Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Racism is Theft: The Deliberate Widening of the Racial Wealth Gap



Justice Department, CFPB Say Mortgage Lender Overcharged African-American and Hispanic Borrowers

U.S. Government Uses Race Test for $80 Million in Payments

‘I Put in White Tenants’: The Grim, Racist (and Likely Illegal) Methods of One Brooklyn Landlord

Hasidic neighborhood in South Williamsburg is a top beneficiary of Section 8, but some question whether law is strictly followed

Honda to pay $25M for overcharging minority buyers on loans

How Toyota May Have Started Overcharging Minority Customers

Survey Finds Insurance Companies Charge Black Drivers Living in Predominately African-American Neighborhoods 70% More for Auto Insurance

City Council alert: Fifth Third Bank hiked interest rates on minority customers

Wells Fargo Deliberately Pushed Dangerous Loans On Blacks, Hispanics: Lawsuit

Feds: BancorpSouth illegally denied black consumers fair access to mortgages

Just FOUR Home Loans Were Given To African-Americans In This Major City In A Whole Year

Credit Card Debt’s Mighty Grip on Black America

5 Big Companies Sued for Racial Discrimination

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Q"Is our society wrongly declaring certain things as racist that are not racist?"

Muhammad Rasheed - Yes, the dominant class of the United State’s racist aristocracy (and their subjugated and indoctrinated supporters) has been labeling those who criticize racism as racists themselves, generally for no other reason than because they talk about the issue and make whites uncomfortable in the telling.

To pull this off, it’s necessary for the racist to attempt to redefine the meaning of “racism,” so that they may play victim and avoid accountability for their willing support of a system designed to economically build them up at the expense of others. The entire point of racism and why it exists, comes from targeting Black people for subjugation, exploitation, and the plundering of their wealth. The justification for doing so has created a surface-level ideology supported by the oppressor class, that pretends Blacks are inferior beings. The latter would not exist without the former, and the former defines to the smallest degree the race issue in the United States. To decree that the prejudiced/bigoted feelings of a racist are divorced from the white race’s never-ending history of exploiting Black people for profit, and is all that encompasses the definition of racism, is a fiction.

It benefits the racist for the oppressed to never fight the oppression — to never even bring the topic up — enabling the racist aristocracy to enjoy their plundered loot unopposed. Therefore, the dominant class has created the idea that those who bring the topic to the forefront of the national conscious in order to fight for the long over-due righting of traditional Western wrongs are themselves racists (“reverse racism”) in order to get them to shut up.

Michael Mc Laughlin - I think that a lot of what you say is true, but I think the American focus on race is divisive. I was really shocked when I went to see a doctor in the US and had to fill out a form asking what race I was. In Ireland that would be illegal. I think you guys are too focused on it. I do not think it is healthy. We are all the same. Why all this pretence that their is something fundamentally different? I don’t buy it. Do you?

Muhammad Rasheed - Hi, Michael. The issue isn’t whether l personally buy it or not. The problem that we deal with here is that the root cause of racism —the exploitation and plundering of Blacks by the white dominant class creating the infamous wealth gap—never stopped. This is the source of the racial divide you’ve mentioned.

If Black people don’t bring the topic up in efforts to finally cure our society of the wrong, it will never be addressed at all, since the white dominant class benefits from just leaving the oppressive social contract in its current anti-Black state.

Your suggestion that l should just leave the topic alone is fundamentally unjust.

Fel Rouse - There’s no question this has been done and is often the meaning behind the phrase “playing the race card.” The response to that accusation is rarely heard: “since you’re dealing the race card, I’m playing it. I play the hand I’m dealt.”

But we should never allow the idea that race governs everything in the lives of black people. It can only do that if we allow it to go unchallenged when it arises, or if we bring up race in situations where it isn’t related to the situation we’re facing. As a black man, I refuse to be limited by anyone-that to me is the meaning of freedom. Along with that is my refusal to limit anyone else. If race is an element in some situation I get into I definitely confront it. But if it’s not there, and a lot of times it isn’t, I’m not going to bring it up because it doesn’t occur to me to do so.

Muhammad Rasheed - Hi, Fel. Thanks for responding.

