Saturday, November 26, 2016

Say His Name: Kajuan Raye

Though the officer said that the teen pointed a gun, Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said Thursday that no weapon had been recovered from the scene.

Christopher Brennan (Daily News)

Solid Rainy Day Vigil -- With New Faces!

Thanks to all who came out to our vigil today. It is always great to have brand new faces and perhaps even greater to have newer faces returning for the second or third time. In this time of frightening uncertainty for our future, it helps to come together and get filled up with the power of community.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

How to Stay Sane While Black

"In regard to restitution, I submit to the American government an invoice totaling fees incurred for medical treatment. I believe you will find the bill reasonable and fair, all things considered."


"These women's names (black women) have slipped through our consciousness because there are no frames for us to see them, no frames for us to remember them, no frames for us to hold them.  As a consequence reporters don't lead with them, policy makers don't think about them, politicians aren't encouraged or demanded that they speak to them." (Kimberle Crenshaw--video here)

CIT Group Accused of Redlining and Violating Fair Housing Act

The complaint alleges that OneWest Bank has violated the Fair Housing Act (FHA) through redlining practices such as failing to locate branches in communities of color and extending very few or no mortgage loans to borrowers of color.

Fair Housing Advocates Northbay

Sunday, November 13, 2016

How to Easily be a White Ally to Marginalized Communities

1. Be intolerant of intolerance

2. Seek out marginalized voices and perspectives

3. Confront your racism and don’t be fragile

4. Use your privilege to support marginalized movements

5. Give your time and money

6. Be proactive about inclusion in your daily life

7. Avoid segregation

8. Do the work to be inclusive

Christopher Keelty (full article here, Medium)

Friday, November 11, 2016

Can I Live here?                    

Restrictions and exclusiveness
Certain ways and wealth
Stacks of old money.

Seeking love and community
That money can’t provide.

Scared to see my people
That’s why you run to the cops
The same cops that routinely kill my people
Haven't you seen all the hashtags?
The community I would like to call my people
Fails to be a community.

We never seem to see eye to eye
Always coming from different sides
What happens now?
People want to come together
Their differences separate and disfigure
How can we come together?

By Etagu Zilliac

We Will Not Be Turned Around

Resist the knee-jerk urge to make old mistakes. Whenever there is a major loss, there is are a series of predictable knee jerk urges that we must disrupt. a) The urge to move to the political center to appeal to the white voters that were lost, when the more strategic move is actually towards the left to engage and energize a base of people of color, LGBT people, and progressive white voters


Don't Despair-Alice Walker

Don’t Despair
Copyright © 2016 by Alice Walker
When I was a child growing up in middle Georgia, I thought all white men were like Donald Trump. They too seemed petulant and spoiled, unhappy with everything they were not the center of, brutal toward the feelings of those “beneath” them, and comfortable causing others to act out of hate. How did we survive this?
I think of my father, a poor sharecropper with eight children, so desperate for change in a system that left his family in danger of starving that he walked to the polling place – a tiny, white owned store in the middle of nowhere – to cast the first vote by a black person in the county. Three white men holding shotguns sat watching him, for niggers were not supposed to vote and they were there to enforce this common law. My father voted for Roosevelt and a “New Deal” he hoped would also apply to black people.
I come from a line of folks who chose to live or die on their feet. My 4-Greats grandmother was forced to walk chained from a slave ship in Virginia, and carried two small children that probably weren’t hers all the way to Middle Georgia. There she was forced to work for strange, pale people who could only have appeared to be demons to her. She was given as a wedding gift to a young married couple when she was advanced in age; what the story of this event was is a mystery to this day. All we know is that she lived to bury all these people and that it is her who is remembered.
My aunts and uncles learned trades – tailoring, bricklaying, masonry, house-building – whatever was allowed for black people, and raised their children in homes of stability and even comfort, while the white world beyond their neighborhoods attempted to squeeze them into corners so tiny that to the majority of “citizens” of the cities they lived in, they did not even exist.
How to survive dictatorship. That is what much of the rest of the world has had to learn. Our country has imposed this condition on so many places and peoples around the globe it is naive to imagine we would avoid it. Besides, do Native Americans and African American descendents of enslaved people not realize they have never lived in anything but a dictatorship?
In this election we did not really have a healthy choice, as is said in a commercial for something I vaguely remember. Or, as a friend puts it: “‘the “choice” was between disaster and catastrophe.”‘ If this puzzles you, here is the next step of my counsel: Study. Really attempt to understand the people you are voting for. What are they doing when they’re not smiling at you in anticipation of your vote? Study hard, deeply, before the Internet is closed, before books are disappeared. Know your history and the ways it has been kept secret from you. Understand how politicians you vote for understand your history better than you do; which helps them manipulate your generations. It is our ignorance that keeps us hoping somebody we elect will do all the work while we drive off to the mall. Forget this behavior as if it were a dream. It was. In some way, many of us will find, perhaps to our astonishment, that we have not really lived until this moment.
Our surprise, our shock, our anger, all of it points to how fast asleep we were.
This is not a lament. It is counsel. It is saying: We can awaken completely. The best sign of which will be how we treat every being who crosses our path. For real change is personal. The change within ourselves expressed in our willingness to hear, and have patience with, the “other.” Together we move forward. Anger, the pointing of fingers, the wishing that everyone had done exactly as you did, none of that will help relieve our pain. We are here now. In this scary, and to some quite new and never imagined place. What do we do with our fear?
Do we turn on others, or toward others? Do we share our awakening, or only our despair?
The choice is ours.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

