The above clip from the television series The Boondocks is from the episode “The Passion of Uncle Ruckus” where the Uncle Ruckus, a recurring character that hates black people and claims to be white but he believes he has “re-vitiligo, the opposite of what Michael Jackson got,” finds out he has cancer and claims to be called to the cloth by “White Jesus” who is depicted as Ronald Reagan. In this clip is his final sermon where he eventually goads the white people in the audience to beat the black (sin) out of the black people which incites a massive brawl. This clip aligns well with what Langston Hughes was saying in “The Negro Artist and the Racial Mountain” with Aaron McGruder, the creator of The Boondocks, and his recognition of a self-hatred or self-shame in the face of whiteness. This is reflected throughout Ruckus’ entire sermon but most notably in the line “If you are black of skin and full of sin come forward so I may lay my hands on you. (Slaps black audience members) Black, begone!” but this is most notably reflected through the reaction of Tom.
Tom is the blue-suited lawyer who is half black and half French (white). He is a talented member of society by virtue of his intellect and law skills yet he, like the Negro poet Hughes referred to, show that they want to be white but more importantly that they don’t want to be black and have a hatred of the self with all of its blackness. However, there is a positive element that subverts the hatred of this scene which is in McGruder’s recognition and satirizing of the issue of self-hate within the black community. Hughes wanted to communicate that there is a beauty in your own individuality that is reflected through your being and your art. Although, the scene is all that the audience gets to see, it’s worth noting that this is McGruder’s art and an expression of his thoughts and his individuality. The Boondocks exist as the work of a proud black artist with all of his expressions of blackness and his concerns for its well-being.