Should Black People Commemorate Veterans/Remembrance Day?
Should Black people commemorate Veterans/Remembrance Day? The major world wars were not fought for our benefit and we did not gain Socially, Politically or Economically from the wars. Why then should we pay our respects to war veterans when they fight for nations and those nations do not respect us as Black people?
November 11th is recognized internationally as Remembrance Day or Veterans Day in the United States. It is a day in which we are supposed to pay tribute to the sacrifices of military service men and women who have serves in wars to defend freedom as defined in Democratic terms. This means that anyone who fought or died defending a position that was not considered Democratic is not welcomes to commemorate their war veterans on this particular day. Unfortunately, most Black people face a dilemma when it comes to Veterans/Remembrance Day because, although we fought in all the major world wars, we were fighting for countries and colonial masters that, to this day, do not practice true Democracy at all.
If Black people do not participate in Veterans Day we are seen as ungrateful. White people say that if it wasn’t for the sacrifices of their white veterans, we as Black people wouldn’t have the freedoms we enjoy today. In America, for instance, Black soldiers fought in WW2 and many became heroes but when they returned home their social condition did not change. They were subjected to extreme racism just like before the war. That means that the war was not for Democratic freedom at all, it was for something else. In fact, all the major wars around the world were fought as a result of oppression.
Even the major wars inside America were fought over oppression. The American peasants felt oppressed by their British rulers so they fought for their independence. The South tried to fight against increasing Northern political power so they fought the Civil war and lost. Although Black people gained freedom because of the war, their oppression at the hands of whites didn’t change much for the following 100 years. It wasn’t until Black people demanded social change through the Civil Rights Movement that social change really happened.
So why not participate in Veterans day to honor our own Black veterans then? Most Black people do participate in Veterans/Remembrance Day to honor our Black veterans who fought and died to show that they were just as brave as our oppressors. Some Black people participate in Veterans/Remembrance Day because they truly believe that they belong in the various countries they have become citizens of. A lot of Black people dismiss Veterans/Remembrance Day because they see it as a white man’s thing.
Any Black person wishing to celebrate Veterans/Remembrance Day can do so if they want. Its their right under the false sense of freedom that they have. On the other hand, Black Conscious people recognize that Black people have been fighting for freedom from white oppression ever since they came and took us out of Afraka. We may have won our physical freedom but the war for our mental freedom is never over. We commemorate the memory of our fallen soldiers all year long because we know the war for Black mental liberation is not over.#Veterandday #RemembranceDay