2/17/08 Abe's All-Americanism Today

"To make a contented slave it is necessary to make a thoughtless one. It is necessary to darken the moral and mental vision and, as far as possible, to annihilate the power of reason."
Fredrick Douglass

"I will say then that I am not, nor ever have been in favor of bringing about in anyway the social and political equality of the white and black races - that I am not nor ever have been in favor of making voters or jurors of negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people; and I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the white and black races which I believe will forever forbid the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. And inasmuch as they cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I as much as any other man am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race. I say upon this occasion I do not perceive that because the white man is to have the superior position the negro should be denied everything." -- Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865) 16th US President Source: Fourth Debate with Stephen A. Douglas at Charleston, Illinois, September 18, 1858 (The Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln edited by Roy P. Basler, Volume III, pp. 145-146.)

"I have never had a feeling, politically, that did not spring from ... the Declaration of Independence ... that all should have an equal chance. This is the sentiment embodied in the Declaration of Independence ... I would rather be assassinated on this spot than surrender it."
Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865) 16th US President

"My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or to destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that. What I do about slavery, and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union; and what I forbear, I forbear because I do not believe it would help to save the Union. I shall do less whenever I shall believe what I am doing hurts the cause, and I shall do more whenever I shall believe doing more will help the cause."
Abraham Lincoln - (1809-1865) 16th US President Source: Letter to Horace Greeley, August 22, 1862

"Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we."
August 5, 2004

"I'm the commander. See, I don't have to explain why I say things. That's the interesting thing about being the president. Maybe somebody needs to explain to me why they say something, but I don't feel like I owe anybody an explanation."

“People who shut their eyes to reality simply invite their own destruction, and anyone who insists on remaining in a state of innocence long after that innocence is dead turns himself into a monster.”
James Baldwin Biography

"We are the ruling race of the world...We will not renounce our part in the mission of our race, trustee, under God, of the civilization of the world...He has marked us as his chosen people,,,He has made us adept in government that we may administer government among savage and senile peoples."
Sen. Alfred Beveridge

“We face an enemy that has an ideology, they believe things. The best way to describe their ideology is to relate to you the fact that they think the opposite of the way we think.”

"The Negro youth and moderate[s] must be made to understand that if they succumb to revolutionary teachings, they will be dead
J. Edgar Hoover, FBI Chief, re: COINTELPRO against the Black Panther Party

"We need a program of psychosurgery for political control of our society. The purpose is physical control of the mind. Everyone who deviates from the given norm can be surgically mutilated. The individual may think that the most important reality is his own existence, but this is only his personal point of view. This lacks historical perspective. Man does not have the right to develop his own mind. This kind of liberal orientation has great appeal. We must electronically control the brain. Someday armies and generals will be controlled by electric stimulation of the brain."
Dr José Delgado. Director of Neuropsychiatry, Yale University Medical School Congressional Record, No. 26, Vol. 118 February 24, 1974.

The West won the world not by the superiority of its ideas or values or religion but rather by its superiority in applying organized violence. Westerners often forget this fact, non-Westerners never do.
U.S. imperialist Samuel Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order

"Depopulation should be the highest priority of U.S. foreign policy towards the Third World."
Henry Kissinger, National Security Memo 200, dated April 24, 1974

"The concept of race and alleged racial superiority fit into a social requirement of a thoroughly exploitative period in the 'development' of Western (European) man. The idea of race was developed in direct response to the exploitation of other people, to provide both a pretext and a justification for the most unjustifiable conduct, the enslavement, murder, and degradation of millions of human beings".
Dr. Ashley Montagu, The Fallacy of Racial Superiority

The same rebellion, the same impatience, the same anger that exists in the hearts of the dark people in Africa and Asia is existing in the hearts and minds of 20 million black people in this country who have been just as thoroughly colonized as the people in Africa and Asia...

... here in America the seeds of racism are so deeply rooted in the white people collectively, their belief that they are ‘superior’ in some way is so deeply rooted, that these things are in the national white sub consciousness. Many whites are even actually unaware of their own racism until they face some test then their racism emerges in one form or another....
Malcolm X

... America will never be changed unless and until the system which props it up is thoroughly dismantled and rebuilt upon a foundation that is devoid of white racism and all forms of social and economic exploitation. The unjust and deplorable scenario that we are witnessing and experiencing today in America is not new. This US system, which at its core is built upon massive and horribly debilitating slavery, genocide, and the thievery of a continent, will not change of its own accord. Real, systemic change, if it is to be made a reality will ultimately have to be led by, and emanate from, the people on the bottom, not the privileged at or near the top. ...
from We Beg Your Pardon America: Excuse Us While We Puke, by Larry Pinkney

