The Black Stake in the Green New Deal

Source:  Black Agenda Report
March 7 2019

the black stake in the green new dealBlack people should see the Green New Deal as an arena of self-determination, communal repair, and justice-creation.

“In its broad outlines, the Green New Deal is a transformative program that calls for democratic reconstruction of U.S. society.”

The debate over some form of Green New Deal is destined to dominate political discourse in the coming decade, as the clock ticks toward a United Nations panel’s 2030 deadline to avoid climate catastrophe by holding global warming to 1.5 degrees centigrade. A Green New Deal bill –actually, a non-binding resolution — submitted last month by New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Massachusetts Sen. Ed Markey, so far has 89 co-sponsors in the House and 11 in the Senate including endorsements from Democratic presidential hopefuls Kirsten Gillibrand, Cory Booker, Elizabeth Warren, Amy Klobuchar and Kamala Harris. Bernie Sanders backs the resolution and promises to develop his own Green New Deal plan.

With 80 percent of registered voters generally in favor (92 percent of Democrats, 64 percent of Republicans), the Ocasio-Cortez/Markey Green New Deal is at least as popular as Sanders’ signature proposals on Medicare for All and free public college tuition. But the oligarchic .01% beats super-majorities every time under the two-corporate-party electoral system, and the oligarchy demands that there be no retreat from austerity and eternal warfare. The Democratic presidential contest sets the stage for an empire-shaking confrontation between popular forces demanding protection from the terrifying insecurity and unfairness of madhouse capitalism versus the political servants of the rich. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was caught red-handed plotting with insurance companies to sabotage Sanders’ Medicare for All bill (see BAR, Feb 13), and is sure to treat every austerity-threatening measure as a poison pill, no matter how popular in the polls. But Pelosi’s billionaire bosses will be driven apoplectic by the Green New Deal, the drumbeat for which will grow louder and louder as humanity approaches the next of many climatic points of no return.

“The oligarchic .01% beats super-majorities every time under the two-corporate-party electoral system.”

Of all the supermajority-backed proposals on offer, the Green New Deal has the potential  to mobilize the broadest and deepest popular forces to challenge the political hegemony of the Lords of Capital. In its broad outlines, the Green New Deal is a transformative program that calls for democratic reconstruction of U.S. society in defense of the global homeland: the biosphere. Derived from the Green Party’s New Deal plan and its “Economic Bill of Rights,” first put forward in 2006, the Ocasio-Cortez/Markey resolution calls for achieving “global reductions in greenhouse gas emissions from human sources of 40 to 60 percent from 2010 levels by 2030…and net-zero global emissions by 2050” by overhauling the industrial and agricultural structures and habitats of the nation, at breakneck speed, while simultaneously redressing the injustices inflicted on “frontline and vulnerable communities” (mainly people of color) in the course of U.S. history.

Specifically, the GND aims to “promote justice and equity by stopping current, preventing future, and repairing historic oppression of indigenous peoples, communities of color, migrant communities, deindustrialized communities, depopulated rural communities, the poor, low-income workers, women, the elderly, the unhoused, people with disabilities, and youth.”

“The GND aims to ‘promote justice and equity by stopping current, preventing future, and repairing historic oppression.’”

The GND’s authors recognize that Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal actually strengthened the racial caste system by favoring whites, as did the post-war GI Bill and the federally subsidized suburbanization of the nation — the greatest makeover in U.S., and possibly world, history. This time around, the repair and upgrading of the infrastructure and housing stock of the nation and the provision of “high-quality education, including higher education” for all, is to be accomplished “with a focus on frontline and vulnerable communities” as “full and equal participants in the Green New Deal mobilization.”

The Resolution promises to direct economic development investments in ways that “build wealth and community ownership, while prioritizing high-quality job creation and economic, social, and environmental benefits in frontline and vulnerable communities, and deindustrialized communities.” High-quality retraining and education will be accomplished with “community-defined projects and strategies.”

The goal is restorative justice that addresses past crimes against communities that were repeatedly destabilized and made into sacrifice zones for the benefit of capitalists and to satisfy the demands of white privilege. The GND is committed to “ensuring the use of democratic and participatory processes that are inclusive of and led by frontline and vulnerable communities and workers to plan, implement, and administer the Green New Deal mobilization at the local level.”

The plan envisions creation of 20 million new jobs at living wages while “strengthening and protecting the right of all workers to organize, unionize, and collectively bargain free of coercion, intimidation, and harassment.”

