Women WorldWide: January-February 2017

January 29, 2017

Latonja S. Richardson’s effort to educate African-American girls about Black women’s achievements; a grassroots movement of mostly women to stop the jailing and killing of mentally ill people in police custody; and the ongoing struggle of refugee women jailed in Berks Country Residential Center to free themselves and their children.

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Black Lives Matter

May 3, 2015

The long-simmering outrage of Black masses has broken out into a movement against this racist society, particularly its pattern of racist killings by the police. It has not only reverberated internationally, but also made itself felt in the battle of ideas and the sphere of theory.

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Workers can fix L.A.

November 22, 2014

Los Angeles—On Oct. 28, several thousand Los Angeles City workers (mostly Latina/o and Blacks) and community supporters marched through downtown to City Hall to protest the city’s proposed 30% cut in workers’ wages and benefits. The cuts included medical coverage, bonuses and retirement benefits, as more and more of the city’s infrastructure deteriorates….

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Racist election deepens reactionary direction of U.S.

November 20, 2014

The U.S. government took an ominous, reactionary political turn in the 2014 midterm elections, with Republicans taking control of the Senate. Extreme pro-war Senators like Joni Ernst in Iowa and Tom Cotton in Arkansas join veterans like Senator “Bomb, Bomb, Bomb Iran” John McCain, who will now control the Armed Services Committee and is hell-bent for new “boots on the ground” in Syria and Iraq. The whole Republican campaign—including these pro-war, pro-fossil-fuel, pro-“fetus is a person” candidates—ran on a cynically deceptive anti-Obama mantra….

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Picketing for jobs

August 29, 2014

From the September-October 2014 issue of News & Letters

Chicago–Altgeld Gardens residents picketed the Chicago Housing Authority (CHA) on June 26. They told News & Letters that the CHA contracts with Walsh Construction to work on housing projects like Altgeld Gardens, which is 97% Black. But Walsh refuses to follow Section 3, which requires 30% [=>]

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Voices From the Inside Out: On prison and race

July 7, 2014

From the July-August 2014 issue of News & Letters

by Robert Taliaferro

Race has always been at the forefront of this nation since its founding. It seems ironic that the generation that produced the country’s first Black president is also the generation that is seeing the advances made in civil rights during [=>]

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Racism and the fight against it take center stage in the U.S.

September 5, 2013

Nationwide protests erupted immediately after the outrageous July 13 acquittal of George Zimmerman for murdering 17-year-old African-American high school student Trayvon Martin last year. Within three days, thousands of protesters came out in dozens of cities, and a new group called the Dream Defenders began a 31-day occupation of Florida Gov. Rick Scott’s office.

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Readers’ Views, March-April 2013, Part 1

April 25, 2013


American Civilization on Trial (ACOT) is not “Black history.” Rather, Blacks play such an enormous role in the U.S. that their history that is in ACOT is a history of America.



The movie Django Unchained could have been an ad for the NRA’s position on the current [=>]

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American Civilization on Trial

April 8, 2013

Raya Dunayevskaya’s sublimely researched American Civilization on Trial: Black Masses as Vanguard (ACOT) deserves a place among the U.S.’s most honest historical treatises.

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Chalking a felony?

December 14, 2012

[Update: If in Chicago, please support Marissa Brown at her court date, Monday, Dec. 17, at 2:30 PM, at 2452 W. Belmont, Chicago.  Details here: https://www.facebook.com/events/206707866130402/]

Chicago—On Nov. 9 we held a “Budget Showdown” protest at the Federal Building. We were protesting the threatened budget cuts to Medicaid and Medicare, rallying around the Robin Hood tax [=>]

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Obama’s re-election doesn’t end clash of two worlds

November 26, 2012

by Franklin Dmitryev

The two worlds of the rulers and the ruled shone through the suffocating blanket of propaganda surrounding the election in which Barack Obama won a second term. A pronounced gender gap and long lines at the polls in African-American and Latino areas reflected the determination to defeat the reactionary Republicans and retain the [=>]

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Reactionary U.S. election shows capital’s contradictions

September 10, 2012

by Ron Kelch

“We built it!” roared the delegates at the Republican Party convention in Tampa. It was the perfect expression of the presidential campaign and of capitalist thinking in general. The truth is that workers built the social wealth. Capitalists take it from the workers, and the government gets a portion.

Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan [=>]

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Martina Noel Davis-Correia, 1967-2011

February 24, 2012

I want people to know that we didn’t fail. As long as we keep hammering away at this thing, as long as we refuse to give up, we haven’t failed. We’ll be doing what Troy Davis wanted us to do. Our efforts made an impact and will continue to make an impact.  —Martina Correia

A woman [=>]

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Reverse convictions by tortured confessions

February 23, 2012

Chicago—Twenty-four Black men are still in jail almost 40 years after the first allegations of torture were brought against the Chicago Police Department.

