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Sunday, June 28, 2015


            I had written a 170-page typescript, BLACK ERUPTION, SOUTHERN STYLE, of SUNO events in summer 1969 as I was not teaching that season as originally planned.  Moving to Europe and then back and never having a teaching post in the US, struggling to pay bills, I sent most of my material to Tulane Special Collections, now Louisiana Research Center.  At least 2 scholars used my SUNO typescript and acknowledged credit in their published works, Adam Fairclough and Jeffrey Turner.  I think it was in summer of 2014 when I received a call from Mr. Leon Miller, the director of the LRC.  He asked if I had a copy of the typescript.  No.  The reason he inquired, Tulane had received a call (I think from California) from another scholar requesting to use the material, but the 170-page typescript was missing, or lost, or stolen.  Tulane searched, and I asked friends who might have had a copy.  No luck.  The typescript was controversial.  Some might find it offensive.  After a year, it is still missing.  Because it is still missing, I decided to use my memory to try to recall some of the important points not covered by others.  Hugh Murray

(short version June 2015) by Hugh Murray
            The SUNO strike of 1969 began a few days before Easter, on 2 April, 8am, when a number of students gathered round the flag pole in front of the Administration Building at SUNO.  They proceeded to take down the already flying American flag, and replace it with a Black Liberation Flag – black, red, and green.  The green represented nature in Africa, the red the blood of the people, and the black, the color of their skin.  Some of the leaders of the student protest then distributed a mimeographed page with the pledge of allegiance to the new flag, and most assembled there took the pledge.  The pledge, which I get now from Adam Fairclough’s Race & Democracy, p. 429: “I pledge allegiance to the Black Liberation Flag and to the cause for which it stands – Black people together, indivisible for liberation, self-defense, self-determination.  I am prepared to give my life in its defense.”  (Strangely, Fairclough describes the flag as black, green, and gold, rather than black, red, and green.  Perhaps he was confusing it with the flag of Abyssinia, which was green, red, and yellow and was used by Black Nationalists in the early 20th century.  But the SUNO flag was black, red, and green.)  I was there as a sympathizer, but when I read the pledge, did not take it.  I don’t recall all the details but two leaders of the Africa America Student Assn were Val Ferdinand and Lynn French.  They also read a list of “non-negotiable” demands that they were issuing to the SUNO Administration, the objective of which was to re-from the university into a Black-centered institution, such as the creation of a Black Studies Department, and hiring a draft councilor (and the person suggested was a young man who opposed the draft).  Some of the demands were of a more physical nature, for the contrast between the physical plant of “white” LSUNO with “Black” SUNO was stark, with the facilities at the former far nicer than those at the latter institution.  
Of the 2.200 students at SUNO, only one was white.  The first non-Black faculty had been hired only a few years prior when a Korea was employed.  This year, there were about 10 of us non-Blacks, including me teaching history, Vera Krieger, who taught English, and George Haggar, an Arab-Canadian who taught political science.  The university was a branch of Southern University in Baton Rouge, then the world’s largest Black university, and the segregated counterpart to Louisiana State University.  When LSU opened a branch in New Orleans near the Lake Pontchartrain, soon after SU opened its branch also near the lake.  LSUNO (later, the U. of NO) and SUNO were new institutions of the 1950s and 60s.  Then the AAS presented its demands to change the ideal of SUNO, these demands were rejected by Dean Bashful and the university’s administration.  Consequently, a student boycott of classes began.
