Jim Crow Museum
1010 Campus Drive
Big Rapids, MI 49307
Just over one year ago I started collecting material for a subject I have made numerous attempts to address, in the form of an essay or publish material, since the late 1980's....the use of the word "nigger." I happened upon the Ferris State University site, Nigger and Caricatures. I read part of it, no, let me correct that, I actually skimmed through it, downloaded it to a hard copy and put it away.
Once again I was hit with the spirit and inspiration to finally commit to expressing the history of that word and how it affects Afrikan people today. I retrieved your essay first and read it. I was blown away and overwhelmed with the background, research and directness of your writing. It filled me with a spirit and enthusiasm that said in many ways that what I was reading was eloquently what I was attempting to express.
I am a self-taught historian, and have uncovered much what you have published in your essay. My interest in history covers a broad spectrum of world history in order to put into full context the puzzle of the history of the Afrikan in ameriKKKa. I am over fifty years of age, and have been a political activist for more than forty years. I am not a racist, and cannot be a racist since Black people are not in control of any political, social, or economic institutions here in the United States that can affect/effect any other people's cultural/national existence or livelihood. Black people in the United States adverse feelings, actions and opinions are reactions to white supremacist racism. I gave this explanation so that you may understand my spelling of America. I am a Black Nationalist Reparationist. I do not approach the political issue from an emotional view, but from factual, archival and historical perspective. I am not a multiculturalist, nor a cultural diversity advocate because my belief system warrants that I respect all people irregardless of their heritage, culture, nationality or background...leaving the term multicultural, cultural diversity useless in my regards.
My introduction to history was of course Dr. Carter G. Woodson. I was educated in the era before Black History Month was honored, but was recognized as "Negro History Week." I have read the works of Dr. John Henrike Clarke, J.A. Rogers, and Arthur Schomburg amongst others, and have followed the teachings of Dr. Claud Anderson, National Co-Chair of the National Reparations Convention, and founder of the Harvest Institute (you can find the Harvest Institute website online). My initial understanding of Black Nationalism came as a juvenile from studies of Marcus Mosiah Garvey and his Universal Negro Improvement Association movement. At that period, my mother enlisted my sisters, brothers, and myself in the NAACP, and A. Phillip Randolph Institute. This gave me a background and association with the works of W.E.B DuBois, Thurgood Marshall, Roy Wilkins, the labor movement (which was important since at that period, most Black people were domestic housekeepers, janitors, unskilled laborers, and performed similar such menial tasks for their livelihood), and the like.
I abstain from the universal brotherhood of man in search of a lovefest, negotiating, begging, crying or pleading with people throughout the world to accept me, the Afrikan of ameriKKKa, the descendant of enslaved Afrikans from ameriKKKa. I am sure that my education and intellect will force others to recognize and respect me as a person and as a man of the world. Although my educational experience is not limited to the individuals that I have listed above, I explained all of this so that you would not get the impression that by being a Black Nationalist, that I was a hate-monger. I practice the Christian faith...the historical Afrikan Jesus (some people say that Christ's nationality and culture is unimportant. If that was so, why did the Europeans make him white?). Actually, true Black Nationalists are above and beyond racial hate. Our major objective is to build an intelligent, productive Black nation that will contribute to the world without compromise. That does not mean that we exclude white people. Many white people such as Dr. Howard Zinn, and Herbert Aptheker among others, have been instrumental in our quest and have been allies. One such person is James Allen. Mr. Allen is the author of Without Sanctuary, a study of lynching in the United States.
I am sure you are a busy man. At your convenience, I would greatly appreciate communicating or corresponding with you. I cannot say that I will complete my writing project, but in the event that I do, because your work parallels mine...and in many instances, outdistances mine, as I put my material together, I would like permission to use some of what you have uncovered as a reference source. Money is not my aim, goal, nor objective, it is the education of the gangsta rap/hip-hop generation, who are misinformed about the real politics of the world, I am trying to reach (I am sure you are familiar with the brother, Michael Eric Dyson. A very intelligent brother, but I do not agree with his philosophy on rap and hip-hop.). Of course, if I am successful, and have your permission to use any part of your material, whatever monies that are bestowed upon me you will share in royalties.
Thank you for your time.
-- September 3, 2007