Special Black August Liberation Forum

Friday, August 25 @ 6:00 PM
Southeast Community Center
901 Shelby St.

Every year, PSL Indianapolis honors Black August, a month during which activists and organizers study, commemorate, and rededicate themselves to the heroic, centuries-long, and ongoing struggle for Black Liberation. The origins of Black August date to August 21, 1971, when Field Marshal George Jackson was assassinated by prison guards who killed Jackson but immortalized his spirit and legacy. As ongoing events in Western Africa demonstrate, Black Liberation is an internationalist project.

We will learn the details about the ongoing anti-imperialist developments in Niger, Mali, Burkina Faso, and Guinea, and what they mean for the world and for the movement in Indianapolis. In addition, we are honored to have two special guest speakers, Travis Washington and Pastor Jamil Campbell, who will address pertinent topics to the Black Liberation struggle today: racist police violence and how we can build a broad and united movement that includes political groups as well as others, including churches and religious organizations.

Washington, who earned his undergraduate degree in University Studies and Africana Studies as well as a Master’s in Education Administration at Southern Indiana University, has been heavily involved in community activism for several years.

Washington founded and is building support for the “Hands Up Act,” a bill that will enforce a mandatory minimum prison sentence of 15-years on killer cops.

Although his petition has almost 3 million signatures, it has received relatively little coverage in the media. The Indianapolis Liberation Center is partnering with Washington to advance this cause in Indianapolis and the broader region. Given that mandatory minimums are imposed on the rest of the population for non-violent crimes, why should the police be exempted?

Pastor Campbell, originally from Haughville, has served as a Pastor at several churches over the past seven years. He is currently a chaplain at Life’s Journey Hospice and spreads the word of love and power to the Black community.

Campbell will speak on Black August from the perspective of Liberation Theology, a tradition that reclaims the origins of Christianity by applying it directly to the struggles of oppressed people.

Liberation theology has historically played crucial roles in various people’s movements. In the U.S., Black Liberation Theology emerged and helped build the revolutionary upsurge of Black and all oppressed and exploited people during the 1960s-70s, the same period during which Jackson and so many other leaders were assassinated, imprisoned, or otherwise repressed by the U.S. state.

As Malcolm X said, “You can’t have capitalism without racism.” This means that we can’t have socialism and an egalitarian society without fighting against white supremacy and for Black Liberation. We look forward to seeing you at this special Liberation Forum, where we will discuss and advance both of these struggles!