Black History Month founder Carter G. Woodson is spinning in his grave right now. We know it. Because 2014 has brought us what may be the worst Black History Month ever. From Michael Dunn to Nicki Minaj to stolen barbecue ribs, these have been some trying 28 days. In case you’ve tried to block it all from your memories, here are 28 reasons this has been the worst Black History Month in recent memory.
1. George Zimmerman Celebrity Boxing Starring DMX
Speaking of murderers: George Zimmerman is apparently a celebrity now. He’s going to do celebrity boxing and his possible opponent will be none other than Earl Simmons. If this ever comes true, it will be a nightmare.
2. The MLK Family Feud
Dr. Martin Luther King’s legacy can’t be tarnished. But dammit if his family isn’t trying. His son has tried to sell the late Dr.’s Nobel prize and a few other of his memorabilia. This, of course, has led to a nasty family feud that nobody wants to see. Ugh.
3. Boosie Not Getting Out
Picture it: NBA All Star Weekend in New Orleans. The entire hip-hop world in attendance wearing all of their chains and their best outfits with leather sleeves. A darkly tinted SUV pulls up to a post-dunk contest party, and out jumps Torrence Hatch, loose as a goose, with a fade so perfect that Andis had to have created a special pair of clippers just for the joyous occasion. But alas, it was not to be.
After several reports from very reliable sources like Bun B, and Boosie’s own brother, indicated that Boosie would hit the bricks in time for this year’s All Star festivities, the federal government apparently had other ideas. Hopefully, he gets out before the Ides of March. Until then we here at TSS are still screaming “Free Boosie!”
4. Marcus Smart Vs. Jeff Orr
Jeff Orr said something to Marcus Smart towards the end of February 8’s Oklahoma State/Texas Tech game. Whatever was spewed was enough to incite Smart to step in Orr’s face and shove him. The act dominated sports headlines for a few days and the same song and dance about players, etiquette and the underlying issue of race reared its ugly head all over again. The travesty here is that people like Jeff Orr can yell whatever racial epithet they want at athletes like Smart and it’s the victim of the slur that gets the penalty. Good to know.
5. Nicki Minaj Calls Malcolm X A Lookin A$$ N****
Nicki was doing everything right. She was putting her goods on display. She was rapping like a mother*cker. She even showed her natural hair. But then she took to Instagram to portray the iconic image of Malcolm X looking out the window with the title “Lookin A$$ N****.” Then she apologized for you all being idiots. Sounds about right.
6. Wale’s God-Awful All-Star Performance
Proof that all Black people are not wizards at the game of basketball. The funniest moment of this year’s All Star Weekend took place on Friday night during the Celebrity Game. Wale was so bad (HOW BAD IS HE) his basketball skills make his spoken word feats make him sound like the second coming of Gil Scott Heron.
7. Rick Ross Vs. Grammar
We’ve typed “misconfusion” 100 times and each time we get the red squiggly line underneath. That’s bullsh*t, Ross. Just like him attempting to imply he and Jeezy never truly had any bad blood between each other.
We were born at night, Ricky. Not last night. And for the record, the only rappers we respect who can make up their own words are Cam’ron and E-40.
8. Terrell Owens’ New Wife Attempts To Kill Herself
This isn’t funny, not in the least bit, so we won’t even attempt to crack a joke. Not even a month after marrying former NFL All-Pro wideout Terrell Owens, Rachel Snider filed for divorce and allegedly attempted to take her own life. The reason? She felt T.O. – whose financial problems are well-documented – was using her for her money.
9. Maxwell Not Dropping New Music On Valentine’s Day Like He Said he Would
There’s not much out there in the way of slow jams these days, unless you like songs about the club that rhyme bottles and models. Where is the love? We thought that Maxwell was going to provide it on Valentine’s Day, but apparently he was too busy trimming his soul patch or something.
10. The Michael Dunn Trial
Michael Dunn opened fire on a car full of Black kids because they were playing music too loudly. So clearly his life was in danger. He shot all the of the kids in the car, killing Jordan Davis in the process. The trial revealed that Dunn was guilty of attempted murder but the jury was hung on if he actually murdered Davis. Wait…what? Sigh.
