Reclaiming Our Way promoting the well-being of African American children & families

18Jun/150

‘3 ½ Minutes’ Chronicles Florida Murder of Jordan Davis Over Loud Rap Music

I had a chance to see this film, which is really well done, back in early May.  They've done a really great job sharing the Michael Dunn trial experience through the eyes and reflections of Jordan Davis' parents.

From NPR (June 17, 2015)...

A new documentary revisits Florida's loud music murder case. Michael Dunn, a white man, shot 10 bullets into a car with four unarmed young black men during an argument at a Jacksonville gas station.  (Approx. 7 minutes)

10Aug/140

What Trayvon Means For Renisha

This discussion took place last month, a couple of weeks before the recent verdict in the Theodore Wafer trial, the Michigan man found guilty of murdering Renisha McBride.  Still an interesting listen...

Although the killings of Renisha McBride and Trayvon Martin draw many comparisons, each case raises different legal questions. (HuffPost Live) takes a look at the comparisons and their racial implications, as well as what to expect from the pending verdict.

Originally aired on July 23, 2014

Guests:

  • Benjamin Crump  (Tallahassee, FL) Lawyer for Trayvon Martin's Parents
  • Dr. Brittney Cooper  (New Brunswick, NJ) Assistant Professor of Women's and Gender Studies and Africana Studies at Rutgers Universit
  • David A. Harris  (Pittsburgh, PA) Law Professor, University of Pittsburgh

7Mar/140

Dear Marissa – Jasiri X

30Dec/130

Moving forward against ‘Stand Your Ground’

Phillip Agnew from Dream Defenders joins to discuss the fight against “Stand Your Ground” in Florida and what needs to be done in 2014 as the struggle continues.

As described in the brief clip...

Stand Your Ground is just one branch in a really poisonous tree that really shows how Florida cares about its young people.  And at the root of that tree is prejudice, profiling, and prisons for profit.

Other issues on the 2014 organizing and advocacy agenda include undoing the School to Prison Pipeline, and transforming Florida's completely privatized and abusive juvenile justice system.

10Nov/130

Demand Justice for Renisha McBride: White Homeowner Kills 19-Year Old Detroit Woman Seeking Help

Renisha McBride could have been your sister, your daughter, your mother, your aunt, your niece, even your grandmother. She didn't deserve this, and her family and friends should never have had to experience the lifetime of pain that now follows!

Renisha's senseless killing deserves every bit as much attention and justice as any other.

Spread this message, and Demand Justice for Renisha McBride!

Many thanks to Dream Hampton for creating this short video... long-time Detroiter, writer, filmmaker, activist and organizer.

 

23Jul/130

Michelle Alexander on the “Zimmerman Mindset”

Below is an excerpt from Democracy Now on Wednesday, July 17, 2013 (approximately 18 minutes).  In this excerpt, Michelle Alexander discusses the broader legal context of the tragic killing of Trayvon Martin by George Zimmerman, including the differential application of Stand Your Ground in Florida.

there has been an outpouring of anger and concern because of the actions of George Zimmerman, a private citizen who profiled a young boy and pursued him and tried to confront him, perhaps. But what George Zimmerman did is no different than what police officers do every day as a matter of standard operating procedure. We have tolerated this kind of police profiling and the stopping and frisking of young black and brown men. We have tolerated this kind of conduct for years and years, recognizing that it violates basic civil rights but allowing it to go on.

You know, the reality is, is that it is a crime for a private person to go up to another private person, armed with, you know, a loaded weapon, and confront them, stalk them, perhaps search all over their body to see what they may have on them. That is a crime. It’s an assault with a deadly weapon, aggravated battery or aggravated assault. But when a police officer does precisely the same thing, it’s called "stop and frisk."

And, as we know, stop-and-frisk policies are routine nationwide. In New York City alone, more than 600,000 people are stopped and frisked every year, overwhelmingly black and brown men, and nearly all are found to be innocent of any crime or infraction, and are harassed simply because they seem out of place, seem like they’re up to no good. The same kinds of stereotypes and hunches that George Zimmerman used when deciding that, you know, Trayvon Martin seemed like a threat in his neighborhood, law enforcement officers employ all the time.

I believe that Trayvon Martin’s life might well have been spared if many of us who care about racial justice had raised our voices much, much sooner and much, much more loudly about the routine stereotyping and profiling of young black men and boys. It is because we have tolerated these practices for so long that George Zimmerman felt emboldened, I believe, to act on a discriminatory mindset that night.

14Jul/131

On the George Zimmerman Verdict…

The days of white supremacy are numbered.

Be angry and stay vigilant, but don't let it turn to despair or depression.

Victory remains on the side of those who persevere.  Our history - the history of African people - in this country and throughout the world is a case in point.

My 12-year old daughter is angry about the verdict, but also not surprised.  After yelling about why it didn't make sense... In her own words, she acknowledged that this is consistent with the kind of treatment we have experienced in this country throughout history.  She named names and gave examples.  She then acknowledged in her own words why we have to keep fighting.

To be upset by this injustice is natural.  But being surprised by this verdict is essentially acknowledging that one slipped for a second and thought somehow we had overcome.  Sure, you might want to believe that because it makes living in a racist society more bearable... but wanting something to be true doesn't make it true.

We have to stay at it.  The struggle takes place in state houses, in the halls of Congress, city councils, schools, in our churches, our recreation centers, on our street corners, at our dinner tables, etc.  There is no one answer.  Read, study, and engage in all of those places you can have influence.  Push everyone you know to do the same.

We can't just go to work, come home and raise our own individual families.  And please don’t try and shield your children from the truth.  They need to know the truth so that they can be prepared for what this society continues to dish out.  Not to do so is setting them up, and our community, for failure.

We all have to engage more.  Our ancestors made it possible for us to be here, and we have to press on for our future generations.

The struggle continues.