Friday, December 31, 2010

Friends of Justice Special Report: Governor Barbour Suspends Scott Sisters Sentences

Dr. Alan Bean of the Friends of Justice reports that Governor Hailey Barbour has suspended the sentences of Gladys and Jamie Scott.
As the announcement appears below indicates, this was a political compromise. According to the governor's announcement, "The Mississippi Parole Board reviewed the sisters' request for a pardon and recommended that I neither pardon them, nor commute their sentence." If no one in the wider world was paying attention, this would have been the end of the matter. But thanks to Nancy Lockhart, the civil rights community is well aware of this egregious case and, with Mr. Barbour already on the hot seat for his racial tin ear he had good reason to look for a third way.
Like the vast majority of defendants, the Scott sisters can't prove their innocence. The case against them was badly over-prosecuted, state witnesses have complained of harassment, and the trial was a travesty. But even if you think Gladys and Jamie done the deed, it is difficult to justify a five-year sentence in a case like this let alone double-life. What kind of jury would hand down sentences appropriate to an abduction-torture-rape-murder scenario for an alleged crime netting $11?
Well, if the comments section in Mississippi newspapers is anything to go by, there are a lot of folks in Mississippi who are quite prepared to take an eye-for-an-ear-lobe for any sort of crime if the defendants are presented as stereotypical thugs. The response of the Mississippi Parole Board is disappointing, to say the least. A recommendation of pardon or commutation would have amounted to an admission of judicial over-kill. A mere suspension creates the impression that the Scott Sisters deserved every year of their sentences but the good governor has a compassionate heart.
I doubt Gladys and Jamie are particularly concerned about the legal niceties--they just want to breathe in the free world again. And soon they will! That is good news indeed.

Dec. 29, 2010


"Today, I have issued two orders indefinitely suspending the sentences of Jamie and Gladys Scott. In 1994, a Scott County jury convicted the sisters of armed robbery and imposed two life sentences for the crime. Their convictions and their sentences were affirmed by the Mississippi Court of Appeals in 1996.

"To date, the sisters have served 16 years of their sentences and are eligible for parole in 2014. Jamie Scott requires regular dialysis, and her sister has offered to donate one of her kidneys to her. The Mississippi Department of Corrections believes the sisters no longer pose a threat to society. Their incarceration is no longer necessary for public safety or rehabilitation, and Jamie Scott's medical condition creates a substantial cost to the State of Mississippi.

"The Mississippi Parole Board reviewed the sisters' request for a pardon and recommended that I neither pardon them, nor commute their sentence. At my request, the Parole Board subsequently reviewed whether the sisters should be granted an indefinite suspension of sentence, which is tantamount to parole, and have concurred with my decision to suspend their sentences indefinitely.

"Gladys Scott's release is conditioned on her donating one of her kidneys to her sister, a procedure which should be scheduled with urgency. The release date for Jamie and Gladys Scott is a matter for the Department of Corrections.

"I would like to thank Representative George Flaggs, Senator John Horne, Senator Willie Simmons, and Representative Credell Calhoun for their leadership on this issue. These legislators, along with former Mayor Charles Evers, have been in regular contact with me and my staff while the sisters' petition has been under review."
Link to Friends of Justice News Feed --

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Haley Barbour’s Yazoo City Also Home To Mississippi’s Most Prominent Lawyer, John Satterfield, Nationally Known Segregationist and Twice President of American Bar Association

John Satterfield Also Prominent in Citizens Councils Legal Wizardry

By Susan Klopfer

If Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour has some explaining to do over Mississippi’s racist past, one of Barbour’s fellow Yazoo City Rotarians, John Satterfield, would also have the same problem – except that he’s dead, so maybe the American Bar Association could enlighten us.

The assassination of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy left most civil rights activists grief-stricken. Kennedy had been the first president since Harry Truman to support equal rights for black Americans, even if he was not always successful. Some activists knew that Lyndon Baines Johnson, the president’s successor, had been one of only three Southern politicians who refused to sign the Southern Manifesto in protest of Brown and also orchestrated Eisenhower’s weak 1957 Civil Rights Act that helped kick-start the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the 1965 Voting Rights Act.

But could Johnson, a politician first and foremost, be trusted to work for civil rights instead of supporting his fellow white Southerners – men like Senator James O. Eastland of Sunflower County?

Apparently he could, and on November 27, 1963, President Johnson called for passage of the Civil Rights Bill as a monument to the late President Kennedy. Johnson and others knew this would not be an easy task, but few could have predicted the massive effort coming from Mississippi to undermine this legislation. By the fall of 1963, “Mississippi public funds” were already underwriting “the most active lobby [in Washington, D. C.] against civil rights legislation,” reported Ben A. Franklin in a special report to The New York Times. (It would be learned years later, the majority of funds actually emanated from a racist New York financier.)

Franklin correctly discovered money coming from (actually passing through) the Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission to initiate activities of the Coordinating Committee for Fundamental American Freedoms, Inc. (CCFAF) at the Mississippi taxpayers’ expense. CCFAF was organized in July 1963, registering as a lobby to oppose the Administration’s Civil Rights Bill and “all similar legislation.” In all, over $300,000 would be collected and spent on this legislation and related Mississippi segregationist projects, according to the New York Times reporter. Sovereignty Commission files, opened to the public years later, revealed the original major source of these funds, Wickliffe Draper.

It was an intriguing group that came together to battle the civil rights legislation: Chairing CCFAF was William Loeb, the controversial and conservative editor and publisher of the Mancheser (N.H.) Union Leader and other newspapers. James J. Kilpatrick, editor of the Richmond News Ledger was Vice Chair while secretary-treasurer and most active top officer was John Satterfield of Yazoo City, a close adviser to Governor Ross Barnett and president of both the Mississippi and American Bar Associations (in 1961 and 1962), positions he used in fighting the Civil Rights Bill.

Satterfield was clearly the conservative’s conservative -- once charging the U.S. Supreme Court with “eroding state’s rights and threatening the country’s liberty and security” by giving “inordinate weight” to the rights of individuals. By the end of the 1960s,Time magazine would label this Yazoo City lawyer as "the most prominent segregationist lawyer in the country.”

A year before the Washington, D. C. effort, Satterfield served as a special adviser to Governor Ross Barnet during James Meredith’s successful integration of the University of Mississippi, and wrote a report to the Mississippi legislature blasting Kennedy and the federal government’s intervention.

Like any power broker, Satterfield had his enemies, including Rev. Ed King of Jackson, a well-known Tougaloo College chaplain and civil rights activist. King had helped coordinate the Jackson lunch counter protests with his ally, sociologist John R. Salter. In a Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Methodist Conference rally a year following the murder of NAACP state leader Medgar Evers, King appeared in front of the session to brand Satterfield as “the chief [functionary] of the Nazi operation that operates the state of Mississippi.” Satterfield was attending as leader of the lay delegation of the Mississippi Methodist Conference and King reported on Satterfield’s “$20,000 a year to lobby against civil rights legislation in Washington.”

Despite its detractors, Mississippi’s fight over civil rights legislation, albeit short-lived, was an upscale operation under Satterfield’s direction, with an office suite serving as CCFAF headquarters at the Carrol Arms Hotel, a Capitol Hill landmark overlooking the Senate office buildings.

John Satterfield, born July 25, 1904 in Port Gibson, Mississippi, the son of a Claiborne County attorney, began working part-time in his father's office at the age of ten. Admitted to the Mississippi bar in 1929, Satterfield joined the practice of Alexander & Alexander in Jackson. That same year, the twenty-year-old was elected to the Mississippi House of Representatives where he remained until 1932.

In 1969, Time described Satterfield as "the most prominent segregationist lawyer in the country." Satterfield drafted legislation for the Citizens' Councils and acted as counsel to the Mississippi Sovereignty Commission, the Coordinating Committee for Fundamental American Freedoms. In 1969-70, Satterfield served as special counsel for a number of public school districts across Mississippi and the South seeking to delay desegregation, a consolidated case that reached as high as the Supreme Court.

Satterfield was president of the Mississippi State Bar in 1954-55, and was an active member of the American Bar Association, serving on numerous committees over the years including: Rules & Calendar, Jurisprudence & Law Reform, Resolutions, Individual Rights as Affected by National Security, Continuing Legal Education, Awards to Media of Public Information, Economics of Law Practice (chair). He served on the organization's Board of Governors from 1955 through 1958 and represented Mississippi in the House of Delegates for twelve years. In August 1960, he became president-elect of the American Bar Association and held the presidential office from 1961 through 1962.

Satterfield was also a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation, served as director of the American Judicature Society, and also belonged to the American Law Institute, the International Bar Association, the Federal Bar Association, the American College of Probate Counsel, the Mississippi Defense Lawyers Association, the International Association of Insurance Counsel. Satterfield was a member the Masons, the Rotary Club of Yazoo City, and the Kiwanis Club of Jackson. He attended both Galloway Memorial Church in Jackson and First Methodist Church in Yazoo City, serving on various local and district boards.

Satterfield died on 5 May 1981 reportedly from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Some resources uses for this article

"Satterfield, ex-ABA chief, dies at 76" Jackson Clarion-Ledger (7 May 1981): 10B.

