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Vester Lee Flanagan, Va TV Killer Had a History of Playing the “Race Card” and “Gay Card”…

Let me start this on first off with a criticism of the title –

Vester Flanagan Threatened Coworkers, Played the Race Card for Years

The problem being that Flanagan had a number of issues, was fired by several stations, and alternately blamed it on being Gay and Being black. Of course, using “Playing the Race Card” is more incendiary as a Title.

On with the story…

The cold-blooded Roanoke killer kept getting fired, kept threatening co-workers, and kept claiming he was the real victim.

Vester Lee Flanagan claimed in a suicide note Wednesday that June’s massacre of black parishioners at a South Carolina church was “the tipping point” that sent him on the path to murdering two journalists on live television Wednesday.

But in court papers and interviews with The Daily Beast, former colleagues describe Flanagan as a problematic employee, who was repeatedly reprimanded for his harsh treatment of coworkers, and complained racism was behind harsh evaluations of his work.

“He just had a history of playing the race card,” former WTWC anchor Dave Leval told The Daily Beast. “I know he did that in Tallahassee a couple of times…”

The day Flanagan was fired from a Virginia TV station in 2013, his bosses called 911 because of his volatile behavior—an incident captured on camera by Adam Ward, a man who would later become one of his victims.

At a February 2013 meeting, managers at WDBJ7 in Roanoke told Flanagan he wasn’t a good fit and would be terminated. Flanagan became “agitated” before issuing a threat, one boss recalled in court papers

Flanagan also claimed he was attacked for being a gay black man, and that he suffered bullying, sexual harassment, and racial discrimination at work, ABC News reported.

Court papers in Flanagan’s 2013 discrimination case also reveal an apparent preoccupation with perceived racism against him.

“I am hereby requesting a trial which will be heard by a jury of my peers,” he wrote in a letter to the judge. “I would like my jury to be comprised of African-American women.”

Flanagan also mentioned a frequently appearing watermelon as evidence of racial harassment at the Roanoke TV station and claimed he had photos of it.

“This was not an innocent incident,” Flanagan claimed. “It appeared after a meeting during which ‘watermelon’ comments were discussed.”

He also claimed head photographer Lynn Eller was the mastermind of a “carefully orchestrated effort by the photography staff to oust me,” court documents show.

“Why did one of the photographers go to HR on me after working with me ONLY ONCE,” Flanagan wrote, in an apparent reference to victim Adam Ward. “There was nothing to report! That, Your honor, is just plain wrong.”…

In a performance review one month later, Flanagan scored a 1 out of 5 in the category of “works well together with photographer, producer and assignment editor;” he scored 3s on evaluations about delivering news “in an understandable manner” and “covering beat and enterprising stories.”

Bosses reprimanded Flanagan that November for wearing an Obama sticker when he voted, a violation of the non-partisan conditions of his contract.

“While this is the first incident of this nature, and we trust the last, you need to quickly and diligently move from the category of an employee who commits misstep after misstep to the kind of problem-free employee we hope you can become,” Dennison wrote in a letter to Flanagan.

One of the final memos before his termination included a harsh suggestion:

“Avoid being merely a human tape recorder” and report the real news.

Among the missteps that led to this admonition was his decision to cover a local creamery over the governor’s comments on gun control after the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre.

 
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Posted by on August 27, 2015 in You Know It's Bad When..., Domestic terrorism

 

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So Much for the conservative “George Zimmerman isn’t a racist” meme

Hmmmm…didn’t take long for the bigot crew to latch on to the shooter’s race in the Virginia TV shooting yesterday….And even spuriously try and tie President Obama to the shooter…

George Zimmerman: Virginia “hate crime” shootings committed by “pansy” and condoned by “ignorant baboon” Barack Obama

George Zimmerman, the killer of Trayvon Martin who was last seen hawking paintings of the Confederate battle flag that praised the Second Amendment, took to Twitter in the wake of yesterday’s shootings of Alison Parker and Adam Ward to condemn the “Black [piece of shit]” who murdered them and the “Ignorant Baboon” in the White House who mentioned gun control in his comments about their murders.

