Blog Rating

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

This for You Anonymous

This is the first time I have posted something twice. I am posting this in reponse to an unprovoked attack by an anonymous visitor to Dancyscorner. Like most people he/she hides behind an avatar. Nothing wrong with that until you start hurling insults and go out your way to belittle me, the host of Dancyscorner. I post what I post because I am a big boy. I know there is no shortage of nut cases who probably beat their kids over some of the things I write.

People without coping skills.

I have written about the power of words before and I am still, to this day, in awe of what they can do in the proper order.

I have narrowed down the location of the anonymous reader but that is unimportant I do not have any intent on going beyond this form of correspondence.

But I am disturbed.

The type of cowardice displayed is equally as bad as the jealous merchant after reconstruction joining in on the lynching of a business rival. It is disturbing because there is no integrity, no face, no pride, just ethers and the monolithic injustice of our shared American history.

I also am disturbed by people who read the first paragraph of my blog and comment on it without finishing the whole post. The type of people that read the headlines in the newspaper not the articles. I actually thought about moderating my comment section but I want to expose these type of people. I knew they existed but in everyday life they will never speak out of turn at least that is my experience.

So without further ado

enjoy anonymous -this is for you.

Black History is American History. The lack of historical acknowledgement or an accurate account of the Black American experience is a regular complaint of those dedicated to racial justice in America.

The continued subtle omission of Black/American accomplishments in history books help shape a contemporary mindset- an indoctrination.

They did it all- white people that is. We blacks have always been a burden.

O.K. back to omissions

A particularly grievous omission( historical disregard) hovers around the issue of lynching; this brutal bizarre form of mob 'justice' would occur continually from the end of the Civil War to the last celebrated lynching in 1951.

The statistics are fuzzy- The Tuskeegee institute claims about 3,500 during that period- most of the lynchings recorded were documented through press clipping and postcards , there were obviously a lot more.

My grandmother has shared first hand accounts of an American world gone mad.

Before we continue ask yourself.

If I was alive then would I do something?
(To stop it)?

The Klu Klux Klan started in 1865.....thats interesting.Isn't that the same year the slaves were freed?Mr. Pike( 1st Grandmaster) did not wait one Mystikal second to set the record straight.No..... I uppity niggers!

The white supremacist mindset included a belief that Black people were less than human therefore inhumane acts could be committed us. The Klan would help define those methods.The level of brutality was incomprehensible.

A lot of people will have difficulty reading this post.
Many won't even finish
Racism hits a nerve.
Especially with racists

I always wonder why white people are so quick to say."This isn't about race"or"He played the race card".

Breaking News-"We did not invent the race card".

Back to lynching.

Contrary to popular belief there was a lot of skilled slave labor. Slaves were used to build and maintain the infrastructure of the Southern United States. But who cares. They are not doing it now.

We all know the Civil War devastated the southern economy. All the, newly freed, skilled artisans who were once sources of income for their masters immediately became bonafide competitors.

The main competition was poor whites.

The frugal lifestyle of the former slave served as a catalyst for creativity and efficiency. It was easy for these survivors to create a comfortable modest lifestyle from very little. Prosperity was right around the corner all the newly freed men needed was opportunity. The ingredients for success were there.

Guaranteed in The Constitution.

Many ex-slaves began to thrive as a result of hard work and of course, humility. But the rapid success brought about jealousy from the Southern Gentleman- the once dominant Southern Planter did not enjoy the same profits he did before. It was an abomination for him to be stripped of his skilled cheap labor, but for the brutes to succesfully compete with him was unthinkable- like war with Iran

Still here? Good.

I actually got hate mail for this article.

As we climbed the social totem pole under the watchful and protective eye of Federal Troops we began to develop a little self esteem. Started to walk upright, no longer bowing our heads as we walked by a white person. Some even made direct eye contact with a white person-before abolition that could get you killed. Some former slaves even competed in international markets for tobacco and other crops during harvest charging top dollar for a superior crop. This is surely where the notion of being uppity was invented.The former Master snickering away as The French Merchant buys his ex-slave's bumper crop of Tobacco.

His face turning red.

Knuckles bone white.Gripping the Lions Head on his cane... A gentleman.

Many white southerners felt the The Federal Government had declared outright war on their sensibilities. There was a simmering effect.It was not just the Klan.There was determination to prevent the newly freed black men from ever being on equal ground with the white man.

William J Northern Governor of Georgia from 1890-1894 conducted a fact finding mission on the backroads of his state. He observed: I was amazed to find scores and hundred of men who believed the negro to be a brute, without reponsibility to God, and his slaughter nothing more than the killing of a dog.

Remember Black folks were no longer a private commodity the value of Black life cheapened considerably. Lynching became the most popular means of controlling and intimidating Black people. To deter any type of social progress but it was mainly about white supremacy. It was terrorism American style. It was a peculiar cultural phenomenon that persisted for generations undeterred by local, regional and even Federal law enforcement.

Lynchings were not restricted to the south, they occured all over the United States. Wherever they were it was an occasion.There was a self righteous pride in these mobs. Photographs were taken, post cards made to commemorate what came to be known as The Negro Bar- B- Que.

Most of us conjur images of a man hanging from a tree. Sorry- its worse.

The first recorded lynchings involved tying the victim to a tree, whipping them and then setting them on fire.

Pretty effective way to send a message to the uppity......They would usually grab an innocent upstanding citizen to send a message"We'll take their best nigger an burn em on the trash heap if they get to actin biggity"(quote in Without Sanctuary 00')The power of the lynch mob was directly related to the excitement that could be generated.

