Protest in the United Kingdom (U.K.) against racism that were sparked off by racism in the United States of America (U.S.), and in particular the murder of George Floyd by a police officer, are but just one side of a coin, so to speak.
The protest in the U.K. and in particular those in Bristol, appropriately and effectively remind us of the roots of black oppression.
The symbolic take down of the statute of Edward Colstom, who was a “prominent 17th Century Slave trader”, by Bristol, U.K. protestors, reminds us to go back into history, in order to address the roots of black oppression, de facto racism.
This side of the coin, indeed, demands a re-examination and a review of the history of the British Empire and other European empires, such as France, Spain, Belgium and others.
Case in point:
“A petition in Belgium is calling for the country to remove all statues of the former King Leopold II who is blamed for the deaths of millions of Africans during colonial rule … Leopold II is blamed for the genocide of 10 million people in the former colony of the Belgian Congo … (But) for the majority of Belgians, he’s known as the ‘King who built the country’”Jack Parrock, euronews
The other side of the coin, is the need to focus the spotlight and limelight on that which, in the first place, justified colonisation of Africa by European empires; and that which justified the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade.
Caucasian European kings and queens deeply held and, seemingly, they and other European political leaders, continue to hold a racist interpretation of John Locke’s Second Treatise. And, in order to justify their racist interpretation, they employed and continue to employ colour.
They coloured Africans black and themselves white. And they created a narrative so negative and toxic for their creation “the blacks,” to the extent that Steve Biko famously asserted:
“Being black is not a matter of pigmentation – being black is a reflection of a mental attitude.”Steve Biko
That mental attitude sustains for it nurtures and is nurtured by neo-colonialism. This side of the coin, that mental attitude, can be more effectively dealt with from Africa. Africa needs to rid ourselves of the glorified legacies of colonialism.
We need more Africans, such as African Union Ambassador Arikana Chihombori-Quao, who are brave and willing to speak truth to power to European empires.
We, Africans, need to and must restore the dignity and cultures of the first nations of Africa, back to their greatness.
Blog post featured image of Ambassador Arikana Chihombori-Quao source: ThisIsAmericaTV, Oct 25, 2018; Image of George Floyd Source: Nile Post; Image of King Leopold II Source: The African Exponent and Image of Seve Biko Source: AFRICH ROYALE.