Control, ownershipof Prof. Gates'documentary raise need for 'real' EncyclopediaAfricana
By SAMUEL LEE BURNHAM
As a Pan-Africanist and person who has studiedthe research of Cheik Anta Diop, Chancellor Williams, and RonukoRashidi, I must say that Prof. Henry Gates told much truth, butomitted much. For starters, the 'real' Encyclopedia Africana is beingpublished in Ghana where it was the final wish of W. E. B. DuBois anda handful of African people from the motherland. How can we expect tohear the most important points of our true history if it is financedand controlled by Harvard University and Microsoft corporation?
In my view, Prof. Gates betrayed the wishes ofthe DuBois family, especially DuBois himself who wanted to of keepsuch a project to be owned, and controlled economically andpolitically by cultural Africans. Recently, I was informed that thatgates has tried to explain this to the family of the great onementioned above. DuBois realized his mistake of taking on the "talented tenth" mentality shortly before his death. This Eurocentricapproach will not liberate a mentally-enslaved people. This explainsone of the reasons DuBois moved to Ghana.
Next on the Prof. Gates-PBS-Microsoftproject/agenda: the Sudan. Was Gates only allowed to visit theArab-dominated northern portion of the Sudan?. Leaders of the Arabworld have been oppressing our African brothers for over 1400 yearsin this part of Africa. Although, many "colored" Arabs dominated thearea, they enjoy a standard of living higher than that of the unmixedblacks in Southern Sudan. The Kammaasi guide page has input from theTrue people of Sudan. (Uuse your search engine for more informationon the Kammaasi).
The next hot topic focused on continentalAfricans and their role in the slave trade. It is true. If you don'tbelieve it, take a look at the lack of unity of the global Blackcommunity. Our lack of unity, relative to that of non-African people,is the foundation of White Supremacists distortions of our lives andrealities. The truth hurts -but we must face it so we can globallymove forward as a people and remove our sellout leaders from power.We can not afford to gloss over the truth just because it isuncomfortable to us. Let's move to the original Egyptians. Herodotus,the "father of history" according to most European historians,proudly proclaimed that the original Egyptians were Black and had"wooly" Hair. Not "brown", "colored" , "all shades", or any other'Politically Correct ' color designed to please the Eurocentrichistorical community.
In summary, if we want such projects as theAfrica history encyclopedia/PBS documentary done right, we have to doit ourselves. It should not be done by Microsoft, Harvard, or, in myview, a man who seems too afraid to admit the original color of theEgyptians to a scientific community dominated by ethnocentric-basedAnthropology and history. We need to honor the garbage collectors,the striving workers, the servants and the common people. Thesepeople need our help to tell the truth. We need to live the truth, inorder to help lift them above the poverty line. They need us to fightfor them in Sudan, like Queen Dahia Al-Kahina did in Mauritania. Theyneed our help globally before the divide and conquer tactics destroyus before the third millennium arrives.
Burnham's e-mail is email@example.com. Saturday February 19,2000
Gates' report stirs important dialogue about Africans and our relations with ourselves and others. By Seibert L. Murphy