Black History Month Superhero Spotlight – The [Original] Black Ranger

I aspired to be this guy

I aspired to be this guy

Remember him? Zack Taylor was apart of the original “team of teenagers with attitude” and without a doubt was one of my favorite characters growing up (although having the Black guy be the black ranger and the Asian woman be the yellow ranger was pretty messed up, in retrospect).  He was the ORIGINAL Black Ranger in the first season and the first half of the 2nd season.  Chosen by Zordon (The big face in the tube) to use the Dino Power of the Mastodon for being “clever and brave,” Zack definitely held his own against his Caucasian counterparts, even earning the spot of 2nd in command…you know…until Tommy showed up and took over.

In this episode I just knew Zack was going to beat the breaks off of Billy

So what made Zack so significant amongst the 20 seasons worth of what I estimate to be over 100 Power Rangers (Yes, we are indeed old)? Two words: Hip-Hop Kido. Sure I haven’t watched Power Rangers since the Lost Galaxy but I’m fairly sure there has never been another ranger who combined elements of hip-hop dancing and martial arts. His fighting style was completely one of a kind and it’s uniqueness was hands down made young Black males of my era want to be like him.

Tell me you didn’t try this a few times while watching MMPR and I’ll call you a bold faced liar

*Fun Fact* The guy who played Zack, Walter Emanuel Jones, was missing the middle finger on his left hand.  The show never brought attention to this detail, but if you look carefully in the footage you’ll see its true. 20 years later and you’re still learning new things.

Advertisements

Black History Month Superhero Spotlight – Kwame

*Looks to the left* *Looks to the right* Oh look…I still have a blog. Weird.

Anyway, it’s Black History Month! You know, those 28 days that we are supposed to honor and celebrate the past, present, and future of the African American culture…. O_o please tell me this time of the year is ringing a bell for you…

Welp, since I’m me, I decided that instead of doing the normal thing and honor actual people, I would shine some light on prominent Black superhero characters that I grew up on.  Completely nerdy, yet you know you want to read more.

First up on the list is Captain Planet’s own wielder of the Earth power ring, Kwame.

"Gold all in my chain, gold all in my ring, gold all in my watch, don't believe me just watch"

“Gold all in my chain, gold all in my ring, gold all in my watch, don’t believe me just watch”

So I’m starting out with Kwame for two reason: 1) He’s probably one of the first African  superhero characters (he’s from Ghana, Africa if you didn’t know) you were aware of and 2) He’s is the first Black character I ever remember to be the leader of a team.

For 6 seasons, Kwame led the Planeteers through all types of eco-threatening hi-jinx  in the 1990’s (3 of which he was receiving marching orders from Whoopi Goldberg . Google it), summoning the power of Earth, which is a WAY better power than Heart. Ma-Ti sucks, to kick butt and take names. And when things got tough, he’d give the order to bring out the big guns by saying those four famous words, “Ma-Ti, you are useless” “Let our powers combine” calling forth the one and only Captain Planet.

“I’M MAKING TREES!!”

Kwame was a huge asset to the team; being the voice of reason and maintaining the team’s focus. He always kept his cool under pressure except for that one time when he questioned his usefulness and subsequently abandoned the Planeteers all while while saving the planet one day at a time. Hats off to the guy.

Oh! and lets not forget this guy provided Kwame’s voice

That's right, freaking Geordi LaForge...or as he's formally known by, That Guy From Reading Rainbow

That’s right, freaking Geordi LaForge…or as he’s formally known by, That Guy From Reading Rainbow

Always remember. The power is yours!

Why There is No “White History Month”

Originally this post was going to be on the video above. However, http://www.treyningday.com/ beat me to the punch.  Luckily I found a related subject that I would like to comment on, so lets begin. Oh and shame on all those people in the video. Black History Month is in March?? Stop the ignorance.

This post is not directed at all White people. This is directed just to the ones who have never taken a step back from their position in society and realized how privileged they are in comparison to the other ethnicities and cultures in America.

It’s Black History Month. This means the inevitable question will be asked by our White counterparts: Why isn’t there a White History Month? If you’ve never encountered this question then I’m pretty shocked. I hear this nonsense of a question every year like clockwork.  Usually I shrug this question off and chalk it up to being a terribly dumb rhetorical question on their part…or i just call them idiots and its never brought up again. It happens.

But now I have access to the internet 24/7 12/7 (I don’t have a smart phone. Eff y’all. Don’t come at my life), and pretty much anything on the net is immortalized forever.  Which brings me to the basis of this particular blog post.  It has recently been brought to my attention the existence of this website that came into manifestation sometime near the beginning of the month, aptly entitled http://wheniswhitehistorymonth.tumblr.com/.

Take a moment to peruse the site. Don’t worry. I’ll wait.

….

….

….

Got the premise of the site? Good. Let’s continue shall we?

REALLY?? Really @maggierose14, @SmeagolLover, @Mirandaceratops, @BigStewMVP, @Adair_Neff, @Tylaerickson, @Alicia_Ruth, @chlo_rara, @casstat, @TaoBoxer, @BodiCanCelly, @JustinBorges1, @JakeBrownvb, @logeyy_TheKidd, @PerfectlyCourt, @ScAHP_ThA_WorLd, @kristenkemper1, @loKAL_celebrity, @ohhtet, @StrattonRobert, @ConnorFurst, @Leahwilging, and all you other ignorant people who have quotes on the site saying that a lack of a White history month should be considered racist?! You’re honestly telling me that you can’t figure out why there isn’t a White history month?

Fascinating.

It must be nice to be so privileged in American society that you are able to take for granted the educational opportunities afforded to you about your culture and history.  Let’s think about this logically, shall we? Let’s go into the recesses of the memories you have pre-college.  What race of people did we spend the majority of the time learning about throughout those years? If you answered Caucasians you would be correct! Give yourself a cookie.

Do you see my point here? All of our lives we have been learning the history of White people. Every Social Studies and History class from Kindergarten to 12th grade has primarily been focused on how White people have contributed to this nation.  The very idea that you folks think there needs to be a White history month is not only ignorant, its freaking selfish.  You already have 9 months out of the school year dedicated solely to teaching the history of White Americans. 10 months if we’re really being honest because that 1 lesson you learned in class and that 1 assembly at the end of the month on Black history just isn’t cutting it anymore.

Your complaints are asinine. Why are you asking for a White history month when we learn about it EVERYDAY. In addition, I’m willing to bet that the vast majority of people don’t know a thing about Black history.

Pop Quiz:

Off the top of your heads specifically name 5 prestigious African-Americans you have learned about in school. But wait! The people you name CANNOT be related to slavery or the Civil Rights Movement. Oh and no Goggle, Yahoo, Bing, or any other search engine. Now go!

Don’t worry. I’ll wait.

……

……

……

……

……

I wonder how many of you actually came up with 5 people. I’m doubting very many.  Smdh. The sadder part is Black History Month is supposed to be the popular minority appreciation month. If you don’t know anything about this observance I’m willing to put my life savings on the the fact that you know diddly-squat about National Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct. 15), National American Indian Heritage Month (November), or Asian Pacific American Heritage Month (May). Bet you didn’t even know that last one existed.

But I digress. Here’s the overall message I’m trying to convey to you: there’s no White history month because it’s an everyday event. Let us other cultures and races have some shine, without you trying to cast shade upon us. Stop being so damn selfish.

Thanks.