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7 Nov, 2021 12:00

Why the black US professor ranting at white ‘motherf**kers’ is historically ignorant

Why the black US professor ranting at white ‘motherf**kers’ is historically ignorant

Not just racist and rude, Brittney Cooper, a professor of gender studies at Rutgers University, needs to study her history books more closely.

Cooper is steered by rage over reason, and her video below provides multiple examples of how people like her reimagine history to cover their own hatred and bigotry.

According to Professor Cooper’s broadest swath of hatred, “White people are committed to being villains in the aggregate … we got to take these motherf**kers out.” She helpfully explained that her last instruction was not about “a project of violence.

Said one person critically, and I have to fully agree,

Cooper’s whoopers and whoppers 

Cooper is apparently ignorant even about the transformative story of her own university. She is paid $114,000 a year to spew her endless cant at a university founded by a white revolutionary – Benjamin Franklin’s son, William. The university’s entire first century developed exclusively under that breed of people Cooper stereotypes as follows:

 “They are so corrupt their thinking is so morally and spiritually bankrupt about power that … they fear viscerally, existentially letting go of power because they cannot imagine that there is another way to be. It is either that you dominate or you are dominated. And isn’t it sad that that is spiritually how they are?”

It is her own condition that is sad. Rutgers began as a Christian college whose early leaders, teachers, and students revolted against their colonial masters. Originally named Queen’s College, it was renamed after the American Revolution to honor Colonel Henry Rutgers as a hero because “he epitomizes Christian values.” Rutgers was president of the Dutch Church’s Board of Corporation. So, in the Rutgers story we find white colonialism, Christianity, and eventually abolition of slavery, all wrapped together in one extensive narrative of white self-transformation.

At one time, the college had more professors of theology than it had for all other areas of study combined. While this cast of truly moralistic individuals chose to teach liberally beyond their seminarian interests, it took almost a hundred years for them to appoint their first layman as president and to establish their independence from the Dutch Reformed Church.

Its various presidents and milestones of white transformation include Theodore Frelinghuysen, a pre-Civil-War abolitionist Republican (Whig at the time), sympathetic to the plight to black slaves. He opposed Andrew Jackson’s Indian Removal Act of 1830, which began the segregationist move of Indians to reservations. Apparently, as part of a spiritually minded college, Frelinghuysen could “imagine that there is another way to be,” which caused him to act against the domination and subjugation of others.

Another one of the college’s presidents – white, of course – served on the Indian Board of Commissioners, and wrote in 1885, “By our injustice toward them, we demoralize them.” He, too, did not feel that “you dominate or you are dominated;” he wished to make sure Native Americans were treated justly.

Also on rt.com ‘We gotta take these motherf**kers out’: Rutgers professor says white people ‘committed to being villains’

Rutgers’ student population shrank drastically during the Civil War because many of them joined the north in fighting against slavery. After the war, in 1887, this largely Dutch college became the first in the nation to open its doors to Japanese students. In 1892, decades ahead of forced desegregation, Rutgers graduated its first black student, James D. Carr, the son of a clergyman. In 1911, in the early days of the Suffragette movement, Rutgers graduated its first female law student.

Cooper claims that white people “fear that there is no other way to be human than the way in which they are human.” Contrary to that nasty opinion, all of these changes were made by supposedly irredeemable white men who voted themselves step-by-step out of power. They rewrote history the hard way – not by rewriting what it was, as Cooper does, but by changing its course as they themselves changed. It was not, after all, women who voted to obtain their enrollment at Rutgers.

In the 1920’s, these white men moved with greater determination down the path of openness to others by creating a college for women. They did what Cooper says this race cannot do. They broadened as they learned from the history they were a part of. Everyone has a starting point they must grow from, and enlightenment is usually a journey of incremental steps.

When those who are born empowered vote to empower those whom they or their ancestors have oppressed, they run the risk that the oppressed will use their new empowerment to get even. The enlightened make that vote in the belief that it is the right thing to do and in faith that the best will happen. These white men voted as they did over time because they were spiritually informed, even though it took generations for that information to lay open their natural human malformations and change them.

If those who descend from the oppressed decide, as Cooper suggests, to use their newly gained power to get even, then they ironically repeat the immoral actions of their oppressors, because the people they are getting even with are not the same people who oppressed their own ancestors, but merely people of the same race that oppressed them. People like Cooper merely perpetuate the cycle of bigotry and racial hatred. 

The fact that Cooper benefited from the white, Christian, male leaders at Rutgers, who broadened themselves over time from their historic benchmarks, is wasted on her, because her hatred over past wrongs blinds her.

Whites were the first people in human history to legally abolish slavery

One person (“Jaffro”), responding to Cooper’s video, noted the following blind spot to which I’ll give only slight adjustment:

Since it took a majority to vote out slavery, Cooper’s judgement that, in aggregate, whites are irredeemable villains, cannot be true because only whites had the vote to entirely change the course of history on the subject of slavery. No one was forced to become an abolitionist. Rather, these people challenged the practices of their own race until they transformed them.

The US was only one year past its revolutionary victory when Vermont, a very white state even when it isn’t winter, became the first state to legally abolish slavery in 1777. After millennia in which all races enslaved each other at one time or another, it took a majority of whites to establish the world’s first law against slavery by vote, and those white people spent a lot of their own blood later taking that battle across the nation. Many were Christians whose spirituality drove them to abolish slavery out of love for all humanity, at any personal cost.

