Sounding Off on Anger…African American MEN

Greetings, I gather intelligence on a daily basis from several sources.  I have an overwhelming sensitivity to the emotion of ANGER that is seeping through the undercurrents and the undertones in our America.  People are angry.  They are angry about the economy, the election, their lives their, perceived treatment of by others. You name it, someone is probably angry about it. I am no Dr. Phil and I do not feel motivated nor called to enroll in any type of behavioral health courses, so I searched the word “Anger” in Wikipedia this morning which states:

Anger is an emotion related to one’s psychological interpretation of having been offended, wronged or denied and a tendency to react through retaliation.

Read the rest for yourself it is pretty interesting and you may find yourself there…I did.  I, like you, have been offended, and will be again in the future. I would say at least a couple times a week I am offended by something  or someone.  I have chosen to blog about today although, I was not the offended in this scenario.  I don’t like telling other peoples stories, but I will this time because I am angry.

On a “honey-do” mission for me, my husband goes to return a used cable box that was musty and had a rancid smell.  We received this box upon moving into a new home, did I mention it was used and musty?  Let me also mention we did not have nor request a special low cost low service plan in order to pay for basic cable services from this company we pay the standard rates like everyone else…lest I digress in my anger let me continue and get to the point!

He returned the box and made several observations based on his treatment. My husband informed me that the clerk was short with him, very impatient, and agitated at his request to exchange the box.  He was subject to a long line of questioning and at the end was not offered a pretty new bag like all the other customers had received after receiving their products and leaving the store.

GUESS WHAT? HE BECAME ANGRY!! (CAPS)  Justifiably, when you observe differential treatment or lack of courtesy in any scenario you may be offended.  Upon moving to North Florida this is not the only incident.  Our family has met plenty of friendly and welcoming Floridians but we have also observed the apparent racially charged undertones and overtones in the area.  I wish I was only writing about the woman who works at the local Publix store in our rural neighborhood who draws happy faces (that depict each family member) on our receipt upon check out and the numerous retired seniors who always make themselves available for us or even help with the kids, they could easily have 10 different sets of grandparents here! Instead have to sound off here..angry.

My observation is that Jacksonville has a serious issue with black males.  What do I mean by that? People are scared of and distrustful of them. Why? They are always in the news.  Why? They are usually reported as the suspects of armed robbery, assault, or murder with a deadly weapon.  I’m afraid too, based on all the news reports.  I’m not “frontin” (faking, pretending) and can imagine if I did not have any associations with black males I would be scared out of my mind and not sure how to associate with them also.

My husband, for over the past 4-5 months has observed , complained, and vented about how he is treated in this area.  The startled looks he received when he walks into stores, restaurants, banks, and sometime even at work, where he was hired…to do a job… OMG, work that’s why we moved here. He even overheard a little girl to her mother’s shock, dismay, embarrassment and shame call him a “nigger”, no I’d rather not get into it lets keep going, the mom even apologized I hear. While I realize that we are in the “Deep South” it has caused us to become more sensitive to the issue of race here and as it relates to our children.  I have noticed that I become angered more frequently due to his observations.


Looking at the definition provided and just trying to sort and guide my emotions into a positive work, I felt it would be great to begin a call for discussion and education.  I do plan on writing the local newspaper about this issue and feel that the best way to make change is through education, the in application in action and thought.  I also will have suggestions on how the media can encourage positive news stories with black men.

No, the clerk at the cable company store front did not know the black male in camouflage pants, tennis shoes and a black t shirt went to school 9 years and studied coursework in a field where many drop off  because that can’t handle the complex codes and higher level math (statistics) courses that go along with the program.  Then this black male began work on his MBA to better his career advancement opportunities for himself and his family working tirelessly into the late hours of the night while trying to make sure he was responsible in all his duties as husband, father, employee and student.

It shouldn’t matter whether he was wearing a suit or jersey.  In this case quality customer service and courtesy would have sufficed.  I wish my husband or any other hard working and respectable, tax paying, up-standing law abiding, American citizen who is a black man or any person of color would not have to deal with the many offenses that come their way due to sex and race, but they do and they will. My son at  6 years old has and he will be offended in the future, sadly and frankly due to his race and sex.  What shall we do?  I think when there a perceived offense has occurred it should be addressed, especially when children around.  Politely impose “teachable moments” on those who you have felt have offended you.


About T.Michelle Miller

I am a born again believer in Jesus Christ my savior and Lord. I am one wife to one husband and mother of two. I enjoy abundant life, watching movies, going to the beach, biking and laughing with my family! I have finally begun my writing journey.
This entry was posted in African AMerican Males, Labels, stereotypes, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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