Archive for January, 2011
by Brenda Lee
Jehovah’s Witnesses often brag to outsiders (non-Jehovah’s Witnesses) that they do not pass a collection plate during services (like the churches do). Many Jehovah’s Witnesses are under the assumption that the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, parent organization to their religious group, is extremely poor. This perception comes from the Elders (leaders) in the congregations who regularly talk about how the organization is run on a shoe string.
Indeed, thousands of members work in Brooklyn, New York, every year and volunteer their time and resources, receiving a pittance for their nearly-free labor (they receive a small monthly stipend of around $20[Editor’s note: actually I think it’s up to a whopping $100 per month now Brenda-cs]). Once they leave headquarters, and especially if they stop subscribing to the tenants of the organization, they receive no pension, positive job referral or career assistance.
Still, most members do not realize how wealthy the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society really is.
In September 2001, Newsday.com reported that the Watchtower was worth $951 million. It was listed in the top 40 of New York City corporations!
In addition, many of the multi-million-dollar properties have been sold over the years to make way for purchase of more expensive real estate.
On Monday, we glimpsed new views of the Brooklyn Bridge Park courtesy of the new website of new development One Brooklyn Bridge Park. Today, let’s take a peek at the development itself. Formerly known as 360 Furman when it was owned by Jehovah’s Witnesses, the building changed hands for $200 million in summer 2004. What makes the development particularly interesting, besides its site smack in the middle of the forthcoming parkland, are the variety of units being offered: two-to-five bedroom duplex townhouses fronting the harbor; lofty apartment spaces; penthouses..
I attended a Jehovah’s Witness assembly (religious convention) a few years back where tens of thousands had gathered over a three-day period, and one thing that really stood out to me were the 3-ft high by approximately 2-foot wide cardboard boxes positioned strategically at each exit in the stadium, labeled “Worldwide Work” (I guess you had to pay to leave). The speaker mentioned the boxes several times during the last talk of the day, noting that there was one at each exit. Now, maybe I am being a little naïve, but if they weren’t bringing in that much money, wouldn’t it make sense that the boxes would be just a few inches in circumference? I mean, checks and dollar bills aren’t that big, right? Maybe the reason they don’t pass a collection plate is because the collection plate is simply too small?
One thing that has me very curious is, why do they continue to invest in real estate and resell it for ungodly amounts if Armageddon is coming any day now? Wouldn’t it make more sense to donate at least a portion of that wealth to the truly poor folks around the world through some charitable organization? (See my blog entitled “Is the Watchtower a Charitable Organization?” for more information about that.)
About two years ago I asked my father how much money he, as a poor, struggling farmer, had given to the Watchtower in New York over the years. He took offense at my question and as expected (well-programmed) he defended them, commenting that they didn’t have that much money. (I had heard this repeatedly during the nine years I was a Jehovah’s Witness from various JWs.) I pressed on and he acknowledged that he had probably donated at least $50,000 to the Watchtower over the last 35 years. Then I asked him, “Dad, if you have donated that much money as a poor farmer, how much money do you think the Watchtower has taken in over just the last few years with over 6 million members?” He turned silent; didn’t know what to say. My dad is, after all, a logical man, even when heavily indoctrinated and coached.
I was shocked a few years ago to learn that the Watchtower even solicits estate donations in their book entitled, “Charitable Planning.” But they aren’t talking about donating to charitable organizations. They are referring to donations to the Kingdom Service World-Wide, a catchy phrase for “Watchtower” donations. Here is one page that talks about cash donations:
“Outright gifts of money are the simplest and most common way of making contributions. Such an unrestricted gift provides an immediate resource that the Society can use in it’s many theocratic endeavors. Gifts of money can be made in any amount and at that time you may send these gifts directly to the Society. Please follow the directions on page 29.
Gifts of money are tax deductible up to 50 percent of your adjusted gross income. If you cannot deduct the entire gift in one year, you may carry the unused portion of the tax deduction forward for up to five additional years.”
Readers of this may argue that other religions regularly benefit from their members’ contributions so why am I “picking” on the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society in New York?
I’m not saying that they don’t have a right to get support from their members, just like other tax-free churches in this world. My concern is that there is no accountability for the money, as evidenced by the fact that the members are kept in the dark about what their financial status is (in fact, most Jehovah’s Witnesses would emphatically state that this Charitable Planning book doesn’t exist). In my nine years as a Jehovah’s Witness, I don’t recall seeing one financial statement from headquarters.
Additionally, what does the Watchtower do to support other “worldly” institutions or people who assist the poor and needy? Have you ever seen a Watchtower soup kitchen?
In fact, I bet if I showed up at New York headquarters tomorrow and asked for even $10,000 of my father’s $50,000 back, citing that he could use it now that he’s retired, they would laugh me all the way back to Colorado.
Lee is a regular bullet columnist who has appeared as a regular on the TV documentary The Secret Lives of Women “Cults” segments. She has written several pieces in our starting rotation but her first essay for the bullet was on Mothers Day “An Author’s Reflection on Mothers Day…” She overcame her mother’s (mis)using religion like a scalpel in a power-mad effort to break her will, only to write a powerful book of revelation and triumph.
by CHARLES M. BLOW
President Obama made history on Tuesday.
It was only the second time since Harry S. Truman’s State of the Union address in 1948 that such a speech by a Democratic president did not include a single mention of poverty or the plight of the poor.
The closest Obama got to a mention was his confirmation for “Americans who’ve seen their paychecks dwindle or their jobs disappear” that, indeed, “the world has changed. The competition for jobs is real.” I’m sure they appreciated that.
The only other Democrat not to mention poverty in the speech was Jimmy Carter in 1980, but even he was able to squeeze in one reference to at least a portion of the poor and disenfranchised, stressing the continuation of jobs programs to “provide training and work for our young people, especially minority youth.” (Carter did mention the poor in a written version that he submitted to Congress.)