Our quality of life as Black Americans revolves around economics in a country with a capitalist tradition. Along side that tradition is another, more nefarious tradition, which has involved the plundering of our wealth, preventing us from building legacy wealth over generations, which is responsible for the ever-widening wealth gap between the two races. Whites have deliberately kept us away from wealth building opportunities they made available for themselves, while charging us higher fees and taxes. The nature of racism is theft, and the bigotry and prejudiced attitudes is how they justify that theft.

Racism touches every aspect of our lives whether we are conscious of it or not. We all need to be in that fight so it can finally stop. We are at war.

(see: list of plundering of the Black community articles linked above)

Fel Rouse - Yes, this is an old tradition. But there is a piece that you have not included. That is black American participation in this process. Credit card debt doesn’t have to be so rampant among our communities if we get wise about our spending habits. We can seek to do business with minority owned firms and institutions instead of leaving our communities to shop and conduct business. We can make it hot for any politician supposedly representing us and our communities locally, on the state level, and nationally. We can volunteer in schools and demand that school administrators include education on consumer economics, the trades, and consumer mathematics. And we can demand that our churches take a seriously proactive role in monitoring and improving conditions in our communities. Where I live, too little of that is being done by black people when it is done at all. You might see it as a war, but what it truly is is brainwashed people who have to learn to come away from a lifestyle that is ego and desire driven. There is little that 14–15% of the population can do in a war against 75% of the population unless they develop a strong awareness and discipline in thought an behavior. I have been learning about a man named Umar Johnson and I have been sadly unsurprised to see how this person convinced black Americans to donate thousands, if not hundreds of thousands to him for a school he has no plans to establish. My own former congressman Chaka Fatah now languishes in prison after having let our communities decline economically, socially, and politically for decades. And for those decades our people voted for him because he was the name they recognized, period. We have work to do in our communities first. It will not be easy, it won’t be dramatic, and it won’t be accomplished with marches, speechifying, and news cameras. Are you in?

Muhammad Rasheed - To be honest, I’ve strongly disagreed with too much within these two posts of yours to trust your “Are you in?” offer. I would fully expect to get my throat cut while my back was turned. lol

Every time you’d type the word “but,” I’d wince as it would immediately be followed by something from my ideological enemy’s political talking points script.

Fel Rouse - Get your throat cut?

Okay now I understand your point of view. Your ideological enemy is black Americans themselves, especially those who don’t completely accept your version of reality. Next I suppose you’ll try to categorize me as some sort of Judas to black people’s aspirations. I have met quite a few guys who believe they have the only and best view for the liberation of our people from oppression. Every one of them has only served to produce an even more confining vision of black life in America, and not one of them has done a thing to improve conditions for our people. You might be one of those kinds of guys, you might not. What is definite is that it will take a whole lot more than graphic novels to overcome the challenges we face. Peace.

Muhammad Rasheed - It will no doubt take more than my cartoons alone to free us, and it’ll certainly take more than downplaying the racism to deflect towards victim blaming as well.

Blacks have never had a problem building wealth and working hard, etc. It’s our ability to keep the fruits of our labor, own our own communities, and build legacy over generations that has been deliberately sabotaged by greedy outsiders who are currently pretending “not to see color.” There are varying tools at our disposal that can empower us, but using them effectively will lead to one certain outcome: We will be physically attacked by frustrated whites, fearful that their racism gravy train will stop. My people need to be armed with that knowledge, too. We are at war, it is NOT their fault, and to be “in” will encompass far more than telling them to stop letting whites plunder them using credit card scams.

There’s only one way to improve conditions for our people. That’s to weaponize our spending power with a nation-wide boycott, spending only on Black businesses, and then arm ourselves in defense for the certainty of American Civil War 2.0.

Laniyia Washington - M. Rasheed wrote: "There’s only one way to improve conditions for our people. That’s to weaponize our spending power with a nation-wide boycott, spending only on Black businesses, and then arm ourselves in defense for the certainty of American Civil War 2.0."

You think the people at the top give a damn about any color other than green? They screw over blacks, whites, browns, yellows and reds, race is just another excuse to do it like religion used to be and still is in some cases.

So here is the reality.

Some blacks will join the white billionaires and proceed to piss all over the poor, the black, white, brown, yellow and red poor.

In fact plenty already do and always have, before blacks and whites met blacks exploited and enslaved other blacks and whites exploited and enslaved other whites.

Look out your window and wake up to the fact that its going on already all around you, blacks murdering and killin each other, robbing and stealing, exploiting and oppressing ourselves.

You think black run businesses are not gonna do what those white businesses you listed did when it makes them more money?

Look at Baltimore.

63% black population a majority.

Black mayors for years, black leaders of the city council and black police chiefs and a majority black and other minority police force.

And just as corrupt as places whites are the majority with the black people in power doing what people in power always do.

There will never be a time we become what you describe, it is a childish fantasy that ignores human nature. The moment i grew out of believing such nonsense and began making my own way along my own path was the day i became free from racism.

But go ahead wait for your fantasy to happen instead and live in chains of your own making.

Muhammad Rasheed - Hi, Laniyia. Thank you for your feedback. I appreciate it a great deal.

I have little choice but to live my life and to live my own path, primarily since l enjoy eating, having shelter from the elements, and the cartooning craft of my chosen field. I can strive along my personal pursuit of happiness while l do my small part to fight for Black Empowerment and Economic Inclusion within the country of my birth.

I happen to believe that my people’s securing of full citizenship, and finally winning free of the greedy clutches of whites and their subjugated minions, is a fight worth the effort, even if l don’t live to see it happen myself. Freedom is always worth fighting for—no matter the odds—since it is indeed a Righteous Fight.

It is our duty to fight for freedom, yet it is the mindset of the treacherous blacks who support my enemy that the battle is too great, the odds too overwhelming. I, for one, am proud to not be of that class of cowards.

Laniyia Washington - How will you know you are free of greedy white clutches when greedy black clutches are identical and have a identical effect?

M. Rasheed wrote: "It is our duty to fight for freedom, yet it is the mindset of the treacherous blacks who support my enemy that the battle is too great, the odds too overwhelming. I, for one, am proud to not be of that class of cowards."

Think about this for a second.

Who is it that thinks the enemy is so powerful that it needs all blacks to rise up en masse and weaponize our spending power to defeat it?

Who is it that thinks the odds are so overwhelming that a nation wide boycott is required?

I do not think that, i think its weak and easily defeated because it could not stop me from achieving success.

Its a phantom similar to the kind children tell each other stories about in the dark only this ghost story is told by adults who imbue it with vast powers only all blacks rising up and working together can overcome.

Just look at your imagined monster, that you imbued with such power it requires a race achieving the impossible to be defeated.

Yet was bitch slapped out of the way by this 47 year old black tranny.

When you become obsessed with the enemy, you become the enemy.

Muhammad Rasheed - lol Hi again, Laniyia.

My argument doesn’t feel as if it had been “bitch slapped” as you say, since a goodly portion of your own counter was composed of strawman effigies that I don’t believe in anyway.

By no means do I think that a literal “ALL” Blacks need to come together for the boycott, just as not all Blacks in the African-American community need to work together in order for us to have a powerful political bloc to hold our elected officials accountable.

It didn’t take all the slaves to engage in violent uprisings, running away to freedom, or passionately fighting for the abolitionist cause, but the quality people who did perform in this way was enough to shake the barbaric racial contract to its core.

It didn’t take all the slaves to bear arms during the Civil War to beat back the greed-fueled enemy, but the quality of the brave men and women who did fight was enough to grant us the rudimentary freedoms we enjoy today.

It didn’t take all the Blacks to engage in sit-in demonstrations, marches, and mountains of paperwork to finally end jim crow and achieve the signing of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, but the dedicated quality men and women who did throw their considerable force and passion behind that fight was more than enough.

I hope for all Blacks to join this fight, it is true, but I do like to think I hold at least a bit of realism with my Hope. lol If I call on the ALL, perhaps I can win through to the fiery and powerful SOME that can be called once again to our great task of being finally, fully FREE.

Once again I thank you for your feedback. You’ve been a delight.

Laniyia Washington - M. Rasheed wrote: "My argument doesn’t feel as if it had been “bitch slapped” as you say, since a goodly portion of your own counter was composed of strawman effigies that I don’t believe in anyway."

I was not referring to your argument i was referring to the monster you think that cannot be defeated by anything but a mass uprising.

And i used your words to describe it not strawmen.

