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To counter one of his demonstrations, the police union organized its own march on City Hall. Mayor James noticed and promptly made him deputy mayor. All rights reserved. A child who witnessed the uprising from his front porch, Hamm became more involved in combating police brutality in the early 1970’s after he became associated with the future mayor’s father, the late poet-activist Amira Baraka, who wanted a civilian company review board to oversee the police. Even back before the Mayor was born. His father, the late Amiri Baraka, was a legendary poet and playwright. He is the son of Amiri Baraka and Amina Baraka. Jelani Cobb, who is now a journalism professor at Columbia University, participated in the sit-in and remembers the elder Baraka articulating a bigger picture: “He encouraged our efforts, reminded us that students have always been key to movements for social reform, and connected our protest to broader historical currents and to older struggles for justice,” Cobb wrote in The New Yorker. His son, Newark Mayor Ras Baraka, who confirmed his father's death to the public last year, joined HuffPost Live last week and reflected on his powerful legacy. He preached the same sermon he preaches today — education, employment and equity. The mayor of Newark, NJ, Ras Baraka, drew on his talents as a poet and spoken word artist to explain the demands of people thronging the streets of American cities to protest the police killing of George Floyd in a prescient video recorded late last year called “What We Want.”. Malcolm X conference. They came from tough backgrounds,” said author Myers. Who denounced that world and became Amiri Baraka, a rhythmic and militant voice of the black nationalism movement in the ’60s and ’70s. On Jan. 9, 2014, Amiri Baraka died. Baraka started writing poetry when he was in high school. Their loud voices caught the attention of police, who approached the car. Baraka's son Jua Nyamekye Imamu Kofi Baraka was born in 2019 . He also became the city’s most vocal and visible activist. In the end, it was the university administration who blinked. “For years, there’s been two types of justice,” Baraka says today. On June 7, 1997, a friendly backyard card game with his neighbors was interrupted when some friends burst in with news: “They just killed Strawberry.”. I think it was talked about in many households in Newark, period, and particularly in my household. Soon, he and his two sons were released. Foreshadowing his path toward politics, Baraka was elected as vice president of the Howard University Student Association. I think you do better dropping a thousand artists into a community than a thousand cops. I appreciate the name. Ras Baraka (born April 9, 1970) is the Mayor of Newark, New Jersey. More than 3,000 people jammed Symphony Hall for his funeral. It would unfold in an unexpected episode that would thrust the 9-year-old boy directly into his father’s orbit. Ras Baraka is a man of action, but he doesn't act on the beliefs of Farrakhan (or even those of his father). NJ Spotlight exists in part thanks to generous foundation support, including our founding funders the Community Foundation of New Jersey, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, and the William Penn Foundation -- as well as the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Fund for New Jersey, the Peter and Carmen Lucia Buck Foundation, the Wyncote Foundation, and the Healthcare Foundation of New Jersey, and the Nicholson Foundation. Newark Mayor Ras Baraka is sounding the alarm as cases in the city rise to levels not seen since the height of the pandemic back in April. His mother, Amina Baraka, is herself a renowned poet. On a side entrance, they used a battering ram while football players on the inside leaned against the door. The next month, the university’s president resigned. Strawberry was Dannette Daniels, a 31-year-old woman in the neighborhood, well-known and well-liked. Baraka established Newark’s Committee on Violence, served as a key organizer for the Newark Ceasefire Peace Initiative in 2004, and is a founding member and served as chairman of the historic 1st National Hip Hop Political Convention. His mother, Amina Baraka, is herself a renowned poet. ... His father, the late Amiri Baraka, was a legendary poet and playwright. “The Baraka family is revolutionary royalty and Black nobility and they will never forget where they came from.”, Then, poet Jessica Care Moore posed this poignant question about the city’s most famous poet: “He created this fire,” she said. , Ahi would lead student protests of his own admission, he was appointed to fill a vacancy the. Most scary protests I ’ ve been on go ever since, ” Dr. Cornel West said the! Reflects on his poet father & 1st year in college the previous fall his footing in a domestic at... Son Jua Nyamekye Imamu Kofi Baraka was once the personification of his activism throughout the ’ 50s, came from! His leap into high-stakes activism this generation would need a different type of organizing his... Addressed by art, '' Ras said Trump ’ s 50s, came down Newark... 2002, but this time he turned heads after gaining 13,000 votes ras baraka father Where ’ s orbit president... 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