THE CAPITALIST MYSTIQUE, by Dr. Steven Nur Ahmed

Greedy Capitalist Pig

Historically, African, Latino, Asian, and Native Americans have suffered the slings and arrows of outrageous economic fortune in the United States. Africans were enslaved; Latinos’ were victims of larceny in violation of the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution and were economically exploited under the Brocero program of 1942; Asians’ land and property was taken in direct violation of the Fifth Amendment of the Constitution; and criminal larceny was committed against all Native American tribes . We could go on but just these few facts reveal something very important.

Let’s face an undeniable fact about the theory of capitalism. Capitalism is not natural law; it is a theory. A rational theory differs radically from a ‘law of nature’. A rational theory is imperfectly applied to ever changing circumstances whereas natural law is constant.

The law of gravity, for example, is a claim that asserts a direct relation between the sum of masses and an indirect relation to their distance from one another squared. Gravity has been proven to exist naturally by experimentation.  It holds true everywhere in the known universe according to astrophysicists. The gravitational relation between masses is not guided by an ‘invisible hand’ in the universe not even the hand of God.

Capitalism on the other hand is not natural, it is artificial.  Capitalism is a rational belief system; it is guided by human hands.

The theory of capitalism is the brain child of Adam Smith.  Adam Smith was not a scientist; Adam Smith was an ethical and economic philosopher.  If you have gone to college then you know that your first course on economics taught you some fundamental assumptions about the market place as it is assumed to work in an open market. First there is supply and demand. 

Understand that there is no ‘natural relation’ between the supply and demand of goods and services. That is because according to Adam Smith, both supply and demand are mediated by an ‘invisible hand’ in the market place. Supply can be anything natural or artificial and demand may or may not exist from moment to moment or even from season to season because it depends on human choice. So, the relation between supply and demand is a game of chance; it is not universally constant as gravity is.  Your best example is the depression of the 1930s.

Furthermore, you were taught something about the value assigned to goods and services that are distributed to you through the market place.  You were taught some other correlations. You were told that as demand for goods and services increase there is an increase in their ‘price’ or value, but that if the supply of goods and services is greater than demand for them then prices for goods and services will decrease. Do you remember all of those red, green, and black curves in the book!

Here is something you probably came to understand while taking notes in that class. One, the course was taught like it was physics when it was presented to you. That is the ‘mystique’ of the system as presented to you.

And two, if there is an ‘invisible hand’ manipulating the supply of goods and services in the market place by reducing production of goods and rolling back services or increasing them, then prices can be manipulated to go up or down at will. Therefore, capitalism is not natural law; Capitalism is an art.

If capitalism is an art then it can be done away with and replaced by another kind of economy or it is a system which can be adjusted depending upon human needs under any given circumstance at any time. What that means is that our priorities must be rearranged. 

Which is more important?  Do human beings collectively and individually have greater value than the market place or do the products in the market place have greater value than the human beings who made them? I think you know the answer to those questions. 

History suggests that in each generation some people are recruited and socialized to think illogically about the value of all human life. They arrive at the conclusion that they are inherently better than other people and indeed the total environment.  We have evidence to prove that. 

America was founded upon capitalism. Any serious student of the United States Constitution knows that.

We Americans know that during the era of slavery, indentured servitude, and later under ‘Jim Crow’ and ‘share cropping’ in the southern states, the exploitation of others’ labor was qualified as more important than human rights.

So we know that pure capitalism can place the market place above entire ethnic and gender classifications of human beings as a more important priority. That very qualification which capitalism implies is that without capitalism a quality life on earth would not be possible.  That is a lie and here is why it is a lie.   

It we follow the logic of that propaganda then what kind of justice would we be compelled to validate?  If justice has to do with how, when, where, how much, and to whom we distribute benefits to people in society then by our sentiments and actions we are certainly not validating equal justice because in our market place the ‘invisible hand’ has caused extreme inequality of resource distribution in the United States and all over the world. Most people have barely enough to subsist on or nothing at all.

The ‘invisible hand’ is the hand of exclusion. It pushes some people away from the fruits of their labor and allows others to indulge in fruit that they do not deserve.

In fact, the invisible hand may be a metaphor for ‘power’.  If that is so, then the market place is tied to instinctually based anxieties which give rise to conscious rationalizations for discriminatory use of power by the haves against the have-nots.

Capitalism is used to justify the discriminatory use of state power.   The ‘invisible hand’ snatches from most people their time and energy used to produce benefits and gives to a minority of other people benefits they do not deserve.  

Market place exclusion by the ‘invisible hand’ is the result of intentional injustice. That kind of injustice is criminal. It is criminal because it is intentional and because it wrongs human beings and more generally it wrongs nature so that a few people can control and benefit from all of the wealth produced by the majority of people. That kind of market place is not the result of natural law.

If we do not follow the logic of that kind of propaganda then what kind of justice would a more precise of kind logical reasoning compel us to validate? 

If justice has to do with how, when, where, how much, and to whom we distribute benefits to in society then a more just society would result from the application of proportionate justice. That would be a form of justice predicated on a person’s belonging to humanity not on an artificially measured kind of worth.

