Thursday, February 28, 2013

Out In The Black Liberation Night- The Black Panthers And The Struggle For The Ten-Point Program-Fourteen –A Nation Of One’s Own?

Jackson Pulley had been doing his Saturday morning soapbox spiel in the environs of Lenox Avenue and 125th Street in high Harlem up in New Jack City for as long as anyone could remember. Some grandmothers would tell their grandchildren whom they were minding or raising as their own while passing by doing the Saturday morning shopping that they could remember when their own grandmothers of blessed memory had taken them to that very same Saturday shopping not to listen to, not to be bothered by Jackson’s big boom voice, and of his hand-held mic that could be heard far above and below the avenue. And Jackson Pulley’s spiel had not changed much since he had first given voice to his project back in the late 1920s. His basis idea was that the black people in America, his people, his sweated, kicked around, abused beautiful people, due to the white man’s inherent racism, needed a country, a nation of their own. He would moreover argue his conceptions through good times and bad, against all comers, from old black knight scoundrel Marcus Garvey through the Communist party turns for and against the black nation, through the “new negro” stuff in the 1950s through to the Doctor King and Malcolm X knock down drag out fight and right up until recently when the Black Panthers gave the idea of a black nation a whirl for a while. Old Jackson kept his main idea front and center and would as the “false” challengers arose kick them like tin cans down the road.

Jackson had had no truck with old black knight Marcus Garvey seeing in him just another black hustler working the ignorant West Indies immigrant black janitors and black maids and down and out southern slave-branded sharecroppers out of their hard earned dough. He had been right as rain on that man when he first started seeing that blacks needed a new homeland. The pivotal event though that drove him to his position was seeing one of his own kin lynched right after World War I down in the great state of Georgia while the whites watched with red-heat passion bordering on lunacy. Later before heading north he bore the full brunt of Mister James Crow and his equally savage ways. No, it was time to separate, long past time.

He had had some respect for the Communist Party and their black nation idea. In fact he had been in a study circle with some brothers in the African Blood Brotherhood before some of them went over to the party. He could not go with them since he refused to belong to an organization that allowed whites in. Besides those reds didn’t follow that black nation policy except when they wanted to use it to recruit blacks in hard times. That “new negro” stuff was a joke as far as he was concerned, something out of W.E.B. Dubois’ “talented tenth” and just another way to buy off the natural leaders of black people. Stuff them harmlessly out of the way like some old time Toms. He got serious when Malcolm X arose like a phoenix out of the ashes but he had no truck with Elijah Mohammed seeing him as a less clever Marcus Garvey with all that religious mumbo-jumbo that never did anybody any good. Just another fast-talking preacher hustle, except not Baptist hustle like he knew growing up. The Black Panthers of course demanded respect, respect as black warriors ready to stick their necks out for the black community, but they had been taking a beating of late trying to stay in America, in the cities. Were taking a beating from whitey and his bad ass cops who went crazy when he saw black men with guns ready to defend their own. Still they were righteous and had an idea of what black people needed to get the hell off the eight-ball.

When pressed Jackson like he was this Saturday by a young black brother who seemed to want to know more details about how it would work he would say that what blacks should fight for is a place like Idaho, a place with lots of land and far away from the vast majority of whites. Although he himself had never been there he was sure it would do, and equally sure once black people had had enough of the white man (and increasingly woman) on their necks they would be flocking there. But the young man seemed to say by the shrug of his shoulders like one grandmother said as she passed Jackson Pulley and his soapbox for the hundredth time to her grandchildren “Don’t pay old Jackson any never mind.”…
The Ten Point Program

The original "Ten Point Program" from October, 1966 was as follows:[39][40]

1. We want freedom. We want power to determine the destiny of our black Community.

We believe that black people will not be free until we are able to determine our destiny.

2. We want full employment for our people.

We believe that the federal government is responsible and obligated to give every man employment or a guaranteed income. We believe that if the white American businessmen will not give full employment, then the means of production should be taken from the businessmen and placed in the community so that the people of the community can organize and employ all of its people and give a high standard of living.

3. We want an end to the robbery by the white man of our black Community.

We believe that this racist government has robbed us and now we are demanding the overdue debt of forty acres and two mules. Forty acres and two mules was promised 100 years ago as restitution for slave labor and mass murder of black people. We will accept the payment as currency which will be distributed to our many communities. The Germans are now aiding the Jews in Israel for the genocide of the Jewish people. The Germans murdered six million Jews. The American racist has taken part in the slaughter of over 50 million black people; therefore, we feel that this is a modest demand that we make.

4. We want decent housing, fit for shelter of human beings.

We believe that if the white landlords will not give decent housing to our black community, then the housing and the land should be made into cooperatives so that our community, with government aid, can build and make decent housing for its people.

5. We want education for our people that exposes the true nature of this decadent American society. We want education that teaches us our true history and our role in the present-day society.

We believe in an educational system that will give to our people a knowledge of self. If a man does not have knowledge of himself and his position in society and the world, then he has little chance to relate to anything else.

6. We want all black men to be exempt from military service.

We believe that black people should not be forced to fight in the military service to defend a racist government that does not protect us. We will not fight and kill other people of color in the world who, like black people, are being victimized by the white racist government of America. We will protect ourselves from the force and violence of the racist police and the racist military, by whatever means necessary.

7. We want an immediate end to POLICE BRUTALITY and MURDER of black people.

We believe we can end police brutality in our black community by organizing black self-defense groups that are dedicated to defending our black community from racist police oppression and brutality. The Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States gives a right to bear arms. We therefore believe that all black people should arm themselves for self defense.

8. We want freedom for all black men held in federal, state, county and city prisons and jails.

We believe that all black people should be released from the many jails and prisons because they have not received a fair and impartial trial.

9. We want all black people when brought to trial to be tried in court by a jury of their peer group or people from their black communities, as defined by the Constitution of the United States.

We believe that the courts should follow the United States Constitution so that black people will receive fair trials. The 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution gives a man a right to be tried by his peer group. A peer is a person from a similar economic, social, religious, geographical, environmental, historical and racial background. To do this the court will be forced to select a jury from the black community from which the black defendant came. We have been, and are being tried by all-white juries that have no understanding of the "average reasoning man" of the black community.

10. We want land, bread, housing, education, clothing, justice and peace. And as our major political objective, a United Nations-supervised plebiscite to be held throughout the black colony in which only black colonial subjects will be allowed to participate for the purpose of determining the will of black people as to their national destiny.

When in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume, among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self- evident, that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. That, to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed; that, whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute a new government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly, all experience hath shown, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But, when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariable the same object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security.

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