|Wrestlin' With Racism Cryme Tyme Hits Prime Time|
|Written by Min. Paul Scott ID3014|
|Sunday, 17 September 2006 05:09|
Wrestlin'' With Racism: Cryme Tyme Hits Prime Time by Min. Paul Scott
The crowd of 20,000 rose to their feet as 6 foot 5, 400 pound, Mandingo "Tha Masked Minstrel" Jones headed for the ring decked out in a bright red tuxedo and fur coat and carrying a big bucket of fried chicken. The announcer, obviously upset over his being 20 minutes late, spits watermelon seeds at him as he strolls to the ring with his main "Ho" Jazzybelle on his arm.
After pickpocketing the wallets from the people on the front row he tap dances into the ring, only to slip on a chicken wing and get pinned 30 seconds later by 120 pound Bobby Taylor as the crowd erupts in laughter....
Wrestling is racist! What a news flash, right? Anyone even vaguely familiar with America's favorite guilty pleasure would be hard pressed to argue with the fact that the image of black professional wrestlers has left much to be desired. All of the negative stereotypes that have historically plagued Black folks have always found a comfortable home in the middle of the squared circle. Somehow, the predominately good ole boy audience always got a hoot of 450 pound Black men being reduced to bumblin'', bug eyed buffoons every week.
I remember as a child staying up way past midnight to watch wrestlers with names like "Pork Chop" Cash constantly get their behinds kicked by the golden boys like Nature Boy Ric Flair. While Flair and the rest of the boys strutted to the ring in diamond studded robes the Brotha's came to the ring like they had just escaped from the Crocket Plantation. I would always wonder why the white dudes had the fancy moves like the figure four leg locks and could triple flip off the top rope but the only move the Black wrestler had was that same ole head but.
Black wrestlers were also used to do what they did best, scare the pants off of white folks. I remember wrestlers such as Abdullah the Butcher rushing up on a wrestlers and gouging their eyes out with a number 2 pencils. And who could forget the witch doctor Papa Shango who had little white kids sleeping with their lights on. Perhaps the most stereotypical wrestler was Kamala, the Ugandan Giant, a "savage cannibal from dark Africa" who would wreck havoc on his opponents with the help of his "trainer/master" some white dude in a stocking mask.
While one may argue that like the Black actors from the Steppin'' Fectchin'' Era, Black wrestlers had to portray these characters in order to eat, what about the Black wrestlers of the last decade like the wrestlin'' Pimp "The Godfather" who would come to the ring surrounded by his "Ho's" or Booker T who has Ms. Jones'' kindergarten class walking around buggin'' their eyes and yellin'' "CAN YOU DIG THAT...SUCKA's!"
The latest bright idea of WWE owner Vincent K. McMahon (yeah, the same dude who called wrestling's thugged out version of Vanilla Ice, John Cena, "my nigga" ), is Cryme Tyme. The promos feature two gold toothed, gold chain wearing Brothas, Shad and JTG preparing for what promises to be a stellar career in WWE by bumbling their way through smoothie store robberies and muggin'' fools who get lost in tha hood while the announcer urges listeners to "pop a 40 and check their Rollies."
One must wonder why this blatant diss of Black folks wasn’t stopped long ago. Could it be that most Black men are ashamed to admit they occasionally flip from the Monday Night Football game to watch a couple of dudes in tights tryin'' to pin each other. Or could it be that our fearless "Civil Rights" leaders are scared that some 400 pound steroid addicted masked maniac may show up at their homes one night and pile drive them through their patios?
Now before I hear the familiar comeback of "Aw, you people are sooo sensitive...lighten up, buddy. It's just entertainment...geez guys." Do you think that the Jewish community would tolerate a wrestler named "Captain Kike, maser of the kosher karate chop?" You can best believe that Flyin'' Father Francois Flanagan, the homosexual priest who has the nasty habit of inviting little boys to his dressing room would be met with tons of angry letters from outraged members of the gay and Catholic community.
But Black folks are supposed to accept all kinds of disrespect with a "thank ya massa" and a big Kool Aid smile.
I say enough is enough, we must start a petition to demand that WWE cancel the Cryme Tyme story line, immediately. We must send email and letters telling Vince McMahon that we will not take this disrespect lying down on the mat!
It's time that we, throw racism over the top rope, put hatred in a head lock, give prejudiceness the pile driver, beat tha...Aw, ya''ll get the point.
As Hulk Hogan would say "Now, whatcha gonna do, when the Black community runs wild on you!"
Min. Paul Scott is a writer, activist and lecturer based in Durham NC. He can be reached at (919)
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Minister Paul Scott