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Louis Gates on Black reparations and a secret about slavery……

Louis Gates is a complex man…..

We know that from watching his past specials on geneology and history….

And from his run in with  the Police Sergeant in Cambridge, Mass.

So with that in mind …

I was not surprised after reading something Professor Henry Louis Gates wrote in the New York Times…a few days ago

The piece was about President Obama and the issue of reparations for blacks due servitude into slavery……

But the more I read the piece…..

It became apparent that the Harvard Professor was giving  fellow blacks a history lesson…..

You see the story that everyone has about slavery is that white’s…

From the trade countries of the 1500’s to 1800’s captured blacks in Africa and shipped them off to the New World as a commodity….

Mr. Gates through extensive research reports …..

That simply isn’t the correct story…….

While we are all familiar with the role played by the United States and the European colonial powers like Britain, France, Holland, Portugal and Spain, there is very little discussion of the role Africans themselves played. And that role, it turns out, was a considerable one, especially for the slave-trading kingdoms of western and central Africa. These included the Akan of the kingdom of Asante in what is now Ghana, the Fon of Dahomey (now Benin), the Mbundu of Ndongo in modern Angola and the Kongo of today’s Congo, among several others.

For centuries, Europeans in Africa kept close to their military and trading posts on the coast. Exploration of the interior, home to the bulk of Africans sold into bondage at the height of the slave trade, came only during the colonial conquests, which is why Henry Morton Stanley’s pursuit of Dr. David Livingstone in 1871 made for such compelling press: he was going where no (white) man had gone before.

How did slaves make it to these coastal forts? The historians John Thornton and Linda Heywood of Boston University estimate that 90 percent of those shipped to the New World were enslaved by Africans and then sold to European traders. The sad truth is that without complex business partnerships between African elites and European traders and commercial agents, the slave trade to the New World would have been impossible, at least on the scale it occurred.

Advocates of reparations for the descendants of those slaves generally ignore this untidy problem of the significant role that Africans played in the trade, choosing to believe the romanticized version that our ancestors were all kidnapped unawares by evil white men, like Kunta Kinte was in “Roots.” The truth, however, is much more complex: slavery was a business, highly organized and lucrative for European buyers and African sellers alike.

The African role in the slave trade was fully understood and openly acknowledged by many African-Americans even before the Civil War. For Frederick Douglass, it was an argument against repatriation schemes for the freed slaves. “The savage chiefs of the western coasts of Africa, who for ages have been accustomed to selling their captives into bondage and pocketing the ready cash for them, will not more readily accept our moral and economical ideas than the slave traders of Maryland and Virginia,” he warned. “We are, therefore, less inclined to go to Africa to work against the slave trade than to stay here to work against it.”


Gates, who is black….seems to be arguing against reparations because the reason blacks arrived in this country as slaves was because they where sold to white human trade merchants by OTHER MORE FORTUNATE BLACKS!…….

He uses the figure of 90% derived from historians John Thornton and Linda Heywood of Boston University as the percentage of blacks shipped to the New World before the 1800’s by OTHER blacks…….

This reading of history isn’t going to go down to good with the majority of today’s American black population……

But Gates has done a lot of work on the subject……

In this case I think he knows he’s sitting on a stick of dynamite…..

President Obama does also….

Don’t look for either to mount a campaign to bring this subject up in a big way….

Obama will have Secret Service protection for 10 years after he leaves office (he’ll get it extended for the rest of his life… no doubt )..

Gates doesn’t…

And there will be lot of mad ‘brothers’ out there looking to talk to him….

No doubt…..

Not just about reparations, either….

But history IS history……

April 25, 2010 - Posted by | Blogs, Breaking News, Counterpoints, Media, Men, Other Things, PoliticalDog Calls, Politics, Travel, Updates, Women | , , , , , ,


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    Comment by pharmacy tech | April 26, 2010 | Reply

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