Column: Brown bad for business

By Chuck Prochaska

Little Berkley, Kerry’s Clan or Allen Hall, whichever you prefer to call it, is up to its usual America-hating, socialist loving, White Anglo-Saxon Christian bashing again.

Last year, they invited known terrorists Bernadine Dohrn and Bill Ayers, once on the FBI’s most wanted list, to their Guests-In-Residence program. Portrayed as some kind of defenders of equality or justice, they launched their treasonous and offensive rhetoric cheaply disguised as academic realization. It was determined that our tax dollars weren’t funding their stay, but this event was still a laughable attempt to further a socialist agenda masked as education.

This year, the program’s outrageous choice to speak on social justice is Elaine Brown, a former chairman of the now inactive Black Panther Party (BPP). Angela Clark, Assistant Program Director of the African American Cultural Program, says that Brown is speaking because she has done things in the BPP to fight racial injustice. And when Clark says fight, she really means fight.

The party was founded in 1966 by blacks that rejected the nonviolent, integrationist techniques of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and sought a total domination of American society, violent takeover of the American government and installation of a Marxist economy.

The BPP’s 10 point plan of reverse-racism, nonsensical policy and violence included the following: full and immediate employment for all blacks, the exemption of blacks from military service, the release of all black men held in prisons and jails and all black juries for black defendants in court.

The BPP did have some redeeming qualities, providing a successful “Free Breakfast for Children” program in San Francisco, and launching a first of it’s kind testing program for sickle-cell anemia, a rare blood disorder almost exclusively effecting blacks, according to Wikipedia.com.

Yet, the BPP’s tactics of fighting injustice with injustice was viewed as blatant hypocrisy by the majority of Americans, and afforded minute legitimacy in the shadow of Dr. King’s movement. Bombings of supermarkets in white neighborhoods and other white-targeted crimes, especially those against the “foreign occupying force” of the white police were not uncommon. Hundreds of pages of FBI memos documenting BPP violence have been released courtesy of the Freedom of Information Act.

Given this history, I’m confused as to why the African American Cultural Program has also invited Brown to speak at their Maafa Week’s events. Nakema Bates, assistant director of the Program, says that she will be discussing social mobility and social justice. But if the methods Brown is known for advocating were so violent, illegal and ineffective, why would they choose her as the model dictating, “where we’ve come from …and where we need to go,” according to Bates?

Elaine Brown should be allowed to speak if that’s who the politburo at Allen pick, no matter how questionable her past. But African American programmers on this campus should be looking for a less divisive and more successful figure to represent ideals like social justice and equality.

But unfortunately, divisiveness seems to be the trend in creating inclusive and diverse atmospheres on campus lately. This is reflected in the African American Homecoming events. Are the African American pageant, homecoming court and after party designed to signal that African Americans can’t or should not interact and compete with the rest of the university community during this spirited weekend? If so, wouldn’t that contradict the teachings of successful civil rights leaders like Dr. King who dreamed of justice and equality through integration rather than separation? Wouldn’t equality be preserved and a more inclusive environment be achieved by dropping the “African American” prefix and simply planning a “Physique Show” and “After Party” for all to attend?

The U.S. has made much progress in the area of social equality by creating equal opportunities for all and providing for equal treatment under the law. However, unearthing a relic like Elaine Brown and using her past misguided leadership as a beacon for achievement revitalizes the imagery and tension of a gory past, and undercuts the true progress being made.

Chuck Prochaska is a junior in LAS. His column appears every Thursday. He can be reached at [email protected]