            As the strike gained momentum, the Administration fought back.  And not just the SUNO Administration.  NO Chief of Police Joseph Giarrusso and NO Mayor Victor Schiro announced that the American flag would be protected.  When students removed it one morning, NO police marched in, lowered the students’ banner, and rehoisted the American flag.  There were some scuffles and arrests.  Photos showed the flag pole with the American flag guarded by police amid hostility from the students.  (This is not from my memory but from Fairclough, p. 430)  The SUNO Administration now claimed that the students were not the leaders of the movement, but were being manipulated by an Arab professor on campus, a white man.  Prof. George Haggar had been born to a Christian Arab family in French Syria/Lebanon during WWII.  He had studied at Columbia U. in New York City where he earned a doctorate in political science.  He had also published book reviews in some of the leading academic journals in his field.  He had taught at Waterloo Univ. in Canada, where he also held citizenship.  While the SUNO anti-boycott portrayed him as the real leader of the protest, that Black students were being misled by this white, Haggar asserted that he was not white, but brown.  He also denied leading any protest movement on campus.  The AAS vehemently denied that they were mere pawns of the Arab or whites or anyone else.  They declared that they were promoting Black Nationalism and wanted a university to reflect that viewpoint, and to achieve it they continued the boycott into the spring of 1969.  At one point the national leader of SNCC, once the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee, by 1969 the Student National Coordinating Committee, James Foreman, came to SUNO campus and spoke to Haggar and various students.
            About the same time, the national media were focused on the Black power strike at Cornell U. in upstate New York, in which some Black students took rifles to the campus.  Those students were featured on the cover of Newsweek or Time magazines.  So, about this same time, Val Ferdinand and Lynn French brought their weapons to SUNO, and this was featured in the New Orleans media.
            At one point, a long line of police with loaded weapons was formed to enter SUNO campus.  Quickly assembled to face it was an equally long line of students (and one or 2 faculty, myself and Vera).  We hoped to stop the intrusion of the police onto the campus.  For a time, neither side moved.  No one shouted.  I suspect, had a stone been thrown, shots would have been fired.  No stone was hurled.  I think both sides withdrew.  Violence was averted; no one was shot, no one was hurt.
            Gov. John McKiethen, Democrat, mobilized units of the National Guard, and helicopters began to buzz round the campus.  On 21 April 1969 McKiethen came to campus and entered a building to discover what was causing daily headlines.  In one building a huge crowd of students came in to see him.  He would address them.  But as he was escorted to the dais, pictures were taken as he stood beneath the Black Liberation Flag.  McKiethen began his remarks: “Would you kindly tell me what flag is that above me?”  Many shouted, the BLF with others shouting what the symbolism was.  “Would you kindly remove that flag as I speak?”  I do not recall his words, though I suspect he praised the American flag.  This was the first time a governor of Louisiana had ever visited the campus and he promised to inquire about the problems facing the university and make improvements.
            Again, I do not recall the sequence of events, but while McKiethen was in NO, he drove downtown where some of the protestors had gathered, in particular George Haggar and Val Ferdinand.  The governor’s limo drove to where the other two were and perhaps a hand gesture and words invited them into the vehicle – or so they thought.  Haggar climbed in, but when Ferdinand attempted to enter, the governor’s party said no.  McKiethen would speak to Haggar in private.  According to Haggar, McKeithen then offered the Arab anything he wanted if he would break the strike at SUNO.  Of course, Haggar maintained he had no such power, but I don’t know if he ever said that in the limo.  Bottom line, Haggar rejected McKiethen’s offer.
