I've always admired people who transcend the limits of their physical body and place in the social hierarchy to stand up for the rights of all oppressed people. Jane Elliott comes to mind. If you're not familiar, she's the teacher known for the "blue eyes/brown eyes" exercise in 1968 who has dedicated her life to battling racial injustice as a white woman. Fred Hampton fit this mold from the other end of the spectrum--a Black man who fought for the rights of poor people from inner city Blacks to Latinos to white Appalachians and oppressed people internationally. Unfortunately due to his strong socialist views and growing following, he was seen as a threat to the establishment and was snuffed out violently by Chicago police in a late-night raid while he slept.
While Fred was a proud Black man, he didn't let race act as a barrier to helping people in need. Here's a direct quote from one of his speeches: "White power to white people, Black power to Black people, brown power to brown people, yellow power to yellow people, red power to red people, ALL POWER TO ALL THE PEOPLE." Now if someone said this today, they would be torn apart by liberals and the Twitter language police, most of whom belong to Generation Z and aren't used to the concept of class unity. (To be fair, "white power" has been abused and dragged through the mud by actual white supremacists and neo-Nazis who have given it the hideous image it has today). But the proof is in the pudding: What Fred actually accomplished in the segregated '60s was exactly what this divided country needs now more than ever. Another timely quote from the docudrama Judas and the Black Messiah:
|Original Rainbow Coalition|Chairman Fred Hamptons Rainbow Coalition First History
|Fred Jr. stands near his father's bullet-riddled grave|