Black Panthers White Lies | Curtis Austin | TEDxOhioStateUniversity


Translator: Brandon Muschlitz
Reviewer: Denise RQ Good afternoon. I’ve been known as many things
over the course of my life. I’ve been known as a son, a brother,
a husband, an educator. But in 2008, I became known as a felon. And I became known as a felon through a very curious set
of circumstances. I was teaching at a university
in Mississippi at the time, teaching the History
of the Civil Rights Movement, and I needed a car. So, I did what most people would do. I went on the Internet and I found a car. This car I found was in Des Moines, Iowa. So I was going to fly to Des Moines
and drive the car back. A few weeks before that,
I’d had a book signing, and I actually ran out of books
at this book signing, but people wanted the books,
so they gave me cash, and wrote me checks, and said, “The next time you come through town
just bring the books with you.” And I said, “OK.” I’d do that. I knew that when I was driving
this car back from Iowa, I was going to have to
pass through this town, so, I took the books with me. I packed my stuff up,
went to the airport, checked in, made my way through security. And then I hear my name over the intercom. “Curtis Austin, return
to the check-in counter.” And so I do. I get back to the check-in counter,
and there’s this bevy of airport police and TSA agents surrounding my bag,
just hovering over my bag. And they’ve got these books,
and they’re looking at these books. And the book has
this picture on the cover. It’s a book about
the Black Panther Party. And they’re flummoxed. They’re taken aback, you know? They’ve got this black man,
he’s got a one-way ticket to Iowa, no clothes, no toiletries,
and all these books. And so they said, “Well,
we’re going to have to call the FBI.” I said, “Whoa! The FBI? Why?” He says, “Well, that’s what we do
in situations like this.” And that’s what they did.
They called the FBI. And the FBI came to the airport. TSA and airport security
escorted me upstairs, put me in a room, and this FBI agent came in the room
and began to interrogate me, but he had this book. He was going through this book,
and then he’d ask me questions, he’d look in the book
and ask me more questions, and this interrogation went on for hours. And I finally worked up the nerve
to say, “Am I under arrest?” And he said, “No, we’re just
asking questions here.” And I said, “Well,
does that mean I can leave?” And he said, “Yeah, you can leave.”
So that’s what I did. I left. I found another flight.
I went to Des Moines. I bought the car and drove it back
and dropped the books off and went back to work. I didn’t think much more about it. I mean, I thought it was bizarre,
but I grew up black in Mississippi and so you get used to the bizarre. (Laughter) And I don’t think about it anymore
until one day I’m talking with my boss, and she says, “Curtis, we have a problem.” And I said, “OK,
what kind of problem do we have?” She said, “Well, it’s come to my attention
that you’re a felon, and we can’t allow felons
to teach at the University.” A felon?! Wait a minute. This is a classic
WTF moment for me, right? (Laughter) I don’t know what’s going on
and she doesn’t either, but she says, “I think you should call the FBI.” That’s what I do. I call the FBI,
tell them who I am and why I’m calling, and they look me up on their system
and the woman I’m talking to says, “Yeah, it says you’re a felon.” I said, “Well, what did I do?”
She said, “I don’t know.” I said, “When did I do it?”
She said, “I don’t know.” I said, “Where did I do it?”
She said, “I don’t know. In fact I don’t have
any more information. Maybe, if you call the
U.S. Attorney’s office, they can give you more information. She gave me the number
for the U.S. Attorney’s office. I called them. They looked me up in their system,
and the person I spoke with said, “Yes, It says here you’re a felon.” And I asked the same set of questions,
and got the same exact set of answers. “I don’t know.” It literally takes me more than two years to get this felony removed from my record. I came to understand
that the felony was on my record because I had written a book
about the Black Panther Party. Some of you may be familiar
with the Black Panther Party. For those of you who are not,
it was an organization that started in 1966
in Oakland, California, as an effort to prevent the police
brutality and murder of black people. But it also organized
around a range of other issues that were affecting the black community,
like healthcare, and housing, and full employment,
and fairness in the courts. They wanted blacks to be tried
by juries of their peers because to that point
they were being tried by all whites. While they were organizing
around these issues, the press was vilifying them
and demonizing them and telling lies about them. In fact, one of the lies
is that it was this group of black men who wanted to go out
and kill white people. That’s what they were about. Nothing could be further from the truth. The fact of the matter
is the Black Panther Party, the majority of the people
in the Black Panther Party were not men, they were women. And a few years after their party started, the majority of the leadership
of the Black Panther Party were women. So, It just wasn’t true
that there’s this group of black men going around and killing white people. Another lie that has been told
about this organization is it was racist and anti-white, and they just didn’t like
white people at all. Well, also not true,
and I’ll prove that to you. The Panthers would find out
what the problems were in their communities
and attempt to solve them. For example, they realized that children
weren’t learning in school, and they weren’t learning
because they were hungry. So they decided to feed the children. They were going to feed them
before school, so they created
these free breakfast programs. And the way they created these programs was to go to the grocery stores
in their communities, ask the grocery store owners
if they would donate milk, and bread, and eggs, and meat, and cereal,
other things people eat for breakfast, and these store owners said yes,
and they donated these items. All over the country, in every city
where there was a chapter of the Black Panther Party,
– and there were about 40 – there was a free breakfast program. It’s not likely that these
white business owners would donate to the Black Panther Party
