Great Black Nerd Fallacy on Black Nerds vs. the Black Community: Intellego Quid Metuunt

Onyx Contributor:  H.T. (@Gees3Howard)

One of the biggest accusations commonly thrown at black nerds is that black nerds hate their blackness and ultimately the black community.  While I can say this was the case for some black nerds, I think the more common experience is that black nerds feel rejected by the black community BECAUSE we are nerds.

The irony is that the black community in all its fights for improving the conditions of black people don’t realize that many black nerds are a product of the progress we’ve made so far in terms of society.  The average black nerd, for as much slang they use or how street they may dress, fact is most black nerds come from a very middle class home and at worse come from a single parent household.  I did, but I can’t say economically I struggled.

The black community loathes black nerds, or at least black nerds who don’t fit into the rigid standards of what’s “actually” black.  For one, the standards of masculinity in the black community focus less on knowledge and authenticity and more on looks and swag.  For every 5 black nerds who have “swag” there’s another 7 who quite frankly don’t have it as it was never a key part in how they were raised.  Look at my little brother, guy’s a huge nerd too, but because he’s grew up in a WAY more suburban area than where I grew up, the kid’s kinda dorky, even with being an athlete in two sports.  Swag isn’t something you get or don’t get just because you’re a nerd or grew up in the hood; it’s something you learn to master as it’s an essential part of life in the environment you live in.

Another is, as I’ve discussed on here countless times, is that black people can’t understand how any black people in the age of “wokeness” can read a comic book when black men are dying left and right.  Fact is, the average black person can understand that it’s messed up that cops can be on camera shooting an unarmed black man and get off, but after a while, you need to check out.  There’s entire comics with black heroes fighting injustice, but because nerdom doesn’t give that quantifiable masculinity that the black community craves, it’s rejected.

Which goes to one of the biggest issues black nerds, particularly black male nerds, have with the black community.  Black nerd men are often called coons for our hobbies, and black women are told that no good black man will want them with their hobbies.  Black men get frustrated because, yes, black men catch shit from women for being nerds.  People will say that it’s not being a nerd, it’s a lack of swag or just need to dress better.  But as I have said before, not every black person is raised to value the same things.

The difference between swag and confidence is that many black nerds have basic confidence, but in the day and age of everyone is a celebrity in their own right, being knowingly humble comes off as lacking confidence.  Swag comes from men being told to basically dick wave to seem strong to the outside world.  The black community doesn’t realize this.

To the black community, we are seen as different yet similar things to others in it.  The super pro black hoteps see us as coons for not being like them and existing in predominantly white spaces.  The hipster woke black folks see us as self-hating because how dare we like fiction starring cishet white or even black males?  Don’t we know about the think pieces written about Marvel’s lack of trans lesbian womanist heroes by some dough faced Netta looking chick with purple lipstick and a septum piercing?  And the hood black person looks at us as stuck up for not feeling the need to live by the code of the streets.

The black community doesn’t need to accept us as many nerds intersect into these other types of blackness, but none of that matters to them.  No, to them, black men can’t be strong, masculine, woke or keep it real when they play Final Fantasy or read the latest issue of The Ultimates.  But we do.  We do, and to sit here and say we don’t have a place in the black community because of YOUR standards quite frankly speaks to why so many black people do turn their black on the black community.  Remember, there’s 50 million ways to be black in America, don’t let anyone tell you the one you picked is automatically wrong just to fit in.

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