            Shortly after this, SUNO fired Prof. Haggar.  Because he was not a citizen and in the US on an employment visa, loss of the teaching post meant Haggar was then liable to be deported.
            Although fired, Haggar returned to his office on SUNO campus, and when word came that the Administration was sending security to remove him, a barricade of desks was erected.  When, however, NO Police were called to remove him, Haggar fled.  Moreover, he did not return to the room he had rented through the university, suspecting the landlady was too close to Dean Bashful.  Instead, he would remain that night at the home of another white faculty member, Vera Krieger, who was Jewish.  I too was at her home that night.  After supper, the three of us sat on her sofa to watch the local news.  One of the first items was a report by NO Police Chief Joseph Giarrusso, whose demeanor reminded me of 1930s crime films: Pointing his finger, Giarrusso announced to the camera “I hope you are watching this Dr. Haggar, because you are not so brave.  When my men went to arrest you this afternoon, you ran away.  You are not brave.  And I am telling you now, you are to be arrested on sight!”  On the couch, Vera and I were frozen in fear upon hearing these remarks.  But Haggar burst out laughing.  An incredible, memorable scene.
            Next day, class (or boycotted class) as usual.  Vera drove to the campus as usual, but this morning Haggar was hidden from sight on the floor of her auto.  Once he appeared on campus, hundreds of students surrounded him to protect him from the threatened arrest.  Haggar made a short speech.  Dean Bashful, the chief administrator of SUNO, came to me, pleading, “Get him out of here.  If the police come to get him, there is sure to be violence.”
            Haggar had made his appearance and his speech.  I then urged him to leave with me to avoid violence.  As I drove him away from the campus, I heard a helicopter above that seemed to follow.  It was a police helicopter.  When I dropped him off at his own apartment, the police swooped in and arrested him.
            All this was p. 1 in the various editions of the NO States-Item, the afternoon newspaper of the morning Times-Picayune.  I think Haggar was released on bail without staying overnight in jail.  He was fired from SUNO and then arrested for going on campus, and the government wanted him deported.  Haggar sent feelers to a Black scholar then at San Francisco State U (or college), about being hired quickly to fend off immigration problems, but felt he was being stalled and strung along.  Nothing came of this.  About this time from my apartment he was interviewed on a Canadian Broadcasting nationwide call in program about events at SUNO.  But he also brought in other topics and I was chagrined when he blared at a caller that “Your rabbi told you wrong,” and Haggar went on to denounce Israeli policies in the Middle East.  Haggar was a radical, but he was a man of great courage and intelligence.
           Haggar could fight the deportation case, but without a job or job offer, his stay in the US would be untenable.  So he decided to depart for Canada on his own.
            Meanwhile, the SUNO strike fizzed out.  Although I had been offered a teaching post for the summer of 1969, that offer was rescinded.  Furthermore, I was told henceforth I would be on a blacklist.  I have no idea if that were true; I only know that I have never held a university teaching position in America since 1969.
            Haggar was in Canada and he was radical.  Earlier, in the 1968 fall term of that school year, I was driving him in my car as we discussed various topics.  On one occasion he explained to me what had been Stalin’s greatest mistake.  Stalin had failed to incorporate the various nations of Eastern Europe into the USSR.  I was amazed for I doubt if many people would agree that that was Stalin’s greatest mistake.  On another occasion, he informed me that Stalin’s greatest mistake was that he did not break up the family.  I could not roll my eyes because I was driving.  George was radical.  And after he had left the US, the last I heard was that he was planning to write a biography of a woman hi-jacker who had taken over a plane for the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.  Radical though he was, it is hard for me to believe that hundreds of Black students at SUNO were simply “dupes” of the Arab at the height of Black Nationalism in the US in general and at SUNO in particular.
