Jan 8, 2017
My heart goes out to any victim of torture and sadism, and while once again, the media seeks by focusing on one isolated and particular incident, however moving and sad, we should never, even for a minute, turn blind to the thousands who are anguishing under torture daily in every corner of this world and to the universally human fact that no particular group of people are ever solely to blame in part or whole for these atrocities that are committed by all and suffered by all. Simply, what is to blame is evil, and whatever your color or the unquantifiable falsehood of ‘race’, whether your skin is dark or light, or whatever is the shape of your nose or the inflections of your accent, the clothes you wear, the music you listen to or the food that you eat– it just does not matter. It is only evil that we must stand up against, and it is evil we all must fight even if we must beat our chests and brows to do it.
I have seen more incidents of racial hatred since Trump came to town than I’ve seen in my whole life, excluding from the history books I’ve read and the documentaries and movies I’ve watched over a fifty year lifetime. The corporate owned media, which was envisioned to be a watchdog of the people, has a vested interest in this hate among our peoples, in particular it has an interest in stopping us who would build a more just and more perfect nation, and is amplifying not only racial hate, but hate of any kind. And its intentions are clearly to provide the enemies, real, imagined or concocted, to confound and agitate the common person who ought to know better but does not. It is clear now and has been most painfully clear without respite in this nation’s history that there are slaves among us. There are the white slaves who are the most enraged and angry of all and therefore the most problematic because deep down they know they’re slaves but are powerless to do anything about it except to blame the black person, the Mexican person, the Muslim/Arab person and anyone ‘different’ or an immigrant. They are the most dangerous people not because they are white, but because they are terrified and enraged. They are enraged because they are not privileged but instead through fear and intimidation keep the myth of white privilege, the privilege of their masters, firmly entrenched. And this is why the abused and dehumanized Irish immigrants of New York, sufferers of hunger and disease, became cops. And why the lower class or working class, black and white, become cops- or are used as cops, today. In large measure their duty is to protect and serve. But we, who suffer under their brutality, who are dying from their bullets, who are beaten and being tortured, who are harassed for no reason; we want to know that while we have no doubts that they are here to protect and serve, just who is it that they are protecting and what is it that they are serving (I sure didn’t order it)? Because it is certainly not the poor. We want to know why the police are here to serve the people of higher status than themselves, of those wealthier than the average cop can ever hope to be? We want to know what the stake is in this for the cop on the street and we want to, through any means available, remove that stake, divest them of that interest, divorce them from the fabricated issues of ‘racial’ hatred that they perceive in their minds and must therefore be true to them. Without the removal of this disease top to bottom from our communities we will never have freedom and the mythos of ‘the land of the free’ will always be said in mockery. Finally, we must judge freedom as worth dying for in the same way that slavery is not worth living for, because slavery is not life but hell. We must not be afraid to die for freedom. And we must refuse to live for the benefit of our oppressors.
Black people in this nation have suffered in ways that words cannot even begin to penetrate, and if there are people in this nation, white or black, who are ‘sick and tired of hearing’ about the legacy of slavery that continues to oppress our black communities to this very day then I got something to say to them: too bad, because we’re going to keep talking about it. We’re going to keep talking and complaining and demanding until we all have justice in this nation, the same justice and the same rights regardless of the color of our skin. Because we know that is not the case now. We know that being black in this nation in 2017 still puts you under the boot heel of oppression. That you can go to prisons where you rot while corporations make a profit off of free labor, we know tragically and have seen it over and over now, that you can be shot in cold blood by the police just for having dark skin. For being an African-American. And black or white, we’re going to keep to talking about it and you had better cut our tongues out to make us stop talking, had better break our fingers to keep us from writing. And all of us, every creed and color that makes up our nation, we have, as our ignoble and disgraced leader has said, we have ‘nothing to lose.’ But I might add, instead we have the world to gain and dreams to fulfill.
