I am a Black woman who is terrified to birth into this world: a son. The fear that I have mirrors the same apprehension many White female teachers have when a Black boy enters their classroom on the first day of school. However, whereas I’m scared for my unborn son’s safety, most teachers in today’s public school classrooms are fearful for their own safety. This is one of the most absurd, but real, realities. In my opinion, the distrust of the legal system to protect our Black boys starts in kindergarten. And it starts from scary teachers – of all colors – that are ill-equipped to teach Black students.
As a former Atlanta Public Schools educator, I can tell you the absolute truth: the overwhelming majority of teachers are White females (over 80 percent), most of which are absolutely scared of Black children. Not all, but most. As a result, teachers’ “safety” supersedes student learning, and students are strategically pushed out of school. It’s no surprise the African American students comprise of the most suspensions, expulsions, and discipline referrals, when teachers are scared of the students they teach. The top school discipline infractions that lead to suspension and expulsion are highly subjective, including: noncompliance, classroom disruption, and disorderly conduct. There have even been instances where students were suspended for giving “threating looks” to teachers. How is this possible? How is the teaching force so disjointed and disconnected with their student population to where a look – not a bomb threat or dangerous weapons at school – accounts for the most suspensions? The criminalization of Black students in school is the precursor to the nation’s biggest civil rights issue of the 21st century – racial injustice. Sadly, teachers are scared of their students, and as a result – students are criminalized for simply being kids. We need to unpack this issue – as a collective community – to see how to stunt the criminalization of African American students in K-12 school settings. Unpacking this issue will – for once – place heightened blame on teachers, not students, for discipline violations. In many cases, students are guilty just for being Black.
From the moment Black students start kindergarten, students are profiled based on race. Learning from Martin and Brown’s case, it is important for districts to reexamine discipline issues that also are embedded with racial bias and cultural misunderstanding. The differing American perspectives on civil rights issues are essential for educators to understand when addressing school discipline in the classroom. If current news coverage’s, jury’s decisions, and grand jury’s decisions are indicative wide-scale perceptions, then the focus is – and will always be – focused on the wrong issue! Sadly, there has been far more coverage on cigarillos and looting, than on racial suffering, police violence, and mistreatment. The police, like teachers in many urban classrooms, are rarely held accountable for their actions. For this, the criminalization of Black males continues.
The relevance of this issue is embedded in nearly every facet of education today. Not only were Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown students in a local Florida and Missouri school districts, respectively, but their lives was a representation of many urban youth who have also been unjustly misunderstood and extracted from educational settings for petty crimes. Both in education and in the cases of Martin and Brown, why are unarmed “Black” teens dangerous? Why are their lives so threatening to where – in both cases – it was forced to end? The answer to these questions raises three distinct points (for places of introspection and departure):
The first issue raised in the death of innocent Black males is the significant racial repercussions within the justice system. The assumption that legal affairs are color neutral proved to be a false, utopian ideal, when the local Florida police failed to thoroughly investigate the crime. In Ferguson, local citizens attested to a racially segregated city, with racist and discriminatory law enforcement. Sadly, local police departments failed to interview or even question George Zimmerman for the death of Trayvon Martin. In fact, although the emergency dispatch calls seemed to indicate Zimmerman was intoxicated, local police authorities failed to complete a thorough investigation of the perpetrator in accordance with their widely controversial “Stand Your Ground Law.” Moreover, Florida state law enforcement also failed to complete any sort of investigation of Zimmerman’s family members, etc., which are seemingly viable steps when investigating a homicide. It was not until the media and family pushed for a federal investigation that the nation began to hear of this muted offense.
The second issue raised is the criminalist stereotypes associated with Martin and Brown being “Black males.” These stereotypes are evident throughout the case and the jury’s decision. Without question, the jury’s decision (in both cases) suggests there are hidden misconcetions, thoughts, and perceptions about the behaviors and deviancy of a “Black” person, specifically a Black male. The jury’s verdict to acquit Zimmerman and fail to indict Wilson serve as justifications for the killing of young, unarmed Black teens.
