Tag Archives: Ohio

Montel Williams to Back Weed Legalization in Ohio

Always knew that boy was on somethin’! :)

Montel Williams to Back Effort to Legalize Pot in Ohio

An effort to legalize medical and recreational marijuana in Ohio is getting the backing of TV personality Montel Williams.

The celebrity who hosted “The Montel Williams Show” for a decade is scheduled to endorse Issue 3 during a Columbus appearance Wednesday. Williams also will announce opposition to Issue 2, a proposed ban on constitutional monopolies that’s designed to block the marijuana effort.

Wednesday’s event will include Ohio patients who could benefit from access to medical marijuana if the amendment passes Nov. 3.

A spokesman said Williams does not intend to be an investor in any of the 10 authorized growing sites created by the proposal and has no current plans to be involved in the Ohio cannabis business.

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Posted by on October 21, 2015 in The Post-Racial Life


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The Story of Longtown, Ohio – A Town Where Color Didn’t Matter

There were two sizeable Tri-Racial communities in Ohio – this is the story of one, and efforts to preserve it’s history. Longtown was “Post-racial”…Before anyone else in America came up with the idea.


An Ohio town where races have mixed freely for more than 200 years

Amid the corn and soybean fields of western Ohio lies a progressive crossroads where black and white isn’t black and white, where the concept of race has been turned upside down, where interracial marriages have been the norm for nearly two centuries. The heavy boots of Jim Crow have never walked here.

Founded by James Clemens, a freed slave from Virginia who became a prosperous farmer, Longtown was a community far ahead of its time, a bold experiment in integration.

Now that history is in danger of being lost. Longtime Longtown residents are dying, and whites are moving in and buying property. Many historically black-owned buildings have already been torn down or remodeled.

But Clemens’s great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-grandson is working to save his family’s heritage. Though his eyes are blue and his skin is pale, Connor Keiser, 22, said that his childhood is filled with memories of “cousins of all colors” playing in the pastures at the family farm.

“We were a typical Longtown family. We all looked different, and we were taught that color didn’t matter,” Keiser said. “As long as I have anything to do with it, Longtown won’t die.”

Largely because of Keiser’s efforts, the National Park Service, the National Register of Historic Places and the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center have recognized Longtown as a place noteworthy for its early embrace of racial integration and educational opportunities for blacks. But the town’s institutions are in peril.

Longtown’s former school, the Union Literary Institute, founded in 1845, has a largely forgotten history as one of the nation’s first integrated establishments of higher education. Notable alumni include the first black man to serve in the U.S. Senate, Hiram R. Revels of Mississippi. The school, which closed in 1914, fell into disrepair and until recently was used to store farm equipment.

The original Clemens farmstead is in better shape; the two-story brick farmhouse, built around 1850, still has its original fixtures and woodwork. Although the National Park Service has dispensed $25,000 to restore the property, Keiser estimated that the project will require an additional $100,000.

George Clemens and wife

So Keiser has hit the road to appeal for money. He’s been drawing big crowds to area libraries with his presentation about the racial harmony of Longtown and the desperate need to preserve it.

“I don’t think the public was aware this was here,” Keiser said. “Black history is not talked about a lot in general, and I think [the fact] that we have that kind of history means something to a lot of people.”

The racial harmony of Longtown is the legacy of Clemens, who found his way here in 1818 and purchased 390 acres — probably with the aid of abolitionist Quakers, sympathetic Native Americans and, by some accounts, his former owner in Rockingham County, Va.

Clemens was of a mixed-race ancestry — black,white and Native American. So was his wife, Sophia. They served as a beacon to other integrationists, as well as runaway and freed slaves looking for succor and education during and after the Civil War.

The couple became conductors for the Underground Railroad and — while the rest of the nation endured Reconstruction and Jim Crow laws — built a mixed-race town that numbered close to 1,000 people at its peak in the 1880s.

But Longtown began to falter after World War II, when residents were forced to seek help from bankers to modernize their farms.

“When we began to need machinery and bank loans to expand and grow and become competitive, that’s when there was trouble,” said Carl Westmoreland, a senior historian with the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center who has visited Longtown.

“Banks would not help black farmers purchase new equipment. In Longtown, people gradually had to go to industrial centers for jobs. And if you are not part of the day-to-day energy of the community, it begins to decline.”

Today, only a handful of families remain. But Longtown lasted longer than other integrated rural villages once scattered across the Ohio plains.

Clemens Home, now Abandoned

“Because Longtown’s population was so much larger than others like it, it took longer for it to whittle down,” said Roane Smothers, a distant cousin of Keiser’s and an active Longtown preservationist.

“And because Longtown was so much larger, more structures have survived,” Smothers said. “As these other communities faded away, white folks bought the land and structures, and many times all that was left was the church.”

A junior majoring in international studies at nearby Wright State University, Keiser seems an unlikely savior for this blink of a town. Unfailingly polite, possessing a bright white smile, Keiser looks as Caucasian as the rest of Darke County, which was 97.7 percent white at the last census.

