i always liked this brother.
he was honest, sincere, and very smart - a gifted communicator, a college student, a young father and husband, and an officer in the black panther party. how cool that he could see the positive impact of his hard work in the community and how it was making a difference in the lives of so many people. but it was the twang in his voice that got me. he seemed so down to earth and folksy and accessible. even now, when i see film clips of him casually talking politics, he feels like someone i used to know.
fred was killed - actually what i should say is, murdered - in his apartment by the chicago police in conjunction with the fbi. it seems that j. edgar hoover - everyone's favorite crossdressing homosexual! - was willing to do anything to twart a black power movement, even if that meant assassinating all of its officers.
i think the black power movement was extremely dangerous to the status quo because it was so inclusive. all power to all people wasn't just a chant they threw up in the air at rallies. they meant it. such a radical shift would have destroyed everything that edgar held dear. everyone would have stopped obsessing about things like race and gender issues and they would have focused on what's really going on.
here's the documentary "the murder of fred hampton" in four parts. i know it's a little long, but trust me - it's well worth watching. and really, shouldn't we always make every effort to know our history?