Secret Council of American Negroes
Volume 2, Episode 3
It had been a good life for Michael Steele since he got out of the rigors of running for this office and that. He’d chased political ambitions all his life, and for what? To end up giving the “center right” opinion on Chris Matthews? There was a time the Man of Steele had dreamed big, been ambitious, done audacious things, scared the crap out of more “stodgy” and decided less “hip hop” Republicans.
But now, that was all over. He was a TV pundit. The only thrill he got was meeting with the other members of NONA, Negroes of North America, a covert group that worked to address the needs of black people from a slightly center right point of view. Not that the Secret Council was “political.” It claimed no particular party even though Steele’s membership to the storied organization, founded by abolitionists Frederick Douglass and Harriet Tubman, was denied again and again. NONA, founded by Booker T. Washington, welcomed him with open arms, but it always stung … just a little bit … that he ended up on the anti-racism “B-team.”
“Any news from the front,” Steele asked no one in particular when he entered NONA’s surveillance room.
NONA’s staff, which had dwindled down to about 100 in the “Age of Obama,” still managed to maintain a tight-knit counter-intelligence unit. Sure, 85 percent of their time was spent scrubbing embarrassing videos of SCAN member Condi Rice’s wild partying from World Star Hip Hop, but that was “kind of” important.
“So, we holding SCAN’s purse good? Made sure no one stole any money out of it, right? Can’t have that!” scoffed Steele, again, at no one in particular.
Most of the NONA officers were staring at their computers, at the TV, listening to the secure lines. They were working. They never stopped working. They didn’t share their superior’s apathy. Racism needed to be fought on all fronts, even the phone lines. No job was too small if it meant the fall of discrimination. There would be no time for celebrations and inaugural parades. They had one job and one job only to do — listen to the wires, suss out the fluff and report back to their liaison, Gen. Colin Powell, at SCAN.
Steele, annoyed at how no one seemed to notice his presence — it’s not like he was Herman Cain or something, c’mon people — finally approached an agent, steadfastly listening to the clandestine wire they had planted at SCAN’s Macon, Ga. HQ.
“Hey, what’s going on in GA?”
The agent, annoyed at being interrupted barked, “A-Team is celebrating.”
“Celebrating what? Did Nene Leakes go bankrupt again?”
The agent’s eyes grew wide. Then little tears started to brim at the edges.
“They got him,” he said.
“Got who, got dammit!” shouted Steele.
The agent removed his headphones and looked Steele in the eye.
“They got Donald Sterling. Operation Massa is over. Twenty years now … and it’s finally over.”
A slow clap began in the room as others acknowledged the great feats and sacrifices of the A-team. They’d done what they could not do — use a 199-year-old unfrozen jump off to take down a racist billionaire. Sure, he was still racist and yes, still a billionaire, but at least everyone knew now and for SCAN … even NONA … that was a win. The first step to fighting racism in the modern age was getting people to see that it still existed.
But Michael Steele did not clap. He was not amused. But not out of pettiness. Out of curiosity. While others openly wept or giggled at TMZ reports, one agent, NONA Agent Zero, stayed transfixed to her laptop. She seemed to be in her own world. The look on her face, disturbed.
Steele approached her.
“What’s up, Zero? Didn’t you hear? Those point-scoring show boats finally got Donald Sterling in the cheapest way possible … with a piece of ass,” Steele smirked. “Shit. Why didn’t WE think of that?”
Agent Zero said nothing, continuing to stare straight ahead.
“Hey … I’m talking to you,” Steele barked.
The agent leaned over, still staring at her screen.
“It’s D. L. Hughley.”
“What about him? Did CNN decided they wanted to ruin their network again by giving him another show?”
“No … but he’s … he’s defending Colombus Short for beating the crap out of his wife … on the radio …”
“What? Why would he do that? That doesn’t even make sense. That’s like have R. Kelly chaperon your prom. Know your battles, son. D. L. knows he’s not supposed to talk about women shit in public.”
“I know … but … but it’s almost too obvious.”
“What do you mean? D. L.’s just some yokel. It’s not like its that … what does SCAN call it? Rule #210 … Never be too competent. Unless you think?”