            Gov. McKiethen had offered Haggar anything he wanted if he would only break the SUNO student strike.  Haggar rejected the offer and was fired and effectively deported.  Val Ferdinand, perhaps the most prominent student leader of the boycott and protests, had sought to enter the governor’s limo when Haggar entered.  At that time, Ferdinand was told, no.  Clearly, the governor wanted to make his offer to Haggar in private.  After Haggar rejected, did the governor make a similar offer to Ferdinand?
            Ferdinand was talented.  The first time I encountered him was before the uprising, probably during the first semester 1968-69.  A poetry contest at SUNO had been arranged, and I was selected to be among the judges.  There were only 4 contestants, and 3 read rather conventional poems (I think they were all original poems).  Val’s was different.  His “reading” was really a performance, similar to those in a poetry slam.  His title, “Niggers in the Streets,” and in ghetto language it was a description of the activity that one might see in a Black urban neighborhood.  Though he was not my student, I thought he deserved 1st prize, as did most of the judges.  Ferdinand won the contest.
            Marcus S. Cox in “Keep Our Black Warriors Out of the Draft,” in Educational Foundations, Winter-Spring 2006, writes: “On May 14, 1969 student leaders at Southern University met with Louisianan Governor John McKeithen to discuss their grievances.  Both parties characterized the meeting as productive.  The Governor agreed to several demands of which included a major legislative bill for $100,000 for campus security….better cafeteria facilities to more library books and better street lighting.”  It was unclear as to how much of this was for SUNO and how much for the larger Southern U. in Baton Rouge.
            The SUNO boycott/strike collapsed by May 1969.  In the summer of 1969 Ferdinand became editor of a new Black newspaper in NO.  He was also active in the Free Southern Theater (a theater group that began in the early 1960s when they performed integrated plays in Black churches in Mississippi).  Under Ferdinand, the FST moved from integration to Black Nationalism.  I attended one of the FST performances in the summer 1969.  I was the only white in the audience.  There were drums on stage.  At one point, Val, center stage, began to shout “Nigger, nigger, nigger, nigger…” and the audience joined in the shout.  Ferdinand was talented.
            Soon thereafter Ferdinand changed his name to Kalamu Ya Salaam and became editor of Black Collegian.  Despite the numerous typos and errors in the articles of Black Collegian, the magazine quickly grew in advertising and prestige, for this was one place where major corporations could recruit Blacks to their companies, fulfilling affirmative action quotas now required by the EEOC and the Nixon Administration.  The want-ad section expanded with affirmative action, and in a decade, the magazine had become so slick and thick, about 500 pages, that it was a major periodical.
             In June 2015, when I googled Ferdinand and Kalamu Ya Salaam and checked various websites like afropoets.net and thehistorymakers.com and the blurb about him in Historical Dictionary of African American Theater, they all report that he had served in the US Army in Korea, attended Carleton College, and returned to his native NO to receive an AA degree in business administration from Delgado Junior College.  I find this astonishing, for there is not a word about his activities at SUNO!  I have no proof, but I wonder if Gov. McKiethen offered Val Ferdinand anything he might want if he would break the SUNO boycott/strike?!  And in 1969, I was not the only person with such suspicions.
          HUGH MURRAY          

