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California and the U.S.

The organized poor: Poor People’s March on Washington and HUD in honor of Dr. King’s March on Washington

June 17, 2018

“We are surrounded by Black cops,” said Leroy Moore, with POOR Magazine and Krip Hop Nation, about the 15 Black cops who surrounded us houseless and formerly houseless mamas, uncles, children and elders from the Poor People’s March when we walked humbly into the Washington, D.C., office of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to demand our housing back. “We are here to meet with Ben Carson,” we all said.

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California’s chance to lead for poor children

June 11, 2018

The crisis of deep child poverty persists in California, which recently surpassed the United Kingdom as the fifth largest economy in the world. One in five California children was poor in 2016, and one in 12 children lived in deep poverty. In a high cost-of-living state where the monthly fair market rent for a 2-bedroom apartment is $1,608, many families lack the resources to cover rent and all their children’s basic needs.

‘Went Down to the Rich (White) Man’s House’: Poor and unhoused people march on Washington DC for their lives and self-determination

June 9, 2018

There we were – the unhoused, the evicted, the displaced, the disabled, Black, Brown, Indigenous, poor white, youth and elders on one accord, all colors, all nations, all cultures, all ages, all abilities. The 2018 Poor Peoples March on Washington was originally launched by impacted poor, houseless and formerly unhoused people from the Poor Peoples Economic Human Rights Campaign 15 years ago. Poor folks walked in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s Poor Peoples March on Washington in 1968.

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OSHA attorney Dr. Darrell Whitman: Whistleblower connects the dots

June 2, 2018

Dear friends and neighbors in Hunters Point: I’ve been reading the questions you’re asking about safety and health in your neighborhood and thought I might be able to point you toward some answers. I was born and lived in San Francisco for many years and know your neighborhood well. I remember when it was a vital part of our city and a good place to live. So, it’s been sad to see how poorly the years and the 1 percent have treated you. You deserve better.

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Vote Stacey Abrams for governor to build a Georgia where everyone has the freedom and opportunity to thrive

June 1, 2018

Good evening, Georgia. I stand here tonight grateful to the thousands of you who have joined me on this drive to history. We are writing the next chapter of Georgia’s future. Where no one is unseen, unheard or uninspired. A Georgia where we prosper – together! And I know, for the journey that lies ahead, we need every voice in our party – and every independent thinker in the state of Georgia – energized and by our side to succeed, so I hope you will join our fight for the future.

Challenging Democratic Party corruption in Pennsylvania’s District 197

May 19, 2018

In 2017, Cheri Honkala, the founder of the Poor People’s Campaign for Economic Human Rights, ran for the Pennsylvania House of Representatives in Philadelphia’s District 197. I spoke to her about what happened. It was a special election last year for a representative to the Pennsylvania State House. On the night of the election, there were literally hundreds of calls to our campaign headquarters and the district attorney’s office about election fraud.

Workers march with pride and power on May Day, International Workers’ Day

May 14, 2018

May Day – International Workers Day – is celebrated around the world, including in the United States, honoring the fighting spirit and struggle of all working and oppressed people. It is a time when workers show their strength, demand their rights and forge global solidarity. Its roots are in the struggle for the eight-hour day in 1886 in Chicago. Only in the United States, whose working class gave birth to May Day, have the powers that be managed to conceal that history, erase the memory of May Day, and suppress the class struggle that it represents. ILWU Local 10 shut down all Bay Area ports on May Day for the fourth consecutive year.

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Eureka NAACP to HSU: Cease recruitment in minority-majority neighborhoods until substantial support is implemented

April 28, 2018

The Eureka chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) has sent out a press release regarding Humboldt State University’s recruitment efforts in minority-majority neighborhoods –telling HSU to forgo the revenue these prospective students offer until they implement substantial support for students of color. Following is the press release, dated April 25, 2018.

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The City of Arcata receives notice for damages in David Josiah Lawson’s death after police chief resigns

April 15, 2018

This Sunday, April 15, will mark one year since David Josiah Lawson, who was a sophomore at Humboldt State University (HSU), died after suffering multiple stab wounds at an off-campus party. Currently, no one is in custody for his death. Shelley Mack is an attorney in Arcata and is currently working with Kyndra Miller, a lawyer based in San Francisco, to assist Ms. Lawson with litigation. On April 13, Mack delivered a notice of claim to the City of Arcata in Lawson’s death.

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Save our sons! Stop the killing! Condemn Trump! 10,000 Black men march on White House April 21

April 7, 2018

Join 10,000 Black men for a mass march and rally in Lafayette Park, in front of the White House, on Saturday, April 21, 10 a.m.; rally starts 1 p.m. The march is a part of the five-day 10,000 Black Men’s Convention set to take place in Washington from April 18-22, which promises to draw thousands. Topping the gathering’s agenda is a call for an immediate end to police brutality as well as the firing and charging of officers who have been involved in the unjust killings of Black people.

