Sunday, September 23, 2007
Posted September 22nd, 2007 by Prometheus 6
Nooses are pranks, racists screeds are not viable threat...
Exactly what does it take for an anti-Black racist to be taken seriously nowadays?
Deputies had already stepped up patrols around the six families' homes "to keep reporters away," LaSalle Parish Sheriff Carl Smith said last night. Smith added that he did not think the posting was "any kind of viable threat," but that his officers would remain vigilant.
Neo-Nazi Web Site Probed In Jena Case
By Avis Thomas-Lester
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, September 22, 2007; A08
FBI agents are looking into a neo-Nazi Web site, which has listed the home addresses and phone numbers of the six black teenagers charged in the beating of a white schoolmate in Jena, La., a bureau spokeswoman said last night.
The Thursday posting on the site that lists the information also encourages readers to "get in touch, and let them know justice is coming."
According to the annual victimization surveys taken by the Justice Department (which give a more complete picture of total crime, by taking into consideration crimes that go unreported to police), blacks in 2005 committed twenty-four percent of all violent crimes in the nation, where the race of the perp was known: about 1.2 million incidents, out of approximately five million in all. Even if we assign a good percentage of the white perps' crimes to Latinos (most of whom are classified racially as white in the data), this would still leave the responsibility for the majority of violent offenses on white folks, even using the most restrictive, Hitler-friendly definition of the term. So, the color of crime is not black, but mostly white, and not just for corporate misconduct, where we might expect this to be the case, but even for regular violent crimes. "
From Tim Wise, an anti-racist white guy who actually gets it. This is excerpted from his essay, "Facts? We Don't Need No Stinkin' Facts: Racism, White Anxiety and the Projection of Personal Inadequacy ".
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHA! I read some of your posts and cannot believe how incredibly racist they are!!!!!! Seriously man, you need to wake up and realize that "whitey" is not out to get you. We have better things to do that to have brainstorming sessions on how to keep the black man down. Your post about the traffic stop was hilarious! I can sympathize with you situation as we all have been screwed by the system, it sucks. I was pulled over for a bogus expired registration (which turned out to be a total nightmare)... the cop was white, but I never once thought about bringing race into the picture. The cop that pulled you over was a BLACK WOMAN, how is this whitey's fault? Maybe you should be pissed at women if you are so quick to lash out at that which stings you.... that would make more sense don't you think? You mention you read "Black Blogs"... why? Why is race so important to you? It seems like black people are always complaining about racism, yet you form groups like the NAACP that exclude other races and isolate yourselves in every way possible. Think about it, if I were to read "white blogs" I'd be considered a neo-nazi racist.I don't know where your hate is coming from, but seriously bro, just let it go. I love everyone the same (including you) and I wish you the best. Don't fall into the Jackson/Sharpton trap... they are only hurting those with darker skin. You seem like a smart guy, don't let the racism of others draw you in. Tolerance goes both ways...Take care!
Anon, I usually don't bother with people who hide behind internet anonymity, but I'll make an exception to try to clear up some misconceptions you seem to have about me.
Racism as it is generally defined has to do with a belief in the inherent superiority or inferiority of one group over another based on skin color. Please tell me where, in any of my postings, have I stated or even alluded to any superior or inferior group based on skin color. You won't because you can't because I have never subscribed to any such nonsense.
Anonymous you say "We have better things to do that to have brainstorming sessions on how to keep the black man down."
Logically all that statement tells me is that you are not highly placed enough or perhaps not in with the right people to be allowed participation in the alleged brainstorming sessions. I assure you that such sessions are indeed going on, and you can follow them on many of the white supremacist websites and blogs on the internet. Of course these are low level sessions (in terms of both brain power and sphere of influence), but if they are going on at a low level, why should I not be concerned that they may be going on at higher levels as well? Do you also go to sites like the anti defamation league and tell them to get over their "Never Again" stance on the Jewish Holocaust?
Perhaps this post was a little bit to subtle for you, but that was actually the point. You must not be a student of history, because the history of Black oppression in this country is full of examples of Blacks being used to help the oppressor. The divide and conquer has been the favorite tactic of white supremacy for centuries. In fact, I don't think the Black woman who gave me my ticket is even aware of her role in the dynamic of our dysfunctional criminal justice system; most of the Black law enforcement that I have met aren't. That doesn't change the fact that they are being used to perpetuate the problem. Of course, being a white person, I really don't expect you to even recognize, much less acknowledge, that there is a problem because it simply does not affect you. You got "screwed by the system" and "it sucks". You have no idea what it feels like to be oppressed, but I can assure you, "it sucks" doesn't even come close to describing it. But you may never understand that because it just isn't your reality. Most people can't see past their own small world, why should you be any different?
