The real America: a Black perspective
BASHIR MUHAMMAD AKINYELE | 1/14/2021, midnight
“And when I speak, I don’t speak as a Democrat. Or a Republican. Nor an American. I speak as a victim of America’s so-called democracy. You and I have never seen democracy––all we’ve seen is hypocrisy. When we open our eyes today and look around America, we see America, not through the eyes of someone who has enjoyed the fruits of Americanism. We see America through the eyes of someone who has been the victim of Americanism. We don’t see any American dream. We’ve experienced only the American nightmare.”
––Malcolm X (Omowale El Hajj El Malik El Shabazz)
The Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol by President Donald Trump supporters to stop democracy in the U.S. is a needed teachable movement. Every four years, after the national U.S. Presidential elections are over in November, the U.S. government passes the electoral votes through the Senate in Congress to make the winning presidential candidate the official American president. This is America’s democratic process for the executive branch of the U.S. government. The Trump supporters’ failed American coup left many people angryand should have. Yes, many people in America are outraged by Trump’s antics; but there is a deeper lesson to the events on Jan. 6, 2021. Unfortunately, some people are trying to revise the history and contradictions of America under a safe rug. However, to many Afrikan people, American democracy has been nothing more than disguised hypocrisy. Racism has been at the core of impeding true democracy in America for centuries. As educators, we must teach the unaltered facts of U.S. history to help America liberate itself from the love affair with racism and anti-democracy.
The United States was built upon white supremacy. The ideology of white supremacy gave birth to systematic racism. White supremacy forces many people in America to pander to systematic racism. White supremacy justifies fascism. White supremacy has given many white people in America a false identity of superiority. But the fictitious belief in white supremacy by many white people has led to preventing Black people from enjoying American democracy.
For centuries, systematic racism denied democracy to the Afrikan American community, to women, to Indigenous people, and Latinos. America has a long history of hatred and violence, especially toward Black people and people of color!!!!!!!
Throughout U.S. history, systematic racism violently and legally protected whiteness in America.
White supremacy destroys entire Black towns, discredits Afrikan history, consistently denies reparations to Afrikan Americans, kills many Black freedom fighters, justifies police violence in the Black community, neutralizes Black self-determination, and annihilates Black liberation organizations.
White supremacy has made Afrikan people hate everything Black, but love everything white.
White supremacy justified the enslavement of Black people in America for 250 years. White supremacy justified making our own continental Afrikan mother tongue illegal in America. White supremacy justified making Afrikan culture subhuman. White supremacy justified the rape of Black women during American slavery and segregation. White supremacy justified the emasculation of Black men. White supremacy justified the destruction of the Black family in America. White supremacy justified nearly 100 years of U.S. racial segregation. White supremacy justified biological and chemical warfare toward the Black community in America. White supremacy justified the lynching of thousands of innocent Black lives. White supremacy justifies the mass incarceration of Black people in America. White supremacy justifies giving white people a false sense of superiority. White supremacy worked to disenfranchise the Black vote in America. White supremacy justifies Black oppression.
Unfortunately, white supremacy is on remote control. White supremacy will produce more Trumps until white supremacy is destroyed in America. But let’s be clear, white supremacy existed before Donald Trump. White supremacy has produced a very long list of racist U.S. presidents. White superiority has been here since 1607 (the first English colony settled in Jamestown, Virginia), 1620 (English Pilgrims settle Plymouth colony in Massachusetts), 1619 (Black people arrived in chains from Afrika by way of the Dutch in Jamestown, Virginia), July 4, 1776 (the birthdate of the United States of America), and 1787 (the founding of the U.S. Constitution which legalized protecting the American enslavement of Afrikan Americans).
As Afrikan people, many of us understand that American democracy has been nothing but disguised hypocrisy. America has a long history of racism, hatred, violence, and anti-democracy. U.S. democracy has decimated the Afrikan American community.
This is the real America.
But if America truly wants to be the shining example of democracy in the world, she must give up her love affair with white supremacy and systematic racism. Racial politics are crippling America’s march towards real democracy.
Hotep (An Ancient Afrikan Word for Peace!
Bashir Muhammad Akinyele is a history and Afrikana Studies teacher at Weequahic High School in Newark, NJ. He is also the co-coordinator for ASCAC’s (the Association for Study of Classical African Civilizations) study group chapter in Newark, NJ. (https://ascac.org/)
Note: Spelling Afrika with a k is not a typo. Using the k in Afrika is the Kiswahili way of writing Africa. Kiswahili is a Pan-Afrikan language. It is spoken in many countries in Africa. Kiswahili is the language used in Kwanzaa. The holiday of Kwanzaa is celebrated from Dec. 26 to Jan. 1.