M. Rasheed wrote: "By no means do I think that a literal 'ALL' Blacks need to come together for the boycott, just as not all Blacks in the African-American community need to work together in order for us to have a powerful political bloc to hold our elected officials accountable."

They do not give a crap about what virtually all white voters want other than the few billionaire special interests so why would they care about a minority voting block?

They play identity politics, keep people thinking along racial lines, making us feel dependent on them, all to prevent us from realizing that it is they who are the true enemy.

Here is a bit of historical fact that is rarely mentioned.

In the USA within a generation of being newly emancipated slaves, half of that group went from illiterate to literate. That is a feat no other group of people to have existed on this planet before or since has accomplished in the same time frame.

I do not know about you but that lifts me every time i read it.

Here is the disappointing part.

Fast forward nearly 150 years to today and in many urban areas primarily populated with the descendants of those newly emancipated there is up to a 75% high school dropout rate.

Think about that for a second.

Muhammad Rasheed - Laniyia wrote: “…so why would they care about a minority voting block?”

Well, right now they wouldn’t. I’m saying that it wouldn’t take a whole lot to get them to be accountable, just like in my other examples. Just a dedicated ”some” would do. To reach and recruit that ‘some’ we need to talk to the ‘ALL.’

Laniyia wrote: “…half of that group went from illiterate to literate.”

I’m aware; I often use that same factoid to boast of my people’s power myself. What you have done here is give me yet another reason to slowly shake my head at your proudly displayed, bitch-slappin’ pessimism. If we want it, we can make things happen, Laniyia. God willing. All we have to do is do it.

Laniyia Washington - I do not think im a pessimist i am very pissed.

If i can go from where i started to where i am without the great white racist system beast preventing me or even slowing me much i do not see why others cannot do the same better or even a bit worse but still improve.

That is my reality and i did not need a uprising or a boycott.

Nobody expects everybody to get to the top of the ladder like Obama did but there is no excuse not to get up it a rung or two, and for some maybe a few more.

That is how a people build themselves and it requires no handouts or mass uprisings.

The foundations have been laid and we are standing on the shoulders of giants who laid them yet all i hear is complaining about how hard things are now by people who find it easier to give up than to achieve anything.

They point back in history at those newly emancipated slaves not to honor them, not to be inspired or empowered no. They look back in SELFpity ignoring that amazing achievement preferring to see those amazing people prior to emancipation and lay that they suffer a similar fate.

We aint so different i just didn't want or need to wait around for the rest of you.

Muhammad Rasheed - Okay, I see where our miscommunication breakdowns lay. None of my argument is about an individual’s tract to success (though there is some obvious spill over from the list of plunder articles I linked above), and whether focus, hard work, training, and patient perseverance will work for us as Black people. Of course it will… we’ve never had a problem building wealth. That’s not my issue. OUR issue.

Here. Do me a favor and read this very quick article, and then come back and tell me what your honest take away is.

Detroit’s plan for ‘African Town’ stirs racial tensions

Laniyia Washington - I think it was a stupid idea, its tokenism that at best does nothing to solve the issues and at worst simply exacerbates and disguises the real problems.

Chinatown's and Little Italy's did not need government handouts to be created the people did it themselves. They put their own blood sweat and tears into creating a place and that gave it value to them, it gave them the pride that comes with achieving a goal and knowing it truly belonged to them.

You think a place paid for by others for blacks is ever going to be treated with respect by blacks in the way it would be had it been built by the community itself, even if black contractors are used?

The place would be wrecked robbed and likely burned down the first time CNN spin doctors a police shooting of a black to get ratings. Its not truly the communities creation its a symbol of what the community could not do alone even though other demographics managed it.

It gives me no joy to bring this up but when i came up with the idea for my business i was a whore working the worst part of Harlem in order to pay for the drugs i needed to transition. I learned what i needed to know from local libraries and put together a step by step plan to make it happen.

Can you guess what the very first step was before even considering taking any other steps?

Getting the hell away from and starting it any place other than a poor black community. It was a absolute necessity and above all, above racism and identity politics and all of it that is OUR issue as you put it.

That fact saddens me more than i can properly express.

I do not know if this is the reply you expected wanted or agree with but its what i got.

