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2011 August

Monthly Archives: August 2011

Free African political prisoner Victoire Ingabire

We need an international movement to free Rwandan opposition leader Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza. Her case is important to African people all over the continent and in the Diaspora and to all of us, all people. The weight on Victoire’s shoulders is that of resource war, the ongoing wars for the world’s natural resources that threaten to destroy the whole planet.

Release my mother, son of terminally ill blind prisoner asks Gov. Jerry Brown

California spends millions of dollars every year guarding physically incapacitated prisoners. California has a $10 billion budget deficit. California taxpayers will spend nearly $2 billion to pay for the health care needs of state prisoners. A large percentage of those funds are used for a small group of severely incapacitated inmates.

Unleashing the African genius: an interview with legendary historian Ashra Kwesi

The African historian Ashra Kwesi will be bringing a level of scholarship to the Bay Area that hasn’t been seen since Professor Theophile Obenga moved back to the Congo. He will be speaking on Saturday, Sept. 3, 6 p.m., at the Joyce Gordon Gallery, 406 14th St., in downtown Oakland.

Bayview Library: building down, price up $2 million

On the corner of Third and Revere, where the Bayview Library used to be, nothing is left but bare ground. One of the few places in the neighborhood where youngsters felt safe and enriched and everyone was welcome is gone. If the City had allowed the low bidder to build the new library, it would have been at least halfway to completion by now. The youngsters who love the library would be watching their parents and older brothers and sisters build a beautiful new library for them to return to in a matter of months. Liberty Builders, my general contracting company, was that low bidder.

The hunger strike was a success

The prisoncrats, as expected, seek to downplay and minimalize the success of the mass hunger strike that began on July 1, 2011, by its typical damage control tactic of spoon-feeding their spin to their Sacramento Bee stoogie who, like most of the public, believe their misleading and inaccurate assertions.

Virginia earthquake shakes U.S. awake to nuclear power danger

The North Anna Nuclear Power plant reactors are located about 10 miles from the epicenter of the 5.8 earthquake that shook Virginia on August 23. The plant is built to sustain a 6.2 magnitude earthquake, but this does little to comfort those who live close by.

Real talk on three strikes

For many years, the “three strikes” law has rained havoc and waste over the state of California, plunging its state debt increasingly deeper each and every year, which the taxpayers are paying for without any real justification.

Rep. Waters to Black voters: ‘Unleash us’ on Obama

Sparks flew Tuesday during the Congressional Black Caucus “For the People” jobs tour that took place in the town hall in Detroit, Mich., as Black caucus members told the mostly Black audience to “unleash” them in confronting President Barack Obama on the issue of jobs.

Locked up and left behind: New York’s prisoners and Hurricane Irene

“We are not evacuating Rikers Island,” Mayor Michael Bloomberg said in a news conference Friday afternoon. Bloomberg annouced a host of extreme measures being taken by New York City in preparation for the arrival of Hurricane Irene, including a shutdown of the public transit system and the unprecedented mandatory evacuation of some 250,000 people from low-lying areas.

Wave of illegal, senseless and violent evictions swells in Port au Prince

Mathias O is 34 years old. He is one of about 600,000 people still homeless from the January 2010 earthquake in Haiti. He lives with his wife and her 2-year-old under a homemade shelter made out of several tarps. They sleep on the rocky ground inside. The side tarp walls are reinforced by pieces of cardboard boxes taped together. Candles provide the only inside light at night. There is no running water. No electricity. They live near a canal and suffer from lots of mosquitoes.

New Orleans six years later: The disaster is not over

The storm that brushed by New Orleans on Aug. 29, 2005, was never the cause of the disaster. The real disaster began immediately after the storm when the city’s white supremacist economic elite and its “colored” collaborators decided to remake the city in their image, which strongly resembles a 21st century plantation. All people who believe in social justice should make it a point to march on Aug. 29 from the base of the Industrial Canal in the 9th Ward at 10 a.m. to Hunters Field.

Tripoli port notes

Tripoli port area, Aug. 23 – This observer’s tentative appraisal of Tuesday’s events along the North Tripoli port area as of late afternoon Aug. 23 is that the “65,000 well trained and well armed troops” hyped Sunday by the Qaddafi government don’t in fact exist and that the pockets of government troops here in Tripoli and across Libya that do will continue to resist what it views as NATO aggression – designed to usurp the country’s oil and add Libya to Africom.

Police, media demonize Kenneth Harding’s family

You are listening to the Minister of Information JR on Hard Knock Radio. Today we are talking to Denika Chatman, mother of Kenneth Harding, who was murdered July 16 in Hunters Point over a $2 transfer for Muni. Denika, how are you?

BART hates free speech

In justification of BART’s shutdown of mobile phone service on Aug. 11, the agency began to disingenuously claim that demonstrations against BART’s police brutality were a threat to passenger safety, even though no one has ever been hurt during a BART protest.

Pelican Bay threatens hunger strikers

It is a historical truth that repression breeds resistance, which is why we prisoners at Pelican Bay State Prison’s SHU/CMU units took the initiative to come together and go on a hunger strike in order to say to our oppressors that ...

The truth about the situation in Libya

Libya is a small country of just over 6 million people, but it possesses the largest oil reserves in all of Africa. The oil produced there is especially coveted because of its particularly high quality. The Air Force of the United States along with Britain and France has carried out 7,459 bombing attacks since March 19. Britain, France and the United States sent special operation ground forces and commando units to direct the military operations of the so-called rebel fighters – it is a NATO-led army in the field.

Criminalizing our youth to excuse police murder

After the London riots in August, the theorist Paul Gilroy made a rousing yet frighteningly honest speech to a crowd of community leaders and activists in Tottenham, North London. In his speech, Gilroy argued that Black and poor youth had been subjected to what he called “processes of criminalization,” re-creating them in an image they did not choose.

Don’t fall for CDCR’s disinformation

I’d like to extend my deep and heartfelt thanks to you and the Bay View staff in truthfully reporting what came down during and after the hunger strike on July 1, 2011, at Pelican Bay State Prison and all other prisons that took part in it.

People are being tortured inside these places

I first of all want to say that this, what you all are doing, is long overdue and needed if we are ever going to change the direction of this unjust system. I know that for a lot of you the idea of resisting and speaking truth to power is instinctive, and we have to figure out a way to inject this spirit into more people.

Hunger strike updates: Legislative hearing on Pelican Bay SHU tomorrow in Sacramento

The Prisoner Hunger Strike Solidarity coalition will hold a press conference Tuesday, Aug. 23, 11:00 a.m. at the California Capitol Building in Sacramento where families of prisoners, community members and activists from around California will converge to rally and participate ...