Any talk of black nationalist groups and activists active in the ’60s in America will definitely include Huey Percy Newton.
Newton was a revolutionary African-American political activist who did his best to correct what was described as the ills of the American society at the time and fought for the end of the oppression of people of colour in the country.
He was the co-founder and leader of the activist group, Black Panther Party for Self Defense, known in later years as the Black Panther Party, from its inception in 1966 to its disbandment in 1982. During the 16 years of its existence, the party was able to cause enough disconcertment in favour of the nationalist movement.
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The Panther Party became infamous for brandishing guns, challenging the authority of police officers, and embracing violence as a necessary by-product of revolution. The Panthers were not just about being menacing, however, as the group introduced a series of goals such as fighting for better housing, jobs and education for African-Americans. These plans were laid out in the Panther Party’s “Ten-Point Program.”
In recent times, an excerpt from one of his interviews has gained popularity. “… we view each other with a great love and a great understanding. And that we try to expand this to the general black population, and also, people– oppressed people all over the world. And, I think that we differ from some other groups simply because we understand the system better than most groups understand the system. And with this realization, we attempt to form a strong political base based in the community with the only strength that we have and that’s the strength of a potentially destructive force if we don’t get freedom…”, he says in the audio.
But away from the activist and freedom fighter the rest of the world knows him as there is more to Huey P. Newton. Here are 5 things about him you probably did not know: