With all of the protests and riots consuming the nation in the wake of George Floyd’s death, the dean of students at Stanford University decided to send out a supportive, uplifting email to all of the students to comfort them in these troubling times. And what better way to inspire young minds than with an inspirational quote? Perhaps something from Martin Luther King, Rosa Parks, or even Malcolm X? Naw. Those are all too milquetoast for this occasion. Instead, Dr. Mona Hicks decided to go with something a bit more “in your face.” She chose a quote from a convicted cop-killer who remains on the FBI’s top ten most wanted list to this very day. (Free Beacon)
In a message addressing the nationwide protests and riots that followed the death of George Floyd at the hands of police, the university’s dean of students, Dr. Mona Hicks, cited the “loving” words of Assata Shakur, who was convicted in 1973 for the murder of a police officer and remains on the FBI’s “Most Wanted” list.
“As a Black woman, I am also struggling to make meaning in our world today…. This loving refrain from Assata Shakur still rings true as I shelter-in-place: ‘It is our duty to fight for our freedom. It is our duty to win. We must love and support each other. We have nothing to lose but our chains,’” Hicks said. The quote Hicks cited borrowed from the words of Karl Marx, who wrote in The Communist Manifesto that workers have “nothing to lose but [their] chains.”
In case you don’t recall, Shakur, aka Joanne Chesimard, was a member of the Black Panthers back in the 70s until she decided they weren’t quite radical enough for her. She then joined the Black Liberation Army and murdered a New Jersey State Police trooper execution-style by the side of a highway. (She was already wanted in connection with several bank robberies and other felonies.) She later escaped from prison and fled to Cuba where she remains today.
Shakur remains a very popular figure on the left and among Democrats. If that quote she used in her email sounds familiar to you, it might be because it was the same quote chanted at the opening of the 2019 “We the People Summit” for Democratic presidential candidates. The chant was led by a leader of the NAACP and none of the candidates made a peep about the choice of quotable material. Of course, Shakur didn’t come up with it herself. She cribbed it from Karl Marx and The Communist Manifesto.
That’s far from the only example of Democrats’ love affair with the cop-murdering fugitive. In 2017, the Women’s March tweeted out a painting of Shakur on her birthday in “celebration” of her “revolutionary” lifestyle and her contributions to feminism and against racism or something. They then had to issue a flurry of tweets as to why they weren’t a violent organization but Shakur still deserves recognition.
Further out west, USC Berkeley at one point tried to rename one of their buildings after her. (The building was named after former university president David Barrows, an anthropologist. And you know how anthropologists are, amirite?) Barrows wasn’t a slave owner. He was president of the university in the 1920s. But he was “problematic,” unlike a convicted cop killer.
Some things never change, I suppose. Shakur remains an icon on the left, which really says a lot more about her liberal admirers than it does about Shakur herself. She was just a common criminal with a history of violence. Those who adore her are probably sending you a pretty solid signal in terms of what they think of law enforcement.