Al Sharpton

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Al Sharpton


Rev. Al Sharpton is an American leftist racial agitator.

History

Al Sharpton was a child preacher in the vein of Marjoe Gortner and others who would travel the "circuit rider" path around the country. One of the first known references to Sharpton regarding any Communist Party front activities was found in an article in the CPUSA newspaper Daily World, February 9, 1971, pp. 1 and 11, in an article by Stephanie Allan entitled "Angela rallies held in churches". More details immediately below.

Rev. Al Sharpton and the Communist Party front, Committee to Free Angela Davis

In the CPUSA newspaper Daily World, February 9, 1971, pages 1 and 11, several rallies concerning clergymen supporting the Communist Party USA front known as The Committee to Free Angela Davis (and by other similar names]] were written about by CPUSA member Stephanie Allan. A dual story entitled "Angela rallies held in churches" covered events in Chicago and White Plains, NY.

In the Chicago event, sponsored by the Chicago Angela Davis Defense Committee (one of several forms of that parent organization's name), a number of speakers were heard at the Tabernacle Baptist Church on Chicago's South Side. From the DW of 2/09/71 came the following paragraphs and names of speakers:

"Sponsors of the rally, the Chicago Angela Davis Defense Committee Angela Davis, brought together, under the theme of "The Fight to Save Angela's Life is the Right for Our Own Lives," a large program of speakers and other performers."

"Included were":

White Plains, New York Rally: Daily World February 7, 1971, pp. 1 & 11, "Angela rallies held in churches" by Stephanie Allan

Held at the Allen A.M.E. Church in White Plains, NY, several hundred people attended the "first mass meeting organized by the White Plains Committee to Free Angela Davis.

Participants and leaders were:

"The high spot of the meeting was provided by Rev. A. Sharpton and Rev. J.L. Scott of Operation Breadbasket, who told about the struggle against A&P, and how the boycott movement could be developed in the Black community. These speakers - the 16-year-old Rev. Sharpton and the older Rev. Scott - spoke in simple, eloquent but politically profound terms. They exposed the connection between A&P, U.S. monopoly capitalism, racism and imperialism, and related these to the Angela Davis case and the threat to the vital rights of the Black people."

"There are five functioning Free Angela Davis Committees in Westchester, with two more in process of organization."

"Co-chairing the Westchester Committee with Warren is:

  • Mae Morgan Robinson - black political leader, member of the N.Y. State Committee of the Democratic Party, and member of the Black Democratic Caucus which has passed a resolution in support of Angela Davis."

Rev. Al Sharpton and Workers World Party fronts support, participation and/or sponsorship

The Rev. Al Sharpton has amassed a significant record of supporting various communist/Marxist parties, fronts and causes over many decades, but they have been almost totally ignored or glossed over by the mainstream print and visual media, usually by deliberately failing to identify these fronts as belonging to Marxist organizations.

Below will be a listing of many of Sharpton's documented associations with Workers World Party(WWP) fronts that KW has found in public WWP materials, often on their own website on the internet.

From "Performance and Speakers at the Jan. 18 Demo to Stop the War on Iraq", Updated List of Speakers & Messages, on the WWP website "http://internationalanswer.org/news/update/011003j1 8update.htm"

[a sampling of other communists and supporters for this front included]

Tabankin soiree

In February 1995, a private party was held in New York to celebrate Margery Tabankin who had been recently chosen to head Steven Spielberg's Righteous Person's Foundation, (Tabankin also ran the Streisand Foundation). Attendees included Jesse Jackson, Alan Bergman and Marilyn Bergman, Streisand publicist Ken Sunshine, Rev. Al Sharpton, Ruth Messinger, Charles Schumer, Mark Green, Basil Paterson, David Paterson, David Dinkins, New York Urban League President Dennis Walcott, and Warner Records chairman Danny Goldberg. The taslk focused on how "liberals could take the political spotlight back from the conservatives"[1]

Pro Democracy Convention

The Pro Democracy Convention was held June 29th To July 1, 2001. It started with a National Town Hall Meeting, Annenberg Center, University of Pennsylvania.

