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.

President Obama's Weekly Address (3/28/09)

Oakland residents march for Lovelle Mixon, man who killed four police officers

OAKLAND, Calif - A march and vigil was held for Lovelle Mixon March 25. After killing four Oakland Police officers following a "routine traffic stop" on March 21, Mixon was shot and killed by SWAT team members.

The march was captured by Uhuru News, and is below:

John Hope Franklin dies

John Hope Franklin; scholar, historian, and Presidential Medal of Freedom winner, has passed away. Professor Franklin died due to heart failure March 25.

He was the James B. Duke Professor Emeritus of History, and for seven years was Professor of Legal History in the Law School at Duke University. He was a native of Oklahoma and a graduate of Fisk University. He received the A.M. and Ph.D. degrees in history from Harvard University, according to his Duke University biography.

He taught at a number of institutions, including Fisk University, St. Augustine's College, North Carolina Central University, and Howard University. In 1956 he went to Brooklyn College as Chairman of the Department of History; and in 1964, he joined the faculty of the University of Chicago, serving as Chairman of the Department of History from 1967 to 1970. At Chicago, he was the John Matthews Manly Distinguished Service Professor from 1969 to 1982, when he became Professor Emeritus.

Ten Ways to Save Oakland

Check out this post from an Oakland blogger, "City Homestead." It is Ten Ways to Save Oakland.

How do you think we can save Oakland?

Uhuru Statement on Lovelle Mixon shooting four Oakland Police officers

The Uhuru Movement thanks all of our friends and supporters who have voiced their concerns about the position taken by the Uhuru Movement on the March 21 killings of four Oakland policemen and twenty-six year old Lovelle Mixon.

We unite with your interest in dialog and resolution to this situation and in building unity among the various communities in Oakland through genuine social justice.

The Uhuru Movement has always understood that our friends may disagree with some of our positions—positions which always uphold justice for the African working class community.

We understand and unite with your concerns that the tense situation in Oakland must be resolved.

It is unfortunate that it takes a situation like this to bring Oakland’s real problems to the surface.

We have to take the March 21 events in the context of the long history that the Oakland police department has had with the Oakland African working class community.

It was the infamous brutality of the Oakland police that gave rise to the Black Panther Party for Self Defense in the 1960s.

There has been the exposure of the notorious Oakland “Riders,” whose brazen violence, harassment, racism and dishonesty are well known.

There have been relentless police murders of African community members young and old, such as Casper Banjo, an elderly African man and well-known, respected artist who was blatantly shot by the police last year.

There are hundreds of African and Mexican working class people who have been murdered by police over the years, real human beings whose names fade from the collective memory so quickly. Many of these victims have been blatantly slandered in the media, doubling the pain of the grieving families.

The recent cold-blooded, point blank BART police murder of young Oscar Grant was only unusual because it was caught from many angles on video.

But it is much more than this. Oakland has a very clear publicly supported policy of police containment, implementing an incessant martial law with ever-present SWAT teams and police helicopters circling over neighborhoods daily.

California’s prison population is the fourth largest in the entire world and the OPD does everything possible to feed young African men and women from Oakland into that system for their entire lives.

Discriminatory legislation such as Three Strikes locks up countless African people as young as 14 years old for things that white people get to go to rehab for.

It has long been documented in articles by journalist Gary Webb in the San Jose Mercury News, for example, that the US government is responsible for imposing the devastating crack cocaine plague in African communities, and it is well known that the police have and continue to facilitate this.

The Uhuru Movement does not support the loss of life of any person. But the loss of life at the hands of the police in the African community of Oakland has been going on for half a century.

The “tensions” in Oakland are caused by the police, not by an impoverished community struggling to survive.

Even the mainstream media sources such as the New York Times and National Public Radio have had to mention in most reports that many in the African community do not support the police’s position in this case, and understand that Mixon’s actions were the result of years of oppression of a whole community which has come to a boiling point.

Lovelle Mixon’s life, like that of thousands of young African men in the impoverished neighborhoods of Oakland, was over long before he was killed by police. He faced a hopeless dead end of joblessness, poverty and criminalization by a society that would rather lock up young African men than make college or jobs available to them.

The police are not social workers; they are a military force with the assignment to carry out a violent containment policy against a whole community. The purpose of the police is to maintain power for the status quo and uphold the relations of poverty and wealth in the city.

