Sorry, Miss Jackson

YOUR NEGRO TOUR GUIDE Sorry, Miss Jackson Kt10z8.75k-20f"Century-Book":"Sex is not the one string on the guitar. There are nine other Commandments."-- The Rev. Jesse Jackson performing damage con

Jan 25, 2001 at 2:06 pm


Sorry, Miss Jackson

Kt10z8.75k-20f"Century-Book":"Sex is not the one string on the guitar. There are nine other Commandments."— The Rev. Jesse Jackson performing damage control for President Clinton during the Monica Lewinsky scandal It came down to ego and dick. Those are certainly the two things that got the Rev. Jesse Jackson all hung up and stuck in a sex scandal of his own, a befitting bookend to the Clitoris, er, Clinton Administration. Jackson was so taken with 39-year-old Karin Stanford while she was writing a book-length doctoral dissertation on his foreign policy that he gave her a job running the Rainbow Coalition in Washington, D.C. From there, they had sex. From that came a now 20-month-old daughter.

Then there was an avalanche of financial deals — a reported stipend of $10,000 a month in addition to a $40,000 payment allotted before Stanford took a maternity leave and relocated to Los Angeles. Sure, we're all used to Jackson in all his savior modes. Spewing rhymes faster than Rakim and always showing up uninvited, he's saved white politicians from themselves, whites from blacks, blacks from whites, fallen American soldiers from any number of America's foreign enemies and, perhaps most notably, blacks from ourselves when he co-starred as Martin Luther King Jr.'s earthy, Afroed Soul Brother No. 1.

Back then, Jackson was Maceo Parker to King's James Brown. Now, he's not so much pitiful as he is fallible.

He's just that baby daddy.

Well, as Jesuses go, they've all gotta be revered, hailed, followed, misunderstood and ultimately crucified. Let us now escort Jackson up Golgotha. His custom cross awaits.

The only thing more despicable than the married, iconic family man Jackson screwing a female staff member and getting her pregnant is the official White House photographs showing Stanford, Jackson and President Clinton while Jackson acted as "spiritual adviser" to the Clintons during the Monica Lewinsky debacle. This means Stanford was at least four months pregnant with Jesse's child while he was setting Clinton on the straight and narrow.

I wonder what the Reverend and the President talked about. Not getting caught? Baby names? Stain removers? Lord knows they had a lot to bandy about, 'cause everybody knows pimpin' ain't easy.

As Jackson reveals himself to be a fallible human, however, we're sucker-punched into believing in and trusting yet another flesh-and-blood person who we thought deserved our trust and reverence. And the fact that Jackson — the bastard son of a teen-aged mother and a married next-door-neighbor man — has fathered a bastard daughter says as much about the erosion of our collective fiber as it does about his male weaknesses.

Forget for a moment the mammoth societal implications of Jackson's part in the Civil Rights Movement, his association with King, the founding of Operation PUSH, the Rainbow Coalition and his participation in the countless marches, rescue missions and opportunistic appearances at every lynching and at each fallen Negro's bedside. Dismiss all that.

Now look at Jesse Jackson as a man with an erection, a chubby, a woody for a woman who, 20 years his junior, slathered him with compliments, praise and adoration.

Whad'ya get? A baby, scandal, disappointment, bewilderment and resignation.

And that's just what the general public might be going through. Or maybe not. Except for its sexiness as a point of newsworthiness, maybe nobody really cares about Jesse Jackson anymore. If he were a musician, he'd probably be eligible for a "Whatever happened to ..." segment on VH-1. As it is, he's now ripe for a "Behind the Music" spot.

I mean, is it just me or had Jackson's penchant for assuming he spoke for all blacks worn thin? Is it me or had he made himself into a caricature, a remnant of black America's glory days when we cared about ourselves for the sake of self-preservation? Is it me or had he become little more than Al Sharpton's handsome older brother?

Of course, we'll never know anything more than what we can piece together via the media, because Jackson now is stepping back from public life and refusing to publicly discuss or explain the matter of his illegitimate daughter.

Maybe he'll use the time to concoct some nifty new rhymes: "Don't legislate! Masturbate!" Or, "When you've hit bedrock, have a child out of wedlock!"

I wonder now who will be his "spiritual adviser" and if any of the thousands of people he's counseled and rescued will return the favor.

Nah. He's probably better off alone to reconcile his shortcomings like the rest of us.

Besides, he could use the time out to unscramble the direct correlation between his two heads. Maybe he'll figure out that one is for thinking and the other stays in his slacks.

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