Afro American Caribbean Struggle Continues
We present and encourage progressive Caribbean views of Caribbean and world affairs.
We join our Afro American brothers and sisters in celebrating the historic march on Washington. Fifty years ago Dr. Martin Luther King, made one of the greatest modern day speeches, commonly called: I have A Dream. It is safe to say that no other speech made since then on behalf of Afro Americans comes close to his fine oratory and certainly none has captured the picture of the America that he wanted for all Americans. We have no doubt that Dr King would be proud of the nation’s first black president. We have no doubt that he would be equally proud of all the progress made by the African Americans. Unfortunately, we are also certain that he would be saddened by some other realities.
The statistics in relation to Afro Americans in prison would be one of his concerns. He would ask himself why fifty years later, why so many black men are in prison, some for no other reason than the color of their skin; he would question why so many blacks were prevented from voting in elections and why the America’s chief court struck down voter legislation.
Dr. King would be out in the trenches fighting for proper social policies in the inner cities; against stop and search by the police targeting blacks and Hispanics and other law enforcement tactics that too often bear the mark of racism. No doubt he would be calling on President Obama to use the bully pulpit to engineer programs specifically designed for the poor. He would have asked the president how come you can bail out Wall Street but seem impotent in producing a stimulus package for the destitute. He would no doubt be conscious of the fact that Obama is president of all Americans but he would remind Obama that all includes the poor African Americans.
There are some questions that we often ask our own Caribbean leaders. How come after fifty years of independence, in some of our islands, the dream of true economic transformation has not been accomplished? Why is it that the commanding heights of our economies are still controlled by the few? Why is it that so many leaders have not dumped the monarchy? Why there is still a limited understanding of our past? Why have we not dealt with racism outside of the cosmetic occasional discussions?
It can therefore be suggested that both Afro American and Afro Caribbean peoples have made progress but both still have to be vigilant because the gains made may all evaporate without leadership. There is need for new leadership in the struggle of both Afro America and the Afro Caribbean. Fifty years after the March on Washington and independence; the parallels are, to put it mildly, sobering if not frightening.
The struggle continues.