Frank Chapman

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Frank Chapman


Frank Chapman is a long time Communist Party USA supporter.

WEB DuBois Clubs of America

In 2014, Frank Chapman was listed a a friend on the DuBois Clubs Facebook page.[1]

Jail

In 1966, Frank Chapman was released from Jail with the support of Esther Jackson and Freedomways magazine[2].

Finally, and on a more personal note, had it not been for Esther and Jim Jackson I might still be in prison for they were the ones who first called national attention to my case through the pages of "Freedomways" in the Summer of 1966.

US Peace Council

As at March, 1982, the following took active roles in the Communist Party USA initiated U.S. Peace Council - founding, speaking or listed as workshop leaders:[3]

1980s U.S. Peace Council Executive Board

Frank Chapman was an Executive Board member of the Communist Party USA dominated U.S. Peace Council 1983-1985-National Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression, NYC[4].

National Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression

National Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression (NAARPR) was founded in 1973 in Chicago, Illinois. It grew out of the struggle to free Angela Davis from a "racist frame-up" on murder charges surrounding the aborted attempt by Jonathan Jackson to free his brother, George Jackson and the Soledad Brothers in 1970[5].

It was led by Communist Party USA members and supporters including Davis herself, Charlene Mitchell, Anne Braden and Frank Chapman.

  • Notice, Daily World, Nov. 11, 1982, p. 19, "What's On" section, re Nov. 14th "Victory Celebration. Reception honoring Frank Chapman, Associate Director NAARPR and Contributing Editor, Freedomways Magazine, freed after 21 years of prison and parole. Report on the recent victory in the Mayor Eddie Carthan case in Mississippi. Benefit for NAARPR and

Freedomways...

  • Frank Chapman was a scheduled speaker at the LRA's (Ninth) "Annual Banquet Luncheon" planned for November 21, 1982, NYC. (Daily World, Nov. 11, 1982, p. 20, "Hail Black Caucus at LRA annual fete"). The LRA has long been cited by the government as a Communist Party front.
  • The organization's 10th Anniversary Conference was held in Chicago, May 13-15 1983 at the McCormick Inn - Featured speakers included Frank Chapman[6]

Chapman as Editorial Board Member People's Weekly World

Frank Chapman finally came out as a Communist Party USA member when his name appeared as a member of the Editorial Board, People's Weekly World, with one example being the April 11, 1998, issue, page 12.

He also wrote columns and articles for the PWW, some of which will be listed here to provide a chronology of his open relationship with the CPUSA.

"Revolutionary mole" letter

In January 2008 Frank Chapman wrote an intriguing letter on Barack Obama to the Communist Party USA's Peoples Weekly World[7].

Now, beyond all the optimism I was capable of mustering, Mr. Obama won Iowa! He won in a political arena 95 percent white. It was a resounding defeat for the manipulations of the ultra-right and their right-liberal fellow travelers. Also it was a hard lesson for liberals who underestimated the political fury of the masses in these troubled times.
Obama’s victory was more than a progressive move; it was a dialectical leap ushering in a qualitatively new era of struggle. Marx once compared revolutionary struggle with the work of the mole, who sometimes burrows so far beneath the ground that he leaves no trace of his movement on the surface. This is the old revolutionary “mole,” not only showing his traces on the surface but also breaking through.

2013 CCDS conference

Nearly 100 delegates, observers and friends gathered in Pittsburgh, PA for the 7th Convention of the Committees of Correspondence for Democracy and Socialism over the July 18-21, 2013 weekend.

One panel was a discussion on how to use the Anne Braden film for radical education in organizing efforts. Presentations were made by Jim Branson, Janet Tucker, Frank Chapman, Ted Pearson, and the maker of the film, Anne Lewis.[8]

CCDS member

In 2015, Frank Chapman was a member of Chicago Committees of Correspondence for Democracy and Socialism. [9]

CoC 2016 conference

Banquet at Emeryville Senior Centerly 2016;

Evening program: “Building Solidarity with Social Movements”

ILPS conference

“Right to Exist, Right to Resist” was the theme of the national political conference called by the International League of Peoples Struggles (ILPS) - U.S. Chapter, held in Chicago, Oct. 22. 2016. ILPS is an anti-imperialist and democratic formation, which promotes anti-imperialist and democratic struggles of the peoples of the world. “We mobilized over 160 people from around the U.S. and Canada to discuss how to build the struggle against U.S. wars abroad and war on the workers and oppressed people at home,” said Bernadette Ellorin, national chairperson of BAYAN USA, an alliance of progressive Filipino organizations.

