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"America, We Have Found You Out"

 

 

 

Books by Stokely Carmichael/Kwame Ture

Ready for Revolution: The Life and Struggles of Stokely Carmichael (Kwame Ture)  /  Black-Power:The Politics of Liberation 

Stokely Speaks: From Black Power to Pan-Africanism

*   *   *   *   *

Black Power

By Stokely Carmichael

 

The Black Power movement in the US is exposing the extent of the racism and exploitation which permeates all the institutions in the country. It has unique appeal to young black students on campuses across the US. These students have been deluded by the fiction in white America that if the black man would educate himself and behave himself, he would be acceptable enough to leave the ranks of the oppressed and have tea with the Queen.

However, this year, when provoked by savage white policemen, students on many campuses fought back, whereas before they had accepted these incidents without rebellion. As students are a part of these rebellions, they begin to realize that white America might let a very few of them escape, one by one, into the mainstream of a society, but as soon as black move in concert around their blackness she will reply with the fury which reveals her true racist nature.

It is necessary, then, to understand that our analysis of the US and international capitalism is one that begins in race. Color and culture were, and are, key factors in our oppression. Therefore our analysis of history and our economic analysis are rooted in these concepts. Our historical analysis for example views the US as being conceived in racism.

Although the first settlers themselves were escaping from oppression, and although their armed uprising against their mother country was around the aggravation of colonialism, and their slogan was “no taxation without representation,” the white European settlers could not extend their lofty theories of democracy to the red men, whom they systematically exterminated as they expanded into the territory of the country which belonged to the red men.

Indeed, in the same town in which the settlers set up their model of government based on the theory of representative democracy, the first slaves were brought from Africa. In the writings of the glorious Constitution, guaranteeing “life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness” and all that other garbage, these were rights for white men only, for the black man was counted as three fifths of a person. If you read the US Constitution, you will see that this clause is still in there to this very day—that the black man was three fifths of a man.

It was because white America needed cheap or free labor that she raped our African homeland of millions of black people. Because we were black and considered inferior by Americans and Europeans, our enslavement was justified and rationalized by the so-called white Christians, who attempted to explain their crimes by spouting lies about civilizing the heathens, pagans, savages from Africa, whom they portrayed as being “better off” in the Americas than they were in their homeland. These circumstances laid the systematic base and framework for the racism which has become institutionalized in white American society.

In our economic analysis, our interpretation of Marx comes not only from his writing, but, as we see it, from the relationship of capitalistic countries to people of color around the world. Now I’m going to show what happens when people in a white country in the West organize themselves when they’re oppressed.

I want to use the Labor Movement in the US because it’s always quoted around the world as the real movement, or friend, of the black man, who is going to be able to help him. This is true for all other little white countries when the white workers organize—here’s how they get out of the bind.

The Labor Movement of the US—while in the beginning certainly some of their great leaders in the struggle were against the absolute control of the economy by the industrial lords—essentially fought only for money. And that has been the fight of white workers in the West. The fight for one thing—more money. Those few who had visions of extending the fight for workers’ control of production never succeeded in transmitting their entire vision to the rank and file. The labor Movement found itself asking the industrial lords, not to give up their control, but merely to pass out a few more of the fruits of this control.

Thereby did the US anticipate the prophecy of Marx, and avoided the inevitable class struggle within the country by expanding into the Third World and exploiting the resources and slave labor of people of color. Britain, France, did the same thing. US capitalists never cut down on their profits to the American working class, who lapped them up. The American working class enjoys the fruits of the labors of the Third World, and the bourgeoise is white western society.

And to show how that works—and not only how it works just in terms of the bourgeoise—I’ve watched the relationships of whites to whites who are communist, and whites to non-whites whom they call communist. Now every time the US wants to take somebody’s country, they get up and say “Communists are invading them and terrorist guerilla warfare is on the way, and we must protect democracy, so send thousands of troops to Vietnam to kill the Communists.”