“The GND is committed to ‘ensuring the use of democratic and participatory processes that are inclusive of and led by frontline and vulnerable communities.’”

The Green New Deal is not designed to be a plaything of the oligarchs, but will ensure “a commercial environment where every businessperson is free from unfair competition and domination by domestic or international monopolies.” And care will be taken that “the public receives appropriate ownership stakes and returns on investment.”

This is fine language, but even if the words survive the congressional process they mean nothing unless the “frontline and vulnerable communities” – communities that have been abused by U.S. capitalism during booms and busts, through periods of industrialization and de-industrialization, suburbanization and urban disinvestment, and now gentrification and mass Black expulsion — aggressively engage the Green New Deal process and assert their human rights, including the right to self-determination.

“The plan envisions creation of 20 million new jobs at living wages.”

The Green New Deal was clearly conceived as a “nation-building” as well as biosphere-saving project. Black people should see it as an arena of self-determination, communal repair, and justice-creation. The best available guideline for waging that struggle is the National Black Political Agenda for Self-Determination put forward by the Black Is Back Coalition after two years of development and ratification by community participants in cities across the nation. Many of the Agenda’s 19 Points have immediate and critical relevance to the national makeover project, particularly Point Number 11:

Halt Gentrification through the empowerment, stabilization and restoration of traditional Black neighborhoods. Black people have the right to develop, plan and preserve our own communities. No project shall be considered ‘development’ that does not serve the interests of the impacted population, nor should any people-displacing or otherwise disruptive project be allowed to proceed without the permission of that population. Peoples that have been displaced from our communities by public or private development schemes have the Right to Return to our communities, from New Orleans to Harlem.”

“The Green New Deal was clearly conceived as a ‘nation-building’ as well as biosphere-saving project.”

If the GND is to fulfill its mission while “promoting “justice and equity by stopping current, preventing future, and repairing historic oppression” then it must respect the self-determinist rights of the “frontline and vulnerable communities” — mainly people of color, who must be the principal planners in the new ecological order. And since the Green New Deal does not envision a transition to socialism as inherent in the project, the Black Political Agenda for Self-Determination’s Point Number 12 is highly relevant:

“Black Business must be nurtured by public development banks and protected from strangulation by corporate chains and monopolies. Black community planning agencies must protect and give preferential access to local entrepreneurs and cooperatives willing to operate in harmony with the community’s developmental plans, with a special emphasis on agriculture. Accordingly, we demand immediate Reparations for Black Farmers and an end to the land theft and discriminatory laws and practices used against Black farmers in the U.S.”

Ocasio-Cortez and Markey’s Green New Deal mandates that high-quality retraining and education will be accomplished with “community-defined projects and strategies.” Black communities will likely consider that a green light for community control of such institutions of learning, as is their self-determinationist, democratic right.

Indeed, the 19 Points of the National Black Political Agenda for Self-Determination are critical to “ensuring the use of democratic and participatory processes” in all interactions between Black America and an historically hostile United States.

The oligarch-owned Democratic leadership and corporate media (the same folks that brought us Russiagate) will wage relentless, dirty war against the Green New Deal and the other super-majority-supported healthcare, education and living wage measures, likely resulting in the breakup of the Democratic Party – a welcome and necessary outcome. The rupture could be set in motion this election cycle if the Lords of Capital instruct their media and party operatives to treat the Sanders/Ocasio-Cortez agenda as an existential threat. Every passing day, however, more Americans awaken to the reality that the rule of the rich must end, so that the Earth can live. The current system is rigged for mass extinction. We need a whole new deck of cards. Black folks would like to get free before the lights of the world go out.

BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at Glen.Ford@BlackAgendaReport.com.

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BAR: Venezuelan Elections Cleanest in the World

Source:  Black Agenda Report

March 5 2019

 

 

Efia Nwangaza, who served as an international observer of Venezuela’s most recent election, agrees with former President Jimmy Carter that “Venezuela has the most transparent and cleanest elections of any country in the world.” The US has no respect for law or truth, said Nwangaza, director of the Malcolm X Center for Self-Determination, in Greenville, South Carolina.