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Charleston, SC murders in perspectives

In 2012 I posted my review of Colin Flaherty's WHITE GIRL BLEED A LOT (earlier version) on amazon books.  Just after a young white racist entered a Black church in Charleston, S.C., joined with the group in a prayer meeting, and then proceeded to murder innocent Blacks, there was much anger.  Suddenly, there was a new comment re my review.  I do not plan to repeat my review here (it is on amazon and on an earlier section of this blog), but I will included some recent comments on my review on amazon.  Clearly Charles did not approve of my review.---Hugh Murray

Posted on Jun 20, 2015 3:39:30 AM PDT
Charles says:
who is this racist bastard, they do not touch upon that the master plan was to kill off blacks and destroy black households from day one that we were brought here via ship, killing us, raping us, dividing us, hanging us, using and abusing us, end of institutionalize slavery, then jailing us for no apparent reason dropped guns and drugs into our neighborhoods via ship, planes and etc. by the cia under bush, the child abuse law strictly enforced due to our kids were behaving to well because we whipped our kids, they respected authority and feared there parents at the same time. started taking away the recreation centers, boys and girls clubs and etc. took away jobs, promoted our women above the black man to create more problems, all because the fear of the black man. so yeah you are going to get gangs, drug dealers, rapist, and etc. and yes racism created all of America's ills in this stolen land.
Your post, in reply to an earlier post on Jun 20, 2015 7:34:54 AM PDT
Hugh Murray says:
If the master plan was to kill off all Blacks, the whites would have left them in Africa. Slavery existed in Africa, and the Africans traded off their Black slaves for goods from the Europeans. Slave ships were horrible, but the slaves were cargo, to be sold for profit. Killing them made no sense - except in the fantasy world of Black nats. Slavery did exist in the US, but whites finally elected a party opposed to slavery, and the costliest war was fought which resulted in the destruction of slavery. Blacks in the US are probably the wealthiest Black population on earth.
What happened when the colonial powers departed Africa and it became "free"? See all the boat today fleeing Africa for Europe. Today in parts of Africa there is still slavery, there is still slaughter, there is still hunger. The descendants of the slaves who were brought to the US are the lucky ones.
Unfortunately, too many repay America by robbing, mugging, beating, and murdering whites. B on w crime is much higher than w on B crime; and interracial rape is overwhelmingly B on w. The few cases where a white nut kills Blacks gets national publicity, but the many more examples of Blacks killing whites are ignored by the mainstream media.
The real racism in the US today is anti-white racism, a racism pushed by Pres. Obama, ex-Atty Gen Holder, and the entire mainstream media.
If whites are so bad, why do thousands of Africans seek to get into Europe each day? And so many African immigrants to the US?
You can insult me with your names, but the facts remain, the facts that you prefer to ignore, distort, excuse. You prefer the fictions of Alex Haley's Roots, instead of the truth.
In reply to an earlier post on Jun 20, 2015 4:52:09 PM PDT
J J. Ma says:
It is always helpful to know how the descendants of the freed slaves appreciate the sacrifices of the Union soldiers, and their families, who died and suffered to free their enslaved ancestors.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 20, 2015 10:18:19 PM PDT
brian says:

Enough ranting on about the past history you can't change, and fast fwd 100 years to today. Besides many Irishmen were also brought over on ships as slaves, but we never hear about their pain and suffering that they experienced at the hands of their landowners. 
Since the civil rights movement and affirmative action things have gotten a lot better for blacks, but much worse for whites. Black History month, black only colleges, and bypassing hiring standards to accommodate minorities are just a few of their perks. 
70% of black families are single parents, what does that tell you about dead beat dads... fukem and leaveem (even Obama can testify to that). 
Black on white crime is roughly ten times of that of white on black crime, and that's not even taking in account that many hispanics crimes are classified as white crimes.
So before you go off and continue blaming us white folk for aggressive black behavior, and all their problems...you should really take a good look in the mirror and see who's really at fault for your failure...and try and clean up your act, instead of waiting for the white to do it for you!

Friday, June 5, 2015


The following article by Milo Yiannopoulos comes from Breitbart.com 
Breitbart Non-Syndicated

The “gender pay gap” is one of the most persistent myths put about by feminists and social justice warriors. It has beencomprehensively debunked: in the UK and US, women in their 30s are actually paid more than men for the same work.

