Sunday, October 30, 2005

Reconciliation March

Was going to blog about the NBA today but that'll wait since I've wanted to blog about this story for a while. I heard about it word of mouth last week but I wanted to be able to link to the story and if you've ever checked the Barbados Nation site online you know they are rather picky, read censor, with what they actual post.

Anyway I just realized that Titilayo did a few posts on the topic already so I can at least post her links. Thanks mademoiselle. Much respect!

Last Wednesday in Barbados there was a symbolic march to relive the horrors of slavery. It was organized by an international group called Lifeline Expedition and was a march by descendants of former slave owners (read in this case mainly white folk) in 'chains' and 'yokes' to various places in the island.

Yep apparently these Lifeline Expedition folks have been conducting these symbolic marches all over the place.

You can read about the actual march in Barbados and see a photo here under the title "They are so sorry." Trust me you need to see the photo (which in case you're wondering isn't the same photo I posted below).

Sigh! Image hosted by Photobucket.comWhere to start where to start. Ok first expression of utter disdain. Big lawless Chupssssssseeeeeeeeeee!

Sorry? What the !! Yes indeed they are sorry. They are a sorry bunch of folk. This march was a sorry, pathetic excuse. Symbolic march! Oh lets take a nice leisurely stroll in our paper mache chains, in our caps, shades and designer athletic shoes while drinking our bottled water and say we are sorry for slavery. Does this really help anyone? I know it doesn't help me. All you have done is made me as angry as when I came out of the theatre after watching Rosewood. This is a complete farce!

I'm sorry Lifeline Expedition but you are reducing the suffering of my people to a joke. From what I heard no one in Barbados wanted you to march anyway so what's the point of this? This is despicable. I spit in your general direction! Sorry but I cant really see this being a heartfelt sorry on your part unless you are somehow mentally slow and cant for a minute realize how stupid this is. So I imagine that somewhere deep inside you are laughing at my ancestors experiences and this annoys me, scratch that, this seriously pisses me off.

I would have accepted a simple sorry rather than this mockery. I mean is this how you apologize or make reparations? You march in chains to say you are sorry to the one's you oppressed? What's next Germans locking themselves in a symbolic concentration camp and throwing themselves into symbolic gas chambers to say sorry for the holocaust. Imagine the international uproar if that happened. But no this is just someone trivializing slavery so who cares right.

This march right here in my honest opinion is a travesty, a mockery, a despicable imitation which trivializes a serious part of our history!

I might even have accepted the march as being sincere without the chains and yokes but they went too far right there. Your symbolic chains don't amount to jack compared to the real heavy iron under which we were bound and the miles upon miles which black men, women and children of all ages were force marched on. Any of these marchers ended up with wrists or necks rubbed raw from those chains? I suppose not right.

You want to do this thing right. Ok take off your shoes, and your shirts, dash way the shades and bottled water, get some real heavy chains and get some big lawless, ignorant overseers with long whips to lash your sorry behinds all along your march. I mean big heavy whips and cat-o-nine-tails to tear out your flesh if you lag on the march. Cant afford overseers? I know some cats that can just run out of a crowd of onlookers at intervals on the path and just let loose a few lashes in your tail with a belt or a dog hunter. Still want to do a march now in the face of physical harm? Lets see if you're so composed as you march now.

And while we're at it lets set up a slave auction somewhere where you can be stripped of all clothing and dignity, examined by a bunch of prospective buyers and bid on based on your physical appearance. How ya like dem apples? Matter a fact after you've been bought lets get someone to mark you with a big hot branding iron. Now a permanent brand on your backside that would be truly symbolic wouldn't it?

How about a symbolic middle passage crossing. Only thing is half y'all would have to be tossed overboard before we made port.

Ok I'm getting carried away here. The point is this symbolic march is a waste of time. It looks like a parody, a bad Saturday night live skit. You just don't get it do you. Its really doing nothing but aggravating feelings on serious issues.

You probably think this is a fine idea don't you? Umm No! You want to discuss slavery fine, you want to apologize fine, you want to discuss reparations or making amends somehow fine but don't think that some half-assed walk in fake chains is an apology for slavery. Its best appearance is as a caricature not to be taken seriously. If you really want to foster reconciliation this is not the way to go about it. Start some dialogue and ask those to whom you are apologizing or whom you seem reconciliation with what we want cause I'm sure seeing you march does nothing positive for us.

If anything this march shows us more deeply the divisions that exist rather than fostering reconciliation.

23 comments:

dorna! said...

What de hell! Dem people better not come to Lucia with that self-serving crap 'cause someone's liable to make them real sorry, real fast.

