fred hampton

In 1969 Fred Hampton was shot dead during a police raid.
In our continuing discussion over police tactics used to control and often oppress minority communities throughout the nation, more than a few law enforcement and conservative voices have dragged out the wretched old canard of linking the former Black Panther Party to the Ku Klux Klan.
December 4, 1969 is the 46th anniversary of the assassination of Chicago Black Panther leaders Fred Hampton and Mark Clark, and, four days later, of the shootout between the Los Angeles Black Panthers and the LAPD.
While watching Stanley Nelson's documentary, The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution, I was propelled back to my own remembered experience in these years - hearing Stokely Charmichael speak at my college campus, learning of Fred Hampton's murder by FBI and Chicago police while I was in the army.
Documentarian Stanley Nelson Jr. looks back on the life of the young Black Panther.
The killings of Oscar Grant, Eric Garner, Michael Brown, Walter Scott, and Freddie Gray, along with the militarization of municipal police forces, the rise of the prison-industrial complex, and the riots, are all symptoms of a much deeper malady.
Police unions further the-all-too-accurate conception that the police are an occupying force in poor communities of color, and are antithetical in principle and action to the progressive principles of the labor movement.
Black lives matter. All lives do. I don't celebrate Christmas. It's not an either or proposition, but I will celebrate Kwanzaa this year as I have for the last 25 years.
Similar to the wanton police killings of Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Eugene Ellison, Roshad McIntosh and countless other victims, the killer cops who murdered Fred Hampton and Mark Clark were never charged with murder or attempted murder, and never spent a day in jail.
As the history of the battle against racist police violence so pointedly teaches, the public outcry and agitation must continue not only in Ferguson but across the nation.