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Travis Little
divalocity:

Actress Lupita Nyongo by Hanneli Mustaparta
Photo Credit: Hanneli Mustaparta

divalocity:

Actress Lupita Nyongo by Hanneli Mustaparta

Photo Credit: Hanneli Mustaparta

(via iandafrica)

ikaythegod:

Without community there is no liberation, but community must that mean a shedding of our differences, nor the pathetic pretense that these differences do not exist. 
— Audre Lorde

ikaythegod:

Without community there is no liberation, but community must that mean a shedding of our differences, nor the pathetic pretense that these differences do not exist.

— Audre Lorde

fuckyeahmarxismleninism:

Walter Rodney
ikaythegod:

Revolution In Our Lifetime - Emory Douglas 1969 offset lithograph 20 ¼ x 14 in. One of the artist’s great iconographic images, this drawing appeared as a pull-out poster in the Black Panther newspaper, November 8th, 1969.

ikaythegod:

Revolution In Our Lifetime - Emory Douglas 1969 offset lithograph 20 ¼ x 14 in. One of the artist’s great iconographic images, this drawing appeared as a pull-out poster in the Black Panther newspaper, November 8th, 1969.

ikaythegod:

African in America or African American

"You do not know what it means to be black in this country," an American-born son told his African father. He was right. White America differentiates between Africans and African Americans, and Africans in the United States have generally accepted this differentiation. This differentiation, in turn, creates a divide between Africans and African Americans, with Africans acting as a buffer between black and white America.
It is with relief that some whites meet an African. And it is with equal relief that some Africans shake the hand proffered in a patronising friendship. Kofi Annan, the Ghanaian former UN secretary general, while a student in the United States, visited the South at the height of the civil rights movement. He was in need of a haircut, but this being the Jim Crow era, a white barber told him “I do not cut nigger hair.” To which Kofi Annan promptly replied “I am not a nigger, I am an African.” The anecdote, as narrated in Stanley Meisler’s Kofi Annan: A Man of Peace in a World of War, ends with him getting his hair cut.
There are several interesting questions here. Why would Kofi Annan accept a haircut from a racist? Why did he not stand in solidarity with African Americans who, at that time, were facing lynching, imprisonment and other forms of violence simply for agitating for their rights? And equally intriguing, on what basis did the racist barber differentiate between African black skin and African American black skin? Is an African not racially black? At a time of racial polarisation in the US, what made the haircut possible?
Being black and African, these are the types of questions with which I constantly wrestle as I navigate through myriads of confusing, illogical, but always hurtful and destructive racial mores. I was born in Evanston, Illinois to Kenyan parents. We returned to Kenya when I was a few months old. I grew up in a small rural town outside of Nairobi, and attended primary and secondary school in Kenya before returning to the United States in 1990 for college. I have now lived in the United States half my life. What I have come learn is that in the United States, being African can get you into places being black and African American will not.
For instance, take the “African foreigner privilege”. In Ohio, thirsting for a beer I walk into the closest bar. Silence. I order a beer and the white guy next to me says, “Where are you from? Where is your accent from?” I say, “Kenya.” Relief, followed by the words “Welcome to America. I thought you were one of them.” The thirsty writer in me is intrigued. Now that I am on the inside, I can ask “What do you mean?” “Well, you know how they are,” followed by a litany of stereotypes. Eventually, I say my piece but the guy looks at me with pity: “You will see what I mean.” Never mind that to his “Welcome to America,” I said I had been in the US for 20 years.
The end result of the African foreigner privilege, usually dispensed with condescension, is that Africans are becoming buffers between white and black America. There is now a plethora of reports comparing African students to African American students. The conclusion is that if Africans fresh off the boat are doing better than African Americans who have been here for centuries, then racism can no longer be blamed. But the reports do not consider that, just maybe, at either Harvard or a community college, Africans experience race differently from African Americans. Africans experience a patronising but helpful racism, as opposed to the hostile, threatened and defensive kind that African Americans grow up with. Racism wears a smile when meeting an African; it glares with hostility when meeting an African American.
Africans in the US can end up becoming foils to continuing African American struggles, because they buy into the stereotypes. They end up seeing African Americans through a racist lens. This is not to say that African Americans have not themselves bought into racist stereotypes of Africans, where Africans are straight out of a Tarzan movie. But to the credit of African Americans, they have actively, through organisations like Africa Action and Trans-Africa Forum, agitated on Africa’s behalf.
Indeed, Nelson Mandela once said that without African American support, ending apartheid would have taken much longer. But one will not find organisations in African countries that reciprocate – for example, seeking to end a racialised judicial system in the US that sees more black men in prison than in college. And Africans in the United States tend to stay away from protests against police brutality and racial profiling. True, the fear of immigration police and offending the host country play a part, but I think there are ways in which Africans do not see the African American struggle against racism as their fight, too.
Twenty years and counting in the US, I no longer feel a conflicted identity, one is that torn between being black in the United States and African. Going to Kenya this past December for the Kwani Literary Festival, I saw no contradiction between going home to Kenya and returning home to the US. I do not fully comprehend terms like cosmopolitan. I do not float around in a universal home. But it makes sense to me that one can have two homes at the same time. Not just in the physical sense, but in the deepest sense of the word – to be rooted, and to have roots growing, in two different places.
And as a writer and citizen, I have duties to each. I want to open up the contradictions that, in Kenya, keep the majority in oppressive ethnicised poverty and violence and, in the United States, racialised violence and poverty.
As an African and a black person, I feel, rightly or wrongly, that I have a duty to love both homes. And love need not always be pleasant – it can be demanding, defensive, angry and wrong, but it always wants to build, not destroy.

