Elaine Brown’s “A Taste of Power,” a memoir which chronicles her leadership of the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense when co-founder Huey P. Newton is imprisoned, still resonates with me. The idea that a Black woman is nominated to the leadership position of the most powerful civic organization in the country at that time is still remarkable and speaks to what Kathleen Cleaver calls revolutionary imagination.
As Africans, our struggle must be focused on achieving our inalienable right to self-determination – to develop our own political and economic systems and put in place our own political structures, free of interference from the outside world. Only we can turn the tables – only we can achieve our own liberation from systems that continue to keep us in a state of dependency and disarray.
Today, Haiti’s first democratically elected president, Jean Bertrand Aristide, whose return to Haiti is demanded daily by his people – he was kidnapped Feb. 29, 2004, in a U.S.-engineered coup and has since lived in South Africa – wrote the following letter to the South African and Haitian governments seeking to return home. But, asks Ezili Danto, who forwarded his letter, “If Duvalier can, without trouble, travel on an EXPIRED Haitian passport, why can’t President Aristide do the same?”