Why Don’t Descendants Of American Slaves Ever Return To Africa To Live There?

Some of them did and it was an absolute, unmitigated disaster that constituted one of the five major imperialist incursions of the 19th Century doing the most long term damage to the continent. They can be divided by region: Central Africa was beset by the Belgians under King Leopold II. Arab pirates and raiders further expanded in the North and East. The Dutch and British divided and conquered the South. In the West proper came those seeking to repatriate themselves to a land they did not know, whose languages they did not speak, and whose religious practices and customs were unknown save for some folklore survivals crudely passed on. They had dreams of both escape and romantic notions of reclaiming a lost heritage. But when they arrived there, they did not see the land of their ancestors, assuming they have even got the right location. Rather, they saw exactly what the English Pilgrims blown off course and landing in the uncharted North did: a forbidding wilderness filled with fierce beasts and infested with heathen savages that had to be subdued and controlled by the gun, the sword, and the whip. And that is precisely what they did. They could do little else. They had the finest teachers when it came to conquest and establishing profitable enterprises utilizing forced labor without contract. The indigenous people were conquered, their temples destroyed, their languages forbidden to be spoken. They had no hope of progress in this new society unless they gave up their very names and ways. The oligarchy that followed has for almost two centuries maintained itself much like a Neo-Feudalist atavism some of their numbers who stayed behind in the U.S. helped to defeat a few decades later. It profits by engaging as a haven for crime dealing in contraband, weapons, ecological decimation, and money laundering though minerals and petroleum. It has yet to genuinely admit this tainted past. It hypocritically condemned apartheid even as it made clandestine deals with Pretoria. I know this from what refugees have told me since I met them when my parish hosted some when I was a kid. It was not really comprehensible to me until I was older. I met some expats years ago who told me that nobody there who has maintained an identity from the time before they invaded even calls them Africans, much less Liberians. They call them the Americos; Americans.


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