"The "civilized" have created the wretched, quite coldly and deliberately, and do not intend to change the status quo; are responsible for their slaughter and enslavement; rain down bombs on defenseless children whenever and wherever they decide that their "vital interests" are menaced, and think nothing of torturing a man to death: these people are not to be taken seriously when they speak of the "sanctity" of human life, or the "conscience" of the "civilized world"."
James Baldwin COLLECTED ESSAYS (1998), ch. one "The Devil Finds Work" (orig. pub. 1976)

6 years ago...
Corrections Population Hits 6.6M & nearly half are Black
People in the U.S. correctional system hit a record 6.6 million - more than 3 in every 100 adults- last year, the Justice Department says.
The Sentencing Project: http://www.sentencingproject.org

digest commentary: racism, the ideological engine of racism has always fueled national oppression, the major lynchpin of u.s. capitalist rule in the 'homeland' and worldwide

U.S. imperialism is 'globalized' capitalism. It has dominated the world since it defeated and/or destroyed its rivals and enemies in imperialist world war 2. It's genocidal crimes against humanity have far surpassed those of the nazis. Facing a deep capitalist crisis and geostrategic rivalry from former --socialist, now capitalist Russia & China, the U.S. instigated --using 911 as the causus belli -- another world war.

This so-called permanent 'war against terrorism', to expand and secure unrivalled supremacy by controlling the world's major oil and energy resources, to give the u.s. power leverage over allies as well as enemies worldwide. This fascist juggernaut has met defeat by the Iraqi resistance and opposition worldwide have deepened the crisis of capital. U.S. holocausts continue from Iraq, Palestine and Africa, to the Black nation and indigenous Americans on whose backs and blood america fattened to expand its global white supremacist 'manifest destiny' empire.

The following pieces on New Orleans testify to several truths: "holocaust commission and holocaust denial" is still the fabric of the world's #1 enemy in its "homeland" as well as internationally. The ideological engine of racism fueling national oppression is the major lynchpin of u.s. capitalism everywhere. Fascism has always been the means of enforcing national oppression and destroying the liberation struggles -- the only proud moments in this country's history. 911was also the pretext to institute a fascist mode of capitalism to suppress all mass resistance-- in the name of 'national security'. Securing patriotic support by targeting Arabs, others of color and immigrants, the state knows it can depend on systemically embedded american racism to enable its crimes.

From slavery to racist "anti-gang" police ops. to "natural disasters" in New Orleans, state-sponsored terror is the white supremacist history of the "homeland": racist ideology is the engine driving and 'justifying'' genocidal national oppression -- the lynchpin of amerikan capitalism .

Ongoing genocide 2 1/2 Years Post Katrina : Imprisoned in Govt.'s Toxic Trailers
FEMA’s Formaldehyde Foul-Up
Red flags went up about formaldehyde nearly two years ago. In June 2006, a man who had complained of formaldehyde fumes was found dead in his trailer. FEMA received many warnings, not only from the families who occupied the claustrophobic trailers but from the Environmental Protection Agency and, more recently, the House Committee on Science and Technology. Yet FEMA waited until the CDC disease control and prevention centers had done the survey before seriously swinging into action....

The CDC said fumes from 519 tested trailers and mobile homes in Louisiana and Mississippi were, on average, about five times what people are exposed to in most modern homes. Formaldehyde, a preservative commonly used in construction materials, can lead to breathing problems and isalso believed to cause cancer.... http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/national/351394_trailers15.html

FEMA plans to move Gulf Coast hurricane victims out of their government-issue trailers because of high levels of formaldehyde....FEMA's new plan, announced Thursday, does not provide a timeline for getting everyone out of the trailers though it hopes to have the task done by summer. The elderly, infirm, families with children and people with respiratory ailments are expected to get priority...
The Federal Emergency Management Agency says 25,162 trailers are still occupied in Louisiana, 10,362 in Mississippi. The trailers were made by several companies. Some were made specially for FEMA... Commonly used in manufactured homes, formaldehyde can cause respiratory problems and has been linked to cancer by the International Agency for Research on Cancer and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. CDC Director Dr. Julie Gerberding said the test results can't be used to draw any conclusions about other mobile homes....In 2006, some trailer occupants began reporting headaches and nosebleeds. Other have reported difficulty breathing. Lawyers for hundreds of storm victims charge trailer makers produced inferior products in a rush to fill FEMA's demand for thousands of units. Several consolidated cases against trailer makers are before a U.S. District Court judge in New Orleans... Documents released last July after being subpoenaed by a congressional committee indicated FEMA lawyers discouraged officials from pursuing reports the trailers had dangerous levels of formaldehyde.[...]


