A journal dedicated to truth, freedom of speech and radical spiritual consciousness. Our mission is the liberation of men and women from oppression, violence and abuse of any kind, interpersonal, political, religious, economic, psychosexual. We believe as Fidel Castro said, "The weapon of today is not guns but consciousness."
Wish I could fly like a hawk just soar above earth silent gliding smooth no noise silent observing all madness below rats scurrying snakes in the grass wish I could fly like a hawk sometimes in motion still wings frozen in flight yet moving wish I could be hawk above the madness of it all the meaningless chatter cell phone psychosis talking loud saying nothing why are you breathing jogging without meaning purpose no mission beyond nothingness absorbing air from the meaningful who subscribe to justice let me fly above the living dead let me soar let me dream imagine another time and place another space this cannot be the end game the hail marry let me soar above it all wings spread wide let me glide ah, the air is fresh up here did I make it to heaven did I escape hell come with me do not be afraid the night is young let us fly into the moon see the crescent so beautiful let us fly into the friendly sky wings spread wide we are strong and mighty the hawk. --Marvin X 10/10/10
Ritual ground known as Oak Park hosted the Second Annual Sacramento Black Book Fair June 5-7 with dozens of w/riters, thinkers, filmmakers, musicians & visual artists in nine venues--& hundreds of children & adult attendees. Mind mining panels, literary & spoken word performances, autograph parties, receptions & walks near historic sites such as the Women's Civic Improvement Club and the former Oak Park School of Afro-American Thought (of the 1970's: thanks James Fisher & Marie Collins!) were among the rich offerings. Few other collectives in the nation are as threaded into their communities as the SBBF which boasts scores of supporters, sponsors & partners. http://www.sacramentoblackbookfair.com/
I have read your publication periodically over the years, and after some discussion with fellow prisoners, it was suggested I seek your assistance with getting the message out there that I need help! The enclosed documents tell a lot of the story of what I’ve been up against for years. Most of my support system has died – mother, wife, daughter and sister. The Brother Keith Wattley took my case and fought it to a short lived victory.
Note, I was found suitable for parole in 2003, but that decision was reversed. Also, the court ruled in my favor on a Habeas Corpus; that’s when I found out they had 11 confidential 1030s (Confidential Information Disclosure Forms) against me containing all sort of allegations. I received copies in 2005. The courts later sealed that evidence and labeled it confidential to prevent my attorney from seeing the information.
Instead of taking me back before the Parole Board, I was locked up on a 114-D investigation order, validated a BGF (Black Guerilla Family) and sent to Corcoran SHU for six years.
Director Susan Hubbard let me out on the Step Down Program, bypassing the first four steps to Step 5, sending me straight to General Population. I had to postpone all hearings while in the SHU. They were giving guys 10 and 15 year denials, based on that alone. Jan. 27, 2015, was my first time going back before them since the 2003 hearing.
It would take more time and paper than I have right now to rehash over 45 years of history – bottom line being, I went before the Parole Board in 1972, after Fleeta Drumgo and I was acquitted, when all the events were fresh. They found me suitable and paroled me; in 2003 I was found suitable and in 2015 I was again found suitable.
The enclosed documents tell a lot of the story of what I’ve been up against for years. The Brother Keith Wattley took my case and fought it to a short lived victory.
Gov. Brown “reversed” the Parole Board as though the events of 1971 were something new. I wasn’t charged or indicted with the San Quentin Six, yet the governor acts as if I was an unindicted conspirator.
Before I close, let me go on record by saying none of us – George, Fleeta, David, Willie, Luis, Johnny, Hugo, James, Ruchell, William – were BGF. I’ve always taken issue with those who used George as a recruitment tool, for lack of a better word, reducing all his efforts and sacrifice to what the prison authorities now call a “Black prison gang.” The Brother had evolved far beyond that. What I am trying to do is get some funds for Keith Wattley. He has represented more prisoners than myself and is deserving some reward and benefit for his diligence.
What I am trying to do is get some funds for Keith Wattley. He has represented more prisoners than myself and is deserving some reward and benefit for his diligence.
Thank you in advance for whatever assistance you can provide. Respectfully, John Clutchette Send our brother some love and light: John Clutchette, C-23857, CSP Solano B7-139L, P.O. Box 4000, Vacaville, CA 95696
It’s time for the last Soledad Brother to go home
In a March 15, 2007, story headlined, “Justices Look Past Notorious History for Inmate’s Parole,” the San Francisco Daily Journal quoted the divided appellate panel explaining why he deserves to be paroled: “The fact that Clutchette was one of the ‘Soledad Brothers’ denotes only an alleged involvement in the murder of a corrections officer, of which he was acquitted. It is no wonder the People have never, even in the trial court, attempted to explain how this historically interesting but otherwise irrelevant material was significant for denial of parole.”
Clutchette enclosed a clipping of the article in a packet of papers with his letter. Also in the packet is a 1982 CDC Form “Q” “Tip and Enemy Information” naming him a BGF member and “one of the Soledad Brothers. Involved in SQ adjustment center incident of 8-21-71.” He notes this is “the sole basis for the BGF designation … This is not a validation.”
Ironically, several credible reports are circulating that high CDC officials want to remove BGF from the list of prison gangs because it is a political organization and not a gang but that “internal politics” are preventing them from doing so. Clutchette is in his 70s; how much longer must he wait?
I say to those who passed legislation permitting sex between consenting adults, and in California one of them was then Assemblyman Willie L. Brown, if gays can be with gays and lesbians with lesbians, then men who love prostitutes should be allowed to be with their sex workers in peace, not sneaking around in the alley like a broke dick dog, arrested and cars seized.Yes, legalize prostitution. Lakum dinu kum waliya din: to you your way and to me mine.--Marvin XXX
We congratulate UC Merced professor Kim McMillan for keeping the flame of liberation alive. Ishmael Reed said, "If not for the Black Arts Movement, Black culture would be extinct!"
Art is the life blood of culture, the images, rhythms, sounds, words, colors, dances, songs, myths and rituals are reflections for the Man/woman in the Mirror, Michael told us. Remember the Time? Art and Culture is the collective memory bank. Continue your work, Kim. I love your students! --Marvin X
Marvin X during a recent lecture/discussion at the University of California, Merced. Students in Kim McMillan's Theatre and Social Responsibility class read to him Flowers for the Trashman, his first play written while an undergrad at San Francisco State University, 1964. The Drama Department produced Flowers for the Trashman. It appears in the anthology Black Fire and the BAM reader SOS.
Like the earthquake in Japan, man too is in mental motion, a mind quake of the most devastating degree that is rocking his mental equilibrium to the core!We must be aware of the times and what must be done. A blind man named Ray Charles told us "the world is in an uproar, the danger zone is everywhere...." And so it is, ancestor Ray, there is turbulence in the land and in man, woman and children. As the earth enters another 25,000 year cycle of history with the coming New Age of high spiritual consciousness, there are many who remain deaf, dumb and blind to present and future events, even though the news is full of rapidly changing events in the global village. One would need to be in worse shape than Ray Charles and Stevie Wonder not to see the earth is in transformation, even Nature itself. The ice is melting, the sea rising, the forests burning, earthquakes and tsunamis , drought, famine, pestilence, in diverse places, just as Jesus predicted.
Apparently, many do not believe what Jesus said even when they see events he predicted before their very eyes, on the news, Twitter, Facebook, Cable TV and elsewhere. He said mother would be against child and child against mother and father. Did he not say brother would be against brother and sister against sister? And do we not see this in our social relations today.
