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Folsom hunger strike begins today, May 25 – your support is needed

On May 16, inmates at Old Folsom State Prison made contact with the outside world to announce that they will begin a hunger strike on May 25 in response to ongoing mistreatment, dehumanization and unbearable living conditions at Old Folsom. When incarcerated people take action to fight for their dignity, their rights and their lives, those of us on the outside must answer with solidarity. Our support is crucial in getting their demands met and minimizing retaliation against them. We must let these brave individuals know that we have their backs, and that they will not be forgotten.

Behind Enemy Lines

The antithesis of oppression: How I survived 20 years of solitary confinement

May 27, 2017

In recent months, renewed interest in the lives of those who were released to the mainline after decades in California’s infamous SHU torture units has prompted many to ask us the question: How did you survive decades of solitary confinement? To understand how I survived almost two decades of solitary confinement, you must first understand why the state subjected us to these torture units in the first place.

Hunger strike set to begin May 25 in Old Folsom ASU/Ad-Seg

May 16, 2017

The men at Old Folsom State Prison in the ASU and Ad-Seg will begin a hunger strike on May 25 due to ongoing issues with the conditions of confinement that violate the Eighth Amendment. These prisoners are without food bowls, therefore having to eat out of ziplock bags. They have no cups, needing to drink water from an old milk carton. They have no TVs, no property at all. The mail is sometimes withheld for no reason – up to a month for some prisoners, for others even longer.

Modern day slavery is real

May 14, 2017

Modern day slaves, sanctioned by the United States government under the 13th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution … Yes! By subjugating, marginalizing and disenfranchising the oppressed human beings, by way of economic discrimination or depriving humans of decent wages, that forces humans to live half-butchered lives that subject humans to the many social ills produced inside a society – a slave, criminal and gangster mentality that devalues, demeans, degrades and dehumanizes humans.

Delaware returns to death penalty debate after prison uprising

May 5, 2017

Just after 10 a.m. EDT on Feb. 1, a group of inmates took four staff hostage as they seized control of Building C at the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center in Smyrna, Delaware, with 120 prisoners inside. By the end of the 18-hour standoff, Sgt. Steven Floyd Sr. was dead. Republican Rep. Steve Smyk, who had planned to support a bill to reinstate capital punishment, says he thinks the uprising has given some state lawmakers who initially opposed the death penalty a new outlook.

It’s back on now

May 4, 2017

I am currently in SCI Greene prison in Pennsylvania. All this time I never knew such a beautiful paper like this existed for our community, that has the character of putting everything in the paper, no matter how much it will scare the masses with truth and clear and undiluted information as to what is going on in our communities and groups and in other minority communities. I feel solidarity and love and purpose when I read your paper, which was lent to me by a brother in here.

Dr. Belay D. Reddick awarded honorary degree
Comrade Malik: Update on the End Prison Slavery in Texas and Fight Toxic Prisons movements
Prison censors don’t like Uncle Du: Creators Ruben and Mandu respond
Amend The 13th: Why the Millions for Prisoners March is vital to social change in Amerika
What California should do with people convicted of violent felonies
BOP approves prisoner-created and run rehabilitation and reentry program
Prison Transportation Service, PTS of America, is hell on wheels
In our fifth year of the Agreement to End Hostilities, it’s time for Gov. Brown and CDCr to recognize our humanity!
Planted weapons and stolen property: Mounting retribution for continued exposures of abuses in Texas prisons
Mumia Abu-Jamal: The illusion of correctional medicine – UPDATE: Mumia finally begins treatment
Advice for prisoners and their supporters regarding Board of Parole Hearings psychological evaluations
Updates on Zulu
Prison lives matter
California Board of Prison Hearings Prisoners are guests of honor at KKK lynchings
Fight Toxic Prisons National Convergence is in Texas this June

News & Views

Americans can have better healthcare at lower cost

May 26, 2017

In other countries, people enjoy better healthcare at lower cost. Everyone has access to healthcare and average life expectancy is greater. In Canada, with their version of Medicare for All, no one goes bankrupt because of healthcare expenses. In the U.S., healthcare bankrupts more than a million every year. In a recent Kaiser poll, 81 percent of Democrats and 58 percent of all voters supported an Improved and Expanded Medicare for All. What is being done to move us in that direction?

