Black Quotidian: Everyday History in African-American Newspapers

October 2, 1993

Guest post by Courtney Canavan, undergraduate student at Manhattan College.

On October 2, 1993, the New York Amsterdam News reported that Elombe Brath made a special guest appearance at the Beacon School in Queens along with approximately three hundred others to celebrate Brath’s accomplishments in social justice for the oppressed. The president of the Committee to Eliminate Media Offensive to African People (CEMOTAP), Betty Depson, presented Brath with a plaque to honor his dedicated efforts to make a better future for not only their city, but the people of many places worldwide. Viola Plummer said, “[When you got a problem], call Elombe… He is as valuable to us as our life blood, and we are never going to lose because he is on our side.”

The entire article was written as if Elombe was a local man that everyone knew, including the audience. It said nothing about his efforts in South Africa, Cuba, and hardly anything he’d done in New York; the writer assumes you know it all already. This shows what a local legend Brath was, and how prominent of a figure he was in their society. 

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