A series of letters, brimming with realities difficult to accept and as difficult to ignore, that act as a call to action for a Black family in White America…
by: Frederick Foote
Dear children, Patrice, Salvador, and Ida, & my beloved grandchildren and great-grandchildren,
I trust this letter finds you well, yet I fear the truths contained within it will be distressing to hear, but also enlightening, and liberating.
For four hundred years, the White people in the British North American Colonies and the United States of America have made it explicit that their only use for African Americans is to exploit them. The United States Constitution enshrined African Americans as a slave labor source for the new White nation. These White people have been remarkably consistent in rejecting African Americans in their neighborhoods, schools, families, businesses, and as fellow human beings.
Their efforts have been complete. National, state, and local governments, big and small businesses, and the White Christian community have joined in African Americans’ oppression. Law enforcement in the United States serves a prime directive in terrorizing African Americans. The United States government promised African Americans the right to vote with the 15th Amendment. In a matter of years, that Amendment was rendered toothless and useless by Jim Crow laws. In 1964 the United States passed the Voting Rights Act to again give African Americans the right to vote. Today, that Act is under assault by 43 States and the United States Supreme Court.
What should be evident over the last four hundred years is that the White people of the United States will not accept African Americans as equals or grant them equal opportunities. There is no appeal or sacrifice African Americans can make that will convince White America to accept them as equal partners in this nation. This is a difficult reality to accept and equally difficult to ignore.
Regrettably but beyond question, if you attempt to play by the rules made by rich White men for a White nation, you will lose every time. The United States of America will not voluntarily pay us the debt owed us. Nor will this country ever accept us as fellow human beings.In the United States, African Americans have at least two options, to continue to struggle for acceptance or to fight to crush the White power structures. I prefer the latter. It is incumbent upon us to take our freedom and crush the White systems of oppression.
Many people will tell you that is an impossible goal. However, history tells us it is a goal more likely to be achieved than integration and acceptance. Every one of us must follow the path that best meets our needs and understanding of our situation. I would rather die challenging the existence of this White racist nation than expire on my knees, begging for acceptance.
April 27, 2021
I have framed your letter and hung it in our kitchen. My husband, Roland, and our sons, Warri, ten, and Agbor, twelve, read it each morning. We send you our love with each reading. You are our inspiration and our hope.
In fact, I have had it framed three times. Each time the popo raids us, they smash that as soon as they see it.
We have, along with others, been raising money for your prison account, to no avail. Your attorney is aware of this issue and is working on it. Also, about half of our letters are returned without explanation. The feds have even refused to confirm which supermax you are in.
We wish you a happy 84th birthday. We will carry on the struggle for as long as it takes.
With love and appreciation,
Etta, Roland, Warri, & Agbor Porter
April 2, 2028
To whom it may concern:
On January 2, 2028, the remains of Laura-May Rodgers, Prisoner SA24-12-234, were disposed of in accordance with Patriot Act Section 366. It is a felony to reveal the location of these remains.
Inquiries should be directed to the Federal Bureau of Prisons and include the inmate’s prison number.
Federal Bureau of Prisons
320 First St., NW
Washington, DC 20534
From: Agbor Porter
Sent: Wednesday, April 7, 2035, 12:09 PM
To: Warri Porter
Subject: Laura-May Rogers’ Remains
WE FOUND HER!
Explanation and details to follow. I wish we could share this moment with Mom and Dad.
With Love and Affection,