Black Bourgeoisie Defend Their Own In Chicago Tragedy

Black Bourgeoisie Defend Their Own In Chicago Tragedy


ChickenBones: A Journal

for Literary & Artistic African-American Themes



Black Arts Advocate Pricks the Soft Belly of Traditional Leaders


Books by Marvin X

Love and War: Poems  / In the Crazy House Called America / Woman: Man’s Best Friend Beyond Religion Toward Spirituality

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Black Bourgeoisie Defend 

Their Own in Chicago Tragedy

By Marvin X


As we can see in the New York Times article below, there is more concern for the club owner than the 21 victims who perished at the Chicago southside din of iniquity. The National Public Radio stated the same, that civil rites leader Jesse Jackson, Jr., has shown more concern for his friend, club owner Dwain J. Kyles, than for the 21 victims of a tragic stampede.

Apparently they were nothing and their lives represent nothing to Jackson and his bourgeoisie comrades. NPR noted that Mayor Daly has silenced black preachers with development loans, muzzled black bourgeoisie with appointments and bought the grass roots with city jobs. NPR concluded there was no one to speak for the 21 dead young people or the poor class they represent. Apparently, Farrakhan doesn’t live in Chicago. Or is he part of the problem? The incident in Chicago reminds me of how Jim Jones was supported and defended by the San Francisco Black bourgeoisie down to the last drop of poison Kool Aide he administered to the 900 poor black people in Jonestown, Guyana.

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Jesse Jackson, a Club Owner and Lasting Ties  

By Jodi Wilgoren New York Times

CHICAGO, Feb. 19 — There was the Rev. Jesse Jackson in the early-morning chaos, consoling relatives of the 21 people killed in a nightclub stampede and vowing to help them seek justice in court. A few hours later, at a West Side police station, there was Mr. Jackson again, praying with the club’s owner, Dwain J. Kyles, a man he has known practically since the day Mr. Kyles was born. This was not their first tragedy together: The night the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was killed, Mr. Jackson and Mr. Kyles’s father, the Rev. Samuel Kyles, had been escorting him to a soul-food dinner at the Kyleses’ Memphis home. Monday morning’s nightclub disaster, and the finger-pointing following it, have put Mr. Jackson, this city’s most prominent African-American leader, in a strange spot. As always, he is supporting the victims, consulting his old friend Johnnie L. Cochran Jr. about legal options and coordinating funeral arrangements. But he is also supporting Mr. Kyles, who denies the city’s contention that the club was operating illegally. And he is trying to explain his own earlier efforts to help the troubled club survive. Mr. Kyles’s South Loop business — an upscale restaurant, Epitome, and a second-story after-hours hip-hop spot, E2 — was not just another liquor licensee battling with city officials over building codes. As Chicago’s largest black-owned entertainment establishment, it was host to all manner of social and political events for the African-American elite, and was also a magnet for the rowdy younger set. Nor is Mr. Kyles just another business owner. A leader of civil rights protest when he attended high school in Memphis, he later became a lawyer, worked for Harold Washington, Chicago’s only black mayor, and for a Tennessee congressman, Representative Harold E. Ford Sr., and toiled with Mr. Jackson’s Rainbow/PUSH Coalition on issues like minority contracting. Mr. Kyles’s former wife, with whom he currently lives, is Mr. Jackson’s former assistant. Mr. Jackson’s son, Representative Jesse L. Jackson Jr., is among the politicians to whom Mr. Kyles has donated in the past decade. The younger Mr. Jackson issued a statement this week describing Mr. Kyles as “a childhood friend” and “an upstanding example of a young professional person in our community.” On Monday morning, it was the elder Mr. Jackson who called Mr. Kyles’s father, known as Billy, to tell him of the nightmare at the club. “They were kind of extended family,” explained Frank Watkins, who spent 27 years working for Mr. Jackson and is now Congressman Jackson’s press secretary. “Because the Reverend and Billy Kyles were such good friends, obviously there were welcome arms whenever he came around,” Mr. Watkins said of Dwain Kyles. “He was clearly seen as part of the civil rights families, so to speak.” Today, back at his club for the first time since Monday’s melee, Mr. Kyles, 48, fell apart, sobbing as he tried to offer condolences before television cameras. Asked on Tuesday when Mr. Kyles might be available for an interview, his lawyer, Andre Grant, said, “Never.” Families of several of the victims have already filed lawsuits against the club, and the city took steps today to revoke all its licenses. In court documents, city lawyers said Epitome and E2 had served alcohol to minors on several occasions, illegally opened during a liquor-license suspension in January and failed to report assaults there. The city also says the liquor license should be taken away because, it maintains, Calvin Hollins Jr., a convicted felon, is running the club, though Mr. Grant has described Mr. Hollins as just a consultant. Mara S. Georges, Chicago’s corporation counsel, said this afternoon that the city was considering changing its policy so that the police would be notified of court orders like the one that should have barred anyone from entering the second-story nightclub. Ms. Georges also produced transcripts of court proceedings showing that Mr. Kyles was present when the order was described as covering “the mezzanine, the second floor and the V.I.P. rooms.” Mr. Grant has said that the court order prohibited use only of the V.I.P. skyboxes above E2’s dance floor, not the entire second-floor club.