Proportionate justice is a method of distributing the values of society according to what a person deserves as a result of his or her own efforts in his or her life time. We do not have such a system of proportionate justice in the United States.  We do not have a system of justice based upon merit. For example, most wealth in the United States is inherited wealth.  Twenty-seven (27%) percent of all wealth in the United States is inherited by 1% of the population or wealth is owned by corporations or some form of government. 

And here is yet another example. Most African Americans are the descendents of slaves.  Slave labor was exploited to build up the capital base of the United States. But the descendants of slaves have not been given any financial proportionate justice in the form of reparations to them for unpaid wages justly due to slaves during slavery.

As a consequence, the total average amount of wealth owned by African Americans today in the United States is about $4,000.00 dollars compared to Euro-Americans’ average of $88,000.00 dollars.  African Americans were cheated by a capitalist market place wherein they do not get proportionate justice.

It is amazing that right wing conservatives in the United States will criticize the theory of evolution but cannot tolerate criticism of the theory of capitalism. Evolution assumes that change is inevitable while the one percenters struggle to prevent change.

 http://www.spreaker.com/user/themalcolmxsociety/what-is-the-state-of-your-mind

Welcome to Earth Colony.Net: “FEAR HAS ITS USE BUT COWARDICE HAS NONE”, by Dr. Steven Nur Ahmed

MLK_in_Birmingham_Jail

There are two fundamental impediments challenging the African American community. They are its unscrupulous members and its fears. The first and worst challenge faced by the Black community are from people within its own population who share the same ethnic characteristics. For that reason they are camouflaged and thus more likely to win the trust of innocent persons. These unscrupulous people are individual malicious men and women, as well as institutions within the community.  Whether they work for plantation masters and overseers or whether they work out of greed and selfish material interests, all of them act to do harm to the innocence of African people. They are in street gangs, religious groups, businesses, education, government services, and law. All of those entities support the plantation status quo and are rewarded for doing so.

 

All of them add up to a degenerative force in the community. Such was the structure of the southern plantation wherein Negro slave was pitted against Negro slave for a prize of pork guts; such was the structure of the Warsaw ghetto wherein Ashkenazi Jews were manipulated to literally cannibalize each other as they jockeyed for a dead life and for favor in the eyes of their Jewish overseers who in-turn hustled for their Nazi war lords’ approval.  And it is never by overwhelming numbers that they are ruled. But rather they are paralyzed by fear.

 

Fear is the second impediment. For it is never the number of degenerates that are greater because they are always far outnumbered by their victims.  No; the harm to the innocence of African people can only happen if enough African people have a deficit of conscience.  A greater deficit of conscience establishes amorality as the new norm in the inner cities of the United States. 

 

There is a deficit of conscientiousness in the African American community otherwise that new norm would not exist. A prime example is the hip-hop ‘nuisance’. The fact that the hip-hop counterculture can openly defame African icons such a Harriett Tubman and is produced and controlled by a Jewish media cliché in Hollywood supports the claim there aren’t enough conscientious African people who will stand up to stop it. Consequently, many young African American men and women have literally lost their minds and it is we the educated and understanding folks who have allowed that to happen.

 

When men and women of learning and thoughtfulness ignore the long shadow of social evil that is cast over them, those they love and their communities by unscrupulous persons among them, then their community is more dead than alive.  Thus, whatever their class or presumed status they too are more dead than alive. They are more dead than alive because they have a deficit of conscience.  The facts support that thesis. The 1 million entombed men and women locked away in prisons, the 7,000 who will die of ‘Black on Black’ homicide this year, and the 22 million fetuses aborted since 1972 are incontrovertible proofs that both those victimized, even the unborn who are dead, and the community are more dead than alive. But is this a passing fog or a permanent shadow which envelopes us all?

 

It is a shadow that is now cast over all African Americans -descendents of slaves.  It is a shadow which does not smother all the life out of innocence, for then the unscrupulous ones would die, too.  Rather it lingers over innocence as a shadowy pall; it is an immoveable pall because it feeds upon their spirit of innocence day and night. We are their ‘live-stock’.  Their strength over us comes from our fears, our ignorance, and our ill health.  For the victims must be kept morally and physically weak so that they can be dominated. You see, the relationship has become sadomasochistic.

Birmingham_1963b_CharlesMoore

This is a time different from the past. It is a time when men and women of learning and thoughtfulness tremble at the thought of their own death. There is no difference in the passage of time but  there is a difference in the texture of common character. Even more, they have become so psychologically impaired by their fears that they cannot throw themselves with full force at their nemesis. Nor can they at least speak out against the social evils which sap the spirit from their own children in their own homes and in their own communities.

 

Those same people however learned and however thoughtful are cowards. Their fear of death and want of sugary comfort and entitlements outweigh their conscientiousness.  The end result is always cowardice. That is historically true. Cowards never act. Cowards tremble in sleep and when awake. Cowards do what they are told to do. Then they die.

