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Posts Tagged with "Oakland"

Family and friends demand justice at memorial for Derrick Gaines

June 15, 2012

On June 12, family members held a memorial for Derrick Gaines, a 15-year-old who was shot and killed by an officer with the South San Francisco Police Department on the evening of June 5. Police claim that Gaines, who was walking with a friend near an Arco gas station, was engaging in “suspicious behavior.”

Senate Committee on Public Safety votes to lift the media access ban on California prisons

June 12, 2012

Today, residents throughout the state celebrate as AB1270, a bill to lift the media access ban in California prisons, passed the Senate Committee on Public Safety in a 4-2 vote. Since 1996, media have been prohibited from choosing their interview subjects inside prisons, and nine versions of this bill have been vetoed by three different governors.

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Filed Under: Prison Stories
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Stop the swiftboating of KPFA board member Tracy Rosenberg!

June 11, 2012

There’s more mischief underway at community radio station KPFA. KPFA subscribers will soon be receiving ballots in the mail asking them to vote on whether media activist Tracy Rosenberg should be recalled from her seat on the KPFA board. This swiftboat-style attack on the station’s hardest working board member must be defeated!

Congress pushes to deregulate public housing authorities across the nation

June 11, 2012

With corruption running rampant on Wall Street and in the nation’s lending institutions and housing industry, millions of homeowners are facing foreclosure as a direct result. Matters are only getting worse as members of Congress and the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) are pushing to deregulate the nation’s more than 3,000 public housing authorities.

‘Merritt College: Home of the Black Panther Party,’ an interview wit’ filmmaker James Calhoun

June 9, 2012

Most people do not know enough about the Black Panther Party, which was founded at Merritt College in Oakland in October of 1966 by Minister of Defense Huey P. Newton and Chairman Bobby Seale. This happening is important to Black history nationally and worldwide because the Panthers were and are an example of Black people fighting for self-determination no matter the cost.

Wanda’s Picks for June 2012

June 3, 2012

I would like to wish all the fathers a blessed and happy Fathers’ Day 2012. It is a hard time to be a parent of a youngster, not to mention an adolescent or youth. The challenges are great, in direct proportion to the rewards. I’d like to congratulate the young fathers who are stepping up and participating in their children’s lives, especially when society equates parenting with one’s largess or paycheck.

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Filed Under: Culture Stories
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Lawsuit challenges solitary confinement at California prison

June 2, 2012

The Center for Constitutional Rights filed a federal lawsuit Thursday on behalf of prisoners at Pelican Bay State Prison who have spent between 10 and 28 years in solitary confinement. The legal action is part of a larger movement to reform inhumane conditions in California prisons’ Security Housing Units (SHUs) dramatized by a 2011 hunger strike by thousands of prisoners.

Youth of color: Watched and shot

May 25, 2012

Trayvon Martin and Mumia Abu-Jamal. One is dead. One languished on death row for 30 years. They are separated in age by a generation, separated by different locations and different life-histories, but their stories of being under surveillance, watched and shot, intersect strikingly with each other and with many other people.

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Filed Under: California and the U.S.
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Swedes revive ridicule of Black beauty Hottentot Venus

May 7, 2012

Swedish Minister of Culture Lena Adelsohn Liljeroth, a self-proclaimed “anti-racist,” declared the party officially started by slicing a piece of a cake depicting a stereotypical African woman – in the area of the genitalia. Shocking photos that went viral on the net show the Stockholm cultural elite watching and laughing as Minister Liljeroth slices the cake.

My husband, my hero: The story of a prisoner labeled ‘worst of the worst’

April 6, 2012

Imagine you were framed again by prison gang officers using a tattoo you got as a child and a symbol in a birthday card to “validate” you as a “prison gang associate” and label you “worst of the worst” and placed in segregation in a Security Housing Unit, or SHU, for years on end. That is what happened to my childhood best friend and husband, Robbie Riva.

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Filed Under: Behind Enemy Lines
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Wanda’s Picks for April 2012

April 4, 2012

The Oakland International Film Festival is Friday-Sunday, April 6-8, at the Oakland Museum of California, 10th and Oak Street, Oakland. Visit http://www.oiff.org/2012schedule.pdf. This year’s headliner is one of the most controversial independent films ever made, “The Spook Who Sat by the Door.” Watch it again here.