In every case, their confessions were obtained illegally through torture.

On Nov. 5, 30 people, including the mother of Javan Deloney and family members of four or five other torture victims, met at the [=>]

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Expose demonization of Black Gay youth

September 25, 2011

Chicago—Editor’s note: News and Letters Committees hosted a forum in our Chicago office on Aug. 8 on the response within the Gay community to the Facebook page Take Back Boystown posting videos of Blacks fighting as a way to demonize “outsiders” coming to Gay institutions and bars. Below is part of the discussion among panelists [=>]

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Justice for Oscar Grant!

August 31, 2011

Oakland, Calif.–On June 12 over 150 demonstrators marched to downtown Oakland from Fruitvale BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) station, dubbed “Oscar Grant Station” by community activists. We were protesting the mild charge and minimal sentence handed down to Grant’s killer, former BART cop Johannes Mehserle. Mehserle was released from a Los Angeles County jail the [=>]

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Straight, No Chaser

August 29, 2011

Warner Brothers presents Thelonious Monk: Straight, No Chaser directed by Charlotte Zwerin. Produced by Charlotte Zwerin and Bruce Ricker. Executive Producer Clint Eastwood.

Art is the eternal particular, the unmediated, mediating term in which the human face is recognized. A familiar tune, like a familiar face, catches us unawares and we smile in recognition. We find ourselves whistling.

To [=>]

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Gil Scott-Heron’s life

August 25, 2011

When Gil Scott-Heron passed on May 27, we lost one of the great artists of our time. As the “Winter In America” of which he sang stretches on, cold and brutal, his voice remains as relevant as his presence is missed.

Coming out of the Black Power movement, he had a keen understanding of where Black [=>]

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Racist police murder two more people of color

August 23, 2011

The continuing problem of racist, unaccountable police violence is highlighted by a recent pair of outrageous shootings in Arizona and Florida. Both illustrate the militarized, “search and destroy” mentality so prevalent among police officers, supported by the racist political climate in the U.S. today.

A Pima County Regional SWAT team killed Jose Guerena in his Tucson [=>]

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Voices from the Inside Out: Remembering John Alan

May 18, 2011

by Robert Taliaferro

John’s writings are strikingly poignant and timeless, with a prosody that is uniquely old-school. The body of his work is eloquently instructive and historically prescient.

In reading his columns we are challenged to look upon his words as more than philosophical constructs; there is a timelessness that reminds us that history–if left to its [=>]

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The wars at home

May 8, 2011

From the new issue of NEWS & LETTERS, May-June 2011

Part II of

Draft for Marxist-Humanist Perspectives, 2011-2012
Revolution and counter-revolution take world stage


  • I. The Arab Spring
  • II. The wars at home
  • III. Japan: earthquake, tsunami and meltdown
  • IV. Revolution, organization and philosophy
  • V. Marxist-Humanist Tasks

(Part I was posted yesterday.  Parts III through V to come in the next few days)

II. The [=>]

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In Memoriam: John Alan/Allen Willis

March 19, 2011

Allen Willis/John Alan–who would have been 95 on June 10 this year–died quietly on Feb. 23 in Oakland, California. The near-century of his life was filled with thoughts and experiences of Black life in America. One of his earliest recollections was as a three-year-old witnessing the 1919 race riots, seeing Black men being attacked and [=>]

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Harriet Tubman and the Civil War

February 18, 2011

Editor’s note: We commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Civil War with excerpts from John Alan on Harriet Tubman from the April 2004 News & Letters.

Since the 1960s there has been a growing interest in Harriet Tubman. Catherine Clinton in Harriet Tubman: The Road to Freedom (Little, Brown, 2004), lets her reader know immediately that the [=>]

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American Civilization on Trial: Black Masses as Vanguard

December 16, 2010

Part of the classic American Civilization on Trial: Black Masses as Vanguard, written by Raya Dunayevskaya, has been posted on the web at the Marxists Internet Archive. The entire book can be obtained from News and Letters Committees.

This was excerpted from Part V, “From Depression Through World War II.”

Source: American Civilization on Trial, Part V “From Depression Through [=>]

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Is Black education related to freedom?

December 14, 2010

by John Alan

Editor’s note: To highlight what is missing from current debates on education reform, we reprint John Alan’s column from the June 1993 N&L.

* * *

This June [1993] the New Jersey Educational Commissioner, Mary Fitzgerald, will take control of the Malcolm X Shabazz High School and the rest of the Newark, N.J., school system. [=>]

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Mayor Bloomberg’s schools get an F

November 24, 2010

From the Nov.-Dec. 2010 issue of News & Letters:

Mayor Bloomberg’s schools get an F

New York–In June 2009, Mayor Bloomberg and Schools Chancellor Joel Klein, together with the president of the Council of School Administrators and United Federation of Teachers President Mike Mulgrew, announced an increase in the four-year high school graduation rate for New York [=>]

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