John F. Kennedy didn’t say the specific words “poor” or “poverty” in his first State of the Union, but he talked at length about providing “more food for the families of the unemployed, and to aid their needy children,” securing “more purchasing power for our lowest-paid workers by raising and expanding the minimum wage” and of a new housing program to address the problem of “cities being engulfed in squalor.”
So how is it that this Democratic president has the temerity to deliver a State of the Union address that completely neglects any explicit mention of the calamitous conditions now afflicting his staunchest supporters: the poor?
(In 2008, Obama won 73 percent of the vote of those earning less than $15,000 a year, 60 percent of those earning between $15,000 and $30,000 and 55 percent of the vote of those earning $30,000 to $50,000. Those were his widest margins of victory of any income group and helped to propel him to victory.)
He talked at length about education (the most inspiring part of the speech) and about civility and his repackaged bromides of global competitiveness and investments in the future. And, of course, there were cautious mentions of programs that benefit seniors and the need to protect and secure them. Can’t forget the plea to the old people.
Protecting programs for seniors strikes the right chord morally and politically, but the data show that seniors are not the ones feeling the majority of the pain these days.
According to data from the Census Bureau, the percent of people ages 18 to 64 who were living in poverty in 2009 was higher than it had been in any year since 1959, while the percent of seniors living in poverty was lower than it had been in any year since at least 1959.
(By the way, voters over 65 were the only age group that Obama lost in 2008.)
I, for one, refuse to believe that this is an either-or proposition. We can make smart choices about protecting seniors and supporting younger Americans in need at the same time. We don’t have to ignore the Annies among us to court the Miss Daisys.
For the poor, this is the Obama Conundrum. He was obviously the best choice in 2008. And judging by the current cast of Republican presidential contenders, he could well be the best choice in 2012. But does that give him license to obviate his moral responsibility to his electoral devotees? Can and should they take his snubs as a necessary consequence of political warfare as he makes every effort to tack back to the middle and reconnect with those whose opinion of him vacillates between contempt on a bad day and sufferance on a good one? Does keeping him in the White House dictate keeping them in the shadows?
And things could get even worse for the poor if the president feels the need to cut too many deals with the new Republican-led House in order to appear more centrist.
According to Brian Miller, the executive director of the nonpartisan and Boston-based group United for a Fair Economy and co-author of the group’s report entitled “State of the Dream 2011: Austerity for Whom?” released earlier this month, “austerity measures based on the conservative tenets of less government and lower taxes will ratchet down the standard of living for all Americans, while simultaneously widening our nation’s racial and economic divide.”
As Miller put it, deficits that tax cuts for the rich helped to create “are being used to justify a host of austerity measures that will harm Americans of all races but will hit blacks and Latinos the hardest.”
According to Miller, “With 42 percent of blacks and 37 percent of Latinos lacking the funds to meet minimal household expenses for even three months should they become unemployed, cutting public assistance programs will have devastating impacts on black and Latino workers.”
(Obama won 95 percent of the black vote and 67 percent of the Hispanic vote in 2008.)
Even as my respect for this president as a shrewd politician has begun to rebound, my faith in him as a fervent crusader for the poor and disenfranchised has taken yet another nose dive. One’s tone-deafness — or blatant indifference — to the poor has to be at Black American Express status to brag that “the stock market has come roaring back” and “corporate profits are up” and not even mention the unemployment rate or the continuing foreclosure crisis.
I want to believe that President Obama’s speech omissions were oversights, not acts of arrogance. But I’m not sure.
President Truman wrote in 1953 that, “ultimately, no President can master his responsibilities, save as his fellow citizens — indeed, the whole people — comprehend the challenge of our times and move, with him, to meet it.” But, it is sometimes hard to follow — indeed, to chase — a president who appears to be moving, often at a full sprint, away from the people who once carried him.
Charles M. Blow is a New York Times Columnist and nationally-known commentator: “I invite you to visit my blog By The Numbers, join me on Facebook and follow me on Twitter, or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.”
by Alberta Parish
Recent news concerning a suspected suicide bomber who killed 31 people and injured countless others at the Moscow International Airport has set off a chain of events once more, which the globalists can then use to push their agenda of a global society with a global economy. The Illuminati secret societies are funding terrorist networks all around the world. They have Illuminati plants within each extremist terror organization be it Al-Qaeda, Al-Shabaab, the Neo Nazis, and so forth. The Illuminati currently owns and operates all the drug cartels, which are extensions of terrorist organizations. Look how the drug cartels are slowly destroying the Mexican government, which was a long planned accomplishment of the secret societies, often operating in the name of open organizations and many times in covert organizations, which employ secret operatives to assassinate individuals. Illuminati secret societies have also funded the Ku Klux Klan, and the Nazi Party and Adolf Hitler, its Chancellor. Although history tells us that Hitler was a devout Christian, this is a false history. Adolf Hitler was actually a devout occultist who was a member of the Thule Society, which is a secret society beginning in Germany in 1918. From the Thule Society came many members of the Nazi Party,which primarily funded World War 2.
There is no historical evidence that Adolf Hitler was ever a member of the Thule Society nor is there evidence that his lineage can be traced back to the Rothschilds, which is one of the thirteen Illuminati bloodlines. Since the Illuminati currently own all media outlets, they can put out false and misleading information. They can rewrite history, which is what they’ve been doing for over a century in this country. The lies we hear on CNN, MSNBC, NBC, ABC, CBS, HLN, and even Fox News are carefully assimilated by those who really control all media, even if the news anchors as well as those who report from the field are unaware of the amount of misinformation they’re feeding to the public.
A White House representative gave a statement concerning the terror attacks at the Moscow International Airport. He spoke about standing against those who would use terrorism to fund their political goals. The White House representative may not know this, but the people using terrorism to fund their political goals are members of the Illuminati secret societies.
The secret societies, dating back to antiquity, are the primary schools of occultism along with higher learning in every major field of study including psychological warfare and the supplanting of subliminal messages, which is Mind Control. Psychology warfare and the supplanting of subliminal messages have been achieved by way of hypnotism, telecommunication devices (including television and radio), the RFID chip, music, movies, so-called reality TV series, etc. Trauma-induced government programs have been using mind control techniques for decades. The CIA government project known as MK Ultra Mind Control, originating in the 1950’s, is still being used today despite the lie they’ve told about this government project having been discontinued.
Members of secret societies refer to themselves as the enlightened ones or illuminated ones, because they feel they are on a higher consciousness than most other peoples in the world. To some extent, they are right. These people are after all the ones who dominate most of society, including having control of major industries and being major distributors of goods and services. They control all forms of governments and even dictators. The illuminated ones are also on a higher consciousness, because they actively serve the gods that many people in the earth believe to still be mythological deities but are actually the “fallen angels” written about by peoples in various cultures throughout the ages. The names of these deities vary from culture to culture, but they’re essentially the same gods or fallen angels. The Hebrew Bible refers to these fallen angels as the Nefilim (which means Fallen Ones). The word giants have been inserted in the place of Nefilim in the King James Version Bible. But the Nefilim are actually the fallen angels who fell from the heavens. According to Sumerian cultural writings, these fallen ones are called the Annunaki, which means those who from heaven came to earth. The Sumerians had written about how the Annunaki had splashed down in the Persian Gulf area around 432,000 years ago, and had ruled over humanity. Historical records also tell how the Annunaki had genetically engineered Homo Sapiens by splicing their angelic DNA with that of an existing human race known as the Homo Erectus, who had originated in ..Africa.. millions of years ago. The Sumerians themselves were a dark race of people, and you probably didn’t know this before I told you because of the lies we’ve been taught in history books. You should also know that the gods who fell from the heavens had also cohabitated with human women. Think about the stories of gods/goddesses and demigods/demigoddesses in Egyptian, Babylonian, Persian, Greek, and Roman mythology.
According to Greek mythology, the Titans were the primary gods and they produced children, who were the demigods/demigoddesses known as the Olympians. Zeus was a child of a Titan god and goddess. He was known as the god of the sky who ruled as a supreme being on Mount Olympus, which was located in the sky. The Egyptian god Horus is another god of the sky. The Watchers spoken of in the Book of Enoch are the angels whose habitation was in the sky before they came down to earth to cohabitate with human women. The Watchers are referred to as the sons of God in Genesis Chapter 6 and Verse 2. They left their lofty habitation in the sky, according to the prophet and scribe Enoch, and took wives for themselves. The women were impregnated by the Watchers, and produced children who became of a great statue. And they were brutal toward human men and women. These Watchers are a different group of fallen angels from the Nefilim who preceded them and were already in the earth before the arrival of the Watchers.
Secret society members aren’t the only enlightened ones. God has people stationed throughout the world that perhaps the Illuminati discard as being insignificant because they may not be Titans of industries, or they may not be well-known figures. However, they fail to realize that the people of God are the true stars of light, the illuminated ones, or the “Christ” Light-Bearers who are watching the signs and see every move of the Illuminati secret societies just as Christ saw and was subsequently crucified by members of the secret societies, which existed within the Judean leadership (consisting of the Sanhedrin, including the Pharisees and Sadducees), and the Roman government. In other words, the crucifixion of Christ was a collaborative deed between members of the Cabala, the Judean secret society existing in the Roman province of Judea, and the Illuminati Masons who controlled the Roman government. But of course history was rewritten and lies perpetuated to cover up the deeds of the secret societies. Such as what happened with the biblical account of Christ’s trial before the Sanhedrin. It is neither mentioned in the Gospels nor in other ancient historical records that members of the Sanhedrin who had Jesus brought to trial were also members of a secret society. Of course Jesus had knowledge of this secret society, which explains why they consistently plotted to have Jesus arrested and killed. The Gospel writers indicate how Jesus consistently spoke out against the Pharisees, Sadducees, and others in the Jerusalem ruling council. Jesus had referred to them as children of Satan.
The Cabala (Kabbalah) is NOT just the Jewish doctrine received by oral tradition. According to Wikipedia, the Kabbalah is a discipline and school of thought concerned with the mystical aspect of Rabbinic Judaism. In other words, the Kabbalah is a MYSTERY SCHOOL, and they practice the “Occult” in the name of Satan. The secret societies are mystery schools.
Biblical accounts only indicate that Jesus was arrested during the early morning hours after a great multitude of soldiers with swords and staves along with Judas Iscariot had come to take Jesus to the Jerusalem ruling council. Jesus was first taken to the High Priest’s house and later that morning to the Sanhedrin, (the supreme court of the Hebrews in ancient Israel), where He stood before the High Priest, Caiaphas. They accused Him of heresy and later had Him crucified by the Romans. Although the Gospels indicate that the Roman governor, Pontius Pilate felt that Jesus was innocent of any wrongdoing, he still had Jesus crucified. However, according to the Hebrew historian Josephus, Pontius Pilate was a cruel man and was insensitive to Hebrew customs. When Judeans protested his actions on a particular day, he ordered his soldiers to hide among the citizenry and when he had given a signal, his soldiers began beating and killing people. He was quick to crush insurrections in his province, and for this same reason he would’ve saw Jesus as a possible threat against the government. There is more Hebrew literature on Pilate. According to Philo, a Hellenistic Hebrew Biblical philosopher, he had written that Pilate was stubborn, inflexible, and had a cruel nature. He executed seditionists and insurrectionists without trial. He executed many Judeans, because he was of a savage nature. Pontius Pilate was controlled by Satan just as the Sanhedrin who had Jesus arrested and put on trial was controlled by Satan.
