter and the community it speaks for is more than capable of rolling down on DeSantis like Samuel L Jackson’s character in Pulp Fiction. “Blessed is he who, in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of the darkness, for he is truly his brother’s keeper and the finder of lost children. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who attempt to poison and destroy My brothers!” You know you done messed up right? The election is only two months away. This will still be fresh in peoples’ minds, and best believe the Democrats will use all types of ads and fundraisers. DeSantis might’ve blown that money early.
2. Things you might’ve slept on: The Trump administration has negotiated a trade deal with Mexico. This is the first legit shot across the bow of NAFTA. Mexico is campaigning to add Canada to the pact but The North is reluctant. As crazy as Trump is, he is wielding the weight of the States how he wanted to. Mexico caved under threat of losing its biggest trade pruner and market. Canada might have a few more cards to play.
Locally, voters passed a bill increase that will generate more money for schools and yada yada. Some teachers are disappointed because the pay raise is more a one time bonus than a pay hike. The silver lining, and it might be a very very very thin lining, the vote may show a willingness by the constituency to consider higher taxes for education down the line. 🤷🏽♂️ maybe?
3. Kanye Shrug: Kanye has apologized for the hurt his comment about slavery being a choice caused the Black community. Big debate on Breakfast Club this morning about whether the apology was genuine or motivated by some other sinister factor. Kanye made a bad gamble. He rolled the dice on his own perceived racial transcendence. He learned a lesson that he helped craft and apparently forgot. Black people and Black culture move the world, and the collective cold shoulder of the culture can have a chilling effect on future endeavors.
I respect the acknowledgement that what he said was wild dumb, but I wish he still shared that visceral connection with the fam that compelled him to declare that George Bush doesn’t like Black people. He kind of gives me low key sell out vibes, and that’s a terrible thing. A really terrible thing.
4. Tag Team Back Again: Kanye May have gone off the res on us, but he left some talented strivers in his wake. This week Serena Williams collaborated with Virgil Abloh to create her one of one tennis looks for the US Open. Abloh is the mind behind the Off White brand and is the new Artistic Director of Louis Vuitton’s menswear collection. The tutu he designed for Williams came off super raw, and the Off-White Nikes she played in will be flying off shelves and e-tail sites as soon as they launch.
The bigger news here for me is the coming together of two people of color, at the top of their fields, creating a product that will once again prove the impact of the “Culture” on the culture. I can’t recall the Kwanzaa/Swahili term for collective empowerment, but I always hope that when collaborations like this happen that it will catalyze something all the way down to the grass roots level.
Now that I think about it, Beyonce recently chose the first black photographer to shoot a Vogue cover when she selected Tyler Mitchell to shoot her portrait. First Lady Michelle Obama often selected up and coming people of color to design her dresses and pair the portraits of her and President Obama. So maybe the movement is already afoot. Find someone to work with. #CollabSeason