11. The Slam Dunk Contest
The Dunk contest basically took the kiddie “everyone wins” route and it absolutely sucked. R.I.P. to one of the greatest events to happen every February.
12. Charlamagne Tha God Asks People About Black History Month And They Know Nothing
Ubiquitous MTV and New York radio personality Charlamagne Tha God encountered a bunch of walking facepalms at a subway stop, and the ancestors cried out in response. For black history month, Charlemagne showed each idiot pictures of well-know black historical figures…and Tyler Perry. None of these geniuses could identify a picture of Malcolm X, but maybe if Tyler makes Madea By Any Means Necessary, Black History Month will be a little better in 2015.
13. Black Dude Kills Black Teenage Girl Over Egging Incident
I had already typed the word Florida out, before double-checking and confirming that this horrible tragedy actually took place in Arkansas. What would be the appropriate response to a car full of kids throwing eggs and condiments at your car? A call to the police? Informing the neighborhood watch? A middle-aged psycho threw common sense to the side like a shell casing being expelled from a handgun, and instead fired multiple shots into the kids’ fleeing car, killing 15-year-old Adrian Broadway in the process. Mischievous, hell, even bad, kids do not deserve to die. Put the guns down people.
14. Black Chicago Congressman Shoots 100 Pornos In Zimbabwe
So let us get this straight. You’re a former US Senator who went to Zimbabwe on the premise you were the middleman between foreign investors and the tourism industry. However, after some digging, officials find you were the leader of a pornography ring with over 2,000 nude pictures and 100 videos where they hit you with 12 counts of statutory rape, obstruction of justice and solicitation of child porn BEFORE you left your Senate seat. And you piled up $24,500 in debt between two hotels.
You’re an idiot, Melvin Jay Reynolds.
15. Kevin Durant’s New Nickname: The Servant
Kevin Durant has been having an MVP season. His basketball skills are nearly unparalleled and if he continues to play at the ridiculous level he is now, we’ll probably see him in June. However, the guy absolutely sucks at nicknames. He didn’t like Slim Reaper (which was actually brilliant) and decided The Servant was the most applicable pseudonym for him.
To be fair, we’re sure it has to do with his religious beliefs and that’s beyond commendable. It’s just not a great basketball nickname though. At all.
16. Score One For Good Ol’ Boys Of Georgia And Their Fancy New (Racist) License Plates
But what happens when a good chunk of the heritage is hate?
This crap would’ve never happened if OutKast just promised to drop a new album by now.
17. Ray Rice Allegedly Beating Up His Wife
Super Bowl champion, model citizen, and anti-bullying advocate Ray Rice looks to be in serious trouble. He’s charged with literally knocking his fiancée the fuck out, and there’s video evidence of him dragging what appears to be her unconscious body into an Atlantic City elevator. Police officials claim to have video evidence of the assault as well, which will edge an already awful Black History Month into new depths of failure.
18. Black History Gets Ignored On ‘Jeopardy’
Three college-educated White kids went on Jeopardy and answered every. damn. question. on the board except for any Black History question. Rosie Perez would have kicked their asses this round.
19. Tennessee Official Threatened Blacks With Skin ‘Trophy’ He Saved From 1896 Lynching
Way to go, Tennessee! You’ve managed to one-up both Florida and Arizona in the no-way-this-can-happen-in-2014 race. As the story goes, medical investigator William Sewell met with Shun Mullins and two others to discuss the death of Mullins’ mother and allegations of racism in the way medical personnel treated her.
Sewell wanted to show Mullins what racism was so he described a lynching of a black man in detailed and included a footnote about his grandfather, who saved a piece of the deceased victim’s skin and passed it down through generations. Reportedly, Sewell took delight in telling the story and spoke on the piece of skin as if it “was like a trophy to him.”
The state finally stepped and terminated Sewell’s employment for conduct that could be perceived as a form of intimidation. But Shun Mullins should’ve never had to experience pre-Civil Rights treatment while searching for the answers to his mother’s death.
20. Man Stuffs His Pants With $100 Of Ribs At Piggly Wiggly
Well…a man’s gotta eat. You couldn’t sneak some quinoa or something in your britches, though?
21. Racist Twitter Troll Gets Exposed
So there’s some woman named Darth Venn aka Venny and she apparently makes fun of Black men for a living. Well, some people apparently found her at an Applebee’s looking like Despicable Me with edges and it became the biggest thing on Twitter for a day. Yes, this is what everyone was talking about.
22. Robin Thicke and Justin Timberlake Took Home NAACP Image Awards
It’s one thing for Kendrick to not when a Grammy. It’s another thing when Thicke and Timberlake outrank countless artists of A-A descent when it comes to winning a NAACP Image Award.
23. Mayor Chokwe Lumumba Dies
You may not care too much about the mayor of a city like Jackson, MS. But here’s why he’s important: he’s the first Black radical to become mayor of a capital city in this country. And guess what, it was working. Of course, since we’re in the worst Black History Month ever, he suddenly passed away only seven months into his tenure.
24. NFL’s N-word Policy And Its Controversy
Whether this is a byproduct of the Richie Incognito-Dolphins situation or a move to prep football players and fans for other slurs that may come with the arrival of Michael Sam, it feels a.) overdue but b.) almost impossible to police.
25. Fake Outrage Over Pharrell’s G I R L Album Cover
Pharrell is just about the most famous musician around, which means it’s the perfect time to find something wrong with him. This is where Cocoa Butter Twitter comes in. Led by dream hampton riding her steed of contempt, Yassss Twitter, embarked on a rampage against the cover to G I R L. Why? Because the women weren’t Black enough. Even though two of the women on the cover looked like they could pass.
What resulted was a day long embarrassment that made the rest of the mythical Black Twitter want to put paper bags over their heads.
This is why we can’t have nice things.
26. Rick Ross Is Still Rick Ross
Rozay had a pretty typical Rick Ross-y Black History Month. First he made up the word “misconfusion” then he compared his success to Trayvon Martin:
“Trayvon Martin, I’m never missing my target
B*tch ni**as hating, tell me it’s what I’m parking”
Even though he managed to explain it away (sort of) just…Ugh. Make it stop. Please.
27. Paula Deen Compares Herself To Michael Sam
In addition to gratuitous amounts of butter, Paula Deen just can’t seem to keep her crusty ass foot out of her mouth. In an interview with People Magazine, the Mrs. Claus doppleganger compared her current attempt to climb back into the public’s good graces to Michael Sam, who could potentially be the first openly gay NFL player.
Deen stated that “I feel like ‘embattled’ or ‘disgraced’ will always follow my name. It’s like that black football player who recently came out. He said, ‘I just want to be known as a football player. I don’t want to be known as a gay football player.’ I know exactly what he’s saying.” If you remember, Deen lost endorsements and her television show last year after, while being deposed for a lawsuit in which her former employees claimed she fostered an environment of racism and abuse in the workplace, she admitted to having used racial slurs in the past. Good thing she’s grown up and can now find common ground with that black gay guy.
28. Darren Sharper And His Rape Cases
There is mounting evidence pointing to the conclusion that former NFL player Darren Sharper is a brutal rapist. So far, eight women have come forward, each with similar stories of being drugged then raped while unconscious. The fact that Darren Sharper was on television, had money, and wasn’t ugly does not preclude him from being a sick S.O.B. Before anyone makes this terrible argument again, a reminder: Rape is not about sex.
Continuing to trot out the argument that because of who he was, he didn’t “have” to rape women only perpetuates the myth that rapists are slack jawed bogeymen who spring from the bushes and attack. Again, rape is not sex. It is an act of violence, whose perpetrators derive satisfaction from power and control. We’ll find out soon enough if the evidence proves Sharper’s guilt, but these are serious charges that should not be ignored.