"Within a matter of hours I amongst others intend to be present at the funeral service of Hadiya Pendleton. The 15 year old child who resided in the Hyde Park area and was mysteriously murdered in that same respective area. Another one of what I/We believe to be of the countless casualties in what can be defined as nothing less than a war on our people. In a city that presently tops the list in unsolved crimes and forced false confessions. In our line of service we are continuously in funeral parlors, memorial services, trauma wards, barber shops, pool halls, mosques, churches, concert stages, school yards, street corners, courts and concentration camps...(In one way or another, I might add). Amongst other points, it is a struggle to not become immune to the impacts of Imperialism. For as Assata Shakur assessed, "We must struggle to continuously distinguish what is normal as opposed to abnormal." Everyday in so many ways this system, this politic, pulls at no only the literal life of the people. But also at their respective humanity. Some of the sights that I expect to see at this service. If in fact the people are even allowed entry to the service. Sights in which are absent from the countless numbers of caskets I've witnessed corralled down the aisles and/or corpses found in alleys or prison galleries of Boston, Cincinnati, Detroit, LA Oakland, Sao Palo Brazil, France, New Orleans, Statesville, Menard, Pontiac, and that in which happens to be today's focus...Chicago. Sights in which I have seen more times than I would like to remember. That being the suits and spokespersons for the same system, that for all practical purposes snatched the life out of these children in one way or another.
I recall my disgust at the funeral services for Derrion Albert to the point that it became difficult to maintain anything close to a poker face. With not only the presence, but the grandstanding and speech making by the same authors, enforcers and supporters of such policies as Renaissance 2010. The same entities that received no bid contracts from the Daley machine that denied these babies and their families of any opportunities. The same agencies that turned the school in Altgeld Gardens into a military academy. And without any transitional period, packed those children like slaves on a ship from the area known as the Ville and those from the Gardens. Setting the stage for nothing but death and disaster. The same radio stations that vilified them and bombarded them with nothing but bullshit and beats. The same so-called community activists that have been literally given to our communities like Gov't. cheese. By the same administration that is wiping us out. For these are some of the sights in which we are forced to see when something or someone becomes political "correct" to address. It is what it is. However, even with the understanding of what as Min. Huey P. Newton assessed, "one of the most difficult jobs of being a revolutionary. Is to fight in the interest of the people, even when they are not cognizant of the interest."
We not only extend our condolences to the Pendleton family. But to those throughout Englewood, North Lawndale, Oakland, New York, Ghana, Philadelphia, and elsewhere. For the living, dead, and yet to be born. Also, aside from condolences we commit! To continue to fight for the new Man/Woman. For a society in which truly respects self determination. For a climate in which for our communities the constitution doesn't merely serve as pagan poetry. That in which we are able to distinguish living from existing. In closing, in the spirit of liberation and the words of the late great Field Marshall George Jackson, "If I'm guilty of anything, it is of not fighting hard enough. "Power to the People!"
-Chairman Fred Hampton Jr. POCC/BPPC.
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