What you people need to realize is that secret society members exist within Judaism, Islam, and Christianity. The Illuminati has infiltrated many Black Mega-Churches, and the evangelical churches. Just as the Illuminati infiltrated Judaism before Jesus was even born and subverted its teachings, the Illuminati have done the same in Christianity and Islam. The Illuminati’s agenda is to create as much opposition as possible on all sides in order to create wars on all sides in the name of the god each side worships in whatever name they choose to call this god. None of them are really worshipping the true and living God, because the wars they manufacture are not of God but of their own devices. Opposition created on all sides are the desired tools of which the Illuminati secret societies will use to destroy existing religious systems and bring about (by law) a new religious system.
by Gloria Dulan-Wilson
I recently received an email from my friend, Jitu Weusi in reference to the proposed closing of Paul Robeson School in Brooklyn (see below), and I thought, now this has gone absolutely too far. The hits just keep on coming in terms of the assaults on the Black community.
With each day there is a new way to try to drive Blacks out of Brooklyn. To gentrify the communities we live in. To push people to the point that it’s no longer a desirable place for us to live, while our communities are supplanted by more “palatable” ethnicities (did I put that correctly?).
And while everyone blames Bloomberg, I think the issue is even more organic than some miscreant who has usurped the mayoralty for a third term. I think the heart of the matter really lies with us – we Black folks – who appear to be content to mutter and complain, and put together weak demonstrations (not you, JiTu).
Those of us who sat on our behinds during an election that was ours to lose, and allowed him to sneak back in for four more years of even more insult to injury, are now finding themselves in the crosshairs of his gun site. He is proceeding unabated in his efforts to dismantle the Black community, and to make Brooklyn the “new Manhattan.” Some part of the culpability of the desecration and the denigration of the Black community must also be attributed to Borough President Marty Markowitz, who does not seem to be looking out for the best interest of the constituents, either. These schools are in the communities over which he has some jurisdiction; yet there is silence from Borough Hall.
By the way, before I go any further, just want to know if anyone has noticed the synchronicity and timing of this whole thing? We have the debacle at Medgar Evers, with a perpetrator in the role of president who clearly means neither the university or the community any good. And while we’re fighting that battle, we now have to close ranks on Paul Robeson School.
But, at the risk of pissing everybody off, I am going to say that the real culprits are we ourselves – we the Black/Caribbean/African/African American/Afro Latino residents of Brooklyn – who make up 85% of the population, but get pushed around as though we are less than 10%.
While I wholeheartedly support Brother Jitu Weusi, I had to wonder just how many really know who Paul Robeson was, and what his significance is for us as Black people? How many of us know who Paul Robeson is? Apart from those of my generation and older, how many have had the pleasure of watching one of Paul Robeson’s classic movies, such as “The Emperor Jones,” or “Sanders of the River,” (which was the original movie about King Solomon’s Mines).
How many have ever heard this wonderful man’s bass-baritone mellifluous voice, or viewed perhaps one of the handsomest Black men ever to walk the planet? How many know what a real honor it is to have a school named after such a man?
I personally have always called Brother Paul Robeson F.I.N.E. = Focused, Intelligent, Natural, Elegant – he was an all round athlete, actor, activist – he got a law degree in 1923 from Columbia Law School, in a day and age when Black men weren’t even allowed to “practice” law. He was an all around athlete and intellectual. He came from a family of intellectuals – father a minister who graduated from Lincoln University in Pennsylvania (my alma mater!!); mother a member of intellectuals from Philadelphia. He was raised in Princeton, NJ., graduated from Rutgers. He was what was called a credit to his race – meaning us Black folks – and indeed Robeson did us proud.
He was so positive and powerful that he was allowed to make movies on themes that were outside the bounds of Jim crow racism – in London, of course – you know they’d never allow him to do that here back in the day of lynchings and castrations. Robeson was a hero – and he was and is a personal hero of mine and my family. I just watched a DVD of “The Emperor Jones,” a movie I will never tire of, and watched as took us through a complete range of emotions. The brother was a fantastic actor. To this day there have been few who have come close to his talents.
That a school was named in honor of Paul Robeson shows there was a consciousness in the community of providing the students with an individual, a role model they could look up to.
What has happened to cause this to no longer be the case? Well it certainly can’t be the students. It has to be a combination of the administration, faculty, staff – but more importantly, it has to be because the parents have allowed the school to slide into a low level of standards.
If you have a high standard for your child, there is no way that you are going to allow the teachers to do less than the best. If they are now trying to close the doors of Paul Robeson, our parents have to look at what it is they have or have not been doing that has allowed this to happen. Then we have to turn it around and at the same time take a stand, draw line in the sand, and let Bloomie and his henchmen know that we are not going to close the school, but we are going to demand a regime change in terms of the faculty and staff. That we are going to set the standards. We are going to make sure they are implemented.
In addition to demonstrations and negotiations, there has to be some activation of parental involvement. Whose community is this? Whose children are these? Don’t want to hear that you don’t have time because you have to work. Don’t want to hear that Bloomie is going to do what he wants to anyway because he has lots of money. At some point it can’t just be about the money. We are either the majority and of value, or we are just ineffective complainers.
