Emancipation 2011: On Blacks Being A Cursed Race
By N Oji Mzilikazi
(Originally published in Montreal Community Contact Volume 21, Number 17)
August 18, 2011
For as long as I can remember, the trials and tribulations of people of African descent; our victimisation, failures, messing-up, misdeeds, missing out on opportunities, manifestations of self-hate et al, was credited to Blacks being biblically cursed.
And we ourselves were never ashamed to voice that opinion.
Internalization of that blasphemous credo is at the heart of our psychological and racial incapacitation, the all too common culture of diminished expectations, our dysfunction, disunity, educational and economical poverty, impotence, lack of inner conviction, will-power and belief in us as a people, our abilities and in our potential.
Consequently, we function as one cursed.
When one consider that after forty-eight years of Independence, Trinidad and Tobago recruited a white Canadian and not a Black “foreigner” to be their chief of police, it exposed the scars of disfigurement in our supposed maturity and enlightenment.
Greater absurdity is seen in the recently commissioned Bill Johnson Opinion Poll, which showed that 60 per cent of Jamaicans believe the country would be better off under British rule.
What a shame the blood of Jamaica’s intellectuals, freedom fighters and martyrs has been subjected to such fickleness born out of multi-level ignorance, and the powerlessness of small economies to effectively deal with the economic turbulence that’s affecting the world.
Since the Bible is said to be the source of our curse, it makes sense ascertaining its veracity.
While the Old Testament deals primarily with Jewish history, in it there are passages that give glimpses of Africa. And more often than not, they are of strength, power and nobility.
The very first/second page of the Bible- Genesis 2:10-13 states that the river that went out of the Garden of Eden encompassed the whole land of Ethiopia. For surety, such a thing infers a blessing and not a curse.
The majority of ills that plague Africa have their roots in European colonisation and their machinations to extract its vast and rich natural resources along with gold and diamonds.
Numbers 12:1-10 records that Aaron, the high priest, Moses right-hand man and elder brother, and Miriam, their sister, was so displeased over Moses’ marrying an Ethiopian that they “bad-talked” her. Incensed over their bias and Moses choice of mate, God afflicted Miriam with leprosy.
(So it’s not today people don’t like Blacks. Anti-Black racism did start yesterday, if you get my drift.)
If there was a curse on Blacks, God wouldn’t have punished not just one of his supposedly chosen people, but the leader of the Israelites sister, over a Black woman.
II Chronicles 14:9 shows the aggression and militancy of Ethiopia. It tells of Ethiopians waging war against Judah, “And came out against them Zerah the Ethiopian with a host of a thousand, thousand and three hundred chariots.”
Nahum 3:9 states, “Ethiopia and Egypt were her strength, and it was infinite.”
Amos 9:7 reads “Are ye not as children of the Ethiopians unto me, O children of Israel? Saith the lord.”
Such a phrasing infers equality, so where did this curse of Blacks come from?
There is no supporting evidence, archaeological or otherwise to the claim that the Jews built the pyramids. Still, it is commonly believed and accepted that they did.
For reasons unknown, early Jewish Talmudic/rabbinical scholars erroneously positioned the mark of Cain as well as the Curse of Ham as applicable to Blacks.
Since Christianity arose out of Judaism, a lot of Jewish beliefs made the transition as well. Noah’s curse was thus used to legitimize and justify the enslavement of Africans, the rape of Africa and subsequent dehumanization of Africans.
Genesis 4:15 is clear. The mark of Cain is so that no one would kill him, for “vengeance shall be taken sevenfold” on the person that does. If Blacks bear the mark of Cain, then where is that promised vengeance?
While Genesis 9: 25 records Noah in his rage cursing Canaan, the son of Ham, and prophesying that he shall be a servant of servants unto his brethren, the land of Canaan deemed the promise land of the Jews is not in Africa.
Genesis 12:5-7 “The Canaanite was then in the land and the Lord appeared unto Abram and said, unto thy seed will I gave this land.”
The Middle-East conflict surrounding Israel is primarily among other things, their claims to Canaan.
Cush was one of Ham sons. Cush gave birth to Nimrod. And according to Genesis 10:10, Babel was the beginning of his Kingdom. I’d like to think most adults are familiar with the story of the Tower of Babel. Babel is not in Africa.
History tells of the Sudanese Kingdom of Cush (1000BC-350AD) that conquered Egypt, ruling as its 25th dynasty. Since one of Ham sons was Cush, one could think it was an accidental mix-up. But then, though Ham is the father of Canaan, his children are also the Jebusite, Amorite, Hivite and Arkite- peoples that cannot be historically traced back to Africa.
From where I sit, the African Cush was deliberately used and inferred to further support there being a curse upon Blacks.
While Zephaniah 2:9 states, “Ye Ethiopians also, ye shall be slain by my sword.” And Isaiah 20:3-5 tells of Isaiah walking naked and barefoot upon Egypt and Ethiopia, and that the King of Assyria shall carry away Ethiopians and Egyptians captives; “young and old, naked and barefoot, even with their buttocks uncovered,” they in no way shape or form infer a curse.
Furthermore, Assyria was a kingdom in Iraq, so there is no correlation to European enslavement of Africans.
Contrary to what is advocated and believed, there is no biblical evidence of a curse placed on Blacks.
Such was the belief that Blacks were the descendants of Ham/Canaan, that in 1903, the British offered Jews a parcel of land in British East Africa (in what is today Kenya) to be their homeland.
In 2005, Four Haitians won a Québec Human Rights Tribunal decision against Centre Maraicher Eugene Guinois Jr. Inc., Québec’s largest lettuce producing company.
In nothing other than damage control for their multi-million dollar business, the Gazette despatched reporter Jeff Heinrich to their farm to state their case.
In Heinrich’s June 6th column, he stated that the Guinoises are defiant, Eugene the clan patriarch is prone to make off-colour jokes and he calls Blacks the descendants of Cain.
In July 2009, Israeli television Channel 9 convened a panel to discuss if the Torah ever revoked the curse of Ham. For based upon the curse, Obama’s ascension to the White House was akin to a slave becoming a king, and the “supposed reason” many Jews do not like and trust Obama.
As demonstrated, the ideology of Blacks being cursed still has traction with a great many. When people feel that way about us, it would be delusional to believe they would ever have our interest at heart.
In E.V. Rieu’s translation of Homer’s “Iliad,” there is a line that says, “Zeus left for Ocean Stream to join the worthy Ethiopians at a banquet and all the gods went with him.”
Even if one considers the Iliad solely as an imaginary work or a compilation of myths, the acknowledgment of Ethiopia in that vein is verily a peep into the esteem into which Africa was held.
If Africans were inconsequential as history has repainted the race, why then would the chief God of the Greeks take his entire cabinet to visit the Ethiopians?
According to Greek and Roman epics surrounding the Trojan War, Troy called upon Ethiopia to help them repel the Greeks. Memnon, described as black as ebony and an African warrior-king, brought endless troops to defend Troy.
Memnon met his end at the hand of Achilles.
Virgil, Ovid, Strabo and Hesiod are just a few of the well-known poets/literary writers of the ancient world who spoke effusively of Memnon.
Those that define you will confine you. When exploitation of a people/person is the goal, anything that aids in the process like brute force, isolation, drug addiction or denying access to education are employed.
Africa was never cursed nor the intellectually and culturally dark continent it has historically been portrayed it to be. Its only curse, and that of people of African descent, is in our inability to recognise that there is no curse and act accordingly.
To Be Continued.