FEMA to use trailers after tornadoes
In this March 2, 2007, file photo, some of about 7,200 mobile homes and travel trailers owned by the Federal Emergency Management Agency sit at the Hope Municipal Airport near Hope, Ark. Some of the trailers, purchased by FEMA in 2005 after hurricanes tore through the Gulf Coast, may finally be put to use to help victims of the tornadoes that struck five southern states last week, David Maxwell, head of the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management, said Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2008. (AP Photo/Danny Johnston, File) ...
Some members of Congress accused FEMA of playing down the danger of possible formaldehyde contamination in the trailers - more than 6,300 of them stored at the Hope airport - but an agency spokesman said Tuesday that the trailers are safe...Tennessee state officials estimate the tornadoes destroyed 517 homes and 61 mobile homes, and estimates in Arkansas suggest about 300 homes were destroyed, likely including a number of manufactured or mobile homes. FEMA still hasn't reached a firm number of how many mobile homes will be used from Hope and other storage sites around the country, spokesman James McIntyre said Tuesday. The majority of mobile homes stored at Hope were unused and in good shape, with a small percentage refurbished after being used in hurricane relief operations, he said....

After Katrina hit in 2005, FEMA purchased 25,000 manufactured homes built at a cost of more than $850 million. Many of them went unused while many hurricane victims remained homeless. All together, FEMA has about 75,000 trailers and mobile home in various locations across the country.
Congress ordered FEMA to stop selling or donating the houses last year after discovering problems with formaldehyde but... FEMA determined its mobile homes in storage at Hope were safe to use. [...] http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/national/1110ap_tornadoes_fema_trailers.ht...

"Most New Orleans schools are in ruins, as are the homes of the children who have attended them. The children are now scattered all over the country. This is a tragedy. It is also an opportunity."
Former Chief Economist Milton Friedman, op-ed in the Wall Street Journal 3 months after Katrina

“Ethnic cleansing” in New Orleans
By Ghali Hassan
Online Journal Contributing Writer

"We finally cleaned up public housing in New Orleans. We couldn't do it, but God did." --Richard Baker (R-La), September 09, 2005.

New Orleans, the city where Hurricane Katrina struck in September 2005, is barely covered in the media these days. The failure to report on New Orleans is a deliberate omission as the city and its people continue to suffer. Hurricane Katrina is the precursor to “clean” the city of its African-American population, and create a resort for affluent Americans and tourists. The aim is to gentrify New Orleans and deny its black poor population their right of return to their city.

The “reconstruction” of New Orleans has become a euphemism for the destruction of the city’s cultural and historic heritage. Major developers and real estate agents are taking advantage of the city's redevelopment at the expense of New Orleans' low-income population. In the current political milieu, economic redevelopment seem to be guided by an extremely narrow vision capable of responding only to big business and tourism.

The Housing Authority of New Orleans (HANO), in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), is planning to demolish New Orleans’ largest public housing developments and replace them with unaffordable housing units disguised as a “mixed income housing” program (Hope VI). The Hope VI program is designed to decentralise poverty according to a neoliberal agenda.

The secretary of HUD, Alphonso Jackson, has announced that more than 5,300 public housing units -- built for low-income people -- were to be demolished and replaced by units for people with a wider range of incomes. It would be the largest project in the city’s history, and would include the sprawling St. Bernard, C. J. Peete, B. W. Cooper and Lafitte housing developments, along with most of the city's public housing. The units have been closed or fenced off to residents since Hurricane Katrina to allow them to deteriorate. The decision was taken despite the shortage of housing to accommodate the over 200,000 still displaced New Orleans residents. Many of those remaining are living in abandoned housing, without electricity and water. It is possible that more than 3,500 families will have no place to return to if HUD goes with its decision to demolish the public housing units.

The Hope VI program allows only about 10 percent of the original population who used to live in public housing to come back. Public schools and healthcare services will be reduced or removed to discourage people from returning. Even if they return, there will be no public housing, no public healthcare and not enough public schools for them and their children.

The reality is that those “who've been planning the recovery process never wanted poor people to return to the city in the first place,” Lance Hill, the director of the Southern Institute for Education and Research at Tulane University, told the New York Times. “And they haven't made it easy” for them to return to their homes. In other words, the victims will be further victimized.

“That’s tantamount to ethnic cleansing,” said Mike Howells, a member of United Front for Affordable Housing. “We know who is going to be shut out as a result of that” added Howells.

Furthermore, the vacancy rate in New Orleans, especially in areas less affected by Hurricane Katrina, is very high, but rentals are beyond reach for low-income people, and landlords are opting to keep their properties closed, further reducing the availability of housing for rent.

In the 2000 census, the New Orleans' population constituted of 67.3 percent black and 28.1 percent white. However, in the four months following Hurricane Katrina; the "New Orleans metro area's population was 37 percent black between January and August 2005 and fell to 22 percent between September and December 2005. The percentage of white residents grew from 60 percent to 73 percent. Households earning between $10,000 and $14,999 annually dropped from 8.3 percent to 6.5 percent; while those with a yearly income of between $75,000 and $99,999 rose from 10.5 percent to 11.4 percent,” according to statistics released by the Census Bureau this month.

