Archive for Ferguson Missouri

Ferguson: Seems Like Everyone Has An Opinion

Posted in African Americans, Black America, Black Interests, Black Men, President Barack Obama with tags , , , on December 3, 2014 by Gary Johnson

Obama at Ferguson Summitt

By Black Men In America.com Staff

The recent White House summit regarding the events in Ferguson is one of many incidents and experiences resulting from the Ferguson Grand Jury’s decision not to indict Police Officer Darren Wilson for the shooting death of Michael Brown.

Everybody seems to have an opinion on this topic and some of the opinions have nothing to do with facts and other related data.  Here is a fact or two to consider:

  • According to a study by USA Today, an average of 96 blacks are killed by white cops per year. 
  • Last year, 6,000 blacks were murdered by other blacks — more than 60 times the number of blacks killed by white cops.
  • In 2013, 409 whites were murdered by blacks.
  • Black participation in the labor market has been steadily going downward during the Obama presidency.  All other racial groups have moved up.  Blacks are the only group that has taken a definitive step backwards.

The National Review Online posted an article by Peter Kirsanow with statistics on other issues of concern to black America including black unemployment, educational achievement, single motherhood, household income, poverty rates, and school discipline.

Black columnist Deroy Murdock wrote an article in May of this year contending that black Americans are worse off economically under President Obama.

NBA Analyst and former NBA great Charles Barkley conducted a “no-holds’ barred interview on CNN where he called the looters in Ferguson scumbags.  Barkley also said:  “Every time something happens in the black community, we have the same cast of sad characters. We don’t have to have Al Sharpton go there, we don’t have to have — and I’m not disparaging [Brown family lawyer] Mr. [Benjamin] Crunk.  I know he represented what happened in Florida with Trayvon’s family, and God bless them, but we have the same sad sack of black characters, we need strong black men in St. Louis to stand up, and say, hey, let’s handle this situation?”

Ferguson Rioters

Writer Jason L. Riley wrote:  “Today blacks are about 13 percent of the population and continue to be responsible for an inordinate amount of crime. Between 1976 and 2005 blacks com­mitted more than half of all murders in the United States. The black arrest rate for most offenses — including robbery, aggravated assault and property crimes — is still typically two to three times their representation in the population. Blacks as a group are also overrepresented among persons arrested for so-called white-collar crimes such as counterfeiting, fraud and embezzlement. And blaming this decades-long, well-documented trend on racist cops, prosecutors, judges, sentencing guidelines and drug laws doesn’t cut it as a plausible explanation.”

Pediatric neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Carson wrote a column where he opined the following:  “There are few things that can compare to the emotional devastation that accompanies such an event. This makes the varied emotional responses of Michael Brown’s family more understandable as the tragic events unfolded in Missouri. What is difficult to understand, though, is the benefit that the Ferguson, Missouri, community derives from burning and looting business establishments in their own neighborhoods, especially when unemployment is already a problem. In the meantime, the outside agitators in many cases are sitting in their hotel rooms sipping wine and watching the carnage on television.

Hopefully, people in communities such as Ferguson, like people all over America, are beginning to awaken and realize that they should be more than pawns in the hands of manipulators who, in reality, could not care less about them.”

President Obama held a summit on Ferguson but did not invite any representatives of the Ferguson Police Department.  “The president was interested in gathering stakeholders from across the country, not just one community,” said White House press secretary Josh Earnest, who said the meetings focused on “building bridges and restoring some trust between law enforcement agencies and the communities that they’re sworn to serve and protect.”

Was the summit more of a political move?  Is the White House and Department of Justice serious about bridging the gap between the police and the black community?

President Obama photo courtesy (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Sophisticated Modus Operandi of Exploitative, Oppressive American Traditions

Posted in African Americans, Black America, Black Interests, Black Men, Black Men In America with tags , , on December 3, 2014 by Gary Johnson

ferguson3web

By H. Lewis Smith

In light of the recent Ferguson, Missouri, grand jury decision to not indict Officer Darren Wilson for killing Michael Brown, a common denominator associated with all other injustices African Americans face—including others also being unnecessarily killed at the hands of police officers—all across the American landscape was once again proven to undoubtedly exist. In the end, the African American’s life is disregarded and discarded because the Black man in America continues to be viewed as an expendable sub-human by the still-strongly thriving and clearly alive systemic.

