“Uprising: Resistance and Rebellion” ll OUR COMMON GROUND with Ajamu Baraka and Efia Nwangaza

OUR COMMON GROUND   with Janice Graham

       “Uprising: Resistance and Rebellion”

05-02-15 Resistance and Rebellion

               Depraved INDIFFERENCE – Beyond Baltimore
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Saturday, May 2, 2015 LIVE 10 pm ET
Guests: Ajamu Baraka and Efia Nwangaza
Call In – Listen Line: 347-838-9852
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Tonight we look back at this week’s uprising in Baltimore MD and explore where we go from here. How do we prepare a generation of people for a new, more militarized war on Black people? How do we get our people to see, “we are the Gaza?” Looking at the Freddie Gray murder charges and the overall fracture and failure of the Amerikkan judicial and government systems.


Ajamu Baraka,Human Rights Leader and Contributor, Black Agenda Report

Ajamu Baraka is a human rights defender whose experience spans three decades of domestic and international education and activism, Ajamu Baraka is a veteran grassroots organizer whose roots are in the Black Liberation Movement and anti-apartheid and Central American solidarity struggles.
Baraka is an internationally recognized leader of the emerging human rights movement in the U.S. and has been at the forefront of efforts to apply the international human rights framework to social justice advocacy in the U.S. for more than 25 years. As such, he has provided human rights trainings for grassroots activists across the country, briefings on human rights to the U.S. Congress, and appeared before and provided statements to various United Nations agencies, including the UN Human Rights Commission (precursor to the current UN Human Rights Council).

As a co-convener with Jaribu Hill of the Mississippi Worker Center for Human Rights, Baraka played an instrumental role in developing the series of bi-annual Southern Human Rights Organizers’ conferences (SHROC) that began in 1996. These gatherings represented some of the first post-Cold War human rights training opportunities for grassroots activists in the country.

He writes for the Black Agenda Report and is Editor of “A Voice from the Margins” http://www.ajamubaraka.com/

Efia Nwanga, Human Rights Attorney and Liberation Broadcaster, WMXP Greenville South Carolina

Sister Nwangaza, current director of the Malcolm X Center for Self Determination, is a former Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) organizer. The Malcolm X Center for Self Determination (http://wmxp955.webs.com/aboutus.htm ), is a volunteer grassroots, community based, volunteer staffed, owned and operated human rights action center, since 1991. It serves as a non-profit, public space for developing, testing, training and implementation of approaches to popular education, strategic planning, problem solving, and communications skill enhancement, with wide ranging performing and organizing skill development, using human rights frameworks and mechanisms for self-determination, community and self-advocacy. WMXP-LP 95.5 FM – The Voice of the People, http://wmxp955.webs.com/, is a community based, volunteer programmed, listener and local business supported non-commercial educational radio station. It’s mission is to give voice to the voiceless with local music, local talk, local news, local people doing local programming.

She clerked in the SNCC national office, worked the Julian Bond Special Election Campaign, and was a member of the Atlanta Project which drafted the Black Power, Anti-Vietnam War, and Pro-Palestinian Human Rights position papers popularized by SNCC,http://www.crmvet.org/vet/nwangaza.htm . At the behest of Malcolm X, SNCC worked and moved the 1960s U.S. Civil Rights movement to founding today’s U.S. Human Rights Movement. SNCC’s modern day call for Black Power/Self Determination united, elevated and invigorated resistance movements here and around the world. For fifty years of work as a human rights activist, her early career as a staff attorney for the Greenville Legal Services Program, and her contributions to numerous civic and human rights organizations . Nwangaza is an affiliate member of the Pacifica Radio Board of Directors as a representative of WMXP.



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What to do about Baltimore Schools? l The Real News Netwok l Discussion of crisis in education

January 2, 2013

What to do about Baltimore Schools?

Pt.2 Lester Spence and Marc Steiner discuss possible fixes to the crisis facing Baltimore public schools

Discussion of Public Schools of Baltimore, MD and the urgency of reinvention.

PAUL JAY, SENIOR EDITOR, TRNN  The Real News Network. Paul Jay in Baltimore.

Second part of a discussion about public education in the city. And now joining us again to discuss all of this, first of all, is Lester Spence. He’s a contributor to the book We Are Many. He’s an associate professor of political science and Africana studies at Johns Hopkins and author of the book Stare in the Darkness: The Limits of Hip Hop and Black Politics.

With Marc Steiner who hosts the widely acclaimed (see? “widely acclaimed”—it actually is) public radio news and interview program The Marc Steiner Show, which you can hear on WEAA 88.9 FM in Baltimore.

Transcript of opening of discussion


MARC STEINER, RADIO HOST, WEAA 88.9 FM: It’s good to be here.

JAY: So, Lester, let’s kick it off with you. So let’s say tomorrow you get appointed head of—you’re now in control of education, public education in Baltimore, and you’ve got a majority of support on city council, and the mayor says, Lester, I’ll back you. What would you do?

SPENCE: Well, there are a few things I would do. Right? So one thing I would do is Baltimore City schools are undercapacity—If I’m right, it’s something like 60 percent stands out as far as either 60 percent of them have—people don’t really have a full house, or in general the system is 60 percent undercapacity, which means they have to shut down certain schools. So it becomes a zero-sum competition.

What I would actually do is—if you think about these schools as neighborhood public spaces, one of the first things I would do is I would open them outside the school hours. Right? So a certain amount of time, it would be open for school, but then, after that, whether it’s quote-unquote “training” or whether it’s public meetings, whether it’s gym space for folks to work out in, etc., meeting space, you have to transform these schools to institutions that actually meet the needs of those neighborhoods. Right? So that’s the kind of infrastructure thing I would do.

What I would do as far as curriculum is I would transform the curriculum to build—and I don’t like that word build, but it’s shorthand—to kind of build citizens, like, citizens, you know, to—. If we think about these folks, like, these kids are in school from five to 18, five days a week, you know, nine months out of the year. Imagine what we could—what they could do as citizens if we taught them how to engage in the world politically, right, actually how to be citizens.

And the thing is is there are a number of ways to teach core concepts of math, of science, and literacy through that project, right? Along those same lines, every school would have, like, a community garden, and kids would learn from kindergarten how to grow and tend their own gardens and how to grow and tend their own food and to create a certain type of relationship with the environment.

So just the—if you just think about just those two things, if I only could do two things, right, the one is you make those schools public institutions and make them open them up to the community, like, year-round, 24/7, and then the second thing is reframe the curriculum and gear the curriculum towards making them citizens, like, local global citizens.

JAY: I guess you could add to that community center cheap, affordable daycare.

Watch full multipart The Real Baltimore