William H. Tucker, The Funding of Scientific Racism: Wickliffe Draper and the Pioneer Fund (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2002), pp. 64-94.

Finding-Aid for the John C. Satterfield/American Bar Association Collection (MUM00685), Archives and Special Collections, The University of Mississippi Library

Parts Excerpted from Where Rebels Roost; Mississippi Civil Rights Revisited (Klopfer, 2005)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Jury selection begins Monday for a 45-year-old civil rights case in Alabama

Kathy Lohr of National Public Radio reports that Jury selection begins Monday for a 45-year-old civil rights case in Alabama. A former state trooper is charged with murder in the shooting death of Jimmie Lee Jackson, a black protester who was killed in 1965. Jackson's death united civil rights leaders across the country and led to the historic Selma-to-Montgomery march.
Marion, Ala., 1965...In the Deep South of 1965, segregation was the law of the land. Anyone who protested against the system was met with violence. Not far from Selma, Ala., in Marion, a group of African Americans was gathering in a church at night. Alabama state troopers, including James Bonard Fowler, were called in to break up the meeting, and, using billy clubs, they began beating protesters, including 26-year-old Jimmie Lee Jackson.
Continued --


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Status of Black US Males in "Crisis" New York Report States

(Buffalo News) The Council of Great City Schools today released a stark report detailing the status of young black males in the United States.

“The nation’s young black males are in a state of crisis,” the authors write. “This report is likely to make people angry, and it should. We hope that this is a louder and more jolting wake-up call to the nation than this country is used to hearing.”

Some of the key facts they cite:

- Black males are twice as likely to drop out of high school as white males.

- Ten percent of black males have a bachelor’s degree, compared to 18 percent of white males.

- White males who did not graduate from high school earn $5,000 a year more than black males who dropped out. White males with a master’s degree earned $20,000 more than black men with a master’s degree.

Here's more --

Color of Change Org. Asks People to Help Black Farmers Get Due Settlement From U.S.D.A.

For more information, contact:

Please Cut, Paste and Send the following:

Dear friends,

For years, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) denied Black farmers loans and other aid easily approved for White farmers. Many Black farming families lost their land and livelihoods as a result. The farmers sued the government for damages and won -- but only a fraction of them ever got paid.[1]

As a Senator, Barack Obama helped to secure a new settlement for the remaining Black farmers, but Senate Republicans have repeatedly blocked funding for it. A growing chorus of voices, including the Congressional Black Caucus, has called on the White House to directly address this injustice and pay these farmers what they're owed out of administrative funds -- but so far it hasn't.[2]

I've joined in calling on President Obama to do right by these farmers. Will you join us? It takes just a moment:

For more than a generation, managers at the United States Department of Agriculture systematically turned down Black farmers' applications for loans and other critical forms of aid. These loans are the lifeblood of farming, and without them many Black-owned farms were foreclosed on -- and resold to White farmers.

This insidious discrimination enabled some White farmers to prosper and grow at the expense of generations of Black families who sought to make a living off the land. At the same time, it devastated the Black farming community. While 14% of all farmers were Black at the turn of the last century,[3] by 2002 only 1.4% were Black.[4]

Black farmers eventually filed a class action lawsuit against the federal government, winning a landmark legal settlement in 1999. At the time, the USDA paid only a portion of the farmers with legitimate claims, so a second settlement was announced -- but Congress never approved funding to pay the remaining farmers.[5]

Republican obstruction has been the main stumbling block on the Black farmers' long road to justice. Senate Republicans have repeatedly stood in the way of funding the settlement. First they demanded that the money to pay the farmers not add to the national budget deficit.[6] Even after that requirement was satisfied, they once again blocked a vote on the appropriation.[7]

Members of the Congressional Black Caucus are rightfully furious at the Republicans' stalling, and have called on President Obama to bypass the legislative process by paying the settlement out of administrative funds.[8] The White House has maintained that it doesn't have the money to pay the $1.25 million settlement -- but at the same time, the administration promised to find $1.5 billion to pay disaster relief for wealthier, mostly White farmers in Arkansas.[9]

With Congress becoming even more conservative after November's election, it is even less likely that funding for the Black farmers' discrimination settlement will be funded in next year's Congress. It needs to happen now.

The White House has worked hard to pass the funding through Congress, but now they need to show Congressional Republicans that they mean business. As the CBC pointed out, justice delayed is justice denied for these aging men and women. Every day, another farm is foreclosed on and more farmers die without having been compensated for the shattering discrimination they faced. Please join me and the rest of the community in supporting the CBC's call for President Obama to fund the Black farmers' settlement. And when you do, please ask your friends and family to do the same:




Tuesday, October 19, 2010

October 19, 2010 -- Diversity, Civil Rights Briefs

WASHINGTON - A federal jury in Scranton, Pa., has convicted Brandon Piekarsky and Derrick Donchak, both of Shenandoah, Pa., of a hate crime arising out of the fatal beating of Luis Ramirez. The jury found the defendants guilty of violating the criminal component of the federal Fair Housing Act, which makes it a crime to use a person’s race, national origin or ethnicity as a basis to interfere, with violence or threats of violence, with a person’s right to live where he chooses to live. In addition, the jury found that Donchak conspired to, and did in fact, obstruct justice.

Continues --
* * *
ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- The US Department of Education has received nearly 7,000 complaints this fiscal year--an 11 percent increase over last year and the largest year to year increase in more than a decade.The source of the jump can be attributed to issues like the disciplinary rate between ethnic groups.

Continues --
* * *
CLAYTON COUNTY, Ga-- About a dozen civil rights activists met in front of the Clayton County courthouse Sunday night singing and praying on the eve of the much anticipated trial of Troy Dale West, Jr.

The 47-year-old auto body shop owner from Poulan, Georgia is accused of punching and kicking Army Reservist Tasha Hill outside a Cracker Barrel restaurant in Morrow last September.

The 35-year-old says as she and her 7-year-old daughter were leaving the restaurant she cautioned West to be careful after the door almost hit them. She said West went ballistic and started beating her and using racial slurs

Continues --
* * *
Two remarkable women served on the front lines of the Civil Rights Movement in Richardson ... Hands on the Freedom Plow: Personal Accounts by Women in SNCC, intense stories of 52 courageous women in this monumental struggle for social change.

Continues --
* * *

US DOJ and LGBT Civil Rights -- Last week, Assistant Attorney General Tom Perez joined the Mayor of Cleveland, Frank Jackson, and U.S. Attorney Steve Dettelbach, to celebrate LGBT Heritage in Cleveland. During remarks delivered at the celebration and awards ceremony held in the City Hall Rotunda, Assistant Attorney General Perez said:

“From our nation’s founding, individuals have fought for their rights, facing dozens of defeats for each victory. Progress has so often been painfully incremental. But each victory, however small, was motivation enough to keep moving. And so it has gone with the fight for LGBT equal rights. For decades now you have stood up to challenge discrimination, misconception and sometimes hatred. And hard-fought victories have been won. But the people in this room know that we have not yet reached our goal.”

Continues --


Saturday, October 16, 2010

From the Land of Emmett Till: New York Times Op-Ed Columnist Asserts Gov. Haley Barbour Could Free Mississippi Scott Sisterrs

Gov. Haley Barbour of Mississippi has to decide whether to show mercy to two sisters, Jamie and Gladys Scott, who are each serving double consecutive life sentences in state prison for a robbery in which no one was injured and only $11 was taken.

“This should be an easy call for a law-and-order governor who has, nevertheless, displayed a willingness to set free individuals convicted of far more serious crimes. Mr. Barbour has already pardoned four killers and suspended the life sentence of a fifth,” Herbert writes.

The Scott sisters, African Americans have been in prison for 16 years. Jamie, now 38, is seriously ill. Both of her kidneys have failed. "Keeping the two of them locked up any longer is unconscionable, grotesquely inhumane," Herbert writes.

The sisters were accused of luring two men to a spot outside the rural town of Forest, Miss., in 1993, where the men were robbed by three teenagers, one of whom had a shotgun. The Scott sisters knew the teens. The evidence of the sisters’ involvement has always been ambiguous, at best. The teenagers pleaded guilty to the crime, served two years in prison and were released. All were obliged by the authorities, as part of their plea deals, to implicate the sisters.

No explanation has ever emerged as to why Jamie and Gladys Scott were treated so severely. Persons close to the family have said this resulted from an ongoing fight between their father and the county sheriff, however.

In contrast, Governor Barbour has been quite willing to hand get-out-of-jail-free cards to men who unquestionably committed shockingly brutal crimes. The Jackson Free Press, an alternative weekly, and Slate Magazine have catalogued these interventions by Mr. Barbour.

"Some Mississippi observers have characterized the governor’s moves as acts of mercy; others have called them dangerous abuses of executive power."

The Mississippi Department of Corrections confirmed Governor Barbour’s role in the five cases, noting that the specific orders were signed July 16, 2008:

• Bobby Hays Clark was pardoned by the governor. He was serving a long sentence for manslaughter and aggravated assault, having shot and killed a former girlfriend and badly beaten her boyfriend.

