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A diverse crowd of around 500 mostly young activists turned out for a rally Aug. 25 at San Quentin Prison. Most came from Oakland, many in two chartered buses, but sizable contingents traveled from San José, Santa Cruz and San Francisco as well. Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee, a key organizer of the rally, along with Prisoners Human Rights Coalition, CA, and many other Bay Area activist groups, including Party for Socialism and Liberation, helped publicize the action. The idea for the strike originated with Jailhouse Lawyers Speak, an incarcerated group of prisoner rights advocates.
Hundreds of anti-fascists confronted a coalition of far-right extremist bullies in Seattle on Aug. 18. The fascist event was part of the “National March Against Far-Left Violence” that was scheduled to take place in several cities one week after “Unite the Right II” in Washington, D.C. In Seattle, the far-right event was only confirmed two weeks prior. A local coalition came together quickly and called for a “unified, militant and orderly” counter-protest at City Hall with the theme of “Unite against fascism: Remember those lost to far-right violence.”
Dr. King’s assassination was the key marker in the transition of a great era of social change, from one where “inclusion” in the broader capitalist system was the general thrust to one where the general focus of the Black fight for equality became a broadly defined “self-determination,” rooted in a recognition of the entrenched nature of racism, not simply as a function of attitudes, but as a method of social control.
Liberation News spoke with Bradley Angel, the executive director of Greenaction for Health and Environmental Justice, about the news that a U.S. Navy-sponsored review of the radioactive cleanup at the former shipyard in San Francisco’s Bayview Hunters Point revealed massive fraud by federal contractor Tetra Tech. According to the review, nearly half of the data produced by Tetra Tech has been manipulated, falsified or is otherwise suspect.
There is one place in the U.S. where slavery is still constitutionally legal: in prisons. The 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, passed in 1864, abolished slavery and involuntary servitude, except as punishment for a crime. But prisoners held in this enslavement are organizing resistance. Brave prisoners within the Florida state prison system have organized themselves into a month-long work strike called Operation Push. It began on Jan. 15, Martin Luther King Day. In a phone interview, an anonymous prisoner-activist specifically linked the strike to King’s legacy of protest against racism and economic injustice.
Called by prisoners to give voice to their demand to strike the slavery clause from the 13th Amendment – making slavery legal “as a punishment for crime,” thus legally holding 2.3 million imprisoned Americans in slavery today – thousands turned out in as many as 16 cities in the middle of Black August, on Aug. 19, 2017, to abolish slavery and end mass incarceration. In San José, about 200 marched to the county jail for a rally with powerful speakers who saluted the prisoners and inspired the crowd.
It happened today in downtown Charlottesville, Va., on the second of a planned three-day rally dubbed “Unite the Right.” Thousands of counter-protesters summoned by Black Lives Matter and an allied white group, Showing Up for Racial Justice, surrounded about 500 neo-Nazis, including former Ku Klux Klan Imperial Wizard David Duke. “Witnesses said a crowd of counterdemonstrators was moving up Fourth Street, near the mall, when a gray sports car came down the road and accelerated, mowing down several people and hurling at least two in the air.“
On Sept. 8, 1985, Oscar Grant Jr. found himself in jail for a murder he did not commit and has since been held in prison for 28 years. An innocent Grant suffered for decades the dehumanizing conditions of prison and was deprived of raising his son, Oscar Grant III. His reality took a more horrifying turn on New Year’s Day 2009, when from inside prison Grant Jr. learned the news that a police officer had deliberately killed his son on a train platform in Oakland.