The third issue is perhaps the most important. This case proved to be true that we do not live in a “post-racial” society. The uniqueness of these cases, the “Stand Your Ground” laws, and the media attention that has surrounded the jury’s verdict, has shown that race centered the discussion at nearly every avenue. The timeline of events including: the lack of local police response in the initial crime, the racially one-sided jury, and the jury’s acquittal of Zimmerman, repeatedly displayed insensitivity to the loss of a Black teen’s life. All in all, this case showed that depending on who is the victim and who is the victor, crime and punishment can look drastically different.
As I reflect on Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Oscar Grant, and others, I see why students enter classrooms and don’t trust teachers. I see why students resist the system. Students are embedded in this reality every single day, and they realize – probably more than adults – that the criminal justice system isn’t on their side. They walk into school with an attitude, and why shouldn’t they? I’d be pissed if upon arrival to school, I was sniffed by police canine units. Before many students enter into a middle or high school, they pass through metal detectors that mimic airport security screenings! I have worked in a school where students were asked to remove shoes, belts, and hats – place their items onto a conveyor belt for screening – and wait while their items are packaged up for “contraband” to retrieve at the end of the day. A middle school!
While the nation cries out in regards to the decisions made in the recent Mike Brown and Eric Garner case, I realize where the outrage lies. It lies in the educational institutions that train the Darren Wilsons and George Zimmermans. Social institutions – like schools – teach students much more than reading, writing, and arithmetic. They teach and perpetuate social expectations. They favor the privileged, and dispose the unwanted. While Mike, Trayvon, and others entered school vivaciously excited for their life ahead, many of the teachers waiting for them were not excited. Darren and George had a fair chance, simply based on race. Trayvon did not. Mike did not. Oscar did not. Sean did not. So many unarmed Black teens did not.
Black men are criminalized when they walked through the doors in elementary school. Everyone was scared of them, simply because of what they looked like. Their experiences in school simply prepared them for the live streaming production of real life! Students, teachers, politicians, and local citizens around the globe have united for the sake of justice. The facts have remained constant that these teens were unarmed and defenseless. Their lives, however – considered disposable by local law enforcement. The reoccurring themes of injustice in recent unlawful Black deaths – display the lackadaisical attitude towards the lives of the “threatening.” These young men, all Black, were considered “delinquents” or “menaces.” Yet, challenging these stereotypes start in elementary school. Equipping teachers – not students – to take responsibility for their fears, their mistreatment, and their actions, is what will reverse this crippling and cyclical cycle. There is hope! I believe it lies in the training of future teachers, law enforcement officers, jurors, and neighborhood watchmen.
So what, who cares…superintendent Johnson “resigned” (I know senators Champion and Hayden are celebrating). That’s really not a newsworthy issue. The issue should be, what does this mean for our children in the Minneapolis Public Schools and how fast can we get the district on track with the new and not-so-new board members coming on the scene in January? This has a potential to become a political mess, in the end, it is our children who do not benefit. A strong case can be made for the former mayor to lead us back to greatness.
By Don Allen, Founder – The Independent Business News Network
Minneapolis, Minn. – It’s not much of a stretch to understand the Minneapolis Public Schools system has dropped plenty of balls in their mission to teach children. The school district put little to no investment into pre-school children being ready-to-read by kindergarten and if you think about it, they should be put into state or federal receivership.
Sure, Bernadeia Johnson has announced her resignation, but she still holds on to $12,000.00 per month (for a short time), plus another outrageous amount of money. The school board should have brought her out and showed Johnson the back door. Hell, they would never do that; she’s a stakeholder in the DFL – just like them.
Enter former Minneapolis mayor R.T. Rybak, whose straightforwardness and his well thought out planning with vision has put him in a position to put back together a system of checks and balances that has shamed Minnesota’s people, elected officials and of course, our children.
R.T. (Superintendent Rybak) has one hell of a resume as posted on GenerationNext.org.
- As mayor, R.T. founded the Minneapolis Promise, an innovative cluster of coordinated efforts to get students college- and career-ready and put them on the path to success.
- He jumped-off the work-readiness training through the STEP-UP program
- Pushed The Power of YOU (T. has called STEP-UP the achievement of which he is the most proud. Since 2004, STEP-UP has put 18,000 Minneapolis youth — 86% young people of color, 50% from immigrant families and 93% living in poverty — to work in meaningful summer employment. The White House recognized STEP-UP as a national model for youth summer jobs at a conference that President Obama attended.)
- T. has been recognized as a national “Afterschool Champion” by the Afterschool Alliance.
- Founded the Minneapolis Youth Violence Prevention Initiative.
- A champion of the youth-led Minneapolis Youth Congress.
- Involvement in Minneapolis’ Youth Coordinating Board.
- A Minneapolis native, R.T. Rybak spent almost 30 years working in journalism, commercial real estate business, publishing and the Internet.
- Youth Employment Director at Wilderness Inquiry.
What this says about the former Minneapolis mayor? He is qualified, through experience, vision and work history to change the dynamics in a failing school system, which has needed an overhaul in business and educational practices for more than a decade.
As a product of the Minneapolis Public Schools in a time when the district was one of America’s top educational systems, I can honestly say someone like R. T. Rybak can change what needs to be changed from the communications department to reaching out to each and every mother and father that has a child in the Minneapolis Public Schools.
Today, with the half-departure of Bernadeia Johnson, we have a juggernaut in the operations of the Minneapolis Public Schools and it’s newly appointed and returning board members. They can fool around and waste time focusing on a search, or they can do the right thing put R.T. Rybak where he belongs.
The district needs a communicator and people around who know how to be cordial and diplomatic while focusing on educating all children in the system. R.T. Rybak is a communicator that exceeds all expectations and visions – he will get the job done.
NAACP uses Black American tragedies as fundraising tool; when will the organization take real action?
Editors note: Based on the bylaws of the NAACP, the Minneapolis Branch is no longer in operation and there is no president of the Minneapolis NAACP. The national branch in Baltimore, MD has been contacted and no reply has been received prior to this posting.
by Don Allen, Independent Business News Network
Minneapolis, Minn. – For the record, I don’t dislike black people. What I dislike is a faulty process that only benefits a few. #ilovemypeople.
The NAACP has to step up to the plate and once again become a functioning organization. In a recent email received by me from Cornell William Brooks
President and CEO of the NAACP, I was troubled by the NAACP’s use of recent black tragedies to raise “$100k” in December 2014. The email, titled, “Enough is Enough” (below) read:
“Across the country, we’ve been coming together with our brothers and sisters to say, “we’ve had enough”: Enough of chronic injustice, enough of racial profiling, and more than enough of police brutality. We are speaking out, contacting our elected officials, peacefully marching hand in hand, holding ourselves to the highest standard of advocacy—and it’s incredible to see. We have to keep this up, Donald. We cannot organize only in the midst of tragedy. We need to gather our resources now for the long road ahead toward justice, so I’m issuing a challenge: Let’s raise $100,000 for justice in December. Make your contribution today to show the nation that we aren’t going anywhere—this isn’t one moment, it’s an entire movement.”
I find this highly irregular when NAACP branches around the United States are allegedly plagued by corruption, fraud and under-the-table dealings. (Read: NAACP SUPPORTS ELECTION AND VOTER FRAUD IN DETROIT, MICHIGAN). Also, the agency, which is suppose to be non-partisan rolls left with it’s decisions and actions as seen in a post-election statement where the national NAACP ignored two African American candidates who won seats in November as Republicans (Read: NAACP Ignores Mia Love, Tim Scott in Post-Election Report).
NAACP non-partisan? Let’s take a look:
- The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People claims to be nonpartisan, but it uses its millions of dollars to promote the Democrat’s agenda.
- Conservative critics question its claim to nonprofit status, arguing that the exemption shelters its $14 million annual budget from being taxed, and note that in the most recent presidential campaign the NAACP, which once derided big money as a corrupting influence, established two independent fund-raising organizations to conduct the kind of political warfare it once denounced.