ShellyP said...

Many times the heart is willing but the hands don't know what to do. Maybe they really were sincere. However, they should have gotten some input from Black folk as to how this would be received. I too agree that this "march" trivializes the experience of a race of people and find it offensive. If they really want to show they are "sorry" let them work to make present lives better - tutor disadvantaged children, help build homes with Habitat for Humanity, donate time/money to service organizations, do something that will make a difference.

Sunshine said...

Hi Jdid-excellent post here. Although I'm not black, the Chinese were considered and treated worse than horses building the railroads in California. So speaking from that reference point, if I saw groups of people being sorry" and posting photos like that, I find it most distasteful, grotesque and most inappropriate. Groups like this makes me sick. Try do something like helping Haiti with their poverty instead of marching around with yokes around their necks. That doesn't contribute anything but publicity for their stupid cause.

Radmila said...

I can't imagine what kind of guilt eats away at the brain of people who are descendants of slave owners. Kind of like having to admit that you're related to Adolf Hitler.

I would have to say that this march is most certainly a stupid and insulting way to show your remorse. Kind of like a frat week at the University of Historical Atrocities or something.

Maybe someone can suggest that they spend the money and time they would use for these silly parades and donate them to a worthy cause.

So sad how misguided people are.

Dr. D. said...

The march amounts to a BIG FART! Enuff said

Inside Man said...

Somebody should have pulled out a whip, or let some people get chased by rabid dogs. I'm sorry? How about "I'm willing" to restore social injustice and racial equality.

Groove said...

Some people are not only heartless, but Braindead. What in the hell did were they thinking, and Tshirts with Sorry?!?! What the Fugg?

Just when I think they can't sink any lower, they out do themselves.

Those kinna shananigans are not sincere.

Just my few damn cents

Abeni said...

I bet in their hearts they feel they have accomplished something grand.Am slightly amused at it all.

Lene said...

This is the stupidest idea since "New Coke". Why did they think that some white people now would be responsible for their ancestors. I think this is just making a mockery of the suffering that we went through.

Brotha Buck said...

Jdid, I'd have to agree, the march serves no purpose but to make themselves feel better

Mad Bull said...

I don't feel offended. Obviously these people were not too smart. so why sweat it. I just think its a big waste of time, thats all.

Rose said...

Maybe they are really sorry...but it would have been best to talk to some African Americans and asked them how they would feel about....cause basically they look silly....and yes, it would piss off many folks....

Ruben said...

It all seems like a porrly constructed stunt to get some press.

Mr. Righteous said...

Guilt !!! We sorry !! Pure Fart !!
This dude Potts had a dream of a snake entwined around a pole. He relates the pole to the meridian, the snake as the symbol of forgiveness and everything to the bible and the Israelites coming out of slavery..The disparity of wealth among the nations along the meridian and a 260 mile footpath he intended to complete and have people from the different nations walk in support of redistribution of that wealth.. How this turned in to a SORRY ASS march about 400 years of African slavery I didn’t have the time or wiliness to continue …I hope they go to Trinidad next where the people having a difficult enough time with about 200 kidnappings this year let some bandits kidnap the whole bunch and give them a first hand experience of what it used to be like then they would be sorry.

obifromsouthlondon said...

read about it in a sunday paper yesterday. my mouth open thinking these fools are taking the piss!!

BajanQueen said...

You have got to be kidding me right!! This really happened and it not a scene from some really bad movie!?!?!

Of all the things they could have done if they were really sorry....this wasn't it!!!!

I feel like you it's a slap in our faces!

~Smooches~

Amadeo said...

If they really want to apologize I got some bills they could go to work on.

Ben Hyde said...

Oh man! That is that sick! It's some sort of guilt based cult thing combined with a travel agency. This Potts guy is apparently selling these junkets off to various vacation spots.

Bleck!

Stunner said...

Someone should have given them a symbolic whipping! Bout dem sorry.

They should invest all that energy in helping some of the black people who need help financially or getting an education, if they want to show that they are sorry.

Gunner Kaufman said...

I really want ot say "your fucking kidding" but if its a group of white folk, i cant put it past them. That the dumbest crap ive heard in ages.

Luke Cage said...

I'm like... damn. Do you know that phrase, "looking like a deer caught in headlights?" Well man, that's the expression I have right about now! Unreal...

Anton said...

If Germans put themselves in symbolic death camps, the "international uproar" would amount to the same big "Huh?" that this stunt gets, only louder because it would be better reported (the Antilles are somewhat out of the way).

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