The disaster of Hurricane Katrina is being used effectively to artificially change the demographics of New Orleans. The population of the New Orleans metropolitan area has become substantially whiter, older and less poor -- not because people suddenly got richer, but because the poor are being shut out of the city -- and it shrank to less than half its size, according to the Census Bureau. “New Orleans is not going to be as black as it was for a long time, if ever again,” said Alphonso Jackson. It is suggested that only the whites and affluent are encouraged to make New Orleans their home at the expense of African-Americans and their cultural heritage.

The current restructuring of New Orleans provides an excellent social experiment of the new epidemic of privatisation of public housing and public assets. The destruction inflicted by Hurricane Katrina allows politicians, the ruling elites and their cronies to remodel the city as a free-market and privately-owned city catering to the rich and tourists. With billions of dollars of taxpayers monies made available for “reconstruction,” the disaster brought by Hurricane Katrina is the smokescreen for the gentrification of New Orleans and corporate looting of public resources.

To preserve African-American heritage, African-Americans should be allowed to participate at the forefront in the rebuilding and economic redevelopment of New Orleans. The city’s unique history and cultural heritage should inspire new urban invention and economic sustainability, not the neoliberal ideology that has been proven to advance the interests of the rich and affluent.

Furthermore, as a result of total neglect by authorities, low-income people of New Orleans are experiencing “a near-epidemic of depression and post-traumatic stress disorder.” The suicide rate in the city of a vibrant African-American heritage “was less than nine a year per 100,000 residents before Katrina, and increased to an annual rate of more than 26 per 100,000 in the months after.” reported the Times.

The crime rate has increased dramatically. “I thought I could weather the storm and I did -- it's the aftermath that's killing me,” Gina Barbe, a New Orleans resident told the Times. The response by authorities has been to deploy the National Guard troops to patrol the streets, pretending to fix the social and economic ill they have created.

Most tragic of all, if the U.S. government is treating its own people in this way, how can a significant number of Americans be so oblivious to what their government is doing to peoples in far away places like Iraq? Can you imagine how the U.S. is treating the people of Iraq? ...
For peace to success and justice to prevail, mass resistance is the only way against the rise of this anti-human ideology and injustice.
Ghali Hassan lives in Perth, Western Australia. He can be reached at G.Hassan@exchange.curtin.edu.au.

Racist Genocide in New Orleans Continues: "Like 911 But Add Water"
by liz burbank
[edited article originally published 9/3/05 as "A Catastrophic Success": A Holocaust Shaped by Race]

Katrina was no accident, no surprise, no act of 'mother nature', the 'gods' , nor the result of 'bureaucratic incompetence' and 'poor communication'. The human and environmental and impact on New Orleans of a hurricane of this magnitude had been scientifically calculated. Rescue and recovery were deliberately withheld, working class Black people militarily imprisoned, forcibly dispersed and murdered by the armed state's violence.

Katrina is a major intensification of the genocide, a premeditated physical and psychological attack on the Black Nation, part of a strategy to destroy its strength, pride, contributions and cultural cohesion and influence. A renaissance of Black resistance and leadership -- historically the leading edge of revolutionary resistance in the U.S. This is what the postmodern slavemasters fear would give rise to a movement here in the 'homeland', in solidarity with international resistance, that could defeat its global "new world order" agenda.

Katrina and the ongoing brutal aftermath was engineered to serve u.s. capitalism's bipartisan agenda in two interrelated ways: uprooting, dispersing and destroying the Black Nation, while simultaneously inflaming reliable american racism and support for the consolidation of a fascist mode of state capitalism -- under the pretext of "rescue, relief and recovery” from a "major casualty-producing event", a not “natural disaster.” [...]

full article at http://lizburbankdigest.blogspot.com/2006/03/racist-genocide-in-new-orle...

The CIA drug distribution network
Glen Ford
On August 18, 1996, the San Jose Mercury News broke the story that should have been heard around the world. "For the better part of a decade, a San Francisco Bay Area drug ring sold tons of cocaine to the Crips and Bloods street gangs of Los Angeles and funneled millions in drug profits to a Latin American guerrilla army run by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency," wrote investigative reporter Gary Webb. Black America erupted in demands for a thorough investigation.

The CIA, lacking the credibility to absolve itself, found defenders among the cream of the corporate media, most shamefully at the New York Times and Washington Post, who performed their disinformation functions so well that the agency was allowed to slink away, free to continue its narco-dealings. Los Angeles Congresswoman Maxine Waters, point-person in the drive to unmask the 1980s CIA-Nicaraguan contra drug connection, was made to appear all but mentally unbalanced, and Webb was finally left twisting in the wind by his own newspaper.

Having written a book on the experience, Webb has resurrected the series' web site, "Dark Alliance: The Story Behind the Crack Explosion."

