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Courtesy Jonathan T. Reynolds

Southeastern Regional Seminar in African Studies (SERSAS)

Spring 2004 SERSAS Conference
26 - 27 March 2004

The College of Charleston
66 George Street
Charleston, South Carolina 29424 USA
http://www.cofc.edu/



The Impact of the South African Liberation Struggle
on Pan-African Praxis in the United States:
a Pedagogical Study

Tekla Ali Johnson
tj95536@alltel.net

Not for attribution without permission of the author

Copyright 2004 by SERSAS and Tekla Ali Johnson
All Rights Reserved


The South African newspaper Sechaba reported in April of 1984 that the "American imperialists" were encouraging the Botha regime to attack the African National Congress and other anti-apartheid revolutionaries taking refuge in the front-line states. Fortunately, the editorialist wrote "Reagan is aware that the black Americans are very sensitive--and justifiably so--about U.S. policy towards Africa. The Afro-Americans who understandably identify with the struggles of the African people, regard an attack on the African continent as an attack on them," and it is an election year.[1]

In Human Rights and the South African Legal Order (1978) John Dugard correctly argues that African resistance to colonialism and segregation mounted on both sides of the Atlantic throughout the 1950's, 60's, and 70's. In the United States and South Africa, Anti- Apartheid activists continued to expose the brutality of South Africa's legalized racism, lobbied for economic sanctions, and in South Africa took direct action against the regime.[2] In short, they continued the work that they had been doing since 1912, when W. E. B. Du Bois' National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) supported the founding of the African National Congress.[3] Africans across the Diaspora have collaborated for more than a century to win their independence and to alleviate racial oppression.

In 1937, international vocalist Paul Robeson helped to found the Council on African Affairs and Du Bois soon joined the organization.[4] Both men worked for decades to alleviate the suffering of, and to politically educate, Black people in Africa and in the Americas. Although Robeson's and Du Bois' anti-imperialism caused them to be denied passports by the United States Government, by the 1970's and early 1980's their diligence on the Council had paid off.[5] Hundreds of thousands of people were then working for the liberation of Africans in South Africa. By this time the Anti-Apartheid Movement consisted of international, national, and local activities carried out both by governmental and non-governmental organizations. The most effective diplomacy was heard in the United Nations. Significantly, the UN began organizing economic boycotts of the racist regime only after a meeting of the minds of a continental leader and a leader from the African Diaspora. On December 10, 1962, civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. and Chief Albert J. Lutuli of the African National Congress jointly issued a prophetic call for sanctions against South Africa.[6]

Whether they supported separatist or integrationist strategies for dealing with racial oppression, African intellectuals across the Diaspora have cooperated with their counterparts abroad in their efforts to eradicate the legal and political legitimacy of colonial governments. Paul Robeson, clearly, built on the liberation philosophy of Marcus Garvey's United Negro Improvement Association, in arguing that Afro-American resistance would be more successful in the global arena. It would, however, take Malcolm X (El Hajj Malik El Shabazz), to clarify the idea that the problems of Africans across the globe were in fact only segments of the same struggle. This essay explores the historiography of Pan-Africanist thought in North America under the influence of Pan African intellectuals and anti-colonial movements in Africa.

The legal, social and economic systems in South Africa and the United States of America have in essence functioned similarly in the oppression of African people so that they can appropriately be described as colonial-sister nations. This argument was first made by Black Nationalists and has since become prevalent in scholarly studies on racism. The present essay embraces this view and argues, further, that South African liberation resulted from a number of factors the first and most essential of which were the sacrifices and dedication of freedom fighters, young and old, in South Africa, secondly, that the support of the anti-apartheid front-line states was crucial, and finally that Pan- Africanist theology passed down among Diasporic Africans in turn influenced grass roots organizing and collaboration which eventually surfaced as the opinion of the international community. Central to this essay is an African American politician, Nebraska State Senator Ernie Chambers, who inherited over a hundred years of Pan Africanist and anti-colonial thought and strategy, and who furthered the pedagogical and practical aspects of the African freedom struggle when he initiated successful divestment legislation.

