Let me make myself abundantly clear. I grew up in San Francisco during the mid to late 1970s. The significance of this is that during that period, San Francisco was without question the capitol city for the LGBTQ community. This fact wasn't even challenged. During my middle school years, what we used to call Junior High, I caught the bus daily on the corner of Castro and Market, which was the main intersection within the main gay community in the entire U.S. My dear departed mother, being involved in community theater, created and directed plays throughout San Francisco on a regular basis. Many of her participants in these productions were transgender, gay, queer, folks. My point is I grew up exposed on a regular basis to people in the LGBTQ community. I interacted with them as a child growing up. And, today, I am as heterosexual, CIS, whatever the hell you want to call it, as anyone can be. Plus, just to be completely transparent, I cannot tell you that I am completely resolved in my consciousness about the question of being LGBTQ e.g. whether its something people are born as or not. I lean heavily towards people are without question born as they are born, but the nature of my intellect is I constantly challenge myself on everything I believe, including my Pan-African beliefs. Due to that, I know my ability to constantly challenge myself this way is the reason I am so strong in my convictions, beliefs, and actions.
And, a very strong conviction that I am not the least bit confused about is regardless of what I or any other so-called heterosexual person believes about LGBTQ as a lifestyle, natural way of life, or whatever people believe about it, I know that jumping on the homophobia bandwagon does absolutely nothing to help anyone, especially the oppressed African masses. This is the main reason for my irritation. Its unfathomable that African people, anywhere we live on earth, with the centuries of oppression we have experienced everyday, could find any possible way, any opening, no matter how slight, any grain of sand, to support any thinking that causes any group of people, especially portions of our own communities, to suffer. Its painful enough to see, not to mention for those in our communities who have to experience it, when I know the homophobic ideas that are growing legs in our communities everywhere today are not ideas we are originating.
This part needs to be exceptionally clear. Kwame Nkrumah was 100% clear and precise when he talked about African culture being a culture of "humanism, collectivism, and egalitarianism." Those are the values and the fundamental basis of our existence as African people. That's why Kwame Ture (Stokely Carmichael) was correct when he said that Africans have "civilized America!" When we responded to the massive brutality and terror of thousands of lynchings against African people exactly 100 years ago in this country, our response to stage large, peaceful, marches, to demonstrate our humanity was an act (whether you agree with it or not is immaterial) of civilizing this society. When we responded to the brutality and terror of the Ku Klux Klan, in and out of uniform, by singing humanizing songs, we were civilizing this society. When Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. talked about loving our enemies, we civilized this society. When our people faced brutality from colonialists in Africa and the Caribbean, we civilized this world. All the peaceful marches that were met with state violence in Southern Africa. Sharpesville for example. We were civilizing our oppressors. Again, not the point whether you think you agree with those peaceful tactics or not. You benefit from them so give the required respect.
Besides, you fantasizing about what you would have done is so besides the point. The focus here is that our people have always maintained a level of humanism, despite whatever our circumstances. We have no history of bombing anyone. No history of lynching anyone. There are no pictures you can find of countless cases of Africans standing around burning Europeans alive. No examples of our organizations whole sale killing Europeans. Even though our enemies (with many of you mindlessly contributing) continue to try and compare the existences of the Ku Klux Klan and the racist White mercenaries in Africa with the Black Panther Party, Land and Freedom Movement (Mau Mau in Kenya), Nation of Islam, etc., any violence we meted out was always only to protect our people from persecution. Never was it to prevent any other people from living in whatever way they desired. So, anyone who cannot see the differences here is just a lost soul. We have always maintained that humanism. To be honest, I don't claim to understand it myself, but we have. And, we have because that is who we are as a people. So, historically, despite whatever we felt about the LGBTQ community, we have never before advocated any type of suppression against them, until now.
Recently, we have seen episodes of Africans terrorizing LGBTQ people in Azania, South Africa. We have seen repression proposed and practiced against these communities in Uganda. We have seen it in Zimbabwe. Now this African from Negroville is going to a school board - where we challenge you to find one public school board in this entire society that is a true friend to African children - to attack an African formation that is trying, to the best of its capabilities, to fight in the interests of African people.
