Tuesday, March 16, 2010

#71. The Term Hoodlum

Jesse Jackson famously stated that when he walks down a darkened alley at night, upon hearing foot steps behind him, he takes solace in the knowledge that those sounds are made by white feet and not by Black feet.

Why would a man who has dedicated his life to perpetuating the already victorious struggle for Black equality be fearful of Black people walking behind him in a dark alley? For one reason: Black people know that petty Black criminality is a plague that terrorizes their communities as the Black Plague did in Europe so many centuries ago.

Each year, Black-on-Black crime seemingly gets worse, destroying communities and creating a constant state of upheaval that erodes trust and impoverishes an already disadvantaged class of people.

Jesse, in his now iconic statement, was talking about life in the hood, the type of place Disingenuous White Liberals can only fantasize about in movies and would immediately lock their car doors and drive away from quickly if encountered in real life.

Black people can be found living in socio-economic conditions that would leave the most hardened stomach deprived of its lunch. Black people affectionately call non-gentrified areas of major cities they occupy “the hood” and every city that has a Black population –regardless of the size of that population - automatically qualifies for membership in “the hood” club.

White people have whitopia’s, and a hell of a book could be written about hood-topia’s, primarily dealing with geographic areas that have a Martin Luther King street address.

Some mistake the term “hoodlum” to be synonymous with Black people and believe the term as having etymological roots in being a pejorative used to describe hood-dwelling Black people. This couldn’t be further from the truth:


1871, Amer.Eng. (first in ref. to San Francisco) "young street rowdy, loafer," later (1877) "young criminal, gangster," of unknown origin, though newspapers have printed myriad stories concocted to account for it. A guess perhaps better than average is that it is from Ger. dial. (Bavarian) Huddellump "ragamuffin."

Over time, the word has evolved into a moniker for Black people in geographically diverse locations as Los Angeles to Miami. Hoodlum has become an adopted noun (replacing Black people) and one that is universally accepted as being a descriptive word for Black behavior and in turn, is virtually recognized as describing exclusively Black characteristics and encompassing Black nuisances.

Hood behavior can be seen on basketball courts, football fields and Chicago playgrounds.

The pervasive use of this word has entered the sacred realm of words (or combinations of words) deemed insulting and offensive to Black people and thus, an attempt at discrediting the jingoistic elements the word currently entails are underway.

Like the term niggardly or the mystery surrounding the scientific term “black hole”, hoodlum is now decreed a forbidden utterance, part of the lexicon that only people with nefarious intentions will utilize in a descriptive tone:

Pinellas School Board chairwoman Janet Clark is coming under fire for using the term "hoodlums" to describe a small group of chronically disruptive students in county schools.

Board members Mary Brown and Linda Lerner criticized Clark at Tuesday night's board meeting. And now Ray Tampa, president of the St. Petersburg branch of the NAACP, said Clark's refusal to apologize has made things worse.

"I was disgusted with her response," Tampa said Wednesday.

The International People's Democratic Uhuru Movement — better known as the Uhurus — called for Clark to resign for the statement, which it viewed as racist. Clark is white. Tampa said he thought the comment was inappropriate, but not racist.

Tampa said he was considering filing a complaint against Clark, who has a teaching certificate, with the Florida Department of Education's Office of Professional Practices, which handles complaints against teachers.

"The (teacher) code of ethics says you can't embarrass kids or make disparaging remarks about kids," he said.

Clark made the comment at a board workshop last week in a wide-ranging discussion about chronically disruptive students at John Hopkins Middle School and other Pinellas schools.

"So much time is taken up with addressing hoodlums, with kids who don't want to be in school," she said. She also said, "We are talking about a small number of children."

Brown and Lerner weighed in Tuesday night.

"They might be disruptive. They might be in gangs. They might be many things, but they are not hoodlums," Brown said. "I feel that that statement showed insensitivity to our children, and it certainly did not offer good guidance to our staff."

"There are people upset out there about the comment, different kinds of people, including employees," Lerner said. "We have to be careful as board members when we speak."

Before the meeting, Clark said the statement had nothing to do with race. "I made no mention of race," she said. "There are hoodlums of all races and colors and ethnic backgrounds."

No, hoodlum is a term of derision that applies exclusively to Black people now, despite its early origins as a term descriptive of mere adolescent transgressions. To act Black is to act as a hoodlum would and to depart from this behavior is the fatalistic decision to Act White, the ultimate form of betrayal to Black people.

