On 40th Anniversary of Newark Rebellion,
a Look Back at Historic Unrest
that Changed the Nation
Forty years ago, Newark erupted. Followed by Detroit, then city after city across the United States, spontaneous uprisings by disaffected African American communities who were met with brutal violence by police and National Guardsmen. In Newark, 26 people were killed and 43 in Detroit. Thousands more were injured. A presidential commission into the unrest later famously concluded that the United States was “moving toward two societies, one black, one white — separate and unequal.”
Today, on the 40th anniversary of the Newark Rebellion we go back to the tumultuous days of July 1967 with renowned poet, playwright, activist and Newark native Amiri Baraka; and Larry Hamm, a Newark community organizer, chair of the People’s Organization for Progress, that organizes a commemoration of the Newark rebellion every year. He was thirteen years old during the rebellion.
Amiri Baraka. Poet, playwright, and activist who is a native of Newark. He was one of the founders of the Black Arts movement in the 1960s and was New Jersey's poet laureate in 2002. He was arrested and severely beaten by the police during the rebellion.
Larry Hamm. Community organizer in Newark and chair of the People' Organization for Progress that organizes a commemoration of the Newark rebellion every year. He was thirteen during the rebellion.
Ernest Rutledge. Spoke to Democracy Now! Thursday at People's Organization for Progress march commemorating the 40th anniversary of the Newark rebellion. Rutledge’s nineteen-year-old brother James was killed by the police forty years ago. He was shot 39 times.
Excerpt of "Newark: The Slow Road Back", documentary made over two decades ago.