Wyclef Responds to Yele Accusations Clears the Air & Puts Folks On Notice..

Wyclef‘s press conference where he again addresses the issues at hand..Below is an excerptof the press conference.. You can and should see full conference which includes Q&A.. at

http://www.yele.org.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uy69tYbiL4Y&feature=fvw

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I’m glad Wyclef spoke to this, because it was pretty disheartening to see people jump on the hate bandwagon when we let so much slide. Tax write-offs and filing are not the last or even the first word in corruption.. You want corruption.. ask your bank about the bailout money and the late fees they charge? Ask about Haliburton and Blackwater contracts paid for with your tax dollars? Ask about the way things DIDN’T run after Katrina.. Hell let’s be real ask why is George Bush and Bill Clinton  on the case when you look at their shabby track records with Haiti..

-Davey D-

Below is a blog that someone wrote in defense of Wyclef.. Its pretty thorough

Word to Yele-I Write the Wrong

http://iwritethewrongs.wordpress.com/2010/01/16/word-to-yele/

I  will never claim to be an expert in economics, my credit report alone would betray me. Nor can I profess to have gained any insight to the inner-workings of volunteer/humanitarian agencies.

Having been fortunate, I count my blessings that I have never had to lean on any such entity. My family in one way, shape or form has always provided whatever assistance any of us needed, be it shelter, food, clothing or simply bus fare. So again I must admit my lack of intimacy with such institutions.

However, I am not aware of any one who looks like me who does not remember the ravaging flood effects of Katrina and the flood of money that poured into one of the most popular volunteer relief organizations, the American Red Cross. Just about every high-profile philanthropist, bad boy thug-turned legit rapper, religious leader to media outlets and major companies, combined millions of dollars were donated to the relief efforts promised by the American Red Cross.

Let me note here, FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) an agency of the U.S. government, and yes even under the executive orders of our beloved Barack Obama, directs charitable donations to the American Red Cross. The American Red also receives various grants from FEMA including http://www.fema.gov/news/newsrelease.fema?id=18473

Now on its own website FEMA acknowledges “The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Grant Programs Directorate (GPD) is fiscally responsible for approximately 17,000 open grants and is programmatically responsible for more than two-thirds of those grants.

The following preparedness grants are programmatically managed by the Grant Development & Administration Division of GPD.”

According to policies set forth in its directorates on the site, these grants can cover everything down to staffing expenses of a volunteer/relief organization. So, in my estimation, the American Red Cross can be qualified as a money-laundering service for our government. It pays itself to do the work. Well I know it isn’t that cut and dry, but where I come from in the hood that’s what it looks like. You are an agency charged with overseeing a particular task, you then identify a group to perform such task for you, utilizing your dollars, training, directive, etc. ultimately reporting to you any funds raised which you in turn manage and act as fiscal agent over.

So that is the base understanding I’ve come to in trying to figure out why in God’s name, as we sit helplessly here on American soil watching as the poorest neighboring country is completely devastated beyond human capacity, would various entities attempt to discredit a movement to bring relief to the people of Haiti.

Wyclef Jean, for those who have not been attuned to hip hop prior to Cash Money or Young Jeezy, is a grammy-winning, international hip- hop artist who single handedly put Haiti on the map. Through his artistry and advocacy,  it brought to light history of Haiti for many who were just too young or simply never cared enough to realize Haiti’s rich history. It was the first country that freed itself from slavery and not only overthrew that heinous institution, but defeated the whole lot of French rule.

Wyclef in his music has always paid homage to his homeland, and shared the culture and pain of his countrymen unashamedly. He did this at a time when many Black Americans shunned any relationship to Haiti. At the height of his career as a member of the Fugees, (group first named ‘Refugee Camp’ for the conditions many Haitians find them selves when arriving on American soil) the group went back to Haiti and took several media outlets to document the plight there. Subsequently, that trip garnered Haiti prime shine in various magazine articles. During his solo career, Wyclef went back further still to his roots, releasing a full CD in creole titled, Welcome to Haiti Creole 101. And then in 2007, pledging a more substantive allegiance to his native land, Wyclef became a Haitian ambassador for the government.

