Serious Injustice from Coast to Coast: Family of Oscar Grant & Marissa Alexander

The Grant Family, Uncle Bobby, Oscar Grant’s Mother-in law and Grant’s mother Wanda Johnson

Yesterday I attended  a press conference where the family, friends and supporters Oscar Grant came to speak out about something hideous. The family, like everyone else in the Bay Area found out through local news reports that the person who murdered Oscar Grant, former BART cop Johannes Mehserle went to court to file an appeal. There’s a strong possibility, given the way things have been MIS-HANDLED in court, the walking psychopath may have his felony record expunged and be reinstated as a police officer… Yes you read that correctly..

During the press conference, Grant’s family cited the state law for victim rights which clearly notes the family was supposed to be notified of any appeal by Mehserle appeal.. The Alameda County DA Nancy E O’Malley admitted her office ‘made a mistake’ in not contacting them..That in turn enraged the Grant family and supporters even more..

‘How many mistakes are people in this justice system who are supposed to protect the people, going to make? asked Cephus ‘Uncle Bobby’ Johnson..

During his remarks he read a list of mistakes made all throughout the proceedings including the big blunder by presiding  judge Robert Perry who said he ‘made a mistake’ in giving the jury instructions hence he had to reduce key sentencing components to Mehserle’s sentencing..

You can hear the press conference at the link below

As this heart-wrenching press conference was unfolding, we got word about another grave Meanwhile in Fla a sista named Marissa Alexander just got sentenced to 20 yrs for shooting a gun at ceiling to protect herself from an abusive husband who had a restraining order and had beaten her while pregnant.. When he violated the restraining order and attempted to beat her again,Ms Alexander who legally owned a gun shot the gun into the ceiling to scare him away.. Florida where Ms Alexander is from has the infamous ‘stand your ground law‘, but it was disallowed as a defense.. Alexander was sentenced to 20 years in prison.. her three kids have not seen their mother since the incident a year ago.. Talk about injustice..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=htVE9qrzyWk

Rappers Willie D, Immortal Technique & Rebel Diaz Speak out on Trayvon Martin Tragedy

Houston rapper and Geto Boys member Willie D Near Tears After Getting So Angry About Trayvon Martin in FOX 26 Interview!

One thing I can say about Willie D and the Geto Boys they have always spoken out and given tons of money toward causes like these.. I remember talking with Willie and Bushwick Bill about the topic of political prisoners and finding out how they had laid out several hundred thousand dollars so folks on death row could get lawyers and fight to prove their innocence.

I recall being with Willie D years ago at Minister Farrakhan’s home when he got artists together to help put an end to the so-called East -West Coast beef.. Willie was one of the key speakers that day..  We need more Willie D’s

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xzJfAhIMYDo

Immortal Technique is someone who is grossly under appreciated. He’s long spoken on issues like Trayvon. As noted in this video below he connects the dots and sheds light on the rise of vigilante killings. He talks about how there are so many victims who are unnamed.

He’s absolutely correct. It’s crucial that folks take note that vigilante killings are happening with increased frequency along the borders in states like Arizona where, Neo-Nazis and Minute Men are jamming up immigrants and members within the Brown/ Latino communities with reckless abandon.. Peep tech’s wise words below

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MwC0KUNZ43E

Along the same lines of connecting the dots and bringing attention to the rise in vigilante killings where folks are deemed ‘suspicious’, we recently held a round table discussion on the topic…Our guest included Bronx based rapper Rodstarz from the group Rebel Diaz.. He talked about how the Trayvon Martin killing came on heels of the Ramarley  Graham killing in New York..

Here you had police officers who decided that Graham who was standing outside his home was ‘suspicious’.. Graham who was well aware of the police Stop and Frisk policy wanted to not be one of the 680 thousand people who police stopped, so he went back inside his home. Police had not warned Graham to stop. Nor was he detained. However cops seeing him leave considered it a ‘furtive’ movement which is the basis on which they can pursue subjects.. They ran after Graham thinking he had a gun.. They busted into his house.. They never rang the bell or asked to be let in.. Ran upside his house and shot him in front of his grandmother. No weapon was ever found..

Rod recently penned a powerful article called the Fleeting Whiteness of George Zimmerman where he offered up some good solutions

In the video below we talk about that shooting as well as the culture of suspicion and how it plays out in Black, Muslim and Latino Communities.. Our other guest are; Cephus Johnson aka Uncle Bobby (He’s the Uncle to Oscar Grant), Zahra Brillo of the CAIR (Council on American-Islamic Relations ) and Isaac Ontiverous of Critical Resistance.. This is a powerful discussion that all need to see so we are familiar with how this Trayvon tragedy is not isolated

http://cdn.livestream.com/embed/tradiov?layout=4&clip=pla_ea43e1b3-f630-4da1-b562-08a505eb10cb&height=340&width=560&autoplay=false

tradiov on livestream.com. Broadcast Live Free

A Tale of Two Threats: Who Do the Police Let Live When Danger is Present?

Yesterday something strange and quite frightening took place in the San Francisco Bay Area. A distraught 51-year-old man named Craig Carlos-Valentino hoped in his SUV during the height of rush hour and drove from Antioch to the middle of the Bay Bridge which is one of most traveled spans in the country.  Accompanying him was his 16 year daughter.