This evident truth remains intact and lives on through the American political and judicial systems: basically, law enforcement officers are beholden to politicians, and politicians are beholden to their white constituents. Because the “law” has been written in such a way that allows for heinous acts of racial terrorism to be carried out against African Americans in the name of self-defense, police may be tried in the court of law, but their behaviors will be found permissible. Police are simply carrying out orders to continue to exterminate African Americans, knowing that they will not be convicted. Thus when it comes to law enforcement and the black community, police conduct themselves in a manner acceptable by those to whom they are obligated or swear allegiance. This allegiance is not to protect and serve African Americans. And it isn’t just law enforcement officers, the justice system across the board is suspect.

Young men of color have a disproportionate number of encounters with law enforcement, indicating that racial profiling continues to be a problem. A report by the Department of Justice found that Blacks and Hispanics were approximately three times more likely to be searched during a traffic stop than white motorists. African Americans were twice as likely to be arrested and almost four times as likely to experience the use of force during encounters with the police.

Bureau of Justice Statistics further dictate that one in every 15 Black/African-American men are currently incarcerated, and that, at a minimum, one in every three black men can expect to go to prison at some point in their lifetime. As for other races, only one in every 106 white males are incarcerated, and one in every 36 for Hispanic males are locked up.

In accepting this reality, one must realize that it is the black man’s responsibility to awaken, protect, uplift and serve its collective self in a manner honoring their race. Since the absolution of slavery, Black America has constantly begged, moaned and groaned, and sought its salvation through governmental subsidies and either the Democratic or Republican political parties. Rather than electing to stand as a united force, self-correct, and self-uplift, Black America refuses to take control of its OWN fate and destiny and looks to someone else to take the reins in boosting the community’s much-needed and more-than-possible rejuvenation.

If Black America is to overthrow the systemic and gain its rightful equality and just treatment, the race must realize that waiting on either political party and/or a certain representative to cure the community’s ailments is not the key, or clearly apparent as of late, the right ingredient at all. In fact, African Americans are being recruited by oppressors to help continue to push the 400-year-old plight in terms of being puppets, turning blacks against one another, and serving as the white man’s cash cows. Sadly, African Americans are too blind to see it. These recruitment efforts dwindle the African-American community’s manpower in this war for real progress and leave the community more distracted, separated, broken, and confused than before. So, if Black America thought Black elected or appointed officials were the cure, please think again.

The Meritorious Manumission Act of 1710, enacted in Virginia, was a law that served to control the mentality of enslaved Africans. The indoctrination established in ancestors a mindset that made them view the world through the white man’s eyes, to make them white in every way except skin color. Those who became skilled at it were rewarded. As such, if any black person saved a white person’s life or protected their property, invented something from which a white person could generate money, or squealed on someone involved in a black slavery revolt, he would secure his own freedom. Such American traditions are still in vogue today albeit in a more sophisticated modus operandi.

The Republican Party’s latest election of two black Senators and one congressman should not be construed as progress or a new level of entitlement or America’s appreciation for the African-American community as a whole. This past election, the Republican Party cleaned house, and many African Americans were excited just to see another “sister” or “brother” elected to office, even if they are republicans. But should the community actually be excited about that, or is this strategy one of the previously-mentioned recruitment tactics?