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Police murder of Stephon Clark shuts down Sacramento

March 30, 2018

Angry and frustrated residents are demanding answers after a police-involved shooting left an unarmed, Black man dead. Stephon Clark, 22, was fatally shot in his Meadowview area backyard Sunday, March 18, after two Sacramento Police Department (SPD) officers shot at him more than 20 times. Local and national Black leaders have vowed to demand justice for Clark and his family. Black Lives Matter and Rev. Les Simmons of South Sacramento Christian Center spearheaded vigils and rallies, where those who knew Clark called him a loving son and father of two young boys, who didn’t deserve to die.

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Newsflash: Alabama has been torturing poor people for a long time

March 26, 2018

If you have a high-profile lawyer with powerful friends and you’re tortured while on death row in Alabama, everyone in the nation not only knows about it – overwhelmingly, especially in liberal, progressive, civilized circles of thought and news – they’re righteously appalled. But poor death row inmates in Alabama can be tortured just as terribly, just as brutally – they can be killed barbarically – and not many people in America, much less the rest of the world, knows a thing about it. Or worse, cares.

‘One life is worth all the guns in America’: Students demand end to violence at March for Our Lives

March 26, 2018

In a historic day of action, more than 800 protests on Saturday urged lawmakers to pass gun control. In Washington, D.C., alone, organizers say up to 800,000 people took part in the March for Our Lives, which was organized by students who survived the Feb. 14 shooting massacre at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. In New York, another 150,000 people took to the streets; 85,000 rallied in Chicago; 55,000 marched in Los Angeles. Tens of thousands also rallied in Atlanta and Pittsburgh. And 20,000 people gathered in Parkland, Florida.

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March for our lives and the rest of the world’s

March 24, 2018

Why have the recent marches been so large, with not even a whisper of peace as an issue? As I often say, follow the money. There is bipartisan agreement that war is good for business. The U.S. is by far the largest arms dealer in the world. Until we stop the plague of endless war, guns are the norm, and they will be on our streets as well as the streets of Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, and Yemen.

‘Black Panther’: Reflection on cultural solidarity and historic debt

March 7, 2018

Black Panther in a nouveaux peacock chair making deals with the CIA! I am like hold up?! Are you out of your mind? This must be a slapstick thrown in to distract and confuse the audience who do not know their history and who probably believe it’s OK to share secrets with the U.S. government. Like Okoyo, the CIA is all about meddling in international affairs that threaten white supremacy and its economic and military dominance. Wakanda has a seat in the U.N. Council.

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Free Mumia, free Meek Mill, free them all!

March 5, 2018

The frame-up of rapper Meek Mill by Philadelphia cops bears a telling resemblance to the case of Mumia Abu-Jamal. Both stand as indictments of the entire injustice system. Recent revelations about the fraudulent arrest and imprisonment of Mill demonstrate what police and prison abolitionists have known for decades: The entire institution of mass incarceration is a crooked, racist system. When we say, “Free Meek and free Mumia!” we also say, “Free them all!”

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No justice yet for Humboldt State University student David Josiah Lawson

March 4, 2018

As the months fly by, the commitment of holding vigils every month for Humboldt State University Student David Josiah Lawson has remained. These vigils are a way to remember the life of Lawson that was ended way too soon by an act of violence. They also serve the purpose of keeping a light on the fact that his case remains unsolved and that his killer remains on the loose.

In honor of Shirley Chisholm, let’s elect leaders who speak truth

March 2, 2018

Asked what she wanted her legacy to be, Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm once said, “I’d like them to say that Shirley Chisholm had guts. That’s how I’d like to be remembered.” Like Shirley, I believe that to restore confidence and trust in our institutions and leaders, we need to speak truth. And that means electing more leaders who aren’t afraid to speak up and speak out. And every one of us privileged to serve has to mentor and lift up others.

Mass incarceration for profit: The dual impact of the 13th Amendment and the unresolved question of national oppression in the United States

February 26, 2018

The 13th Amendment reads in Section One: “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, nor any place subject to their jurisdiction.”
Understanding this contradictory character of the 13th Amendment sheds light on the utilization of the criminal justice system in the perpetuation of bondage for the purpose of institutional racism and class exploitation.

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‘Black Panther’: The masking of Oakland’s Panthers

February 21, 2018

Coogler’s “Panther” has a terrible counter-revolutionary message. It’s overall politic message tells you that since you cannot be the Black Panther character, king of Wakanda, you can be a CIA agent like T’Challa’s right hand man. But before I get into that, let me tell y’all what I think is great about this box office record breaking Disney-Marvel film. The cinematography is phenomenal. The costumes and the colors are on another level. The sets are beautiful.

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