Presumably because he knows a thing or two about killing people in cold blood, Zimmerman expounded at Twitter-length on the murders of Parker and Ward, writing first that:

Pansy Fester lee Flanagan, too much of a daisy to deal w/racism. Murders 2 whites. Hate crime, 100%. Racist Obama says nothing condeming.

“Pansy” is, of course, a reference to the fact that the shooter, Vester Flanagan II, was a homosexual, which is relevant here because Zimmerman inexplicably chose to make it so. Flanagan’s motivations, at least as they were communicated in his 23-page-long manifesto, were based on a combination of a personal grudge against Ward and his feelings about the massacre in Charleston, South Carolina earlier this year. But Zimmerman felt it necessary to denigrate his sexuality anyway, as well as complain about what to him was the lack of timely manner in which President Barack Obama addressed the murders:

White woman & man get murdered by a Black P.O.S. 8 hours later B. Hussein Obama the divider still says NOTHING.

Putting aside the fact that Zimmerman’s complained, at length, that Obama jumped to conclusions about him and spoke too soon about his killing of Martin, it’s worth noting that Obama did, in fact, address Parker and Ward’s murder yesterday, sayingthat it “breaks [his] heart every time [he] read[s] or hear[s] about these kinds of incidents,” and that “the number of people who die from gun-related incidents around this country dwarfs any deaths that happen through terrorism.”

“the # of people who die from gun-related incidents around this country dwarfs any deaths that happen through terrorism,” – Ignorant Baboon

 
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Posted by on August 27, 2015 in The New Jim Crow

 

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Republicans and the Racial Triple-Play

Geez…I there anyone in America the current crop of Republican candidates hasn’t pissed off…Except the Joe Six-Pack brain dead old white guys?

After sequentially pissing off black folks, Hispanic folks…The Reprobates try for a triple play with Asians!

The mini-Clowns on the bus…”We don’t want your kind living here either!”

An ugly new frontier in GOP race-baiting: Attacking the Asian menace

Jeb Bush proved for the millionth time Monday that he’s the worst candidate promoted as a presidential “frontrunner” since Ted Kennedy in 1980. Bush’s latest gaffe, you probably heard, involved his claim that he’s not scapegoating Latinos with his complaints about “anchor babies,” because the real “anchor baby” scammers – people who aren’t Americans but have children here so they become citizens — are “Asian people,” not Latinos.

Bush brushed off a suggestion that he’s alienating Latinos with his “anchor baby” rhetoric by pointing to “my background, my life, I’m immersed in the immigrant experience.” Then he stepped in it: “Frankly it’s more related to Asian people coming into the country…taking advantage of birthright citizenship.”

Suddenly it seems the GOP field has a new political scapegoat: Asians! There aren’t as many of them as there are Latinos, though they’re the fastest growing “minority” group in the country. The same day Bush slurred Asians on the illegal immigration issue, Gov. Scott Walker demanded President Obama cancel his meetings with Chinese president Xi Jinping, because…toughness? He didn’t really say.

Meanwhile, Donald Trump’s China-bashing has long rivaled his Mexican-bashing when it comes to identifying a top foreign scapegoat for our problems. As the stock market plunged again Monday, Trump had an excuse to lay it on thicker.

“I’ve been telling everybody for a long time,” he said in a video. “China’s taking our jobs; they’re taking our money. Be careful — they’ll bring us down. You have to known what you’re doing — we have nobody that has a clue.”

And from the back of the pack Gov. Chris Christie yelled, “Me, too!” claiming that the federal debt “has been given to us in large measure by the Chinese” and “as the Chinese markets have a correction” the U.S. will suffer.

There’s a weird pause when Bush blasts Asian immigrant parents. You could hear him hesitate mid-sentence, as if he knew he was stepping in it again – and then he carried on with his thought because, why not? He’s in free fall already. Also: these are Republicans we’re talking about; they don’t know discretion or restraint when it comes to sharing their racial theories. It’s like he’s sitting with the fellas at his private club, talking about “those people.”

