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The Black Panther Party - Research Paper Example

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Introduction African Americans in the US suffered enormously in the hands of their white counterparts before and after the country achieved its independence. Their past is characterized by misfortunes and oppression as a result of poor representation as well as lack of economic empowerment…
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The Black Panther Party
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Download file to see previous pages They were the victims of constant harassment and violence orchestrated by white mobs such as the Ku Klux Klan and the government, especially the police, who arrested them arbitrarily without any justifiable reason to do so (Claver 29). It is for these reasons that these people found it necessary to come together and form an organization, which would be well equipped to protect them and to offer leadership necessary in improving their livelihoods. This paper is a critical evaluation of the Black Panther Party and its activities in the US from 1966 to 1982. The Black Panther Party The Black Panther Party was a political organization in the US, which existed between 1966 and 1982. It was established by Huey Newton and Bobby Seale as a movement to fight for the liberation of black people, who were going through racial discrimination and violence orchestrated by organizations, which advocated for white supremacy (Hilliard 18). The African American society at this time faced numerous challenges such as police brutality, racism, poverty and lack of political representation among others and, therefore, it was necessary for them to unite under a common agenda in order to defend themselves and protect their interests. To achieve these objectives, the party adopted a socialistic ideology, which led to the foundation of school feeding programs for pupils, whereby, more than 15000 children were beneficiaries. The party also felt the need to establish health facilities to cater for the African American people who were usually neglected by the national government and the white society as a whole, which perceived them as second class citizens, who did not deserve any compassion or sympathy (Hilliard 22). As earlier stated, police brutality against the African Americans was a common phenomenon. This was one of the issues that the party wanted to solve and to that end, members of the party organized themselves into several armed groups, which were to engage in patrols aimed at neutralizing inhumane police activities (Claver 44). The groups followed police officers whenever they were on patrol and if they dared arrest or harass a member of the community without a justifiable reason, then, the police were to be beaten and chased away from the vicinity. This led to occasional exchange of fire between the police and the vigilantes sometimes resulting to injuries and death. For example, in 1967, one of the founders of the party, Huey, was injured and hospitalized after a shooting incident involving the Oakland police and the party members. Later, while in hospital, he was accused of causing the death of a police officer during the incident. Similarly, the police officers ambushed several party members from the same department in 1968 for no apparent reason. The police just started firing at the persons’ vehicle, thereby, forcing people such as Eldridge Cleaver and Bobby Hutton, to take refuge in a basement of a nearby house. The police fired at them for a long time after which they threw teargas into the basement forcing Hutton to come out lifting his hands as a sign of surrender but the police sprayed him with bullets killing him instantly. This is proof of how government instruments disregarded human life with respect to the black society. In fact, it may be noted that the authorities, including the FBI, adopted numerous inhumane ways, such as assassination, ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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