In 1995, the war on the term Hoodlum began in earnest, with The New York Times printing a story attacking the fundamental of the word:

It all happened on Halloween of 1993. I was visiting my aunt. I was picking up my clothes from the laundromat when three white boys came up to me and told me to get off their block. Then they said, "This is a white block." They tried to take my money. Lucky for me my two older brothers came. The three kids ran. Reginald Thomas One day I was on the bus. The bus driver called me a black hoodlum. My mother was on the bus too. My mother said to me, "What did he call you?" I said, "He called me a black hoodlum." The bus driver said to my mother, "Yes, I called your child a hoodlum.

" I felt very sad. I said to the bus driver, "I am not a hoodlum." I am a Black (African) American." So the bus driver looked at me and said "I am sorry for calling you a hoodlum." I said "I forgive you."

Calling someone a “Black Hoodlum” seems like an oxymoron, does it not?

You are advised to remove the term hoodlum from your vernacular, for if you dare renege on this mandate from Black Run America (BRA) governing conversational etiquette, you will ostracized for your verbal faux pas and the punishment won’t be niggardly applied.

Stuff Black People Don’t Like includes the term hoodlum, for daring to utilize this unanimously agreed upon term to describe Black people and their behavior is an egregious display of cultural insensitivity no amount of shock therapy can remedy.

Those who believe “you can remove the brother from hood, but you can’t remove the hood from the brother,” are practicing a sickening and shocking insensitivity that threatens the fabric of our society.

No matter. Every night, local nightly newscasts will showcase highlights from the hoodlum community. Words may be outlawed, but the reason the word was created will only intensify.


Anonymous said...

The term " 'hood" is black slang for both "black neighborhood" and "hoodlum". "The 'hood is full of hoods" translates to "the black neighborhood is full of hoodlums". It's incredible that the obvious amalgam, "neighborhoodlum", is not in the lexicon of blacks, whites, or law enforcement agencies.


Anonymous said...

I'm just glad that that white chick had some backbone and did not back down. Whites need to start getting offended , that blacks get offended, at anything and everything. And you never say you are sorry to those race hustling fools. Tell them to kiss your white ass. I would rather have my balls lopped off and salted, then fed to me, rather than apologize to those race baiting, perpetual victim, con artists.


Anonymous said...

If so many black people get hurt feelings or upset or angry about what white people say and do, why is it that so many black people want to come and live near where white people live and work where white people work and send their tender children to school amongst the spawn of the blue-eyed devils?

As for "hoodlum", a friend of mine in law enforcement says that there are "the Hoods in the 'Hoods" (black gangs and trifling street criminals) and "the Hoods in the Woods" (drunken white trash and militia and Klan).

We now have a paper-bag test president who would not have been elected if several whites hadn't decided to vote for him. This should help show that America no longer needs to atone for the sins of three hundred years ago. Let's ditch the whining and just say whatever we want.

What word starts with an "N" and ends with an "R" and is something you don't ever want to call a black person? "Neighbor."

And really, it's okay if you would like to call me a name or tell me that you have a television set almost as big as your penis or that you're in some other way proud of yourself. Just don't whine and call in Jesse Jackson to whine louder and attempt to extort money for you. Money unearned is never appreciated. You'll spend it much more wisely if you have to go and stand in line at the welfare office in person.

As for me, I am white. I "act white" as to do otherwise is dishonoring my heritage. I only date whites because I ultimately only want to make white children. And I only hire whites.

Yeah, I just said that.

I don't need all of the tension that comes with an integrated workplace. If no blacks are around I won't have to worry about whether disciplining a shiftless and lazy employee will appear racist. I'll just select from other equally-qualified job applicants and avoid the hassles. Despite what the EEOC and civil rights attorneys and all sorts of statutes say, the First Amemdment to the U.S. Constitution says that I have the freedom to associate with whomever I want. Guess what? Freedom to do something is also freedom not to do something. I should be free to NOT associate with people if I don't want to do so. And, let's be honest folks, blacks don't want to associate with me either.

With love,
Woods Hood

Anonymous said...

Woods Hood,

You don't like black people? What? I'm so shocked!

I will agree with you about two things. I don't want to associate with you or be your neighbor.

-Black guy

Anonymous said...

What I don't understand is why you whites think that you are the beacon of all that is perfect and clean and nice and fuzzy about our society. Where I live there is a lot of white hood trash.

And to Woods Hood: no black woman would ever want to give birth to your demon spawn, let alone accept your misshapen, microscopic penis. Get over yourself! White people are not God's gift to humanity.

Unfortunately, we do live in a society/world where there are people of color who believe associating with whites will bring them higher status. But in reality that is only because white people control everything--we can't get a break if we aren't kissing massa's ass.

Talk to real living, breathing people of color and you'll realize that we probably hate you just as strongly as you hate us.