RSS

Tag Archives: kentucky

Yet Another Tea Bagger Trumpazoid Busted

Another typical lowlife Teabagger criminal. Just like the Chumph – who is now looking down the barrel of a possible Felony Fraud charge for stiffing his various “charities”. Maybe he will get to share a cell with the Chumph…

Tea Partier who nearly destroyed Kentucky’s libraries busted for selling opiates

J.R. RothA Tea Party activist who frequently argues against anti-drug measures at government meetings has been arrested for illegally selling prescription drugs.

John “J.R.” Roth was arrested Thursday night in Highland Heights, Kentucky, and charged with felony trafficking in a controlled substance after police said he sold 10 oxycodone pills to an informant, reported the Cincinnati Enquirer.

The 60-year-old Roth, who is a Donald Trump supporter and promotes “birther” conspiracy theories, is a fixture at local government meetings in Campbell County, where he complains about government spending for almost anything.

He was one of three plaintiffs who filed a lawsuit in 2012 to repeal the property tax that funds the county’s libraries.

Roth and two other members of the Northern Kentucky Tea Party hired a lawyer the year before, when the county library was considering a plan for a new branch, to investigate whether the library board was violating a state law regarding its debt level.

The lawyer determined the library had not exceeded its debt limit — but he found another statute that appeared to prohibit the library board from raising taxes without voter approval.

Roth filed a lawsuit, along with Erik Hermes and Campbell County Commissioner Charlie “Coach” Coleman, seeking to repeal the property tax that funds libraries in Campbell County.

Similar lawsuits were filed in other counties throughout the state.

The tax repeal would have dramatically cut library funding and would have resulted in branch closures, reduced hours and services, and the loss of jobs.

Tax opponents argued that library patrons wouldn’t miss much because books and movies are readily available online sellers such as Amazon — although many patrons rely on libraries for free computer and Internet access.

The lawsuit ultimately failed, after the Kentucky Court of Appeals reversed two circuit decisions last year that had found library districts in Campbell and Kenton counties had improperly raised taxes for decades.

The appeals court ruled that libraries may raise taxes without voter approval as long as the amount does not bring in 4 percent more revenue than the previous year.

Roth, who has been previously cited for animal cruelty and accused of domestic violence, was released from jail on bond.

If convicted, the Tea Party activist faces up to five years in jail.

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Death of King Coal

The end is coming fast for coal as an energy source…

The World’s Largest Private Coal Company May File For Bankruptcy

Peabody Energy, the largest private coal company in the world, may soon file for bankruptcy, citing falling global demand and “substantial doubt” about its future.

The company has been hit hard by a glut in cheap natural gas and the Obama administration’s tougher, climate change-minded government. Several major coal companies have already succumbed to the changes, including Arch Coal, the second largest supplier in America.

“These projections and certain liquidity risks raise substantial doubt about whether we will meet our obligations,” Peabody said in a filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission. “There exists substantial doubt whether we will be able to continue.”

Shares in the company fell more than 45 percent on Wednesday after the filing.

Coal has long been lambasted for being a fuel of the past as growing concerns about climate change have led to harsh crackdowns on future mining operations. President Barack Obama halted new coal leases on public lands earlier this year. And China, by far the largest burner of coal on the planet, has promised to tackle it’s gargantuan greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.

Several leading environmental groups, including 350.org, Greenpeace and WildEarth Guardians, called on Peabody to end its coal business, citing the announcement as an “opportunity to protect the climate” in a press release.

“All we’re doing is calling on the company to get on board with helping our nation and our communities transition away from coal by winding down their operations in an orderly and effective manner,” Diana Best, Greenpeace’s senior coal campaigner, said in the statement.

Peabody has laid off hundreds of employees over the past few years and announced in January it would pay $75 million into a health fund for thousands of retired coal workers from a now-defunct company it spun off in 2007.

The company had $6.3 billion in debt and a net loss of more than $2 billion at the end of 2015.

