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Son of the late legendary poet wins the mayoral race in his father’s hometown

Last night, Ras Baraka, the son of the black consciousness icon Amiri Baraka, won the popular vote through election, therefore becoming the Mayor of Newark, New Jersey.


He was the last elected Mayor of the troubled city since Cory Booker, who left his post as Mayor after a special election to become a Senator last year. Since then, City Councilman Luis Quintana has been acting mayor.

Baraka, 45, has inherited the city’s whopping $93 million budget deficit, the challenge of the city’s highest murder rate since 1990, and the plummeting public school system, which will definitely have the former high school principal’s hands full.

Ras is the son of poet, playwright, and Black Arts trailblazer Amiri Baraka, who passed away in January of this year. The elder Baraka which, among other things, laid the foundation for Hip-Hop. The Black Arts movement of the 1960′s and 70′s was spearheaded by politically driven artists such as Sonia Sanchez, Nikki Giovanni, and The Last Poets, who documented narratives that were specific to the Black culture and experience.

Congratulations to Ras for his win, which the city of Newark hopes will be the positive change that is desperately needed in that city.

-Sha Be Allah(@KingPenStatus)