HUEY P. NEWTON and the Black Panther Party he created have passed out of existence, as all things do. Like all things, they leave behind memories, those private sensory recollections sadly destined to be weaned out of history with each new generation. Like some, they leave behind certain tangible references to lives lived and life works. But, in kinship with those rare few whose footprints remain in defiance of time, they leave a legacy, a humane legacy that is a beacon from the past for those of us searching still to cross the abyss of human barbarity that seems written into eternity.
I came to know and embrace the best of Huey Newton, first as a Black Panther Party youth member and later as his wife during the last five years of his life. In that, I am a witness to the enlightened dreams as well as the torture of the dreamer. I came to know that he was the truest revolutionary, seeking always to bring harmony between the nature of things and the state of things, to transform dark into light, to challenge fear and hate with courage and love.
The Huey P Newton Reader is the first summation of this revolutionary life told in Huey’s own words. From this definitive collection of writings, readers will discover, perhaps for the first time, the astonishing breadth of Huey’s thoughts and actions. For history is a witness to the fact that he acted on his vision by inventing an instrument for freedom and enlightenment called the Black Panther Party. This was his essence and his life’s work, left behind as his personal legacy. As such, the Black Panther Party has left a living legacy, a work begun, but left undone, a foundation laid, a seed sown whose flowers brighten the barren fields today.
Fredrika Newton, President The Dr. Huey P. Newton Foundation