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African Holocaust | African Race | The appreciation or relevance of Africaness is located in the face of a multi-racial world and the primary function of defining African identity is first and foremost an exercise in political self-interest and African agency. The power of definition must remain with the majority and today African is a term used to super-umbrella all the indigenous ethnicities of the African continent and their modern-day descendents in the Diaspora

 

     
     

     

 
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AFRICAN HOLOCAUST ARTICLES

Until lions tell their tale, the story of the hunt will always glorify the hunter

African Proverb

Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will

– Frederick Douglass

The most pathetic thing is for a slave who doesn't know that he is a slave

– Malcolm X

Every man is rich in excuses to safeguard his prejudices, his instincts, and his opinions.

– Ancient Egypt

Cowardice asks the question: is it safe? Expediency asks the question: is it political? Vanity asks the question: is it popular? But conscience asks the question: is it right.

– Dr. Martin L. King, Jr

What kind of world do we live in when the views of the oppressed are expressed at the convenience of their oppressors?

– Owen 'Alik Shahadah

We are not Africans because we are born in Africa, we are Africans because Africa is born in us.

– Chester Higgins Jr.

Leave no brother or sister behind the enemy line of poverty.

– Harriet Tubman

If we stand tall it is because we stand on the shoulders of many ancestors.

African Proverb

If we do not stop oppression when it is a seed, it will be very hard to stop when it is a tree.

– ' Alik Shahadah

 

SEEN BUT NEVER TRULY HEARD

Anna Marano
'Alik Shahadah & MK Asante 2003
 
NO ROOM IN MULTI-CULTURAL BRITISH MEDIA FOR AFRICAN HISTORY

   
Until the Story of the hunt is told by the Lion, the tale of the hunt will always glorify the hunter
 
African Proverb

There is the false notion going around that media is becoming more acceptant of the diverse culture in Britain. When we switch on the television, we see more Asian and African faces than ever before. There are more documentaries and films focusing on “ethnic” culture. However, when we take a closer look it is, more often than not, a very superficial portrayal of culture.

Diverse television will only reflect the “Black Culture” that White Brits are comfortable with. So Black history month is all about Carnival, and maybe if we are lucky a very soft and passive look at some significant black personalities, maybe Martin Luther king for the 200th time, maybe a program on how the British got “moral” and ended slavery. We will naturally see allot of the celebrities, the boxers, the footballers, the musicians, the clowns. We see those who have been accepted into White British society, those who have the “White pass,” the tame and predictable, those that ultimately reflect the images of Black people that white society is comfortable with; the clown, the rapper, the sports person, the newsreader, etc.

500 YEARS LATER: Ground breaking definitive multi-award winning documentary. Prehaps the best documentary ever on slavery. Filmed in over twenty countries and on five continents, 500 Years Later is a compelling journey that chronicles the struggle of a people from enslavement who continue to fight for the most essential human right - freedom.ON DVD

Buy now Motherland

And it is interesting to note how many of these ethnically inclusive programs on mainstream television are actually produced by Black people. We see programs on Africa and all the black people are on the other side of the camera, we have white British people writing Black television series, we have completely white crews producing hip-hop documentaries. They occupy all of the decision making post of all the media institutes. How is that diversity? People have to be allowed to tell their own stories, this is the basic principle in the rights to self-determination. The most honest Christian European (as an example) cannot accurately make a film about Islam, or Slavery, or Colonialism, or African kingdoms, apart from the blatant conflict of interest, the complexities of Black culture are only known by people of that culture/race. Until the lion writes his own story...the tale of the hunt will always glorify the hunter.


HYPOCRISY

The current trend of the mainstream broadcasting channels is to post very politically correct notices of equal opportunities and diversity, but how can you be judge and jury at the same time. How can a wolf act as a shepherd? How can they be justice in media for the minority in British society where the racist mind is holding the keys to the media gate? And when they are challenged they say there aren’t many Black involved in broadcast media and they are taking steps to encourage this. The Fuller Picture, a recent report co-produced by the Black British Film Bulletin and the British Film Institute, identified a ‘cultural gap,’ and called for “The urgent appointment of senior black personnel in commissioning and other funding institutions. None exist at the British Film Institute, British Screen, at any of the Lottery-funded franchises or at the BBC.” Since commissioning is a highly personal issue and comes down to whether one likes or can relate to a project, who will champion the work of culturally minded black talent? Moreover when racism does occur how can we monitor it?


