Editorials/Comments

6.1.15-7.31.15

EDITORIAL CORNER:
Judy Martin, Founder, Survivors/ Victims of Tragedy, Inc.; Treasurer, Black on Black Crime, Inc. No Truth. No Justice. No Peace.

UNBELIEVABLE
TOTAL ARROGANCE BY POLICE UNION

A 17 year old young unarmed man is killed by a police officer.
The police union decides to have a fundraiser for the officer.
The police union decides to raffle off a gun. A GUN! A gun very similar or the same as the one used to kill the young man.

Total arrogance, insensitivity and a family traumatized further by actions being taken by the police union.

DID YOU KNOW?

MONEY, MONEY, MONEY
WHERE DOES IT GO?
HOW IS IT ALLOCATED?
DOES ANYONE BENFIT?

DETROIT— So far during fiscal year (FY) 2015, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Office of Field Operations (OFO) has seized over $7,900,000 in unreported currency at ports of entry within the Detroit Field Office.

HOUSTON — U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers working in the Houston Field Office area of operations seized over $2.37 million in unreported currency from the start of the fiscal year through June 30, 2015. U.S. law requires international.
Question: Where does this money go? What is it used for? That’s a lot of money. It could help a lot of people.
CALEXICO, Calif. — U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the Calexico downtown port of entry Wednesday discovered more than $457,000 in unreported U.S. currency in a vehicle bound for Mexico. The incident occurred shortly before 4 p.m. on…
Sterling, Va. — U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Office of Field Operations (OFO), at Washington Dulles International Airport seized almost $50,000 recently from two outbound travelers for violating federal currency reporting regulations….
LAREDO, Texas – U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers and agents conducting outbound examinations at the Laredo Port of Entry this week seized nearly half a million in undeclared currency in a single enforcement action. “This is one of the…

Flaws in consent decree will undermine confidence in police reforms: Letter to the Editor
July 17, 2015 at 3:51 PM
On June 29, we filed an amicus brief concerning flaws in the agreement between the DOJ and the City. Although we support the overall agreement, we believe certain provisions will undermine the intended reforms. The parties have refused to amend the agreement, hence our call upon the judge to use his authority to intercede in the public interest. Here are the key flaws in the agreement:
1) It undermines the inspector general’s independence by forcing the IG to answer to the police chief, whose policies and actions the IG is supposed to critique;
2) It allows the police — rather than an independent investigative agency — to police themselves by investigating their own use of force resulting in death or grievous bodily harm;
3) It fails to require collection of demographic data on complainants to track the “bias-free” policing reforms;
4) It fails to develop youth-focused policies and training to prevent excessive force;
5) It fails to provide the Community Police Commission with the necessary powers, resources, and structure to inspire belief in its effectiveness;
6) It grants the Monitor illegal immunity from ever testifying in court.
If the parties are serious about heeding public input, they will fix these flaws now.
James Hardiman, Cleveland Branch, NAACP
Terry Gilbert, Ohio Chapter, National Lawyers Guild
Dr. Rhonda Y. Williams, Collaborative for a Safe, Fair and Just Cleveland

Julia A. Shearson
Executive Director | Litigation Assistant
CAIR-Ohio, Cleveland Chapter
Council on American Islamic-Relations
2999 Payne Avenue, Suite 220
Cleveland, Ohio 44114
Tel: 216-830-2247 Fax: 216-830-2248

Your attitude towards life defines
who you are and
the quality of life you are after.

EDITORIAL CORNER:
Judy Martin, Founder, Survivors/ Victims of Tragedy, Inc.; Treasurer, Black on Black Crime, Inc. No Truth. No Justice. No Peace. 3.1.15-5.31.15

Apparently Our Laws and Rules Don’t Apply to Everyone

If regular people make a mistake, there are usually consequences.
If regular people commit a crime and are caught, they usually go to jail.
If regular people commit a murder and are caught, they usually go to jail.
When police officials don’t follow their training or protocols and policies and hurt or murder someone, they say they were in “fear” for their lives and they are found not guilty or get administrative leave or a slap on the wrist.
They are not doing the best job they can.
What about all the police officials who are doing the best job they can. They follow the rules and protocols.
Why aren’t they upset when they are being tarnished by the same brush?

VERDICT

And now we know for sure. If you are a policeman and stand on the hood of a car and fire at least 49 rounds through the windshield of the car and into the bodies of two unarmed people, you will be found “innocent.” Amazing.
We also now know that if are one of the other 11 or 12 officers who were near the above car and you fired innumerable rounds into the car, you won’t even be charged.
I’m sure that most officers intend to do a good job, be a decent officer and human being and are not dangerous to the public. But how do we know who they are?

DOUBLE STANDARD
AS USUAL?

WILL THE DOUBLE STANDARD CONTINUE?

