Rev. Osagyefo Sekou is one of the most courageous and prophetic voices of our time.
— Cornel West, Harvard University

“Democracy and God have failed" captures the spirit of this provocative collection of essays. Arguing that religion must be used for the expansion of democracy, Sekou takes up gay marriage, economic justice, and social movements. Written in Parisian cafes, London’s ghettos, and the aftermath of Haiti’s earthquake and post-Katrina New Orleans, Gods, Gays, and Guns is a spiritual tour-de-force, revealing a crisis of faith in religion and democracy.

Letter to a Black Girl Born in a (Never Ending) Time of Terror

To my darling niece, Ximena: I do not know the day you were born, yet you are here. You chose to come a few months early for a time such as this-the last days-the end of an empire. Because you are Black, this can be a mean world, but you are loved so the gates of hell shall not prevail against you.

OPINION: The clergy's place is with the protesters in Ferguson

"The hottest place in Hell is reserved for those who remain neutral in times of great moral conflict." - Martin Luther King My Dear Fellow Clergy: It been brought to my attention that some of you are questioning the intentions of the protest movement in Ferguson, Missouri, and of the clergy supporting it.

Queering Democracy and Christianity - The Feminist Wire

By Rev. Osagyefo Uhuru Sekou A few years ago, I interviewed to serve as the Senior Minister of a church in the Bronx. I was excited about serving as a pastor in the poorest congressional district in the country, plus the "Boogie Down" is the birth place of Hip Hop.

OPINION: The radical gospel of Martin Luther King

Martin Luther King Jr. is ubiquitous. A federal holiday, a monument and a plethora of schools and streets bearing his name have cemented his presence on the cultural landscape of the United States. Liberals and conservatives alike appropriate King's language to adorn their political wardrobes and buttress their ideological constructions.

Danny Glover: Artist & Activist

SCN caught up with Danny Glover walking down Flower Street in Downtown Los Angeles. The 6'4' actor is towering and humble at once. His salutation is a standard greeting that is southern hospitality mixed with California cool-"How you doing, baby?" Glover is most widely known for his role in the Lethal Weapon franchise Since 1979,...

The Meaning of Barack Obama

I know your image of me Is what I hope to be I've treated you unkindly But darlin' can't you see These lyrics are from the classic, A Song for You. Though originally written and recorded in 1970 by Leon Russell, a white rocker-singer-songwriter, these lyrics were ushered into the American songbook by soul music...

A Prophet in Exile: A Personal Meditation on James Baldwin - The Feminist Wire

By Rev. Osagyefo Uhuru Sekou After the re-election of George W. Bush, I was done with America. Less than a year into Bush's second term, I left the United Statesfor the first time. At the tender age of 34, I moved to Paris to be like James Baldwin.

The Brief Life and Times of a Nigger from Palestine

Jesus was a nigger. To be a nigger, now and then, is to contend with arbitrary violence, legislative repression, and ontological uncertainty. Every moment of one’s life is policed and every action questioned. Where and how a nigger lives is subjugated to interrogation. Jesus, like all niggers, is empirically unjustifiable yet existentially irrefutable.

And the Young Ones Shall Lead Them: The Ferguson Rebellion and the Crisis in Black Leadership

Rev. Osegyefo Sekou (center) leading demonstrators in freedom hymns in Ferguson, Missouri tekeiller/Twitter The blood of Michael Brown has seeded the soil of a great American revolution -sprouting yearlings of new black leadership onto the political and public landscape.

Martin Luther King's Radical Legacy, From the Poor People's Campaign to Black Lives Matter | Dissent Magazine

Osagyefo Uhuru Sekou ▪ January 15, 2017 "The only thing I ask is that they not take the freeways. Dr. King would never take a freeway." So said Kasim Reed, the liberal African American mayor of Atlanta, in response to Black Lives Matter protests in King's birth city last summer.

Exclusive: Open Letter to Tamir Rice

Civil rights activist and EBONY Power 100 honoree pens a moving letter to a beautiful Black boy denied justice [OPINION] by Rev. Osagyefo Sekou, December 29, 2015 Comments Tamir Rice family photo America has failed you, yet again. This nation gorges on our flesh, and yet it is never satiated.

Prophecy Delivered! Martin Luther King Jr. and the Death of Democracy

Truthout is accountable to our readers, not big business or billionaire sponsors. You can sustain our work by clicking here to make a tax-deductible donation! Democracy is dead. It has always been an afflicted creature - hobbling about - wounded at its very being. An enslaving disposition corrupted the United States before it matured.

Bob Marley, Soul Rebel

"Live if you want to live / That's what we got to give," were the first lines sung by Bob Marley at the Amandla Festival held at the Harvard Coliseum some 34 years ago in 1979. Marley's plea for li...

Cornel West: A Voice in the Wilderness

"I come to you tonight with a heavy heart," Cornel West began. "I just buried my grandmother," he continued at the crowd gathered at West Park Presbyterian Church in the New York, which caused a collective "ahhh." Dr. West cancelled a number of speaking engagements in early March, pausing his whirlwind schedule to deliver the...

urbansouls foreshadows the Ferguson uprising by offering keen insight on the social and cultural situation of the greater St. Louis region. Written while serving as a youth pastor and community center director in the late ‘90s, Sekou reads the religious sensibilities of hip hop as a meaning-making activity for those who have been alienated from society's traditional institutions such as the church. 

The Task of the Artist in the Time of Monsters

We come to know monsters early in our lives. Our childhoods are filled with scary things that “go bump” in the night. A ferocious fire-breathing creature with bulging eyes, fangs, and foaming at the mouth stands over us. We pull the covers over our head; pray and pretend that the monster is just a figment of our imagination.

Dear god,

I have not written you in some time. I have been busy cleaning up your shit down here. I believe the last time I wrote you it was from New Orleans. Now, I write from a little further south-Haiti.

Gays Are the New Niggers

Those who declare "Gay is the New Black" have outraged intellectuals, religious leaders, and politicians inside the black community. They have outraged, for instance, Rev.

Tell the Truth and Shame the Devil

Writing and art from or about the South. Published Quarterly.

Embed Block
Add an embed URL or code. Learn more

Marian Wright Edelman

SCN: Thank you so very much; we're deeply honored that you would take this time to talk with us. It's my understanding that my predecessors had a brief interview with you concerning your summer program. MWE: Right-which we are very proud of. And it's just growing and growing.

The Rebellious Life of Rosa Parks

The Rebellious Life of Rosa Parks + Beacon Press + 303 pages "A tired seamstress" is how we remember Rosa Parks in our national imagination. Accordingly the tired seamstress was not a troublemaker just a simple woman who in a single act of defiance launched the modern civil rights movement.