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The Anti-Liquor Store Movement: an interview with Yusef Bey IV of Your Black Muslim Bakery
The anti-liquor store movement in Oakland is part of the new Blackpower era that is emerging in Oakland. A few months ago, some brothas ran up in two liquor stores in North Oakland and threw all of the liquor that was being sold on the ground. That one action kicked off a movement that has Muslims from every faith involved. A Muslim brotha at the "Muslims against so-called Muslim-owned liquor stores" rally told me that 90 percent of Oakland's 930-plus liquor stores are owned by so-called "Muslims."
Anyone who knows Amerikkkan history knows that this government uses alcohol just like drugs, as biological weapons against Black and other oppressed communities. Alcohol was given to enslaved Africans during "holidays" so that they wouldn't think about rebelling or freedom. The Native people of this land have been decimated by alcohol in much the same way that the Black community in this country has been decimated by crack.
Why is there a liquor store on every other corner in East Oakland, West Oakland, North Richmond, Fillmore and Hunters Point but not in Piedmont and Emeryville? Ask yourself why doesn't the government regulate alcohol in our community, while you read the rest of Yusef Bey IV's words. Peep it ...
JR: What is the objective of the movement to get liquor stores out of the Black community?
Yusef: We had liquor stores in our community for a long period of time, and we know what goes on around these liquor stores. And one thing about it is, it's not just liquor stores. They sell crack around these liquor stores, they're able to buy crack and drugs from these liquor stores, and things like this are not supposed to be done by so-called Muslims.
If you say you're a Muslim, you should have the action of a Muslim. If you say you're going to be a Muslim and a follower of Muhammad, you should have the actions of following Muhammad - not selling drugs or selling alcohol or selling things in your store that's not good for our people, that's killing our people.
Yusef Bey IV, 19, is one of the men facing charges in connection with liquor store vandalism. That incident, which was caught on video tape and broadcast internationally, has sparked an anti-liquor store movement in Oakland CA. JR Valrey is a Bay Area journalist and a contributing editor at YO! Youth Outlook Multimedia.