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Life as a Blackman: The Game.
August 12, 2002 9:41 PM   Subscribe

Life as a Blackman: The Game. A board game that depicts life from the perspective of a minority.
posted by josephtate (20 comments total)

 
yeh, okay...
posted by delmoi at 9:59 PM on August 12, 2002


er, I seem to be full of npr links today, but anyhow...

NPR recently had several segments on this game:
Tavis Smiley talked with the game's creator
Alex Chadwick played the game with some friends
posted by gluechunk at 10:17 PM on August 12, 2002


What is the meaning of 'Blackman'? Is it the same as Black Man... or more accurately, black man? Is it pronounced (blak'-mn) ?

The website says, "...only board game to depict life from the perspective of a minority." So is it a game for all minorities or just Blackmen?

[rolls dice] {moves two squares}
"Right on! I get to draw an "Affirmative Action" card."
posted by Witty at 10:29 PM on August 12, 2002


This is great....

Read the FAQ:

1. How does Prison work?

Must be the question on every "Blackman's" mind.

11. Do you collect the trade in value of a stolen SUV since you paid to get it registered?

Yes, it is your vehicle once you pay to get it registered at the time of pulling that card.

Ummm yeah...

It is the first and only board game that looks at the world from the perspective of an African-American male.


That is a pretty shitty perspective.
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 10:35 PM on August 12, 2002


"Fired again? The MAN's keeping me down!!!"

(that commercial is priceless)
posted by Stan Chin at 10:37 PM on August 12, 2002


Various media mentions and some more African American board games.
posted by rjs at 10:43 PM on August 12, 2002


The commercial almost makes me think this is a joke... at least I keep looking for more clues anyway.
posted by Witty at 10:45 PM on August 12, 2002


That is a pretty shitty perspective.

What is? Having anything to do with prison in a game about life as a black man?

Recent stats show that there are about 3,500 sentenced black male prisoners per 100,000 black males in the U.S., compared to about 450 white male inmates per 100,000 white males.

Is Monopoly's corporate crime feature (Go To Jail) also a pretty shitty perspective?
posted by gluechunk at 10:45 PM on August 12, 2002


Recent stats show that there are about 3,500 sentenced black male prisoners per 100,000 black males in the U.S., compared to about 450 white male inmates per 100,000 white males.

What is the cause of this? I posit a combination of the drug war, the welfare state, and the minimum wage law. If you're poor and uneducated, it's difficult to get a legit job when the employer HAS to pay you a certain amount (economically, consider employees a good: if you set the price of their labor, the wage, artificially high, there will be a surplus in supply). Why not sell drugs? Its cheap, easy, and everyone else is doing it. So you might go to jail, oh well, its worth the risk, its not like you have many other options.
posted by insomnyuk at 10:58 PM on August 12, 2002


gluechunk: If Monopoly was target-marketed to corporate moguls, I might understand your point. But your comparison is weak at best. You toss stats out there as if to suggest that black males are more likely to be jailed for nothing more than the fact that they're black. I think there's a little more to it than that.

The game is just dumb... I can't decide on a better word to describe it.
posted by Witty at 11:14 PM on August 12, 2002


Recent stats show that there are about 3,500 sentenced black male prisoners per 100,000 black males in the U.S., compared to about 450 white male inmates per 100,000 white males.

What is the cause of this? I posit a combination of the drug war, the welfare state, and the minimum wage law. If you're poor and uneducated, it's difficult to get a legit job...


Thank Undergod we completely and utterly stamped out racism in America. There is no trace left, therefore it cannot affect America.

You toss stats out there as if to suggest that black males are more likely to be jailed for nothing more than the fact that they're black. I think there's a little more to it than that.

