Saturday, November 29, 2003

Shabbazz's presentation in Havana "Black Panther Kuwasi Balogun’s Journey to
Anarchism and Guerrilla Warfare: An Exploration of International Influences to
the U.S. from Spain and Cuba." Southwest Council of Latin American Studies,
March 1998, is a true distortion of what happened to the Black Panthers in Cuba.
Almost all Black Panther leaders who sought "asylum" in Cuba, including
Eldridge Cleaver and Huey Newton, left there at the first opportunity and
denounced the Castro regime as racist.
As early as 1969, Black Panther Raymond Johnson was denouncing that he and
other members of his party were "isolated and imprisoned" in Cuba. (Miami
Herald, June 26, 1969, page 17-D)
Black Panther Tony Bryant, who hijacked a plane to Cuba in 1969, voluntarily
returned to the U.S. in 1980 and wrote a book denouncing racism as practiced by
the Castro regime and the situation of dozens of African Americans who were
imprisoned in Cuba.
Milwaukee Black Panther Garland Jesus Grant, who hijacked a plane to Cuba in
January 1971, was jailed twice in Cuba and beaten by prison guards, who stabbed
him in the eye with a bayonet. He voluntarily returned to the U.S. in 1978. The
Washington Post, April 26, 1977, quoted Grant in Cuba as saying: "Im living
like a dog in Cuba." He said blacks are treated badly. "There are more racism
problems here than in the worst parts of Mississippi." He said going to jail in
the U.S. wouldn't bother him. "Just open my cell door, and I'll walk in," he
said. Grant pled guilty o a 15-year sentence in 1978.
Black Panther Richard Duwayne Witt, who hijacked a plane to Cuba on September
18, 1970, also returned eight years later to voluntarily serve his sentence is
the U.S.
African American Robert Williams, who in the early sixties operated "Radio
Free Dixie" out of Havana to incite blacks in the South, also returned to the
U.S. and testified before a U.S. Congressional committee denouncing racism in
African American Gregory Alexander Graves, a U.S. Army deserter who hijacked
a plane to Cuba in 1971, returned to the U.S. in June 1975 to face a 20-year
prison sentence rather than remain in Cuba.
Three other African Americans, Henry Jackson, Jr., Melvin Cale, and Louis
Moore, who hijacked a Southern Airways jet in 1972, also voluntarily returned
to the U.S. in 1980 to face prison sentences.
The only black radical hijacker who remains in Cuba is Michael Finney, who
murdered a New Mexico state trooper in 1971. He faces a death penalty upon his
Check out my website on hijackings to Cuba at
Here is a list of Fugitives In Cuba Wanted by the FBI
Maybe next time the Bush Administration allows another shipment of food to be
sold to the Cuban Government, they should ask for some of the fugitive cop
killers in return.

Quoting robert register :

> w:
> If you ever really want to lose weight, click on the following and it will
> make you so sick to your stomach you'll will either lose your appetite or
> vomit up whatever you may have in your belly.(while you read about Amilcar's
> great accomplishments, remember who paid for all this bullshit- the talk
> about Black Panthers in Cuba presented in Havana is the best as well as the
> articles printed in that Hip Hop Chronicle of Death and Disease known as The
> Source)
> http://www.as.ua.edu/amstud/azvita.htm

> saludos,

> roberto

Saturday, November 08, 2003

Back to Cuba (from April ' 94

A black Alabama state representative, Alvin Holmes, is well known for his single-minded promotion of the interests of blacks. Earlier this year, when the state legislature was considering a bill that would make it easier for the state police to help deport foreign criminals, Rep. Holmes took particular aim at Cubans:
“They all ought to be sent back to Cuba, including the ones that aren’t in jail .... They don’t do nothing but hurt the blacks. They all ought to be sent back .... I wish every one of their citizenships would be taken.” Not to be thought prejudiced, Rep. Holmes went on to recommend that all people from Norway, Sweden, Ireland, France, Germany and El Salvador be repatriated too.
Besides his duties as a legislator, Rep. Holmes is a professor of history at Alabama State University.

