Never forget, a phrase often time associated with the Jewish Holocaust applies to the horrific experience that many Jewish people faced. Another holocaust has been going on since the 1600’s and its the African American Holocaust, most people in dominant and melanated society refuses to acknowledge it as a holocaust though. I can understand why the dominant society doesn’t utter the phrase, it’s against their purpose and them admitting to committing genocide is them effectively letting their grip on the world go. I also understand why people of melanated decent don’t acknowledge their own holocaust. Simply put, it’s terrifying. That’s one hell of an albatross to bear, the weight of being the worlds scapegoat hurts and we react to that hurt in many different often not positive ways, but were we ever taught positive coping mechanisms?
Something that isn’t talked about in American history classes are “Contraband Camps”, which were the American version of German concentration camps. Contraband camps were the next big thing during and after the Civil War. During the Civil war these camps were used to hold escaped slaves and they were forced to hard labor in dreadful conditions. The male escaped slaves were the ones who loaded weaponry into the trains and some contraband camps eventually became overrun by the Union and sometimes(very rare) they began to pay the men for their services. The female escaped slaves were often cooks and they were taught to read and would in turn teach the children and men to read, but this was only under Union camps. In the Confederate camps escaped female slaves were often resorted to “belly warming”.
One of the most well known contraband wants was located in Natchez, MS. It was called The Devil’s Punchbowl. The small town of Natchez, Ms went from 10,000 to 120,000 over the course of a few months. The racist in the town didnt know what to do with the influx of recently freed men, women and children. So they began to funnel them into an area of town called the bluffs. They put and fence, which evolved into a wall around the area and left them to die. The conditions of the enclosed area were so bad that smallpox and cholera broke out in rapid numbers, killing countless blacks on top of the executions that took the lives of 20,000 recorded deaths. The union would not allow the freed men to remove the corpses from the area, exposing them to more disease. Even today after a strong rain remains still wash up. Today where there was once an American death camp there are peach groves as far as the eye can see. A lot of the towns black residents refuse to eat the fruit because they know what fertilized the ground.
One this side of history we had another situation very similar to the Devils Punchbowl. Hurricane Katrina was the closest thing to seeing black people marched to their deaths we have seen since slavery. The Superdome was used as a holding pen for people who didnt get out of the city in time or didnt have the means to get out of the city. Those people were held in there with hardly any food or water (slave quarters). The conditions were so bad that people were committing suicide left and right. There are several reports that the levee was blown up by the national guard. There are also several reports that Black Water was on the ground sniping people, from eye witness accounts. There are people still missing from Katrina that there are no accounts as to who took them even when the parents said they gave their kids to men in military uniforms. Is Katrina the most well executed organ harvesting scheme since chattel slavery? Also lets talk about the white supremacist militias that took over neighborhoods and was kidnapping black people on their way out of the city. Donnell Herrington, was brave enough to tell his cousin and friend to run after being shot in the neck by white supremacist. He escaped by running while holding his open wound while three white males screamed “Get that nigger”. They were in an area called Algiers Point, an isolated, affluent neighborhood on the west bank. They were not too affected, which is suspicious even though they were isolated the hurricane stayed in majority black areas. At any rate, the people of Algiers Point could have easily rallied to aid the people with help however they were afraid of crime that would follow the victims and they established vigilante groups to protect them from the “Outsiders” which is what they called people from the city.
Throughout the history of this nation blacks have always been marched to death, either physically or spiritually. Be weary when you hear people telling you where to go for your own safety, especially government officials they have never had your best interest at heart. Its usually something to push their own agenda. Practice situational awareness and stay alert.