if they were actually racist. Another thing they did in the community
to serve the people was they created free health clinics. Again, they went around and found out
there were a range of health problems that needed to be attended to. Black people were rather poor,
so they couldn’t afford to go to doctors, couldn’t afford to go to hospitals. So the Panthers went
to hospitals and medical schools and asked the doctors and medical students whether they would come
to the black community and deal with some
of these medical issues. Overwhelmingly, they said yes. Again, all over the country, in cities wherever the Black Panther Party
set up chapters, there were these free health clinics; although they were being run
by the Black Panther Party, they were peopled by white people, so I don’t know
how they could be racist and anti-white if their signature programs
were actually being supported by fairly wealthy and often
middle class white people. One of the people who was very, very good
at pulling individuals, white and others, into the Black Panther Party orbit,
was a guy by the name of Fred Hampton. Fred Hampton was the leader
of the Chicago Chapter of the Black Panther Party. He was a very eloquent speaker.
He was very persuasive. Fred Hampton could persuade people
that there was actual injustice. More importantly than that,
he could persuade people that they should do something
to combat that injustice. So in addition to going
to these hospitals, and grocery stores, and getting the things
they needed for their programs, Fred Hampton also worked
with other groups and organizations who were Latino, Asian, Native American,
even large groups of poor whites who had moved up from the South
or into Chicago from Appalachia. They would work with these organizations and set up the same kinds of programs
in their communities. They were very successful at this, but the government
didn’t like what they were doing, so in addition to vilifying
and discrediting them in the press, they began to arrest its members and in very extreme cases,
to kill its members. And thats exactly what happened
to Fred Hampton. On December 4th, 1969, the Chicago Police Department,
the Illinois State Attorney’s Office, burst into Fred Hampton’s apartment
at 4:30 in the morning, while he and everyone else
in there were asleep, and just began spraying
the place with bullets. It wounded several people. There was a person guarding the door
named Mark Clark. They shot him straight through the heart,
and he died immediately. They make their way through the house
to Fred Hampton’s bedroom, find him there, he’s asleep,
because he’s been drugged, but he’s asleep next to his girlfriend
who’s eight and a half months pregnant, and they grab Fred Hampton by his hair
and shoot him in the back of the head at point blank range twice,
killing him instantly. That’s the end of Fred Hampton. So we have to ask ourselves,
what is it about this organization that prompt’s such an irrational,
over the top, and extreme response, that 40 years after the organization
has died, a lowly professor like myself can be stopped in an airport,
detained for hours, questioned, then labeled a felon for simply
writing a book about the organization? Why does Fred Hampton have to pay
with his life for simply organizing around issues, that everybody — there’s nothing wrong with feeing kids,
and taking care of sick people. There’s nothing wrong with not wanting
to be killed by the police. So we have to ask ourselves,
what is it about this organization? And I’ll tell you. The thing about this organization
is that it was actually anti-racist, and it made a point to work
with all people whether it was upper and middle class whites,
lower class whites, Asians, latinos, Native Americans. Anybody who wanted to help
solve these problems, this organization was willing
to work with them, and that was the problem. If this interracial organization
was not effective, people would not have been
so dead set against it. So it wasn’t just Fred Hampton
who had to pay. It wasn’t just me who had to pay
with being labeled a felon. You probably saw this a few weeks ago. Beyonce performed at the Super Bowl,
at the halftime show, and she and the women
who were dancing with her, dressed up in these black leather outfits,
these black berets, and they were dressed that way
to pay homage to the Black Panther Party. 2016 marks the 50th anniversary
of the founding of the Black Panther Party and they were trying to honor
this community service organization. But what they got in return
was a ton of hate mail. People all over the country are saying
they are racist and anti-white, they are cop haters. Police officers has said
that they don’t want to give her the security she needs at her concerts. Mayors have said
they don’t want her in their town. Beyonce is racist. Beyonce. I mean, racy maybe? But not racist. (Laughter) So, we just have to keep asking ourselves why are we told these stories
about the Black Panther Party, and who benefits
from us knowing these lies. I want to encourage you
to do your own research about the party, but be careful
when you’re doing your research because I’ve been studying
this subject for 25 years now, and what I’ve discovered is that 73%
of all the newspaper articles written about the Black Panther Party, were written by the FBI,
or people the FBI recruited. So there is all this villainy
and misinformation. And we spoke about
Fred Hampton a second ago, and I just want to tell you
that Fred Hampton and Mark Clark’s family actually sued the city of Chicago,
the State Attorney’s Office, a jury found them guilty, and they paid them
almost two million dollars. But that doesn’t bring Fred back,
and that doesn’t stop the villainy. We have to find out the truth
about this organization for ourselves, and I encourage you to do that. I also encourage you to question
your own biases about what you know about American history. And finally, I want to encourage you to reach out across
racial lines and ethnic lines, and do your part in solving the problems
that face our country today, because black people can’t solve
these problems on their own. White people can’t solve them
on their own. Latino people can’t solve them
on their own. Unless all of us come together as a people
and solve these problems, they will never be solved. So I say to you: power to the people. (Applause)

