San Francisco

#Frisco5 Hunger Striker Teams Up With Black Panther Co-Founder

A hunger striker from the #Frisco5 has reached out to the Black Panther co-founder in order to build an intergenerational bridge of community activism.

Averi Sellassie Blackwell, 39, will lead a frank conversation with Bobby Seale, 79, scheduled for 7 p.m. Friday at Freedom Archives, 522 Valencia Street in San Francisco. Tickets are available for $20.

Blackwell made international news as part of the #Frisco5, a group of five citizens who pledged not to eat anything until Mayor Ed Lee fired or asked former SFPD Chief Greg Suhr to resign over the police department's 0 percent conviction rates in police killings.

The #Frisco5 were hospitalized on their 16th day, and formerly ended the strike on the May 8, the 17th day. Lee asked Suhr to resign on May 19 after Jessica Williams, 29, was fatally shot by a San Francisco police sergeant.

"To sit and talk with him is inspiring," Blackwell told NBC Bay Area of Seale, who started the Black Panther movement in Oakland in 1966 with Huey Newton. "To hear his organizational tactics and his motivation and his intentions for why he started and put his life on the line for the Panthers and to hear from him as opposed to other people talking about him — I'm always interested to hear what people have to say about something they built as opposed to what other people have to say."

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