Come to a National Town Hall Meeting! Hear speakers representing a wide range of communities, including academics, labor leaders,

lawyers, organizers, and elected officials, speak out about Election 2000, recommendations for electoral reform, and how we all can build the movement to expand democracy in the U.S. Partial List of Invited Speakers and Presenters:

DC rights march

The Aug. 23 2003 march on Washington that marked the 40th anniversary of the giant 1963 Civil Rights March led by the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. was noted for its strong anti-war mood. Thousands of people from across the country streamed onto the grounds of the Lincoln Memorial to commemorate the historic march, which featured Dr. King's famous "I Have A Dream" speech.

The night before this year's march, Yolanda King hosted a "spit in" geared toward younger activists. Many people took the stage for five minutes each to "spit" poetry against war, about growing up poor and oppressed, about police brutality and other injustices to illustrate that the "dream" has not been realized by most working people in this country.

Throughout the weekend the speakers who received the loudest ovations were those who demanded an end to the occupation of Iraq.

Among the speakers were three presidential candidates--the Rev. Al Sharpton, Carol Moseley Braun and Howard Dean; historic civil-rights leaders such as James Forman, Coretta Scott King and Jesse Jackson; representatives of the civil-rights/peace-and-justice movement like NOW Executive Director Kim Gandy, National Lesbian and Gay Task Force Executive Director Matt Foreman, Damu Smith of Black Voices for Peace, Leslie Cagan of United for Peace and Justice, James Zogby of the Arab American Institute, Raul Yzaguirre of La Raza, and Mahdi Bray of the Muslim American Association, who invited everyone to come back for the Oct. 25 march against the U.S. occupation of Iraq. National youth and student leaders and church representatives also spoke.[3]

"NO WAR, NO WAY"

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Jan 19, 2003, ANSWER brought together an impressive array of speakers at two rallies—one that began at 11 a.m. in the sprawling National Mall, and a concluding rally at the Washington Shipyard.

Moonanum James, co-chair of United American Indians of New England and a Vietnam-era veteran, opened the rally by connecting the U.S. government’s ongoing racist war against Native peoples with their preparations for a racist war against Iraq.

Actors Jessica Lange and Tyne Daly addressed the crowd. So did political figures, including the Revs. Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton; former-U.S. Congressperson Cynthia McKinney and Rep. John Conyers. The Rev. Lucius Walker read an anti-war statement from Rep. Charles Rangel.

Former Attorney General Ramsey Clark called on those listening to “impeach Bush.” Blase Bonpane, from the Office of the Americas, traveled from Los Angeles to bring greetings. International representation included Ashraf El-Bayoumi from the Cairo Conference against U.S. Aggression on Iraq and Jeremy Corbyn from the Stop the War Coalition and Abe Tomoko spoke as a representative of the Lower House of the Japanese Parliament.

Struggles around the world against U.S. domination were articulated by Teresa Gutierrez and Sara Flounders from the IAC; Hector Castro, director of education, Central Unitaria de Trabajadores, Colombia; Francisco Rivera, Committee for the Rescue and Development of Vieques; Marie Hilao Enriquez from BAYAN; and Yoomi Jeong from the Korea Truth Commission.

Muslim speakers included Mahdi Bray, Muslim American Society; Ismael Kamal, Muslim Students Association; Ihab Darwish, Free Palestine Alliance; Ghazi Khan Kan, Council on American Islamic Relations; Imam Mousa, Masjid Al-Islam; and Dr. Mansoon Khan from Peace TV.

The Revs. Herbert Daughtry, national pastor of House of the Lord Church; Graylan Hagler, pastor of Plymouth Congregational Church, andJesuit priest John Dear addressed the audience. [4]

CBC 33rd Legislative Conference, 2003

Anger at the Bush administration for waging war abroad and attacking rights at home bubbled up at the Congressional Black Caucus 33rd Legislative Conference in Washington DC, Sept. 24-27, 2003.

“Collective Leadership: Challenging A Bold New World” was the title of the conference, which attracted thousands of participants in 53 plenary and workshop sessions.

A standing-room crowd at a session titled “The Iraq War: America Speaks Out” convened by Rep. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.), cheered Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.), who recently accused Bush of “fraud” in tricking the U.S. into war. The White House reacted with rage to that blast.

But Kennedy did not apologize. “If your son or daughter is in the National Guard or Reserves, you know they are going to be called up and sent over to serve in Iraq,” Kennedy thundered. “They are asking $87 billion for the war in Iraq and they cannot find enough to fund ‘No Child Left Behind.’”

Kennedy read from the Pentagon’s 28-page draft plan sent to Capitol Hill after weeks of protests from lawmakers that the occupation is floundering. “Locate and secure weapons of mass destruction,” was the goal one week. A week later, again, “Continue to locate and secure weapons of mass destruction.” The crowd groaned and Kennedy flung the draft in the air, calling it “an insult to our troops serving over there.”

Democratic presidential contender Al Sharpton told the crowd that Kennedy “has nothing to apologize for” in his blistering attacks on Bush. Recalling Secretary of State Colin Powell’s presentation to the UN last Feb. 14 with spy photos allegedly showing Iraqi weapons sites, Sharpton demanded, “Where are they?” He said, “Our children were put in harm’s way. It is immoral to give this president $87 billion for this war.”

Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) asked, “What do you do if a president has committed acts that should lead to his removal? Citing mounting calls to investigate lies and misuse of intelligence by the “unelected president and the people around him,” Conyers said, “How do we withstand the mood of people who are saying to us: ‘What are you waiting for?’”

Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas) said, “Every day people are dying. I am appalled and outraged that Republicans are blocking a full and fair examination of the facts.”

Civil rights leader Rev. Willie Barrow said, “Mr. Bush, you didn’t find Osama bin Laden, Saddam Hussein, or weapons of mass destruction. We know a lie when we hear it.” She challenged the crowd to start now to register millions of voters. “It’s not enough to register people. We have to get them out to the polls on Election Day,” she said. “Let’s come together and show Bush the door.[5]

Millions More Movement

The Millions More Movement held an important all-day rally Oct. 15, 2005 on the National Mall that attracted an overwhelmingly African-American crowd numbering more than 1 million, according to organizers. The main demand put forth by the rally organizers and supported by the masses there was “Black power!”

Not one U.S. flag was prominent in the crowd, but the colors of the flag for U.S. Black liberation—red, black and green—could be seen everywhere.

This MMM rally was first announced in 2004 as a commemoration of the 10th anniversary of the Million Man March on Oct. 16, 1995, held at the same site. That event attracted at least 1 million, mainly Black men, and was initiated by the Nation of Islam.

The speeches were focused on a variety of issues: the prison system and the plight of political prisoners—especially Mumia Abu-Jamal, Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin (formerly H. Rap Brown) and Leonard Peltier-police brutality, reparations, voter disenfranchisement, LGBT oppression, immigrant rights, economic and political empowerment, education and health, the role of art and culture in the struggle for social justice, and much more.

The main presentation at this rally was given by the MMM’s national convener and NOI leader, the Hon. Minister Louis Farrakhan.

Among the many other speakers were Clarence Thomas and Chris Silvera from the Million Worker March Movement; Dr. Dorothy Height of the National Council of Negro Women; Indigenous leaders Russell Means and Vernon Bellecourt; Congress woman Sheila Jackson; Haitian singer Wyclef Jean; Reverends Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson; Viola Plummer of the Dec. 12 Movement; Damu Smith, Black Voices for Peace; and comedian and social activist Dick Gregory.

In a videotaped message played to the crowd, the president of Cuba’s National Assembly, Ricardo Alarcón, expressed the Cuban people’s solidarity with Katrina survivors and all the poor in the U.S. He also spoke about the case of the Cuban 5, who were imprisoned for fighting against terrorism while the U.S. aids and shelters real terrorists like Luis Posada Carriles. [6]

Comment on Equality

Al Sharpton, May 5, 2010

Circa May 5, 2010, Sharpton made an address during which he stated,

"The struggle is not over until we achieve equality. Someone was saying to me the other day, "Reverend Sharpton, we've got an African American President; we've achieved the dream of Dr. King" - and I told him that was not Dr. King's dream. He's a great man. I've been working with the President and supporting the President. But the dream was not to put one black man in the White House. The dream was to make everything equal in everybody's house. President Obama being in the White House can help us get there, but we're not there yet."

Prison gerrymandering bill

The Rev. Al Sharpton, Senator Eric Schneiderman and Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries joined forces with a statewide coalition Jan, 28, 2010, to announce a new organizing campaign plan to end prison-based gerrymandering in New York State before the 2010 Census.

