White men have much to discuss about mass shootings

Imagine if African American men and boys were committing mass shootings month after month, year after year. Articles and interviews would flood the media, and we’d have political debates demanding that African Americans be “held accountable.” Then, if an atrocity such as the Newtown, Conn., shootings took place and African American male leaders held a news conference to offer solutions, their credibility would be questionable. The public would tell these leaders that they need to focus on problems in their own culture and communities.

But when the criminals and leaders are white men, race and gender become the elephant in the room.

Nearly all of the mass shootings in this country in recent years — not just Newtown, Aurora, Fort Hood, Tucson and Columbine — have been committed by white men and boys. Yet when the National Rifle Association (NRA), led by white men, held a news conference after the Newtown massacre to advise Americans on how to reduce gun violence, its leaders’ opinions were widely discussed.

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Why Is Socialism Doing So Darn Well in Deep-Red North Dakota? It’s the Banks

North Dakota is the very definition of a red state. It voted 58 percent to 39 percent for Romney over Obama, and its statehouse and senate have a total of 104 Republicans and only 47 Democrats. The Republican super-majority is so conservative it recently passed the nation’s most severe anti-abortion resolution – a measure that declares a fertilized human egg has the same right to life as a fully formed person.

But North Dakota is also red in another sense: it fully supports its state-owned Bank of North Dakota (BND), a socialist relic that exists nowhere else in America. Why is financial socialism still alive in North Dakota? Why haven’t the North Dakotan free-market crusaders slain it dead?

Because it works.

In 1919, the Non-Partisan League, a vibrant populist organization, won a majority in the legislature and voted the bank into existence. The goal was to free North Dakota farmers from impoverishing debt dependence on the big banks in the Twin Cities, Chicago and New York. More than 90 years later, this state-owned bank is thriving as it helps the state’s community banks, businesses, consumers and students obtain loans at reasonable rates. It also delivers a handsome profit to its owners — the 700,000 residents of North Dakota. In 2011, the BND provided more than $70 million to the state’s coffers. Extrapolate that profit-per-person to a big state like California and you’re looking at an extra $3.8 billion a year in state revenues that could be used to fund education and infrastructure.

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BACKGROUND ON 2013 SEATTLE MAYOR CANDIDATE OMARI TAHIR-GARRETT

omari
Omari Tahir-Garrett

RALLY 6/23/09! SEATTLE YOUTH AND COMMUNITY MEMBERS TO RALLY FOR RESPECTED ELDER | Hip Hop Congress
http://www.hiphopcongress.com, 23 June 2009

Members of the United For Youth Coalition, UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center, Seattle Hip Hop Youth Council, Hip Hop Congress, Poor Peoples’ Economic Human Rights Campaign, Workers Economic Recovery Campaign, will hold a rally tomorrow, June 24th, at 10 AM in front of the King County Jail (5th & James) to support a respected elder and pillar of our community Omari Tahir-Garrett (Hon. James C. Garrett) who was arrested yesterday while observing Seattle

Police Department officers near 23rd and Union in the Central District.

Omari is a 63 year resident of the Central District, founder of the African American Heritage Museum and Cultural Center, Elder of the UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center, a Little League baseball coach for over 30 years, former High School educator, US Army Vietnam era disabled veteran, Garfield High School alumni and star quarterback, a grandfather, human rights advocate, and counselor to youth and fellow veterans alike.

According to witness accounts, Omari was watching the police detain several young men near the bus stop when the police accused him of harassing them and placed him under arrest. He has since been charged with harassment, unlawful use of a weapon, and “obstruction”, according to the King County Jail.

“I have known Omari for over nine years”, says Central District resident and waterfront stevedore Leith Kahl.
When I first came to this city, Omari welcomed me to his community.

