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Solidarity Is The Solution

Fred Hampton: “You don’t fight racism with racism. We’re gonna fight racism with solidarity… We’re gonna fight capitalism with socialism”

A friend of mine who reads my posts on a regular basis became convicted that he should take some action to help the world. The question was ‘what to do?’ 

hand in hand photoLet’s begin the story with Fred Hampton who was the chairman of the Black Panther Party in Chicago. Nobody will ever convince me that the Black Panther Party wasn’t a huge positive, not only for the African American community but for the world in general. They stood up to abusive and racist cops, produced a newspaper, fed hungry children, got people involved in the political process and most important was a great example.

Fred Hampton was assassinated by the United States Government. I can’t go into the exact details but if you investigate the matter there is no other conclusion to be drawn. Today Chicago is a violent community. I will boldly state that if the United States had never destroyed the Black Panther Party, Chicago would be flourishing in a renaissance. As it is through COINTELPRO and other illegal methods the Black Panther Party was destroyed.

The Black Panther Party was simply fulfilling the last wishes of Joe Hill in ‘organizing.’ Joe Hill was, of course, the famous songwriter of the IWW who himself was assassinated by the state of Utah.

Now at this point, I want to stop and recognize that some of my readers are probably objecting to some of the things I’ve said. Many are probably ignorant of Fred Hampton, Joe Hill, COINTELPRO, and the IWW, let alone assassinations conducted by the United States government. There is an old adage that says “History is written by the winners.”

And so that is the first step in this ambiguous process to ‘help the world’ and that is to learn the history. You can see the signs of history being distorted around us. The Vietnam War is trying to be transformed into something other than blatant imperialistic aggression. They are trying to raise money for a World War 1 memorial. I won’t give a penny but I suggest that for a monument that they depict Eugene Debs locked in his prison cell. Eugene Debs was, of course, the Socialist candidate for president who said World War 1 was a war for profits and not for freedom. Debs reward for speaking the truth was a prison sentence.

Historically one will see that when things go bad, like say in the great depression, that people will get closer together. They do so as a necessity for survival. The lesson is simple, oppression brings solidarity. I can see this today in the African American community.  When somebody is killed or dies in Newark, the turn out for the funeral is tremendous. I don’t see this in the community that I was raised in. That’s why African Americans will address one another as ‘brother’ and ‘sister’ as they have that cohesive closeness.

One must recognize that things are not working in the world. You have billions of people in abject poverty. Babies starve to death. An aggressive war in Yemen may kill millions of people. There is so much tragedy, yet in America, many don’t feel it. They are secure in their middle-class enclaves sending their children to college to inherit what they attained. To that selfish buffer, I give a word of caution, “Just wait.”

The economy is controlled or better put manipulated. There are cycles in the economy going from boom to bust. In the process, the super rich steal the wealth of the masses. It will affect even the middle class. Once more the average American will be wondering where their next meal is coming from as their children are sent to some futile war to serve as cannon fodder. That is unless we stop this madness of ‘endless’ war.

Race, culture, economics, religion, and put whatever hangup you have on the list, does not trump our humanity. A divided people is a weak people. And so therein is the second task, to see that in the end, we are not that different from each other.  That we all share a common interest in a prosperous world without war.

So bringing this back into the context of mental health. We live in a sick and twisted society where the elite manipulates and controls the masses for their selfish gains. Those in the mentally ill community are very sensitive to these maneuvers. We are the barometers of society, our mere existence tells you that something is terribly wrong. In helping my personal mental illness I take medicine, society in general needs some assistance as well. As the apostle, John was accredited in saying “Little children love one another.”

Please check out my book of poetry called “Letting It Out.” It is a thought-provoking book and quite affordable.

Solidarity Is The Solution

John Kaniecki

John Kaniecki is a full-time caregiver for his wife Sylvia. He is a published writer and works with the Church of Christ. John has lived with bipolar for over thirty years and has been hospitalized nine times, three of which were committed. John has chronicled his life story in his memoirs "More Than The Madness". Also of note is John's book of poetry "Murmurings Of A Mad Man" which are poems written about being committed in Graystone Psychiatric Hospital. John believes in the power of words to change the world for the better. His website can be seen here. His books can be seen on Amazon. You can visit his personal blog "Turn A Page Or Two" here.

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APA Reference
Kaniecki, J. (2018). Solidarity Is The Solution. Psych Central. Retrieved on March 21, 2019, from


Last updated: 14 Jun 2018
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 14 Jun 2018
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