 

 

 

Welcome to Earth Colony: SLAVE MORALITY v. MASTER MORALITY OR NOT OF GLORY BUT OF GREED

John Brown, pic EC

John Brown was a great man. He was an abolitionist in the pre-civil war United States.  He eventually came to understand that Christian religious/moral arguments against slavery would never be persuasive to slave owners and their states to stop the institution of slavery. Nor did he believe moral arguments could cause an anti-slavery amendment to the U.S. constitutional because Congress could never meet the required 66% ratification of both houses of Congress or 66% of the States because of greed.

He also came to understand that logical arguments based upon the Enlightenment premise that each person has inherent natural rights and that each person must be presumed reasonable would not be persuasive to the slave owners, their states, and the massive economic infrastructure which had grown dependent upon slave labor for national economic prosperity, either.  He understood that race ideology was a tool used to short circuit logical reasoning so as to create straw man arguments based upon the premise of white supremacy.

John Brown was compelled to reach one conclusion.  It would be necessary for African Slaves to fight their way out of slavery by any means necessary.  With that thought in mind, John Brown and some of his sons seized a U.S. military armory.  They then called on neighboring slaves to fight their way out of slavery side by side with them.  The slaves refused to do so.

Some of the slaves informed on him.  The others refused to stand and fight.  John Brown fought the U.S. Army. Most of his sons were killed. He was wounded and captured. He was hanged on December 2, 1859.  But he stated in his last words that only a bloody war against the slave owners and their states could free the slaves.  He was right.  The Civil War started in 1861 only two years later.  Over 600,000 people died in just four (4) years.  It was a savage blood bath.

I do not mean to belabor you with so much history; but history is so important for an understanding of present social circumstances. What people did and thought in the past should be studied. Note, the slaves wouldn’t fight and note some of them informed the plantation owners of John Brown’s plan.  Can we identify the same patterns today?  I answer yes. However, first we must examine some of the most influential thoughts on population of the 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries. These are thoughts which every African American should know and understand.

MASTER MORALITY

thomas malthus

THOMAS MALTHUS

The method to reduce birth rates of poor populations was devised centuries ago. Thomas Malthus wrote a book entitled: ‘Essays on the Principle of Population’ in 1798. In that book he laid down a theory.  He said that population will grow indefinitely because people have an automatic sex drive which causes them to reproduce offspring and because people need to eat food. He stated that unless there are checks and balances in the environment to stop it population would grow unabated.

What should be of concern to African Americans is what Malthus identified as a method to decrease the birth rate of an unwanted population.   He termed it ‘Preventative’ checks on population growth.  It originates as political policy.  As such the sentiment and laws of the general public promote and execute such method as a matter in the interest of the state.

By the ‘Preventative’ method to decrease a population’s birth rate he said that two general political policies must be executed among the lower classes.

The first, he said, must be a policy to institute ‘vice’. Vice would constitute the social encouragement of uncivilized habits combined with poverty.  For example: discourage good hygiene, make them live in neighborhoods that are polluted areas of a given city with narrow streets making them more vulnerable to disease and or physical disability, provide less habitable dwellings than needed by the them so there is homelessness, make available to them low paying jobs, discourage them from marriage, make their schools dysfunctional, provide small portions or cheap low quality food, allow prostitution, make criminal acts a more likely choice for the young especially the males, and introduce communicable diseases into their population .

The second policy under the ‘Preventative’ method, he said, should be ‘misery’. Misery would constitute psychological depression, low self-esteem, suicide, and institutionalized hopelessness.  Misery would follow as a byproduct of the first policy. If executed as a matter of public policy, each of the two types of ‘Preventative’ methods would decrease the birth rate of a given population over time.

Charles Darwin

 CHARLES DARWIN

Charles Darwin wrote: ‘The Descent of Man’.  It was published in 1871.  As you can see it follows in time Thomas Malthus’ book who in turn followed Adam Smith’s cornerstone theory on capitalism: ‘The Wealth of Nations’ (1776).  These writers signaled the birth of a new world view.

Darwin theorized that in nature animal species compete with different species and with others in their own species for resources of every kind.  Even when there are plentiful resources greed or the fundamental insecurity of an animal will drive it to take everything for itself.  For Darwin, conflict is one of the driving forces of animal and therefore human history.  History for him is not of glory but of greed. He stated that racial extinction is the result of inter-racial or tribal competition for resources in times of plenty and scarcity.[1]

Darwin predicted in ‘The Descent of Man’ that ‘race’ war is inevitable and that in the future lower races will be exterminated by higher races. This is a population issue because for Darwin genocide is natural not criminal. The law of nature that he describes can reduce a population by increasing the death rate due to war with another group of people or animals. He also said that it is just as illogical to breed defective people as it is to breed defective animals. Please, bare with me, this is very important for you to think on.[2]

 Galton

FRANCIS GALTON

Arguments for the application of Preventative population control through state power was triggered by the Eugenics movement.  Francis Galton was the cousin of Charles Darwin. Galton wrote the book: ‘Hereditary Genius’. In that book he theorized that intelligence is a heritable genetic trait like hair color, skin color, and height and that it is passed down from one generation to a succeeding generation.  He argued that there should be selective breeding.  He invented a mathematical method to prove his theory of inherent intellectual differences between races.  His statistical method is called the normal distribution curve and the difference between means.[3]

With that method, he argued that races have different naturally determined levels of intelligence, physicality, and sexuality.  From that argument he founded the theory of Eugenics and the Eugenics movement.  The basic premise of the Eugenics’ theory corresponds to that of both Malthus and Darwin.  He argued that there should be political policies which restrict the reproductive opportunities of lower races and genetically defective people.  In the United States for nearly 80 years many states enacted laws which vested the state with executive power to sterilize women and to castrate men who were deemed genetically unfit.[4]  Such state eugenical laws were supported by the Supreme Court ruling in Buck v. Bell, 1927.

Margaret Sanger

MARGARET SANGER

Galton’s theory gave rise to early 20th century birth control organizations like the ‘American Birth Control League’, its spin off: ‘The Negro Project’, and today, the ‘Planned Parenthood Federation of America’.  It was founded by Margaret Sanger in 1921. Margaret Sanger believed in White Supremacy.[5]

Her husband William Sanger was Jewish by birth but was not his religious practice as an adult man. He and Margaret were both Communists.  It’s important to know their political and philosophical beliefs because as Communists they believed in an inherently amoral universe. One structured by natural law as argued by both Darwin and Galton.

She targeted African women in Harlem, New York, through the ‘Negro Project’ clinic; she also targeted other minority ethnic women and men to reduce their number of pregnancies and thereby their birth rate.[6] She argued that ‘dysgenic’ groups like African Americans had two choices. They could either choose segregation or sterilization.

She organized at a time when the poor and/or immigrants were crowded into cities but in a nation where there was no scarcity of land, food, and other resources in the United States.

The basis of her argument to women was that having too many children was unhealthy and would cause a shorter life-span.  And to both men and women her argument was that they could not financially afford to care for too many children.

She did not address the extremely unequal distribution of income which existed at that time in the United States. At that time 1% of the U.S. population took home 28% of the national income.  Nor did she target the wealthy that were called the gilded class as being exploitative of the poor.

She didn’t target the wealthy because the wealthy were funding her birth control clinics.  Familiar names to students of the international banking system are listed.  John D. Rockefeller who if you recall was one of the founders of the Federal Reserve Bank and Income Tax acts of 1913; Julius Rosonwald of Sears and Roebuck, Company; Clarence Gamble,  founder of Proctor and Gamble; and the Ku Klux Klan were all financial donors of her organization.

Her ideas were a direct offshoot of Malthus, Darwin, and Galton.[7] However, her interest was not in theory. She moved to institutionalize their ideas into state and federal law. She appealed to women’s moral sensitivity because she argued on the premise of a moral argument, i.e., a ‘women’s right to choose’ when in fact she did not believe in essential morality of any kind.  She argued it at a time when women were generally abused in society. She was for them what Paul was to Christianity.

Black Flag spray

      APPLICATION OF THE MASTER MORALITY

Now, let’s look at some facts and ask ourselves: could the target population for preventative political policies Thomas Malthus wrote on in his book be us?

In 1954, the Supreme Court held in ‘Brown v. Board of Education…’ that segregation in public schools is unconstitutional. It signaled the beginning of racial integration of public facilities in the United States; it initiated the legal movement against ‘Jim crow laws’ premised upon ‘separate but equal’.

That same year (1954 to 1960) the birth rate of African American women was 4.5 births per woman. Thereafter, their birth rate started to go down such that by 1970 it was 3.0 children per African American woman ages 15 to 45.

By 1975 it was 2.5.  Today, 2013, the number of babies per African American woman between 15 and 45 is 1.9.  That is a 50% decrease over 55 years.  That amounts to a one percentage point decline per year from 1954.  At 1.9 babies per woman, for the first time African Women are not reproducing enough babies to replace the current population of 42 million.

Why is this happening to us?  One reason is that the Federal Drug Administration approved the birth control pill in 1960.  We see a negative correlation between the increased use of and marketing of birth control pills and a drop in the African American fertility rate.  That is a fact.

Was the marketing of the birth control pill a racist reactionary response to the civil rights movement and racial desegregation? A correlation does exist but it doesn’t prove causation; it could simply be a coincidence. But another Supreme Court decision might move us to a cogent inference.  It was Roe v. Wade, 1973.

Roe v. Wade was premised on the proposition that a woman has the sole individual right under the U.S. constitution to determine whether or not she should or could carry her pregnancy to term. She needs not to legally consult with anyone. She could act on her own individual needs and wants. However, the court did impose a time limit.  She must decide to abort the fetus within the first trimester (3 months) of her pregnancy.

The abortion statistics are startling.  Since 1973, African American women have constituted 32% of all abortions while constituting only 3.5 percent of the total population.  That amounts to over 22,000,000 abortions.  It equals 70 abortions per hour nationwide as of this writing. The 22,000,000 (million) abortions is three (3) times more than the number of Baby Boomer African Americans born between 1946 and 1964.  It is one-third (1/3) of the total number of people killed during World War II.  It is a slaughter.

Does what we have described conform to the Preventative Method proposed by Thomas Malthus?  Remember, he argued that there must be political policies in place to decrease the birth rate of unwanted populations of people. Infanticide or abortion was one of his proposed methods to kill those who are unwanted.

Malthus also argued that unhealthy social conditions ought to be intentionally constructed to demoralize an unwanted population of people.  He argued that unwanted people should be made miserable. Are there other socio-economic conditions which are evidence of the application of his method on African American people?  Let’s list some social conditions to see.

Given that racism is a social construction it follows logically that most misery suffered by African Americans is a derivative of institutionalized racism.  So the following conditions are social constructions for the most part just as the misery of Native Americans (birth rate of 1.4) is a derivative of reservation (concentration camp) life.

  1. African Americans are disproportionately poor at about 27% of the total U.S. population.
  2. About 15 million African Americans live in urban ghettoes.
  3. The national high school dropout rate for African Americans is 42%.
  4. Between 1976 and 2010, there were 273,366 African American ‘black on black’ homicides; that averages to 23.9 homicides per day nationwide.
  5. African Americans are 2.5 times more likely to murder their infants as compared to other ethnic groups and lead the nation in infanticide.
  6. There are now over 200,000 African American children in foster care homes.
  7. Between 1973 and 2013 there have been approximately 22,000,000 African American abortions; that number equals 1,687.5 abortions per day.
  8. The top ten leading causes of death are: heart disease, cancer, stroke, diabetes, unintentional injuries, kidney disease, chronic lower respiratory disease, homicide, infection, and Alzheimer disease.
  9. Nearly 1,000,000 African American men and women are incarcerated in city, county, state, and federal jails and prisons.
  10. About 1 out of every 4 (25%) are in the criminal justice system.
  11. The African American national unemployment rate is about 13% to 20% for the year 2013.
  12. About 9 million African Americans receive food stamps or put another way, 1 out of 3 Americans on food stamps are African American and they are primarily women with dependent children.
  13. Approximately 72% of all African American births are to single parent female headed households.
  14. The highest annual death rate per 100,000 at 898.22.
  15. 85% of ‘Planned Parenthood’ clinics are in low income neighborhoods.

I think the evidence is compelling. The social conditions which pressure a population’s birth rate to decrease are fundamental conditions to the life of the majority of African Americans.  Therefore, a cogent conclusion can be drawn.

Probably, birth control pills, abortion law, over the counter sales of Depo-Provera, Norplant, and Lunelle are primarily aimed at African American women and girls.  The purpose in this early part of the 21 century differs from that of the last part of the 20th century in four important aspects.

Automation used in factories in the United States to eliminate the need for people, the exodus of capital (factories overseas) to Asia, continuous civil rights demands on governments by some African Americans, and the aging of America resulting in a larger dependent population are collectively making African Americans more than ever before a dependent population.

These four facts make African Americans an economically unwanted population. No longer cheap labor and not withstanding their high consumption capacity of 1 trillion dollars spent per year much of which is just Federal and State money going back to Federal and State governments they are perceived as what Henry Kissinger called ‘useless eaters’.[8]

The cost to maintain African Americans is high. For example a cost of 16 billion dollars per year for food stamps; another 40 billion dollars per year on incarceration costs; 154 billion dollars in welfare costs are just a few costs which the plutocrats calculate eat away at the 1 trillion dollars spent by African Americans annually. Furthermore, most of that 1 trillion dollars is spent in ghetto neighborhood stores, fast-food outlets, and quick loan and check cashing outlets.  For 60 years it has been a continuous ‘quantitative easing’ monetary disbursement by the U.S. Treasury Department. Add to that the fact that racially African Americans are generally unwanted in the U.S.  We are perceived as a greater cost to the plutocrats than we are a benefit to them.

John Brown discovered that slaves would not fight to save themselves. He discovered that the condition of slave misery permeated the consciousness of African people. They identified themselves as slave; theirs was a slave morality. John Brown was hanged under the rule of master morality.  You better wake up.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


[1] Darwin, Charles, Chapter 7, The Descent of Man, published 1871

[2] Ibid, Chapter 7

[3] Galton, Francis, Inquiries into Human Faculty and Its Development, Published, 1883

[4] Laughlin, Harry, Eugenical Sterilization in the United States, Pub.1922

[5] Sanger, Margaret, Pivot of Civilization, published, 1920

[6] Sanger, Margaret, A Plan for Peace, published, 1932, pp. 107-108

[7] Sanger, Margaret, The Pivot of Civilization, Published, 1920

[8] National Security Council, Washington D.C. 20506, April 24, 1974

(For Criminal citations see: Bureau of Justice Statistics: Homicide Trends, by James Fox)

FROM THE BOOK: THE SYLLABUS OF MALCOLM X, by Dr. Steven Nur Ahmed

malcolm2

NUMBERS IN THE MIND’S EYE

The fabric of nature is sewn and held together by numbers.  At night and above the prison yard there must have been times when Malcolm viewed a clear sky revealing to him a majestic display of stars.  And now, and of all places in a prison without any haze to obstruct his view, he must have appreciated the dazzling colorful full spectrum splendor of star light.  He must have understood his infinitesimal smallness in relation to the universe.  How so much less time he had to live when compared to the burning stars and countless planets which litter the night sky.  And even how so much of the star light he saw was but the legacy of stars that had long burned out; yet, though burned out they had been stars which had burned so bright that billions of lights years away they would be known to conscious and sentient creatures to have once existed.