Racist repression had enjoyed a long life in South Africa, beginning in 1642, when the Dutch East India company took possession of the southern portion of the Cape and used it as a re-supply station for ships. At the time this was already the home of the San and Khoi Khoi. The British Empire gained control of the Cape in 1795, and kept control of it until 1803. The crown colonized the region again from 1806 to 1910, despite the efforts of Shaka who led a standing army of Zulu's against the British (1820's). In the mid-nineteenth century the British passed laws freeing slaves, and giving "coloreds" equal rights with whites. In resistance to these laws, and to British control in general, the Dutch population migrated to the middle of the region, setting up the Orange Free State and the South African Republic. After the Anglo Boer War of 1899-1902 the British annexed these republics back into the British Commonwealth. In 1910, South Africa became a self-governing Union, and was considered an independent British State.[7] When the Afrikaans National Party (the party of Dutch nationalism) came to power in 1948, the Afrikaner controlled parliament went virtually unchecked as it created ridged segregationist policies.[8] Activist groups in South Africa responded to the increasingly repressive laws by organizing resistance campaigns. In hopes of stopping the resistance, the South African government outlawed the African National Congress and the Pan African Congress in 1960. By 1968, the government made the assembly of racially mixed parties a crime. Dugard writes that the U.S. and South Africa have shared a legal heritage in regard to their treatment of their diverse populations. For example, both the U.S. and South Africa, accepted the separate but equal doctrine (until the U.S. Supreme court reversed itself in the Brown decision of 1954) upholding the exclusion of African Americans from facilities reserved for whites.[9]

As African and African American resistance to colonialism and segregation grew the United States and South Africa responded somewhat differently. In the United States, Northern courts reviewed the constitutionality of segregationist laws and called for reform, (although America's federal police continued to wage a secret program of harassment and imprisonment against activists). The South African Government, on the other hand, publicly enhanced its repressive measures; passing a series of restrictive laws, openly unleashing the federal police upon the anti-apartheid leadership, and setting the police regulars upon protesters. The government instituted the Terrorism Acts under which suspects could be kept in detention, often without formal charges being filed, for up to 180 days. Detainees who survived the ordeal reported being deprived of sleep, and adequate food, a practice which the European Commission on Human Rights called mental and physical cruelty when employed by British police in Northern Ireland (1971). The South African Government continued its program of heightened repression despite increasing condemnation by the international community, arresting 8,000 persons in 1952 in order to squelch the African National Congress' Defiance campaign, (protesters practiced civil disobedience in segregated facilities) resulting in the Treason Trials of 1958-1961 in Pretoria. In 1960, just as the prosecution finished presenting its case, the government declared a state of emergency, presumably to keep the international community from investigating the police killings during PAC demonstrations.[10]

Meanwhile, anti-apartheid activists in the Unites States and elsewhere continued their work of publishing facts on South Africa, and holding teach-ins, which they had been doing since the mid-1950's.[11] By the early 1980's the Anti-Apartheid Movement outside of Africa consisted of groups who focused their efforts on providing political education to potential movement supporters, and to providing direct aid. Many of these activists were Black nationalists, others would describe themselves as humanists, or anti-colonialists.[12]

African American's solidarity with Black South Africa was not solely due to shared cultural and historical backgrounds. Black Nationalists in the Americas analyzed their own situation and decided, that they and Black South Africans had common, or related, oppressors. John W. Cell of Duke University argued that the United States and South Africa were "widely regarded" as being the most racist nations in the world.[13] His The Highest Stage of White Supremacy: The Origins of Segregation in South Africa and the American South (1982) examined the origins of segregation in the United States after 1890 and Apartheid in South Africa at the time of Union in 1910. Cell argues, that in both already racist societies, segregation was a new solution in response to the requirements of a modern, urban, industrial economies, and that rather than being the result of ignorance, as is sometimes assumed, segregation is actually a highly successful political ideology, one which worked as a tool for rationalizing "a particular configuration of caste and class," enabling white supremacy to "survive into the modern era".[14]