The US federal government started taking enlightened action against slavery 30 years later by banning the Transatlantic slave trade, ending the importation of any new people as slaves. Britain and the US both worked on such laws in 1807. Britain’s went into effect first, and the US law followed in 1808. From that point on, predominantly white European nations followed like dominoes, year after year, to decree slavery is just plain wrong and must be stopped. These whites – not forced by blacks, but out of compassion and conviction – changed the course of a world that had always viewed slaves as legitimate plunder from war and part of the natural economy.

Slavery knows no color. It was a constant through human history until the white race became enlightened enough to transform that. It was not blacks who ended slavery by war. It was whites who loathed what they saw their fellows doing. The Egyptians of North Africa enslaved Jews and many others. So did the Middle-Eastern Babylonians. Many Jews also owned slaves. Their forefather, Abraham, was a Babylonian who owned slaves. Those slave economies remained the way of the world everywhere, through the Greeks and the Romans and on down the line.

Native Americans were not entirely the noble lot Cooper imagines

Cooper makes the following statement in her video:

Here is where I land most days about white people. I have actually been helped in this by thinking about indigenous people … The world didn’t start when white people arrived in America and tried to tell all the rest of us how things were going to go.”

Exemplifying her historical ignorance, Cooper appears to believe black people lived in the region now called the Americas before white people showed up. Yet we all know they were brought here by whites, mostly as slaves. Cooper just wants to join herself to the noble Indians in solidarity as if she was also a member of the first nations. 

There were people out here making other worlds – Africans and indigenous people, being brilliant and, you know, building libraries and inventions and vibrant notions of humanity and cross-cultural exchange, long before white people showed up being raggedy and violent and terrible and trying to take everything from everybody.”

There is so much historically wrong in this, it is hard to know where to start. The reality of the region in that time was that several dominant Indian tribes notoriously presumed supremacy over others, conquered them, plundered them, and took the survivors as slaves.

Whites did not show the indigenous people how empire was done. Ever heard of the Incan Empire? The Aztecs? The Mayans? Who does Cooper think built those Mayan pyramids? Just as was the case under Africans in Egypt, the pyramids were built by slaves. People today forget those original nations had no Spanish conquistador blood in them. They were pure native American (as the region became called later), plundering and enslaving the other native tribes around them:

“There was an active slave trade in the Maya region, and commoners and elites were both permitted to own slaves … Prisoners of war who were not sacrificed would become slaves … War was a common occurrence throughout the history of the ancient Maya, and was conducted for the purpose of destroying rival states, gaining tribute, and capturing victims for human sacrifice.

Their contemporaries, the Aztecs,  were no better:

The Aztecs additionally had landless serfs and slaves… Individuals became slaves … as a form of punishment for certain crimes or for failure to pay tribute. Prisoners of war who were not used as human sacrifices became slaves… The Aztec empire was strongly militaristic and its relations with other territories typically revolved around war… War was justified when a territory closed its roads to commerce, when a merchant or ambassador was killed, or if a territory refused to pay its required tribute.

Practically a rubber-stamp version of the Mayans! It is also practically a rubber-stamp version of European history! No one had to wait until whites arrived to learn how to be “raggedy and violent and terrible.”

While there is not much known about Incan slavery, it’s well known that they built their vast empire by conquering other native “American” tribes. The Incas, particularly, had a penchant for sacrificing children and teenagers – the main delicacy for the gods usually being of Cooper’s favorite gender, if not boiled in volcanic lava as legend usually has it, at least slain on the top of a volcano. So, no one had to teach the Incas how to be raggedy either.

Cooper’s fantasized past is a sanitized past. The same atrocities happened in the northern continent. As one professor retorted in response to Cooper’s video,

Deepest, darkest Africa

If one wants to look at Cooper's own race, African history is just as rich in blacks colonizing other blacks and enslaving them. Certain recent names leap to the forefront of raggedy behavior, such as Idi Amin and Robert Mugabe in recent times; however, going prior to any white colonization, Shaka Zulu stole the show.

The 19th-century Zulu leader loved to sack other tribes around him in southern Africa, creating a period of chaos known as the “crushing” or the “upheaval”:

Shaka taught the Zulus that the most effective way of becoming powerful quickly was by conquering and controlling other tribes… The Zulu tribe soon developed a warrior outlook, which Shaka turned to his advantage, smashing rivals and incorporating scattered remnants into his own army.”

The dispersion he caused by those who fled his many invasions resulted in the vanquished people warring with other tribes until, it is estimated, up to two million black people died in the chaos.

Shaka needed no lessons from the whites about being raggedy, either. Any man who hesitated to join Shaka’s ranks was executed. Any regiment that failed in battle returned home to find most of their wives had been beaten to death on Shaka’s orders, though a few were left alive so the returning warriors could watch them get their brains beaten out with rocks.

A number of historians argue that Shaka “… changed the nature of warfare in Southern Africa” from “a ritualised exchange of taunts with minimal loss of life into a true method of subjugation by wholesale slaughter… Fanciful commentators called him Shaka, the Black Napoleon.

As for “dominate or be dominated,” the surrounding tribes reinvented their genealogies in order to pretend they were closely related to the Zulus. Apparently, being dominated was better than being dead.

Of course, African people of color did not keep their colonization to themselves. One has to only remember how the Moors conquered Spain to add it to their empire. One could argue the Spanish and the Portuguese were just seeking reparations later on when they started obtaining slaves from black tribes that were outcast by Shaka. Round and round the cycle goes until some, like those white guys at Rutgers, decide to break it, rather than repeat it, with no personal benefit to themselves, just because they evolved to see it as the right thing to do.

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The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.