Italy is a white country. Over one third of its population is communist. Why doesn’t the US invade Italy? Tito is an acknowledged communist. The US gives him aid. Why don’t they invade Tito’s country, if they really care about stopping communism? The US is not kidding anybody. When they want to take over somebody’s land who is non-white, they talk about communist aggression—that’s what they did in Cuba, in Santo Domingo, and it’s what they’re doing in Vietnam. They’re always telling people how they’re going to stop them from going communist.

And don’t talk about dictatorship. Franco is perhaps the worst dictator in the world today, but the US gives him aid.

So that it is clear it is not a question of communist invasion; it’s really a question of being able to take the countries they want most from the people, and the countries they want most are obviously the non-white countries because that is where the resources of the world today. That’s where they have been for the last few centuries. And that’s why white western society has to be there. . . .

*   *   *

The US knows about law and order, it doesn’t know about justice. It is for white western society to talk about law and order. It is for the Third World to talk about justice. . . .

*   *   *

We are working to increase the revolutionary consciousness of black people in America to join with the Third World. Whether or not violence is used is not decided by us, it is decided by the white West. We are fighting a political warfare. Politics is war without violence. War is politics with violence. The white West will make the decision on how they want the political war to be fought. We are not any longer going to bow our heads to any white man. If he touches one black man in the US, he is going to go to war with every black man in the US.

We are going to extend our fight internationally and we are going to hook up with the Third World. It is the only salvation—we are fighting to save our humanity. We are indeed fighting to save the humanity of the world, which the West has failed miserably in being able to preserve. And the fight must be waged from the Third World. There will be new speakers. They will be Che, they will be Mao, they will be Fanon. You can have Rousseau, you can have Marx, you can even have the great libertarian John Stuart Mill.

*   *   *

Black Power, to us, means that black people see themselves as a part of the new force, sometimes called the Third World; that we see our struggle as closely related to liberation struggles around the world. We must hook up with these struggles. We must, for example, ask ourselves: when black people in Africa begin to storm Johnnesburg, what will be the reaction of the US? What will be the role of the West, and what will be the role of black people living inside the US? It seems inevitable that the US will move to protect its financial interests in South Africa, which means protecting the white rule in South Africa, as England has already done.

Black people in the US have the responsibility to oppose, and if not oppose, certainly to neutralize the effort by white America. This is but one example of many such situations which have already arisen around the world; there are more to come.

There is but one place for black Americans in these struggles, and that is one the side of the Third World.

Now I want to draw two conclusions. I want to give a quote from Fanon. Frantz Fanon in the Wretched of the Earth puts forth clearly the reasons for this, and the relationships of the concept called Black Power to the concept of a new force in the world. 

This is Fanon’s quote:

Let us decide not to imitate Europe. Let us try to create the whole man, whom Europe has been incapable of bringing to triumphant birth. Two centuries ago a former European colony decided to catch up with Europe. It succeeded so well that the USA became a monster in which the taints, the sickness, and the inhumanity of Europe has grown to appalling dimensions. 

The Third World today faces Europe like a colossal mass, whose aim should be to try to resolve the problems to which Europe has not been able to find the answers. It is a question of the Third World starting a new history of man, a history which will have regard to the sometimes prodigious thesis which Europe has put forward, but which will also not forget Europe’s crimes, of which the most horrible was committed in the heart of man and consisted of the pathological tearing apart of his functions and the crumbling away of his unity.

No, there is no question of a return to nature. It is simply a very concrete question of not dragging men towards mutilation, of not imposing upon the brain rhythms which very quickly obliterates it and wreck it. The pretext of catching up must not be used for pushing men around, to tear him away from himself or from his privacy, to break and to kill him.

No, we do not want to catch up with anyone. What we want to do is to go forward all the time, night and day, in the company of man, in the company of all men.

