There is NO Black By Association. Just Stop.

The Black Cookout.

It is legendary in the Black community. The Black cookout is a time for us to relax, to breathe, just to be ourselves without any codeswitching. It is a time for us to talk, our talk, and walk our walk. The Black cookout is a time for your Uncle Leroy to be at the grill in socks and slides, cousins sneaking down the street to smoke those “funny cigarettes,” your aunt with the good Black don’t crack skin to sip her beer out of a chilled glass, while the old folks sit back watching and criticizing asking, “Why ain’t you married yet?” “Why your cousin always bringing her “best friend” with her?” It is our time to do the electric slide and start Soul Train lines.  It is our time to play Spades and damn near choke someone out if they renege, or smack dominoes on the table so hard they bounce back in the air as your cousin that just got out, shouts. “Domino, m*thfucka!”


It is OUR TIME to simply BE BLACK PEOPLE in our spaces. Spaces that we have had to curate throughout time because most spaces in this nation were never designed for us.

The Black cookout is damn near sacred, and for some reason, some Black people always feel the need to invite the White person to the proverbial cookout.

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As Joe would say, “That’s a bunch of malarkey!”

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There is not now nor will there EVER be an honorary Black man. As two Black men, I have no idea what Senator Cory Booker or Rep. James Clyburn were thinking.

Let me be clear; White people don’t get to “be Black” simply because they can shimmy, clap on beat, play the saxophone, speak Ebonics, run some Aqua net gel through their “baby hair” with a toothbrush, or even use more than salt and pepper on their chicken.

You don’t even get to be Black even if you served as the Vice President to a Black man. Sorry, Joe. They lied to you.

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Black isn’t something you “put on.”

Black isn’t performative.

Black isn’t something you gain by proximity.

Black isn’t something Black people can deputize you with.

Black people sincerely need to stop saying that White people can be “honorary Black.” There is not today, nor will there ever be an “honorary Black” certificate.

If you want to speak to Joe Biden about Blackness, ask him what is doing for Black people in this election? Ask Joe what is he doing for the Black people that resuscitated his campaign? Ask him what policies will he enact to help mitigate Black women having a higher chance of dying in childbirth than their White female counterparts.

If you want to mention Joe Biden and Blackness in the same sentence, ask him how he feels about the police shooting unarmed Black people? If you want to speak to Joe Biden about Blackness, ask him how he will ensure Black people that were incarcerated for marijuana will have their records expunged and access to the ever-growing legalized weed industry? If you want to speak to Joe about Blackness, ask him about policies and crime bills he supported that disproportionately impacted Black people? Ask Joe Biden where he stands on Black people receiving reparations?

If you want to mention Black and Joe in the same sentence, ask him some of those questions.

Stop being so impressed with a White man because he worked under former President Barack Obama. Joe Biden doesn’t get to be an honorary Black man. Joe Biden will NEVER understand being a Black person in this world.

Some of y’all are so quick to invite EVERYONE to the proverbial cookout. You give away so much and ask for so little. Never realizing the very people you invite will be the ones that take everything from you, giving you nothing in return.

At best, Joe Biden can be a White man and stand with Black people, but on his BEST day, he will just be a White man standing with Black people. He will never be Black By Association. Period. So please stop it.

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