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The C.O.W.S. | Compensatory Call-In Saturday, February 8th at 9:00PM Eastern/ 6:00PM Pacific on Black Talk Radio Network™

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The Context of White Supremacy hosts the weekly Compensatory Call-In. We encourage non-white listeners to dial in with their codified concepts, new terms, observations, research findings, workplace problems or triumphs, and/or suggestions on how best to Replace White Supremacy With Justice ASAP. We’ll use these sessions to hone our use of words as tools to reveal truth, neutralize White people. We’ll examine news reports from the past seven days and – hopefully – promote a constructive dialog.

 

#ANTIBLACKNESS

 

Black History Month 2014 got rolling with a bevy of Racist jokes about fried chicken and slavery (tacky). February also marked the beginning of the Jordan Davis murder trial in Florida; Angela Corey is one member of the prosecution whom should be familiar to all who’ve followed the Trayvon Martin and Marissa Alexander cases. While black children are gunned down for candy and music, White drug addicts and alleged pedophiles were defended and celebrated. Phillip Seymour Hoffman died from from apparent heroine overdose. He hasn’t been mocked and jeered like the late Whitney Houston; to the contrary, he’s now a VICTIM of the war on drugs. Woody Allen hasn’t received the bashing the Michael Jackson faced. He married his non-white step-daughter and is accused of molesting another child, yet many White people won’t tolerate his reputation being besmirched. Maybe these are just additional instances of affluenza.

 

#AnswersForMiriamCarey

 

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About: Context of White Supremacy

The C.O.W.S. Radio Program is specifically engineered for black & non-white listeners – Victims of White Supremacy. The purpose of this program is to provide Victims of White Supremacy with constructive information and suggestions on how to counter Racist Woman & Racist Man.

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Views – 91

Jim Crow Redux: war on drugs or on non-white communities?

METRO

Alan Bean couldn’t miss the headline splashed across the top of his hometown paper one summer morning in 1999. It spoke of big news for the 5,000-person burg in West Texas: a big drug bust that landed a sizable portion of the town’s black community behind bars.

Tulia streets cleared of garbage,” the banner headline read. Like many aspects of the American war on drugs, the wording smacked of insidious racism.

Bean recalled his  reactions to that news story a few days ago, to a roomful of people at a Fort Worth hotel. The event, examining the 40-year-old war on drugs and its disproportionate impact on minority communities, was hosted by the Tarrant County Libertarian Party but drew speakers from several parts of the political spectrum.

At the podium, Bean acknowledged that he’d known nothing of the lopsided statistics when he picked up the paper that morning. The drug bust in his small town would change all that, though, and suddenly push him to the front lines of a war that locks up seven black men for every white man incarcerated in the United States, devastating minority neighborhoods while white enclaves, where drugs are every bit as prevalent, are left mostly unscathed. The more Bean read and researched, the clearer the drug war’s racism became to him.

But that drug bust was the eye-opener. On that July 23 morning, dozens of police officers in tactical gear swarmed the black neighborhoods of South Tulia and pulled 47 people, many still in their underwear, out of their homes and arrested them on charges of selling powder cocaine to undercover officer Tom Coleman, a sheriff’s deputy who had posed as a drifter. Thirty-eight of the defendants were African-American, representing roughly 15 percent of the town’s black community.

Bean wondered how a town Tulia’s size could have enough drug users to sustain 47 drug lords. And powder cocaine? That’s a drug of affluence, something you’re more likely to find in Dallas high-rises than in dusty neighborhoods where crack is far cheaper and more prevalent. Also he’d never heard of Tom Coleman.

Bean, an ordained Baptist minister and Canadian native who was relatively new to town, shared his misgivings about the sting later that week at church. A white businessman pulled Bean off to the side and offered some local context.

“The sting was all about these young black males who were sports stars in high school but never left town after graduation,” Bean said the businessman told him. “They think they can do drugs, mess with our girls, and get away with it.”

He’d heard enough. Early meetings with local sympathizers became the Friends of Justice, a group that now operates out of Bean’s office in Arlington. The group initially aimed to get to the bottom of the Tulia busts, even if the effort got him  run out of town.