But Keiser doesn’t consider himself white. Nor does he consider himself black. Instead he calls himself by the dated and, to some, offensive term “colored.”

“I know who I am and what I am. I may look white, my appearance is white, but my insides are not. I know I am not white,” Keiser said. He makes it a point to tell anyone who will listen about his black ancestry. “I tell everyone about it, whether they want to hear it or not. I am so proud of it.”

The issue of race has long perplexed America. In the past year, the racial identities of high-profile black activists such as former Spokane NAACP chairman Rachel Dolezal and Black Lives Matter activist Shaun King have come under scrutiny. If birth certificates tell the story, both Dolezal and King are Caucasians trying to pass as black.

From the perspective of his own racial heritage, Keiser finds them “pretty cool. You don’t hear of many white people wanting to be black,” he said.

Alisann Clemens Smookler with Daughters

Not many people anywhere these days want to be called “colored.” But it’s common in Longtown.

Take Edith Perkins, 75, who also looks white. For 30 years, she worked in human resources at Alcoa in nearby Richmond, Ind., where prejudice surfaced as soon as people learned she was from Longtown.

“I was never really accepted by the whites, who viewed me as black. Nor was I really accepted by the blacks, who viewed me as white,” Perkins said. “So I ate lunch by myself for 30 years.”

Patricia Hope, 82, has snow-white hair and a fair complexion and also identifies as “colored.” She said her family has a long mixed-race lineage in Longtown.

“That’s why we worship in this church, to keep our little crossroads alive,” Hope said, referring to the Bethel Long Wesleyan Church, which still holds services every Sunday. This Sunday, the church will celebrate its 159th annual homecoming with a potluck and picnic. Every year, the event becomes larger, as former residents come back to reconnect with their heritage.

“This place is all we know,” Hope said.

Her husband, Thomas, died in 2013. One by one, the repositories of Longtown’s legacy and its stories are passing to the grave. Keiser grew up steeped in the town’s oral history, stories passed down from his great-grandfather, Maze Clemens.

“He was the keeper of Longtown’s history, and my biggest hope is to make him proud by doing the same,” Keiser said.

While Longtown itself was a haven, a refuge from prejudice, sometimes biases from the outside world would creep in. The Ku Klux Klan would visit periodically. Keiser said his great-great-great-great-grandfather was murdered by the Klan. As recently as 2003, racist notes were left on the door of the church, Keiser said. In nearby Hollansburg, Ohio, Confederate flags flutter casually from many front porches.

“If the rest of the world got along as well as we do here in Longtown, there wouldn’t be problems,” said James Jett, 90. His dark skin, smooth despite his age, contrasts with his wife Brenda’s much lighter complexion.

Jett grew wistful remembering Longtown’s heyday, pointing to cornfields that were once filled with houses. And he remembers the Tigers, the town’s semi-professional baseball team, which sent many players to the Negro leagues. The Tigers’ appearance often confounded opponents.

“The Tigers showed up to play a team in Indiana, and they said, ‘Where’s the black team?’ And they responded, ‘We are the black team,’ ” laughed Brenda Jett, who declined to give her age.


Posted by on September 27, 2015 in The Post-Racial Life


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No.. That’s STEAL the Bridge – Not Blow it up!

This group of itinerant morons apparently didn’t get the email, text message, or tweet…

This is more like it, complete with a taste of the paranormal for drama…

And it (bridge stealing) has even gone international!

Thieves Make Off With 10-Ton Bridge

Thieves recently got away with stealing a 10-ton bridge in the Czech Republic earlier this year. How, do you ask, were thieves able to steal a bridge? It’s simple really.

A railroad spokesman Pavel Halla reported that the theft, which was worth millions, happened when a group, claiming that a bridge in Slavkov had to come down. Halla stated:

“The thieves said they had been hired to demolish the bridge, and remove the unwanted railway track to make way for a new cycle route.”

They came with very convincing, albeit forged, paperwork, which passed inspection, allowing the thieves to dismantle and take away the bridge, along with 650 feet of unused railroad track. Halla went on to stated that:

“It was only after they had gone that checks were made and we realised we’d been had. The cost of replacing the bridge will run into millions.”

This is not the first bridge to be stolen in the Czech Republic, though it is the largest. In 2008, thieves made off with a 4-ton railway bridge outside the Czech city of Cheb. A police spokeswoman stated of that theft that, “We are not sure if it was taken for personal use or for its scrap value.”

While stealing bridges is not a regular occurrence, stealing metal has become a commonplace activity, especially in the face of an economic crisis. Thieves have been known to strip copper wire from the insides of traffic lights and street lights. Metal theft in Great Britain is estimated to cost the economy about £770 million every year.

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Posted by on May 1, 2012 in Domestic terrorism


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Bad Night for the Reich Wing – Good Night for America

In what are considered bellweather elections prior to the 2012 contests, Republicans went down on a lot of fronts…

Miss. defeats life-at-fertilization ballot prop

Mississippi voters Tuesday defeated a ballot initiative that would’ve declared life begins at fertilization, a proposal that supporters sought in the Bible Belt state as a way to prompt a legal challenge to abortion rights nationwide.

