Nyhiem: don’t ever think you can pick up a pen and come into this space as equals with me. You can’t. Not ever. I will body you in every single sentence. I am going to give you the benefit of the doubt and assume that the reason you even thought you could pull up like that in the first place is because the compression shirts you are so fond of wearing are cutting off the blood supply to your brain.
Understand that this—the last piece, this piece—this is me writing in a very low gear. Do not make me shift out of first.
You and your little boy scout troop can take your casual, giggly relationship to wishing death upon people somewhere else. Go try and build your own national movement around that sort of rhetoric and behavior. Go try and build a national movement out of your absolutely blinkered and childlike understanding of how electoral politics in the U.S. works—a deficiency of thought that was on display for everyone during last year’s Tamara Johnson-Shealey campaign and subsequent defeat. Take whatever little adolescent traumas are fueling that boisterous machismo and strongman braggadocio and just go. Go be loud and fussy and preen online and stay consumed with your petty grievances. Do whatever. But keep everything of actual substance that was painstakingly developed by Yvette and Antonio long before you arrived here out of your mouth while you go off and fail spectacularly. Take your habitual movement vandalism elsewhere.
And for anyone who thinks that I—as a white person—am ‘out of pocket’ for addressing Nyhiem like this, the only pockets you should be concerned with are your own—the ones that will never see a single cent of reparations money go inside of them so long as Nyhiem and the rest of the self-styled ‘intellectual titans’ of BTP are allowed to take this movement and help run it aground on the barren shores of HR40 campaigns or tank it in some fatuous, imbecilic third party fantasy.
These people will tie bigotry in the public sphere and total failure in the political arena to the very heart of the movement’s identity. And white people—even those who are most sympathetic to the cause of your group’s repair—will write off Nyhiem and BTP and anything associated with them without a second’s hesitation, I promise you. Whatever value you think they might bring to this space will be forever siloed here, static and inert with all of its toxic hatred and infantile babble. It will steadily bleed out every drop of sacred possibility that now courses through this movement. Every last drop.
If your feathers are ruffled by me pointing out this obvious guarantee of what awaits these messengers in white America—how these four individuals will lead you down their road to failure—I don’t particularly care. My reasons for writing about the #ADOS movement are myriad, but being liked by anyone is decidedly not one of them. I am here because of the simple recognition that would compel any justice-hungry person to be here: the fact that four-hundred and two years is an unspeakable amount of time for a group of people to be forced to live inside an idea from another human’s mind—to live in someone else’s monstrous idea about what your life in America is supposed to look like; a seemingly never-ending idea of what your life and your children’s lives should mean or not mean in this country. The #ADOS movement is the answer to finally halt the consequences of that idea from continuing to ricochet throughout your lives—and in many ways all our lives. And there is nothing more detrimental to that end than the sort of grandiose egos and resentful intrigues of a handful of people who deep down just hate—hate—that they couldn’t come up with it first and that they couldn’t actuate its possibility in the people.