ikaythegod:

African in America or African American

"You do not know what it means to be black in this country," an American-born son told his African father. He was right. White America differentiates between Africans and African Americans, and Africans in the United States have generally accepted this differentiation. This differentiation, in turn, creates a divide between Africans and African Americans, with Africans acting as a buffer between black and white America.

It is with relief that some whites meet an African. And it is with equal relief that some Africans shake the hand proffered in a patronising friendship. Kofi Annan, the Ghanaian former UN secretary general, while a student in the United States, visited the South at the height of the civil rights movement. He was in need of a haircut, but this being the Jim Crow era, a white barber told him “I do not cut nigger hair.” To which Kofi Annan promptly replied “I am not a nigger, I am an African.” The anecdote, as narrated in Stanley Meisler’s Kofi Annan: A Man of Peace in a World of War, ends with him getting his hair cut.

There are several interesting questions here. Why would Kofi Annan accept a haircut from a racist? Why did he not stand in solidarity with African Americans who, at that time, were facing lynching, imprisonment and other forms of violence simply for agitating for their rights? And equally intriguing, on what basis did the racist barber differentiate between African black skin and African American black skin? Is an African not racially black? At a time of racial polarisation in the US, what made the haircut possible?

Being black and African, these are the types of questions with which I constantly wrestle as I navigate through myriads of confusing, illogical, but always hurtful and destructive racial mores. I was born in Evanston, Illinois to Kenyan parents. We returned to Kenya when I was a few months old. I grew up in a small rural town outside of Nairobi, and attended primary and secondary school in Kenya before returning to the United States in 1990 for college. I have now lived in the United States half my life. What I have come learn is that in the United States, being African can get you into places being black and African American will not.

For instance, take the “African foreigner privilege”. In Ohio, thirsting for a beer I walk into the closest bar. Silence. I order a beer and the white guy next to me says, “Where are you from? Where is your accent from?” I say, “Kenya.” Relief, followed by the words “Welcome to America. I thought you were one of them.” The thirsty writer in me is intrigued. Now that I am on the inside, I can ask “What do you mean?” “Well, you know how they are,” followed by a litany of stereotypes. Eventually, I say my piece but the guy looks at me with pity: “You will see what I mean.” Never mind that to his “Welcome to America,” I said I had been in the US for 20 years.

The end result of the African foreigner privilege, usually dispensed with condescension, is that Africans are becoming buffers between white and black America. There is now a plethora of reports comparing African students to African American students. The conclusion is that if Africans fresh off the boat are doing better than African Americans who have been here for centuries, then racism can no longer be blamed. But the reports do not consider that, just maybe, at either Harvard or a community college, Africans experience race differently from African Americans. Africans experience a patronising but helpful racism, as opposed to the hostile, threatened and defensive kind that African Americans grow up with. Racism wears a smile when meeting an African; it glares with hostility when meeting an African American.

