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hard-knock-radioLUMPENPROLETARIATOn 18 MAY 2015, Hard Knock Radio broadcast audio from a panel discussion on police terrorism at Stanford University.  Listen here. [1]

The panel discussion took place at Stanford’s Cemex Auditorium, Monday, 27 OCT 2014, 19:00 PDT. [2]

Messina

Ferguson: America’s Movement for Racial Justice” by Stanford

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HARD KNOCK RADIO—(18 MAY 2015) What up, everybody.  Welcome to another edition.  It is Hard Knock Radio.  Davey D, hangin’ out with you this afternoon.  On today’s show, we check in with FergusonAmerica’s Movement for Racial Justice, an incredible panel discussion with David Banner, Dr. Marc Lamont Hill, Tef Poe, and many more. [3]  All that and more coming up after the afternoon headlines.”

[SNIP:  News Headlines (read by Gabriela Castelán)]

DAVEY D:  (c. 8:18) “I wanna say wussup to everybody.  Welcome to another edition of Hard Knock Radio.  Davey D, hangin’ out wit’ you.

“During the newscast, you may have heard excerpts, you know, from, I think, Barack Obama and, also, information pertaining to the state of California and how police are going to be allowed to use military gear.  That’s a very important discussion.  One that is situated in the tragic events, that took place August 9th, 2014 in a little town right outside of St. Louis called Ferguson, Missouri.  It is at that town, that you saw and you heard a lot of protest, a lot of uprising, a lot of conversation, a lot of kicking up dust around the brutality of police and how they had taken advantage of a special programme, that allowed them to militarise themselves.  And, ever since the Ferguson Uprising, you’ve seen movements, that have taken folks all the way to the United Nations, of all places, not once, but on several occasions to appeal to have some sort of restrictions around the use of military gear.

“We wanna take a trip back and look at some of these important conversations, in particular, one, that took place at Stanford University, that featured a number of people speaking, not just about the use of military gear and the police, but also what we should be doing about police terrorism, in general.  Among the panelists included:  rap artist and activist David Banner; Maria Chapelle-Nadal, who is a Senate legislator for Missouri; we also heard from Dr. Marc Lamont Hill.  He is the co-author of a book, that talks about Mumia Abu-Jamal, among other things, and well known for his activism around police terrorism.  And also, Tef Poe, who is a frequent guest on our show, who is an artist as well as an activist.

“This discussion took place at Stanford University.  And we wanna give a special shout-out to our people at the Institute for Diversity in the Arts, as well as the African and African-American Studies department, as well as the Black Community Services Center of Stanford, who granted us permission to rebroadcast this and let you all get a taste of this very, very important discussion.  (c. 10:48)

“And I think it’s important that we situate ourselves back into some of the finer details of what came in the aftermath of Ferguson, so we can understand where we’re headed.  I mean, since Ferguson, we’ve had South Carolina.  We’ve had Baltimore.  We have a number of other cities, in which police terrorism is front and center:  Cleveland, another place.  And, with each incident, unfortunately, we’re seeing police being cleared, with the exception of Baltimore, and maybe South Carolina.  We need to be asking ourselves the hard questions, as to, not only where do we go from here, but what are some of the very practical and feasible steps, that can be taken to limit the powers of the police.

“Right now, we’re talking about whether or not the P.A.T.R.I.O.T. Act will be allowed to be renewed.  That’s an important discussion.  But how does that also dip down to the type of surveillance police are doing?  How does that dip down to the type of profiling, that police are doing?  How does that dip down to the military equipment, that they have and that they are frequently using on its citizens, on the citizens of this country?

“So, with that being said, why don’t we check out this first part of the discussion?   Ferguson: America’s Movement for Racial Justice.  And this will feature remarks from David Banner and, I believe, Maria Chappelle-Nadal, as they’re giving some important context to this, to Ferguson, and to the larger discussion of police terrorism.”  (c. 12:22)

DR. MARC LAMONT HILL:  “Greetings, everybody.  Free the land, as we say, where I come from.  Free Mumia.  Free all political prisoners.  And free Palestine.  Thank you all for being here.

“Well, on a certain level, I entered the Ferguson Moment, long before Ferguson happened, just like all of us did.  I’ve been an activist since I was a child, working on the Free Mumia Campaign.  And I remember in 1985 when the mayor of my city, Philadelphia, dropped a bomb on Osage Avenue, a residential neighbourhood, killing members of MOVE, seven years after the first attack on MOVE in 1978 in Powelton Village in December.  And, for me, that moment connects to Ferguson because it was another example of how an entire community of people could be rendered disposable in the service of state violence, state interests, state power.

