All over the world on Aug. 17, 2022, celebrated was the honorable Marcus Mosiah Garvey––the Jamaican-born Pan-Africanist, publisher, writer and activist. It has been 135-years since he was born in St. Anns, Jamaica. The man who inspired Black people in the diaspora to return to an “Africa for the Africans,” is respected and honored the world over. Brooklyn, New York is no different. The December 12th Movement, the human rights advocacy group stated that “In the spirit of Marcus Garvey which way forward; Resistance and Reparations––Presidential Executive Order Now––$50 billion downpayment for Black healthcare.”
“Citing the decisive role that the African American voters played in electing Joe Biden, and the president’s verbal commitment to do right by the Black community after his victory, many African Americans are outraged that he is ignoring the issue of slavery reparations,” stated Kamau Brown, a volunteer organizer of the reparations rally on Wednesday, Aug. 17, 2022, held at Restoration Plaza 1368 Fulton Street in Brooklyn, N.Y.
“We are sick and tired of being told to wait. Black folks have seen President Biden sign executive orders on a bunch of other issues, but has not signed one for slavery reparations. Are our centuries of sacrifice, terror and forced labor in the cotton fields not important?” asked a college student organizer who wished not to be identified for fear of retribution. The reparations rally was organized by a national coalition of historians, regional leaders, students, and activists connected with a diverse crowd who view reparations as a necessary tool to repair the damage done. Rally organizers envision reparations as “needed to build a state-of-the-art health care system all across the United States because health outcomes data clearly reveals glaring health disparities.”
“They stole us from Africa. They stole the wealth that our ancestor’s labor generated and use Jim Crow laws and lynch mobs in a desperate attempt to normalize barbaric behavior. The bottom line, however, is that Joe Biden must sign an executive order for a $50 billion down payment for reparations compensation. It’s time.” said, Omowale Clay, a member of the December 12th Movement.
Other rally speakers included: Philly-based activist Pam Africa; Councilmembers Charles Barron and Chi Osse, and December 12th Movement members Viola Plummer, Shaheed Muhammad, and Milton Jemmott – who determined that priceless is the cost of the systematic theft of Africans, the, enslavement, displacement, the disruption of history, culture, economy, language and possibilities.
The Wednesday, Aug. 17, 2022 reparations rally also marked the 20th anniversary of the first ever national reparations rally that was held in Washington, D.C.