Letter of Jesus Chucho Garcia, member of the Frantz Fanon Foundation and former General Consul of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela in the United States.
The recent intervention of the President of the United States, Joe Biden, on the occasion of the first hundred days of his administration, included the racial issue from the murder, in the city of Minneapolis (Minnesota), of the Afro-descendant George Floyd, which occurred last May 25 (Africa Day) of the year 2020, during the government of the racist, fascist, xenophobic and sexist Donald Trump, the alarms in Afro-American cities and towns went off, and thus began a chain protest against America’s system of racial injustice.
I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO
The Afro-American writer and civil rights activist James Baldwin (1924 – 1987), in a documentary they made about his life titled, “I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO,” explained in great depth the historical issue of racial violence in the United States, from slavery, the law of racial separation supported by Jim Crow, the lynchings in the southern United States, the murders of his activist friends such as Medgar Evers, Martin Luther King and Malcolm X, in other respects… Baldwin, author of essays, novels and plays, clearly understood that it was almost impossible to live in that murderous racial structural system that still prevails in that country. Baldwin made the decision to visit other places and share anti-racist human beings from Turkey, Puerto Rico, and France.
Baldwin used to say, “The reason why people think that being white is important is because being black doesn’t mean anything… it’s not important.” This reflection leads to the fact that in almost all governments led by whites or “assimilated blacks” like former President Obama, it is that they understood, beyond the romanticism of Uncle Tom, that to “be” or to assimilate to power, you have to stop being you to be the other and try to fantasize that society is not racist, it is not criminally racist. James made it very clear to American society I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO, and his struggles against the system of racial injustice accompanied him until his death in 1987.
I AM YOUR NEGRO
President Joe Biden’s speech, finely crafted and also preventative in the face of any looming wave of protest over the cowardly murder of George Floyd, beyond the racial issue, also gave an anti-male-chauvinist view by placing two women behind him in his speech, for the first time in the discursive history of the US Congress. Biden took the racial flag, I speak of the George Floyd Law Act, but an act is an act that may or may not transcend as has happened with the H.R. 40 to study the issue of reparations on slavery and its consequences in contemporary racism. Since the 1980’s, I have been listening to the subject of reparations by former congressmen like John Conyers, with whom I held some meetings in the United States Congress. But the issue has not yet made a qualitative leap. Biden’s speech mentions the racial issue. The Republicans through the congressman, African American, from South Carolina Timothy Eugene Scott, responded to the president, Biden, that the American society is a NON-RACIST society that those divisions could continue to be stimulated. Tim Scott, in the words of a white Republican, apparently quietly expressed… THAT IS MY NEGRO.
Jesus Chucho Garcia