Dr. Melinda Wilson
16 October 2013
The Subconscious Effect Throughout the history of time, people have done whatever it took to get them to the top, even if that meant to abandon their values and morals. From indentured servants to slavery, people have abandoned their beliefs and ethics for self satisfaction and pleasure. I believe Radio Golf and Slave Ship reveals the a type of culture clash. In the play, two very important scenes that depict American capitalism and portray a culture clash of the Black Diaspora are when Roosevelt tells Harmond about the FCC Minority Tax Certificate and when and when Harmond speaks about preserving Mr. Barlow's house. In the play when Roosevelt and Harmond talk about Roosevelt's new part ownership of a radio company, Harmond questions him asking why he was asked to be part owner. Roosevelt's response, "The seller of the station gets to defer a large portion of his capital-gains taxes by taking advantage of the FCC's Minority Tax Certificate. It's an advantage for him and an advantage for us" (Radio Golf, 97). The FCC Minority Tax Certificate is something that was given out from 1978-1995. It encouraged cheap minority ownership of radio and TV stations just before it was repealed. Bennie, the man that encouraged Roosevelt to go in with him, used him to buy a cheap radio station because it was to his advantage. This is an example of American capitalism because Bernie Smith used Roosevelt as a pawn to expand his business and to make himself look better. It was in his favor to do this because he knew Roosevelt wanted
Rasooli 2 nothing more than to be wealthy and to feel important and Roosevelt was a gateway for him to take control of the town. He had the power to bring in all his own workers to rebuild the city. Furthermore, this scene also depicts a social clash of the Black Diaspora. Here, Roosevelt is portrayed as a man who wants nothing more than to become wealthy and powerful. Roosevelt's interests become more geared towards doing whatever it takes to get to the top while Harmond falls back to his roots. Harmond views himself as an individual who always wants to do the right thing for himself and for the people around him. Harmond is a man who wishes to preserve family hood and tries to do things that are morally right. From the beginning of the play where the two had nearly identical ideas and approaches towards reconstruction of their town to molding into two different people who seem to have lost their connection. In the next scene, Roosevelt and Meme are waiting for Harmond to get to the office. As soon as he gets there, Harmond explains what he is trying to do, "I'm not trying to save the house. I'm Trying to save Bedford Hills. Everybody involved in this project wants to see it happen. They'll get mad at first but they'll calm down and adjust. The plan I came up with is the only way I see we can save Bedford Hills. We can't tear down Mr. Barlow's House" (Radio Golf, 104). Here, Harmond knows that no matter what plan they use, ultimately revenue will be brought into the town and the reconstruction of Bedford Hills will continue. Roosevelt becomes aggravated because the change Harmond wanted to make was going to affect the original calculations they made. This is a repetition of American capitalism because Roosevelt, the man closest to Harmond, becomes blinded by money and power and goes out of his way to ensure that nothing happens to his precious plan that will make him rich. Rasooli 3 Moreover, this example also depicts a culture clash between Roosevelt and Harmond. Harmond, a man who represents the Black Diaspora, ultimately falls back to family hood.
Despite all the bad he hears about Mr. Barlow, he neglects it all and ambitiously tries to do whatever it takes to protect his house. Roosevelt however, is more interested in the capitalistic