African arts showcase at UC Berkeley

The spirit of Africa was alive at the African Arts Society's "Showcase" on November 20 at UC Berkeley.

Ready to Learn Fun Fair

Children enjoyed face painting, legos and storytelling at the Ready to Learn Fun Fair at Peralta Elementary School in Oakland.

Occupy Oakland calls for West Coast Port Shutdown

Organizers say Port owners are "1%." Port begs to keep the Ports Open for 99% workers.

Oakland Labor Day BBQ hosts good time for 'fam bam'

The "I am Oakland" collective hosted the Labor Day Fam Bam BBQ at Mosswood Park on September 6.

Protest against censorship of Palestinian Children's Art

In response to censorship of Palestinian children's art by an Oakland art museum, dozens came out to protest in Oakland.

RIP Peabo Wellington

College of Alameda student Jepeabo Wellington was murdered days before the school year began.

Students gain college acceptance at Black College Fair

Hundreds of young people attended the third annual Black College Fair at Laney College, the second year the Oakland community college has hosted the event.

Bay Area Black History Month Events (February 1-4)

Listing of Black History Month events taking place Wednesday, February 1 to Saturday, February 4. If you have an event you would like posted to the calendar, email theblackhour (at) gmail (dot) com.


"African Americans in Education"
6-8pm, Unit 1, Cheney Main Lounge, UC Berkeley Residential Housing

What is wrong with education in Black communities??? But most importantly, what will we do as Black students to help improve education in our communities??? Come to a panel and discuss the state of education for Black communities and the realities of many primary and secondary children in the public school system.

We will discuss the problems, and primarily focus on possible solutions, including, but not limited to TeachForAmerica. Black TFA Corps members, seniors who have accepted offers, and college students who were taught by TFA corps members will discuss their experiences with and views towards TFA's impact on public education. We will have a Q and A session for those who have questions, concerns or apprehensions about TFA and engage in healthy dialogue to reach a place of common understanding for the betterment of public education in the Black community.

Speakers include student activist Jevon Cochran.

RSVP: Facebook event


Everyday Sunshine: The Story of Fishbone Film Screening and Discussion
6-9pm, Museum of the African Diaspora
685 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 94105
Thursday, February 2nd
6:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Join us for a FREE screening and panel discussion of the film, EVERYDAY SUNSHINE: THE STORY OF FISHBONE, a documentary about the musical group Fishbone and the social and cultural forces that gave rise to this pioneering Black punk rock band from South Central-Los Angeles. From the shifting faultlines of Hollywood fantasies and the economic and racial tensions of Reagan's America, Fishbone rose to become one of the most original bands of the last 25 years. With a blistering combination of punk and funk they demolished the walls of genre and challenged the racial stereotypes and political order of the music industry and the nation. Telling it like it is, the iconic Laurence Fishburne narrates EVERYDAY SUNSHINE, a story about music, history, fear, courage and funking on the one.

Post-screening discussion with Fishbone's frontman Angelo Moore, filmmakers, Lev Anderson and Chris Metzler, and cultural critic, Jeff Chang, along with a spoken word musical performance by Angelo's alter ego Dr. Madd Vibe.

This event is made possible with the generous support of the California Council for the Humanities.
FREE to the public.


"Black History Month Celebration Through Film Series"
6-10pm, Oakland City Hall Council Chambers
1 Frank Ogawa Plaza, Oakland, CA 94612

Oakland's Vice Mayor Desley Brooks, Rocky Seker, and Black Cinema At-Large are holding Black Independent Film screenings at City Hall in Council Chambers every Friday in February in celebration of Black History Month. A reception will be held before each screening. On February 3, the film will be "Make A Movie Like Spike" (soon to be "The American Dream").

More info: Blog/Site


African American Celebration Through Poetry
1-4pm, West Oakland Library, 1801 Adeline Street, Oakland, CA
The 22nd Annual African American Celebration through Poetry is Saturday, Feb. 4, 1-4 p.m. at the West Oakland Branch Library, 1801 Adeline Street, (510) 238-7352. Hosted by poet, journalist and professor Wanda Sabir. This year the theme is great black women. All are welcome to attend. There is an open mic at the end of the program.