“He’s not a SCAN operative. This isn’t a covert mission of ignorance, he’s actually ignorant. But … there seems to be a pattern in the words he’s saying … I’ve heard this some place before. Listen!”
Agent Zero handed Steele the headphones. At first, he just smirked, even laughed a little at D. L.’s “rant” but then suddenly Steele’s face grew stern. This wasn’t your typical sexist rant. It was something more, something Steele had seen before in his years with NONA.
“This is code.”
“Yes!” said Agent Zero, “But for what?”
“No,” Steele said. “I ran undercover on the New Underground Railroad with SCAN … while not getting to be a member of SCAN of course … for a decade. I was undercover. Part of ‘Operation Black Friend.’ It was my job to be friends with bigots, get close to them, see how they really think so we, NONA and SCAN could take them down. People think black men who publicly say really sexist things are just acting in a vacuum, but they aren’t. They’ve been fed these lines — they’re called ‘The Distortion,’ a racist effort to keep black men and women so busy fighting with each other that they can’t properly create ‘Revolution Time.'”
“So … D. L.’s working for The Distortion?”
“No black person knowingly works for The Distortion … I think. Sure, some take a quick bucl for it. Sell out. But come Revolution Time … they know which side to stand on. I hope. No … these words were fed to D. L. He was convinced of them, persuaded. He didn’t know he was giving out a code. GIVE ME A PEN! QUICK!”
Agent Zero handed Steele the pen and paper. He furiously began writing, counting letters, circling, deciphering, decoding. When he was done, sweat beaded across his forehead, he looked faint. But he also looked proud. He hadn’t gone undercover all those years for nothing.
“SCAN’s gonna rue the day they passed me over,” Steele said.
“Why is that?” asked Zero.
“Because I’m the only one who can save them. Call SCAN intelligence. Wake up the HNIC. They’ve got a nest in their tree, and we ain’t talking birds.”
Agent Zero’s eyes grew big. She knew immediately what Steele meant, her heart now filling with fear.
“A wasp’s nest. WASPS,” she whispered under her breath. “The White American Supremacy Proliferation Society.”
“THAT’S RIGHT, BITCHES! THE MAN OF STEELE FIGURED THAT SHIT OUT! WHO SHOULD HAVE BEEN ON THE A-TEAM NOW!!! WHO DA MAN? HUH? WHO DA MAN! KING KONG AIN’T GOT SHIT ON ME!”
Despite Brother Steele’s gloating and my own discoveries about WASP, the HNIC didn’t seem all that concerned.
In fact, the HNIC didn’t even flinch. The HNIC said the WASP operation was known and that SCAN was actively trying to weed out double agents, as well as get the Drop Squad on D. L. Hughley so he could come in for deprogramming. The HNIC was all “I got this.”
“But did you consult the No. 2 or Real David Palmer?”
“I’m the HNIC, boy. I do what I want.”
“What if Operation Winter Mistress has been compromised? WASPS can’t find out about her or our scientific research or that black people SECRETLY HAVE THEIR SHIT TOGETHER! It’ll mean war. Looking like massive fuck ups all the time is the only thing KEEPING US ALIVE! We have to get Emily out of here.”
“I agree,” said the HNIC. “We gotta put that bitch back on ice.”
I was taken aback. I’d never heard the HNIC talk like this before.
“She’s too valuable,” said the HNIC.
“But I promised her! I told her she could go back to Five Points … I mean Manhattan.”
“I’ll take this to the board!”
“The board has been disbanned, boy. We’ve been infiltrated by WASPS! We gotta clean house, so until I know SCAN is safe, I’m gonna be not only the HNIC, but HDIC — Head Dictator In Charge. SCAN ain’t a Democracy no more, buddy. We’re at war … with ourselves. I’m making the unilateral decision that Operation Winter Mistress stays in effect. She’s going back in the box until we need her again. Some things are BIGGER than one old ass woman. We’re trying to save the entire race here!”
“AT WHAT COST? She’s not just some random jump off. She’s a piece of American history!”
“A side-piece of American history.”
“When did you become such a slut-shaming sexist? You recruited and trained Special Agent First Class Michelle Obama! She’s the No. 2! Don’t you understand if you do this to Emily you’re no better than … massa?”