It is crystal clear to me we are in times in which a friend is no longer a friend, a wife and husband no longer wife and husband. There is no love between them. Husbands and wives say the horrible things to each other. Daughters and sons say the most wretched things to their parents, often when the parents are helping them.
But when the danger zone is everywhere, no one, no relationships are exempt from the turmoil sweeping the old order out and ushering in the New Era. But there is an almost organic relationship between the earth quaking and the minds of men, women and children becoming totally unbalanced. In this time of radical change of Nature and man, those with no understanding shall become unglued, losing their fragile mental equilibrium or simply tripping out. Ultimately, they become a danger to themselves and others and must be committed, for they are not the person we knew only yesterday. Today they are a total stranger who does not know us, cannot even recognize us, yet we have known them since childhood. They could be a sibling yet they do not act like there is any blood relationship between us. We behave like total strangers.
It could be parent/child relationships that come to such a low point children will sue parents or visa versa. In short the love is gone. Amiri Baraka tells us in his play A Black Mass, "Where the souls print should be there is only a cellulose pouch of disgusting habits...."
As we walk the streets be very careful what you say to people, for they are on edge, on the precipice, ready to strike out at the slightest perceived negative incident, or wrong word uttered. Yes, they are ready to kill, so be aware as you make your daily round.
The political/economic atmosphere is charged with venom, but it is misplaced aggression, for no one is going after the bankers, the loan sharks, the Wall Street financiers who were casino gamblers with the wealth of the people, stealing 13 trillion dollars in the sub prime housing scam. And yet hardly a banker is in jail, meanwhile 2.4 million mostly poor are incarcerated for petty crimes, additionally they suffer drug abuse and mental illness, not to mention lack of proper legal representation at the time of their trials. The only white man doing time is the one who stole from the rich, not the poor. Those who robbed the poor are yet receiving multimillion dollar bonuses while 30 million workers are unemployed and millions are now homeless.
It is this atmosphere that is so unsettling to the mental state of those who were already suffering stress from the general hostile environment, from bad food, the media dispensing information from the world of make believe and promoting the addiction to white supremacy conspicuous consumption
How do we move from problem to solution, from addiction to recovery, from sickness to healing? The Buddhists says knowledge plus the right action. We must first understand the time and what must be done. These are perilous times, very dangerous, thus one must tip through the tulips, through the mind fields that lay before us, behind us, to the right and to the left.
We must practice eternal vigilance and stay on guard against being deceived. There are those who wish to deceive us so that we remain victims of the slave system. They will not tell us all the institutions are exhausted, political, economic, educational, religious, marital. None of these shall continue with business as usual. They must and shall undergo radical structural change, if not simply thrown into the dustbin of history where they belonged long ago.
Those not prepared for radical change shall be blown by the wayside where they shall inhabit the lower realms of an animal existence until they die or recover from savagery and come into the era of civility and spirituality beyond religiosity.
Those who are a danger to themselves and others will need to be confined to a program of long term recovery, a rehabilitation of their disgusting habits, namely greed, ego, pride, lust, arrogance, and other deadly sins, and most importantly the inability to practice freedom, justice and equality, constitutionally unable to share the wealth and practice democracy or the consent of the governed.
The end is the beginning and the beginning is the end, or rather what goes around comes around. What we are witnessing and experiencing is not linear time but circular, for we shall continue, but only those who are able to jump out of the box of the old structures into the new.
The fearless ones, they shall be successful. Those not motivated by the illusions of the monkey mind shall be successful. We pray for the others who persist in their inordinancy, blindly wandering on, as the Qur'an says. --Marvin X 4/7/11
Why are ten souls inside my soul Always there haunting me mostly never letting me be at peace especially with a lover most jealous of people these guys inside me no matter how beautiful she is intelligent they are not satisfied unless they have one too bug me to death fuck up my shit little haters inside me demanding happiness too absolutely will not let me be happy if they aren’t up in my face pleading for the same joy I know you will never go away perhaps I shall stay in solitude writing my songs in the key of life like Stevie said they can’t taunt then don’t disturb my writing they know better I would kill them motherfuckers they know it writing is my mistress supreme so they leave me alone call themselves protecting me guarding the inner walls of my soul I am a prisoner of love if love doesn’t come to them as well no love for me oh well, buddy, write your books we got yo back. but you better get us some ladies too fine and mellow kind you like intelligent we know you like ho’s too we like ho’s too don’t play us like that buddy we ain’t goin nowhere you know that been with you yo whole life even in high school you satisfied us didn’t you you tried we made you do some things you didn’t even wanna do didn’t we, buddy? so don’t play with us you know you can’t see us coming in the night or in the day unless we make ourselves known yeah, we the spirit in the dark and in the light can’t miss us we show don’t miss you closer than your jugular vain closer than close better ax somebody. —Marvin X 6/3015
For the sake of peace in my family, I have not written about my grandson in nearly four years. When he was two and three years old, he used to accompany me downtown to my Academy of da Corner. It was during this time he told me, "Grandpa you can't save the world but I can!" I was shocked but relieved, a mountain of pressure escaped my back, the weight was overwhelming. A woman friend asked me to just be Marvin for today, forget about Marvin X. "When you add the X the weight of the world is on your shoulders. Just for today, be Marvin, especially while you're with me."
Yes, that day as we walked to Lake Merritt and he said those words to me, the pressure was released. But my daughter, his mother, didn't want her son to be so racialized, shall we say. But I came from parents who were a Race Man and Race Woman, meaning they were for the upliftment of the North American Africans. They published one of the first Black newspaper in the Central Valley, the Fresno Voice. At the same time they had a real estate business. Most Blacks in Fresno bought their first house from my parents during the 1950s. My parents were activists, members of the NAACP and serveral other social organizations, including the Elks, American Legion, Eastern Star, Men of Tomorrow Business Club, especially when our family migrated to Oakland in the late 1950s. I have a picture of my parents at the San Francisco Peace Conference that evolved into the United Nations. I am so happy I experienced the North American African culture of 7th Street. I grew up on 7th and Campbell. I feel so blessed to grow up in a black world of 7th Street, Harlem of the West, Slim Jenkins Restaurant, Percy's Shoe Shine Stand, Wolf's Record, Lincoln Theatre, Scott's Lock and Key Store, Jackmon's Florist. I am so humbled that Paul Cobb and I grew up together yet he knows more about my father's social and political involvement than I do. We are so thankful for the community archivist Jackson Raysor who gave me articles from the Oakland Tribune of my parents fighting racism and housing discrimination. I am so proud of my parents. My oldest daughter asked me, "Dad, how can we still be fighting the same issues; and Dad, how is it that you are still alive?"
But my daughter is a Yale graduate in psychology and Stanford Law School graduate, she has her own ideas on raising her children and has written a book on how parents can reward their children for good behavior, Ki-Change, printed in China! So her children are my grandchildren, but I defer to her in the manner she wishes to raise them. But imagine the world of Yale and Stanford, for sure it is not my world. Dr. Wade Nobles says, "The brothers go to prison and the sisters are prisoners of white supremacy academia." Ancestor Amiri Baraka said, "We send our children to colleges and universities and they come back home hating us and everything we're about--but they don't even know what we're about!"
Today, my grandson called me, he said, "Grandpa, are you selling at the flea market today?" I said, "No, grandson, today is Wednesday. I'm downtown right now handling some business. I might be at 14th and Broadway a little later, not sure."