Positive impact in African American community is key to Democratic infrastructure jobs plan

May 25, 2017

Today, May 25, congressional Democrats and a coalition of progressive organizations representing millions of Americans kicked off the long-anticipated infrastructure fight, launching a massive campaign to create millions of new jobs – and invest billions in much-needed projects in African-American communities across the country. The Millions of Jobs Coalition announced grassroots events across the nation next week touting the progressive plan.

The story of SF Mayor Hood Robin’ and his Merrie Men

May 25, 2017

San Francisco has the highest employment disparity between Blacks and Whites in the country according to a February 2017 report from the Brookings Institution. The legend of Robin Hood and his Merrie Men who stole from the rich to give to the poor has more myth than truth to it. However, in San Francisco, the story of Mayor Hood Robin’ and his Merrie Men, who steal from the poor to give to the rich has more truth than myth.

Gentrification hits Brooklyn House: Sugar Hill DJ Rob ‘Da Noize’ Temple faces eviction

May 24, 2017

When I started Krip-Hop Nation 10 years ago, the first artist I met online and face to face was Rob “Da Noize” Temple of Brooklyn. Since that time, Noize Studio has become a second home for Krip-Hop Nation and the studio that professionally produced and mixed most of my spoken word mixtapes and Krip-Hop Nation’s songs on our six CDs. Now Temple, his studio and family are being evicted as the forces of gentrification are burning and privatizing Brooklyn at a fast pace.

SF Sounds’ ‘Bring on the Bayview’ by Sarah Burchard greenlights white supremacist gentrification

May 22, 2017

On April 13, the ​SF Sounds​ newspaper made the mistake of publishing an article written by Sarah Burchard, entitled ​“Bring on the Bayview​.” From what we’ve gathered, Sarah Burchard is a white person who is not from San Francisco. ​As people born and raised in San Francisco and Bayview residents, we find Sarah’s article overtly ignorant and flat-out offensive. The article blatantly disrespects residents and our experiences in the current social, economic and political climate.

Tribute to my pops, Kilo G Perry
Broutage and coupé-decalé: A cybercrime way of life in Western Africa
Bay Area leaders join National Mama’s Bail Out Day to highlight inhumane bail practices
All charges against Kyle Zoellner dropped in the murder of Humboldt State student David Josiah Lawson
Parents bring the child care crisis to Sacramento at the 21st annual Stand for Children Day
Parents Against CPS Corruption fights ‘medical kidnap’
Future plans for Southeast Campus remain cloudy
AATCLC stands with San Francisco Supervisor Malia Cohen as she introduces bold city-wide ordinance to restrict the sale of menthol and flavored tobacco products
Louisiana must decarcerate
Net neutrality: Protecting your right to free speech in the 21st century
Poor people on Park Avenue?
Building for May Day ‘on the shoulders of Dr. King’
Why Oakland needs a multi-unit smoke free housing policy
‘The public peace’: Race, class, control and the creation of the modern police in antebellum Baltimore
Did police and EMT response contribute to Humboldt State student’s death?

Culture Currents

Upcoming Events

 » Full event list and descriptions
May 27, 2017
AFRICAN LIBERATION DAY, Oakland 2017 11:00 am Tassfaronga Center 85th Avenue, Oakland, CA 94605 United States This is our day. PLEASE PARTICIPATE & SUPPORT! Asante. Ase`.

