Wednesday, June 08, 2016

A Historic Time and a New Era in American History

Today, we have witnessed a historical moment in our history of America. Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton claimed the Democratic presidential nomination Tuesday night. She won four state primaries. They are California, New Jersey, New Mexico, and South Dakota. Now, she has the majority of elected delegates for the Democratic National Convention. She is the first woman to have the Democratic National Party nomination in history. Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders narrowly won the Montana primary and the North Dakota caucuses. The size of Hillary Clinton’s victory in California was greater than 2 percentage points. Many people believe that Bernie Sanders supporters had a lower turnout because of the media proclamation of declaring Clinton the presumptive nominee. The Democratic race has been tough and at times controversial. Hillary Clinton gave a speech in Brooklyn Yard, NYC to talk about her moment just before the polls closed in California. She talked about the struggle for women’s rights that lasted for centuries. She expressed support of the first convention for women’s suffrage at Seneca Falls, New York. “Thanks to you, we’ve reached a milestone,” Clinton said. “The first time in our nation's history that a woman will be a major party's nominee.” The New York Times and other media outlets like MSNBC have been very supportive overtly of the Hillary Clinton campaign. The New York Times set the tone for the exultation in the media over a Clinton nomination, writing in an editorial posted on its web site: “Mrs. Clinton’s name on the ballot in November would be another milestone in the quest for women’s rights, which, as she noted years ago, are human rights. This achievement is worth cheering by all, regardless of party, because it further opens the door to female leadership in every sphere." Years ago, many people praised Barack Obama as the first African American President. We should always realize that we must continue to fight regardless of the background of who is President. We see Wall Street interests defended by the political elites, banker bailouts at the expense of the working class, and imperialist wars conducted now under a Democratic administration. Hillary Clinton wants the Democratic Party to be unified in sending an olive branch to Bernie Sanders. He wants even disgruntled Republicans to vote for her too. She denounced Trump, claiming that his signature slogan, “Make America great again,” was “code for let’s take America backwards. Back to a time when opportunity and dignity were reserved for some, not all.” White racists in high numbers support Trump. Also, it is important to recognize that deteriorating economic conditions like stagnant wages have contributed to the rise of a billionaire demagogue like Donald Trump. These economic condition affect working people and the poor of every color and of all sexes. So, Trump's xenophobia and racism are unacceptable. Hillary Clinton's war mongering policies and incremental centrism are unacceptable too.  We believe in political independence. 

The 2 party duopoly advances austerity, tax cuts for the wealthy, and militarism. That is the truth. Sanders addressed his supporters late Tuesday night California time, as he prepared to fly back from the West Coast to his home in Burlington, Vermont. His campaign announced that he would travel on to Washington, DC Thursday for a campaign rally there and a meeting at the White House the same day with President Obama, “at Sanders’ request.” It is obvious that the White House wants Sanders to quit his campaign and support Hillary Clinton. Donald Trump is being criticized by many people, even Republicans for his overtly racist attacks on the federal judge (who is an American citizen who is of Mexican American descent). The Judge is Judge Gonzalo Curiel. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Speaker Paul Ryan disavowed Trump’s evil comments. Yet, they support his candidacy. On Tuesday, Republican Senator Mark Steven Kirk of Illinois publicly withdrew his support for the presidential nominee, citing the attacks on Judge Curiel. Trump wants to get Sanders supporters who will not vote for Hillary. He said that Bernie is right to oppose terrible trade deals and wants to make known about the manufacturing jobs gone in the  communities of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Indiana, and Ohio. Trump said that America is broke, which is a myth as Wall Street corporations are hoarding trillions of dollars of wealth and preventing that wealth to be used in infrastructure development. Trump has vilified Mexican immigrants and his misogyny signifies a fascistic turn in the Republican Party. Many people are afraid, but we should not fear evil. We should continue to stand up against injustice, promote economic justice, and reject imperialism overseas & reject xenophobic domestically. 

