Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: A welfare rights leader rallies to support the poor people of mostly Black Benton Harbor, Michigan; the financial board overseeing Puerto Rico is trying to divert disaster aid money to satisfy a debt to the bankers; a Black book store in Harlem, still standing; and, Mumia Abu Jamal says Donald Trump is crowning himself King.
Kshama Sawant, the Socialist Alternative Party leader who serves on the city council in Seattle, Washington, is being sued for defamation by two city cops. Sawant called the police killing of an unarmed Black man “a brutal murder.” Defending against such suits costs a lot of money. Emerson Johnson is part of the Kshama Solidarity Campaign. He says, the cop’s suit is an effort to silence opponents of police lawlessness.
The powers that control mostly Black Benton Harbor, Michigan, were overjoyed when local activist Rev. Edward Pinkney was sent to prison for 30 months for allegedly tampering with election petitions. But a higher court later exonerated Pinkney of all charges. Within weeks, Pinkney was leading protests against the Whirlpool corporation, which has dominated Benton Harbor’s politics for decades, and Whirlpool’s pet project, the PGA senior golf tournament, which Pinkney said contributes nothing to the Black city. On hand for the protests was Marian Kramer, head of the Michigan Welfare Rights Organization and widow of the legendary Detroit activist, General Gordon Baker.
Recently, the world learned that as many as 5,000 Puerto Ricans died in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, far more than originally thought. Now, a new report by the Center for Economic and Policy Research, in Washington, shows that the appointed financial board that oversees Puerto Rico’s finances has been trying to divert disaster relief aid to finance the island’s debt. We spoke with Lara Merling, one of the authors of that report.
Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner, says the United States now appears to have a King in charge: Donald The First.
Black book stores are disappearing at an alarming rate. In Harlem, New York, Jenifer Wilson operates the Sister’s Uptown Bookstore and Cultural Center. She told Black Agenda Radio producer Kyle Frasier why she opened a book store Black America’s most famous neighborhood.