I’ve Never Watched Roots: Black History Month Confession
Day 10 of this Black History Month is upon us, and I’m here to get something off my chest. Why? Because I need to cleanse my soul of this burden I’ve carried around for so long. As a strong melanin-blessed individual, I am a card-carrying member of the Coalition of Colored Folks. However, my card may be revoked because… *pause* I’ve never watched the movie “Roots.” On purpose. *runs away from the mob*
All these years, I’ve never watched anything but that one scene where they were tryna get Kunta Kinte to call himself Toby. And that was enough for me. Mind you, I know that “Roots” was groundbreaking and classic. I’m not taking away from Alex Haley’s book nor the movie. BUT I am running away from it. It’s all because my soulspace just can’t take watching all that pain on camera.
I can’t watch “Roots” because I’ll feel African Guilt. It’s the stronger version of White Guilt. With less privilege and more melanin. As a West African, I know a lot of slaves came from that territory. My ancestors may have been the ones who sold Kunta. Shoo… NAWL son.
Also, I’m pretty sure that watching “Roots” is gon make me side-eye white folks for at least 2.5 days after watching it. I’ll be walking down the street. A random melanin-deficient person will say hi to me and I’ll reply with “Hmph. So you talking to me now? You ain’t talk to Toby all nicely.” And who needs that? One semester in college, I took three Black history/sociology classes. I spent all 12 weeks walking around mean-mugging everyone who passed the paper bag test. Chile…
Roots would MURK my ENTAH soulspace. And I’d start being all “Why is my computer screen WHITE and I gotta put BLACK letters on it? Roots gon have me walking ’round talmbout “Why does a BLACK ball hit WHITE pins when you bowl? Stop. Wait. Think bout it.” I am far too impressionable to watch “Roots.” I’ma walk ’round angry with a t-shirt that says “His name AIN’T Toby! It is KUNTA, GAHTDAMBIT!” Is it me *pause* or is it a conspiracy, MY… BROTHAS AND SISTAS??? *fist up* O__O
That ain’t the way to advance race relations. I’m so impressionable.
Besides… isn’t Roots like fitty-eleben hours long? Yeah… I’m pretty sure me sitting through it will be painful because my attention span is remedial and subpar.
To my fellow Black folks, am I the only one who’s never seen “Roots?” To my melanin-deficient readers, have you ever ventured to watch it? Are there any other movies like this that folks avoid seeing? Let a goon know.