KATRINA AND WISDOM FROM OUR ANCESTORS

By Dr. Conrad W. Worrill (September 24, 2005)

 

 

            On Saturday, September 17, 2005 approximately forty representatives of the Pan Africanist / Nationalist Movement convened for a Special Summit in Baton Rouge, Louisiana at Southern University. The purpose of this Summit was to discuss the Katrina Disaster and develop a minimum collective action / work program.

            The primary conveners of this meeting were Dr. Conrad Worrill, National Chairman of the National Black United Front (NBUF), Attorney Malik Zulu Shabazz, Chairman of the New Black Panther Party, Attorney Chokwe Lumumba, Chairman of the New African Peoples Organization, Johnita and Dr. Imari Obadele of N`COBRA and the Republic of New Africa, and our esteemed elder, Baba Hannibal Afrik.

            Let us briefly examine some of the ideas our leaders presented in the nineteenth and early twentieth-centuries that should be the foundation for establishing the framework for the growing Millions More Movement as we prepare to commemorate and participate in the 10th Anniversary of the Million Man March on October 16, 2005 in Washington, D. C.

            Jean Jacques Dessalines, one of the leaders of the Haitian Revolution in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth-centuries said, “Never again shall a colonist, or European, set his foot upon this territory with the title of master or proprietor. This resolution shall henceforward form the basis of our constitution.”

            Henry Highland Garnet, a min-nineteenth-century Black Nationalist thinker and organizer explained, in the following statement that African people need “…a grand center of Negro nationality, from which shall flow the streams of commercial, intellectual, and political power which shall make colored people respected everywhere.”

            Martin Robeson Delany, Harvard trained physician of the mid-nineteenth-century and leading Black Nationalist espoused, “We must act for ourselves— We are a nation within a nation; as the Poles in Russia, the Hungarians in Austria, the Welsh, Irish, and Scotch in the British dominions. But we have been, by our oppressor, despoiled of our purity, and corrupted in our native characteristics, so that we have inherited their vices and but few of their virtues, leaving us really a broken people.”

            Edward Wilmot Blyden, a leading educator and Pan Africanist of the mid and late nineteenth-centuries said, “We need some African power, some great center of the race where our physical, pecuniary, and intellectual strength may be collected. We need some spot where such an influence may go forth in behalf of the race as shall be felt by the nations. We are now so scattered and divided that we can do nothing… So long as we remain thus divided, we may expect imposition… An African nationality is our great need… We must build up Negro States; we must establish and maintain the various institutions.”

            One of the greatest Pan Africanist and Black Nationalist leaders of the twentieth-century, Marcus Mosiah Garvey succinctly states, “Africa for the Africans at home and abroad.”

            Another great Black Nationalist leader of the twentieth-century, the Honorable Elijah Muhammad challenged that “we must do for self.”

            Professor Joseph Harris in commenting on the work of William Leo Hansberry, one of our leading authorities on African History in the twentieth-century said, “Hansberry realized that the African students not only had to contend with life in this racist country, but that they also had the obligation to return to their countries with both the skills acquired at Howard and an Afrocentric perspective of their heritage.”

            And finally, the editorial commentary in the Afrocentric World Review, Vol. I, No. I, Winter 1973, explained, “In this crucial world wide scramble for Africa, African minds and African bodies, we must proclaim in our own right African interest first… Blacks must cease becoming a vest pocket people for other national interests and world pursuits, and hasten to revive the age old traditional quest for a World African Center that will make us once again masters in our own house.”

            In this spirit, the participants of the Pan African / Nationalist Summit on the Katrina Disaster established the Black Activist Organizers Coalition for Katrina, and by listening to the wisdom of our ancestors agreed to advocate and organize around the following:

secure ourselves

 

Long live the Spirit and Wisdom of our Ancestors!


National Chairman
National Black United Front (NBUF)


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