Bloomie has shown that he has little to no regard for any of our feelings or needs. So let’s don’t think that you will be able to appeal to some sense of humanity – some sense of reason. He has more of a specimen approach when it comes to African Americans. He will try to get his way one way. If that doesn’t work, he’ll pretend to relent, and come at you in another way. He’ll pit two ends against the middle, and while we’re focusing on solving that emergency out of no where, he sneaks up the middle, or from the back and does what he originally intended. Remember, he’s the democrat who turned Repuglican to run for mayor. Then he stated he was an independent. Now what is he? He’s the one who pledged to uphold the two term decision, then vacated it via fiat, and stood stone faced while New Yorker after New Yorker stood in City Council voicing their anger, and still put a third term in place. He barely noticed them, because he had already decided that we didn’t count.
We now have Kathie Black, female puppet, in charge of our children’s education. New carte blanche as she rubber stamps Bloomie’s policies.
So if there is nothing new and different about his behavior and policies, there had better be something new and different about ours. We have to do more than protest. We have to do more than circulate petitions. We have to circle the wagons and begin to protect our communities.
Sadly, we lost Johnnie Cochran a few years ago, and we’ve not had our own mouthpiece since then. We’ve not had someone who has had the Blackbone to take on the administration when it violates our rights, and take a principled stand in our behalf. So we need to either cultivate or hire our legal eagles, while at the same time putting together our activist crew, while at the same time putting together a parents brigade. We have to shut the city down and make sure that this man knows that the people in Brooklyn are as valid and powerful – as large and in charge, as they are in Manhattan.
Notice that I did not say don’t protest. We have to attack on all fronts. We have to make it clear that nobody moves until we get what we want, or stop them from doing what we don’t want.
But we then have to make sure we know what we want. We have to have standards and a criteria for education, and them make sure that we have the people who can step in and get the job done. If we want quality education at Paul Robeson, we had better make sure at the end of the day we have teachers who are qualified and committed to our children, and a higher standard than the ones Bloomberg and Black are putting forth.
We have to make sure that we have a curriculum reflective of the man the school was named for. You can’t just name the school after Paul Robeson and not have academic standards that will turn out Paul Robeson clones. We definitely could use a cadre of Robesons. And we have to make sure that we don’t compromise our standards for some crappy concept that has nothing to do with our children’s intellectual development.
We now have to be about it. We now have to let those who walk around paying lip service to autonomy but cower in the shadows when it comes time to make a stand.
Brother Jitu Weusi has always been in the forefront of our education and rights. He’s carried that banner and still carries it because we lack those who would come behind him and take the baton and keep on going. His love for us is evident and unwavering. Now is the time to make sure we give him the support, take some of the weight off him, while at the same time learning from him so we can go forth benefiting from his wisdom and expertise.
You had better be about saving Paul Robeson School as well as any other Black institutions in Brooklyn, Manhattan, Bronx, Queens, Staten Island, Westchester, Long Island – they represent and belong to us. Now is the time to stand up for them in order to have a future. What we do now will determine what happens tomorrow.
(To read Jitu Weusi’s letter click here and scroll to the end of Gloria’s column)
bullet Columnist Gloria Dulan-Wilson Is a veteran New York City Journalist. Her experiences, perspective & sense of history are an invaluable combination. “check out my blog:” www.gloria-dulan-wilson.blogspot.com
by Alton H. Maddox, Jr.
No Black organization in the history of the United States has put more energy into forming a Black political party with ballot access than United African Movement. This effort started by the United African Movement in 1990 with the United African Party and continuing in 1994 with the Freedom Party.
In 1998, New York was going after me as the lead defendant in Steve Pagones’ defamation lawsuit. The state attorney general’s office was Pagones’ co-counsel. Both Rev. Herbert Daughtry and Charles Barron have opposed Tawana Brawley since 1987. A female member of the House of the Lord Church was on the legal staff of New York State Attorney General Robert Abrams.
Similarly, neither Rev. Herbert Daughtry nor Charles Barron supported the “Central Park 6″ initially. They were praying for Patricia Meili at Metropolitan Hospital in Manhattan. To be sure, something had happened to Meili but it was a “hoax” as to these Black and Latino boys and I said so without a choir. Most Blacks questioned my integrity.
For a handful of reasons, I have never viewed Charles Barron as being the gubernatorial candidate of a political party funded only by Blacks. It never dawned on me to ask Charles Barron to run as a gubernatorial candidate on a third-party ticket. In 2010, I supported Michael Greys who later stepped aside in favor of Charles Barron.
When Charles Barron became the gubernatorial candidate, he immediately asked me to co-chair the Freedom Party with Viola Plummer. I declined. The chairperson of a political party must be elected. By appointing Viola Plummer and Jitu Weusi to co-chair the Freedom Party, he disenfranchised its supporters.
Despite my repeated requests for a sit-down, Charles Barron has refused to speak to me since I refused his request on November 3, 2010 to leave the New York Police Department alone in its role in miscounting the votes of the Freedom Party. There were 195,000 votes missing and the New York Board of Election has refused to open its files to any interested party.
The “D-12 and BUF factions” of the Freedom Party have called a political convention on Lincoln’s birthday on February 12 in Harlem. This is like putting the cart before the horse. The Freedom Party has no current constitution nor any by-laws as is required under state law and Charles Barron has erased the black panther as the party’s symbol and changed the its mission.
Before there is a political convention, there must be a constitutional convention. White supremacists held a secret, constitutional convention in 1787 in Philadelphia. It would be the next century before a political convention was held in Baltimore. The Freedom Party must not be a fly-by-night operation.
Everyone should attend a historic meeting on Wednesday, January 26, 2011 at 7:30 p.m. at Elks Plaza, 1068 Harriet Tubman (Fulton Street) nr. Classon Ave. in Brooklyn. Take the “C” train to Franklin Ave. Two blocks to Elks Plaza. It is important to bring paper, pen, pad and clipboard. You must get it right.
