The Ignorance Jar (Part One)

By Michael-Louis Ingram
Updated: June 2, 2008

PHILADELPHIA — Over the two years and change that I’ve spent here contributing to our website, I’ve been privy to some rather unusual insights by people who responded to columns written by myself as well as some of my colleagues.

For the most part, many offer kudos for what we do and are grateful that BASN offers a voice seeking to provide a checks and balances atmosphere for folks to agree and disagree.

Even when there is dissent, some folks make good arguments; and it comes down to the kind of stuff people speak on in the bar or pub as debate is passionately made for the attributes of Player A as opposed to Player B and so on in good spirit.

But there are those who look to poison that spirit, and some of these Ass Crumbs made their feelings known with anonymous names, stupid statements and even death threats.

Moms used to say, “If someone is trying really hard to prove they are better than you; they have something to hide”; and the truth in said statement belies the fact there is little effort to hide the agenda of mainstream media and its lunatic fringe of so-called “fans.”

This effort spurred me to repeat something I had done while working as a journalist in Vancouver, British Columbia. After a racial incident, in an afterthought I stated out loud about what I could buy if I had a nickel for every time someone white said something stupid about Black people.

I went home and rinsed out an old gallon juice bottle and dropped a nickel in, promising for each dumb-ass thing I heard Whites say about Black people, I would throw in a nickel or five pennies; but for each time a Black person said something as stupid about someone Black, I would throw in a case dime. Twice as much for twice as stupid, because we’re supposed to know better!

This was done for almost a year’s time, and when the jar was just about filled, I counted the loot. It came out to $60.95, and the amazing thing was $43.60 of it was in dimes. So 436 times — more than once a day — someone Black made a point of saying something disparaging about another Black person.

Well, with the constant media Blacklash affecting Black sports figures; the ripping of Michael Vick, the Donovan McNabb comments, the dehumanization of Genarlow Wilson, the Marion Jones steroids situation, the actions of Brat Selig and Major League Baseball in its apparent collusion against Barry Bonds, the lack of Black coaches in NCAA football, the NCAA’s slave system of “student-athlete”, the squelching of a scandal in pro basketball in the Tim Donaghy affair – let’s just say I’ve been dropping some coins as all this madness has carried on.

And, if you can make out my wobbly attempt at photography, the Jar is almost full. Once it’s at capacity, I will count the cash and point where some of that hard-earned dough went in terms of remarks.

The same rules apply, with one glaring exception: I felt the remarks by Golf Channel bimbo Kelly Tilghman suggesting Eldrick Woods should be lynched — along with Woods’ inference he was cool with that — warranted me dropping a Kennedy half dollar in the jar.

So before the Gods of CoinStar receive their offering, I’ll be back to break it down.

The saddest thing about this jar is…that this muthafucka filled up real quick.