Talking about Kentucky and Coal…A little Bluegrass is in order in a song about Peabody…

This is a modern electrified version of a Bluegrass classic – “You’ll Never Leave Harlan Alive”. Harlan County Kentucky was featured in a television series a few years ago, and it’s theme song featured a new style blending Bluegrass, funk, and rap.

In case you need to ask, my Grandfather was a coal miner, and my Dad did a stint to get though school up in the mountains working the Pocahontas mine.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on March 17, 2016 in American Greed, General

 

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Yet Another Black Woman “Dead in Prison”

Yest another “mysterious death” of a black woman held in a jail…

The so called “choke hold” used in Martial Arts disciplines doesn’t produce unconsciousness by shutting of the air supply…It produces it by shutting off the blood supply to the brain. If you have ever watched MMA, check out how long it takes for these extremely well conditioned athletes to get up after being submitted with one of those holds. These holds can be lethal, which is why the referees in the sport are trained to jump in at the first sign of unconsciousness.

Using such on a child, with no threat of harm to anyone else is extreme. Yet another murder.

Detention staffer used martial arts hold on 16-year-old Gynnya McMillen before she was found dead: report

Gynnya McMillen

A staffer working at a Kentucky juvenile detention center used a martial arts hold on 16-year-old Gynnya McMillen hours before she was found dead in her cell,reports CBS.

According to a spokesperson for the Kentucky Department of Juvenile Justice, the teen refused to remove her sweatshirt for a pat down search and to have her booking photo taken, leading a staffer to use an “Aikido restraint” on her in order to get her to comply.

“The staff performed an Aikido restraint hold to safely conduct a pat-down search and remove the youth’s hoodie,” spokesperson Stacy Floden stated. “The purpose of having multiple staff involved in a controlled restraint is to ensure the safety of the youth and staff.”

McMillen was found dead in her cell at the Lincoln Village Juvenile Detention Center on Jan. 11, after officials failed to check on her well-being throughout the night.

According to center policy, juvenile detainees in isolation cells must be checked on every 15 minutes by staffers.

On Thursday, Reginald Windham, a 10-year veteran of the juvenile justice department, was placed on administrative leave for failing to check on the teen.

According to the Kentucky Center for Investigative reporting, McMillen’s cold lifeless body was discovered “in a sleeping position” in a “secure” room at 9:55 a.m., after failing to respond to twice earlier when asked if she wanted to eat.

Despite her lack of communication, staffers never entered her cell to check on her.

According to the Hardin County coroner there were no obvious signs of trauma or a drug overdose, and that a toxicology report is still pending and could take two more weeks.

Juvenile justice expert Michele Deitch criticized the use of martial arts on the teen.

“I’ve never heard that phrase used in the context of a corrections setting,” Deitch said, adding refusal to remove a sweatshirt is not acceptable grounds for restraint.

“As far as I’m concerned that is a completely inappropriate use of a restraint,” Deitch said. “This goes back to not being so punitive with kids. That’s not just how you interact if you want to achieve a positive social response.”

McMillen was taken into custody after a fight at at a Shelby County residence shortly before 2 a.m. on Jan. 10, according to the Shelbyville Police Department. The teen was was charged with misdemeanor assault after leaving her victim with what were described as “minor injuries.”

The family of McMillen have asked for a full investigation into the teen’s death, and video from her cell has yet to be released.

 
1 Comment

Posted by on January 30, 2016 in BlackLivesMatter

 

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Really Dumb Criminal Yells “N-Word” in Black Judge’s Court

This the case of a particularly stupid guy – yelling racial epithets in court. Bad move…

Jefferson Circuit Court Judge Olu Stevens

The Judge in question, Olu Stevens has been under fire from his superiors for not going along with prosecutors setting up all white juries for black defendants.  He has been accused of destroying black folks faith in the Justice System…As if the Tamir Rice, Sandra Bland, and dozens of other miscarriages of justice have nothing to do with it.

Kentucky man shouts ‘punk a** n****r’ at black judge — and gets slapped with 60 days in jail

A Kentucky man is spending 60 days in jail after he used a racial epithet in front of a black judge on Monday.