Africans in the US can end up becoming foils to continuing African American struggles, because they buy into the stereotypes. They end up seeing African Americans through a racist lens. This is not to say that African Americans have not themselves bought into racist stereotypes of Africans, where Africans are straight out of a Tarzan movie. But to the credit of African Americans, they have actively, through organisations like Africa Action and Trans-Africa Forum, agitated on Africa’s behalf.

Indeed, Nelson Mandela once said that without African American support, ending apartheid would have taken much longer. But one will not find organisations in African countries that reciprocate – for example, seeking to end a racialised judicial system in the US that sees more black men in prison than in college. And Africans in the United States tend to stay away from protests against police brutality and racial profiling. True, the fear of immigration police and offending the host country play a part, but I think there are ways in which Africans do not see the African American struggle against racism as their fight, too.

Twenty years and counting in the US, I no longer feel a conflicted identity, one is that torn between being black in the United States and African. Going to Kenya this past December for the Kwani Literary Festival, I saw no contradiction between going home to Kenya and returning home to the US. I do not fully comprehend terms like cosmopolitan. I do not float around in a universal home. But it makes sense to me that one can have two homes at the same time. Not just in the physical sense, but in the deepest sense of the word – to be rooted, and to have roots growing, in two different places.

And as a writer and citizen, I have duties to each. I want to open up the contradictions that, in Kenya, keep the majority in oppressive ethnicised poverty and violence and, in the United States, racialised violence and poverty.

As an African and a black person, I feel, rightly or wrongly, that I have a duty to love both homes. And love need not always be pleasant – it can be demanding, defensive, angry and wrong, but it always wants to build, not destroy.

ujustkeepgoing:

sad but true…

ujustkeepgoing:

sad but true…

ikaythegod:

African American Teen Thrown In Violent New York Prison For Years Without Ever Having Been Convicted

Bronx resident Kalief Browder was walking home from a party when he was abruptly arrested by New York City police officers on May 14, 2010. A complete stranger said Browder had robbed him a few weeks earlier and, consequently, changed the 16-year-old’s life forever.

Browder was imprisoned for three years before the charges were dropped in June 2013, according to a WABC-TV Eyewitness News investigation.

At the time of the teen’s arrest, Browder’s family was unable to pay the $10,000 bail. He was placed in the infamously violent Rikers Island correctional facility, where he remained until earlier this year.

Now that he’s free, the young man is speaking up about his experience.

"I spent three New Year’s in there, three birthdays…," Browder, now 20, said in a recent interview with WABC, adding that he was released with "no apology."

In October, Browder filed a civil lawsuit against the Bronx District Attorney, City of New York, the New York City Police Department, the New York City Department of Corrections and a number of state-employed individuals.

The official complaint states Browder was “physically assaulted and beaten” by officers and other inmates during his time at Rikers Island. The document also maintains the accused was “placed in solitary confinement for more than 400 days” and was “deprived meals.” In addition, officers allegedly prevented him from pursuing his education. Browder attempted suicide at least six times.

In an interview with The Huffington Post, Browder’s current lawyer Paul Prestia summarized his client’s experience as “inexplicable” and “unheard of.” Based off one man’s identification, Browder was charged with robbery in the second degree, he notes. It took three years to dismiss these charges, even though it was, in Prestia’s words, a “straightforward case to try.”

"The city needs to be held accountable for what happened," Prestia said. "[Browder] had a right to a fair and speedy trail, and he wasn’t afforded any of that. He maintained his innocence the entire time, and essentially got a three year sentence for that."

Still, when Browder was offered a plea deal in January, he refused to take it, because he did not want to plead guilty to the crime, WABC-TV notes. (Had Browder been tried in a timely fashion and pled guilty to the crime, Prestia told HuffPost, he might have spent less time in prison.)

Prestia adds that his client has suffered lingering mental health problems, and though he’s currently going to school for his GED, he’s “clearly way behind from where he would have been.”

"We need someone to be held accountable," Prestia said. "This can’t just go unnoticed. To the extent that [Browder] can be financially compensated — although it’s not going to get those years back for him — it may give him a chance to succeed."

The District Attorney’s office said it was unable to comment, as Browder’s allegations are currently the subject of ongoing litigation.

Incidentally, Browder’s claims about his experience at Rikers Island are consistent with findings from a recent report commissioned by the New York City Board of Correction. The report, obtained by The Associated Press, notes that the use of force by prison staff has more than tripled from 2004 to 2013, from seven incidents of force per 100 inmates, to almost 25. Additionally, the number of self-mutilation and suicide attempts by Rikers inmates have increased by 75 percent from 2007 to 2012. According to the report, 40 percent of the city jail’s 12,200 inmates are mentally ill, and many of these inmates are placed in solitary confinement “holes” as punishment.

eccentriclovechild:

Behind Every Strong Man Is His Woman :-*

eccentriclovechild:

Behind Every Strong Man Is His Woman :-*

ikaythegod:

School Teacher Tells Students They Can’t Write About Malcolm X Because He Was Violent

Queens parents are using any means necessary to stop their children’s teachers from besmirching Malcolm X’s name.

Teachers at Public School 201 in Flushing told fourth-graders last week that the controversial activist was “violent” and “bad.” They also refused to let the kids write about the assassinated icon for Black History Month.

Parent Cleatress Brown, 47, of Flushing complained to Principal Rebecca Lozada on Friday after a teacher forbade her fourth-grade son from writing a report on Malcolm X.

“I’m outraged,” said Brown. “As a teacher, you’re imposing your opinion on a bunch of kids.”

She had her son write about him anyway — and then turn the paper in to her. “That’s called learning,” she said.

Another parent, Angel Minor, said she was “very upset” after her son came home complaining he couldn’t do a report on Malcolm X for his technology class.

“It was disrespectful to our history,” said Minor, 33, whose son is not in Brown’s class.

Children were asked to pick from several prominent black leaders, including Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks and Malcolm X for the project, Minor said.

“I felt like when he grew up, he wanted to stop segregation so everyone could be equal,” said her son Tyrese Minor, 9.

But his teacher quickly took Malcolm X off the list. The black leader defended the use of violence as a form of self-defense before his assassination in 1965.

About 43% of the 477 students at PS 201 are black, according to the school’s website. It earned a “C” on its last city report card.

City Department of Education officials said they were looking into the matter and would not defend it.

“Malcolm X is a historical figure and a hero to many New Yorkers that we believe should be celebrated in our schools,” said agency spokesman Devon Puglia.

Lozada did not immediately return calls for comment.

Eliakim Brown, 9, picked Martin Luther King Jr. for his class project.

“Malcolm X did the same thing as Martin Luther King,” he said. “They both fought for the rights of the world.”

The civil rights movement wasn’t all about MLK, said Sylvia Cyrus, executive director of the Association for the Study of African-American Life and History.

“Malcolm X is a figure in American history who helped make change,” she said. “Students should be allowed to write about him.”

This isn’t the first time PS 201 has come under fire.

In April 2012, a kindergarten teacher gave kids a worksheet with a picture of a gun and a robber on it for a spelling lesson. The teacher later apologized.

ikaythegod:

QUESTION

Since humanity was born out of Africa, should other non-black races be included in the back to Africa movement? Should whites consider this their home as well?

ANSWER

While it is legal for whites to migrate where they wish like anyone else, I don’t support any white person moving to Africa under the label of repatriation, which as the previous poster said, is a term generally used for those Africans who were forcibly removed from Africa.

There are Whites that embrace some brand of Rastafari, go to Africa to reside, and they then call that repatriation. Although some Blacks embrace this as a sign of togetherness, I don’t. I see it as a cop-out by some Whites that should be in the West trying to dismantle the anti-social capitalist system.

Remember that I said I don’t support it, not that I can stop it. But I do all in my power to ensure that my funds do not go to such muddling moves.

Blacks who embrace this are equally delusional as they fantasize about a world of earthly togetherness that is not based on justice for all. Justice mandates that those who have benefited from the abuse of others should pay reparations, and they should allow the former victims to rediscover their own social systems. Any well-intentioned White person should invest their time and resources in educating themselves and others about the ills of the capitalist system as it is, and they should be using their ‘privileged’ position in these societies to fund and promote progressive Black movements without trying to take controlling interest.

To add insult to injury, some whites leave the West and go to Africa then want others to finance them. This to me is a gross insult. Resources should be going to Africa to support progressive Black movements, and to alleviate the sufferings of those indigenous to the region that cannot easily move out. Resources should not be going to Whites who choose to go back there to play ‘grassroots poor’. Those Whites should leave Africa, Repatriate to the West, and get a job. Their history first exploited Africa, now they return to extract more, and divert necessary attention and funding from more deserving African causes.

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