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The Naval Radiological Defense Laboratory at the Hunters Point Naval Shipyard placed prisoners and others in a bomb shelter during exercises simulating a nuclear attack. – Photo courtesy TimePix

Less than one lifetime: Eyewitness to nuclear development, from Hunters Point to Chernobyl and Fukushima, issues a warning

April 17, 2015

While sorting through papers, correspondence, news clippings, records etc., I realized that nuclear bomb and nuclear power development has occurred within my lifetime. It was July 16, 1945, when Trinity, the first atomic bomb, was detonated at Alamogordo nuclear site in New Mexico, followed by the uranium bomb dropped on Hiroshima and the hydrogen bomb on Nagasaki in August.

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Photos by Poor News Network

San Francisco Mayor’s Office plans to sell public housing to private investors, leaving thousands of Black, Brown and poor families houseless

April 13, 2015

Join us at 9 a.m. Tuesday, April 14, in the front of City Hall for an emergency press conference and then join poor youth and elders who will be impacted by the lie of RAD as we visit the Board of Supervisors to plead with them to NOT vote to sell off public housing to the RAD program.

Aunti Francis of the Aunti Francis Self-Help Hunger Program and Love Mission marches against displacement on Martin Luther King Day in Oakland. – Photo: PNN

California: For rich people only?

April 13, 2015

Thousands of families, elders and babies across the state are under attack by the concerted forces of gentrification and removal by the white-supremacist nation that would like to remove us all. From police terror to the acts of elder and child abuse caused by eviction to the endless building of prisons and militarizing of these colonizer created borders leaves us all asking who is this shiny state being built for?

“Everybody loved him,” Walter Scott’s mother told reporters. “He was the most outgoing out of all of us. He knew everybody,” his older brother said.

ACLU: America’s obsession with locking up Black men led directly to death of Walter Scott

April 12, 2015

If America hadn’t become a nation that excessively incarcerates Black men for minor, nonviolent offenses, Walter Scott’s funeral would not be happening because he’d likely still be alive. That’s the conclusion drawn by Ezekiel Edwards, director of the ACLU’s Criminal Law Reform Project.

Blacks picking cotton in the U.S. in 1897

With no more cotton to pick, what will America do with 40 million Black people?

April 11, 2015

Our American economy was built on the backs of Black slaves who were initially brought to America to work in the cotton, tobacco and sugar cane fields. America’s dilemma today is what to do with 40 million Black American descendants of those slaves who were shipped, as commodities, to American shores 400 years ago for their economic value yet whose heirs today are deemed of no value to America’s economic mission.

The man Walter Scott’s family lawyer calls a hero for recording Scott’s police murder came forward to be interviewed on NBC News today. He had delayed releasing his video to the press – he gave it first to The New York Times – until he could first show it to Scott’s family and until the police department had given the press Officer Slager’s version of events.

Witness who recorded shooting of Walter Scott speaks out: Cop had control before he shot

April 8, 2015

The bystander who recorded a South Carolina officer fatally shooting an unarmed Black man eight times said the cop had control of the situation before he pulled out his gun. “I remember the police had control of the situation,” Feidin Santana said during the interview. “You can hear the sound of a Taser … I believe [Scott] was just trying to get away from the Taser.” Update: Watch a powerful video of the reunion between Santana and Walter Scott’s family.

Dr. Edmund Lubega, seen here with his niece, says that Africa’s emergency response to the West African Ebola epidemic makes him think the continent’s future is bright.

A Ugandan doctor describes the real ‘Ebola Hot Zone’

April 8, 2015

In a recently published open letter to 60 Minutes, the CBS TV news magazine, former New York Times Africa correspondent Howard French expressed concern about the program’s “frequent and recurring misrepresentation of the African continent.” Dr. Edmund Lubega says, “As Africans, it would be good if we could organize ourselves and try to find means by which we can share and broadcast our stories in our own way, in our own words.”

A frame from the video recorded April 4 by a passerby – a “hero,” according to the victim’s family’s attorney – shows Officer Michael Slager, 33, checking out Walter Scott, 50, the man he had stopped for a faulty taillight, then shot eight times in the back as he ran. The video also shows Slager planting his Taser next to Scott as he lay dead or dying. Slager has been fired and charged with murder.