But bashing Asians, while it might help with the party’s white base, hurts the GOP long term, as Asians are probably the best prospects for conversion if Republicans ever decide they need to make a play for non-white voters. They used to be a fairly reliable if small component of the Republican electorate.

 

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Uncle Ben Carson… Rebuttal

Uncle Ben decided to launch a broadside at the Black Community again in a piece for USA Today entitled Ben Carson: #BlackLivesMatter misfire. In the piece, Carson offers a number of “solutions” to the problem he sees a relevant to the “misdirected” black community…

Let’s have some fun batting that around. Dr Carson in black….My response in blue.

Let’s head down to the board of education. Teaching is a tough job and thank God there was a teacher who convinced me that I was not dumb, but our schools are failing and we have no power to abandon them. The actions of rogue police officers take black lives one at a time. Our public school system has destroyed black lives not in the ones and twos, but in whole generations.

The schools don’t teach and our children don’t learn. Too many public schools are controlled by teachers unions focused more on the convenience and compensation of adults rather than the education of children who started out far behind. Their failures don’t kill as quickly, but they do kill as surely as a bullet.

To begin with, the U.S. public school system is hardly the abysmal failure portrayed in the conventional conservative wisdom (yes, I know that is an oxymoron). The international comparative data is skewed, by vocational tracking in Europe (all American high school students are sometimes compared to select Gymnasium and Lycee students in Germany and France) or geography (the entire U.S. is compared to the Shanghai metro area, rather than to all of China — the French educational system would look pretty bad, if it were compared in its entirety to Westchester County, New York). Further, most of the right wing analysis of “failure” of inner city schools misses 3 points –

  1. Comparing inner city poor schools to suburban middle class or wealthy districts is inherently going to result in those poor schools “failing”. A more apt comparison would be to compare those inner city schools to other equally poor rural areas such as Oswego County, Kentucky – which is 99% white, 95% Republican, and 95% of the residents are on Food Stamps.Indeed, the lowest “performing” schools in America aren’t in the inner city – they are in the very red, Republican South.
  2. The Republican solution has been (as usual) to privatize schools systems through Charter Schools. The ugly fact is that these Charter schools have not only been systemic failures in terms o survival, but when they are subjected to the same testing regimen and measuring stick as the Schools they supposedly are replacing – the perform worse. When exactly are Dr Carson, and his fellow white conservative backers going to take responsibility for the tens of thousands of young black lives their misguided racism has ruined?
  3. Those inner-city schools do not educate a majority of black kids. Indeed, they don’t even educate a significant minority. Only about 7% of the total black population in the US still lives in urbanized ghettos. Now – while we might dismiss the ignorance or racism of a white conservative in not really understanding what the black community is, or it’s dynamics…Dr Carson is supposed to be an educated man and the wherewithal to correct that racist stereotype is well within anyone’s capabilities who cares to look..

 

Let’s confront the entertainment industry that lines its pockets by glamorizing a life where black men are thugs and our women are trash. Let’s tell them we plan to start talking with our wallets.

It is time for them to pick on someone else because we have had enough. Demeaning women is not art, and it shouldn’t be profitable. Neither is glorifying violence and equating prison time with authenticity. Straight Outta Compton, #1 in movie theaters, is just the latest example. You only have to watch the trailers.

A day late and a dollar short. There already is a substantive movement to clean up some of the entertainment industry. There is a fairly strong kickback against members of that industry who have promoted the misogynistic, violent images. But you have to ask the question – why is it only black musicians or artists  who are guilty? No white musicians or artists promote the same imagery? Perhaps Dr Carson need listen to his fellow candidate Donald Trump’s comments about Megan Kelly. And I wasn’t aware Donald Trump was “passing”. We live in a society where white college fraternities believe it is OK to rape and objectify girls…But I don’t see anyone spouting that it is a “problem with the white community”. Lastly – who buys that Hip-Hop music? 80% is bought by white kids.

Let’s go down to city hall. Living behind a door with three deadbolts is not living in freedom. Being too scared to walk around your block at night is not the pursuit of happiness we were all promised.

