LC’s Commentary

Listen To The Voice of Reason

Oh yes, I am the great pretender (Part one)

All is not well

In the fifties, a singing group recorded a song entitled “ I am the great pretender.”  It was a big hit. The song contained the following words: Oh yes, I’m the great pretender, pretending that I’m doing well.  My needs are such, I pretend too much, I’m lonely, but no one can tell. As I look at a large percentage of the black population, young and old, I see a great deal of pretending taking place.  What does the word pretend mean?  According to Webster, it means to make up, act as if, make believe, or play.

Take some time and really look at the young men and women who sleep and hang out in downtown parks day after day, you see very lonely people. Look at the young fellows hanging out on street corners, insulting people and selling drugs. They act as if all is well and they are not doing irreparable damage to the neighborhood and those who reside within. Sure, you see them skinning and grinning, laughing and joking when in the midst of people of like persuasion and condition. To see the real person, seek them out when they are alone.  You will see very demoralized, lonesome and beaten-down individuals.  Many are totally lost and are completely outside of societal expectations in terms of self-sufficiency appearance, hygiene and behavioral norms.   Are they comfortable in their stead in life? Do they enjoy panhandling and living off what they can beg or get from social services? Is the drug dealer happy with his stead in life? Is it good to be threaten by the police and other drug dealers on a daily basis?  I think not. When you get these people in a group with like behavior, you see a great deal of pretense. Most will pretend that all is well.

Look at grownups driving around playing loud obnoxious and vulgar music in their automobiles with their children aboard.  They pretend that what the children are hearing does not adversely influence their behavior or eventually damage their hearing.  Walk down the streets in many neighborhoods and listen to the raw, gutter like and vulgar language that females are exposed to on a daily basis.  See the females pretending that they do not hear it.  See the males pretending that what they are spouting off is not disrespectful or offensive.

Copyright 2006
This commentary written by L.C. Thornton, for The Peoples Voice Black Weekly News
To reprint ONLY WITH PERMISSION contact:
L.C. Thornton at


June 10, 2006 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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