Muhammad Rasheed - I'm more than satisfied with you comfortably expressing your truth, as well as your honest take away from the article. It is very insightful and helps me fill in puzzle pieces within my own knowledge base in general with how the various tribes within the Black Nation see the world, as well as helps me see where you are coming from in this particular topic. Thank you so much for your time; it' part of why engaging with you here has been so positive.

Now if you are still willing, please skim through these articles below, and give me your honest take away regarding the concept in general, and particularly compared to what you said about the 'China Town' and 'Italy Town' histories you've mentioned.

Atlanta race riot

Tulsa race riot

Chicago race riot of 1919

Rosewood massacre

Red Summer

Springfield race riot of 1908

New York City draft riots

East St. Louis riots

Laniyia wrote: "It gives me no joy to bring this up but when i came up with the idea for my business i was a whore working the worst part of Harlem in order to pay for the drugs i needed to transition. I learned what i needed to know from local libraries and put together a step by step plan to make it happen."

I think it's awesome that instead of lying down and becoming a statistic, that you got up and took hold of the reigns of your life and guided it to the quality you dreamed for yourself. I would NEVER be mad at that, especially for one such as you, loathe as you may be to see me indulge further in racial "identity politics."  lol (Although thus far, you certainly don't seem shy about expressing the 'identity politics of your own tribe.)

I do note, Laniyia, that in order to get the seed money for this venture, you admitted that you had to go off-grid, and use the illegal 'street' methods to attain funds. Aside from the high-physical risk, from the finance side of things that was actually a great advantage for you. How much more difficult would your path have been, and how much more longer would it have taken, were you to have gone through the "legit" routes touted by the deceitful "Stop breaking the law, snowflake! BOOTSTRAPS!" crowd? This is what the "legit" route looks like: (seelist of plundering of the Black community articles linked above)

Laniyia wrote: "It was a absolute necessity and above all, above racism and identity politics and all of it that is OUR issue as you put it."

Hm. There is no "above racism" in America. The best you can do at this time is assimilate into it and wear economic goggles that carefully select out what you don't care to look at. Those you've left behind in Harlem currently cannot afford such equipment. Of course they can at any time choose to do what you've done, but it isn't their fault their community looks the way it does. This is by design.

Laniyia Washington - M. Rasheed wrote: "I'm more than satisfied with you comfortably expressing your truth, as well as your honest take away from the article. It is very insightful and helps me fill in puzzle pieces within my own knowledge base in general with how the various tribes within the Black Nation see the world..."

I am neither part of any black tribe or black nation nor will i ever be.

M. Rasheed wrote: "Hm. There is no 'above racism' in America."

Nor for you because race to you is all as per your comment above.

For me and many others who will never be part of a black nation or tribe there is individuality.

M. Rasheed wrote: "Now if you are still willing, please skim through these articles below, and give me your honest take away regarding the concept in general, and particularly compared to what you said about the 'China Town' and 'Italy Town' histories you've mentioned."

My opinion is they are history.

M. Rasheed wrote: "I do note, Laniyia, that in order to get the seed money for this venture, you admitted that you had to go off-grid, and use the illegal 'street' methods to attain funds."

No i did not i said i did it to pay for the drugs i needed to transition.

I got a loan to start my business.

M. Rasheed wrote: "The best you can do at this time is assimilate into it and wear economic goggles that carefully select out what you don't care to look at. Those you've left behind in Harlem currently cannot afford such equipment. Of course they can at any time choose to do what you've done, but it isn't their fault their community looks the way it does. This is by design."

I left because those who i knew that heard i had a idea asked me about it in order to try and steal it and i left because had i built it there i would have been robbed and ruined by that “tribe”.

Muhammad Rasheed - Laniyia wrote: "I am neither part of any black tribe or black nation nor will i ever be."

lol That proclamation centers you firmly within a sub-group Black Tribe that I argue with all the time. I take it that you have done the following:

1) taken ownership of the concept "surround yourself by the people who are doing what you want to do" or something similar.

2) associate all Black people with ‘poor criminality.’

Couldn't you find some successful Black trans-folk to hang out with? My "former" brother-in-law (he-turned-she) is one. I'm positive there are more. I'm not sure if the extreme position you've taken was entirely necessary in order for you to attain the life you wanted. Thoughts?

Laniyia wrote: "Nor for you because race to you is all as per your comment above."