I know Dr Carson doesn’t get out much beyond the bubble of white racist Republicans who fawn over his absolution… But BLM and other black organizations are taking on City Hall every day. Moral Mondays ring a bell? Moral Mondays Georgia? Ferguson, Mo?

Let’s go over to the crack house. We need to tear it down. Profiting from selling poison to our children and destroying lives must not be the ambition of our children. These monuments to our destruction deserve our active scorn not our silent acceptance.

“Crack House”?  How so very …90’s. Hate to be the first to tell you Dr – but the current “epidemics” are Meth…And Heroin. And the folks being affected are in large majority white and suburban or rural. This is the sort of racist stupidity that is just jaw-dropping.

We should go to Washington. For decades they have fought the “War . on Poverty.” Poverty won. We lost.

Over 19 trillion dollars has been wasted, but can anyone identify a single battle won as a result? We certainly have not helped the poor “lift themselves out of the ruts of poverty” as Lyndon Johnson promised — far from it. These programs have been a great American failure.

In 1960, the black poverty rate was 65%. Under Bill Clinton hat sunk to under 20%, and now hovers in the 20-25% range. Uncle Ben has been drinking that funny Kool-Aid again. And of the “purported” $19 Trillion number hawked by conservatives – 80% of that was poured into The Great White Ghetto – and that isn’t even talking about other majority poor white areas of the country. The idea that all this money was poured into the black community is the typical racist flim-flam of the racist right. Below is a simple map of the areas with the highest concentration of people on Food Stamps and “Welfare”.

The “Solid South”…Indeed.

We should have a talk with the Democratic Party.  Let’s tell them, we don’t want to be clothed, fed and housed. We want honor and dignity.

We don’t want a plan to give us public housing in nice neighborhoods. We want an end to excuses for schools that leave us without the means to buy our own houses where we choose to live. We want the skills needed to compete, not a consolation prize of Section 8, Food Stamps and a lifetime of government paperwork.

Finally, we need to go over to the Republican Party. We need to tell them they have ignored us for too long. They need to invite us in and listen to us. We need to communicate and find a different way.

There are many things to be angry about when you are consumed by hopelessness. Bernie Sanders isn’t one of them.

Two simple answers to that in graphic form.

This is a county by county map of percentage of poverty and welfare participation –

County by County Food Stamp Enrollment shows most Welfare recipients live in the “Red Zone”

SNAP Enrollment Rate (%)
  • 0-4
  • 5-9
  • 10-14
  • 15-19
  • 20-24
  • 25-29
  • 30+

Lastly…If conservatism worked – wouldn’t the Red States be richer?

I mean….Just sayin’…

Black Conservative Jock Strap Award

 

 
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Posted by on August 25, 2015 in Black Conservatives, The Clown Bus

 

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“Anchor Babies”…The new and improved “N-word”

Seems the Republican Presidential candidates are all in a furor over “illegal immigration”, and want to repeal the 14h Amendment which guaranteed birthright citizenship to 3 million former slaves living in the US after the Civil War.

Even more interesting this brouhaha is about Hispanics, supposedly sneaking across the border to have babies to claim citizenship though their American born kids – despite the fact that the vast majority of folks coming to the US to have “Anchor babies” are wealthy Chinese. And they are not sneaking across the border to do so.

So what the right is really up in arms about is the brown N88765rs coming here, not based on any evidence they don’t contribute to he economy, don’t pay taxes, or commit crimes…Just the fact they aren’t white.

Anyone ever watch the TV Show, the Americans? It is based on a cold war effort by the Soviet Union to bury “sleeper” spies in the US, who would live in the US as American Citizens, and whom could be activated to commit sabotage or terrorism against the US in the event of war.

With the extent of China’s complicity in ongoing  hacking of US Computers to steal corporate and Military secrets, placing spies in the US, and economic terrorism – and cyber attacks against American infrastructure….Seems to me it is far more likely that Wan or Le, born in the US of A by a mother who used the “Birth Tourist” evasion – is a heck of a lot bigger threat than Akbar or Miguel digging a tunnel under the border.

