By Stacy M. Brown
Special to the NNPA News Wire from the Washington Informer
Dr. Frances Cress Welsing, the famed 80-year-old afro-centrist, has died. Welsing’s death was announced by close friends on social media and later confirmed by family members.
“RIP to the elder, Dr. Frances Cress Welsing, the inspiration behind ‘Fear of a Black Planet,’” said Chuck D, the leader of the groundbreaking rap group, Public Enemy, whose 1990 “Fear of a Black Planet” album sold more than 1 million copies in less than two weeks and is viewed as one of the greatest and most important recordings ever.
Popular Democratic strategist Donna Brazile said Welsing died of complications from a stroke she suffered earlier in the week.
“Our great teacher and leader has transitioned into the realms of the ancestors,” said designer Inl Vibez. “I give thanks for all the powerful word sound and knowledge she has shared. Let us learn from the teachings of this divine queen and move accordingly.”
Welsing was admitted Thursday to MedStar Washington Medical Center in Northwest and was eventually placed on a ventilator. It is believed that the decision to remove Welsing from life support machines occurred after the arrival from Chicago of her sister, Loren Cress Love.
Born in Chicago on March 18, 1935, Welsing, a psychiatrist, is noted for her “Cress Theory of Color Confrontation,” which explores the practice of White supremacy.
In 1991, she authored the book, “The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors,” where she stated that a system is practiced by the global White minority, on both conscious and unconscious levels, to ensure their genetic survival by any means necessary. Welsing said this system attacks people of color, particularly people of African descent, in the nine major areas of people’s activity: economics, education, entertainment, labor, law, politics, religion, sex and war. She said she believes that it is imperative that people of color, especially people of African descent, understand how the system of white supremacy works in order to dismantle it and bring true justice to planet Earth.
Welsing appeared in the 2005 documentary, “500 Years Later,” and the 2011 film, “Hidden Colors: The Untold History of People of Aboriginal, Moor, and African Descent.”
Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis Jr., the president and CEO of the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA), praised Welsing and her legacy.
“May God bless the living legacy and memory of freedom fighter Dr. Frances Cress Welsing. On behalf of the National Newspapers Publishers Association, we mourn the passing of our beloved sister and freedom fighter,” Chavis said in a statement. “More than anyone else in the 20th and 21st centuries personified the intellect and courage to speak the truth about the pseudo ideology of white supremacy and its longstanding impact on the consciousness and lives of millions of Black people throughout the world.
“Today we all must reaffirm our determination to keep the memory and legacy of Dr. Welsing alive in all that we do to continue to advance the struggle for freedom, justice and equality. RIP, Dr. Frances Cress Welsing.”
Memorial services have not yet been announced.