The following is an anthropological experiment conducted in 1967 ( Sources: Stephenson, G. R. (1967). Cultural acquisition of a specific learned response among rhesus monkeys. In: Starek, D., Schneider, R., and Kuhn, H. J. (eds.), Progress in Primatology, Stuttgart: Fischer, pp. 279-288.)
Begin the experiment by placing 5 monkeys is a cage. Tie a banana to the top of the cage so that the monkeys cannot reach the banana.
Place a ladder in the cage. One intelligent monkey will climb the ladder to reach the banana.
When that happens, the observing scientist punishes the other three monkeys by spraying them with cold water.
Repeat this process once every day. You will notice that each day, the rewarded monkey will remember how he got the banana yesterday, and proceed to climb the stairs again. Again, the other monkeys are sprayed.
Within a short period of time, the monkeys who have never gotten the banana, but who have always been sprayed will ATTACK the smart monkey when he tries to climb the stairs, since they have learned that whenever someone goes for the banana, they are punished.
Remove the intelligent monkey, and replace him with a newbie.
The newbie sees the banana, sees the stairs, and sees the other three cold, wet monkeys. The new monkey tries to climb the stairs to reach the treat and is beat half to death.
Now, remove one of the monkeys that had previously been sprayed. You now have two monkeys who remember being punished, one monkey thats brand new, and one monkey that has never been sprayed (but who is recovering from being beaten silly).
The new monkey will, of course, try to reach the banana. The two original monkeys will proceed to beat the hell out of the intelligent new monkey, but an interesting thing will happen: the new monkey thats never been punished will join in on beating the new monkey!
Keep in mind, this new monkey has never been sprayed. He doesnt know why the old monkeys beat anyone that goes for the reward. He just joins in on the mobbing.
Keep swapping the old monkeys out until you have a cage full of new monkeys. This brand new generation has never been punished for trying to reach the objective. However, all the monkeys punish each other for trying to reach the prize.
The above experiment is an example of Post Traumatic Slavery Disorder, mob mentality in action, and how leaders are often persecuted.
Its often said in the Black Conscious community that we still suffer from the effects of slavery. In the above story, when one animal went for the goal, the others were punished. When one slave managed to escape, the chains on the other slaves were tightened, and they were beaten, interrogated, and restricted. Over time, it became easier for slave masters to control the next generation of slaves. Eventually, many slaves became so comfortable with their situation that they fought to keep things the way they were. We see similar behavior today, 7 generations later.
It is no secret that we Black and conscious are in the minority within the Black community. It is, of course, easier to join in mob mentality than it is to think for yourself. Of course it doesnt make sense to buy in to the obvious manipulation of the media. Of course it doesnt make sense to tie ourselves to a system that has proven time and time again to spite us. Of course it doesnt make sense for us to spend so much of our money keeping up with the Joneses when we are arguably the weakest economic demographic on the planet.
But we do anyway. Why? Because we have been conditioned to do so. Such is the nature of the cage that we are in.
In the above experiment, whenever one animal rose above the others to reach an objective, he was punished by his peers. Likewise, Malcolm X was assassinated by his peers, Marcus was perpetually under attack from his peers (namely, W.E.B. DuBois), Kwame Nkrumah was attacked and overthrown by his peers, as was H.I.M. Haile Selassie, Patrice Lumumba, Huey P. Newton, and countless others who remain unnamed and unknown.
We Black men and women are told that the solution to this whole situation is to be the first one to grab the banana. This is incorrect. The solution is to get the hell out of the cage.
Do the knowledge.