Omali Yeshitela celebration at USF St Pete
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01/22/10 Tom Baur
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday | Listen to this entire show:

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In 1966, Joe Waller was so fed up with the City of St Petersburg’s refusal to remove a repugnant racist mural that he tore it down and fled with the police close behind. But last night, he was honored in the same city.

The mural Waller tore down depicted what many felt were grotesque images of black musicians playing for a white audience. Joe Waller, who later changed his name to Omali Yeshitela, was arrested that day and spent nearly 3 years on one of Florida’s infamous chain gangs.

John Wesley Bryant was surprised his friend Joe Waller would carry out on his threat to take down the mural.

More than 100 family, friends and admirers turned out last night as the Nelson Poynter Memorial Library at USF celebrated its recent acquisition of the complete works of Yeshitela, leader of the Uhuru Movement. Jim Schnur, the library’s representative, says it’s an important collection of writings.

During the ceremony there were pictures and videos about Yeshitela’s life and work. One of videos was of the night in 1996 the Uhurus were accused of inciting a riot after police shot Tyron Lewis, an unarmed young black man. Their house was surrounded by a St Petersburg Police SWAT team and set ablaze during a tear gas attack. Yeshitela says the police murdered Lewis.

One admirer, Clay Colson, drove all the way from Lakeland to celebrate Yeshitela.

To make an appointment to view the Yeshitela collection at the USF Poynter Library call Jim Schnur Monday thru Friday 9AM to 5PM at 727-873-4094.

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Against Communists!

This piece of shit "Omali" is nothing but a Marxist-Leninist and his fucking "complete works" should be incinerated. Jim Schnur is a fucking idiot.

Dean, Nelson Poynter Memorial Library

As the Dean of the Nelson Poynter Memorial Library of the University of South Florida St. Petersburg, I am proud of Jim Schnur's work to acquire this important historical collection. Libraries are in the business of documenting the world around us and helping people find and access information about the world, whether we agree with the points of view being expressed or not. Our special collections, as well as our circulating collections, contain published and archival materials representing many divergent points of view. We are proud of our commitment to the constitutionally guaranteed right to freedom of expression. For more information about such commitment, please visit the American Library Association's website and review the "Library Bill of Rights" http://www.ala.org/ala/aboutala/offices/oif/statementspols/statementsif/librarybillrights.cfm

Uhuru

I am also proud of Omali Yeshetela and i feel sorry for those who live in the Bay area who have never overstood oppression. This man stood up to the racist st pete police when noone even had a voice during the 60's..We have yet to meet but Bro Yeshetli i am on my way. This is Atty and nurse..sis Milagros G from Tampa i am in H aiti and when i ret i promise that u and i will connect.There is lot to share and hopefuully we can join hands..Uhuru

Praising cop killers

If I have anything to say about it, the Uhuru will only be remembered for their having praised cop killers, rapists, and criminals, as "resistance to oppression by Africans", and the obnoxious waster of human flesh that most of these people are. What does Omali do for a living? We know what his sons do/did for a living.

This is Why I'm Not a Member

Typical.

Joe Waller is a fraud

Joe Waller is a criminal that continues to bring the black man down, all the while living in his million dollar home in the "pink" district in St. Pete. Any institution that props this fraud up deserves to be shut down. Do your homework USF, you are endorsing a communist. It is time to rise up against this oppression.