We share this article by Uhuru Solidarity Movement organizer Harris Daniels based in Philadelphia, PA, as part of a series of personal statements to be published throughout the month of March, written by members of the Uhuru Solidarity Movement on why they carry the card of USM membership. Also check out the first in the series by comrade Wendy Craig in San Diego, CA. Uhuru!
From the White Suburbs to Solidarity With Black Power: Why I Carry the Card
by Harris Daniels, Northeast Regional Organizer of the Uhuru Solidarity Movement
Why I joined Uhuru Solidarity Movement:
I found out about Uhuru Solidarity Movement in 2005 after hearing Chairman Omali Yeshitela speak on the Dead Prez album “Let’s Get Free.” I was blown away. As a white kid from the suburbs of Connecticut, I had never had to deal with so many real life political questions faced every day by African people: the drug economy, the State, police containment, hostile colonial schools and the continued results of the attack on Africa that formed the pedestal upon which this entire social and economic system was built.
I was a teacher, and was actually coming into somewhat of a political consciousness through my students, Africans, showing me the conditions they faced every day outside and inside of school. Hearing the analysis of African Internationalism really transformed me as a person and as a member of society; what was my role? Is it enough to just carry out a job in a colonial school system – at the time, I was teaching in an actual prison, but we know all schools are prisons for Africans – and collect a paycheck at the expense of African youth? What more can I do?
Well, fortunately, I looked into the man behind the voice on the Dead Prez record, and found out about the movement behind the man. So many people – white people especially – hear that record and never take it that extra step further, but I had to. I had to know where M-1 and Sticman got their politics from, and what role (if any) I could have in living and carrying out this African revolution.
A Role for White People in the African Revolution?
I was so pleased to learn about the African People’s Solidarity Committee and Uhuru Solidarity Movement. That the strategy of the African People’s Socialist Party for reunification and liberation of African people around the world, and the strategy for reparations, extended into the isolated white community. White people – the beneficiaries of 500 years of plunder, genocide, slavery and theft of land and resources – have a defined role in making reparations to African people through daily accountable campaigns and work.
It was after learning about the organization – and reading Omali Yeshitela Speaks and Overturning the Culture of Violence — that I knew this was the next step I needed to take: to Carry the Card. I couldn’t just be a consumer of information; I couldn’t just absorb the analysis and then go on living my life as I once had; I couldn’t ignore the call being made for me to take a stand as a white person in solidarity with African liberation! I had to become a member immediately!
And so I did. And since then, I have been proud to not only call myself a card-carrying member of Uhuru Solidarity Movement, but I have also been trained as an organizer and I have won my brother, my friends, neighbors, loved ones and even complete strangers to become members too – just by sharing with them everything I know about this movement and what it means to me and to others like me.
If you’re like me and you want to do more than just clock in and clock out of a job that gets you resources at the expense of others, if you believe that liberation for oppressed peoples is the only way this world is going to have a future, if you think that the Kony 2012 campaign is propaganda for imperialism, then do what I did and join the Uhuru Solidarity Movement and make a contribution to the real African Revolution.
CARRY THE CARD! Join today, and represent a real movement that’s building principled solidarity with African liberation, supporting concrete on-the-ground programs that are led by African people, for African self-determination.
AND COME TO THE 2012 UHURU SOLIDARITY MOVEMENT NATIONAL CONVENTION: “Occupy Imperialism!” In Philadelphia, PA June 9-10.