Many victims were dragged out of court after acquittal by a Judge and lynched. You could be lynched for just about anything.

Talk about race card.

There are documented lycnchings with absurd reasons like reckless eyeballing, unpopularity...unpopularity? And refusing to sell land. Regardless, the atmosphere was always carnival like . A man dressed as a clown in blackface might be running around like a gleeful imp encouraging people on the sidelines to get involved.

People would sometimes rampage through streets severing digits, limbs or genitals off the victim as they made their way kicking, screaming and pleading for mercyThe burning coal oil would await them and the mob would erupt in a frenzy as the near dead but concious man/woman was lowered into the oil.

Participants would come and clip a finger, toe somethiong as a souvenir before he was finally set afire and mercifully allowed to die.

An account of a lynching by a reporter for the Vicksburg Evening Post decribes the 1904 execution of a husband and wife. When the two negroes were captured, they were tied to trees and while their funeral pyres were being prepared the were forced to suffer the most fiendish tortures. The blacks were forced to hold out thier hands while one finger at a time was chopped off . The fingers were distributed as souvenirs. The ears of the murderers were cut off. Holbert was beaten severely his skull was fractured and one of his eyes, knocked out with a stick, hung by a shred from the socket...The most excruciating form of punishment consisted in the use of a large corkscrew in the hands of some of the mob. The instrument was bored into the woman in the arms, legs ,and body and then pulled out, the spirals tearing out big pieces of raw, quivering flesh every time it was withdrawn.

A frenzied America there are a lot of frenzied atmospheres.Suffice it to say the thin fabric of order was routinely torn in many otherwise law abiding communities. Entire towns would trade in their civility and replace it with demonic, unthinkable demonstrations of hatred.Words like savage , brutal, sadistic, evil and abberant can be used to describe every report of a lynching.

Remember these were supposedly sane people. The postman, The Dentist.They were all indoctrinated to believe it was o.k.

This is The America we fail to recall in The History Books.

This is the America that kills it's own.
An old black man shared some thoughts "Kill a mule, buy another, Kill a nigger hire another...They had to have a license to kill anything but a nigger".

At least now you have to have a badge.Bridge the gap...if you can.any funny looking heirlooms in your family?


Anonymous said...

Dave, I read this all the way through as you requested. The day you posted on Rev. Wright I had a comment queued up for you and couldn't post it because I was walking out the door here at work. I wanted to address not only the idiot that left you the anonymous comment (possibly no_slappz???), but add some thoughts of my own. You closed comments for a while, so I could not.

As a white-skinned, Puerto Rican who's run the gamut on this issue, I'm conflicted. On the one hand, It's hard for me or any white guy to understand the experience of African Americans, even if you revise the history books to include them more prominently. This difficulty, I believe, is the source of the conflict.

On the other hand, all we really have is hope on this issue. That with each succeeding generation that follows us, there will be less and less of this nonsense. Wishful thinking to be certain because the proportion of numbers of blacks in prison to the entire population tell a story that things aren't getting better.

Dude, I'm sorry you had to go through this. You are indeed one of the good guys in the blogosphere and I love stopping by and reading what you have to say. Be cool man and know that this white guy's got your back.

Alecto said...

This is the first post of yours I ever read and yes, I read it again start to finish and yes it still burns like it ought to. I still can't read those original comments though.

Justin Burton said...

Here I am commenting without getting to the anonymous person who started this whole thing.

But, this is a nice work of exposing the divided histories of Whites and Blacks. Most White people don't know the first thing about Tuskegee, Japanese internment camps, Emmett Till... Why? Cause it's not in the history books in school. And if it's not there, it must not be important, which means it's always an uphill battle to be heard when setting the record straight, even on something as basic as the history of lynching.

Aymswill said...

"It takes two to speak the truth — one to speak, and another to hear."
^^ Thoreau.

And I think that sums it up right there. I was going to say a lot of things you know, but that's it's hard for people to swallow or even understand the truth. Thus, hate mail and people like Anonymous here.

I mean Dave what do they always say "That was so long ago, get over it."

That people, that's something that's very very hard and more complicated to just get over, especially when it's not even exposed it's just got some dirt tossed over it and try to bury it like the rest of America's bloody and cruel history.

David B. Dancy said...

Thanks everyone.
Spartacus my son as you can see , is bi-racial. I have a common theme of respect and interest for eveyone's history. ,I think the human journey is soo much bigger and I am a bit taken a back by ignorance. i have not always been a thinker i used to be a reactor. A walking reaction to an unknown source of anger.
I sought knowledge, I built up my self esteem by learning the truth.
Alecto- i love when you come to visit...there really is harmony in the world. i truly believe the majority of us want the same basic good things. Love, companionship, comfort everything else is gravy. You remind of the honest goodness.
Justin- It was a pleasant surprise to read your words. When I graduated highschool (87'). I had no idea what lynching was. i thought it was pretty much a case of bankrobbers getting hung by a mob. I never really paid attention to our chapter on reconstruction which actually overlooked the years following where lynching would peak as a means to control and terrorize. In college i did and oral report on slave insurrections and revolts. That began a quest; I started to understand why my grandmother did not trust white people too much. I also started to acknowledge the reality that thre are some people who hate me for no reason. Wow.
Aysmwill- You are already on a graduate level of thought and I am soo excited to watch you grow up. Thoreau huh?