- BLM co-founder Alicia Garza, 39, is the principal of Black Futures Lab, an advocacy group for black people
- The group is financially supported by the Chinese Progressive Association, it has been revealed
- Its donate button links directly to the CPA site
- The CPA was founded in San Francisco in 1972 and has held events with and in support of the Chinese Communist government
- Garza has previously been described as a ‘trained Marxist’
A liberal initiative led by a co-founder of the Black Lives Matter movement is funded by a group linked to the Chinese Communist Party, it has been revealed.
Alicia Garza, 39, is the principal of Black Futures Lab, an advocacy group she created two years ago that works ‘with black people to transform their communities’, according to their website.
Garza has previously been described as a ‘trained Marxist’ by her BLM co-founder Patrisse Cullors.
‘We are super-versed on, sort of, ideological theories. And I think that what we really tried to do is build a movement that could be utilized by many, many black folk,’ Cullors said in an interview with The Real News Network.
On a funding page for Black Future Labs, it reveals how it is ‘fiscally sponsored’ by the Chinese group group.
The Chinese Progressive Association are not listed among the partners on their website yet the donate button on Black Future Labs website links directly to a page on the CPA’s own site.
Black Future Labs writes that its goal is to build ‘black political power’ and change ‘the way that power operates—locally, statewide, and nationally’.
Their mission is to ‘engage Black voters year-round’, to ‘use our political strength to stop corporate influences from creeping into progressive policies’ and to ‘combine technology and traditional organizing methods to reach black people anywhere and everywhere we are,’ they add.
On their website, the CPA state that their group ‘educates, organizes and empowers the low income and working class immigrant Chinese community in San Francisco to build collective power with other oppressed communities to demand better living and working conditions and justice for all people’.
Yet according to the Post, the group, founded in 1972, also has ties to the Chinese government, where there is a history of the mistreatment of black people.
According to Heritage.org, the CPA was founded ‘during the heady days of the Marxist-oriented Asian American Movement’.
It cites a Stanford paper that states: ‘The CPA began as a Leftist, pro-People’s Republic of China organization, promoting awareness of mainland China’s revolutionary thought and workers’ rights, and dedicated to self-determination, community control, and “serving the people”.’
It adds that it ‘worked with other pro-PRC groups within the U.S. and San Francisco Bay Area … Support for the PRC was based on the inspiration the members drew from what they saw as a successful grassroots model that presented a viable alternative to Western capitalism.’
The group has also held events with and supporting the Chinese government.
This included support for raising the Chinese flag over Boston’s City Hall last year to celebrate the anniversary of the Communist Party’s takeover of China. The group now has an active branch in the city as well as in San Francisco.
They also held a joint event with the People’s Republic of China to help Chinese nationals renew their passports, the Washington Times reported.
Just this year, the coronavirus pandemic allegedly saw Africans living in Guangzhou, China, targeted with xenophobia, according to CNN.
There were reports that they were subject to random coronavirus testing or quarantined for 14 days in their homes, despite having no symptoms and there being no evidence they had contact with an infected person.
According to an advisory issued by the US State Department in May, there were also reports that bars and restaurants in China were ordered by law enforcement not to serve people of African origin.
‘Moreover, local officials launched a round of mandatory tests for COVID-19, followed by mandatory self-quarantine, for anyone with “African contacts”, regardless of recent travel history or previous quarantine completion,’ the advisory said.
‘African-Americans have also reported that some businesses and hotels refuse to do business with them.
‘The US Consulate General advises African-Americans or those who believe Chinese officials may suspect them of having contact with nationals of African countries to avoid the Guangzhou metropolitan area until further notice,’ it added.
However, China has voiced support of the BLM movement and used the Chinese Communist Party outlet China Daily to slam US ‘racism and police violence’.
The Black Lives Matter movement started with the use of the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter on social media following the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the shooting death of black teen Trayvon Martin in February 2012.
It grew following a Facebook post by Garza called ‘A Love Letter to Black People’ published shortly afterward.
It regained traction this year following the brutal police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis on May 25.
The three founders of the movement and hashtag are activists Garza, Cullors and Opal Tometi, who expanded the project into a national network of over 30 local chapters between 2014 and 2016.
Garza is also behind the Movement for Black Lives which has described itself as ‘anti-capitalist’, according to Heritage.
‘We believe and understand that Black people will never achieve liberation under the current global radicalized capitalist system,’ it has stated.
It adds that in 2015, Garza also stated: ‘It’s not possible for a world to emerge where black lives matter if it’s under capitalism, and it’s not possible to abolish capitalism without a struggle against national oppression.’
According to the Maine Beacon, Garza said in 2019 that ‘we’re talking about changing how we’ve organized this country, so that we actually can achieve the justice that we are fighting for’.
‘I believe we all have work to do to keep dismantling the organizing principle of this society, which creates inequities for everyone,’ she added.
Garza is an organizer and writer living in California. As well as founding BLM, she has worked as the Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance.