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Posts Tagged ‘Michael Brown’

Charleston, Racism, and America in 2015: A Regression in Time?

In Uncategorized on August 2, 2015 at 7:34 pm

The shooting of Walter Scott, a falsified police report, and a recorded incident that switched a conclusion from “justified homicide” to “murder” only highlights the concerns many Americans have with the state of policing in America today.

PITTSBURGH (June 19, 2015) – Political commentator and social activist Lenny McAllister (host, “NightTalk: Get To The Point” on PCNC and “The Lenny McAllister Show” on Newsradio 1020 KDKA) discusses “America’s Original Sin” and the outlook Americans should take as the nation addresses the aftermath of the Charleston tragedy on this “Starting Point” commentary for the June 19 program.

Check out this segment of the June 19 episode of “NightTalk: Get To The Point” by by clicking on the picture above or on this link HERE

“NightTalk: Get To The Point” airs live Fridays at 8pm on the Pittsburgh Cable News Channel (Comcast channel 35 / Verizon FIOS channel 9) on over 850,000 households in the Pittsburgh television market.

A Reply from “The Community” to New Pittsburgh Police Chief

In Articles on December 26, 2014 at 12:56 am
New Pittsburgh Police Chief Cameron McLay tells "the community" in his recent "open letter to the community": “Here in Pittsburgh, we too have had our incidents, and the public trust is in jeopardy. If we, the police, are to regain legitimacy, we must assure those calling for change that we hear and understand them, and are committed to police accountability...and, in the process, demonstrate to our communities of color that we hear and understand the pain..."

New Pittsburgh Police Chief Cameron McLay tells “the community” in his recent “open letter to the community”:
“Here in Pittsburgh, we too have had our incidents, and the public trust is in jeopardy. If we, the police, are to regain legitimacy, we must assure those calling for change that we hear and understand them, and are committed to police accountability…and, in the process, demonstrate to our communities of color that we hear and understand the pain…”

Pittsburgh (December 25, 2014)  – Pittsburgh-born urban-based advocate and current Pittsburgh boomerang Lenny McAllister published “An Open Letter to Pittsburgh Police Chief Cameron McLay”, a response to McLay’s “An Open Letter to the Community” published originally in The New Pittsburgh Courier earlier in the week.

 

McLay’s letter, coming on the heels of Christmas, denotes the reassignment of Officer David Derbish to desk duty after several protests led by supporters of Leon Ford, Jr. demanding the firing of Derbish as well as an investigation by the Department of Justice into the 2012 shooting of Ford by Derbish after 3 Pittsburgh police officers broke several police procedures during a mangled traffic stop.

 

Now the question remains,” McLay apparently asks Pittsburgh’s African-American community in the letter. “What are we going to do, Pittsburgh? Police work is often not pretty. Officers must arrest violators. Violators often resist, sometimes violently. When the next ugly incident happens, will we be willing to withhold judgment and control our emotions long enough to give each other the benefit of the doubt? Are we going to work together toward reconciliation? Are we going to work on listening to one another with the intention of compassionate understanding?”

 

Understandably, our appreciation and respect become challenged when we collectively put too much pressure on ‘the community’ to change its ways without calling for and overseeing appropriate, holistic, and long-term actions of accountability by those with the capabilities to enforce laws, ensure ethics, and commit traumatic and life-ending acts within the blink of an eye,” McAllister writes in his reply as a member of “the community”. “Compassionate understanding comes from the acknowledgment that pain forecasts an issue that must be remedied immediately and properly so that discomfort can subside and dysfunction can cease. Sir, it is of the utmost importance that the discomfort currently felt throughout America (particularly within police bureaus such as ours here in Pittsburgh) is remedied alongside the underlying dysfunction simultaneously lest the pain continue and the problems remain…burdens involved in police-community interactions uniquely entail irreversible consequences that occur in lightning-quick moments – thus prompting immediate remedy.”

 
McAllister’s full reply can be found HERE.

 

McLay’s “Open Letter” can be found HERE.

