The Other America

A
speech by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
martin_luther_king

The civil rights leader's speech at Stanford
University, April 14, 1967. "[T]here are hundreds of
thousands of Negroes who have given up. They've lost hope. They've come to feel
that life is a long and desolate corridor for them with no Exit sign, and so
they no longer go to look for a job. There are those who would estimate that
these persons, who are called the Discouraged Persons, these 6 or 7% in the
Negro community, that means that unemployment among Negroes may well be 16%.
Among Negro youth in some of our larger urban areas it goes to 30 and 40%."

Rev. Pinkney is “Banned” – Like in the Old South Africa

RevPinkneyThe trials
(literally) and tribulations of Benton Harbor, Michigan's Rev. Edward Pinkney
give the lie to American claims of "race-neutrality."  The activist minister has been stripped of most of his political
rights, plunged into a purgatory of the "banned" as in white-ruled South
Africa.
 
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{mp3}poetry/20090114_gf_rev_pinkney_banned{/mp3}
 

Haiti and the Dilemma of Afrikan Sovereignty in the Americas

by Ahati N. N. ToureHaitiouverture.1

The Haitian Revolution was but one of many Afrikan rebellions against "European dictatorship" in the Americas. "Afrikan revolutionary struggles convulsed nearly all areas of what was or was to become the United States from 1619 to the end of the American civil war in 1865." Haiti was at one point central to the success of Bolivar's revolution on the mainland of South American. "Haiti posed a strategic threat to North American empire by introducing the specter of spreading Afrikan revolution that could potentially dethrone European settler hegemony not only within itself but throughout the larger Americas."

Reflections on Obama’s “Non-Ideological Pragmatism”

by Paul StreetobamaStreet

The corporate media work hard to frame pro-business policies as the "practical" and "pragmatic" work of "centrist" and "non-partisan" politicians who can "get the job done." The clear implication is that progressives have their heads in the clouds, and are incapable of "getting things done." Of course, "Adolf Hitler and Josef Stalin certainly ‘got things done.' So did Richard Nixon and George W. Bush and so on." That doesn't make them the good guys. Barack Obama and his handlers stress that he is "non-ideological" - which really translates to non-threatening to entrenched interests.

Freedom Rider: Bush Goes Out a Winner

FRbush_torture78by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

Bush is leaving office in the popularity basement, but his checklist of accomplishments is full. Bush has "succeeded in radically changing nearly every facet of government, and always with the help of the Democratic Party." Even when at his nadir in the polls, Bush managed to transfer $700 billion dollars into the pockets of his high-roller banking friends. He has implicated so many Democrats in torture, the party has little choice but to give him and themselves immunity. "It is hard to see how Bush can be considered a failure when the so-called opposition aided him every step of the way."

Black Unionists Losing Share of Membership



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UAW"The decline in manufacturing has been cruel to Black workers, loosening what once seemed to be a firm hold on middle income status. The decline in union membership has been even worse."

Somalia: President Obama's Turn To Kill Africans

Click the flash player above to hear this Black Agenda Radio commentary, or click here to download an mp3 copy.
somalia500_15088t"The farcical, puppet Somali government installed by the Ethiopians and Americans could never survive on its own, and has effectively disintegrated."

 

Desperately Seeking Obama

GazaSeekingObamaby Dr. Sunera Thobani

"That
Obama chooses to remain silent" on Israeli savaging of Gaza "is nothing short
of cowardice." Even before he is sworn into office, Obama's stature is
diminished; he has been "pushed into a corner" by the Israelis. What has been
lost may not be regained. "The hope that a Black man will stand up to the
racial calculations that turn the ‘native' into a ‘thing', as Frantz Fanon put
it, is palpable among many Muslims." There is "no greater cause for social
justice than that of the Palestinian people," but "Obama is missing in action
in this first challenge to his Presidency."

Who is Black America’s Moral Emissary to the World?

by BAR executive editor
Glen Ford

McKinney

 

The global reputation of Black America has suffered
greatly under George Bush, who deployed Black faces as fronts for his vicious
brand of U.S. imperialism. Barack Obama's silence on the Israeli assault on
Gaza suggests that his honeymoon with the planet won't last long. So who is to
represent the progressive values of African Americans on the world stage?
"Thanks to Cynthia McKinney, millions of Arabs have been made aware of a
different Black America, one that is not silent, like Barack Obama, in the face
of a purposely inflicted human rights catastrophe."

Bankers and Military Hog Power Under Obama

Carrion-1"In the current economic and imperial crisis, real power
is exercised through the Treasury, which has been converted into an ATM for the
once-rich and still powerful, and through the Pentagon."

 To listen to this Black Agenda Radio commentary, click the flash player below.{mp3}20090107_gf_urban_policy{/mp3}

The Great Debate

7_foot_poet_upright_250wideby Kemet Mawakana, a.k.a. the Seven Foot Poet

In these historic and unprecedented times, questions of great importance loom before us.  Latte or mocha?  Chili dogs or sauerkraut?  Leather or cloth interior?  Our choices, the learned and knowledgeable tell us, do matter.  No, really, they do!  The Seven Foot Poet agrees.  Mostly.   

Arne Duncan and Neoliberal Racism

by Paul Street

Barack Obama likes to play basketball with his friend Arne Duncan, but does that make Duncan worthy of the nation's top education spot? If Obama's appointees are a reflection of the president-elect's own world view, this one is quite disturbing. Paul Street writes: "Privatization, union-busting (charter and contract schools operate union-free), excessive standardized testing, teacher-blaming, military schooling, and the rollback of community input on school decisions - these are the interrelated hallmarks of private school graduate Arne Duncan's six and a half years at the helm of" the Chicago Public Schools.

Eshu’s blues: Ode to Charles Rex Fisher/Christmas Night in Harlem

by BAR columnist michael hureaux perez

A teacher/activist offers some holiday ruminations on education: "Let us celebrate punitive testing, carved up tables and chairs, chain link fence in the stairwells and high strung civil servants who are just marking time until they can get away from the children of the great unwashed." Not cheered up, yet? Let's think of kinder times and inspiring educators, like Rex Fisher, who introduced the author "and my peers to the words of David Walker, Frederick Douglass, Martin Delaney, WEB DuBois, Marcus Garvey, Fannie Lou Hamer and Malcolm X -  and that was a rare thing from teachers in the public schools of 1973."

Perversion of Justice: Gulag America

 by Rady Ananda

perversion-of-justice--590-x-165-20081124-473

The American Prison Gulag, already one-half Black, is becoming increasingly co-ed. "The US jailed one in 746 women in 2006, up from one in 100,000 back in 1925.  Compared to other nations, the female portion of the prison population is highest in the US - at 9%." Melissa Mummert's film, Perversion of Justice, tells the "story of Hamedah Hasan and her three children" to "exemplify the need to repeal the Sentencing Reform Act of 1984, and the mandatory minimum laws."

Freedom Rider: Rick Warren and Barack Obama

WarrenAndObamaby BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

Some folks like to call him "No-Drama Obama," but it appears that the president-elect doesn't care how much drama he stirs up - on his Left. Obama and his handlers should have known that bestowing the invocation honors to "evangelical preacher/businessman" Rick Warren was sure to cause drama among gays, as well as pro-choice advocates. But, "like Bush, Obama believes that he is the decider. The Warren invitation is yet another instance of the patronizing Obama telling the left that they shouldn't worry their pretty little heads about anything that he decides is inconsequential."

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gf

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