The world of Black liberal intellectuals is wringing its hands again, in the face of yet another Supreme Court decision restricting public school integration.
Now is the time for a collective resolution among Black intellectuals and the Black masses to: Do For Self!
The Court’s final ruling of its 2007 term involved school assignment plans in Seattle and Louisville. In a narrow 5-4 decision, the Court held a virtual funeral for the landmark Brown v. Board decision in 1954, which unanimously declared, on paper at least, an end to segregated schools. Those segregated Black schools were never meant by Whites to be equal with their schools, but rather than fighting for “our own,” for the best education for our people, we have spent our intellectual energy, fighting to be in schools with Whites.
Ever since the Civil War, courageous and well meaning–but sadly misguided–men and women, the Black descendants of slaves have been seeking freedom. Unfortunately however, the advocates of integration and assimilation into the society which enslaved us have been leading us in the wrong direction along that road. There should be little wonder then, why after all these decades, we have yet to reach the Freedom Gate.
A little history might help us understand.
The Civil War was seen correctly by Black people as a fight for their freedom from the shackles of chattel slavery. White Northerners, such as President Abraham Lincoln, saw it as a fight to preserve the “Union,” and to bring the rebellious slave-holding Confederate States back into the United States. The Confederates wanted to maintain slavery. The Unionists wanted a United nation. The slaves just wanted freedom.
After the war, although the United States declared us emancipated, the “freed slaves” were not equipped with the means to go free. The federal government appeared, at first, to make an effort do some things right.
The Congress passed legislation to give 40 acres and a mule to each freed male slave. President Andrew Johnson vetoed that legislation, and the farmland which had been confiscated from the treasonous Southern plantation owners who rose up in rebellion against the United States government, was returned to those same former slave owners. No land and no reparations were given to the slaves for their 300 years of free labor, which made the Whites in the North as well as in the South–in all America–very wealthy.
Ironically, the public school system in America was created to teach the freed slaves. This explains in part why Southern, so-called “conservative” Whites oppose the very existence of public schools for Blacks or for Whites, for that matter.
Since the Civil War the former slave-masters and their children–who literally hate Black people; who taught and practiced White supremacy as their lifestyle–have fought and bitterly resisted every effort to improve the schools and every aspect of the living and conditions of their former slaves. Sadly, the former slaves have only fought to be closer to their former masters.
After the 1954 Brown decision, the Southern states adopted a campaign of “massive resistance” to the Supreme Court’s desegregation ruling. The Court responded that the states must proceed with school integration “with all deliberate speed.” In the 53 years since that ruling, the schools, the neighborhoods and the workplace has never been truly integrated.
The Southerners resisted in the courts; their governors stood in school house doors with their National Guard, they stood in restaurant doors with ax-handles, in order to block desegregation; and their Ku Klux Klan night riders continued what added up to 100 years of Black lynching aimed at violently keeping Blacks “in their place.”
The Black intelligentsia rejected and resisted the race haters, but never learned from them, how deep-seated was their hatred of the former slaves. Now, instead of wearing white sheets, those who harbor a Ku Klux Klan mentality are wearing black judges’ robes.
With this ruling, as liberals correctly complain, the Supreme Court has all but buried the Brown decision, coming almost full circle, back to its 1896 Plessy v. Ferguson decision which declared that segregation was permissible, so long as accommodations for Blacks were “separate, but equal.” We were always separate. We were never equal.
The Black intelligentsia has helped us on the road to freedom, but they continue to lead us in the wrong direction. So the Bible teaches that if the blind lead the blind, they both fall into the ditch.
“The Supreme Court rejected reason, rationality, and respect for all Americans in its decision limiting access to education for all Americans,” Congressional Black Caucus Chair Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick, (D-Mich.) said in a statement after the Court decision. “In rejecting school diversity plans…the Court tears at the very fabric of unity in our nation. We can, and we must, do better for our children and grandchildren.”
But that “unity” of which Rep. Kilpatrick speaks, has always been a mirage.
“We believe that the offer of integration is hypocritical and is made by those who are trying to deceive the Black peoples into believing that their 400-year-old open enemies of freedom, justice and equality are, all of a sudden, their ‘friends,’” the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad declared in 1959 when he issued: “The Muslim Program: What the Muslims Want; What the Muslims Believe.”
“Furthermore, we believe that such deception is intended to prevent Black people from realizing that the time in history has arrived for the separation from the Whites of this nation. If the White people are truthful about their professed friendship toward the so-called Negro, they can prove it by dividing up America with their slaves.”
As post-Civil War history, and now the most recent Supreme Court decision teaches us, White America has no intention of giving freedom, justice and equality to her former slaves, and she certainly does not intend to divide her land or wealth with her former slaves. The Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad has boldly declared that “we must do for self or suffer the consequences.” This decision represents an aspect of the consequences of the failure to do for self. The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan has urged Black people to form a united front for our salvation and independence. He has given his every effort for the unity of Black and oppressed people against the forces of White world supremacy. He has lead us through the Million Man March, Million Family March and now the Millions More Movement. Our only salvation is in our unity and the creation of the Nine Ministries of service to help us ease the suffering in our communities.
Black people can choose to remain like Lazarus, at the rich White man’s gate begging for crumbs which fall from his table, or we can correctly choose to separate and do something for ourselves. For more than 140 years, up from slavery, we have made the incorrect choice, even though we were blessed with Divine Guidance in the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad to guide us to the straight path of liberation. His servant, the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan is an extension of that Divine Guidance.
We should now see clearly, the consequences of making the wrong choice. We should hurry, while time permits, to join on to our own, and do something for ourselves.