After Donald Trump issued a statement that refused to acknowledge the 6 million Jews slaughtered by Nazi Germany during the 1940s on International Holocaust Remembrance Day Friday, black America should prepare ourselves for what may be the last Black History Month.
I’m sure many of you doubt that the Cheddar Comb-Over could erase a tradition begun in 1915 by Carter G. Woodson, but I have learned never to underestimate the power of wypipo. Hours after he issued his anti-Semitic statement and doubled down on it, Trump banned an entire religion from entering the country, ignoring not just any constitutional amendment—but the first one! So what’s stopping him from signing an executive order changing the name of February to “Trumptober” and declaring it a monthlong celebration of pussy grabbing and ethnic cleansing?
So, it is up to us to make this Black History Month one for the ages. It should be educational and uplifting, and most of all, it must be fun! And there is nothing more enjoyable than ...
1. Making wypipo think it is an actual holiday: On Feb. 1, near the end of the day, break down crying in front of your co-workers. When they ask you what’s wrong, tell them that you can’t believe no one in the office remembered that it was Black History Month. Ask them why they hate your people. They will immediately become defensive and open to any suggestion. They’ll also be a little bit excited because wypipo love holidays—even ones that have nothing to do with them.
Remind them Black History Month is just like St. Patrick’s Day, but instead of wearing green, they should wear kente cloth every day. Think of how much fun you’ll have watching them come in every day in dashikis and African prints, looking like Great Value Rachel Dolezals. Schedule a work outing for the 9th, and tell them it’s “Nueve de Negro,” which is kind of like Cinco de Mayo for black people, but instead of wearing a sombrero and drinking tequila, they should wear Kangols and drink Hennessy. You might wonder, “What kind of idiot would fall for this?”
Trust me, they’ll do it, because it combines the two greatest Y.P. Pull pastimes: costumes and cultural appropriation.
2. Financial empowerment: When possible, only spend money with black-owned businesses during the month. Challenge your friends to do the same. Some of them will correctly point out that black businesses have higher prices. Some of them might say that black businesses are always missing one or two items in stock, and they will probably be correct. Then you should inform them that all of their complaints are problems of small businesses, or of businesses in general. I have visited approximately 1,029,393 McDonald’s where the McFlurry machine was broken and the cashier put cheese on my Big Mac when I explicitly stated, “No cheese,” but I’ve never heard anyone scream about how white-owned fast-food restaurants never have what they want.
I’m willing to bet that those bananas at Whole Foods are the same ones as those in the corner gas station, but we never complain about their prices because the little “organic” stickers mean “white-people certified.” Have you ever seen anyone in a long Wal-Mart line, when only three of the 17 registers are open, mention how they’re so tired of white-owned-department-store customer service?
Just for this month, spend your money with black people. Once you see how easy it is, and how it doesn’t really decrease your quality of life or your bank account, you’ll be more willing to do it.
Plus, when Trump’s economic policies destroy the white middle class, their bread will be soggy and moldy from white tears anyway.
3. Not letting wypipo slide: No matter how radical, empowered or unapologetic you might be, if you took the time to address every incident when a Caucasian said or did something problematic, you’d never get anything done. Sometimes they don’t mean any harm or malice, but since this is the last Black History Month, let’s use this time to make white people better.
When your liberal Caucasian friends use euphemisms like “inner city” and “urban,” inform them that the word “black” is not a pejorative. When co-workers switch into their cool ebonics code-switch, remind them that you speak fluent wypipo. For the next 28 days, you shouldn’t feel the need to flash a smile or make yourself less intimidating in elevators and dark parking lots. If people touch your hair without your permission, chop them in their throat and tell them you thought they wanted to play the “I can do what I want to your body” game. Ask them if you won.
Some of these actions might make your white friends and acquaintances feel uncomfortable, so remind yourself that you deserve a vacation from 11 months of being surrounded by uncomfortable whiteness. Being black in America is the constant act of tamping down your blackness to assimilate. But not this month. This month, leave the bass in your voice and the sass in your step.
4. Teaching “alternative facts” history: The entirety of most white people’s knowledge of black history is limited to Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, Harriet Tubman and whichever slave movie was most recently nominated for an Oscar. Aside from that, they will muddy a few random facts they learned from a drunken game of Trivial Pursuit. They remember something about George Washington Carver inventing the peanut and vaguely recall that Eli Whitney created cotton-candy-flavored gin—or something like that. It is not your responsibility to rectify the blind spot in their education. Instead, have some fun with it!
Tell your Uber driver that archaeologists recently discovered that the ancient Egyptians used an ancient form of ride-sharing to build the pyramids. (Am I the only person who always gets Uber drivers who make slightly racist comments, then turn up the trap music and act as if everything is cool?) If your Caucasian colleague mentions an email, tell him that the “reply all” button was invented by Jamaal Griggs in 1983 when he wanted to tell his entire family about his Labor Day cookout.
They will never know if you’re telling the truth or not, because American history is one big alternative fact, from Christopher Columbus’ discovery of America to George Washington’s cherry tree to Abraham Lincoln’s title as “the Great Emancipator.” If they realize you are lying about history to them, don’t confess. Instead, double down just like their president did, and repeat the biggest, most outrageous lie ever told in America:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed, by their creator, with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
If they still believe that, they’ll believe anything.
Happy Black History Month.