“The Tulia defendants weren’t being prosecuted for selling drugs, I realized,” Bean said.  “They were going down for not having a job, not paying a mortgage, not maintaining a marriage, and not tucking their children in at night. So long as they were demonstrably deficient as parents and breadwinners, the fact issues of a particular case were irrelevant.”

The facts did eventually come out in the Tulia case, but only after a district judge handed down extremely harsh sentences, like the 50-something-year-old man slapped with 90 years for allegedly selling a few grams of coke to Coleman. Civil rights lawyers and journalists who flocked to Tulia unearthed a litany of flaws in Coleman’s investigation. The officer’s own checkered past came into question too. By the time the dust settled a few years later, Gov. Rick Perry had pardoned most of the Tulia defendants, and in 2005 a jury found Coleman guilty of perjury. A visiting district judge sentenced him to 10 years probation.

To many like Bean in the civil rights trenches, Tulia offered chilling evidence that the federal war on drugs had devolved into a thinly veiled race war that’s had basically zero effect on drug consumption, availability, and related crime.

“Tulia was America writ small,” he said. “The drug war was a public policy response to conditions in economically starved inner-city neighborhoods, but the social dynamics are more visible in small, pissant towns like Tulia, because everything is small, and therefore simple.”

A 2010 federal survey found almost identical rates of drug use among whites and African-Americans. Yet minorities — particularly African-American males — make up a staggering majority of drug-war inmates.

The Drug Policy Forum of Texas estimated, based on federal numbers, that whites represented 74 percent of U.S. drug users in 2010 but only 19 percent of drug-related inmates. That year, blacks, representing about 11 percent of total drug users, made up 56 percent of drug-war inmates. Latinos were 10 percent of users and 22 percent of inmates.

“The war on drugs is really a war on black and brown people,” said Jasmine Tyler, deputy director of the Drug Policy Alliance, an advocacy group based in Washington, D.C. “We aren’t worried about drugs. If we were worried about the effects of drugs, we’d stop them from entering the country at the border. What we have is a tactic that’s used under a guise of public health and safety which really has nothing to do with either of those two areas. The drug war really is the new Jim Crow.”

Tyler  believes the disproportionate effect on minorities stems from both subconscious discrimination and outright racism.

Other reformers, like Carl Veley, a Drug Policy Forum speaker from Houston, attribute much of the apparent racism to convenience: Drug dealers in low-income neighborhoods conduct business on street corners and other open places like public parks, where it’s easy for police to make arrests.

“Police are rewarded for the number of busts they make,” Veley said. “It’s much easier to make a $5 bust over in the black neighborhood than a $5 million bust over in the white neighborhood or even a $50 bust in the white neighborhood.”

He cited conversations with police officers who told him they look at the disproportionate numbers of incarcerated blacks as clear evidence that crime is more common in black communities, which the statistics seem to call into question.

“They operate on the assumption that the justice system is absolutely fair and perfect,” Veley said. “I look at that data and say there’s clearly something wrong with the justice system.”

Critics from across the political landscape have been saying for years that Washington is losing the drug war. Drug usage levels have barely changed since Richard Nixon declared the war in 1971.

The only drug for which usage rates have dropped during the past 40 years is tobacco, as Drug Policy Forum activist Suzanne Wills dryly noted at the Fort Worth gathering.

Gil Kerlikowske, President Barack Obama’s drug czar, told the Associate Press in 2009 that the drug war has “not been successful” and that “40 years later, the concern about drugs and drug problems is, if anything, magnified, intensified.”

That’s why critics are calling for a return to the drawing board and a new national debate about how state and federal officials can more effectively attack a problem that many see as better addressed by doctors than law enforcement. They’re also worried that what they see as the institutionalized racism involved is doing long-term harm to minority communities.

Every arrest means more cost to taxpayers for prosecutions and prisons, the speakers pointed out, as well as costs to the overall economy from the self-perpetuating cycle of usage, crime, and imprisonment.

Veley said it’s crucial that minority leaders, above all, are brought into that debate.

“Black leaders look around them and say, ‘Oh my God, drugs are terrible. They’re ruining our country,’ ” he said. “Then they make the logical leap and say drugs are terrible, they must be illegal. That doesn’t follow.”

http://www.fwweekly.com/2012/05/23/jim-crow-redux/

Views – 81

The Racist Drug War Called Out

Last Thursday evening, the San Francisco Human Rights Commission held a remarkable hearing on the human rights impacts of the drug war. Thirteen experts and more than two dozen members of the public gave cogent and powerful testimony.

