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A recent Madison365 article quotes Freedom Inc.'s M Adams, who worked for over a year to generate six demands and 40 specific policies to end systemic racism in conjunction with the Movement for Black Lives, an umbrella #BlackLivesMatter organization.
Here are the six fundamental demands:
◆ End the War on Black People
◆ Economic Justice
◆ Community Control
◆ Political Power
YGB's Eric Upchurch wrote a powerful article for Madison365 about how the phrase "All Lives Matter", while of course true in a literal sense, is anti-progress when used as a contradictory response to the phrase "Black Lives Matter", because denying the truth of an oppressed community is an act that stands in the way of freedom and self determination.
Please click here to read Eric's article.
YGB’s Eric Upchurch joined Wisconsin Public Radio on Wednesday, June 29 to talk about the Black Lives Matter community’s response to the police beating of Genele Laird, and how her release isn’t necessarily a victory to Madison’s Black community. Says Upchurch, Laird “did not resist, what she did do was react to the escalation that trained police officers induce. So, we need to foster a culture that doesn’t make that seem like a good idea to police officers, and what we’ve seen is that when police officers are accountable to the communities that they serve, things like this happen less.”
Listen to the full talk with WPR by clicking here.
A recent Madison Magazine article explained the cultural shift that YGB has sparked in Madison, through the eyes of a white person. The article is a personal narrative in which the author explains how YGB gave him the power to transform his assorted knowledge of racial issues in Madison into a full, comprehensive understanding of the systemic racism that plagues Madison.
The writer explains that through YGB he was able to connect the death of Tony Robinson to school failures, mass incarceration, and Black unemployment. The author implies that without YGB's raising of awareness, he would not have the empathetic connection to the family and friends of Tony Robinson that he has today, nor such a profound understanding and drive to take action against Madison's systemic racism.
And, most importantly, he said that these realizations have been experienced by a large portion of white Madisonians. The protests and messages sent by YGB have sparked a conversation in nearly every Madison household on the topic of Madison's relationship between the police force and the Black community, and this has changed our political system greatly; in a governmental discussion last year over Madison's $150,000,000 new jail proposal, multiple representatives emphasized that the desire of the people, as seen by YGB protests, is to deny the jail proposal - and that people power directly influenced how the representatives viewed the problem, and ultimately how they voted.
The Madison Magazine article perfectly debunks the myth that YGB protests are unproductive or wasteful - it proves that the protests have brought the conversation to tens of thousands of tables across the city, have challenged misconceptions, and have had social, political, and cultural impacts that cannot be measured or overestimated.
Read the Madison Magazine article:
In a historic turn, the UN workgroup, Experts on People of African Descent, is pushing the U.S. government to give long overdue reparations to descendants of slaves in America. YGB and Freedom Inc. members turned out to present their case to the UN workgroup in earlier February 2016 and it appears their arguments did not fall on deaf ears.
3:00 at Philosopher stones. Join us for food, community building, resisting displacement, and an end to the state violence against Black homeless people.
The Mayor and Chief Koval have made a final decision to remove the philosopher stones at the park on the top of state street and have started doing it on Monday the 10th. This has been a spot where Black homeless people and low income people gather and build community due to having no other place to go. A similar group of Black homeless people have been moved and criminalized for many years from Brittingham Park, to Peace Park, to concrete park to Philosopher stones park. Kicking people out of public space is not the answer, we need a day resource center, a wet shelter, better mental health services, better case management, better night shelter services, more affordable housing with supportive services, an end to over policing and criminalizing this group of people. There are some good steps being made in the city and county towards these ends. Black homeless people are at the root of the racial disparities in poverty, policing, and mass incarceration. This is an issue for all of us to be engaged on.