The Black Panther Party was founded fifty years ago — and still, many misconceptions about its revolutionary work run rampant.
“The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution,” a documentary by Stanley Nelson which aired on PBS Tuesday, shined a necessary light on the contributions, convictions and struggles of members in the party. Nelson’s informative film took a deep dive into discussing the truth behind the Black Panthers and underscored the heavy institutional backlash the liberation movement received from police and the government.
From the group’s radical inception in 1966 to it’s dissolve in 1982, here are a few important things you must know to better understand the Black Panthers.
1 The Black Panthers’ central guiding principle was an “undying love for the people.”
The Black Panther Party for Self-Defense, otherwise known as the Black Panther Party (BPP), was established in 1966 by Huey Newton and Bobby Seale. The two leading revolutionary men created the national organization as a way to collectively combat white oppression. After constantly seeing black people suffer from the torturous practices of police officers around the nation, Newton and Seale helped to form the pioneering black liberation group to help build community and confront corrupt systems of power.
2 The Black Panthers outlined their goals in a 10 point program.
The Black Panthers established a unified platform and their goals for the party were outlined in a 10 point plan that included demands for freedom, land, housing, employment and education, among other important objectives. Read more