100 thoughts on “Black Panthers White Lies | Curtis Austin | TEDxOhioStateUniversity

  • This is just another example of why Amerikkka should be Tried for Crimes against Humanity and made to pay the DEBT owed to African Americans.

  • After all this time nothing much has change or will change as long as the same negative people are in charge and thats world wide

  • If this is true all Americans should revolt against our corrupt government. However, when yesterdays news is reported today, we cannot accept it as the truth.

  • Ive never heard it explained in this manner. Ive just encountered the media making the narrative seem like the Panthers are hostile towards white people for years of mistreatment.. But now I know better. Cool beans

  • The FBI doesn’t stop terrorist, they create the terrorist. Literally they go online to chat sites recruit idiots on far right, give them money bombs and know how….then they arrest them before the bombs go off. They don’t count as terrorist when the FBI does 73% of the work.

  • So-called "NEGROS"=Biblical ((HEBREW ISRAELITE SEEDLINE)) and all of you should know this and have figured this out already in 2019!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Also this is your enemies kingdom rulership at present that's beyond obvious that you have no power here in this society but if you get your spirit right with the Most High you will be in a great position of power in the Kingdom to Come (Hebrew Israelites) for the Kingdom to Come will be ruled by the Elect which are all so-called Blacks. Figure it out if you don't believe me and do your own research because there is no more excuses the information is out there!!!!!

