Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook 13 Printer Friendly Page More Sharing
Exclusive to OpEd News:
OpEdNews Op Eds   

An Apology, Not So Fast

By       (Page 1 of 2 pages)   No comments
Follow Me on Twitter     Message Milton Lee Norris
Become a Fan
  (5 fans)

The Senate Apology Bill for slavery passed. Unfortunately, this bill does not thrill me; I say no to this apology, which the senate has deemed wonderful, and that's an unequivocal no. For those who are wondering why, allow me to explain. I recently published a book entitled "Born In The Wrong Country," and in this book I talk about many things; one of the things that I talk about is the 'how to', which covers just about everything we do. I also talk extensively about Slavery in America, and an apology, which had never been given.

Basically, this government has used the AAPC, (African-American People of Color,) like rags, only to be used over and over, and then thrown out, without giving credit, where the real credit belongs. However, it really doesn't surprise me, that with an African-American President, that the senate would attempt a debacle apology bill as such. Now the senate can finally say that after more than 140 years, the United States of America has apologized. Look how long this country took to finally admit to what is called the Tuskegee Experiment, an experiment where African-American men were used, without their knowledge, an experiment, which was deadly, and which lasted forty years.

When constructing this kind of apology, one must look at one thing in particular, and that is forgiveness. If that is not taken into consideration, and I do have my doubts, then the 'how to' write and construct a formal apology is lost. To be done right, this apology must be vividly clear, gut wrenching, and truthful. As writers of such a bill, they must be willing to expose elements that might not present this country in such a favorable light; it requires enormous sacrifice; there isn't any sacrifice in this bill.

Not that the AAPC would or could ever forgive this country for the atrocities that were committed against them, but in thinking about how to construct this apology, one must be willing to delve into the hearts, minds and the spirits of the African-America People of Color. This apology cannot be a slam dunk case, where basically, all the senate says, is that we apologize; this kind of rhetoric will not work, because it is hollow, and without substance. In my opinion, the only thing that it has accomplished is angering the African-American People of Color.

There must be some kind of atonement; one must truly show how sorry they are for the ills that they caused. Frankly, this bill seems like a pacifier, something that was designed to placate the African-American People of Color; it's laughable, but more than that, it is a slap in the face to all African-American People of Color. African-American People of Color should never allow anyone, especially this country and those who created such a flagrant bill, to pacify or short change us in any way. We should not allow any compromise; this bill does not honor the African-American People of Color. The way that this bill is written, only continues to say one thing; America still does not consider the African-American People of Color important or deserving, and that is a very sad scenario. This bill shows that they really refuse to understand the magnitude of sins that were perpetuated against the AAPC; it also demonstrates that this senate, really has no concept of what an apology means to the African-American People of Color.-

Does the Senate think that they can get away with throwing a curve ball at the African-American People of Color? Shame on them; this shows their insensitivity; it shows that they just want to pass something quick, so that they can say that the United States of America finally made a formal apology. As the first African-American President, I believe that they are using President Barack Obama's comments to sort of solidify their bill. The fact that President Barack Obama is extremely important to the African American People of Color, the fact he is the first Black president of the United States of America, is really inconsequential; this apology must be handled as if a birth is happening, because it is; this birth affects millions of AAPC, and the entire country. Remember, there were countless numbers of our ancestors that suffered extreme cruelty, torture and brutality, at the hand of at this country, and still that does not tell all that was done to them. The death toll from when the African slaves were bought, stolen and brought to this country, through what is now know as "The Middle Passage," -is really unknown, and as I mention in "Born In The Wrong Country," many of us are still suffering in some way, even today. A true apology needs be written, that admits to all of the transgressions of the United States of America, which were done to the African-American People of Color, so not so fast America.

In my book,-"Born In The Wrong Country,"-I speak about slavery in this country, and about an apology that has never been made. For more on the subject, one can view my website at , which will lead them to where they can also purchase the book if they so choose. In "Born In The Wrong Country," I state, "To have never said that they were sorry, never to have admitted that slavery was a cruel and unusual treatment, and that it was a crime against humanity, is a crime in itself, and it remains a cruel and unusual punishment.- Never to say that one is sorry, never to admit to such a terrible wrong is inexcusable, it's the intolerable height of arrogance, so to forgive, I must say unequivocally no.- How in the world can one expect such when one has violated the African-American People of Color in so many ways, and not by accident?- Look at the crimes, for that's what they were, they were beyond criminal, but these unspeakable crimes were allowed to go unpunished, so one should never expect to be forgiven without a total admission and atonement, for without this, it remains impossible for a real healing to begin, and the AAPC remain without closure."