“So, by the time I got to FergusonI got to Ferguson two days after the shooting.  I watched it on TV.  That’s not true.  I saw it on social media.  TV hadn’tI was at CNN.  And we weren’t talking about it yet.  But I saw it on social media.  And I saw his body lay there for an hour, and two hours.  And I saw people Tweeting that they were out there three hours, four hours.  And the image, that stuck to me was him laying on the ground, as if he didn’t belong to anybody, as if he had no family, as if he didn’t belong to a community, as if he didn’t belong to a democracy, as if he didn’t belong to a state, as if he didn’t have anyone to protect him or to invest in him or to care for him.  Forget the level of innocence of guilt.  I’m talking about a body being exposed to the sweltering sun as well as the kind of global gaze of the media, of the internet, of the people in the community, who had to watch this spectacle of, yet, another example of state-sanctioned violence.”  (c. 14:22)

[SNIP]

[This is a rush transcript. This transcript is currently under construction.]

[SNIP]

DR. HILL:  [SNIP]  (c. 38:40)  “So, we need to think about this in a global context of resistance.  And that is how I engage with police, if we have to.

And I hope that we can imagine the world that is not yet.  That is a world without prisons.  That is a world without police operating as extensions of state power.  That is us imagining whatthey said:  It’s easier to imagine the end of the world itself than to imagining the end of capitalism.

I want us to dream and dare to imagine a world after capitalism, after whiteness, [audience laughter], after the prison.”  [audience applause]  (c. 39:18)

[SNIP]

[This is a rush transcript. This transcript is currently under construction.]

[SNIP]

TEF POE:  (c. 40:00)  “Well, first and foremost, the movement on the ground in St. Louis, it’s really led by a widespread coalition of people.  Um, it’s a lotprimarily led by young women, to be straight up wit’ you. [audience applause]

“And it’s funny because, when we could have the Hands Up, Don’t Shoot talk, I actually get offended bynot offended, but I go.  I’m a little hesitant to applaud people, that are like, when they go:  Hell, yeah! Hands Up, Don’t Shoot!”

POE:  “‘Cos I’m with you.”

DR. HILL:  [laughs]

POE:  “I’m livin’ in the moment.  I’m goin’ towards the pain.  But is the person in the audience truly gonna show up when we on that, as a result?”

DR. HILL:  “That’s real. [laughs]”

POE:  “You feel me, though?  Like, you sayin’ you wanna do this.  So, let’s go do this.  ‘Cos I’m livin’ it.  Get a plane ticket.  Come to Ferguson with me.  And we can get it poppin’.”

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  “For real.”

POE:  “I got plenty of that for you.  So, segue into the actual question.  Um, for real what we’re trying to do is re-imagine and reshape what a movement is supposed to look like.  We don’t come outside in slacks and dress shoes.  I don’t have any shame about using profanity when I’m on a panel, that’s not at a church.” [audience laughter]

MODERATOR:  “It’s not your daddy’s civil rights movement.”

POE:  “Yeah; that was my quote.  I made a quote.  We had a really disruptive moment at the Chaifetz Arena last week with Dr. Cornel West and a bunch of other religious leaders.  One of the guys from the NAACP got up to speak and the young people just turned up.  And they turned it to, like, a free-for-all.”

DR. HILL:  “Good.”

POE:  “Everybody was up there speaking at some point.  And that’s really reflective of what we’re trying to do.  We don’t want a situation where there’s a definitive figurehead.  You know?  Like, I’m not trying to be like the next Martin Luther King.  I’m not trying to be the next Malcolm X.  Both of them dead.  So, they didn’t do something right.  [audience grumbling]

“Um, so, for us, we’re trying to modernise the Civil Rights Movement.  We’re not trying to recreate it.  We’re not trying to be it.  We’re trying to modernise it and address the concerns of all oppressed people and be all-inclusive of that and really find ways to relate to each other’s struggle.  So, a lot times, we’re in the meetings, like, the sisters would get on my head because they’d be, like:  Yo, such and such said something that was hella sexist.  You should’ve stepped up and said something about that.  And I’d be like:  You right.  I got you next time.  Because, as a man, it’s my job to address that particular ism because I’m a party.  I’m a member of the oppressing party upon her.  Right?”  [audience applause]  So, I gotta have her back.