MLK: “Capitalism has out-lived its usefulness”

Source:  People’s World
January 18 2018

MLK: “There’s something wrong with capitalism”

Racist violence and economic injustice were among the problems Dr. Martin Luther King laid at capitalism’s doorstep. Here, King looks at a glass door of his rented beach cottage in St. Augustine, Fla. that was shot into by someone unknown on June 5, 1964. | Jim Kerlin / AP

 

Throughout his life, Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke often and with vision about the nature of capitalism and the kind of changes needed to replace it. The following quotes reflect some of King’s key thoughts on the subject. The power of his words speaks as much to the present day as they did to the turbulent times he witnessed.

“I imagine you already know that I am much more socialistic in my economic theory than capitalistic… [Capitalism] started out with a noble and high motive… but like most human systems it fell victim to the very thing it was revolting against. So today, capitalism has out-lived its usefulness.” – Letter to Coretta Scott, July 18, 1952.

“In a sense, you could say we’re involved in the class struggle.” – Quote to New York Times reporter, José Igelsias, 1968.

“And one day we must ask the question, ‘Why are there forty million poor people in America?’ And when you begin to ask that question, you are raising questions about the economic system, about a broader distribution of wealth. When you ask that question, you begin to question the capitalistic economy. And I’m simply saying that more and more, we’ve got to begin to ask questions about the whole society…” – Speech to Southern Christian Leadership Conference Atlanta, Georgia, August 16, 1967.

“Call it democracy, or call it democratic socialism, but there must be a better distribution of wealth within this country for all God’s children.” – Speech to the Negro American Labor Council, 1961.

“We must recognize that we can’t solve our problem now until there is a radical redistribution of economic and political power…. This means a revolution of values and other things. We must see now that the evils of racism, economic exploitation, and militarism are all tied together… you can’t really get rid of one without getting rid of the others… the whole structure of American life must be changed. America is a hypocritical nation and [we] must put [our] own house in order.”- Report to SCLC Staff, May 1967.

“The evils of capitalism are as real as the evils of militarism and evils of racism.” – Speech to SCLC Board, March 30, 1967.

Dr. King speaks in Atlanta in 1960. | AP

“I am now convinced that the simplest approach will prove to be the most effective—the solution to poverty is to abolish it directly by a now widely discussed matter: the guaranteed income… The curse of poverty has no justification in our age. It is socially as cruel and blind as the practice of cannibalism at the dawn of civilization when men ate each other because they had not yet learned to take food from the soil or to consume the abundant animal life around them. The time has come for us to civilize ourselves by the total, direct and immediate abolition of poverty.” – Where do We Go from Here?, 1967.

“You can’t talk about solving the economic problem of the Negro without talking about billions of dollars. You can’t talk about ending the slums without first saying profit must be taken out of slums. You’re really tampering and getting on dangerous ground because you are messing with folk then. You are messing with captains of industry. Now this means that we are treading in difficult water because it really means that we are saying that something is wrong with capitalism.” – Speech to his staff, 1966.

“[W]e are saying that something is wrong … with capitalism…. There must be better distribution of wealth and maybe America must move toward a democratic socialism.” – Speech to his staff, 1966.

“If America does not use her vast resources of wealth to end poverty and make it possible for all of God’s children to have the basic necessities of life, she too will go to hell.” –  Speech at Bishop Charles Mason Temple of the Church of God in Christ in support of the Memphis sanitation workers’ strike on March 18, 1968, two weeks before he was assassinated.

MLK Global

Michelle Obama Slanders Black Men in Her Book, Adds to the Obama Family’s Long Anti-Black Tradition

Source:  Black Agenda Report
December 19 2018

obama in barMichelle Obama Slanders Black Men in Her Book, Adds to the Obama Family’s Long
Anti-Black Tradition

The Obamas are cashing in on their lifelong project to further the destruction of Black people, while blaming the victim.

“When it comes to imperialism, it pays to be anti-Black.”

Black Agenda Report has spent over a decade analyzing the numerous manifestations of the Obama family’s hatred of Black America. Michelle Obama is currently on a book tour of her latest release, Becoming. The overpriced book is but another addition to the post-Obama Presidency family fortune. Barack and Michelle Obama have been busy building a billionaire brand with book deals and speaking arrangements with Wall Street. As Paul Street noted, the Obama Foundation is putting the donations of Wall Street corporations to good use by opening a “library”in the heartland of Black Chicago. Just as during its tenure in the White House, the Obama family is profiting from the promotion of white supremacist policy and ideology directed against Black America.

