A message to those who think we are over celebrating the Black Panther movie and those who are crying that “We are giving Disney a Billion instead of giving it to black business” etc.
We are not racist, if Disney or Marvel does something we like, we will buy it.
Let me explain the value of this movement as briefly as possible.
Mark Zuckerberg’s net worth = 71 Billion USD
Do you know why? Growing up he watched movies with heroes that looked like him! He did not grow up with the psychological baggage we grew up with! He saw movies that told him “you can be a hero too”.
Seeing is believing, what you can see in your mind’s eye can often be achieved.
American scientists were influenced by movies they saw when they were younger. The reason why the American space program came into fruition can directly be linked to movies and fictional books like 1968’s 2001: A space Odyssey.
Don’t take it from me read it from NASA yourself here – https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/main/2001_anniversary.html
The foundations on which the education, self-belief, and world view of most captains of industry and scientists of today, were built on watching cartoons of mad scientists before going to school and marvelling at their technological wizardry whiles slowly munching on a bowl of cornflakes, with a line of milk running down their chin back into the bowl, their little minds in a battle to understand what “inspector gadget” just did and chew at the same time.
We didn’t have the same privileges growing up and if you did the characters you saw were white whiles you could hear your dad hurling insults at the inept wayside mechanic who has just returned his car from fixing it with an expectant big grin on his face.
Your Dad: “I am not paying for this! I asked you to respray the bonnet not the wheel arch! There is nothing wrong with the wheel arch! Black people can’t get anything right!”
Alas your Dads mechanic did not have the privilege of watching MacGyver.
Their argument blurs into background noise whilst you transition back to whatever substandard programming was on your screen.
Checkmate. Several years of these incidences slowly build into your young malleable psyche the ineptness of your kind. A lesson you’ve learnt well and apply piously on decisions and judgements for the rest of your adult life.
I only found out Jesus couldn’t have been blonde and blue eyed when I was a full-grown man! Do you understand the barriers and hurdles we must jump as Africans, growing up in an environment where even the movies you watch tell you that you are not good enough? Because the hero is white and the only person who looks like you in the movie is first to die? Why do you think bleaching is rampant in Africa? It’s gotten so bad we even have an African proverb that says, “if you are going to church and you meet a white man go back home because you will have no need for God!”
I’ll do you one better.
Elon Musk. Net worth 20 Billion USD or so. He’s modelled his life after a comic book character called Tony Stark also known as Iron Man, a billionaire who builds fancy gadgets and rockets!
The game has changed. Services we respect like doctors, lawyers and accountants will soon be done by Google & Siri. Your Apple Watch will let you know you are experiencing atrial fibrillation, the leading cause of stroke, recommend exercises, book you in a gym and Google or Alexa will fill out your prescription. Meanwhile the white kid who created Minecraft (a game) makes more than your president even though he’s pocketing revenues from your country’s resources.
The game has changed. If we are ever going to have a chance, it is during this transitional period. We need to reprogram ourselves and program our children correctly!
Programming like Black Panther “programs” our children to be future billionaires, trillionaires, scientists and problem solvers! They will have self-belief and no psychological barriers and inferiority complexes to deal with. Some will emulate the technology you see on screen to build a better Africa. Do you know how much of the technology you are using today was inspired by sci-fi movies?
One last example to close off with, Martin Cooper, the inventor of the first mobile phone, got his inspiration from an episode of “Star Trek: The Original Series” where Captain Kirk used his communicator to call for help. In “Star Trek: The Original Series,” all the crew members all carried handheld devices, that looked remarkably like flip phones, that allowed them to communicate while on the ship and even from planet to planet.
So if you haven’t yet watched Black Panther, make sure to go watch it and take your kids or a friend or two along.