We must also give an open ear and a open heart of understanding to the white slavery that has been a part of this country both in legal reality and in social reality long before the United States was even a nation and represents the driving force of hatred and violence of racism In America today. The time has come to dissect and thereby understand this problem because no problems get solved without dialogue and nothing gets talked about without understanding the very heart and nature of the problem. In our society a black person can have a billion dollars and be an honorary white. A multi-racial man can become president, but we will still call him black and we still marvel that we have ‘broken the race barrier’ when in fact we are fooling ourselves as we have seen one of our more dignified and intelligent presidents become the object of racial mockery; when even one instance of this is intolerable. But you will never hear the rich and privileged speaking in coarse and vulgar terms about race, although they are more than happy to allude to it. Not unless it is Donald Trump, but he is not of their class. He is not the ruling class and never was. He’s Archie Bunker in a $5000 suit. He’s the puppet, he’s the white slave. He’s the pirate that busted out, the rapist and the cutthroat robber. The people we are sickened by, the white supremacist, the KKK, the people in all those images that haunt us from the past- the lynchings, the whippings, the chains, the auctions, the rapes, the segregation, the humiliation, the fire hoses and the police dogs… the unforgivable list created by Satan himself that seems to have no end; we hate it with our every fibre, but we cannot ignore it, and we must figure out why. And if we cannot know why then at least know how. Why do we want to know why? Because that hate still exists in the minds of these same people, and we would be naïve- no we would be blind and reckless to dismiss it. It is a ticking time bomb and as I write this in early 2017 it is already exploding. It is vital therefore that we do not splinter into groups but promote freedom and participate in a united front that makes it clear that we will not acquiesce to slavery. It is vital that sooner or later we have a dialogue with racist whites or the division among us will never end. Some of us, at least, must talk with the rednecks, the crackers, the ‘white supremacists’ (whatever that is supposed to mean), and the white trash. It is not an easy dialogue to commence, but it is also not a task for a coward. And we can say this and know that it is true: the poor African-American communities and the poor white communities of this nation have many if not most of the same hardships in common, especially when it comes to economic hardship. While it is certainly true and always has been that the black people of this country have borne the worst of its brutality we cannot ignore the fact that poor, ill-educated whites are second in this stratum. And what is this stratum? It is the hierarchy of servitude and slavery of the United States. It is our system of inequality, of our apartheid. If you are African-American, you must find out how the poor white family lives and know the culture. At the very least, you must know this if you want to defend yourself and fight back. Hopefully, you will learn more than you bargained for and feel empowered. How can you fight something you know little or nothing of? If you are trying to get a white racist to listen to the realities of being black and poor in America you’re going to have a tougher time. It is my assertion that the black culture in our society is far more adaptive and flexible in dealing with our common problems than the stubborn, poor, white and racist. To the person who cannot admit that he is underprivileged. And as long as success in this country means being white and rich, this problem is going to persist. As long as a ‘cracker’ is told in dark whispers, ‘well, hey, at least you’re white,’ then we’re going to have this problem. Malcolm X asked in 1964 whether or not the ‘white man’ could be swayed to see justice. I do believe that the problems he addressed then still exist today and seem just as insurmountable. Through the media lens, we seem to be going backwards, not forwards. And let us not forget who owns the media and the terrifying power they have had over us, whatever our backgrounds. This will change. It is changing now. Malcom X answered his own question with the words, “Well, we shall see.” And I do believe that it’s heartening to observe that millions of eyes have indeed opened, millions of hearts have indeed been filled with love for people regardless of race, and despite what is happening now, which is nothing less than a call to arms, we have moved forward since the time Malcom X gave that speech. So, in regards to the poor white family in the Panhandle of Florida or the boot heel of Missouri, families that have mortgages that they cannot pay, jobs that pay survival wages when they can get them, who despite all the stereotypes do not go around all day thinking about race but rather how they’re going to make it next month- in regards to these human beings we must have understanding. We must understand that they’ve been bought and sold too; they’re not in control of their destinies. All they have really is the hand-me-downs of a wasteful, excessive society and a will to survive. If the inane and hateful things they say and pretend to believe are hurtful, remember that they are sick and have been made slaves as well- debt slaves- and that they have been made slaves by the same people who make African-American slaves. My friends, pay attention! We have a common enemy. And that is a start for dialogue. A start for the political revolution we must engage and must never fail no matter what the cost.
Lilly Workneh, it’s discouraging to hear you say the following words: “And, quite frankly, reiterating the message and mission of the BLM movement time and again is daunting, maddening and entirely exhausting.” It’s discouraging because while I hear the fatigue in words I also hear the impatience and the resentment. I say it with love, because without love (I trust people know what I mean by ‘love’ in this context), we might as well as stay home in bed. A person tired of reciting virtues comes to recite words she no longer believes in. Empty words. Lies. No, we must keep up our passion and never give up against the tyranny that is constantly riding our backs, relentlessly squeezing our necks, choking us, not giving us a pause for freedom to breathe. We must be unflinching and unmoving as stone. And not to survive- but to live. To finally live. We must look back at how hard we fought in the 60’s for so little. An equal rights ‘act?’ A voting rights ‘act?’ Acts that under the fire as I write this. We did not get amendments? Well, why the hell not? That’s what we need to be asking ourselves now and we better be ready to hunker down as one people again because the fight is coming. Did our leaders of the black civil rights movement get shot down in the street like dogs just so that the African-Americans of this country could trade one Jim Crow for another? I don’t think so folks.
This is not news. This is race baiting and we all know it. Don’t give into it. This will be a challenge to BLM but only by racists, by those people who hate life and project their smallness on other human beings simply for the color of their skin. We should not waste a second on them with our outrage but save our outrage in our battle against evil and in our fight for justice, which we shall achieve. And we should not care about BLM as an organization as such but rather care about what’s in the heart of every African-American you know, and that hated, tolerated or praised, BLM and others will stand as an umbrella to him or her, no matter how much it comes under media attack. Keep the faith and wait for the miracle.