The white/Black dynamic is 100% the racism relationship of whites exploiting Blacks. It's been like that since 1619 and continued up into today. Your ability to figure out how to manage around it -- as have numerous Blacks throughout the same time period -- doesn't mean racism is a fiction. Or is that "wishing it into the cornfield' magical-thinking spell part of your sub-group Black Tribe's ideology?

Laniyia wrote: "For me and many others who will never be part of a black nation or tribe there is individuality."

Do I sense the terminology of the 'soveriegn without citizens' group bubbling just under the surface of that comment?

Laniyia wrote: "My opinion is they are history."

Indeed. It IS history, if for no other reason than because such efforts are attacked and stomped out like a fire by the barbaric dominant class, jealously guarding their monopoly of wealth & power. The last one destroyed to my knowledge was Malachi York's township that Wesley Snipes was a part of. The feds cooked up some nonsense about them and set what they didn't steal on fire. The fact that they left the Chinese and Italians alone to build their own interconnected community, economically included into the mainstream without outsider sabotage, is also history. You don't consider it odd that the proposal for Blacks to do the same was vehemently shot down by the power class? I know you have your own expressed opinions as to why the idea is "stupid," but why react the way they did react? You don't think that suspicious?

Laniyia wrote: "I got a loan to start my business."

You saw my long list of financial institutions scamming Blacks. Was the interest rates on your loan comparable to what whites routinely receive, or to what the racist institutions inflicted on the Black people?

Laniyia wrote: "I left because those who i knew that heard i had a idea asked me about it in order to try and steal it and i left because had i built it there i would have been robbed and ruined by that 'tribe.'"

So I gathered from your first mention of your testimony. And I don't blame you, but every people has their criminal element, and of course they concentrate in the poorest neighborhoods. I know you probably overcame some crazy trash during your impressive journey, Laniyia, but it isn't fair to paint the entire ethnic group with the colors you found on the Harlem community's weakest side. Please soften your heart for those who haven't allowed themselves to fall into "the life."

Laniyia Washington - M. Rasheed wrote: "lol That proclamation centers you firmly within a sub-group Black Tribe that I argue with all the time."

A sub group you created by being entirely focused on race not them.

M. Rasheed wrote: "I take it that you have done the following:
1) taken ownership of the concept "surround yourself by the people who are doing what you want to do" or something similar.
2) associate all Black people with ‘poor criminality.’"

I surround myself with (if that is the correct term) people who i enjoy the company of, typically those who have similar interests, personality and character.

And i do not think of any group of people in terms of “all”.

M. Rasheed wrote: "Couldn't you find some successful Black trans-folk to hang out with? Thoughts?"

My thoughts are that you got it bad.

What the hell does me being black or trans tell you about me?

That i was born in a poor area to a single mother, bolstered my education in public libraries was a prostitute in the late 80’s and early 90’s during those violent times and eventually built my own business gives you some idea about my personality.

But even that is only a slight insight.

What the hell does black tranny tell you about me when it tells me nothing about me?

M. Rasheed wrote: "The white/Black dynamic is 100% the racism relationship of whites exploiting Blacks. It's been like that since 1619 and continued up into today."

I am in my 40’s not my 400’s and whatever form today's racism takes is and was irrelevant and powerless to prevent my success.

M. Rasheed wrote: "You saw my long list of financial institutions scamming Blacks. Was the interest rates on your loan comparable to what whites routinely receive, or to what the racist institutions inflicted on the Black people?"

I cannot say what others do but if you think i just walked blindly into the first bank i found and accepted what they offered then you have not been paying attention to the kind of person i am.

But maybe you think cos im black that is what i did.

M. Rasheed wrote: "So I gathered from your first mention of your testimony. [...] Please soften your heart for those who haven't allowed themselves to fall into 'the life.'"

I am painting no entire ethnic groups anything, in all this i have over and over expressed myself as a individual and with a focus on individuality i have also continually dismissed being or seeing myself as part of a tribe or black nation.

You are projecting your racial views and how you delineate by race onto me and my life, the struggles you are having is that i did not live my life along those lines nor do i share that perspective.

Muhammad Rasheed - Laniyia wrote: "A sub group you created by being entirely focused on race not them."

