2012 will be The Year of the Village
FBI records show that 85 percent of COINTELPRO resources targeted groups and individuals that the FBI deemed ”subversive, including communist and socialist organizations; organizations and individuals associated with the civil rights movement, including Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and others associated with the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, and the Congress of Racial Equality and other civil rights organizations; black nationalist groups; the American Indian Movement; a broad range of organizations labeled ‘New Left,’ including Students for a Democratic Society and the Weathermen; almost all groups protesting the Vietnam War, as well as individual student demonstrators with no group affiliation; the National Lawyers Guild; organizations and individuals associated with the women’s rights movement; nationalist groups such as those seeking independence for Puerto Rico, United Ireland, and Cuban exile movements including Orlando Bosch’s Cuban Power and the Cuban Nationalist Movement; and additional notable Americans, such as Albert Einstein (who was a member of several civil rights groups).”
The remaining 15 percent of COINTELPRO resources were expended to marginalize and subvert ”white hate groups,” including the Ku Klux Klan and the National States’ Rights Party.
FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover issued directives governing COINTELPRO, ordering FBI agents to ”expose, disrupt, misdirect, discredit, or otherwise neutralize” the activities of these movements and their leaders. (quotes from Wikipedia)
Breathe — this is deep. Last week I was threatened by two Black men with “public character assassination.” Truth. Coincidentally, last week the village shouted its dissent and let the politicians know about our dissatisfaction — and here comes COINTELPRO. COINTELPRO is blamed for the deaths of Dr. King, Malcolm X and Fred Hampton, to name a few.
Now “they” want to practice a New COINTELPRO on me. Wow! No worries — whatever it is they have, I have been preparing. Born the daughter of a man who founded a Black House in 1968 and a mother who knew the plight of Black people and resisted daily, I will not be moved.
The New COINTELPRO, like the original, has many devices at its disposal. First “they” call your job and threaten your livelihood. If that doesn’t work, they look for things “they” believe compromise your integrity, “planting misinformation in at least three places in the community.” Then “they” talk badly about people in your family; then “they” pray that it will take root.
It has been working for at least four centuries. It has been working, but we can stop it — we can resist.
The story is told that Harriet Tubman had to get a shotgun the second time she took people to freedom. See, when she crossed by herself to freedom, she said that “there was a glory over everything,” and she thought that this would be true of everyone who crossed.
She learned the first time she brought a group of slaves to freedom that there would be some who would want to return, despite the slow death and destruction that awaited them back on the plantation. So, she got the shotgun and told future “defectors” to “Go forth to freedom or die.”
She knew in her heart that she could not risk the whole village for the confusion of the few. I know that too, so whatever “it” is, let “them” plant it, say it, repeat it, but don’t let it deter you.
The ideology counts on human greed, jealousy and desire for 15 minutes of fame. It counts on the reality that we speak life but love conjecture more, and all too often we will feed gossip faster than we will speak well of someone or something. The ideology counts on the self-hate it generates in us and then reminds us of daily, like water over a rock.
If 2012 is to be the year of the village, we need you. Ask the superintendent of the Minneapolis Public Schools why the highest rate of suspension in her schools is for Black kindergartners. Ask the mayor of Minneapolis why under his leadership the Black community has crumbled. Ask him about the Empowerment Zone.
Ask Council Member Samuels, the mayor, and local pastors why they are always present at the violence vigil while the cameras are there, but once the photo op is over the mother of the three-year-old who was killed by a stray bullet was left without a ride home — the real story the mainstream news never tells us.
Seize your power, get conscious and get busy or we stay stuck.
Can you dig it?
Hear Lissa Jones’ radio show “Urban Agenda” on 89.9 KMOJ-FM Thursday nights at 6 pm, stream her live at www.kmojfm.com, or read web posts from Lissa at www.kmojfm.com. She welcomes reader responses to firstname.lastname@example.org.