Tuesday, November 04, 2003

From: "Thomas B. Wheatley" | Add to Address Book
To: "robert register"
Subject: Re: academicshitheads.com
Date: Mon, 3 Nov 2003 21:59:19 -0500

I love it. I will check it out, but need now to go watch the Patriots.
----- Original Message -----
From: robert register
To: delacova@indiana.edu
Cc: skelley@arnarb.harvard.edu ; skyp@skypilotclub.com ; tbwheatley@msn.com ; tuskmag@dbtech.net ; walford@dbtech.net ; wingsvalor@aol.com ; ngcarc@onwire.net ; ninneraritycrea@myfamily.com ; phermann@english.as.ua.edu ; rbiii1@graceba.net ; robert.forbes@aya.yale.edu ; rrougemain@aol.com ; sahope@webtv.net ; scott@gellerstedt.com ; michael.palmer@tuscaloosanews.com
Sent: Monday, November 03, 2003 9:26 PM
Subject: academicshitheads.com

An old buddy of mine from my childhood years in Dothan, Thomas Wheatley (whose Daddy was my Scoutmaster and whose Dad, Arthur, had Pancho Villa's blood splatter on him cause he was standing right next to him when Pancho was killed) kinda inspired me tonight and I typed "academic shithead" into google. Nothing really came up so I decided to start something.


Testimony by Susan Babbitt on previous trips.
The University of Havana attracts foreign students because Cuba is relatively safe, stable, inexpensive and close, and has a well-developed higher education system. Many Canadian and American universities have academic programs at and exchanges with the University of Havana. Such programs promote internationalization goals and, in particular, respond to students' interests in better understanding the situation in Latin America and acquiring Spanish language skills. I developed a course to be held at the University of Havana called "Development Ethics", with support from the Development Studies program at Queen's. Philosophy has in fact become important to Development Studies because there are questions about what "development" means. Such questions are recognized in the United Nations' discussions about the Human Development Index. Amartya Sen, who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics in 1999, has argued for the importance of Philosophy in such debates, as have also other economists (e.g. K. Cole). Yet although Philosophy has recently begun to play and to be recognized as playing a role in Development studies and programs, there are challenges involved in orienting Philosophy students toward development issues, since these are best pursued in interdisciplinary programs. IDIS 309* was intended as a Philosophy course, to be crossed with Development Studies. The course involves challenges because of its location off-campus but also because of its interdisciplinary nature. Thus, its success can provide resources for raising and answering some of the questions involved in pursuing objectives of internationalization and interdisciplinarity.

IDIS 309* addresses issues in Development Ethics by considering particular topics - culture, participation, the situation of women, priorities of democratic procedure - involved in the measure of development, specifically from the perspective of the situation of Latin America. It is certainly the case that students in this course learn particularly about Cuba, but the aim is that students see how the case of Cuba is the case of any developing country. That is, while in some ways Cuba's developmental path has been different from that of other Latin American countries, the aim is for students to understand some of the common problems faced by developing countries - for example, the struggle for independence - to which Cuba's distinctive efforts have been a response. Lectures are given by distinguished members of the Cuban Philosophical Association at the University of Havana. Thalía Fung, president of the Philosophical Association and Rubén Zardoya, dean of the Faculty of History and Philosophy, have been the principal contacts in the realization of the course organization. I requested specific instructors on the basis of what I know about their work. In one case, I requested a lecture from someone from outside the Faculty. Mayra Vilasís is a film producer and director, and I asked her to speak about the history of film in Cuba and its role in the development of cultural identity. I spoke with each instructor about the objectives of the course, the expectations and knowledge-level of our students, and the connections I wanted to make between the different topics. Many of the instructors gave me outlines in advance, in order that I could put them on our web page for the students. I hope to do this again for Spring, 2002. EduToursToCuba.com did all the logistical work for us. Its president, Arnold August, has excellent contacts at the University of Havana, knows Cuba very well and is skilled at arranging fair prices for students.

