So what is 3UFirst and how does it bring billions back to our community? 3UFirst was created specifically to solve the major problems in the Black community. The focus is on creating jobs, business and investment opportunities, building wealth, sponsoring, funding the best programs locally and across the country, solving the other problems in our community, and donating 50 percent of the net profits back into the community.
“An American Nightmare: Black Labor and Liberation” will be transformed from paper to the screen with a Kickstarter campaign to raise money for a seven-part film series co-produced by Deep Dish TV and Cooperation Jackson and directed by Kali Akuno. Please go to Kickstarter and donate as generously as you can before Nov. 7. The theme: 150 years since an end to chattel slavery, anti-Black racism is still a virulent force in the U.S. The cause? The path to liberation?
Just five days after the signing of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the Watts Rebellion erupted, lasting several days. Today urban rebellion remains a key element in the struggle of the African American people against national oppression and economic exploitation. Since 2012, with the vigilante killing of Trayvon Martin and the resultant acquittal of George Zimmerman, a rising consciousness and intolerance for racism has been rapidly accelerating.
The uprising in Baltimore has delivered an unmistakable and powerful message that the time is over when people will tolerate the unending and outrageous murder and brutality carried out by police. The torture and murder of Freddie Gray for nothing – and the ongoing, infuriating lies and coverup – is only the latest in a long line of such horrors in not only Baltimore but all over the U.S., from North Charleston, S.C., to Ferguson, Missouri, from Pasco, Washington, to New York City and beyond – THIS MUST STOP!
A week ago Sunday, five St. Louis Rams professional football players entered a game with their hands up, protesting the killing of Michael Brown. They stand in the lineage of John Carlos and Tommie Smith, of Muhammad Ali, identifying with the pain in their communities and turning protest into power. The gesture turned to chants – “Hands up! Don’t shoot!” – in demonstrations across the country.
On the 20th anniversary of the demise of my father, Fred Ali Batin Sr., the 18th anniversary of the Maafa Commemoration San Francisco Bay Area – the Ritual Sunday is Oct. 13, 2013; see http://maafasfbayarea.com/ – and approximately the 60th day of the hunger strike to end the inhuman conditions in California’s Security Housing Units or SHUs, I just want to pause and reflect.
“We as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values … when machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, materialism and militarism are incapable of being conquered.” – Martin Luther King Jr., April 4, 1967
“This system treats us like throw-away people,” says Carolyn Brown, a Seattle volunteer with prison reform group Justice Works! An African American with a record, her effort to find a job is deeply frustrating due to systemic racism.
It’s time to be counted. Every day, the average American gets 1.7 pieces of direct mail; in March they will get another in the form of the 2010 Census. The 2010 Census is being mailed to more than 130 million households, including America’s 8.5 million Black family households. Fully a third of these households aren’t expected to send their forms back.
The 10 Black members of the powerful House Finance Committee are still being applauded this week by the Black press and Black leaders nationally for boldly boycotting a committee meeting in order to force a $4 billion allocation to benefit the Black community. They plan to escalate protests if lawmakers continue to ignore the suffering of their constituents, including advertising discrimination against Black newspapers.
On Thursday, Dec. 3, while President Obama holds a national summit on jobs and unemployment, unemployed workers will picket at 11:30 a.m. in front of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office in the SF Federal Building, 90 7th St., calling for Congress to take immediate action to put people back to work.
When America talks about unemployment percentages around 10 percent, I know they are talking about white people. It is talked about as an alarming figure. As a Black man, I am not alarmed. If that were the number in my community, I would rejoice. “No Blacks working! That’s what I see at every construction jobsite in San Francisco,” exclaims Willie Ratcliff, Bay View publisher and lifelong construction worker and contractor.
So Van Jones, activist, joins the Barack Obama administration, as the green energy czar, a field he’s passionate about, to provide jobs in Black communities and conserve natural resources as part of a larger change in America’s addiction to oil. But, almost immediately, Jones comes under attack from forces in America that really don’t want change.
President Barack Obama delivers his Inaugural Address on the steps of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., Jan. 20, 2009 - see the videos, photos and transcript.