We are not ONE people: the Present.
We were NEVER one people: the Past.

Africa Slave Trade

African slave trade

Greetings fellow zobopians! Finally got my thoughts together on another touchy subject. Yeah, you know me! I’ve been agonizing about the idea of unity with the African diaspora. You know, people of African descent. We truly are the Tower of Babel!  Reply…you know I’ll reply back on this.

{Setting: 400 years ago…give or take.}
According to some historical books and historian Henry Louis Gates, Jr. slavery was a social custom on the continent of Africa. Slavery either existed in Africa or it was imported from the Roman world of the Arabic realm centuries earlier. My question is, why did African tribes and societies accept and allow slavery in the first place? If Africans knew then what we know now, I’m sure slavery would have been fought against [more] furiously and never would have been accepted so meekly. (Hindsight truly is twenty-twenty [20/20]). What was an Africans’ worth when tribes were selling off their own or capturing and selling others into slavery? What was an Africans’ worth when white Europeans came to Africa in ships to trade European goods, (junk by modern standards), for human beings? We were NEVER one people!

{Setting: Western hemisphere – [Slave era] USA, Caribbean and South America.}
After transporting African chattel slaves to their plantation destination the slavers originally grouped their slaves by their respective tribes. Not realizing that an African tribe/social group spoke a common language, the Africans were able to communicate to each other in order to form an insurrection or revolt. White slavers quickly became observant and noticed that Africans spoke many languages and dialects. So, upon realizing this, the slavers began to mix up their slaves from different tribes and ethnic groups. After this slave management technique the African slaves were unable to communicate to each other effectively to organize insurrections. Africa then, and probably now, have over 800 languages.  White slavers in other colonies recognized this in order to use this language difference against Africans. It’s Divide and Conquer. We were NEVER one people!

{Setting: Fast forward to present – 21st century world.}
Africa is still a continent comprised of many, many tribes and ethnic groups. [Conflict!] Still comprised of many, many languages and dialects. [Failure to communicate!] Plus many religions too! [More conflict!] In the Caribbean people of African descent, in their respective island country, speak their common language now; whether it be Spanish, French, English, etc. or whatever language their former slave masters spoke. In South America most of the people speak Spanish, except for Brazil which speak Portuguese…how unique is that? It just goes to show, even the white European slavers didn’t speak one common language. And yet they oppressed human beings based on one common aspect: “Color Prejudice”. [the color Black] (There is no such thing as RACE people!). In the diaspora known as Black America we also now speak one common language: English. There have been, and probably still now, Black American educators who insist that we as a people speak a different dialect of English; called Ebonics or ‘Black English’. (That episode caused a lot of head shaking in the Black community). Whatever language we do speak, we have a failure to communicate! Modern day people of African descent have evolved into a diverse diaspora outside the continent. (Africa was always diverse). But where is the UNITY? “UNITY in DIVERSITY” is a phrase that has to mean something but what do we have to show for it?

_______________________

Until next time…

Advertisements