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In the May 6, 2015, Walkout to Save City College, 200 students walked out of classes for a march, rally and flash occupation of the administration building.

The fight to save City College: Push back against push-out

The fight to save City College is taking place on two levels. We’re winning one but losing the other. Many elected and appointed city and state leaders have taken action to preserve City College as an accredited, accessible, community-friendly institution that serves all of San Francisco. But on another level, the fight to save City College has taken a terrible toll. Enrollment has dropped from 100,000 students in 2008 to 65,000 this year. The fight to save City College is also the fight to save San Francisco as a truly diverse city, not just a gentrified and overwhelmingly white enclave.

Behind Enemy Lines

On visiting George

Jul 29, 2015
Black Panther newspaper editors, in the Aug. 28, 1971, issue, the first after George Jackson’s assassination, urged readers to keep his spirit alive. In prisons throughout California and the U.S. and in the hearts of freedom-loving people everywhere, that spirit thrives.

George Jackson was a legendary prisoner who was attempting to organize the Blacks, Latinos and poor whites under their common linkage as victims of an exploitative class system. At that time, he was incarcerated in the San Quentin Adjustment Center, which housed the prison’s most feared and dangerous inmates. The Adjustment Center also housed the political prisoners.

Manifesto on rebuilding New Afrikan people, families and communities

Jul 28, 2015
“Peace in Our Hoods” – Art: Roger “Rab” Moore, G-02296, HDSP Z-168, P.O. Box 3030, Susanville CA 96127

I introduce this manifesto to all New Afrikans (i.e. Blacks) and any human beings who are SERIOUS about changing the inhumane living conditions that we see the people being subjected to in oppressed, impoverished communities throughout Amerika. It is crucial that we assess our conditions based on what is in our power to do, opposed to what someone can do for us.

We can’t breathe! Thoughts on our Agreement to End Hostilities

Jul 25, 2015
“The Agreement to End Hostilities” – Art: Michael D. Russell, C-90473, PBSP SHU D7-217, P.O. Box 7500, Crescent City CA 95532

The Webster’s New Universal Unabridged Dictionary defines the word “hostility” as 1) a hostile state, condition or attitude; enmity; antagonism; unfriendliness; 2) a hostile act; 3) Opposition or resistance to an idea, plan project, etc.; 4) acts of warfare; 5) war. So our initial question to the people is: “What does hostility mean to you?”

‘TDCJ placed me in harm’s way because I spoke out in reference to the extreme heat’

Jul 19, 2015
From the report: “The TDCJ also fails to provide effective medical care for its inmates. … The TDCJ neither monitors these inmates nor provides them with adequate living conditions to prevent suffering and death during the summer months. Indeed, all 14 inmates who have died since 2007 under the care of the TDCJ suffered from pre-existing medical conditions exacerbated by the heat … Five of the deceased spent less than a single week in custody before succumbing to the dangerously high temperatures in Texas facilities. … Even where the TDCJ has issued specific standards to protect heat-sensitive inmates, such as in work or recreation areas, the TDCJ fails to actually implement these standards.” – Photo: Lauren Schneider

Greetings, brothers and sisters. This year in Texas we have seen a marked increase in the exposure of heinous acts of abuse and mis­treatment perpetrated by state employees who work for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. Behind the scenes, the prisoners responsible for this massive movement to combat injustice have be­come victims of retaliation and harassment at the hands of prison officials and, elected state government officials.

While counting President Obama’s NAACP speech and prison visit as big wins, let us keep fighting

Jul 18, 2015
Responding to the movement begun by the California prisoners’ hunger strikes in 2011 and 2013 to stop mass incarceration and longterm solitary confinement, President Obama became the first sitting president to visit a federal prison, where he met with a group of prisoners. Afterward, he asked Attorney General Loretta Lynch to “start a review of the overuse of solitary confinement across American prisons.” Accompanying the president is Federal Bureau of Prisons Direct Charles Samuels (right). – Photo: NBC News

On Tuesday, July 14, one day after commuting the sentences of 46 people currently serving sentences for nonviolent drug offenses in federal prisons, President Obama addressed the NAACP National Convention in Philadelphia. In his address, the president declared that our criminal justice system is “built on the legacy of slavery, segregation and other structural inequalities that [have] compounded over generations.” Our current system, the president said, is “not an accident.”