I didn't create the sub-group. A certain group of people happens to share a set of very specific traits that they have in common. The one that recognizes the natural grouping isn't the creator of the group. The people of the group who share those common traits don't HAVE to come together for mutual interest (as you very firmly demonstrate in your own life), but it would seem to be a good idea to do so, since those who do tend to be the most successful.

Laniyia wrote: "And i do not think of any group of people in terms of 'all.'"

Thus far you've given the impression that you have an active dislike for the African-American ethnic group in general, and are trying to distance yourself from them as much as possible. I can fully understand a desire to want to get away from an old neighborhood that held way too many bad memories, but you've expressed something much broader than just that. Does your new company circle hold an anti-Black opinion among them, Laniyia?

Laniyia wrote: "My thoughts are that you got it bad."

lol Probably. To be honest, the more I dig and learn about what's going on within the fabric of Western Society, the more radicalized I FEEL. No doubt I'm projecting that a lot in these dialogues.

Laniyia wrote: "What the hell does me being black or trans tell you about me?"

What else? It tells me you share similar background with a group of others.

Laniyia wrote: "I am in my 40’s not my 400’s and whatever form today's racism takes is and was irrelevant and powerless to prevent my success."

You support an earlier statement of mine, that Blacks have never had a problem building wealth. There were wealthy freemen Blacks during the very heart of the slavery era. The problem is that were it not for racism, MORE Blacks would be wealthy, and poverty would actually be rare. Our wealth has been continuously siphoned off and used to feed the dominant class of our racist aristocracy. My status post is pointing that out, and you've come to refute it using your individual success story. The facts of history demonstrate that you will need something stronger. What do you have?

Laniyia wrote: "But maybe you think cos im black that is what i did."

No. I expected you to do the very best you could with what you had, and even use your ingenuity to pioneer new opportunities. I also expected THAT one to continue the trend of being a racist asshole when he saw that you were Black, and raise your interest rate just because he could, even if it happened to be the best deal you found after shopping around.

Laniyia wrote: "...the struggles you are having is that i did not live my life along those lines nor do i share that perspective."

I'm not struggling, I'm just expressing concepts your way to learn more about how you think from your responses. My goal was to learn why you responded to my status post the way you did by probing more. Just conversation stuff, Laniyia. I certainly appreciate you being game for it, even though you sound like you want to tear my head off sometimes. :D

Fel Rouse - M. Rasheed wrote: “Making my own way along my own path" is the true path of freedom. A very wise statement.

Muhammad Rasheed - Bearing in mind that fighting the oppressive greed of my country’s racist aristocracy is part of that path I’m on. I’m pleased you recognize the wisdom involved. ;)

Fel Rouse - What you seem to be missing is that the “American Civil War 2.0” has been in effect since the end of Reconstruction and we have been losing. Before even attempting a massive action such as the nation-wide boycott you describe, we do have to take what Laniyia Washington offered as a beginning, and that is to clearly see who is exploiting us among our own people. Sadly there are many black churches that do nothing in the communities in which they are situated but hold services on Sundays and special events for their congregations only. The black church is one of the powerful elements black people have control of yet it seems too often ineffective in combatting crime, economic exploitation, political exploitation, and the deprivations that are unique to all economically challenged communities around the country. In addition, the black church has alienated members of our communities who are gay or transgendered with judgements based on a refusal to see life as it is rather than as they believe it should be. There cannot be such divisions if there are to be massive actions against oppression. Self control and refusing to judge others will go a long way to creating a mindset that will begin to remove the stultifying elements that hold so many of us back.

I don’t believe in an American Civil War 2.0 as some apocalyptic event where the population of America begins attacking itself on the basis of race, religion, or economic situation. The reason is other powerful nations, particularly China, would be all too ready to invade and conquer if we became embroiled in a war against each other. I think a lot of people are aware of that possibility. You are an artist and have a creative mind. I look to you and others like you to help create the vision that will inspire many to break past whatever holds them back.

Muhammad Rasheed - Fel wrote: “There cannot be such divisions if there are to be massive actions against oppression.”

Not so, as my list of major gains during key points of African-American history in my response to Laniyia proved. There were ALWAYS such divisions among the Black Nation, since the tribes do not always get along, then as now. Your well-rehearsed complaints about the church sound little different from that of Reconstruction era Black figures like Booker T. Washington. There have always been treacherous, cowardly, and even apathetic Blacks among us every step of the way. Remember the response of then heavyweight boxing champion Sonny Liston when he was asked why he wasn’t lending his own considerable voice to the Civil Rights Movement? Suffice to say it didn’t exactly show him in a favorable light.

