The Rich Got Richer...
THE BLACK AMERICANS OF THE 1980S
*If the wage gap between middle class white and black families was a lot in the 70s then this gap had exploded in the 80’s! This had happened due to the introduction of new economic theories like Trickle Down Economics by the GOP.
‘Tricky D’, as people referred to it back then, signified that tax laws will be in favor of the top 10% in America, and their wealth will then trickle down to the people in the bottom 10%. In simple words – the wealthy got wealthier.
A Black Renaissance of Sorts
Despite the economic problems that ultimately betrayed the Black community in the 80’s, there was an unprecedented rise of Black people being seen on the rise in the cultural front. This was then sparking what seemed like a Black renaissance of sorts and for the first time in history, the most popular idols of teens were Black. More and more prestigious representatives could be seen on the rise – most of which were emerging from a new form of art that was called Rap.
Other than Rap Artists
There were so many more. Some of the top cultural icons to this day were celebrated in the 80’s. First and foremost was Eddie Murphy who was rooting for the rank of number one stand-up comedian and up and coming film star. There were also lists of top female and male vocalists such as Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson who are almost worshiped till date.
Other than these celebrities, the Black community was introduced to the world of basketball with Michael Jordan and he worked hard to become the top earning athlete at the time. After Jordan we would also switch channels over to the number one sitcom which was called ‘The Cosby Show’ or the number one talk show in the daytime with Oprah Winfrey.
Then and Now
The milestones mentioned above, if mirrored against the sentiments of African Americans today, may actually be called ‘The New Face of Racism’. This is because of the changing landscapes of political oppression and topics of teen pregnancies, lack of education, and topics of obesity.
Even though this is the cases, we still have new Black celebrities beautifully portray their culture every day. After Eddie Murphy, there have also been so many legendary Black comedians who took to the microphone to raise their voices.
We are now in the era of re-determining and relearning.