Saturday, June 27, 2015

History's New Chapters

Our history books today present in depth evaluations of how to capture, ship, purchase, break and own a slave. Note that there's no redundancy in that list, as it is chronologically arranged. You may put a man in chains, but the physical restraint cannot compare to that of mental, emotional restraint. Take a man from his wife, children, brothers and sisters; sell him naked to the highest bidder; hand him a cutlass and a deadline. He'll do your work, but you have yet to own him. Our textbooks say that to own a slave, you have to whip them, dehumanize them, feed white children from the same breast their newborn has yet to suckle- that's when they've surrendered their souls to the slave master; that's when an African has been broken.

But history never changes- we've entered a new era of "Jim Crowe" where the "breaking" movement has become revolutionized. Where the "lynching" has become modernized. Where the subliminal "skinhead" ideals have become televised. Our new slave masters are the same ones that were put into place to keep us safe. The same ones we reside beside. The same ones we were owned by before. In many ways our freedom has been reduced to what had been allowed during the days of Amelioration. The police force can be likened to those put into place to "protect the slaves" in such times. In fact, in some ways it may even appear that we are being governed by assemblies and not truly God fearing political parties.

Our children's history books won't be changed, but rather revised- among heroes such as Toussaint L'ouverture, Bussa, Vincent Oge, Martin Luther King, Jr. and Ida B. Wells will be their evidence of progress: Trevon Martin, Dontre Hamilton, Eric Garner, Michael Brown, Jr., Dante Parker, Tanisha Anderson, Tony Robinson, Phillip White, Eric Harris, Walter Scott, Freddie Gray, and the countless number of other African Americans that have lost their lives this year in the same manner. Beside their names, their stories will be told, extending the metaphor of the clock that continues to run backwards.

The only difference between today and yesterday is if they'll be able to own us like they did before- make us fall victim to asking for the "white-man's mercy." However, they've chosen to "cut out the middle man" by following the same tactic used by the man they celebrate every year on October 12th- genocide. Killing mothers, fathers, children and siblings; disrupting their sense of pride and peace; putting young African Americans like me to fear the sound of a siren, knowing that in an instant, I could lose my freedom, my family or even my own life; putting young African Americans like me to fear having children of our own and having our son killed on his way home from school or daughter brutalized on the way to a friend's house- all on the premise of racial profiling; putting young African Americans just like me to fear the very system we live under. That's how you break an African...

Soon we'll know if we'll be able to re-write history or be stuck re-living it.

Love Always <3,
Katrina Lowell
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