The follow material – below the line – was read to me by my Lady. It made me sad. It is not so much that it is wrong, but rather it is incomplete. Leaving out context changes the meaning. For example, 400 years ago, white people enslaving black people arose as an aspect of a world where all over it, folk were enslaved by other folk, and “slaves” were valued property. White people didn’t event this, and not only that the Continent with the most slave trading was Africa. Africans sold other Africans to the invading colonial powers.
There is an interesting story in noticing how slavery was rejected in England, but not America. Plenty of English still plied the slave trade, they just couldn’t bring their “product” home.
250 years ago, what happened is way more complex than a bunch of white men institutionalizing slavery. If the only conclusion you draw, about the founding of this Nation, was concerned with that, you’ve made a historical illusion arise. The main issue was not about freedom of all individuals – an ideal born in the enlightenment – it was about money and banking.
England maybe didn’t need black slaves, if they could keep the colonists enslaved economically. But who listens to that story, although the influence of wealth excesses on 2008, shows that we remain, white and black: wage slaves.
I don’t think angry white men made laws, holding back blacks, I think it was fearful white men. At the same time, if you travel around the world, all manner of races are afraid of other races, something primal being involved.
Police forces were born in the need to control neighborhoods of Jews, and Germans, and Italians. The way to deal with that, was for a particular people to be the police. The great Depression, and the one we now enter, are indifferent to race, while at the same time police forces live at a social edge, where the officers life is at risk.
Protesters get attacked for two reasons, regardless of their Cause.
1) There would be no labor laws, without the worker movements at the beginning of the 20th Century, and the owners have always needed armed forces to suppress political dissent. Again, it is fear. Africa has a lot of dictators, race and power having little to do with each other.
2) The other – the match – comes from agents provocateur. A protest, that does not expect to be compromised by paid and/or voluntary adventurers, has managed that bit about those you don’t know history, being forced to repeat it.
Abstracting “racial” issues from the overall general shock and awe of history in general, is like looking at an ill person (the social organism) and noticing only the sites of a particular “color” of inflammation – the symptom – without finding your way to make the whole healthy as a necessary precursor to the required systemic change, … that’s cart before the horse stuff.
Want the social order to be different? Stop talking about it, and live it differently. Telling the other guy what to think and feel never works. Fixing the social starts at home.
Just to recap.
One. More. Time. In case it’s STILL unclear.
400 years ago white people enslaved black people. And sold them. And treated them as less than human. For 250 years. While white men created its laws and its systems of government. While 10, 15 generations of white families got to grow and flourish and make choices that could make their lives better.
And then 150 years ago white people “freed” black people from slavery. But then angry white people created laws that made it impossible for them to vote. Or to own land. Or to have the same rights as white people. And even erected monuments glorifying people who actively had fought to keep them enslaved. All while another 5, 10 generations of white families got to grow and accumulate wealth and gain land and get an education.
And then 60 years ago we made it “legal” for black people to vote, and to be “free” from discrimination. But angry white people still fought to keep schools segregated. And closed off neighborhoods to white people only. And made it harder for black people to get bank loans, or get quality education or health care, or to (gasp) marry a white person. All while another 2-3 generations of white families got to grow and pass their wealth down to their children and their children’s children.
And then we entered an age where we had the technology to make PUBLIC the things that were already happening in private– the beatings, the stop and frisk laws, the unequal distribution of justice, the police brutality (police began in America as slave patrols designed to catch runaway slaves). And only now, after 400+ years and 20+ generations of a white head start, are we STARTING to truly have a dialog about what it means to be black.
White privilege doesn’t mean you haven’t suffered or fought or worked hard. It doesn’t mean white people are responsible for the sins of our ancestors. It doesn’t mean you can’t be proud of who you are.
It DOES mean that we need to acknowledge that the system our ancestors created is built FOR white people.
It DOES mean that Black people are treated at a disadvantage because of the color of their skin and it DOES mean that we owe it to our neighbors– of all colors– to acknowledge that and work to make our world more equitable.
BLACK LIVES MATTER!
(Copied and pasted- please do the same!)