OUR PROJECT

We at Halaqah Media films have made an epic film documenting the journey that people of Afrikan decent have made from the initiation of slavery. We have travelled to five continents interviewing African people from all occupations, allowing them to vent their concerns past, present and future. This project in a nutshell is a global thermostat on what is on the minds of African people globally. Do you think we will ever get such an unbridled product into the doors of mass media? We submit the proposal and no one ask to even have a look at it, just a systematic stream of “no”. Channel fours Danny Cohen humoured us and said it was “interesting but not something he (a European) feels strongly about to pursue any further”. We ask for clarification and we are still awaiting a response. Therefore, a film about how the Global black community feels 500 years later is not an important topic in the eyes of the major media channels. Doors close before they open. We don’t need funding, we don’t need anything but an honest consideration for airing our product to the British audience, Black and White. But this is a cultured program with Black lawyers and PhD holders, they aren’t any “Ganstas” or “Hochie Mamas” in this film, only qualified Black academics that could inspire the disenfranchised black community to start believing in its self. Maybe words like empowerment and reparations and the truth about our past scare people, but why should it in this era of truth, knowledge and equality?

Danny Cohen Rejects 500 Years Later as not worthy

You will always hear excuses such as “it is a minority topic”, While Irish, Jewish and Scottish films, irrespective of their global numbers, can be marketed as mainstream, but Black and Asian topics are always painted as “minority” interest; so White media makes up the minds for ethnic issues. Walt Disney has been doing cartoons on all kinds of cultures for years, when it comes to Africa-they do one on a Lion. Because you see, we must continue to believe that Africa has no culture, no civilisation, nothing to equal to Pocahontas or Aladdin or some orphan Russian princess. Positive African topics are not mainstream, but a programme showing Black and Black crime is feasible, Africans killing one another, poverty in Uganda, Black children with flies on their faces, “Mandela beneath the Halo”, “Why Africa is so poor “(because of mosquitoes), African-Caribbean’s hating Africans, Asian hating Africans, Africans enslaving Africans, so-called “Black Arabs” committing genocide on Blacks (Sudan). This is a brief list of topics broadcasted on mainstream television so far in 2004. You will notice these programs always serve to divide, they always serve to create “inter-Ethnic” animosity, and they always serve to continue to perpetuate a negative image of Africa and her ascendants. They rarely point the finger at the mastermind behind all of the World’s major atrocities for the last 500 years. In addition, they never explore the legacy of those atrocities.

California Newsreel rejects 500 Years Later


A VOICE

This world needs justice and justice in this case is a voice, a voice a medium that we are allowed to truly partake in and express our experiences, a forum to redress our imbalances even if they are “controversial,” because they would be, as we have been made silent for so long. So what if red flags go up. So what if people get upset. There was a time in South Africa when to speak of liberation would have upset some people, but should that limit the true feeling of a people silenced? They was a time in America where to show a Black face on television would have caused offence. Should that limit justice and true equality?

Personally one gets tired of the mockery they make of Black culture, I am tired of the superficial way our problems are explained away, I am tired of how we are portrayed in mainstream media. And some of us think just because we see a Black face that it is alright, just because Halle Berry wins an award for shaming herself that it alright. When there are cultured Black owned equivalents of Warner Brothers then maybe it will be alright. Maybe when our story our struggles are as institutionalised as the Jewish people’s history, then it will be all right. But, until then we are waiting for justice to be served and in the bold words of Cenque in Amistad we say “GIVE US US FREE.”

www.africanholocaust.net www.500yearslater.com

 

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500 Years Later - Owen Alik Shahadah


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