Category Archives: Activism

Black Panther film fuels calls for release of jailed political activists

Film serves as ‘opportunity to remind people of the real heroes of the Black Panthers’, says former party leader

When he was released from prison in 2014, Sekou Odinga felt like he was falling from the sky into a foreign land. After 33 years behind bars, the former Black Panther party leader was released into a United States he didn’t recognize – with strange technology and grandchildren he had never hugged.

Though he celebrated with family and supporters, Odinga, 73, also remained mindful of the many other civil rights activists who weren’t so lucky: “You always feel like you don’t want to leave nobody behind.”

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Source: gad

California police worked with neo-Nazis to pursue 'anti-racist' activists, documents show

Officers expressed sympathy with white supremacists and sought their help to target counter-protesters after a violent 2016 rally, according to court documents

California police investigating a violent white nationalist event worked with white supremacists in an effort to identify counter-protesters and sought the prosecution of activists with “anti-racist” beliefs, court documents show.

The records, which also showed officers expressing sympathy with white supremacists and trying to protect a neo-Nazi organizer’s identity, were included in a court briefing from three anti-fascist activists who were charged with felonies after protesting at a Sacramento rally. The defendants were urging a judge to dismiss their case and accused California police and prosecutors of a “cover-up and collusion with the fascists”.

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Source: gad

‘Young black people can be heroes too’: the campaign to send kids to see Black Panther

From Harlem to Peckham, the Black Panther Challenge has blossomed into a worldwide celebration of race, identity and empowerment

It seems like only yesterday that Marvel released the official trailer for what can now be described as the franchise’s most anticipated film to date, Black Panther. Fans have been waiting for the moment when they’ll finally experience the nation of Wakanda and now it is almost here: in less than a week, everyone will be able to watch the latest addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Black Panther is proving to be more than just a hashtag trend: it is a film of considerable cultural significance for black communities around the world. So high in fact, that it inspired Frederick Joseph, a marketing consultant and activist from New York to set up a GoFundMe campaign called “Help Children See Black Panther”.

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Source: gad

John Perry Barlow: will dream of open internet die with its founding father?

The pioneer penned his techno-utopian ‘Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace’ two decades ago. His ideals are at risk of going with him

Internet pioneer John Perry Barlow, who championed ideals of a free and open internet, has died. And his ideals are at risk of dying with him.

Barlow’s Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, written almost exactly 22 years ago, was a rallying cry for cyberpunks and a warning to governments: “On behalf of the future, I ask you of the past to leave us alone. You are not welcome among us. You have no sovereignty where we gather.”

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Source: gadt

Turkey’s huge crackdown is destroying civil society | Kate Allen

My Amnesty colleagues face a sham trial for terrorist offences at the hands of a draconian government. Such scare tactics threaten Turkey’s future

Turkey’s military offensive in Afrin ​looks set to dominate news coverage of the region for weeks to come.

Which is no surprise. The operation is taking place on the much bigger stage of the war in Syria, Russia and the US are both deeply involved, and the UN is anxiously assessing the scale of the impact on the already dire humanitarian situation, the number of displaced people running into the thousands.

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Source: gad

Could this be our Momentum moment in Germany? | Steve Hudson

Our grassroots initiative, NoGroKo, has gathered thousands of supporters in days, giving us the most precious resource: hope

After living in Germany for over 20 years, I joined the Social Democrats (the SPD) in early 2017. Martin Schulz, the party leader, had just taken the unprecedented step of criticising the infamous “Agenda 2010” welfare cuts of the last SPD chancellor, Gerhard Schröder.

The Agenda, as it is known, is to the SPD what Iraq was to New Labour. In squeezing pensions, slashing benefits and pushing millions into low-paid, precarious employment, the SPD abandoned its electorate. The electorate responded in kind: since Schröder’s first election victory, in 1998, the party has lost more than half its support – plummeting from more than 20 million voters to 9.5 million in 2017. Most of all, it cemented the SPD’s reputation as a party of pushovers, too open to the siren overtures of lobbyists: indicating left in elections, turning right in office.

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Source: gad

As a black, gay woman I have to be selective in my outrage. So should you | Ashley ‘Dotty’ Charles

Before social media, protest was provocative and empowering. Outrage used to mean something – now it’s just another hashtag
• Ashley ‘Dotty’ Charles is a Radio 1 presenter

Everyone is offended by everything. It’s exhausting. Keeping up with all the noninclusive, misogynistic, racist, homophobic, transphobic, xenophobic, ageist, cultural-appropriating, body-shaming propaganda that seems to litter the social media age.

In 2018, almost anything apparently is subject to the scrutiny of one marginalised eye or another. Being outraged allows you to take the moral high ground. It reaffirms your righteousness. It lets you say: “I am offended and therefore I am principled.” It lets you jump on the bandwagon and pledge allegiance to the latest campaign on your timeline. It gives you a vehicle to add your name to the narrative. It proves that you are following current affairs, albeit from the comfortable vantage point of your Instagram feed. It allows you to place yourself on the virtuous side of the conversation. It says: “I am woke.”

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Source: gad

We’re staging a sit-in to stop our university’s social cleansing plans | Sahaya James

The disastrous proposals for the Elephant and Castle area in London will destroy entire communities and cultures

On Tuesday night we occupied University of Arts London’s (UAL) London College of Communication (LCC) building to demand our university puts a stop to its disastrous development plans in Elephant and Castle. The university has entered into a partnership with the property firm Delancey, with a plan to knock down the much-loved Elephant and Castle shopping centre opposite the Southwark campus – home to 70 local, mostly black, Asian and minority ethnic-owned businesses – in order to build luxury apartments and a new campus.

Delancey has made provision for a paltry 3% of the 1,000 new flats to be available at an affordable rent, while businesses and market traders based in the shopping centre will be turfed out, without any coherent plan in place for their relocation or any guarantee of a right to return at the end of the process.

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Source: gad