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Black Power Blueprint brings African pride, beauty to North St. Louis during the pandemic

May 22, 2020

Mr. Gary Brooks


The COVID-19 disease is wreaking havoc on African, Mexican and Indigenous communities. The U.S. government is bailing out Wall Street banks with trillions of dollars. New York, home to the center of white world capitalism, has reported more COVID-19 deaths than 97 percent of all the world’s countries.

In St. Louis, MO, African people comprise over 80 percent of all documented COVID-19 deaths.

The corner of Alice St. and West Florissant in north St. Louis, the Black Power Blueprint, a project of political and economic power in the hands of the African working class, is literally blossoming because of the Gary Brooks Community Garden and outdoor event space.

The suffering of African people is a common theme wherever we are located and it seems that there is no relief in sight.

This is why the Uhuru Movement launched the Black Power Blueprint in 2017.

The African People’s Socialist Party (APSP) is showing that African people can and must build an economy in which the formerly exploited African workers lead the struggle for African people to be free. 

Ona Zené Yeshitela, Deputy Chair of APSP, leads this incredible campaign that began with the purchase and renovation of a run-down 9,000 square foot building at 4101 W. Florissant.

The Deputy Chair led the complete transformation of the building over a nine-month period. It is now home to the Uhuru House, which includes offices for community organizations, as well as the beautiful Akwaaba Banquet Hall.

Community organizations fighting for self-determination now have a vibrant location from which to plan while families have a place to hold weddings, parties, baby showers and even political rallies.

The Black Power Blueprint team was in the process of erecting an outdoor market space across the street from the Uhuru House just as COVID-19 swept the world.

We were forced to stop work after the beautiful stage had been built and the concrete pathway had been laid that meanders throughout the space.

Capitalism pushes us to early graves, robs us of an economy then runs off with our resources. As long as their $4 trillion bailout can be direct-deposited, they will simply relocate to safer quarters and rationalize our poverty and death as fair exchange for their wealth and comfort.

Mr. Gary Brooks lives next door to the emerging One Africa! One Nation! Marketplace. He soon joined the Black Power Blueprint team after members of the Steering Committee named the market’s garden after him to recognize his support for the project.

A resident of the neighborhood for more than 30 years, Mr. Brooks remarked that taking part in building the Black Power Blueprint is like watching his first child be born.

Along with his younger brother and nephew, Mr. Brooks has refused to allow COVID-19 to bring the Black Power Blueprint to a standstill. They strap on face masks, gloves and maintain social distancing while they work inside the antique wrought-iron fence that surrounds the market.

Seventy-five year old Mr. Gary helped transport the solid wrought-iron fence that Paradigm Builders welded together and erected on the outskirts of the market area which is roughly the size of four commercial storefronts typical to north St. Louis.

Planting season will be over soon and the Gary Brooks Community Garden which touches the west side of his modest brick house, needs to be completed.

Brooks and family planted five trees then purchased cedar wood boards used to build half a dozen garden boxes. An array of flowers, fruits and vegetables such as tomatoes, broccoli, yellow onions, oregano, bell peppers, collard greens and tomatillos were planted.

The entire Black Power Blueprint team is eager to continue building the emerging Black Power economy headquartered in a city where 30 percent of the mostly African population lives off an average of five dollars a day.

The Gary Brooks Community Garden is like a breath of fresh air in a neighborhood where vacant and abandoned buildings drape the African community as evidence of a relationship with the white-dominated capitalist economy configured to transfer the wealth of African people to a white population who didn’t produce it.

The economy we are building is designed to push the capitalist economy into irrelevance as described by Chairman Omali Yeshitela, visionary of the Black Power Blueprint.

Chairman Omali Yeshitela and the African People’s Socialist Party called the coronavirus a colonialvirus. We are fighting the colonial domination of the resources of Africa and African people the world over. Africa must be free! 

The white ruling class is desperate to reopen the colonial-capitalist economy at the expense of African and other colonized workers who are two to four times more likely to die from COVID-19 than white people.

The Black Power Blueprint recognizes that this capitalist economy is the reason why Africans from New York City, NY to St. Louis, MO to Whales, UK are far more likely to live in poverty and die of COVID-19.

The economy of the Black Power Blueprint is an economy designed to obliterate the exploitation of colonized African workers and to place power in the hands of the African working class!

Join the Black Power Blueprint at

Build a liberated African Economy!


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