The so-called “personhood” initiative was rejected by more than 55 percent of voters, falling far short of the threshold needed for it to be enacted. If it had passed, it was virtually assured of drawing legal challenges because it conflicts with the Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that established a legal right to abortion. Supporters of the initiative wanted to provoke a lawsuit to challenge the landmark ruling.

Ohio voters reject Republican-backed union limits

The state’s new collective bargaining law was defeated Tuesday after an expensive union-backed campaign that pitted firefighters, police officers and teachers against the Republican establishment.

In a political blow to GOP Gov. John Kasich, voters handily rejected the law, which would have limited the bargaining abilities of 350,000 unionized public workers. With more than a quarter of the votes counted late Tuesday, 63 percent of votes were to reject the law.

Democrats, unions cheered by election results

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear, a folksy moderate Democrat, cruised to victory as expected with about 56 percent of the vote over a Republican and an Independent candidate.

The only bad news? Johnny Dupree lost in his run for Mississippi Governor. Republican Phil Bryant had 59 percent of the vote to 41 percent for Democrat Johnny DuPree, with 43 percent of the votes counted. If DuPree had won, the mayor of Hattiesburg would have been the first African-American to win statewide office in Mississippi in modern times.


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Posted by on November 9, 2011 in General


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Animal Slaughter in Zanesville, Ohio

Damn, this one gives me a lot of heartburn. I really question the need to kill the animals. First off, they list among the animal they “had to put down” 6 black bears. Black bears? They are native to North America – and I dare say that in a rural area like Zanesville there is a native population of black bears living in the woods. It also wouldn’t surprise me, that if you had someone who knew where (and how) to look – that there aren’t at least a few Mountain Lion…which the cops also killed. I’ve seen Mountain Lion in the mountains and forests of West Virginia and Kentucky, and a heck of a lot of black bear – one or two not very far from the big city. I’ve also seen wolves in Wyoming and Montana, along with Grizzly. And while it can be a heart thumping experience – I have never heard of wolves attacking humans except in adventure and horror stories – although a Grizzly does consider you a nice between meal snack if he is in the mood.

So I don’t see any need to have killed the black bear, mountain lion, or wolves as “threats to the population”. Wolves will kill sheep, I don’t know why, but sheep apparently look like filet mignon coming off the grill to a wolf. However, my family raised pedigree Boxer dogs – and one of the things you never wanted to do was get them in sight of a sheep. Apparently they share the same mental wiring as wolves. And for the truly stupid out there, yes wolves are gorgeous big cuddly looking dogs… And they can be successfully domesticated if you start from puppies…But sticking your hand out to pet a wild wolf is a really bad idea.

So…That leaves the Lions, Tigers, and Monkey. You can’t convince me that in an age of night vision goggles, thermal imagers, and helicopters that there was any threat of these animals going too far. Further, in 4 hours or less – that sheriff could have had a team of 50 or more Animal Welfare, and Zoo professionals onsite armed to the teeth with tranquilizer guns. The story about the guy with the tranquilizer gun having to get 10 feet away from the lion to zap it is utter bullshit.

So is the story about having to kill the animals. This was really an unnecessary, and tragic slaughter.

Add this one to “Domestic Terrorism”.

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Posted by on October 20, 2011 in Domestic terrorism


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Tra Bagger Candidate Busted

Just in case you thought Alvin Greene was the only one with legal problems…

Senate Candidate Indicted for Sex With Minor

Another day, another political sex scandal—but this one involves a minor. Ohio’s Eric W. Deaton, Senate candidate for the conservative Constitution Party, was indicted Tuesday for having alleged sexual contact with a young girl, the Dayton Daily News reports. Deaton, 42, is accused of having unlawful sexual conduct with the girl, who he reportedly met at his church, while she was between the ages of 13 and 15 … and he’s calling the whole mess “politically motivated.”

He adds that “the powers that be don’t like” his decision to run for office, and says he’ll stay in the race despite his Sept. 14 arraignment and the fact that he faces the possibility of five years in prison. According to WDTN Dayton, police say they have hotel surveillance video and receipts that prove their case … and Deaton’s lawyer says those very items (somehow) help prove that his client is innocent. Deaton, a married Cub Scout leader with three kids, says he has Tea Party endorsements.


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Arrest In Serial Stabber Case


This undated photo released by the Arlington, Va., County Police Department shows Elias Abuelazam. Abuelazam, suspect in a string of 18 stabbings that terrorized people across three states and left five dead, was charged Thursday, August 12, 2010 with assault with intent to murder in connection with a July 27 stabbing in Flint, Michigan. Abuelazam was arrested at a gate at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport as he tried to board a plane for Israel, officials said Thursday. (AP Photo/Arlington County Police Department)

Atlanta Police have announced the arrest of a suspect in the multistate serial stabber case. The suspect was attempting to board a flight to Israel, apparently on an expired Israeli passport. No word yet on the identification of the suspect, but police have said the man had ties to both the Flint, Michigan and Leesburg, Virginia areas.

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Posted by on August 12, 2010 in News


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