Thank Undergod we completely and utterly stamped out racism in America. There is no trace left, therefore it cannot affect America.
posted by fold_and_mutilate at 11:25 PM on August 12, 2002


Jason of Negroplease sums up the stupidity of this game quite well:
If Chuck Sawyer [the game's creator], Maxine Waters, Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson are the representatives of black folks in Political and News forums then nobody will ever figure out what the true issues are facing the black community. These carnival hucksters don't do shit about shit. They scream racism without looking deeper, they are so concerned about being something for every black person that they stand for nothing. I know that black people love an orator that sounds like a preacher but we have to find new leadership. Chuck Sawyer cannot be the only black man on TV He shouldn't even get near a TV There should be black political figures with enough intelligence, candor, and prominence that the Chuck Sawyer's of the world don't take up my time. We celebrate all these thugs, hustlers and shiftless crooks because 'they're doing something' without ever considering that there are tons of us out here really laying it down that never hustled, never was a thug, never went to jail. And we don't all think alike. Where are the black leaders that are having intelligent debate about issues? Where are the black leaders known more for their societal and political convictions than their criminal ones?
posted by owillis at 11:34 PM on August 12, 2002


"Don't fret CHURCH is always available to strengthen you."

Priceless.
posted by adamgreenfield at 11:41 PM on August 12, 2002


After spending a week discussing race heavily at my site, I'm probably a little on edge but I wanted to clarify one thing lest some of the less appetizing warbloggers take my comments as proof of something they think they know already...

My statements about Jesse Jackson, Maxine Waters and Al Sharpton are criticisms in the heat of a rant. Its not really political commentary and its not a dismissal of their relevance even though it may seem that way. My blogspace isn't about punditry and political debate. Its about me spouting off at the mouth on whatever I feel like at a given moment.

So, just because black folk get frustrated with the leadership sometimes doesn't mean that dismissing everything that they do is cool.

I would link to the life as a thug game website right now but I have some forks right here that really want to go into my eyeballs. That sounds like more fun.
posted by negroplease at 12:18 AM on August 13, 2002


gluechunk: My point was that Prison, was the #1 Frequently Asked Question... as if a major portion of the game deals with it or revolves around prison (Suggesting that a "Black Man's" life revolves around going to prison). Go To Jail in Monopoly is something that happens in the game, and is not the game it self, and is looked at as a punishment, not something that just happens in the normal course of events in life.
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 12:28 AM on August 13, 2002


From the link:
Tired of Playing those same old boring Board Games?

Um, no. I think I'll stick with Settlers of Catan, Puerto Rico and Tigris & Euphrates, thanks.

Can this game enable me to experience life as a minority any better than Mamma Mia! can enable me to experience being a pizza maker?
posted by salmacis at 12:49 AM on August 13, 2002


negroplease: I know that black people love an orator that sounds like a preacher but we have to find new leadership.

From what I've gathered (from previous discussions like this and, even moreso, this), some fraction of the black community realizes exactly what you've said, and understands the detriment clowns like Sharpton pose when acting as their political voice.

Where are the black leaders that are having intelligent debate about issues?

Depends on what you consider 'intelligent', really. If conservative Christian leadership is your cup of tea, Alan Keyes seems to be your candidate of choice. I listened to a handful of his speeches on C-SPAN and subsequently scoured his official site (which appears to be dead), before deciding that he didn't suit my needs as a political candidate.

Of course, his detractors claim he is subject to the same corruptive influence as all politicians and, if I am to believe what the media tells me, African-Americans are largely Liberal/Democrat, which means Keyes wouldn't suit their needs as a political candidate, either.
posted by Danelope at 3:33 AM on August 13, 2002


this kind of reminds me of the other mefi thread about how people with a low self image find sadness comforting and dont want to get rid of it.
posted by zoid at 4:59 AM on August 13, 2002


Buy a copy and keep it shrink-warped for collectors this kind of stuff has a very high resale value once out of print.
posted by stbalbach at 6:15 AM on August 13, 2002


Buy a copy and keep it shrink-warped for collectors this kind of stuff has a very high resale value once out of print.
not unlike gay johnny texas vegetables!
posted by quonsar at 6:29 AM on August 13, 2002


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