I wrote this last week Friday and forgot to post. I am pretty outspoken when it comes to matters of racism and injustice and I just could not ignore the overall tone of David Cameron’s visit. However, I do think we should realize that prison issues aside, he was beyond disrespectful on the topic of slavery and an apology, but this is the way of the world when handling black people. Take a red and tell me what you think
There is a saying “Libaty come chru caylissness” and clearly the recent visit by British Prime Minister David Cameron is testament to that. For Cameron a man whose ancestors are direct beneficiaries of slave ownership and the payoff that was given when the slave trade ended to come to Jamaica and dodge the reparations topic with a simple “Get over it and move on” is absurd. He could sugar coat it in the guise of “moving forward and looking to the future” a little more, we know exactly what he meant.
However, I would be unfair to act as if Mr. Cameron’s stance on slavery and reparations is isolated, it is part of a systematic endeavor to downplay the wide reaching repercussions slavery has had on a single race. The topic is often made to seem as a nuisance, with the belief that black people everywhere need to stop “harping” on this whole slavery thing. World leaders, politicians have no qualms telling you to forget slavery it was so long ago while in the same breathe reminding us to NEVER forget the holocaust nor any of the World Wars.
Is it that there is a statute of limitations for international war crimes when it involves crimes done against black people? Because according to international laws there are no such limitations on crimes against humanity and let’s make no mistake, Slavery is the single most horrible crime against humanity to be recorded. So how can Mr. Cameron tell us to forget about it and move on? Sadly, this is a window into how blacks are constantly treated when asking for equality or oftentimes simple acknowledgement.
While other races are encouraged to memorialize the wrongs that they have suffered by an oppressor the descendants of Africans are almost always told “well that was eons ago, we can’t do anything” and even most conveniently “We do not think reparation is the correct way to go about this”. Well that’s a surprise you do not think paying us back our money is the way to go about this, never saw that coming at all.
When we have black history month people ask why isn’t there a white history month; when we say black lives matters, we are told to scrap that and to say ALL lives matters. I believe it is an inability to face their shame at what they did to us. So often we let the argument go whether out of frustration or loss of hope but in this instance I urge the government to hold fast to the reparations discussion. For once let them be the ones to feel awkward and uncomfortable about the past.
Faith & Love,