  • It's horrific that in 2008-10 an FBI agent could just label someone a "felon" and that it would take two years to remove that from the record, even with no evidence of any conviction or even a charge. That's undeniable evidence of racism.

  • Why is it funny that the fbi have labeled this innocent man a felon, whilst not even being able to explain or answer why????? 👀

  • I love his talk but that last statement I must disagree with. We can't help everyone else, until we help ourselves first. It seems to me that as a culture we are so successful at bringing light to the issues of everyone. Their issues,(Latinos, Asians, poor whites, and others.) Get picked up while we as a people are left on the porch to continue to suffer injustices that don't need to be. I'm not saying we should hate anyone or leave them alone completely. Just focus on healing and growing our community first. Then give help to others.

  • Sorry, but I have a hard time swallowing this story. Particularly because it sounds suspiciously like the stories certain southerners used to tell about the Ku Klux Klan.
    "Oh, the Klan was just trying to protect the white community, they promoted community values, all that talk of racism was made up by the FBI, ect."
    So forgive me if I take your story about a wholly innocent, infallible, racial promotion group with just a grain of salt.

  • man,I was crazy about the B.P's back in the day.i wanted to be one really bad. but…….oh yeah b4 I 4get 'POWER2THEPEOPLE' I'm out.

  • He never really finished about his felony. He says he had a felony on his record and it took 2 years to get cleared up. Did he sue? This is a case any civil right attorney would love to fight.
    Seems like he left out a lot of info on himself and how he cleared his felony up and what was it for. He needs to finish the story. Lots of ??? On the table.

  • His story is moving but it still pisses me off, along with personal experience my cynicism for America grows .

    I welcome anyone to reply on some ole “ love it or
    Leave it “ bs

  • The truth of any situation is never readily apparent. The truth involves in having an open mind, a thirst for knowledge and an ability to put aside preconceived notions of what we assume we know. The status quo will remain such because no one in power wants to lose that power. No one on power wants to share that power. The people in power assume that they will be treated the way that they have treated others. Power to the people!

  • Yes I was a child. My moms best friend our neighbor was connected to them somehow. I do not remember them doing any crimes. Teachers walked out of my school saying they were afraid. We had few teachers for a couple years teaching jr high school. I did not understand why? I still don't. I didn't learn to read until I left Cleveland. I passed 9th grade but I missed over half the year. The School was just passing everyone it didn't matter if you went or not.

  • I need to check my records from Illinois, I was a state worker who got terminated from the State after 22 h years because of racial remarks by my supervisor, I moved to another state took a part time job because
    Of my health only after two years to hear my supervisor make a statement to another worker over the phone that I was under investigation, but I was never informed or notified by any one I found out also by old associates who now will not talk to me because they were instructed not to.

  • Over 300 dislikes??😯🙄🤦🏾‍♂️🤦🏾‍♂️.. and you cant even tap on the #'s to see who they are💁🏾‍♂️

  • Same rhetoric the present day prez is spewing..
    ABM……………….
    Caucasians writing about blacks wow. Writing negativity about blacks. Wow…..
    ABM……..
    This man is well spoken and I love what Huey and company did for all people. Especially the women…
    Just like the sisters of today being ostracized by the now prezzzzz….
    Phoooooey…
    This makes me so angry I have to contain myself cause I must go out amongst my fellow man and be what I am always , ABlackAmbassador. Or as I call it.
    ABlaMbassador..
    ABM………..

  • I was living in Oakland as a (white) teenager in 1966 (and beyond) and I can tell you there was a LOT of hatred by blacks toward white people, most of whom were innocent.

  • Yeah but they wanted exemptions from the draft in 1966 the release from jail of all African-Americans and compensation payments..and on Top they were socialist political party and the FBI considered them communist group and enemy of Americans!!

  • The miseducation and mischaracterization of people of color (and of native Americans) has created chaos in America. It has supported slavery, it has supported injustice in law/economics/healthcare/housing/access to unpolluted water-tainted food, and much more. These violations of human rights have been seen with chattel slavery, Jim Crow, lynching, violation of body for expression and exploitation. The list goes on and on. Generational deprivation has been the consequence of oppressive, and racial politicalization. Reparations are warranted.

