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The Matrix of Racism

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Can blacks be racist? The answers will vary on how racism is defined.  Let’s look at the matrix of racism. If it is defined it as hatred toward another “race” (even though race has no real meaning), then blacks can be racist on an individual basis. If you define racism as the belief that racial differences construct a dominance of one race over another by some false biological argument then the answer is yes once again, and again on an individual basis. However, if racism is a distinct system of institutionalized advantage by those with most of the control and opportunity, then we are not looking at a position that blacks have power in; to oppress in institutional ways. From that standpoint the answer is a big no. As an identifiable group whose oppression is the result of skin color and other physical features, blacks do not control the joystick of power, nor do they control the power of privilege. On an individual plane, blacks can be as racist as anybody else, usually in the form of calling other ethnic groups by racist terminology; such as “Meskin, chink, peckerwood” and other derogatory terms. However, these individual foolish comments cannot be equated to the power of white supremacy and how it is a controlling mechanism.

 

In quoting Joe Feagin, one of the past presidents of the American Sociological Association, “Racism is more than a matter of individual prejudice and scattered episodes of discrimination designed by African Americans to exclude White Americans from full participation in the rights, privileges, and benefits of this society. Black (or other minority) racism would require not only a widely accepted racist ideology directed at whites but also the power to systematically exclude whites from opportunities and rewards in major economic, cultural, and political institutions. While there are Black Americans with anti-white prejudices, and there are instances of black discrimination against whites, these examples are not central to the core operations of U.S. society and are not an entrenched structure of institutionalized racism.”

 

According to the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination,  “The term ‘racial discrimination’ shall mean any distinction, exclusion, restriction or preference based on race, color, descent, or national or ethnic origin which has the purpose or effect of nullifying or impairing the recognition, enjoyment or exercise, on an equal footing, of human rights and fundamental freedoms in the political, economic, social, cultural or any other field of public life.” From this universal definition one can see that individual blacks have no real power to inflict mass discrimination upon others. There is a big “however” in any case; we are all obliged to confront all forms of racism whether it is coming from a society or from confused individuals.  Perhaps Nelson Mandela said it right on the day of his release from an apartheid prison; “I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. . . . I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons will live together in harmony with equal opportunities. It is an ideal, which I hope to live for, and to see realized. But my Lord, if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.”

 

According to the United Nations declaration we should “Undertake to adopt immediate and effective measures, particularly in the fields of teaching, education, culture and information, with a view to combating prejudices which lead to racial discrimination and to promoting understanding, tolerance and friendship among nations and racial or ethnical groups, as well as to propagating the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the United Nations Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination . . . .” White supremacists, neo-confederates, and Nazis don’t want this to happen.

 

What we must do is to take away the myths of racism. We must defeat white supremacy with real history and prove to all that blacks and whites have fought together against racism. The southern bigots do not want to admit that the white abolitionist John Brown was a hero for fighting against slavery in the same light that Malcolm X fought against white supremacy and the belief that whites were devils. For example, if you have not seen the movie or read the book, The Free State of Jones, it is a classic that totally destroys southern racial myths. One of the myths shattered by the book and the movie is the fact that many white soldiers deserted the Confederacy after they realized they were fighting for wealthy slave owning plantation men. After the American Revolutionary War, many whites migrated to Mississippi. Many of these families moved into what became known as Jones County, Mississippi. These white men would later married black women and would declare war against the Confederate States of America (CSA). They became known as “Southern Yankees.”

“. . . many white soldiers deserted the Confederacy after they realized they were fighting for wealthy slave owning plantation men.”

The South has sought to falsify history by denying that thousands of whites deserted the Confederate Army, and in the case of Mississippi actually declared secession from the Confederate States of America (CSA) and defied Jefferson Davis and Robert E. Lee. Ancestors of the slave owners adopted fake history and falsely educated folks with lies which enforced an inflexible philosophy of racism. This led to erecting statues and symbols to enshrine bigotry across time by a movement called the “Redeemers of the Lost Cause.” These so-called redeemers were actually racists that sought to distort the true history of the war and the fact that the Civil War was mainly about white supremacy and slavery. In order to create racial myths, the former slave owners had to hide the fact that thousands of whites refused to support the South and its racist belief system.

