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In any

government began, especially in these matters. case, we have Dr. Jonas' confession, and all the silly Negroes who listened approvingly to the senseless allegations made by Messrs. Jonas, Gabriel and others of a standing army of 4,000,000 in Abyssinia and of JapaneseAbyssinian diplomatic relations and intentions, must feel now very foolish about the final result.

How natural it was that Jonas, the white leader, should have gone scot free, while Redding and his other Negro dupes are held! How natural that Jonas should be the one to positively identify Redding as the slayer of the Negro policeman! And so, once again, that section of the Negro race that will not follow except where a white man leads will have to pay that stern penalty whereby Dame Experience teaches her dunces. Under the present circumstances we, the Negroes of the Western world, do pledge our allegiance to leaders of our own race, selected by our own group and supported financially and otherwise exclusively by us. Their leadership may be wise or otherwise; they may make mistakes here and there; nevertheless, such sins as they may commit will be our sins, and all the glory that they may achieve will be our glory. We prefer it so. It may be worth the while of the white men who desire to be "Our Professional Friends" to take note of this preference.

A Tender Point

When the convention of turtles assembled on the Grand Banks of Newfoundland it was found absolutely impossible to get a tortoise elected as leader. All turtles, conservative and radical, agreed that a land and water creature, who was half one thing and half another, was not an ideal choice for leader of a group which lived exclu

sively in the water. Whenever a leader of the Irish has to be selected by the Irish it is an Irishman who is selected. No Irishman would be inclined to dispute the fact that other men, even Englishmen like John Stuart Mill and the late Keir Hardie, could feel the woes of Ireland as profoundly as any Irishman. But they prefer to live up to the principle of “Safety First."

These two illustrations are to be taken as a prelude to an important point which is not often discussed in the Negro press because all of us-black, brown and particolored-fear to offend each other. That point concerns the biological breed of persons who should be selected by Negroes as leaders of their race. We risk the offense this time wecause efficiency in matters of racial leadership, as. in other matters, should not be too tender to these points of prejudice when they stand in the way of desirable results. For two centuries in America we, the descendants of the black Negroes of Africa, have been told by white men that we cannot and will not amount to anything except in so far as we first accept the bar sinister of their mixing with us. Always when white people had to select a leader for Negroes they would select some one who had in his veins the blood of the selectors. In the good old days when slavery was in flower, it was those whom Denmark Vesey of Charleston described as "house niggers" who got the master's cast-off clothes, the better scraps of food and culture which fell from the white man's table, who were looked upon as the Talented Tenth of the Negro race. The opportunities of self-improvement, in so far as they lay within the hand of the white race, were accorded exclusively to this class of people who were the left-handed progeny of the white masters.

Out of this grew a certain attitude on their part

towards the rest of the Negro people which, unfortunately, has not yet been outgrown. In Washington, Boston, Charleston, New York and Chicago these proponents of the lily-white idea are prone to erect around their sacred personalities a high wall of caste, based on the ground of color. And the black Negroes have heretofore worshipped at the altars erected on these walls. Onc sees this in the Baptist, Methodist and Episcopal churches, at the various conventions and in fraternal organizations. Black people themselves seem to hold the degrading view that a man who is but half a Negro is twice as worthy of their respect and support as one who is entirely black. We have seen in the social life of some of the places mentioned how women, undeniably black and undeniably beautiful, have been shunned and ostracised at public functions by men who should be presumed to know better. We have read the fervid jeremiads of "colored" men who, when addressing the whites on behalf of some. privilege which they wished to share with them, `would be, in words, as black as the ace of spades, but, when it came to mixing with "their kind," they were professional lily-whites, and we have often had to point out to them that there is no color prejudice in America-except among "colored" people. Those who may be inclined to be angry at the broaching of this subject are respectfully requested to ponder that pungent fact.

In this matter white people, even in America, are inclined to be more liberal than colored people. If a white man has no race prejudice, it will be found that he doesn't care how black is the Negro friend that he takes to his, home and his bosom. Even these white people who pick leaders for Negroes have begun in these latter years to give formal and official expression to this principle. Thus it was that when the trustees of Tuskegee had to elect

a head of Tuskegee and a putative leader of the Negroes of America to succeed the late Dr. Washington, they argued that it was now necessary to select as leader for the Negro people a man who could not be mistaken by any one for anything other than a Negro. Therefore, Mr. Emmett Scott was passed over and Dr. Robert R. Morton was selected. We are not approving here the results of that selection, but merely holding up to Negroes the principle by which it was governed.

So long as we ourselves acquiesce in the selection of leaders on the ground of their unlikeness to our racial type, just so long will we be met by the invincible argument that white blood is necessary to make a Negro worth while. Every Negro who has respect for himself and for his race will feel, when contemplating such examples as Toussaint Louverture, Phyllis Wheatley, Paul Laurence Dunbar and Samuel Ringgold Ward, the thrill of pride that differs in quality and intensity from the feeling which he experiences when contemplating other examples of great Negroes who are not entirely black. For it is impossible in such cases for the white men to argue that they owed their greatness or their prominence to the blood of the white race which was mingled in their veins. It is a legitimate thrill of pride, for it gives us a hope nobler than the hope of amalgamation whereby, in order to become men, we must lose our racial identity. It is a subject for sober and serious reflection, and it is hoped that sober and serious reflection will be given to it.

The Descent of Du Bois

In a recent bulletin of the War Department it was declared that "justifiable grievances" were producing and

had produced "not disloyalty, but an amount of unrest and bitterness which even the best efforts of their leaders may not be able always to guide." This is the simple truth. The essence of the present situation lies in the fact that the people whom our white masters have "recognized" as our leaders (without taking the trouble to consult us) and those who, by our own selection, had actually attained to leadership among us are being revaluated and, in most cases, rejected.

The most striking instance from the latter class is Dr. W. E. Du Bois, the editor of the Crisis. Du Bois's case is the more significant because his former services to his race have been undoubtedly of a high and courageous sort. Moreover, the act by which he has brought upon himself the stormy outburst of disapproval from his race is one which of itself, would seem to merit no such stern condemnation. To properly gauge the value and merit of this disapproval one must view it in the light of its attendant circumstances and of the situation in which it arose.

Dr. Du Bois first palpably sinned in his editorial "Close Ranks" in the July number of the Crisis. But this offense (apart from the trend and general tenor of the brief editorial) lies in a single sentence: "Let us, while this war lasts, forget our special grievances and close our ranks, shoulder to shoulder with our white fellow-citizens and the allied nations that are fighting for democracy." From the latter part of the sentence there is no dissent, so far as we know. The offense lies in that part of the sentence which ends with the italicized words. It is felt by all his critics, that Du Bois, of all Negroes, knows best that our "special grievances” which the War Department Bulletin describes as “justifiable" ́

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