Times photos: John Pendygraf
Wyclef Jean refused United Nations protection for a trip through Cite Soleil, Haiti’s most notorious, gang-infested slum, relying on his popularity to keep his group safe. “I am putting myself in the front line because I want that change to happen.” Jean said.

http://www.sptimes.com/2006/03/13/Worldandnation/Haiti_s_hip_hop_helper.shtml

This to me, speaks volumes of his love and honor of his country. But greater than that it speaks of the mutual respect and pride the country has for him.

So why is it when a native son of Haiti yells out for relief from the devastation that has demolished his beloved land, why would there be questions of his intentions? What force would rally against his efforts and bring questionable allegations regarding his foundation http://yele.org

Smoking Gun posts IRS returns for the year 2009. Listing the foundation as being in operation for “12 years,” they say accounting has not been so transparent. Maybe it hasn’t. But check the records of many and you’d be hard-pressed to find squeaky clean accounting, even among the most financially prudent. But they continue to try and smear this guy by pointing out he “paid” himself for rent and performances.

http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years/2010/0114102wyclef1.html

Check it… just on some real plain and simple hood logic: if you open a business/not-for-profit, foundation, carity, church, etc. you have to keep the lights on. Most times, that money is coming out of your very own pocket. You do what you must to hold yourself afloat until things start rolling. In the grand scheme of things, if you have an accountant savvy enough, you’l wind up writing a large amount off. Isn’t that what every tax paying American seeks out like a leprechaun searching for a pot of gold, that tax-incentive? I’d like every politician to disclose personal or affiliated returns for the public. Of course I know they have to go through the motions of making them public, but when is the last time your elected official directed you to his/her returns and they were in plain view? Uh, huh.

For me, I just can’t see what the deal is. For one, yes he may have performed at a charity event, yes yes I know his foundation gave it. But who said the band played for free? Did the production company who handled stage, lighting, hotel, travel, catering, security, attorney fees, and on and on the list could go. Did those entities get tossed in for free. Come on. In America? I doubt it. He probably had to pay them folks and somewhere down the line he figured he’d get his scratch back.

Hell, you wanna steer me away from giving to something? Show me an organization that has ties to assisting in wars, paid by war monies. Show me an organization that since its inception has had ties to government. Show me an organization that has claimed to be a relief and rescue agency for all victims of disaster, that existed pre-post slavery but has no record of providing relief to the families of the thousands of blacks who were lynched. Surely they knew of this hideous “devastation” since Ida B. Wells was traveling the same circles of the UN and such with her message of anti-lynching. Surely those families needed “relief.”

Well, I don’t have to look any further to see it. It is the Red Cross and I for one, if not for any other proof than the shenanigans of the Katrina debacle, won’t be giving my money anytime soon to its efforts.

But that’s just little ole me who does not have much insight when it comes to these matters.

BTW, if you’d like to know how much money RC has made in the last two days, check out the article below. Now where are their tax returns? Hhow are they accounting for all the donations?

http://content.usatoday.com/communities/kindness/post/2010/01/donations-to-aid-haiti-set-new-text-records/1

Yet, it took them longer to get on the ground than it took Yele.

I am signing off. And if you’re looking for me, I’ll be tweeting away, reminding you to text yele to 501501.

BTW, peep the video Wyclef did speaking about the work of his foundation long before the earthquake rocked Haiti.

http://www.forbes.com/thought-leaders/video/?video=/video/thought-leaders/tl_2009_1209

Peace

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In These Troubled Times We Really Need to Remember Martin Luther King-Now More Than Ever

Click HERE to listen to Speech

 This weekend we celebrate what would’ve been Martin Luther King‘s 81st  birthday. In doing this we take time out to reflect on his life and the words he delivered on the issues of peace and social justice.

