NYU Black Renaissance Noire NYU Black Renaissance Noire V. 16.1 - Page 7

Republican politicians pursue the same short-term goals while campaigning that have become the standard model for many American corporate businesses. Donald Trump’s Republican primary campaign recalls the campaign tactics of Italian billionaire Silvio Berlusconi. Berlusconi successfully ran for office but subsequently led Italy down the road to fiscal disaster from which it has yet to recover. Berlusconi’s model is a stark, tragic example of short-term political gain over a long-term strategy that may benefit everyone. In their cynical (short-term) pursuit of ratings and money, corporate media bears much of the responsibility for the toxic tribalism and presidential campaign debacle we’re witnessing this election season. Rachel Maddow of msnbc has been the lone, wise, courageous and shining light in all this darkness. At this moment in our history we need more like her example in this moribund, compromised and corrupt media. Let’s hope the incredibly dangerous example of Donald Trump will lead some of them to reexamine their priorities. For me, this frightening scenario will lead to a kind of mass hysteria similar to that ignited by the genocidal killings in Hitler’s Germany during World War II, to what occurred in Cambodia and Rwanda, or to what is happening today in South Sudan, Syria, Egypt, Libya, and Iraq, unless wiser more visionary forces emerge. On a brighter note, we here at Black Renaissance Noire have pulled together another issue for you to read and digest. As always, we hope you will find it as engaging and exciting as we do. In this issue, we are privileged to publish fiction by the distinguished Kenyan novelist, Ngũgı̃ wa Thiong’o, and a short fiction piece by Eric Priestley. We are thrilled to offer an excerpt from saxophonist and physicist, Stephon Alexander’s new book The Jazz of Physics, a short essay from Ishmael Reed, as well as non-fiction prose from Walter L. Gordon, III, E. Ethelbert Miller, Eben Wood, Joseph McLaren, art critic and filmmaker Lydie Diakhaté’s article on sculptor, Melvin Edwards, and an interview by Steven Isoardi with poet, Kamau Daáood. In this eclectic mix are poems by Kamau Daáood, No’u Revilla, Shayla Lawson, Bill Harris, former California Poet Laureate, Al Young, Joel Dias-Porter, Terry Blackhawk, and the legendary grand Dame of Detroit poetry, Naomi Long Madgett. Finally, we offer stunning visual images from Marielle Plaisir and Peter Bradley, who grace our front and back covers, fabric artist, Carole Harris, and paintings and sculpture of Ruth Hardinger. As always, we at Black Renaissance Noire welcome your feedback on this and every issue, and we thank you for your continued support of our efforts. n BLACK RENAISSANCE NOIRE Nowhere in the definition is “tribe” or “tribalism” defined sorely in a racial or ethnic manner, but it is defined as “a strong loyalty to one’s tribe or group.” It’s what is also happening in some aspects of the white evangelical church movement, where some leaders who have seemingly sold their souls to the Republican Party and annexed their whole congregations to the ignorance of the retro, backwards party of George W. Bush. These are mostly all white evangelicals — though you have some blacks too — drinking from the “Kool Aid” trough of group thought. 5 Sadly, the American corporate media has not stepped up to the plate to provide a balanced critique of all the various candidates running in Republican and Democratic races all over the country. Instead of analyzing their various claims and critiquing the candidates’ policies and positions, the corporate media gleefully treats this year’s presidential campaign like horse races and reality tv shows, reporting trivial bromides about who said what about the other candidate’s sexual proclivities. Rather than having any discussion of policy or political positions during the Republican debates, corporate media focuses on whether protestors should or shouldn’t be hit up side their heads and thrown out of political rallies. This kind of nonsense has become the most important element in one of the most important voting cycles for the presidential (and congressional and senate) elections in the history of this democracy.