There has been more than enough attention on Wisconsin’s electoral politics, which highlight the recall election of governor Scott Walker.
The narrative that has given rise to very large political mobilizations is that Walker, in about one year in office, has divided the state politically and attacked unions.
In the recall election, Milwaukee’s mayor Tom Barrett is challenging Walker for the position.
What is consistent between the policies of Barrett and Walker is their relation to the African community in Milwaukee and throughout the state of Wisconsin.
The African community suffers no matter who wins the office.
The official unemployment rate for African men in Milwaukee hovers around 55 percent which is third in the U.S. behind Buffalo and Detroit, respectively.
The African population in the state of Wisconsin is a little more than six percent, yet Africans make up 48 percent of the state prison population.
The colonial plight of Africans in Wisconsin is brought to light when we examine our conditions in housing, infant mortality, education and other issues.
It is evident that Africans have no control over our livelihoods. We as Africans need to fight for self-determination.
Wherever you find Africans, you find mass numbers of Africans suffering. You will also find a class of Africans in collusion with the white power structure.
There are many Africans in political office on the city, county, state and national level that are assigned to the issues in Milwaukee.
Most of these politicians only work visibly during election time to hold their office.
None have publicly criticized Barrett’s $230 million police budget, which dwarfs the city’s economic development budget of $9 million.
The realities on the ground are stark; one cannot drive a mile into the black community without witnessing at minimum 4 police squad cars patrolling the neighborhood.
This kind of police containment is not raised as a concern from the black politicians whom the people have entrusted for representation.
This intense police presence in the city helps feed the state prison system with Africans. It demoralizes the community and doesn’t protect the people or solve the issue of crime.
The real crime here is the exploitation from not only the white power structure, who deny African people the right to our own livelihoods, but also from the community’s own sons and daughters in political positions, who partake of this exploitation for their own gains.
This is a form of neocolonialism—white power in black face.
The crime we see in the black community is a result of imposed economic conditions upon an already exploited population, which is the result of historic and continued State aggression.
These community politicians work to support the continued oppression of the African community.
They attend church on Sunday, they may host a park festival promoting low paying jobs in the community, but NONE are working to concrete ends in the interest of the black community.
Milwaukee’s statistics prove that.
If they were, they would challenge the white power structure in their capacity as legislators to address the needs of the community.
Some openly support the oppressive policies, some sit silent on them, some present Band-Aid legislation to appease their black voting bloc.
What is obvious is the disconnect between these community representatives and the material conditions of the African community, the very communities in which they come from or reside.
Whether this dismal reality in Milwaukee results from a myopic worldview or blatant opportunism at the expense of the African community, their work (or lack thereof) supports colonialism.
Build revolutionary organization rooted in the African community
None of our issues in Milwaukee or anywhere in the African world will be solved if we leave them to chance.
We can’t vote a potential benevolent slave-master into office in hopes of overturning our conditions. We didn’t vote on these conditions in the first place, so it will take more than that.
We need to build the African People’s Socialist Party and the organizations of the Party.
It is these colonized conditions of Africans, not only in Milwaukee but all over the U.S., which called for our own representation in our own interests that only we can and must voice through the collective body of the African working class.
No organization in Milwaukee speaks directly to the interests and aspirations of the African community.
Some organizations never challenge neocolonial leadership, nor do they directly challenge white power.
Most are content with having events and study sessions that emotionally empower Africans briefly, but have no intention to practically overturn the conditions in the community.
This neocolonial leadership is useless for the masses of suffering Africans.
Party organizations such as the All African People’s Development and Empowerment Project (AAPDEP) and the International People’s Democratic Uhuru Movement (InPDUM) give the African community and supporters of African self-determination practical ways to overturn the conditions in the community.
It removes the isolation of Africans working in geographically different locations, as well as Africans organizing around singular issues.
These organizations win Africans back into political life not just around election time, but everyday because politics affect us every day.
It is in the interests of the white ruling class and all of their neocolonial lackeys to impose their political consciousness onto the African community.
What we really must win is not an election, but power in our own hands!
Build the Party of the African Working Class!
Build AAPDEP and InPDUM!
One Africa, One Nation!