By: Matsemela Odom- Chair, Africans Charge Genocide Campaign
The COVID-19 crisis has heightened the contradictions of parasitic capitalism. African Internationalism, the theory of the African Working Class, is the only worldview that successfully explains the crisis and the way forward. African Internationalism is the theory of the African Working Class.
Grounded in historical and dialectical materialism, African Internationalism teaches that “the world is tangible, completely knowable through our senses, existing independently of our minds” and that the African Working Class has the ability to change the world.
As Africans have comprised as many as seventy-percent of the COVID-19 deaths in certain areas, all segments of the African nation are yearning for self-reliance. We have even seen a variety of African athletes and entertainers express concern. Yet, their mobilization has not been met with organization. Project Black Ankh and the People’s War Against COVID-19 provides that organization. “African Internationalists understand that what is required is the ideological leadership to show the way forward. Only we are able to explain the crisis of the old, dying capitalist system,” Chairman Omali writes in Vanguard (291).
Parasitic Capitalism is the true conspiracy
As the African masses look for direction, they have been exposed to a series of conspiracy theories that exploit the righteous African Working Class distrust for the colonial system.
First, Africans were told that melanin made Africans insusceptible to COVID-19. Then Africans were told that COVID-19 was caused by 5G cellular towers. Next, conspiracy theories swirled that COVID-19 was not real but was instead an excuse to trick Africans into taking vaccines. In recent days, a meme circulated social media suggesting African children had been killed during COVID-19 vaccine testing in Senegal. Even more, people have begun to suggest that there are no deaths, the government is forcing hospitals to say that deaths are due to COVID-19 when they are not.
Many of these theories have been tied to white nationalists such as Glenn Beck and Alex Jones. These theories have been picked up by petty bourgeois Pan-Africanist opportunists like Brother Polight and Umar Johnson and spread to the African masses.
These conspiracy theories are not based in materialist understandings of the world. They are luring because they do not demand action. They are idealist deceptions used to intentionally confuse the masses. Africans do not need the charlatans who peddle confusion.
Chairman Omali writes, “African Internationalism gives Africans and the oppressed our own voices and our own brains, capable of investigating the world from our reality and making an analysis stemming from that investigation.” African Internationalism shows us the real conspiracy is parasitic capitalism and Black Power is the cure.
Colonialism is Dangerous to Your Health
Predictably and understandably, the fear over forced vaccinations have been the most pronounced. Recently, on international television, two French doctors boldly suggested that COVID-19 vaccine testing begin in Africa “like it’s been done for certain AIDS studies, where among prostitutes, we try things, because we know that they are highly exposed and don’t protect themselves.”
While colonial doctors plot to turn Africans into guinea pigs for their trials, African and other colonized people have limited access to testing, if any. In New York City, Africans are twice as likely to die from COVID-19 but two-thirds of the testing have been in wealthy and white areas. The Apartheid-state of Israel has shut down a Palestinian testing clinic in East Jerusalem. South African police have reportedly killed more Africans than the virus has. These contradictions reveal colonial medicine’s anti-life agenda for colonized people.
Dr. Aisha Fields, Director of the All African People’s Development and Empowerment Project recently stated, “The problem that we are confronted with is not vaccines being the enemy. The issue that we are confronted with is science and medicine being in the hands of the colonizers.”
A recent dig through The Burning Spear archives at the University of Florida Digital Collections revealed the long history of the Uhuru Movement’s People’s War. In the late-1970s and early-1980s, The Burning Spear printed a regular column titled “Colonialism is Dangerous to Your Health.”
The column covered a variety of health crises plaguing the African community such as cancer, sickle venereal disease, hypertension, and workplace illnesses. As AAPDEP and Project Black Ankh took leadership in 2020, the Spear offered tips towards healthy living but ended every article calling for an end to colonial contradictions. Taking action, the movement organized a health clinic in Oakland, California in the 1980s.
Combatting Liberal Myths
The strongest of myths are not the ones circulated on social media memes but the ones in colonial media and textbooks.
Starting in the 1960s, liberals blamed Africans for the genocidal conditions in deindustrializing urban centers. This is represented in the 1965 Moynihan Report.
Now, the colonial media blames the overrepresentation of African COVID-19 deaths to “preexisting conditions” ignoring the real preexisting condition: COLONIALISM!
Their argument simply does not hold up under a revolutionary microscope. It does not explain the high-rate of Africans dying in cities like St. Louis, Chicago and New York City but the relatively low numbers in places such as Compton and South Los Angeles. Surely, the contradictions of the African Working Class diet in South Los Angeles is not dissimilar to other places. COVID-19 has exposed the contradictions of African life in the post-industrial American Rust Belt. Parasitic Capitalism has a minimal surplus value on African life.
In the US, Africans hold seven percent the wealth of whites. The median wealth of white families is above $130,000 while the median wealth of African families is $9,500. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, Africans comprise 12% of the essential workforce but one-quarter of all food and courier delivery workers, 27% of postal workers, 31% of public transportation, 17% of healthcare workers, 31% of home healthcare workers, 18% of hospital workers, and 28% of workers at nursing facilities.
The genocidal conditions of population density, poor public transportation, food deserts, and criminal primary care overdetermines these death rates.
The Coronavirus is a colonial virus. What Africans are facing is genocide. The solution is reparations and self-determination. We must arm ourselves with truth, objectivism, and the science of African Internationalism and build African Internationalist organizations.
Build the Black Ankh! Join InPDUM! Fight the People’s War! Eradicate the Colonial Virus!