17 August 2011 — Black Agenda Report – News, commentary and analysis from the black left
It’s Too Late To Save The Obama Administration. Can We Still Save Ourselves?
By BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon
Two and half years into the Obama presidency, some of us spend more time mooning over pretty pictures of the First Family, their beautiful kids and regal mother-in-law than we spend publicly worrying over the fates of millions of families, children and elders we personally know. Why are some of us still trying to “save” the Obama administration. When will it be time to save ourselves from endless war, climate change, joblessness and the other ravages of late predatory capitalism?
Black Libya City Said to Fall to Rebel Siege
by BAR executive editor Glen Ford
Western-backed rebels have made good their vow to “purge slaves, black skin,” with their reported capture of Tawurgha, a black Libyan city, after a long siege. Elsewhere, just 30 miles from the capital city of Tripoli, NATO bombed 85 civilians to oblivion. Facing a September 27 United Nations deadline on its “humanitarian” mission, “NATO has resorted to terror bombing to clear the way for the rebel advance.”
Freedom Rider: Look! Over There! It’s President Michelle Bachmann!
by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley
Most Democrats are so fixated on the prospect of another Republican in the White House, they are oblivious to the actual crimes of the current resident. “It is true that [Texas Gov. Rick] Perry called Social Security a ponzi scheme, but it is Barack Obama who has made common cause with Republicans to cut the program.” As for the Neanderthalian Rep. Michelle Bachman. Democrats “only care that Bachmann confuses Massachusetts with New Hampshire or Elvis Presley’s birthday with his death day” – not that Obama confuses the difference, in Libya, between war and not-war.
British Jealous of America’s Savage Police
A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford
Given the extreme violence of American life, when compared to other rich nations, why would the Brits consider for even an instant emulating the U.S. criminal justice system? What could American cops teach them? How to fill prisons to overflowing, make millions of citizens hate authority, and saturate the nation with guns and drugs? But then, why do white Americans tolerate such a system? The answer: the aim of white supremacy is not efficiency or justice, but to keep non-whites in their place. White racists in Britain “are jealous of the absolute savagery of the U.S. criminal justice system’s treatment of Black people.”
Deported 1 Million, Separated Countless Families Since 2009, to Latinos Obama is the Bait & Switch President
Latinos overwhelmingly voted for the First Black President. And why not? He wrapped himself in the mantle of Dr. King, made explicit promises to humanize the immigration system, and even spoke out against some of the racist scapegoating of immigrants. But that was then, as a candidate. After two and a half years as president, Obama’s record marks him out as the bait-and-switch president.
Black Democrats Go to Israel, Ron Paul Puts Democrats to Shame
A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford
At least five Black Democratic congresspersons are in Israel, part of the one-fifth of the U.S. House that accepted an expensive vacation paid for by AIPAC, the Israel lobby. Clearly, it is thought wiser to take blood money from the Israelis, than to anger them. Meanwhile, Rep. Ron Paul is the lone presidential contender in either party that opposes America’s widening wars.
Newark: Day In, Day Out Protests
229 Days of Protest to Go for People’s Organization for Progress
Inspired by the 381-day-long Montgomery, Alabama bus boycott of 1955, the People’s Organization for Progress will conduct demonstrations every day highlighting the “need for a national jobs program, a call to end military actions in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, a call to stand against police brutality, a call to preserve workers rights and collective bargaining, a call for a moratorium on foreclosures, a call for national health care and for affordable higher education, and more,” said POP president Larry Hamm.
For information, call 973 801 0001.
International Day of Action Against Imperialist Wars Against Africa and African People Worldwide
Teach-In at Harlem’s St. Mary’s Church
Saturday August 20th 2011
3 to 6 PM, St. Mary’s Church 521 West 126 Street
George Jackson: Forty Years Ago, They Shot Him Down
by Norman (Otis) Richmond aka Jalali
If you don’t know about George Jackson, the Soledad Brother, then you have had a very incomplete education on the Black Liberation Movement. Assassinated by guards in San Quentin’s prison yard in 1971, Jackson is both an icon and theorist of the era. His younger brother, Jonathan, was martyred a year earlier seeking George’s escape, an incident in which educator and activist Angela Davis became enmeshed. C.L.R. James described the letters in Jackson’s book Soledad Brother as “the most remarkable political documents that have appeared inside or outside the United States since the death of [Vladimir Ilyich] Lenin.”