Its astounding to me, but that's probably because I see the world much different than most people in this backward capitalist reality. To me, if you are my people, I'm ride or die forever. I know lots of people say that, but most of the people saying that have never been tested. When their moment to stand up comes, they will wilt like ice in 100 degree weather. That's why so many people are opposed to any form of accountability. Try to implement some and see how they react. For me, there is no one alive who can make me more accountable than I make myself, so accountability is not only not fearsome to me, its a way of life. I've been tested countless times and continue to be tested. In fact, I look for ways to be tested. I do because I am all about fighting against the enemies of my people and humanity. I'm real about that and therefore, I am able to recognize others who are real about it. I'm also able to recognize those who aren't. And, most of us talking about real aren't real at all. We get mad when people like me tell Africans we don't engage in serious study. Well, get ready to be mad because I'm going to say it again. We aren't serious about doing the study we need to do. If we were, we would realize who we are as African people. There wouldn't be so many people out here running around spouting this ridiculous nonsense that we aren't Africans. Show me one of these people and I'll show you a person who knows absolutely nothing about Africa, period. Show me one of these people born in Africa and I'll still show you one who knows nothing about Africa. Serious students of African history, and our humanist culture, know that its not a question of whether one believes a person can be gay or not. For those of us who are not LGBTQ, its really none of our damn business. Its a question for us that all people deserve respect and dignity. And, that our culture is one that provides that to everyone. That's why my dear departed father was always nothing except respectful to everyone my mother had over to our place. Not tolerant, respectful. There's a huge difference and if you don't know what that difference is, you don't understand African culture around humanist questions like this one. And its time for us to attack this backward idea that by acknowledging our LGBTQ family members we are somehow compromising "the African family." Please come to my 30 year old daughter and I and explain to us how our respect for the LGBTQ community has compromised our healthy father/daughter relationship. How its diminished our strong commitment to African liberation and Pan-Africanism? You cannot do that because that position is BS and we all know it is. What's really happening there is African men who lack strong enough self esteem and guts to challenge our true enemies are taking the coward route and attacking members of our communities who are easy targets. These so-called "brothers" and the mindless women who support them, despite whatever soothing rhetoric they are preaching, are pimps who see our suffering as a means to an end. Nothing else. Find me one of these people and I'll show you someone who is either severely miss-informed and/or who has never confronted the true enemies of our people at any time in their lives.
The final and very critical point on this question is the reality that this latest version of intolerance and repression that is being suggested by this latest brand of pseudo so-called African "leaders" (especially all those who have absolutely no organizational structures to help our people, just a youtube following) is the undeniable fact that their reactionary rhetoric is straight out of the handbook of white supremacist groups like Franklin Graham's "Samaritan Power" which spends millions of dollars annually in African communities from Nairobi, Kenya, to Los Angeles, priming our people to become homophobic. The reason? Because big money capitalist interests use their vehicles like the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) to squeeze through lots of anti-African and poor people legislation. They now they can get you to support it if they couch it in homophobic rhetoric. They know you won't look much farther once you determine what their peddling lines up with your homophobic views. And, since they are the ones feeding your homophobia, they know their tactics will work. Just like they know their Southern Strategy, coded racist language, will continue to convince European/white working class people to support racist polices against their own economic interests. In other words, those of you who believe all this nonsense are being pimped, again. But, you'd rather be mad at people like me for telling you to study than research all of this yourselves in an organized fashion with others.
Then, to add insult to injury, we don't even have the basic scientific understanding of the war we are in to piece together the obvious. This federal government, through its criminal investigation agency - the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), has targeted BLM activists as terrorists. They have done this despite the fact BLM hasn't killed, harrassed, or terrorized a single person. Yet, they are telling you that they are classifying BLM as a main threat to the security of people in this backward society. All of this while white supremacist groups are producing lone wolf terrorists who are shooting up and killing scores of people in schools, malls, and even churches. Yet, your FBI is completely silent about any of these groups. Our collective African response to all of this obvious sabotage against our people is to help the criminal FBI and U.S. government by openly attacking BLM? And, many of us support this amateurism? You'all are either painfully ignorant of history, or you are working for the police against our people. None of this is to suggest that if you have disagreement with BLM or any African formation that you have to just swallow it. There is this thing called communication you know. We can reach out to each other, discuss our concerns, and try to learn to work together to resolve them so that our collective strength grows and isn't diminished. We do have options besides going to a racist school board - and I don't care if every single member is an African - the institution of public education in this country is institutionally racist and no one can deny that. Those of us who are serious about organizing our people for liberation understand this because its the core work we do. Working to build relationships. Strengthening our connections to one another. Those of you who's activism consists of being individual keyboard warriors have absolutely no idea what I'm talking about right now, but no worries. This analysis is for those who have some trace of honesty and integrity left and hopefully that's you, but quite possibly, it could never be you.