One of the strengths of segregation has been to glean support from those it oppresses. In a South African context this meant that some traditional leaders, and in the U.S. the Black elite, at times supported the oppressive regimes. Cell believes this phenomena is the result of the dominant group's virtual monopoly on political power. Segregation, Cell argues, even gained the appearance of constitutionality and impartiality when the courts seemed the only source of protection from political violence.[15] This apparent legitimacy, with which segregationists shrouded their systems of domination are the reason that Biko, El Shabazz (Malcolm X) and Chambers, have all argued that the first leg of the struggle must be for the minds of the people.[16]

Nebraska State Senator Ernest Chambers was one of the Black Nationalists who played a significant role in dismantling American financial support for apartheid South Africa. Chambers' message was not new, but had been delivered by his political and pedagogical anteceedents in the United States. One of those political theorists was Paul Robeson who, like Chambers and Malcolm X, fought racism in America and colonialism in Africa. Robeson condemned racism when he attended Rutgers University, and spoke out against his country's racialized abuse of African Americans, especially when he traveled overseas. Robeson asked in his autobiography (Here I Stand, 1958) "When will Americans learn that if they encourage liberty in other countries they must practice it at home?" Robeson countered the argument of the gradualists by saying that gradualism hadn't worked in the past 100 years, and that it failed to soften "hard- hearted" haters of Blacks. Robeson further believed that Afro-American resistance would be more successful in the global arena, and his biographers write that "he became the supreme emblem of that resistance."[17] It was, in fact, Paul Robeson, who's publications through the Council on African Affairs pointed to America's "pro-imperialist" stance, in supporting the establishment of trusteeships over African States, as well as compromises over the racist rule in South Africa. In 1949, Du Bois joined Robeson's organization, acting as Vice Chair of the African Aid Committee, and as such was instrumental in sending aid to the families of men killed in African coal mine strikes. The U.S. Government, apparently in an attempt to silence their critics, took both Du Bois and Robeson's passports.[18]

However, neither the urgency of the movement, knowledge of U.S. complicity with the Apartheid government, nor the African, Afro-American connection were buried. Despite the reluctance of the United States Government to support the UN's anti-apartheid initiatives, such as the 1963 voluntary arms embargo of South Africa, the International Commission of Jurists, Amnesty International, and the International League for Human Rights, all had the support of some American members or sympathizers in making contributions to the defense of Southern Africa's political prisoners.[19]

Prophetically, during a short break in his detentions, Stephen Biko corresponded with U.S. Senator Dick Clark, Chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Africa. "At this stage of the liberation process we have become very sensitive to the role played by the worlds' big powers. ...In a sense America--your country has played a shameful role in her relations with our country...." Biko argued that America's choices were either to support the existing white minority or to offer real help toward the formation of South Africa as a non-racial egalitarian society. Although it was a crime punishable by death to call for divestment from South Africa, Biko said that boycotts were needed, while acknowledging that Blacks would suffer materially because of them. Biko believed that the level of suffering was already so high that the only hope for a non-violent solution was sanctions.[20]

At this point the U.S. Anti-Apartheid Movement consisted of individuals and NGO's (Non- Governmental Organizations) which Janice Love describes as rejecters of the Federal governments' policy of cooperation and "Constructive Engagement" (President Reagan's term) with the apartheid regime. Disenchanted activists in the states began targeting universities, banks, churches, and labor unions as well as major U.S. companies in South Africa, such as Shell, Mobil, Ford, General Motors, IBM, and U.S. Steel.[21]

Of the handful of well known African American intellectuals who were also Pan-Africanists, Malcolm X had a special brand of Black Nationalism, argues Archie Epps in his collection of Malcolm's Speeches at Harvard (1991). A number of African Americans, including Ossie Davis who eulogized X, have suggested that Malcolm simply articulated the goals of the liberation struggle and explained the abusive results of the white supremacists' mechanisms most clearly.[22]

In many of his speeches, Malcolm reiterated Marcus Garvey's call for self-help programs (Malcolm's father had been a Garveyite) arguing that "Marcus Garvey failed only because his movement was infiltrated by Uncle Toms, sent in by the Government." And in another sense, the Muslim leader said, Garvey succeeded at giving a "sense of dignity" to black people, by organizing a mass movement based on going back to Africa. "Indeed," he argued, "It was Marcus Garvey's philosophy that inspired the Nkrumah fight for the independence of Ghana from the colonialism that was imposed on it." In return, after African countries began winning their independence, Afro-Americans stopped feeling inadequate and inferior. In Malcolm's view, the images created by "an enemy" began to lose their force.[23]

Malcolm felt the need for an international perspective in dealing with racism in America, arguing frequently that the solution to racism for Afro-Americans was to join the world wide struggle for human rights. This was the only vantage point from which they could wage the struggle against colonialism within the United States. In this context, he said, Black people outnumber whites "eleven-to-one." Like Chambers in the 1980's, Malcolm struggled to put the case of African American oppression before the United Nations.[24]

In the summer of 1964, when Malcolm visited his hometown of Omaha, Nebraska he met with Ernie Chambers and other African American leaders. When he spoke at the Omaha City Auditorium that same week, Malcolm explained that his organization of Afro-American Unity was committed to bringing the African struggle from the level of civil rights, to the level of human rights. Malcolm argued that the U.S., as the leader of the free world, should not hold back on the recognition of the human rights of Afro- Americans, and should cease its support of imperial ventures into Africa.[25]

Like many young African Americans, Chambers was profoundly impacted by Malcolm's words. Even his demeanor was striking, Chambers would later recall after talking with the national leader at his hotel room in Omaha following Malcolm's speech.[26] "He was one of those persons who command respect just by the way that they walk into a room."[27] Malcolm's assassination did not hinder the popularity of his ideas among young people. The Militant reported in 1966, that Dr. Kings' Southern humility was no longer accepted.[28] Inevitably, African National Congress President Oliver Tambo reached the conclusion that the maturation of the liberation struggle made violence unavoidable because of the intensified oppression and brutality of the regime in its efforts to destroy the movement. To prohibit the use of violence at the later stages of the movement, he said, would be to work on the behalf of the regime and against the liberation forces.[29]

In the years after 1970, when Chambers was elected and returned to the Nebraska State Legislature, he was called a hate-filled reverse racist and frequently criticized by the press. Yet, he was regarded by many African Americans in the state as their primary defender against police brutality and other obvious forms of racist oppression. Just as Chambers had called on fellow African Americans to defend their lives against Omaha policemen in 1960's, by the early nineteen-eighties he told his audiences that the quickest way to end the suffering in South Africa would be for the 24 million Blacks there to kill the five million whites who were determined to hang on to their apartheid state.[30]

Chambers believed that freedom fighters inside of the United States trying to end police repression in their communities faced the same racialized and often murderous forces which South African revolutionaries confronted. In one of his many public statements on behalf of jailed members of the Midwest Black Panther Chapter, Chambers said that the story of government and police interaction with the Black Panther Party is a story of death and imprisonment. Unarmed Bobby Hutton's police killing in Oakland, California, and Fred Hampton and Mark Clark's assassination by Chicago police are only the best known cases. Other Panthers, Chambers argues, "became political prisoners having been imprisoned pursuant to false criminal charges designed to squelch legal political activities." The talk was in support of Wopashitwe Mondo Eyen We Langa and Ed Poindexter, two Black Panther Party members imprisoned for allegedly conspiring to kill a police officer in 1970. "The mere passage of time. . ." Chambers argued, "does not convert innocence to guilt."[31]

In April of 1979, a year and a half after the death of South African Black Consciousness leader Steve Biko in detention, Senator Chambers co-sponsored a resolution in the Nebraska State Legislature to remove the states' financial investments from corporations doing business in South Africa. He argued that Nebraska should re-affirm its stated concern for human rights by withdrawing its support from a system in which the ruling class of four million white people controled the political and economic life of 19 million Black people. Chambers told his colleagues that apartheid meant that in their own country, Blacks were restricted to certain areas, were not allowed to own land, vote, hold public office, join white unions, or go into urban areas unless they were working for a white person. He said that investment in the Apartheid regime "denies basic human rights. . ."[32]

