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Wednesday, July 17, 2019
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Prisoners, mass incarceration and freedom

Now that we’re supposedly free, Blacks have become the majority of the U.S. prison population. And that is because the free labor of Black slaves built this country into a profitable, prosperous enterprise for whites who are trying to keep it that way.

I had to write on brown paper bags when these rogues...

This is the story that Missouri prisoner Shyheim Deen El-Mu’min wrote on paper bags when guards confiscated the writing paper from him and all the prisoners in his solitary confinement unit. The entire story is one of the longest we’ve ever received, over 10,000 words that filled 14 single-spaced pages when transcribed, so we’ll be presenting it in parts. This is the introduction, addressed to Bay View publisher Dr. Willie Ratcliff.

Monster Kody: an interview wit’ author Sanyika Shakur

The first book I read after I decided to consciously educate myself to be a part of the movement was Sanyika Shakur’s “Monster” in the mid-‘90s. I was inspired by the sharpness of his ideas, his vocabulary and his grasp on history. I respected him in the same way I respected Tupac Shakur. I knew that one day I wanted to be able express myself as articulately as the two of them.

Remembering Geronimo

Political activists around the country are still absorbing the news of Geronimo ji Jaga’s death. His commitment, humility, clear thinking as well as his sense of both the longevity and continuity of the Black Freedom Movement in the U.S. all stood out to those who knew him.

Wordplay: an interview wit’ Umar Bin Hassan of the Last Poets

By far one of the most revolutionary cultural groups to put words to music in the United States is the Last Poets. Many, including myself, trace the roots of rap music to the spoken word, lyrics and speeches of the Last Poets, Gil Scott Heron and the current political prisoner Imam Jamil Al-Amin, otherwise known as H. Rap Brown.

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Thoughts on ‘Democracy Denied’

During outside recreation, as we all were locked in individual dog cages that are side by side, I initiated a conversation into what we read in “Democracy Denied.”

Human rights team finds US-backed Haitian government culpable in Lasalin massacre

On April 1, 2019, our team went to Lasalin and interviewed survivors and eye-witnesses of the November massacre. The report demonstrates that the Lasalin massacre was in fact an attack facilitated by government officials and directly conducted by Haitian National Police officers working closely with paramilitary elements.

‘State of Black San Francisco’ conference raises questions

Findings of the 2008 State of Black San Francisco public conference predicted our present: "a combination of violence, economics and lack of Black leadership has contributed to a situation that could soon turn SF into a city with only a handful of very rich and very poor African Americans."

Joe Debro on racism in construction, Part 20

The old rhyme, so well known in the nether regions of American slums, is certainly apropos to minority business conditions in Oakland: “If you’re white, that’s all right; If you’re yellow, that’s mellow; If you’re brown, you can stick aroun’; But if you’re Black, get the Hell back!”

St. John Coltrane Church celebrates 50th anniversary in San Francisco

Since its inception in 1969, the Saint John Coltrane African Orthodox Church (SJCAOC) has been dedicated to the spiritual artistry of its namesake, the great American jazz musician and composer, whose instrument was the saxophone.