And finally, because I find myself not willing to put too much more time into teaching the unteachable, you mentioned my hate. Again, I defy you to find even one instance of me espousing hatred towards anyone in my blogging. I don't hate white people. I abhor the system of global white supremacy whose manifestations impact negatively on the lives of the vast majority of the people on this world who are non-white. I decry that system at every turn, and in all it's myriad and convoluted expressions, because like the Jews in the ADL I too have vowed never again to meekly submit to oppression. If you are one of those people who wants to maintain the status quo, then you probably won't like my stance on very many things, as it challenges your position. So be it. Tolerance is fine, but don't expect me to tolerate oppression because you think things are fine the way they are. And don't think for a second your opinion of me has any bearing whatsoever on how I feel. Love me or hate me, you will have to deal with me beating you about the head and shoulders with the truth. If you've really been reading me, you would know this.
Friday, September 21, 2007
See I got pulled over by the police the other day. I got a traffic citation for a red light violation. I was so thoroughly pissed off that I had to wait a couple of days before I was calm enough to write this blog entry. Let me assure you first of all that I did not violate the law in any shape, form, or fashion. People often say to me that if Black folks weren't doing something wrong then they wouldn't have to worry about so much police scrutiny. That's a crock of crap. I drive a Chrysler Sebring so it's not like I look like I'm big ballin when I roll out. I was on my way to a business luncheon, wearing business attire, so it's not like I looked thuggish. I got pulled over about two miles away from my home, so it's not like I was in the wrong place at the wrong time, or in an area I was not familiar with.
Here are the facts. I pulled out of my subdivision just ahead of a police car that was approaching. That was my first mistake, because as a Black man in America who is intimately aware of how the police operate, I always try to keep them from being behind me. After driving about 3/4 of a mile with the police car about 50 yards behind me, I made a left turn. The traffic left turn signal turned yellow just as I crossed the stop line. Of course I continued through the intersection, as stopping at that point would have placed me squarely in the middle of the intersection. I see from the corner of my eye that the light turns red just before I complete my turn. Knowing I've done nothing wrong I proceed down the street another 1/2 mile when I see blue lights coming over the hill behind me. I'm in the far left lane, thinking they must have just got a call so I pull over to the left to let them pass. Instead they pull up right behind me. So I turn right across the street into a parking lot to see what they want.
The officer, a black female who I have often seen patrolling the area, comes up to me and asks me if I know why she pulled me over. Of course I don't, and say as much. The officer advises me that she pulled me over because I "did not clear the intersection before the light turned red". Now some of you know that I am a lawyer, and having some familiarity with the law, I replied to the officer that the law, as I understood it, required that a driver not enter an intersection on a red light, not to clear the intersection before the change from yellow to red was complete. The officer told me that what I did was dangerous, and then asks me why I'm not wearing a seat belt. Had she been looking she might have seen that I was wearing my seat belt when the car was moving, but I had taken it off to reach for my license and insurance card (both in good standing by the way). She chose not to press this issue, went back to her car and took her sweet time writing my ticket. I was polite to her but drove away cursing like a sailor. I was sure that I had gotten caught up in some bullshit quota day for the police, and as I made my way late for my meeting I saw three more cars Dekalb police had pulled over on the highway during a 15 minute drive. You tell me if that sounds like someone trying to make quota. I can't prove it, but I know it happens.
For your edification here is a link to the applicable code sections regarding traffic signals in Georgia. I just found this site yesterday and I think it's one of the best free resources for statute and case law study I have ever seen on the internet. In addition to the complete unannotated statute the is also a list cases that have cited the statute. I was able to quickly locate a case that proves that Georgia does not recognize any offense relating to running a yellow light. The officer's statement to me clearly demonstrated that she was well aware that I did not enter the intersection after the light had turned red. The traffic ticket she wrote me did not, however, specifically state what action on my part caused her to issue the citation, just that I had violated some provision of the law regarding red lights.
Now I know I can beat this ticket, because I know I did not violate the law. I firmly believe the officer knows this as well, because she appeared to be a field training officer. I say this because there was another officer in the vehicle who never even opened his car door, which is truly a rookie mistake. The police, at least in Dekalb County Georgia are quick to tell you that you can call the courthouse and get the amount of the fine for most traffic offenses and pay the ticket before the court date. The only reason they would have for making sure this piece of information is clearly understood is because they do not want a lot of people showing up in court to dispute traffic tickets. Rather, they want to collect that money as expeditiously as possible. But this is more speculation, nothing that I could ever prove.