In courtroom video obtained by WDRB, Jefferson Circuit Court Judge Olu Stevens is seen revoking Adam Satterly’s bond on drug charges.

“Punk ass n*gger!” Satterly shouts as he turns to walk out of court.

Moments later, Stevens asks deputies to bring Satterly back into the courtroom.

“Is there something that you wish to say to me?” the judge asks.

Satterly argues that he had directed the slur at his brother, not the judge.

“No, no, no, I didn’t mean it like that,” the defendant insists.

“Oh, you didn’t mean it like that?” Stevens replies skeptically. “You don’t speak those words in here. And that word particularly, you don’t use that word.”

“I’m going to give you 60 days for having used that word. I’m going to hold you in contempt right now for having used it in this courtroom. It’s disrespectful; don’t ever do it again.”

Monday was Stevens first day back on the bench after he was scolded by Kentucky’s chief justice for complaining on social media that prosecutors wanted “all-white juries.”

Although Kentucky Chief Justice John Minton declined to disqualify the judge for bias against prosecutors, Stevens decided to take himself off the bench after he was ordered into private mediation.

“Judge Stevens’s ensuing public discourse appears to flout the directives of the Code of Judicial Conduct, creating a social-media firestorm calculated to aggrandize himself by exploiting the deep-seated and widespread distrust of the criminal-justice system by minority communities,” Minton wrote.

And on that All White Jury issue…

 
7 Comments

Posted by on January 5, 2016 in Giant Negros

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

3 Time Divorcee, 4 Times Married Clerk Plays the God Card

Don’t know if you have been watching the freak-show down in Kentucky, but a County Clerk has made national news with her stand to not issue Marriage Licenses to Gay couples. Her rationale? God told her not to do it!

She is currently locked up for Contempt of Court, and may be spending quite a while in the hoosegow for refusing a Court Order. Of the 6 Clerks working in her office, one of whom is her son (nepotism, anyone?), all but her son have agreed to issue Marriage Licenses, As of today, she is making a “brave stand” not to change her ways…

From where I sit, at least – I really don’t care about her religion – in terms of her job. I mean, she signed up to serve the people of her County, and nowhere in that oath of office did it include anything about she could serve only some of the people. Her role is to execute the law, period. After hours if she wants to waive her cross and participate in civic action to change the law, as is the right of every other citizen (at least unless conservatives like her take over) – then right on.

This writer compares her to another Southerner who took a stand on the Courthouse Steps…

Kim Davis follows the footsteps of George Wallace

Kim Davis is in jail for contempt of court for refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, but make no mistake: this uncivil civil servant isn’t a religious freedom fighter. She’s a homophobe, pure and simple.

“The court cannot condone the willful disobedience of its lawfully issued order,” said Judge David L. Bunning of Federal District Court. “If you give people the opportunity to choose which orders they follow, that’s what potentially causes problems.” Davis, county clerk for Rowan County, Kentucky, will be released when she complies with the law and issues marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Now Davis will play the martyr, tossed behind bars for putting the laws of God above those of mere mortals. Even after the Supreme Court ruled against her, Davis spent the week telling gay men and lesbians that in rejecting their request for a marriage license, she was acting “under God’s authority.”

Can God sue for defamation of character?

Wrong and strong, Davis’s actions are reminiscent of Alabama Governor George Wallace’s infamous “Stand in the Schoolhouse Door.” In 1963, Wallace, who had declared “Segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever,” literally stood in a doorway at the University of Alabama to block two black students from entering the school, despite federal laws. Of course, this was nothing more than a political show for the cameras and segregationists. After jabbering on about states’ rights — as shallow an argument as it had been a century earlier during the Civil War — Wallace eventually stepped away, a small man pushed aside by the resolve of a nation struggling to be just.

Defying the rule of law didn’t work for Wallace, and it won’t work for Davis. (Davis had been trying to skirt the law by denying all marriage licenses. “I’m not discriminating, because I’m not issuing licenses to anybody,” she said.) Still, even the shameless Wallace didn’t try to hide his bigotry behind the Bible.