"Well, grandpa, I want to sell some popcorn to make some money, can you come get me or can Mama drop me off?"
"Jah, that's possible. If I decide to set up, I will call you, ok?" "O.K.!"
Jah Amiel is standing in front of his grandfather. He is holding Mayor Libby Schaaf's proclamation honoring the 50th anniversary of the Black Arts Movement. The Mayor is holding Jah's sister Naima Joy. photo South Park Kenny Johnson
Jah is on the right of Mayor Libby Schaaf. His sister Naima Joy is on the left, along with their aunt Nefertiti, Marvin X's oldest daughter. photo South Park Kenny Johnson
After seeing a friend off on Amtrak and eating an original fish burger at 8th and Washington, I drove through 14th and Broadway to check out the terrain but decided not to open Academy of da Corner, instead I headed to my daughter's house in Berkeley. When I got there, Jah was on the front lawn selling his uncooked popcorn for $5.00 a canning jar. He'd only sold one jar. I bought one. He showed me his art work on the label celebrating the 4th of July. Of course I asked him if he'd heard Frederick Douglas's speech on the 4th of July. He had not.
He'd sold his uncooked popcorn during Xmas to make over $100.00 he needed to buy himself a tablet. Today he needed money to buy Lego's. Toward traffic time on the street he lived, business picked up, by 6pm, the boy had made $60.00 to buy his Lego's. I would like to continue this story but in deference to his mother, my baby daughter, I shall end here and pray she will not crucify me for the above words regarding one of her chillin'.
Peace and Love, Marvin X/El Muhajir/Nazzam Al Sudan
The Education of Jah Amiel
I'd rather Osama Bin Laden knock at my door than my grandson. I know total destruction is about to happen in my house. --Marvin X
Grandpa, you can't save the world but I can! --Jah Amiel
Child a thousand years before you came from me and your grandmother and our daughter I knew you you did not know me but I knew you a thousand years ago in the infinity of the universe I knew you were coming to be a force in the world and I see you at my doorstep in my bed asleep beside me pissing in my bed lying about it in the morning I see you a thousand years before you came crawling walking dancing singing rapping I saw you yet you claim I am blind a bad grandfather mean to you yet I saw you coming it was no dream you were the return of a madman a son who self destructed and now a grandson the same potential so we want to save you the pleasure desire for you are a god we see that you listen to my prayers for you ask me to pray and so we do Al Fatihah you love this prayer I am amazed but you ask me to say it again and again Al Fatihah you want Not Al Hamdulilah it is not enough Grandpa, I want you to say the prayer In Arabic that is what I want to hear That is what I shall recite after you. --Marvin X 1/23/11
Marvin X is now available for bookings, readings, performance: send letter of invitation to firstname.lastname@example.org
MARVIN X, DAVID MURRAY, EARLE DAVIS, VAL SERRANT, MECHELLE LACHAUX WITH THE BLACK ARTS MOVEMENT POETS CHOIR AND ARKESTRA, MALCOLM X JAZZ/ART FESTIVAL, OAKLAND, MAY 17, 2014. BAM 27 CITY TOUR. COMING SOON TO SAN FRANCISCO, SACRAMENTO, FRESNO, LOS ANGELES, SAN DIEGO, AND BEYOND
FOR BOOKING CALL 510-200-4164; EMAIL JMARVINX@YAHOO.COM
PHOTO GENE HAZZARD
Marvin X and Sun Ra, Master Musician and Philosopher of the Black Arts Movement. Sun Ra arranged the music for Marvin's drama Flowers for the Trashman, retitled Take Care of Business. Marvin produced a five hour concert without intermission with Sun Ra's Arkestra, along with a cast of fifty people, including the cast of TCB and the dancers of choreographers Raymond Sawyer and Ellendar Barnes at the the Hardiing Theatre on Divisadero, San Francisco, 1972. Also, Marvin X and Sun Ra taught in Black Studies at the University of California, Berkeley until the entire faculty was purged for being too radical for white supremacy academia.
JOHN COLTRANE, ST. JOHN OF THE CROSS AND LYNCHING TREE
I AM JOHN COLTRANE
I am John Coltrane
not with horn
beyond words to silence
no proper politically correct
beyond bourgeoisie culture police
don't say nigguh but kill nigguhs at every turn
turn holy in prison doing push ups after killing all nigguhs in the hood
don't say motherfucker
but fuck their mothers, daughters, sons and anything else under the sun
but don't say motherfucker
don't say bitch
while they are the real bitch in disguise of mother Theresa
Fuck the King's English
the king and his mama
I am Freedom in discipline
all words in context
No political correctness
Sun Ra taught somebody else's idea of somebody else's world
not my idea
Sonny said I am not holy man
ain't crucifying me
that's for Jesus, Osiris, Malcolm, Martin, Medgar
My words shall crucify you
hang you on the cross and lynching tree of truth
people want low down dirty truth
Sonny taught me
no holy ghost truth
miller lite truth
watered down diluted polluted
pasteurized homogenized truth
Don't think nice of me
no politician here
vote for me I'll set you free here truth
more people love me
common people with common sense
no academic negores holy ghost negroes
common people with common sense
don't read book by cover common sense people
seeking truth and relief from suffering
light for children slipping in darkness
somebody help me
I am shaman truth
between darkness and light
before dawn truth
working my twist while wicked sleep
your world is not my world
and my world is not your world
to you your way and to me mine
lakum dinu kum waliya din.
Catch me in my hour of madness
did you invite me to your gladness
don't want your sadness
Sonny taught me this
get up outta here wit dat!
Square nigguhs will get ya killed
hustler podna's taught me that
I walk alone
Men of fear
cannot walk this road
I walk alone
men who snitch
who take evidence to pharaoh
cannot walk this road
I walk alone
a love supreme
a love supreme
space is the place
space is the place.
Muhammad said live like you here for eternity
and live like death is tomorrow at dawn
why are you breathing
what reason what purpose
Huey Newton asked me in our first meeting
what is your program, Jackmon?
I am John Coltrane
writing is fighting
writing is fighting
A love supreme
A love supreme
You can't touch this
beyond the beyond
politics money sex
vote for me
I'll set you free truth
see the stars. moon. sun.
I am blue man
Trane moving on
catch me if you can
my intensity consumes you
get out da kitchen
I am terror in the night
the dream the prayer of ancestors
for every hurtful thing
I speak and sing songs of the lion king
nothing holy nothing nice
catch me if you can
see my mask
the mask you fear
in your bones and blood
I am the wind
a pleasure to my people
I am the sun
A pleasure to my people
common sense people
beyond edumakion from the devil people
simple minded shit
where was he ten trillion years ago
Space is the place
Space is the place.
A love supreme
A love supreme.