We live in trying times. Real lynching is about the killing of people by evil people via the usage of rope or other objects. California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law legislation removing the word "lynching" from the penal code. Therefore, that law under which Jasmine was convicted under completely mocks real lynching. What Jasmine Richards did was never the lynching that black people experienced during the 19th and 20th centuries at all. I read that she faced up to 4 years in prison. According to Jasmine's attorney Nana Gyami, there’s a requirement that there be a riot, that there basically be a lynch mob that is assisting you in the lynching of the person that you’re trying to take from the police. There was no riot and Jasmine Richards never participated in any riot, therefore this situation certainly deals with a targeted prosecution of a young black woman who is an activist in Pasadena, California (as that law was rarely enforced in that vicinity). Tuesday morning, Judge Elaine Lu sentenced Richards to 90 days in jail, with 18 days served, and three years on probation. Richards is not the first modern protester to be charged with lynching. Maile Hampton, a 20-year-old black woman, was arrested for "lynching" during a rally against police brutality in Sacramento in April 2015. Occupy Oakland activists Tiffany Tran and Alex Brown were charged in 2011, and Los Angeles Occupy activist Sergio Ballesteros was charged in 2012 for lynching while intervening in an arrest at the local Artwalk. All charges against these human beings were dropped, except for Jasmine Richards. Meanwhile, California law states that interfering with police, as Deputy District Attorney Christine Kee described Richards's actions, is a misdemeanor. By charging and convicting Richards with the "lynching" felony, Gyamfi argues that the deputy district attorney and the local police department are setting a tone that tells activists and organizers that protesting is a criminal activity. Therefore, we will not quit this struggle for black liberation. We should use legal strategy. Also, we have to use economic development plans, organization of workers and the poor, methods of opposing police terrorism (as crooked cops are terrorists like Burge of Chicago), continued social activism, and other progressive activities. The criminal injustice system is a disgrace. I wish the absolute best for Sister Jasmine Richards. 

I hope that Sister Assata Shakur doesn't go into America into prison. I hope that she stays in Cuba. First, we must show the hypocrisy of the American oligarchy. The oligarchy overtly preaches about justice, liberty, and being against corruption, but the FBI and the CIA for years and decades have used illegal spying, torture, assassinations, voter tampering, harassment, and other evils. The CPD blatantly murdered Black Panther Party leader Fred Hampton (including Mark Clark) in December of 1969 and the police has murdered many black men, black women, and black children for years & decades. Assata Shakur was a Sister born during the post-WWII era in Jamaica Queens, New York City. She joined the Black Panthers and other revolutionary organizations as a way for her to express her enlightening, inspiring goal of black liberation. There is no evidence that she murdered any cop and she was placed into prison where she suffered injustice after injustice. In fact, one officer shot her while her hands were up decades ago. Today, Assata Shakur is an author, a lecturer, and strong a proponent of black liberation. There is a strong and vibrant Afro-Cuban culture. We express solidarity to our Afro-Cuban Brothers and Sisters. The corporate media will definitely report what they want to report and omit key critical analysis which goes to the larger point as many have accurately outlined. 

Cuba was once ruled by the dictator Fulgencio Batista. Batista was backed by the U.S. and by the Mafia. Batista was overthrown by Castro and his forces. The Cuba talks certainly are about how some Western corporations seek access to Cuban infrastructure, so the Cuba nation will be more aligned with neoliberalism. I have no problem with ending the embargo, but we want Cuba to be independent in their own way. She has courageously spoken about the oppressed and the necessity to stand up against Western imperialism in all of its manifestations. Western imperialism is complicit in not only in torture, but in advancing the evil, unjust Iraq War that resulted in the deaths and wounding of millions of people. Also, we continue onward in our struggle for justice and economic justice (for the 1% have used financially devastating policies from bad predatory lending to derivatives which have increased radically economic inequality. I am opposed to crippling austerity policies and I believe in social justice). Assata Shakur is a black woman with excellent insights and a loving spirit. We honor heroic black women like Assata Shakur, Sojouner Truth, Harriet Tubman, and others who desire freedom in the globe. Assata Shakur is a lover of truth and she has eloquently shown beautiful words of encouragement and wisdom. Her soul shines brilliantly and her cause is just.

By Timothy

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