But it’s still repeated endlessly by journalists, activists and even presidents. Even though it’s not true, should it be? Is there an argument that we ought to pay women less?
Some people think there is a case for purposefully remunerating women less generously. They say it’s like any financial incentive: designed to nudge people into happier and more productive lifestyles. With the rise of the comically absurd #GiveWomenYourMoney hashtag on Twitter, I thought the idea deserved closer inspection.
Supporters of what I am sure will come to be called #PayWomenLess correctly point to social incentives built into the tax systems of most western countries designed to encourage, or discourage, certain life choices – such as tax breaks for married couples. They say: “If it’s being done already anyway, why can’t we make the case for our vision of the good life?”
A variety of statistics and scientific observations, some of them quite compelling, are used to make the case that incentivising women to stay home by introducing a gender pay gap is better for everyone in the long run. Here are a few arguments I’ve come across for reversing pay equality.
1. Women like it
Why do women get a kick out of bagging a man who earns a lot more than they do? Because it frees them up to focus on the home, on children and on other hobbies. Women usually strive for a more balanced life than men, which is why they work fewer hours, take longer holidays and earn less for their companies, so being given the freedom to raise a family is a chance most women would jump at.
2. Men pay more throughout relationships
From that first date to who pays the most off the mortgage to the shared American Express, men pay more throughout their relationships. Shouldn’t pay packets recognise the fact?
3. Actually, men pay more for everything 
The so-called “Pole Tax” is something all men have to live with. Men pay more, not only for insurance. In the US, men pay nearly 60 per cent more into Medicare and other state medical benefits programmes despite women using services more.
Women’s insurance premiums used to be higher to reflect their higher usage of resources, but that was outlawed by Obamacare, so whether using public or private healthcare, men now subsidise women significantly when it comes to health.
Men pay far more into retirement and pension plans but die earlier than women, so they subsidise the fairer sex there, too. (On average American women live 4.8 years longer than men.)
When you factor in higher educational costs and all the other financial penalties for having a penis, it can be over 10 per cent more expensive to be a man.
4. Men need to save for ‘divorce rape’ 
It’s a silly name, but a real problem: when marriage breaks down, it’s men who get taken to the cleaners. Their wealth, reputations and access to their children are all on the line. Women can walk away with a fortune, having in many cases done very little to contribute to savings or equity in the family home. Child support payments can be crippling.
5. It’s insurance against unfair criminal sentences
Here’s a male privilege men could learn to do without: controlling for all relevant variables, men receive 63 per cent longer sentences for the same crimes as women. Women are twice as likely to avoid incarceration when convicted. If we are sending men to prison more frequently and for longer periods of time, its only right they have an economic edge to pay for lawyers… and other prison necessities, like soap on a rope.
97.1 per cent of death penalty executions take male lives even though women commit 10 per cent of murders. Actually they might be responsible for more, but women often use methods like poison that can be difficult or impossible to trace after the fact and leave less evidence at the scene.
6. Women refuse to do the nasty jobs
Out of college, on of the the top-paying fields is petroleum engineer. But women stubbornly refuse to apply for highly paid but grubby jobs. Why all this focus on the software industry and “women in tech”? Don’t we need more female coal miners, lumberjacks, truck drivers (not you, Rosie O’Donnell!), slaughterhouse operatives and steeplejacks? 
I learned programmable logic controller development in a slaughtering and packing facilities too,” says one critic. “Women want IT jobs, start there!”
7. Men stick with their jobs and earn more for their companies 
Men are more likely to stick with their careers and be a long-term benefit to their companies. Men on average make more money for the companies they work for, they take shorter holidays and they work much longer hours.
8. Men are constantly discovering new and imaginative ways to die at work  
Mentally disabled and physically challenged men can be put on the front line, but women aren’t, so even though the Armed Forces is 15 per cent female, 97 per cent of combat deaths and casualties since the Gulf War have been male. And men make up pretty much all the workplace deaths back home, too: at least 93 per cent of workplace deaths are male.
9. … and at home 
79 per cent of suicides are men. No one knows why and no one seems particularly keen to find out, but male suicide is four times higher than female. It is a national scandal in many western countries. 83 men kill themselves every day in the United States; that’s 30,000 a year. Why not use the money saved on lower female wages to subsidise research into this silent killer?
10. Men need the help, frankly 
More women go to college. By a significant margin. Should men be subsidising all these state-funded gender studies courses? Most people would say no. 57.7 per cent of college places now go to women, but even that doesn’t tell the whole story, because for some reason men are now dropping out of school, at unprecedented rates. For 4-year college degrees, 1.35 women graduate for every male. Men make up only 44 per cent of college applicants.
Women are now routinely hired over men with the same qualifications, just for having boobs.
11. Paying women less would incentivise them to stay home, protecting the nuclear family and reducing single motherhood
Growing economies understand the importance of the nuclear family. There’s no clamour for gay marriage in China or India, where governments recognise that families are the cohesive glue that binds society together. Having a mum and dad at home is better for children: all the studies agree. The breakdown of the nuclear family, especially in ethnic minority communities, has been a disaster for community cohesion and has driven crime rates through the roof.
Now look, ladies. I’m not saying if you work like a man, take risks like a man, and negotiate like a man that you’re not due a man’s wage. What I’m saying is: it’s fairly clear by the numbers that most women don’t, and they make that choice willingly and consciously.
The #GiveYourMoneyToWomen crowd want a wage that is inconsistent with the level of actual labour that they contribute to the workforce (sorry girls, but tweeting isn’t “work”) and the value they generate in the economy.
There’s no reason men and women should be paid the same, when they don’t work the same. Food for thought.
My comment