Ever heard of WWI, WWII, WWIII, yeah, the eternal war on terrorism good for business as usual Ask Africans was the Good Ship Jesus a nice ride to Mississippi, Jamaica, Brazil, Cuba How did Mali music turn into Blues in the Mississippi Delta Ever heard of the Cross & Lynching Tree Billi called it Strange Fruit nothin' to eat Native Americans just love the teachings of Jesus the small pox syphilis alcoholism wife beating oh how we love Jesus in the concentration camps called reservations Now wasn't Hitler a Christian pure Christian 100% Wasn't the KKK Christian burning crosses in the name of Jesus the Blue eyed blond hanging on the cross looking like a hippie How did blue eyed blonds get to Palestine, Jerusalem was it on the Ra boat did they come from the river Hapi Christians sliced Africa at the Berlin Conference just split the pie Germany took a piece, France, England Holland, Spain, took Arabia too, Egypt, Iran did they practice human rights administer justice kind to women europeans cry bout Muuuuuuuuuuslims in their midst how long did they stay in Muuuuuuuuuuuuuslim lands did they treat Muuuuuuuuuuuuuuslims with tender loving kindness did they not hang them, beat them, cut off arms legs lips hands these Christian saviors of the savages saved them from nakedness saved them from no heart attacks no high blood pressure no AIDS no Ebola Do they not have 800 Christian army bases around the world today occupying lands for the rights of corporations who are people too we heard the court say corporations are people who murder in the name of Jesus rob in the name of Jesus exploit plunder pollute like Shell in Nigeria India Peru steal the forests for IKEDA furniture you want Gold and diamond mines so Negroes can have bling bling extract African minerals so Negroes can talk on cell phones Where you at, where you at, where you at Is you outside Jesus you ain't back yet been two thousand years where you at, where you at, where you at. Is you ISIS they look like Jesus Is you Taliban they look like Jesus Is you Hamas, Hezbollah, they look more like Jesus than Jesus we know Is Al Quida Jesus Who is Al Quida anyway Ain't Al Quida America Ain't Al Quida who America helped in Afghanistan then left them naked after the Russians ran home Ain't the Bin Laden family and the Bush family lovers and friends Bin Laden family flew out of American when nobody else could fly, remember 9/11 Baldwin said these people ain't Christians your condition proves it yes, Baldwin said your condition proves it. Where you at Jesus with your pretty blond hair pretty blue eyes drone in the sky poison water air food poison men women and children Where you at, where you at, where you at Oh, you love Native Americans so much Your good Christian police love Negroes so much, ok they love Africans so Ask Diallo how much they love Africans or did they think he was a Negro we all look alike don't we What's the difference between a Negro and African they both Black ain't they You made them Christian didn't you you gave them both the Cross and Lynching Tree Messed up their minds for the next four hundred years Dumping bleaching cream by the tons on Africa Bleaching still in America, look at Sammy Sousa Remember poor Michael My grandson said he wanna be white like Michael Jackson So why you good loving Christians crying bout Muuuuuuuuuuslims in your midst didn't you make them devils like you didn't they go to your good Christian colonial schools didn't they study the Bible while you stole the land little bait and switch here uh Oh, now you morn in Europe Muuuuuuuuuuuslim terrorists Muuuuuuuuuslim terrorists all Muuuuuuuuuuuuuuslims are terrorists All Christians are what good guys in white hats Onward Christian soldiers kill the infidels heathens drive them from Europe and America like Spain did in 1492 Put them on the Good Ship Muuuuuuuhammad America is a Christian land Europe is good Christian land let the world be a good Christian land let Jesus return in a space ship to save us all, save us all. where you at, where you at, where you at --Marvin X 1/15/15
The Negro Knows Everything
The Negro knows everything, don't tell him nothing Cause he knows everything History of the atom Construction of the pyramids Exact location of Bin Laden How to grow marijuana with air Everything Expert Scientist Einstein's teacher The Negro He knew the world was round trillions of years before the white man He was with God in the beginning He knows how to be a loyal slave like no other His drugs are holistic He doesn't need treatment, but more drugs What would a Negro be without drugs, his morning wake up Start the day right Ask him which way is east or west He'll have a nervous breakdown Wanna fight Insulting his intelligence But he knows everything Does he have an exit plan Just in case America falls and FEMA is closed? Does he have water, food, guns? Of course he does Think the Negro is stupid He knows everything Don't tell him nothing Leave him alone He's dangerous to your healthâ?¦.. say peace when you see him. On her dying bed, my Moma said, "Marvin, leave them nigguhs aloneâ?¦.." but I love dem nigguhs, Mama LEAVE DEM NIGGUHS ALONE Mama, I love dem sick crazy hog eatin liquor drinkin jesus lovin white man creation nigguhs MARVIN, LEAVE DEM NIGGUHS ALONE Mama, I can't stay way from dem nigguhs dem all nite party get down funky ugly lookin wig wearin weave headed dreg locked dead locked nigguhs Dem black african bilalian afro pan centric endemic nigguhs anti freedom fightin job loving hate doing for self scared fearful fearless when fightin for the white man killling each other beatin they wife ass but never touch the white man cowardly nigguhs MARVIN, LEAVE DEM NIGGUHS ALONE.... Mama MARVIN.... Mama but I MARVIN Please, Mama can I MARVIN I love MARVIN Mama dem nigguhs MARVIN...... And Mama died........ and I love dem nigguhs................ and Mama died and I love dem nigguhs and Mama died and I love dem nigguhs and Mama died and I love dem nigguhs.
Little African Woman
Little African woman
full of wisdom speak
strength of your silence
calls me like the Sirens
silence calms by soul
whisper your love energy
send it my way if you can
I will flow wit da flow
listening to you
screaming silence in my ears
the deal is done
no rats can bite this cheese
ancestors have this day in the sun
I listen to you
your soft words are the sea
the tide is in and we are happy.
I AM AMERICAN
I am American
no citizen of the United States
gave that up years ago
protesting US in Vietnam
exiled in Canada
underground to Chicago, Harlem
crucified at Fresno State University
same time Angela Davis was on the cross at UCLA, 1969
I am American
exiled a second time in Mexico City
with all the exiled Americans from the Americas
from Cuba, Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Columbia, Guatemala, El Salvador, Brazil
they call me Pele Pele Pele on the streets of Mexico City
want to touch my hair for good luck
I am American
in Mexico City founded by Africans
now exiled by president for life regimes
we are young men of resistance
and women too, my wife is with me
put aboard planes that landed in Chapultepec Park
cerca de Paseo de Reforma
my wife and I live near the Metro by the park
we see the lovers in the park on Sundays
and we are in love
she is pregnant with our daughter Nefertiti
I am American
I cannot speak with my brothers in exile
Jorge from Choco, Columbia
Enrique from Venezuela
I speak Spanish pochito
I can only say Poder Negro to my revolutionary amigos.
