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In Baltimore on Monday, April 27, 10,000 hit the streets to demand justice for Freddie Gray.

Stand with the defiant ones in Baltimore

The uprising in Baltimore has delivered an unmistakable and powerful message that the time is over when people will tolerate the unending and outrageous murder and brutality carried out by police. The torture and murder of Freddie Gray for nothing – and the ongoing, infuriating lies and coverup – is only the latest in a long line of such horrors in not only Baltimore but all over the U.S., from North Charleston, S.C., to Ferguson, Missouri, from Pasco, Washington, to New York City and beyond – THIS MUST STOP!

Behind Enemy Lines

From SHU to mainline, you will be tested

May 1, 2015

This is the advice I share with anyone getting out of the SHU and going into GP (general population). The first thing I did when I was released to GP was to find out all I could about the mainline and the programs that they offered. You want to get connected to as many self-help programs as you can. Something else that helped me to transition from SHU to mainline was to surround myself with positive people and keep myself busy.

Solitary confinement tricknology at Menard Concentration Slave Camp

Apr 30, 2015

On the battlefield of psychological warfare, the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) made moves that “appeared” to redress the unconstitutionally inhumane conditions in Menard isolation unit that gave rise to last year’s hunger strike. But the move is no more than tricknology aimed at curbing grassroots activism and damage control due to the negative publicity that the hunger strike generated.

Baridi Williamson at Pelican Bay: ‘I met with UN Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan Méndez’

Apr 29, 2015
“Solitary Confinement” – Art: Baridi J. Williamson

On Dec. 9, 2014, I visited with Mr. Juan Méndez, the U.N. special rapporteur on torture, who is now an expert on our class action lawsuit to end solitary confinement torture here in California. Hopefully, it will have a ripple effect across the U.S. I gave him a living experience witnessed from its opening in late December 1989 to the present under its “snitch, parole or die” mass validation and indeterminate SHU torture classification and enhanced coerced debriefing.

The public execution of Mumia Abu-Jamal?

Apr 28, 2015
New Yorkers turned out to march for Mumia, demanding “No execution by medical neglect! Free Mumia!” on April 3. – Photo: Ashoka Jegroo, WNV

Although states across this country have banned executions where the public can freely attend, some contend that the American public is again witnessing the spectacle of a public execution. This current spectacle of governmental killing involves a high-profile inmate in Pennsylvania that evidence indicates is quite possibly experiencing a “slow execution” through calculated medical mistreatment.

‘I contribute to peace,’ a pledge to end hostilities inside and out

Apr 26, 2015

We, under the union of the United KAGE Brothers, joined with the Prisoners Political Action Committee (PAC), welcome you to our communion. We aim to unite and unionize internationally the peace movement – under the Agreement to End Hostilities – as an ad campaign from prison to the street. As people of all colors, races, creeds, genders and sexualities, we stand in solidarity with the following pledge.

At Ohio’s supermax prison, a hunger strike ends but extreme isolation remains
Wadiya Jamal: Help my husband get free! Mumia is dying in there!
Visitor decries racism at Pelican Bay in open letter to warden
Struggle without sacrifice is useless
Prisoner Human Rights Movement fights on many fronts to reclaim our lives and freedom
See how sick Mumia is – keep calling!
Mumia’s wife, Wadiya Jamal: It’s time to stop trying to kill my husband and free him now!
Let’s help Shuja come home to his family
Mumia’s life is in danger; only the people can save him – keep calling!
Mumia’s son says, ‘My father is in pain,’ as Mumia is sent back to prison
Mumia Abu-Jamal hospitalized in diabetic shock, guarded, family and friends denied access
Gov. Jerry Brown, AG Kamala Harris and CDCr officials, you have the power to stop torture in California prisons
SHU-shifting: An update on and overview of the Ashker v. Brown class action
Free Speech Society: Forum for prison activists inside and out
The criminality of solitary confinement

News & Views

Will the world remain silent with Rwanda and Uganda in DR Congo again?

May 5, 2015
M23 commander Sultani Makenga, during M23’s occupation of the eastern Congolese city of Goma in 2013

Rwandan and Ugandan troops have been reported in the Democratic Republic of Congo during the past two weeks, but reporting is scant and neither the U.S., the U.N. Security Council nor any other members of the international community have spoken to this, the latest Rwandan and Ugandan violation of Congo’s sovereignty. The international community has instead been focused on the constitutional crisis in Congo’s neighbor, Burundi.

Black fathers snookered at Vallejo Senior Center

May 2, 2015

In December 2012, local resident and New York Yankees pitcher C.C. Sabathia donated a tournament size pool table and flat screen television to the Florence Douglas Senior Center in Vallejo. The pool table served as a catalyst in attracting growing numbers of African American men, mostly fathers, to the center. The pool players and their senior supporters are denouncing the racist decision to remove the pool table.

ReBUTTal: The arguments for rent control in Richmond

May 1, 2015
Richmond residents protest eviction.

Richmond Mayor Tom Butt has set himself up to be the spokesman for landlords in a campaign against rent control in Richmond. The jump in Richmond rents the past few years, reflecting trends in the Bay Area, has produced new calls for the progressive city council to respond with rent control and “just cause” requirements for eviction. The mayor’s arguments are classic examples of misusing numbers and logic.