I hope that Aliza Sherman’s family can find out who killed her and have him or her prosecuted.
I don’t begrudge them the coverage they get whenever they march or have a vigil.
But I wonder why other families with cold cases cannot get the same coverage or interest from the media.
Why?
There are too many other families who don’t know who killed their family member or friend. They don’t know who killed their mother, father, brother or sister.
There is:
A family that lost their mother over 30 years ago. It hasn’t been solved.
A family that lost a brother a few years ago. It hasn’t been solved.
Another mother lost her son five years ago. It hasn’t been solved.
Another mother lost her son over nine years ago. It’s still unsolved.
So many others still unsolved.
Why aren’t their cases covered?
Is it because they aren’t white families?
Is it because they don’t have $50,000 as a reward for information?
I hope not.
Is it because of a double standard?

Your attitude towards life defines
who you are and
the quality of life you are after.

OHIO COALITION AGAINST GUN VIOLENCE

ADVOCATING THE RIGHT TO BE FREE FROM GUN VIOLENCE

Last legislative update, we let you know about four bad gun bills in the House State Government committee that were up sponsor testimony in one day: HBs 20, 35, 48, 152. We attended the hearings in person and found out that State Rep. Ron Maag, chairman of the House State Government Committee, was planning on combining provisions of these bad gun bills, and creating an omnibus bill to pass out of his committee this summer. True to his word, Maag scheduled a second hearing last week on a “guns everywhere” bill (HB 48) and a bill that would allow hidden loaded guns to be left in cars in our school safety zones (HB 152).
What’s a second hearing? Bills that are going to advance have at least three hearings in the Ohio Legislature with sponsor, proponent, and opponent testimony. The first hearing is “sponsor testimony,” where the elected official(s) sponsoring the bill present their testimony to the committee the bill where the bill is being heard. The second hearing, as it was last week, is typically “proponent testimony.” (In the case of bad guns bills, if you are attending a hearing, you have the joy of hearing gun lobby misinformation presented as fact.) When “opponent testimony” is scheduled on these bad bills, we’ll be there to help amplify your voice, and speak the truth about what these bills would mean for Ohio.
Maag is giving good gun bills a fair chance too, right?! Unfortunately, no! That’s why we’re collecting signatures to stop the advancement of these irresponsible gun bills and give common sense regulations, like universal background chance their due. Hundreds of Ohioans have signed on to this petition, but our records don’t show that you haven’t yet. Add your name here.
Thanks for caring about Ohio,
Jennifer Thorne
Executive Director, OCAGV
Legislative Update 5.19.15

NORTHEAST OHIO BLACK COALITION
Saturday
May 23, 2015
Dear Community Members,
Just like you I was saddened and sickened at the hearing of the Brelo verdict. In my heart I knew what the outcome would be but in my mind I wanted to hear something different. What will it take for us to realize that we must address all of the issues outlined in the Department of Justice Report dated December 4, 2014? When will African Americans get justice instead of JUST-US?
This isn’t new for my community or me, in 1975 my uncles best friend Wayne Hawkins was gunned down on his front porch by police after his mother called for assistance after a disturbance between Wayne and his stepfather. At 19 he was gone. That loving smile will be forever embedded in my mind as a 7-year-old child I was in shock. Why?
I have also lost my mother, brother and best friend to violence. We have so many families that are hurt and hurting. The community is broken. Trust is lost. The lack of justice in law enforcement is spiraling toward a tipping point. We are supposed to be the “Land of the Free and Home of the Brave” but many of us don’t feel free. The polarizing and stigmatizing effects of unequal treatment by law enforcement has produced fear for the safety of family and friends at the hands of those who take an oath to protect and serve and silence is constructed as community apathy.
We know that mental health, drug abuse and fear disproportionately impacts communities of color, it concerns me that our police are not trained to work with at risk populations. When the officers that are supposed to be patrolling my community fear the very people that they have sworn under oath to protect and serve that is problematic.
Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. stated, “Law and order exist for the purpose of establishing justice and when they fail in this purpose they become the dangerous structured dams that block the flow of social progress.” Passively waiting for change continues to be the enemy of justice.
To my community we must remember “every step toward the goal of justice requires sacrifice, suffering and struggle; the tireless exertions and passionate concern of dedicated individuals” We must work to change Cleveland for our children and grandchildren we should not pass them a baton that is on fire. We must stand because we can no longer sit. We have very little power individually but we are a force to be reckoned with collectively.
Please stand with the Northeast Ohio Black Health Coalition as we work to address disparities in health, education, housing and employment.
Sincerely,
Yvonka Marie Hall Executive Director
Northeast Ohio Black Health Coalition

EDITORIAL CORNER:
Judy Martin, Founder, Survivors/ Victims of Tragedy, Inc.; Treasurer, Black on Black Crime, Inc. No Truth. No Justice. No Peace. 1.1.15-2.28.15

When will we stop our family from killing our family? Killing each other? Why are so many keeping their eyes and minds closed to the war in the streets of America?
It won’t stop or at least slow down until we work together on a solution. It seems like it’s gotten too easy to kill.
It seems like it’s gotten so much easier to send everyone to jail for a long time instead of creating and offering educational opportunities, mental health programs, programs to get off drugs, employment, community projects offering jobs to rebuild and save our neighborhoods or for at least 70% of the churches in our communities to offer after school classes or projects in a safe environment.
It easier to charge everyone with RICO charges than to do all aforementioned suggested solutions.

 

 

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Alfred Porter, Jr. – President