Why 'ADOS' Has Been Forced To Pursue Reparations Without The Aid Of Continental Africans.

Friday, August 23, 2019


American Descendants Of Slavery; Why ‘ADOS’ Has Been Forced To Pursue Reparations Without The Aid Of Continental Africans.

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(ThyBlackMan.com) The foremost blessing and the most prominent curse of being an African-American Studies Professor begin and end at the same source, my students. I have repeatedly stated on this site that I consider it a privilege to teach Black collegians for the past two decades. Considering the joy that I get from engaging, prodding, and poking the minds of my young charges, it may seem strange that any portion of our interactions can be considered so frustrating that I consider it a curse; or at least curse like.

I am mature enough to accept partial blame for the frustrations mentioned above. My portion is found in the expectation that my students, Historically Black College (HBCU) students, would not only a fervor, but also a heightened understanding of race matters.

I now understand that my hopes birthed expectations that my classes would be filled with politically astute students that remind one of young Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee such as Stokely Carmichael, Diane Nash, John Lewis or radicals like Huey P. Newton, Fred Hampton, Elaine Brown, Eldridge Cleaver, Kathleen Cleaver who composed the Black Panther Party for Self Defense. To this day, I hope to meet students that I can repeat the familiar refrain that I often heard from my Professors that I was “born too late.” A phrase that I eventually understood to be a compliment that my politicization reminded them of  Huey, Fred, and Eldridge. I long to find a student in possession of a spirit like Black Liberation Army members Assata Shakur, Mutulu Shakur, or Sekou Odinga.

In many ways, the Predominantly White Institution (THE Ohio State University) that I hailed from oozed Black intellectual thought and activism. I considered it logical that an HBCU would present an even more politically informed and radicalized student.

Such expectations were quickly dashed as my initial meeting with students conveyed the undeniable reality that they were unfamiliar with historical figures such as Assata Shakur, Marcus Garvey, Paul Robeson, Fred Hampton, Ida B. Wells-Barnett, and Asa Philip Randolph. None of them had read any of the agreed-upon classic Black texts. As if things could not get any worse, they hadn’t read The Autobiography of Malcolm X, yet, they had read, The Diary of Anne Frank, as a high school requirement. It goes without saying that if my students were unaware of Black heroes and heroines, the strategies they propagated were similarly foreign.

Now, I understand that it is my duty to teach my students, however, the fact that they were unaware of the above individuals depressed me.

I am sure that most African-American Studies Professors would be troubled by their students’ ignorance regarding major figures such as Marcus Garvey and his call for Pan-Africanism, a call for persons of African descent around the globe to join forces in an effort to uplift Africa and her descendants wherever they are on the Planet. I realize that most of the blame for my students not knowing falls at the feet of school administrators whose decisions regarding curriculum and daunting “end of the road tests” that invariably handcuff teachers into “teaching to the test” and nothing else.

This matter of the voluminous dangers revolving around not knowing returned into my orbit with the recent success of the ADOS (American descendants of slavery) movement. According to its website, ADOS explains the reasons for its creation.

#ADOS was started by the brain trust of Howard graduate and host of the Breaking Brown political show, Yvette Carnell, and UCLA alumnus and attorney, Antonio Moore who hosts the weekly radio show Tonetalks. ADOS—which stands for American Descendants of Slavery—seeks to reclaim/restore the critical national character of the African American identity and experience, one grounded in our group’s unique lineage, and which is central to our continuing struggle for social and economic justice in the United States.

ADOS, along with N’COBRA (National Coalition Of Black for Reparations in America) serves as the leading advocates for Blacks to receive reparations for their ancestor’s exploitation from Colonial society through American chattel slavery. The reparations claim is a sound one in a nation where racial bigotry is a staple. Nevertheless, I have chosen to by-pass discussions regarding the legitimacy of reparations in favor of addressing an issue that I believe disturbs the graves of Pan-Africanist leaders such as Marcus Garvey, Kwame Nkrumah, and W.E.B. DuBois.

The issue that I am alluding to is the deep-seated animosity between American Blacks and Africans living in this nation. The comedian Chris Rock once remarked that there was a Civil War going on within Black America between Black folk and Niggas; and according to Rock, “Niggas have got to go.” I believe that there is much validity in Rock’s risqué observation, a truth that can be stretched in the following way; there is a Civil War going on between American Blacks and Africans.

In many ways, this division explains why the leaders of ADOS chose to separate themselves from Africans in their efforts to secure reparations; unfortunately, it appears that this movement has also excluded other Black populations such as the numerically formidable Brazilians strewn throughout the Western Hemisphere.

The blame for the asinine fratricide between Blacks and Africans primarily lays at the feet of Continental Africans. The lack of appreciation for the historic struggles Blacks have undergone to provide first-class citizenship to all “minority groups” has angered Blacks throughout the 20th Century. It appears that Africans either have no understanding of such matters or have even less care as they arrive with unconscionable disdain for Blacks.

The alluded to disdaining gaze and negative perspective of Africans toward Blacks does not hide the undeniable truth that without Blacks storied struggle against Jim Crow, the Black Codes, and an unprecedented post-World War II assault on racial discrimination, bigotry, and a plethora of institutionalized racist structures including, but not limited to, unwritten de’ facto policies, no non-white male would have a “snowballs chance in hell” of improving their plight without vowing to support the interests of existing white male power-brokers.

Without “American Blacks” contributions, Africans political voice would be muted and traditional avenues of improvement (employment, education, and group cohesiveness) production centers of frustration.

Alas, the condescending nature of Africans toward those “American Blacks” that they have refused to embrace, killed any real possibility of the Pan-Africanist constructs espoused by Garvey or Malcolm X. It is this spirit of non-cooperation that best explains how Europeans, Asians, and Indian populations have been able to ravage the Continent of Africa with precision.

One thing is for sure, Blacks will never accept Continental Africans denigration of the very population that gifted them the first-class citizenship and relative equality that they enjoy on the North American continent. Sadly, a battlefield with adversaries (African-Americans vs. Continental Africans) lives where cooperation, support, and mutual-respect should exist.

Although I would like to cite ADOS and their push for reparations devoid of Africans strewn throughout the diaspora as indicative of what has gone wrong in this colossal failure of Pan-Africanist politics, the truth of the matter is that this relationship has been strained for centuries, not decades. There doesn’t appear to be any desire, let alone concerted efforts, to heal a divide whose genesis not a single African could reasonably articulate.

Staff Writer; Dr. James Thomas Jones III

Official websitehttp://www.ManhoodRaceCulture.com

One may also connect with this brother via TwitterDrJamestJones.


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