Urban Legends

USPS vs. African Americans

The Legend


Thurgood Marshall, Roy Wilkins, Langston Hughes, Zora Neale Hurston, Patricia Roberts Harris are all scheduled for destruction by the United States Postal Service. Please forward this e-mail and boycott buying of stamps ASAP until the postal service changes this policy. The P.O. will unleash its army of postal workers and DESTROY all remaining African Americans at the end of the month instead of following their usual procedure of selling them until they are depleted. Why? Because since the Civil War we're not buying them! However, our postal workers are toeing the oppressive company line and asking patrons to complain to the Post Master, via a complaint form, instead of "getting all upset." Please ask for and complete the form (at the post office) unless you're black, in which case you should probably avoid the post office until they promise not to kill you. And if you do have to buy stamps, request African-American stamps every time to show solidarity and opposition to genocide. If we don't buy them, nobody will know that we have a problem with the policy and the P.O. will just go about its horrible business. Please send this email to all your friends so we can keep BLACK PEOPLE in America!!!

Behind the Legend

We still have not been able to discover whether this item is based on fact or not. Our guess is that someone heard a rumor that that the Post Office would be discontinuing its line of Black Heritage stamps and didn't hear (or didn't remember) the key detail that it was stamps and not people the Post Office was discontinuing.

Complicating the matter is the fact that the United States Post Office, prior to the Civil War, did produce a line of stamps intended to be affixed to the backs of slaves before they were transported between owners. The government was extremely embarrassed about this when slavery was finally stamped out (no pun intended) that they tried to just ignore the issue and the rules governing these products were never removed from the books. As a result, the Post Office is still required to carry "Immigrant Worker Transfer Stamps" and sell them on request. The current line of stamps carries pictures of famous Southern plantation owners, Klansmen, and Nazis, and are sold along with a pamphlet in which the Post Office vehemently apologizes for offering the things for sale in the first place. The price of these stamps is one ha'penny and has not changed since 1825. Ask for them at your local post office, if you must.

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