Carlos-Valentino stopped his car mid-span and  called local news station KCBS where he announced that his car was wired with explosives and he had a gun. he then followed up his call to the police where he announced the same thing. Needless to say local authorities went nuts. They stopped traffic, alerted the bomb squad, the free way entrances were closed. People upon hearing this man had a bomb started turning around on the freeway and headed back toward Oakland. Local programming was interrupted  and everyone was on edge. We had a man on the Bay Bridge who was ready to blow things up.

Everyone was on edge because they remembered an angry man White supremacist named Byron Williams who back in July was stopped by police on the 580 freeway leading to the Bay Bridge. He was stopped by police for some sort of traffic violation and came out with guns blazing. Williams had on full body armor and had an arsenal fit for a small army. When all was said and done, Williams shot 3 officers and left the freeway strewn with bullets. Williams was on his way to San Francisco to kill liberal workers at the Tides Foundation.

Craig Carlos-Valentino

With respect to Carlos-Valentino and his bomb threat, everyone was on alert. There was a stand-off on the bridge during which this man tossed his gun, allowed his daughter to run off to the arms of police who were near by.  He threatened to commit suicide  and was talked off the ledge of the bridge, the whole time folks had no idea about his car. Did it or did it not have explosives?

Eventually Carlos-Valentino was taken into custody. We later learned this man was upset because his wife was cheating on him and was gearing up to leave him.

This man causes massive traffic jams and got all sorts of law enforcement involved to make sure he wasn’t a domestic terrorist. Later the police explained his ordeal and Mr Carlos-Valentino will live to see another day.

The key words here  ‘He got to live’. Police used caution. They explained away a man who potentially put thousands of people’s lives in danger as someone who was not real threat, but someone who was disturbed. In other words he was humanized.  We came away feeling sorry for this man. We don’t know if  Carlos-Valentino  was abusive, cheated or did anything wrong. He was just a trouble man who issued a bomb threat.

One has to wonder why such caution is not ever afforded to any number of people who have done far far less in terms of endangering the lives of others or themselves, yet wind up being killed by police.

We can look at Amadou Diallo reaching for his wallet.. Shot 41 times. The man had no criminal record and was un-armed.

We can look at the case of Sean Bell who shot 50 times drove away from a club where he held a bachelor party. Bell was unarmed, had committed no crime, but well-trained police thought he and his passengers had reached for a gun.

We can look at  the shooting death of 7 year old Ayana Stanley Jones in Detroit. Police busted into the wrong house looking for a suspect, beat her suprised  grandmother and shot Jones.

Last month Denroy Henry a star football player at Pace University was shot after being ordered to move his car from in front of club where a fight occurred. Henry who was not involved in the altercation, bumped a police officer with his car. End result was the cop unloading his gun into the car and killing an unarmed Henry.

This list can go on and on. One has to ask the hard questions, why can’t law enforcement show the same restraint they do so many others who arguably do far worse. Hell even Byron Williams is still alive and he shot down 3 cops. Why are these unarmed men and women always being killed by police?

Derrick Jones

This past Monday police were called to the Kwik Kuts barbershop in East Oakland owned by popular 37-year-old father Derrick Jones. Police say Jones was involved in a fight with a woman at the shop, not his wife and when they approached he ran away. Jones who was unarmed was shot 8 times by two officers, one of whom shot him twice while he lay on the ground.

Police said they thought the unarmed Jones was reaching for his waistband. Eye witnesses vehemently dispute the tale. Jones had his hands in the air and was shot by cops who many feel had a vendetta out for him.

According to neighborhood folks, Oakland cops never forgot or forgave the way Jones and his family stood up to police for their brutality and misconduct when he was 16 years old and was accused of stealing his own bike.  Disbelieving cops assaulted him and his 19-year-old sister . The family fought back and got two of the officers involved fired.

Over the years Jones was frequently stopped and harassed by police and so were many of his neighbors. As one shop owner who wished to remain anonymous explained, ‘Any excuse to smash on folks near the barbershop was used’.  Monday’s altercation was no different. This time the shooting death of yet another unarmed Black man in Oakland came on the heels of killer cop Johannes Mehserle receiving a super light 2 year sentenced for the murder of unarmed Oscar Grant.

We are posting up audio from the rally for Justice for Derrick Jones which took place in front of his barbershop yesterday. Folks need to check out what’s being said to get a full understanding of who he was, what his family did here in Oakland and how this relates to the injustice experienced by Oscar Grant’s family.

Here in pt1 Derrick Jones’ friend speaks about what happened after he got shot by Oakland police and the how witnesses are being intimidated by the police. Also Oscar Grant’s Uncle Bobby speaks and talks about what took place in the courtroom during sentencing. He reminds people what its gonna take to bring about justice and how the shooting of unarmed Derrick Jones and unarmed Oscar Grant are connected.

Minister Keith & Uncle Bobby

We finish off with some enlightening remarks from Yvette of BAMN who runs down what this case is about and why it appears to be some sort of vigilante killing. Jones was targeted by OPD

http://www.swift.fm/mrdaveyd/song/77329/

In pt 2 Minister Keith of the Nation of Islam gives a passionate speech about the legacy of ‘unarmed Black men’ being shot.  He also gives details as to how these shootings are supposed to be investigated. He calls out the DA Nancy Omally

http://www.swift.fm/mrdaveyd/song/77334/

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