Our disaggregation from flat Blackness may finally lead to liberation for those seeking it.
Disaggregation Isn’t Wanted, But It’s Needed
If you haven’t read my essay to break down White folks’ flat Blackness labeling of the diaspora, you should start here before going forward. Thinking of Black through a White Supremacist lens for a discussion on the disaggregation of flat Blackness will have you in your feelings and believing you’re being attacked personally. Maturity and a little nuance are required to have this uncomfortable discussion. What should be common sense to most, unfortunately, isn’t common at all. All Blackness is beautiful, but it’s definitely not all these same.All Black Is Beautiful, But All Black Isn’t the Same The mythical monolith of Black in Americamedium.com
For African American Black people living in America (Freedmen, DOS, ADOS, FBA, etc.) labeling every person Black in the States has been a blessing and a curse. It’s been a blessing because the flat Black label of White Supremacy is an easy way to define the diaspora. The flat Black labeling is a curse to African Americans in particular because it does not allow for the differences in cultures, religions, political ideologies, morals, values, languages, social issues, histories, and discussions about national, tribal, as well as individual and collective pasts to stand or matter.
We’ve allowed White supremacists to define us, erase us, and steal from us.
While many Blacks were enslaved, millions of Blacks in America hail from nations and tribes that were not enslaved. Some Blacks are from the islands while others migrate from Europe, Africa, the United Kingdom, Latin America, and other places where the term Black isn’t used to refer to the skin hues of persons with African lineages. Many Black people immigrate from places where they’ve always had Black representation. They’ve never completely been colonized and forced to assimilate in the ways African Americans and Native Americans were.
Some Black people come from countries where they flat out call themselves Whites (for obvious reasons), they move like Whites and want nothing to do with anything remotely labeled as Black — and some of them have skin tones that are darker than mine. Other Blacks only want to be identified by their national origins, tribes, ethnicity rejecting any labeling White Supremacy forces upon them arriving here in the United States. Black in America is hard, and America has done nearly a century of anti-Black propaganda through international broadcasting to ensure we don’t get any help to strengthen our numbers.
America looks for a certain kind of Black to immigrate here, and it’s not the revolutionary type if you understand where I’m coming from.
There are plenty of Black folks who love White Supremacy. They love being the only Black everywhere — in class, on the job, in college, at church, on television. The first Black anything is what they pine for. They understand the assignment and they are all in. These types of Black folks aren’t going to fight for our liberation or their own. If there is a White system or structure to be in, they’re there. These types of Black folks would rather fight against us alongside White Supremacy and remain tethered to Whiteness and all the White things they’ve accrued over time that validates them.
We have some Black folks within our ranks who awaken every day with revolutionary and noncompliant mindsets because they understand we’re all hostages in the system of White Supremacy. All they want to do is be with like-minded individuals so they can fight to perhaps finally win the liberation so many of our elders and ancestors fought and died for.
There are the Black folks who still believe we are still on plantations laboring as house negroes and field negroes. They think Black folks are supposed to care for everything and everyone first but ourselves. Many of these Black folks are also die-hard integrationists who believe the best thing for Black people collectively is to support White people and the People of Color brigade while competing with them all for table scraps on the floor like old bottom-feeding catfish. With this crew of Blacks, any discussions of disaggregation for our collective protection and cultural preservation will get you called xenophobic.
We’ve got plenty of Black folks who think the best the world has to over them can only be attained from White spaces. These folks send their kids to all-White or predominantly White schools as if Black education didn’t produce similar results prior to integration. These are the same Blacks who live in all White or predominantly White communities because they believe being around Black people is unsafe. The parents of these types of Blacks taught them that being Black was bad and required assimilation for a better future. Assimilation was necessary for entry into these all highly coveted White spaces to receive the White programming with a side of anti-Blackness.
These types of Blacks don’t like anything outside of their assimilated social circles, aren’t interested in learning anything about us, and don’t want to be around us. Zaddy is good to them, for now.
We have a growing number of Black people who are pro-reparations movements for descendants of enslavement across the diaspora because they understand our perilous state in the world was caused by White Supremacy. Also within the diaspora, we have Black anti-reparationists and Blacks who are apathetic to the causes because they won’t be getting anything from the recompense. They have crabs in the barrel mentalities all day every day. These Blacks are mostly selfish and jealous. If they can’t have any, no one can.