ColorsNW Magazine
http://www.colorsnw.com, 27 April 2001

Omari Tahir-Garrett, the legal head of the African American Heritage Museum, summed up his feelings about the league’s plan more succinctly, saying, “Beware the dream killers, they are here.” What makes the reactions of Tahir-Garrett and others so ironic is that no one really knows what the plan will be, not even Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle President James Kelly.

In fact, disagreement over condos and other issues are among the primary factors that prompted the initial rift in the museum board years ago, eventually leading to the ouster of Tahir-Garrett and Earl Debnam.

Tahir-Garrett and another activist have filed suit against the School District and the City of Seattle for breach of contract on agreements both entities originally had with their organization.

Lowell Henderson.com Event Detail Page
http://www.graphics.lowellhenderson.com, 11 Oct 2003

Proceeds from the party will benefit the Seattle Hip-Hop Youth Council, political prisoner Omari Tahir-Garrett, the African American Heritage Museum and Cultural Center, and community and youth development programs.

Members of the United For Youth …
http://www.hiphopcongress.com, 22 June 2009

Members of the United For Youth Coalition, UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center, Seattle Hip Hop Youth Council, Hip Hop Congress, Poor Peoples’ Economic Human Rights Campaign, Workers Economic Recovery Campaign, will hold a rally tomorrow, June 24th, at 10 AM in front of the King County Jail (5th & James) to support a respected elder and pillar of our community Omari Tahir-Garrett (Hon. James C. Garrett) who was arrested yesterday while observing Seattle Police Department officers near 23rd and Union in the Central District.

Omari is a 63 year resident of the Central District, founder of the African American Heritage Museum and Cultural Center, Elder of the UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center, a Little League baseball coach for over 30 years, former High School educator, US Army Vietnam era disabled veteran, Garfield High School alumni and star quarterback, a grandfather, human rights advocate, and counselor to youth and fellow veterans alike.

According to witness accounts, Omari was watching the police detain several young men near the bus stop when the police accused him of harassing them and placed him under arrest. He has since been charged with harassment, unlawful use of a weapon, and “obstruction”, according to the King County Jail.

1 FAMILY ? Same Gender Loving Peoples Of Color Family e-List

http://www.blakout.net, 18 Feb 2003

EMP. Garrett is the son of Omari Tahir-Garrett, former mayoral candidate and longtime advocate of founding anAfrican-American Heritage Museum in the old Colman School-a cause which he worked on alongside Kwame and Allah. After two trials and many months of professing his innocence, Tahir-Garrett was convicted last week of assaulting Mayor Schell last year.

SEATTLE YOUTH RALLY TO PROTECT PUBLIC SCHOOL BUILDING

horacemannveteransdayprotest

FROM PRIVATIZATION AND CONDOS

by Leith Kahl

The downsizing and privatizing of education in the US is a brutally physical process. Perhaps nowhere was this more clear than in Seattle´s Central Area on Veterans Day, when a crowd of young people refused to leave a public meeting about the future of a public school building at 24th and Cherry, which has sat vacant since the end of 2008. Police were called to eject the public from the building, and one youth and one community elder were arrested and charged with “tresspassing” and “disorderly conduct”.

An advertisement in the The Facts Newspaper had clearly invited the general public to this meeting. The meeting called by the leaders of an organization called “Family Life Center”, a ministry of Peoples Institutional Baptist Church, which also sometimes does business under the name “Work It Out”.

This entity was awarded a lease on the building by the Seattle Public School District about a year and a half ago, even though their lease bid was neither the highest bid, nor was it a bid that contained any committment to the school district to use the building for any purpose relating to public education. Their were other bids which did offer such an explicit committment, including one from the nearby Umojafest Peace Center which has a track record of turning blighted buildings into vibrant centers of community programming with almost no budget at all.

