Tag Archives: naacp

Sue the Bastard, Shirley: Libel and Shirley Sherrod

Sometimes bloggers forget that we have to consider the same laws and rules of the land that everyone else does.  It’s one thing to switch some video footage around to create a funny mashup or to edit audio to make it sound like someone said something that they didn’t.  It’s another thing to pass your edited footage off as the real thing with no disclaimer.

Most reasonable people who run websites know that you have to let the public in on the deception at some point.  Humor goes a long way when it comes to this.  People get the hint when things are funny or outrageous.  They say, “Hey!!  That’s not real right?!?!” not “Oh my God!  How terrible!”.   However, the editing that conservative blogger Andrew Breitbart did to footage of former Dept. of Ag staffer Shirley Sherrod speaking at an NAACP function was not your common funny video mashup one could find on YouTube and forward on to co-workers and friends.  No need for me to rehash that whole drama of her firing, people backpedaling after realizing the deception, etc.  You know the story.

I’m happy to see that Ms. Sherrod is SUING Breitbart.  At the time that this happened, she was a private citizen doing her job, not a public figure or celebrity who doesn’t enjoy the same legal protection because of their status.  Defamation is defamation.  Breitbart should have attacked the NAACP as an organization if he had an axe to grind (which is what seems to be the case), instead of going after a government employee.

Mrs. Sherrod has accused Mr. Breitbart, employee Larry O’Connor and the unnamed source of the video with defamation, representing her in a false light and intentional infliction of emotional distress. The lawsuit, filed Feb. 11 in Superior Court in the District of Columbia, seeks the removal of the video and related blog posts from Mr. Breitbart‘s site and monetary compensation, including punitive damages, to “punish the defendants’ reprehensible conduct and to deter its future occurrence.

“Defendants deliberately edited the full video of Mrs. Sherrod‘s 43-minute speech down to a short, highly misleading two-and-a-half minute clip that defendants knew, or should have known, would portray Mrs. Sherrod in a false and defamatory manner,” the lawsuit stated. – source

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Possible Modern Day Lynching Ruled Suicide in Mississippi

This situation is just not adding up for me.  A 26 year-old black man with a history of mental illness was found hanging from a tree in the predominantly white housing area of Greenwood, MS after he wandered off on Dec 1, 2010.   Greenwood, in the Mississippi Delta, is in the same county as Money, Miss., where 14-year-old Emmett Till was infamously lynched in 1955.

There are of course no witnesses and not much mention of how he would have been able to hang himself.  As far as I know, hanging one’s self without assistance is difficult at best.  Police say there was no visible sign that the body had been tampered with and there was no initial physical evidence that would indicate it could be murder. I know police need evidence.  I understand that.  However, in terms of a suicide this is not a typical scenario.

USA Today – “The county sheriff says that a 26-year-old black man found hanged from an oak tree in Greenwood, Miss., apparently committed suicide, but the president of the local NAACP challenges that explanation and says the group will monitor developments in the case.

Frederick Jermaine Carter, whose body was found Friday in North Greenwood, had a history of mental illness, was on medication and had a pattern of wandering away, says Leflore County Sheriff Ricky Banks.

Carter, who lived in neighboring Sunflower County, was helping his stepfather paint a building Wednesday. The stepfather went to get tools and when he returned, Carter had wandered off, Banks says.

“That really didn’t bother the stepdaddy,” Banks says. “It had happened so many times before. He’s a mental patient and was taking medication. He had wandered to Florida, to Arkansas.”

After Carter was found Friday, Banks says he investigated the scene and found no evidence that anyone else was there. “I didn’t see any indication of anybody else being in that area, going from physical evidence and the general tracks,” Banks says. “He had on a sort of new pair of tennis shoes that had a most distinct track with an unusual design.”

“We tracked him where he walked in there,” he says. “No other tracks followed his tracks. He walked in there by himself. There were no signs around the tree where he was hanging.””

I’m skeptical given the young man’s metal state and the difficulty of doing something like this outside in the woods.  I’ve only read one article (out of 10 so far) that notes how he might have done this.

“”There was an old table, just a frame of an old table right up at the tree. It looked like he used that frame to stand up on and then kicked it out from under him,” Banks said.He said the man’s jacket pocket held a bundle of braided rope like the rope around his neck.” source

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NAACP: Don’t Just Criticize, Become a Member and Effect Change from Within

I just have to give my 2 cents on the Wells Fargo, NAACP, and Boyce Watkins drama.  I’ve listened to all the points given.  I think there are a lot of valid points on both sides.  However, the thing that stands out to me is that the NAACP as an organization is not the same organization that I read about in the history books.  It’s not the NAACP of the time of W.E.B Dubois or in the 60s with King.  This is a different time.  A time that calls for different tactics and is full of different concerns.  The very fact that such an institution is now being challenged from within the black community is interesting.  The NAACP is a holy grail organization historically.  What this whole conflict has make me consider is the future of the organization and how African Americans can best influence it.

The best way for people to influence and ensure its future…JOIN.  For just $30 you can join and actually help this historic organization.  Money talks. If you really care, pay your dues and get involved with the actual governance of the organization.  Sure, you can affect it from outside, but if you really cherish what the NAACP has meant to the African American community, wouldn’t you want to see it refashioned for future survival?  If you have answers and know what direction the organization should do in, why not share them?

Sponsorship means money.  Perhaps if there was an infusion of new member revenue, the amount of sponsorship revenue needed for the conference would have been reduced.  Perhaps they could afford to be more choosy when selecting sponsors in that case.

Just my 2 cents.

Background: Recently the NAACP came under fire by bloggers for having Wells Fargo as a leading sponsor for its annual convention this July. Dr. Boyce Watkins wrote an op-ed for theGrio questioning why the NAACP would partner with Wells Fargo — a company accused of predatory lending practices — so recently after the civil rights organization dropped its lawsuit with the bank. Click here for the response to Dr. Watkins’ inquiry from NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous.

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Real Housewives of Atlanta nominated for NAACP Image Award

The blogs are a buzzing this week with news that Bravo’s “Real Housewives of Atlanta” has been nominated for an NAACP Image award.   I agree with Bossip, someone should be fired.  I didn’t believe it a first.  I had to check the facts for myself on the NAACP website.  There it was:

Outstanding Reality Series

  • “American Idol 8” (FOX)
  • “America’s Next Top Model” (CW)
  • “Dancing With the Stars” (ABC)
  • “Extreme Makeover” (ABC)
  • “Real Housewives of Atlanta” (Bravo)

Someone please tell me this is a hoax.  Next they will be giving Kisha Cole’s momma an Image Award.  Hell, I know Mr. Brown is bound to get nominated in the “Step n’ Fetch it” category.  This tops their nomination of R. Kelly…

…well, maybe not.  Where am I?  Someone please tell me this is just a dream.

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McCain meets with Black Republicans

From NBC/NJ’s Matthew E. Berger – MSNBC.MSN.com
PITTSBURGH, Pa. — African-American Republicans told McCain Tuesday not to abandon efforts to court black voters, despite the uphill battle in facing a prominent African-American Democratic challenger, meeting participants told NBC/National Journal.

A small group of black Republican current and former elected officials met with McCain at his Virginia headquarters, carrying a message that McCain and the Republican Party should reach out to black voters through “conversation and engagement” on issues like economic policy and healthcare.

“It’s important, especially with an African American running on the Democratic side, that the party reawaken its relationship (with black voters), no matter how tattered and torn it has been over the years,” Michael Steele, the former Maryland lieutenant governor, said in an interview.

Included in the group were Texas Railroad Commissioner Michael Williams, former Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell — who ran lost to Ted Strickland in 2006 for Ohio governor — and former Rep. J.C. Watts, according to the campaign. Lynn Swann, the pro football Hall of Famer who ran for Pennsylvania governor in 2006, participated by conference call. Continue reading

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Warner removes racist cartoons from YouTube

We posted the YouTube link to a posting of these videos a few months ago.  I think it’s a very important thing for people, especially black folk.  They are part of the very racist history of American media and the sterotypical representations of African Americans on TV and film.  We love to post that type of stuff because in the present day people like to act as if racism has been done away with and that it doesn’t exist.  From the posts to the comments on this blog, it’s clearly alive and well.

From NY Times/Photo: Youtube
Among the millions of clips on the video-sharing Web site YouTube are 11 racially offensive Warner Brothers cartoons that have not been shown in an authorized release since 1968.

Despite efforts to suppress them, racist cartoons from the 1940s have been circulating on the Web.

Some of the cartoons were removed on April 16. A message saying the cartoons were no longer available because of a copyright claim by Warner appeared in their place. By evening the messages disappeared, and some of the cartoons were back. Representatives for YouTube and Warner would not confirm whether the companies had tried to remove the cartoons.

The cartoons, known as the “Censored 11,” have been unavailable to the public for 40 years. Postings no longer appear if YouTube is searched for “Coal Black and de Sebben Dwarfs,” a parody of “Snow White” and the most famous of the cartoons. But a search for “Coal Black” does find the cartoon.