Another point, when single mothers work, they often must spend much time at work on the phone conversing with their children or school officials or whatever. If they were married and their husband had a decent salary, the mother would be at home, the children might not have so much trouble in schools, and things might be better for her family, and the employer could hire instead a real full-time employee, a man.  On the other hand, I have worked with some single mothers who were better workers, more efficient, than I was, even with their family interruptions.

Monday, June 1, 2015


The following article is taken from Frontpage.com, the website of David Horowitz.

‘Roots’ on the History Channel: Remaking a Lie
May 29, 2015 by Jack Kerwick
In 1976, Alex Haley authored the nearly 1,000 page, Roots: The Saga of An American Family.  The following year, ABC aired a mini-series that was based upon it. Both book and television show proved to be tremendous successes.  Now, the History Channel has officially announced that it will remake Roots.
There’s only one problem: Roots is a fake and Haley is a fraud—and a fraud on multiple levels.
Investigative journalist Philip Nobile refers to Haley as a “literary rogue,” an “impostor” whose “prose was so inept that he required ghosts [ghost writers] throughout his career.” Upon reading Haley’s posthumously released private papers and interviewing one of his original editors for Roots, Nobile was able to determine that the book’s real author was Murray Fisher, Haley’s editor from his time at Playboy.  
Fisher was also white.
But matters get worse.
Not only was Roots ghost-written.  It was plagiarized.
You probably aren’t familiar with the name of Harry Courlander.  In 1978, one year after 130 million viewers tuned into Roots, Haley agreed to pay Courlander $650,000 (2 million dollars in today’s terms) as part of an out of court settlement.
Courlander—a white man—had sued Haley for having plagiarized his 1967 work, The African.  Haley conceded that at least 81 passages were lifted practically verbatim from the Courlander, and the judge presiding over the case agreed with Courlander’s pre-trial memorandum remark that Haley “copied [from The African] language, thoughts, attitudes, incidents, situations, plot and character.”
So too did Columbia University English professor Michael Wood.  In his Expert Witness Report, Wood insisted that the “evidence of copying from The African in both the novel and television dramatization of Roots is clear and irrefutable,” “significant and extensive.”
Judge Robert J. Ward concluded: “Copying there was, period.”  Years later, Ward came forth in an interview with the BBC and admitted that Haley “had perpetrated a hoax on the public.”
Although during the trial Haley swore that he personally had never read The African, that “the life” of Courlander’s book had found its way into Roots courtesy of careless research assistants who failed to document their material, a “minorities’ studies” professor, Joseph Brucac from Skidmore College, signed a sworn affidavit in which he noted that he and Haley had indeed discussed The African at least five years prior to the publication of Roots. In fact, Brucac even lent Haley his own copy of it.
However, for as bad as plagiarism is, Roots was cooked in another respect:
It is a lie.
Professional genealogists Gary B. and Elizabeth Shown Mills have noted that not only is there zero formal documentation to corroborate “the oral tradition” regarding Haley’s family history; what evidence there is—“plantation records, wills, census records”actually repudiates this tradition.  The evidence “contradict[s] each and every pre-Civil War statement of Afro-American lineage in Roots” (emphases original)!
Haley claims that his great-great-great-great grandfather, Kunta Kinte, was brought to America and renamed “Toby” by his new master.  But upon canvassing all of the evidence, the Mills issue a decisive verdict:
“Toby Waller was not Kunta Kinte.”
The insuperable problem is that “this Waller slave Toby appeared in six separate documents of record over a period of four years preceding the arrival of the Lord Ligonier,” the ship that supposedly brought Kunta Kinte to America (emphasis original).