“I’m a recovering slave, point blank,” said Dorsey Nunn with group for recovering addicts, All of Us or None. “The war on drugs is a war on me. So if I showed up today, I showed up to ask that you stop chasing my children.”

Post-Racial Society?

Many people think of San Francisco as a progressive hip place. But African Americans in the city face felony drug arrests at a rate 19 times that of other groups in the city, and more than seven times the rate of African-Americans in other counties in the state, according to a study presented by the Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice (minute 24).

Yet most of those who have died from illegal drugs in San Francisco have been non-Latino Whites. Though African American female youth account for over 40% of felony drug arrests in the city, seven in 10 people dying from illegal drugs are aged 40 or older.

The data is part of a pattern for more than 40 years of racial disparities in drug law enforcement in San Francisco. “We have a disease in America, and that disease is racism and discrimination,” said Martin Reed as he stood with his young daughter before the commission (minute 1:41). Yet city authorities have not explained why its law enforcement practices are so discriminatory, nor why that has grown worse in the last few years.

Dorsey Nunn at San Francisco Human Rights Commission on the human rights impacts of the drug war, April 12

Local NAACP chair Alice Huffman pointed out that the drug war laws that born out of racism and discrimination. “It’s not an accident that we’ve chosen to target cocaine, as opposed to Ridilin,” noted Deborah Small (minute 1:18), founder of Break the Chains. “All the laws that we’ve passed were linked to minorities.”

Linda Evans of Legal Services for Prisoners with Children (minute 54) spoke of the impacts of incarceration on civic engagement, because those who have been imprisoned frequently cannot vote, serve on juries, or run for public office. Others addressed the difficulty of those who have been imprisoned in the drug war in obtaining employment. “When you’re looking for a job, on the application you have worked in structural discrimination,” said Nunn. “The question is ‘Have you been convicted of a felony?’ You used to ask the question a different way. It used to be ‘Are you a Negro?’”

The same questions are asked when people apply for public housing and student loans, and even – when people want to leave something for their children – on life insurance applications.

One recovering addict, David Moss (minute 1:52) recounted going to jail 14 times for being under the influence of a narcotic, and not once was he offered treatment. He said he never robbed or assaulted anyone, but he was treated like a criminal. “Having a disease is not a crime,” Moss said.

He emphasized that drugs and alcohol are symptoms of a deeper problem. “So rather than building more beds, building bigger prisons, give people a chance to find out what’s beneath the alcohol and drugs, so they can be moms, dads, brothers, sisters, and husbands and wives again.”

I spoke about the drug war’s impact in Latin America (minute 2:09), two days before several presidents from the hemisphere appealed to President Obama to revisit the whole drug war paradigm because, as I said, their people are paying for it in blood.

Community members had many recommendations for addressing the drug war’s impacts. Here are a few:

· to re-examine stop and frisk rules;

· to do away with “jurisdiction shopping,” by which local prosecutors bump up cases to the federal level to impose more prison time;

· to support state legislation that – like Portugal – would reduce drug convictions from a felony to a misdemeanor and provide treatment on request;

· to expand the definition of San Francisco as a sanctuary city;

· to sit down with Nancy Pelosi to ask what she and her party are doing in Congress to change the drug war paradigm;

· to pass a Board of Supervisors resolution urging the federal government to shift funds from incarceration and war in Latin America into treatment;

· to investigate San Francisco’s policing policies and practices to see why there is such extreme racial discrimination in its drug felony arrests, and adopt concrete plans to address it.

“Why are we willing to tolerate a law enforcement strategy on drugs,” asked Deborah Small, “that basically makes it decriminalized for people with money, people with status, for people with power, for people without melanin, and a violation for everyone else?”

You can view the entire hearing online.

FOR is working with Breaking the Chains and other groups in the Bay Area to organize a “people’s movement assembly” focused on the drug war in June. Stay tuned.

http://forusa.org/blogs/john-lindsay-poland/racist-drug-war-called-out/10487

Views – 78