Norman J Clement is the owner of Pronto Pharmacy Tampa, Florida, and his group of Black Pharmacist who owned their Pharmacy are fighting and challenging the policies of the United States Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) redefining medical protocols, racial subordinate caste targeting, and the selective targeting of large Chain and the small family-owned pharmacy businesses (5)
BY NORMAN J CLEMENT RPH., DDS
THE COUNTRY I ONCE KNEW
The country I once knew is the country I now fear and I find myself struggling to know. Is there a future here in The United States of America for my grandchildren, and my family? As November’s 2020, election results slowly roll in, I’m beginning to think of Berlin 1934 as Germany slipped, daily, into fascism as most of the nations of the world came to accept the third Reich’s madness, hoping it would just disappear.
According to Isabelle Wilkerson from her April 2020 book Caste, The Origins of Our Discontents;
“The caste is the boundaries that reinforce the fixed assignments based upon what people look like,” according to Ms. Wilkerson,
“The vast majority of African Americans who lived in this land in the first 246 years of what is now the United States lived under terror of people who had absolute power over their bodies and their very breath, subject to people who faced no sanction for any atrocity they could conjure.” (1)(4)
Ms. Wilkerson, a winner of the Pulitzer Prize and National Humanities medal and author of the critically acclaimed New York Times bestseller, “The Warmth of Other Suns,” points out:
“The institution of slavery created a crippling distortion of human relationships where people on the one side were made to perform the role of subservience and to sublimate whatever inane talents or intelligence they might have had.” (1)
https://www.c-span.org/video/?14263-1/jails-prisons-drugs (see link Chairman John Conyers (D) Detroit, “Drug Wars” targeting Black youth and physicians /dentists, Omnibus Crime Bill, 1990. Congressional Black Caucus Weekend, a discussion lead by Professor Dr. Ron Daniels.)
Ms Wilkerson further notes:
“ It would take a civil war, the deaths of three-quarter of a million soldiers and civilians, the assassination of a president, Abraham Lincoln, and the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment to bring the institution of enslavement in the United States of America to an end.”
At least that’s what was the thought.
“for a brief window of time”, Ms. Wilkerson states, “ the twelve years known as Reconstruction, the North sought to rebuild the South and help the 4 million people who had been newly liberated.”
In my short dynamic lifetime, I have partaken of these brief times when windows opened up and America sought to be inclusive and disassemble their pervasive system of “Subordinate Racial Caste,” Jim Crow, “Separate but Equal” and other clauses handed down by the United States Supreme Court 1896.”
THE PILLAR OF THE CASTE ENSHRINED 1896 IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND WHERE EVER ITS FLAG SHALL REIGN
Ms. Isabelle Wilkerson briefly describes the event, outlining:
“The pillar of the caste was enshrined into law in the United States of America in 1896, after a New Orleans man challenge an 1890 Louisiana Law that separated “the white and colored races” in railroad cars.”……..Louisiana had passed the law after the collapse of Reconstruction and the return to power of the former Confederates.” (1)
At this point a committee of citizens of color raised money to challenge the law in court and,
“ on the appointed day June 7, 1892, Homer A. Plessy, a shoemaker of light complexion but was categorized as black under the American definition of race, bought a first-class ticket from New Orleans to Covington on the East Louisiana Rail Road and took a seat in the white-only car”
…..the conductor ordered him to the colored car and when Plessy refused he was arrested as the committee had anticipated. His case went to the United States Supreme Court which rules seven to one in favor of Louisiana’s separate but equal law.”
These actions of the Supreme Court set into fabric in all of American Society, including the Panama Canal Zone (Gold and Silver) seven decades of formal, state-territorial sanctioned isolation. The exclusion of one caste from the other in the United States and any land or territory its flag shall reign. (1) (see below video Pig Laws, developed to restrict the subordinated caste by Laura Coates Esq)
THE PIG LAWS
I can hardly remember the time, I was barely 3 years old, on that day of May 1954 when Brown vs Board of Education reversed/overturned Plessy vs. Ferguson Separate but Equal Clause. The opportunity was now before my three brothers and I, at least that’s what we were told. We were a family consisting of newly arrived immigrants from Panama living in Royal Oak Township Michigan. Of the eight boys, two who died at birth, the remaining six men all finished college.
I remember Boy Scouts, Soap Box Derby, Sputnik, Yuri Gurgaian, Detroit Newspapers Route, Patrice Lumumba, Civil Rights, Stockley Carmicheal, Voting Rights, New York Worlds Fair, Malcolm X, Expo 67, 1967 Detroit Riots, Vietnam War, Martin Luther King, Florida A&M Marching Band, Shirley Chisolm, Nelson Mandela, Kappa Alpha Psi, School of Pharmacy, Michigan School of Dentistry University of Florida College of Dentistry, Jim Dent, Tiger Woods, the election of Barack Obama as President of the United States, “Hampton Pirates,” “The Penn State Nittany House Cats,” and “Bear Down Chicago Bears.” and surviving colon cancer, quite an accomplishment; “at least that’s what I thought.”
Oh, I forgot to include I have traveled nearly all over the world, a wife and 3 children all of whom finished college, At least that’s what I remember.
THE FAILURE TO BE SUBORDINATE
I started this article at 11:00 pm on the night of November 3, 2020, feeling the anguish and strongly believing Donald Trump had won a second term as President of the United States. At that moment, I called my friend (frat) Cedric Alexander “The Cop Doc,” we both related and express the feelings of the Dalit Ph.D., scholar from Wilkerson book, of the subordinate caste, trapped in the purgatory of someones else’s definition of who he is and who he should be. (6)
“For us, it is dignity, they might attack us, and then, they say that we are hostile when for us it is a matter of dignity. Our dignity was under assault.” (6)
However by 5:00 am November 4th, 2020 things had changed or that’s what I was told. Perhaps Donald Trumpism attitudes had prevailed because every vote cast in support of him reflects his belief in the dominant caste. Black persons of advanced training, skill, and knowledge are cast as conceited, arrogant, boastful and we know the resentment.
PRECONCEIVED AS ARROGANT
Arrogance is rate-limiting, defined by a preconceived standard of what we are expected to know and further based on a preconceived level of knowledge, expectation, and skill of what one should have obtained. This is likely an eighth-grade education. Anything beyond that becomes suspicious, surprise, unearned, and requires further examination of one’s credentials.
Instead of being well versed, you are detested. Arrogance stops one in their tracks to be undervalued, underestimated, and marginalized. This is a reality that all Black professionals face, especially those who are licensed in any profession, in which we only quietly discuss these matters amongst ourselves. (2)(3)(4) Ms. Isabel Wilkerson writes:
____” when we feel a pang of shock and resentment, a personal wounding Adsense of unfairness and perhaps even shame at our discomfort upon seeing someone from a marginalized group in a job or a car or house or college or appointment more prestigious than we have been led to expect, when we assume that the senior citizen should be playing Parcheesi rather than developing software,”
_____” we are reflecting the efficient encoding of caste, the subconscious recognition that the person has stepped out of his or her assumed place in our society. We are responding to our embedded instructions of who should be where and who should be doing what, the breaching of the structure and boundaries that are the hallmarks of caste.” (1)
Yet, we have further and properly been schooled by our ancestors, teachers, professors, within our hairdressers, and barbershops to resist, to not ever accept or yield to subordination. We know that the built-in institution of racial caste injustice, particularly within the Judicial System or in the fields of medical science, sports, politics, or the military. will default to all knowledgeable, educated Black persons as arrogant and uppity.
We especially observe and experience these attitudes of ill will in our history, particularly in the United States, when one is right and dares to challenge these societal mores. (2)(4)
At least I have come to learn and perhaps, just perhaps, after this election a very small window of opportunity has opened just a minuscule bit to keep this divided mighty nation from destroying itself from the racial caste system of 400 plus years in these lands.(4) At least that’s what I hope.
FOR NOW YOU ARE WITHIN THE NORMS
1. Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents, April 2020, pg. 47, pg. 50, pg. 72, pg. 116-117, Wilkerson, Isabelwilkerson.com
3. Congressman John Conyers 1990: Crime Bill September 1990 C-span Targeting of Black Youth, “DEA WAR ON DRUGS”
4. Of Role Models and Invisible Men, Exposing the Rise and the Mission of the Filtered Negroes, https://youarewithinthenorms.com/2020/06/18/of-role-models-and-invisible-men-exposing-the-rise-and-mission-of-the-filtered-negroes/
5. Barrack Obama, 44th President, United States of America, speech on the “Good Troubles” Congressman John lewis, Home-Going July 30, 2020, Atlanta, Ga.
6. Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents, April 2020, pg. 290, Wilkerson, Isabelwilkerson.com