Nowhere is this clearer than in the very words that have come out of the mouths of both members of the Obama “power couple.” At a recent speaking event at the Barclay’s Center in New York City, Michelle Obama had this to say about Barack Obama:

“I had never met a black dude like Barack Obama. Not only his background and where he had traveled and who is parents were and he was always very introspective and he had been a community organizer. I hadn’t met a Harvard black dude who had been a community organizer in neighborhoods on the far south side where most people in the firm didn’t know those neighborhoods, he had been all up in those neighborhoods and those churches. So he understood the community in a full way but he was not arrogant, he was humble. I also liked the way he treated others.”

“The Obama family is profiting from the promotion of white supremacist policy and ideology directed against Black America.”

Michelle Obama uses her husband’s falsified credentials as a weapon against all Black men. Her statement that she had never met a “black dude”like Barack Obama represents but another racist dog whistle to please white America. The former First Lady of the United States has met plenty of Black men; she was raised for a period in the South Side of Chicago after all. However, as the Obamas have so plainly demonstrated, it isn’t where you are from but who you serve that matters. Few things please white America and its allies in the Black political class more than the criminalization and demonization of Black men. True to U.S. history, Michelle Obama invokes the image of the pathological, criminal, and lazy Black male who could not possibly live up to the standards of her “cultured” yet humble husband.

Texas A&M professor and scholar Tommy Curry is fighting for the creation of Black Males Studies precisely because the demonization of Black men is central in the shaping race, class, and gender politics in the United States. Curry argues quite convincingly that contemporary theories about race and gender are formulated around the extermination of Black men , especially poor Black men. Black men suffer from disproportionate rates of intimate partner violence, state violence, unemployment and incarceration but are often considered to be sexual deviants and criminals who possess “toxic masculinity.” Black men hold progressive views on gender and poll higher on these views than white women but are often thought to obsess over the patriarchal power of white men.

“As the Obamas have so plainly demonstrated, it isn’t where you are from but who you serve that matters.”

The legacy of mass Black enslavement, now manifested in the incarceration regime, is the foundation from which anti-Black attitudes against Black men and all Black Americans are nourished. One of Michelle and Barack Obama’s signature achievements for the ruling elites of the United States was the creation of massive amnesia in the Black polity around this fact. Black Americans as a group became more pro-warand pro-state surveillance than at any point in its history. Black Americans were further unable to muster any demands on the Administration around issues like forcing the Justice Department to indict murderous police officers or for the state to address the theft of Black wealth, even at the height of the Black Lives Matter insurgency. Not only were the Obamas able to move Black America to the right, but they were able to insult Black America every step of the way.

Michelle Obama’s racist dog whistle against Black men wasn’t the first time that the Obama duo attacked Black people. In 2008, then Presidential candidate Barack Obama castigated Black men as absentee fathers . Obama didn’t mention that data suggests Black men are the most committed fathers of any other group studied in the nation. But Obama’s comments are not about respectability. The myth of the absentee Black father is but a trope for the criminalization of Black men, where massive levels of exploitation and oppression by way of discrimination, police violence, incarceration, and poverty faced by Black people can be erased in favor of the Reaganite mantra of personal responsibility.

“Not only were the Obamas able to move Black America to the right, but they were able to insult Black America every step of the way.”

Once in office, the Obama Administration made it clear that it was the Presidency of all people, not Black people. Of course, what Obama meant was that he was the President of Wall Street, the ruling elites, and the white Americans who do their bidding. In a 2013 speech at Morehouse College, Barack Obama lectured Black men about personal responsibility. He told new graduates to stop blaming slavery for their problems and focus instead on being good fathers. Thus, the Obamas are no stranger to hurling insults at Black people whenever the opportunity arises. This was an especially useful skill during the Black insurgency that developed in the wake of the police state murders of Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown. Obama made sure to repeat the mantra of demonic Black men by criminalizing the victims as violent, drug-induced thugs and labeling the righteous rebellion of Black people as “excuse making” and “criminal behavior.”

White supremacy is the fuel that drives the imperialist system. U.S. imperialism is a system of extermination that relies upon the dehumanization of Black Americans, indigenous peoples, and non-whites in the formerly colonized world to justify the capitalist exploitation of the ruling elites. Obama expanded the tentacles of imperialist destruction and the world awaits as to whether Trump will receive two terms to outdo his predecessor. However, the consequences of the Obama Administration’s policies live on into the Trump period. Black Americans were repeatedly insulted during the Obama period all the while the so-called “first Black President” expanded U.S. wars abroad and oversaw the massive theft of Black freedom and wealth through Wall Street and the mass incarceration regime. In a word, Obama helped facilitate the further destruction of the Black condition while placing the blame on Black people.

