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AUTODIDACT 17

Stories by AUTODIDACT

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Brooklyn Nets’ anthem singer partakes in courageous ‘silent protest’

Concluding the singing of the national anthem at the Brooklyn Nets home opener against the Orlando Magic at the Barclay’s Center Friday evening, Oct. 20 Justine Skye utilized her platform in front of a nationally televised audience to heighten awareness regarding police terrorism and racial injustices her people endure daily, and knelt on the court.

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Stevie Wonder takes part in social protest

In a pair of recent performances, superstar singer/songwriter Stevie Wonder utilized his high-profile platform to bring attention to the racial injustices that are so obvious in this country that even he can see them.

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The Black Power salute at the 1968 Olympics

Five decades before Colin Kaepernick and the current crop of disgruntled NFL players utilized silent protest to bring international attention to the plight of Americanized Africans in the land of the free, U.S. Olympians Tommie Smith and John Carlos seized a moment in time to be eternally etched in the annals of Black Power history. This past Monday marked the 49th anniversary of one of the most incendiary acts of protest committed by athletes.

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Farrakhan speaks in Newark: Separation or death

The Nation of Islam commemorated the 22nd anniversary of their historic Million Man March, which occurred in Washington, D.C., Oct. 16, 1995, with a forum at Newark, N.J.’s Symphony Hall. Their leader, Minister Louis Farrakhan, echoed much of the powerful speech of his spiritual father and former NOI head, the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, delivered at Harlem’s 369th Armory Aug. 27, 1961, titled “Separation or Death.”

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The Barrons battle to follow national trend for Indigenous Peoples’ Day replacing Columbus Day

In late 1994 the United Nations declared Aug. 9 as International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples and four years prior, Berkeley, Calif., had already become the first U.S. city to replace Columbus Day. Last month Los Angeles joined Denver, Minneapolis, Phoenix and Seattle, among other cities, in recognizing Indigenous Peoples’ Day. And this Oct. 5, Austin, Texas, did the same.

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Racist Georgia cop who admitted ‘We only kill Black people’ forced to resign

Greg Abbott, a Caucasian cop in Cobb County, Ga., notified his department last Thursday that he was resigning, after being threatened with termination after local TV station WSB-TV aired a video the previous day of him making some racist remarks.

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Marcus Mosiah Garvey: Emancipate your African mind!

The immeasurable legacy of Pan-African forefather Marcus Mosiah Garvey will be commemorated this Thursday, the 130th anniversary of his birth in St. Ann’s Bay, Jamaica, with a host of activities throughout the metropolitan area.

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Hip-hop celebrates 44 years

Although November is recognized as “Hip-Hop History Month” by many of the pioneers who laid the foundation for the culture up in the Bronx during November 1973, several months before that, an 18-year-old Jamaican-American DJ was already hosting parties at 1520 Sedgwick Ave. His record collection and sound system was so astounding that no other DJs could compare.

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MOVE 9 commemorates 39 years behind enemy lines

Four decades after the MOVE 9 were imprisoned in what many contend was an unjust frame-up case, supporters of the Philadelphia-based MOVE Organization packed Brooklyn’s House of the Lord Church (415 Atlantic Ave.) this past Saturday afternoon to attend the “39 Years Too Long: Free the MOVE 9” seminar.

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Articles of impeachment officially filed against Trump

What several political analysts had predicted before his takeover of the Oval Office this past January may become a reality sooner than many had anticipated—the impeachment of U.S. President Donald Trump.

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Allah, the Father’s assassination: 48 years later

Ever since 1971, during the second weekend of June, the Harlem-based Five Percenters aka the Nation of Gods and Earths acknowledge their annual accomplishments during the anniversary of the assassination of their founder Allah, the Father, with their Show & Prove event. 

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Harlem hosted seventh annual stroll for cancer awareness

During the afternoon of Saturday, June 24, at Harlem’s Morningside Park (123rd Street and Morningside Avenue) Shades of a Cure conducted a daylong event that helped heighten awareness about a very serious topic affecting inner-city communities nationwide—cancer.

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Scott La Rock Boulevard unveiled

A couple of weeks ago, “up in the Bronx where the people are fresh,” hip-hop legend DJ Scott La Rock was honored with a street-naming ceremony at the intersection of Jerome Avenue and Kingsbridge Boulevard.

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Hip-hop community mourns passing of three legends

During this month of June three legendary figures who helped popularize the urban culture known as hip-hop have transitioned onto the ancestral realm.

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Mobb Deep’s Prodigy returns to the essence at 42

The hip-hop community was deeply saddened as news spread that Prodigy, an MC from the legendary Mobb Deep out of Queensbridge Housing projects in Long Island City, Queens, transitioned onto the ancestral realm this past Tuesday.

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Mumia supporters’ demand to DA: Release the files!

Supporters from “The Mobilization for Mumia” converged at the Philadelphia district attorney’s office, (3 South Penn Square) on the afternoon of Tuesday, May 30, to pressure them to comply with a recent court order instructing them to release all files pertaining to former DA Ron Castille’s handling of Mumia Abu-Jamal’s appeals by May 30.

Brother Kenneth Muhammad transitions

Admirers, family and friends gathered at the Unity Funeral Chapel (2352 Fredrick Douglas Blvd.) in Harlem Thursday, May 11, 2017, to pay their respects to Brother Kenneth Muhammad (Hayes), who joined the ancestors May 4 at Harlem Hospital.

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Harlem remembers Malcolm X

Last Friday morning, a caravan of vehicles trekked from the corner of 126th Street and Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard in Harlem up to Ferncliff Cemetery in Westchester County to commemorate the 92nd anniversary of Malcolm X’s May 19 birthday.

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NYCLU report: NYPD racially profiling kids in public schools

A report released by the New York Civil Liberties Union May 8 reveals that the NYPD in city schools are handcuffing Black and Hispanic students disproportionately to their Caucasian counterparts.

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Sonny Abubadika Carson to be commemorated this Saturday

The life and legacy of urban warrior Sonny Abubadika Carson will be commemorated this Saturday in the People’s Republic of Brooklyn in acknowledgement of the 81st anniversary of his physical birth. Although he joined the ancestors Dec. 20, 2002, his immeasurable influence is still felt today.

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Malcolm X: What’s in a name?

Upon returning to New York City on May 21, 1964, after his hajj to Mecca, Brother Malcolm X picked up right where he left off when he departed several weeks earlier, on April 13.

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Mumia’s attorneys optimistic after latest hearing

The latest leg in the legal battle to free political prisoner of war Mumia Abu-Jamal took place Monday, April 24, his 63rd birthday, during the first court hearing of the Post-Conviction Appeal Act petition at Philadelphia’s Court of Common Pleas.

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Longtime Harlemite Mary Black joins the ancestors

Family, friends and relatives convened at Unity Funeral Chapel (2352 Frederick Douglass Blvd.)  Monday, April 17, 2017, to bid farewell to longtime Harlem resident Mary Black, who joined the ancestors April 2 at age 79.

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Reflections on hip-hop pioneer Mr. Magic

Last week, in acknowledgement of his 61st physical day anniversary, the hip-hop community paid due respect to one of the urban culture’s most influential pioneers, Mr. Magic.

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Reflections on Shirley Chisholm

Too bad, Barack.

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Community sends abolitionist attorney Lynne Stewart home

A multi-ethnic audience of supporters attended two days of memorial services a couple of weeks ago to commemorate the life and legacy of “The People’s Lawyer,” Lynne Stewart.

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Activist/attorney Lynne Stewart joins the ancestors

Many self-determining activists and freedom fighters were saddened by the heartbreaking news that the courageous attorney Lynne Stewart had passed onto the ancestral realm this past Tuesday at her Brooklyn home.

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Malcolm X memorialized on 52nd anniversary of his assassination

Tuesday, Feb. 21, the 52nd anniversary of Malcolm X’s martyrdom, a capacity, multi-ethnic crowd packed into the building where it actually occurred—the former Audubon Ballroom, renamed the Malcolm X and Dr. Betty Shabazz Memorial and Educational Center (3940 Broadway) when it reopened in 2005—to reflect on his iconic legacy.

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Harlem’s revolutionary trinity: Khalid Muhammad, Malcolm X and Allah the Father

Last week’s edition of Amsterdam News spanned some significant dates that tied together three different alpha males whose lifetime efforts immensely affected many communities throughout the African Diaspora.

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Malcolm X: The price of freedom is death

Friday, Feb. 21, 1965 marks the day a hit squad of cold-blooded assassins aired out the Audubon Ballroom stage, expiring the physical life of Black Nationalist advocate El Hajj Malik El Shabazz, aka Malcolm X, in full view of his pregnant wife, Betty, and four young daughters along with approximately 400 unsuspecting Organization of Afro-American Unity supporters.

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Harry Floyd Smith Sr. Returns to the Essence

The Harlem community, the boxing fraternity and many members of the Five Percenters, were deeply saddened by the news that Harry Floyd Smith Sr., aka A. Allah, had joined the ancestors Wednesday, Feb. 8, at 83 years of age.

