May 4, 2011
Happy Mother’s Day to Yuri Kochiyama! I’d like to also wish the women who haven’t seen their children in a long time, some since birth, a special Happy Mother’s Day. Our prayers are with you even if you feel alone at a time when in America prisons systematically separate mothers from their children, often permanently.
March 19, 2011
Aristide returned to Haiti today. I’ve not seen such genuine happiness on the faces of Haiti’s poor in over seven years. Welcome, President Jean Bertrand Aristide and family. Today is a good day for the poorest of the poor. Blessed be the endless Haiti revolution against the organized tyranny of the “civilized” and “schooled” peoples. On this day, we remember the sacrifice of the warriors who took up arms in self-defense against the occupation and coup d’etat. We recall the 20,000 slaughtered by the coup regime from 2004 to 2006, slaughtered with the complicity of U.N./U.S. firepower.
February 25, 2011
Several prominent figures from the international anti-apartheid movement have sent South African President Jacob Zuma an open letter “in the hopes that he can assist” former Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide and his family in returning to Haiti “as soon as possible.”
February 5, 2011
The return of Jean Claude Duvalier, “Baby Doc,” to Haiti as a free man was excruciating to veterans of the struggle that overthrew the 30-year dictatorship. The traumatizing symbolism of Duvalier’s return at Haiti’s weakest hour is an insult to the dead and an assault on the living.
November 9, 2010
No matter how much you know about Mumia, you’re sure to find something new and exciting here – beginning with an introduction that sets the scene, then Mumia’s latest essay, “The dirty game (POLITICS),” an open letter he wrote in 1981 called “The sting of betrayal,” followed by some “Blackground info” and concluding with “Mumia Abu Jamal Radio Teach-In” featuring the voices of M1 of dead prez and Minister of Information JR, Ramona and Pam Africa and more.
November 6, 2010
Press reports don’t describe Jelvon Helton as a young San Francisco champion who was murdered while celebrating the Giants’ victory. Instead, article after article in the mainstream media simply states that a gang member was killed.
July 15, 2010
Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums had a chance to shine last Thursday, after the verdict was announced in the murder trial of transit cop Johannes Mehserle for the Jan. 1, 2009, killing of 22-year-old unarmed Black man Oscar Grant. But instead of standing with the people, Dellums stood with his police chief, and together they proceeded to criminalize the entire community.
July 4, 2010
“The Cannes International Film Festival provides a larger opportunity for African Americans to bring their stories to the world marketplace expanding beyond the 500 or so theaters. In my experience, contrary to what we are told in the U.S., the world is ready to hear our stories of insiders, outsiders, the oppressed and the powerful.” – John Michael Reefer, film producer and director
May 15, 2010
We lost the great Lena Horne this month on Mother’s Day, May 9. She was 92, her birthday June 17, 1917 – her funeral Friday, May 14. I found out recently that Ms. Horne was at the March on Washington with sisters Mahalia Jackson and Dorothy Height.
April 16, 2010
“Death at a Funeral,” produced by actor and comedian Chris Rock, hits theaters today with an all-star cast of actors and comedians. I had the opportunity to chop it up with comedians Chris Rock and Tracy Morgan, two of the most talented Black comedians in the game right now.
February 5, 2010
Join with me in showing some love to the Haitian people. If not for the blood and courage of our ancestors there in Haiti, we here in the U.S. would not have our freedom today, as it was the example of Haiti defeating the great powers of Europe that sparked numerous other rebellions against slavery and oppression – in Mexico, South America and here in the U.S.
November 22, 2009
U.S. Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Calif., gained international acclaim for being the only member in Congress who courageously and extraordinarily voted against the authorization of the use of force following the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. She recently authored a controversial bill, H.R. 3699, that would prohibit the funding for additional troops to Afghanistan.
November 20, 2009
Keb’ Mo’, who grew up in Compton surrounded by blues – a name he doesn’t particularly care for, the blues often associated with sad stories and hard luck lives – didn’t really come into the music until his 30s. Just out with a new album, on his own label, Yolabelle International, “Live and Mo’” features six live tracks and four studio. The artist tells stories which reflect the American social and cultural landscape.
October 16, 2009
Can you imagine 45,000 people dying each month and hardly a peep from anyone in the age of the Internet? There is a media blackout about Congo and no worldwide resolution to end the conflict and carnage there. The purpose of the Break the Silence Congo Week is to raise awareness about the devastating situation in the Congo and mobilize support on behalf of the people of the Congo.
July 18, 2009
Drama has been a valuable art form to the Black experience in Amerikkka since before slavery. It was one of the ways that we maintained our history, although huge segments of the population couldn’t read or aren’t reading. I have only been to a few theatrical plays, but I love cinema, with some of the best dramatized movies to me being “dead presidents,” “Brown Sugar” and “Juice.”
June 12, 2009
San Francisco Supervisor Eric Mar announced June 8 to 300 people rallying at 850 Bryant that he would introduce a resolution to the Board of Supervisors calling on California Attorney General Jerry Brown to drop the charges against the San Francisco 8. “San Francisco does not tolerate torture,” he said, braving the wrath of the Police Officers Association, who evidently tolerate torture in defense of one of their own.
May 15, 2009
Johannes Mehserle’s trial begins Monday, May 18, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. at the Alameda County Courthouse, 12th and Oak Street, in Oakland. A strong community presence has been requested by the Oscar Grant family and allies. A teach in to prepare for the trial is Sunday, May 17, 1-4 p.m., at Humanist Hall, 390 27th St., Oakland. And wish Tatiana Grant happy birthday. She turns 5 on May 16.