Black With No Chaser (And 5 Reasons Why We All Need It Right Now)

Y’all should know by now that I take my #TougalooProud very seriously. Today, I need to shout out several of my #Tougaloo brothers who are about to hit a major follower milestone and I want you to help them get there along with me.

Black With No Chaser is an effort that started a couple years ago born out of a need to better represent the issues facing black folks to the general public. No filter, no special interest, just raw and to the point. All you have to do is turn on the nearest television to witness just how slanted the news media is when it comes to reporting on issues affecting and involving the black community. While I am proud of the work the whole team is doing, I am especially proud of CJ, Tyson and Chuck for not only launching but also sticking with this movement. Lawd, I remember when y’all first hit the yard… 😊

(Insert Big Sister Privilege 😏)

Moving on… I know how y’all like lists so if you are not yet into Black With No Chaser hopefully you will rush over to https://www.facebook.com/blackwithnochaser/ and hit that like button so you won’t mix what’s next after reading this.

(Non-Black people, there’s room for you at the table as well. You might even learn some things that help you in being a more effective ally for black and brown people just by reading some of these perspectives.)

5 Reasons We Need Black With No Chaser RIGHT NOW

1. The Black In The Day nuggets are scrumdiddily delish.

Why would you not want to learn about the amazing things that black and brown people have accomplished over time. We have an entire generation of youth who are not aware of the great things our people have done and instead are inundated with negative messaging about people who have black and brown skin. We each of us have a responsibility to pass on our stories and make sure we celebrate our legacy.

2. You can count on relevant legal news broken down for the general public to consume from around the country.

Too often we see those types of stories reported in local municipalities (if they make the news at all) and not always elevated to the national stage where there are others who could benefit from the information. For example, if there is local law in California aimed at reducing police brutality and if I know my community (very much not in California) is struggling with that same problem, I’d want to know how to study the successful model used to change the law and then learn how to adapt the strategy to fit the problem(s) in my community. Black With No Chaser is one way to share knowledge across those geographic boundaries.

3. Black Spaces Matter.

As an African American who spent most of her life surrounded by whiteness, I need time to exist in spaces where I don’t have to black-splain everything. I don’t know what might have happened to me had I not been blessed to attend Tougaloo College when I did because that was the first time in my life outside of my family that I wasn’t on guard 24/7 in relationship to being black in America. It is mentally, emotionally, spiritually and sometimes physically exhausting to exist in a space where you feel as though you are constantly on display. Within the gates of the Eagle Queen I felt safe. The closest I get to that feeling now is in unapologetically black spaces like BWNC.

4. It’s Important To Feel Safe In Disagreeing With Other Black Folks.

Contrary to popular belief, all black folks do not think alike on everything. We all bring different experiences and baggage to the debate table. BWNC is wonderful in that healthy dialog is encouraged. It’s a great day when I run across fam who differ on my stance regarding an issue. Sometimes the conversation sharpens my defense of my position, sometimes the conversation can open me up to changing my stance on an issue. I value this resource because it helps me to be better.

5. We Can’t Abdicate Responsibility For Our Community’s Issues To Other People.

We are powerful, talented, driven, passionate and intelligent people. We need to direct our talents to the uplift of all but especially our people. The way I see it, if I have an opportunity to support a black business that is committed to giving me great customer service, I’m with them. You can call that racist if you want to but then you would have to make the same claims with Jewish people who do business with other Jews or White Americans who do business with their long-standing family friends who happen to be very WASPy. Now I am not throwing my money at any business that doesn’t treat me right black, white or polka dot-owned, but I believe in buying local. I believe in supporting small businesses. I believe that we have the ability to secure education and opportunity for our children without selling our souls to financiers. If we see homeless people in our community we know there are things we can do to address the need in a measurable and sustainable way.

Basically, if that’s not enough of a justification for you to go pull up and follow BWNC, I am all out of ammo for the moment. Please go check out the page and like and subscribe because we really do need spaces like this to help advance to the next level of community we require to succeed.

p.s. By the way, why am I not on the BWNC writing staff? 👀

Marta C. Youngblood is a writer, education and social entrepreneur based in Little Rock, Arkansas. For more information on her current projects visit https://about.me/MCyoungblood.

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