If Black Folks Have To Beg For Rights, They Are Not Truly Free
On grappling with the fact, freedom is only for White people.
Black People Aren’t Free
I turned on the television for the first time in weeks and was annoyed at the discussions surrounding voting rights in America. We Black folks are literally sitting around watching a bunch of old White folks to decide if my people get the right to vote for who they want to represent them. It’s become increasingly obvious we aren’t free. Can you imagine what the enslaved must have felt like watching rich, White plantation owners and businessmen discuss their lives, rights, and freedoms as if they were property?
Johnny Silvercloud did an amazing job breaking down how little freedoms Black folks enjoy in America as well as the rationale for that lack. They are the freedoms White folks have and take for granted every single day. Ain’t no way in hell we can consider ourselves a democracy when Black folks don’t have the Freedom of Emotion, Freedom of Space (Appearance), Freedom of Memory, Freedom of Healing (Recovery), Freedom of Self-Defense, or the Freedom to Protect the Other Five. This was one of the first pieces by Johnny Silvercloud I ever read, but it made a huge impact on my life because it helped me to understand how little freedom I actually had as an African American woman living in America. He speaks as a retired veteran and former freedom fighter for people across the globe.
Silvercloud’s piece helped me to better understand the illusion of inclusion.
Six Freedoms Black People Do Not Have Under a White Supremacy
The Six Freedoms Kept From Black Folk’s Grasp
Freedom for Black folks, much like that notorious inclusion word, is nothing more than an illusion rich and/or powerful White American men and women come up with to keep everyday White folks from feeling like oppressors and embarrassed about their lineages while doing White Supremacy’s bidding. The fact White men and women along with a host of gatekeeping People of Color and Blacks in Congress are debating rules and rights to keep Black folks and other minorities from voting is confirmation Blacks and African Americans in certain communities (the poorest and Blackest) are not free.
Only White people are free, which leads me to the illusion of inclusion. White people continually perpetuate the lie we all have rights and we’re all equal. We’re not. Nothing shows us how equal we are like our very own White-run state and federal governments. They work in tandem giving us all the illusion of Black inclusion in society while at the same time snatching or altering the very rights we’re all supposed to have access to. We don’t have a democracy. They [Whites] do.
Only White people live in a democracy and are allowed to have democracies. They are the only people in the modern world who have always had democracies. Black folks live in an autocracy and are only allowed to live in autocracies. Even if there is a Black state, it’s mostly governed or entangled with White Supremacy which determines how free and prosperous they truly are. Black states [Black nations and Black collectives across the diaspora] are the only people in the modern world who must live in such a manner.
White Supremacy will not have it any other way.
Black Folks Aren’t Free To Vote In Their Best Interests
If Black people must wait on White people to give them the right to vote and to oversee how states give and revoke rights, then Black folks aren’t free. If Black folks aren’t don't have the autonomy to determine which days they’ll celebrate their independence and to declare holidays, they are not free. If Black people cannot choose who they desire to lead them, they are not free.
For the last few years, White folks have been making decisions about the Voting Rights Act. I’m not going into a bunch of details about it because folks should know by now why the Act even exists in the first place. If you don’t know, research it. In any event, White folks have been playing football with our rights, putting them into bills that expire and require renewal or strengthening. If Black citizens need a bill to give the same rights for things White citizens can do, that means Black citizens aren’t free and White citizens dictate which rights Black citizens have and don’t have.
America doesn’t have a democracy. If Black folks would come to terms with this fact, perhaps they could stop supporting groups who oppress them collectively. You can’t end White Supremacy continuing to vote for White people. White people can’t end White rule by sitting on their asses expecting Black folks to do the heavy lifting. That’s not how this works. It’s just not how it works. Democracy has led to tyranny and subjugation for African American Black people which continues to this day.
Black people must begin to prepare for what always happens when White people feel threatened, and White people should prepare to go back to normal. Black people will continue to be oppressed, and White people will continue to be free, still. I don’t know why anyone Black has faith in America anymore, in particular White America, at this juncture. How many ways do they need to let you down to let you know they cannot and will not be able to help us?
The majority of White people on this earth are not interested in Black liberation and/or decreasing White Supremacy despite seeing the damage done. They are only interested in not giving the appearance of being racists, being called racists, and/or being included in the pool of White people who uphold and benefit White Supremacy/racism every hour of every day unless it's one of those moments they are countering racism.
Democracy Is An Illusion
Black people are still treated as property in America controlled by our governments. We are still fighting to be recognized as humans, treated equitably as the dominant society is treated. If we live apart, we are punished. If we live with, we are neglected and excluded. To be an African American Black person is to be in constant fear of having something taken from you, including your life. This message needs to be driven home and received by both White and Black readers. Being born a citizen should guarantee our rights, but it doesn’t. White Supremacy/racism gets to dictate who gets the privilege of having rights.
If Black folks are sitting around waiting on White folks to relitigate their rights, reaffirm their rights, or give them rights despite the fact they are supported to be born with inalienable rights, then Black people need to understand they truly are not free. Get it in your spirit and then learn to live and fight accordingly.
This illusion of inclusion propaganda must die in Black people so that we can finally see the permanence of White Supremacy/Racism. The illusion of inclusion must also die in White people too. It needs to die in them so that they can see who they are. Ending White rule is all about White folks not choosing White people to lead. Until there is a decrease in White governance, we cannot and will see permanence in Black upward mobility and freedom.
Ending White rule means ending White dominance, trusting Black self-determination, and relinquishing Black rights. You can’t end White Supremacy voting for White people, and you can’t free Black people by supporting White political leaders. This goes for all people.
Being an antiracist means making decisions that destroy opportunities for White folks in power to engage in racial discrimination and rights infringement.
If Black folks need legislation for something White folks are guaranteed yet we’re born in the same nation, Black folks are nothing more than caged birds White folks have fooled into believing they are free. The only way to be free is to wrestle the key to the cage away from White folks, except this time, it needs to be for good.
I now know why caged birds sing. It’s because we want to be free. Revolutions have never created democracies. They just clean out old regimes. To create democracies, the majority of citizens must subscribe to the central principles of a society without having fundamental social conflicts. We do not have such a society nor can we as long as there is White Supremacy/racism. We live in a failed state. We’re a doomed nation ruled by rich oligarchs. America will go down in the history books just like all the other failed democracies because the best country in the world was also the dumbest. We could have learned from history, but we chose to ignore it.
Plato described in great detail how democracies would lead to nations being governed by bullies and brutes. Just take a look at America and most of the world today. His predictions about democracies were spot on.
White Supremacy is a peculiar thing.
Marley K, 2021
Read more about failed democracies. We live in one.
Plato and the Disaster of Democracy
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