Remember Hubert Harrison

Hubert-Henry-Harrison, <strong>Remember Hubert Harrison</strong>, Abolition Now!
Hubert Henry Harrison (1883-1927), was a West Indian-American writer, orator, educator, critic, race and class conscious political activist and radical internationalist based in Harlem, New York. 

by Kevin “Rashid” Johnson

Hubert Harrison

His name is a mystery

Written out of history

Because he left no stone unturned

From every source he learned

All exploiters he spurned

From Booker T. Washington to Marcus Garvey

He boldly exposed the pawns of racist bosses

And those who used Black causes

To hustle the people

He was without equal


One of the greatest minds

Of his time

When Blacks migrated

To urban centers from the South to find

Freedom from poverty

Lynchings and the Ku Klux Klan

Saw much to be learned from Afrikans

An unrivaled people’s champion

Stood for women’s equal rights

Led the struggle against

Lynch mobs and supremacy of whites

Spoke against the attack on Black Wall Street

With white mobs and bombs

Called on Blacks to take up arms

To protect themselves

To respect themselves

Rejected leadership from the elite and middle classes

Championed creating leadership from the masses

Recognized Black people as a nation

Maintained a humble occupation

A proletarian postal worker

Street orator

Black journalist

And mass educator

A leading Black socialist

The mind behind Garvey’s UNIA

Until he witnessed Garvey betray

The people with scams bombast and lies

Which he despised

Broke ranks

Exposed Garvey as a hustle

With fake Afrikan muscle

Behind him

Garvey tried to keep Hubert in line

But he wouldn’t mind him

An ‘Emperor Jones’ he defined him

Influenced every major Black voice

Of the Renaissance in Harlem

The people’s choice

Many regarded him

The father of radical Black

Literature poetry and theater

Unmatched brilliance as a

Scientific thinker

Theoretical creator

If it began in early Black Harlem he led it

A race and class conscious critic

From JA Rogers and Cyril Briggs

To Winston James

Among those he influenced

Were the greatest names

In Black history

Yet his name is a mystery

Few know this story

Cuz he boldly exposed those

Who falsely posed

As champions of the people

Scammers and con men

Opportunists he’d see through

Many of whom were in league

With the powers that be

Like Booker T.

It was his honesty

That made them his enemy

So they were able to themselves erase

And put themselves in place

Of his legacy

If many Black leaders knew

Of Hubert’s political breakthroughs

We’d have avoided many obstacles

He showed what was possible

When the source

Of our political voice

Is the people en masse

Remember Hubert Harrison

And serve the future with the past!

Send our Brother some love and light: Kevin “Rashid” Johnson, 1007485, Sussex I, 24414 Musselwhite Dr., Waverly VA 23891.