Power to the Poor: Black-Brown Coalition and the Fight for Economic Justice, 1960-1974 (Justice, Power, and Politics)
Gordon K. Mantler
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The Poor People's Campaign of 1968 has long been overshadowed by the assassination of its architect, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and the political turmoil of that year. In a major reinterpretation of civil rights and Chicano movement history, Gordon K. Mantler demonstrates how King's unfinished crusade became the era's most high-profile attempt at multiracial collaboration and sheds light on the interdependent relationship between racial identity and political coalition among African Americans and Mexican Americans. Mantler argues that while the fight against poverty held great potential for black-brown cooperation, such efforts also exposed the complex dynamics between the nation's two largest minority groups.
Drawing on oral histories, archives, periodicals, and FBI surveillance files, Mantler paints a rich portrait of the campaign and the larger antipoverty work from which it emerged, including the labor activism of Cesar Chavez, opposition of Black and Chicano Power to state violence in Chicago and Denver, and advocacy for Mexican American land-grant rights in New Mexico. Ultimately, Mantler challenges readers to rethink the multiracial history of the long civil rights movement and the difficulty of sustaining political coalitions.
had what looked like some terrible explosion of thorns, spikes, and razor wire. From the center of this melee of thorns, spikes, and razor wire protruded one spike, longer than the others, which was known as a chulk. This chulk was split so that it was really two spikes with a narrow gap between them, rather like two tines of a fork. It was these chulks that the Brembles used to pin Mack in place. They had driven their chulks deep into the ground in such a way as to pin his four limbs down. In
Camaro said. She beckoned the golem and whispered in his ear. “I want you to walk toward the boys’ room. Then, at the last minute, just as you reach the bathroom, you’ll be close to the outside door, right?” The golem had no idea if this was right. So he said, “Right.” “When you get there, do something to attract attention. Then run outside real quick!” Camaro did not specify exactly what the golem should do to attract attention, and this would prove to be a mistake. Because the golem followed
as if. But even as Gil tried to be patient, Risky’s haranguing tone was grinding his last nerve. It had not been easy getting this temple built. Even simple things like measuring a slab of stone could be very difficult—the invention of the tape measure was still thousands of years in the future. They would measure in “feet,” but each foot was slightly different, and after a man’s foot had been cut off, it would shrivel up and the toes would curl, so that a “foot” measured with a fresh foot would
really don’t like coffins. Most people don’t. But a person with claustrophobia will start sweating if you even just mention something like being buried alive. I know! What a wimp, right? And yet, to be shoved into a tiny space, unable to move your arms or legs, to feel yourself closed in, not enough air, all noise muffled, to hear perhaps the sound of dirt being shoveled onto . . . So, maybe not so crazy, right? Oddly enough, while Mack was afraid of all those things, he was not afraid of
squirm around in there and make him think about . . . about stuff. Strange stuff. But he had no time for strange stuff. He was the Destroyer! He had a reason for existence: destruction. He had a mission: create so much destruction that everyone fled the city and Risky could lay a perfect trap for Mack. Mack. That was another of those squirmy things in his head. What did it mean? Why was it in there? He frowned harder still and scrunched his eyes and even pounded the side of his massive bullet