I think, Mister Scion Sir, that you will find the answer to your question within the question. Or at least the spirit in which the question was flung.
My favorite part of this page was drawing Zhiro’s face in the last panel. Zhiro is 110% DONE with your nonsense and drama, Tama.
This isn’t the first time Tama’s thrown a tantrum because Zhiro won’t. I think Tama resents Zhiro’s calm control because it makes Tama ashamed of his inability to rein in his own temper. The more restrained Zhiro is, the more inadequate and insecure Tama feels next to him. Which means a part of Tama, conscious or not, tries to goad Zhiro into a response so Tama can not only feel vindicated in his anger, but comforted in the knowledge that even his brother gets mad sometimes.
Of course, were Zhiro ever to actually respond the way Tama wants, I don’t think the Scion would feel very good about the outcome. Both because eventually he’d realize, “Oh zhak I’m an idiot. Again,” and because Zhiro’s one of those people that you really don’t want to see get visibly angry. It’s just not a good time for anyone.
Unfortunately for everyone, Tama’s still got a lot of growing to do.
In bookworm news, I’m nearing the end of “My Bondage and My Freedom,” by Frederick Douglass, one of several autobiographies he wrote. Frederick Douglass escaped slavery in 1838 and later became an abolitionist, famous orator and debater, writer, and statesman. He was the first African American to be nominated as running mate/Vice President candidate with Victoria Woodhull in 1872, although the nomination was done without his approval, and the campaign never really received legitimacy. He traveled to England and Ireland prior to the Civil War, both to escape recapture by his former master and to speak against slavery, and a church that supported slavery, abroad. Upon his return to U.S. soil, he started his own newspaper, The North Star, which ran from 1847 – 1851 and then was merged with the Liberty Party Paper to form Frederick Douglass’ Paper which continued on until 1863.
The autobiography covers Frederick’s life as a slave up to a little after he has started to publish The North Star. It starts with an introduction by Dr. James McCune Smith, who was he first African American to hold a medical degree (top of his class at the University of Glasgow in Scotland) and run a pharmacy in the US. Dr. James McCune Smith is a fascinating individual in his own right, both for his abolitionist efforts and his scientific ones. He was a founding member of the New York Statistics Society in 1852 (a new science in those days) and also served as a member of the American Geographic Society. Despite the recognition in these organizations and his qualifications and occupation, he was never accepted into any medical associations. In 1853 he and Douglass started the National Council of Colored People.
This book has probably been not only one of the best books I’ve ever read, but one of the most important. It has challenged preconceptions I didn’t even know I had, time and time again. African Americans were largely omitted from my history education. I had not realized what a fundamental impact that had on the narrative of the Civil War in particular. When people like Frederick Douglass, Dr. James McCune Smith, Harriet Tubman, and no doubt countless others are reduced to footnotes, or removed from the discussion entirely, what is left is the implication that they were not involved at all. I truly, unconsciously, thought that slavery was something that white Americans independently decided was an injustice and eventually, after a great deal of internal strife, decided to abolish. It did not occur to me that African Americans were involved in this conflict, because they were never mentioned by my teachers or textbooks.
This book shined a light on that unquestioned assumption and made me start looking beyond what I was taught to all that had been left UN-taught. That was only the first of many, many narratives it forced me to question. Perspectives that, once I looked at them, made no sense at all, but that was what I’d always been told was true, so that was what I thought was true.
History shapes our cultural narratives, which in turns shapes our current views and future actions. It’s scary to discover how much was left out of the history I was presented in the classroom.
Maybe next update I’ll talk about Sister Rosetta Tharpe, godmother of rock-and-roll, who I learned about just this week. Yup, another African American left out of the history I knew. And another woman. I wish I could say that omission came as a surprise.
What have you read or seen that’s made you question what you’ve been taught was true?