• Michael David Graham had his life sentence for murder suspended by Governor Barbour. Graham had stalked his ex-wife, Adrienne Klasky, for years before shooting her to death as she waited for a traffic light in downtown Pascagoula.

• Clarence Jones was pardoned by the governor. He had murdered his former girlfriend in 1992, stabbing her 22 times. He had already had his life sentence suspended by a previous governor, Ronnie Musgrove.

• Paul Joseph Warnock was pardoned by Governor Barbour. He was serving life for the murder of his girlfriend in 1989. According to Slate, Warnock shot his girlfriend in the back of the head while she was sleeping.

• William James Kimble was pardoned by Governor Barbour. He was serving life for the murder and robbery of an elderly man in 1991.

More at

Monday, October 11, 2010

Diversity Business Book Uses Storytelling and Personal Anecdotes; Targets Inexperienced Supervisors, Managers

Susan Klopfer, diversity author
News Release
Contact: Susan Klopfer
Group Klopfer~ Mount Pleasant, IA
Cell 505-728-7924 ~
Author Bio:

Diversity Business Book Uses Storytelling and Personal Anecdotes; Targets Inexperienced Supervisors, Managers

A new business book that gives advice on how to manage diversity targets inexperienced supervisors and managers. Profit From Diversity: Getting Along With Others, set for Nov. 15 publication, is geared to business leaders who have little or no training in diversity management, author Susan Klopfer said.

“This is why I emphasize story-telling and include a unique glossary – one with down-to-earth definitions of diversity-related key words,” said Klopfer, who also weaves in personal examples throughout the book’s glossary to “make points relevant” for readers.

“For instance, I share my own story about travelling to Germany and getting off the plane to hear a language I don’t speak, and how the sound of people talking seems amplified. I recount feeling frustrated and even dizzy while trying figure out how to use the phones at the airport. When I found it difficult to follow instructions, even though I was trying to use a German language tourist book and getting a lot of help from Germans, I became silently angry at myself and the situation.

"But then I took a few deep breaths, sat down for a couple of minutes, and recognized I was simply experiencing some ‘culture shock’ – an encounter that anthropologists and other social scientists have written about for many years. After a few minutes, I was okay and in a better mood to figure out the telephone system. Next came learning how to signal taxis!”

Whether a person enters a host culture as a short-time visitor or as an immigrant, culture shock can be a devastating response, Klopfer continues. “Studies show that from 30 percent to 60 percent of expatriates or people who make a permanent move outside of their own country suffer serious culture shock, manifesting as anxiety and stress. Business managers, supervisors and all employees need to understand this kind of information so that we can have empathy and understanding to work better with others in the growing global markets.”

Profit From Diversity: Getting Along With Others, was written for anyone in business who wants to learn more about using diversity successfully to grow their company, including personnel, marketing, management, supervision − but also has important messages for educators, ministers, health and mental health professionals, lawyers and students, as well as anyone else who is interested in the world around them, Klopfer states.

The first part of the Iowa author’s book revolves around stories of four different people who work in business organizations and are confronted with diversity issues involving ethnic differences, gender discrimination, empowerment and change management.

“I learned about what real people were going through, while interviewing them at their businesses, as part of my research. Through their true accounts, readers will learn more about what it feels like to be the ‘different’ person at work, for instance the person who comes to this country from an Island culture and goes to work in a small town where she is asked to prepare a ‘special dinner’ every year so her co-workers can learn more about her culture.”

The problem with this particular practice, Klopfer explains, is “while it seems like a friendly-enough gesture, everyone focuses on this employee’s ethnic differences, which actually keeps her at a distance, making it harder for her to become a part of the team and contribute her unique talents to the team.”

Managing diversity is tricky. A company executive might believe she is managing diversity simply because the company employs minorities, women or others who are not part of the majority culture, usually white males, Klopfer said.

“There is far more to be done to make and keep a company diverse, and to use this diversity to benefit the company’s bottom line. Real problems arise – and employees representing diversity may leave or do not contribute their unique talents, for many reasons – when diversity is not managed well. White males are sometimes shut out, for instance, and not allowed to make their unique contributions when diversity management is not the focus.”

Klopfer says her book cites important social research, but also has “plenty of interesting true stories and accounts.” It is written “at a high school level with the goal of making it easy to read and interesting for just about anyone."

Profit From Diversity: Getting Along With Others is set for publication by CreateSpace in both e-book and print book formats to coincide with American Education Week that is annually observed beginning in the third week of each November. Susan Klopfer is a Missouri award-winning journalist and author of three civil rights books. She is a former acquisitions and development editor for Prentice Hall.


Diversity Briefs: Disabled Still Get Cool Reception in U.S. Workplace

Bloomberg Business Week
Executive Health
Kessler Foundation, News Release

FRIDAY, Oct. 8 (HealthDay News) -- While many American companies say that hiring people with disabilities is important, few of them actually hire these job seekers or take steps to provide a welcoming work environment, a new survey finds.

The national poll of 411 senior executives and human resource managers found that 70 percent of respondents' companies have diversity policies or programs in place, but only two-thirds of those with programs include disability as a component.

Only 18 percent of companies offer an education program designed to integrate people with disabilities into the workplace, and only 19 percent of companies have a specific person or department that oversees the hiring of people with disabilities, compared with 40 percent in 1995.

Among the other findings:

Only 7 percent of companies with disability programs offer a disability affinity group (a group promoting disability awareness).
Slightly more than half of respondents estimated what percentage of new hires in the past three years were people with disabilities, and on average the number they came up with was 2 percent.
The survey was released Tuesday by the Kessler Foundation and the National Organization on Disability (NOD). October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month.

Only 21 percent of people with disabilities ages 18 to 64 are working either full- or part-time, compared to 59 percent of people without disabilities, according to data released in July 2010 by the two groups. Those findings suggest little progress has been made since the Americans With Disabilities Act was implemented in 1990, the researchers said in a Kessler Foundation news release.

"America's success in the global economy depends on how well we put to use the productive capacity of every person's talent, skill and ability. This new survey reveals that most employers are not aware of the unique contribution that workers with disabilities can make and do little to recruit them," Carol Glazer, NOD president, said in the release.

"The shockingly high unemployment rate among people with disabilities suggests that employers seeking dependable workers have a rich and ready talent pool of workers from which to draw," she added.

More information

The U.S. Office of Disability Employment Policy offers work information for people with disabilities.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCE: Kessler Foundation, news release, Oct. 5, 2010

LGBT Social Justice News: Suspects charged in NYC attack of Gays

USA Today reporters Oren Dorell and Haya El Nasser report that eight teenage and adult males were arraigned Sunday on a range of charges including sexual assault, robbery, intimidation and hate crimes. Two were held in lieu of $100,000 bond, and the others were held without bond. Police said a ninth member of the Latin King Goonies, as the group called itself, was still at large.

Dorell and El Nasser say that police said the attack happened Oct. 3. They said gang members heard a rumor that one of their recruits was gay and found the teen, stripped him, and beat and sodomized him with a plunger handle until he confessed to having had sex with a 30-year-old man in the neighborhood.

"The gang members found a second teen they suspected was gay and tortured him, police said. Then they lured the 30-year-old man to an abandoned house, where they burned, beat and tortured him for hours and sodomized him with a miniature baseball bat, police said.

"The incident came on the heels of an Oct. 3 beating at the Stonewall Inn gay bar, a symbol of the gay rights movement since protests over a 1969 police raid there, and a string of suicides attributed to anti-gay bullying, including a New Jersey college student's Sept. 22 plunge off the George Washington Bridge after his sexual encounter with a man in his dorm room was secretly streamed online."

USA Today, story continues

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Bullying Problem On The Increase, Says Diversity Expert

Did You Know?

Bullying among our youth is a significant problem--and it is steadily increasing. Many experts fear bullying has become so widespread and common, adults are blinded to its extensive harm. Here are the facts:

It is estimated that 160,000 children miss school every day due to fear of attack or intimidation by other students. Source: National Education Association.

A survey conducted by the American Association of University Women reported that 85% of girls and 76% of boys have been sexually harassed in some form and only 18% of those incidents were perpetrated by an adult.

Young bullies carry a one-in-four chance of having a criminal record by age 30. Study by Leonard Eron and Rowell Huesman.

American schools harbor approximately 2.1 million bullies and 2.7 million of their victims. Dan Olweus, National School Safety Center.

One in seven students is either a bully or victim.

56% of students have personally witnessed some type of bullying at school.
15% of all school absenteeism is directly related to fears of being bullied at school.

71% of students report incidents of bullying as a problem at their school.
One out of 20 students has seen a student with a gun at school.
Mean behavior among kids is a universal problem. In a poll of 232 kids in kindergarten through 8th grade at a Connecticut elementary school, every child claimed to have been the victim of at least one schoolmate's or sibling's meanness in the previous month.

Compiled by Diversity Expert, Dr. Maura J. Cullen

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Workplace Violence Ends in Suicide; University Slow to Respond

Workplace violence and bullying, like school violence and bullying, needs to be stopped. In this case, a major university was involved -- and apparently, did nothing to help this man who eventually committed suicide. What a shame.
Kevin Morrisey, the 52-year-old managing editor of the award-winning Virginia Quarterly Review, walked to a nearby area of the University of Virginia campus on July 30, 2010, and shot himself in the head. According to an ABC News report, 18 calls were made to appropriate officials to report that Morrisey was the target of workplace bullying and was seeking protection from his employer. The report alleges that the university may not have responded in a timely manner to the employee’s plea for help.

