Let me tell you about some of the encounters I had with the brothers. Though not as negatively profound, there still was an attitude of “you are not one of us”. One thing I learned real quick is that if a black man dates a white woman, some black men assume she is a “brother lover” so they did everything to conquer her.
In the fall of nineteen eighty-six, The Coal Miner’s Daughter and I were standing in line at the cafeteria of the school. One of the football players, Specs I will call him, decided to “Mac” on her. I guess he thought there was no better time to try. Hell, I was standing right there, so I guess he was trying to make a fool of me because he occasionally turned to his jock buddies laughing. They wanted to teach the immigrant how it was done. The second time he turned to his friends, The Coal Miner’s Daughter handed me the tray and walked off. He stopped talking to his friends turned around with this stupid grin on his face. “What time you want me to ……….,” he asked as he turned around and stopped dead in his tracks when he realized he was talking to my chest. I could see the disappointment in his eyes when he he saw that he was not looking into the chest he wanted to. “Is seven good for you?” I asked, then blew him a kiss. His glasses almost fell off his face as laughter filled the cafeteria as his friends dogged him.
I was called every name in the book by some of these gentlemen. African booty scratcher, dirty Jamaican, starving Ethiopian – of course none of the above applied because I am a frigging Spice Islander. I was not mad about the way they treated me. I knew that people who felt like they were being oppressed usually deflected their lack of security on others; been there, done that. Now you may derive from my tone that I am a little perturbed with the brothers. Well to a certain degree I am. Where the hell were they when a white president ordered the invasion of a black nation? Did they take to the streets? Did they express solidarity? As a matter of fact the army that invaded the island was sixty percent black. Now there is a perfect example of keeping people separated by culture. The only brother that showed interest in our plight was Harry Belafonte. Thank you my friend; it was the humane thing to do.