“Obama told new graduates to stop blaming slavery for their problems and focus instead on being good fathers.”

A diseased politics of respectability gave Obama clearance to do the bidding of the ruling class without any protest from the majority of Black Americans and other “progressive” sections of the population. Because Obama was considered Black, the fact that he spoke and acted like a ruling class white supremacist oligarch was given little attention. Obama gave the ruling class a gasp of air from the political and economic crisis of imperialism by painting the system with a darker hue. The Democratic Party solidified its position as the “diverse” face of Wall Street and war. The politics of respectability gave Obama, Clinton, and the rest of the Democratic Party brass a thin layer of legitimacy that has quickly eroded in the era of Trump. The Democratic Party is struggling to defeat an arch racist billionaire and neoliberal partners such as French President Macron and German President Merkel face a similar fate to the Democrats in their respective imperial nations.

An old dog has trouble learning new tricks, especially if that dog is on the leash of the monopoly capitalist class. Michelle Obama continues to insult Black men because it is advantageous to the family. Barack and Michelle Obama are raking in hundreds of millions from books, speaking tours, and investments in gentrification in cities such as Chicago. When it comes to imperialism, it pays to be anti-Black. Ant-Black tirades are profitable, especially for a family currently building a post-Presidential fortune for diligently serving and directing the forces that incarcerate, murder, and impoverish Black Americans across the nation.

Danny Haiphong is an activist and journalist in the New York City area. He and Roberto Sirvent are co-authors of the forthcoming book entitled American Exceptionalism and American Innocence: A People’s History of Fake News- From the Revolutionary War to the War on Terror (Skyhorse Publishing). He can be reached at wakeupriseup1990@gmail.com

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Cuban President repeats Fidel’s historic visit to the Riverside Church

Source:  Granma
September 27 2018

by: Leticia Martínez Hernández ;  René Tamayo LeónAndrés Ferreiro Molero internet@granma.cu

Díaz-Canel and Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro spoke at an event organized in solidarity with the two nations, in the emblematic New York church

miguel diaz sept 2018.jpeg

President Díaz-Canel repeated Fidel’s historic visit to the Riverside Church back in 2000. Photo: Leticia Martínez

Located in Upper Manhattan, New York, and bordering the renowned neighborhood of Harlem, the Riverside Church has been the scene of memorable speeches by numerous historic leaders, such as Martin Luther King, who on April 4, 1967, delivered his famous sermon entitled “A Time to Break Silence (Declaration Against the Vietnam War); and Nelson Mandela, shortly after his release in 1990.

Harlem became a symbol of solidarity with Cuba on September 18, 1960, when then Prime Minister, Fidel Castro Ruz, arrived in New York heading the Cuban delegation to participate in the 15th Session of the UN General Assembly. Due to the attacks of the Eisenhower administration, which forbade him from leaving the island of Manhattan, the Cuban leader was welcomed at Harlem’s Hotel Theresa, where he held meetings with Malcom X, and with the First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, Nikita Khrushchev, among other personalities.

Doctors Joaquin Morante and Sitembile Sales c

Doctors Joaquin Morante and Sitembile Sales, who trained at Havana’s Latin American School of Medicine, expressed their eternal gratitude to Cuba. Photo: Leticia Martínez

Forty years later, on September 8, 2000, the leader of the Cuban Revolution would repeat the visit to this New York neighborhood, on the occasion of the UN Millennium Summit,and deliver a speech at this same church.

 

 

DÍAZ-CANEL REPEATS FIDEL’S HISTORIC VISIT

The President of the Councils of State and Ministers of Cuba received a warm welcome in the historic Riverside Church, where he was surrounded by friends of the island.

He was also joined by Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro Moros, who was welcomed with cries of “Long live Venezuela!”

Two young doctors, Joaquin Morante and Sitembile Sales, who trained at Havana’s Latin American School of Medicine, thanked Cuba for its solidarity and commitment to train young people from all over the world for the benefit of those most in need in their own countries. “We will follow the example of the Cuban people,” they noted.

Next to speak to the enthusiastic crowd was President Nicolás Maduro. “I came to New York, to the United Nations, to bring the truth of the Venezuelan people. I also wanted to return to this historic church in Harlem and reiterate our love and commitment, and share this moment with our brother Miguel Díaz-Canel and the people of Cuba,” he stated.

