Black History: Where Do We Go from Where?
By Dr. Gloria J. Latimore-Peace
Presented by Omni-U Virtual University
"History is a clock that people use to tell their political and cultural time of day. It is a compass they use to find themselves on the map of human geography. It tells them where they are, but more importantly what they must be."
Dr. John Henrik Clarke
In a previous H3O Art of Life Blog, "Who Am I Doing Here?", we made the following assertion:
"Because we take it for granted that we know who we are, we tend not to ask ourselves the foundational questions posed by our ancient Ancestors as they embarked upon the "Way of Life", their culture:
*Who Are We?
*From whence did we come ?
*What is Our purpose?
*Where are we now?
*What is our destiny?"
The above quote, from the wisdom of Ancestor Dr. John Henrik Clarke, provides the impetus for focusing on another of the "foundational questions," i.e. "Where are we now"?
Based upon his defining analysis of history- what it is and what is its purpose- I would venture to argue that we are so disoriented by our lack of knowledge of our history, that it is almost impossible to answer either of these questions- especially the question raised by Ancestor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In his book,"Where Do We Go from Here:..."
This state of affairs is, in part, what has led to today's question- "Where Do We Go from Where?"
A prerequisite to answering the question of where we are "on the map of human geography," is to know our history as taken from the deep well of the wisdom of Our Ancestors. But, how are we to achieve that objective when our history has been "so often obscured and omitted," as Ancestor Dr. Margaret Taylor Goss Burroughs informed us . Our history is repeatedly under assault and "no holds barred" efforts are underway to eradicate it altogether;
● The teaching of Black History is being undermined,restricted, and subjected to a misrepresentation of the "Critical Race Theory;"
● Books by Black authors and/or about Black people and subjects are being banned, removed from library shelves and/or misinterpreted, i.e., "slavery was beneficial to Black people.."
● Curricula addressing our history and culture are in the process of being legislated out of existence in public education
●"Affirmative Action", under other names, is being transferred back into the hands of the privileged.
● Black CPS Administrators are being purged from their positions of leadership - with neither "due process" nor justification.
● Black proprietors, such as Afriware Books, are on-the-ropes and are facing closures;
● Etcetera., etc., etc.
Meanwhile, we are neglecting to connect the dots while our history-past, present, and future-continues to be obscured, omitted, falsified, and eroded by those who would prevent us from knowing who we are, where we are now, and where we are headed.
It is said that those who are ignorant ot their history are "doomed to repeat it". There are chapters in our history that we can ill- afford to have repeated.
With regard to the "Where do we go from Where?" question, it is a foregone conclusion that, "If you don't know where you're going, any road will take you there." However, "if you don't know where you're going, you ought, at least, to know where you have been." Not knowing where we are compounds the problem, exponentially. Without the compass of our history, we are lost like the Sumerians of whom it was inquired:
"What happened to the people of Sumer?
"They lost their history so they died."
We have been forewarned, by our Ancestors who struggled to preserve our history, that:
"A people without knowledge of their past history, origin, and culture is like a tree without roots." Ancestor The Honorable Marcus Mosiah Garvey
"A race without the knowledge of its history is like a tree without roots."
Ancestor Charles C. Seifert
In " What Shall I Tell My Children Who Are Black…?, our Ancestor, Dr. Margaret T.G.Burroughs, answered the question, thusly:
[We] "must find the truth of heritage for [ourselves]
And pass it on to them…"
Queen Mother Burroughs also admonished Us:
"This [We] will do for them, Noone else will do it for [Us]." This means that we must " drink deeply… from the fountain of [ Our] [B]lack culture" and assume the responsibility for learning and teaching Our history.
Fortunately, we are blessed to have those among Us who are dedicated to preserving the Wisdom of Our Ancestors. They need and deserve the support that is all to often given to other merchants- online as well as within brick and mortar- whose prime interest in us is purely commercial. We owe a debt of gratitude to Brother Minister Rahim Aton Darrell Wilson and Ancestor Dr. Webb Evans who spent years cautioning us about the hazards associated with "Financing Oppression." Therefore, we should know, by now, where we should go.
In his monumental work, "The Condition, Elevation, Emigration, and Destiny of the Colored People of the United States," Ancestor Dr. Martin Robison Delany, declares:
"Every People should be the originators of their own designs, the projector of their own schemes, and creators of the events that lead to their destiny, the consummation of their desires."
"A luta continua. The struggle continues…"
Please join me in supporting the enterprises and/ efforts of the Authors, Researchers, Publishers, and Book Sellers, who have commited themselves to providing access to our history and culture.
I hope that you will buy the works of Black authors such as "The Bluest Eye" by Ancestor Toni Morrison, and others that have been banned.
Consider also purchasing books:
● to add to your own personal library
● as gifts to friends and family members- especially children and seniors
● to donate to Homeschool families/ organizations and church schools
● to contribute to a study group (Create one, if necessary).
Ask your Fraternity Brothers, Sorority Sisters, and members of other organizations to which you belong to do likewise.
UMOJA/ UNITY is the message! Spread the word on social media, by mouth, by phone, email, texts, newsletters, church bulletins, etc.
I urge you to act now in as many ways as possible.
 Life with Margaret: The Official Autobiography By Dr. Margaret T.G. Burroughs
The Eternal Year of African People. Edited and Compiled by Authens Asantewaa Oppong Wadie, Ed d. and Ancestor Bartley McSwine, Ph.D.
Home Is a Dirty Street: The Social Oppression of Black Children. by Ancestor Useni Eugene Perkins
Sacred Fire: The QBR 100 Essential Black Books (1999). Compiled and edited by Max Rodriguez, Angeli R. Rasbury, Carol Taylor.
The United - independent Compensatory Code / System/ Concept Textbook. Revised Edition. A Compensatory Counter Racist Code.by Neely Fuller,Jr.
For more information on book selections, please contact the Omni-U Virtual University official bookstore:
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