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Sunday, July 20, 2014

Savant's Words

There is some debate about the numbers. Ronald Segal in ISLAM'S BLACK SLAVES estimates that the number of slaves taken by the Christian West and the Muslim East are more or less equal...But Asdurrratin refuses to acknowledge that a slave trade among Muslims even existed. Considering the millions of Africans lost the Muslim Arab trade, denial of the Muslim slave trades is as odious and disingenuous as the denial of the Atlantic trade, or the denial of the the Nazi holocaust or the mass murders of Stalin. 

-Savant

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You are uninformed. There is high unemployment among African Americans(as among Black South Africans), but the majority are not jobless. Our working class constitutes about 75% of the entire Black population in the USA. Most Black Americans DO have families to worry about even if the family is troubled and beleaguered--as are South African families. Perhaps you should inquire before posting. Impression derived from the white corporate media are not especially reliable. Furthermore, the primary problem is not the flaws in the South African or African American people, but in the oppressive system of imperialism which eviscerates our lives.

-Savant 


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 You know, W.E.B. Du Bois also advocated for a cooperative economic philosophy and commonwealth among Black Americans in his 1940 book called DUSK OF DAWN. It appears in the chapter called "The Colored World Within." Robert Allen proposed something along these lines in his 1969 study entitled BLACK AWAKENING IN CAPITALIST AMERICA. It's something worth looking at.

-Savant

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 Amandla! First of all, let me say that I have the greatest respect and admiration for the courageous struggles of the people of South Africa. And probably no struggle outside the USA has been more inspirational to African Americans than the heroic resistance of the Black people of South Africa. Our poets have written in praise of Mandela, of the courageous children of Soweto who pit their lives against the murderous fascist behemoth of apartheid. The problem is not, nor did I suggest, one of South Africa being a war torn country, or a "barbaric " land. The problem seems to be that the inequalities of the colonialist white dictatorship has continued even after the formal dismantling of apartheid. The dissolution of a fascist regime and its replacement by a parliamentary democracy is an accomplishment of no mean importance. But without fundamental democratic transformation of the socio-economic order, the new civil liberties are severely weakened and rendered largely abstract and ineffective--at least for the masses. That is a lesson that many of us have had to learn the hard way in the USA after the great battles of the 1960s. Fanon warned that exploitation can wear a Black face as well as a white one. My concern now is whether the new order in South Africa will be one of growing social democracy---which seemed to be implied by the ANC FREEDOM CHARTER--a democracy which empowers the common people, or whether we will have a new order which privileged the few at the expense of the many--an order in which perhaps the police (though now African) will be compelled to behave has they did under apartheid. What measures are being taken to undo the radical economic inequalities and exploitation engendered by the Native Land Act? Is at least partial nationalization part of the current agenda of the ANC government? I seem to have read the support for the ANC among mine workers has diminished. The winning of parliamentary democracy ought not be an endgame but a step toward the full democratization of society. I hope that this is what's under way Only thus can it be said that the thousands who died to win South African freedom did not die in vain. 

-Savant

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I won't debate Asdurratin regarding the dogmas of his faith. I can simply point out that claiming Mohammed was the last prophet is as pointless to a non-believer as it is for a Christian to insist that Jesus was divine or a Son of God. Cornel West,, Abraham Heschel and other many other religious people do think that Dr. King was a prophet; and their belief is informed by their religious convictions--convi ctions which I do not share. But if we can speak of the prophet as a social type, or a person pursuing a mission, then even without religious convictions I can agree that King fit the type or kind of person one can call a prophet. I also think that West is right that at least in societies in which one of the Abrahamic traditions is the majority faith, the prophetic tradition within that Abrahamic religion. Yes, even some Muslims may fit that description--like Abdul Ghaffer Khan of India, probably many of those clerics who supported who supported Mossadegh, etc. I suspect that in countries whose religion is not predominantly Abrahamic, there are equivalents of the prophets. I know that India has an ancient philosophical tradition preceding the Greeks (though convention has it that Greece INVENTED philosophy), I suspect she also has her own prophets. Gandhi seems to be such a person. But I know far less about Hindu or Budhists traditions. So, I can't be sure


-Savant

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