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Reverend Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr.
The History of the Black Church
Saturday, February 4, 2012
2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
MoAD Salon (2nd floor)
685 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA

As part of MoAD's ongoing lecture series Migrations of the Sacred: Spiritual Practices Across the Diaspora, Dr. Wright will present a special lecture entitled “The History of the Black Church” on Saturday, February 4, 2012, from 2-4 pm. The lecture will be followed by a book signing of Dr. Wright’s new book A Sankofa Moment: The History of Trinity United Church of Christ.

Dr. Rev. Jeremiah Wright will lecture on the formation of the first American black churches in the 1800’s up to their present role in fostering community organization, political leadership, in addition to religious fellowship. After the lecture Rev. Dr. Wright will be available to sign copies of his recent publication, A Sankofa Moment: The History of Trinity United Church of Christ, which gives the 48-year history of the Trinity United Church of Christ with a major emphasis on the building of the largest United Church of Christ congregation within the denomination that developed several ministries and several entities under the pastorate of Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr.

More info: Jeremiah Wright tickets

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Filmmaker's Lounge with Kevin Epps
3:30pm, de Young museum’s Koret Auditorium
San Francisco

In celebration of Black History month, Kevin Epps returns to curate and host films by local filmmakers in de Young museum’s Koret Auditorium. The first film, "Which Way is Up" will be shown Saturday, February 4 at 3:30 p.m., followed by Q&A with screenwriter Cecil Brown.

Richard Pryor plays a landmark role—actually, three roles—in this comedy, which has gained cult status among Pryor fans. Orange-picker Leroy Jones finds himself fired from his job and alienated from his friends and family as a result of accidentally joining a union strike.

Site: de Young artist fellow Kevin Epp's page

Free Mumia Summit held at Oakland's Laney College

On December 11, an anti-death penalty summit was held at Laney College in Oakland. The program focused on Mumia Abu Jamal, the recently executed Troy Davis, Stanley "Tookie" Williams, and current inmate Kevin Cooper.

Ramona Africa of the MOVE organization speaks out for freedom for her friend Mumia Abu Jamal.

Abu Jamal has been on death row for 30 years for the shooting of a Philadelphia police officer that activists say he did not commit. It was recently reported that the District Attorney would no longer seek death penalty in Abu Jamal's case. Africa called for Abu Jamal's freedom.

Barbara Becnel speaks
Barbara Becnel speaks about her friend "Tookie" Williams.

Barbara Becnel, president of the Stanley "Tookie" Williams Legacy Network shared how he wished to use his life example to save other children from violence. Williams was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize.

The Stanley Tookie Williams Summit was previously held at Merritt College from 2007-2010. The program moved to Laney College this year. Speakers included prison abolitionist Angela Davis; Ramona Africa of MOVE organization, and fighter for Abu Jamal; William's friend Barbara Becnel; Crystal Baybee of Committee to Free Kevin Cooper; rapper Boots Riley; and more.

Free Mumia at Laney College video by Peralta TV

Photos by Reginald James for

Occupy Oakland plans West Coast Port Shutdown

On Monday December 12, Occupy Oakland is joining with the anti-Wall Street Movements along the entire U.S. West Coast to shut down the ports.

During the November 2 General Strike, Occupy Oakland had tens of thousands in the streets, including thousands blockading the Port of Oakland.

"The ports play a pivotal role in the flow and growth of capital for the 1% in this country and internationally. For that reason alone it is the ideal place to disrupt their profit machine," according to the West Coast Port Shutdown website.

Organizers point out that workers have long been attacked at the ports: the 1934 San Francisco General Strike lead to police violence against dock workers, the 1946 General Strike in Oakland had been the nation's last general strike; and in 2003, protesters at the Port of Oakland protesting the War in Iraq were also violently attacked, leaning to Oakland Police changing their policies on crowd control.

Occupy Oakland is a local site that began October 10 following the September 2011 Occupy Wall Street Movement. For Occupy Oakland stories, visit or Further updates also available at and on Twitter.

Fashion, poetry, dance at UC Berkeley "Showcase"


The African Arts Society event, "The Showcase," took place November 20. The event featured fashion, poetry, dance and musical stylings of UC Berkeley students.






Photos by Reginald James.

Occupy - 99% vs. the 1% Animation

"Who is the '99'?" "We are the 99!"

So goes the rallying cry at Occupy Wall Street demonstrations throughout the nation. But what do those numbers really mean? The UK Guardian explores the data about wealth inequality and concentration and the United States.

The real questions may be: What does it mean that the rich get richer? And what will it take to change this system?

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