White cop charged with murder for shooting Black man in South Carolina

April 8, 2015

A white South Carolina police officer was arrested and charged with murder Tuesday after video showed him fatally shooting a fleeing, unarmed Black man in the back. North Charleston Police Officer Michael T. Slager, 33, can be seen shooting 50-year-old Walter Scott after a confrontation on Saturday. Slager chases Scott and shoots at him eight times in the video recorded by a passerby

Art: J. Heshima Denham, J-38283, Cor-SHU, 4B-1L-25, P.O. Box 3481, Corcoran CA 93212

Quest for Democracy Day 2015: Formerly incarcerated people will press legislators to allow them to thrive

April 7, 2015

To formerly incarcerated people, their families, friends, allies and comrades, join us for a day of grassroots legislative visits at the California State Capitol on Monday, April 27. We need to speak out when our suffering outlasts our jail or prison sentences. Bills are being considered that directly relate to our capacity to thrive as human beings. Buses will roll out of both Northern and Southern California. Join us.

At AfrikaTown, veggies and herbs are leaping out of the ground this spring. Nearby, a sign on the fence reminds everyone: “Food is medicine.”

Cultivating resistance in AfrikaTown, West Oakland

April 7, 2015

Under the block-long “Welcome 2 AfrikaTown” mural painted last year on the Qilombo community center, 2313 San Pablo at West Grant, a dozen garden beds are now bursting with food and people are always there. On March 26, a bulldozer and cops arrived to destroy the garden, but supporters blocked them. On April 3, AfrikaTown won a reprieve to negotiate purchase of the land.

Doctors Medical Center

Richmond asks, ‘Who killed DMC?’

April 5, 2015

A quarter of a million people in Richmond and West Contra Costa County, a majority people of color community, will be without a community hospital as a result of the decision made last Thursday to phase down and finally close the doors of Doctors Medical Center (DMC) in San Pablo by April 21, 2015. To not provide a full service hospital in West Contra Costa County is an example of environmental and institutional racism.

University of Quebec Professor Emmanuel Hakizimana, a member of the Rwandan National Congress, is among those threatened in Montreal.

Rwanda: Critics ask Canada to protect them from Kagame’s assassins

April 2, 2015

Rwandan exiles in Canada and their Canadian allies, all of whom are well-known critics of Rwandan President Paul Kagame, held a press conference earlier this week in Montreal to call on Canadian authorities to protect them from attacks by Rwandan government agents. The dissidents said they’d been warned by allies within the Rwandan government that so-called diplomats assigned to Rwanda’s embassy in Canada were actually there to intimidate or assassinate dissidents.

Asa Sullivan – Art: Nomy Lamm

The people’s investigation into the San Francisco police killing of Asa B. Sullivan

March 29, 2015

A collective of community folks organized with the family of Asa Benjamin Sullivan recently launched a people’s investigation into the killing of Asa by San Francisco police in 2006. Asa Sullivan was killed when SFPD responded to a “well-being check” at his residence then tracked him into an attic and shot him 17 times.* Police cannot be allowed to kill people and then claim that person was responsible for his own death and call it “suicide by cop.”

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Oakland’s action was in Oscar Grant Plaza, 14th and Broadway, the scene of many, many struggles for justice in recent years. Readers are urged to come out in droves on April 23 and the 23rd of every month. We may not be able to rid the world of all evils, but we CAN end solitary confinement!

The first monthly Statewide Coordinated Actions to End Solitary Confinement held March 23

March 28, 2015

Statewide Coordinated Actions to End Solitary Confinement (SCATESC) began March 23, 2015. Actions were held in California from San Diego to Arcata (Arcata-Eureka, Los Angeles, Oakland, San Diego, San Jose, Santa Cruz) and Philadelphia, Penn. Activists in more locations will be joining in on April 23 and the 23rd of each month. Below is a report from just one locality, Santa Cruz, which took a creative approach.