- The NAACP National Voter Fund and Americans for Equality drew on a combined $10 million to finance get-out-the-vote efforts and issue ads that energized Democratic voters. (Bullet-point Source: www.rfcnet.org)
At this time, it is only fair that we demand the NAACP to do the following things in Minneapolis.
1. Reinstate Ronald A. Edwards back into the NAACP has a life-time member emeritus.
2. Dissolve any remnants of the current Minneapolis NAACP due to lack of process.
3. Appoint Ronald A. Edwards as the interim President of the Minneapolis NAACP for one year, or until scheduled elections take place in Minnesota.
It’s a short list that needs to be acted upon promptly.
IBNN Editors note: Here in Minnesota, it has been reported that over $100 million has been set-aside for veterans, especially homeless veterans. Unfortunately the snow came early in November 2014 – there has been no real commitment from the governor or the people being hired to be paper shufflers. While Minnesota homeless veterans walk the street, sleep outside, there is no meaningful actions being taken, but as usual, someone is getting paid and living in the suburbs. “God Bless America.”
By Keith Rogers – LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL
Vietnam War Navy Cross recipient Steve Lowery isn’t alone in his battle to convince the Veterans Benefits Administration that his wounds are linked to his military service.
Lowery, a retired Marine major from Las Vegas, took a long-awaited physical examination Thursday at the North Las Vegas VA Medical Center to show a doctor that scars from shrapnel in his knee and those on his thighs from an AK-47 resulted from a 1969 firefight in Vietnam.
In 1994, the VA benefits office in Reno told him those wounds weren’t related to his military service, and he’s been fighting with the agency ever since.
The VA apparently disallowed his initial claim because the government’s archive agency failed to send his records to Reno. Bewildered by the decision, Lowery provided a copy of his personal medical file in 2010. Two years later, his claim was rejected again.
Since the Review-Journal wrote about Lowery’s case last week, other veterans have come forward with complaints about tactics employed by the agency, which demands that veterans prove their injuries were service-related but can deny claims without proving anything.
They include Phil Cushman, a Vietnam War Marine veteran from Oregon who beat the VA system there by winning a “due process” challenge in a federal appeals court that netted $400,000 in compensation. Now, through his nationally recognized nonprofit veterans rights advocacy group, Cushman is helping disabled Korean War soldier Charles P. Mahoney, of Las Vegas, with his appeal for more compensation.
“I’m not filing claims for the money. I want justice,” Mahoney, 82, told the newspaper. “What the VA did to me 60 years ago is they tore up the Bill of Rights.”
Mahoney, who served with the 1st Cavalry Division in Korea in 1950, suffered wounds and mental problems from a mortar blast that heaved him 15 feet into the air. After a hospital stint in Japan, he was taken to Fort Hood, Texas, where he underwent a series of electroshock treatments in 1951 that “blotted out my memory for nine months.”
Two Army evaluation boards determined he was 100 percent disabled, but a third said he was only 10 percent disabled. The Army then told him he was cured and discharged him in 1952.
The VA immediately opened a claim but never processed it or issued a decision and never told him about it. Concealment of the claim effectively denied his right to counsel, Cushman said.
It wasn’t until 2012, three years after Mahoney filed a claim with the VA, that he obtained records showing he had been diagnosed in the early 1950s with a permanent mental disability.
“I thought I was normal, but I wasn’t normal. I had problems with, I guess they call it post-traumatic stress disorder now,” Mahoney said, describing dreams that would cause him to “wake up in the middle of the night screaming.”
“I knew something was wrong with me, but I didn’t find that out until I read (about) my physical evaluation boards that I got out of (military archives in) St. Louis in 2012.” Read the rest of this entry »
By Trevor Burrus (This article appeared on Forbes.com on December 9, 2014.)
The events in Ferguson, Missouri and the death of Eric Garner from a police chokehold have brought needed attention to the long-simmering problem of an increasingly militarized, militant, and distant police force that, for many communities, seems more like an occupying army than an institution tasked with protecting and serving. President Obama’s task force on police militarization has tepidly suggested increasing oversight. More oversight is not a complete solution, but reviewing existing programs and practices, as well as providing funds for wearable cameras, can mitigate some abuses.