“To issue a marriage license which conflicts with God’s definition of a marriage, with my name affixed to the certificate, would violate my conscience,” Davis wrote in a statement issued by the conservative Liberty Counsel, which is representing her in federal court. “It is not a light issue for me. It is a heaven or hell decision.”

As Mahalia Jackson once sang, “Everybody talkin’ ’bout heaven ain’t going there.”

They actually went there…

Davis is just the latest in a long, infernal line of fanatics to contort their so-called faith into an excuse for hatred and division. Religion has been misused to justify the Crusades, slavery, apartheid, the Holocaust and — more recently — terrorism and extremism around the world. If faith is a comfort to some, for people like Davis it’s a cudgel to scold and threaten anyone with whom they disagree.

In her statement, Davis, an Apostolic Christian said, “I intend to continue to serve the people of Rowan County, but I cannot violate my conscience.” Except, of course, she isn’t serving the people of Rowan County, at least not the ones who want to get a marriage license. Just because Davis has been married four times, it doesn’t make her the moral arbiter on who should be allowed to walk down the aisle. Davis should also be reminded that God does not pay her $80,000 salary; that’s the burden of taxpayers, some of whom want the licenses Davis is denying them.

Whatever her agenda, Davis has made a mockery of her position and religion. History has roundly denounced Wallace’s intolerance and intransigence at the door more than 50 years ago; it will be just as unforgiving of the uncivil civil servant of Rowan County, Kentucky.

 
1 Comment

Posted by on September 4, 2015 in The New Jim Crow

 

Tags: , , , , ,

Republican District Hurt By Budget Cuts

Last night’s Gubernatorial election in Virginia went about as expected, although the Republican challenger was a bit closer than projected. Looking at the voting acrss the State, the more populaous and prosperous areas voted overwhelmingly Democrat, while rural counties and the southwestern mountain are voted heavily Republican.

There are a lot of similarities between those areas and the area in this article in Kentucky. Poor white folks voting for their own misery… wonder when these folks are going to finally wake up and realize their Tea Party representatives don’t give a damn about their welfare.

Austerity deals harsh blow to already stricken land

Republican Congressman Hal Rogers brought so many federal dollars home to eastern Kentucky’s coal country, he was crowned “Prince of Pork.”

Now that spigot has been turned off, just when his district might actually need it the most.

Competition from natural gas, cheaper coal, and environmental regulations have hastened the demise of the mining industry here, already in decline. More than 6,200 eastern Kentucky miners have been laid off since July 2011. There are now fewer coal jobs here than in 1920, when the great-grandfathers of today’s miners wielded shovels and pick-axes.

But sequestration—a series of across-the-board spending cuts that many Tea Party Republicans have come to embrace—and other austerity measures have accelerated the economic free fall. Unemployment benefits to laid-off miners are shrinking; fewer meals are getting delivered to homebound seniors; and there’s less money to help workers retool for new jobs. Beginning Friday, food stamps will be cut by an average of $36 per month for a family of four.

It’s yet another blow to struggling Appalachian mining towns like Harlan, where the mayor estimates that 15% of the town’s residents have moved out in the past year, searching for work elsewhere.

Unsold guns are piling up in pawnshops. Even the local mortician is feeling the pinch: grieving relatives are downgrading from hardwood coffins to two-gauge steel, and ordering five baskets of flowers instead of twenty or thirty. “If I don’t sell to the coal people, I don’t sell,” one Harlan businessman explained.

Rogers has been one of the few Republicans to slam sequestration as devastating, unworkable, and unrealistic. Unless Congress decides otherwise, $109 billion in cuts will continue every year until 2021—a budget that Rogers must implement as chair of the House Appropriations Committee. But many of his Republicans colleagues have embraced the $85 billion in cuts this year as guaranteed spending cuts. It’s unlikely that budget negotiations that started this week in Congress will reverse all of them.

