REPARATIONS AND ECONOMIC INDEPENDENCE

By Dr. Conrad W. Worrill (November 14,2003)

 

 

            The evidence is clear that African people throughout the world are owed reparations for the damages inflicted on us through the Trans Atlantic Slave Trade, which has now been officially declared “A Crime Against Humanity!”

            In our demands for reparations in the United States, we must continue to pressure the government and those identifiable corporations who participated in, and benefited from, our enslavement. It is no question that “They Owe Us!”

            In the process of building the Reparations Movement, it is crucial to take note of an important aspect of our work that Brother Chinweizu pointed out in a paper read at the second plenary session of the First Pan African Conference on Reparations, held in Abuja, Nigeria on April 27, 1993. Chinweizu observed that one of the most important aspects of the Reparations Movement “is our self-repair, the change it will bring about in our understanding of our destiny, the change it will bring about in the world.”

            Chinweizu further observes in his paper, “So, reparations, like charity, must begin with ourselves, with the making of the new Black person, with the making of a new Black world.”

            With this in mind, in our work in the Reparations Movement, we must direct our attention to our external demands at the same time we work on our internal repair. We must do both at the same time.

            It is especially obvious that at this time of the year millions of African people get caught up in the European holiday season by participating in helping the European economic order remain strong by purchasing their products promoted in the name of the holiday season. Let us reflect for a moment on this problem.

            Since being captured from Africa and introduced into the United States as property and commodity, over four hundred years ago, African people in America have become subjects of one of the world’s greatest tragedies. This is the tragedy of being completely taken over by the Euro-ethnic order of America, in almost every area of our lives, at the detriment of our own self-interest. This tragedy manifests itself today most vividly in the area of economic development in the African in American Community.

            If you observe the African Community in America throughout the United States today, you will observe that we do not control the economics of our own communities. We have allowed other ethnic groups to become the major benefactor of the economics of our communities. This problem has major impact on many of the  problems we face, such as: the African Family Crisis, African on African (Black on Black) crime, drug and alcohol abuse, teenage pregnancy, HIV and AIDS, cultural domination, educational genocide, and lack of real political power, et. al.

            All African people in America need to stop and think for a minute and ask the question, why do we so easily and willingly spend our money with other people and these same people do not spend their money with us? In fact, the white community will not even allow African in American businesses and enterprises, for the most part, to open in their communities.

            One of the most devastating outcomes of this capturing process of African people in America is the fact that too often we look to other people to solve problems for us instead of solving them ourselves. It should be crystal clear that the problems we face as a people will not fundamentally change until we decide to make these changes and correct the habits that keep us in an oppressive state. Continuing to spend our money with other people at the expense of our own communities will continue to keep us in a state of begging other people to do for us what we should do for ourselves.

            In America, most ethnic groups tend to have control of items they consume as part of their cultural heritage and characteristics. For example, the Chinese dominate the rice industry and the Greeks dominate the fruit and vegetable industry. African people eat greens as a part of our regular cultural eating habits, but we do not control greens. Just think, if we controlled the production, processing, wholesaling, retailing, and distribution of greens in America, we would considerably advance our own economic situation.

            During this season of super propaganda and economic rip-offs, let us recommit ourselves to at least become a part of the MATAH Network, which is the only African owned and controlled channel of distribution featuring hundreds of Black manufactured products.

            Let us stop the cycle of economic dependence and struggle harder to build the Reparations Movement.

 
National Chairman
National Black United Front (NBUF)


NBUF Homepage | The Bush Telegraph | Worrill's World