Frank Chapman of the Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression spoke about the struggle in Chicago for community control of the police. “In the final analysis movements such as our must be measured by our ability to challenge the powers that be and bring about the systemic changes needed to empower the people.”

Sarah Chambers, a member of the executive board of the Chicago Teachers Union, gave a fiery speech about the recent contract fight for 23,000 teachers.

Hatem Abudayyeh of the Rasmea Defense Committee addressed the crowd on behalf of the iconic Palestinian community activist, Rasmea Odeh, who is on trial by the U.S. government for her commitment to her homeland and her people. Abudayyeh urged the crowd to travel to Detroit on Nov. 29, in solidarity with Rasmea as she and her lawyers appear in court. Abudayyeh explained, “This is the most important political trial in the country - resisting the attempt by the Department of Justice to criminalize all those who struggle for Palestine.”[11]

FRSO member

The strains of the civil rights anthem, Oh, Freedom, rang out in Trinity Episcopal Church on Chicago’s South Side, Feb. 12, 2017, sung by Evangeline Jackson. Jackson, a registered nurse, is a leader in her union, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) Local 1216. As a young woman in the South in the 1980s, her hospital was unionized with the help of Frank Chapman, a veteran of the Black liberation movement.

The song introduced a Black History Month program where Chapman spoke about his upcoming book, “A Marxist-Leninist Perspective on the Struggle for Socialism and Black Liberation.” A leading member of Freedom Road Socialist Organization/FightBack! , Chapman explained that the book sets forth the thesis that an important part of revolutionary content of Marxism-Leninism lies precisely in seeing the centrality of the national question in the struggle against imperialism and the struggle for socialism.

For Chapman, history is alive. He illustrated that the struggle for democratic rights that was the period of Black Reconstruction is still on the agenda today. “We lost the right to vote in the 1890s, we fought to get it back in 1965, and the Supreme Court just took it away again.” He explained that it was political power backed by arms in the South after the Civil War that guaranteed Black equality.

Chapman began by establishing that the idea of Black people as a nation in the U.S. grew organically out of the Black liberation movement, starting before the Civil War. He recounted the development in the 1920s, when the Communist Party USA, with the leadership of Black communists like Harry Haywood and the influence of the Communist International, “dealt with Black people as an oppressed nation within this nation.” Once this happened, the Party began to play a leading role in the Black movement, including the campaign to free the Scottsboro Boys, and organizing textile workers in North Carolina. Chapman even argued, “In the South, without the role of the Communists, there would have been no Civil Rights Movement.”

A former member of the Communist Party USA, Chapman joined FRSO because of the organization’s view of “the strategic alliance,” expressed in a statement adopted at the organization’s 2007 congress: “Our basic strategy for revolution and socialism is building a united front against the monopoly capitalist class, under the leadership of the working class and its political party, with a strategic alliance between the multinational working class and the oppressed nationalities at the core of this united front.”

The event opened with comments by Aislinn Pulley of Black Lives Matter-Chicago, who spoke of the recent Amtrak Police shooting of Chad Robertson; the refusal of prosecutors to bring charges against the cop who killed Quintonio LeGrier and Bettie Jones on Christmas morning 2015; and the Chicago police department murder of a mentally ill woman two days before the event. This helped place Chapman’s talk in the context of the ongoing struggle against racist discrimination and national oppression.[12]

Charlottesville protest

1000 protesters gathered in Chicago to protest the murder of Heather Heyer and the injuring of 19 others by American Nazis and white supremacists in Charlottesville, Virginia on August 12, 2017.

“Donald Trump is the commander in chief of white supremacist terrorism,” called out Frank Chapman at the start of the rally in Federal Plaza. “We call for driving Trump from office by a mass movement of the people.”

Chapman, field organizer of the Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression, explained the demands of the protest. “We demand that the Department of Justice root out, arrest, indict, prosecute, and jail the leaders of this racist conspiracy against our democracy.”

“In Chicago, we have a problem with white supremacist attacks, but they come from the Chicago police,” said Nesreen Hasan of the Arab American Action Network in her speech. A popular chant during the march was, “Cops and Klan go hand in hand!”

The coalition behind the protest included Black Lives Matter, Assata’s Daughters, Arab American Action Network, Organized Communities Against Deportations, the Filipino youth group Anakbayan, and Freedom Road Socialist Organization/FightBack!.[13]

References