OUR STRATEGIC THEORY, DILUTED
Awhile back, I stopped reading Sons of Africa because there was too much useless info filtering in there. It’s a great site, and there is quite a bit of important news and updates which come in, yet there is a great deal of irrelevant nonsense, too. Much of the informative stuff I can get on sites with fewer posts. As for discussion, Hands Off Assata (Assata Shakur Forums) is the best place with a black working class feel. There, people mix it up in lively discussions around any number of topics, and there are different areas where you can find the type of discussion which best suits you. But SOA, like any Yahoo group including mine (URC Discuss), doesn’t have a feature which allows moderators to file posts under different headings.
Now, people cannot focus on the main points of our struggle so as to form a strategy when they believe they are outflanked, out organized and out gunned. And for this reason, due to the variety of wild ideas in the name of Pan Africanism, the discussion in our community has become as diluted as it has from substance abuse or neo-colonialism or any other cause. One claimant to Pan Africanism on SOA, one Chief Elder Osiris Akkebala, justified introducing a rabid neo-nazi onto the board by alleging in effect that he will join with anybody to elevate his cause. We have to remember this is a polemical struggle involving actionable ideas, history and movements.
On the other hand, those of us who think along strategic lines — rather than subscribing to the panic theory, the hopeless theory, the otherworldly theory, and anything else which makes the mind putty in the hands of the oppressor, to paraphrase Steve Bantu Biko — we may better recognize the pressure points in Imperialism and what WE must do to turn pressure points into cracks, cracks into fissures, and fissures into the ruin of white power. Black Panther Party Deputy Chairman Fred Hampton said ‘we don’t fight racism with racism anymore than we fight fire with fire; we fight racism with Solidarity,’ by recruiting the staunchest anti-racist elements of the white community. And we don’t fight racism by joining with the most bloodsucking, marginal supporters of Imperialism.
So believing in the wrong knowledge is useless. Knowledge can exist without anybody having to buy into it, and we can invent ideas and theories which render exactly no service to our cause. While Santa Claus doesn’t exist, people make him real because they tell their kids there is a Santa and then their kids demand stuff at Christmas time and then parents run around like headless chickens serving a notion they planted in a child’s mind. We must calm our minds, breathe deeply, and try to look at the question as a cola nut, with a shell that protects a kernel. The kernel is what we are after because the shell is useless to us, unless we are playing Three Card Monty. We need knowledge that will render a service to our cause and the nonsense about the US being a corporation, the laws on martial decrees and citizenship, the archaic 3/5ths of a man rule and the one-drop law, the Illuminati and other passe issues are not going to liberate a single African in the Americas or in the Motherland.
In all these Chicken Little discussions, — which are found almost everywhere, from the barbershop to the bar and up in the churches and on the street corners — nobody has any idea about what can be done. Nobody wants to know what can be done. Its like Frances Cress-Welsing’s Color Theory of Racial Confrontation, whereby she identifies a problem (like she is the first black person to identify racism!) and then proposes no solution to the problem. Obviously, moving away from white folks is the clear solution, given her premise. But she is no Back-to-Africa advocate. So what does she propose? Psychotherapy! Guess what? If Frantz Fanon, who was a psychotherapist, had suggested psychotherapy for Algeria instead of a liberation war, Algerians would either have killed him as a collaborator or else took his advice and still be a French colony. So much for that revisionist game Three Card Monty.
The black middle class, being the class of collaborators and traitors, does not kno what it takes to build a revolution or to even make qualitative change for our community. Not every black middle class individual is a traitor. But as a class, that is its historical role. It traded in nationalism for mobility, collaboration for integration. It exists solely thru its neo-colonial relationship to international finance capital, Imperialism. In Atlanta, the Mecca of the black middle class, a war is being waged against the historical roots of the Black Power Movement. Willie Mukasa Ricks, founder of the slogan Black Power, has been assaulted, jailed and banned from Morehouse campus. Jamil Al Amin, SNCC coordinator and former Black Panther, has been imprisoned. These repressive developments are due more to the initiative of the black middle class (on behalf of Imperialism) than to any other source.
These questions without answers, that is, without solutions that can be applied as a strategy for our liberation, derive in whole from the black middle class. In fact, the question posed by the black middle class and joined by its natural ally, the lumpen proletariat (the parasite within the working class) has only deepened our oppression.
Therefore, when we discuss the contradictions within our community we see giants in the African liberation struggle having to compete with mental midgets. People prefer to read Dr York’s opinions on Africa rather than Cheik Anta Diop, John Henrik Clarke and Walter Rodney. Our community gets offered Khalid Muhammad and Malik Shabazz’s fake panthers, in substitution to Huey P, Bobby Seale, Fred Hampton and George Jackson. Folks are no longer able to make the distinction between revolutionary theory versus harebrained half-baked idle talk. This has been a petty bourgeois trend ever since Floyd McKissick stole Willie Ricks’ slogan and cried, “Black power means green power, money!”
Here, you have freedom fighters who have built up reputations, careers and movements. These martyrs have liberated minds and bodies, while on the other hand you have limelight seekers, slick talkers and masters of Three Card Monty. The New Black Panther Party doesn’t even reproduce the theory of Huey P or George Jackson or Fred Hampton. The NBPP does not understand revolutionary theory. It has no grasp of democratic-centralism, criticism/self-criticism, revolutionary class theory, the leadership role of women, community programs, the Little Red Book or anything the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense committed itself towards implementing. The FBI labeled Huey P’s organization “the greatest internal threat to the security of the United States.” Those Black Panthers were jailed, imprisoned, exiled and assassinated for their groundbreaking work. The NBPP stole their name and doesn’t even pay them lip service. On this count, the NBPP is not Pan Africanist, not revolutionary, and not a freedom fighting organization. In the sense that the Panthers read Nkrumah, Fanon, and Amilcar Cabral, they were Pan Africanists. So what is the NBPP?
We are engaged in a polemical struggle, combatting a crisis in thinking. Why would anybody propagate a theory which has no potential to liberate our people? We have to understand background info is used for agitational purposes. Citizenship — based on the one drop rule, based on the Dred Scott Decision, based on the Emancipation Proclamation — is nothing but background information that we use as an agitational point. We do not develop theories around background info. It is factual, that is enuf. We build theories around our current conditions, things which effect our everyday lives, and the things which tell us what is important inform us who we are speaking with.
Unemployment, homelessness, the prison system, drugs and violence, the war against our community. That is critically important to the black working class. Other things, ephemeral at times, remain of varying importance to the middle class. My struggle is immediate, right here and now. It is in my face. It does not appear to me in the form of a document, a writ, a speech, a conversation. My struggle is the struggle for survival, the struggle to change my conditions, the struggle to rise above my conditions and bring along those who have suffered with me. Not just my family, but my community. My struggle is immediate and glaring. I do not need anybody to define it for me. It is the struggle of my neighbor to feed himself, to clothe himself. It is the struggle of my stepdaughter to get thru school without being sexually assaulted, to excel at her studies, and to transform her world and her community. Nobody needs to go into an extensive expose on black citizenship or the Illuminati to do that. Black workers still have our feet firmly planted on god’s good earth turned sour under Imperialism. Peace.