“Inception” And African-Americans
I saw the movie Inception when it first came out. It’s an excellent, original movie that I highly recommend. The basic plot of the movie is that a Japanese corporate executive has hired a group of people to try to plant an idea into the subconscious mind of the heir to a rival corporation. In the movie, this process of planting ideas into a target person’s mind is called “inception.” A friend and I recently had an email conversation about the movie. She’s graciously given me permission to quote her comments. [*Note: We generally refer to African-Americans as “our former people” because the masses of modern, “new school” African-Americans are unrecognizable to those of us with “old-school,” traditional African-American values.]
THERE ARE MANY REAL WORLD EXAMPLES OF OUTSIDERS SUCCESSFULLY PERFORMING VERBAL “INCEPTION” ON AFRICAN-AMERICANS
The pity is that, unlike in the movie, most African-Americans don’t have to be drugged to be vulnerable to inception. Simply hearing somebody else say something is enough to influence most of us. During the email conversation I said,
I forgot to mention something else about the movie that struck me. It reminds me of how clueless and easily manipulated our former people are. As the Nation of Islam (NOI) ministers often remark, African-Americans foolishly act out scripts written by other people that they mistakenly think are their own indeas.
And it doesn’t take much to influence the bulk of African-Americans. All White folks have to do is elevate a Negro to prominent status (via media promotion, job appointments, etc.), and most African-Americans will buy into whatever warped ideas that newly-elevated Negro is promoting. This is how African-Americans became suddenly “confused” and unsure of the monstrous aspects of conservative ideology (as they relate to our particular interests). All because we will blindly support any prominent colored person (such as Condi Rice and Colin Powell).
In Inception, the idea that they were trying to plant in the target corporate heir’s mind (“I’ll be my own man by breaking up my father’s business empire and building something new”) is similar to the idea that Elijah Muhammad’s son acted out after he inherited leadership of the NOI. That idea ultimately led to the dismantling and destruction of his father’s empire.
It reminded me of something that several Nation of Islam and CROE (Coalition for the Remembrance of Elijah Muhammad) ministers have said over the decades about Warithudeen (Wallace) Muhammad, Elijah Muhammad’s son:
(1) That basically the ideas that Warithudeen Muhammad had about “decentralizing” and “democratizing” the NOI were not his own original ideas. That these ideas had been verbally planted and suggested to him by the various government agents that had infiltrated the upper ranks of the NOI.
(2) That the government agents who gave him this ultimately destructive advice played on the typical motivations that sons of notable men have—to want to surpass their fathers.
Ultimately, I blame Elijah Muhammad for this. He didn’t properly groom his son to know how to make his own mark on the NOI while maintaining the base that his father had built. There’s an art to keeping what you inherit as a base while you expand into other directions.
INCEPTION ONLY WORKS WITH WEAK, UNQUESTIONING MINDS
In reply my friend said,
I would also take it one step further, these tactics only work with weak minds. A mind that does not put into question what is being said or shown or a mind that does not know itself is always in a vulnerable position with regards to others.
She’s right. I see proof of this everyday when I hear African-Americans blindly repeating other people’s talking points. Including talking points from Tea Party members and other racist Whites who are featured on Faux News. Just the other day, I read a comment by an African-American who was seriously repeating the (racist, White, Tea Party) “birther” lies about Pres. Obama purportedly not having a valid US birth certificate. That’s utterly insane.
I find it amazing that Blacks folks who have bought into that madness actually believe that the many right-wing, White racists at the FBI, CIA, and other alphabet-lettered government organizations would permit any Black-skinned, non-US-born-citizen to be sworn in as President of the US. The FBI, CIA, and so on are not known as institutions that are friendly to Black-skinned individuals. No matter how much any particular Black person buckdances.
I’ve observed similar patterns with African-American religious zealots who are single-issue fanatics. They will support any candidate who supports forcing pregnant women to give birth against their will. I’ve also seen the same pattern with African-Americans who blindly repeat Democratic Party officials’ talking points. Whatever slogan is being said during that day’s news cycle by the White Democratic Party officials will be hypnotically repeated by many African-Americans. Most African-Americans do very little thinking for themselves.
In one sense, one can argue this level of gullibility shows how much more free we are. In previous eras, there was no room for African-Americans to have that type of self-delusion: There’s nothing to be confused about when you have a noose around your neck.
WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR INFORMATION FROM?
Do you watch Fox “News”? If so, why in the world would you watch the equivalent of Pravda? Do you have more than one source of information? Do you have any international sources of information? Have you bothered to read a single book about any of today’s current events? Such as a biography of any of the key players in Iraq or Afghanistan (for example, Muqtada al-Sadr)?
[**Audience Note** Please, no spoilers about Inception during this conversation. Any comment that contains spoilers will not be published.]
Tagged as: pop culture detox