Volume Two, Chapter Five: The Freedom Century

On January 1, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln formally made the Emancipation Proclamation, which freed virtually all Black slaves. After the Civil War, the former slaves set out to make it on their own. Thus began the spectacular “Freedom Century”. It spanned from 1865 to 1965, and was perhaps the most decorated time in all of Black history. Blacks created their own jobs and schools. Booker T. Washington’s Tuskegee Institute, whose academic standards rivaled those of Yale and Harvard, were founded. Robert Johnson’s Ebony Magazine highlighted and nigh demanded this excellence. And many Northern communities were integrated. More importantly, the Black community had values that even the “non-believer” knew worked. The bastard birth rate was a mere 20%; those that had illegitimate children were often told to leave town. Black people policed themselves to avoid police brutality, making crime virtually unheard of. When Blacks dealt with Whites, they made sure to put their best foot forward; the threat of harm to their entire race often depended on it.

Unfortunately, the banished rogues eventually began to outnumber the law-abiding Black folks. As a result, many of the strides made in Black America and interracial relations were nullified, particularly in the North. As Black economist and author Thomas Sowell points out in Black Rednecks and White Liberals, a life centered on touchy ethnic pride, sexual escapades (like making numerous babies), and blowing money through riotous living was common in both the African and “Fighting Irish” colonialist (cracker) culture. Nonetheless, it’s what caused the White man to get all in their business. And he’s been there ever since.

Black people today constantly bring up the wrongs done to their forefathers. There was actually more affluence in the Freedom Century, even with Jim Crow Laws and the Ku Klux Klan looming ever near, than there has been following President Lyndon Johnson’s “Great Society”. The modern Black middle class exists largely because of Affirmative Action and labor unions. The biggest argument for these things is that Blacks just can’t meet the standards of Whites. This admission of racial inferiority is actually agreed upon by Black leaders like Jesse and Al. Yet Tuskegee was not started with minority loans. In addition, Black people of that day respected themselves and other people equally. The “Afro centric” crowd, with all its emphasis on cultural loyalty, respects (and often emulate and envy) White people, knowing they can’t make it without them. Consider this: two men have erroneously been called the “First Black President”. Yet Black people accomplished more under the White one (William Jefferson “Bill” Clinton) than the biracial one (Barack Hussein Obama).

The Cracker/Black Redneck culture that resulted in the South’s defeat in the Civil War is now known as multiculturalism. Its emphasis on ethnic or collective pride cuts minorities off from the rest of society, preventing them from seeing what other cultures have in common that make them thrive. Its emphasis on sexual prowess explains why AIDS is so rampant in Blacks, Hispanics, Latinos, and gay men more than other people. (There has never been an AIDS epidemic among monogamous spouses who didn’t shoot up dope.) Its muddled priorities keep poor people and minorities as an exploitable non-threat to the Black middle class and White liberals. In South Africa, it was more widely known as apartheid.

This is not implying that Blacks and Whites should disassociate. It is merely stating that Black people do not need White clemency as a crutch. They are as capable as the Asians and Hindus of self-sufficiency. People like Harlem’s ATLAH Church Pastor James David Manning and Dr. Condoleezza Rice survived the Jim Crow era. They know firsthand how well Black America can do, even under the worst conditions. So when Pastor Manning slams President Obama as a “Long-Legged Mack Daddy” rather than worship him, he’s earned that right. The same can be said for post-Jim Crow commentators like Star Parker, David Webb, and Minister Derrick “TMOT” Grayson. They point out the things Black people do and Black leaders condone for their own gain, but can rarely find Black audiences honest enough to take note. The United States, for better or worse, were forged from men who started out with little or nothing more than a will to make it. When President Lincoln set Black slaves free, they also had that will, and flourished. Black people of the Freedom Century, be it a college professor, grocer, or a sharecropper, had values-honor. If having and neglecting babies or killing your brother was wrong even under Jim Crow conditions, how is it acceptable today? How are Black leaders and those who allow and encourage such things not traitors? And to think, a young Black Pastor named Martin Luther King, Jr. marked the 100th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation with the legendary “I Have a Dream” speech. His plea for recognition based on the content of character rather than the color of one’s skin was also the goal of the Freedom Century. As the 50th anniversary of that speech approaches, it should be ours, too. We owe our predecessors that much.

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Posted on January 14, 2013, in Civil Rights and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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