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Friday, June 02, 2006

Ghetto Monk Groove

Ever wonder why Jeremy Huggins calls himself 'Ghetto Monk'? Here's your answer, as he writes about his friend Lamarcus...
After graduating with my bachelor’s degree, I moved into Brookville Gardens, the only state-run housing project in Starkville, Mississippi, a small college town. I knew that no white person had ever lived in that project, and I’d heard stories about its crime, poverty, and general degradation. I’d been considering becoming involved with racial reconciliation efforts in Mississippi, a state with sore racial needs.

Figuring that my talk of “loving my neighbors,” specifically my black neighbors, was only so much moralizing until I understood them well enough to know how to love them, I decided that the best way to even begin to identify with them enough to earn my principles some weight was to live where they lived, suffer the same crime, poverty, and degradation that they did. ...

Soon after moving in, rumor began circulating that I was an undercover cop, a rumor that, given my slight frame, lack of lingual currency, and appalling want of anything regarding caution, I found laughable. It only stopped becoming laughable after one of my neighbors, fearing that I was trying to put his brother in jail, gathered some other tenants, surrounded me one weekend night, and stuck a pistol to my temple...

Now do yourself a favor and read the whole thing. Once again, I really, really like his writing. Very nicely done.

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