Growing up black, Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story was the book that all of us had to read. As a child, Ben Carson was a heroic figure. I imagined myself one day marrying a Carson. He’s an educated, handsome Black man who seemed straight out of the pages of your favorite Zane romance.
Then 2013 happened. Ben Carson revealed his true political views. Black people everywhere collectively groaned. We lost another one. Throughout the years, Ben Carson became that cousin you didn’t want to invite to the family picnic. You knew that after the first pork chop he’ll start ranting how racism isn’t a thing, rap music is destroying our society, and that we should have cooked kale instead of collard greens. Who invited cousin Carson and his bland potato salad to the barbecue?
Ben Carson’s rants about race are familiar. Raven-Symoné may have been able to see the future as a child, but now she can’t see race. Oh snap!!! Some people believe that if you throw enough money at racial issues, then they’re going to disappear. Let’s give it try and have Raven-Symoné and Ben Carson give me a couple millions. I’ll tell them in a few years whether I’m still a Nubian Queen.
What Ben Carson and Raven-Symoné are going through is called Brand-New disease. Brand-New Disease happens when Black people attain money or a powerful position in society and they forget or stop believing that they are Black. Research has shown that people suffering from Brand-New Disease are a couple of coughs away from becoming an Uncle Tom.
There is no cure for this disease except for a brutal wake up call. Until then, I’ve decided to stop giving those suffering from Brand-New disease the time of day. All they want to do is pester and distract people from the true issue of race happening in our society. While people suffering from this sickness bodies start convulsing into jigs, the rest of us have to keep remembering and reminding ourselves and others that Black is beautiful, powerful, and nothing to deny or something to move beyond.