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Gala Dynastie Actually Reflects What Needs To Be Fixed In Montreal And It’s A Good Thing

When An Invite To The Cookout Goes Wrong

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Whether You Hate Or Love Gala Dynastie, The Conversation Is What Really Matter

Before I do this mental gymnastic with you, I have to first address the elephant in the room: yes I was nominated twice at Gala Dynastie for blogger of the year. Sure I was there at the first edition, I took pictures at their black carpet, someone I looked up to was nominated a couple times, I have colleagues & acquaintances who work with the organization and my PR/mentor is actually their publicist.

Read More: I Got Nominated For Gala Dynastie & Here’s How I Really Feel About It

Strangely enough last weekend was the first time I wasn’t in attendance. Something about being in large crowds don’t sit right with me anymore.

What I like about the internet is the fact that you don’t need to be there to actually be there.

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I saw different sides of the spectrum. Regular black folks, industry black folks, creative black folks and other folks (shoutout to my non-black people who rock with us for real).

Just like you, him and her, I saw Mr. Benoit Charette in attendance and at first I did find it odd.

I saw Julie Snyder too and I couldn’t help but think that somehow someway it was the equivalent of when a rapper is going POP (which can be a good thing at times).

I get it, a lot of us see Quebecers new found wokeness as performative but these days, I try to tone down my natural gift for cynicism and ask myself ”What If Though?!”.

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I can see how things like these can build bridges between mainstream Quebec and us and with that opportunities arise.

While I had ”We Shall Overcome” banging in my head, things went kind of left for a minute.

It was all fun and games until a clip of Mr. Benoit Charette surfaced on my timeline the next day.

It  had the effect of whatever unfortunately happens when two vehicles cross path on a one way road.

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The collision was head first and violent. Funny and morbid at the same time.

We did what we usually do as a community.

We don’t crucify the offender, we crucify the person who gave them a mic.

On a technical level, the gala did nothing wrong.

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I’ve learned a long time ago that when public fuckups occur, you will be judged on a moral level based on what emotional cord got pulled.

Yes he did wrongfully morn the loss of Mr. Touré whom was actually alive, well and IN THE AUDIENCE .

Just like you, I felt like it was insensitive, unacceptable and tone deaf.

On the other hand, to put another man’s words and actions on an entire entity is unfair and disingenuous.

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Just say you hate the guy and keep it moving!

I can already see you guys throwing your phone, punch the air and come at my neck too.

You see it as an oxymoron that a white man became the minister of anti-racism? I hear you brother.

You’re appalled that his government doesn’t recognize systemic racism? I feel you sister.

To add insult to injury, you can’t wrap your head around the fact that the same person did a speech at a black award ceremony? Damn me too my guy!

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If these are your only optics, I can see where you’re coming from but hear me out.

On my end,  I can ALSO see the benefit of establishing a line of communication with the other side when DONE RIGHT.

I remember a point in time where we had this running joke of which white person could or could not come to the cookout.

Today more than ever we need to make sure we can always control who’s coming and who’s bringing what to said cookout.

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If you come to MY cookout, there is cookout etiquette at all times!

My world, my rules. No relish and no eulogy for someone who’s still alive and in the room (simple ain’t it?).

Unfortunately Gala Dynastie got a sour taste of what happens when good intentions contrast with the final result and the internet NEVER forgives.

When you extend your hand to somebody we might not be fond of, sometimes you have to let the public know WHY you’re doing it.

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Else the move might be interpreted terribly and one thing about black folks, we love ourselves a good conspiracy theory and be quick to label you coon for it.

I hate to be this guy, I swear I do. Perhaps at times like these I feel like I have to remind my good people to look at the bigger picture first.

Before the incident, the celebration was real, ya’ll got your fly on, vibe out to the performances and had a blast.

People looked good, flicked up, felt good and celebrated each other after being in the confine of their homes for now what seems like 3 years.

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I wasn’t there but my ”fear of missing out” was high while watching the screen.

I saw people getting their flowers for their great work like Eva Kabuya, Tai Laguerre & Gayance

Cc: Manoushka Lacherie

I’ve discovered people that I might never heard of if it wasn’t for Gala Dynastie.

In the midst of all that, I came to the realization that the actual problem is the disconnect between us as a people.

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Corporate black folks don’t mingle with creative black folks from the internet. Black folks on TV don’t seem to understand or respect the impact of black folks who are personalities

on social media and vice versa.

One group  is viewed as buddy buddy with white folks, the other group looks like they’re against white folks. Just like that we’re back to good old house or field ”you know what” debate with cellphones to make matters worst.

We don’t know or comprehend what happens in each other’s worlds and we don’t make an effort to do so because 140 characters on an app are enough to get your point across these days.

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The same disconnect make both camps question the legitimacy of the other and as a guy who’s seen/worked with both, it’s disheartening to me.

Gala Dynastie, to me, might be the only time and place in the year where we both can coexist to bridge that gap.

The young and old, in the industry or on the internet and while we’re at it, the corporate crowd and those who lean on the artistic side.

Whether we like it or not black twitter is a voice you can’t avoid anymore and all it took to spark controversy was a clip from an Instagram user.

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Whether we like it or not black folks in corporate settings either have the capital, know those who do or are able to facilitate projects to push us forward.

It’s not about US vs US v and then vs THEM, it has to simply be a ”US” thing.

If it’s a ”US” thing, let’s make sure people outside of ”US” understand the intricacies of what being ”US” mean.

Let’s make sure they care about ”US” enough, let’s make make sure they really understand what comes with an invite to the cookout (no relish and no eulogies).

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Let’s also give ”US” a chance whenever one of ”US” let something slip or couldn’t predict.

One thing is for sure and two things are certain; whenever we mesh with white people things like that CAN and ARE GOING to happen.

Do things like that can help the gala become mainstream? Absolutely. Does it benefit people from the organization? Absolutely too.

The bigger picture is to realize that the same exposure makes EVERYBODY win.

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From a nominee, performers, potential advertisers, viewers and even attendees.

Knowing the history of how we’ve been portrayed though. I feel like we need to carefully oversee how we are perceived and treated especially when they come to our platforms.

Not to say that people behind Gala Dynastie didn’t do just that but judging from the backlash; the stakes are higher than they’ve ever been.

I want to see this thing and our community flourish and be recognized for what it’s suppose to mean and represent.

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When I see a lot of outlets who wouldn’t normally cover the gala focus on what Mr. Charette said, I feel like it defeats the purpose.

When I see another black person going at the neck of another black person who’s trying to bring light to another black person, I feel like it defeats the purpose.

They say pick your battles and also to pick your poison.

I pick my people first and then deal with whatever I disagree with my people at the end.

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If you stick to this Mr. Charette’s debacle, to me it’s like your picking your poison twice.

On one side you’re tearing down an entity meant to uplift you and on the flip side you’re giving power to a man who seemingly doesn’t care enough to know when you exist or not.

We can always be at extremes when it comes to what we believe but we can’t afford to not being able to meet at the middle when it comes to how we grow from there.

 

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