These cartoons were controversial when first released; the N.A.A.C.P. unsuccessfully protested “Coal Black” before it was shown in 1943. Richard McIntire, the director of communications for the N.A.A.C.P., wrote in an e-mail message that “the cartoons are despicable. We encourage the films’ owners to maintain them as they are — that is, locked away in their vaults.” Continue reading

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NAACP protests the light sentences of the Barbie Bandits

Do you remember the scene in “Malcolm X” where Denzel and Spike were in court with the 2 white women they were dating and got hella years compared the light sentencing of their co-criminals?  Denzel’s lines went something like this…

The average first offender gets two years for burglary.

We were all first offenders.
That’s what the girls drew.

Two years in the women’s reformatory.

Our crime wasn’t burglary.

It was sleeping with white girls.
They threw the book at us.

For some reason this the sentencing of the Barbie Bandits made me think of that scene.  You know the reason, and obviously the NAACP feels my pain.  The head of the Georgia NAACP called for the state to investigate the sentences given in the so-called “Barbie bandits” bank theft case, saying the two white defendants got less prison time than two black men.  Continue reading

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Julian Bond email is a HOAX

Stop passing that email around!  LOL!  Well, um…maybe you can keep passing it, just take Julian’s name off before you forward it.  The name “Hillary” is misspelled in the email.  That should have been a dead giveaway.

From the NAACP website
NAACP National Board of Directors Chairman Julian Bond is not the author of an e-mail currently being distributed entitled, “10 Reasons Not to Vote for Hilary Clinton.”

In refuting the misleading message, Chairman Bond stated:

“I did not write the ‘10 reasons’ and have not and will not support or oppose any candidate or party for President. The NAACP is studiously non-partisan and does not engage in partisan politics. This is a political dirty trick and a fraud, calculated to confuse.”

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Florida: Police shoot several unarmed black men, NAACP reponds

The Dade county NAACP is calling for justice in light of recent police shootings of unarmed African American men. People want answers and lack of response to the shootings by black elected officials and the absence of local political leaders at a recent meeting also became a major focus.

Miami-Dade NAACP President Bishop Victor T. Curry began the meeting on the evening of Nov. 19 by dispelling accusations that he is against the police.

“I’m against police brutality and I believe 99 percent of police officers in their right minds are against police brutality,” he told the crowd of more than 50 people at the New Birth Enterprise Building at 8400 N.E. 2nd Ave. in Miami.

According to Curry, the purpose of the meeting was to determine, “What should our response be as a community?”

Curry questioned whether other communities in Miami-Dade are treated similarly by the police.

“I can guarantee you this…if in the last two months, four unarmed…men from Aventura were shot and killed by African-American police officers, don’t you think the citizens, the residents of Aventura would be meeting like this?” he said.

Michael Knight and Frisco Blackwood, both 21, were killed on Nov. 12 in Little Haiti after police stopped them for running a red light. Details of the events that led to the shootings are in dispute.

A Miami-Dade police officer shot and killed 19-year-old unarmed Haitian immigrant Gracia Beaugris on Oct. 26 after what police said was an altercation, according to published news reports.

Roger Brown, 40, died Nov. 7 after a struggle with police officers outside a tire shop in North Miami-Dade. The owner of the shop, at 1655 NW 95th St., called police just after 7 p.m. after noticing the man’s truck being driven erratically, according to The Miami Herald. Officers immobilized Brown with a stun gun. He was taken to North Shore Medical Center, where he died.

Curry, the popular pastor of the New Birth Baptist Church also took issue with the absence of Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Alvarez from the meeting.

Curry insisted that the mayor, County Manager George Burgess and Police Chief Robert Parker would have attended meetings in other communities “to hear the concerns of the people.”

He added that their absences represent “just utter disrespect” for the black community.

Source: BrowardTimes.com

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NAACP Doesn’t Support Hate Crime March in W.Va.

The NAACP said Tuesday it does not support a hate crime awareness march that will raise money for a black woman who says she was tortured by six whites.

Local and national NAACP officials said they disapprove of Saturday’s march organizers, a group based in Washington, D.C., called Black Lawyers for Justice that wants hate crime charges brought against the defendants.

Six whites are charged with raping and torturing 20-year-old Megan Williams for days until her Sept. 8 rescue. All could get life prison sentences if convicted, but the prosecutor has not filed hate crime charges, saying they could be difficult to prove.

Williams, her family and black leaders such as the Rev. Al Sharpton plan to participate in the march, which has been endorsed by groups including the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and the National Conference of Black Mayors.

The Rev. Audie Murphy, NAACP branch president for Logan and Boone counties, said his group will continue supporting Williams, “but not within this march.”

“The NAACP is not against hate crimes being charged; we’re just saying we respect the decision of the prosecutor to later on have the freedom to do so. We do believe that some of what the perpetrators (had) against Megan, it was hate crime, but we want them to be prosecuted under the laws.” Continue reading

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