  • People need to wake up in this country it’s been out of control and has gotten so much worse. This is insane.

  • So he's accusing the fbi of a lynching. Where cam i fact check this. The whole story doesn't make sense.

  • And this is just one man’s story. How many others will we never hear? The war against the poor by the powers that be seeks to keep those where they are.

  • The reason behind the reaction is “white rage”. Pink colored Caucasians are very sensitive if you point out the injustices they’ve done.

  • Want true cold hard facts. Colin Flaherty channel. You can say all the lies you want but there is proven hard facts. Im glad blacks are fighting for freedom when there just as free as we are.

  • I only came to the comment section to see what white people think about this. To see if any have the indecency to discredit or disrespect this man and his great presentation and information shared.

  • 👏 BRAVO Sir thank you for sharing the truth about people wanted to change the world together for the better for all people💕💕💕💕💕💕💕.

  • Most good guys don't need bodyguards just saying. Doesn't matter what side you're for, he obviously made himself enemies and it wasnt by feeding kids.

  • Well if you totally accept this view without reservation, then I guess the Panthers really got a lousy image put on them. Who knows why. Could it have been all those democrats who were in charge of those cities back then? Actually the same cities they're in charge of today. Could it have been those thousands of photos of them carrying weapons? Just like the cover of his book. Or all those other photos where they're looking at the cameras with faces full of anger and intimidation? Who doesn't see that and think "wow, peaceful dudes". Could it have been the nightly news cast. Watching them on tv, and those pesky photos of them showing up at voting precincts and marching through wherever armed and "supposedly" intimidating people? I know myself, whenever I see people, dressed in military style clothing, or just yelling in an angry tone, carrying weapons and generally having these really angry looks on their faces, I never think these guys are bad guys, I should steer clear of them. On the other hand, could it be that this Ted talk is perhaps just a little biased in its presentation? I was a young man back the 60's and 70's. I remember the Panthers. I also remember Dr King and many of his marches and the way he tried to change things. I have no doubt that what this man said is true. I also have no doubt that he left a whole lot out of his presentation. Between the Panthers and Dr King, I personally preferred Dr King. Sorta like the Jesus approach. But then that's me.

  • Sorry, but having picked up a few felonies myself, something doesn’t jive about this guy’s story. He would be easily able to ascertain a charge, conviction, incident number, jurisdiction, etc.

    The notion he received a felony for writing a book is preposterous.

  • There is no afterlife. While we are here there is no spiritual identity within us. We would ask a soul, but where? Since there is no spiritual location within us, there is no memory that passes on.

    It is better to know ourselves, rather than to believe. When believing, you are unsure leading to weakness and delusion. When drawing from your own source, we are strong and truthful.

    Only option is to reduce to unaffiliated. That way we can respect ourselves as well as our surroundings. We don’t want to put our life in the hands of a creator that lies, and is destructive.

    Watch for Reptiles (through Pleiades), to try to destruct Planet Earth in or around 2019-20. Their working up plan’s to destroy Earth in the coming year’s. Their blame is to be on Planet Niburu (which is fake) and the Arcturian’s (who are not around).
    They are trying to say Annunaki (fake alien race) are still there with human's, if they get caught by law enforcement. If you check the timeline of who's been here they can reoccur the races, and by simultaneous time back and forth they can insert hologram's to change history of time.

  • White America is so on top of the idea and suspicion of terrorism by non-whites but I so supportive of their own terrorism via the "forefathers" they worship and name everything after, the Ku Klux Klan, the FBI, the CIA, the ATF, ICE, American police, and the American Military in every act of terrorism they've committed since the original terrorists in stockings and tights with buckle shoes…

  • Yet KKK members and other white affiliated groups can walk around with semi automatic weapons in broad daylight while "protesting" and no arrests of any of their members are made

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