Beware of ‘meritorious manumission’ Black leaders!

ASSEMBLYMAN CHARLES BARRON | 12/3/2020, midnight
Meritorious manumission Black leaders are those Black leaders who sell us out for personal gain. They’re also known as sycophants!
Charles Barron Bill Moore photo

Meritorious manumission Black leaders are those Black leaders who sell us out for personal gain. They’re also known as sycophants!

In Virginia, during the enslavement period, there was a law passed titled, “The Meritorious Manumission Act of 1710.” It was the legal act of freeing an enslaved African for “good deeds,” as defined by the national public policy, and could be granted to an enslaved African who saved the life of a white racist colonial enslaver or his property, invented something from which a white racist colonial enslaver could make a profit, or “snitched” on a fellow enslaved African who was planning a rebellion or to run away. This act encouraged enslaved Africans to gain their personal freedom, prestigious positions, and material benefits for “snitching” on their brothers and sisters who were planning and executing revolts and rebellions. As a matter of fact, I created a PowerPoint presentation titled, “We Fought Back,” exploring the history of resistance and rebellions by enslaved Africans in America. In every rebellion researched from the 1700s to the 1800s, the rebellion was ultimately unsuccessful, because an enslaved African “snitched,” giving the white racist colonial enslaver information that enabled him to abort the rebellion and kill the leaders.

Well brothers and sisters, we still have some “meritorious manumission” Black leaders running around here today who prioritize their personal ambition and rugged individualism over the liberation of the masses of our people from colonial capitalism and its by-product called poverty. These leaders are given prestigious positions in the capitalist system and material benefits as long as they do “good deed”" for the maintenance of the white capitalist power structure. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. called them “manufactured leaders” created by the white power structure in order to maintain control over the Black vote, politics, economics and social movements in the Black community. You will find these kinds of Black leaders in government, elected office, Wall St. firms, and a myriad of social, political and economic institutions.

As we move ever so swiftly through the 21st century, we must develop an independent Black radical political movement to win local political seats of power, and continue to mobilize mass protest movements in the streets. We must fight against America’s colonial racist capitalist system and its warmongering imperialist foreign policy, whether it takes the form of the neo-colonial administration of Barack Obama, or the neo-fascist administration of Donald Trump, or the neo-liberal/conservative administration of Joe Biden.

“Black faces in high places” does not mean Black Power or Black Liberation, especially since they were “meritoriously manumissioned” by the white power structure. We don’t want a change in the complexion of leadership only; we want a change in the direction of leadership. We don’t want personality changes; we want policy changes. And finally we don’t want symbolic changes, we want radical systemic changes.

Remember, our struggle may be long, but our victory is certain!

All Power to the People! Revolution is the Solution!