Every year since 2001 at the University of Georgia, a “Mary Frances Early” lecture has been given in April in honor of Ms. Early, who was UGA’s first African-American graduate.
This year’s lecture, “sponsored by Graduate and Professional Scholars, a minority graduate and professional student organization at UGA,” will feature an interesting, not-divisive-at-all speaker: Elaine Brown, former head of the Black Panther Party, current Green party member (and announced 2008 presidential candidate), and slightly radical activist.
Her lecture will be titled “Rethinking Social Justice: A Contemporary Look at Activism” and will be delivered in the Chapel at 7pm on April 18.
One can only wonder what wonderful, American-dream-catching, uniting message will be included in an address given by a woman who, on her website, directly refers to any black people who are actually employed in America today as “a little legion of Negroes who would abandon any sense of duty or relationship to the masses of blacks in favor of a job in the house of our common oppressor.”
“Today, as in the days of the Black Panther Party,” she continues, “black people in the United States are not free and must be free. It is absurd to believe otherwise.”
How far we’ve come in this society that former leadership of the Black Panther Party — an organization founded on the principle of “armed resistance to societal oppression in the interest of African American justice” (a principle which was acted on more than a few times) — is something which qualifies a person to be a social leader, and is a badge to be worn proudly!
And proudly it is being worn; from the Early speech press release to Ms. Brown’s personal website, her former Black Panther leadership is the “qualification” highlighted above all others — not that her post-BPP career has been incredibly stellar, or free of attacking those of her own race who have dared escape the ghetto or achieve success. Example: In her 2002 book “The Condemnation of Little B,” she refers to Colin Powell, Vernon Jordan, Chris Rock, Russell Simmons, Sean “Diddy” Combs, and Oprah Winfrey, and several others as “New Age House Negroes” and “New Age House Negresses.”
Nice way to bring folks together, and to advance a positive agenda, especially to new college graduates who are about to
enter the work force join the “little legion of Negroes who would abandon any sense of duty or relationship to the masses of blacks in favor of a job in the house of our common oppressor.”
Where’s Bill Cosby for these speeches when you need him?