For a social medium that allows its millions of users worldwide to post all sorts of lewd, nude, inane and profane pictures and videos with little impunity, the six times I have been suspended from the medium all stemmed from educational posts/pictures of Jim Crow era atrocities such as beatings, lynchings and black women forced to nurse white children, or ones of the human costs of warfare in Palestine.
That was until today…
My seventh suspension that will keep my blogs and musings away from tens of thousands of Facebook friends and followers–this one for 30 days–is because Facebook has decreed that my viral post about why I could not in good conscience celebrate the British Royal wedding due to nearly six centuries of brutal British colonialism–and its attendant horrors–offensive and in violation of its “Community Standards.” I guess being twice nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for Commentary and having won a Florida Bar Media Award does not matter to the same medium that allows racists to post swastikas and Confederate flags to show “white pride.”
Included within my essay from this past Saturday was the following infamous picture from 2005 that showed a younger Prince Harry wearing a Nazi military uniform.
The young Prince’s defenders, both in 2005 and today, dismiss the same as a puerile joke or youthful indiscretion. But I am of the belief that some things simply are not funny, and that the very essence of white privilege, especially for “nobles,” is to have people make excuses for twisted behavior, such as Harry’s decision to wear a Nazi uniform. Lest we forget that Harry’s great great grandpa, King George V, changed the family name from the Germanic “Saxe-Coburg-Gotha,” to Windsor, during World War I to distance himself from his first cousin, Germany’s Kaiser Wilhelm II. (Nota Bene that Russian Czar Nicholas II, killed near the end of World War I after the Russian Revolution, was also cousins to George V and Wilhelm II, meaning, that famous Queen Victoria’s heirs were responsible for warfare that ended in nearly 41 million dead souls in Europe and the Middle East).
Or, more crucially, that Prince Harry’s great-uncle, Edward the VIII–the same monarch who abdicated the British throne to marry American divorcee Wallis Simpson–was a staunch supporter of Adolf Hitler and a Nazi eugenics or “Aryan race superiority” sympathizer. Check out the pictures below of Edward being warmly greeted by Hitler, one of Edward inspecting Nazi SS troops that would soon be responsible for the murder of nearly 10 million Jews and Roma (Gypsies) in Europe, and Edward standing by smiling as his encourages his 7-year-old niece Elizabeth, now known as Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Harry’s grandmother, to give the Nazi salute.
Despite these facts and my typical rational analysis of the same, Facebook has decided to suspend my account for an entire month. So be it, but I would be remiss to not blast the medium for its continued harassment of us black public intellectuals who use our words and well documented news images to criticize the lingering aspects of racism in all of its putrid forms, criticism that continues to violate “community standards.”
Below, the offending essay that accompanied the aforementioned well documented and previously posted picture of Prince Harry:
“I could NEVER celebrate a British Royal wedding because the British Crown was directly responsible for the rapacious capture and barter of African men, women and children to serve lives of misery as the enslaved in the Americas. The Crown was responsible for the rieving of African lands and natural resources from ivory to gold to the very diamonds that the Royal family has worn ever since Cecil Rhodes began his murderous and lecherous reign as the corporate king in southern Africa. (One in which Rhodes forced African men to strip naked and be subjected to full cavity searches each day as they mined diamonds for his and the crown’s enrichment).
I could never celebrate a British Royal wedding because Britain was THE most ‘successful’ slave-trading nation from the late 1600s to 1807, one that along with Portugal, was responsible for about 70% of all African men, women and children transported to the Americas. Specifically, British traders with charters from the Crown transported 3.1 million Africans during this time, on ships that were launched from Liverpool and Bristol–ships and “cargo” that were insured by Lloyd’s of London.
I could never celebrate a British Royal Wedding because my last name, Hobbs, is the name of Colonizers and Slavers in the Bahamas, Colonizers and Slavers who brutally worked, beat and raped my ancestors. Likewise, the Williams side of my family toiled in slavery in the former British colony of Georgia, where many remained throughout Jim Crow, knowing that they were only a whim away from being raped or lynched with impunity.
I could never celebrate a British Royal Wedding because in the end analysis, enjoying the study of history like I do; recognizing that the past is prologue and that many of the issues that plague Africa and Africans in the Diaspora today stem from the horrific atrocities plagued upon Africa and Africans by the British from the 1600s to the late 1900s; honoring the memories of the ancestors as I lovingly and reverently strive to do in my writings each day, compels me to use my fecund mind to note the historical nature of today’s wedding of Sister Meghan Markle into the Royal Wedding, while simultaneously noting that her vows, new title as the Duchess of Sussex, and infusion of Black cultural aspects into today’s ceremony will have as much impact as spitting into the English Channel or the River Thames–none, not when considering how deeply entrenched racism is across the globe, and not in remembering that such racism and division across the globe is so because as the quip once held, “the sun never set on the British Empire.”
I’ve got much love for many of my Sisters (and a few Brothers) who arose early to watch the ceremony today, mostly out of your love for love and the enjoyment of the pomp and circumstance of such a fairy tale occasion.
I get it.
But on this Malcolm X Day, the day before Emancipation Day in Florida, I am compelled to remind now that the fairy tale is over, the painful truth of the reality tales as described above.”
Lest we forget