If we want to move forward and “build bridges” as a city there is only one road to do so. We have to truly understand the calls of a community under siege and demand an immediate end to this completely failed public policy of police containment, this war without terms waged against the African community of Oakland.

We have to demand a policy of genuine economic development for the African community—development that truly benefits and uplifts the deeply impoverished African working class of this city, and is not just another cover for gentrification and dispersal of the oppressed.

We appreciate your continued support of the Uhuru Movement and urge you to take an active stand in transforming Oakland into a model city of shared prosperity and true social justice.


Throw Back Hiphop: It's Your Birthday

It's Your birthday

We've dedicated this week's Throw Back Hiphop Video to The Black Hour host Reginald James, whose birthday is today. Don't do too much!

TBH Videos: Death Penalty Forum at Berkeley City College

A forum on the death penalty was held at Berkeley City College in March. Click to watch video.

Video courtesy of P-Span, Peralta Television.

President Obama to host online town hall from White House

Original post

According to, "The White House is open for questions."

"We invite you to participate in our community-moderated online town hall. Submit your own question about the economy and vote on submissions from others. We also encourage you to include a link to a video of yourself asking your question (ideally 30 seconds or less), but text submissions are all you need," states the site.

On Thursday, there will be a live "online town hall" at 8:30 AM, Pacific. Visit the White House for more info.

President Obama's Weekly Address

TBH Videos: President Obama on Jay Leno Show

Full interview of President Barack Obama on March 19 episode of The Tonight Show with Jay Leno

TBH Alert: BART protest planned at Rockridge BART

No Justice! No BART! is holding a second protest in order to prevent BART from going back to "business as usual." The protest will be held at Rockridge BART from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., Thursday, March 16.

The organization's demands include:
  • the firing of BART Police Chief Gary Gee or covering up Oscar's murder

  • the firing of BART General Manager Dorothy Dugger or covering up Oscar's murder

  • the firing of BART Police Officer Tony Pirone and criminal charges for punching Oscar in the face and holding him down while he was shot

  • and an investigation into the other officers present that day and to make changes to ensure this never happens again.

SHOW UP EARLY or use the bus or some alternative means of transport. AC transit lines 7, 51, and 59 stop at the Rockridge BART.

Recognizing Ida B. Wells' "Passion for Justice"

Ida B. Wells-Barnett was a fearless anti-lynching crusader, suffragist, women’s rights advocate, journalist and speaker. She stands as one of our nation’s most uncompromising leaders and most ardent defenders of democracy. She was born in Holly Springs, Mississippi, in 1862 and died in Chicago, Illinois, in 1931 at the age of 69.

Read the complete article that originally appeared in the San Francisco Bay View Newspaper.

Special to The Black Hour By Lee D. Baker

TBH Video: Fight the Power, by Public Enemy

The Black Hour's (TBH) Throw Back Hiphop Video of the Week

Fight the Power
Public Enemy

TBH News: Rescue education rally in Sacramento

As California continues to head downward in an economic freefall, it is time to "Rescue Education." Students, faculty and staff of the state's community colleges, state colleges and universities will rally at the State Capitol March 16 to express their support for higher education in California.

"The time has come where we must ask ourselves and our legislators whether our budget reflects our goals as a state," says the groups, website. "Even with the passage of the 2008-2009 and 2009-2010 budget package, we, the students of California's public higher education system, realize that this crisis is far from over and that very real threats are not far ahead. So, join us at Raley Field to begin a march to the State Capitol in Sacramento to express support for California's public higher education system."

For more information how how to "KEEP THE DOORS OPEN to our colleges and universities" and to "come support affordable, accessible, and high-quality education for all!" go to

Thousands convene for action on Climate Change

Over 12,000 young people seized the nation's capitol last weekend to make a statement to Congress about Global Warming.

Power Shift 2009 brought together people from all walks of life for a "movement deeper than a solar panel."

Van Jones, executive director of Green for All, gave the conference keynote speech. Check out the complete video below, courtesy of the Energy Action Coalition.

Van Jones' keynote speech at Power Shift '09.

Oakland seeks Justice for Oscar Grant

Oakland continues to seek justice for Oscar Grant. This video below features highlights from a January 10 community meeting in Oakland along with footage from the January 13 demonstration in downtown Oakland.

