Way back in the far gone days of my youth; I attended a small “liberal arts” college. The adjectival allusion ascribed to my aforementioned Alma mater is well deserved for many reasons, but almost chief among them is the following one, steeped in irony…….
I was one part of an enthusiastic cadre of Asiatic students –along with a few European Americans, who joined the on campus Black Culture Society. (The actual name escapes my old synapses.) We were young and ready to forge ahead toward our intent to make the club synonymous with consciousness. Amid plans for the requisite fundraising parties; (How else could we make legal paper legally?) and brainstorming sessions for cultural activities, was a brewing conflict. Long story short – we had one of our meetings preempted by a Resident Life official (name withheld as to remain litigation-free) who told us that our club name, which had previously been approved by her office – was now verboten. Reason being? It had exclusionary connotations. Now recall the fact that several wide- eyed Caucasoids also joined our Society. Someone should have shot them the email that we were an insular Afrocentric group bent on decimation of all not like us.
In truth, our moniker had no brash overtones, no militant renderings; (though I and a couple of my like-minded brethren lobbied for one and were outvoted). We pushed back as a group, asking why the campus Irish culture society had an archaic name which readily associated it with a certain people, yet was allowed to retain its etymological selection. The official response was that the other club’s designation was an innocuous one – nothing that would preclude other so-called racial denominations from seeking admission.
In actuality it was the admission of the white students into our group which helped spur the unconscionable, yet typical backlash from the administration of this supposed institution of enlightenment, inclusion, innovation and evolved thought. Part of our mission mandate was to educate and promote pride among our people, while also highlighting the reality of humanities’ shared genetic commonality. Once the higher-ups were made aware that we wanted to push this agenda, the “liberal” facade of this college cracked and exposed the ghastly truth. It was bad enough we wanted to remind everyone from the bluest black to the most alabaster white that we all come from an African Man and Woman. The greater umbrage was the sting inherent in knowing we had almost every so-called nationality taking part in this upstart club.
Retrospectively speaking? Should have protested; should have pasted the campus with placards and chants and sat in the admin. bldgs. Whether such tactics would have yielded success or not is a moot question. We should have fought back – but we relented, and our name was altered. In the end, a mix of disillusion & shame prompted the revocation of my membership along with several others.
Mollification is achieved when the most fundamental things are co-opted (E.g., our music – soul, rap jazz, etc.) None more basic among these things is a name. When our group was buffaloed, it was at a modern day microcosmic redux of what happened once the irons shackled us centuries ago. The greater felony however, was our display of impotence, and fractured solidarity before a sociophilosophical, and cultural enemy.
I employed my reminiscence in order to illustrate the machinations of those devoted to Asiatic erosion via covert tactics – as it is, and will remain a cogent topic for our people. I also lead with the past to address the present; how Sathar (The Hidden) adeptly re-contextualize our reality. It’s not new & they are well practiced in this science. Whenever someone can control your food/water/living conditions –and dictate your educational exposure to such an extent that Potomac Georgie is a hero, & the pilgrims were the persecuted, & the true Indigenous become nonexistent (Olmec Who?), resultant defeat is all but assured.
End Pt. 1