Cal State L.A. professor emerges as leader in Black Lives Matter movement

A photo posted by Melina Abdullah (@docmellymel) on

EL SERENO- Melina Abdullah has taught for more than a decade at Cal State L.A. in the Pan-African Studies Department, which she now oversees as chair. But in recent months, Abdullah has become better known as the most visible and vocal leader of the Black Lives Matter chapter in Los Angeles, which was involved in a tense confrontation with Mayor Eric Garcetti last week. On Tuesday, Abudullah will deliver a lecture about Black Lives Matter at Occidental College in Eagle Rock.

The educator, activist and author (Abudllah is currently working on a book on “Hip Hop and political mobilization”) has been quoted widely.  “The mayor has neglected, disrespected and abused the black community for far too long,” Abudullah told the L.A. Times following what was described as a hostile demonstration at Garcetti’s appearance at a South L.A. Church. Black Lives Matter, she told The Guardian, is about “recognizing that we have targets on our backs and the state has targeted us for killing – that we must take on the work of liberating ourselves.”

A quick Google search found few revealing profiles of Abdullah, who serves on on the Los Angeles County Human Relations Commission and co-hosts and co-produces a weekly radio program on KPFK.  Abdullah earned her Political Science Ph.D. from the USC  and her B.A. from Howard University in African-American Studies. She lives in the Mid-City area with her three children, according to several website profiles. Her Cal State L.A. bio describes her as a “soccer mama.”

Earlier this year, Abdullah and her family had joined others who camped outside of the LAPD headquarters in an effort to have the officers involved in the fatal shooting of Ezell Ford fired from the department. “I’m here because I’m a mother,” she told L.A. Times columnist Sandy Banks. Banks wrote:

She remembers growing up in Oakland at a time when every mom on the block looked out for everyone else’s children. “There was a shared sense of responsibility to protect them. We need that now,” she said.

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  1. I think many people were initially sympathetic to BLM. However, they seem to be mostly about protesting and complaining and getting media attention, and not about working towards solutions.

  2. How has this mayor disrespected and abused the black community? This is like when the BLM people shut down Bernie Sanders. The left is eating itself.

  3. How the hell is it that Garcettii, the wussiest-kissiest-ass-PC whipped mayor to ever swing a gavel at city hall “disrespected or abused” anyone other than taxpayers and business owners of L.A.?! By not sitting down long enough to be insulted and yelled at for essentially not tucking his tail even further down between his legs to appease this tiresome crowd? Even Garcetti isnn’t that big of a wussy (darned spell check keeps tripping me up), Seems to me this woman is more concerned with being a “star” within the BLM movement than by actually being productive. But that’s always been the tactic of those with more to say than actual ideas to realize progress. As for Mayor Cut and Run, let’s hope he’s doesn’t abandon us when a real emergency strikes, like say a 20.9 earthquake or when Storm Watch 2016 rolls around. .

    why does it have to be separated as only one group of peoples lives matter!

    • All lives matter, sure. But there isn’t an epidemic of police shooting down white people. The police are out of control when it comes to blacks. That’s just reality. Unjustified killings are being plastered all over the internet and still people want to give the police a pass. How about we all take a step back and admit that black lives are cheap in the eyes of the powers that be and law enforcement has taken things way too far, Sure all lives matter, but not all lives are under attack. I’m not black by the way.

      • I was pulled over by LAPD , i was told to step out of my vehicle and put my hands up , i KNEW i had done nothing wrong, but i COMPLIED when i was told to put my hands behind my back. I was handcuffed. After clearing up that i only resembled the car and suspect of an attempted car jacking in the area , i was apologized to and let go, no big deal. I didn’t resist , i didn’t run , i did not disrespect any one involved , i just COMPLIED .

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