Morrisey’s suicide is only one of many workplace shootings that result from bullying. In fact, the growing epidemic of workplace bullying has been featured in a recent documentary entitled, Murder by Proxy, released in parts of the U.S. and Canada.

Workplace bullying expert Dr. Gary Namie, President of the Workplace Bullying Institute defines bullying as “repeated mistreatment: sabotage by others that prevent work from getting done, verbal abuse, threatening conduct, intimidation and humiliation.”
Read more on Workplace Bullying...Continued --

World's Biggest LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) Study Launched; Focus On Workplace Discrimination

The world's biggest ever lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) study has been launched to highlight the true scale of workplace discrimination and reveal if diversity and inclusion programmes are working.

Community Values 2010 will investigate views on other forms of workplace discrimination such as racial harassment as well as homophobia.

The Community Values 2010 research study is thought to be the largest and most comprehensive global LGBT research study of its kind, offering unprecedented insight into the lives of LGBT people from all walks of life across six continents.

This ground-breaking project is being conducted by the specialist gay marketing consultancy Out Now and is currently live in 23 countries and 10 languages, covering more than 1.3 billion of the world’s population. More than 25,000 respondents have already taken part.

The findings will be revealed in January 2011.


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Celebrate LGBT Month in October; Missouri Teacher Organizes Activity

In January 1994, Rodney Wilson, a social studies teacher in Missouri who was appalled at the failure of textbooks to address LGBT issues, organized a grass-roots network of teachers and community leaders toward creating a month of celebration that focused on the contributions of LGBT people. October was chosen because it built on already existing traditions such as National Coming Out Day (October 11) and the anniversaries of the first two LGBT marches on Washington in 1979 and 1987.

Each year in October, growing numbers of educators find ways to bring LGBT history into their curricula and school programming, opening up a dialogue that will hopefully lead to ongoing explorations of LGBT issues and a more integrative approach to exploring LGBT themes throughout the school year.

Here's More --

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

U.S. Department of Justice Works to Combat Religious Discrimination and Protect Freedom of Religious Expression

U.S. Department of Justice
September 14, 2010

Combatting Religious Discrimination
and Protecting Freedom of
Religious Expression

The right to build, buy, or lease a place to assemble for worship is an indispensable part of religious freedom. For many faith groups, the same is true of schools for religious instruction. Religious groups simply cannot exercise their faiths without facilities adequate for their needs.

But houses of worship and religious schools often face discrimination from local zoning authorities, or face unjustifiably burdensome restrictions on their ability to use their property for worship and religious instruction. In nine hearings over the course of three years that led to the enactment in 2000 of the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA), Congress compiled what it termed "massive evidence" of widespread discrimination against religious institutions by state and local officials in land-use decisions. In particular, Congress found that minority religions are disproportionately disadvantaged in the zoning process. For example, Congress found that while Jews make up only 2% of the U.S. population, 20% of recorded cases involved synagogues. Faith groups constituting 9% of the population made up 50% of reported court cases involving zoning disputes. Congress found that even well-established religious denominations frequently faced discrimination and exclusion. Zoning codes and landmarking laws, Congress found, sometimes exclude religious assemblies in places where they permit fraternal organizations, theaters, meeting halls, and other places where large groups of people assemble for secular purposes. In other situations, Congress found that zoning codes or landmarking laws may permit religious assemblies only after highly discretionary proceedings before zoning boards or landmarking commissions, which can and often do use that authority in discriminatory ways.

To address these concerns, Congress unanimously enacted RLUIPA. RLUIPA prohibits zoning and landmarking laws that substantially burden the religious exercise of churches or other religious assemblies or institutions unless implementation of such laws is the least restrictive means of furthering a compelling governmental interest. This prohibition applies in any situation where (i) the state or local government entity imposing the substantial burden receives federal funding; (ii) the substantial burden affects, or removal of the substantial burden would affect, interstate commerce; or (iii) the substantial burden arises from the state or local government's formal or informal procedures for making individualized assessments of a property's uses.

In addition, RLUIPA prohibits zoning and landmarking laws that (1) treat churches or other religious assemblies or institutions on less than equal terms with nonreligious institutions; (2) discriminate against any assemblies or institutions on the basis of religion or religious denomination; (3) totally exclude religious assemblies from a jurisdiction; or (4) unreasonably limit religious assemblies, institutions, or structures within a jurisdiction.

In addition to creating a private cause of action, RLUIPA authorizes the Attorney General to bring suits to enforce the Act. The Attorney General has delegated this responsibility to the Civil Rights Division. Cases under the land-use provisions are handled by the Division's Housing and Civil Enforcement Section.

Examples of recent cases:

United States v. Village of Airmont: The United States alleges in this suit, filed on June 10, 2005, that a New York village enacted a ban on boarding schools specifically to keep Hasidic Jews, who educate their young men in boarding schools called yeshivas, from settling in the village. The case is pending. See the United States' brief in response to motion to dismiss.

Gainesville, Florida: The Civil Rights Division opened an investigation of the City of Gainesville, Florida after the city denied a permit to Fire of God Ministries to operate a church in a building formerly used as a Moose Lodge. The city subsequently agreed to allow the church to operate on the site, and changed its zoning code to treat religious uses the same as other assembly uses. The Civil Rights Division closed its investigation in April 2008.

Berkeley Illinois: A mosque had operated in a former school building on a 4.5 acre parcel in the Village of Berkeley, Illinois for more than 20 years. The mosque sought to build a 13,000 square foot addition to accommodate its congregation, which had grown to the point that worshipers spilled into the hallways during services, and to make exterior changes to give the building a more mosque-like appearance, including adding a minaret. The expansion project faced community opposition and repeated permit denials. The Civil Rights Division opened an investigation under RLUIPA in 2007. In March 2008, the Village agreed to allow the mosque’s project to move forward.

Albanian Associated Fund v. Township of Wayne: A New Jersey Township allegedly delayed a mosque’s building application for more than three years, then tried to stop the building project by seizing the property under eminent domain. The mosque filed suit under RLUIPA and various state and federal claims. The Division filed a friend-of-the-court brief against the Township’s motion for summary judgment. The United States' brief contends that the mosque has produced sufficient evidence to show that the Township deliberately thwarted the mosque’s application for a conditional use permit for discriminatory reasons through its exercise of its power of eminent domain. The court agreed.

United States v. City of Hollywood, Florida: The Division filed suit in April 2005 against the City of Hollywood, Florida, after it denied a permit to an Orthodox Jewish synagogue located in a residential neighborhood, a permit that the suit alleged was routinely granted to other houses of worship. The suit alleged that the denial and subsequent enforcement actions taken by the city against the synagogue were a result of discrimination toward Orthodox Jews. The Division reached a consent decree with the city and the synagogue that permits the synagogue to continue to operate at the location and to expand in the neighborhood in the future and requires training for city officials. A separate agreement signed at the same time required the city to pay $2 million in damages and attorneys' fees to the synagogue.

Village of Morton Grove, Illinois: A Muslim school in Morton Grove, Illinois, encountered community opposition to its plans to build a mosque on its property, some of which appeared to be driven by animus against Muslims. The Civil Rights Division opened a RLUIPA investigation, and, after mediation by the Department of Justice's Community Relations Service, the village reached an agreement that permitted the school to build the mosque subject to certain conditions.

Brighton Township, Pennsylvania: Brighton Township denied a permit for an Assemblies of God church to build on a 3.25-acre lot, since the zoning code had a five-acre minimum for churches. However, the zoning code specifically stated that there was no minimum acreage requirement for adult movie theaters, cabarets, assembly halls, and fraternal organizations. The Civil Rights Division opened an investigation, and the Township amended its zoning code.

Midrash Sephardi v. Town of Surfside: Two Orthodox Jewish Congregations were barred from meeting in space they had rented above a bank in the city's commercial district. The City's zoning code permitted private clubs, lodge halls, dance studios, music studios, and language schools in the commercial district, but excluded houses of worship. The Civil Rights Division filed a friend-of-the-court brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, and a brief as intervenor defending the constitutionality of RLUIPA. The court ruled that the exclusion of houses of worship from the commercial district violated RLUIPA, and that RLUIPA did not exceed Congress's constitutional authority to enforce the Fourteenth Amendment of the Constitution.

United States v. Maui County: The Civil Rights Division sued the county of Maui after it denied a permit for Hale O Kaula, a small, nondenominational Christian church that has held services on Maui since 1960, to build a church on 5.85 acres of land in an agricultural district. The church encourages practitioners to grow food in accordance with Biblical principles and live in harmony with the land, and being in an agricultural district was integral to its worship needs. The county permitted various secular assemblies in the district, including rodeo facilities, petting zoos, and sports fields. The county subsequently settled with the church, permitting it to build and paying it damages and attorney's fees.

Guru Nanak Sikh Society v. County of Sutter: A Sikh congregation in a California county that only permits houses of worship in residential and agricultural districts first purchased land in a residential district, was denied a permit, and then purchased land in an agricultural district, only to be denied a permit there as well. The United States argued that the congregation's rights under RLUIPA had been violated, and the court of appeals agreed.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Feds Go After Arizona For Violating Civil Rights of Non Native English Speakers


Two federal investigations have found that Arizona is violating the civil rights of some students who are not native English speakers by denying them access to special programs for English learners.

In one case, the U.S. Education and Justice departments concluded that Arizona is inappropriately classifying students as fluent in English when tests show they are not.

In the other case, investigators found that the state is not identifying thousands of students who might struggle with English because it replaced a three-question survey with a single vague question.

Arizona could lose millions in federal funding if officials don't fix the system to address investigators' concerns.

AP story continued --

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Arizona's 'Tough Sheriff' Must Answer To Justice Department; Discrimination Against Hispanics

The Associated Press
PHOENIX — The Justice Department sued the nation's self-proclaimed "toughest sheriff" on Thursday, calling Joe Arpaio's defiance of an investigation into his office's alleged discrimination against Hispanics "unprecedented."

It's the first time in decades a lawman has refused to cooperate in one of the agency's probes, the department said.

The Arizona sheriff had been given until Aug. 17 to hand over documents the federal government first asked for 15 months ago, when it started investigating alleged discrimination, unconstitutional searches and seizures, and jail policies that discriminate against people with limited English skills.

From AP, continued

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

U.S. Demographics Changing; Businesses That Adapt To Diversity Will Move Out Ahead of Others

Wednesday, September 1, 2010
Contact: Susan Klopfer, MBA
Group Klopfer
Cell 505-728-7924

U.S. citizens are changing, whether they know it or not. "Besides getting older, our skin color is changing. Even our taste for food, how we dress and the religions we follow are undergoing major transformation.

"From businesses to families — new languages, new relationships and new music and entertainment are emerging into our lives," says diversity expert, Susan Klopfer.

People once called "minorities" are becoming the majority and are introducing a whole new set of likes and dislikes...and requirements, says Klopfer, who is also a civil rights author and diversity consultant.

Klopfer draws on vital statistics, like this data recently reported by the U.S. government: half the country's population will be members of ethnic minorities by 2050, according to the Census Bureau.

How can businesses−from banks to colleges (large and small)−adapt to what some see as chaos, and thrive?

It is clear, some organizations are having a very difficult time addressing the needs of new employees, Klopfer states -- "...those employees who are not part of the curret majority group, which is typically white and male."

“Unfortunately, some businesses are not recognizing the importance of the changing workforce and marketplace and many are being sued left and right over employment discrimination." Klopfer shares some shocking statistics:

In one major study using data from the Equal Employment Opportunity
Commission, discrimination charges increased by 77 percent in a 7-year period. Of these complaints, 37 percent sued over racial discrimination, 31 percent charged sexual discrimination and harassment, 9 percent alleged discrimination based on national origin and the remaining 23 percent of the complaints were mixed, and included discrimination based religion, age, disability and other allegations.

Klopfer adds to this, a study by the U.S. Department of Justice finding that lawsuits claiming discrimination in the workplace more than tripled in the late 1990s.

“Here is the trend: more than 82,000 private-sector discrimination charge filings were received in Fiscal Year 2007 by EEOC, representing the largest single-year increase since the 1990s. Two years later, there were over 93,000 workplace discrimination charges filed with the EEOC nationwide during Fiscal Year 2009, the second highest level ever, and monetary relief obtained for victims totaled over $376 million.”

In fact, more people with disabilities filed charges of discrimination against their employers that year than at any other time in the 20-year history of the Americans with Disabilities Act, Klopfer adds.

But there is an answer, a way to take advantage of the unique opportunities embedded in diversity, Klopfer says, with education serving as the major key. She has announced four free, 30-minute diversity education webinars geared for business owners and executives. "But anyone can attend," she adds.

Titled "Five Costly Diversity Mistakes Companies Make -- And How to Avoid Them," each online session addresses how organizations and businesses often respond to diversity changes, "...unfortunately, too often in ways that damage their ability to market successfully to all segments of today's diverse populations. Companies will be challenged to answer such questions as −

Are you ready to attract new diverse and global customers? Will your company be able to hire and keep the best employees? Is your organization stuck with being afraid of getting sued because of discrimination or harassment perpetrated, without your knowledge, by your own untrained employees?

The Iowa-based consultant states workshops are available to "anyone looking for sensible answers to these questions and more." Attendees will receive a gift valued at $500, Klopfer said. "Each session contains the same information; we're mixing dates and times to accommodate as many people as possible."

Online session dates are set for Wed, Sep 8, 2010 4:00 PM - 4:30 PM CDT , Thu, Sep 9, 2010 10:00 AM - 10:30 AM CDT , Fri, Sep 10, 2010 10:00 AM - 10:30 AM CDT, Mon, Sep 13, 2010 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM CDT.


- End -

Monday, August 30, 2010

SPLC Settles Wrongful Death Suit of 73-Year-Old Retired Black Man in Louisiana

Aug. 30, 2010
Southern Poverty Law Center
Morris Dees, Founder

Dear Friend,

I'm proud to tell you that we've settled the lawsuit we filed on behalf of Louise Marie Monroe, the widow of a black man who was shot to death by a police officer in Homer, Louisiana.

Earlier this year, we filed a civil suit against the town of Homer, seeking damages for the wrongful death of Bernard Monroe. The 73-year-old retiree was enjoying a family reunion on Feb. 20, 2009, when two white police officers came onto his property. Our suit claimed that the police officers created a volatile situation when they chased Mr. Monroe's son into the family home and shot the young man in the back with a Taser gun.
During the commotion, Mr. Monroe went to check on Louise Marie, his wife of 49 years. As he was climbing his porch stairs, one of the police officers in his home shot him several times through the screen door. Because he had lost his voice to cancer, Mr. Monroe was unable to call out during the incident. The officers said they thought he had a gun; several witnesses said he did not.

Morris Dees and Bernard Monroe's widow, Louise Marie

The settlement will allow Bernard Monroe's family and the town of Homer to move forward from this terrible tragedy. The town's attorney, Jim Colvin, agrees that the settlement will help heal the community. "The town needs an opportunity to recover from this unfortunate event. This settlement is a key step in that healing process."
Because of the nature of the settlement, I'm not allowed to disclose the amount of the monetary damages, and the town did not admit liability. Both officers have left the police department.

One of Mr. Monroe's family members told me how grateful they all were for the SPLC's help, saying that "everyone we met at the Center was kind and considerate" and that the attorneys were "real people who cared about our family."

But we could never have won justice for Mr. Monroe's widow and family without your support. As you may know, the SPLC takes no portion of the damages we win for our clients. Your dedication to fighting injustice and intolerance enables us to take on cases like this. Please accept my personal thanks for standing with us in this important case and all the other work we do.


Morris Dees
Founder, Southern Poverty Law Center

Friday, August 27, 2010

Bob Dylan to Release Ninth Volume Bootleg Series; The Death of Emmett Till, Included

Rolling Stone
By Daniel Kreps
Aug 24, 2010 9:48 AM EDT

Bob Dylan will release the ninth volume of his Bootleg Series on October 19th, he has announced, confirming recent rumors. This edition will be the first official collection of the Witmark Demos, 47 songs that Dylan recorded between 1962 and 1964 for his first two publishers, Leeds Music and M. Witmark & Sons. The tracks -- which Dylan performed with only acoustic guitar, harmonica and some piano, all before he was 24 -- include early versions of classics like "Blowin' in the Wind," "A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall" and "The Times They Are A-Changin'," plus 15 more recorded exclusively for the sessions, including "Ballad for a Friend," "The Death of Emmett Till" and "Guess I'm Doing Fine." The deluxe set will feature a booklet of photos from those sessions and in-depth liner notes by Colin Escott.

Rolling Stone, Continued

Civil Rights Author Talks About 55th Anniversary of Emmett Till's Murder; Spark That Set Off Modern Civil Rights Movement

Susan Klopfer, author
Who Killed Emmett Till
Aug. 27, 2010

This Saturday is the 55th anniversary of the murder of 14 year-old Emmett Till, an incident that galvanized the modern civil rights movement.

Do you know the story of Emmett Till? I am always surprised at how many people don’t know this story or recognize its historical significance. Recently, I met an anthropologist from a well-known Midwestern university who had never heard of Till. After telling her the story, she was deeply concerned that neither she or her students knew about Till. The story is still quite new and is just now becoming part of contemporary history taught in schools. But it is an important story and your children should hear it. Is your school teaching this history? Call and ask. You will be surprised.

In observance, the Emmett Till Foundation today kicks off a weekend of observances commemorating the 55th anniversary of his murder with its "A Time of Reflection and Remembrance" gala. On Saturday, the foundation will launch the "Never Again" campaign against social injustice, which continues the positive activist message of Till's late mother, Mamie Till Mobley.

The campaign includes the pledge:

I pledge to never again allow the ugly parts of our past history to become the present.
I will forever stand up against racism, hatred, injustice and crimes against our youth.
I will always stand up for peace, justice and equality for all.

The campaign's launch is on the actual anniversary of Till's lynching, which shares the same historic date of Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" speech and Barack Obama's acceptance of the Democratic nomination for president.

For decades, Emmett Till's story has been defined by justice denied and justice delayed. But there is now an effort to mark a new and more hopeful chapter in the story of the Chicago teen whose savage killing galvanized the civil rights movement.

"We want to make sure people understand what hate looks like, and Emmett's story includes all of that. But where do we go from there? We want to flip the script on injustice and move forward," said Deborah Watts, co-founder and president of the Emmett Till Legacy Foundation.

Read more from the Chicago Tribune at,0,1316443.story

Meanwhile, a second group, the Emmett Till Memorial Commission has requested permission to place one marker in front of the location of the former grocery store called Bryant’s where Till allegedly whistled at a white woman, and another marker at the East Money Church of God.


And an unnamed businessman from Texas is seeking to restore the grocery story in Money, Mississippi when young Till whistled at a white woman, a gesture that sparked the modern civil rights movement.

Today, Jerry Mitchel from Jackson, Mississippi wrote about the plan:

I have spoken with the person, as well, and he seems quite serious about his plan..

If you don't know this important civil rights story (and the history of the modern civil rights movement), please pick up a book and start reading. Or, check out my ebook, Who Killed Emmett Till? You can download half of this book for free!!

Go to Smashwords at for a free sample.

Meanwhile, some say that Till's death kicked off the civil rights movement, but this is not so. The civil rights movement began the day that people were enslaved and brought to this country. There are many historical accounts of black men and women resisting enslavement starting back then. After the Civil War, following the First World War and leading into the Second World War, there are stories of significant attempts by individuals and groups to overcome enslavement and mistreatment. Till's 1955 murder caught the attention of Rosa Parks who then refused to sit at the back of a city bus in Montgomery, Alabama. It was Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. who then took the reigns of the modern civil rights movement.

Susan Klopfer

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Mississippi Scott Sisters Emergency; Jamie Scott in Crisis, Says Long-time Supporter

Nancy LockhartAugust 23, 2010 at 9:09am
Subject: Urgent ~ Please E-mail and Call For Jamie Scott ~ Once Again Jamie Needs Hospitalization

(This email just arrived from Nancy Lockhart. Remember these women when Haley Barbour announces his run for the presidency. Susan Klopfer, publisher)

Dear Supporters:

Jamie was hospitalized this weekend but, is now in the prison infirmary. The hospital scheduled surgery for her this morning at 8:30am to unclog the fistula in her arm which is used for dialysis treatments. Jamie was not taken back to the hospital for this surgery.

Please write Dr. Gloria Perry, cc Christopher Epps and Margaret Binghman. Flood their offices with e-mails and ask them to have this surgical procedure done immediately at the hospital. Your e-mails and phone calls have saved Jamie's life in the past and will continue to do so. Let these officials know that Jamie needs to be in a hospital NOW!

Dr. Gloria Perry - gperry@mdoc.;
Margaret Bingham - mbingham@mdoc.;
Christopher Epps - CEPPS@mdoc.;

You may also call.- Dr. Gloria Perry - (601) 359-5155
Margaret Bingham- 601-932-2880
Christopher Epps - 601-359-5600

Thank you,

Nancy Lockhart, M.J.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

The Commission on Civil Rights approves motion asking Congress allow it to take Justice Department to court if it refuses to enforce commission's subpoenas and other "lawful requests"

ABC News/Politics

The Commission and Agency Have Clashed Over the Case of the New Black Panther Party

The Commission on Civil Rights has approved a motion asking Congress to essentially allow it to take the Justice Department to court if it refuses to enforce the commission's subpoenas and other "lawful requests" pertaining to a lawsuit against the New Black Panther Party.

In a heated, often unruly meeting where tempers flared, most of the eight-member, conservative-heavy commission accused the Justice Department of failing to enforce the voting rights law in a race-neutral way in the case of the black panthers.

The Bush administration filed a voter intimidation lawsuit against three members of the New Black Panther Party in January 2009, alleging that they intimidated voters outside a polling place in Philadelphia in November 2008 by hurling racial slurs.

ABC reports: Continued
* * *
Susan Klopfer, MBA, helps organizations discover and implement diversity plans. Visit Susan's website to learn about her free online workshop, Five Costly Diversity Mistakes Companies Make and How To Avoid Them.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Sexual Harassment, Housing Discrimination, Nets female tenants Award

Department of Justice
Office of Public Affairs
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEFriday, August 6, 2010

Jury Awards $115,000 to Victims of Housing Discrimination

WASHINGTON – A federal jury in Detroit today returned a $115,000 verdict against an Ypsilanti, Mich., man for sexually harassing female tenants in his capacity as a property manager, the Justice Department announced today. The jury also found the property owner and his company liable for the illegal harassment.
The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Detroit, alleged that Glenn Johnson subjected female tenants to discrimination on the basis of sex, including severe, pervasive and unwelcome sexual harassment, in violation of the federal Fair Housing Act.   The complaint also alleged that Ronnie Peterson and First Pitch Properties LLC, the owners of the properties, are liable for Johnson’s discriminatory conduct.
“Civil rights laws in this country – including the Fair Housing Act – seek to ensure that all individuals may live free from discrimination and harassment,” said Thomas E. Perez, Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights. “Today’s jury verdict reminds landlords and rental agents that tenants should never be subjected to sexual harassment and that the Justice Department will vigorously fight to protect tenants from illegal discrimination.”
Over the course of a six day trial, the United States presented evidence that Glenn Johnson subjected six women to severe and pervasive sexual harassment, ranging from unwelcome sexual comments and sexual advances, to requiring sexual favors in exchange for their tenancy.   One woman testified that Johnson refused to give her keys to her apartment until she agreed to have sex with him. Another woman testified that she had sex with Johnson at least 20 times because he threatened that the owner would evict her if she did not.
The United States also presented evidence that Washtenaw County Commissioner Ronnie Peterson, who owned the properties, knew that Johnson was sexually harassing tenants but did nothing to stop it. One woman testified that she complained in person to Peterson about Johnson’s conduct yet Johnson continued to handle properties for Peterson for nearly two more years.
“Today’s verdict sends a message to landlords and rental agents that they cannot abuse their positions and sexually harass tenants,” said U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan Barbara L. McQuade. “Women should be safe from sexual harassment in their own homes.”
Compensatory and punitive damages in the amount of $115,000 will be divided among the six female tenants whom the jury found were victims of the harassment.   The United States will file a post-trial motion seeking civil penalties against the three defendants as well as comprehensive injunctive relief. This case was referred to the Department of Justice by the Fair Housing Center of Southeastern Michigan.

Fighting illegal discrimination in housing is a top priority of the Justice Department.   The federal Fair Housing Act prohibits discrimination in housing on the basis of race, color, religion, sex familial status, national origin and disability.   More information about the

Civil Rights Division and the laws it enforces is available at  Individuals who believe that they have been victims of housing discrimination or have information related to this lawsuit can call the Housing Discrimination Tip Line at 1-800-896-7743, e-mail the Justice Department at or contact the Department of Housing and Urban Development at 1-800-669-9777.

10-906Civil Rights Division

Friday, July 23, 2010

Series of Free Online Diversity Workshops Announced By Civil Rights Author, Diversity Expert

Contact: Susan Klopfer
Group Klopfer

Upside Potential Exists For Companies That Embrace Diversity

New EEOC data shows that religious discrimination claims have doubled in the past 15 years, and the number of settlements has tripled since 1997. This should not surprise most executives for two reasons, says diversity consultant Susan Klopfer.

First, the United States is seeing a broader mix of religious backgrounds as workforces diversify. Second, employees have become more litigious, “and they’re well aware of the laws that give them the right to certain accommodations based on their religious beliefs.”

Yet the real question for today’s companies are whether they are seeing this and related employment discrimination litigation as a "problem" or at least some components as an opportunity to strengthen their businesses, Klopfer says.

The Iowa civil rights author is announcing three online workshops entitled “Five Costly Diversity Mistakes Companies Can Make and How To Avoid Them.” Sessions are set for Tuesday, August 10 and 24 and Wednesday, September 1 running from 2 to 2:30 p.m. Central time. There is no cost and attendees receive a free gift, Klopfer said.

For the Thur, Aug 12, 2010 2:00 PM - 2:45 PM CDT online session, click HERE now to register.

For the Tue, Aug 24, 2010 2:00 PM - 2:45 PM CDT online session, click HERE now to register.

For the Wed, Sept 1, 2010 2:00 PM - 2:45 PM CDT online session, click HERE now to register.

“As our country becomes more and more diverse in every aspect, from changing family structures and increasing minority population to changing religious patterns, there is great opportunity for the organization that adapts to and embraces diversity, and this will be the focus of these online workshops,” Klopfer said.

Klopfer, who holds a master’s degree in business administration from Indiana Wesleyan University, is also the author of three books on civil rights, including her latest, Who Killed Emmett Till?” Persons wishing to sign up for workshops can do so at Klopfer’s website


Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Free Diversity Online Workshop Set for July 27

Diversity Workshop Announcement
Susan Klopfer

A free 30-minute online workshop on Five Costly Diversity Mistakes Companies Make -- And How to Avoid Them is set for Tuesday, July 27 at 2 p.m. All participants will receive a special bonus offer for attending, valued at $500.

To register, go to

Friday, July 16, 2010

Muslim Civil Rights Group Endorses NAACP Condemnation Of Tea Party For Harboring Racists

CAIR, the national group focused on protecting civil rights for the nation's Muslim population, is standing in support of the NAACP's resolution calling on Tea Party leaders to repudiate racism in their ranks. In a strongly-worded statement released this afternoon, CAIR spokesperson Ibrahim Hooper said that his group shares the NAACP's concerns about racist rhetoric found among tea partiers.

"If the Tea Party wishes to be taken seriously by mainstream Americans, it must repudiate all those who express or promote extremist, racist or bigoted views while claiming to be affiliated with the movement," he said.

Story Continued --

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Mississippi Scott Sisters Documentary Now In Production

News Release from Nancy Lockhart
Subject: July 4th 2010 - Jamie Scott's Birthday - Documentary of The Scott Sisters and Thank You's

Dear Supporters:

Jamie and Gladys would like to thank all supporters for everything that is being done to assist in securing their freedom. They would especially like to thank The Gray Haired Witnesses for the most recent Washington, DC event.

Jamie sends a special thank you to everyone for contacting the Health Department regarding conditions at MDOC's- Quickbed Unit which is where she and many other inmates are housed. She has said that the prison made noticeable improvements and are continuing to do so. Many other inmates have also expressed their thanks to everyone who called and wrote the Mississippi Health Department. The Health Department did visit the prison and it has made a great difference in the lives of inmates.

Mrs. Rasco said that Jamie has broken out in boils again. The medical clinic has given her antibiotics and hopefully this will clear her condition. Although Jamie is sick; she is in very high spirits because of the improved living conditions. I would personally like to thank Ms. Gloretha Darlene Pinckney-Gray for sharing the idea of contacting OSHA and the Health Department. Ms. Gray - you have made a difference in many lives there at MDOC - Quick Bed. We thank you!

Jamie's Birthday is on July 16th and she would very much appreciate receiving cards and letters from supporters. Please write to Jamie Scott at the following address:
Jamie Scott # 19197
P.O. Box 88550
Pearl, MS 39288-8850

Anyone who wishes to send funds directly to Jamie for her commissary privileges may do so by following instructions provided via this link.;

Free The Scott Sisters T-Shirts are available and may be purchased via the link below. Thank you to Paul Lefrak for organizing this and to Jack and Mike for picking up the torch! Please order your shirts, wear them and assist us in spreading the word.;

Last but not least, a documentary is now being produced of The Scott Sisters, their family and this tragic case. The producer and his team are working around the clock to meet deadlines and ensure that all bases are covered. This documentary should be released in a few months!

In Solidarity,

Nancy R. Lockhart, M.J.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Will U.S. Dept. of Justice Intercede? Curtis Flowers Found Guilty of 4 Murders in Mississippi

Alan Bean, Friends of Justice reports that Curtis Flowers has been found guilty of all four counts of murder. Dr. Bean, a forensic historian, has been covering the trial. Here is part of his most recent report with a link to his blog. Remember that Dr. Bean's organization can always use donations to help fund his work. (Susan)

Curtis Flowers has been found guilty on all four capital murder counts. No surprise there, but I wasn’t prepared for a twenty-seven minute jury (non)deliberation. That’s right, twenty-seven minutes. Hardly long enough to pick a jury foreman.

The courtroom quickly filled up with the kind of folks who have been leaving derogatory comments on our blog. One older man rushed up the courthouse steps as I was emailing supporters. “I guess I’m late,” I heard him say, “but maybe not.”

“They’re just starting the sentencing phase,” another man replied.

“That’s the part I’m looking for,” the first man exulted.

He will have to wait until tomorrow morning. The defense put on an elaborate and lengthy mitigation case highlighted by the testimony of corrections expert James Aiken. He testified that he had to sit down with Curtis Flowers for two face-to-face meetings because he couldn’t believe that a man locked up for almost fourteen years doesn’t have a single disciplinary write-up. Aiken testified that manipulative inmates can put up a good front for a short time, but anyone who holds up for over a decade is an exceptional inmate.

The disconnect was almost surreal. There is a very good reason why Curtis Flowers has a discipline record bordering on the miraculous–he is 100% innocent. He simply doesn’t fit the killer profile. His detractors have done a good job of demonizing Mr. Flowers over the years, but anyone who has sat down with the man (as I did for forty-five minutes Wednesday night) can’t help but be impressed with his gentle faith and quiet confidence.

The sentencing hearing got under way with several representatives of the victims families testifying. The room was in tears as Roxanne Ballard explained that her children were too young in 1996 to know the woman she used to be. One of Carmen Rigby’s sons talked about the horror of losing a mother on the verge of college. The grief in the room was palpable.

Link --

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Day 9 of the Curtis Flowers Murder Trial; Defense Begins Its Case

Dr. Alan Bean, a forensic historian, is covering the trial of Curtis Flowers in Winona, Mississippi. Flowers, an African American, is on trial for the sixth time on the same murder charges -- setting a judicial record. The following comes from Bean, this morning:

On Tuesday morning, the Winona perjury parade ground to a halt. Bonita Henry is one of several witnesses in this legal marathon who are [no]longer capable of testifying. She appeared courtesy of a brief excerpt from the 2004 trial transcript.

Tardy Furniture store in Winona, Mississippi

Ms. Henry said she was sitting on her porch between 9:00 and 9:30 on the morning of the murders when she saw Curtis Flowers walk by. He was wearing white shorts and a T-shirt.

I was hoping the defense attorney in the transcript would ask if Curtis had a .380 automatic stuck inside the elastic waist band of his shorts–but the question never came.

Curiously, neither the state nor the defense asked if the witness remembered seeing Mary Jeanette Fleming heading west while Curtis was walking east. A couple of days ago, Ms. Fleming testified that Curtis passed her just a few seconds after he passed Ms. Henry, only this time he was wearing a pair of black dress pants, a dress shirt and a jacket.

Continue here -- (and please consider contributing to Friends of Justice to help pay Dr. Bean's expenses. Because of his work, several major media organizations have written about this travisty).

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Day 8, Curtis Flowers Mississippi Murder Trial; Smoke and Fog...

Dr. Alan Bean, forensic historian, is covering this historical murder trial in Winona, Mississippi. Here is his report on Day Eight:

“Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.” The prosecution of Curtis Flowers rests on this bit of folk wisdom. Curtis told investigators he never strayed onto the east side of Highway 51 on the morning in 1996 when four innocent people were murdered execution-style at the Tardy furniture store. One witness seeing Curtis Flowers on the east side of the highway might be mistaken, but the state has half- a-dozen witnesses making this claim.

With that much smoke there must be a fire some place. Right?

Or are we all being duped by an elaborate fog machine?

Strip the eye-witness testimony from this case and nothing remains but junk science.

There’s the bloody footprint. The Mississippi Crime Lab has shown that the print was made by a size 10-11 Grant Hill Fila running shoe. An empty shoe box for a pair of 10.5 Grant Hill Filas was found in a chest of drawers owned by Connie Moore, Curtis Flowers’ live-in girlfriend.

Connie Moore says the shoe box is from a pair of Filas she purchased for her son Marcus. Marcus confirms this testimony.

Smoke or fog?

The problem pile grows. The pool of blood grew gradually in the half hour between the murders and the arrival of Sam Jones (the first man to witness the crime scene). Moments after the killing there would have been little blood to step in.

Sam Jones has testified that the print wasn’t there when he arrived at the Tardy furniture store.

An older white witness named Porky Collins claims to have seen two black men walking toward Tardys at around 10:00, a moment or two after Sam Jones ran off to report the crime.

Grant Hill Filas were a marketing sensation in the summer of 1996, with over 600,000 pair in the size 10-11 range purchased nationally. Every young man in Winona who could make the $100 price tag owned a pair.

Smoke or fog?

Then we have the single particle of gunshot residue found on the web of the defendant’s right hand. Doug Evans has a little mantra: particles of lead, barium and antimony (with a unique spherical morphology) can only be produced by the discharge of a firearm.

Does this mean Curtis Flowers fired a gun on the morning of July 16, 1996? The jury may be thinking along these lines, but claims from expert witnesses are more modest. A single particle of residue (and an unusually tiny particle at that) can easily be picked up by casual contact, especially if you are in a highly contaminated environment. Curtis Flowers was picked up by two officers, taken to the police station in a police car, and was questioned at the police station. Studies have shown that gunshot residue is ubiquitous in all these environments.

Smoke of fog?

The residue evidence in the Flowers case is meaningless. Judge Joey Loper was asked to restrict testimony on the residue issue but ruled for the state (his standard practice).

A crime this horrific inspires sympathy for the victims and a deep craving for justice, but junk science alone falls short of a conviction.

Enter the witnesses.

For the past few days we have witnessed a parade of sad, compromised black people testifying that, fourteen years ago, they saw Curtis Flowers walking in the direction of the Angelica garment factory, hanging around the Angelica parking lot, returning home, heading downtown, walking in the direction of the furniture store, arguing with an unidentified stranger on the Boulevard in front of Tardys, and running from the scene of the crime.

Smoke or fog?

One or two of these people may come off as a bit addled, but you still have six or seven fingers pointing at Mr. Flowers.

In fact, so many people claim to have seen the defendant doing so many things, at so many times, and in so many places that even the prosecutor and defense counsel have a hard time keeping all the details straight.

Who are these people, and why do they keep repeating the same tortured testimony year-after-year?

There’s Patricia Hollman, the woman who saw Curtis Flowers heading north to get to a southern destination. Elaine Ghoulston, the sharp-eyed neighbor who detected a pair of Grant Hill Fila running shoes at a distance 200 feet (I paced it off yesterday morning).

There’s Katherine Snow who first said she saw a five-foot-six stranger with a cap leaning against a car in the Angelica parking lot and then, a month later, remembered that she had really seen a five-foot-ten, hatless, Curtis Flowers.

There’s Jeanette Fleming who waited seven months to report meeting a flirtatious Curtis Flowers (“Hi, good-looking!”). Fleming was working at McDonald’s when officers spirited her off to the police station for a little tete-a-tete. She has no idea how they got her name.

There’s Charles “Porky” Collins, the man who, in a single eventful morning witnessed (a) Carmen Rigby entering Tardy Furniture for the last time, (b) Curtis Flowers arguing with an unnamed buddy in front of the store, and (c) Doyle Simpson reporting his gun stolen. In the midst of all this activity, Collins made three failed attempts to visit a dry cleaning establishment.

There’s Odell Hallomon who claims an extreme addiction to cigarettes drove him to accuse his loving sister of perjury. In the second trial, Hallomon testified that he and Patricia Hallomon cooked up a story about Curtis Flowers to get their hands on the $30,000 reward. In a letter to Curtis’ mother, Odell said he knew his family would reject him for telling the truth, but he was determined to do the right thing.

“When I got out of prison, my momma was on me everyday,” Odell explained today. After a few weeks of constant harassment from his mother and sister, he got on the phone and told Doug Evans he was going to change his story.

Mr. Evans has done his best to harmonize this flurry of testimony, but serious problems remain. Jeanette Fleming saw Curtis a block from Tardys at 9:00 am and Clemmie Fleming saw him running away from the furniture store 60 minutes later. Would a murder spend a full hour at the crime scene? What did he do, and where did he go between 9:40 (when the bodies were first discovered) and 10:00 when Clemmie saw him leaving the scene?

While Clemmie saw Curtis fleeing the scene, Porky Collins saw him engaged in a vigorous argument on the boulevard.

Police initially had two suspects: Doyle Simpson and Curtis Flowers. Shortly after Porky reported his strange tale to the police, Doyle had been eliminated as a suspect. This made the second man (and his two-tone, dusty, brown Pontiac) superfluous, but the report could not be altered. Doug Evans copes by pretending that Porky never mentioned a second man.

If Curtis had access to a vehicle, why did he leave on foot?

And why is there no overlap in the way the various witnesses describe the defendant’s physical appearance? They have him wearing shorts, “windpants”, dress pants (of various colors), T-shirts (in a rainbow of colors and several designs), a hat, a shaved head, short hair, and, remarkably, a jacket–this on a scorching Mississippi summer’s day.

The problems with the eyewitness testimony are too numerous for a single post, but you get the idea.

Is the state’s case generating smoke or is that a fog of confusion settling over the courtroom.

And why would any self-respecting prosecutor allow himself to be associated with witnesses this unconvincing? Doug Evans created these witnesses. They are his puppets. They twirl and sing at his command. Sure, you can win convictions by sponsoring perjury, but have you no pride man? Is this the legacy you had in mind when you left law school?

Why did all these people, over a period of nine months, agree to sign Curtis Flowers’ death warrant? Was it greed, fear, a desire to be left alone, or a combination of all these factors?

At the end of Clemmie Fleming’s testimony on Monday, defense attorney Ray Carter asked her why it took nine long months for her to turn on Curtis Flowers.

“They told me there was a baby in it?” the dead-pan witness responded.

“A baby?” Carter said.

Clemmie explained that the 16 year-old Bobo Stewart, one of the victims, was just like a baby in her eyes (she was 21 at the time). Outraged by this new information, she broke her silence.

Carter asked one final question. “You don’t believe that Curtis Flowers killed those people at Tardys, do you Clemmie?”

“No, sir,” she replied softly.

So let’s get this straight. Outraged by the death of an innocent adolescent, Clemmie decided to implicate an innocent man.

Ponder that, dear reader, and you’ll know why Friends of Justice is in Winona.

The tension at the courthouse deepens by the day. One observer described a brief encounter with an indignant woman. “Are you with the Friends of Justice?” she asked.

“No,” he replied, “I’m from Greenwood.”

The woman softened instantly. “Oh, then I’m sorry for glaring at you,” she said.

By now, everybody on the white side of the room knows who I am and they’re all glaring (yes, I notice). I was standing outside the courthouse, fumbling with my Blackberry, when I glimpsed a middle-aged gentleman glanced in my direction.

“By the way,” he said, “I find you disgusting.”

“Thank you, sir,” I replied in the calmest voice I could muster.

“You’re welcome,” he snarled.

Friends of Justice

Friday, June 11, 2010

Gray-Haired Witnesses Update: Washington D.C. Event, June 21; Scott Sisters of Mississippi Top Item


We need your support in bringing national attention to the case of the Scott Sisters and all other women who have been incarcerated wrongly and egregiously over-sentenced, punishing and destroying our families and children, please plan to participate!


Thanks so much to Julie Turner for all of her help in organizing support in solidarity with the Gray-Haired Witnesses!

The New York Avenue Presbyterian Church has confirmed the Radcliffe Room for press conference/rally attendees on Monday, June 21, 2010 to rest, use the bathroom and get situated. The times we may use the room are from 8:30a until 9:45 and 11:45a until 1:00. The Church will close at 3 on Monday, but this will give everyone enough time to sort things out. The church is at 1313 New York Ave, NW—2 blocks from the White House and Lafayette Square Park.

Directions to Dept. of Justice from the New York Ave. Presbyterian Church: Come out of the building at 1313 New York Avenue, NW and turn left, cross the street at corner of the church,---you will be in front of the Inter American Bank—which is now H St, NW. Stay on H, cross at 13th, and count the numbers down to 9th—turn right on 9th, now count down the letters until you reach Pennsylvania Ave., NW –the address is 950 Pennsylvania. It’s about 10 city blocks.

There is a public parking lot located 4 blocks from the church and 4 blocks from the Department of Justice. It’s the best deal in town—most other parking is in garages that will not fit a bus. This is the contact information: City Center Parking operated by U Street Parking - 900 9th St., NW—the entrance is on 9th St, which is one way. Cars can park all day for $20 and buses can park all day for $35. Come down H St, NW to 10th, turn right on 10th go up 1 block, turn right, and then right again on 9th—the entrance is mid block on the right. Buses park to the far right of the lot. The telephone number is 202 265-0010.


The California Coalition for Women Prisoners expresses our strong solidarity with the courageous fast by the Gray-Haired Witnesses for Justice to demand freedom for the Scott Sisters and an inspection of the prison where Jamie Scott is being held. In California, we witness similar inhuman conditions for women in prison on a daily basis, and we condemn the systemic racism and sexism which has caused the population of women in prison to triple in the past twenty-five years. Jamie and Gladys are serving outrageous life sentences which in Jamie’s case could well turn into a death sentence if the criminal health care conditions she is enduring aren’t quickly improved. We deeply appreciate your determination to stand up and expose the grave injustice being perpetrated against the Scott sisters and the tens of thousands of other sisters who are wrongly incarcerated across the United States. -- Diana Block, Founding Member

Legal Services for Prisoners with Children endorses the June 21, 2010 Gray-Haired Witnesses Fast for Justice in DC and your mission to free the Scott sisters. LSPC is a non-profit organization based in San Francisco, California, with a 32 year history of advocating for the rights of prisoners, formerly incarcerated persons, and their families. We know that the unique situation of incarcerated women is often overlooked. Prison medical care is notoriously inadequate. Sentences are too long. Justice is often not served in our criminal courts. We support your efforts to free the Scott sisters and call on the Obama administration to help justice be served here. -- Carol Strickman, Staff Attorney

Thank you Bro. Rudolph Lewis of ChickenBones for sharing this critical information on your illustrious pages:;

Thank you also to Rev. Kenneth Glasgow and T.O.P.S. (THE ORDINARY PEOPLE SOCIETY) for writing and sending out a press release in support of this effort. Website: www.;



Action Committee for Women in Prison
Agnes Johnson, The 1212 Community in the Bronx
Ahmad Abdulibad, Minister~General, Sons Of Afrika
Bonnie Kerness, AFSC*
Brenda Scott Lowery
Bro. Moorbey, Chairman, Black Unity Movement
Bro. Sauti & Sis. Shiriki,;KCBLR.ORG Radio
California Coalition for Women Prisoners
Charles E. Campbell, Allen Hydro Energy Corporation (AHEC)
Cleo Silvers
David Blanchard
Dick Gregory - