Weaponized Complexions by Nigel Byng

A painting in bluish purple hues of four black colored individuals of different nations standing sadly with tears falling from their eyes

It is so disingenuous it’s strenuous, the Animus that comes at us

The history of lies that fly, from the lips of these animals.

Propaganda of the antebellum,

an act of benevolence, and good for them

Pure evil in its conception

they weaponized our complexion

In regulated doses, they opiate the masses

With the medicine of religion, one nation under God, Is a fraud

They laud and applaud without true conviction.

From its inception it was a deception

Toussaint undertook vengeance to bring liberty into existence.

So to maintain their high station, laws regarding miscegenation

The elites weaponized our complexion

Justified homicide, regulated genocide,

by their laws the world is forced to abide.

A different code for these ultras, their own morals, and dogmas, codified Luciferan agendas

Six degrees of separation, but aren’t we all kin?

By it am elevated, or by it am degraded.

Fredrick Douglas explained the aristocracy of the skin.

As a result, peace remains but a fleeting illusion,

they weaponized our complexion

Until this malignance, pales in significance

Like the color of our eyes,

says Selassie l

It will be WAR… consummated,

An elite nest of vipers, pirates, prelates, and marauders,

They love WAR… unabated.

It is all about the hegemon,

Using the ultimate bioweapon,

Weaponized complexions



The theme for this year’s Black History Month is Black Resistance.

Prior to the abolition of slavery in the USA, the Haitian revolution had commenced in the summer of 1791. Led by the self-liberated slaves on the island, their success and eventual declaration of independence in 1804, was perhaps the most pivotal blow to the European capitalist enterprise of slavery, which had benefitted from the subjugation and forced labor of Africans.

I had first heard the phrase “The Aristocracy of the Skin” while reading The Black Jacobins, the seminal work on the Haitian Revolution, by Trinidad and Tobago author C.L.R. James, and it inspired the words to the poem. The term, without any ambiguity whatsoever, describes what is essentially a systemic policy that had normalized the horrors of racism, creating a legalized, and morally perfidious justification of discrimination based on the color of a person’s skin. It essentially weaponized our complexions.

The French National assembly had used this phrase in 1794 to describe racism in Europe and America, which they saw as the new form of the aristocracy they had just dethroned, and summarily executed during their own revolution.

Frederick Douglas, the former slave, who became an author, a statesman, and key figure in the abolitionist movement, explained what Skin Aristocracy in America really was while on a trip to Coventry, England in February of 1847, he said “…it was the color of the skin; that was the mark of distinction, or the brand of degradation…” Racial classifications of slaves and free peoples, were enshrined into laws of America which dictated the rights of people based on the color of the skin.

These policies are still felt to this day, and many of us do not even realize the underlying biases we harbor as a result. Reference is also made to the speech given in October of 1963 at the United Nations by Ethiopian Emperor Haile Selassie I, where he called for world peace. The words of that speech were then extracted and made famous by the legendary musician Bob Marley in his 1976 song, WAR. It is a remarkable political commentary that still resonates nearly 50 years after he released it.

The poem honors five distinguished men of color, namely Toussaint L’Ouverture, Haile Selassie, C.L.R. James, Bob Marley and Frederick Douglass, who through their efforts lifted the cause of oppressed people, promoted unity, and encouraged the world to a higher consciousness.

Nigel Byng is a freelance writer, living in the USA. His writing can be found on Signs of the Times Australia, or on his personal blog Helping you to Succeed where he displays his love of fiction under his pen name, Jerome Kenrick. Follow him on Instagram at @hyts_daily.

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9 Comments Add yours

  1. Terveen Gill says:

    Nigel’s powerful poem reveals the wounds that never had the chance to heal, the pain residing in their depths, oozing out as questions that demand plausible answers. Yet the words are scarce, the feelings are corrupt, the ignorance is a flimsy bandage that peels off at the slightest touch. As a person of color, I can feel this on a personal level, though many times avoidance has seemed like the better option. A big shout out to Darryan Cornwall for creating the beautiful artwork accompanying this piece.
    Congratulations Nigel and Darryan!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. byngnigel says:

      I appreciate you kind words Terveen. It’s always difficult to discuss issues like this, as they have the potential to divide rather than heal. So I understand “avoidance” seeming the better option. Thanks for sharing, and allowing the conversation to happen.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. haoyando says:

    I was really shocked when I read about Columbus when his statues were pulled down all over the world. It turned out he sold people into slavery, caused millions and millions of death. He’s a despot. But why did those history books laud him as a hero?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. jonicaggiano says:

      Haoyando, that is an excellent question. He did not discover the New World. The indigenous folks lived there for centuries before Columbus came. You are right; he treated these people horribly, was responsible for horrific cruelty, and sold many people as slaves. So many never even made it destinations because of the unbelievable way slaves were put onto ships. So many people died who lived there from diseases the white man carried. In 1492 the Vikings beat Columbus by five centuries earlier when a man called Leif Eriksson discovered the New World. One thing I don’t necessarily believe we should do is tear down historical monuments. They can remind us of the horrors and atrocities committed in the US. Terveen, forgive me if I should not have answered this question, and I promise I will not do it again. I don’t know the rules, so just don’t publish this if it is inappropriate. This is an emotionally moving piece. This may not be allowed. I don’t know. Columbus would be considered a murderer if alive today and guilty of crimes against humanity. Still, the problem is that too many people have grown to accept this behavior. This is why we have so much slave trafficking still going on. I read not too long ago about an enormous ring of slave prostitution that was busted in Seattle. People who don’t think slavery is still going strong have their heads in the sand.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Terveen Gill says:

        Thank you, Joni, for sharing this. I applaud your brave and kind spirit.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. byngnigel says:

        Well said Joni… Never be afraid to speak your mind. Not to me at least.


  3. jonicaggiano says:

    As usual, my very gracious friend Nigel has written a beautiful piece, and I applaud his poetic truth. Hard to read, hard to hear, and hard to believe. Slavery runs rampant in Haiti still today. I love what Terveen had to say regarding this post and think she is as spot-on as one can get. I love the words that, in so many ways, tell the ugly truth of slavery – “they weaponized our complexion.” Thank you, Terveen, for publishing this incredibly informative piece, to Nigel for writing it, and for the fantastic artwork. Congratulations on your publication, too, “DARRYAN CORNWALL. 2023”.

    An incredibly sad piece of truth that many people do not know should be mentioned:

    “Perhaps surprisingly, the last two presidents to own enslaved workers were both men closely associated with Abraham Lincoln, who led the nation during a civil war caused in large part by the divisions sowed by slavery, and later signed the Emancipation Proclamation and championed passage of the 13th Amendment ending slavery. Andrew Johnson, who served as Lincoln’s vice president before becoming president in 1865, had owned at least half a dozen enslaved people in his native Tennessee and even lobbied for Lincoln to exclude the state from the Emancipation Proclamation.”

    “All told, at least 12 chief executives—over a quarter of all American presidents—enslaved people during their lifetimes. Of these, eight held enslaved people while in office.”

    Link for the above information: https://www.history.com/news/how-many-u-s-presidents-owned-slaves

    Liked by 2 people

    1. byngnigel says:

      Thanks for sharing the link..will have a read today. Awesome as always Joni.


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