But there are no panaceas. The problems with our police are deep, and they can’t be fixed with top-down, federal oversight. States, municipalities, and communities should help fix our broken police forces by passing laws limiting how SWAT teams are used and by requiring departments to keep records of SWAT raids. Curbing SWAT team abuses is just one of many things that can help restore trust in the police and rebuild the vital link between officers and the community.
“We must reassess the power and immunity police enjoy.”
The baton-twirling Officer Friendly is a thing of the past, replaced by assault-rifle wielding Officer Rambo. Throughout the country, SWAT teams violently raid houses over 100 times each day. Since 1980, the number of SWAT raids has increased by 15 times, while the violent crime rate has dropped by nearly half. Rather than being called out to quell an active shooter or deal with a hostage situation, SWAT teams mostly execute search warrants for drug offenses. These raids are as violent and confrontational as any carried out by the U.S. Army in Iraq. Police batter down doors, shoot dogs, and toss flashbang grenades, all while wearing body armor and brandishing assault rifles.
When Congress began funneling military gear to local police departments, few people considered that it would change how police behave. There seems to be a “if we have it we might as well use it” attitude, particularly when SWAT teams have been used to raid barber shops to check for licensing compliance, to raid Gibson guitar company to check whether wood was properly imported, and to raid bars to investigate underage drinking.
Yet states have the power to limit how and when SWAT teams will be used. Laws can limit SWAT team deployments to truly high-risk situations posing an imminent threat to public safety. States should also clarify the process by which SWAT raids are approved, ensuring every deployment is sanctioned by a high-level official or supervisor. In deciding whether to authorize a deployment, officials should be required to assess whether children or the elderly might be present, whether forced entry should be used, and whether safer (for officers and citizens) and less violent alternatives would be preferable.
But constraining when SWAT teams are deployed is not enough. Transparency in the use of SWAT teams is equally important. Unfortunately, it is very difficult to get accurate information on how much SWAT teams are used, when they are used, whether and what criminal charges are filed, and whether any harm resulted to people, property, or pets.
In the wake of a 2008 raid on the home of the Cheye Calvo, the mayor of Berwyn Heights, Maryland, the state passed a trailblazing law requiring police departments to track how SWAT teams were used. A report found that, in 2014, Maryland SWAT teams were deployed an average of 4.5 times per day, and 93.1 percent of the time they were deployed to execute a search warrant. Almost 60 percent of those deployments were for nonviolent crimes, usually to serve search warrants on suspected drug offenders. Unfortunately, the Maryland law sunsetted in 2014 and it has yet to be re-passed, although many lawmakers have expressed a desire to reintroduce the law.
After a 2011 botched raid in which SWAT officers violently gunned down an army veteran who was growing 16 marijuana plants, Utah began looking at reforming police practices. Earlier this year, the state passed two laws to chip away at SWAT team abuses. One law requires officers making a forced entry to “use only that force which is reasonable and necessary to effectuate forcible entry” and to “minimize the risks of unnecessarily confrontational or invasive methods which may result in harm to any person.” Another law requires reporting on SWAT deployments, including whether a threat assessment was completed and whether an officer injured or killed a person or domestic animal.
Even in the absence of state legislation, communities should demand that police departments adopt policies limiting how SWAT teams are used. Again, deployments should be limited to truly dangerous situations that deserve a tactical, armed response. Serving warrants with SWAT teams should be generally avoided except in truly exceptional circumstances.
Finally, more states should follow the lead of Colorado and Washington and legalize marijuana. When it comes to police militarization, the drug war is the 800-pound gorilla in the room. Overall, the war on drugs has been the biggest single contributor to the militarization of police. The dramatic rise in drug raids shows how the war on drugs is in fact a war on citizens, and police are the soldiers in that war.
We must reassess the power and immunity police enjoy. Unfortunately, it takes situations like the unrest in Ferguson and the death of Eric Garner to bring the issue enough attention to make reform possible. Reforms like these will chip away at the divide grown between police officers and the citizens they are serving.
The Black American male must activate his survival mode software to navigate in a nation that is judge, jury and executioner in a magic blue uniform. We do not have time to hold our breath and wait for an ideology we have never seen.