*   *   *   *   *

So the psychologists ought to stop investigating and examining people of color, they ought to investigate and examine their own corrupt society. That’s where they belong. And once they are able to do that, then maybe we can move on to build in the Third World.

I want to conclude, then, by reading a poem that was written by a young man who works in SNCC, the organization for which I work. His name is Worth Long. It’s called "Arson and Cold Grace, or How I Yearn to Burn Baby, Burn.”

*   *   *   *   *

Arson and Cold Grace,

or How I Yearn to Burn Baby, Burn

 

                                                                                 By Worth Long

 

We have found you out, four face Americas, we have found you out.

We have found you out, false faced farmers, we have found you out.

The sparks of suspicion are melting your waters

And waters can’t drown them, the fires are burning

And firemen can’t calm them with falsely appeasing

And preachers can’t pray with hopes for deceiving

Nor leaders deliver a lecture on losing

Nor teachers inform them the chosen are choosing

For now is the fire and fires won’t answer

To logical reason and hopefully seeming

Hot flames must devour the kneeling and feeling

And torture the masters whose idiot pleading

Get lost in the echoes of dancing and bleeding.

We have found you out, four faced farmers, we have found you out.

We have found you out, four faced America, we have found you out.

Source: To Free a Generation: The Dialectics of Liberation, edited by David Cooper. London: Collier Books, 1969.

posted 2 November 2007

*   *   *   *   *

 

Stokely Speaks; Black Power Back to Pan-Africanism

By Stokely Carmichael

Stokely Standiford Churchill Carmichael—(June 29, 1941 - November 15, 1998), also known as Kwame Ture, was a Trinidadian-American black activist active in the 1960s American Civil Rights Movement. He rose to prominence first as a leader of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC, pronounced "Snick") and later as the "Honorary Prime Minister" of the Black Panther Party. Initially an integrationist, Carmichael later became affiliated with black nationalist and Pan-Africanist movements. He popularized the term "Black Power."

In 1965, working as an SNCC activist in Lowndes County, Alabama, Carmichael helped to increase the number of registered black voters from 70 to 2,60 — 300 more than the number of registered white voters.

Black residents and voters organized and widely supported the Lowndes County Freedom Organization, a party that had the black panther as its mascot, over the white dominated local Democratic Party, whose mascot was a white rooster. Although black residents and voters outnumber whites in Lowndes, they lost the county wide election of 1965.

Carmichael became chairman of SNCC later in 1966, taking over from John Lewis. A few weeks after Carmichael took office, James Meredith was attacked with a shotgun during his solitary "March Against Fear". Carmichael joined Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Floyd McKissick, Cleveland Sellers, and others to continue Meredith's march. He was arrested once again during the march and, upon his release, he gave his first "Black Power" speech, using the phrase to urge black pride and socio-economic independence:

"It is a call for black people in this country to unite, to recognize their heritage, to build a sense of community. It is a call for black people to define their own goals, to lead their own organizations."

While Black Power was not a new concept, Carmichael's speech brought it into the spotlight and it became a rallying cry for young African Americans across the country. According to Stokely Carmichael : "Black Power meant black people coming together to form a political force and either electing representatives or forcing their representatives to speak their needs [rather than relying on established parties]. Heavily influenced by the work of Frantz Fanon and his landmark book Wretched of the Earth, along with others such as Malcolm X, under Carmichael's leadership SNCC gradually became more radical and focused on Black Power as its core goal and ideology. This became most evident during the controversial Atlanta Project in 1966.

SNCC, under the local leadership of Bill Ware, engaged in a voter drive to promote the candidacy of Julian Bond for the Georgia State Legislature in an Atlanta district. However, unlike previous SNCC activities—like the 1961 Freedom Rides or the 1964 Mississippi Freedom Summer — Ware excluded Northern white SNCC members from the drive. Initially, Carmichael opposed this move and voted it down, but he eventually changed his mind. When, at the urging of the Atlanta Project, the issue of whites in SNCC came up for a vote, Carmichael ultimately sided with those calling for the expulsion of whites, reportedly to encourage whites to begin organizing poor white southern communities while SNCC would continue to focus on promoting African American self reliance through Black Power.