The coalition’s goal was to organize across the state to pass Senator Schneiderman’s bill that would require New York State to count incarcerated persons in their home communities--rather than in the districts where they are incarcerated--for purposes of drawing legislative district lines. If passed, it would be the first law in the nation to count prisoners in their home communities for districting purposes.

“It’s an absolute injustice that New York currently counts people in the districts where they are incarcerated, rather than in their home communities. I am proud to be here to join forces with Sen. Schneiderman, Assm. Jeffries and this coalition to end this unconstitutional practice. If we do not act soon, it will be 10 long years for another opportunity to right this wrong. We cannot afford to wait,” said Rev. Al Sharpton.

“Equal representation under the law benefits everyone,” said Senator Eric T. Schneiderman, the lead sponsor of the bill to end prison-based gerrymandering. “The practice of counting people where they are incarcerated undermines the fundamental principle of 'one person, one vote' - it's undemocratic and reflects a broken system. This legislation is as simple as it is fair: it requires that legislative districts at every level of government contain an equal numbers of residents. The time to act is now.”

Assemblyman Jeffries was the bill's lead sponsor in the Assembly.[7]

"THINK OUTSIDE THE CELL: A NEW DAY, A NEW WAY"

A national symposium on issues affecting the incarcerated, the formerly incarcerated and their families that will bring together an impressive array of well-known speakers:

Rev. Al Sharpton; Newark, NJ Mayor Cory Booker, named one of Time Magazine's 100 Most Influential People; CNN journalist Soledad O'Brien; Randall Robinson, best-selling author and social justice advocate; Jeremy Travis, President of the John Jay College of Criminal Justice; "Chef Jeff" Henderson, formerly incarcerated motivational speaker, author and star of the Food Network; Rossana Rosado, CEO of El Diario La Prensa, one of the nation's top Spanish- language newspapers; Khalil Muhammad, noted historian and new director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture; Alan Rosenthal, co-director, Justice Strategies, Center for Community Alternatives; Terrie Williams, youth advocate and author of the book, Black Pain: It Just Looks Like We're Not Hurting, CBS national correspondent Byron Pitts; and Marc Lamont Hill, a leading hip-hop generation intellectual and host of the nationally syndicated television program, Our World with Black Enterprise.

Location: The Riverside Church, W. 120th St & Riverside Dr. NYC

The "Think Outside the Cell: A New Day, A New Way," symposium is made possible by a grant from the Ford Foundation to the Think Outside the Cell Foundation, which was founded by Sheila Rule. It is being presented in partnership with the Fortune Society’s David Rothenberg Center for Public Policy, the College and Community Fellowship and the Riverside Church Prison Ministry.[8]

Harlem rally against gun violence

More than 2,000 predominantly Black and Latino working people gathered March 21, 2013, on Adam Clayton Powell Blvd. in Harlem in a militant protest against gun violence.

Organized by a broad coalition of labor and people's organizations, it was a "powerful grassroots protest against the National Riffle Association and a warning to Congress that it must pass strong gun control legislation, including a ban on assault weapons."

George Gresham, president of Local 1199 of the Service Workers, captured the fighting spirit of the rally. In a message to all elected officials, Gresham said, "We are the people; do the right thing and we got your back. Do the wrong thing, we got your job."

MSNBC commentator, the Rev. Al Sharpton, addressing the NRA, declared: "We have the right to bear arms but we do not have the right to kill babies. The second amendment does not give you the right to have guns that can hold 30 rounds. We have to take back our streets here in New York and beyond."

Leslie Cagan, who was part of the organizing team for the rally, said that the demonstration was particularly important in light of the Senate leadership having announced that day that the assault weapons ban would be left out of the legislative package. "We need Congress to find the backbone to stand up for communities and families here in Harlem and all over the country," Cagan declared."[9]

"Economic justice"

April 3, 2013, at Mason Temple Church Of God In Christ (Headquarters) Memphis, Tennessee. Martin Luther King III, Lee Saunders, Al Sharpton, Valerie Jarrett, Van Jones and more joined a panel discussion on economic justice.