African ... more>>
May 27, 2017
No Trump or City Cuts to Affordable Housing - Rally & March! 12:00 pm Phillip Burton Federal Building 450 Golden Gate Avenue, San Francisco, California 94102 PROTEST OF FEDERAL AND LOCAL CUTS TO AFFORDABLE HOUSING
March ... more>>
May 27, 2017
Outdoor Movie Night Featuring "Get Out" 7:30 pm NOW Hunters Point 155 Jennings Street (cross street Cargo Way)(right next to Heron's Head Park), San Francisco, California 94124 Join NOW Hunters Point for the start of the new ... more>>
May 28, 2017
UUSF Forum - Dr. Jeffrey Gee: "S.B. 562 - California's Movement toward Single Payer" 9:30 am First Unitarian Universalist Society of San Francisco (MLK Room) 1187 Franklin St, San Francisco, California 94109 Californians for a Healthy California Act (SB 562) was introduced on ... more>>
May 28, 2017
Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD) in the Neighborhood: Fun Day in the #Bayview Free Family Arts + Crafts 2:00 pm 4720 3rd St., between Newcomb and Oakdale, Bayview Hunters Point, San Francisco TODAY! and Every Sunday Will Be Fun Day in the #... more>>
May 28, 2017
SAN FRANCISCO NAACP BRANCH GENERAL MEETING 3:00 pm Third Baptist Church-Walker/Reynolds Assembly Room, 1399 McAllister St., San Francisco HIGHLIGHTS

Presentation on the reactivation of the Youth Council which ... more>>

SF Black Film Fest doc chronicles Atlantic City’s Madame of Black hair

May 23, 2017

In an era where the Koreans own the multi-billion-dollar Black haircare industry in the U.S., we need to know about and learn from Black business pioneers like Madame Sara Spencer Washington. Atlantic City’s Madame was a multi-millionaire in the 20’s, running a business empire called Apex Hair and News Co. Her grandson, filmmaker Royston Scott, sat down with me to discuss his documentary called “The Sara Spencer Washington Story,” which will be screening at the SF Black Film Festival.

‘Pass Interference: The Davone Bess story’ tackles mental illness in NFL at SF Black Film Fest

May 23, 2017

The monumental documentary created by filmmaker Branson Wright, “Pass Interference: The Davone Bess Story,” chronicles the life of one of Oakland’s most talented athletes, who shot to superstardom in the NFL. Then his life crumbled when he had to come face to face with his own mental illness. I caught up with filmmaker Branson Wright to talk about the motivation for doing the film, mental illness, a hometown hero and more …

Colorism in the Black community is the subject of SF Black Film Fest-selected film, ‘Cream’

May 22, 2017

“Cream” is a political and socially conscious short that is set in Oakland in 1968, at the time of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King. The film deals with identity, self-respect and knowledge of self in a Black family setting. Check out filmmaker Alexandra Lebona as she talks about her film, “Cream,” which has been selected to screen at the San Francisco Black Film Festival.

‘#Victim 505’: Local filmmaker Antwon Rollins’ horror short selected for SF Black Film Fest

May 21, 2017

When people mention horror, they may think of Alfred Hitchcock or Stephen King. Now we have Antwon Rollins, a Black man, whose mind is immersed in writing and shooting horror, but who is able to tell stories from a slightly different perspective: a common Black perspective. Check out “#Victim 505” at the San Francisco Black Film Fest, as well as check out the filmmaker Antwon Rollins as he talks to us about filmmaking and “#Victim 505.”

Suspense and drama encapsulate SF Black Film Fest pick ‘Live a Little’

May 18, 2017

One of the best mystery films in the 2017 SF Black Film Festival this year is “Live a Little” by filmmaker David Jaffe, where the main character gets loaded, a fight spills from the bar, someone gets killed, and everyone is trying to put together the many pieces to figure out what happened. Suspense drives this feature film more than any other emotion. Check out filmmaker David Jaffe in his own words.

SF Black Film Festival highlights human trafficking in ‘When Love Kills: The Falicia Blakely Story’
Political short ‘White Face’ hits SF Black Film Fest like a tsunami
Love story ‘Boston2Philly’ selected for San Francisco Black Film Festival
‘BlaxploItalian: 100 Years of Blackness in Italian Cinema’
Wanda’s Picks for May 2017
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