Ras Adam's solution to racism
Posted: Friday, June 18, 2004
This is one response from among many that are linked here. The debate is on the Rastafari Speaks Message Board.
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Interracial Relationships and Brown Babies
The issue is not about people mixing if they so choose. No one person can decide how people should associate, as there are many reasons individuals can get together with people of different races.
The issue is Adam's thoughtless view, "… interracial relationships are a great tool to break down racism" [sic], together with the fact that it is coming from one who many may have unwittingly taken seriously in this Black community. Remember that he is also talking about a Utopian race of Brown people.
The Rastafari Movement is a Black Movement that primarily seeks to uplift Black Communities, following the degrading effects of Slavery, Colonialism, Neocolonialism, and Racism on Black People.
It stands to reason that the movement is supposed to be encouraging Black people to take pride in themselves, their race and color etc. So it is more than passing strange for me to hear Ras Adam, who is supposed to be around for a long time, advocating that a great tool to break down racism is about bringing an end to Black-skinned people through race-mixing. So we should all dislike being Black to end racism? The further implication of that is to push people to further dislike Black skin. It is also about trying to legitimize what takes place in Black communities as a result of Colorism, i.e. Blacks hooking up with lighter shades based on a distorted idea of Beauty, and for what they feel is upward social mobility.
I certainly do not feel that his idea can have any real effect on me personally. But it sheds light on many issues, most of all, how people are receiving these messages that are popular in this movement, and whose interest is being served here.
That ridiculous proposition is indirectly saying that the problem with racism is the Blackness of Black people, since it proposes a set of Brown people as the final solution. So how are Black people who are in a Black Movement supposed to take that? Here it is that this White guy is now inadvertently telling Blacks: That the problem with racism is their Blackness.
Well to any sensible person that should be seen as downright disrespectful and racist. Making that type of suggestion in a BLACK movement is obscene.
We already experience brown-skinned ones discriminating against Blacker ones, which is called Colorism, so any move to promote them as the ideal, spells out hopelessness for the Blackest of our people. That is certainly not utopia for the Blacker ones.
If you were Black with kinky-hair like me, and had to deal with the silly bigoted conduct of people who perceive themselves superior based on the color of their skin, and the texture of their hair, then you would immediately know that the proposition spells doom for Blacks. If more people do not see it that way, it is only because there are less Black-skinned, kinky-haired ones on these forums, who actually do take pride in being Black.
Racism is a reality; Colorism is a reality; the idea of 'nice hair' that is assessed based on its proximity to European straight hair is also a reality that fuels negative discrimination. All these discriminations, and more, impact on Black-skinned kinky-haired Africans the most, especially in these Eurocentric societies. Even among many light-skinned and Blacker ones who profess to be above these things, I have seen negative actions/reactions based on these discriminations.
I have had to publicly defend the rights of some children who were denied entry to schools because their parents either braided their short kinky hair or they had dreadlocks. The schools called that untidy.
All these discriminations, and more, impact on a certain type of Black people the most. I am also aware of the negative discriminations coming from even mixed-race people, even within the same family. So saying race-mixing would end racism is crap, and worst yet it unfairly places the burden for dealing with racism on the worst victims. It is saying that the Blackness is unacceptable, and the lighter shades are acceptable. That is a genocidal anti-Black approach to trying to deal with racism.
In a Black Movement that is supposed to be fighting racism and other ills, it is quite appropriate for Ras Marcus, if he is indeed Black (I never met the man), to advocate that Blacks should not mix. Remember Blacks are the victims in the system, and to some of us, most Whites only pay lip service. Often it seems like Whites who are around in Black Movements want Blacks to fix the situation, and worst yet, to do it without discomforting whites. It is not important for them to understand the issues. They appear cool just smoking weed, dancing to reggae, and throwing around Rasta/African clichés. Much about the conduct of lighter ones when dealing with these issues demonstrates their lack of sensitivity, in my view. They always want the Blacker ones to watch their words, be casually friendly, and to accommodate them. To deny them is to have these Whites and other light-skinned or mixed-race ones suddenly accusing some of us of reverse racism, bigotry, feeling we know too much, and many other choice adjectives for not pandering to them. This does not mean that dark-skinned Blacks do not act ridiculously at times, and deserve cautioning.
The fact that I have been able to get what I wanted, in spite of the corruption of this Eurocentric system, is no consolation to many others like myself. The system is still wrong, and these issues have to be addressed. It is people's ignorance of these core issues that keep many from being incensed at what is taking place in Haiti. The lives of the Blacker ones are way undervalued to the extent that many are not moved when they see these Blacker ones under attack. So I see no reason to make alliances with people who have not demonstrated sensitivity to these issues.
Many mixed ones were historically privileged to have had educational and other opportunities ahead of the Blacker ones, and they were more articulate for a while, but they still do not get it (in my view), as they are often too busy playing for personal attention and fortune (some blacker ones also operate that way). Many light-skinned ones do operate as if they expect the Blacker ones to be their servants. Also fair-skinned ones are used to saying what they want anywhere they feel, and they don't care who they are disrespecting when they conduct themselves badly.
So any proposal that says the Blackness of people's skin must change to deal with these learnt behaviors, is really genocidal for Blacker ones. If Blacks had the economic and political control, and were saying that the solution to racism is to do away with white skin through race mixing, you would have easily seen the madness implied there. So a call like that about Blacks should be seen as a call for the annihilation of Blacks.
Informed Blacks in the Rasta community should not jump to any idea of race mixing for the purpose of getting fairer skins. That is already an issue that ‘we' are supposed to be educating Blacks against. The Blacks who find that acceptable would be those who have problems accepting their own Blackness. The mixed ones who find it acceptable are doing so because the proposal validates their superiority complexes. The Whites who find nothing wrong with that proposition are just the materially poor whites being comforted with the idea of their 'superior' over all others. You will hardly find wealthy Whites supporting such a proposal.
Remember, we are discussing White Ras Adam's 'Utopian' idea in a Black Movement, which is, "interracial relationships are a great tool to break down racism". Add this to his firm position that Whites are entitled to benefit from the Repatriation Movement, and I can see the master plan. He says it is only a few Whites benefiting from Repatriation so far, so it is nothing, and he called me a bigot for challenging Whites' claim to Repatriation to Africa.
The only line he has not crossed so far is in making a claim for Whites to receive Reparations for Slavery. He does not have to worry about Reparations, as he knows that Whites have no intention in paying that. Anyhow, if his utopian master Brown race plan could work, and Reparations were being paid out, Blacks would be forced to the back of the line for whatever change that falls from the pockets of the fairer ones.
I am saying that Ras Adam's Utopian Brown-skinned race to break down racism is only about keeping the Blacker ones down, and promoting Ras Adam's Whiteness in a Black Movement.
He should take advice similar to what the China Daily media gave Bush, which is, to do himself and the world a huge favour by establishing a closer relationship with reality rather than wrestling with his own version of the truth.
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