By Colin Flaherty, WorldNetDaily
You may have missed this chapter in Black History Month: In 1787, a bunch of people signed a bunch of agreements that said black people are not required to obey American laws because they are really citizens of Morocco, not the United States.
Today, members of the Moorish Nation claim this entitles black people to move into empty houses without paying (don’t call it squatting!), create their own license plates, issue their own drivers licenses, print their own property titles and claim sovereign immunity when they get arrested.
All without success, so far. But they keep trying all over the country.
Moorish Nation made its biggest national impression last March, when Abka Re Bey and her six children moved into a $3 million, 10,000-square foot mansion in Memphis. Abka Re Bey even filed paperwork with the local Register of Deeds saying she was taking ownership of the property “in the name of Allah, the most high,” said NewsOne, a TV network “for Black America.”
The Washington Post, CBS News and others neglected to mention the religious connection to Islam in their reports on these racially separate squatters.
Abka Re Bey stayed in the mansion a week before the SWAT team came and took her away for trespassing, burglary and theft.
“She’s Moorish-American,” said Jarrod Batts to Action News in Memphis after her arraignment. “Why y’all saying she’s a squatter?”
The Washington Post tracked down two officials who say this group is responsible for a lot of mayhem that never makes the newspapers:
“I can promise you that every state has had their challenges with these guys,” said Carol Foglesong, a land records official in Orange County, Fla., and past president the National Association of County Recorders, Election Officials and Clerks.
“It’s going on in every state,” said Kory Flowers, an investigator with the Greensboro, N.C., police and a national expert on sovereign groups.
In Bethesda three months later, three members of the Moorish Nation tried the same thing when they moved into a $6 million house with 12 bedrooms, 17 bathrooms and two saunas. When deputies showed up to haul them off, they said they were members of “the Moorish Nation and had the right to claim the property,” said the local sheriff.
Over at the legal offshoot of the Sierra Club, the Natural Resources Defense Council, the staffers are curiously ambivalent about black nationalists invading Bethesda to steal private property:
“To be fair, a good bit of the movement’s apparent philosophy honors human rights and criticizes the sad and too-long chapter of slavery in the U.S., in ways that are hard to argue with,” said house philosopher Kaid Benfield. “I figure the (the Bethesda mansion owner) has had enough breaks in life and maybe is due for a karmic hit.”
The last karmic hit the Bethesda mansion had was when it hosted a fundraiser for local liberals and Bill Clinton and Al Gore planted trees there.
In Tampa Bay, police found Zuri Akila Betiti Matawala Zurj-Bey, a grand sheikess in the Moorish Temple of Science of the World, driving with an usual set of license plates: “Moorish American Republic 070117-004.”
That didn’t work out too well either.
“I’ve been kidnapped,” she told the Tampa Bay Times in December 2012 after police hauled her off to the slammer for outstanding warrants. “I don’t belong here. When you belong to another government, you’re not subject to someone else’s rules and laws. I’m just a missionary. This is a misunderstanding.”
That misunderstanding continues today in Wilmington, Del., where Moorish Nation had a lot to choose from: 1,387 of that city’s 22,576 homes are empty. And that does not count houses for sale.
Last month, Moorish Nation struck again. And not for the first time in this city of 72,000. This time they invaded a large home on the tree-lined, once majestic and now slightly worn Baynard Boulevard.
“They just moved in liked they owned the place,” said Ralph Malatesta, the next door neighbor. “That’s what they said to me anyway and I believed them. A few of them look like they just got out of prison.”
A SWAT team ended that soon after. “There were a lot of kids in there too,” Malatesta said.
The Moorish Nation is hardly the only black separatist group in America. On July 1, Chokwe Lumumba was sworn in as mayor of Jackson, the capital of Mississippi. He is a former leader of a group called the Republic of New Afrika that seeks to turn the states of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and South Carolina into an independent black nation.
Even Al Jazeera was impressed: The network called Lumumba “America’s most revolutionary mayor.”
“Free the Land” is the group’s slogan. In his inauguration address, one of the first things Lumumba did was raise his hand in a clenched fist and proclaim to loud applause from 2,500 people: “Free the Land.”
Neither is Moorish Nation the only group of black people squatting. In Detroit in February, a homeowner gone for a few days returned to find her neighbors had moved in, stolen her property, eaten her food, and turned her home into their chill pad where they could use drugs.
Adrea Isom of Fox News in Detroit could hardly contain her incredulity when speaking to the family and friends of the squatters:
“Three men had helped themselves to all of her gin and her Seagram’s happy juice,” said Isom. “They cooked up crab legs, shrimp and they even had a turkey in the oven, can you believe it? And while they were fixing their feast they she says they were high as a kite on the chronic.”
Two of the suspects lived next door.
The locals were unapologetic and blamed the owner for leaving the house unguarded:
“It was like a chill spot,” said one neighbor. “Somebody going to invite you over to smoke some weed and we right next door. The guy that was in there was squatting already, so he was inviting people over, because he was living there.”
“This is Detroit and we will come squat in your house if you’re not home,” said another neighbor who also offered the homeowner a few words of advice: “Stay in your home before your copper come up missing.”