The definition of the word “Conservative” is “a person who is averse to change and holds to traditional values and attitudes”; that includes “Law and Order”, which means maintaining the status quo and giving pretense that what is seen is normal. In other words, being a conservative means, according to this definition, that all the suffering African Americans endured is supposed to be normal. When a Black person declares him or herself a conservative, that individual, knowingly or unknowingly, is saying that he/she is politically predisposed to “conserving”, or PRESERVING, the American traditions of the past—including those same traditions of hypocrisy, brutality, and racism toward his or her own people. So the question remains: just what is it that so-called black conservatives are trying to conserve? Conservatism is about white values, white superiority.
Black/African Americans’ monumental mistake is placing their fate and destiny into the hands of political parties (Democrats and Republicans) as opposed to circling the wagons and taking control of their own fate and destiny. Anything less, both political parties are going to continue to use African Americans to their own benefit. Some would argue that African Americans need to demand economic reciprocity for their support, and that it should be verbalized consistently and resolutely communicated as absolute expectation. Such rationale is paramount to trying to mix water and oil together—it just doesn’t work.

African Americans, tired of being taken for granted, are looking for alternatives to the failed policies of the left. Now, the Republican message is resonating with them. However, behind closed doors insofar as African Americans are concerned, the two party system becomes a single party system with its ideology towards Black America being one and the same. This was never more apparent than in the 2004 presidential election when Florida’s black votes were discounted, which unfairly gave the election to Bush. The Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) protested but to no avail. They needed one Senator from either party to side with them to overturn the hi-jacking. Instead of gaining the support they certainly should have received, the two parties joined in unison against the CBC, and in so many words, each member of the CBC was told to shut up, take their seats and be quiet.

Black America has been brainwashed into believing that drug abuse, unemployment, unwed teen-age parents, welfare, poverty, and black on black crime, to name a few, are the pathologies of their community. However, reality is such that the Black community has been locked into a NO WIN situation. All the wealth and power in this country has been dispensed over 400 years systemically into the hands of the majority white society. Black people don’t own a significant amount of anything to be able to control their lives to the extent that would promote and allow collective progress. Whites in America today control almost 100% of the income, wealth, power, resources, privileges and all levels of government, making it impossible to compete.

To add insult to injury, during the 80s under the Reagan Administration, the black community was flooded with cocaine by the CIA as noted in the following article: http://www.mega.nu/ampp/webb.html. Millions of lives were adversely affected and the lingering effects are prevalent to this very day; yet, Republican conservatives have the unmitigated gall to look at the Black community in utter contempt asking why the black community is the way it is. Really?

Proverbs 29:18 says: “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” Black America’s salvation can only be won for its self, by its self. Looking to others to complete this feat for them is NOT going to work. Depending on political parties and the government to win this battle for them is not the answer. Instead, enlightenment, commitment to the collective community’s progress, and establishing economic independence must be at the forefront of each member’s mind and present in every single action taken and association made. Ultimately, this mindset will lead to self-reliance and self-respect, which are the proper ingredients of advancement. Anything less, they can expect to always be treated in an exploitative, subordinated and exclusive manner; to assume otherwise will prove to be an exercise in futility.

h-lewis-smith H. Lewis Smith is the founder and president of UVCC, the United Voices for a Common Cause, Inc., http://www.theunitedvoices.com author of Bury that Sucka: A Scandalous Love Affair with the N-Word, and the recently released book Undressing the N-word: Revealing the Naked Truth, Lies, Deceit and Mind Games https://www.createspace.com/4655015

Benjamin Watson’s Reflection On Ferguson Goes Viral

Posted in African Americans, Black America, Black Interests, Black Men, Racism with tags , , on November 30, 2014 by Gary Johnson

Ferguson Rioters

By Gary A. Johnson

I tend to cringe whenever I hear about a professional athlete discussing current events.  In my experience, the athlete “doesn’t know, what he doesn’t know,” and usually has no idea how ignorant sounds.  New Orleans Saints, Tight End Benjamin Watson is the exception and a GREAT one I might add.

Watson came home last Monday night and turned on the television and saw the looting and rioting that was going on in Ferguson, Missouri, in the wake of the grand jury decision not to prosecute Officer Darren Wilson for the shooting death of Michael Brown, an unarmed civilian.  He stared at the TV trying to deal with his emotions.

The next day while sitting in a Target parking lot while his wife was shopping, Watson reportedly compiled an essay based on notes that he had been jotting down via his iPhone throughout the day.

