By Catherine Murombedzi
I write what I like
By Steve Biko
Published by Picador Africa (2004). 40th Anniversary edition 2017
IN order to understand the source of the blackman’s inferiority complex, we need to revisit the slave trade and subsequent colonisation of Africa, the cultural domination, the thought processes engendered, the emasculation of the African and the final revolt.
What is necessary is a very strong grass-roots build-up of black consciousness such that blacks can learn to assert themselves and claim their rightful place.
How is that possible for the indigenes who now view everything white as right and everything black as wrong?
Whites have oppressed blacks since they took over control of indigenous lands they colonised.
A dangerous group of the whites have been liberals who appear to have black souls and feel for blacks.
The liberals are worse than the whites who are outright oppressors.
Biko wrote: “A dangerous approach comes from the liberals who are adopting a non-racial approach, they are playing their old game by claiming a monopoly on ‘intelligence and moral judgment’ and setting the pattern and pace for the realisation of the blackman’s aspirations. They want to remain in good books with both the black and white worlds.”
With the arrival of whites in South Africa, more than 300 years ago, brainwashing the blackman was easy.
Everything black was seen as ungodly. The blackman has a religion, however, the missionary, with bible in hand, told the indigenous people of a white God.
Religion is the opium of the people, and in this case Christianity. All people, globally, have a religion they ascribe to. Atheism too is a religion.
Religion teaches all men are from a force defined differently.
Religions tend to differ on the final destiny of man.
Religions ascribe to a supreme being and are all ritualistic.
Religion attempts to explain what science falls short of on the origin of man.
Christianity was good in subduing traditional religion. It brought about new living, new medical approach, new customs, new clothing, new etiquette — a new everything. Indigenous became pagan and barbaric.
Two groups were created; the converted and the pagans.
Stripped of their essence, the Africans became a playground for colonialists.
The new know-it-all tutors made Africans perpetual students.
The acceptance of the colonially tainted version of Christianity marked the turning point of African resistance.
With Christianity, it became easy to have indigenes believe that something was being done to better their conditions.
“These dull-witted, self-centred blacks are, in the ultimate analysis, as guilty of the arrest of progress as white friends, for it is from such groups that the theory that … one day God will step down from heaven to solve their problems… (derives). It is such people…who keep scanning the papers daily to detect any sign of the change they patiently await without working for.”
Biko defines racism as discrimination by a group against another for the purpose of subjugation. Blacks need no go-between for their emancipation.
One needs to understand the root cause before setting up a remedy.
Apartheid, Biko wrote, is evil.
Biko calls on blacks to master the art of caucusing to have blacks in positions of authority.
Surprisingly, the churches have 90 percent of their membership being black but with 90 percent controlling power in the whites. Whites have never held black interests at heart.
“No race possesses the monopoly of beauty, intelligence, force, and there is room for us all at the rendezvous of victory,” said Aime Ce’saire.
False prescribed freedoms are given with blacks grouped in tribal lands. Whites gave Africans tribal boundaries, perpetuating tribalism which today remains a barrier to black unity.
Until the blackman flushes out inferiority mentality, blackman emancipation remains a mirage. The blackman will forever run to the ‘master’ for solutions.