What is not speculation is how Dekalb County traffic court operates. I will be forced to spend at least two separate days at the courthouse, and it will take from 2-4 hours each day. The first day I have to show up is on October 30 (almost 6 weeks away, maybe trying to give people enough time to raise that fine money?). I will wait in a long line of people to go into the traffic court. The court clerk will spend some time explaining to everyone with a "minor" traffic offense that they can choose to take a nolo plea up front, which means they will pay the full fine but the offense will not show up on their driving record and they won't receive any points. All of the people who choose this option give up the right to face their accuser or appeal the sentence, but they get to go first and possibly save some of the rest of their afternoon. If you choose to dispute the citation, you have to wait until your name is called (no rhyme or reason to the order) and then the clerk will set another date for the case to be heard. At this point the officer will have to show up and testify, in effect asking the officer to remember a brief incident that happened over two months in the past, without any notes or references to facilitate an accurate recollection of the event. I have been in court and seen officers give the same testimony to dozens of similar tickets. They repeat the testimony almost if by rote, knowing what the judge needs them to say to make enough of a case for a guilty verdict. I don't want to accuse these officers of willfully perjuring themselves, but I have been the victim of an officer perjuring himself to get me convicted of running a stop sign, and I have seen officers basically perjure themselves to get a search warrant, so I know it happens.
So are you wondering to yourself, "exactly how does this criminalize poverty"? Look at it this way. If a person makes $15/hour, and fighting the traffic ticket means that person would have to give up two days of pay, many people simply take the ticket and pay the fine to save themselves from losing even more money. If the case involves something that an attorney would be better able to handle (as is the case most of the time), there is that additional cost to consider as well. This means if you can't afford the time and financial resources to fight the ticket, you will not get justice even if you deserve it.
Or consider people who get tickets for offenses like no insurance, expired tag, or any other violation that involves some financial obligation. The state already charges a tax on the gasoline we use, and that money is more than enough to pay for all things related to motor vehicles. 99% of the people who get caught up on charges like this simply do not have the money to take care of the financial obligation. But being unable to drive only causes more financial hardship, especially in a place like Atlanta where public transportation is pretty pathetic. Inability to pay and the necessity of driving would be an affirmative defense if the goal was not to criminalize poverty.
Family, I don't want y'all to worry about me. I'm gonna be just fine. I work for myself so I have little to lose from having to repeatedly go to court. I am a lawyer, so I don't need to retain anyone to assist me. I have all the relevant case law on my side. I've even got a strategy to attack the officer with if she tries to come in and give some bogus pre-recorded testimony. But there are very few people out there who know what I know and can do what I can do. For most people this would simple be another $100 or so down the drain.
What I do want is for people to begin to understand how the criminal justice system, from the lowest level of police work, through the court system and the prison industrial complex, is stacked against poor people and Black people. It's not just the big cases like the Jena 6, Genarlow Wilson, or Ron Pettaway. It's not just the blatant Jim Crow, or as the Rev. Al calls it, the modern day James R. Crow, Esq. It's not just out of control police brutality. It's the little things, the day to day overseer mentality that has permeated the criminal justice system since the first slave laws and Black codes were enacted.
Don't think for one moment the struggle begins or ends in Jena.
Thursday, September 20, 2007
Hat Tip to Francis L. Holland Blog for finding the most in depth analysis of the Jena 6 situation available anywhere. Francis, I understand your tears my Brother.
From Denmark Vesey This brother is too much, and very often the most on point analysis of a given issue that I find.
"South Africa under apartheid (1993), Black males: 851 per 100,000 U.S. under George Bush (2006), Black males: 4,789 per 100,000"
From The Field Negro Another brother not known for pulling punches.
"Let's keep those marchers down in Louisiana in our hearts, and let's walk with them---at least in spirit---every step of the way."
From Mirror On America I can't forget the sisters, and Rikyrah is one of the best female bloggers, black or white, out there.
"This case, at its core, is about a town and system that continues to think that they can abuse our children, have two sets of rules, and judge our children more harshly while we stand around doing nothing."
From Eddie G. Griffin (BASG) A veteran soldier in the war for Black justice, there's no quote because his roundup is better than mine.
From Electronic Village on of the first efforts to gather us all together, EV is like the village griot, keeping the story going through generations.
From My Urban Report A.Man.I is one of the hardest working video bloggers around, and also a professional journalist. He was in Jena with his camera and his conviction.
"This is an amazing event, so many people, so much media. I interview Martin Luther King III., Jesse Jackson, the father of Theo Shaw, Theo McCoy, young people, older people, parents, a LaSalle Parish Sheriff’s Deputy, and a school board member."
MORE TO COME