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At his March 26 press conference, Public Defender Jeff Adachi plays the recording of his interview with Ricardo Palikiko Garcia, a 150-pound Hawaiian and Filipino man, the smallest and only Asian in his pod at San Francisco County Jail, who was forced into gladiator fights with Stanly Harris, a 350-pound African-American man, the largest man in the pod, though neither wanted to fight. Garcia believes the deputies’ intent in forcing the fights was not only to entertain themselves as they gambled but to stir up racial animosity among prisoners. – Photo: Santiago Mejia, SF Chronicle

SF County Jail prisoners forced into interracial gladiator-style fights

March 27, 2015

A San Francisco sheriff’s deputy has been accused of forcing inmates to fight in gladiator-style matches while he and his colleagues bet on the outcomes, San Francisco Public Defender Jeff Adachi announced Thursday. One of the men forced to fight told Adachi, “I feel like they’re trying to stir (up) something racial … because I’m the only one of Asian descent” in an otherwise all-Black pod. Staged fights between prisoners of different races to aggravate interracial antagonism is reminiscent of the gladiator fights scandal in the California state prison system that made international headlines in the 1990s.

This man decided to make installing solar panels on his roof a do-it-yourself project.

Making money with solar

March 26, 2015

What is the fastest way to shift our economy from oil to solar? If a city passes a local law that requires each house sold to be required to install 10 or more solar panels after the sale, this will shift 1 million homes to solar in 2015. Think about that. The Solar Justice affinity group meets every Sunday, 3 p.m., at 2940 16th St. at Mission, San Francisco. Join us.

Common sense says support SB 224, the Elder Parole Program, to reduce the prison population and corrections spending and get people back to their families and communities. – Photo courtesy of Legal Services for Prisoners with Children

A durable and sustainable plan: Reducing corrections spending in California

March 26, 2015

The month of March marked the beginning of state budget hearings that will set next year’s fiscal priorities for the welfare of Californians. The first version of the state budget shows no clear plan to provide adequate relief for people living in poverty, fails to make restorative investments to the social safety net, and continues to increase corrections spending.

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In the 60 Minutes story “The Ebola Hot Zone,” broadcast Nov. 9, 2014, Lara Logan watches as American virologist Joseph Fair instructs Liberian gravediggers at a graveyard adjacent to an Ebola treatment unit. No African voice is heard in the 15-minute segment except that of the African American doctor who heads the clinic and speaks a few words. – Photo: 60 Minutes screenshot

How does Africa get reported? A letter of concern to 60 Minutes

March 25, 2015

The following open letter was sent by email to CBS 60 Minutes Executive Producer Jeff Fager: We, the undersigned, are writing to express our grave concern about the frequent and recurring misrepresentation of the African continent by 60 Minutes. In a series of recent segments from the continent, 60 Minutes has managed, quite extraordinarily, to render people of Black African ancestry voiceless and all but invisible.

Thousands march up San Francisco’s Market Street in the youth-organized “Millions March” against police brutality in cities around the country on Dec. 13, 2014. Since then, SFPD has taken four more lives. – Photo: Jeremy Raff, KQED

Jim Crow San Francisco

March 24, 2015

Every morning, young and old African Americans are paraded through courtrooms in San Francisco, dressed in orange jumpsuits not unlike Guantanamo inmates and often shackled in handcuffs or chains. The vast majority of judges and prosecutors are resigned to that daily reality. The City’s jail in 1994 had 4.4 times the proportion of Black inmates as in San Francisco as a whole. By 2012, the jail population was 9.5 times more Black than The City. It is time to address the apartheid-like conditions in the metropolis and stop giving passes to the “liberal” coastal cities like San Francisco.

As Black-Brown solidarity grows in the Bay Area, the focus March 22-23 was on the first anniversary of the San Francisco police murder of Alex Nieto, marked with a cultural commemoration Sunday, followed by an early Monday morning shutdown of the street outside the Mission Police Station for a people’s trial of the four officers who killed Alex. – Photo: Freddie, Twitter

Community shuts down Mission Station, puts police on trial on anniversary of Alex Nieto’s SFPD murder

March 23, 2015

Over 200 people gathered in the early morning hours today and shut down Valencia Street in front of the San Francisco Police Department’s Mission District station. Sixteen activists locked themselves down for four hours and 15 minutes, blocking the gate to the parking lot and chaining themselves to large-scale art work in front of the station.

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