“We have been victims of immense imperialist aggression, but today I can say that the Bolivarian Revolution of Venezuela is still standing, alive and victorious,” Maduro concluded, to huge applause.

President Miguel Díaz-Canel began his speech by reiterating the fraternal relations and common struggle of Cuba and Venezuela. “Today at the United Nations, two sister peoples raised their voices. Venezuela denounced all the aggression to which it has been subjected and also ratified its decision to continue the Bolivian revolution, as a legacy faithful to Comandante Chávez,” he noted.

nicolas maduro at riverside church c.jpg

Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro Moros was welcomed with cries of “Long live Venezuela!” Photo: Leticia Martínez

“Cuba also raised its voice with Venezuela, to support Venezuela, to support Nicaragua, to support Puerto Rio, to support Latin America, to support the Palestinian and Saharawi people, and to support all the just causes of the world. And also to denounce, once again, the unjust blockade that, for almost 60 years, the United States has imposed on us,” he continued.

“For Maduro, for Venezuela, for the Cuban delegation, it is very emotive to be here with you, friends of Cuba and Venezuela here in New York. Miracles like these happen in this city only here, in the Riverside Church,” the Cuban President stated, before stressing that this meeting, in a cathedral of faith and solidarity, was a gathering of brothers and sisters, of friends, of equals.

“Fidel taught us that to cooperate with other exploited and poor peoples was always a political principle of the Revolution and a duty to humanity,” Díaz-Canel explained.

“Cuba also owes a lot to international solidarity and to the help of many friends and activists here in the United States, among whom are many Cuban residents,” he continued.

“The most recent demonstration of this was the fight for the return of the Five Cuban anti-terrorist fighters and, before that, the return of little Elian to Cuba,” the Cuban leader noted.

He stressed that bilateral relations with the United States continue to be characterized by the economic blockade, which constitutes an obstacle to the development of the Cuban people and has caused huge deprivation to Cuban families.

The solidarity event concluded with performances by local dance groups in honor of the guests.

fidel at riverside church in harlem.jpg

During his stay in New York Fidel participated in an act of solidarity with Cuba in the Riverside Church in Harlem, in Manhattan. Photo: Estudios Revolución

National Black Police Association Stands Behind Colin Kaepernick

Source:  Officers.com
September 6 2018

kaepernick kneeling.jpgSan Francisco 49ers’ Eric Reid (35), quarterback Colin Kaepernick (7) and
Eli Harold (58) take a knee during the singing of the national anthem before a
game against the New England Patriots on Sunday, Nov. 20, 2016 at Levi’s
Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif.  
JOSE CARLOS FAJARDO/BAY AREA NEWS GROUP/TNS

Mr. Parker:

It is with great dismay that we were made aware of a letter that you received from the National Association of Police Organizations (NAPO) regarding your use of Colin Kaepernick in your new “Just Do It” advertising campaign. The National Black Police Association (NBPA) is not in agreement with NAPO on this matter, and we strongly condemn their call for police officers and their families to boycott Nike and its products.

Your inclusion of Mr. Kaepernick in your ads seems appropriate to us. We live in a country where the 1St Amendment is a right of the people. Mr. Kaepernick chose to exercise his right where his passion was on the football field. NAPO believes that Mr. Kaepernick’s choice to openly protest issues surrounding police brutality, racism and social injustices in this country makes him anti-police. On the contrary, the NBPA believes that Mr. Kaepernick’s stance is in direct alignment with what law enforcement stands for-the protection of a people, their human rights, their dignity, their safety, and their rights as American citizens. NAPO has shown an adeptness at maintaining the police status quo and the tone in their letter further validates Mr. Kaepernick’s concerns, as it undermines the trust that is needed by law enforcement in order for the profession to maintain its legitimacy. That NAPO has chosen this matter to take a stance, only perpetuates the narrative that police are racist, with no regard, acknowledgement, respect, or understanding of the issues and concerns of the African- American community.