There are Black people within our flat Blackness labeling who have put everything before their Blackness. They’re conservative, liberal, progressive, LGBTQIA+, women, men, religious men/women, feminists, Black feminists, artists, pro-equality, pro-equity for all, businessmen/businesswomen, or anything before they are Black. We don’t see eye to eye on lots of things a lot. We talk differently. We socialize differently. We are often at odds with each other. They are on an unproductive Black island unto themselves like angry, bitter. Every time they speak they let us know it.
As you can see from the aforementioned examples, flat Blackness has always been problematic for us because Black people are not a monolith. No group on earth is. We’ve not been able to talk about our differences before now. Black gatekeepers blessed by White Supremacy had all the microphones and platforms to speak on our behalf until now. Thanks to social media and sites like 6ZEROS, we’re now able to speak for ourselves.
These disaggregation conversations we’re having are long overdue. Our Blackness is complex thanks to White Supremacy. Let’s make sure we give credit where credit is due because Black people didn’t create the problem, we’re simply using our self-determination to fix it. Black folks across the diaspora are having difficult discussions right now that make a lot of us uncomfortable, but these conversations must be had.
It’s a matter of life or death for us right now. We’re at a crossroads, and some of us are going to be parting ways.
What you need to understand is that we’re not all trying to be free of White Supremacy. Some of us love the plantation model of living and existing figuratively speaking. There are many Black folks who also don’t want to fight with Whtie Supremacy. They have had all the fight beaten out of them. They simply want to move on, work on their good job, get their good colonial education, raise their kids in good White communities, and live a goodassimilated life free of the fight. To them, White Supremacy is good and they ain’t never letting go.
For African American Blacks, ADOS (African American Descendants of Slaves), FBA (Foundational Black Americans), Descendants of Freedmen (Descendants of Freedman), Black Cherokee, and Choctaw Native Americans, and other Black people who are descendants of people stolen or sold to the United States during the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade, the disaggregation of flat Blackness is necessary for future litigation against America and other potential oppressors to give us the freedom to separate from the intricate system and enterprise of White Supremacy, as much as we can anyway. We can also clearly define who is eligible for reparations and make a claim in court without ineligible Black tethers being a distraction.
Flat Blackness is centered in abstract Whiteness. That’s the way things have always been. We didn’t make the rules we’ve all just been subjected to them. And while the many derogatory and often oversimplified labels for people of African descent have changed, our place in the social hierarchy has remained the same thanks to America’s immigration policies and other social engineering orchestrated by the dominant society. Our place is likely never going to change because we cannot Whiten our skin.
Disaggregation of flat Blackness is necessary to sort, distinguish, and if/when needed, separate from those playing a game of chicken with White Supremacy we simply cannot win.
Those fighting for reparations here in America are running into issues from many Black people whose ancestors were not enslaved here in America or victims of other racialized terrors post Reconstruction Era. Sadly some of the Black people across the diaspora feel we should move on from slavery and Jim Crow not receive recompense for atrocities committed against us in the past and present. We need to stiff-arm them. Bless them as we part.
Many Black immigrants didn’t attend integrated schools, weren’t redlined, weren’t forced to drink from an all-Black water fountain, weren’t denied opportunities because of the color of their skin. They weren’t denied G.I. Benefits after wars, as a matter of fact, many Blacks immigrating to this country never served the country in any way. They don’t care about that even though it’s our fights that have led to the benefits they enjoy here today. Black immigrants have been quite disrespectful. Disaggregation allows us to part from those who don’t respect us. We’re no longer giving cover and protection to those who work to demoralize us alongside the system of White Supremacy.
We also have many Blacks who believe we’re living in a post-racial society. I don’t know after the last 50 years but they do. The dominant society’s propaganda, depopulation agendas, and nation whitening strategies to increase the number of Whites being born are not a problem for them. They’re comfortable with the agendas and being life support for White Supremacy. Disaggregation will allow those people to become White as they wish.
The disaggregation of flat Blackness will allow the diaspora to divide itself into respective categories where we can advocate for the interests that are most important to us. Disaggregation will also allow those interested in finally doing what Freedmen in a Black community in Savanah, Georgia desired to do back in 1865, which was to live separately from Whites for the obvious reasons we can clearly see 157 years later.
After the Civil War, General Sherman met with leaders from Savannah’s Black Community to inquire about how freedpeople could take care of themselves. Garrison Frazier, a 67-year-old former slave, and the group’s spokesman told General Sherman the best way for freedpeople to care for themselves was “to have land, and turn it and till it by our own labor.”