The United For Youth Coalition, a coalition of which the Umojafest Peace Center is a member, called upon its members and supporters to attend this public meeting and voice their concerns, which they did. When the “Work It Out” entity reacted to the presence of these youth by first cancelling the meeting, and then asking the Seattle Police Department to eject the public from the building, the Coalition responded by staging a protest on the sidewalk immediately outside of the building. Some members of Occupy Seattle and other local groups also attended both the meeting and the protest which followed it.

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Civil-rights reviews focus on several school districts, state

Along with investigating Seattle Public Schools’ record on student discipline, the U.S. Department of Education has four other civil-rights reviews under way in Washington schools.

Seattle is the focus of two of the probes — the investigation into whether black students are disciplined more frequently and more harshly than white students, which came to light two weeks ago, plus a second review that focuses on students learning English.

Federal officials also say they are looking at programs for English-language learners in the Lake Washington School District and at anti-harassment policies and practices in the Yakima School District, plus what appears to be a statewide review related to gender issues in athletics.

All five reviews were initiated by the Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights, as part of a four-year-old push by the Obama administration to more aggressively enforce civil-rights laws covering public schools.

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The Jackson Plan: A Struggle for Self-Determination, Participatory Democracy, and Economic Justice

A major progressive initiative is underway in Jackson, Mississippi. This initiative demonstrates tremendous promise and potential in making a major contribution towards improving the overall quality of life of the people of Jackson, Mississippi, particularly people of African descent. This initiative is the Jackson Plan and it is being spearheaded by the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement (MXGM) and the Jackson People’s Assembly.

The Jackson Plan is an initiative to apply many of the best practices in the promotion of participatory democracy, solidarity economy, and sustainable development and combine them with progressive community organizing and electoral politics. The objectives of the Jackson Plan are to deepen democracy in Mississippi and to build a vibrant, people centered solidarity economy in Jackson and throughout the state of Mississippi that empowers Black and other oppressed peoples in the state.

The Jackson Plan has many local, national and international antecedents, but it is fundamentally the brain child of the Jackson People’s Assembly. The Jackson People’s Assembly is the product of the Mississippi Disaster Relief Coalition (MSDRC) that was spearheaded by MXGM in 2005 in the wake of Hurricane Katrina’s devastation of Gulf Coast communities in Mississippi, Louisiana, Alabama and Texas. Between 2006 and 2008, this coalition expanded and transformed itself into the Jackson People’s Assembly. In 2009, MXGM and the People’s Assembly were able to elect human rights lawyer and MXGM co-founder Chokwe Lumumba to the Jackson City Council representing Ward 2.

What follows is a brief presentation of the Jackson Plan as an initiative to build a base of autonomous power in Jackson that can serve as a catalyst for the attainment of Black self-determination and the democratic transformation of the economy.

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Race In Brazil: Majority-Minority Nation Offers Lesson To U.S.

Nubia de Lima

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Many Brazilians cast their country as racial democracy where people of different groups long have intermarried, resulting in a large mixed-race population. But you need only turn on the TV, open the newspaper or stroll down the street to see clear evidence of segregation.
In Brazil, whites are at the top of the social pyramid, dominating professions of wealth, prestige and power. Dark-skinned people are at the bottom of the heap, left to clean up after others and take care of their children and the elderly.

The 2010 census marked the first time in which black and mixed-race people officially outnumbered whites, weighing in at just over 50 percent, compared with 47 percent for whites. Researchers suggest that Brazil actually may have been a majority-nonwhite country for some time, with the latest statistics reflecting a decreased social stigma that makes it easier for nonwhites to report their actual race.

It is a mix of anomalies in Brazil that offers lessons to a United States now in transition to a “majority-minority” nation: how racial integration in social life does not always translate to economic equality, and how centuries of racial mixing are no guaranteed route to a colorblind society.

Nearly all TV news anchors in Brazil are white, as are the vast majority of doctors, dentists, fashion models and lawyers. Most maids and doormen, street cleaners and garbage collectors are black. There is only one black senator and there never has been a black president, though a woman, Dilma Rousseff, leads the country now.

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