by Alton H. Maddox, Jr.
Warren Ballentine has a radio program on Sirius Satellite Radio (“128 the Power”) weekdays from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. It precedes Rev. Al Sharpton’s “Keeping it Real”. A listener from Atlanta called in to Ballentine last week about Tony Brown of Tony Brown’s Journal. Apparently, Brown is urging Blacks to empower themselves by purchasing computers.
This was the shocker. Ballentine had never heard of Tony Brown even though Brown had hosted the nationally-syndicated Tony Brown’s Journal for decades and, among other things, he had been the founder and dean of Howard University School of Journalism. In short, he has been around and he has paid his dues in journalism.
This lack of knowledge reminded me of the last program of “Open Line” on WRKS-FM this year in April. The Kiss Team was unaware that “Open Line” was a public affairs program. The activism of UAM had been responsible for its birth in September 1989 and after the arrest of the “Central Park 7”. It had been started to address public affairs issues.
I immediately wrote a letter to WRKS-FM and sent a copy of it to the Federal Communications Commission about dropping “Open Line” from the airwaves. WRKS-FM could arguably assign its license to ESPN but it could not assign its duties. “Open Line” is public affairs programming and it is a duty of WRKS-FM to keep it intact.
At the very least, WRKS-FM would have to contract with a similar license holder for “Open Line”. It did: WBLS-FM. I was the only person to file a complaint with the FCC. It resulted in keeping “Open Line” on the airwaves temporarily. WBLS-FM is on a life support system. It may fold at any time.
Now, I intend to not only restore “Like It Is” to the airwaves but also to revive “Positively Black” and “Black News”, among others. As long as the Democratic Party is in the White House, it controls the FCC. President Barack Obama could snap his fingers and this problem of public affairs programming for Blacks could be resolved immediately. The hurdle is that Blacks intend to continue to practice “plantation politics” on November 6.
“Friends of Like It Is” was established last year in October after “Here and Now” not only supplanted “Like It Is” but it also erased Black history and culture. For those Blacks who love their revered ancestors, this was an unpardonable sin. It caused those Blacks who dearly love their ancestors to draw a line in the sand. We are prepared for a protracted struggle.
“Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will”. The first misstep is for Cong. Ed Towns to have decided unilaterally that he was ready to ride off into the sunset. An officeholder should be accountable to his constituents. Towns was not and it was to the detriment of his constituents.
His buddies, City Councilman Charles Barron, Rev. Al Sharpton and Bob Law, should have encouraged him to remain on the Commerce Committee in the U.S. House of Representatives. It has jurisdiction over the FCC. White members of Congress with seniority must keep on their boots. This is political accountability and respect for the race.
If Bob Law is serious about Black radio, he should organize a petition drive throughout Connecticut, New York and New Jersey and demand that President Barack Obama meet Law’s demands before November 6 “or else”. Otherwise, Mr. Obama will behave like any other politician. “The squeaky wheel gets the grease.”
In 1996, President Bill Clinton signed the Telecommunications Act of 1996. This legislation killed Black ownership of radio and television stations. Black selected officials said zero. President Ronald Reagan had already abolished the “Fairness Doctrine” in 1987. Propaganda wars started and Clear Channel, after 1996, began to enjoy a monopoly over the airwaves. Steven Biko said it best: “The most potent weapon in the hands of the oppressor are the minds of the oppressed”.
Utrice Leid called me this past Friday. Many of the media outlets linked to Black, Latino and Asian communities will go on the auction block on Friday, October 3, 3012 while some white attorneys have convinced Bob Law to file a frivolous complaint with the FCC. I wish Bob Law good luck. Unfortunately, this issue of Black ownership was decided in 1996.
We are always knocking on the wrong door, talking to the wrong people and raising the wrong issues. This is why I proposed to establish a media rights organization with the organization’s first year acquiring and disseminating media education. Otherwise, Blacks will always be at the mercy of white lawyers. October 2012 will be the first anniversary of this effort. This is a victory in itself. We have also kept WABC-TV on its toes and “Open Line” is still on the airwaves.
Elks Plaza: Thursday- The presidential debate between President Barack Obama and his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney, will occur on Wednesday, October 3, 2012. The next evening, October 4, 2012 at 7:00 p.m. UAM will replay the presidential debate and Alton Maddox will dissect the debate with the teachings of Prof. Melvin Tolson, the classic methods of argument, the techniques of critical thinking and a history of the presidents in the “Executive Mansion” and the “White House” (1799-Present).
Field Trip to Baltimore and Washington- Every year, hundreds of thousands of white children are transported by airplanes, trains and buses to the nation’s capital to become familiar with historic buildings, monuments and statues in addition to the design of the streets of the city, among other things. This trip fails to give them a true history of those objects, designs and matters in additional to the urban planning and architecture.
In the meantime, most Blacks parents refuse to invest any money in their children to give them a true, historic meaning of those objects, designs, architecture, urban planning and other matters. If the Black children do go on a tour of the nation’s capital, the tour guide must be white. This means a “white-out” of history.
Black people actually reinforce the “doctrine” of Negro inferiority by either withholding the truth from their children or putting money on their feet instead of putting it in their “heads”. Thus, white educators tell their story. Our story –the true story– is never told. This gives white children a leg up on life.
Tony Browder is the best tour guide of Washington, DC in the nation. He traces the architecture of Washington back to ancient Egypt. This is the purpose of “Nile Valley on thePotomac” field trip. Added features are the “Blacks in Wax Museum” in Baltimore, MD and the “African American Civil War Museum” in Washington, DC.
By acquiring a grasp of our history, our children can change the European-centered, educational system and turn Brown v. Bd. of Education on its head. Black history has never been a part of the school curriculum. Our children can change education by giving black history answers to white history questions. Let truth decide the correct answers.
Black parents, guardians and students should depart Brooklyn on the “Freedom Bus” to Baltimore and Washington, DC on the evening of October 5, 2012. The bus returns on the evening of October 7, 2012. The educational fun starts immediately with the bus departing Brooklyn. For more information, call Freedom Retreat for Boys and Girls at 917-514-6523.
October 10, 2012 Dr. Arthur Lewis . Topic: “African Americans and Health.” “. Elks Plaza, 1068 Harriet Tubman Boulevard (Fulton Street) Brooklyn, N.Y. (between Franklin and Classon avenues 7:00 pm. Please support the Freedom Retreat for Children.
October 17, 2012 Dr. James Small. Topic: “Spirituality and the ability to provide food, clothing and shelter.” Elks Plaza, 1068 Harriet Tubman Boulevard (Fulton Street) Brooklyn, N.Y. (between Franklin and Classon avenues 7:00 pm. Please support the Freedom Retreat for Children.
October 24,2012 Dr.Yaa-Lengi Ngemi. Topic: “African and American History.” “. Elks Plaza, 1068 Harriet Tubman Boulevard (Fulton Street) Brooklyn, N.Y. (between Franklin and Classon avenues 7:00 pm. Please support the Freedom Retreat for Children.
October 31, 2012. Community Cops Topic:“Community issues “ Elks Plaza, 1068 Harriet Tubman Boulevard (Fulton Street) Brooklyn, N.Y. (between Franklin and Classon avenues 7:00 pm. Please support the Freedom Retreat for Children.
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