The following spring, on March 31, 1980, the Nebraska Legislature voted 28-0 to adopt a resolution for the removal of state funds from "Any bank or corporation which has investments in the Republic of South Africa."[33] In 1983, Chambers' priority bill was an additional divestment measure, one meant to "provide teeth" to the 1980 Resolution. The bill would prohibit the investment of state funds in South Africa, by providing guidelines for the phasing out of pension funds, and prohibiting the investment of stocks in any company with South African investments. Chambers told his colleagues that "Nebraska should not be underwriting the most racist, repressive regime on the face of the earth."[34]

In spite of divestment's many critics, including corporate businessmen, and some conservative African Americans, Chambers saw past the string of arguments against placing economic sanctions on South Africa. Amid rumors that the African National Congress was Soviet controlled, that TransAfrica --Randall Robinson's direct aid and lobbyist organization-- was sympathetic to Marxists, and that divestment would hurt Blacks more than it hurt the white- controlled government, Chambers persevered. Helping him to decipher news from propaganda, Chambers' staff, and American born anti-Apartheid activists like Nilene Omodele Adeoti Foxworth, encouraged him in his support of the freedom struggle in South Africa. Also reliable were reports that he received by way of Randall Robinson whom he knew maintained communication with ANC leadership.[35]

Knowledge of Chambers stand against Apartheid soon spread outside of the Midwest. On May 6, 1980, Franklin A. Thomas, Chair of the Study Commission on United States policy Toward Southern Africa, invited the senator to submit a statement describing his recent legislation concerning United States Policy toward South Africa. Funded by the Rockefeller Foundation, the board members of the commission had just returned from a fact finding trip to South Africa and wished to incorporate into their report the views of American organizations and individuals working in the area.[36] Chambers shared information about his divestment resolution and supported the call for sanctions at the national level. Released in the Spring of 1981, the study recommended broadening the arms embargo, endorsed the Sullivan Principles (prohibiting discrimination of Africans in American firms located in South Africa) but did not support divestment or direct action campaigns.[37]

The South African Press, however, had by this time learned of the passage of Nebraska's divestment resolution and reported that it was "ominous." It was horrific news to the Botha regime partly because Nebraska had an estimated $24 million dollars invested in businesses with interests in South Africa and because "It is the first time an individual American state has taken such an action. . . Its vote could well set a band wagon rolling. . ."[38] In fact, the Rand editorialist proved correct. By 1982 the U.S. divestment campaign was snowballing. In that year 33 mayors of U.S. cities joined an international group demanding the "immediate and unconditional release of Nelson Mandela-the ANC president who had been imprisoned since 1962.[39]

Odyssey West Magazine ran a special on Chambers in the spring of 1985, querying how "an ultra-conservative predominately white state" where African Americans only make up three percent of the state's population could be the third state in the U.S. to enact a divestment law--and the first to sucessfully pass an anti-apartheid divestment resolution. For the writer of the article, the answer was that Chambers was determined to achieve social justice. Chambers also told the paper that "To be Black and conscious is to be in a perpetual rage. The only way you can walk through this life as a Black person and be docile is either to be drugged and have narcotics in your system or be asleep mentally. Asleep intentionally because you can't face what is being done to us and you feel helpless to do anything about it."[40]

The South African government did not fail to see the growing cohesion of the freedom movement, and tried to take steps to mute the rising chorus of voices demanding a change in what they had come to think of as "their" country. In March 1983, the South African Consul in Chicago contacted Euro-American members of the Nebraska State Legislature in order to invite the senators to South Africa, because he said, his country had been the victim of bad and erroneous publicity.[41]