They each had their measured times, distances, velocities, amounts of heat disbursed into cold dark matter, lengths of cycles, and measurable mass. Finally, all of it is intellectually understandable and can be expressed logically in geometrical and numerical form as equations, inequalities, averages, ratios, and proportions on the canvas of the mind’s eye.  A legacy is but a snapshot of an immeasurably short moment.

Malcolm X did not want to die in prison and have his legacy etched as prison graffiti on prison walls. So, to avoid dying in prison and to become the master of his legacy he decided that from thence forward the steps he took would be increasingly measured steps not erratic ones.  He fathomed the meaning of the statement: “to measure is to know”.  While in Charlestown State Prison Malcolm followed the batting average of Jackie Robinson saying that: “…no game ended without my refiguring his average up through his last at bat…” He realized the necessity of arithmetic and its application to solve problems so that he could know where he stood in the moment.

The fact that Malcolm X could refigure Jackie Robinson’s batting average on a daily basis means that Malcolm X knew how to add, subtract, multiply, and divide. To calculate the average of a set of numbers requires the practical application of each arithmetic operation.  His ability to do so is a learned skill driven by the power of logical thinking. He could grasp the theoretical nature of the arithmetic operations and each operations relation to the other.  This leads to another question.

What did Malcolm really know as a result of ‘refiguring?’ Was it simply an average? Or is the implication more fundamental and having to do with the two arithmetical operations adding and subtracting as well as their two sub-alternate operations of multiplying and dividing? In order to get at the answer to that question, let’s go back to his walks around the yard.

Thousands of inmates walking the circuit of the yard for decades must have worn it into a deep trench. It is that beaten path on the yard which shapes their thoughts as the banks of a river give shape to a meandering stream of water. And like the banks of a stream of water it directs the flow of their thinking in relation to their mindscapes. As one walks that beaten path one’s thoughts and conversations pour forth and are molded by it as liquid poured into a mold. Therein some thoughts become heavy and sink while others become lighter and levitate. Such thoughts thus freed from the weight of stress fly free of gravity and then focused downward can see the never ending circle of the yard and the utter futility of those moving around and around it.  Naturally one so freed wants to know the circumference of the circle that held his body and mind and which like a boa constrictor with ever tightening grip around its victim slows the pulse of its victim until the victim dies.

The circumference of a circle, its area, its diameter, and Pi; all are needed to calculate. Those are all characteristics of the yard that one needs to know if one is to escape the never ending route and the deepening trench cut into the circuit of the yard which ties everyone together and which will eventually bury everyone on it.  Along with those figures are methods in the form of equations which are necessary to get precise answers as to why one is going in a circle.

Observing the circular path of the yard Malcolm X must have imagined its composition.  He must have figured out that by use of kite string and a mental compass he could by extending it from one point on the circle to its opposite side draw with a compass four intersecting curves and that by reversing the method he could do the same to the lateral sides of the circle thus drawing four other intersecting curves. And that then he could precisely connect the four intersecting points with straight lines through to the middle of the circle; that would give him the precise center of the circle.  He would have then seen that the radius = ½ D or the diameter divided by 2.

Assuming the yard is a circle, the circumference of the yard is a necessary figure to know. A perfect circle divided by two intersecting lines at its center and creating four quadrants would have been obvious once he imagined the diameter. But how could he measure the length of the diameter and circumference of the yard?  Perhaps he would have measured in feet since he was walking.  There are 5,280 feet in a mile. Assume the yard circuit is a mile. So, the length of the circumference of the yard equals 5,280 feet.  After that he would have needed the diameter.  Let’s say that Malcolm took a short cut by walking across the circuit of the yard instead of around it.  His walk would have described its diameter.  Let’s say that he figured the number of feet as he walked and concluded that it was 1,680.62 feet.  He now had two important figures: the circumference of a circle at 5,280 feet and the diameter at 1,680.62 feet.  Malcolm was now ready to figure something very big. He was about to discover Pi.

First he would have wanted to figure out what percent of the circumference of a circle the diameter is. It would have been a fraction of the circumference: 1680.62/5280 or approximately 32%. So, the decimal .3182 of any circumference is equivalent to its diameter.  Next, he would have noted that the ratio of the circumference of 5,280 feet to the diameter of 1680.62 equals 3.1416. Malcolm had found Pi: 3.1416. He would have simply divided the circumference of a circle by the diameter. Pi is constant. It is always the quotient of the circumference divided by the diameter expressed as a percent of the circumference.