Carmichael saw nonviolence as a tactic as opposed to a principle, which separated him from moderate civil rights leaders like Martin Luther King, Jr.. Carmichael became critical of civil rights leaders who simply called for the integration of African Americans into existing institutions of the middle class mainstream.

Stokely Carmichael—Black Power Speech

*   *   *   *   *

Black Power, A Critique of the System / Black Power  / What We Want

Amite County   Beginning   Kish Mir Tuchas     A Tribute to Kwame Toure/Stokely Carmichael

*   *   *   *   *

African Revolutions

       By  Mukoma wa Ngugi

Her womb pressed against the desert to bear the parasite

that eats her insides like termites drill into dry wood. 

He is born into an empty bowl, fist choking umbilical cord. 

She dies sighing, child son at last.  He couldn't have known,

 

instinct told him - always raise your arm in defense of your

own -Strike! Strike until they are all dead! Egg shells

in your hands milk bottle held between your toes,

you have been anointed twice, you strong enough to kill

 

at birth and survive.  You will want to name the world

after yourself but you will have no name- a collage of dead

roots, tongues and other things.  You will point your sword

to the center of the earth, duel the world to split into perfect

 

mirrors after your imperfect  mutations but you will be

too weak having latched your self onto too many streams

straddling too many continents, pulling patches of a self

as one does fruits from an from an orchard, building a home

 

of planks with many faces. How does one look into a mirror

with a face that washes clean every rainy season? 

He has an identity for every occasion - here he is Lenin

 there Jesus and yesterday Marx - inflexible truths inherited

 

without roots.  To be nothing to remain nothing, to kill

at birth - such love can only drink from our wrists.  We

storming from our past to Jo'Burg eating wisdom of others

building homes made of our grandparent's bones.  We

 

gathering momentum that eats out of our earth, We standing

pens and bullets hurled at you, your enemies.  Comrade, there

are many ways to die. A dog dies never having known

why it lived but a free death belongs to a life lived in roots,

 

roots not afraid of growing where they stand, roots tapped all over

the earth. Comrade, for a tree to grow, it must first own its earth.

Source: Zeleza

*   *   *   *   *

 

Stokely Carmichael, "Black Power"—Kalen M. A. Churcher—Speaking at Morgan State College in Baltimore on January 28, 1967, Carmichael displayed the very different style he used when addressing a predominantly black audience. Joking about how he partied at the school and participated in a sit-in near campus when he was younger, he also gave his audience at Morgan State a serious charge: overcoming the negative connotations of "black" that he had talked about in Berkeley. "If you want to stop rebellion," he said, "then eradicate the cause."

Carmichael then spoke of their responsibilities as leaders and intellectuals within the black community: "It is time for you to stop running away from being black. You are college students, you should think.

"It is time for you to begin to understand that you, as the growing intellectuals, the black intellectuals of the country, must begin to define beauty for black people."— Stokely Carmichael, "At Morgan State," in Stokely Speaks; Black Power Back to Pan-Africanism, ed. E.N. Minor (New York: Random House, 1966), 61-76.—Archive

*   *   *   *   *

Stokely Speaks; Black Power Back to Pan-Africanism

By Stokely Carmichael

Stokely Standiford Churchill Carmichael—(June 29, 1941 - November 15, 1998), also known as Kwame Ture, was a Trinidadian-American black activist active in the 1960s American Civil Rights Movement. He rose to prominence first as a leader of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC, pronounced "Snick") and later as the "Honorary Prime Minister" of the Black Panther Party. Initially an integrationist, Carmichael later became affiliated with black nationalist and Pan-Africanist movements. He popularized the term "Black Power."

