40 Years: The Assassination of Chairman Fred Hampton and Defense Captain Mark Clark

"Until the killing of black men, black mothers' sons, becomes as important to the rest of the country as the killing of a white mother's son. We who believe in freedom cannot rest until this happens." Ella Baker

40 years have passed since the assassination of deputy Chairman Fred Hampton and Defense Captain Mark Clark of the Illinois Chapter of the Black Panther Party. On December 4th, Chairman Fred Hampton Jr., family and friends gathered in Chicago to remember the assassination of Chairman Fred and Defense Captain Mark Clark, as well as the struggle that continues for liberation. The San Francisco Bay View gives a comprehensive analysis of the events surrounding the assassination of Chairman Fred and Defense Captain Mark Clark and Democracy Now's “The Assassination of Fred Hampton: How the FBI and the Chicago Police Murdered a Black Panther” also speaks to the brutal murder of these two African-American political activists and their influence on the Black Power Movement.

What is most unsettling is the fact that Chairman Fred is one of so many examples of African American men, in particular, who have been brutally murdered by the hands of the U.S. government and/or government agencies. When watching videos of Chairman Fred speaking, it is horrible to think that he was assassinated simply because of his willingness to stand up for and speak out against the atrocities of police brutality. To say to the world that we, Black people, deserve the right to live freely, to move about freely, to be human. And to be such a young man, to have your life ahead of you. To have a pregnant wife beside you and to take a stand and risk your life. That's a warrior, respect and homage are certainly due.

The Last Poets, Pam Africa, Ramona Africa and others gathered on December 4th in solidarity and to remember the brutal assassination of both men. Pictures of the event are available here.