I give them the black power salute
I am American
I flee Mexico City for Belize
I pass through Yucatan, Vera Cruz, Merida, Chetumal
the land of Yanga el Africano Mexicano
Yanga was so bad the Spanish gave him a town
San Lorenzo de los Negroes
down in Vera Cruz
I flee against the advice of my Elizabeth Catlett Mora
my elder revolutionary artist
she begged me not to go
those negroes are in raw colonialism
not neo-colonialism she said
I am American
young and hard headed
easy to lead in the wrong direction
hard to lead in the right direction
I am American
I want to hear English
tired of Spanish
I want to see los Negroes
esclavos pero Negroes
yo esclavos tambien
I am American
This is my land the Americas
all of it
I was here before Columbus
Before Maya Aztec Incas Olmec
I was here
I came by canoe from Ghana, Mali, Songhay
from the land of Sonni Ali, Askia the Great
the bling bling of Mansa Musa
a thousand camels with gold on his haj to Mecca
I am American
in Belize los Negroes speak English
pero muy rapido pero English
I am American
Norte Americano Africano
Simon Bolivar Americano
Simon Simon Simon
I am American
North Central South American
I am American
from Toronto, Montreal
to Georgetown, Caracas
Slums of Mexico City are mine
shacks of Belize are mine
madness of Kingston are mine
cocaine of Port of Spain are mine
land of C. Eric Williams
victim of Capitalism and Slavery
Guyana is mine
I interviewed PM Burnham at his residence
Africans with AK47s at his gate
the genocide of Jonestown
assassination of Dr. Walter Rodney
how can we forgive the reactionaries
who never turn into Buddha heads
who never put down their butcher knives
I am American
in Belize I join the revolution of Evan X and Shabazz
on trial for sedition
the government is games old people play
this is sedition
I covered the trial for Muhammad Speaks
this was my sin
a 1970 Wikileaks
exposing the emperor has no clothes
the people have no clothes
no water no electricity no toilet
brothers want to know why I left American with no gold
they want to go to American to get the gold
why did I leave without the gold
I am American
the people are rich in Belize
joy and peace, sun and land
gardens of paradise
islands in the sun
I love on Gales Point
a little shack with no water no electricity no bathroom
but I am happy
my wife is pregnant and happy
except for the sand flies
mosquitoes who love her blood
we bathe in the river
the out house is on the other side of the island
the catfish collect the waste
people do not swim on that side of the island
I am American
the people beg me to teach black power
I do not check in with the village headman
a drunk man sings outside my house
day comin ta git ya in da mornin
been down here teachin dat black power
day comin to get ya in da mornin, boy
my wife and I laugh
wish dat drunk nigguh git way from our door
but they come to get me in the morning
I am American
When I get on the boat into the city
five hour ride through the jungle
police on boat
I am under arrest
but don't know it
don't say nothing to me
when we get to the city
he don't say nothing
police come to my friends house
call me out
I grab rifle
but put it down
a mulatto greets me outside
I am under arrest
take me to Ministry of Home Affairs
Minister reads my deportation order
Your presence is not beneficial to the welfare of the British Colony of Honduras
therefore you shall be deported to the United States on the next plane to Miami
leaving at 4pm.
Until then you are under arrest.
Mulatto takes me to police station
I am told to sit down. No cell, no handcuffs.
Soon the police gather around me
I am in the middle of a circle of police
I do not know what's up.
Soon they say, broder man, teach us about black power!
I am American
victim of the slave system
police victims too
teach us broder man.
Marcus Garvey came here in 1923
told you to get the Queen of English off yo walls.
It's 1970 and you still got that white bitch on yo walls.
Get that bitch off yo walls!
police crack up
they say you all ite broder man
They point out uncle tom police
they say he black man wit white heart
black man wit white heart!
I am American
Plane came for me on time. Mulatto pushed me onto the plane. I refused to leave without my wife. The plane door slammed. Fly south to Tegucigalpa, Spanish Honduras.
I ask for asylum . Espera un momento, Negro!
I am marched back onto the plane.
We land in Miami. Two gentlemen greet me at the airport. Escort me to my hotel suite at Dade County Jail. I am put into a pit with dead, deaf dumb and blind negroes.
I call them brother.
They say we ain't yo brother, nigguh. I am silent.
After a few days the gentlemen come to transfer me to Miami City jail, the Federal facility.
White Cuban drug dealers greet me. What do you want, my brother, they say.
You need money, food? We send out for food to the restaurant, what do you want.
I am American
I want hamburger, fries and milkshake!
No problema, hermano!
They give me money to call my wife.
She is home in America.
I am American
Cubans say again, whatever you need just let us know.
“Malcolm X was a student of history, and that is what made him one of the most important political philosophers and leaders African Americans ever produced. For some 15 years or more, Malcolm X studied history, philosophy, religion, and politics.”
Quote from Malcolm X and the Black Liberation Movement by Muhammad Ahmad (Max Stanford), the closest of Malcolm’s associates in the final years of his life. Muhammad Ahmad became one of the most significant leaders, activists, and theoreticians in the Black liberation Movement. He was instrumental in fusing the philosophies of Robert F. Williams, Malcolm X and Queen Mother Moore to give birth to the ideology of Revolutionary Black Nationalism.
The name Muhammad Ahmad, or Max Stanford, is not among the many African American leaders and activists from the 1960s whose names are household words. However, it should be, for, as far as J Edgar Hoover was concerned, he was the most dangerous man in America. Use the links below and get to know him. Explore this man who is still living and who can best be considered a key architect of the Black Revolution in America. Get to know this unseen living legend. Watch interview with
Muhammad Ahmad from Cointelpro 101
MuhammadAhmad from Cointelpro 101 on Vimeo Muhammad Ahmad (formerly Max Stanford Jr.) was a pivotal figure within the Black Liberation Movement and struggle for Black Power in the 1960s and 70s; notably, he was the national field chairman of the Revolutionary Action Movement (RAM) and a direct target of J. Edgar Hoover’s COINTELPRO.
References on Muhammad Ahmad, Malcolm X and Revolutionary Black Nationalism The Malcolm X Project at Columbia University http://www.columbia.edu/cu/ccbh/mxp/stanford.html http://www.columbia.edu/cu/ccbh/mxp/stanford.html Early in 1963, Malcolm took the young Philadelphia militant Max Stanford under … New Jersey, movement, his support for members of the Black Liberation Army … Islam and since the early 1970s, he has been known as Muhammad Ahmad.
http://www.blackpolitics.org/the-1960s/black-power-movement-robert-williams-fred-hamptongeronimo-pratt-dhoruba-moore-kwame-ture-stokely-carmichael-african-liberation-support-committee-african-peoples-party/ … and Why Such Support is Support of the BlackLiberationMovement… The Assassination of MalcolmX . The Black Arts Movement: … MuhammadAhmad (MaxStanford), … Black Nationalism and the Revolutionary Action Movement: The … http://gdc.gale.com/archivesunbound/archives-unbound-black-nationalism-and-the-revolutionary-action-movement-the-papers-of-muhammad-ahmad-max-stanford/
The two tendencies of the civil rights movement, … young activists led by MaxStanford (later MuhammadAhmad) … The objective basis for the Blackliberation… Stanford, Maxwell Curtis, Jr. (aka MuhammadAhmad, 1941 … http://www.blackpast.org/aah/stanford-max-1941-and-revolutionary-action-movement-ram-1962-1968 Dr.MuhammadAhmad (Maxwell C. Stanford… MalcolmX in Harlem in November 1962, and Malcolm would join the … The BlackLiberationMovement: … The Black power movement; Part 3 http://www.bibliotheek.nl/catalogus/titel.339688904.html Reproduces the writings and correspondence of MuhammadAhmad (MaxStanford); … BlackLiberation Army, Black Panther … associated with RAM including MalcolmX, …
We Will Return In The Whirlwind: Black Radical Organizations … http://www.amazon.com/Will-Return-The-Whirlwind-Organizations/dp/0882863142 He has worked closely with MalcolmX… of meeting Professor Ahmad (MaxStanford) … knowledge of Stanford’s activity and importance in the liberationmovement. Activism – Dr. Akinyele Umoja http://www.akumoja.com/Activism.html … joined the MuhammadAhmad (MaxStanford) … Power movement organizer and associate of MalcolmX and … detailing the Blackliberationmovement’s …
Pan-African News Wire – Books That Will Advance Knowledge of LiberationMovements http://panafricannews.blogspot.com/2007/12/books-that-will-advance-knowledge-of.html Hoover went on to call Stanford‘s organization, the Revolutionary Action Movement (RAM) “a highly secret, all-Negro, Marxist-Leninist, Chinese Communist oriented organization which advocates guerrilla warfare to obtain its goals.” Stanford today is Dr MuhammadAhmad, who teaches in the department of African American St…
“Within all political phenomenon under capitalism is a right (conservative), center (moderate), and left (militant) sector. So was the case within the Nation of Islam in the 1950s and early 60s, especially as it began to grow. Malcolm was part of the left-wing while he was in the Nation of Islam. This is why Malcolm’s speeches sound so different from Elijah Muhammad’s. These tendencies were also present among the civil rights organizations, SCLC, NAACP, and SNCC. What made Malcolm so pivotal to the Black Liberation Movement was that he followed in the anti-imperialist tradition of Paul Robeson and WEB Dubois and was developing a mass following as a revolutionary democrat (not to be confused with the Democratic Party).
Malcolm, before his death, made an ideological leap, a leap which took many of us years to understand. Malcolm often had ways of saying things. He said, ‘travel broadens one’s horizons’. By traveling, which Malcolm did most of his life, he came in contact with progressives all over the world. But he began to see something. During our last one on one meetings in 22 West Restaurant in Harlem, approximately February 11, 1965, Malcolm said, ‘I can no longer call myself a black nationalist. The best thing to describe myself is to say, I am an Internationalist.’ ….What confused so many people is that some writers have said Malcolm had become an integrationist. Black nationalists say Malcolm died a black nationalist, and Muslims say Malcolm died a Muslim. Malcolm stood for all of these, and much more, but that is not the issue. It is important to know that Malcolm was in rapid transition in search for the best solution to the plight of African Americans and persons of African descent the world over….
Malcolm had become, at the time of his death, a revolutionary international democrat, or an anti-imperialist who stood against the oppression of people by people, regardless of nationality, creed, or color…..Even while Malcolm was in the Nation of Islam he was heavily influenced by the young students in the civil rights movement and developing progressive forces in and around the NOI. The Nation of Islam was the center of black nationalism in the late 1950s and early 1960s. During 1962-63 several independent, all black student formations developed in the North. All these organizations had a close association with the Nation of Islam. In Detroit, there was Uhuru; in Chicago, NAO; in Oakland, California, there was the Afro-American Association; in Cleveland, the African American Institute; in New York, UMBRA; and in Philadelphia, the Revolutionary Action Movement. Malcolm, being the traveling representative for the Nation of Islam, was in contact with these organizations and others….Malcolm’s advocating of armed self-defense was a radical departure from traditional black nationalism. His position reflected the new mood developing among black youth. The left-wing of SNCC (Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee), particularly the Mississippi field staff, had become revolutionary nationalists and had armed and untied with Malcolm’s strategy. Before the end of 1964, several SNCC delegations had met with Malcolm. Interrelated was the networking of the Revolutionary Action Movement with third world revolutionaries, civil rights organizations, and other nationalists and the OAAU. The RAM sponsored the direct action Afro-American Student Movement conference on black nationalism May 1, 1964, which was the pivotal point for the student movement. …The convening of the….conference on black nationalism was the ideological catalyst that eventually shifted the civil rights movement into theBlack Power Movement” Muhammad Ahmad (Max Stanford)
Currently, he is an Associate Professor and chair of the … http://l.b5z.net/i/u/6075908/f/Umoja_movement_bio_2014.pdf for UCLA’s Black student newspaper NOMMO and joined the MuhammadAhmad (MaxStanford) … of MalcolmX and … published in BlackLiberationmovement… Black Social And Political Thought by MuhammadAhmad… http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/black-social-and-political-thought-muhammad-ahmad/1017470645?ean=9781934269428 Black Social and Political Thought: … liberation of the Black Nation, … Dr. MuhammadAhmad (MaxStanford) … REVOLUTIONARY ACTION MOVEMENT– The Freedom Archives http://www.freedomarchives.org/Documents/Finder/Black%20Liberation%20Disk/Black%20Power!/REVOLUTIONARY%20ACTION%20MOVEMENT%20copy.doc REVOLUTIONARY ACTION MOVEMENT. … Black Workers “Liberation Unions. … Dr. MuhammadAhmad (MaxStanford) 2008 . Title: Letter from friends of Dr. Muhammad Ahmad – Black Bird … http://blackbirdpressnews.blogspot.com/ Dr. Muhammad Ahmad, aka, Max Stanford, Revolutionary Action Movement (RAM) … Maxwell Curtis Stanford, Jr., known since 1970 as Muhammad Ahmad, is a civil rights activist and was a founder of the Revolutionary Action Movement (RAM), a black power organization active during the 1960s. Born on July … Marshall and Stanford met Malcolm X in Harlem in November 1962, and Malcolm would join the organization before embarking on his trip to Mecca in 1964. UMP | University of Minnesota Press Blog: Diane C. Fujino … http://www.uminnpressblog.com/ Professor of Asian American studies and director of the Center for Black Studies Research at the University of California, Santa Barbara Appearing in Life … There I met Muhammad Ahmad (formerly Max Stanford), who was a major leader in the Revolutionary Action Movement, who had worked with Malcolm X, and whose intellectual and political prowess inspired Yuri—who in turn pushed for a wider audience for his book, Toward Black Liberation. I remember Yuri … RAM: The World Black Revolution (1966) | Anti-Imperialism … http://anti-imperialism.com/ … Revolutionary Action Movement. The group counted Malcolm X as a close supporter and member and was heavily influenced by Robert. … Like many individuals and organizations which fought for justice against the US, Max Stanford Jr. (now know as Muhammad Ahmad) and the Revolutionary Action Movement have been ‘erased’ from history. Until very recently, this document … On ‘the World Black Revolution’In “Black National Liberation”. RAIM Draft 12 Point … COINTELPRO 101 & COINTELPRO Documentary … http://earthwarriorsrising.wordpress.com/ Muhammad Ahmad (Max Stanford)—Founder of Revolutionary Action Movement and professor at Temple University. Bob Boyle—Attorney representing many activists and political prisoners targeted by COINTELPRO. Kathleen Cleaver—former leader of the Black Panther Party, now Professor of Law at Emory and Yale Universities and an expert on COINTELPRO. … COINTELPRO Alive: Malcolm X Grandson, Malcolm el Shabazz, Issues Statement · COINTELPRO: …
An Updated History Of The New Afrikan Prison Struggle by … http://www.sundiataacoli.org/ Two of the returning students were Wanda Marshall and Max Stanford, now name Akbar Muhammad Ahmad, who transplanted RAM from Cleveland to the ghettos of Philadelphia, New York, and other urban areas. …. Small groups began studying on their own, or in collectives, the works of Malcolm X, Huey P. Newton, The Black Panther newspaper, The Militant newspaper, contemporary national liberation struggle leader Kwame Nkrumah, Jomo Kenyatta, Frantz …
Eldridge Cleaver, A Memoir by Marvin X – Black Bird Press … http://blackbirdpressnews.blogspot.com/ Several of us were associated with Soulbook, the Revolutionary Action Movement (RAM) publication headed by Robert F. Williams and Max Stanford (now Muhammad Ahmed). ….. Chicago, especially the South side, but Harlem, the capital of Black America, the ground Malcolm X walked upon, and Duke, Billie, Basie, Parker, Apollo Theatre, awesome power of my people, the East coast version of what I’d experienced in Oakland on Seventh Street, Harlem of the West.