The incremental nature of sequestration —slow rolling, local, and scattered unevenly nationwide—has made the belt-tightening hard to measure and easy to dismiss since the cuts took effect in March. “The people that I’ve talked to seem to be doing well,” Missouri Rep. Billy Long said in April. “In fact, when I got out in restaurants here in town, people come up to me. They want to see more sequestration, not less.”

Even some Democrats believe the White House overhyped the cuts when it made dire predictions about their impact, some of which didn’t pan out. “I think they probably went over the top in terms of saying that the consequences were going to be horrible. The lines in the airports aren’t long, the world hasn’t changed overnight,” said former Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell.

But Harlan sees long lines. They are in the unemployment office, filled with out-of-work miners chasing any rumor of jobs left to be had. A TV in the waiting area explains how federal cuts have chipped away at the safety net most had hoped they would never need.

“Sequestration…What does that mean for you? Your Emergency Unemployment Compensation benefits that begin on or after March 31, 2013 must be reduced 10.7% for each week of unemployment through September 2013.”

“Sequestration is a terrible way to do business. I’ve said it since day one. It slices the good with the bad, and removes the duty of Congress to ensure vital programs, like Head Start and various grant programs receive adequate support,” Rogers told MSNBC. “Couple those deep cuts with the rapid loss of coal mining jobs in eastern Kentucky and we’re now facing an economic superstorm.”

For Donnie Reeves, 40, each passing week of unemployment means less security. He lost his mining job in March, just weeks before his wife Tiffanie lost her job as a teaching assistant. “After December, it’s no more unemployment, no more nothing,” he said in August.

“I would have to work a minimum of three jobs, each 40 hours a week at minimum wage. That’s to keep the lights on. No groceries, no gas,” said Donnie, who made $70,000 in his best year.

Donnie spent the summer retraining for a factory job through an emergency federal program spared—this time—from sequestration’s axe. Tiffanie found a job helping unemployed Kentuckians like her husband find work.

But with two teenage kids and their hometown’s economy in tatters, the Reeves know that their future may lie outside Harlan, leaving behind a family rooted here for more than 120 years.

“Tiff,” he told her last spring, when they were first considering the idea, “we’re giving up.”…

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Of Melungeons and Other Historical Mysteries

Arch Goins and family, Melungeons from Graysville, Tennessee, c. 1920s

Arch Goins and family, Melungeons from Graysville, Tennessee, c. 1920s

When Dr. Thomas Walker and Daniel Boone first explored what they would name the Cumberland Gap, the pass which allowed western expansion by the colonists in the Mid-Atlantic region in 1750 – they found a group of folks living in the area who were not Native Americans. They spoke English, and by appearances were neither white, black, or Native American. They became known as Melungeons, partially based on an early statement by one of the group that they were “Portugee”.

Theories have abounded as to how thee folks got there, and from where they came from. The most romantic of which claimed that they were descendants of survivors of the “Lost Colony” and Virginia Dare on Roanoke Island near the border of Virginia and North Carolina who mysteriously disappeared in 1586/7. Others have it they were the descendants of Portugese sailors and Turkish slaves who had been shipwrecked along the Barrier Islands protecting the Carolina and Virginia coasts during the 15th or 16th Century. Still another had them as descendents of slaves originating from the first Spanish Colony located on the Virginia/North Carolina Coast founded by Lucas Vázquez de Ayllón in 1526, which was destroyed by a slave revolt.

None of these historical theories was true.

Another long standing mystery is what happened to the initial African slaves brought to Virginia in 1619. Because there were no slave laws in Virgina at that time – they were purchased as Indentured Servants. Serving of a period of years to pay back the cost of their voyage – or “purchase” cost…

After which they became free, along with the hundreds of thousands of white Europeans who had been brought to the Colonies as Indentured Servants typically to pay off their debts. Permanent black slavery wasnt legally institutionalized in Virginia until about 1670, when a number of “Slave Codes” were ratified in response to several slave revolts, and complaints of slave owners about the economic cost of having to free their slaves.  So what happened in the intervening period to these black folks who were brought to America – served as Indentured labor and paid off their debt to be free? The commonly accepted story is that they intermarried with Native Americas – which is only partially true.

