Ajamu is one our Freedom School graduates. In the blog post below he writes about why it’s been important for him as an African-American teenager to show up in solidarity with communities in Ferguson and Palestine.
After the killing of unarmed Mike Brown, it deeply impacted the African-American community. It brought a major uprising in Ferguson, which the town has a past of killing unarmed African-Americans and known for racism. For example, Ferguson is sixty-nine percent Black, but those in power are majority white. While the people of Ferguson were protesting against the injustices that they have been facing, the police force who is dominated by white Americans used tear-gas, rubber bullets, militarized tanks and other high class war tactics as if the people of Ferguson were criminals or dangerous.
A couple of weeks after his murder there was a solidarity rally in Raleigh, NC for our brothers and sisters in Ferguson. It was significant that I was in attendance, being that I’m a young African-American who notices the racial injustices in this country. Ever since the shooting I have heard many white Americans try to dehumanize the life of Mike Brown and the struggles of people of color across the country. The killing of Mike Brown is nothing new to our community, in fact it happens quiet often, and unarmed people of color are being killed by the police nation-wide and nothing is changing. We face racial discrimination, police brutality, mass incarceration, school-to-prison pipeline, etc. These injustices affect our community daily. I can personally say I am tired of it, fired up and refuse to take it anymore. I refuse to stand for systematic racism; I refuse to stop fighting until my people are free. Enough is enough. Until we address the issue of race in this country, until we address white privilege and white supremacy, this country will never move forward. BLACK LIVES MATTER!
I also attended a Palestine solidarity rally where a family friend pointed out to me the similar struggles of African-American and Palestinians. This increased my knowledge on how inhumane these acts were. Additionally, throughout the protesting in Ferguson and the tear-gas the community has had a great deal of support from the Palestinian people on how to overcome the effects of tear-gas. It is essential that the Black community stand with Palestine in their fight for self-determination! We both are going through similar things and “the oppressed speak the same language.”
The United States government funds billions of dollars for Israel war-crimes with our tax dollars, so not only is it an International issue but in fact it is a local issue. Over Two-Thousand Palestinians have been killed, a lot of their land being taken away from them, being restricted on things they can and cannot do. Sounds very similar to what Black people have faced in this country. The PLO (Palestinian Liberation Organization) has showed a great deal of support to the Black Liberation movement as well as support to overcome the oppressive apartheid South Africa government.
It is time we unite the struggles both Palestinians and African-Americans, because when the people unite, we can never be defeated! We must know who are allies are in these difficult times. It is time to end the occupation, in Palestine and here in the United States! We charge the United States and Israel with GENOCIDE!!!