By Don Allen, Publisher – The Independent Business News Network
Malcolm X, dead. Martin Luther King, Jr. – dead. Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton – compromised. Charles Barkley, out of his rabbit ass mind. Bill Cosby, done.
Face it – the 1960s and 1970s are long gone…the people that spoke for black America have been rendered useless by a Jewish owned powerful mainstream media platform that can strike in the middle of a poor black neighborhood and every black person tuned to watch or listening believes every word. This was by design.
I come before you today with a heavy heart. I need to talk to white and black, young, old, citizens and immigrants to explain the Year of the Black Man is not a celebration – but a cause for major concern in our county. History has repeated itself providing scenes of mass protest in pre-revolution for those who passionately seek justice, including those posing for social media. It comes as no surprise to this writer that America has declared war on the total black male body.
There was a time (some say it still is), when education was used as a divisive tool to segregate black men from the fields of higher learning by killing them in public and private school systems that were never meant to teach black boys, men. Today, in 2014, it has become almost ritualistic to shoot and kill an unarmed black man before questioning his intent or using alternative methods of apprehension. I understand law enforcement too must be able to go home after work, but you also shoot and kill your own in black bodies in blue.
Some of us are saddened by the current events happening across the United States and it is our duty to address these events with our students. We as black people sit wondering what the NAACP and Urban League will do, understanding that both agencies at one time in history were the Rock of Gibraltar for civil rights, human rights and engaging mainstream America. Today we sit in the pew of corruption, sellouts and race baiters who have used America’s black unrest for a fundraising tool.
The original impetus for this communiqué was the shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown in Ferguson Missouri on August 9, 2014. Brown was shot at least six times, following some sort of disagreement or confrontation with police officer Darren Wilson, who claimed that he had feared for his life, though Brown was unarmed, and he was not, and though Brown was approximately 150 feet from him when he was killed.
Images and descriptions of the dramatic, militarized police response to the protests that formed in Ferguson following the murder shocked the nation, as we saw officers “clad in Kevlar vests, helmets and camouflage, armed with pistols, shotguns, automatic rifles, and tear gas,” and driving armored vehicles driving through the streets of Ferguson, as if it were a war zone.
Black people gathered to protest. They are called thugs, fools and niggers. White people on social media want more protesters shot; the water hoses opened at full and SUV’s to roll over protesters…if they are black. Let the killings be of white males and we would have World War III in the making.
News of the deaths of Brown in Missouri, and Garner in New York, and Tamir Rice, a 12-year-old-boy shot dead in Cleveland by an officer judged unfit for duty in 2012 – as well as news of the subsequent protests of the murders, and the grand jury acquittals, have spread rapidly throughout the U.S. and the international community, largely through the medium of social media.
The catch phrases associated with protests of these deaths have included, Hands up Don’t Shoot, Black Lives Matter, Our Son’s Matter and the twitter hashtag CrimingWhileWhite, which you should check out.
The president of the United States has checked out on black Americans using boutique catch phrases and acting black by appearing on Black Entertainment Network (BET). I’m sorry President Obama, you are not doing enough, no president could, not even a black one. So while we are stuck in America’s purgatory of harsh race relations and those who would like to see fire hoses, dogs and tear gas flung into crowds of protesters lets me know my work is not finished; it has only just begun.
This story is for the black mothers, fathers, children and other concerned individuals so we can start to try and make sense of what is going on in America today, how we should address the issue of police brutality, and how we can make all of our sons safer. How they can go about their lives, and be boys, and not be angels, necessarily, and make mistakes, and be imperfect, and yet not therefore face the risk of having their lives taken with impunity, in cases such as these, by the police.
2014 is the year of the black man because of the attempted annihilation of his black body. Comedian Chris Rock said, “Black men are endangered species. But endangered species have laws to protect them.”
There will be no indictments of any police for the recent killings of children and black men in America. The grand jury will be told when a police officer feels threatened, his or her survival mechanism kicks in deep from within the human reptile brain; it seeks to live another day. Unfortunately, black and brown people in American are threatened, beat and shot dead – we have no recourse to remedy a situation that could cause us death.
