Description: A new documentary, “If a Tree Falls: A Story of the Earth Liberation Front,” tells the story of environmental activist Daniel McGowan. Four years ago this month, McGowan was sentenced to a seven-year term for his role in two acts of politically motivated arson in 2001 to protest extensive logging in the Pacific Northwest—starting fires at a lumber company and an experimental tree farm in Oregon. The judge ruled he had committed an act of terrorism, even though no one was hurt in any of the actions.
Democracy Now! played an excerpt from the film and speak with the film’s director, Marshall Curry. They also speak with Andrew Stepanian, an animal rights activist who was imprisoned at the same CMU as McGowan, and with Will Potter, a freelance reporter who writes about how the so-called “war on terror” affects civil liberties.
To this day I believe we are here on the planet Earth to live, grow up and do what we can to make this world a better place for all people to enjoy freedom.” – Rosa Parks
Today, February 4th, is “Mother Of The Civil Rights Movement”, Rosa Parks’ birthday. Her act of civil disobedience broke the Jim Crow laws of the time and launched Parks into the spotlight as a symbol of Black people’s frustrations overnight. As with most people launched into the spotlight overnight, it took more than one night for Parks to get there. Continue reading →
I am intrigued by the idea that Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. has a national holiday in his name, and yet on this day, for many, it’s not clear what we’re supposed to be doing to celebrate. Continue reading →
This is a huge, huge victory for myself and black farmers, many of whom have died waiting for justice. I have been working on this thing for 26 years. I’ve been hearing ‘no’ for so very long.” John Boyd of the National Black Farmers Association (NBFA)
On Friday, November 12th the senate unanimously approved funding for a $1.15 billion settlement to compensate Black farmers who were racially discriminated against by the Department of Agriculture. Continue reading →
Lena Horne: You’re beautiful and I think it’s what I want to be
What could be fresher or greener than this? It saddens me that aside from all of her many talents and accomplishments, Lena Horne’s character and strength doesn’t seem to exist in so many performers today. Even the frankness and honesty with which she explained how she came into knowing about herself and Black people seems to me unrivaled today. Continue reading →
A Negro woman has the same kind of problems as other women, but she can’t take the same things for granted.â€ ~Dorothy Height
I just wanted to draw some attention to the passing of Dorothy Height, women’s, African American rights leader and chairwoman of the National Council of Negro Women. She died on Tuesday at 98 years old. I didn’t want for it to be the case that Dorothy Height would get the Farrah Fawcett treatment when she died the same day as Michael Jackson. She died the same day as Hip Hop legend Guru, born Keith Elam, of Gang Starr.
UPDATE: “Congress failed to approve $1.15 billion by a March 31 deadline so now the Obama administration cannot allocate $1.25 billion to settle decades-old discrimination lawsuits with black farmers. The deal, one of the largest civil rights settlements in history, was to compensate black farmers left out of federal farm loan and assistance programs due to racism. Lawmakers left for a 2 week break on Friday without approving the deal, leaving it in limbo.” ~aaenvironment.blogspot.com
Surprise, surprise some farmers are actually Black! These farmers are upset about discrimination they have faced over the years in U.S. Department of Agriculture programs. The Black farmers say they have been systematically denied loans, crop subsidies and government aid while their white counterparts did not. I guess that’s why some call the USDA â€œthe last plantation”. Continue reading →