If you have not heard about or read this eloquent essay, I think it is well worth your time to read.

Benjamin Watson

At some point while I was playing or preparing to play Monday Night Football, the news broke about the Ferguson Decision. After trying to figure out how I felt, I decided to write it down. Here are my thoughts:

I’M ANGRY because the stories of injustice that have been passed down for generations seem to be continuing before our very eyes.

I’M FRUSTRATED, because pop culture, music and movies glorify these types of police citizen altercations and promote an invincible attitude that continues to get young men killed in real life, away from safety movie sets and music studios.

I’M FEARFUL because in the back of my mind I know that although I’m a law abiding citizen I could still be looked upon as a “threat” to those who don’t know me. So I will continue to have to go the extra mile to earn the benefit of the doubt.

I’M EMBARRASSED because the looting, violent protests, and law breaking only confirm, and in the minds of many, validate, the stereotypes and thus the inferior treatment.

I’M SAD, because another young life was lost from his family, the racial divide has widened, a community is in shambles, accusations, insensitivity hurt and hatred are boiling over, and we may never know the truth about what happened that day.

I’M SYMPATHETIC, because I wasn’t there so I don’t know exactly what happened. Maybe Darren Wilson acted within his rights and duty as an officer of the law and killed Michael Brown in self defense like any of us would in the circumstance. Now he has to fear the backlash against himself and his loved ones when he was only doing his job. What a horrible thing to endure. OR maybe he provoked Michael and ignited the series of events that led to him eventually murdering the young man to prove a point.

I’M OFFENDED, because of the insulting comments I’ve seen that are not only insensitive but dismissive to the painful experiences of others.

I’M CONFUSED, because I don’t know why it’s so hard to obey a policeman. You will not win!!! And I don’t know why some policeman abuse their power. Power is a responsibility, not a weapon to brandish and lord over the populace.

I’M INTROSPECTIVE, because sometimes I want to take “our” side without looking at the facts in situations like these. Sometimes I feel like it’s us against them. Sometimes I’m just as prejudiced as people I point fingers at. And that’s not right. How can I look at white skin and make assumptions but not want assumptions made about me? That’s not right.

I’M HOPELESS, because I’ve lived long enough to expect things like this to continue to happen. I’m not surprised and at some point my little children are going to inherit the weight of being a minority and all that it entails.

I’M HOPEFUL, because I know that while we still have race issues in America, we enjoy a much different normal than those of our parents and grandparents. I see it in my personal relationships with teammates, friends and mentors. And it’s a beautiful thing.

I’M ENCOURAGED, because ultimately the problem is not a SKIN problem, it is a SIN problem. SIN is the reason we rebel against authority. SIN is the reason we abuse our authority. SIN is the reason we are racist, prejudiced and lie to cover for our own. SIN is the reason we riot, loot and burn. BUT I’M ENCOURAGED because God has provided a solution for sin through the his son Jesus and with it, a transformed heart and mind. One that’s capable of looking past the outward and seeing what’s truly important in every human being. The cure for the Michael Brown, Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice and Eric Garner tragedies is not education or exposure. It’s the Gospel. So, finally, I’M ENCOURAGED because the Gospel gives mankind hope.

Thank you Benjamin Watson.

ERIC HOLDER GUARANTEES FAIRNESS IN FERGUSON WHERE NOBODY PLAYS FAIR

Posted in African Americans, Black Interests, Black Men, Black Men In America, Racism with tags , , on August 23, 2014 by Gary Johnson

Eric Holder

Attorney General Eric Holder talks with Capt. Ron Johnson of the Missouri State Highway Patrol.  Associated Press

By Harold Bell

I experienced the 1968 riots in Washington, DC up close and personal as a Roving Leader for the DC Recreation Department’s Youth Gang Task Force.  The riots in Ferguson, Missouri brought back bad memories. On the mean streets in the U Street NW corridor during the riots my co-worker and former Green Bay Packer great Willie Wood and I teamed up with the late U. S. Marshall in Charge, Luke C. Moore. Luke was appointed by President Lyndon B. Johnson.  He was the first black in modern day history to head the U. S. Marshall Service in America.

The three of us walked arm and arm through the tear gas streets of NW DC trying to maintain peace. Luke would go on to become a DC Superior judge and Willie Wood would be inducted in the NFL Hall of Fame in 1989.

When President Lyndon Johnson ordered all businesses to shut down during the riots it was Luke Moore who called the White House and asked the President to reconsider and allow Ben’s Chili Bowl to remain open for first responders. Request granted—when the dust, tear gas and military personnel had cleared the streets, Lee’s Flower Shop, Industrial Bank, and Ben’s Chili Bowl were the only black businesses still standing.

BENs-CHILI-BOWL

Luke Moore’s contributions to Kids In Trouble and Inside Sports can never be measured in time or money. He helped me get the Bolling Boys Base for juvenile delinquents off the ground on Bolling Air Force Base in SE DC. He went directly to DC Mayor Walter Washington and Department of Human Resources Director, Joe Yeldell and said “Let’s do it!” The longevity of the Kids In Trouble Christmas Toy Party (1968-2013) can be directly attributed to him.

Luke encouraged other judges to get involved in the community including, Chief Judge Harold Greene with the opening of Bolling Boys Base. The athletes, politicians, radio and television personalities would all follow his lead when it came to community involvement. We had a great crew of judges from the DC Superior Court where the perquisite was fairness for all. They included “the one of a kind” Harry T. Alexander, Chief Judge Greene, Chief Judge Eugene Hamilton, Chief Judge Ted Newman, and Henry Kennedy Jr. The community and children were really first and they led by example.

The riots in Ferguson made me remember that there was once equal justice for all in the DC Superior in the Nation’s Capital. A white cop would dare not show up in Judge Harry Alexander’s courtroom and not properly address a black defendant as Mr. or Ms. Judge Moore demanded the same type of respect for minorities from lawyers and cops with attitudes. Somewhere along the way I lost Federal Judge Alex Williams when he received his Federal Judgeship for the state of Maryland.

In a recent interview the Chief of the Prince George’s County Police Department said, “Ferguson would never happen in Prince George’s County!” Are you kidding me? When it comes to police brutality in America Prince George’s County is second only to the LAPD in California (remember Rodney King).  The PG County Police Department was monitored by the FBI for over 2 decades as it relates to police brutality.

Have we forgotten that a young Afro-American man was recently found hung by his neck in a jail cell in Upper Marlboro, MD? He was waiting to be tried on the hit and run death of a white PG County police officer. He was the victim of police vigilante justice, here and now in the 21st century. The renegade cops were never brought to trial. A black correctional officer was paid off and took the fall for the renegade white cops who are still in uniform patrolling our streets.

A black Federal Judge Alex Williams had an opportunity to say “Enough is enough” but instead of sending a message he sentence the correctional officer to 1 to 3 years. The sentence condones the department’s outrageous behavior. If this would have been the former black Prince Georges County Judge William Missouri, I would have said “Business as usual.” Missouri was known as “The Hanging Judge” when came to sentencing black folks, this made him a hero in “The Plantation” style halls of the Prince Georges County Court House.
Thanks to Alex Williams and Bill Missouri the KKK is still alive and well in the PG County Police Department.

Let’s not forget there was the unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin walking through a white neighborhood shot to death, or the black teenager Jordan Davis shot to death in a Florida parking lot for playing his music too loud, a black man strangled to death on a NY Street in broad daylight for selling loose cigarettes, a black female college professor is dragged across street by her hair for jay walking, a white California State Trooper caught on video sitting on top of a black woman beating on her like a punching bag.

And now an 18 year old unarmed Michael Brown is shot 6 times and killed in broad daylight in Ferguson, Missouri for reasons still unknown. The common denominator, all the acts were committed at the hands of white men who want to take America back? Brings back memories of Emmitt Till!  Chicago, New York, St. Louis, LA, Baltimore, Detroit, DC, Maryland and now Ferguson, a suburb in Missouri have become breeding grounds for brutal and corrupt cops who in the final analyst are nothing but cowards with a badge and gun. They hide behind a Code of Silence!

The most organized gangs in America are not “The Crips & Bloods” it is your local police departments.

USA Today: Two black men are shot and killed by police every week in America!

Eric Holder’s track record during his tenure as U. S. Attorney for the District of Columbia was not encouraging when came to addressing police violence against the black community. As the U. S. Attorney for the District of Columbia from 1993 to 1997, Holder was in charge of policing the local police. When police violence spiraled out of control, he did little to protect Washington residents from rampaging lawmen. The number of killings by Washington police doubled between 1988 to 1995, the year 16 civilians died due to police gunfire. Washington police shot and killed people at a higher rate than any other major city police department, as a Washington Post investigation revealed in late 1998. The Post reported that “Holder said he did not detect a pattern of problematic police shootings and could not recall the specifics of cases he personally reviewed.” Holder declared: I can’t honestly say I saw anything that was excessive.”

But in 2009 as U. S. Attorney for United States of America in President Barak Obama’s administration I heard and saw a different Eric Holder. In a speech during Black History Month at the Justice Department he declared, “Americans wrongly consider the United States a melting pot. In things racial, we have always been and I believe continue to be, in too many ways, essentially a nation of cowards.” It took a whole lot of balls to make that statement as a black man and politician, but it was the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

His stance reminded me of the best seller “The Spook That Sit by the Door.” I said to myself, “finally, a black man who is not scare of the truth.” The sad part of this charade in Ferguson, the right hand does not have a clue to what the left hand is doing and don’t seem to care. The so-called experts, the talking heads and the writing hands in media are just as clueless, but as boxing promoter Don King once said, “They are a necessary evil. They bring light to Justice & Just-Us!”

The country is based on a racist court system of Justice & Just-Us. A court system where a white man caught stealing millions of dollars can have a new law written into the books on his behalf and it is called “White Collar Crime?”

How can people who call themselves human beings allow an 18 year old to lie in the streets dead for over 4 hours with his parents present and no one in authority is sensitive enough to try comfort them?

One of my favorite television shows to watch on the weekends is “Animal Planet” and it is times like this I am left wondering, who are the Real Animals?

It is easy to understand why politicians like Harry Reid are also clueless. He recently said, “I cannot believe that the scenes unfolding in Ferguson are taking place in an American city in the year of 2914.” My question, ‘Harry where you been?’

The problem, he and his Republican counterparts across the aisle have is they never have been black and have never spend any significant time in the war zones of our inner-cities and therefore have become a part of the problem.

Police shootings and hanging of black men and black on black murder have become the norm in America replacing Apple Pie.

USA Today: Two black men are shot and killed by police every week in America!

Why is it that the media and others with hidden agendas want to make a point that “Outsiders” are responsible for the violence in Ferguson?

They evidently think that American citizens don’t have a stake in this charade? Have they forgotten Selma and the march on Washington where outsiders could be seen as far as the eye could see and made a difference—where is the beef?

There was a Kodak Moment in Ferguson when a white reporter put his microphone in the face of a young black man who was involved in the protest. The reporter was inquiring about “Outside Agitators” from Chicago, California and the violence they had brought to the city. The young brother took a deep breath and said ‘There are no outsiders we are all in this together.”

Where and when will this madness end? I once thought in my life time—I now have serious doubts!

USA Today: Two black men are shot and killed by police every week in America!

“Hands up Black Men in America”—Fairness not on my watch.

“The world is a dangerous place not because of those who do evil, it is dangerous because of those who do and say nothing.” — Albert Einstein

Harold Bell is the Godfather of Sports Talk radio and television in Washington, DC.  Throughout the mid-sixties, seventies and eighties, Harold embarked upon a relatively new medium–sports talk radio with classic interviews with athletes and sports celebrities.  The show and format became wildly popular. Harold has been an active force fighting for the rights of children for over 40 years with the help of his wife through their charity Kids In Trouble, Inc.   To learn more about Harold Bell visit his official web site The Original Inside Sports.com.

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