In 1965, working as an SNCC activist in Lowndes County, Alabama, Carmichael helped to increase the number of registered black voters from 70 to 2,60 — 300 more than the number of registered white voters.

Black residents and voters organized and widely supported the Lowndes County Freedom Organization, a party that had the black panther as its mascot, over the white dominated local Democratic Party, whose mascot was a white rooster. Although black residents and voters outnumber whites in Lowndes, they lost the county wide election of 1965.

Carmichael became chairman of SNCC later in 1966, taking over from John Lewis. A few weeks after Carmichael took office, James Meredith was attacked with a shotgun during his solitary "March Against Fear". Carmichael joined Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Floyd McKissick, Cleveland Sellers, and others to continue Meredith's march. He was arrested once again during the march and, upon his release, he gave his first "Black Power" speech, using the phrase to urge black pride and socio-economic independence:

"It is a call for black people in this country to unite, to recognize their heritage, to build a sense of community. It is a call for black people to define their own goals, to lead their own organizations."

While Black Power was not a new concept, Carmichael's speech brought it into the spotlight and it became a rallying cry for young African Americans across the country. According to Stokely Carmichael : "Black Power meant black people coming together to form a political force and either electing representatives or forcing their representatives to speak their needs [rather than relying on established parties]. Heavily influenced by the work of Frantz Fanon and his landmark book Wretched of the Earth, along with others such as Malcolm X, under Carmichael's leadership SNCC gradually became more radical and focused on Black Power as its core goal and ideology. This became most evident during the controversial Atlanta Project in 1966.

SNCC, under the local leadership of Bill Ware, engaged in a voter drive to promote the candidacy of Julian Bond for the Georgia State Legislature in an Atlanta district. However, unlike previous SNCC activities—like the 1961 Freedom Rides or the 1964 Mississippi Freedom Summer — Ware excluded Northern white SNCC members from the drive. Initially, Carmichael opposed this move and voted it down, but he eventually changed his mind. When, at the urging of the Atlanta Project, the issue of whites in SNCC came up for a vote, Carmichael ultimately sided with those calling for the expulsion of whites, reportedly to encourage whites to begin organizing poor white southern communities while SNCC would continue to focus on promoting African American self reliance through Black Power.

Carmichael saw nonviolence as a tactic as opposed to a principle, which separated him from moderate civil rights leaders like Martin Luther King, Jr.. Carmichael became critical of civil rights leaders who simply called for the integration of African Americans into existing institutions of the middle class mainstream.

Stokely Carmichael—Black Power Speech

*   *   *   *   *

 

Wild Women Don’t Have the Blues

                                                         By Ida Cox


I hear these women raving 'bout their monkey men
About their fighting husbands and their no good friends
These poor women sit around all day and moan
Wondering why their wandering papas don't come home
But wild women don't worry, wild women don't have the blues.

Now when you've got a man, don't ever be on the square
'Cause if you do he'll have a woman everywhere
I never was known to treat no one man right
I keep 'em working hard both day and night
because wild women don't worry, wild women don't have no blues.

I've got a disposition and a way of my own
When my man starts kicking I let him find another home
I get full of good liquor, walk the streets all night
Go home and put my man out if he don't act right
Wild women don't worry, wild women don't have no blues

You never get nothing by being an angel child
You better change your ways and get real wild
I wanna tell you something, I wouldn't tell you no lie
Wild women are the only kind that ever get by
Wild women don't worry, wild women don't have no blues.

 Born Ida Prather,25 February 1896 in Toccoa, Habersham County, Georgia, United States. Died 10 November 1967 (aged 71) Genres Jazz, Blues Instruments Vocalist.

