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And when the justified dead / are thrown up from the earth --

will Judgment’s Trumpet scream out / in a Blast -- / Murder in Mississippi?

 

 

 

Resurrection in Mississippi

     ( For Chaney, Goodman, and Schwerner)

 

By Amin Sharif

 

They say that Mississippi

is like the sea and only will

give up her black dead at the end of time.

 

Tell me? How shall that be?

 

Will the young black corpses

be pieced together again as they were

before?

 

Or will the bullet holes show?

Will broken legs dance?

Each dark shattered hand clap?

Will the torn and screaming

tongue speak?

 

Perhaps the nails and the wooden

crosses will bleed slowly once

again—

warmed beneath a still smoldering

fire?

 

Tell me? How shall that be?

 

Will graceful tree limbs

bend low with each tattered rope

about their slender necks

pointing like a guilt finger

at the unmarked graves held within

the earth?

 

And when the justified dead

are thrown up from the earth—

will Judgment’s Trumpet scream out

in a Blast—

 

Murder in Mississippi?

 

Or are the Mississippi dead

buried too deep for the Eyes of

heaven to see?

The shroud of hate too deep and dark

there—

for the light of Resurrection!

 

Tell me, how shall the dead of Mississippi

be raised and when will that time be?

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Murder at Rock Cut Road

Chaney, Goodman, and Schwerner had just left the burnt out remains of a church bombed by the Ku Klux Klan at 1119, Road 747 in Philadelphia, Mississippi when they were arrested by the local sheriff.  Supposedly, they were released some time after ten o’clock that night. But they did not return to CORE headquarter that night or the next day. A search was launched for them and their car was found empty on a Mississippi road. The FBI and other national figures such as President Johnson and Bobby Kennedy also became interested in the search for the three idealistic young men.

But the three had been savagely murdered by the Klan on the night of June 21, 1964. Their bodies stuffed into an earthen dam as the victims of Mississippi justice.

Did their life and death have meaning? President Johnson would never have gotten his Civil Rights agenda through Congress if the murders had not occurred.

James Earl Chaney—Born 30 May 1943 in Meridian, Mississippi, and kidnapped and savagely murdered 21 June 1964 by KKK and the whites of Mississippi. His parents were Ben and Fannie Lee Chaney. In 1963, he joined the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) and was involved in the 1964 massive voter registration and desegregation campaign in Mississippi called Freedom Summer.

Chaney was the eldest son in a family of five children.  His mother, a domestic servant, was protective; his father, a plasterer, left his mother when James was in his mid-teens.  He was slightly built, but athletic.  He was described as shy in public, but a cutup in his home.

Andrew GoodmanBorn 1943 in; kidnapped and savagely murdered 21 June 1964 by KKK and the whites of Mississippi, near the end of his first full day in Mississippi. He was intelligent, unassuming, happy, and outgoing.  He grew up as the second of three sons in a liberal household on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.  Goodman attended the progressive Walden School, widely known for its anti-authoritarian approach to learning. Longing for commitment, he left Queens College   and in April 1964, Goodman applied for and was accepted into the Mississippi Summer Project. 

Michael SchwernerBorn 1939 in New York City; kidnapped and savagely murdered 21 June 1964 by KKK and the whites of Mississippi. Called affectionately "Goatee," Schwerner, 24 years old, came to Mississippi January 1964 with his wife Rita, hired as a CORE field worker. He was the most despised of the three civil rights workers. Imperial Wizard Sam Bowers put out a contract on him in May 1964.

Schwerner was sent to Meridian,  largest city in eastern Mississippi. to organize a community center and other programs. He was the first white civil rights worker to be permanently based outside of the capitol of Jackson. 

In Meridian, Schwerner organized a boycott of a variety store until the store, which sold mostly to blacks, hired its first African American. He determinedly registered blacks to vote. Though he received hate mail and threatening phone calls and police harassment, Schwerner believed he made the right decision in coming to Mississippi, which, he believed was "the decisive battleground for America. Nowhere in the world is the idea of white supremacy more firmly entrenched, or more cancerous, than in Mississippi."

