Frederick Douglass Was an Uncle Tom
Being our post-racial President isn’t working out any better for The Boy President than anything else he’s tried since taking office. There’s been a plethora of racist, hate-filled rhetoric filling the news this past week. From the NAACP calling Kenneth Gladney an “Uncle Tom” and the New Black Panther Party declaring war on “Crackers” I would say racism is alive and well in America. The KKK apparently traded in their white hoods and sheets for black battle dress uniforms and combat boots. You can skip to 3:45 on the video below to hear Malik Shabazz, the Grand Dragon of the New Black Panther Party explain why it’s NOT racist when he calls white people Crackers.
Now I understand, that’s historical, not racist. Now that the whole “Cracker” controversy is cleared up, what about “Uncle Tom”? Urban Dictionary provides several definitions.
1. A black man who will do anything to stay in good standing with “the white man” including betray his own people.
“Leroy is such an Uncle Tom; he told the boss I took a 2 hour lunch; I had to go see my baby momma.
2. Uncle Tom is a term used by black people to try to convince other black people that working, education, living well, and setting a good example for their children is selling out.
“De Shawn got a job? At Ameritech? He’s a Tom”
3. Theatrical productions of Uncle Tom’s Cabin played throughout the nadir (post Civil War and Reconstruction); but since the novel’s indictment of slavery was no longer congenial to an increasingly white society, rewrites changed Uncle Tom from a martyr who gave his life to protect the people into a sentimental dope who was loyal to kindly masters. In the black community, Uncle Tom eventually came to mean an African American who sells out his people’s interests and still does today. In my opinion the phrase “uncle tom” should not be used today by black people because it degrades the status of a man who wasn’t in fact a sell out but a hero who’s name should be used with reverence not disgrace
“Uncle tom, a martyr who should be admired til the end of time.”
Which definition are the NAACP and Grand Wizard Shabazz using? The New Black Panther Party posts it’s 10 Point Platform on it’s website, I found their definition there.
(these are excerpts, if you feel I am taking anything out of context please investigate for yourself at the link above)
We want full employment for our people and we demand the dignity to do for ourselves what we have begged the white man to do for us. We believe that since the white man has kept us deaf, dumb and blind, and used every dirty trick in the book to stand in the way of our freedom and independence, that we should be gainfully employed until such time we can employ and provide for ourselves.
We want tax exemption and an end to robbery of THE BLACK NATION by the CAPITALIST. We want an end to the capitalistic domination of Africa in all of its forms: imperialism, criminal settler colonialism, neo-colonialism, racism, sexism, zionism, Apartheid and artificial borders. We believe that this wicked racist government has robbed us, and now we are demanding the overdue debt of reparations…
The American white man owes us reparations. England owes us reparations. France owes us reparations, Spain and all of Europe. Africa owes us reparations and repatriation. The Arabs owe us reparations. The Jews owe us reparations. All have taken part in the AFRICAN HOLOCAUST and the slaughter of 600 million of our people over the past 6,000 years in general and 400 year in particular. We know that this is a reasonable and just demand that we make at this time in history.
We want decent housing, fit for shelter of human beings, free health-care (preventive and maintenance). We want an end to the trafficking of drugs and to the biological and chemical warfare targeted at our people. We believe since the white landlords will not give decent housing and quality health care to our Black Community, the he housing, the land, the social, political and economic institutions should be made into independent UUAMAA New African Communal/Cooperatives so that our community, with government reparations and aid (until we can do for ourselves) can build and make drug free, decent housing with health facilities for our people.
We want all Black Men and Black Women to be exempt from military service. We believe that Black People should not be forced to fight in the military service to defend a racist government that holds us captive and does not protect us. We will not fight and kill other people of color in the world who, like Black People, are being victimized by the white racist government of America. We will protect ourselves from the force and violence of the racist police and the racist military, by any means necessary.
We want freedom for all Black Men and Black Women held in international, military, federal, state, county, city jails and prisons. We believe that all Black People and people of color should be released from the many jails and prisons because they have not received a fair and impartial trial. Released means released to the lawful authorities of the Black Nation.
We want land, bread, housing, education, clothing, justice and peace. And, as our political objective, we want NATIONAL LIBERATION in a separate state or territory of our own, here or elsewhere, a liberated zone (New Africa or Africa), and a plebiscite to be held throughout the BLACK NATION in which only we will be allowed to participate for the purposes of determining our will and DIVINE destiny as a people. FREE THE LAND! UP YOU MIGHTY NATION! YOU CAN ACCOMPLISH WHAT YOU WILL! BLACK POWER!
History has proven that the white man is absolutely disagreeable to get along with in peace. No one has been able to get along with the white man. All the people of color have been subjected to the white man’s wrath. We believe that his very nature will not allow for true sharing, fairness, equity and justice.
That’s no more racist than calling me Cracker and it provides a good basis for the identification of an Uncle Tom.
Like this dude…
In regard to the colored people, there is always more that is benevolent, I perceive, than just, manifested towards us. What I ask for the negro is not benevolence, not pity, not sympathy, but simply justice. The American people have always been anxious to know what they shall do with us… I have had but one answer from the beginning. Do nothing with us! Your doing with us has already played the mischief with us. Do nothing with us! If the apples will not remain on the tree of their own strength, if they are worm-eaten at the core, if they are early ripe and disposed to fall, let them fall! … And if the negro cannot stand on his own legs, let him fall also. All I ask is, give him a chance to stand on his own legs! Let him alone! … your interference is doing him positive injury.
Frederick Douglass — speech in Boston, Massachusetts –January 1865
Oh yea, mega Uncle Tom. But there’s more, like this traitorous sell out…
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.
I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia, the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.
I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.
Martin Luther King Jr. — Washington DC, 28 August 1963
This one makes my skin crawl…
The people made worse off by slavery were those who were enslaved. Their descendants would have been worse off today if born in Africa instead of America. Put differently, the terrible fate of their ancestors benefitted them.
Here’s one more, just in case you didn’t have it figured out yet…
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