ARE BLACK PEOPLE THEIR OWN WORST ENEMY?
By Serwaa Ampaafo
It is difficult to understand the psychology or mentality of Black leaders, let alone people of this community even if you have lived with them or are a Black person yourself. The psychologists and college professors always claim to know this nation but clearly they do not really understand the extent of its sick and twisted mentality at times.
We sometimes complain that White people enslaved us but we too often forget that was the very thing the majority of African kingdoms were engaged in way before the introduction of the TransAtlantic slavery.
In Ghana for instance, the Asantes enslaved people from the across all known territories at the the time through wars and sometimes members from their own tribe were not even spared. Most Chiefs at the time of the TransAtlantic slave trade were willing participants in the trade of their own Black sons, daughters, subjects and sometimes people captured through war.
In fact, the Black nation has over the years bordered on animalistic instincts when they savage each other in townships or elsewhere in Africa hence the murder rate amongst Black communities is higher than any other nations in the world.
It doesn’t matter whether one is in South Africa, the rest of Africa , Europe or even America , the same scenario obtains.
The black nation is therefore interesting in more ways than one, interesting because too often we point an accusatory finger to other nations as our oppressors and exonerate our own leaders who commit the worst atrocities against their own in order to hold on to power.
When we point to others, in the process we conveniently forget to acknowledge or lose sight of the fact that four of our own fingers point right back at us, especially to our leaders as the worst oppressors than their White counterparts in their time of rule.
This is a bold statement and one which will probably stir anger in many but at times the truth must be told no matter how painful or inconvenient it may be.
History is littered with examples of bad Black leaders and tyrants in the continent and here one can mention people like Idi Amin Dada, Paul Biya, Omar Al Bashir, Mobutu Se Seseko to mention but a few, who are responsible for many deaths and atrocities.
What is even more sad is that their peers cover up and protect them from prosecution for human rights violations at the Hague under the guise that, “sovereign nations have a right to self determination” .
There are more warlords in Africa than probably anywhere else in the world and this too points to the above-referred sick and twisted mentality of not putting value to human life by Africans. This is particularly true because as Black people we tend to work tirelessly against each other in order that the other can fail.
In his book, Capitalist Nigger, author Chika Onyeni captures this salient but negative feature of our propensity not to support each other, be it in business or in other trades. Some may question what do I mean or where am I going with this accusation and others may even accuse me of being righteous or suggest that I am denigrating Black people or infer that I am overly harsh or generalising.
Granted, there are many heinous atrocities which were committed by our colonisers and apartheid oppressors but none are worst than the ill treatment which is meted out to our people by our very own Black leaders. This begs the question: why do we as Black people allow ourselves to be abused?
Any perceived harshness and generalisation aside, the truth of the matter is that whilst for many years we have believed that the real enemy is the Whiteman who oppressed us for centuries, the reality of Black rule over the years since independence- shows that our leaders are our own worst enemies.
So evil are some of these leaders than they can even murder or persecute their own comrades for as long as they can get to cling onto power perpetually. Now, I am not suggesting that other nations do not murder or persecute each other for power but this is more prevalent amongst Black communities than in any other community.
Finally, as far as I know, the black race is the only race to consistently and willingly throw ourselves under the bus and claim self-awareness under some misguided attempt to lay claim to a culture we never really understood in the first place.
In this light, Is it safe to say the black-man is his own worst enemy?
Musa Xulu; PW