Pelican Bay Hunger Strike: Four years and still fighting
Attorney Demitrus Evans on the case of political prisoner Aaron Patterson
The Black ones too
Message to Black youth
Proposition 47: The clock is ticking to apply for relief
New California prison censorship rules ban ‘Windows 7 for Seniors for Dummies’ and ‘Your Child’s Development from Birth to Adolescence’ as too hot for prisoners
US prisoners sue for constitutional right to lifesaving Hep C cure
CCI Step Down Program is bogus
Soledad Brother John Clutchette asks for your help
Unity between races is going strong; be proud of yourselves!
Rev. Pinkney, hero of Benton Harbor, speaks from prison
Strange fruit
We must leave the crops in the field
The New Underground Railroad Movement
Four years since our hunger strikes began, none of our core demands have yet been met: Our protracted struggle must continue

News & Views

City of Richmond passes rent control

Jul 30, 2015

By a 4-1 vote, the City of Richmond passed a rent control and just cause eviction law on Tuesday, July 21. A broad coalition of tenants, labor allies, homeowners and progressive community groups packed the hearing chambers as Vice Mayor Jael Myrick joined Councilmembers Jovanka Beckles, Eduardo Martinez and Gayle McLaughlin in casting the votes to pass rent control.

Oakland invites proposals for so-called affordable housing for 12th Street parcel

Jul 30, 2015

On July 16, Public Advocates, a nonprofit law firm, sent out a press release announcing that, bowing to community pressure, Oakland has invited new proposals for affordable housing at the controversial Lake Merritt East 12th Street parcel that local groups protested against as an illegal land deal with Urban Core that violated the Surplus Land Act governing the sale of publicly owned land.

‘Katrina: After the Flood’

Jul 29, 2015
A man carries a baby after the Superdome was evacuated following Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans. – Photo: U.S. Navy

The New York Times sent Gary Rivlin to Baton Rouge and New Orleans, days after the storm, to cover Katrina as an outsider. Rivlin’s instincts had him looking forward “to the mess ahead. Eventually the flood waters would recede. How would New Orleans go about the complicated task of rebuilding?” This carefully researched, beautifully written book describes that process from then until now.

Third Baptist Church sues to keep 104 families in their affordable F.D. Haynes Gardens homes

Jul 28, 2015
Rev. Dr. Amos Brown, pastor of the Third Baptist Church and president of the San Francisco NAACP, denounces plans by a nonprofit formed by the church to develop and operate affordable housing at Frederick Douglass Haynes Gardens to now sell the development to speculators. He spoke at a news conference and rally outside Superior Court on Tuesday, July 28. – Photo: Paul Chinn, SF Chronicle

Third Baptist Church in San Francisco asked a San Francisco Superior Court judge today to stop the landlord of the Frederick Douglass Haynes Gardens – a 104-unit Fillmore development that is home to mostly Section 8 tenants – from selling the building to speculators. The temporary restraining order request asks a judge to provide injunctive relief against what appears to be another case of affordable housing at risk in San Francisco.

Midtown Park Apartments residents, promised ownership, rally against 300% rent increase

Jul 27, 2015
Midtown-Park-Apartments-rally-against-300-2

On Monday, June 29, over a hundred working class families of Midtown Park Apartments were joined by community activists, concerned citizens and legal advisors for a rally in support of over 55 households whose rent increased 300 percent. The only such property that is owned by the City, Midtown’s original intent by then Supervisors Diane Feinstein and Ella Hill Hutch was to transform this complex into an equity cooperative – a promise that never materialized.

Burundi’s tense northern border with Rwanda
What I meant when I said that #BlackLivesMatter
Task Force shelter producing pounds of veggies on rooftop garden
Freeing our families from the criminal justice chokehold
Shit storm erupts in Treasure Island townhouse when sewer pipes break after Lennar’s vibro-compaction
Rwanda and Burundi: Who’s ‘promoting instability through violence’?
The Bay Area Black Expo is coming to Frank Ogawa (Oscar Grant) Plaza on Saturday
After pier shooting, San Francisco immigrants mourn and organize
West Oakland youth are going to South Africa
Sandra Bland drove to Texas to start a new job, so how did she end up dead in jail?
The legacy lives on: Black Panther Party founding member Elbert ‘Big Man’ Howard carries the message to San Diego youth
Friday is Kenny Day! Remembering Kenneth Harding Jr. on the 4th anniversary of his SFPD murder
Expand clemency! Freeing 46 is a start but not enough
Open letter to Rwanda prisons director protests intensified isolation of presidential contender Victoire Ingabire
Poor people need your help to survive corporate greed’s heat wave and fees