http://www.freedomarchives.org/Documents/Curr%2520C101/Black%2520liberation%2520movement.pdf The references in the film to Dr. King and Malcolm X, to organizations such as … as Kathleen Cleaver and Muhammad Ahmad (Max Stanford)— to aid students … speakers to discuss the civil rights and Black liberation movement in this context. Letter from friends of Dr. Muhammad Ahmad – Black Bird Press … http://blackbirdpressnews.blogspot.com/2014/07/letter-from-friends-of-dr-muhammad-ahmad.html Jul 10, 2014 … Dr. Muhammad Ahmad, aka, Max Stanford, Revolutionary Action Movement ( RAM) … Marshall and Stanford met Malcolm X in Harlem in November 1962, … with a dissertation titled “The Black Liberation Movement: Then and …
"Marvin X says some wild, wild things!" --Attorney John Burris "He deals in hyperbole to the max!" --Martin G. Reynolds, former Editor, Oakland Tribune "I support his March for Men who need multiple wives and unlimited ho's (sex workers)." --Empress Diamond "I will march with him!"-- Paradise Jah Love "I will hold the banner!"--Eugene Allen "He has my support!"--Keith X Carlisle "Marvin, you don't need a wife! You need a maid, secretary and mistress." --Marian M. Jackmon, Mother of Marvin X (RIP) "Oh, Marvin, you never cease to amaze me!" Libby Schaaf, Mayor of Oakland "Courageous and outrageous! He walked through the muck and mire of hell and came out clean as white fish and black as coal."--James W. Sweeney, Esq. "In terms of being modernist and innovative, he's centuries ahead of anybody I know." --Dennis Leroy Moore, Brecht Forum, New York City
Points of consideration beyond hyperbole
1. How can two people suffering the addiction to white supremacy claim they love each other and want to get married. They are toxic and thus their relationship shall be toxic, resulting in the 50-70% divorce rate in the North American African community. It's 50% in the white community because they suffer addiction to white supremacy type I. We suffer type II addiction to white supremacy, according to the esteemed Dr. Nathan Hare, who was able to maintain 57 years of marriage to his great wife Dr. Julia Hare. But even among the Black Bourgeoisie, their marriages are quite often "the golden handcuffs," i.e., maintained because of the perks that have nothing to do with love but that addiction to conspicuous consumption, as delineated by Dr. E. Franklin Frazier in his classic Black Bourgeoisie. In short, when the deaf, dumb and blind lead each other, they both fall in the ditch together.
2. We already know gay/lesbian relationships suffer the same trauma, emotional, physical and verbal abuse as heterosexual relationships, if not worse! We shall soon know if the same stats are true for marriages. My message to all married persons is the same: transcend the chattel slavery mentality or personal property slavery. You got papers on me but you don't own me motherfucker! Get this in you head, male bitch/female bitch, trans-sexual bitch, polygamous bitch. My life and death are all for God!
3. No matter the sexual gender of said marriages, partner violence must be banned. Emotional violence must be banned. Verbal violence must be banned. And this must be true for tricks and sex workers as well. If you have been with sex workers, you know they will do things for you no wife will do, and their prime object is to satisfy you, for a price, of course. And most men will not hesitate to give the sex worker a generous reward for having a positive attitude, especially when she transcends the wife or wives.
4. As per multiple wives, do not bring two or more women together who do not like or love each other. This is setting the stage for a toxic hell that will be transmitted to the children. Trust me, I know this from experience. When it was clear to me my wives would never love each other, I shifted my focus to trying to make my children by different mother's love each other--I think I succeeded in this.
My wives said they would have been great friends if it wasn't for me, ha, ha, ha, the sistahood--alas, where is the brotherhood? It doesn't exist, hence the present situation in which gays/lesbians/queers, trans-sexuals have rights men can only dream about. Think about it: they can get married and you are not organized to have the right to be with your sex worker in a mutual agreement! Or if you have multiple wives, they cannot meet until you die, when they and your children by them appear at the funeral. What kind of bullshit is this? Kiss my motherfucking ass, if you men can't get your nuts out the sands of time when everyv motherfucker in closet has come out, fuck you!
Rarely is a brother secure and honest enough with himself to reveal his innermost thoughts, emotions or his most hellacious life experiences. For most men it would be a monumental feat just to share/bare his soul with his closest friends but to do so to perfect strangers would be unthinkable, unless he had gone through the fires of life and emerged free of the dross that tarnishes his soul. Marvin X, poet, playwright, author and essayist does just that in a self-published book entitled In the Crazy House Called America.
This latest piece from Marvin X offers a peek into his soul and his psyche. He lets the reader know he is hip to the rabid oppression the West heaps upon people of color especially North American Africans while at the same time revealing the knowledge gleaned from his days as a student radical, black nationalist revolutionary forger of the Black Arts Movement, husband, father lover, a dogger of women did not spare him the degradation and agony of descending into the abyss of crack addiction, abusive and toxic relationships and family tragedy.
Perhaps because of the knowledge gained as a member of the Nation of Islam, and his experiences as one of the prime movers of the cultural revolution of the '60, the insights he shares In the Crazy House Called America are all the keener. Marvin writes candidly of his pain, bewilderment and depression of losing his son to suicide. He shares in a very powerful way, his own out of body helplessness as he wallowed in the dregs of an addiction that threatened to destroy his soul and the mess his addictions made of his life and relationships with those he loved.
But he is not preachy and this is not an autobiography. He has already been there and done that. In sharing his story and the wisdom he has gleaned from his life experiences and looking at the world through the eyes of an artist/healer, Marvin X serves as a modern day shaman/juju man who in order to heal himself and his people ventures into the spirit realm to confront the soul devouring demons and mind pulverizing dragons; he is temporarily possessed by them, heroically struggles to rebuke their power before they destroy him; which enables him to return to this realm, tell us what it is like, prove redemption is possible, thereby empowering himself/ us and helping to heal us. He touches on a myriad of topics as he raps and writes about himself and current events.
Reading this book you know he knows what it is like to come face to face with and do battle with the insanity and death this society has in store for all Africans. Marvin X talks about his sexual relations/dysfunction, drugs, media and free speech, sports, black political power or the lack thereof, the war on drugs and the current War on Terrorism, nothing is off limits. He includes reviews of music, theater as well as film, but not as some smarter/ holier than thou, elitist observer.
Marvin X writes as one actively engaged in life, including its pain and suffering. He lets us know he was a willing and active participant in his addiction, how it impacted his decision making, his role as a parent, his male-female "relationships", his ability to be creative within a movement to liberate African people and the world from the corruption of Caucasian hegemony.
Marvin X is in recovery and it has not been easy for him. As a writer/healer he still has the voice of a revolutionary poet/playwright, it is a voice we need to listen and pay attention to. He has survived his own purgatory and emerged stronger and more committed to life and saving his people. As North American Africans (his term to differentiate us from our continental and diasporic brethren) he sees the toll the insanity of this culture takes on us. His culturally induced self-destructive lifestyle choices and the death of his son is a testament to how life threatening and lethal this society can be.
But Marvin X also talks about spiritual redemption, the ability to transcend even the most horrific experiences with resiliency and determination so that one gets a glimpse of one's own divine potential. This book is an easy read which makes it all the more profound. In The Crazy House Called America is for brothers especially. It is a book all black men should grab hold of and digest, if for no other reason than to experience just how redemptively healing and liberating being honest can be.