The online chapter traces the invention of crack cocaine, a substance unknown to man until concocted in the San Francisco area in the mid-Seventies. The pharmacological story is almost as fascinating as the political uses U.S. intelligence has found for the drug.

Coke and Cola

The CIA's Colombian cocaine alliances were cemented during Ronald Reagan's contra war against Nicaragua, and have since blossomed into a $2 billion a year relationship with the narco-regime in Bogota. George W. Bush pretends his "dark alliance" on the side of the rich in Colombia's 40-year civil conflict is part of a worldwide War on Terror. Colombia is, indeed, soaked in terror, which last month claimed the life of union activist Adolfo de Jesus Munera, shot by a death squad on the steps of his mother's house. This murder also has a coke connection: Coca-cola. Munera, a former Coca-Cola worker, had just learned that Colombia's Constitutional Court had agreed to hear his suit against the Atlanta-based corporation, demanding reinstatement. Munera had charged that Coca-Cola had sent death squads after him, causing him to absent himself from work.

Munera's union charges that Coca-Cola regularly contracts out its employee relations problems to death squads allied with the political Right and the military. Last year the United Steel Workers and the International Labor Rights Fund filed suit in federal court in Miami on behalf of the late Mr. Munera's union, alleging that Coca-Cola arranged for the kidnap, torture and murder of six organizers. And in February of this year, Teamsters union president Jimmy P. Hoffa appealed to Coke's corporate leadership to halt the violence against union workers at its Guatemala bottling plants.

According to the Council on Hemispheric Affairs, more than 4,000 union activists have been murdered in Colombia since 1986. Add Atlanta to the points on the actual Axis of Terror.

Fields of death

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, which must tiptoe around the CIA to get near the real narcotics action, is busying itself busting opium and heroin traffickers in the Balkans and across the vast expanses of formerly Soviet Central Asia - everywhere, that is, except Afghanistan, the one place in that part of the world where the U.S. can do whatever it pleases. The Americans choose to leave the war-drug lords' bounteous fields alone, fearing to alienate their allies in the War on Terror. The U.S. press corps in Kabul is largely silent on the subject, fearing loss of photo ops and other access to the military and the spooks.

The story is left to European news agencies. "Poppy cultivation in Afghanistan is close to record levels a year after being nearly wiped out under the hard-line Taliban regime," Reuters reported, citing the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization. The BBC reports that "a bumper crop" is blooming in full view of the American protectors of the Taliban's successors.

Approximately 70% of the world's heroin originates in Afghanistan, a country that contributed virtually nothing to the international opiate trade prior to the CIA-backed war against the Soviets. Now, the same actors are back on stage, vouched for and paid by the men from Langley, Virginia.

Opium poppies were BBC reporter Raphael Rowe's primary beat in Afghanistan. "Access to the poppy fields was probably the easiest part of the investigation," Rowe told the folks back home in Britain. "There are literally thousands of them - they're not protected, farmers talk willingly about what they're doing and why they're doing it. In fact, almost everywhere we went in the region we were in, there were poppy fields."

Most of the heroin consumed by British addicts originates in Afghanistan. Asked why the U.S. allows the crop to flourish, the BBC's Rowe offers: "First and foremost, the production of opium poppy does not effect America (like drugs coming from South America) in the same way as it does the UK, so the American authorities are not that interested in the production of opium in Afghanistan. I spent eight days in Badakshan and in all that time I didn't see one soldier, a police officer, or any other law enforcement personnel."

There you have it. Poppies are immune from the American military machine. Yet the U.S. can wipe out Afghan wedding parties on the most dubious pretexts.

The truth is, heroin is increasing on U.S. streets, and there can be no doubt of the source. Back in the late Seventies, Afghan heroin leaped from nowhere to take over the bulk of the U.S. market. (See Make this Amendment, April 5.) The terror in American neighborhoods is again being nurtured by the U.S. military and the CIA - a health and crime crisis in the making, yet disassociated from the official War on Terror...
Glen Ford, formerly co-publisher of BlackCommentator.com, is now publisher-editor of BlackAgendaReport.com

digest note: Gary Webb was murdered for his work. See Narconews.com for more on this huge issue:
The NarcoSphere || Comments || Gary Webb: Do What He Did
Dark Alliance: The CIA, the Contras, and the Crack Cocaine Explosion, which lays out more fully than his newspaper exposé the role ...
narcosphere.narconews.com/ comments/2004/12/15/184725/08/15

american history... forever remembered through the lyrics sung by the great Billie Holiday in a song named STRANGE FRUIT ... hear this very sad song at http://www.aztlan.net/strange_fruit.htm

We charge genocide : the historic petition to the United Nations for relief from a crime of the United States Government against the Negro people / Civil Rights Congress (U.S.). New York : Civil Rights Congress, 1952.