In the spring of 1981 Chambers was one of eighteen state legislators from across the country invited to address the United Nations' Committee on Apartheid. Chambers told the UN Conference on Public Investment and South Africa that "Nebraska displays racism similar to the attitudes and policies that exist in South Africa. . ." and that "South African racism and apartheid exist for the same reason as did slavery in America. . . . Racism is profitable. . ." Chambers' said his main purpose in fighting for divestment had been to "give encouragement to those oppressed people. . .who are willing to use any means necessary to speed their freedom."[42] The anti-apartheid movement in the United States, was promoted by a spectrum of Pan-Africanist intellectuals from Du Bois to Garvey. The work was continued during mid- twentieth century by anti-colonialists and humanists, like Paul Robeson. Black Nationalist Malcolm X, clarified for his constituency their essential Africaness, emphasizing that racism in America and colonialism in South Africa shared a common ideology. Chambers was the beneficiary of the legacy of these teachers and believed that the war against colonial oppression was being waged, or should be, in Africa and in the Americas simultaneously. Chambers took his fight against apartheid into the state legislative forum. In this he was not alone. Between 1977 and 1982 twenty three states had tried to initiate some from of divestment measure, and Janice Love is correct that Connecticut (in 1981) and Michigan (in Dec. 1980) passed the first divestment laws. However, Nebraska was the first state to successfully pass any South African divestment mandate, approved in March of 1980, was Chambers' Divestment Resolution.[43] Chambers wrote the following journal entry that spring.

The real momentum for my legislative action came from the dispute over the 1300 krugerrands donated to the University Foundation for the benefit of the University of Nebraska Engineering school. . . . I pressed the point that the university was to benefit from the krugerrands which were minted on the backs of Black South Africans. The Senators expressed the usual disgust with apartheid but didn't wish to 'punish' the university. Because of their expressed opposition to apartheid, I was able to parlay that into an agreement to pass my resolution banning the state of Nebraska from investing funds in companies doing business in South Africa. Thus, Nebraska became the first state to act.[44]
The South African liberation struggle succeeded primarily because of the sacrifices made by South Africa's young people, and because of the dedication of the African National Congress and other activist leadership. The support of the front line states of Zambia, Mozambique, Namibia, and Angola gave the freedom fighters badly needed refuge. Third, international pressure, strategized largely by Pan- African intellectuals over the course of many years was key to the success of the movement, with limited loss of life. Indeed, ANC President Oliver Tambo had issued a call to the international community to step up their organizing efforts if they wished to help the cause of freedom, and, if they wish to help the nation already in a state of "civil war" to keep the bloody phase of the revolution brief.[45] Chambers was among the Black Nationalists in the United States, who heeded that call.

The political and pedagogical Pan-Africanist intellectual tradition established by Garvey in the 1920's, and which broadened in scope through Du Bois' organization of six international Pan-African Conferences was continued by Malcolm X who removed popularly held confusion among African Americans as to their true identities as Africans, and pointed to Africa as the motherland.[46] These lessons were inherited by Ernie Chambers and other activists of the 1970's and 80's, who's work on the western-half of the Atlantic demonstrated that when Africans on the continent and across the Diaspora combine their energies and blend liberation theologies, that they will systematically remove colonial markers from their lives until one day these become only lessons; which we remember.

Notes

1. "U.S. Manoeuvres in Southern Africa," Sechaba, (April 1984), 1-2.

2. John Dugard, Human Rights and the South African Legal Order (Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1978), 133-135.

3. Janice Love, The U.S. Anti-Apartheid Movement: Local Activism in Global Politics, (New York: Praeger Publications, 1985), 14.

4. Love, 1.

5. Paul Robeson, Here I Stand (Boston: Beacon Press, 1958), xx, 72.

6. Love, 3, 35.

7. Dugard, 4, 62, 17, 5.

8. Ibid., 20-21.

9. Ibid., 4, 6, 49, 57-60.

10. Ibid., 133-135, 137, 212-214.

11. Love, 245, 1.

12. Ibid., 1, 3, 35.

13. John W. Cell, The Highest Stage of White Supremacy: the Origins of Segregation in Southern Africa and the American South. (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Cambridge University Press, 1982), ix.

14. Ibid., x, 2-4, 18.

15. Ibid., 19.

16. Ibid., 15.

17. Robeson, xiv, 48, 68-69.

18. Ibid., 117-119, xx, 72, 63.

19. Love, 10-12. The Jimmy Carter Administration did support the mandatory arms embargo of 1977, following the police massacre of Soweto school children and Steve Biko's death in detention.

