Review: A More Beautiful and Terrible History

February 22, 2024

Van Gelder reviews ‘A More Beautiful and Terrible History: The Uses and Misuses of Civil Rights History’, by Jeanne Theoharis, now available as ebook. The work is a deep critique of 21st century recall and commemorations of the Civil Rights Movement, and thus a valuable weapon to fight the suppression of Black history.

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Thoughts from the Outside: The idea of freedom

March 19, 2022

Dr. Martin Luther King’s reference to the Promised Land was his way of talking about the irrepressible idea of freedom. That idea reaches beyond an individual’s life, and beyond the Civil Rights Movement. KIng was confronting the inhumanity of the economy as well as the war in Vietnam.

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What is freedom?

September 29, 2018

A prisoner from Bellefonte, Penn., asks: “In America are we really free or are we going through an act, or through the motions?”

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Youth in Action, September-October 2018

September 20, 2018

University of North Carolina students and workers bring down statue of generic Confederate soldier; Swedish pro-asylum student Elin Errson prevents deportation of Afghan refugee; Iraqi youth and women protest unemployment, electricity shortages and lack of clean water.

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Fight for $15 and labor’s full potential

March 8, 2018

On Feb. 12, workers across the country marched in Fight for $15 demonstrations held to commemorate the 1968 Memphis sanitation workers’ strike and Dr. King’s visionary, multi-racial Poor People’s Campaign. It is a struggle to realize labor’s full potential.

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Martin Luther King Day in Detroit

January 31, 2018

A diverse crowd at Detroit’s Martin Luther King Day rally and march was even larger than last year’s turnout, proving that we refuse to acquiesce to the blatant anti-humanism of the 45th president.

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Florida students rally for immigrants

February 7, 2017

Participant report of a 500-strong student rally at the University of South Florida in Tampa in support of immigrants and calling for divestment from companies whose products harm the environment or which produce weapons and supplies for the military.

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Voices From the Inside Out: African-American History Month

February 5, 2017

Prisoner Faruq looks at how African-American History Month came to be, stressing the importance of Dr. Carter G. Woodson’s vision and how Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s legacy included a critique of cultural and social relations as well as race, concluding that history is necessary for formerly enslaved people to move towards freedom.

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Where to now for the Middle East?

November 30, 2016

A look at the situation in the Middle East in light of Donald Trump’s election that takes up Syria, Yemen and the arming by the U.S. of varying forces–some of whom are fighting each other.

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From the writings of Raya Dunayevskaya: Racism, war and Muhammad Ali

July 4, 2016

On the same day that General William Westmoreland waved the flag before Congress, Muhammad Ali refused to be inducted into the Army. While the general was applauded even by the doves, Ali was, within hours, stripped of his title of World Heavyweight Boxing Champion. War exposed the open nerve—”the Black Question”—which has always been the touchstone of U.S. history. It placed American civilization on trial before the world much more seriously than the “war crimes tribunal” in Stockholm.

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Women WorldWide: July-August 2016

July 2, 2016

Stanford University students protest the light sentence given to the rapist of a woman student; Nepalese girls and the charity WaterAid create a photo exhibit documenting unjust restrictions during menstruation and childbirth; Amina Zioual and her feminist organization, The Voice of the Amazigh Woman, fight against patriarchal customs and sharia law.

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Workshop Talks: Urgency of solidarity

January 25, 2016

Workers often ignore borders to solidarize with fellow humans. Solidarity needed now against atrocities against Syrian civilians and in support of Larycia Hawkins risking tenure to stand with Muslims under attack.

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Fight for $15 and Dr. King

April 30, 2015

In Chicago, thousands march for a living wage, while in Los Angeles, protesters of all races marched downtown on the anniversary of Martin Luther King’s 1968 assassination. They included low-wage workers campaigning to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour, uniting with the movement against police killing of unarmed Black and Brown youth.

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Revolt surges against racist system destroying Black lives

January 27, 2015

Protests erupted following the decision by a St. Louis County grand jury not to indict Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson for the cold-blooded murder of 18-year-old Michael Brown. Thousands marched under the slogan “Black Lives Matter!” These demonstrations grew in the wake of the equally outrageous decision of a Staten Island grand jury not to indict NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo for the murder of Eric Garner.

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From Ferguson to Staten Island: The logic of racism is genocide

December 5, 2014

Protests erupted after the cops who murdered Michael Brown and Eric Garner were let off. They mark a new moment of rebellion against a social order in which Black youth are made to live continuously suspended over an abyss of non-existence.
The passion to tear up this deeply racist society by the roots calls for the fullest development in activity and thought.

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Charles Denby, worker-editor

February 8, 2014

As a contribution to Black History Month we reprint Raya Dunayevskaya’s memorial for Charles Denby (1907-1983), her comrade of 35 years, Editor of News & Letters from its founding in 1955 until his death and the author of Indignant Heart: A Black Worker’s Journal.

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March against violence

February 25, 2013

Chicago—Dozens of people marched on Chicago’s South Side to take a stand against violence on Jan. 15, followed by a speakout and vigil. Occupy the Southside organized this “King on King march” down Martin Luther King Jr. Drive from 63rd to Emmett Till Road.

“We’re here,” explained a Black woman activist with Occupy the Southside, “because [=>]

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‘We are one’ campaign

May 21, 2011

Oakland, Calif.–Dozens of labor groups rallied at Frank Ogawa Plaza on April 4th as part of the nationwide We Are One campaign in support of public sector employees in Wisconsin, Ohio and Indiana. It was the 43rd anniversary of Martin Luther King’s assassination. King had gone to Memphis, Tenn., to join Black sanitation workers’ struggle [=>]

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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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Readers’ Views, Nov.-Dec. 2010

November 29, 2010

Readers’ Views

FBI RAIDS–AN ATTACK ON ALL OF US

On Sept. 24, teams of FBI agents from the “Joint Terrorism Task Force” served search warrants and grand jury subpoenas on anti-war and solidarity activists in Illinois and Minne-sota. This attack on the First Amend-ment rights of peaceful activists must be opposed and we should stand with them [=>]

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