Monthly Archives: September 2008
The officers were waiting, loaded firearms dangling from their waists, steel filled chests puffed out, glassy stares behind helmets. She was one woman alone. She was a reporter doing her job. She was attacked by the police for no reason at all. Her only crime was being a media producer in a hostile location.
A new KPFA policy essentially bans all listeners from the station except those that management deems "authorized" and it permits police to remove anyone not authorized. KPFA recently called the police on an unpaid staff person, Nadra Foster. The calling of police by any progressive organization or institution is a racist act by definition. If anyone should be banned from the station, it should be the present management, which needs to be replaced immediately.
Black radio really is vanishing. Out of 10,315 commercial AM and FM radio stations in the United States, only 168 are Black-owned. In the new film “Disappearing Voices: The Decline of Black Radio,” veteran radio personality Bob Law and independent filmmaker U-Savior explain why.
It is a sad commentary when the management of KPFA Radio, a nonprofit dedicated to social justice in my hometown of Berkeley, Calif., calls the police on a staff member who volunteers her time, donating talent and skill to bring the mission of that organization to bear.
As a member of first the advisory board and later the governing Local Station Board at KPFA through 2006, I witnessed events that I believe gave rise to what the writers of yesterday's Berkeley Daily Planet commentary call a threat of "civil war," and I contribute these words to the struggle for a just peace. KPFA managers are apparently oblivious to the everyday police war on Black people that I believe KPFA is obligated by its mission to cover.
On Saturday, Aug. 30, on the South Side of Chicago, in the Negro League Club aka the POCC's "Lamp Post," the 60th anniversary celebration of the birth of Deputy Chairman Fred Hampton of the Black Panther Party kicked off with a film festival and ended with a Chairman Fred Hampton Streetz Party on Chairman Fred Hampton Way.