We have come to understand that anti-black racism is wrong and therefore our role as black people to root this evil out of our society. There are a number of ways through which we have embarked in the process of securing a system that does not discriminate and mistreat black people, the recent example being the Fees Must Fall movement which began late in 2015. Some of the founding principles of this movement are that, we advocate for the emancipation of those whom the system has always treat as being “black” and by the term black, it should be noted that we do not refer not the colour of one’s skin but rather the condition that one finds oneself being subjected to. Here “black” would refer to people whom the system the system mistreats on the basis that, they do not meet the accepted standard of what it means to be human enough. Of course disabled people, black women and Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals, and Transgender people would fall under such “black” category. It should be noted that people of colour do not meet the prescribed standard of what it means to be human enough hence history teaches us that, as black people are treated in certain ways, exclusion and discrimination being the most obvious ways through which one’s skin serves as a disadvantage. We have seen with the Apartheid South Africa, furthermore we continue to see how the education system in South Africa is beneficial towards those who have money and can afford high costs of studying. It however appears that we as black people have moved to a point where the immediate goal is to defeat the anti-black system which sees us suffering on basis the pigmentation of our skin. Fees Must Fall serves as an example of how as black people are goal is to defeat the white supremacist system, while in the meantime we have opted to perpetuating the same kind of treatment towards those whom the oppressive system has labelled not human enough. I am particularly focusing on the treatment of black women and LGBT+ people within the movements. There are a number of examples which I can refer to, among these examples would be how women leaders constantly have to beg for recognition as compared to their male counterparts, how once there exist an openly gay man, reception and treatment changes completely, how a lot of men who do not identify as being “straight” choose to adopt the “straight acting” behaviour in an attempt to meet the accepted standard of what it means to be a man. There are even times when certain discussions require "men only," leading to the exclusion of black women and LGBT+ people. I therefore believe it is important that, as black men within movements such as FMF and Rhodes Must Fall, we have the responsibility to going back into our “own” spaces and make one another conscious of these practices which tend to mistreat and exclude black women and LGBT+ people. Since we believe that, it is not our duty to teach white people how not to be racist and what ways they can advance the black struggle, black women and LGBT+ people do not carry the responsibility of teaching us how not to be oppressive. Men who are advocating for gender equality have the role of teaching other black men who think patriarchy does not exist, Having asserted myself as a pro-feminist, I also need to go into the spaces I occupy with the sole purpose of raising awareness around patriarchy, sexism and misogyny. Eusebius Mckaiser argues that black people do not have the responsibility of teaching or prescribing to white liberals how to advance the black struggle, progressive whites have to be able to go into their community in an attempt to teach and highlight the wrongness of anti-black racism while at the same time not forgetting that the black struggle has to be fought by blacks themselves. Hence in discussions around patriarchy and the oppression of women and LGBT+ community, black men have the responsibility of listening and hearing what the oppressed have to say. There are a number of utterances I have heard in the past week, particularly around issues of women oppression, some of women leaders who form part of the Fees Must Fall movement have asserted that, if there comes a time where an opportunity to be free from racism and patriarchy presents itself, they will not hesitate to "deal" with those who perpetuate these kinds of oppressions, this simply means that as a black man your existence is on the line too.

By Mpho Ndaba

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