Fred Hampton. Say his name.
On this anniversary of the slaying of the Black Panther leader in Chicago — when black people face the fight of their lives — it is important for us to understand why his life and death mean so much to us now.
The charismatic chair of the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party accomplished a great deal before he was cut down at the age of 21. Hampton headed the Chicago chapter of the Panthers, where he formed a multiracial “rainbow coalition” of organizations, including Students for a Democratic Society, the Blackstone Rangers street gang, and a Puerto Rican organization known as the National Young Lords. He also started a community service program that included a free breakfast program for children and a free medical clinic, and held political education classes.
And under his leadership, the Chicago…
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