“Y’know things get funnier every day you live. They don’t get no better. Dig? But they sure as hell get funnier.” This week I keep hearing those words in the back of my mind, as spoken by a Black journalist named “Roosevelt,” a character who works for a Black New Orleans newspaper in the 1960s film “WUSA.” Critics trashed WUSA when it came out in 1970 and it bombed at the box office, but Paul Newman thought it was the most important film he ever made.
On Sept. 9, 2016, prisoners participated in the largest prisoner work stoppage in the history of the country. Prisoners in at least four facilities in Michigan joined in the work stoppage, including Kinross Correctional Facility. The next morning, after retaliatory actions from staff, Kinross prisoners held a peaceful demonstration in the yard. Since then, hundreds have faced harsh, unjust retaliation. Harold “HH” Gonzales was a spokesperson for the prisoners at the demonstration at Kinross and wrote this account.
Respects to you for giving brothas a voice and love. I won’t lie in this letter nor put on extras out of respect and in honor of my brother Hugo “Yogi” Pinell. I’m an inmate in New Folsom. I was housed in B2-111, five cells away from Yogi. Every day at yard time it was my honor and duty to escort him to the rec yard. His spirit was amazing. He had jokes. When Yogi hit the yard, the unity just by his presence was beautiful. Afrikans from everywhere were one.
The Bay View thanks Donald Lacy for making the recording of this incomparable historic interview available for publication in print for the first time. Don’t miss “Superheroes,” inspired by Gary Webb and “Dark Alliance,” which Lacy calls “the most important play written in the last 25 years.” It runs Nov. 21-Dec. 21 at the Cutting Ball Theater, 277 Taylor St., San Francisco.
Here is the story of two legends who gave everything to their people for decades and continued to their last breaths. Salute to the Freeman brothers, Roland and Elder. Elder Freeman was a mentor and uncle-like community figure at whose feet I sat for half my life, learning from him and his comrades fundamental lessons: true African communalism and how to sincerely love Black people through action
Minister of Information JR, now out of jail, tells how and why Oakland was rocked by rebellion Jan. 7 after nearly a week of official silence following the New Year's police execution of Oscar Grant. Look for a report - both here and in the February paper that will hit the streets Jan.30 - on the Town Bizness Townhall Meeting Against Police Terrorism that had people spilling out the door Friday.
This past Sunday over 1,200 people showed up at Salem Methodist Church in Harlem to listen and weigh in on a discussion that has been raging on in our communities but is oftentimes swept under the rug.