 

Jones County, the home of Newton Knight, a real anti-racist white hero, lived in the Piney Woods of Mississippi.  It is important to understand that there are three types of “whites” (remember there were no whites before they came to America, but lost their Irish, German, and Italian roots and were turned into whites), anti-racist whites, color-blind racist whites, and racist whites. Slavery and segregation was the American dream for a time, and though most whites did not own slaves, many of them still supported white supremacy. This, in part, is what led Newton Knight to lead a rebellion against the racist minions of Jefferson Davis. In 1864, Newton Knight his company of soldiers to overthrew the Confederate power structure and raised the United States flag over the courthouse in Ellisville, Mississippi. They created the Free State of Jones, and it essentially seceded from the CSA.

 

Across Mississippi, the adversaries of the slave owners were often tormented in what whites from that time described as, “A reign of terror.” Many were forced into the Confederate army at gunpoint, and told that they would be killed if they did not support the slave-owner cause. The Confederate authorities passed a law called the, “Twenty-Negro Law.” This law allowed planters who owned twenty slaves to be discharged from the draft. This made it possible for wealthy whites to avoid fighting and make poor whites die for them. In essence, poor whites fought an unjust war by being sucker punched by the wealthy plantation owners. In short, Confederate soldiers were pawns of the slave owners. Many poor whites during that time said the law, “Made it a rich man’s war and a poor man’s fight.”

“Twenty-Negro Law.” This law allowed planters who owned twenty slaves to be discharged from the draft. This made it possible for wealthy whites to avoid fighting and make poor whites die for them.”

Confederate power brokers also inflicted more pain upon poor whites with a “tax-in-kind” scheme. This tariff allowed tax packrat collectors in Mississippi to take whatever they wanted from poor whites. According to research on several legitimate online websites, “They took meat from the smokehouses. They took horses, hogs, chickens, and corn. They took cloth the women had saved to make clothes for the children. Confederate Colonel William N. Brown reported that the corrupt Confederate tax officials had done more to demoralize Jones County than the whole Yankee army” (Source: mshistorynow.mdah.state.ms.us/articles/309/newton-knight-and-the-legend-of-the-free-state-of-jones). So much for the noble cause of the South! Most of what we were taught about the Confederacy was pure lies and some still believe this hogwash. The soldiers that fought for the Confederacy should be recognized as victimized poor people that were manipulated by an evil power.

Knight helped black slaves escape from Confederate authorities. He married a black woman named Rachel Knight and defied southern segregation even in death as he demanded to be buried next to his wife, which was done.  Newt Knight’s modern relatives, both black and white, are alive today to tell the story about how many whites refused to fight for Robert E. Lee. During the Civil War many poor whites felt they had more in common with black slaves than with slave owners. Jim Crow finally set in after the defeat of Reconstruction, and Confederate statues and monuments began to jump up everywhere by racist design. Fortunately, cities across America are removing these symbols of hatred.  San Antonio should be the Free State against Racism and Confederate Statues.

— By Mario Salas

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The Discussion w The Writer Fred Blacks in the Media: Have We Made Good Progress?

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Instead of Inviting Experts Trump Invites Two “Sambos” to the White House

