The Rev. Marvin Winans’ remark, “I refuse to be afraid of us,” in the wake of the robbery attack on him by four young Black men at a neighborhood gas station on Linwood and Davison, carries a moral truth is a statement deeply rooted in the belief that we cannot throw our children away or become prisoners in our own communities, afraid to go out because young Black males have become tigers in the hood, on the prowl for their next victims. I refuse to accept the notion that there is nothing else we can do, and that the solution is to dump Detroit and move out as quickly as you can. While such reasoning is politically expedient and the common sense thing to do in a state of fear, it is not the answer to the growing socioeconomic ills facing our community. It is not the answer to halt the violence in our town.
Last week, 24 long-term employees of United Continental Holdings, United Airlines, and Continental Airlines filed a lawsuit in San Francisco, alleging racial discrimination, retaliation and harassment in violation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and state fair employment laws. I vividly remember United Airlines television commercials of the 1970s urging us to “Fly the friendly skies of United.” In 2012, the skies appear to be anything but friendly for Black pilots as they seek an equal opportunity to be to be promoted to the management ranks.
As Chicago dealt with yet another deadly weekend of violence where 10 people were killed and nearly three dozen injured, the parents of slain Florida teen Trayvon Martin were in town to talk about the impact of gun violence on communities. Speaking at the national headquarters for the Rainbow/PUSH Coalition, Tracy Martin and Sybrina Fulton choked back tears as they told their story of being the parents of a murdered teen.
With President Barack Obama is 100 days away from making his acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention, organizers marked the occasion with a pep talk. National and local party leaders held a press conference Tuesday at Bank of America Stadium to update the convention’s progress and tout its goal of inclusion for the Sept. 3-6 event. “As someone who has been involved in the convention from the very beginning, it’s hard to believe we have 100 days to go,” DNC Committee CEO Steve Kerrigan said. “There’s been so much we’ve accomplished since we got here with a small little staff of 12 people that’s now grown to over 100 people.”
Community leaders, activists and concerned citizens are searching for answers and justice in the wake of the acquittal of former Houston police officer Andrew Blomberg. Charged with official oppression, a misdemeanor, Blomberg was recently found not guilty by an all-white jury even though he and other former HPD officers were videotaped beating and kicking then 15-year old Chad Holley, a burglary suspect who surrendered after being chased.