When it comes to apologizing to someone, even children learn quickly about what it means to apologize; parents teach them about feelings and hurt. -At an early age children are taught that their apology must come from the heart, if it is to be believed and make someone feel better. If children know and understand this, then why doesn't the US Senate at least show the same, in regards to their apology bill for slavery? Their apology must speak of the sins, which were allowed to continue to do harm to the AAPC. This perpetuation allowed this nation to overlook the continual sadistic pain, which was being inflicted upon the African-American People of Color, who did them no harm. The apology must also encompass the fact, that even after the abolition of slavery, this government still allowed cruel and unjust treatment of the African-American People of Color.

After the abolition of slavery, the way that this government allowed the African-American People of Color to be treated was unconscionable. What the senate has listed in their apology shows that once again, that they do not want to tell the real story, but are bent on telling their story, as in their history. To refuse to spell out in detail, the heinous murders, rapes, molestations, heartaches, bloodshed, inhumanness, and terrorism, which was allowed to continue to be perpetuated in the lives of the African-American People of Color, is a crime. So when the senate has the arrogant audacity to say that they, " the Senate passed a bill stating that the US Congress acknowledges the fundamental injustice, cruelty, brutality, and inhumanity of slavery and Jim Crow law," -I say that this is not enough, not by a long shot.

This apology is something that must be gotten right the first time; this government has had over 140 years to get it right; there is no excuse for not getting it right. The African-American People of Color need closure; we need a true apology, without a disclaimer clause. We need an admission of guilt; and we need some kind of meaningful reparations, in order for any kind of apology, to be deemed as sincere, by the African-American People of Color.


This so-called apology that the senate passed, reminds me of Marvin Gaye's song lyrics, "Make me wanna holler," from his Inner City Blues cut. I say this because after what has been done to the African-American People of Color, during and after slavery, is simply an abomination. For the senate, which is now ready to pat themselves on the back, for what they consider a job well done, is also a travesty. Again, I say not so fast; first this government must be responsible, and by being responsible, they must take on the accountability to not only apologize, but go much farther. They must be willing to admit that the atrocities committed by their forefathers and foremothers, was a crime against humanity.

As pointed out in my book, "Born In The Wrong Country," there must be an atonement, and then an apology before the entire world. As I say in my book, "An olive branch must be extended to the Black race that did you no harm; it was you that did unspeakable harm to the Black race.- When so much harm has been done by this nation, it is this nation that must first take the responsibility and show that this government will no longer do harm to the African-American People of Color before any trust can ever be established.- This government must be stark raving mad if they think that we'll trust them if they are not even willing to be responsive to that most crucial need."

There is also another reason that this must be done; doing so without this atonement will not allow for any closure, and we as AAPC will continue to look back. "Born In The Wrong Country," clearly states the reason for looking back. "There is a reason that I must look back because in all of this time, there has been no apology ever made to the African-American People of Color here in this country.- There was a formal apology to the Japanese, but not to the African-American People of Color, the Black people here in the United States, and like I said before, that still irks me.- It angers me a great deal, but what really angers me, and sends chills down my spine is the abject treatment of these slaves, these people, these human beings, my brothers and sisters.

When I look at the years of difference of what was done to the Japanese, what was done to the Blacks and look at how long it took this country to apologize to the Japanese, and then compare the time when slavery ended to the time of the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, I really get infuriated because it only took a few short years before this country apologized to Japan.- However, after over one hundred and thirty-five years, the African-American People of Color have never received an apology. You are probably saying we have read this already, and you have, but still after all that time we wait, and in telling you about this wait, it becomes necessary to make it crystal clear as to what happened in this time of American history."

Next Page  1  |  2

(Note: You can view every article as one long page if you sign up as an Advocate Member, or higher).

Rate It | View Ratings

Milton Lee Norris Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

One might say that writing has become my fondest passion; it is a love that always gives, and one that I feel comfortable sharing. I write because writing has become the voice in which I can speak to many people, share experiences, stories and (more...)
Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Follow Me on Twitter     Writers Guidelines

Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEd News Newsletter
   (Opens new browser window)

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

How Much are the American People Worth?

Steven Slater's Rude Awakening; he's no hero.

What Shirley Sherrod Really Said, subtitled The Sting of Racism

Racism Is Like a Pit Bull; Blacks and Hispanics Aren't Welcome at Our Pool

President Barack Obama Wins the Nobel Peace Prize 2009

Christianity Is Not a Jewelry Store

To View Comments or Join the Conversation:

Tell A Friend