Getting justice for our African Suns
PowerFul sister-mama- community leader Sala has been family with POOR Magazine since my mama Dee and I first started in 1996 doing journalism workshops for other poor mamaz and daddys like us. Sala, like many low-income, Black, Brown and poor mamas including my mama Dee, was struggling to raise her children on the crums of welfare and also were determined to tell our truths and make our own poor and indigenous people-led media.
Fast foreward to 2001 Sala launched the effort to stop the senseless violence perpetrated by us killing us, i.e, the guns so easily attained by our young peoples of color in our own hoods, towns and barrios. this became the powerFUL march she called the One Life Walk-
Then in January of 2015 I received a horrific call that brought me to my knees. Four young African Suns murdered execution- style while driving in a van in the Fillmore district of San Francisco. A neighborhood violated by an onslaught of displacement led by one modern day colonizer devil-oper and poltrickster legislation after another and most recently an influx of what i call the gentryTechNation pushing low and no-income communities of color into smaller and smaller pieces of what used to a thriving Black and Brown neighborhood transforming it into the FillNoMo as coined by A. Faye Hicks, Po Poet Laureate of POOR Magazine.
It was in the FillNoMo, struggling with this insane climate of removal, that these young men were executed. As i prayed, wept and reflected on this horrible murder and because of my own experience through the violence of displacement this formerly unhoused, evicted and displaced mama's first mind went to a gentrification motive for these murders or what author and LA poet laureate Luis Rodriguez refers to as poLice fueled gentrification.
No matter what the motivation of this horrible murder of our children, Sala and the other fierce mamas will not give up until the truth comes to light. As a parent of a 12 year old Sun my heart cries every day for Sala and so many mothers who have lost their suns and daughters to community violence and po'Lice violence, who like Sala says, will never give up fighting for justice for their babies.