CHICAGO (FinalCall.com – A Black president does shift the mental paradigm, but Blacks should not recklessly wave the American flag with a blind eye to the backlash against the rise of President Barack Hussein Obama, explained Kofi Taharka to a spirited crowd of National Black United Front (NBUF) members and supporters.
Speaking April 11 on the theme “It Is Time for the Hip Hop Generation to Step Up,” Taharka, chairman of the Houston chapter of NBUF, pointed to the rise of militant, right-wing organizations as one of the reasons Blacks must remain vigilant.
According to various reports, movie star and martial artist Chuck Norris claims that thousands of right-wing cell groups have organized and are ready for a second American Revolution. These groups are even urging those in the military to not obey orders from President Obama. During an appearance on the Glen Beck radio show Mr. Norris said if things get any worse he may “run for president of Texas.”
In addition to right-wing rebellion, Mr. Taharka highlighted the shooting of Oscar Grant in Oakland, Black youth targeted by a prosecutor in the Jena 6 case and attitudes towards the victims of Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, and Ike. These situations, he stressed, point to the need for a revitalized movement for freedom, justice, and equality.
“Even though you have Obama, we are dealing with a system of White supremacy that operates in all areas of human endeavor. We are still at the bottom of all the lists: food, clothing, shelter, education, health, employment, police brutality, and etcetera,” he said.
The consistent involvement of young people in general and the hip hop community specifically in the liberation struggle, keeps Mr. Taharka optimistic about “the prospects for youth involvement in a more energized, revitalized type of mass movement.” For this to happen, community organizers and activists “must stay focused on basic core issues,” he said.
Building for the future
The NBUF event, which included various rap and singing performances, was the precursor of the July 16-19 national NBUF conference, Turning Point 2009: Connecting the Black Power Generation to the Hip-Hop Generation. The conference, to be held here at the Jacob Carruthers Center for Inner City Studies, aims to continue NBUF’s tradition of teaching and training the next generation of community organizers and activists. The conference will include health screenings and cultural programs as well as workshops and programs on youth entrepreneurship, organizing, education and leadership.
This conference will also be special because Dr. Conrad Worrill, the current national chairman–who has served in that capacity for 25 years and is an NBUF founding member–will step down. There will be an election during the conference and it is very possible that Mr. Taharka, who has previously served as the national secretary, will be amongst the new wave of leaders.
“It’s a good thing (Dr. Worrill) is in sound health and mind to help make a smooth transition. We honor both the length and depth of his commitment to the organization and to our people,” said Mr. Taharka, who is eager to serve in whatever capacity his peers choose.
During the April 11 event, Dr. Worrill made it clear he will remain a strong part of the organization. “I am stepping down, but I am not going anywhere,” he said. “Ya’ll gonna still have to put up with me. I am going to sit in the back and be an elder. I will keep coming to meetings and doing what I do, but somebody else will be the public face of this organization.”
Headquartered in Chicago, NBUF is an organization made up of concerned and committed individuals and groups that have united to assume responsibility for working and leading the struggle for better lives for themselves and their children. The National Black United Front is a broad-based organization that includes social, political, religious and cultural sections of the Black community. For more information about NBUF’s conference, call 773-493-0900 or visit www.nbufront.org.
(Toure Muhammad is the publisher of beansouptimes.com and can be reached via email at [email protected])