Posts Tagged ‘Black Riders’

Late Great 1968

Friday, July 4th, 2008

My girlfriend likes Hip Hop, and she has turned me on to Lil’ Wayne recently. I listened to his “Carter 3″ and found myself enamored with the layered sound, driving around LA in the late night urban heat, crusin’ down PCH past the stink of Wilmington, taking the wheels up the 110 into the heart of south central stopping off at MLK to take a stroll in Leimert Park, visiting with some old Panthers, and then up to Chavos for a Copwatch benefit and a little culture clash, stopping in to rap with the sister from the Black Riders and then getting into all kinds of heat when my shortie went south on me when I wanted to stay and hang with the O.G.s and she wanted to hear some fresher sounds. But hey, it’s all in the way you play it and I like to play it cool.

Al Sharpton

If I was a stoner still, I would be totally blown away. I like Lil’ Wayne’s version of “Play with Fire” by the Rolling Stones, and a nod to the Doors “Light My Fire”, the one that got them banned from that 60’s paragon of hipness’s show “Ed Sullivan”. He got his MLK rap down. Lil’ Wayne, that is. I like his take on that 90’s band Dandy Warhols song “Bohemian Like You”, (which is a take off on the Rolling Stones, “Sympathy For The Devil”), in ‘Lollypop”, I am not sure why he is so against Al Sharpton, but I am sure he has his reasons. One thing Lil’ Wayne knows his roots and the allusions come thick and fast. Anyone, who thinks this is some dumb street kid, is way confused.
But I am listening to Miles Davis great fusion album Bitches Brew, the Tenor Sax bits in that song “Bitches Brew” are killer.
Oh the theme, yes I was taking about the late great year 1968. I am going to be speaking about the revolutionary nature of that year on July 19th, with my communist friends from Europe. How rebellions kept breaking out all over the planet and a couple such as the one in France almost turned into a full fledged revolution. Martin Luther King was assassinated. The Chicago 8 disrupted the Democratic Convention in Chicago in a Police Riot and the masses in Czechoslovakia decided they wanted the communists to lighten up. Allen Ginsberg has some interesting takes on his adventures in Prague. I only remember that as the year Gore Vidal and William F. Buckley got into it on ABC TV, a live bitch fest between two of America’s prominent, err, intellectuals, one queer and one straight. I can say that because I am at least 20% gay by my own calculations, based on an interview with members of the band REM on the public radio program Fresh Air. My girlfriend is trying to drag me out of the closet for a photo shoot. I have so far been way too prudish for an actual encounter. She calls it art, I call it a pain in the ass. I have tendencies, and friends that are gay, but over all I prefer the straight life. Does that make me a wimpy bi? I don’t know, I do love my traditional male role.
I have a link to the famous 1968 live TV meltdown over in my web log if you want to see what my young ears were profaned with. I also have fond memories of showing the Yippie propaganda film made shortly after the convention in which they promote the campaign of Pigasus, their real life pig candidate for president. I don’t remember exactly how I got my hands on a copy of the film, but I did and showed it in my high school ‘World Affairs” club. But that is ancient history and we are talking about current affairs, or more precisely how do we create a revolution in the age of the Hip Hop post Blood and Crips gang banging generation.

They could be they are smart enough and are willing to pick up the gun when they see their self interest in that, but will they have the patience to develop a theory and practices that is based on something other than the immediate gratification that comes with wheeling and dealing on the streets at an early age. We are going to see if we can make some connections on the 19th at 3 pm the People’s Library at 1620 South Vermont. Maybe if you want to help us stir up the pot a bit, and you are in the LA area, you might give us a visit. I promise to be entertaining and if you have some thoughts of your own you will be encouraged. We want participants who want to discuss the current situation in light of what happened way back when.
But that is the entire used car salesman’s rap from me tonight. It is early on the 4th of July and I haven’t been this hopeful for real change in America in almost a decade. Gary Rumor signing out.

Black Riders & Chip Fitzgerald

Monday, June 30th, 2008

Whoever said that giving a boy a gun will make him a man? All over the world, children have been given guns, as young as 12 years of age. In some cultures a male child becomes a man at about age 14, that was true in ancient Rome, and is still true in societies around the world that have not retained the delayed introduction into adulthood that has become prevalent in industrialized societies. In pre-industrial and primitive industrial societies the delay is not required; most everything a person needs to enter the mature world of adults has been absorbed by that age.
In the industrialized world there is a need for advanced training in sitting and waiting for orders. Some skill sets such as those required for brain surgery, may require an extra year or two of apprenticeship with a practitioner, but for most of us the only purpose for advanced education is to inoculate us in the tedium that comes with most so called careers in the world awaiting us. Most youth, by the time they are out of school have now been saddled with enough debt to get them inured to the concept that this is the norm for the rest of their adult lives, and especially if they have advanced degrees they will have become very good at sitting and waiting.
But that is not what I am writing about. Last weekend I went to a couple of events where I was made aware of the plight of several members of the Black Riders and of Chip Fitzgerald. I know that Chip is a former Black Panther who has been in prison for almost 40 years on murder charges while he was an active member of the Southern California Chapter of the Black Panther Party in 1969. We know that the federal government had targeted the Black Panthers for suppression under the COINTELPRO program and that as a consequence we should consider Chip to be a prisoner of war and as such that battle is over, and he deserves to be released.
In a further development the children of the Black Panthers in Southern California are the Black Riders. They have a free food program and work with gang members to get them to move away from the gangs to a socialist perspective on what needs to happen in their communities. As such they are inherently doing work to improve their communities, but because they act in opposition to the established power structure they are seen as threats. Recently several members of the organization have been arrested on conspiracy charges. This is a later day adoption of COINTELPRO methods being used to repress modern day revolutionaries. The Black Riders deserve our support.
On July 1st the Black Riders are going to court in Los Angeles and want anyone who has time to come to the court and show their support. Chip Fitzgerald is coming up before the parole board on July 2nd and deserves your support also. You can find info about their cases by looking them up on line. I will post information as I have it.

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