 

Starting Point (December 5, 2014): “NightTalk: Get to the Point”

In Speeches, Video on December 7, 2014 at 1:18 pm
“Are we willing to make this moment about police treatment in urban areas or understand that these tragedies are a symptom of the dual expectations found in the employment, economics, education, healthcare, and criminal justice systems of America?”

“Are we willing to make this moment about police treatment in urban areas or understand that these tragedies are a symptom of the dual expectations found in the employment, economics, education, healthcare, and criminal justice systems of America?”

PITTSBURGH (December 5, 2014) – (Pittsburgh Cable News Channel)

Generally, people are willing to champion popular civil rights rhetoric from the past yet few are willing to mustard true civil rights courage for today. Perhaps that trend is changing now – before more people are harassed, assaulted, and harmed by a system that calls us all equal on paper, but only on paper. The mighty pen can call us equal – but only a mighty people and a just people can make it so.”

Catch Lenny’s “Starting Point” as he gives his thoughts before talking with the Get To The Point Panel (joined by Dr. Jason Johnson, Jasiri X, and The Rev. Ricky Burgess) concerning the concerns and protests that continue to rise throughout the nation. Watch “NightTalk: Get to the Point” on the Pittsburgh Cable News Channel Fridays at 8pm, Sundays at 10pm, and Mondays at 5pm.

 

Watch Lenny’s latest Starting Point by clicking the picture above or by clicking HERE

“Opening Statement” on NightTalk (November 26 2014)

In Video on November 29, 2014 at 8:44 pm

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PITTSBURGH (Nov 26, 2014) – (Pittsburgh Cable News Channel)

Catch Lenny’s “Opening Statement” on the aftermath of Ferguson, MO and the latest in mistrust between urban communities and police forces as he fills in for Ellis Cannon on the pre-Thanksgiving version of “NightTalk” on the Pittsburgh Cable News Channel by clicking the picture above or by clicking HERE

Ferguson and the Reflection of the Legacy of Our Original Sin – and Obstacle (August 22 2014)

In Video on September 1, 2014 at 3:11 pm
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“Until we come to grips with the current racial disparities in perception, interaction, employment, and societal matters, we’ll meet on the streets once again in the near future…for another rounds of protests over the same resolvable issues.”

PITTSBURGH (August 22, 2014) – (Pittsburgh Cable News Channel)

“One year after the controversial not-guilty verdict freeing George Zimmerman after the shooting death of unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin…Ferugson, Missouri exploded after the death of unarmed teenager Michael Brown…Many Americans hit the streets to protest the latest controversial death, just as they did last summer. Sadly, the protests this time echo the concerns not just for one life, but for a startling trend.

“In New York City, Eric Garnder was asphyxiated…in California, a highway patrol man was caught punching a disoriented, older black woman in the face during a pedestrian encounter…there is also the questionable shooting death of Ezell Ford at the hands of the LAPD.

“In Colorado in 2012, a killer with semi-automatic weapons makes it out of a movie theater – alive – after shooting dozens in cold-blood. In Ohio this year, a man dies in the toy section of Wal-mart with a toy gun in his hand – shot in cold blood by an officer that has a questionable past concerning justifiable homicide while on the police force. Cliven Bundy could stand off against the united states government with armed neighbors at his side. Marissa Alexander – a survivor of domestic violence – is in jail right now for arming herself against a man that previously beat her to the point of hospitalization.

“What’s the state of race relations in America, especially when police shootings of Blacks seems to be going in the wrong direction despite crime statistics generally heading in the right direction? Perhaps the questions we should be asking include: how come innocent until proven guilty applies to some citizens, while guilty until proven innocent – repeatedly – is the norm for other citizens? When some loudly proclaim citizens rights against the government, are they also actively defending the civil rights of black youth…when encountering the police? And why do we think that we can devalue each other as American citizens – and then expect Vladmir Putin, kim Jong-un, and ISIS to respect us as the military and moral leader of the world?”

Catch Lenny’s “Starting Point” concerning America’s reflections and reactions to Ferguson and other incidents of racial tension on the Pittsburgh Cable News Channel by clicking the picture above or by clicking HERE