* * * * *
Marvin X is available for speaking and performing coast to coast. Check Youtube on his participation at the University of Chicago Sun Ra Conference, May 21-22, 2015. Also, check out his appearance at the University of California, Merced, where they performed a dramatic reading of his play Flowers for the Trashman that appears in the Black Arts Movement anthology edited by Larry Neal and Amiri Baraka and SOS: the Black Arts Movement Reader, edited by Sonia Sanchez, John Bracey and James Smerthurst, UMASS Press
BET must be congratulated for presenting a real American gansta: the FBI’s founder J. Edgar Hoover. Those of us in the movement know too well his activities with COINTELPRO or the counter-intelligence program to disrupt, destroy and neutralize the liberation movement. We suffered their spying, lying, murder and other activities during the 60s. For the hip hop and younger generation of today, we urge them to study this video as ardently as they have the socalled black American ganstas.
Even though we now have a black president, this fact doesn’t preclude the continuation of similar activities under the Patriot Act or fighting terrorism. Amiri Baraka has warned us, “In the end, Blacks will be the terrorist.” Black people must therefore be aware of snitches, agent provocateurs, and undercover black FBI and police agents out to destroy our liberation movement in the same manner and zeal as in the days of J. Edgar Hoover.
Watching American Gansta: J. Edgar Hoover brought tears to my eyes because I am so familiar with events during this time. Any person involved in black liberation was a subject for intelligence gathering. I remember being followed home by strange negroes on the bus while I was a student at San Francisco State College (now university).
While living on San Francisco’s infamous Haight Street, a strange negro came to my apartment asking what I wanted. Did I want guns, money, what? I looked at him and told him to get out of my motherfucking house.
During the time I was on the run and in exile for refusing to fight in Vietnam, the FBI came to my mother with photos of me in various situations, begging her to reveal my whereabouts. Mom refused, but later told me they had photos of me with my girlfriend at the time, Ethna X (now Hurriyah).
After my exile in Toronto, Canada, Mexico City, living underground in Chicago, Harlem and Philly, I was finally apprehended in Belize, Central America. At the ministry of home affair, my deportation order was read aloud: “Your presence is not beneficial to the welfare of the British Colony of Honduras. Therefore you are under arrest until a plane departs at 4pm for the United States.” I was taken to police headquarters and told to have a seat. Then suddenly I was surrounded by police who begged me to teach them about black power—the very reason I was being deported. The spies had reported to the government I was teaching black power and was therefore suspected of being a Communist. This was the label given to anyone fighting for liberation throughout the Americas, and one could be killed, jailed or deported for being a revolutionary.
After five months in federal prison, I was released and returned to Fresno, California, in time for the birth of my first daughter, Nefertiti, January 29, 1971. I began organizing a black theatre company that soon gathered youth together in great numbers. Even the rehearsals were packed with young people eager to participate in theatre. But we faced opposition from people who should have been supporters, such as the NAACP and the local black newspaper. The community center suddenly wanted us out, even though we were in full production on the musical version of my play Flowers for the Trashman, not titled Take Care of Business. With the concurrence of local black officials, a worker at the center was told to get a shotgun to get us out since we were supposedly trespassing.
He was the janitor but obtained a shotgun and shot our choir director in the back, killing him. Winfrey Streets was not only our choir director, but was one of the few conscious black people in town. He had been president of the Student Body at Edison High, wore the first natural haircut in town, and most importantly, was the local leader of the Black Panther Party. The black newspaper did a full page story labeling me the cause of my friend’s murder—actually they said I killed him. I believe this was part of the FBI’s Cointelpro activities in Fresno. As we know, J. Edgar Hoover said go after any leader, any potential leader, no matter how prominent. In spite of the murder of Winfrey, the show was performed.
Soon after I was told there was a hit on me because someone had insulted a white boy across town and supposedly the assaulter was associated with me. Actually, as the bogey man of the town, brothers would use my name to scare white people, especially after I came to Fresno in 1969 to teach at Fresno State College, now University. Then Gov. Ronald Reagan told the State College Board of Trustees to get me off campus by any means necessary. But Jack Kelly, one of the first black police officers in Fresno, told me, “Marvin, when you fought to teach at Fresno State College, you made it better for all of us, not only black students. Before you came to FSU, black police were not allowed to patrol the white side of town.” FYI, this was the same year Reagan kicked Angela Davis out of UCLA. The same year Bunchy Carter and John Huggins were murdered in the BSU meeting room at UCLA—as noted in the BET video, this was a COINTEPRO action, as well as the Black Panther shootout at their Los Angeles headquarters. When I came to Los Angeles on a speaking tour during my struggle to teach at FSU, students showed me the BSU room with blood and bullet holes still evident. Lil Joe was part of a group of Los Angeles students who gave me the tour and who supported me during my struggle to teach black studies at FSU.
Although I was fearless concerning the hit, my friends encouraged me to leave Fresno for the Bay area, so I departed and organized my Black Educational Theatre (BET) in San Francisco’s Fillmore. Sun Ra and his Arkestra worked with me as he had done on the East coast. In fact, Sun Ra encountered the hit man outside my theatre. He said the hit man showed him a photo of myself. Sun Ra claimed he used his Ra power to dismiss the hit man. Truth is, after Sun Ra’s encounter, I never heard anymore about the hit. Sun Ra gave me another prophecy. He was teaching in black studies at UC Berkeley. One day he said, “Maavin, you gonna teach at UC Berkeley.” I told him he was crazy, since I had been kicked out of FSU by Gov. Reagan. But Sunny was right: a few weeks later I was invited to lecture in Black Studies with the same qualifications that were used to deny my lectureship at FSU. But in a matter of months, not only myself, but almost the entire black studies faculty was removed and replaced with a passive crew who would do the administration’s bidding, meaning an end to radical, black nationalist based ideology and instruction. This was not unique to UCB but occurred nationwide: radical instructors who had fought to expand black studies and relate it more directly with the community, were removed and replaced with house negroes. At UCB it was professor Bill Banks and his crew of sycophants. A reading of UCB documents from the chancellor’s office will reveal it was a concerted move to eliminate black radicals from the faculty, in line with Cointelpro. Forty years later, black studies is weak, passive and pitiful, although black studies faculty will attempt to defend themselves of such charges as they did recently at the 40th anniversary of the BSU/Third World Strike at San Francisco State University.
Bottom line, Cointelpro is alive and well. We were privy to a meeting between a US Marshall and Oakland Post Publisher Paul Cobb. The officer was there as a private security company person to discuss providing security for Paul Cobb who has been threatened since his editor Chauncey Bailey was assassinated in broad daylight downtown Oakland. The officer revealed that he was also a minister and informed us that there were many ministers who are official FBI and police agents.
And with respect to the assassination of journalist Chauncey Bailey, we call for the investigation of the investigators of the investigators! Mayor Ron Dellums has called upon California Attorney General Jerry Brown to investigate the Oakland Police investigators of the Chauncey Bailey murder—the suspects being young black Muslims.
But the lead police investigator has had a personal relationship with the young Muslims and yet continues on the case, even though he refused to interrogate an eye witness at the crime scene. And as Mayor, Jerry Brown instigated the firing of Chauncey Bailey from the Oakland Tribune because “the nigger was snooping around city hall and the police department.” Jerry Brown’s internet records disappeared when he departed to become attorney general, so how can he investigate the investigators when he himself needs to be investigated?