That wisdom of freedmen, their way of knowing the souls of White folks is the wisdom they relied upon for their survival. After hundreds of years and countless examples of White vigilante violence, betrayal, inhumanity, and immorality they knew they could not trust White folks. They’d also survived White vigilante violence and war. They wanted nothing to do with living in White people’s communities no matter how much good stuff they would have access to. Frazier also told General Sherman he thought there was sufficient intelligence among the group to maintain themselves under the Government of the United States.
Freedmen knew being out of the racist White man or racist Whitewoman’s sight would’ve likely meant they were out of the racist White man or racist White woman’s mind. They also knew they kept plantations afloat. They had the skills to survive. White Southerners did not.
Those free Black people wanted to disaggregate themselves from the general populations of cities and towns as a way to have peace and live prosperously and not the type of superficial consumer-driven prosperity in the dominant society we have today. We’ve done the opposite of what the freedmen wanted. Now we know the results. Disaggregation of flat Blackness allows us to honor the wishes of our ancestors.
Disaggregation today means the same thing for freedmen — peace, and living prosperously on our own land in our own communities. It means tilling our own soil literally and figuratively with fellow Black freedmen and benefiting from our own labor. We wanted freedom.
When the Black leader met with General Sherman, a Black man I might add, notice all but one of the groups wanted to live separately from whites. Apparently, for that group, prejudice against Blacks in the South was tolerable and something they were willing to endure. Sounds familiar?
As we can see today by the divides among the imaginary monolithic Blackness throughout the diaspora, there are still some Black people who are willing to comprise themselves and the rest of us to reside in White America’s anti-Blackness and racial animosity. Water from the White ladle tastes better and it’s worth getting kicked up the ass, being exploited, having their children turned out, and even risking death to have it. I’m good on that! Been there, got a T-shirt.
While the disaggregation of flat Blackness may be uncomfortable, it must be done in order to protect those who want to survive, live, and thrive the way our ancestors did when we were empowered and motivated by freedom.
All Black people have never wanted to go in just one direction. Today’s disaggregation of flat Blackness is simply a reliving of history we didn’t learn from. Trying to get us all on one accord has never worked. Let us finally learn from history and divide so that we all won’t be conquered.
Disaggregation of Blac people is essential, especially for Freedman, FBA, ADOS, DOS, and Black Native Americans forced from reservations to finally live the lives our ancestors desperately desired as well as to finally litigate our case for recompense with the United States of America. Liberation and compensation won’t come without disaggregation.
Liberation Rarely Happens Before Disaggregation
Black people have always had to disaggregate themselves when fighting the dominant society. When planning his slave rebellion, ancestor Nat Turner only trusted four other enslaved men to help plan his slave revolt. It’s estimated that about 75 other enslaved people aided Nat Turner in what the dominant society called a disorganized insurrection resulting in the murder of at least 55 white people. Nat Turner knew from experience every enslaved person couldn’t be trusted. Turner also knew every enslaved person didn’t want to be free because they weren’t willing to fight or die for their freedom.
Ancestor Turner told the people he could trust and left the others where they were. Disaggregation was necessary because Turner knew all Black people weren’t on code and knew some of our Black folks would sell you out and get you beaten or even hung for just a few extra biscuits from master’s table — let’s keep it real.
As ancestor Harriett Tubman worked diligently to free her people from their brutal enslavements across the deep South on the Underground Railroad, she left thousands of enslaved people of African descent behind because they could not dream beyond their current circumstances, they trusted their enemy over their own people, and they were more afraid to be free than they were of enslavement.
Ancestor Tubman said, “If I could have convinced more slaves that they were slaves, I could have freed thousands more.” Slaves thought they had it good and didn’t mind the abuse, strict rules, sub-standard housing, food rationing, rapes, splitting of families, beatings, and working for free. The enslaved were conditioned by the dominant society to believe that kind of life was the best way for them. Their domestic abusers also threatened them with beatings and death if they tried to leave them. Fear drives a number of Black people. Scared folks will get you killed.
For Harriet Tubman, disaggregation was necessary to free those who wanted to be freed prior to the Emancipation Proclamation. Ancestor Harriett didn’t have time to wait on White people to decide to liberate her. She and others took it upon themselves to be free. They took their liberation. Staying behind with those who enjoyed enslavement was a death sentence. Disaggregation allowed the many to stay behind and die.
In Barbados, the slave rebellion of 1816 was carefully planned and organized by the senior enslaved men and women who worked on several estates and plantations. Disaggregation and separation were necessary to ensure only the enslaved men and women on code got the memo. They knew who was who and moved in silence until the time was right because again, you can’t trust everybody when it comes to liberation. The Black people on code understood the assignment and could be trusted to carry it out.
Black people have always had to disaggregate themselves from other Black people in their collectives and in their communities to make liberate themselves, to separate from cowards, snitches, and gatekeepers, and from people who had the potential to betray them, so this notion that we’re all brothers and sisters shit is a lie and we shouldn’t be swayed by anyone who tells us otherwise.
We’ve always had individuals and groups who would undermine the interests of the collective for personal comfort and safety. We’ve seen where that mindset gets us. We’re living the fruit of it today here in America and across the diaspora. Undisciplined Black people, off-code Blacks, ignorant Black people, opportunistic and parasitic Blacks, fearful Blacks, selfish Blacks, disrespectful Blacks, moralless Blacks, White Supremacy loving Blacks, visionless Blacks, and Blacks lacking integrity continue to plague our collective.
These truths hurt, but these same truths also have the power to set us free.
We can’t move forward until we get our house in order. To me, disaggregation of flat Blackness is housekeeping. It’s going to be ugly and it’s going to be painful, but in the end, it’s for the benefit of those wanting to fight White Supremacy and live free from it as best we can.
African American Blacks Leading Disaggregation Discussion
African American Blacks are currently leading flat Blackness disaggregation discussions. They are happening on many different platforms and those I’ve been a part of have been very educational. While each group has a different method of disaggregating, the end results are the same — each group seeks the wellness and empowerment of African American Black people and those Blacks across the diaspora willing to work with us to fight White Supremacy and build strong Black communities.
I personally have watched from the sidelines many disaggregation discussions and I must admit I’m turned off at times by the infighting, the disrespect from those with dissenting or opposing views, followers protecting leaders like celebrity groupies, and activists centering leaders instead of the people who will benefit from their work. Real Black leaders understand it’s not about the coronation of leaders, but about the liberation of people. Good Black leaders also understand enemies of Black joy, Black peace, Black progress, Black wealth, and Black liberation must be cut from the body like cancer. Disaggregation of flat Blackness does this.
With disaggregation happening on social media daily, I see our divides being exploited by White Supremacy in ways that would make the cruelest White Supremacist proud. With technology, it’s going to be COINTELPRO on steroids.
I love my people and I want us to win, but I also want us to have a little grace for those who are still lost, those not ready to leave White Supremacy’s plantation, and respect for those who are wedded to the system of White Supremacy by choice. Some folks need to be convinced they are a hostage in the system of White Supremacy. We all didn’t have strong pro-Black parents, strong Black men, and good pro-Black community leaders. Some Black people were raised by cowards and are programmed. Give them a chance to be enlightened. If we indeed believe in liberation, we must also believe Black people have the freedom to remain in the system of White Supremacy. We can’t stick around too long waiting on people to get it. Know when to cut your losses and run for your lives.
What a certain segment of Black folks are not gone do is put our lives in danger to keep following our known enemies. The friend of our enemy cannot be our friend. Some of our Black people enjoy being friends with our enemies- another reason the disaggregation of flat Blackness is necessary.
We are in a war, and a lot of Black people don’t believe it and can’t understand the concept because there are no bullets flying, there are no bombs dropping, Black folks aren’t being escorted off to detainment camps (yet), see King Alfred’s Plan. We can still go to grocery stores, booty clubs, eat next to White folks, and because no blood has been shed in their families yet, all is well. What they don’t understand is that the war we’re in is invisible and psychological.
Only those with strong minds and strong spirits will survive, and since all Black ain’t built the same, a lot of us ain’t gone make it.
Our children, men, women, grandchildren, spouses, even our unborn children are in this invisible war right now. Some Blacks are fighting against White Supremacy to live while others are fighting for the right to die of it. For the Black folks who love subjugation, domination, and extermination, may the force be with them. The ancestors have warned us generation after generation of the dangers of getting too close and staying too close to White Supremacy and many of us still haven’t gotten the memo.
Many Black folks across the diaspora, including many African American Blacks, won’t listen. They think they are different, smarter, better, more assimilated — capable of withstanding the cruelty, brutality, inequity, and eventual death at the hand of White Supremacy.
Hardheads make soft behinds.
Disaggregation of Blackness must happen to let those wanting to bend to the will of White Supremacy have their way while the rest of us go off to try and have land, and turn it and till it by our own labor. Freedman, FBA, ADOS, and other groups such as reparationists are leading the charge.
“If you hear the dogs, keep going, if you see the torches in the woods, keep going. If there’s shouting after you, keep going. Don’t ever stop. Keep going. If you want a taste of freedom, keep going.”