Joe Debro on racism in construction, Part 11

Apr 30, 2015
Mexican workers storm border Mexicali 020354 by UCLA Special Collections

Mexican immigration 1900-1960: The patterns established during the last century continued into the 20th as well. Successive waves of immigrants came to this country from Mexico as a response to American labor demands in the industrial and agricultural sectors. Before 1910, Mexican laborers were employed generally without union status as agricultural workers, as miners, as maintenance and construction workers.

Four years after Fukushima, Japan is solar-powered

Apr 29, 2015
Japan is on course to be 100-percent solar powered by 2041.

In the week before the March 11, 2011, earthquake at Fukushima, one person, Prime Minister Naoto Kan, did an extraordinary act that set Japan’s energy course in history for the next 100 years. He was able to convince the Japanese Parliament to pass a solar payment policy. This one policy shift is now making Japan one of the leading solar powered nations on earth – far ahead of California or the U.S. Number one in solar generation in 2014 was Germany.

Increasing instability and political repression in African Great Lakes Region
Two years, still not enough answers: Remembering Malcolm
Kibeho and Srebrenica: Ed Herman on the politics of genocide
Baltimore ‘shuts it down’ for Freddie Gray
Berrien County court continues racist campaign against Rev. Edward Pinkney
Rwanda: No justice for Kibeho Massacre victims 20 years later
Prison refuses Mumia medical care as his 61st birthday is celebrated worldwide – update: Mumia GRAVELY ill
A slow death for Mumia Abu-Jamal and thousands of prisoners in America
Open letter to Pennsylvania governor and corrections head urges independent medical care for Mumia Abu-Jamal – seeks more signers
Apple lifts ban on construction workers with felony convictions, must do more – two perspectives
Uganda’s Museveni to seek re-election in his 30th year in office
South African shack dwellers condemn xenophobia: ‘Our African brothers and sisters are being openly attacked’
Less than one lifetime: Eyewitness to nuclear development, from Hunters Point to Chernobyl and Fukushima, issues a warning
San Francisco Mayor’s Office plans to sell public housing to private investors, leaving thousands of Black, Brown and poor families houseless
California: For rich people only?

Culture Currents

Upcoming Events

 » Full event list and descriptions
Community Tuesdays at Radio Africa & Kitchen -- dinner for $10 May 5 5:00 PM Radio Africa & Kitchen, 4800 Third St., San Francisco You’re invited to “break bread” with us in the Bayview more>> ---------------

The Bay Area’s best featured in SF International Arts Festival 2015

May 2, 2015
Blanche Brown – Photo courtesy of Congo SQ West

Classic Black (June 4 , 6 and 7, Southside Theater, Fort Mason Center) and A Night of Tribute in Dance: Blanche Brown (May 28, Cowell Theater, Fort Mason Center) are shining examples of the majestic spectrum of African American artistic excellence in the Bay Area and two of 150 performances that are part of SFIAF 2015. Co-presented by Fort Mason Center, SFIAF 2015 runs May 21-June 7.

Third Street Stroll

May 2, 2015
Former Mayor Frank Jordan greets his friend Rochelle Metcalfe at the VIP pre-game luncheon. When he was at the helm, jobs for Black contractors and workers were plentiful in San Francisco. – Photo: Harrison Chastang

THIRD STREET, starting from Mariposa north, IS BUSY! Reigning World Series Champion San Francisco GIANTS are home for another season at AT&T Park – 3rd and King Streets. Crowds gather at The Yard, Third and Terry Francois, and within two blocks of AT&T, the NEW Mission Bay POLICE HEADQUARTERS (beautiful building) and Public Fire Safety Building, exemplified by the LARGE FIRE BELL out front.

Malcolm X Day San Francisco – to make his birthday an official holiday

May 1, 2015

Malcolm X Day San Francisco is part of a national effort to declare May 19, the birthday of Malcolm X – El Hajj Malik El Shabazz – an official holiday. Malcolm X Day will be celebrated in San Francisco’s Bayview Hunters Point District on Sunday, May 17, with free outdoor music and guest speakers. Performers include local rappers and poets Selassie, Talia Monet, Jabari Shaw and Ras Ceylon.

Radio personality Wesley Burton killed in hit and run car crash: Davey D speaks

May 1, 2015

On April 18, Wesley Burton was killed by a hit and run driver on Martin Luther King and 60th Street in North Oakland in the early morning hours after his show, Side Show Radio. This father, radio man, music producer, friend and comrade meant a lot to a lot of people. I wanted to talk with Davey D about his thoughts on Wesley Burton, who he has known for at least the last 20 years. Here’s Davey D in his own words.

‘Zara’s Faith’: Grandmother rallies community to fight police brutality

Apr 30, 2015
'Zara's Faith' front

The Lower Bottom Playaz, Oakland’s premiere North American African theater company, under the direction of Ayodele Nzinga, in collaboration with OYNX, will present staged readings of “Zara’s Faith,” a play by physician-activist Marc Sapir, on June 6 and 7. “Zara’s Faith,” set in a city that could be Oakland or any inner city in America, unfolds around the police shooting of two unarmed brothers on their way to meet friends.

KPFA radioman Wesley Burton killed in car accident
‘M Cream’ film review
Love story at Arlington National Cemetery
Now that the Justice Department has struck out, it’s time to put Barry Bonds in the Hall of Fame
The San Francisco Black Film Festival is back, second weekend in June!
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