Schwerner was thus the leader of this triad of martyrs and the KKK were really after him and that the other two guys were just in the way and thus killed them as a means of keeping them silenced about their crime. Schwerner was the one with the big balls, so to speaka NY boy who didn't realize the absolute madness of an enemy who hated New York white arrogance more than "niggahs."

posted 2003

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The Civil Rights Life of Birmingham's Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth

By Andrew M. Manis

In this intriguing work, the first full-scale biography of Birmingham's Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth ("perhaps the most unsung of the many heroes of the American civil rights movement"), religious historian Manis compellingly depicts a dual, combustible life. While providing insights into Shuttleworth's pastoral work and family life, he also offers a lengthy analysis of his subject's civil rights activities. He contends that Martin Luther King Jr. and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference went to Birmingham on Shuttlesworth's direct invitation and that they owed their success there largely to Shuttlesworth's having organized a large and loyal cadre of demonstrators over seven years. It was Shuttlesworth's tenacity and courage, Manis suggests, that toppled Birmingham's virulent racism. Based largely on interviews with Shuttlesworth, this well-written and -researched book offers valuable new information and insights into a crucial era of Southern and African American history.—Library Journal

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AALBC.com's 25 Best Selling Books


 

Fiction

#1 - Justify My Thug by Wahida Clark
#2 - Flyy Girl by Omar Tyree
#3 - Head Bangers: An APF Sexcapade by Zane
#4 - Life Is Short But Wide by J. California Cooper
#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

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1493: Uncovering the New World Columbus Created

By Charles C. Mann

I’m a big fan of Charles Mann’s previous book 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus, in which he provides a sweeping and provocative examination of North and South America prior to the arrival of Christopher Columbus. It’s exhaustively researched but so wonderfully written that it’s anything but exhausting to read. With his follow-up, 1493, Mann has taken it to a new, truly global level. Building on the groundbreaking work of Alfred Crosby (author of The Columbian Exchange and, I’m proud to say, a fellow Nantucketer), Mann has written nothing less than the story of our world: how a planet of what were once several autonomous continents is quickly becoming a single, “globalized” entity.

Mann not only talked to countless scientists and researchers; he visited the places he writes about, and as a consequence, the book has a marvelously wide-ranging yet personal feel as we follow Mann from one far-flung corner of the world to the next. And always, the prose is masterful. In telling the improbable story of how Spanish and Chinese cultures collided in the Philippines in the sixteenth century, he takes us to the island of Mindoro whose “southern coast consists of a number of small bays, one next to another like tooth marks in an apple.” We learn how the spread of malaria, the potato, tobacco, guano, rubber plants, and sugar cane have disrupted and convulsed the planet and will continue to do so until we are finally living on one integrated or at least close-to-integrated Earth. Whether or not the human instigators of all this remarkable change will survive the process they helped to initiate more than five hundred years ago remains, Mann suggests in this monumental and revelatory book, an open question.

*   *   *   *   *

The Persistence of the Color Line

Racial Politics and the Obama Presidency

By Randall Kennedy

Among the best things about The Persistence of the Color Line is watching Mr. Kennedy hash through the positions about Mr. Obama staked out by black commentators on the left and right, from Stanley Crouch and Cornel West to Juan Williams and Tavis Smiley. He can be pointed. Noting the way Mr. Smiley consistently “voiced skepticism regarding whether blacks should back Obama” . . .

The finest chapter in The Persistence of the Color Line is so resonant, and so personal, it could nearly be the basis for a book of its own. That chapter is titled “Reverend Wright and My Father: Reflections on Blacks and Patriotism.”  Recalling some of the criticisms of America’s past made by Mr. Obama’s former pastor, Mr. Kennedy writes with feeling about his own father, who put each of his three of his children through Princeton but who “never forgave American society for its racist mistreatment of him and those whom he most loved.”  His father distrusted the police, who had frequently called him “boy,” and rejected patriotism. Mr. Kennedy’s father “relished Muhammad Ali’s quip that the Vietcong had never called him ‘nigger.’ ” The author places his father, and Mr. Wright, in sympathetic historical light.

*   *   *   *   *

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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update 5 March 2012

 

 

 

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