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The POOR family stands proudly surveying their hard work in 2012, the early days at Homefulness when the garden was the focus. No one had moved in yet, so they came as often as they could, busting up the concrete and asphalt to uncover the rich earth underneath that was soon producing delicious, nutritious edibles. The food was shared with folks in the neighborhood, who were soon participating in Community Newsroom, reporting on their lives and community. Homefulness is a very special place. Instead of anyone trying to destroy it, we should all be replicating it where we are. – Photo: Poor News Network

Shaking down the poor: The infiltration of a landless people’s movement

Homefulness is a poor people-led revolution that has taken root in Oakland. Homefulness can also be called humbleness. It is a sweat-equity model of housing that honors the land that was stolen from our ancestors. As history has shown us with poor people-led revolutions and movements of the past, there are those who will try to undermine a humble revolution. This manipulation is rooted in envy. It has no place in our humble revolution known as Homefulness. We will continue to live the revolution by any means necessary.

Behind Enemy Lines

Pattern of practice: Centuries of racist oppression culminating in mass incarceration

Jan 26, 2015
After more than 400 years of Black history in this country, Black children must still remind the public of their humanity.

After winning their freedom in the bloodiest conflict in U.S. history, Blacks were in many cases and places denied basic human, civil and political rights, literally forcing New Afrikans back into slavery by denying them a right to life. Over the years the government declared and waged war on the New Afrikan communities – war on unemployed “vagrants,’ war on crime, war on drugs, war on gangs – culminating in mass incarceration.

The way forward to end solitary confinement torture: Where’s the army?

Jan 25, 2015
“Solitary Confinement Is Torture” – Art: Michael D. Russell, C-90473, PBSP SHU D7-217, P.O. Box 7500, Crescent City CA 95532

I snapped to the fact that once we successfully exposed this torture program to the world, making the people aware, at least some of the responsibility shifts to the people to hold the lawmakers responsible. It’s unbelievable to me to see the numbers of people out there who are aware of the continued torture we are subjected to, and yet they’ve failed to take any action to hold those responsible accountable.

The voice of a slave who is not afraid to speak out against Alabama’s wickedness and corruption

Jan 21, 2015
After a roof caved in a year ago in another part of the prison, more beds were moved into this already overcrowded dorm.

When I arrived at Childersburg Community Work Center on Oct. 25, 2013, I did so with one of the worst cases of ringworm any of the medical staff here or at St. Clair had ever seen. How that came to be I will explain later. It didn’t take long for me to see that I was at a very nasty and unconstitutional facility, and on Nov. 19, 2013, I filed a formal complaint to the U.S. Department of Justice and the State Fire Marshall.

Humanity indicted for our silence in the face of torture

Jan 12, 2015

As imprisoned activists we’ve often asked society: What have your eyes seen to wish to see no more? And what have your ears heard to wish to hear no more? Your self-imposed silence has only fueled the government’s thirst for fascist repression, and this repression has manifested on every level of society, causing humanity to hemorrhage, while debris from this hemorrhaging stains the dissipating remnants of a deteriorating society.

Phil Africa of MOVE dies under suspicious circumstances in Pennsylvania prison

Jan 12, 2015
Phil Africa

On Saturday, Jan. 10, 2015, Phil Africa, revolutionary, John Africa’s first minister of defense and beloved brother, husband and father, passed away under suspicious circumstances at the State Correctional Institution at Dallas, Penn. Phil will never be forgotten and this is not the end. He is dearly missed, but his strong example should inspire everyone to fight harder for the freedom of the MOVE 9 and all political prisoners.

Prison closings in Virginia mean worse conditions for prisoners
Federal Pell Grant eligibility for people in county jails or juvenile hall
Support SB188: Give Delaware prisoners a shot at freedom
Nurse fired for speaking out: ‘I am on a mission to stop torture at CDCR’
The Palestinianization of Blacks in the United States
No matter what they say or do, we die
Pennsylvania politicians pass Mumia Gag Law: Help fund the lawsuit to stop it
‘Helping Me, Help Me’: Help returning prisoners find work, stay free
Prisoners’ Agreement to End Hostilities as the basis for the abolition of ‘legal’ slavery
Lucasville vet: Refusing to snitch on men merely protesting inhumane prison conditions cost me 27 years
Chairman Shaka Zulu: Resistance is the way forward
I grew up in Guantánamo: Now that you have heard my story, you cannot turn away
California’s savage system of confinement: An end to solitary is long overdue
Have NO contact with police – they are child killers
16 hours in the torture chamber

News & Views

Community protector Bo Frierson tipped from wheelchair for protesting SFPD’s assault on his cousin

Jan 27, 2015
SFPD tries to tip Bo Frierson out of wheelchair 011815 poster

Devaughn Frierson Jr., better known as Bo, endeavors every day to protect his community and, like the Black Panthers, he doesn’t turn his back to abuse by police. As a community journalist who is a Black disabled man like Bo, I wanted to get to know what drives this activist, who is a hero to his neighbors but was treated abominably by San Francisco police.

Congolese protest election delay: ‘Non Kabila Rwandais’

Jan 26, 2015
'Non Kabila Rwandais' graffiti Kinshasa 0115 by Reuters

A widely feared and anticipated military attack by U.N. and Congolese troops on the FDLR has not materialized, despite U.N. Special Envoy Russ Feingold’s repeated urgings. Instead, this week, the people of the Democratic Republic of Congo rose up in the streets to demand that their Parliament not pass legislation allowing Congolese President Joseph Kabila to extend his stay in office beyond constitutional term limits. KPFA’s Ann Garrison has the story.