*   *   *   *   *

What We Want

By Stokely Carmichael

A Christian Goon Squad in Black Baltimore 

Clarence Logan and the Northwood Movement  / Reverend Marion Bascom Civilrighting

Roy Wilkins and Spiro Agnew in Annapolis  /  Agnew Speaks to Black Baltimore Leaders 1968

*   *   *   *   *

Walter Hall Lively   Forty Years of Determined Struggle 

Putting Baltimore's People First  Dominance of Johns Hopkins   A Brief Economic History of Modern Baltimore

Understanding the Monumental City: A Bibliographic Essay on Baltimore History (Richard J. Cox)

*   *   *   *   *

The End of Black Rage? Class and Delusion in Black America (Jared Ball)

The Black Generation Gap (Ellis Cose) 

*   *   *   *   *

John Henrik Clarke—A Great and Mighty Walk

This video chronicles the life and times of the noted African-American historian, scholar and Pan-African activist John Henrik Clarke (1915-1998). Both a biography of Clarke himself and an overview of 5,000 years of African history, the film offers a provocative look at the past through the eyes of a leading proponent of an Afrocentric view of history. From ancient Egypt and Africa’s other great empires, Clarke moves through Mediterranean borrowings, the Atlantic slave trade, European colonization, the development of the Pan-African movement, and present-day African-American history.

*   *   *   *   *

AALBC.com's 25 Best Selling Books


 

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#3 - Head Bangers: An APF Sexcapade by Zane
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#5 - Stackin' Paper 2 Genesis' Payback by Joy King
#6 - Thug Lovin' (Thug 4) by Wahida Clark
#7 - When I Get Where I'm Going by Cheryl Robinson
#8 - Casting the First Stone by Kimberla Lawson Roby
#9 - The Sex Chronicles: Shattering the Myth by Zane

#10 - Covenant: A Thriller  by Brandon Massey

#11 - Diary Of A Street Diva  by Ashley and JaQuavis

#12 - Don't Ever Tell  by Brandon Massey

#13 - For colored girls who have considered suicide  by Ntozake Shange

#14 - For the Love of Money : A Novel by Omar Tyree

#15 - Homemade Loves  by J. California Cooper

#16 - The Future Has a Past: Stories by J. California Cooper

#17 - Player Haters by Carl Weber

#18 - Purple Panties: An Eroticanoir.com Anthology by Sidney Molare

#19 - Stackin' Paper by Joy King

#20 - Children of the Street: An Inspector Darko Dawson Mystery by Kwei Quartey

#21 - The Upper Room by Mary Monroe

#22 – Thug Matrimony  by Wahida Clark

#23 - Thugs And The Women Who Love Them by Wahida Clark

#24 - Married Men by Carl Weber

#25 - I Dreamt I Was in Heaven - The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang by Leonce Gaiter

Non-fiction

#1 - Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable
#2 - Confessions of a Video Vixen by Karrine Steffans
#3 - Dear G-Spot: Straight Talk About Sex and Love by Zane
#4 - Letters to a Young Brother: MANifest Your Destiny by Hill Harper
#5 - Peace from Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You're Going Through by Iyanla Vanzant
#6 - Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey by Marcus Garvey
#7 - The Ebony Cookbook: A Date with a Dish by Freda DeKnight
#8 - The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors by Frances Cress Welsing
#9 - The Mis-Education of the Negro by Carter Godwin Woodson

#10 - John Henrik Clarke and the Power of Africana History  by Ahati N. N. Toure

#11 - Fail Up: 20 Lessons on Building Success from Failure by Tavis Smiley

#12 -The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

#13 - The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life by Kevin Powell

#14 - The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore

#15 - Why Men Fear Marriage: The Surprising Truth Behind Why So Many Men Can't Commit  by RM Johnson

#16 - Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire by Carol Jenkins

#17 - Brainwashed: Challenging the Myth of Black Inferiority by Tom Burrell

#18 - A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose by Eckhart Tolle

#19 - John Oliver Killens: A Life of Black Literary Activism by Keith Gilyard

#20 - Alain L. Locke: The Biography of a Philosopher by Leonard Harris

#21 - Age Ain't Nothing but a Number: Black Women Explore Midlife by Carleen Brice