This year I wanted to put forth one of my favorite speeches by Dr King called ‘Entrance into the Civil Rights Movement.. It’s an important speech in the sense that it highlights what was at the core of King’s essence-his relationship to God and his ability to call upon the Holy Spirit.  It’s a very moving speech where he outlines the challenges he was facing as a leader and how he to look deep inside himself in order to move forward…
 
you can peep the speech here:

http://bit.ly/5t17Ns

 
As we celebrate, I am also including a YouTube video I put together called MLK vs the Radio.. This is contains portions of speech that King gave in August 1967 to a group of Black radio broadcasters. It’s an incredible piece where he talks about the responsibility and important role Black radio played in furthering the Civil Rights Movement. I wanted to reintroduce this speech because many of us are still reeling from the verbal assaults that have been occuring on radio shows like the one hosted by blowhards like Rush Limbaugh who recently made disparaging remarks about  50 thousand Haitans who dies in this weeks earthquake.. I want people to peep this video and ask yourself if media is doing right by you.. This piece also includes the voices of activist Rosa Clemente, Minister Farrakhan, H Rap Brown and Chuck D of Public Enemy…

-Davey D-

 Below is a quick bio  from Wikipedia…

 Martin Luther King, Jr. (January 15, 1929 – April 4, 1968) was an American clergyman, activist and prominent leader in the African-American civil rights movement. His main legacy was to secure progress on civil rights in the United States, and he has become a human rights icon: King is recognized as a martyr by two Christian churches.[1] A Baptist minister,[2] King became a civil rights activist early in his career. He led the 1955 Montgomery Bus Boycott and helped found the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in 1957, serving as its first president. King’s efforts led to the 1963 March on Washington, where King delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech. There, he raised public consciousness of the civil rights movement and established himself as one of the greatest orators in U.S. history.

President Obama Pens Article About Haiti for Newsweek

http://www.newsweek.com/id/231131

In the last week, we have been deeply moved by the heartbreaking images of the devastation in Haiti: parents searching through rubble for sons and daughters; children, frightened and alone, looking for their mothers and fathers. At this moment, entire parts of Port-au-Prince are in ruins, as families seek shelter in makeshift camps. It is a horrific scene of shattered lives in a poor nation that has already suffered so much.

In response, I have ordered a swift, coordinated, and aggressive effort to save lives in Haiti. We have launched one of the largest relief efforts in recent history. I have instructed the leaders of all agencies to make our response a top priority across the federal government. We are mobilizing every element of our national capacity: the resources of development agencies, the strength of our armed forces, and most important, the compassion of the American people. And we are working closely with the Haitian government, the United Nations, and the many international partners who are also aiding in this extraordinary effort.

Haiti’s Earthquake, Close-Up

Zoom in to view the decimation in Port-au-Prince, including its cathedral and shantytowns.

How Cities Heal After Disasters

 We act for the sake of the thousands of American citizens who are in Haiti, and for their families back home; for the sake of the Haitian people who have been stricken with a tragic history, even as they have shown great resilience; and we act because of the close ties that we have with a neighbor that is only a few hundred miles to the south.

But above all, we act for a very simple reason: in times of tragedy, the United States of America steps forward and helps. That is who we are. That is what we do. For decades, America’s leadership has been founded in part on the fact that we do not use our power to subjugate others, we use it to lift them up—whether it was rebuilding our former adversaries after World War II, dropping food and water to the people of Berlin, or helping the people of Bosnia and Kosovo rebuild their lives and their nations.

At no time is that more true than in moments of great peril and human suffering. It is why we have acted to help people combat the scourge of HIV/AIDS in Africa, or to recover from a catastrophic tsunami in Asia. When we show not just our power, but also our compassion, the world looks to us with a mixture of awe and admiration. That advances our leadership. That shows the character of our country. And it is why every American can look at this relief effort with the pride of knowing that America is acting on behalf of our common humanity.

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Right now, our search-and-rescue teams are on the ground, pulling people from the rubble. Americans from Virginia and California and Florida have worked round the clock to save people whom they’ve never met. Our soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen quickly deployed to the scene. Hand in hand with our civilians, they’re laboring day and night to facilitate a massive logistical enterprise; to deliver and distribute food, water, and medicine to save lives; and to prevent an even larger humanitarian catastrophe.

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