- Aug 28, 2015
I write this piece following the ground work laid by W.E.B. Dubois’s Veil of Double Consciousness. The veil he described was a visualization of the racial duality blacks take on as part of their American identity. I now undertake the daunting task of clarifying the new veil of economics that has covered the struggles of a generation. The decadent veil looks at black Americans through a lens of group theory and seeks to explain an illusion that has taken form over a 30-year span of financial deregulation and new found access to unsecured credit. This veil is trimmed with million-dollar sports contracts, Roc Nation tour deals and designer labels made for heads of state. As black celebrity invited us into their homes through shows like MTV cribs, we forgot the condition of overall African American financial affairs. Despite a large section of the 14 million black households drowning in poverty and debt the stories of a few are told as if they represent those of millions, not thousands. It is this new veil of economics that has allowed for a broad swath of America to become not just desensitized to black poverty, but also hypnotized by black celebrity.