#22 - 2012 Guide to Literary Agents by Chuck Sambuchino
#23 - Chicken Soup for the Prisoner's Soul by Tom Lagana
#24 - 101 Things Every Boy/Young Man of Color Should Know by LaMarr Darnell Shields

#25 - Beyond the Black Lady: Sexuality and the New African American Middle Class  by Lisa B. Thompson

*   *   *   *   *

 

Across That Bridge: Life Lessons and a Vision for Change

By John Lewis

The Civil Rights Movement gave rise to the protest culture we know today, and the experiences of leaders like Congressman Lewis have never been more relevant. Now, more than ever, this nation needs a strong and moral voice to guide an engaged population through visionary change. Congressman John Lewis was a leader in the American Civil Rights Movement. He was chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and played a key role in the struggle to end segregation. Despite more than forty arrests, physical attacks, and serious injuries, John Lewis remained a devoted advocate of the philosophy of nonviolence. He is the author of his autobiography, Walking with the Wind: A Memoir of a Movement, and is the recipient of numerous awards from national and international institutions, including the Lincoln Medal; the John F. Kennedy “Profile in Courage” Lifetime Achievement Award (the only one of its kind ever awarded); the NAACP Spingarn Medal; and the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian honor, among many others.

*   *   *   *   *

 

 

Here lies Jim Crow: Civil rights in Maryland

 By C. Fraser Smith

Though he lived throughout much of the South—and even worked his way into parts of the North for a time—Jim Crow was conceived and buried in Maryland. From Chief Justice Roger Brooke Taney's infamous decision in the Dred Scott case to Thurgood Marshall's eloquent and effective work on Brown v. Board of Education, the battle for black equality is very much the story of Free State women and men. Here, Baltimore Sun columnist C. Fraser Smith recounts that tale through the stories, words, and deeds of famous, infamous, and little-known Marylanders. He traces the roots of Jim Crow laws from Dred Scott to Plessy v. Ferguson and describes the parallel and opposite early efforts of those who struggled to establish freedom and basic rights for African Americans.

Following the historical trail of evidence, Smith relates latter-day examples of Maryland residents who trod those same steps, from the thrice-failed attempt to deny black people the vote in the early twentieth century to nascent demonstrations for open access to lunch counters, movie theaters, stores, golf courses, and other public and private institutions—struggles that occurred decades before the now-celebrated historical figures strode onto the national civil rights scene.

Smith's lively account includes the grand themes and the state's major players in the movement—Frederick Douglass, Harriett Tubman, Thurgood Marshall, and Lillie May Jackson, among others.—and also tells the story of the struggle via several of Maryland's important but relatively unknown men and women—such as Gloria Richardson, John Prentiss Poe, William L. "Little Willie" Adams, and Walter Sondheim—who prepared Jim Crow's grave and waited for the nation to deliver the body.Johns Hopkins University Press, 2008

*   *   *   *   *

Michelle Alexander: US Prisons, The New Jim Crow  / Judge Mathis Weighs in on the execution of Troy Davis

The New Jim Crow

Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness 

By Michelle Alexander

The mass incarceration of people of color through the War on Drugs is a big part of the reason that a black child born today is less likely to be raised by both parents than a black child born during slavery. The absence of black fathers from families across America is not simply a function of laziness, immaturity, or too much time watching Sports Center. Hundreds of thousands of black men have disappeared into prisons and jails, locked away for drug crimes that are largely ignored when committed by whites. Most people seem to imagine that the drug war—which has swept millions of poor people of color behind bars—has been aimed at rooting out drug kingpins or violent drug offenders. Nothing could be further from the truth. This war has been focused overwhelmingly on low-level drug offenses, like marijuana possession—the very crimes that happen with equal frequency in middle class white communities.

*   *   *   *   *

The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

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Ancient African Nations

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The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery

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The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 -- The Founding of Haiti 

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