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By Mario Marcel Salas

Topics of discussion at the White House with Kanye West were laid out in a statement by the professional liar and White House story teller Sarah Sanders. However, this bizarre meeting was as crazy as it gets. Trump invited to “Negroes,” not black men, who support his madness, to a meeting at the White House while people in Florida walked through the flood waters and ruins of their homes.
If Kanye West thinks that Trump is going to make life better for black people he really needs to get back to his medication if that has anything to do with it. According to Trump in referring to Kanye, “He’s been a terrific guy . . . . You know, he loves what we’re doing for African-American jobs, for so many different things. Median income, as you see, at an all-time high. Poverty level at the best rate — meaning the lowest rate so far. And Kanye is a smart guy. And he sees that.”
With the November elections coming up Trump would have done better for himself by focusing on the flooding and devastation in Florida instead of two ignorant people that are lost in the swamp that Trump created. Trump also had Jim Brown, the old retiree of the NFL, who has said a lot of ignorant things himself over the years and has little credibility if any, not to mention that he sold out his people in a very “SAMBO” way. Jim Brown and Kanye West are no experts on anything that has to do with the problems in the black community and neither is Trump. So, it was indeed a gathering of imbeciles.

West has met with Trump before in which he pretends to be some sort of spokes person for the black community. Shut up and sit down Kanye you don’t represent us, you represent Trump. I don’t have a problem with rookies addressing the problems with the criminal justice system but advice coming from these two political clowns is hardly worth listening too. Yep, I bet Trump and West have been “friends for a long time,” but apparently not long enough as anyone with a brain knows that Trump is a racist that is always looking for a plantation Negro to claim as his mascot. Maybe Kanye will become the new Omarosa! Trump has done a few minor things for the black community in a less than sincere attempt to pretend that he supports the black community. Pardoning one black person from prison is hardly any way to claim some sort of progress that blacks face in terms of police brutality and the thousands that are in prison from false charges that Trump never thought about pardoning.

Can you believe that Kanye said he might run for president? If he was so mentally unstable I would laugh. One commentator, Tara Setmayer, called him another “token Negro of the Trump administration.”

Can you believe that Kanye said he might run for president? If he was so mentally unstable I would laugh. One commentator, Tara Setmayer, called him another “token Negro of the Trump administration.” She was nice; many of us are calling him a SAMBO! While the IQ level at the White House is already extremely low, Kanye and Jim Brown just dropped it another notch. According to Clay Cane, in writing for CNN, “The meeting between Trump and Kanye was high-octane foolishness and one of many debasing moments in Trump’s circus-like White House.” Kanye loves the hat that says “Make America Great Again” when in fact it is a racist dog whistle to that was used and is being used to fire up white racists. According to CNN, “Comedian D.L. Hughley compared this meeting to that of a black slave and his white master.”

Let us the remember the sweet embrace that Kanye gave Donald Trump as they both enjoyed a metaphorical sweet chicken dinner on the plantation with Secretary Sanders. Beyonce and Jay-Z have severed all ties with Kanye South and his wife, Kim “The Disgrace” Kardashian West, over Kanye’s misplaced support of President Trump and his wife’s visits to the White House. Maybe Kanye West and Jim Brown will get to ride in a carriage under the moonlight to the smell of magnolias and sweet julep mint tea and sit on the porch of the slave master.

 

According to Ta Nehisi Coates, a strong black writer, “Like Trump, West is narcissistic, ‘the greatest artist of all time,’ he claimed, helming what would soon be ‘the biggest apparel company in human history.’ And, like Trump, West is shockingly ignorant.” Kanye West may be destined to become a slogan that often repeated by blacks that are aware of racist intent, and that slogan or quote, emphasized by Mr. Coates,  “I’m not black, I’m OJAY” may soon been attached to a political buffoon that is headed toward a tragedy. That tragedy being a falling from popularity and success to a political speck of being that can only be called the walking dead. Perhaps Kanye, and his loving friend Trump, have Halloween in mind, when the horrors of ghosts and goblins emerge—a fantasy of sorts that speaks of comedy about that which is dead.

The elections that are coming up are more important that the Obama elections, for we are faced with a racial juggernaut of injustice. We are faced with Republican candidates who are some of the biggest cowards the world has ever known. They are afraid of losing their precious positions as elected representatives. They trail behind Trump following along in the puke he leaves behind. It is of super importance that we get out the vote and try our best to remove the phantom menaces of the Republican copies of the Trump regime.