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Filed Under: Culture Currents
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Wanda’s Picks for March 2012

March 7, 2012

When the Occupy San Quentin rally ended, San Rafael police followed us to the Richmond Bridge. I don’t know if it was Jabari Shaw’s orange CDCR jumpsuit that kept them wondering – Is he an escapee, one of ours? – or if it was the sheer magnitude of fearlessness represented by women like Kelly, a former prisoner who would not let her traumatic experience silence her. One brother got so full looking at the guards on the other side of the gate watching that he looked like he was going to leap the gate and hurt someone as he recalled the violations of his person over and over again. Members of All of Us or None dropped everything to embrace him when he left the stage.

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Filed Under: Culture Currents
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Guest Amoeblogger JR Valrey presents ‘The Black Experience Study Guide: My top 7 books, movies and albums for Black History Month’

February 29, 2012

Amoeblog invited author, journalist, broadcaster and activist JR Valrey, aka the People’s Minister of Information, to be a guest contributor. The Oakland-based Valrey, who was interviewed and profiled on the Amoeblog last month, is known for his work on KPFA radio, the San Francisco Bay View newspaper, and his book “Block Reportin’.” The book will soon be available for sale in Amoeba Hollywood’s book section.

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Filed Under: Culture Stories
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Mumia calls on you to ‘Occupy 4 Prisoners’ Monday, Feb. 20

February 17, 2012

On Monday, Feb. 20, over a dozen rallies will be held throughout the U.S. for a “National Occupy Day in Support of Prisoners.” Join the Bay Area rally 12-3 p.m. at San Quentin by getting or giving a ride at 10 a.m. at Oscar Grant Plaza in Oakland or 1540 Market St. in SF. “The U.S. is the world’s leader of the incarceration industry – it’s time for the focused attention of the Occupy Movement,” notes Mumia Abu-Jamal. Big rallies on Feb. 20 will push California authorities to meet 12,000 California prisoners’ five core demands and challenge the prison industrial complex everywhere.

Wanda’s Picks for February 2012

February 4, 2012

This is the month we wear our Blackness with pride – so walk on, walk on. I want to thank Rhodessa Jones, Shaka Jamal, Pat Jamison, Elaine Lee, Walter Turner, Vera Nobles and Elouise Burrell for your leads and references for South Africa.

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Filed Under: Culture Stories
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Community benefits win big: Construction contracts and jobs for Oaklanders

January 28, 2012

We finally have legislation that benefits the taxpayers of Oakland. Desley Brooks took a giant step to bring economic parity to the community of the poor. What she has done will slow down the Oakland process of importing labor and exporting capital. Pack the Oakland City Council meeting Tuesday, Feb. 7, regarding local hire and a Jobs Center.

Wanda’s Picks for January 2012

January 5, 2012

Life isn’t fair: Too many kids and not enough food, fat cats bringing in all the money and government services like free hospitals and free education is not free for those who need it because, like everywhere, bureaucracy breeds corruption, whether we are in Madagascar or the United States.

Vietnam vet issues call to arms to save his home

January 3, 2012

It’s time that we stand as an “Army of One” and demand that the banks stop abusing our citizens, veterans and service members. We need to let the banks know that the buck stops here. I am asking that you stand with me as we fight to get a modification so we can keep our home. We have designated Wednesday, Jan. 4, as our “Day of Action” against Wells Fargo Bank. We will be meeting at Lake Merritt’s Snow Park, at 19th and Harrison, on Jan. 4 at 3 p.m. and walk as a group to Wells Fargo Bank headquarters to speak with Jim Foley, regional president for Northern California.

Race and Occupy Cal

December 30, 2011

God could not have sent us a more fitting setting for Occupy Cal at the University of California, Berkeley – the sun rising, yellow and warm. I was going devote today to observing and reporting on the social movement.

Crime and punishment

December 27, 2011

“The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons,” wrote Dostoyevsky. If what he says is true – and I believe it is – then America, which boasts the largest prison population in the world, is perhaps the most uncivilized country there is. Who better to speak to the reality of prison life than someone who is living the experience?

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