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Charles Johnson on the meaning of Obama

The Seattle novelist and expert on Martin Luther King Jr. believes that Obama’s election is a sea-change moment for America and the world. “So we have evolved in terms of our understanding that excellence is colorblind.”— 28 April 2009

Robin Lindley—You’ve described Obama’s rise as evolutionary rather than revolutionary.

Charles Johnson: It speaks more to evolution in terms of the public attitude of the American people than Obama himself. He did not run as a challenging black candidate [but] on the promise of somebody who would bridge the divisions in American society. He doesn’t belong to the generation of Jesse Jackson and others. . . . Obama gave that talk on Fathers’ Day last year at a church in Chicago about better parenting and black responsibility. He was basically taking a page from the playbook of Bill Cosby, and Jesse Jackson was furious with him and got caught on the air saying he wanted to cut [Obama’s] nuts off for talking down to Ns, and he used the N word. So we [need] more honesty and not illusions.

One of the things that has to be addressed seriously is the dysteleological behavior in black male culture. At a community college in the South three young black women asked me “Mr. Johnson, what’s wrong with these young black men?” I said, “I know what you’re talking about, but I don’t know what the solution is.” They were so frustrated.

Robin Lindley What were these young women seeing in young black men?

Charles Johnson: They were seeing guys who just want to get over and get laid. They were seeing guys who do drugs or sell drugs. They were seeing guys who didn’t have their values, like valuing an education. They wanted guys they could feel good about, but they didn’t have that, which is sad.

I have talked about that in many essays, and people don’t want you to talk about it. King would talk about it, and people would say, “You’re airing dirty laundry. Don’t talk about that. Talk about what the white man is doing to us. Talk about the external problem, not this internal problem.” King said, “You have to have a battle waged on two fronts. One is the external battle to get rid of the things that keep black people down, segregation and [those issues], and one is the internal battle to raise our own standards.” He said, “You don’t win this war unless you have the battle on these two fronts because one supports the other.”—Crosscut


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Sharpton and Jackson Endorse War on Terror—A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford—Jesse Jackson said that the killing of bin Laden was a “huge psychological victory.” By this he clearly meant a psychological victory for Barack Obama, who put the hit out on bin Laden,just as he has placed American citizens on assassination lists with no recourse to due process. President Obama badly needed that psychological victory, since unemployment went up last month and now looms as the rock on which his presidency might shatter. . . . 

Jackson either needs to hand in his anti-war credentials right now, or find a good mouth doctor that will stop him from encouraging those who would increase the $1.2 trillion national security budget that is pushing human needs programs into the Valley of Death. Does Rev. Jackson think Obama deserves a “huge psychological boost” for having killed almost one thousand innocent civilian men, women and children in Pakistan last year with his drones, and is guaranteed to kill even more this year?

Rev. Al Sharpton shows that he is as crude and vulgar as his mentor Don King. Sharpton compliments Obama for being “cool under fire”—as if the world is attacking the White House, rather than the other way around. Obama, says Sharpton, “can see the bigger picture.” It does not bother Sharpton that Obama’s bigger picture means bigger wars. Which is alright with Sharpton, as long as he gets a bigger check.—


*   *   *   *   *’s 25 Best Selling Books

For July 1st through August 31st 2011  


#1 – Justify My Thug by Wahida Clark #2 – Flyy Girl by Omar Tyree #3 – Head Bangers: An APF Sexcapade by Zane #4 – Life Is Short But Wide by J. California Cooper #5 – Stackin’ Paper 2 Genesis’ Payback by Joy King #6 – Thug Lovin’ (Thug 4) by Wahida Clark #7 – When I Get Where I’m Going by Cheryl Robinson #8 – Casting the First Stone by Kimberla Lawson Roby #9 – The Sex Chronicles: Shattering the Myth by Zane