Related:  Serena Shows Her Admiration for Colin Kaepernick Over Nike Ad, TeleSUR

Your quote “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.” is also appropriate as it relates to Mr. Kaepernick. For NAPO to presuppose that Mr. Kaepernick has not made sacrifices because he did not die on a battlefield, shows you just how out of touch NAPO is with the African-American community. We would like for them to stop their false narrative that you are not worthy of respect unless you were in the military or worked in law enforcement. The beauty of this country are the countless sacrifices that all people make in their everyday lives. The African?American community makes a sacrifice each time a life is unjustly lost at the hands of the very people who should protect them. A sacrifice is made each time the criminal justice system treats people of color as less than. A sacrifice is made each time a letter is sent asking officers to boycott a corporation, without asking those very African-American officers who are most affected, what their opinion is.

If they had asked the NBPA, we would have told them that they are out of line, and that the NBPA supports any person or group who exercises their right to peacefully protest against any form of social injustice, including police brutality and racism.

Related:  Nike Features NFL’s Kaepernick in Nike’s ‘Just Do It’ ad

The NBPA proudly supports Nike and your use of Mr. Kaepernick in your new “Just Do It” advertising campaign. Truth and upholding the Constitutional rights of citizens, are cornerstones of leadership in policing. Our mission includes striving constantly to bridge the gap between law enforcement and our communities we are committed to ensuring equity for the community, as we work to enhance trust, legitimacy, transparency, and accountability in policing.

We will likely be buying and wearing lots of Nike products in the near future.

Best wishes,

Sonia Y.W. Pruitt

National Chairperson

Nike Features NFL’s Kaepernick in Nike’s ‘Just Do It’ Campaign

Source:  TeleSUR
September 3 2018

nike ad features kaepernick.jpgSan Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick pumps his fist as he
acknowledges the cheers at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in
Los Angeles, California, U.S. on December 24, 2016. | Photo: Reuters

Nike unveiled the campaign last week by releasing a film featuring Serena Williams entitled “Voice of Belief.”

Nike has chosen Colin Kaepernick, the first NFL player to kneel during the national anthem as a protest against racism, as one of the faces for advertisements commemorating the 30th anniversary of its “Just Do It” slogan, amid U.S. President Donald Trump’s ire.

RELATED:  US: Kaepernick’s Case Against NFL For Collusion ‘Will Continue’

“Colin has been a Nike athlete since 2011,” Nike spokeswoman Sandra Carreon-John said on Monday. “Colin is one of a number of athletes being featured as part of our 30th anniversary of Just Do It.”

Based on images sent by Nike, other athletes featured in the ad campaign include New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., skateboarder Lacey Baker and Seattle Seahawks linebacker Shaquem Griffin, who is an amputee with one hand.

Former NFL quarterback Kaepernick posted a black-and-white close-up of himself on Instagram and Twitter on Monday featuring the Nike logo and “Just do it” slogan along with the quote, “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.”

“We believe Colin is one of the most inspirational athletes of this generation, who has leveraged the power of sport to help move the world forward,” said Gino Fisanotti, a Nike vice president of brand for North America, according to ESPN, which first reported Nike’s decision to use Kaepernick as part of the ad campaign.

Kaepernick was a quarterback with the San Francisco 49ers for six years. He raised the anger of nationalist and white supremacist sectors by taking a knee while the anthem was played before games during the NFL’s 2016 season to draw attention to police killings of black men and other issues.

The anthem protests, soon embraced by other players, also raised the ire of Trump, who has said he would love to see NFL owners fire football players who disrespect the American flag.

The NFL this season has adopted a rule requiring all players to stand during the anthem, although it gave them the option of staying off the field until the ceremony was over. Even so, the protests have persisted through the preseason and the NFL has said it is in discussions with the players union on the policy.

Kaepernick and another former 49ers player, Eric Reid, have not been signed by any of the NFL’s 32 teams since their protests spread around the league. Both have filed collusion grievances against NFL owners.

On Thursday, arbitrator Stephen Burbank denied the league’s request to dismiss the case, which means he found sufficient evidence for the case to continue and perhaps go to trial.

News of Nike’s ad campaign broke just days before the first game of the NFL season on Thursday, when the controversy over pre-game protests could flare anew.

Kaepernick received an enthusiastic welcome from fans at the U.S. Open’s showcase tennis match between Serena and Venus Williams on Friday night when he was shown raising his fist on the big screen.

Nike has in recent months been under scrutiny for its culture and accusations that women are not adequately represented in its leadership ranks. Chief Executive Officer Mark Parker apologized for the company’s work culture in May to employees in a company-wide meeting.

Nike, which has said it opposes discrimination and is committed to diversity and inclusion, previously announced “unconscious bias training” for its managers and a review of its human-resources systems.