In order for the course to go ahead in 2001 at the price we had arranged, we needed commitments from 20 students. We received, surprisingly, 50 applications from students from a variety of different programs, and were able to select 25. We asked students to write an essay explaining their reasons and we looked for students who were serious about the educational value of the trip. This will be done again for May 2002. Only a few students knew some Spanish and only a few had been to Latin America or the Caribbean. Some had never been out of Canada. In the end, there were 27 students, as we included one graduate student from Policy Studies and a student from the University of Montreal.

The primary objective of the course was that students understand something about the importance and difficulty of respecting and incorporating into their analyses of global issues the perspectives of the developing world. As is explained in the course syllabus, we expected the students to learn, not just from the lectures and excursions but also from their conversations, interactions and daily experiences. We considered this course to constitute a realization of the Faculty's goals for new and deeper sorts of learning experiences. As can be imagined, Cuba is a challenging experience at several levels. In pre-departure lectures, I tried to identify some of the challenges they would meet.

The trip, May 2001
Many students have commented upon the very intense nature of their two-week learning experience. For my part, I was quite impressed by this group of students, who took the course very seriously. There was not a single student missing from any of the classes or excursions, except for one or two times when someone told us they felt unwell and stayed back. Moreover, I was told before I left and by several who wrote to me after I returned, that professors and administrators at the UH were impressed by our group. Thalía Fung told me that ours was one of the best student groups she had received, and she has received quite a few. The students asked a lot of questions, even (or perhaps especially) about complex, controversial issues. They asked questions respectfully and seriously, and they received full answers. It seemed that the students took very seriously the challenge of engaging fairly and of being aware of stereotypes and their implications. We had suggested to the students that they should approach issues such as human rights, democracy, freedom, etc. as they would any controversial topic or experience: ask questions, find out what the arguments are for the answers and then draw conclusions about the reasons and evidence supporting each side. The challenge, as in any situation of rational debate, is to understand your opponent well enough that you yourself can defend his/her view, and then advance your arguments with that defense in mind. Of course, in Cuba, students would mostly hear the Cuban point of view, but that is part of the point of the course since it is not as easy to get access to their line of argument. One of the goals of the course, clearly shared by the students who participated, is that we can become aware of alternative perspectives, and their explanation, and approach our own problems of development with somewhat greater sensitivity and breadth of vision. According to the reports, it seems that many of the students were intellectually mature enough to realize that the most intriguing issues are too complex to draw clear conclusions about after two weeks, although they probably gained some deeper insight into the sorts of questions that need to be asked.

It was my impression that the students in this course were also quite conscientious about recognizing the complexities of interpersonal relationships in a situation in which they are rich, and regarded as rich. Forming respectful, collegial relationships in such a context can be challenging and certainly constitutes part of what we might call the "experiential" learning. We had anticipated that exchanges between Queen's students and their counterparts at the UH would be one of the most valuable aspects of the course, and had arranged for our students to spend time with students from the Federation of University Students (FEU) at the UH. They organized some meetings and activities, went out together at night and spent a lot of time on the patio of the Colina Hotel, where we stayed, in conversation. As we expected, the contact with UH students was valued by the Queen's students. Two of our students, Sarah Miller and Julia Ostertag, were interviewed by a reporter from Radio Progreso (it was broadcast across the country) who was interested in the situation of youth in Canada, their impressions of Cuba and in how their experiences in Cuba compared with what they had heard about Cuba in Canada. Students and professors at the UH were also very interested in how Canadian students perceived the Summit of the Americas in Quebec City. A group of our students gave an informal presentation about their experiences in Quebec and their understanding of the issues involved.

The Queen's group participated in public events on May 1. Participation was optional, of course, but it turned out that everyone participated in the activities, even though they had to be ready at 7am and everything was in Spanish. From reports, it is evident that the experience of such a large public, festive gathering was impacting, perhaps especially because the students heard and saw the Cuban President, Fidel Castro, speak.