This year marks the 45th anniversary of Dr. King’s final act of solidarity. In commemoration of his life and his solidarity, union members, civil rights leaders and community activists are again gathering in Memphis for a series of historic events.
On April 3, the community will gather from 7-10 p.m. in the historic Mason Temple at 930 Mason St., Memphis, Tenn. Highlights include entertainment, a panel discussion on economic and racial justice and special remarks from civil rights leaders.

This event is part of a series of events April 3-4 to commemorate the 45th Anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King's work. [10]

Ferguson

Ferguson, Mo., Aug. 25 2014— Many thousands of people, the majority of them standing outside the Friendly Temple Missionary Baptist Church, gathered here in solidarity today to comfort the family of Michael Brown, who was fatally shot by a Ferguson police officer on Aug. 9.

Brown’s mother and father, Lesley McSpadden and Michael Brown Sr., were accompanied by notable public figures, including Spike Lee, Wesley Snipes, Rev. Jesse Jackson, Rev. Al Sharpton, Sen. Claire McCaskill and Rep. Maxine Waters. Sharpton delivered the eulogy.[11]

Metropolitan College gala

Metropolitan College of New York celebrated its founding with a 50th Anniversary Gala, Thursday, October 23, 2014 at the Plaza Hotel in Manhattan. Themed, “Amplify the Dream”; the Gala highlighted the school’s dynamic history. The Gala’s honorary chair was Mayor David Dinkins, New York City’s first Black mayor.

“I am honored to serve as honorary chair of MCNY’s Anniversary Gala,” said Mayor Dinkins. “For half a century, MCNY has not only produced professional citizens in New York City, but those who are also socially-responsible and share a commitment to give back and make our society a better place for all New Yorkers.”

The distinguished members of the honorary committee include: Mayor Bill de Blasio, Gale Brewer, Manhattan Borough President; Ruben Diaz, Jr., Bronx Borough President; Senator Kirsten Gillibrand; Carmen de Lavallade and the late Geoffrey Holder; Fernando Ferrer, Vice Chairman, MTA and former Bronx President; Rep. Jerrold Nadler, Ruth Messinger, President, American Jewish World Service; Senator Charles E. Schumer and Reverend Al Sharpton. The Gala honorees include: Helen LaKelly Hunt (Changemaker), Dr. Edison O. Jackson (Trailblazer) and R. Rick Baker (Champion). Robert Sargent Shriver was honored posthumously.[12]

"Progressive Agenda"

Signers of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's May 12, 2015 launched The Progressive Agenda to Combat Income Inequality included Al Sharpton, National Action Network.[13]

References

  1. [Barbra and Jesse split an egg roll. New York Magazine 20 Feb 1995 page 13]
  2. [http://groups.yahoo.com/group/internetdemocrats1/message/4715, internetdemocrats1 · Internet Democrats1, National Town Hall Meeting Posted By: impeach_bush@...Mon Jun 4, 2001]
  3. [DC rights march reflects anti-war mood By Pam Parker Washington, D.C.Reprinted from the Sept. 4, 2003, issue of Workers World newspaper]
  4. [WW http://www.workers.org/pdf/2003/ww013003.pdf Jan. 30, 2003]
  5. PWW Black Caucus hears call: Defeat Bush, GOP, by: Tim Wheeler October 3 2003
  6. WW D.C. rally stresses unity and Black power By Monica Moorehead Washington, D.C. Published Oct 19, 2005
  7. [http://www.nysenate.gov/press-release/rev-al-sharpton-sen-eric-schneiderman-assm-hakeem-jeffries-join-forces-coalition-annou, Rev. Al Sharpton, Sen. Eric Schneiderman, Assm. Hakeem Jeffries Join Forces With Coalition To Announce New Statewide Campaign To End Prison-Based Gerrymandering Before 2010 Census Posted by Eric T. Schneiderman on Thursday, January 28th, 2010]
  8. [1]
  9. PW Thousands in Harlem rally against gun violence, by: Jarvis Tyner March 27 2013
  10. FB The Struggle Continues
  11. Outside the funeral, conversations about racist brutality By John Parker on August 26, 2014
  12. METROPOLITAN COLLEGE OF NEW YORK HOSTS 50TH ANNIVERSARY GALA 20 October, 2014
  13. http://progressiveagenda.us/signers SIGNERS OF THE PROGRESSIVE AGENDA TO COMBAT INCOME INEQUALITY]