The Falling Veneer of the Great Black Hope
by Ron Kipling Williams
Despite some decline in his Black approval rating, most African Americans that voted for President Obama behave like “tourists star struck at the vision of the micro palace on 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.” In this period of deep crisis, we must “remove his black face and peer into the actions of Obama.” He is not our champion, or even our friend. “No president – black or not – should ever be juxtaposed to Dr. King if he himself does not oppose war, and does not call for the radical redistribution of the wealth, and does not fight vigorously for poor people.”
America’s Mass Incarceration Policy: Bad for Children
by Lee A. Daniels
The “New Jim Crow” that has thrown unprecedented numbers of Blacks behind bars and made crime and stigmatized an entire people, has also mangled the lives of Black children – whether a parent has been incarcerated or not. The generalized effects on Black kids include “increased physical aggressiveness, on the one hand, and, on the other, a sense of worthlessness that reaches levels warranting clinical intervention.” Inequalities are being generationally transferred on a massive scale.
Racial Profiling is Cause of Mass Black Incarceration
“There is enough data now to show that racial profiling is the major cause of mass incarceration,” former Black Panther Dhoruba bin Wahada told an Atlanta gathering organized by the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement. “It’s fashionable now to talk about mass incarceration,” he said. “Everybody from Al Sharpton to Cornel West to CNN is talking about it.” What the people must demand is “decentralization of the police” so that local communities can control the workings of the criminal justice system. “With the strike at Pelican Bay” prison, in California, “it’s becoming internationally embarrassing for the United States” to have the world think of U.S. prisons as “the dungeons of the 21st century.”
Wars of Economic Aggression Kill Multitudes
Economic aggression is just as deadly as imperialism’s shooting wars, said Omali Yeshitela, chairman of the Black Is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations. It is outrageous, he said, that “half the people on Earth live off $2 a day.” The Black Is Back Coalition has called for an International Day of Action, on August 20, to oppose the “other” wars: all forms of oppression against African people around the globe.
Halt Sanctions Against Zimbabwe
Human rights lawyer Roger Wareham says, unless Black political leaders withdraw support for U.S. sanctions against Zimbabwe, “we will be as complicit in the oppression of Zimbabwe as were are if we take no stand against what’s happening in Libya.” Speaking to a New York City audience, Wareham said the Movement for Democratic Change, the main opposition party in Zimbabwe was established with Western money “in order to carry out their policy of regime change.”
Colombia “Free Trade” Threatens Blacks, Indigenous People and Unionists
So-called “Free Trade” legislation pending in the U.S. Congress “would consolidate a situation of impunity” in Colombia, a country that leads the world in murders of trade unionists and in the number of displaced persons, said Gemena Sanchez-Grizoli, of the Washington Office on Latin America. The legislation serves only multinational corporations, and will cost Americans 50,000 jobs, said Ms. Sanchez-Grizoli.
EPA Civil Rights Chief Must Go
Lisa Jackson, the Black administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, is headed for a nasty confrontation with human rights forces if she continues to stand by her civil rights chief, Rafael DeLeon, who is accused of making racist and sexist remarks. Marsha Coleman-Adebayo, a whistleblower and a key figure in passage of the NO FEAR Act who was fired by DeLeon, wrote an open letter to EPA chief Jackson, demanding that DeLeon, a Black Puerto Rican, be removed from his job. “We are not prepared to accept Black oppressors, as opposed to white oppressors,” said Coleman-Adebayo.
Morehouse to hold “Nile Valley Conference” on African Roots of Civilization
“For 200 years,” says Dr. Charles Finch II, noted scholar and medical doctor, “the academic establishment of America have systematically falsified history” in order to place the origins of human civilization somewhere other than Africa. Finch and other scholars and activists will converge on Morehouse College, in Atlanta, for a second “Nile Valley Conference” on the roots of civilization. Morehouse was the site of the first conference, 18 years ago.