We organized the excursions to coincide with the lectures. Each day except one, we had afternoon excursions that were in fact on-site lectures. On two evenings, we had special additional presentations. Beside museums and monuments at which they learned more about the history and social structures, we were able to visit a number of important institutions. The Faculty of History and Philosophy at the University of Havana made these visits possible for us. It is not easy to organize visits to these particular centers. At the new School of Social Workers, the Latin American Medical School and the International School of Sport, our group was able to see something about recently instituted projects aimed at resolving some of the serious educational, social and health problems facing Latin America. As well, these centers are part of an effort to achieving greater collaboration and unity amongst developing countries and marginalized communities within developed countries in resolving common problems. At each of these centers, our students were able to meet and converse with students at the institution. The Medical School and the Sport School have students from outside Cuba, mostly from rural areas of Latin American countries and from Africa. There were a number of references in the lectures to the significance for Latin America, and the South generally, of developing a sense of solidarity and identity as part of the struggle for independence. Another productive excursion was that to the Higher Institute of Art (el ISA). Having heard so much about the developing world's grinding struggle for daily survival, it is striking for North Americans to see so many Cuban students dedicated to music, dance, sculpture, and theatre in impressive surroundings.

The faculty and staff of the University of Havana were exceptional in their treatment of our group. They gave us the best rooms and were very generous with their time. There were several lectures after which students made arrangements to speak further with the lecturer. This happened, for instance, with Rigoberto Pupo Pupo, who lectured about 19th century Cuban philosopher and poet José Martí. Jorge Lamadrid, who used to work at the Cuban Embassy in Ottawa, and who is now director of North American relations at MINREX (Ministry of Foreign Affairs), received our group for 1 ½ hours at the MINREX reception hall and explained and took questions about the relations between Canada and Cuba. I also arranged for the students to spend an evening with American journalist Gail Reed, author of Island in the Storm (Ocean Press) who spoke about her experiences as an American living in Cuba. Surprisingly to some, there are in fact large numbers of Americans in the US and in Cuba who do regular business with Cuba, and who work hard challenging the policies of their government. For some students, the talk with Gail Reed was the one of the most impressive.

I am quite encouraged by the success of this trip. There is certainly no doubt about the enthusiasm of the students for such a possibility. There will be positive consequences for our student body at Queen's when we have students returning from such educational experiences.

Monday, November 03, 2003

3. Parents have a prior right to choose the kind of education that shall be given to their children.

If you ask any defender of the "Cuban Revolution" to identify those rights which are respected in Cuba, he is sure to begin by saying: "Education is free and open to all in Cuba." Just how true is this assertion? Certainly, no Cuban living on the island has to spend anything on his own education or on that of his children; accordingly, university entrance depends solely on the student’s qualifications, and as a result, anyone, regardless of his economic or social position, is able to obtain a degree. Superficially, that is so; however, is something free merely because we are not charged hard cash for it? Is it really true that any Cuban may attend university?

First of all, let us examine the notion of "free". From the time a young person reaches seventh grade and until he completes twelfth grade he is required to spend 30 days each year working on the land. Until recently the period was 45 days for pre—university students. If the student is the recipient of a grant at a Rural Basic Secondary School (ESBEC), then he faces a double working day, during the morning in the fields, and during the evening in class, or vice-versa. In neither case is he paid in cash as might be expected, and any student who does not carry out his work in the fields is simply barred from going to university.

If they wish to get into the Carlos J. Finlay Medical Science Unit, which nowadays represents the sole means of studying medicine in Cuba, applicants must apply for entry while they are in the eleventh grade, and not in the twelfth grade, as is the case for all other students. This allows time for their political and moral background to be "checked" by means of personal interviews and "secret" visits to the Committee for the Defense of the Revolution in their block. (The person under investigation is never informed of the time of such visits or whether they have been carried out.)

As if this were not enough, at the beginning of his first year the would—be doctor is required to take an "oath of unconditional support for the Revolution" and for its principles. The word "unconditional" puts things in a nutshell: you qualify as a doctor, but you have to do whatever the "Revolution" decides.