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Anti-police terror open-house conference takes place

Local activists held a free-of-charge open-house conference on Saturday All Souls Unitarian Church “Reidy Hall”

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Community combats cop’s racial profiling

Already during this brief post-Obama period, community activists are figuring out ways to combat the NYPD’s racial profiling of New York City’s citizens of color.

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The Harlem Renaissance

The period of time between the late 1910s and the mid-1930s, when Black cultures thrived in northern Manhattan, is known as the Harlem Renaissance.

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The Harlem Hellfighters: African-American WWI heroes

In the World War I era, Jim Crow segregation laws were prominent throughout the United States in all segments of society, as well as during physical combat overseas.

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Schomburg Center classified as National Historic Landmark

The National Parks Service announced Wednesday, Jan. 11, that Harlem’s Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture (515 Malcolm X Blvd., corner of 135th Street) was designated as a National Historic Landmark by the U.S. Department of the Interior. It was one site among 24 nationwide to be recently so honored.

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Bronx killer cop’s departmental trial concludes

Closing arguments wrapped up Monday’s session at lower Manhattan’s One Police Plaza, concluding the weeklong departmental trial of the Caucasian NYPD cop, Richard Haste, who shot and killed an innocent, unarmed Black teenager in his Bronx home on Feb. 2, 2012.

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Anti-Trump sentiment increases nationwide

As the United States’ first African-American president prepares to conclude his last days in the Oval Office this week, many across the country are staging demonstrations denouncing Donald Trump’s pending inauguration this Friday in the nation’s capital.

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The Haitian Revolution: 213 years later

Historians regularly refer to the Haitian Revolution as the most prominent and successful slave rebellion against European imperialism ever in the Western Hemisphere.

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Activists urge Obama to pardon Mutulu Shakur

With just over a week left before Barack Obama, the United States’ first American-African commander in chief leaves the Oval Office, local activists are appealing to him to grant clemency to “political prisoner of war” Dr. Mutulu Shakur, who has been incarcerated since Feb. 12, 1986.

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Dr. Khalid Abdul Muhammad Brooklyn tribute Thursday

Local activists are preparing to commemorate the legacy of Dr. Khalid Abdul Muhammad this Thursday, Jan. 12, the 69th anniversary of his birthday, at the House of the Lord Church (415 Atlantic Ave., Brooklyn) from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m.

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Dr. Martin Luther King Jr: ‘I fear I am integrating my people into a burning house’

As the nation prepares to observe Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy this upcoming Monday, a closer look is taken at his fearless freedom struggles.

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Reflections on the legacy of Thutmose Powell

Several comrades of renowned Harlem activist Brother Morris Thutmose Powell reflected on his life-long efforts this past Monday at Harlem’s UCLA, the University on the Corner of Lenox Avenue. Powell joined the ancestors May 23 while in Namibia, Africa, where he had been residing as a guest of President Sam Nujoma for the past several years.

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B.B. King hosts the Juice Crew reunion

One of the greatest assortment of hip-hop lyricists ever assembled will be reunited this Thursday evening at B.B. King Blues Club and Grill in the heart of Times Square (237 W. 42nd St.).

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African scholar warriors

A tribute honoring several renowned African scholar warriors will take place in Harlem this weekend, concluding this Greco-Roman calendar year, and ushering in the next.

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Harlem recognizes Human Rights Day

“What’s the call? Free them all!” a slew of multiethnic activists chanted while posted up on the northeast corner of Harlem’s African Square (125th Street and Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard) this past Saturday afternoon as they withstood the cold while commemorating Human Rights Day.

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Second Avenue subway launches New Year’s Day

The M.T.A. announced Monday that the long-delayed Second Avenue subway line is on track to launch its inaugural ride this New Year’s Eve, with local politicians and M.T.A. brass in attendance.

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Abubadika Sonny Carson’s influence today

Several comrades of Brooklyn warrior Abubadika Sonny Carson reflected on his legacy 14 years after he transitioned to the ancestral realm.

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Noted photographer Jamel Shabazz at Harlem’s Schomburg Center

On the evening of Dec. 8, the audience at Harlem’s Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture were taken down memory lane as one of this generation’s top Black photographers, Jamel Shabazz, presented his most recent book, “Pieces of a Man.”

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Local reactions to Fidel Castro becoming an ancestor

Many anti-establishment activists were deeply saddened by the news that Cuban freedom fighter and former president, Fidel Castro, had joined the ancestors Friday at 90 years of age.

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