Essential Workers Are the New “Magical Negro”

Essential Workers Are the New “Magical Negro” (link)

“Our essential workers are overwhelmingly black and brown individuals who have been neglectfully underpaid, unprotected, and subjected to the racial inequities that have always existed in our white supremacist nation. Capitalism has consistently demeaned our cashiers, grocery workers, delivery persons, sanitation departments, custodial workers, medical assistants, and public transportation employees…This will require a paradigm shift that divorces one’s perceived utility in society from one’s profession. The concept of “hard work” that “builds character” must be reexamined as capitalistic propaganda that reifies white supremacy. If hard work creates honorable citizens that are worthy of praise, why are the hardest-working in our societies the least respected? Considerations like Universal Basic Income are just the beginning of ways individuals can self-actualize beyond the confines of productivity. The “magic” of the negro is simply a derivative the negro’s service. What if that service were reclaimed? Not in the form of black-owned business, entrepreneurial ventures, or visions of “black excellence” framed by monetary advancements, but rather as the right to flourish as essentially human? Magic indeed. “

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