While other disciplines do not go so far as to require an oath, everybody is aware of the commitment he takes on, and if anyone refuses to do his "social service", a period of some three years work carried out by the graduate wherever he is sent (almost invariably to a distant province) his degree is withdrawn, and he is thus prevented from exercising his profession

Our mission is four-fold:

To foster global social awareness among present and future physicians through international medical experiences in medically underserved regions.
To deliver medical supplies, through established channels, to the clinics and sanatoria that serve the most impoverished populations in Havana.
To improve the Michigan medical community’s understanding of modern health care delivery by examining the Cuban universal health care system.
To develop professional and culturally supportive relationships between the medical communities of Cuba and the United States.
May 21 - June 12, 2004
Fee - $2900*

A unique opportunity to study on-site in Cuba, one of our nearest, most significant and exotic neighbors. Cuba blends the experience of cultures -- African, European, American --which creates a unique environment that students will be able to experience by enrolling in courses taught by College of Charleston faculty as well as Cuban scholars. Students will be exposed to an array of cultural activities and study trips designed to encourage direct interaction with the Cuban people. The program is designed to allow students to further their Spanish language skills as well as learn about the rich heritage of Cuba as reflected in its, culture, economy, political and social history, art, music, literature and rich natural environment. Classes will be held in Vedado near the University of Havana, as well as at the Instituto de Filosofía. Several study-visits and day trips with cultural activities and lectures will be an integral part of the student experience while in Cuba.

The impetus for holding this event and for starting the SFS organization came out of the influence of our respected and beloved professor of Political Science, John "Tito" Gerassi, and the life-changing experiences of our two-week trip to Cuba in January.

This study abroad program sponsored by the Political Science Department and coordinated by Professor Gerassi was a once in a lifetime experience for many of the students and the first time (hopefully not the last) Queens College students were sent to learn of our infamous (and often misrepresented)neighboring country.

The Cuba teach-in will provide the campus and larger community with a unique opportunity to learn about Cuba's history, the social and economic effects of the U.S. blockade and Cuba's current and future role in the international arena.

SFS is an independent, non-hierarchical organization of Queens College students and faculty, allied with student activists on other CUNY and NYC area campuses and grassroots community organizations; organizing and struggling around our shared principles against racism, xenophobia, sexism, and homophobia; against the attacks on the institution of CUNY and its students; and for real and lasting justice, equity and peace for CUNY and for the global community.

SFS is open to all Queens College students and faculty working or merely interested or curious about these issues.

If you would like to join SFS or find out more about us, please email us at qc_activist@hotmail.com

We hope you will join us for the April 10 Cuba Forum.

In Solidarity,
New Jersey students build
Cuba-U.S. Youth Exchange
(feature article)

NEWARK, New Jersey—“I’ve always been intrigued by Cuba; it is the best country in the Caribbean economically and politically,” said Rutgers University senior Zabdiel Valera. “Cuba is the only Latin American country that’s been able to stand up against the U.S. and survive.”
Valera, the past president of the Black Organization of Students (BOS) at the Rutgers campus here, is one of a dozen students and other youth from northern New Jersey who are going to Cuba to participate in the Cuba-U.S. Youth Exchange, scheduled for July 24-31. BOS is sponsoring the New Jersey delegation, together with the New Jersey Network on Cuba.

The visit is hosted by Cuba’s Federation of University Students, Union of Young Communists, Federation of High School Students, and the Saíz Brothers Cultural Association.

Groups of young people in cities around the United States are preparing to travel to that Caribbean nation to participate in the Youth Exchange. On the trip they will meet and exchange ideas with Cubans—of their generation and others—and see Cuba firsthand. On their return, they will be better able to answer the lies peddled by the U.S. government about Cuba’s socialist revolution.

Organizing meetings have been held twice a week to plan an array of outreach and fund-raising activities, as well as begin educational work to prepare for the trip.

Fund-raising is particularly important since many of those seeking to go to Cuba do not have all the funds needed to cover the costs of the trip. The total cost is expected to add up to about $1,100, including airfare, housing, and food. The fund-raising activities complement the efforts each individual is making to save up money for the trip.

