Change — yes, maybe even the radical kind — may be on its way to Jackson, Miss. The predominately black town elected activist Chokwe Lumumba to be its new mayor, and he’s got an ambitious plan for economic revival.
Lumumba’s election is stunning, because he is openly and avowedly radical on social and economic issues in a way seldom seen in American politics.
During the 1970s and early-1980s, he joined others in espousing the creation of the Republic of New Afrika (RNA), an independent and predominantly black country in the southeastern US.
The RNA movement also called for the US government to pay several billions of dollars in reparations for slavery.
In his campaign literature and in news media interviews, Mayor Lumumba stressed that his economic program will incorporate principles of the “solidarity economy”. Solidarity economy is a umbrella term used to describe a wide variety of alternative economic activities, including worker-owned co-operatives, co-operative banks, peer lending, community land trusts, participatory budgeting and fair trade.
Lumumba was officially sworn in as mayor on Monday.