Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Some Key Dates in the Reparations Struggle for Afrikans©

1782 – Belinda’s Petition is the first recorded instance of an Afrikan in America seeking and receiving reparations from her former enslaver. Belinda petitioned the Massachusetts State Legislature and asks for “the just rewards for honest labor” stemming from half of century of enslavement by her enslaver, Isaac Royall. The legislators grant a lifetime pension for her and her daughter from Royall’s estate.

1803 – The Haitian Revolution puts in motion the simultaneous expansion of the United States with the Louisiana Purchase and the demise of Napoleon in the western hemisphere. The only successful slave rebellion in history that took control of a nation, Haiti will be punished for over 200 years by the white world for its successful rebellion against French enslavement.

1814 – The Tenth Article of the Treaty of Ghent which ends the War of 1812 states, ''. . . the traffic in slaves is irreconcilable with the principles of humanity and justice.''

1825 – Haiti begins paying reparations for land French slave owners “lost” during the Haitian Revolution. Total reparations paid: $20 billion.

1841 – Sengbe Pieh, aka "Joseph Cinque", wins the right to return to his homeland of Sierre Leone from the U. S. Supreme Court after successfully commandeering the Amistad which frees himself and his compatriots from enslavement.

1842 - President John Tyler on December 6, 1842 in his second State of the Union address quotes from the Tenth Article of the Treaty of Ghent, signed by the United States and Great Britain in 1814.

1865 – On January 16, 1865, W. T. Sherman issues Field Order No. 15 that promises “40 acres” to ex-enslaved Afrikans in portions of the Carolinas and Florida. Over the next few months, some 400,000 acres are distributed to the freedmen.

1867 – A bill introduced by Congressman Thaddeus Stevens in the 40th Congress calls for confiscating land from the former Confederate States and redistributing it to the freedmen.

1884-1885 – For three months in Berlin, the European powers carve up Afrika with total disregard for ethnic, linguistic and cultural differences in order to avoid European internecine warfare in the scramble for Afrika.

1890 – Callie House creates the Ex-Slave Mutual Relief, Bounty and Pension Association which petitions the United States government for “pensions” (reparations) for the millions of ex-enslaved Afrikans. On trumped up charges of “mail fraud”, she will spend one year in federal prison. A brilliant organizer and Mother of the modern reparations movement, she gathers 600,000 signatures for redress against Amerikkkan enslavement.

1914 – Marcus Garvey establishes the United Negro Improvement Association (UNIA) and advocates not only a “do for self” ethic but a “right of return” to Afrika by Afrikans in the Maafa. Garvey is considered one of the four great American Afrikan organizers of the 20th century, the others being Callie House, Elijah Muhammad and Martin Luther King.

1920s – Founding of Rastafarianism in Jamaica which provides a theological connection between Afrikans in the Maafa and the Afrikan continent. The religion will become global and has as its core theology the end of white rule (“Babylon”) and the reestablishment of an African world. It will stress repatriation to Afrika by Afrikans in the Maafa.

1930 – Founding of Nation of Islam, by Elijah Poole, aka Elijah Muhammad and W. D. Fard encases a Black Nationalist theology in the religion of Islam. The faith will produce Malcolm X who with Muhammad calls for a “repair” of the Black mind because of the damage done by white supremacy

1963 – Queen Mother Audley Moore presents a 1-million signature petition to President John F. Kennedy calling for reparations on the 100th anniversary of the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation.

1968 – Founding of Republic of New Afrika (RNA) whose constitution calls for five states --- Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and South Carolina --- to be ceded to American Africans for the establishment of the RNA. Its founder Imari Obadele will be imprisoned and ultimately released as a result of the COINTELPRO of the FBI.

1969 – James Forman, a former executive secretary of the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), walks into Riverside Church in New York and demands $500 million reparations for Afrikans in America from white churches.

1987 – National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations in America (N’COBRA) founded. It becomes the premiere reparations organization in the United States.

2001- The United Nations World Conference Against Racism declares the TransAtlantic Slave Trade a “crime against humanity” and further opens the doors for legal redress to enslavement, colonialism and white supremacy.

2001 – Publication of Randall Robinson’s The Debt, which presents a powerful argument for reparations for the TransAtlantic Slave Trade.

2002 – Deadria Farmer-Paellmann sues more than 20 U. S. corporations for their predecessor companies profiteering from the TransAtlantic Slave Trade.

2003 - Creation of the Ndaba Movement by Dr. Conrad Worrill, National Chair of the National Black United Front. Over a period of one year, five cities in the United States --- Chicago, Illinois, Jackson, Mississippi, Houston Texas, Baltimore, Maryland and Atlanta Georgia --- will host mass meetings with Minister Louis Farrakhan and Worrill educating thousands of American Africans about reparations.

2005 – Millions More Movement orgainzed by Minister Louis Farrakhan endorses Reparations for the TransAtlantic Slave Trade.

©2007, Raymond A. Winbush