A fund-raising letter has been sent out to a number of organizations and individuals seeking their assistance to enable the largest delegation possible to visit Cuba.

On May 28, the second day of summer session at Rutgers-Newark, students set up an information table and a bake sale to publicize the trip and raise money. In a few hours $80 was collected. The event is planned on a weekly basis through the month of June.

Additional funds are being collected through the sale of raffle tickets, a poetry slam, and a party. A three-week Cuban film series beginning June 4 at the Rutgers library is featuring Buena Vista Social Club, Death of a Bureaucrat, and Strawberries and Chocolate. A send-off rally and banquet will take place July 19.

Ryan-Katherine Sisco, 22, a graduate student at Rutgers who went to Cuba last year for a month of study at the University of Havana, learned about the Youth Exchange from seeing a flyer posted on campus. Sisco is excited about the Youth Exchange because it is organized to learn more about the Cuban Revolution.

“Cuba is a fascinating place because the people constantly want to engage in dialogue on politics,” she said.

Others going on the trip have just begun to learn about Cuba and want to find out the truth about that country. Regina Fitch, 21, heard about the Exchange from a member of BOS and saw it as an opportunity to see Cuba for herself. She became involved in political activity in February, protesting the U.S.-led war against Iraq. Fitch said that, while she doesn’t have much information about Cuba, she is “going with an open mind to learn as much as I can.”


The students who traveled to Cuba found themselves in quite a different situation. Because of the stringent governmental laws, students were not able to live or eat meals with families, and instead had to stay in a guest house owned by the Small Farmers Association.

The 16 students on the trip were all students in Professor Alejandra Bronfman's class, "Cuba Today: Problems and Promises of a Lasting Revolution."

"Once they decided to take the trip, I thought it was really important for them to learn about Cuba before they went," Bronfman said. "It's a really complicated place, and I thought it would be to their benefit to know as much as possible before going."

While visiting Cuba, students were expected to do a certain amount of research for an upcoming class project. In addition, students had the opportunity to meet with government officials, members of the community arts center and representatives from the Cuban Women's Federation.

Although many students said they could feel the effects of Cuban government restrictions, Lippert said she was struck by the amount of misinformation Americans receive about Cuba.

"Being there was absolutely mind-blowing because the extent of misinformation we get in the U.S. about Cuba is unbelievable," she said.

Lippert said every Cuban has free health care, the literacy rate is 96 percent, and people are living in relatively modest but modern housing. Lippert said she particularly enjoyed meeting a doctor and visiting his office.
Date: Mon, 3 Nov 2003 21:27:35 -0500
From: delacova@indiana.edu | Add to Address Book
To: "robert register"
Subject: Re: I Guess You Inspired Me

Congratulations on your new website! What a scatological idea. As
soon as the
EEOC investigation of ethnic discrimination and retaliation against me
by Rose-
Hulman is finished, I will send you a whole "shitload" of documentation
your website.

Quoting robert register :

> tbw:
> Typed "academic shithead" into google and receive no identical
results so
> I decided it was time to have a website dedicated to academic
shitheads so
> now we have it.
> Everytime you see some nonsense published by these trustfund
> professionals, please email it to me and it will appear for all the
world to
> see on academicshithead.blogspot.com
> http://academicshithead.blogspot.com
> saludos,
> roberto

You are worred too much about technicalities. Clinton is a
master sophist. Once you accept that, then technicalities

such as that to which you refer are irrelevent. Sophists

are simply liars who will eventually be trapped. It just takes

longer for people to realize what they're doing.

-- R. S. MacKenzie (75634.2336@Compuserve.Com), January 27, 1998.

This seminar will continue to explore present and future application of knowledge management techniques in Cuba. Cuba currently lacks many essential physical resources and financial capital. This presentation will explore how knowledge management techniques are applied in a country where intellectual capital has been the most abundant form of capital.>

Decided to establish this blog for the sole purpose of posting the mental diarrhea of the academic class.

Should be fun.

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