In Egypt it was first calculated as the ratio of 256:81. Pi is the mathematical constant which opens the door to figuring out the circumference and area of any circle. It would help Malcolm understand his inner relation to all things. The core of the earth, planets, sun, other stars, the cells in his body and the magnetic fields which cut through their centers all spoke to him of his inner alignment with the universe. Do you see the patterns?  Malcolm couldn’t and you will not break free from the space which confines your body without first knowing the measurement of the space which occupies you. Yes, ‘the space which occupies you’ because the space which imprisons your thinking is proportional to the space which confines your body. Incarceration is a state of mind.  Malcolm X had crossed the yard; he had gotten off the beaten path.  He smiled. The sky was clear. Malcolm could now see forever.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SPEECH: THE STREAM OF OUR FAMILY LIFE, by Kathy Christopher, MD

 

Good Afternoon:

My name is Kathy Christopher. I am the daughter of Myrtis Dillon Christopher. Myrtis Dillon was born in Magnolia Mississippi. She was the youngest daughter of Flowers Dillon and Ada Taylor Dillon, who are descendants of Leonard Dillon.

In my youth, I would often shock my playmates by sharing that my mother had 18 brothers and sisters…They would look at me wide eyed and could hardly believe it. 

It was exciting for me to imagine it as well; especially since I am the youngest and only girl in my immediate family.

At that stage in my life, the thought of always having some one to talk to, play with and confide in was a great one.

The sad part of being a member of such a large extended family was having the misfortune of living across the country and having few opportunities to interact and establish bonds.

Thus I can only praise those who have kept the concept of the Dillon Family reunion alive for it allows and encourages us to maintain and create new connections.  My first family reunion was in 07 and I had a wonderful time. I returned home with a full heart and the desire to “return to the south soon”; little did I know that I’d be back in 09.    

In March or early April, I was contacted by our cousin Barbara Taylor who by the way I’d never met or at least did not recall meeting before the “07” family reunion.   

She requested that I speak at the up coming family reunion banquet. My first instinct was to bow out and give the very valid excuse of having to work. In fact I checked my schedule and discovered that it had been recently rearranged leaving the weekend of the reunion free…was this providential?  I still remained somewhat resistant; in fact I thought to myself: ‘what can I possibly share that would be pertinent and interesting to this group of family members little known to me and vise versa.’   

I concluded that I would simply share my thoughts on the significance of family; I would share of myself;  share my daughter and in doing so I would carry  with me the soul of my mother, Myrtis Dillon, the youngest offspring of the 19 that flowed from the Flowers Dillon line. Myrtis was one of the many tributaries to the Dillon Family stream.

Myrtis’ stream merged with that of Eugene Christopher and from their union Anthony, Nathan, Kenneth, and Myself were born.

There are now 10 grandchildren all of whom live in California. 

LOOK AT US!

Look at us here today! Our family is like a clear flowing stream teaming with life. So I want to talk about two things.  First, I want to say something about the flow of our family stream and secondly, I want to say something about the life of our family stream.

THE FLOW OF FAMILY 

The flow of our family stream has been a meandering one.

Years ago my husband and I began to think about the importance of family and our family heritage but we were confronted with a major problem. That problem was the unique history of our African people in the Americas and the Diaspora.  More specifically, it was the unique history of our immediate family.

I say the Diaspora because we discovered that our organic treasure is situated throughout the Caribbean Islands, Brazil, and the Americas dating back over 80,000 years!

One challenge was identifying family members whose tribal or surname had been lost in the journey across the middle passage, and then on the plantation. So we thought about a strategy to overcome the surname problem.

Knowing that many of the surnames would only lead us to an owner of African slaves, we endeavored to find a strategy to overcome that cultural problem.  We found a genetic path which would help us to identify unknown family members separated by thousands of miles and hundreds of years. We went to Genebase.com on the internet.

We submitted a sample of our DNA and after several months we discovered a family stream that has flowed here in the United States and in many other directions throughout the world.

From the Oromo and Mandingo Tribes in East and West Africa we have now learned of faces we did not know and may never see in person but who share our DNA and thus share remarkable physical, spiritual, and intellectual characteristics.

These findings have allowed us to see God’s remarkable plan to give our family every opportunity to survive and flourish no matter what the situation, the language, or  the culture that we were thrown into!

God cares for each of us individually and also for our entire family.  Without God, our stream would have succumbed to the drought of selfishness and despair but instead we rush forward with energy and love.

There can be resistance to the flow of our family stream, though it is less cumbersome if we simply follow the path that has been paved by our elders. Some obstacles however are inherent to the growth of a healthy, vibrant stream; lets talk about of them.

RESISTANCE TO FLOW

There is much resistance to streams as they flow.  The river bed, boulders, rocks, drought, and artificial barriers each slow down or in some cases can stop the river’s flow. So, too, with family streams like ours; we find in our daily lives different forms of resistance many of which we have all faced at one time or another.   

Economic hardships, individual illness, and death are some of them but we overcome them. We overcome because we assist one another during economic hard times; we care for each other in illness; and, though we cannot stop death, God blesses us with reproductive power so that we never really lose the ones that we cherish for we can see in our off-spring their reappearances in a smile, a certain walk, or just a relaxed expression. In that way, God puts it in our hands to make another generation strong and durable to carry us on as though there has been no change all.

Yet, there is one more thing that we do to overcome the slings and arrows of the world; that which is greater than all others .That one more very essential thing is that we generate is the force of love.

You see, in the natural world streams flow downward conforming to the natural law of gravity. Gravity drives the life cycle in the natural world. But family streams flow up not down!

You may ask why that is? The answer is that family streams conform to a higher law— that is not natural —but which is spiritual. It is the law of love which among other things says that if you love one another you are lifted up, and not caste down! 

As we each generate love within ourselves and let it emanate from our hearts then we create the force that drives our family through the corridor of time and space. Nothing can defeat love! That is why we are here in such numbers on this earth. It is because of love in good and hard times that we continue to thrive. 

Let us never forget it and never cease to generate that love in our hearts. Now, let’s speak briefly on:

THE LIFE OF OUR FAMILY STREAM 

It has been a long time since our sojourn here in the United  States began. Mississippi was once for us a place of extreme injustice and inhumanity. Today however, great changes have occurred. 

We have the first African-American President and First Lady.  Both of whom are highly educated and are excellent family models to our young people. 

I consider President Barak Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama as evidence of a message to be understood in spiritual terms.

They are icons and stand to encourage our youth but we are the first line of defense and must stand as role models and be examples for our children of individuals who make healthy life choices.  

The life of our family stream is the children which we have made through our love. They are the future in every sense of the word. The life of our family stream—our children– must be protected from natural and social dangers as well as from self-destructive behavior.

Ironically, though we have seen a political miracle, we are at the same time seeing such dangerous conditions surrounding our young people that it will take the same will and determination which set our people free to protect them from their own acts of self-destruction.

I am a medical doctor. Everyday I see diseases and physical illnesses not brought about by natural causes but by lifestyle choices. Let me name just a few. HIV infection; obesity; alcohol and drug addiction; crime and incarceration; all of these conditions are major killers of our young today.

Obesity, for instance, now not only affects the health of adults but is also a leading cause of our youth’s decreasing quality of life and longevity.  The rate of obesity in our youth is at a critical level, and is approaching 50% of the population.

What we can do is revert to our diets of the past, save money and save calories, cook at home; we can also reclaim an active life, turn off the television, get off the internet, and stop texting. No longer must we toil in the fields from sun up till sun down but we must continue to push against resistance; we must flex our muscles in order to maintain a healthy body. And a healthy body is the first step toward a healthy mind and healthy self esteem.

I could speak on health and the consequences of unhealthy choices all day long but instead let us push forward and discuss where a disordered mind may lead you. It is the criminal justice system.  

The incarceration rate in our community is astounding and we are witnessing greater numbers of our African American males involved in the criminal justice system. Currently, there are more African American males associated with the criminal justice system than are present at our Universities and Colleges. Unfortunately, our young ladies are not far behind. How has this happened??

I believe that lack of education is the primary culprit and all that contributes to the miss-education of our African American children; be it absent fathers, absent mothers or an absent extended family. 

These social maladies are threats to the Dillon family too, we may be watching from the sidelines but we are not immune. We must address these issues and we must do so head on and with a good sense of practicality. For if we do not, our family which has overcome so much can wither away and die in two generations.

We can overcome those threats by understanding some fundamental facts.

One, when our babies come into the world, we have absolute control over their environments. What that means to me is that what they eat for the rest of their lives will be determined by me during the first 5 years of their lives.  Furthermore, the quality of their syntax and grammar and thus their speech patterns will be determined by me during the first 5 years of their lives.  Also, what they literally see and experience in the home is under my control. 

Two, we can make them optimistic or pessimistic because that is the effect of our positive or negative outlook on life. God has given guardianship over to us to protect the evidence of Divine love; that guardianship is absolute and it cannot be waived.

What can we do to decrease the likelihood of our children falling into the traps that encourage disordered thinking? 

We can continue to do what has been done over the years. We can keep the Dillon family reunions alive. Don’t let the stream run dry. Allow our elders to be role models. Let them be testaments to hard work and perseverance. Let them be historical resources. Let them be the teachers and directors of our family stream.

Because of distance and our busy lifestyles we must be even more determined, even more driven and more dedicated to the recruitment of family members to participate in and enrich our reunion experience.

These are some goals that I believe will enhance our reunions   

1.For our next reunion our goal should be that fifty percent of our attendees be between 15 and 20 years old.

2.Establish a trust so that each family unit can contribute during the year to finance young people’s attendance to our reunion.

3.Make reunion positions for our youth to give them responsibility as the next stewards of our family heritage.

4.Pick locations throughout the U.S. on a cyclical basis with the understanding that it will always return to McComb, Mississippi.

5.Pick a counselor who will contact all relatives during the course of the year by phone, in person or mail for the reunion.  The person must also be a good facilitator.

6.Seek out family talent to perform at the reunion especially among our young people.

These are just some of my thoughts and recommendations.  I am sure there are many more that you can make known.

CONCLUSION 

I believe that the stream of our family life can continue. It must continue and to ensure its health and its effectiveness we must share our ideas, our knowledge, and our wealth. As we all know a house divided is weak and will eventually fall. But can you imagine the strength of our house once we combine the love and expertise that can be found within the Leonard Dillon lineage? It could only be awesome.  It is up to us. 

Thank you for your time and the invitation. Enjoy the remainder of your weekend of fellowship and God bless.