Too honest for the White Press and too black for much of today’s Black Press; bullet columnist Alton Maddox upsets the same people and status quo as he did as an uncompromising Defense Attorney. He is also a founding member of the Freedom Party. Contact him at c/o UAM P.O. BOX 35 BRONX, NY 10471
by Basil Waine Kong
No doubt you have heard of the Vienna Boys Choir, the Harlem Boys Choir or even the Boys Choirs of London. You may not have heard of The Kingston College Boys Choir. If you have, then your life has been enriched. If you haven’t, you are missing a treat. You haven’t heard the Handel or Bach until you have heard these boys. You haven’t truly got into the Christmas spirit until you have heard their rendition of “Hark the Herald Angels Sing”, “We Three Kings” or “Good News”. Tonight (December 19, 2010). I attended their Annual Christmas Concert at the University of the West Indies Chapel and got the Christmas spirit. I rank them first among all the great Boys Choirs from around the world. After each song, the appreciative audience stood and applauded wildly. Jamaica has done it again by developing this fabulous institution. Their voices were the voices of angels. Your Bible did not say there would be preaching or even praying in Heaven, but it does say there will be “Choirs” and I hope when I get there, it will be the Kingston College Chapel Choir!
The only small, little teenie, weenie suggestion I would make is that when the boys gesture “To the World”, I think it would be so hilarious to boldly make the Usain Bolt sign. Just a suggestion!
In addition to continually exporting Reggae, Ska, Dancehall, Calapso and Mento, let’s export this choir! I believe audiences around the world would be tremendously entertained by them and what great ambassadors these talented, handsome, well dressed high school students would be for Jamaica. This is another occasion when we do not recognize an important resource. They have been entertaining Jamaican audiences for almost fifty years!
Father Holong and his choir does well performing abroad, these boys are even better. Under the direction of Audley Davidson, the KC Chapel Choir could be international stars. I wish them well. They performed again on January 2, 2011 at the St. James Parish Church in Montego Bay. You will be doing yourself a disservice if you do not see them.
Bullet Columnist Basil Waine Kong has written several pieces for this journal and especially likes to expound on his favorite subject: his beloved Jamaica. He is a former Atlien (resident of Atlanta GA), and was the CEO of the Association of Black Cardiologists (ABC) for 22 years before his retirement in 2008 to return to Jamaica. This article is reprinted with his permission from his blogsite; Coming in From the Cold… Bob Marley
by Chris Stevenson
A Buffalo family recently endured threats and attempted violence by a woman angry over her daughter dating a man of another race. This took place Saturday evening 11/27. Dianna Goodwin received a phone call from someone warning her that Natalie Bernard was on her way to her home to slash her car tires. Mrs. Goodwin immediately called 911 and told them to send someone to her 1387 Kensington home and warned them that if Bernard touches her car she would be forced to retaliate. Goodwin said the officer answering the call warned her the call was being recorded, but according to Mrs. Goodwin since Bernard had a knife in her possession that’s what she wanted them to know.
Soon after Bernard drove up in front of the Goodwins house liberally screaming racial epithets and accompanied by her husband and son still sitting in the car. She allegedly made several lounges at Marvin Goodwin Jr. on their driveway using her pocket knife, only to have Marvin Jr. avoid getting slashed. Marvin Jr. then was said to have punched Bernard in the face, sending her tumbling to the ground. At about this time two squad cars arrived, and patrol officers Dawn Lopez and Melinda Jones (also a PBA union officer) intervened. According to Mrs. Goodwin Lopez seemed bent on manipulating the outcome rather than securing the crime scene and arresting Bernard-who clearly seemed out of line while on someone else’s property. Ms. Bernard was still shouting and screaming the N-word with the officers present.
Mrs. Goodwin-also a well-known community activist- felt that for some reason Lopez was adamantly reluctant to arrest Bernard, even going so far to order the Goodwins to “shut up” instead of the N-word spraying Bernard and her family. Goodwin had no problem with Officer Jones handling of the situation. This behavior makes it look as though Bernard was way out of her element, verbally and physically assaulting a black family on their own grounds, and Officer Lopez seemed to be giving her a pass. Goodwin said she was playing fast and lose with the law, making statements such as ‘I can’t arrest her without arresting him (Marvin Jr.).’ Of course in unofficial white vernacular any black defending themselves against a white attacker(s), even on their own property must be arrested by default. Officer Lopez was even quoted verbally rewriting the law, “She said it was only my property if it was inside the house,” said Goodwin. Marvin Jr. works for the state, any arrest whether valid or not puts his job in jeopardy.
Mrs. Goodwin claims Lopez was on her own program, insisting ‘if you won’t press charges against her, I won’t arrest him.’ If this is true this can only put a disturbing light on Officer Lopez, especially considering the gravity and danger of the situation; using her job and position to forcibly coerce him, and he’s the victim. Mrs. Goodwin says she called 911 again to let them know how Lopez was handling the incident. Ms. Bernard was said to have tried hiding the knife once she saw the officers arrive until Mrs. Goodwin told them about it.
Marvin Goodwin Jr. and Nicole Skurka
This is not Natalie Bernard’s first visit to the Goodwin home. roughly a year ago Mrs. Goodwin disclosed to me that she rode onto her driveway on a motorcycle accompanied by several other bikers using the same racist language she used on the 27th. What has sent Bernard over the edge is the fact that her daughter; Nicole Skurka, has been dating Marvin Jr. for some time and she is trying to put a stop to it. Truth be told, more forces out there than Ms. Bernard have shown vehement opposition to this relationship. The two of them met each other while employees of the Walden Ave. Target store, and since then Marvin has become a Target, but that’s a story for another article.
