Chris and Rec speak with Johanna Fernandez, (pictured above at left/on Mumia’s right) professor of History and Black and Latino Studies at Baruch College of CUNY and writer and producer of Justice on Trial: The Case of Mumia Abu Jamal. Connecting the campaigns to free political prisoners with other movements to attain racial justice, dignity, humanity, and self-definition, this episode of TRGGR Radio discusses Mumia Abu-Jamal’s current situation on Death Row, the state of the international movement for his release, and its relationship to the addition of Assata Shakur to the Most Wanted Terrorist list.
Our second guest is Kim Adino, speaking about the international organization Better Future and the cultural and educational work they engage in with youth in the Dominican Republic through the Women Worldwide Initiative. On the way out we briefly discuss the track, Neurotic Society, that Lauryn Hill was forced to release.
Part 1: Featuring Johanna Fernandez
“Welcome and good morning. You are now tuned to WPFW 89.3 FM, what is supposed to be a liberated masses medium. This is the super funky soul power hour, a newly official member of the Trggr Media Group, aka Trggr Media Collective, aka Trggr Radio South. This exciting development will be discussed later with one of our guests Dr. Chris Tinson. Our other guests this morning activist and artist Jasiri X and Parisa Norouzi of Empower DC, will be with us to, among other things, discuss the state of activism and, in particular, something still referred to by some as “hip-hop activism.” which makes our special introductory song this morning that much more relevant. Common’s A Song For Assata (Shakur) with vocals by Cee-lo Green has had latent contradictions emerge this week as a Black fbi agent, under the auspices of a Black attorney general and a Black president – voted and campaigned for by the artists themselves -announced Assata Shakur as the one woman on their vaunted “most wanted terrorist” list. the “power and pride, so beautiful” whose soul the song prays will be protected has once again been threatened, but this time by an administration many still claim is different, better, and the product of an activist movement and legacy. Obama claimed it, draped himself in it and welcomed the now blatantly foolish claims by some that he is a product – even an extension of – once great activist traditions. But what kind of activism, or in what state must activism of any kind be, that happily produces the very apparatus that would re-inscribe those who resist state terrorism as terrorists themselves? What kind of activism produces that which would condemn an Assata Shakur or the movement from which she emerged? Today we will ask our guests their thoughts on the state and definition of activism and “hip-hop activism” right here on the super funky soul power hour, aka TRGRRadio the remix on WPFW 89.3 fm.”
Timely and provocative, this globe-trotting book takes you down an almost forgotten road of Black freedom: the one that connects the struggles of the burning ghettos of America to the rage against imperial power in Muslim lands. Shining light on the artists and activists who helped pave that road, Black Star, Crescent Moon vividly shows that Black freedom struggles, whether through art or politics, are always global in scope. Written with an urgency that our times demand, my man Sohail does what we in hip-hop have been doing for decades: uncovering histories, drawing connections, and trying to make people move. Rebel reading for right now!
Panel on the life work of political prisoner Russell Maroon Shoatz, founder of the Philadelphia based Black Unity Council, and member of Black Panther Party and the Black Liberation Army. A collection of Maroon’s writings have recently been published as MAROON THE IMPLACABLE, edited by Fred Ho and Quincy Saul is now out on PM Press (2013). Panelists include Maroon’s daughter, Theresa Shoatz, Quincy Saul, and Hampshire Africana Studies professor Chris Tinson. The panel is moderated by Hampshire professor Margaret Cerullo, and features the poetry of students and Decolonize Media Collective members, Urantia Ramirez and Eric Acevedo.
This week Chris and Rec collaborated with TRGGR family Rosa Clemente and Abby Hernándes to critique Rick Ross’s recent lyric that promotes sexual assault. Recognizing this lyric as only one manifestation of a larger culture that is complicit in rape culture, we unpack what Rosa Clemente terms the ‘Rap Industrial Complex’ and call for outspoken accountability from both men and women through media channels and within our communities. While critical media outlets such as TRGGR speak out against pervasive patriarchy, we discuss how to move forward in confronting rape culture before, during and after these individual incidents surface in major media channels.