by Alton H. Maddox, Jr.
The uniqueness of my writings is that I make arguments based on a Black perspective. This means that these writings are based on history, philosophy and logic. Recent examples are “Cong. Akin Revisits Celia, A Slave” and General Obama and “Private” Romney. This perspective is not found on “CNN”, “MSNBC” and other media outlets.
Blacks are entitled to this perspective on public affairs programming under FCC law. This right is being honored in the breach. Part of the problem in the Black community is the lack of knowledge of media law and media history. Malcolm X said it best, “Of all the disciplines, history is best qualified to reward our research”.
Frederick Douglass was no slouch. He used the North Star to advance our arguments against slavery. Advocacy journalism is no longer available in the Black community. I was continuing the work of Frederick Douglass until Wilbert Tatum’s body temperature went cold. This ended my writings in the New York Amsterdam News. The culprits were “members” of “our” community.
Last year, Gil Noble made his transition and, immediately, “Like It Is” was tossed out the window. According to white supremacists and house Negroes, “Like It Is” was too Black. Black history and culture had to be gutted. Whites do not like to remember their bloody involvement in our past which has resulted in our current predicament.
Before Gil Noble had made his transition due to the pressures of fighting WABC-TV for insisting on an early exit of “Like It Is”, Elombe Brath had already been given a “hot shot”. He is now a “vegetable”. Brath was the architect of “Like It Is” and Gil’s right hand person. At the “tribute” for Gil, no one honored Elombe. He was not even mentioned.
WABC-TV would like for me to go away and the death of Gil Noble and the vegetation of Elombe Brath to be put in a cold case file. I am bent on demanding active and continued homicide investigations. This is the least that any Black person, not living on a plantation, can do to resist continued destruction of Blacks in media. The CIA founded ABC-TV for mind control.
Last Thursday at 2:54 p.m., I was listening to “Keeping It Real” on radio in Atlanta. Rev. Al Sharpton, its host, insists that it not be aired “live” in New York City. It is aired later in New York City with no phone calls. He does not want to take calls from the people who know him best; that is, people like me who he refuses to debate anywhere and at any time with gloves off.
At this time, “Ramona” called in to the program to express her opinion. She noted that many people in the South were without access to satellite radio and to cable television. Tom Joyner and Rev. Al Sharpton, according to Ramona, should hook up to air some of Sharpton’s programs over Joyner’s program. Blacks need to hear and read a diversity of views.
Sharpton noted that given the Obama-Romney “feud” which will be settled in November, it is imperative that Black people be subjected to the widest range of information from a diversity of sources. This is the same man that has chosen to keep Blacks in New York from participating in his daily radio program and has “argued” successfully for “Here and Now” to replace “Like It Is”. This is cultural genocide.
Rev. Sharpton was not a fan of “Like It Is” and “Like It Is” was not a fan of Rev. Sharpton. He enjoyed no amicable relationship with either Gil or Elombe. He was never a frequent visitor on “Like It Is” and it would not surprise me that Gil never invited him to be a guest. There is more to this story. Stay tuned.
On Thursday, Rev. Sharpton made my argument. Blacks should, at the very least, be entitled to public affairs programming. Sharpton is a hypocrite, however. He practices censorship. Like Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey, Sharpton is also a media hog. He employs any issue or person to advance his personal interests.
Like Christie who threw Romney under the bus, Sharpton will do the same thing to President Barack Obama. Sharpton was groomed on the Koch-D’Amato Plantation. He is a switch hitter and, in November, he is guaranteed to be a big winner. He was a dear friend of the late Rev. Jerry Falwell and is a friend of former President Bill Clinton.
Many Blacks believe that Sharpton is leading the charge for President Obama in the Black community. He has fashioned no voter registration drive and he has refused to author a Black agenda. Some Blacks are not interested in plantation politics. If they vote for President Obama, they want him to do something for them. According to Frederick Douglass, “Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will”.
When I arrived in New York in 1973, all of Black New York agreed that Rev. Sharpton was a “snitch” and a “sell-out”. The list of those in agreement included but was not limited to Sonny Carson, Al Vann, Rev Herbert Daughtry, Gil Noble, Les Payne, Rev. Calvin Butts, Sister Souljah (1987), C. Vernon Mason, Roger Green, Charles Barron, Viola Plummer and Major Owens. I did not know Sharpton until 1987.
In March 1988 after Sonny Carson had kept him at bay in Howard Beach, Sharpton interjected himself into the Tawana Brawley case against my specific command for him not to accuse Steven Pagones. I advised him that I would go solo. At the formation of United African Movement, its members decided to give Sharpton a second chance. In hindsight, this was a disastrous decision.
“What you don’t know can kill you”. It is hard to believe that this saying came out of the mouths of Black activists in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut since censorship is widely practiced, without objection, in the tri-state. The same “suspects” are given access to the airwaves every Sunday to promote mythologic.
One would suspect that the best thinkers in the United States reside in the tri-state since New York is the media capital of the world. Different sources of information in the United States may be available in New York but it is kept in a bottle with a tight lid. This tight lid is in the hands of the media both white and Black.
In the Black community, censorship is having a deleterious effect. Censorship means “prior restraint” on expression. If, for example, Steven Pagones raped Tawana Brawley –and he did—you must keep quiet for fear of retribution. History repeated itself with the rape of Nafissatou Diallo by Dominique Straus-Kahn. Our community including the Black media kept quiet.
George Zimmerman used the writ of prohibition to get rid of the judge who would preside over the murder charges in State v. Zimmerman. The lawyer for Ms. Diallo was afraid to use it to reinstate the rape charge in New York v. DSK. The Black community could have used the writ of prohibition to avenge the rape of Ms. Diallo. I was not allowed to go on commercial radio or television to discuss this matter.
On Friday, September 7, 2012 at 4:00 p.m., I will be on “Caldwell Chronicles” on WBAI-FM (99.5) to discuss some serious political and legal issues. By November 6, Blacks must have fashioned a political agenda and a political strategy. The clock is ticking. Every minute is precious.
On Sunday, September 9 at 2:30 p.m., I will be on WHCR-FM (City College). This program is hosted by the able “Black Leroy” to discuss some of the most pressing issues. This discussion can also be heard on the Internet. Further information will be forthcoming.
On Tuesday, September 11 at 5:00 p.m. I will appear on some public access channels in New York. There must be a grassroots effort to get the borough presidents to air “Community Cop” at the same time on Tuesday afternoons. We should bombard these borough presidents with letters and telephone calls early and often. These incumbents should be swept out of office.
On Saturday, September 15, 2012 at 9:00 a.m., I will be conducting a media workshop and lecture to get a media rights organization airborne in the tri-state area soon. We will also calculate a political strategy for November. The implementation of this political strategy requires a knowledge of law and politics.
The venue for this September 15 workshop will be at the Cotton Club, 656 West 125the Street in Harlem. Call 718-834-9034 for registration information. The Cotton Club is located near the Westside Highway. Take the “1” train to 125th Street. Walk one block.
Too honest for the White Press and too black for much of today’s Black Press; bullet columnist Alton Maddox upsets the same people and status quo as he did as an uncompromising Defense Attorney. He is also a founding member of the Freedom Party. Please sign his Petition to save “Like It Is.” Contact him at c/o UAM P.O. BOX 35 BRONX, NY 10471