#10 – Covenant: A Thriller  by Brandon Massey

#11 – Diary Of A Street Diva  by Ashley and JaQuavis

#12 – Don’t Ever Tell  by Brandon Massey

#13 – For colored girls who have considered suicide  by Ntozake Shange

#14 – For the Love of Money : A Novel by Omar Tyree

#15 – Homemade Loves  by J. California Cooper

#16 – The Future Has a Past: Stories by J. California Cooper

#17 – Player Haters by Carl Weber

#18 – Purple Panties: An Anthology by Sidney Molare

#19 – Stackin’ Paper by Joy King

#20 – Children of the Street: An Inspector Darko Dawson Mystery by Kwei Quartey

#21 – The Upper Room by Mary Monroe

#22 – Thug Matrimony  by Wahida Clark

#23 – Thugs And The Women Who Love Them by Wahida Clark

#24 – Married Men by Carl Weber

#25 – I Dreamt I Was in Heaven – The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang by Leonce Gaiter


#1 – Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable #2 – Confessions of a Video Vixen by Karrine Steffans #3 – Dear G-Spot: Straight Talk About Sex and Love by Zane #4 – Letters to a Young Brother: MANifest Your Destiny by Hill Harper #5 – Peace from Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You’re Going Through by Iyanla Vanzant #6 – Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey by Marcus Garvey #7 – The Ebony Cookbook: A Date with a Dish by Freda DeKnight #8 – The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors by Frances Cress Welsing #9 – The Mis-Education of the Negro by Carter Godwin Woodson

#10 – John Henrik Clarke and the Power of Africana History  by Ahati N. N. Toure

#11 – Fail Up: 20 Lessons on Building Success from Failure by Tavis Smiley

#12 –The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

#13 – The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life by Kevin Powell

#14 – The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore

#15 – Why Men Fear Marriage: The Surprising Truth Behind Why So Many Men Can’t Commit  by RM Johnson

#16 – Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire by Carol Jenkins

#17 – Brainwashed: Challenging the Myth of Black Inferiority by Tom Burrell

#18 – A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose by Eckhart Tolle

#19 – John Oliver Killens: A Life of Black Literary Activism by Keith Gilyard

#20 – Alain L. Locke: The Biography of a Philosopher by Leonard Harris

#21 – Age Ain’t Nothing but a Number: Black Women Explore Midlife by Carleen Brice

#22 – 2012 Guide to Literary Agents by Chuck Sambuchino #23 – Chicken Soup for the Prisoner’s Soul by Tom Lagana #24 – 101 Things Every Boy/Young Man of Color Should Know by LaMarr Darnell Shields

#25 – Beyond the Black Lady: Sexuality and the New African American Middle Class  by Lisa B. Thompson

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The Shadows of Youth

The Remarkable Journey of the Civil Rights Generation

By Andrew B. Lewis

With deep admiration and rigorous scholarship, historian Lewis (Gonna Sit at the Welcome Table) revisits the ragtag band of young men and women who formed the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. Impatient with what they considered the overly cautious and accommodating pace of the NAACP and Martin Luther King Jr., the black college students and their white allies, inspired by Gandhi’s principles of nonviolence and moral integrity, risked their lives to challenge a deeply entrenched system. Fanning out over the Jim Crow South, SNCC organized sit-ins, voter registration drives, Freedom Schools and protest marches. Despite early successes, the movement disintegrated in the late 1960s, succeeded by the militant Black Power movement. The highly readable history follows the later careers of the principal leaders. Some, like Stokely Carmichael and H. Rap Brown, became bitter and disillusioned. Others, including Marion Barry, Julian Bond and John Lewis, tempered their idealism and moved from protest to politics, assuming positions of leadership within the very institutions they had challenged. According to the author, No organization contributed more to the civil rights movement than SNCC, and with his eloquent book, he offers a deserved tribute.—Publishers Weekly

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Michelle Alexander: US Prisons, The New Jim Crow  / Judge Mathis Weighs in on the execution of Troy Davis

The New Jim Crow

Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness 

By Michelle Alexander

The mass incarceration of people of color through the War on Drugs is a big part of the reason that a black child born today is less likely to be raised by both parents than a black child born during slavery. The absence of black fathers from families across America is not simply a function of laziness, immaturity, or too much time watching Sports Center. Hundreds of thousands of black men have disappeared into prisons and jails, locked away for drug crimes that are largely ignored when committed by whites. Most people seem to imagine that the drug war—which has swept millions of poor people of color behind bars—has been aimed at rooting out drug kingpins or violent drug offenders. Nothing could be further from the truth. This war has been focused overwhelmingly on low-level drug offenses, like marijuana possession—the very crimes that happen with equal frequency in middle class white communities.

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The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

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Ancient African Nations

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Negro Digest / Black World

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The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery /

George Jackson  / Hurricane Carter

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The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 — The Founding of Haiti 

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posted 29 October 2006 / updated 12 July 2008




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