Wheelchair mobility plus education equals a bright future for Eunice Atim of Uganda

Jan 25, 2015
In her classroom, Atim uses her old wheelbarrow so her new, custom made wheelchair will stay new longer. – Photo: Ronald Galiwango

Ronald Galiwango and Krip-Hop Nation teamed up in 2013 to write articles, published in the SF Bay View newspaper, about a single father raising two daughters with disabilities who needed wheelchairs to get around. The campaign turned into a two-year effort with two goals 1) wheelchairs and 2) education. Here is Ronald’s update on this successful campaign with pictures of Atim at school.

‘Friends of Victoire’ launched to free Rwandan political prisoner Victoire Ingabire

Jan 25, 2015
Victoire Ingabire

In January 2010, Rwandan opposition leader Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza returned from The Netherlands to Rwanda to attempt to run against sitting President Paul Kagame. She said she knew that she would be either assassinated or imprisoned, and she is now entering the fifth year of a 15-year prison sentence. KPFA’s Ann Garrison spoke to Marie Lyse Numuhoza, the founder of Friends of Victoire, a new organization created to fight for her freedom.

Children of incarcerated parents say no to a new jail in San Francisco

Jan 24, 2015
Project WHAT! members participated in the Statewide Action Against Jail Expansion in Sacramento in December 2013.

San Francisco’s jail population is steadily decreasing, and we hope that the number of San Francisco youth struggling to find support during their parents’ and family members’ incarceration will decrease with it. This is why we as youth who have all experienced parental incarceration in San Francisco oppose a new jail in our city. Why invest in a new jail rather than the potential of our youth?

Our future and the solar mandate of Assembly Bill 327
Black men disrespected in Mayor Ed Lee’s State of the City address
Hajj Malcolm Shabazz: Malcolm and Martin came at the same enemy from different angles
Congo’s problems are Museveni, Kagame and Kabila, not the FDLR
Rep. Barbara Lee: We’re still living in ‘two Americas’
New SF board president should fight for new Human Rights Commission
Today the Fillmore went dark!
Victory! Community pressure DID reverse the dangerous secret Lennar-City decision to implode Candlestick Stadium
Five years later: Haitians step up their fight for independence and democracy
An open letter to the technology industry: Honor the King Holiday ‘The time is always right to do what is right’
Thousands of Black lives mattered in Nigeria, but the world didn’t pay attention
Dream Defenders, Black Lives Matter and Ferguson reps take historic trip to Palestine
Governor’s proposed budget leaves California’s youngest children behind
Barbara Lee on US war in Syria and Iraq: Congress ducks responsibility
London Breed wins second most powerful seat in San Francisco, city of hope

Culture Currents

Upcoming Events

 » Full event list and descriptions
Black Brunch holding “Free Marissa Alexander Now Teach-in” for Black folks Jan 27 6:30 PM Omni Commons, 4799 Shattuck Ave., Oakland On Tuesday January 27 Marissa Alexander will have a hearing more>>

The indispensable weapon is culture and the power of the spoken word

Jan 21, 2015
“Incantations and Rites” was presented Dec. 6 by Daughters of Yam (at left) – devorah major and Opal Palmer Adisa – featuring their poetry and the music of Destiny Muhammad, Harpist from the Hood. – Photo: Malaika Kambon

Our community, our humanity; our ancestors, elders and children; our poets and artists from across the Diaspora: All were brought together on Dec. 6 for the sharing of “Incantations and Rites” with the Daughters of Yam, with Destiny Muhammad, “Harpist from the Hood,” and with the hood itself. Our focus was on the issues of our Black young men being assassinated in the streets.

African American classical music: Renaissance woman P. Kujichagulia speaks

Jan 20, 2015

On Sunday, Feb. 1, to kick off Black History Month, Ms. Kujichagulia will be giving a lecture on African American Classical Music, aka Jazz, at the San Francisco Main Library. No matter what you think you know about the topic, this presentation will definitely be something to remember. Hope to see you there. Now check her out in her own words.

Mumia’s daughter Goldii leaves a powerful legacy

Jan 18, 2015
Goldii performs at Mumia’s 55th Birthday and Book Release Party in 2009.

The Free Mumia Abu-Jamal Coalition announced her passing on the afternoon of Dec. 17: “It is with deep sadness that we share the news about the transition of Goldii. From a daughter’s perspective, she was a dynamic spokesperson, speaking stirringly of the impact incarceration has on children and families. She was also a staunch advocate on behalf of her father’s innocence.”

Disobedience is being Black or Brown

Jan 18, 2015
'Disobedience is Being Black or Brown' art by Victor Garcia 1014-1, web

I’ve been drawing all my life, drawing with everything but paint, but most of my art had no meaning. Other artists I have seen in the Bay View and other publications have inspired me to create this piece, which carries a message: The baby in handcuffs represents the young boys torn away from their mothers or society to be eternally incarcerated in men’s penitentiaries – thus the “SB260” on the breast plate.

Ronald ‘Elder’ Freeman: He walked the San Quentin yard with the noble stature of a revolutionary

Jan 18, 2015
Elder Freeman at an All of Us or None event in New York City in May 2002 – Photo courtesy Sis. Carmelita

When I first met Elder, he was introduced to me as Kojo. He served his time with the dignity and the spirit of a caged Panther. I know that spirit, as it was reflected by the many other Panthers who were serving time in San Quentin, like Geronimo ji jaga, the indomitable Chip Fitzgerald and many others. Back in the ‘70s, San Quentin was a dangerous prison, where someone could lose his life in the blink, yet Kojo/Elder walked the main yard with no fear.

Ten things you should know about Selma before you see the film
‘Selma’: Unexpected bounty
‘Selma’ shockingly and sadly relevant
No joy, no peace
Wanda’s Picks for January 2015
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