An International Day of Action Against Racism
Dr. Conrad Worrill
The United Nations World
Conference Against Racism to be held in Durban, South Africa from Aug.
31 through Sept. 7, has stirred the Pan African Movement through the
African governments, non-governmental organizations, and the African and
African Descendants Caucus to unite and fight for the inclusion of the
Africa Group Resolution in the conference agenda.
This resolution takes the position that
both the Trans Atlantic Slave Trade and slavery were Crimes Against
Humanity and that adjudication of these crimes requires an examination
of the Economic Roots of Racism. This position is the basis of the
movementís stance regarding reparations for people of African descent.
One of the unsung Pan African organizers,
Brother Bob Brown of the Kwame Ture Work-Study Institute and Library,
once again, has provided us with leadership. He is initiating and
organizing the International Day of Action Against Racism to coincide
with the racism conference opening on Aug. 31.
As Brother Bob points out, "The
governments of the world are expected to attend the World Conference
Against Racism, and to report on the status of racism, racial
discrimination, xenophobia, and related intolerance in their countries,
and on the measures and programs they have adopted to eradicate them.
Hundreds of non governmental organizations (NGOs) have registered to
participate in the NGO Forum that will take place from Aug. 28th to
Sept. 1st. Thousands of youth are organizing to attend the Youth Summit
that is planned for Aug. 27th. Unfortunately, the masses of exploited
and oppressed people of the world will not go to Durban, and therefore
will not be able to take their destiny into their own hands."
Continuing Brother Bob explains, "We, the
movements, organizations, and activists listed below call upon the
masses of African, Asian, Latin American, and Indigenous peoples of the
world to organize an International Day of Action Against Racism (IDAAR
2001) on August 31, to coincide with the opening of the third World
Conference Against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related
Intolerance in Durban. We also ask all progressive forces in the world
to join with us in organizing IDAAR 2001."
Movements and organizations around the
world have embraced the IDAAR and are planning a variety of events and
activities. In Chicago, the Temple of Mercy Association under the
leadership of Darrell "Sax Preacher" Wilson, with the Kwame Ture
Work-Study Institute and Library, the Black United Fund of Illinois, the
National Black United Front, the Franklin Lodge #25 and the Sister of
JoeAnne Chapter #212 are organizing the International Day of Action
Against Racism (IDAAR) that will be held Aug. 31, 2001 at the Legacy
Theater, 12952 South Western in Chicago, from noon to midnight.
A variety of speakers and cultural groups
have confirmed their participation in the day long event such as, T-Smov;
Positive Rap; TOMA Youth Drill Team; Rappín Tate-Positive Rap; R.F.C.A.
Gospel Singers; Tyson-Gospel Rap; Sax Preacher; and many, many more. It
is being recommended that on Aug. 31, a "Worldwide Stay Away Campaign
(no work, no school, no shopping, no play) and decentralized self
reliant Teach-ins /Rap-ins against racism." This will be the basic
format of the program in Chicago and other places throughout the world.
The International Day of Action Against
Racism is "Urging the governments of the world, especially those in the
Western Hemisphere and Europe to:
ADMIT and apologize for their historical
and continuing role in the commission of these and other crimes against
humanity, and gross violations of human rights;
END, once and for all, slavery, and the
slave trade, slave-like practices, colonialism, settler-colonialism,
neo-colonialism, segregation, Zionism, apartheid, racism, racial
discrimination, racial profiling, xenophobia, and related intolerances;
RATIFY all pending UN Treaties, and pass
legislation and programs to implement them;
DEVELOP, with grassroots input,
appropriate schemes and structures to guarantee African, Asian,
Arab/Palestinian, Latino, and Indigenous peoples right to return to and
reclaim their lands; and
DEVELOP, with grassroots input,
appropriate schemes and structures to award reparations and compensation
to the victims and their descendants, of crimes against humanity and
gross violations of human rights."
We encourage all Black and freedom loving
people to support International Day of Action Against Racism programs
and events organized in your local areas. This will be a great way to
support those of us who are traveling to Durban. For further information
on the Chicago events, call 773-483-9608 or 773-483-1535.
(Dr. Worrill is national chairman of the National
Black United Front. He can be reached at 12817 S. Ashland Ave., Fl.1,
Calumet Park, IL 60827. Or call 708-389-9929, fax 708-389-9819. You can
also visit www.nbufront.org.)