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Speech delivered at the Millions for Prisoners Human Rights March Aug. 19, 2017, in San Jose, Calif.: We’re out here in conjunction with all the people who are marching in D.C. on this day with the same message. We have a “justice system” that perpetuates the institution of racism in this country through its targeting of the most marginalized communities: people of color, women and the LGBT community.
Anyone relying on mainstream media wouldn’t know it, but the U.S. prison system is shaking up right now. No one knows how big the initial strike was yet, but the information is slowly leaking out between the cracks in the prisons’ machinery of obscurity and isolation. Over the weekend more than 50 protests erupted across the country and around the world in solidarity with the Sept. 9 nationwide prisoner work stoppage and protest.
Sept. 9, 2016, is the day that many people in America are wholeheartedly organizing, mobilizing, taking action, standing and locking arms in solidarity against what we know as prison slave labor – yes, legalized slavery – and people are saying, “No more!” Even though there are many taking action and answering the call to cure this particular ill of society, there is an overwhelmingly larger portion of the U.S. population who are absolutely clueless to the fact that slavery still exists.
Leola King brought memorable class and dignity to every business she operated during a 50-year career in San Francisco. Most of the Black people here now know nothing positive of what it was like to walk and live amongst the greatness we had created there on Fillmore Street. Redevelopment viciously undermined and ripped Mrs. King’s fortune away. Her funeral is Friday, Feb. 13, 11 a.m., at Third Baptist Church, 1399 McAllister, the repast 4-7 p.m. at West Bay Conference Center, 1290 Fillmore St., San Francisco.
By the late 1940s, after the war, virtually every young Black youth in San Francisco had a chance to attend City College, for free. We now need another generation of K-12 Black students to gain that chance. Now, the challenge for an entire community of Black people is how to ignite the interest of young Blacks to compete for the education they need – as Malcolm X once stated, “by any means necessary.”
Baba Mandela passed today after a lengthy illness. Though he was not without faults, he was a great man and a decent human being who loved his people so much he literally gave his liberty for their freedom. He sacrificed his life and his life with his family for the liberation of South Africans through the African National Congress, an organization he, as a young attorney, helped found.
The Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment (ACCE) is at the forefront of the resistance to the foreclosures and illegal taking of homes by the banks. ACCE, the Center for Popular Democracy and the Home Defenders League released a report March 12 entitled “California in Crisis: How Wells Fargo’s Foreclosure Pipeline is Damaging Local Communities.”
Standing in front of a JPMorgan Chase bank branch on Tuesday afternoon, San Francisco Supervisor John Avalos announced he was launching an investigation into San Francisco’s potential losses from the LIBOR interest rate fraud scandal and to explore options to recoup that money as other cities and counties have recently done.
Terry Collins, co-founder of KPOO 89.5FM, and Willie Ratcliff, publisher of the San Francisco Bay View, blessed the airwaves last Tuesday afternoon with a warm and revealing discussion of life and resistance and the upcoming Black Media Appreciation Night, honoring the champions of independent Black media. Black Media Appreciation Night is this Monday, Nov. 26, 8 p.m., at Yoshi’s, 510 Embarcadero West, Jack London Square, Oakland. For tickets and more information, go to http://www.yoshis.com/oakland/jazzclub/artist/show/3104.
Action is being taken to give some relief to those seeking some place safe to recreate “Home Sweet Home.” Prop C reads: “Shall the City amend its Charter to: create a Housing Trust Fund that supports affordable housing for low-income and moderate-income households; and change the affordable housing requirements imposed on some private residential developments?”
Harrison Chastang is news director at Black-owned KPOO Radio in San Francisco, and he's also an expert photojournalist. Here are a few of his photos from the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Supervisor John Avalos’ resolution calling for a suspension of foreclosure activities in the City and County of San Francisco passed in an 11-0 vote at the Board of Supervisors. It signals the City’s resolve to protect homeowners from unfair and unlawful actions until state and federal protections are in place.
The campaign to “move your money” has gotten a groundswell of support. Having greater impact would be to “move our money” — move our local government revenues out of Wall Street banks into our own publicly-owned banks. The San Francisco bank proposal is sponsored by city Supervisor John Avalos.
On Friday, a coalition of immigrant rights and Occupy activists temporarily shut down two branches of Wells Fargo Bank in Santa Rosa and distributed a flyer charging that Wells Fargo profits from the private prison business now booming on increased immigrant detention.
The struggle against school closures is far from over. Now is the time to stand up and speak out against this attack on public education – an attack designed by those who should be defending it, Superintendent Tony Smith and the OUSD School Board. You can call Superintendent Smith at (510) 879-8200.
On Nov. 5, thousands have vowed to close their accounts at big banks and transfer their money to credit unions — banking institutions owned by their customers and known to provide more personalized customer service. How about you? If you have an account at a mega bank, are you planning to take your business elsewhere on Nov. 5? To find a credit union in the U.S., go to http://www.findacreditunion.com/. It's time to pool our money and invest in creating a thriving, self-sufficient community in every hood!
Seven San Francisco mayoral candidates have asked the U.S. Department of Justice to send in election observers and monitors and federal investigators to protect San Franciscans’ voting rights from the official mayoral campaign of Interim Mayor Ed Lee and from the “independent expenditure committee” also trying to elect him outside the campaign spending confines of the official campaign.
A municipal bank is finally on the table, and Supervisor and mayoral candidate John Avalos has scheduled a public hearing at San Francisco City Hall for Oct. 24, 10 a.m., in Room 250. There will be time for public comment. At least four mayoral candidates are outspoken advocates for a municipal bank: Supervisor Avalos, Public Defender Jeff Adachi, Terry Baum of the Green Party and state Sen. Leland Yee.
The nation has lost one of its unsung civil rights heroes: Ray Dones was the Martin Luther King of the construction industry. We lost Ray at a time when his kind of leadership is most needed. We all recognize now that the best way to fight violent crime is with a well paying job.
I am pleased to stand with my colleagues today who are outraged at Nobel Peace Laureate President Obama’s decision to wage war on Africa in Libya. At the outset, let me state that Libya is home to tens of thousands of foreign students and guest workers. The students come from Ethiopia, Eritrea and Somalia. The messages I have received from concerned Africans state that these young, innocent people, inaccurately labeled by the U.S. press as “Black mercenaries,” have been trapped in hostile territory and are hated by the U.S.-allied Al Qaeda insurgents.
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