Indeed it seems Goodwin Jr. would have certainly been locked up were it not for the arrival of a newly appointed Sheriff’s Deputy/Community Liason that she contacted; Willy Stewart, whom immediately came on to the Central Booking and adamantly suggested to Lopez not to arrest Marvin Jr. In fact Stewart was with Goodwin at the station from about 10pm-1am to make sure. Stewart questioned the Duty Officer and then asked Marvin Jr. his side of the story. Once Goodwin told him he pushed a lady who came at him with a knife Stewart said he couldn’t be arrested under Article 35 (obviously Article 35 wasn’t written for blacks, particularly in situations confronting whites. But conveniently it’s not worded as such): “When I talked to the Duty Officer that’s when everything changed, I asked for the arresting officers, they hadn’t showed up yet.” Stewart says he hadn’t told them he worked for the Sheriff’s Department, but the officers present agreed with him that due to Article 35 Goodwin couldn’t be arrested: “This was a lady Lt. and she said ‘yes he had a right to protect himself.'”
Eventually Lopez and Jones arrived and according to Stewart, kept looking at him and going back and forth and talking to each other trying to figure out who he was. Stewart wasn’t approving of how Lopez was said to behaved during the incident: “For them to be so disrespectful of taxpayers, that was out of pocket… they knew, they just didn’t think we knew that (about Article 35).
According to the police report Bernard is charged with “a misdemeanor/violation of Criminal Possession of a weapon in 4th Degree/Menacing in 2nd Degree… That the defendant, while at 1387 Kensington, did have possession of pocket knife, in that the defendant did yell threats from across the street at 1387 Kensington. Defendant did pull out a knife and did yell threats. Knife recovered by P.O. M. Jones, all evidence submitted by P.O. Dawn Lopez… Defendant, while at 1387 Kensington, did intentionally place Marvin Goodwin, in fear of imminent serious physical injury by means of a deadly weapon to wit; pocket knife, and did yell threats.” Now try matching the statements in this report filed by the two officers and match it against the alleged behavior of Officer Lopez and from the most objective standpoint it doesn’t make sense. Yet Lopez does have some pretty well-known history of not making sense.
Back on 7/28/06 Officer Lopez and a close friend went joyriding along I90 late one night after apparently barhopping, Lopez pulled her car over and began firing her gun into a field in the dead of night and then allowed her friend (a high school art teacher no less) to fire the weapon as well. A state trooper caught them doing this and arrested them, after which Lopez was charged with “2nd degree reckless endangerment (a misdemeanor).” It’s not like she was young at the time (she was 37 and her partner 39), and even DA Frank Clark-usually accommodating to erring officers-aired suspicions about alcohol impairment. She was given departmental charges and allowed to keep her job.
Like Mr. and Mrs. Goodwin, Stewart seemed more upset with Officer Lopez than Ms. Bernard. He said her behavior makes it seem as if police choose to be in bed with white perpetrators and racists. “I explained to Diana and her husband ‘don’t let them get you upset because that’s what they are trying to do; get an arrest based on goading you into stereotypical behavior. I was just there as a buffer, as an adviser.” It seems Deputy Stewart was a good preventive buffer against another cited white Buffalo Police obsession; Get young black boys without a criminal record in the system. This is a subject matter that is not exposed and discussed enough around Buffalo. It is literally a job and career-stopper for blacks, and most importantly designed to break the spirits of black youths. This reporter has seen Goodwin Jr’s.’ degrees and academic achievements over the years, maybe his arrest would have been quite a prize for Lopez among white officers of the E District Precinct (or the Crooked E as I call them).
Stewart offers a preventive measure to combat “Get-‘em-in-the-system” We need to have some legislation so when it’s wiped clean, it’s wiped clean. If you get an ACD it goes off your state record (after so many months of good conduct), but it stays on your federal record.”
I asked Chief Young about Lopez’ methods and if this was standard operating procedure within his precinct? He said no, but he’s only heard Mrs. Goodwins side of it. He said that what he wants to know is why did it take another officer arriving on the scene to make Lopez do the right thing? The main question regarding Officer Lopez is if there was anything going on in her mind outside of this incident that impeded her judgment? If for example Bernard physically broke into the Goodwins home, would Officer Lopez still have tried to find a way to arrest Marvin Jr? Is there room to wonder if not charging Bernard with a hate crime, a hate-crime on the part of the officers in itself?
What Ms. Bernard and many others see when they think about their daughters’ interracial dating
Evidently Bernard was booked and given an appearance ticket, but did not spend the night in a jail cell. She was said to have been arraigned on 12/7 at 9:30am and returned with a lawyer who was trying to get her an ACD on the 12/14 court date. This type of racism is common in much of the country, but is made more interesting by the mindset of too many members of US law enforcement who carefully interject their own bias and race barriers into their work. I will update you on this story as it goes on.
Chris Stevenson is a syndicated columnist. Follow him on Twitter, Btweetz.com blackcommentator and Facebook, you don’t have to join any of them. Watch his video commentary Policy & Prejudice and The Network for clbTV. Respond to him on the link below.
Those longtime readers of the buffalo bullet probably have been wondering what has happened to one of our best columnists; author/mind-control educator & expert Brenda Lee. Of course you’ve seen her if you’ve been watching WEtv, but several; months ago she has produced a sequel to her first Youtube video skit on the outward teachings and subliminal influence of her former religious organization the Watchtower Society.
This contains as much food-for-thought and humor as her first video-which I posted directly below-in fact production-wise she broke the bank. View it and you (temporarily) be the judge.
©Brenda Lee, 2006, author “Out of the Cocoon: A Young Woman’s Courageous Flight from the Grip of a Religious Cult,”
by CHARLES M. BLOW
Tragedy in Tucson. Six Dead. Democratic congresswoman shot in the head at rally.
