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Black Panther Party Co-Founder Elbert ‘Big Man’ Howard Dies

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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Elbert “Big Man” Howard, a co-founder of the Black Panther Party who served as newspaper editor, information officer and logistics genius behind the group’s popular social programs, has died at age 80.

His wife, Carole Hyams, says Howard died Monday in Santa Rosa, California, after a long illness.

Friends and family described Howard as a “gentle giant” who could paint in words what a jazz song was saying. Howard was an author, volunteer jazz disc jockey, lecturer and activist in Sonoma County, where he later made his home.

Howard was one of six people who founded the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense in Oakland in October 1966, along with Bobby Seale and Huey Newton. The political organization started out patrolling police for possible abuse against blacks.

Key members quit in 1974 after years of fatal fights with police and each other. Later it became clear that the FBI had engaged in surveillance and harassment to undermine the party and incriminate its leaders.

Howard quit the party in 1974, but in its active years, he served as editor of its newspaper and deputy minister of information. He traveled to Europe and Asia to set up chapters and was responsible for the social programs that made the party famous.

Billy X. Jennings, a longtime friend and party archivist, said Howard was the person who negotiated lower prices and organized refrigerated trucks for food giveaways. Later, as an administrator at a local college, he organized a program for jail inmates to take courses.

“He was a beloved member,” Jennings said. “People might have had different grudges against Bobby or Eldridge (Cleaver), but nobody got a grudge against Big Man.”

Howard was born Jan. 5, 1938, in Chattanooga, Tennessee, as the only child of Emma and Anderson Howard. He joined the Air Force and was posted to Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, California.

Jennings said after he was discharged, Howard enrolled in Merritt College, where he met Seale and Newton. Seale remains active in politics. Newton was killed in 1989.

Read more by Janie Har at US News

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History & Culture

Emmett Till’s memorial sign was riddled with bullet holes. 35 days after being replaced, it was shot up again

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(CNN)A sign memorializing Emmett Till, who was brutally murdered 63 years ago, has been vandalized — again.

It’s the third sign to go up at the site outside Glendora, Mississippi, near where the 14-year-old’s body was pulled from the Tallahatchie River in 1955. And it was installed just 35 days before it was pierced with bullets.
The people who put it up might just leave it that way.
Patrick Weems, co-founder of the county-supported Emmett Till Interpretive Center, said the community has ignored Emmett’s vicious murder long enough.
“For 50 years, our community lived in silence, and there’s those who want to erase history,” he told CNN. “We’ve been through that.”
Read  more @ CNN

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Business News

The King and the Queen: How LeBron James and Beyoncé are rewriting the rules of celebrity

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The truest line in Spike Lee’s newest film, BlacKkKlansman, comes courtesy of the president of a college’s Black Student Union. She’s talking to the title character about W.E.B. Du Bois and double consciousness.

“We shouldn’t have a war going on inside ourselves,” she tells him. “We should just be black.”

Maybe the September 2018 cover of Vogue is what it looks like to “just be black.” Or maybe it’s LeBron James striding through the halls of his newly opened I PROMISE public school in Akron, Ohio, and having a conversation with Don Lemon on CNN that drew the ire of the president. Maybe it’s tens of thousands of fans in a stadium going apes— while the Carters close out another On The Run II tour date with “Apes–t.”

The two biggest black celebrities in America, LeBron James and Beyoncé, are both taking big social and artistic swings at the heights of their careers. And they’re doing so as deeply informed, politically engaged citizens, neither of whom went to college. Their actions aren’t defined by vanity or solipsism but by a deliberateness that challenges their audiences to keep up. They have, as sociologist Tressie McMillan-Cottom would say, done the reading.

Read more by @ The Undefeated HERE

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Entertainment

African-American Artist Shoots Beyonce’s Historic Vogue Cover

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Stop what you’re doing right now.

Beyonce will be on the cover of US Vogue’s September 2018 issue!

Yes, you read that right.

Not only is an African American going to grace the cover of the prestigious magazine, this will be the first ever Vogue cover shot by an African American photographer- Tyler Mitchell.

Read more by Udanya Sinha HERE

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