James Baldwin

"I do not mean to be sentimental about suffering...but people who cannot suffer can never grow up, can never discover who they are. That man who is forced each day to snatch his manhood, his identity, out of the fire of human cruelty that rages to destroy it knows, if he survives his effort, and even if he does not survive it, something about himself and human life that no school on earth – and, indeed, no church – can teach. He achieves his own authority, and that is unshakable. This is because in order to save his life, he is forced to look beneath appearances, to take nothing for granted, to hear the meaning behind the words. If one is continually surviving the worst that life can bring, one eventually ceases to be controlled by a fear of what life can bring; whatever it brings must be borne."
~ James Baldwin, The Fire Next Time

Donald Trump's Triumph Is a Victory for White Supremacy

"We have four years of being terrorized by a lie, four years ahead of us of watching white supremacy attempt a Humpty Dumpty act — as it tries to reassemble all these broken pieces in a way that aids the majority of white folks. By winning every level of government, it seems Trump and co. have marshaled every level of power — “all the king's horses” and “all the king's men” — to do their bidding. But they will learn, like all children who recite this rhyme do, that after a fall as great as this — and stock prices do confirm it as a great fall — there is no putting Humpty Dumpty back together again."

(Brittney Cooper) Cosmopolitan 

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Post Election Vigil Today

Do you need community? Do you need to stand up and be heard? Neighbors for Racial Justice invites you to join us today, Wednesday, between 4:30-5:30 at the corner of Fruitvale and MacArthur for a post-election vigil.  Now more than ever, we who believe in justice and equity need to be vigilant and visible.  We'll have signs.  All are welcome.

Monday, October 31, 2016

Arundhati Roy

“The trouble is that once you see it, you can't unsee it. And once you've seen it, keeping quiet, saying nothing, becomes as political an act as speaking out. There's no innocence. Either way, you're accountable.” 

-Arundhati Roy

Arundhati Roy

“Our strategy should be not only to confront empire, but to lay siege to it. To deprive it of oxygen. To shame it. To mock it. With our art, our music, our literature, our stubbornness, our joy, our brilliance, our sheer relentlessness – and our ability to tell our own stories. Stories that are different from the ones we’re being brainwashed to believe.

The corporate revolution will collapse if we refuse to buy what they are selling – their ideas, their version of history, their wars, their weapons, their notion of inevitability.

Remember this: We be many and they be few. They need us more than we need them.

Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing.”

Sunday, October 30, 2016


Filipino poet, J. Cabazares

Talk to us about reconciliation
only if you first experience
the anger of our dying.

Talk to us about reconciliation
if your living is not the cause of our dying.

Talk to us about reconciliation
only if your words are not products of your devious scheme
to silence our struggle for freedom.

Talk to us about reconciliation
only if your intention is not to enrich yourself
more to your throne.

Talk to us about reconciliation
only if you cease to appropriate all the symbols
and meanings of our struggle.

Kaepernick's "I Know My Rights Camp" for Oakland kids

The camp created 10 rights that each child has the right to know. They were listed on the back of T-shirts given to each camper. They are:

1. You have the right to be free.
2. You have the right to be healthy.
3. You have the right to be brilliant.
4. You have the right to be safe.
5. You have the right be loved.
6. You have the right to be courageous.
7. You have the right to be alive.
8. You have the right to be trusted.
9. You have the right to be educated.
10. You have the right to know your rights

Melrose Leadership Academy Teachers (Oakland, CA)

Picture Day (Black Lives Matter)

The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and allies understand it's not "if" but "when" the same will happen in N. Dakota

Saturday, October 22, 2016

If Josh Brown of the Giants were black or took a knee against police brutality, he'd be despised right now

"Colin Kaepernick is hated for peacefully and silently protesting violence while Josh Brown in no way receives the same level of scorn from fans, executives or owners for actually being violent, repeatedly, with his wife." 

Shaun King--NY Daily News

"Letter to my Future White Son"

2015 - Brave New Voices (Finals), by Philadelphia Team

Thursday, October 20, 2016