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Editorial

Some Historic San Antonio Black History – Part 2

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According to George Nelson, slaves were sold at the Alamo, the Cradle of Texas Liberty, during the Civil War. In quoting an Express News article in 1917 a Captain Bill Edgar said slaves were sold on a “Platform” which was “one of the old slave markets where Negroes were put up for auction.” Captain Bill Edgar was a member of the Knights of the Golden Circle, a Ku Klux Klan-type group in the 1850s that came before the 1866 Klan.

On November 1, 1917, the U.S. army held court-martials at the chapel at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio. The military court tribunals indicted the men of the 24th Black Infantry for participating in the so-called “Houston Riot,” Nineteen soldiers were hanged for trying to help a black woman being brutalized by Houston Police, and the need to protect themselves from white harassment and mobs. White officers who faced courts-martial were released, and none of the white civilians were brought to trial for their crimes. Pastor Isaiah Kelly delivered their last rites. Ironically, Pastor Kelly, a black Baptist preacher, would later be exposed as working with the KKK by W.E. Dubois in the Crisis magazine. The brave men were killed by a military kangaroo court, hanged in the back of the Ft. Sam Houston golf course.

Charles Bellinger, a black leader in San Antonio, basically was able to decide who would be mayor in San Antonio. Bellinger was a black political boss and according to the Texas State Historical Association, “Bellinger entered local politics in 1918 and, with the aid of black ministers, developed support among black voters for John W. Tobin, who served as sheriff and mayor, and later for the Quin family. In return the city government provided the black neighborhood with paved and lighted streets, plumbing, a meeting hall, and a branch library, as well as improved recreation facilities and schools. Black political participation set San Antonio apart from most Texas and southern cities and stimulated the state legislature to require a white primary in the 1920s, a move that led to court decisions in the 1930s and 1940s declaring such voter exclusion unconstitutional.”

It should be noted that San Antonio Mayors Charles Quin (1877–1960) and his political opponent Fontaine Maury Maverick (1895–1954) were ideological different in that Quin was a KKK sympathizer while Maverick was a liberal. However, both of them were racists as Maverick once called Charles Bellinger a “black baboon.” Unfortunately, some leftist groups refuse to recognize the racism of so-called liberals or socialists like writers Mark Twain, Jack London, and others. Even though Quin was a KKK sympathizer he was supported by black political boss Charles Bellinger. Bellinger would be called an Uncle Tom by NAACP president Harold Tarver for doing so. Maverick, the so called liberal, would eventually team up with segregationist Walter McAllister, who would later become mayor, and plotted to send Bellinger to prison. Bellinger was convicted for tax evasion and sent to the federal prison at Leavenworth. However, Mayor Quin would plot with the President of the United States, Franklin Roosevelt, which resulted in Bellinger being pardoned.  Hence, black political power was manipulated by a conservative African American, a racist KKK mayor, and a racist liberal. It was a very trying time for blacks in San Antonio.

The Municipal Auditorium was segregated as was the San Antonio Library for many years all the way to 1955. A rope was placed down the center isle by the San Antonio Fire Department which separated “white” from “colored” ad was clearly marked with signs attached to the ropes. The Majestic Theatre was segregated for many years with blacks and dark-skinned Mexicans having to go around to the back of the theatre on College Street. The only place they could set was on the upper balcony which was often referred to as “N” heaven. San Pedro Park was segregated as well and only on Thursdays could blacks go to the amusement park. This was referred to as “Colored Day.”

During the era of segregation, blacks needed places to stay while driving across the country. Segregated restaurants, restrooms, gas stations, hotels, and other facilities were designated “white only.” As a result, a book was published called “The Negro Motorist Green-Book.” This book listed places where blacks could utilize segregated facilities and San Antonio had at least 3 places listed: one at 1216 Dawson Street, 127 N. Mesquite Street (near St Paul’s Methodist Church) and the other at 245 Canton Street. The book was written by Victor H. Green, a black entrepreneur and available in 1941.

The Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), after organizing a Black Student Union at San Antonio College in 1968-1969, went on to organize all of the colleges and universities in San Antonio.  The organization was heavily influenced by the Black Panther Party for Self Defense, adopted Black Panther survival programs, and sold the Panther paper on street corners in downtown San Antonio. San Antonio SNCC was both Black Panther and SNCC.  During this period, Rev. Claude Black, of Mt Zion First Baptist Church, supported SNCC, and led some of the first protests and marches for Martin Luther King in San Antonio when King was still alive. Rev. Black can be credited with the first protest march in support of Martin Luther King in 1965. Later, activists would lead a march in 1968 and 1969 from the “Eastside Y” to Mt Zion First Baptist Church. These would the first marches in protest of the death of King and for Civil Rights. In 1972, the first memorial marches would be organized by Rev. R, A. Callies. In 1972, the initial marches were very small, but former SNCC members and community organizations organized support to increase the numbers for the memorial marches. Thanks primarily to the organizing efforts of former SNCC-Panther members, and the support of the community, it became the largest march in the country, and is now an event that is both a celebration march and a protest march. Black Lives Matter and other protest groups have participated recently and in the past.

In 1969, SNCC organized a large protest after the beating death of Bobby Joe Phillips by San Antonio Police. The medical examiner ruled his death a homicide but no officer was ever indicted. SNCC organized the First Free Breakfast Program in San Antonio, modeled after the Black Panthers for Self Defense, at Antioch Baptist Church on Walters Street. The program was shut down as a result of an FBI program of illegal spying and the work of a black informant photographer who wanted to steal the project. Eventually, the San Antonio Independent School District (SAISD) adopted the free breakfast program, as did other schools, not only in San Antonio but across the country. This was done to prevent black activists from feeding the poor and educating them on the real history of America.

In 1974, SNCC organized the African Liberation Support Committee (ALSC) in San Antonio and sent three representatives to attend the conference at Howard University and the protest at the White House. The protest was to support the liberation struggles in Southern Africa and freedom for Nelson Mandela. The FBI, through an illegal program called COINTELPRO, tried to sabotage a local Catholic institution by threatening Sister Mary Boniface at the Healy Murphy Learning Center. They forced her to cancel the showing of an African Liberation film. The FBI also used an informant at KAPE radio, the program director, to sabotage the films. In 1975 or 1976, the San Antonio SNCC lead organizer resigned and a few years later the organization officially disbanded as the last Black Panther Chapter and the last SNCC chapter in the United States. After the main organizer resigned, the organization considered itself a Black Panther Chapter, and changed it outlook regarding women in the movement, fully supporting women to be members of the group. Although there were women members in SNCC in 1969, some in the movement were concerned that if a woman were killed it might mean a death blow to the entire organization. Hence, women were often discouraged from joining. However, all women would be welcomed after 1975.  It would eventually be recognized as a Panther chapter. Members of the group would go on to fight for civil and human rights by creating other organizations.

In 1990, Frontline 2000, a civil and human rights organization in San Antonio, was responsible for securing the Texas Martin Luther King State Holiday by threatening a boycott and civil action in court if a Super Bowl was allowed to be played in Houston.  The National Football League had already gone on record that they would not play in Arizona unless that state honored Dr. King. The San Antonio delegation headed by Rick Greene and Mario Marcel Salas approached the Texas Speaker of the House at the time , Gib Lewis, and demanded that Texas honor Martin Luther King or a boycott would take place and a suit would be filed in court. Only a few states had not honored Dr. King at the time and Texas was one of them.  At the meeting at the Texas State Capital, the speaker pledged that the bill would come out of committee. The bill was being held up by the Calendars Committee of the House which was headed by Pete Laney. Pete Laney was criticized for holding up the bill, but the Speaker ordered the bill out of committee. Hence, Texas created an official state holiday in honor of Dr. King. Rick Greene was the former SNCC-Panther activist that came up with the winning tactic to get Texas to honor Dr. King.

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