Video by YouTube user

Harriet Tubman Day of Remembrance

Abolitionist, humanitarian, hero, spy, nurse and fearless freedom fighter; Harriet Tubman was all of the above.

Tubman was born ‘enslaved’ in Maryland in 1820. Her original name was Araminta Ross, but took the name Tubman after marrying John Tubman.

As a child Tubman was said to be head strong and resilient. She once bite the knee of a slave owner when she was attacked; one of many acts of defiance Tubman displayed. Tubman often received several lashing due to her “back talk.”

Although she was made to take of children, she was still tough. As she grew older and stronger, she was assigned to grueling field and forest work: driving oxen, plowing, and hauling logs; like any other man.

One day, when she was an adolescent, Tubman was sent to a dry-goods store for some supplies. There, she encountered an enslaved African ‘owned’ by a different family, who had left the fields without permission. His overseer, who was furious, demanded that Tubman help restrain the young man. Tubman refused. And as the slave ran away, the overseer threw a two-pound weight from the store's counter that missed and struck Tubman instead. She said it "broke my skull.” While this left Tubman with a lifelong battle with temporal lobe epilepsy-black outs, it did not cause her will to leave her.

The urge for freedom was always present in Tubman. She had heard of people escaping to the North and surviving. In 1849, Tubman escaped to freedom with her brother.
During the journey Tubman’s brother got frightened and said that he wanted to go back; forcing Tubman to go alone.

I freed a thousand slaves I could have freed a thousand more if only they knew they were slaves.
She returned and led not only her family to freedom but hundreds more along the ‘Underground Railroad,’ a network of safe houses and where those who escaped slavery could stay while on their path to freedom.

Harriet Tubman
Harriett once said, “I freed a thousand slaves I could have freed a thousand more if only they knew they were slaves.”

A devout Christian who was led by her visions from God, she has been called, “Moses,’ alluding to the prophet who led his people to freedom.

We celebrate Harriet not only for her valor but her courage.

What are you doing to ensure Harriet’s work is not in vain?

By Shontrice Williamson
The Black Hour

TBH Fundraiser: Dance Battle (World of Dance Tour) at Laney

The Black Hour Radio Show, in partnership with Harambee News and the world famous Turf Feinz dance crew will host a dance competition Saturday, March 14 at Laney College from 4-7 p.m.

Dance crews can battle for money and a change to travel with the Turf Feinz to the World of Dance competition taking place in L.A. this April.

Admission is $10 with proceeds going to the Turf Feinz and The Black Hour Radio Show. Laney College is located at 900 Fallon Street in Oakland.

TBH Alert: No Justice, No Bart

One in 31 Americans in jail, prison, parole or probation, over 2.3 million incarcerated

Prison BarsOver seven million people in the U.S. are in jail, prison, on parole or probation, according to a new study by the Pew Center on the States based on U.S. Justice Dept and Census Bureau Statistics.

That is about one in 31 adults. Over 2.3 million were incarcerated by the end of 2007.
Black adults are four times as likely as Whites and nearly 2.5 times as likely as Hispanics to be under correctional control. One in 11 Black adults – 9.2 percent – was under correctional supervision at year-end 2007.

“Black adults are four times as likely as Whites and nearly 2.5 times as likely as Hispanics to be under correctional control. One in 11 Black adults – 9.2 percent – was under correctional supervision at year-end 2007,” according to the report.

"And although the number of female offenders continues to grow, men of all races are under correctional control at a rate five times that of women." (In case you thought Madea Goes to Jail was a joke.)

Although the U.S. has only five percent of the total world population, Americans represent 25 percent of the total incarcerated.

Learn more about the prison industrial complex at Critical Resistance.

The Black Hour host featured on KPFA's Morning Show

The Black Hour host Reginald "Brother Reggie" James appeared on KPFA’s (94.1) Morning Show along with Global Exchange’s Monica Vaughan on Feb. 27.

"Reginald and Monica highlighted the importance of social justice and diverse youth voices in getting both national and international policies passed to combat climate change," according to Global Exchange's blog.

Click here for link to show archive, or click play below. You can also download the episode below.
The Morning Show - February 27, 2009 at 7:00am

Click to listen (or download)

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