Black Power Is Not The Same As White Supremacy

Above Photo: Maria Tahir | Staff Photographer

Some may view the black-and-proud movement as supremacist, but historically the only racial empowerment camp with a history of demeaning the existence of others includes those who fly white-pride banners.

To put the black power movement and associated organizations, like the Black Panther Party, on the same level as the infamous ideals of white supremacy is insane. To reach a better understanding, people first need to know the difference in the two ideas’ origins.

White supremacy budded its ugly head when the trans-Atlantic slave trade started. A contributing factor to the crux of the ideals of white superiority came in a time where black slaves and white indentured servants fought for their rights.

Although the rebellion did not last, so continued the perpetuation of an instituted system of racial classification. While white indentured servants were eventually freed and given land, black slaves and their subsequent offspring remained in bondage—creating a subordinate class, far below the lowest class of white people. And so the rise of white supremacy began.

As for the black pride movement, it all started once African American people were able to create and dwell in their own communities. They were able to make platforms in those communities to give the people a voice.

For example, Huey Newton and Bobby Seale established The Black Panther Party in Oakland, California. The founders used the relatively aggressive and militant ideals of the late Malcolm X by pushing their agenda forth for social, economic and political equality among all genders and minorities.

Unlike the Black Power movement, white supremacy quickly molded and shaped itself into a very popular, terroristic group we know today as the Ku Klux Klan.

An infamous terroristic supremacist group, the KKK incorporates devout Christian ideals with the belief that the white race is supreme. Where the KKK preached and acted on superiority, the Black Power movement built upon self-love and unapologetic blackness through the adversity of hateful, destructive societal conditioning.

In ideas of white pride, lynching innocent people was a common activity. Erecting burning crosses in front of the homes of black people as scare tactics to strike fear into their hearts was a typical pastime—and all in the name of the Lord.

On the other hand, the Black Panther Party never lynched people to get a point across. They would only stock up on weapons to protect themselves from those who were targeting their group, like white supremacists, the government and the police.

As a matter of fact, the Panthers didn’t go around terrorizing others communities because they were too busy trying to build up their own. Programs included the People’s Free Ambulance Service and a breakfast program which fed many underprivileged minority children in impoverished communities. Many of the programs the Black Panther Party created were more effective than those of the government at the time because of the tremendous racial inequality still in existence.

Just like any organization, the KKK has an agenda and programs to back it up. The most current ones still in effect today include a protest to the Martin Luther King Holiday and Mobilize America, where yet again they call white Christians to stand up and deport illegal aliens.  

The Black Panther Party never claimed racial superiority or tried to wipe out another group. All the members wanted was an equal playing field. They were going to get it through helping their own community and pushing issues which needed to be dealt with in a less passive way.

It does not take a rocket scientist to understand the difference between a group wanting to degrade and terrorize those not like them and a group trying to build a better community for themselves and the society they live in.