copyright Bettina Network, inc. 2013 for Marceline Donaldson
We declare the year 2013 to be the Year of the Jubilee and a holy, joyous, history making, sin forgiving year!
By whose authority? – by our own. Isn’t that how such things happen!!!!
Generations from now, the historical cry will be reported and everyone will forget it was declared by one little person in a tiny corner of Massachusetts in danger of being crushed by Harvard University.
Why 2013? —————– Why not 2013!
The year Barack Hussein Obama was re-elected president of these United States. A man of African and Colonial American origins. He not only models what African Americans can accomplish, he also models that ‘half-breeds’ can be brilliant, successful, achieve beyond everyone’s expectations and really – how can you tell his racial background from just meeting him? Doesn’t his smile wipe all of your doubts away?
His election – his person – does not go through years of ancestors stolen from Africa and forcibly put into slavery. He comes from the combination of the Africans who escaped being brought over as slaves and the very middle-class White Americans who brought some of his family/tribe/countrymen over to do their work for them – for free. And, in spite of that ancestry he is just as nice and kind and smart and thoughtful and….as he can be. The progeny of the original enemies in these United States – the original American oppressed and oppressors – those who stole the freedom of generations of human beings so they wouldn’t have to do their own menial work and those who were stolen and lived for generations outside their own country, culture, language, until they no longer could recognize from whence they had come.
This Jubilee Year, which we are declaring, also comes 50 year after Martin Luther King, Jr. and the civil rights movement which broke out in this country and partially freed some of us from sitting behind signs on buses; drinking from water fountains which were never clean; going to the back door of restaurants and paying the same price for contaminated food handed to us out the back door which we then had to find a place to eat; travelling and wondering just where we were going to sleep the night because hotels, motels, inns, were not welcoming and did not allow Blacks to register; going to inferior segregated schools; not being allowed into institutions of higher learning except for those established ‘for colored patrons only’ and on and on and on.
We are a step beyond slavery, but still not free! A more qualified African American woman was passed over for Secretary of State in favor of a qualified, but less qualified White Male from a very Patrician American family – complete with trust fund, hundreds of millions of dollars and a phalanx of supporters in his chosen profession protecting him and making sure anyone threatening his path to his chosen goal was dutifully destroyed – or at the least – with reputation mangled.
With BHO’s election to the presidency we should proclaim this a great year of celebration. No, he is not perfect. No, I don’t agree with all of his stands on things. No, I suspect he has more than a little bit of sexism in his soul and it has popped out and will probably continue to do so. No to a lot about BHO, but YES, I will shout and loudly proclaim this celebration and the debt we owe him for stepping out and moving all of us out of a less equal time. If I knew about ram’s horns I would probably continuously bother all of my neighbors by playing several, all year.
This Jubilee Year, which we are proclaiming, is a year of unmitigated joy, but also a year of universal pardon for all of the sins of the past. It is time to put slavery, its manifestations in today’s society, its ruination of the lives of some of my and your ancestors (be they White, Black, Green, Pink, Brown or Purple) in the past and look to the future which this year proclaims possible. A future that is about all of us – that sees us working together to bring about a world free of the horribleness of the past.
In this Jubilee Year:
We need to call on our brothers and sisters to stop manufacturing foods and other processed goods which are harmful to us!
We need to call on our brothers and sisters to take global warming seriously and stop polluting the planet and to stop doing all the other things which are turning our living rooms into our toilets and our bodies into garbage disposals and composters at the expense of our health!
We need to call on our brothers and sisters to learn to settle their grievances without resorting to killing another human being – raping women and children – blowing up buildings out of their self-righteous hatred – playing games which hurt others, but relieves their own anxieties and covers from them the fact that they are mortal and one day will die.
We need to call on our brothers and sisters to take responsibility for each other. No one should sleep on the street or in other than a bed, have warm clothing, enough food to eat and be able to live without the fear of another human being. We are, afterall, more alike than different. We are our brothers and sisters keepers. We have heard those messages from childhood as have our parents, grandparents, great grandparents and much further back into history, heard them also, but we still have not put them into practice in our lives.
We need to call on our brothers and sisters to do at least one good deed each day for someone in need.
We need to dismantle our class structure which raises us up to believe some of us are better – as a part of a group – than others of us.
We need to dismantle what is left of racism.
We need to dismantle what is left of sexism.
We need to totally dismantle ageism.
And we need to do all of that and more before December 2013 so we can all end the year feeling great about ourselves and each other. So that no matter where we are in the world it is a safe place and if we need anything the people in that place will move to supply whatever ‘it’ is.
According to Leviticus 25:10 “Thou shalt sanctify the fiftieth year and shalt proclaim remission to all the inhabitants of thy land; for it is the year of the Jubilee.”
This needs to be a year of great goodness – great deeds – great acknowledgement of our common and shared humanity each one equal to the next, no one greater than another. We should work hard to keep this Jubilee Year and at the end, maybe we will have created habits which carry over into 2014.
50 years ago – at the beginning of this cycle of this Jubilee year -
- John F. Kennedy and Medgar Evers were assassinated and W. E. B. DuBois dies!
- Martin Luther King, Jr. writes his “Letter from a Birmingham Jail’ and later in the year gives his famous “I have a Dream Speech”, during the March on Washington.
- Hoses and Police dogs turned on protestors and are nationally televised for the first time
- Children’s crusade brings about a form of settlement – Birmingham juvenile court inundated with African-American children and teenagers arrested while protesting
- 16th Street Baptist Church bombed killing four young girls – out of which came Condoleeza Rice
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