“Check ya neck, homeboy. You’re talking to the HDIC.”
“You think I’m afraid of you! You ain’t bad! You ain’t nothing! MLK didn’t die so you could use a woman like this!”
“MLK may have had a dream, Brofucious. But our guy in Washington has a drone. We do what we have to do at SCAN. It’s not pretty, but it gets the job done. You’re too soft-hearted, Brofucious. That’s why we had you running the Muppet Babies unit for so long. You can’t handle the real heat. You’re not willing to do what you have to do to defeat racism.”
“I want to defeat racism, but at what cost!”
“You sound like Lew Alcindor, boy. You can’t fight this war and not get dirty. This is AMERICA, GOT DAMN IT!”
“Audre Lorde said the master’s house will NEVER be dismantled with the master’s tools! I’m out.”
That’s when the HNIC … I mean HDIC, touched my arm and looked at me with a lethality that sent chills down my spine.
“Being in SCAN is like being a black in America, boy. You can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave.”
And so I walked away, but not before doing a little damage.
That’s right. I did what the original founders of SCAN would have done, what they’d always planned to do. They didn’t put Emily on ice for her to go back on ice. They did it to save her life so that she could one day come back and help us. But they would have never wanted to hold her in virtual ice slavery, to be used and reused as some kind of super jump off, a Winter Mistress.
With the help of Captain African America, we rescued Emily. Since LeBron is pretty much incorruptible and has more money that God, he only cares about taking out racists. Plus, I’m a desk jockey. My Tony Jaa skills were lacking, but LeBron, Captain African America, being a true SCAN believer got busy on that shit. So I burnt all of Latmier, Dr. Drew and the peanut guy’s cryogenic plans. I also might have accidentally blown up a building where she was secretly being stored.
Shit happens. You’ve all watched at least one episode of “The Americans” on FX!
So me and this 199 year old broad are on the run. LeBron had to go back to doing LeBron shit, so it’s just us. He’s a Boy Scout, so he still believes in SCAN and that the HNIC isn’t compromised. He’s obsessed with routing out the WASPS and going for another NBA finals ring. So Emily and I were low on his priority totem pole. But he did float us a few hundred grand for walking around money.
“So where to, Chappie? Guess I’m with you,” Emily said with a jaunty smile.
Because we’re on the run “V. Stivano” hasn’t really been giving interviews. The Barbara Walters thing happened before the heat got hot. For now, she’s with me. She’s not WITH me though. Apparently I’m not her type or something. She wants to go find “Opal” because she trusts her, even though Oprah is practically funding SCAN. But if we can get to Oprah, we can get to the number two, Michelle Obama. And if we can get to the number two and tell her what the HNIC is trying to do, we can finally stop SCAN from turning to the dark side.
I don’t know if I’ll survive this. Emily will probably be fine no matter what. She’s almost too good at living in 2014 just like she was too good at surviving some of our darkest times in American history.
“I seriously don’t know what you chaps are so tight about,” Emily said. “So what if your father wasn’t around sometimes because your mommy and daddy didn’t get along. At least you know where to look for him. I last saw my poppy floating down a barge to Mississippi in chains. I was nine. I never saw him again. Thug life!”
That’s why when I saw Kareem’s statements about the Winter Mistress, I knew I had to reach out to him. If only so he could meet her and know that she wasn’t a myth, just as Captain African America isnt’ a myth and SCAN is still strong, even when it’s weak. We’re still out there fighting and as an ex-SCAN agent, I knew I could trust him, if I could just get him this message.
And that’s where you come in. That’s why I’m telling you this story.
I don’t mind getting my hands dirty in a fight. But there are rules, buddy. When I joined SCAN I believed in the code. Now I’m working outside of SCAN to hold the organization to it.
And also to stop WASPS.
Ugh. I hate WASPS. They’re the worst. Terrible dressers. No rhythm at all. Oh, and the whole wanting to destroy all black people thing.
Reminder, brothers and sisters in the fight: Together, a people united … can never be defeated.
(But don’t act too united or they’ll catch on. Rule #210!)
BROFUCIOUS OUT!Image Art: Jada Prather Miss the first two installments? Read “Captain African America: The Winter Mistress, Pt. 1 & 2.”