― Harriet Tubman
Expect Push Back
People hate change, especially when it means exclusion, so we should expect pushback throughout this necessary disaggregation process — but ya’ll keep going. Well-meaning pro-Black folks are going to be upset because they believe we all should get along when the truth of the matter is that we’ve never all just got along. Ignore them — keep going anyway. Different pro-Black groups are going to get into it about the routes and paths we should take to achieve our goals post disaggregation — ya’ll keep going. Pushback and resistance are to be expected.
Expect our people to conflate disaggregation thoughts and ideas, deflect and project, whine, circle jerk, and attempt to redirect us just like white people —keep going. Watch upper-class Black folks work hard to convince us disaggregation is too hard. They’re going to tell us we need to wait, and that we should hug it out until things get better — keep going. Disaggregation must happen.
Be prepared for White folks and their gatekeepers to put their noses all up and through Black family business — give them that everlasting work in the words of Vicki Dillard. It’s never in their best interests for Black folks to come together getting on one accord. Expect the dominant society to try to divide us with their tools, threats, and even attempts to co-opt our conversations — but ya’ll keep going.
Know that gender wars are going to ramp up. Black men are threats to White Supremacy. Expect Black women to be used to demoralize Black men and derail Black progress. We’ve always been used as tools. Understand what’s happening — keep going anyway. Plenty of us sisters are conscious and not allowing ourselves to be used as tools.
Sisters and others armed with tools and talking points of the dominant society are going to have beef with strong Black brothers stepping up and leading the charge on disaggregation — but keep going. Black Men have led most of thesuccessful revolutions across the diaspora to liberate our people. Brothers need to understand there are many among us who aren’t interested in following the lead of a strong man. Don’t shrink to make them feel better. We need lions in this hour. The biggest threat to a White man is a strong Black man. Don’t ya’ll dare cower.
Their fears are their problems, not ours.
People will come and people will go as we disaggregate. Folks are going to find leaving family and friends not that cool. People are going to let us down, and many of us are going to fall by the wayside because they don’t want to do the work of fighting for and focusing on Freedmen, ADOS, FBA, etc. — but keep going.
Pro-Black Black sisters, you’re going to catch flack for supporting strong Black men. Expect pushback. You’re going to be bullied for discarding Eurocentric values to pick up Afro-centered values. You’ll be chastised for listening more and talking less. The dominant society is going to use all the tools and resources it can to persuade you not to follow Black men. They’re going to plant seeds of doubt and attempt to create chaos as we disaggregate — keep going.
Finally, expect name-calling and insults from the unread, ignorant, selfishnes, especially from those of the bourgeouise class. People who can’t handle truth or their roles of upholding White Supremacy won’t be able to handle disaggregation — keep going.
They don’t understand this assignment. They don’t want freedom.
Black folks have been going round and round the mountain since the Civil Rights Era trying to figure out how to live in this society and be well. We tried integration, it didn’t work. We tried non-violence. It didn’t work. We tried economic boycotts. Our people won’t stick to them. Some of us temporarily divested from our people to get a bag to the detriment of our community. We allowed our spaces to be gentrified, our schools to be closed, and we sent our best and brightest off to build Whitelandia. We voted. It hasn’t worked. We have nothing to show for our efforts. We’ve tried White culture. It doesn’t work for all Black people.
We’ve been misled. We’re getting ready to do a new thing. Disaggregation of flat Blackness is necessary in order to filter and organize prior to moving and building.
Many of us are ready to admit what we’ve done in the past hasn’t worked and we’re changing course. Expect magical negro whisperers to be mad. We’re messing up their butter biscuits. It’s not our monkey. It’s ain’t our circus.
Smart folks trying to survive don’t see the ship sinking, sit down and eat lunch as you drown. They get up and fight for their survival. Some of our people and sitting down on the sinking ship eating lunch and watching CNN, MSNBC, and other mainstream media parroting their talking points. Expect chaos. It’s normal. It must happen.
It’s the only way this psychopathic beast better known as White Supremacy operates.
Always remember that above all else, B1 disaggregation is about our survival and our survival only. Nothing more, nothing less. Ancestor Harriett Tubman gave us instructions for this journey. We must follow them to the letter. She said, “If you hear the dogs, keep going, if you see the torches in the woods, keep going. If there’s shouting after you, keep going. Don’t ever stop. Keep going. If you want a taste of freedom, keep going.”
Our disaggregation will lead to our liberation. Don’t you dare give up.
Ya’ll keep going.