Culture Currents

Upcoming Events

 » Full event list and descriptions
Rally for Our Right to Exist! Jul 31 3:00 PM Powell & Market Street turnaround, San Francisco A little music, some dancing and a whole lot of more>> ---------------
American Friends Service Committee, Livermore Conversion Project, Tri-Valley CARES presents: Message from Hiroshima: A New Film Narrated by George Takei Jul 31 7:00 PM AFSC, 65 Ninth St., Central Door Upstairs Front Room, San Francisco (Two Blocks from Civic Center BART/MUNI) COST: Free

Message From Hiroshima will be released by Cinema more>>
---------------

From Ghetto to Goddess: Iminah Ahmad speaks

Jul 30, 2015
Sistah Iminah

I have known Iminah, the renaissance woman who works under the brand name “From Ghetto to Goddess,” for a few years, and I continue to be inspired by how she serves the Black community. Since moving back to Oakland from Atlanta where she went to college, Iminah has been involved with speaking to at-risk youth, writing and recording an album, and dancing in everything from plays and dance shows to music videos.

Learning is forever: Fathers leading the way

Jul 29, 2015

No matter where we stopped in the educational process and no matter what the reason, we all have more within us to share and to learn. We can be and do more, but what does it take to awaken the “authentic” fire that once burned when we were young or even in our adulthood? No matter the reason – and for each of us it will be different – it’s never too late to change “what if” to “maybe” to “I’ll give it a try.”

Brando narrates new must-see documentary, ‘Listen to Me Marlon’

Jul 28, 2015
Marlon Brando in “A Streetcar Named Desire”

“Listen to Me Marlon” is a documentary film by Stevan Riley that takes a candid look at the life, activism and work of the legendary, charismatic and mercurial film icon Marlon Brando, whose career spanned five decades. The late Brando narrates the film exclusively with sound taken from hundreds of hours of audio that he himself recorded privately over the course of 40 years.

Frisco’s ‘Let’s Talk Sports Nation’ TV show broadcasts 100 episodes

Jul 27, 2015
Jameel Patterson, aka Tha #1 Neighborhood Sports Analyst, Jeremiah Khaleq and Brandon McGlothen want YOU to watch Let’s Talk Sports Nation every Saturday at 11 a.m. on Channel 29. Jameel and Jeremiah, both from Bayview Hunters Point, created the Facebook group, Let’s Talk Sports Nation, in 2010, and a year later, with 1,000 members already in the group, the TV show was born.

It is of primary importance that we begin to own our own sports media specifically, but media in general, so we can talk about what we want to talk about when we want to talk about it. San Francisco’s Let’s Talk Sports Nation, which comes on Frisco’s Cable 29 every Saturday at 11 a.m., is such a show. This community favorite has broadcast over 100 shows and is primarily hosted by Jeremiah Khaleq and Jameel Patterson, aka Tha #1 Neighborhood Sports Analyst!!!

Los Angeles’ Leimert Park Book Fair is August 1

Jul 24, 2015
Empire-short-v2

The most exciting literary event every year for Black people on the West Coast is the Leimert Park Book Fair, held this year on Saturday, Aug. 1. It brings out a lot of community members, community heroes and sheroes, as well as Hollywood celebrities to share in the festivities. Check out the founder of the Leimert Park Book Fair and author Cynthia Exum as she tells us about this year’s Leimert Park Book Fair.

‘The Emperor Jones,’ starring Carl Lumbly in the Paul Robeson role, is playing in Dogpatch two more weekends – discount for Bayview Hunters Point residents
Rebecca Brando speaks about new doc on her dad, ‘Listen to Me Marlon’
SOMArts’ ‘Night Light: Multimedia Garden Party’ is this Saturday
‘The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution’
Serena Williams is today’s Muhammad Ali
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