20. Steve Biko, I Write What I Like: A Selection of His Writings. Ed. Aelred Stubbs (San Francisco: Harper and Row, 1978), 138-39.

21. Love, 13, 15, 21.

22. Archie Epps, Malcolm X: Speeches at Harvard (New York: Paragon House, 1991), 1-3.

23. Ibid., 157, 169-170.

24. Ibid., 159.

25. "U.N. is Goal of Malcolm X: Omaha Native Seeks 'Human Rights'" Omaha World Herald (June 30, 1964).

26. "Malcolm X: Anything Whites Do, Blacks Can Do Better" Omaha World Herald (July 1, 1964), 4.

27. Interview, Ernie Chambers, July 25, 2002, Lincoln, Nebraska.

28. "Reports and Reviews," The Militant (Sept. 26, 1966), 1.

29. "Spear of the Nation," Videocassette, (San Francisco: California Newsreel, 1989).

30. Kevin O' Hanlon, "Chambers Suggests South African Blacks Should "Off" White Minority," Lincoln Star (Oct. 12, 1985), 21.

31. Ernest Chambers, "Leaders of Midwest Black Panther Party Chapter Nearing Thirty Years in Prison," Speech, (July 17, 2000), 1-3.

32. Legislative Resolution 43, (1979) Legislative Archives, Nebraska State Capitol building, Lincoln, Nebraska. "South Africa Divestment,: Unicameral Update 2: 67 (April 19-25, 1979), 3.

33. Unicameral Update 3: 13 (April 2, 1980), 3.

34. Unicameral Update 6: 3 ( Jan. 23, 1983), 10. Unicameral Update 6: 8 (Feb. 25, 1983), 5.

35. Letter, Nilene Omodele Adeoti Foxworth to Ernie Chambers, April 28, 1984, Aurora, Colorado. Editorial, "Divestment would Hurt Black South Africans, The Very People It is meant to Help," Lincoln Review Quarterly, 5:3 (Winter, 1985), 1-2.

36. Letter, Franklin A. Thomas, Chair the Study Commission on United States Policy Toward Southern Africa, to Ernie Chambers, May 6, 1980, New York.

37. "Press Release" United States Study Commission on U.S. Policy Toward South Africa, New York, (May 21, 1981), 3, 6.

38. "An Ominous Vote in America," Rand Daily Mail, Johannesburg (April 11, 1980), 8. "Legislature Condemns Apartheid," Lincoln Journal, (March, 31, 1980).

39. Karen Barker, "States, Cities Fight Apartheid," Washington Post (Feb. 8, 1985), A1, A6. Love, 21.

40. "Ernest Chambers: Nebraska's Lone Black Lawmaker," Odyssey West: Blacks in the Urban West 4: 2 (April 1985), 22-24, 30.

41. Letter, Gert J. Grobler, South African Consul General, to Steve Fowler, February 7, 1983.

42. "Conference on Public Investment and S.A.," American Committee On Africa Action News 10 (Fall 1981), 1-4. "Chambers: Racism Here Similar to South Africa's" Lincoln Journal (April 16, 1981), 1.

43. Love, 257-67. Transcript, "Conference on Public Investment and South Africa," Ernest Chambers' Speech, United Nations (April 15, 1981), 1. Love argues that Michigan and Connecticut were the most successful states at imposing sanctions against South Africa, largely because they constructed the debate as a question of morality, with opponents risking being observed as aligned with racists. Love does not do an in-depth study of the anti- apartheid legislation in Nebraska, where Senator Chambers employed a similar strategy.

44. Ernie Chambers "Additional Explanation," Journal Entry, March, 1980. State Senator Steve Fowler was the co-sponsor of LR43. Nebraska's divestment Act became law in 1984.

45. "Spear of the Nation."

46. Wilson Jeremiah Moses, Ed., Classical Black Nationalism: From the American Revolution to Marcus Garvey, (New York: New York University Press, 1996), 30.


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