By Marissa Johnson
“You can kill a revolutionary, but you can’t kill a revolution,” Fred Hampton, Jr. said of his late father, assassinated for his role in leading the often violent and militant group, the Black Panthers.
In an rare interview, Stevie Wonder asked Hampton why he believes his father was assassinated. Hampton’s reasoning was that black on black crime was at an all-time low when his father was leading the Black Panthers. Hampton further extrapolates that prisons were and still are big business. The motive for killing his father, he goes on to say, was for a great part financial.
Hampton claims to know the inner workings of the prison system, which he calls “concentration camps.” “I did nine years in ‘em and know what’s really going on inside those places.” Yet, Hampton does not explain what he did to go to prison during this Stevie Wonder interview, what he was accused of doing, and whether or not he’s innocent of the charges that landed him in prison for almost a decade.
Furthermore, Fred Hampton, Jr. goes on to blame police officers for bringing drugs into black communities. “We’re so powerless as people we can’t even choose what drug we’re gonna be strung out on. That’s embarrassing.” At this point in the interview, Stevie Wonder indirectly expresses disbelief by asking Hampton if there was proof why didn’t his group expose this and bring the proof to public consciousness.
Hampton’s answer was that already there are issues of credibility in the black community, namely because of black on black crime. Until black Americans resolve this issue, he asserts, nobody will believe the evidence. The solution, he says, is for black people to police themselves, not snitch, and not rape. “That person did do that, because we don’t do that in our community. As long as there’s a space for question…”
Currently, Chairman Fred Hampton, Jr. is working on a book and a movie.