Recently, I was looking at my original birth certificate for some information and discovered a little-known historical fact—the Georgia Militia District.
In the bottom right corner, there is a check box for “militia district”.
I never noticed it before but, when I saw it, I knew it couldn’t be good.
Georgia Militia: “Central to the American concept of a republican democracy, composed as it was of citizen-soldiers, the militia system was essential to the political and social structure. The basic building blocks at the bottom of the Georgia Militia pyramid were the general militia districts. Formally established pursuant to the Militia Act of 1784, these theoretically contained one company of at least sixty-three men … the governor as commander-in-chief. … “The General Militia Acts of 1803, 1807, and 1818 directed that all district male residents from eighteen to forty-five years old, except those exempted by laws such as ministers, enroll in their district company and perform regularly scheduled drills, at the designated unit muster ground.”
That broad definition is so mundane it doesn’t raise any alarms.
However, the words militia district looked intriguing and suspicious so; I dug a little deeper.
Adapted from Berlet & Lyons, “Militia Nation,”The Progressive Magazine: “This coalescence of the militias out of the patriot movement created a potential for violent assaults against certain targeted scapegoats: federal officials and law-enforcement officers, abortion providers and their pro-choice supporters, environmentalists, people of color, immigrants, welfare recipients, gays and lesbians, and Jews.”
A militia zone evolved from the Willie Lynch Letter and Jim Crow laws that mean containment, which is a form of control that limits the quality of education, etc. for Black people.
Honestly, when I saw the word militia, I thought about the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) aka Knights Templars/Knights Hospitallers/Teutonic Knights, and other white supremacy organizations.
Even today, militia district and militia zone laws are still very much alive through “law codification”.
When I was a girl, I saw a large cross burning in a neighbor’s yard, as well as witnessing an atrocity so beyond the beating of Rodney King, it would be distasteful to explain.
The word militia triggered my memory of the clear hatred and terrorism perpetrated on my neighborhood (militia district) that was all black.
As I look back on the heinous crimes committed on two of the most prominent individuals, compared to present day lynching, disenfranchisement, back shooting, beating, dragging, etc., I know that Black people still live under codified militia laws.
In spite of the childhood incidents, I had a good upbringing in the neighborhood of my youth, even though my family was extremely poor.
Nevertheless, the grinding poverty did not get me down because I grew up among Black people who were tribal and looked out for each other.
Upon further reflection, the militia district was surrounded by middle-class white people.
There were no Black retail stores so, everything we bought came from them.
Although we were poor and segregated, we were no longer in slavery or in sharecropper fields!
“You’ve got to look back and find out the past, and then you look forward.” – Sven Haakanson Sr., Kodiak Island Elder, 1997
Frankly, I was happy living segregated because my parents and grandparents were a quiet force ready and willing to take on any challenges.
They taught me priceless lessons about adversity and diversity in various circumstances and situations.
My grandparents were sharecroppers and descendants of Africans made U.S. slaves.
Fortunately, they had the good sense to give up sharecropping to find a better way of survival—feast or famine!
Even in sharecropper slavery, my mother’s mom seemed to have everything, at least more than we had, living in a Georgia militia district.
Moreover, she had what she needed and could buy whatever she wanted when the Rolling Store came along.
When my mother moved my grandmother to the city, she became a cottage industry entrepreneur.
Even then, she had extra income to buy anything she wanted from the grocery store on monthly credit, with a handwritten note.
She was born and reared in a Georgia militia district but when she died, she was debt free!
My grandfathers died before I was born but, my family matriarchs knew how to socialize with white people (to a certain degree).
They were always respectful, yet were not afraid to speak out or speak their mind while looking to the back of their eyeballs.
They had great rapport with everyone they worked for and dealt with in both personal and business environments.
My family patriarchs and matriarchs did not cause trouble and did not back down from any either.
They stood their ground.
Supposedly, a Georgia militia district is about standing your ground.
Today, I basically live in a militia zone where you are expected to stay in your place and not talk back.
This militia district thing has really stirred up my memories of the threats of violence that I have received since I have been living on my current rural homestead.
I am the only black person living on my street.
Also, I have it on good authority that Black people were not allowed to walk down my street in past years.
A certain neighbor trying to intimidate me pointed out that the KKK live nearby.
As a peaceful person and homesteader, I was advised to post a “NO TRESPASSING/NO SOLICITING” sign—that I stand behind.
I am not afraid because I follow the ways of a long line of uppity ancestors, ambitious for survival so; a warning sign is all I need.
I believe that racism is still prevalent in Georgia and will never end.
It is so bad, I could write a book!
In closing, I will leave you with another Georgia militia district excerpt that was crafted to keep the “niggers” under control.
“The practice of segregating taxpayers by Militia Districts on the tax digests continues to this day.”
Footnote Regarding Ahmaud Arbery: I watched the video and it is clear that the Georgia militia is in full effect. Instead of catching Ahmaud Arbery in the act of burglary on their premise or someone else’ premise where the alledged burglaries took place, there was no attempt to execute a “citizen’s arrest” under The Official Georgia Code Of Laws. Ahmaud was hunted (stalked), accused, tried, convicted and killed at point blank range with a shot gun (and a .357 Magnum pistol at the ready). He wasn’t a lunatic; so he wasn’t struggling to take the shotgun. Why was Ahmaud Arbery murdered in cold blood? In my opinion the usual racial prejudice, which has been taught from slave owner to son, and father to son for over 400 years, to keep secrets from Black people who hardly know their African ancestry or WHO WE ARE. Moreover, to start a race-war. What I do know is this: Ahmaud Arbery’s blood is crying out from the ground to The Creator God!
§ 17-4-60 – Grounds for arrest. A private person may arrest an offender if the offense is committed in his presence or within his immediate knowledge. If the offense is a felony and the offender is escaping or attempting to escape, a private person may arrest him upon reasonable and probable grounds of suspicion. https://law.justia.com/codes/georgia/2010/title-17/chapter-4/article-4/17-4-60/