November 14, 2013

On this day...November 14th

DARC Ethiophile Chronicles

On November 14, 1977 Bantu Stephen Biko died naked and unattended on the cement floor of a cell in a Pretoria prison hospital after it had been established that he had suffered some kind of head trauma.

An inquest into his death was held two months later in Pretoria. The inquest received worldwide coverage, something that had never occurred before for a person who had died in detention. Police admitted to keeping Steve Biko shackled and naked for two days, but still dismissed allegations of assault. As it would later come to light, the inquest proved to be just one big conspiracy to conceal the real cause of Biko’s death, with all the witnesses and all court officials playing a part. The officials stood by the claim that Biko had committed suicide. It was later revealed that five police officers had in fact assaulted him, which led to his death.

Here is some quotes from Steve Biko:
“The most potent weapon of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed.”
“Being black is not a matter of pigmentation - being black is a reflection of a mental attitude.”
“You are either alive and proud or you are dead, and when you are dead, you can't care anyway.”
“Black man, you are on your own.”
“Black Consciousness is an attitude of the mind and a way of life, the most positive call to emanate from the black world for a long time.”
“So as a prelude whites must be made to realize that they are only human, not superior. Same with Blacks. They must be made to realize that they are also human, not inferior.”
“Merely by describing yourself as black you have started on a road towards emancipation, you have committed yourself to fight against all forces that seek to use your blackness as a stamp that marks you out as a subservient being.”

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