Laws against miscegenation between black and white were codified about 1660 in Virginia. The issue was in large part that by treaty (with Native Americans) and law – the status of a couple’s children, slave or free – was based on the status of the Mother. Thus if an African male slave married and had children with a white female Indentured Servant – any resulting children were freedmen. This posed an economic conundrum for Virginia slave holders, and a loss of valuable property in the form of new slaves. Thus we start to see laws being put into place to prevent this.

Unions between black and white was far more common than many historians would have you believe – and not just the result of the slave Master raping their slave women. By some calculations, supported by DNA tests – about 30% of what is now considered the white population of the US, whose families lived in slave states before the Civil War have black Sub-Saharan ancestry. The result of these marriages was the establishment of large bi- and tri- racial communities in Virginia, North and South Carolina, and Louisiana. The groundbreaking work of Professor Paul Heinegg, of the University of Virginia “Free  African American Families of Virginia and North Carolina” and which has been expanded to now include Maryland, Delaware, and other states  – found that the genesis of most Free African American families before the Civil War in Virginia and North Carolina was the result of these unions between black males and white women. If you will recall, Thomas Jefferson kept his offspring from Sally Hemmings in slavery.

Unions between black slaves and white indentured servants were not rare – a situation creating the need (at least from the slave owners viewpoint) for laws prohibiting such unions. Which leaves the question – where did these families, established before the permanent slave laws,  go after finishing their indenture?

Part of my own family were what is called”Atlantic Creoles” (descendants of a white Sea Captain and an “Indian” woman who moved to Montgomery County  from what is now the Norfolk/Newport News area in 1719) whose children migrated from Montgomery County, Virginia on the lower Rappahannock River to an area near the Cumberland Gap on what is now the Virginia – West Virginia border to escape re-enslavement. They would fight a nearly 50 year legal battle in the Courts to retain their freedom. There was already a thriving black (or tri-racial) community there. What they did was to follow the path after the American Revolution of many European-American settlers and move west to the “frontier”, forming stable communities along the Virginia -West Virginia border.

Indeed there is evidence through letters that Confederate troops stayed out of certain counties in Virginia and North Carolina because the majority of the residents were freedmen who took a dim view of Confederates and would shoot any Confederate who wandered into the wrong territory. I have more then anecdotal evidence that being a slave catcher wandering onto some of those counties was a terminal profession. You can track some of that looking at General Sheridan’s campaign in the Shenandoah – looking at where they DIDN’T fight the Rebs.

My Dad, who was a Historian always claimed that the Melungeons of the region were actually the descendants of the first Africans brought to America who had intermarried with white Indentured Servants and had served out their indenture and moved to the remote area to escape persecution.

Turns out he was right. He referred to these folks as “cousins” – although I never figured out why, or have proven any direct family relationship with any of the 40 or so Melungeon families. He was also good friends with one of the Goins family descendants.

Melungeon history researchers at various times have claimed that several famous people were descendants of Melungeons, including Elvis Presley, Ava Gardner, and Abraham Lincoln. That is in all likleyhood wishful thinking – as I have never heard on any evidence to back such claims. The truth of which would be explosive.

Melungeon DNA Study Reveals Ancestry, Upsets ‘A Whole Lot Of People’

For years, varied and sometimes wild claims have been made about the origins of a group of dark-skinned Appalachian residents once known derisively as the Melungeons. Some speculated they were descended from Portuguese explorers, or perhaps from Turkish slaves or Gypsies.

Now a new DNA study in the Journal of Genetic Genealogy attempts to separate truth from oral tradition and wishful thinking. The study found the truth to be somewhat less exotic: Genetic evidence shows that the families historically called Melungeons are the offspring of sub-Saharan African men and white women of northern or central European origin. Read the rest of this entry »

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on May 25, 2012 in Black History, The Post-Racial Life

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

 
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 226 other followers

%d bloggers like this: