In memory of Trayvon Martin.
You must in life carve a memorial for yourself and that William Edward Burghardt DuBois perfectly did. His was on the foundation of social truth, nationalism and Panafricanism. His early showdown with slavery made him a withdrawn man but could not retard his academic genius being the first African American to graduate from Harvard with a doctorate degree.
Armed with a scorpion tongue, sharpened with his cruel experience of African suppression in his travels, DuBois sought to punish race hate through his writings and unlimited mind. His research and activism was into Negro morality, urbanization, Negroes in business, college-bred Negroes, the Negro church and Negro crime. His fame shot up as Editor of the Crisis magazine in which he erected a pulpit for the struggle.
He was a gifted orator who rallied the oppressed race through his advocacy for civil justice and the abolishing of caste discrimination. DuBois believed blacks should lead their own struggle, the whites could support. He organized the 5th Pan African Congress with Comrades Nkrumah, Jomo Kenyata, and George Padmore in attendance. There, he was crowned a “Father of Pan Africanism”
For me, DuBois’ life was to attack the rotten soul of a nation feasting on dehumanizing the African pride and then proceed to heal and restore us all to one fellowship of brotherly love. He believed for Africans to be free, they must be free everywhere.
This he taught through his books; The Souls of Black Folks, The Philadelphia Negro, The World and Africa, Black Reconstruction, Dusk of Dawn, books you must read!!
After 1923, he set sail for Ghana. He became a citizen when the America government confiscated his passport in 1951. I doubt if this was any loss to him after all in his own words in Peking, “In my own country for nearly a century I have been nothing but a NIGGER.” Nkrumah made him director of the Encyclopaedia Africana, and to that he devoted his life until on August 27th, 1963, he went down the grave but up the skies.
Today in Ghana, he rests in his grave by the DuBois Memorial Center, a research library to his honor; he deserves it. In his willl, he “simply wished to make it possible for a man to be both a Negro and an American, without being cursed and spit upon by his fellows, without having the doors of opportunity closed roughly in his face”.
My friend, this dream is still significant in our world. DuBois saw the tragic end of men like Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner, Mike Brown, Oscar Grant, Wendell Allen and Tamir Rice, dedicating his life to their salvation.
The struggle is still on, over to you!!
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