By Don Allen, Founder – The Independent Business News Network
So, do you get that weird feeling in your stomach when a police car pulls up behind you in traffic? You’ve done nothing wrong, but yet there is an internal fear of being pulled over and possibly beat, shot or jailed if you do not answer questions correctly. Don’t tell a police officer that you know the law – you might lose some teeth and get an old fashion plantation beating. If you are black or brown, the current systems of checks and balances denotes that you have no rights when a law enforcement officer seeks to engage you. This is the nexus of many false arrests, beatings and killings in America.
Police departments across the United States have decided it is okay to randomly beat and kill people of color. The mainstream media have brought Americans the reports and social media has provided documented proof there is something wrong with white police officers, their training and the way they perceive black and brown men and women. A police officer could be having a bad day – this means the live of a 12 year-old boy will be taken by an officer that was deemed unfit for duty just a couple of years ago. (2-year-old Tamir Rice, who had a pellet gun when he was fatally shot by a police officer in Cleveland. Cleveland officer who fatally shot Tamir Rice judged unfit for duty in 2012.) Mark my words, the officer who shot Rice will be brought forth as mentally disturbed and not responsible for his actions. This is the way the system works against us.
America has watched a legal system walk away from the responsibility of justice; a president who is at a loss for logic, words and common sense asking people of color to stay calm and to trust and ideology that was never meant to serve people of color.
America’s law enforcement has always been the legal arm of the American sanitation of black and brown bodies. What took place in Ferguson, New York, Los Angeles, Cleveland and here in Minneapolis (on many occasions), and what continues to be the juggernaut of American normalcy past, present and future is the targeted and designed arresting, imprisoning or killing of black men by some type of law enforcement, be it the police, or a lynch mob. In the broad sense, these killings send a disturbing message on many fronts: 1. Self-destructive behaviors are not always black and white; and 2. The same reasons some white police kill black men is the same reason black men kill black men; they see no future or value in the black body.
Today, those who command the definitions of human identity have once again reconstructed the definition of human beings by unloading trash bags full of rhetoric and propaganda in an effort to maintain stereotypes.
The American Dream as an urban utopia controlled by white masculinity that has historically been the headmaster in the circus of identity will not be swayed. If this group in the slightest thinks they will lose control, they can and have implemented dangerous and desperate measures, including mass genocide of economic bases for their red-blooded American counterparts – both black and white. The shameful part of the process is that poor whites and most black Americans are strained into a culture that is not their own by simply turning on the television set, picking up a newspaper, or listening to a song on the radio. This represents the intersectionality of many struggles in a nutshell.
Those who are responsible for defining identities have always made sure social cleansing is never second-guessed. From cotton fields of Mississippi to the White House, the narrative of subjugation arrived at in the mainstream media; law enforcement and the court system have shown what happens when you are poor, young and colored; it has nothing to do with fairness. Author James Baldwin wrote, “This subjugation is the key to their identity and the triumph and justiﬁcation of their history, and it is also on this continued subjugation that their material well-being depends…This is why, ultimately, all attempts at dialogue between the subdued and subduer, between those placed within history and those dispersed outside, break down…the subdued and the subduer do not speak the same language.” You cannot have justice or peace within a framework of inequality; they are incompatible.
Young people across the country protesting against police murdering black folks. In Minneapolis the protests are for more money.
Performance times are: Dec. 16-21: Tuesday through Thursday at 7:30 p.m., Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 2 and 8 p.m. and Sunday at 1 and 6:30 p.m. Dec. 22-28: Monday at 7:30 p.m., Tuesday at 2 and 7:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday at 2 and 8 p.m. and Sunday at 1 p.m. (no evening performance). There are no performances on Wednesday, Dec. 24 or Thursday, Dec. 25 due to the Christmas holiday
MINNEAPOLIS—Producers Kevin McCollum, Doug Morris and Berry Gordy, and Hennepin Theatre Trust are proud to announce that individual tickets for the Minnesota premiere of Motown The Musical are on sale now. The record-breaking Broadway smash hit is coming Dec. 16-28 to Hennepin Theatre Trust’s Orpheum Theatre as part of the 2014-2015 Thrivent Financial Broadway on Hennepin season. Tickets may be purchased in person (no service fees) at the State Theatre Box Office, online at www.HennepinTheatreTrust.org by calling 1.800.982.2787 or visiting a Ticketmaster Center.
