Sunday, April 25, 2010
Henry Louis Gates unwittingly has opened the door for the U.S. government to dig it's claws deeper into Africa, insured that Black Americans will nevah evah evah get reparations, and given ammunition to the Far Right, all in one essay of less than 1400 words. This is the kind of genius that places one more chain around our collective souls.
A few days ago, the New York Times published his article, Ending The Slavery Blame Game. In it, he brings up the issue of reparations, i.e., "the idea that the descendants of American slaves should receive compensation for their ancestors’ unpaid labor and bondage." He then ties it in with a grim history that few know, and writes:
"While we are all familiar with the role played by the United States and the European colonial powers like Britain, France, Holland, Portugal and Spain, there is very little discussion of the role Africans themselves played. And that role, it turns out, was a considerable one...
"The historians John Thornton and Linda Heywood of Boston University estimate that 90 percent of those shipped to the New World were enslaved by Africans and then sold to European traders. The sad truth is that without complex business partnerships between African elites and European traders and commercial agents, the slave trade to the New World would have been impossible, at least on the scale it occurred."
Gee, Skip, have you ever heard of something called timing? Here we are, a hair lengths away from the Racist Right dying for us to re-do the Civil War, and Arizona bringing back a revised version of the 1950s "Operation Wetback" law so cops can stop anybody they want to if the person could be an illegal immigrant suspect. Any Latino falls in this category, but so do blacks, because he or she "could be" from the Carribean or Africa. Arab-looking people are easy targets. Even whites could be illegal here as Canadians. Stopping (and harassing) people based on legitimate probable cause has been made into a joke. All of this going on, and you hand the haters ammunition?
WTF were you thinking?
Worse, we've got AFRICOM (read about it here, here, here, and here) digging into African nations that don't want them there, setting up military bases, along with numerous mega-corporations and Big Agriculture waiting to slither in to dominate the production of food.
Can't you see what I can see? America making a case that those countries have to pay for reparations, and not in cash, but in exchange for oil and other resources? And that blacks won't get a dime of that money because Uncle Sam will say they'll use it for corporate run, privatized welfare and the prison industrial complex?
On no bro, not even a nickel will black Americans see, unless you count working for foodstamps - which is a form of indentured servitude - and being free labor on the neo-plantations they call prison. Once again, white folks profit off black and brown sweat.
To add insult to injury, Dr. Gates threw this "complex" historical bomb to Barack, like the President ain't got enough problems to worry about.
I swear, I thought I had too much time on my hands without a full time job. I think Gates needs two.
Posted by Kit (Keep It Trill) at 9:05 PM