But then…Racism really doesn’t have to make any sense.

Ken Burns: Donald Trump’s birtherism — a “politer way of saying the ‘N-word’” — proves America isn’t remotely “post-racial”

On CBS’s “Face the Nation” Sunday, esteemed documentary filmmaker Ken Burns carefully explained to those who don’t believe the primary cause of the Civil War was slavery exactly why they’re incorrect.

“If you read South Carolina’s articles of secession,” Burns began, “the first state to secede, the birthplace of secession, home of the original fire-eaters — they do not mention states’ rights, they mention slavery, slavery, slavery.”

That we have to remember,” he argued, though he admitted that it’s also more complicated than that. Still, Burns continued, “that’s the reason we murdered each other, why more than two percent of our population, more than 750,000 Americans died, more than all the wars from the Revolution to Afghanistan combined, was essentially over the issue of slavery.”

The problem, Burns said, is that “we’ve grown up as country with a lot of powerful symbols of the Civil War in popular culture [like] ‘Birth of a Nation’ — D.W. Griffiths’ classic — and ‘Gone with the Wind.’” Both of those films postulate that “the Ku Klux Klan, which is a homegrown terrorist organization, was actually a heroic force in the story of the Civil War. So, it’s no wonder that Americans have permitted themselves to be sold a bill of goods about what happened — ‘it’s about states’ rights,’ ‘it’s about nullification,’ ‘it’s about differences between cultural and political and economic forces that shaped the North and the South.’”

The danger associated with this willful misunderstanding of American history is that it obscures the fact that “race is always there, always there. When Thomas Jefferson says all men are created equal, he owns a couple hundred human beings and he doesn’t see the contradiction or the hypocrisy and doesn’t free anybody in his lifetime, set[ting] in motion an American narrative that is bedeviled by a question of race.”

“And we struggle with it. We try to ignore it. We pretend, with the election of Barack Obama, that we’re in some post-racial society,” Burns added. “What we have seen is a kind of reaction to this. The birther movement, of which Donald Trump is one of the authors of, is another, politer way of saying the ‘N-word.’ It’s just more sophisticated, a little bit more clever. He’s ‘other,’ he’s different.”

When in point of fact, Burns concluded, the only thing that’s “other” about the president is “the color of his skin.”

 

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Black Women Book Group Kicked Off Napa Train

Not sure how this happens in this day and age, and what the purported economics are of kicking 11 paying passengers off a train because one is annoyed,

10 Black Women Kicked Off Of Train, Met By Police, After White Woman Complains They Were Laughing

A group of black women were escorted off of a train taking them on a wine tour after a white woman complained they were laughing loudly. After the women, who are all members of a book club, exited the train they were met by a group of police officers.

No charges were filed.

According to a Facebook posting by Lisa Renee Johnson, one of the women in the group, the trouble started when this woman approached them and said she was annoyed by their laughter.

Lisa Renee Johnson with Teri Pierce Chief Sunshineologist at Lisa Renee Johnson · 331 followers · August 22 at 12:54pm · Saint Helena, CA · Facebook Family, we have a problem! We sipped wine, enjoyed each other’s company but our trip is being cut short…this women said our laughter annoyed her because this is “not a bar”… We are a group of 12…if we all laugh at the same time it’s loud! When we get to St. Helena they are putting us off the train.

One of the “noisy” group, and 83 year old grandmother

The complaint that this is “not a bar” is perplexing considering the primary purpose of the train is to serve alcohol.

A maître d’ also told them they were making too much noise. Asked who was complaining, he said that “people’s faces are uncomfortable.”

Johnson said the group of women — 10 black and one white — were then paraded through all six cars and escorted off the train where police were waiting for them.

The Napa Valley Wine Train posted a message to their Facebook page accusing the women of “verbal and physical abuse toward other guests and staff.” The post was quickly deleted, but not before Johnson captured a screenshot.

The group received a full refund but Johnson also wants an apology. “It was humiliating. I’m really offended to be quite honest. I felt like it was a racist attack on us. I feel like we were being singled out,” Johnson told the San Francisco Chronicle.