The Mills conclude that it is “inarguable” that “the 182 pages and thirty-nine chapters in which the Virginia lives of Haley’s ‘ancestors’ are chronicled have no basis in fact.  Neither of the two relationships that are crucial to his pedigree (the identity of Kizzy as daughter of Kinte alias Toby, and the relationship of Bell as wife of Kinte and mother of Kizzy) can be established by even the weakest genealogical evidence.”
Haley’s account of his post-Civil War ancestry fares no better than that of his antebellum genealogy.   As the Mills say, “not only the authenticity of Roots’evidence is called into question by the total absence of documentation for any alleged event, individual, or relationship, but doubt also falls upon the very essence of family life portrayed in Roots” (emphasis added).
There is one final point.  Roots climaxes with Haley discovering the village from which his ancestor, Kunta Kinte, was supposed to have been captured.  A griot from the village of Juffure—“Fofana”—confirmed the account of Kinte’s abduction that Haley had grown up (allegedly) hearing about from his aunts.
Professor Donald R. Wright, “a specialist in African pre-history with extensive experience in the collection of Gambian oral traditions,” visited Juffure twice.  What he discovered was that Fofana was a con artist.
Fofana “showed no inclination to recite long (or short) genealogies of any families.”  When it came to Kunta Kinte, though, “he was eager…to speak.”  Kinte, Wright continues, “was the only individual about whom Fofana provided any specific information.”
There is a reason for this.  In advance of his exchange with Fofana, Haley relayed to Gambian officials the account of Kunta Kinte’s capture that had supposedly been transmitted to him by his relatives.  He told them as well that it was confirmation of this account that he sought.  Seeing the potentially boundless profits to be reaped from tourism and the like, the officials ensured that Haley would hear what he wanted to hear.
The second time Professor Wright visited Juffure he did not seek out Fofana by name.  Rather, he sought out “the person best versed in the history of the village and its families.” Wright was taken to listen to four people.
Fofana’s name was never even mentioned.
Black commentator Stanley Crouch describes Haley as a “ruthless hustler” and “one of the biggest damn liars this country has ever seen.”  Haley, Crouch states, is like Tawana Brawley, the young black woman who infamously lied about being raped and humiliated by six white men.  Like the lie concocted by Brawley and abetted by the likes of Al Sharpton, Haley’s story is also a “hoax” that beautifully illustrates “how history and tragic fact can be pillaged by an individual willing to exploit whatever the na├»ve might consider sacred.”
Regarding Roots’ depiction of slavery, the black scholar Thomas Sowell remarks that it consists of “some crucially false pictures of what had actually happened—false pictures that continue to dominate thinking today.”
For example, West Africa, from which Kunta Kinte was supposed to have been taken, had been “a center of slave trading before the first white man arrived there.”  Moreover, “slavery continues in parts of it to this very moment.”
Sowell also notes that “Africans sold vast numbers of other Africans to Europeans.  But they hardly let Europeans go running around in their territory, catching people willy-nilly,” as depicted by Haley in Roots. 
Even Haley’s friend, Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr., stated that if we are going to “speak candidly,” we have to concede that “it’s highly unlikely that Alex actually found the village from whence his ancestors sprang.”
That Gates, the editor of the Norton Anthology of African-American Literature, chose to omit references to Haley tells it all.
The black leftist scholar, John Henrik Clarke, confessed to having “cried real tears” when he discovered that “Haley was less than authentic.”

The History Channel’s rendition of Roots should be subtitled: “Remake of a Fake.”