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By Elliot Booker — 4 years ago
In Colombia, the month of May is African Heritage month. All over the country you can see and experience events which celebrate the rich history of the community, as well as dialogues on the current state of affairs.
The 21st of May, in particular, marks an important moment in the sojourn of the population; known as “Dia de la Afrocolombianidad,” it’s the day slavery was abolished in the South American nation in 1851. Yet, even with these holidays in place, the reality is that the Latin-American nation is rife with systemic and cultural racism–and the over weekend, thousands marched in cities across the country to call out the prevalence of racial discrimination and to demand for the social recognition of these issues.
A group known as Marcha de la Comunion Afrocolombiana spearheaded the nationwide demonstrations. Taking inspiration from the Black Panther Party and movements such as the Million Man March and Black Lives Matter, they put together a 10-point list of demands and called for millions to come out and march in cities including Cali, Buenaventura, Pareira and Quibdo. The organizers also used the hashtag #PorEsoMarchamos (this is why we march) to encourage unity, spread awareness, and give examples of how racism pervades Colombian society.
I went to downtown Bogota on Sunday to cover the local demonstration. I saw many women in attendance wearing braids and headscarves in celebration of their roots. Out of the estimated 1400 people, it was inspiring to see that the majority of the crowd were teenagers and young adults. Shouting a variety of call-and-response chants and holding up signs of their demands, what struck me most was the sight of the gathering in the capital. Unlike the coastal cities where the majority of the Afro-Colombian population resides, Bogota often seems very whitewashed and frequenting certain areas as a black person you can blatantly be profiled or made to feel uncomfortable. While there was a large turnout in each participating city, ending the series of demonstrations with the march in the capital seemed to be the perfect way to cap-off the weekend.
The most recent census records report that around 12% of the Colombian population identifies as black or of African descent, yet some estimate that it is actually up to 30% with a large percentage of the ethnic group not being documented or choosing to identity as mixed-race/other. The local media adds to the erasure by promoting a euro-centric beauty standards and stereotypical images of black people, and to this day blackface is a widely accepted form of entertainment.
In the hope to live up to a self-perception as a multi-cultural racial utopia, many shun recognition or discussion of race, leaving those whose experience discrimination and colorism regularly to be silenced or outcaste. Still, the reality is undeniable. A recent study conducted by the Anti-Discrimination Observatory of Cartagena found that employers are more likely to hire white or light-skinned Colombians for high-ranking jobs. It´s also be found that those with light skin earn twice as much as those with darker skin, and this is reflected in the fact that most impoverished areas of the country are home to mostly African descendants.
As leaders and organizers rise up in the Afro-Colombian community to have their needs and rights met, it’s amazing to see the interconnectedness of the respective struggles throughout the diaspora. From the U.S. to the Caribbean to South America, since Africans were brought to the shores of the Americas, we’ve been in a constant fight for freedom, justice and equal rights. Living in Colombia for over a year now, I can see there is much to be done in respect to racial injustice. But, as this past weekend has showed me, the fighting spirit for change that has helped African descendants all over to push forward, is undoubtedly here within the Afro-Colombian community.
SHAHIDA MUHAMMADPost Views: 356
By Elliot Booker — 4 years ago
May 25, 2016 | Posted by Ricky Riley
Last March, Mcebo Dlamini, South African Student Representative Council president of Wits University, resigned from his post after making a Facebook post praising Adolf Hitler for his organizational skills.
Dlamini talked about his comments on South Africa’s eNCA last year. In the nearly 11-minute interview, he praises German dictator Adolf Hitler. He says Hitler should be recognized for bringing the nation together. However, this is not the highlight of the interview.
In the final minutes, Dlamini says that all white people have an “element of Hitler in them.” To the surprise of the interviewer, she brings up “good” white people who were part of dismantling the country’s Apartheid to counter his claim.
He defends his statement by stating that “white people have blood on their hands, white people colonized us, dispersed us and enslaved us … that is white people … they are racist and full of hate.”Post Views: 452
By Elliot Booker — 3 years ago
Today’s REVIVE show topic is entitled:
“Independently knowing the difference.”
I need you all to be apart of the conversation!
It would be amazing to hear your perspective. So please call in we want to hear what you guys out there have to say always. Once again this show is for the people. We here at REVIVE thrive off of communication. So call us at (215)490-9832. This episode of REVIVE will be an open forum so all perspectives can be heard through great conversation.
This episode on REVIVE is entitled “Independently knowing the difference.” This discussion will focus on the upcoming Fourth of July holiday, what it truly means to be free, and the differences between independence and freedom.Join us as we discuss this different hot topic it would be amazing to hear your perspective.
Bumi Fernandez: Bumi Fernandez is the CEO of ODUNDE, Inc. is a world-renowned cultural organization whose mission is to serve the need for cultural enrichment in the African American community. In October 2011, she created ODUNDE365 to provide year round African and African-American cultural programming in schools, community centers and public venues. Currently these programs have impacted the lives of thousands of people. She’s the owner of BUMI Productions, an event planning company. Her dedication to cultural awareness and expression has dominated her professional life.
Brother Khabyr Hadas: Khabyr Hadas is an alumni of Cheyney University and has been a community organizer and educator for over 25 years. He is the author of several books including Black Nationalist Guideline and many more. Brother Khabyr is the former Minister of Education at the Universal Negro Improvement Association and African communities league also known as UNIA-ACL. And he is the host of The Red, Black & Green: restoring confidence and self-reliance internet radio broadcast.
Maimouna Dia: Maimouna Dia is a youth leader with the Philadelphia Community of Leaders. Maimouna is also the project manager for the apparel company “What’s Up African” which is famous for their “Hella Black Hella Proud “ Tees.
Bigga Dre: Bigga Dre has a large background of community service he is also a hip-hop artist. He is a native of Chester, PA. Bigga Dre is well known for what he does with the youth in his community taking part in many youth mentoring programs. He is also a public speaker and community organizer. His musical style is undeniably unique and it appeals to all types of listeners — ranging from those who love raw Hip-Hop to those who only vibe with highly-conscious “God-Hop.”
YOU CAN CATCH REVIVE EVERY SUNDAY 11 AM-1 PM & EVERY WEDNESDAY 8 PM-10 PM!!!
It would be amazing to hear your perspective. So please call in we want to hear what you guys the listening audience out there have to say always. Once again this show is for the people. We here at REVIVE thrive off of communication. So call us at (215)490-9832 & follow on Twitter and Facebook @REVIVE_POC !
WE NEED YOU ALL TO BE APART OF THE CONVERSATION!!Post Views: 368