IN HONOR OF THE LEGACY OF OSCAR LOPEZ RIVERA AND THE ANTI-COLONIAL STRUGGLE OF THE PUERTO RICAN PEOPLE FOR SELF DETERMINATION, THE BLACK IS BACK COALITION FOR SOCIAL JUSTICE, PEACE AND REPARATIONS SUPPORTS THE NATIONAL PUERTO RICAN DAY PARADE IN NEW YORK CITY, JUNE 11, 2017. We remind people that this tremendous celebration of cultural pride was born in response to the United State’s brutal oppression of the Puerto Rican people who would be murdered in the streets by the FBI for expressing a desire for Puerto Rican independence and who would be given 10 year prison sentences for merely carrying a Puerto Rican flag, as the US declared doing so a felony. Today’s corporate profiteers and puppet politicians seek to “white wash” this history and the continued pillaging of the island, as massive structural unemployment, a decaying infrastructure, and unprecedented debt plague Puerto Rico under US domination. Therefore, on June 11th it is imperative that all freedom fighters everywhere deliver a strong message to these instruments of oppression by showing that we support Oscar Lopez Rivera and the right for self determination for all oppressed people. The manner in which he served our movement while incarcerated was and is a profile of courage. His perseverance in the face of continued government mental and physical torture was accompanied by a magnificent liberation struggle by his supporters that must be emulated by all on both sides of the wall.
Moreover, we say FREE ALL POLITICAL PRISONERS as we reject the authority of the US Imperialist State to imprison anyone fighting against it’s vicious, racist, system of governance. It is imperative now more than ever that all oppressed people stand united as one to fight for the release of all of our incarcerated freedom fighters. We must be resolute in letting this government know that we will not allow anyone to define our narrative, our heroes or our political discourse. The Black Is Back Coalition does not believe that the future of any people should be in the hands of institutions and governments whose existences are rooted in their bloodshed, and as African people on the front lines of the black liberation struggle, we stand united with all oppressed people fighting against colonialism.