Updated: Sep 23
Democratic presidential candidates are throwing the word reparations around as if reparations will be realized by Blacks in America and delivered by the Democratic Party. Trust me, if Black Americans receive reparations, it won't be delivered by the Democratic Party or any other political party. For the sake of conversation, however, let's say Black Americans are granted reparations by the Democratic Party. How would reparations be dispersed and to whom? Many Africans have, post-slavery, migrated to America and honored the process of becoming American citizens. Former United States President Barack Obama would, rightfully, be identified as an "African American" but his lineage would not qualify for reparations.
Do you believe the United States has data, perspicacious enough, to determine such a thing as the heirs of slaves?
Now comes the words "Negro" and "Negroland". There are numerous accounts of this place called Negroland. According to Princeton University exhibition curator, John Delaney, Negroland would, now, be considered West Africa. I've attached the map Mr. Delaney forwarded as evidence of Negroland. The map of Africa has evolved tremendously from the 1500s so don't look for Negroland on current maps. Why is this important? Negroland connects Black Americans to a specific place. This place identifies the people trafficked in the slave trade. Authentic historical film and other documented accounts of slavery referred to slaves as "Negroes". I don't believe it's the reason many of us deduced, negro means black. Have you ever wondered why Black Americans were called Negroes?
Another interesting conversation concerning "Negroland" is the long-running theory claiming Negroland was heavily populated by Israelites and Hebrews (Jewish people) fleeing Jerusalem in 70 AD. These same Jewish people (Israelites, Hebrews) were enslaved by other Africans and later sold to the Americas in the worst case of human trafficking to ever plague the earth! So, Negroes might also be the lost tribe of the twelve tribes of Israel, namely, The tribe of Judah? Thus, the people of the Bible? This fascinates me. The word "Negro" might make people uncomfortable. For me, however, it uncovers a dynamic and rich heritage. Ever wonder why our people sold us to the Americas? Could it be they were not "our" people?
Do you think the title "African American" is misleading if, solely, used for identifying the descendants of slaves?
President Trump's executive order for establishing The White House Opportunity and Revitalization Council is a step towards reparations. Why aren't we talking about it? Why aren't we talking about Byron Allen and his case, soon to be heard by the Supreme Court? I think these are more productive conversations. Let's discuss in the next blog. It'll be titled "The Congressional Black Caucus".