Word of the incident spread of social media under the hashtag #laughingwhileblack.

In a statement, Napa Valley Wine Train said the women were kicked off after the company “received complaints from several parties” about the noise. The company is also “conducting an internal audit to make sure all of our policies were followed.”

Napa Valley Wine Train. The train has wine tastings, and a wine bar in each car from which passengers may order.

 
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Posted by on August 24, 2015 in The New Jim Crow

 

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The War on Drugs? No – The War on Black People

Former DEA Agent lays it out…Between whitened juries, inability to pay for legal defense, the forced plea bargain deals – the War on Drugs has been the biggest carceral system imprisoning black folks since slavery.

DEA Agent Was Told Not To Enforce Drug Laws In Rich Communities

“WHAT I BEGAN TO SEE IS THAT THE DRUG WAR IS TOTALLY ABOUT RACE.”

In a new video by Brave New Films, Matthew Fogg, a former US Marshall and DEA Agent, speaks out about his time on the task force which specialized in fighting the “war on drugs”.

Fogg first speaks about his time as a teenage volunteer for his local police department, saying he used to park their police cruisers and drive them around the block. He said he knew then law enforcement was his destiny. He started as a Special Agent for the Drug Enforcement Agency and earned the nickname Batman, because he felt like he was policing Gotham city.

We were jumping on guys in the middle of the night, all of that. Swooping down on folks all across the country, using these sorts of attack tactics that we went out on, that you would use in Vietnam, or some kind of war-torn zone. All of the stuff that we were doing, just calling it the war on drugs. And there wasn’t very many black guys in my position. 

So when I would go into the war room, where we were setting up all of our drug and gun and addiction task force determining what cities we were going to hit, I would notice that most of the time it always appeared to be urban areas. 

That’s when I asked the question, well, don’t they sell drugs out in Potomac and Springfield, and places like that? Maybe you all think they don’t, but statisticsshow they use more drugs out in those areas than anywhere. The special agent in charge, he says ‘You know, if we go out there and start messing with those folks, they know judges, they know lawyers, they know politicians. You start locking their kids up; somebody’s going to jerk our chain.’ He said, ‘they’re going to call us on it, and before you know it, they’re going to shut us down, and there goes your overtime.’

Drugs are something that affect all races. Drugs are everywhere. For the DEA to only target urban areas (which are typically predominantly Black populations), something far more polarized is taking place.

Since the DEA was formed in 1986, the agency reports a total of 847,553 people have been arrested. There is also a total absence of demographic information on their website, which means there is no oversight on racial bias in targeting drug crime.

When a black female attorney for the Pentagon was stopped by DEA agents in an airport for suspicion of narcotics use, this prompted the inspector general (IG) for the Justice Department to review the DEA’s practices regarding “cold consent.” Cold consent is when a DEA agent approaches a person based on no particular behavior, or based on suspicion the person is using drugs. The IG found that no demographic data was collected on cold consent interactions. This means the DEA could be stopping people based solely on their race and no one would know.

But Fogg knew:

What I began to see is that the drug war is totally about race. If we were locking up everybody, white and black, for doing the same drugs, they would have done the same thing they did with prohibition. 

They would have outlawed it. They would have said, ‘Let’s stop this craziness. You’re not putting my son in jail. My daughter isn’t going to jail.’

If it was an equal enforcement opportunity operation, we wouldn’t be sitting here anyway. It’s all about fairness, man. And understanding ‘How would I want to be treated?’ Whether I’m on the one end or the other end. How would I be treated if everything was done equally?

After Fogg retired from law enforcement, he went on to file an EEO and Title VII racial discrimination complaint with the U.S. Justice Department in 1998 claiming he worked in a “racially hostile environment” that did not promote black people fairly and was awarded $4 million. In 2011, Fogg formed the Bigots with Badges group and became their President. He was invited by the CATO Institute on C-SPAN to discuss police misconduct. He continues to this day to fight racial bias in the Justice System.

 

 

 

 

 
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Posted by on August 21, 2015 in The New Jim Crow

 

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