Perhaps I’m not as revolutionary as Steve Biko because my writing is unlikely to stop an oppressive, racist governmental system that will systematically leave people of color economically disadvantaged even after its collapse. But Steve Biko and I have one thing in common and that is that we refuse to be censored and quiet so that the forces in power can continue to reign and benefit because good people keep quiet.
I doubt I’ll ever lead a march or a protest but I can be one of the leading voices in creatives being treated with the respect and dignity that our chosen professions demand. We shouldn’t have to wait until we’re insanely successful to finally feel validated. Our validation starts even from the grassroots where we struggled to buy ramen noodles or walked everywhere because we couldn’t afford transport.
Have you ever noticed that the most prolific writing happens when there is something terrible going on? I mean the best books of the Bible were written while Paul or some other apostle was in jail. I suppose that’s because creativity may be a primal skill. It comes out in floods when everything else and we don’t have the comforts of life. When we hear our stomach grumbling and ponder on the meaning of the worth of our life. When we lose the one we love through whatever tragedy it be death or a breakup and our heart mends by pouring itself over poetic lines or script-lines. When our acting skills reach new levels because your parents said they’re going to stop paying your rent and you’ll have to move out of LA if you don’t book a job soon. I guess true creativity comes from the darkest times. The best Psalms of David were written as he ran away from Saul…
Perhaps that’s the cross we bear as creatives. To see and experience the world in the depths of it’s ugliness and realize the full extent of its beauty. To speak where the world wants to cut off our mouths and silence us. Because we realize the power of our voice and expression. That we have changed the world before and that we will continue changing the world.
We create what we like. We live how we like. We rule the world in a way the world does not like but desperately needs. Which is why it baffles me that so many of the things I write about (perhaps you don’t see it now but will see it in the future) are topics that creatives shy away from addressing. Save a few select. When did we become afraid of exploring the dark spaces where no one else dares venture? A lot of the information out there I’ve been seeing gives a Pollyanna view of the creative community. It’s actually one of the things that MLMs get blasted for the most. The false motivation that they gives people who join by promising them unparalleled success and riches. While the creative community is not like that (yet?) we’re clearly not giving realistic advice out there.
I suppose we’re a ramen noodles generation where if something doesn’t happen instantly then we think that it’s a fluke and doesn’t work. I suppose that’s the reason why employers are so frustrated with millennials and the workforce entering tirade of Generation Z’ers.
And then again perhaps we are too outspoken. We speak out on every little thing and know every political buzzword in the social justice dictionary. Doesn’t that signal perhaps that we’ve outgrown the methods and ways of the old generation and maybe we afraid to speak out on certain things because it will break down a system that will challenge the existence of many.
At this point I honestly don’t know the direction on which I’m going but self-expression necessarily need a direction but takes a form. The form of Steve Biko’s self-expression led to the eventual liberation of a people even though he never lived to see it. I wonder if my self-expression will truly liberate anybody, but anyway, no matter what I’ll still write what I like.
If you want me to continuing writing what I like please use this link as much as possible http://www.paypal.me/tanatswaforever