Directed by Charles Randolph-Wright, Motown The Musical is the true American dream story of Motown founder Berry Gordy’s journey from Featherweight boxer to the heavyweight music mogul who launched the careers of Diana Ross, Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder, Smokey Robinson, Marvin Gaye and so many more. Featuring more than 40 classic hits such as “My Girl” and “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough,” Motown The Musical tells the story behind the hits as Diana, Smokey, Berry and the whole Motown family fight against the odds to create the Soundtrack of change in America. Motown shattered barriers, shaped our lives and made us all move to the same beat.
Clifton Oliver and Allison Semmes star in the leading roles of Berry Gordy and Diana Ross. Portraying groundbreaking Motown artists, Jesse Nager plays Mokey Robinson and Jarran Muse plays Marvin Gaye. Leon Outlaw, Jr. and Reed L. Shannon portray Berry Gordy’s boyhood counterpart and the roles of young stars Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder. Motown The Musical also features Erick Buckley, Patrice Covington, Christian Dante White, Jamarice Daughtry, Tamar Davis, Lynorris Evans, Melanie Evans, Devon Goffman, Jennie Harney, Latrisa Harper, Rod Harrelson, Robert Hartwell, Rodney Earl Jackson, Jr., Trisha Jeffrey, Elijah Ahmad Lewis, Jarvis Manning, Krisha Marcano, Marq Moss, Rashad Naylor, Chadaè Nichol, Ramone Owens, Nicholas Rowe, Jamison Scott, Douglas Storm, Martina Sykes and Galen Williams.
Motown The Musical features choreography by Patricia Wilcox (Blues in the Night) and Warren Adams (Toy Story), scenic design by David Korins (Bring It On: The Musical, Annie), costume design by Tony Award® nominee ESosa (The Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess, “Project Runway”), lighting design by Tony Award® winner Natasha Katz (Once, Sister Act), sound design by Tony Award® nominee Peter Hylenski (Rock of Ages, The Scottsboro Boys), projection design by Daniel Brodie (Jekyll and Hyde), hair and wig design by Charles LaPointe (Memphis) and casting by Telsey + Company.
Motown The Musical’s arrangements and orchestrations are by Grammy and Tony Award® nominee Ethan Popp (Rock of Ages), who also serves as music supervisor in reproducing the classic “Sound of Young America,” with co-orchestrations and additional arrangements by Tony Award® nominee Bryan Crook (“Smash”) and dance arrangements by Zane Mark (Dirty Rotten Scoundrels).
Motown The Musical is produced by Tony Award® winning producer Kevin McCollum (Rent, In the Heights, Avenue Q), Chairman and CEO of SONY Music Entertainment Doug Morris and Motown founder Berry Gordy. For more information about Motown The Musical, please visit www.MotownTheMusical.com. For more information about tickets to the Broadway on Hennepin Season, please visit www.HennepinTheatreTrust.org.
TICKET INFORMATION – Tickets for Motown The Musical are on sale now and start at $49 (subject to change) depending on performance time and seating preference. All prices include applicable facility fees. Additional service charges may apply. Tickets may be purchased in person (no service fees) at the State Theatre Box Office, online at www.HennepinTheatreTrust.org, by calling 1 (800) 982-2787 or visiting a Ticketmaster Center. Groups of 10 or more should contact via email MinneapolisGroups@broadwayacrossamerica.com or call 612.373.5665 for information and reservations. Performance dates are Tuesday, Dec. 16 through Sunday, Dec. 28, 2014 at Hennepin Theatre Trust’s Orpheum Theatre.
Posted by IBNN NEWS
“A picture can tell a thousand words, but a few words can change it’s story.” More foolishness and fuckery.