Wednesday, March 7, 2007


A Life in the Black Panther Party

by Mumia Abu-Jamal*


Publisher: South End Press

ISBN 0-89608-719-0

Copyright by Mumia Abu-Jamal

Book Review by Carol Taylor

*(Mumia Abu-Jamal, since 1982, has been in solitary confinement in

Pennsylvania convicted for a murder he did not commit by the late

"hanging judge" Albert Sabo who was overheard speaking about "...frying

the nigger..." This year 2006 France named a street for Mumia Ab-Jamal)


If, as a person of color, you've spent a week in the U.S.A., "We Want

Freedom" is an absolutely necessary 'read' for your survival, in the

arenas (delineated by revolutionary Dr. Frances Cress Welsing) of

economics, education, entertainment, labor, law, politics, religion, sex

and war.

A prescient, deeply BlackAfrikan-spiritual journalist, Abu-Jamal states:

"The Black Political Party may indeed be history, but the forces that

gave rise to it are not. They wait for the proper season,to arise again."

"We Want Freedom," in and of itself, is revolution and anyone interested in

a just society, who aspires to fierce, effective leadership in her/his

Black community, could use not only the evocative prose in this book as a

recipe for change, yes, but also could conduct an ongoing 'community

university' with the revelatory Notes and mind-blowing Bibliography.

This is living BlackAfrikan history with searing relevancy for the future

of BlackFolk (including that of our oppressors - advertent and


"We Want Freedom" is undeniably a 'Handbook for Liberation,' with its

insightful delving into the deviant colorist mentality of powerful

antagonistic figures like the late J. Edgar Hoover, Federal Bureau of

Investigation's paranoid CEO.

Probably even now, in 2006, with the news reports describing how the

un-President George W. Bush deploys his NSA spyBoys to surveil regular

(and 'irregular!') citizens, most folk don't believe 'their' government

would spy on them. Well, in graphic detail, Abu-Jamal gives irrefutable

evidence that the U.S.A. government's "hoovering" had eyes everywhere.

(I can personally attest to this - as the First Black U.S.A. Flight

Attendant, my FOIA - Freedom of Information Act request produced a

government set of spypapers nearly a foot high on many of my activities -

in three countries!)

Aside from describing "...America's addiction to whiteness..." and the

fact that " is possible that the Black Panther Party - which saw

itself as profoundly nonracist...could not appreciate the deep levels of

white supremacy that lay subsumed within much of the white left" and

other innumerable bits and pieces of vital information, Mumia Abu-Jamal

also reproduces the BPP 10 Point Program, which starts with "1. We want

freedom" and ends with #10 - "We want land, bread, housing, education,

clothing, justice and peace." (and the freedom to determine our own

BlackFolks' destinies!) (my emphasis)

The fact that Hoovertypes of neocons these days still find problems, with

the idea of freedom and liberation, land and self determination for

people of color (nationally and internationally), starkly illustrates

that, as the compelling "We Want Freedom" defines it - the United States of

Amerikkka has a long, long way to go in its publicly purported goal of


Be sure to get this book for your Black children.

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