Immediately after the news broke, the air became thick with conjecture, speculation and innuendo. There was a giddy, almost punch-drunk excitement on the left. The prophecy had been fulfilled: “words have consequences.” And now, the right’s rhetorical chickens had finally come home to roost.
The dots were too close and the temptation to connect them too strong. The target was a Democratic congresswoman. There was the map of her district in the cross hairs. There were her own prescient worries about overheated rhetoric.
Within hours of the shooting, there was a full-fledged witch hunt to link the shooter to the right.
“I saw Goody Proctor with the devil! Oh, I mean Jared Lee Loughner! Yes him. With the devil!”
The only problem is that there was no evidence then, and even now, that overheated rhetoric from the right had anything to do with the shooting. (In fact, a couple of people who said they knew him have described him as either apolitical or “quite liberal.”) The picture emerging is of a sad and lonely soul slowly, and publicly, slipping into insanity.
I have written about violent rhetoric before, and I’m convinced that it’s poisonous to our politics, that the preponderance of it comes from the right, and that it has the potential to manifest in massacres like the one in Tucson.
But I also know that potential, possibility and even plausibility are not proof.
The American people know it, too. According to a USA Today/Gallup poll released Wednesday, 42 percent of those asked said that political rhetoric was not a factor at all in the shooting, 22 percent said that it was a minor factor and 20 percent said that it was a major factor. Furthermore, most agreed that focusing on conservative rhetoric as a link in the shooting was “not a legitimate point but mostly an attempt to use the tragedy to make conservatives look bad.” And nearly an equal number of people said that Republicans, the Tea Party and Democrats had all “gone too far in using inflammatory language” to criticize their opponents.
Great. So the left overreacts and overreaches and it only accomplishes two things: fostering sympathy for its opponents and nurturing a false equivalence within the body politic. Well done, Democrats.
Now we’ve settled into the by-any-means-necessary argument: anything that gets us to focus on the rhetoric and tamp it down is a good thing. But a wrong in the service of righteousness is no less wrong, no less corrosive, no less a menace to the very righteousness it’s meant to support.
You can’t claim the higher ground in a pit of quicksand.
Concocting connections to advance an argument actually weakens it. The argument for tonal moderation has been done a tremendous disservice by those who sought to score political points in the absence of proof.
Charles M. Blow is a New York Times Columnist and nationally-known commentator: “I invite you to visit my blog By The Numbers, join me on Facebook and follow me on Twitter, or e-mail me at email@example.com.”
by Alton H. Maddox, Jr.
This world belongs to our children. We only pay rent in it. If we fail, refuse or unable to pay rent, our children will become slum landlords while children who inherit from productive parents of other ethnic groups will prosper. Eventually, our children’s share of the world will revert to the state. In short, every omission has consequences. Our current conduct is sowing the seeds of destruction.
I am not proud to say that Freedom Retreat for Boys and Girls is the only African-centered, sleep-away, summer camp in the nation. Other ethnic groups spend considerable time with their children. On the other hand, our children generally lack a support system. This is critical for their survival.
A summer program for children is expensive. United African Movement chose the historic Peg Leg Bates because of its proximity to the Underground Railroad. For example, the birthplace of Sojourner Truth is only twenty miles from this venue. The children travel at least four hours to Harriet Tubman House and Syracuse University to visit with Black professors. This is an overnight trip.
Other activities include, but are not limited to, swimming, hiking, moot court, arts and crafts, farming, horseback riding, African history and culture, sports, astronomy, “Family Day”, skating, African drumming, martial arts, nature walks, and a county fair. Most of these activities are unavailable to our children in public schools and the Black Church.
After President Barack Obama won the presidential sweepstakes in 2008, the Washington Post ran an article denoting the influences on his life. One of the persons who influenced his life was a camp counselor at a Jewish summer camp when President Obama was a teenager. The counselor introduced President Obama to Zionism. He is now a convert.
No Black person has any reason to quarrel with him for attending this summer camp. The only African-centered summer camp today was established in 1994 and years after he was a teenager. Today, virtually every Black leader has been nurtured by whites. This is a consequence of Brown v. Bd. of Education. “The hands that rock the cradle rules the nation”.
Compulsory education laws which promotes white paternalism and summer school which stigmatizes our children are two of the major weapons employed to cripple them for life. The third weapon is mayoral control. It only applies to “urban areas” in New York and it is unconstitutional but, in the absence of courageous and competent lawyers, it is being employed against our children.
Freedom Retreat for Boys and Girls is only able to function because of volunteers and fund-raising efforts. Every child who attends this heralded summer program receives at least a partial scholarship. Our entire community as well as UAM should salute volunteers and donors on January 15 at 9:00 p.m. in Harlem. Some of the volunteers give at least two weeks of vacation time to Freedom Retreat for Boys and Girls. A few spend the entire time in July and August serving our children.
The Cotton Club has a seating capacity of 150 persons. UAM goal is for every seat to be occupied Saturday night. UAM’s membership should be striving to make MLK Birthday a success in Harlem. In honor of Dr. Martin L. King, Jr., this is an evening for UAM and the Black community to honor the children and camp volunteers.
For forty-five dollars, it is a great evening at a basement bargain. It includes a sumptuous dinner buffet, live entertainment with Ann Sinclair and the Cotton Club All-stars, door prizes and a worthy cause in supporting our children in the only African-centered summer camp in the nation. This program will produce an African-centered President Barack Obama with your support. This will reconnect the cherry tree.
For more information, call UAM at 718-834-9034.
Too honest for the White Press and too black for much of today’s Black Press; bullet columnist Alton Maddox upsets the same people and status quo as he did as an uncompromising Defense Attorney. He is also a founding member of the Freedom Party. Contact him at c/o UAM P.O. BOX 35 BRONX, NY 10471