“And we have these conversations.  Like, we’re not living in a bubble where we’re afraid to have these dialogues with each other.  You know what I mean?  We don’t agree on everything all the time.  We get into a lot of arguments.  But, at the end of the day, we know that when it’s time to throw some tear gas back, it’s only about six of us that’s going to get up and throw it back.  So, we gotta rely on each other.  And we have to have a, sort of, unprecedented trust in each other that, you know, no matter what, if you hear a rumour on Twitter that somebody said I said such and such, just come talk to me about it.  You know?  Don’t feed into that.  Just come rap with me.  If I said it, I’ll tell you I said it.  You know?  We’ll work it out.  (c. 44:04)

“And I think that’s why we’ve had so much progress in a short period of time because we’re not trying to play by the traditional rule book.  You know?  If you feel something, act upon it.  And that’s what happened with Mike BrownWe saw a guy dead on the street.  Most of us didn’t know each other when we started organising with each other.  I meet a lot of people every day, that I did not know.  And they become, like, my best friends.

“And I told the main person I’m with, Tory Russell, he started Hands Up United with me.  And we’re both, also, members of OBS, the Organization for Black Struggle.  I told him the second day that I met him.  I said:  Look, man.  We have to have an undying trust in each other because, if we don’t, this is going to fall apart right in front of our eyes.  I said:  I’m not gonna agree with everything you do.  You’re not gonna agree with everything I do.  But we both in this for the long haul.  And let’s stick it out.

DR. HILL:  “Good.”

POE:  “And we had to have the same conversation with the sisters.

And what we do is a very humanistic approach to revolution.  We have real emotions.  We have real thoughts.  We’re not trying to be so academic about it.  You know?  Because, to be real wit’ you, when they brought the armoured trucks and the M-16s to West Florissantthe people being academic about it stayed at the college campus. [audience grumbling]  And they have that privilege to do so.  When they leave the college campus, the cops will shoot at them ‘cos the cops don’t know they’re college students. (c. 45:47)

“But within your question, you posed something, that I would like to address, which is: Those of us, that are young, black intellectuals, we gotta challenge each other to do more than just sit back and think about fuckin’ racism

[SNIP]

[This is a rush transcript. This transcript is currently under construction.]

[SNIP]

DAVEY D:  [SNIP]  (c. 52:15)  “These are important moments in history.  It might not seem like history right now because this is just happening.  But five, ten years down the road, where will that be?  How will the story be told?  What narratives will they shape around it?  How will it be erased from history?  ‘Cos they’re certainly not talkin’ about it in schools.

“You know, there are some schools here in Oakland, that I know, definitely, personally, had written cards and wanted to exchange and send support to the folks in St. Louis and Ferguson.  And, you know what?  They weren’t able to send it.  You wanna know why?  Because, in that school district, they were not allowed to talk about what’s taking place around Mike Brown.  That’s real talk.  Not allowed to talk about it in the classroom.

“So, you got people that are watching military tanks, being tear-gassed, going on all around them, can’t talk about it in the schools.

“That’s why these [free speech radio] stations, a station like ours becomes important.  It becomes the outlet.  It becomes the place that we connect the dots.  It becomes the place that people can communicate and hear very important perspectives. (c. 53:21)  [SNIP]”

[SNIP]

[This is a rush transcript. This transcript is currently under construction.]

[SNIP]

[Transcript by Messina]

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TIME—(16 SEP 2014, Kareem Jackson aka Tef PoeThey cannot kill us all. They can not throw us all in jail. We want justice for Michael Brown and every victim of police brutality.

In Saint Louis County, the police have a history of racial profiling and abusing the power of the shield. Racial profiling in North County has transformed into a problem of monstrous proportions. Young black men and women have sadly realized that the police are here to do us more harm than good. We don’t drive certain places in our very own community after a certain time of night. We avoid suburban communities as much as possible because we fear being unjustifiably locked up and thrown into jail. In Saint Louis County all of the cards are stacked against young black people.

Learn more at TIME.

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[1]  Hard Knock Radio broadcast, May 18, 2015, KPFA, 94.1 FM (Berkeley, CA), Pacifica Radio, https://kpfa.org/episode/hard-knock-radio-may-18-2015/.

N.B.:  Hard Knock Radio archives are taken down from KPFA.org after two weeks due to copywrong restrictions.

[2]  Stanford University, Cemex Auditorium, 641 Knight Way, Stanford, California, 94305

[3]  Also see archives at:

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