Lynching in America
A History Not Known By Many
1930 lynching of Thomas Shipp and Abram Smith in Marion, IN When I was a boy growing up in New Orleans, Louisiana, the word lynching was hardly ever mentioned. My parents only said these "mean" acts happened in the country (rural areas) with white men in white gowns (the KKK). In all my schooling, through high school and on to college, lynching was never part of a lecture or connected with American history. I knew of the word, lynching, but never, never the scope of this violent, hateful act.

On Thursday, January 13, 2000, an article entitled, "An Ugly Legacy Lives on, Its Glare Unsoftened by Age," by Robert Smith was published in the New York Times. This excellent article revealed a world not known by many Americans living today and especially by me. Without my explaining here, it should be read by all persons, especially as it pertains to race and hate. Without understanding this past evil history, we cannot understand why hate is on the rise today in this year of 2000.

Photo from the official 1977 Citadel yearbook After reading the New York Times article, I wanted to know more about lynching and what could possibly be presented on this squeamish subject. It turned out that an exhibit of rare collected photo postcards were on display featuring lynchings as they took place in America from 1883-1960. I saw this exhibit. It was on view at the Roth Horowitz Gallery in New York City until February 12, 2000. This small gallery took in only about fifteen people at a time, and the line was long. Watching the viewers as they exited revealed what was inside: people with tears, some with anguish, some looked surprised with the horror they had seen.

1919 lynching William Brown in Douglas County, NB This New York exhibition presented the collected photocards of Mr. James Allen, a white Atlanta resident who, for fifteen years, sought out these images of racial horror and self-righteous vigilante acts as rare finds. Since most of these photocards were kept as "keepsakes" by some families, Mr. Allen had to solicit ads for purchase. He paid from fifteen dollars to as much as thirty thousand dollars for individual cards. The sixty photo postcards and other material were temporarily housed in the library at Emory University to allow scholars to have access to it, but are now being held by their owner at withoutsanctuary.org.

Melvin Sylvester, Feb. 2000

1. 1930 lynching of Thomas Shipp and Abram Smith in Marion, Indiana
2. Photo from the official 1977 Citadel yearbook
3. 1919 lynching William Brown in Douglas County, Nebraska

1935 lynching of Rubin Stacy in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Lynching In America
A Book on the Subject
This book, Without Sanctuary: Lynching photography in America (by James Allen, Hilton Als, Leon F. Litwack, with a forward by Congressman John Lewis; Twin Palms Publishers, 2000), is a new, startling book on this shocking topic of lynching in America. This book is an extension of the exhibit held at the Roth Horowitz Gallery and the collected photo postcards of Mr. James Allen of Atlanta, Georgia. Pages of actual real life lynchings are captured with photos and dates with explanatory texts about where these dastardly acts occurred. Mr. Allen says, "Without Sanctuary is a grim reminder that a part of the American past we would prefer for various reasons to forget we need very much to remember." The book is a vivid account of the existence of lynching on American soil. On view in the book are ninety-eight plates of lynchings and the victims and the people surrounding the actual executions. A few were white; a few were women; but most were African-American men used as prime targets for lynch mobs. To see this book is to try and understand, but it is not for the squeamish viewer or persons not able to transcend reasons why these acts should never have happened.

1936 lynching of Lint Shaw in Royston, GA
1936 lynching of Lint Shaw in Royston, Georgia

Further Reading

About Lynching / Robert L. Zangrando, John F. Callahan, and Dickson D. Bruce, Jr. Modern American Poetry : An Online Journal and Multimedia Companion to Anthology of Modern American Poetry. Urbana, IL : Department of English of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2002.

The aesthetics and politics of the crowd in American literature / Mary. Esteve. Cambridge, U.K. ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 2003. PS169.C75E88 2003
Covers lynching in literature

American lynching : a documentary feature / Gode Davis and James M. Fortier. Herndon, VA : Bitter Fruit Productions, 2005. "This documentary explores racist events and attitudes indigenous to the Northern and Southern states that either condoned or condemned lynching as a practice."

American Negro short stories / John Henrik Clarke. New York : Hill and Wang, 1966. PS647.A35C55 1966x
Includes "The lynching of Jube Benson" by Paul Laurence Dunbar

Anatomy of a lynching : the killing of Claude Neal / James R. McGovern. Baton Rouge : Louisiana State University Press, 1982. HV6465.F6M35 1982

And the dead shall rise : the murder of Mary Phagan and the lynching of Leo Frank / Steve Oney. New York : Pantheon Books, 2003. HV6534.A7O54 2003

Anti-lynching crusaders helped free our country / Philip Dray. Newsday, A39 (741 words), June 15, 2005.

An apology for old form of terror : Senate expected to vote tomorrow on resolution regarding its failure to help end practice of lynching / Martin C. Evans. Newsday, A34 (600 words), June 12, 2005.

At the hands of persons unknown : the lynching of Black America / Philip Dray. New York : Random House, 2002. HV6464.D73 2002

The awful truth: a photography exhibition unearths the painful history of lynching in America / Danny Postel. Chronicle of Higher Education, 48(44):A14 (3 pages), July 12, 2002.

Black manhood on the silent screen / Gerald R. Butters. Lawrence : University Press of Kansas, 2002. PN1995.9.N4B88 2002
Includes "Oscar Micheaux: From Homestead to Lynch Mob"

Call for reconciliation : Minister attacked by Klansmen seeks understanding as alleged mastermind in triple killing faces trial / John Moreno Gonzales. Newsday, A07 (733 words), June 13, 2005.

Crime, but no punishment : Georgia town is still divided over the murders of four blacks nearly 60 years ago / Tina Susman. Newsday, A30 (1633 words), March 30, 2005.

Dangerous liaisons : gender, nation, and postcolonial perspectives / Anne McClintock, Aamir Mufti, and Ella Shohat. Minneapolis : University of Minnesota Press, 1997. JC312.D36 1997
Includes "On the threshold of woman's era : lynching, empire, and sexuality in Black feminist theory" by Hazel V. Carby

The Duluth Lynchings Online Resource : a collection of historical documents relating to the tragic events of June 15, 1920. Minnesota Historical Society. St. Paul, MN : The Society, 2003.
"This web site facilitates access to over 2,000 pages of scanned documents to provide an in-depth and scholarly resource of primary source materials on the subject, designed also for those unfamiliar with this tragic event."

Some Past History Of US Secret Human Experimentation

1932 The Tuskegee Syphilis Study begins. 200 black men diagnosed with syphilis are never told of their illness, are denied treatment, and instead are used as human guinea pigs in order to follow the progression and symptoms of the disease. They all subsequently die from syphilis, their families never told that they could have been treated.

Q. What is a “crime against humanity”?
A. A modern definition of crime against humanity is given in Black’s Int'l. Law Dictionary:

A brutal crime that is not an isolated incident but that involves large and systematic actions, often cloaked with official authority, and that shocks the conscience of humankind. # Among the specific crimes that fall within this category are mass murder, extermination, enslavement, deportation, and other inhumane acts perpetrated against a population, whether in wartime of not. See Statute of the International Criminal Court, art. 3 (37 ILM 999).

Note that crimes against humanity are not restricted to wartime nor to the direct violent murder of people.

Here is the standard adopted by the International Criminal Court (which the United States refuses to recognize):

Article 7
Crimes against humanity

1. For the purpose of this Statute, "crime against humanity" means any of the following acts when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against any civilian population, with knowledge of the attack:

(a) Murder;

(b) Extermination;

(c) Enslavement;

(d) Deportation or forcible transfer of population;

(e) Imprisonment or other severe deprivation of physical liberty in violation of fundamental rules of international law;

(f) Torture;

(g) Rape, sexual slavery, enforced prostitution, forced pregnancy, enforced sterilization, or any other form of sexual violence of comparable gravity;

(h) Persecution against any identifiable group or collectivity on political, racial, national, ethnic, cultural, religious, gender as defined in paragraph 3, or other grounds that are universally recognized as impermissible under international law, in connection with any act referred to in this paragraph or any crime within the jurisdiction of the Court;

(i) Enforced disappearance of persons;

(j) The crime of apartheid;

(k) Other inhumane acts of a similar character intentionally causing great suffering, or serious injury to body or to mental or physical health.

2. For the purpose of paragraph 1:

(a) "Attack directed against any civilian population" means a course of conduct involving the multiple commission of acts referred to in paragraph 1 against any civilian population, pursuant to or in furtherance of a State or organizational policy to commit such attack;

(b) "Extermination" includes the intentional infliction of conditions of life, inter alia the deprivation of access to food and medicine, calculated to bring about the destruction of part of a population;

(c) "Enslavement" means the exercise of any or all of the powers attaching to the right of ownership over a person and includes the exercise of such power in the course of trafficking in persons, in particular women and children;

(d) "Deportation or forcible transfer of population" means forced displacement of the persons concerned by expulsion or other coercive acts from the area in which they are lawfully present, without grounds permitted under international law;

(e) "Torture" means the intentional infliction of severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, upon a person in the custody or under the control of the accused; except that torture shall not include pain or suffering arising only from, inherent in or incidental to, lawful sanctions;

(f) "Forced pregnancy" means the unlawful confinement of a woman forcibly made pregnant, with the intent of affecting the ethnic composition of any population or carrying out other grave violations of international law. This definition shall not in any way be interpreted as affecting national laws relating to pregnancy;

(g) "Persecution" means the intentional and severe deprivation of fundamental rights contrary to international law by reason of the identity of the group or collectivity;

(h) "The crime of apartheid" means inhumane acts of a character similar to those referred to in paragraph 1, committed in the context of an institutionalized regime of systematic oppression and domination by one racial group over any other racial group or groups and committed with the intention of maintaining that regime;

(i) "Enforced disappearance of persons" means the arrest, detention or abduction of persons by, or with the authorization, support or acquiescence of, a State or a political organization, followed by a refusal to acknowledge that deprivation of freedom or to give information on the fate or whereabouts of those persons, with the intention of removing them from the protection of the law for a prolonged period of time.

3. For the purpose of this Statute, it is understood that the term "gender" refers to the two sexes, male and female, within the context of society. The term "gender" does not indicate any meaning different from the above.


"It is not a matter of what is true that counts, but a matter of what is perceived to be true."
Henry Kissinger

"Schopenhauer, Kant, Nietzsche, naturally, I read all of ... those whose theories I soaked up in those years [in prison]. These three, it is said, laid the groundwork on which the fascist and Nazi philosophy was built... They remind me of some of the Negro “intellectuals”, so called, with whom I have come in contact- they are always arguing about something useless....the whole stream of western philosophy has now wound up in a cul-de-sac. The white man has perpetrated upon himself, as well as upon the Black man, so gigantic a fraud that he has put himself into a crack. He did it through his elaborate, neurotic necessity to hide the black man [the 'non-white'] ’s true role in history…
Malcolm X
The autobiography of Malcolm X As Told To Alex Haley, Ballantine Books NY 1999, p183, 184

John Lock owned slaves. He also drafted the Fundamental Constitutions of Carolina, which granted absolute power over slaves .
Many in the eighteenth century opposed the idea of political slavery as Locke suggests, but did not find fault in African slavery... because blacks were not considered fully human according to the dominant viewpoint. Because blacks were not fully human, they were not afforded the same natural rights as white[s]..."
How many have any idea of what the "Enlightenment" really was?....

"Blacks are inferior to Europeans, but superior to apes."

"The black might develop certain attributes of human beings, the way the parrot manages to speak a few words."
Arabian Sights

1852, Frederick Douglass, former slave, leader in the fight against slavery, truthteller:

What, to the American slave, is your 4th of July? I answer: a day that reveals to him, more than all other days in the year, the gross injustice and cruelty to which he is the constant victim.
To him, your celebration is a sham; your boasted liberty, an unholy license; your national greatness, swelling vanity; your sounds of rejoicing are empty and heartless; your denunciations of tyrants, brass fronted impudence; your shouts of liberty and equality, hollow mockery; your prayers and hymns, your sermons and thanksgivings, with all your religious parade, and solemnity, are, to him, mere bombast, fraud, deception, impiety, and hypocrisy‹a thin veil to cover up crimes which would disgrace a nation of savages.

There is not a nation on the earth guilty of practices, more shocking and bloody, than are the people of these United States, at this very hour.
Go where you may, search where you will, roam through all the monarchies and despotisms of the old world, travel through South America, search out every abuse, and when you have found the last, lay your facts by the side of the everyday practices of this nation, and you will say with me, that, for revolting barbarity and shameless hypocrisy, America reigns without a rival.

2007, Larry Pinkney, veteran of the Black Panther Party, former Minister of Interior of the Republic of New Africa, former political prisoner, truthteller

...America, from its foundations steeped in genocide, slavery, hypocrisy and the concomitant legalized thievery of an entire continent has developed and continues in the 21st century to perpetuate an ahistorical mentality among its population. Thus, while some white Americans (and their surrogates) in particular, be they so-called conservatives or liberals, might possibly see a few problems with America's internal and external policies that need a little adjusting; the vast majority of people of color within America and around the world correctly view America as fundamentally, systemically, and irreparably flawed.
Nevertheless, by consistently promoting a selectively ahistorically warped national and world view of itself white America vis-a-vis its so called "informational / news" and "educational" institutions maintains an active cognitive dissonance regarding its horrible and active internal and external policies and practices. This applies equally to Republicans, Democrats, and so-called Independents alike in the American economic and political system.
This perpetually maintained cognitive dissonance on the part white America, including white American liberals masquerading as "progressives," is precisely why white America collectively neither feels nor demonstrates conscience or shame for its past and ongoing atrocities against the peoples of the world and most especially towards people of color internally and externally. This is why white America can and does, with no compunction whatsoever, elevate and glorify itself while demonizing its victims on every conceivable level; physically, culturally, and emotionally....

We must remember that comfortable people do not make change. Nor do they want change. Why should they? I reiterate what I wrote back in 2006: "Only by removing our heads from the sand, facing up to, organizing against, resisting and struggling for systemic change here and now is there real hope, for ourselves and for people around the world, of stopping and dismantling this [corporately] fascist onslaught. Indeed, we can ill afford to do otherwise."

"The demand to give up illusions about the existing state of affairs is the demand to give up a state of affairs which needs illusions.”
Karl Marx, Contribution to the Critique of Hegel's Philosophy of Law