Yet, the Black heroes who did take part endured and we won that phase of the war. Where there is a will—and the will is ever among us to be called out—there will be a way.

Fel wrote: “I look to you and others like you to help create the vision that will inspire many to break past whatever holds them back.”

At the moment, I need to create the vision that “no oppressor ever willingly stopped oppressing his victims.” In order to abolish chattel the bloodiest war in America was needed, as there was far too much monetary value within the 4 million slaves at the time to willingly give it up. Today they are still reaping obscene amounts of wealth from us—in far more ways that ever before—and for us to live at our best we will have to make them let us go. It will not be impossible. I am the believing oppressed, and the One God is on my side in this Righteous Fight.

You two should practice more optimism. Freedom is worth it, don’t you think? Not too long ago, a Black President of the United States of America was equally “impossible,” innit? What was done before can be done again.

Black citizens boycott white merchants for U.S. voting rights, Tuskegee, Alabama, 1957-1961

Fel Rouse - Do you know who Paul Robeson was? How about Robert F. Williams?

If your list shows gains you uphold as impressive, what are you doing talking about the need for a nation-wide boycott?

Paul Robeson helped to bring awareness of the world beyond America to black people in America, and he began to create bonds with people in Africa, Asia, and Europe. Various black leaders, the most notably vicious of which was Mr. Roy Wilkins of the NAACP, worked to destroy the reputation and career of Mr. Robeson all in service to a supremacist government that wanted to paint Mr. Robeson as a communist. Those bonds with the people of other nations once called the “Third World” were not maintained.

Robert F. Williams upheld the right to self defense for black Americans in the face of brutal violence by white racists that went unchecked by law. His opposition came from one Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and his followers, who wanted to raise the banner of nonviolence as the pre-eminent tactic of empowerment for black Americans. He too began to create bonds between people in Cuba and China and black Americans, when he was forced to flee the US on trumped-up kidnapping charges. Where was the outrage of the Civil Rights community for the unfair treatment of these leaders? They are just two examples of the divisions I describe.

How was the original Black Panther Party for Self Defense brought down? Certainly there was the involvement of blacks in its destruction. And what was it doing that was so destructive to America? Feeding under privileged black children. Providing legal services for people of the communities where they were situated. Monitoring police activity in communities where police misconduct and abuse of citizens was rampant.

It’s good that you are on this topic, but it’s not enough. I spent more than half of my life working in black communities here helping to confront challenges and joining efforts to improve conditions, so what I am talking about isn’t coming from what I think but from what I have witnessed. It’s your turn now. By your own standards, based on the future you have described, you have mountains of work to do.

Muhammad Rasheed - The ‘divisions’ you’ve described are no less than the work of the enemy, deliberately sowing mischief and deception within our midst (see: COINTELPRO) to prevent his cash cow from escaping his grasp. Our economic exclusion is his living, breathing ATM, and we need to be fully aware of the lengths he will go through to keep us in an exploitative state. The necessary rock solid defensive position needed to fend off his certain attack—with the exact same desperate, greed-fueled, drooling, maniacal-eyed look on his face as he wore during the Civil War—is what I mean regarding the Civil War 2.0. What drove him to violence before will do so again, and our study of his tactics as you’ve laid out here is a weapon we can use in our planning. #KnowThyEnemy

In reading through history, one of my most frustrated moments come from seeing how often Blacks would nonchalantly turn their backs on the white community after winning through to some momentous civil rights gain, foolishly believing that we didn’t have to VIGILANTLY stand over and protect that which we had won. We can’t afford that mentality anymore, if ever. No matter what, he WILL regroup and attack again, and we MUST be ready for it. Even from among our own skin folk.

Fel Rouse - Agreed. Just understand, there are those who will work just as vehemently as the white community to undermine whatever we do to transcend and overcome the bonds imposed and inflicted on our people, and they ain’t white. Peace.

Muhammad Rasheed - I know. Infiltrating agents have been one of the enemy’s most effective tools, but we can fend against that too if we’re willing. Thank you so much for the discussion.

Peace.

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