Assata Shakur, who was born Joanne Chesimard, was a member of the Black Panther Party and Black Liberation Army. She was convicted in the May 2, 1973 killing of a New Jersey police officer during a shoot-out that left one of her fellow activists dead. She was shot twice by police during the incident. In 1979, she managed to escape from jail. Shakur fled to Cuba where she received political asylum. She once wrote, “I am a 20th century escaped slave. Because of government persecution, I was left with no other choice than to flee from the political repression, racism and violence that dominate the U.S. government’s policy towards people of color.”
An article on http://usnews.nbcnews.com starts off by stating:
The FBI put a woman on its list of most wanted terrorists for the first time Thursday — a 1970s black radical who authorities say shot a New Jersey trooper, made a daring daylight escape from prison and fled to Cuba.
By Erin McClam, Staff Writer, NBC News
The tone in which mainstream news, and let’s just be frank, right wing conservatives assert when speaking of the non-white, progressive and poor is unsettling. But, there stands the history of this country and others abroad when it comes to politics and social relationships, or lack thee of.
Now, I am not saying being a radical is a bad thing. The conscious ones out there know that for a change, there needs to be radicalism because the world has not and willnot change by asking nicely. The US was built on the back of slaves, and not just blacks (See: http://ssclinguafranca.wordpress.com/2011/12/08/the-other-slavery-chinese-coolies-in-latin-america/).
For a black man or woman who grew up with blunt racism, to be aggressively addressed by any officer of the law, that to this day uses tactics to kill and imprison our people, is a threat. To stand your ground and defend is the only action to be taken.
I stand with Assata Shakur as a black conscious woman and hope she dies of old age in a paradise untouchable by this country called the United States.