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217 PART 9: Cultural Diversity, Transcontinental, Transactional, Meeting Spaces... “[i]’m testing positive for the funk. [i]’d gladly pee in anybody’s cup. And if your cup overflows, [i]’m testing positive and pee somemo’.” from “We Can Funk”by Prince and George Clinton Black Man from The Black Book of Linguistic Liberation C. Liegh McInnis [i] apologize for marching my muddy waters feet on your pale pat boone carpet, but my steps have been made dusty from dancing in the dirt of the Delta. So, allow me to straighten your crooked records. [i] am history. My name is Black, but you can call me “Daddy Pop” ‘cause [i]’m father to the rainbow. [i] got more child-nations than Skittles got colors all birthed from the rich womb of Alkebu-lan. Even my outhouse produces flowering countries. My loins are the kaleidoscope of life. [i] am the prism that creates the spectrum of humanity. My black body is as fertile as the Nile reservoir, and my soul shines like the son’s Aton. [i] was a Muslim before you submitted, Christ-like before the crucifixion, and a mason before the codes. [i] created remedial education for Socrates. [i] was the one who suggested the elephant to Hannibal, the donkey to Jesus, and the Cadillac to Reverend Ike. [i] was the one who taught Merlin that damn sleight of hand trick; 218 still you call me witch doctor and call him magician; as the government works its hoo doo, hell, [i] need some voo doo jus’ to stay sane. If you don’t think that [i]’m a magician jus’ check me out on bill day. How does fourteen percent of the population give a whole nation so much soul? If the one drop rule applies, then the complete commonwealth is colored. [i] was the one who did the driving and parallel parking for Columbus. [i] tried to warn my carmine brothers ‘bout smoking that pipe with Captain Smith. [i]’m Nat Turner on my best day and Clarence Thomas on my worst, but even my worst makes me supreme. [i]’m B. B. King on Saturday night and Martin Luther King on Sunday morning. [i]’m the beautiful fiery Truth of Richard Pryor and the communal Wisdom of Baba Cosby. [i] am Frederick Douglass with a Kangol slightly tilted to the side, still refusing to give up my plantation house. [i]’m Booker T. Washington in a red, pinstriped double-breasted suit with red silk socks and a pair of shiny Stacey Adams. [i]’m gon’ pull myself up by my wingtips and look good doing it. [i]’m the double talking, double consciousness of Du Bois and the glorious, steadfast rock of Garvey. [i]’m the “New Negro”—of every ten years. [i] made the peanut give birth to things that you wouldn’t believe, and [i] coordinated red, yellow, and green to keep white folks from running into each other. By the way—how you gon’ invent a cotton gin when you ain’t picked no cotton? If necessity is the mother of invention, 219 then every patent in America should be mine. [i] tried to tell Custard not to go in betwixt them rocks. [i] took on wings at Tuskegee and taught America how to fly. [i] pumped electrifying, orgasmic life into your comatose language. [i]’m the same man who cut Malcolm’s conk and gives Reverend Sharpton his touch-up. [i] was the one who said, “Run, Jesse, run.” [i]’m Robert Johnson, Chuck Berry, Thelonious Monk, Miles Davis, Little Richard, Jackie Wilson, James Brown, Jimi Hendrix, Smokey Robinson, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, and Tina Turner all rolled into one. That’s right. [i]’m ! But above all else, [i] am forever here like a stain on the silk shirt of white supremacy. [i] have survived more wars and famines than McDonald’s has sold over priced and over processed scamburgers. [i] have survived more conspiracies than an Oliver Stone movie and more cliffhangers than Dynasty, Falcon Crest, Dallas and General Hospital. That’s why my Young are so damn Restless. [i] am the bulging, pounding phallic anxiety of a nation. You don’t know whether to emasculate me, incarcerate me, infect me, or ejaculate me. That’s alright ‘cause [i] can’t help but touch myself when [i] walk. The music in my rhythm gives me more bounce to my beat. [i] am JSU and Tougaloo, the public and private HBCU. And...


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