Re: What does it mean to be black in the 21st cent
Posted By: Eja In Response To: What does it mean to be black in the 21st century? *LINK* (selassielive)
Date: Tuesday, 28 February 2006, at 6:45 a.m.
In Response To: What does it mean to be black in the 21st century? *LINK* (selassielive)
Yes, several in the leadership of the Black Panther Movement were what could be described as 'light-skinned'. Fela Anikulapo Kuti was a 'light skinned' African, yet, he (like the Black Panthers) lived and fought under the banner of BLACK POWER. And, when I have heard elders speaking about the ORIGINal Black human, they always made it clear that they were speaking about the ESSENCE of Black Power, (i.e. the Primary Origin) uncompromised and undiluted. Nothing complicated, something that is totally graspable without much mental exertion. This goes beyond who slept with who 400 years ago. It is about what part of his/her ancestry the African hold highest.
Should all from the past be given equal rating? Should the cowardly rapist be given the same honour as the victim? Should the one who originated Civilization be placed in the same category as the one who warped it? In order that we may bring about the positive orientation of our communal mind, surely it cannot be hard to see that we must first eradicate the effects made on that mind by monsters from the past, demons who while walking the Earth, worked only for negative outcomes. And, if I say that the mixing of the African species with the neanderthal has been a disaster, who can step up and prove me mistaken? Who has the proof that Africans became better off from the time they started mixing with the neanderthal? How did that species enhance our humanity?
These questions do not take away from the fact that a man may be as Black as a son of the Nuba and still be as ignorant as a dried up turd. The skin is not the source of intelligence. However, during this cycle, in most societies, skin-tone recieves/transmits a vital message. It is up to the one within hearing distance to take heed (or ignore). The darker you are, the more often you will hear/transmit this message. The more conscious of the truth you are, the deeper you will FEEL this message. I use the word 'feel' not to indicate the emotions that come from a distressed ego but to indicate the assimilation of ALL aspects of the message. This include, the words themselves, images, the man-made environment, the way this environment is arranged to reward certain individuals solely on the basis of their exterior being and, the reasons and the desired outcome of these arrangements. All of these, in my opinion, are the factors one should take into consideration before deciding on the validity of the proposition that, since the dark skinned ones feel this phenomenon the most, they are the ones most qualified to speak on it.
As others have noted, the thing called racism does not exist as a homogenous bloc. There are nuances and, colorism is the nuance that makes collaborators out of ones included in the victim class. Therefore, the darkest ones will hear the message spoken of above not only from 'whites', but also from members of their own family. And, from these, which were the voices that did the most damage? The answer to that question should be obvious, so, should it not also be obvious that the refusal to see the critical validity of this issue is nothing more than a way of perpetuating the damage?
This will be news to no one : The world is upside down. Good is bad, and up is down. This is not symbolic talking but fact.
To say "return to the source" is no attack on any who is from the source. The only one who will object to this call is one who is NOT from the source. The ones who find it hard to accept seeing the uncompromised Black icon as the ONLY logical manifestation of divinity to an African are ones who do not fully identify with Africa.
And, all the talk about 'reverse-racism' is nothing else but them seeking a way to confuse the issue.
"This accusation of reverse racism would be credible if anyone could show where (now or in the past), dark skinned Africans have SYSTEMATICALLY discriminated against or set up mechanisms to retard the development of their lighter skinned brothers and sisters. Where (now or in the past) are the sayings or songs or words-of-'wisdom' that SPECIFICALLY extol the dark skinned African over the lighter skinned? Is it not the opposite that has often been the case? In Africa and in the diaspora we have seen many incidents where heirachies within societies were based on a pyramid of skin-tone. And yes, a man black as coal may also be a servant of 'white' supremacy but, 10 times out of 10, such a man is one who has already decided to erase the Blackness within himself by all means possible. So, you will also find such men partnered either to a 'white' woman or to a 'fair-skinned lady'."
It does not matter what shade of black (or brown) an African is. What is crucial is the way he/she reacts to the voices that acclaim the undiluted Black person as the ideal, the most beautiful and the most deserving of all praise. If there ever was any voice within me that objected to this upliftment, I would interrogate that part of my self. Find out where it is really coming from. Because, without knowing for certain where all aspects of the self are coming from, how can one claim to be conscious? How can you say you have an integrated consciousness when there are parts of you existing in contradiction of what you say you are? How can you deny being only partly engaged when you are unaware of all the nuances of the main obstacle that is faced by Africans in the world today?
But, there is another strata within this particular topic that must be heeded. I see current arguements on colorism as another component of an old process. It is indirectly connected but it is crucial because the objective of this exercise is to manufacture a refusal on the part of Africans of what actually belongs to them.
This process is one during which persons who fought for African liberation and dignity are co-opted into the pantheon of 'universal' i.e. 'white') saint-hood. We see this with Bob Marley, we see it with the slogan "One Love", which as Baba Ras Marcus reminded us, was derived from a salutation of Africans in Jamaica. It did not have the meaning it is being portrayed as having now. Then, it was a word of Black unity, now, 'One Love' is the slogan/code behind which neanderthal infiltrators and thier naygrow facilitators march hand-in-hand. They stole that slogan, warped it and Africans allowed them (as usual). Haile Selassie I, which many claim to venerate never married (or had relations) with a 'white' woman (as Priest Asukile Adogun Adofo pointed out). So, if they wish to be like him, why not be like him in all ways? Why pick and choose from what he actually practiced? Why the insistence among certain parties that Haile Selassie I alone represents the highest manifestation of African Liberation thought? Could this be because they have seen items from his works that they think can be warped and made to serve thier purposes? (as usual).
We saw the cream (sour) of the amerikkkan nazi ascedancy at the farewell ceremony for the Honourable Ancestor Coretta Scott King, they were there to further thier aim of co-opting another African icon into thier pantheon. Thus, Martin Luther King, is further cemented into his role as an amerikkkan 'hero'. Mohammad Ali, as we have seen from various olympic-type events, is well on the way to becoming an amerikkkan hero and, Nelson Mandela is the 'friend' of all mankind. The vampires do not only seek to kill our prophets, they also seek to make our prophets thier prophets. And, if they can get us to turn our backs on our prophets because of thier embrace, thier work becomes easier.
And all of this is part of an ancient process, as old as the greeks. Change the face of the messenger and you change the message. This is why it is important for Africans at this time to stress the essence of the messenger.
We have to preserve not just the message but also the ORIGINAL IMPULSE that created the messenger. We have to present the messenger in such a way that his/her face cannot be changed. This is the reasoning behind the importance of the upliftment of the ORIGINal Black face of Africa. What I have always questioned has been the face being given emphasis and the intent behind this emphasis. This has often been misinterpreted (sometimes erroneously and sometimes deliberately) as an attack on a specific type of African. The deliberate misinterpretation, is done with the purpose of deflecting African minds from engaging with the reality of issues.
We are all still learning, some of us have longer journeys in front of us than others but, without knowing where we actually started from, we will never know where we are meant to go. An African as Karibkween said is one who places Africa above all else. Once this is done, if all questions are dealt with from this perspective, then it should'nt be so hard to know the true answer to the question that started this thread.
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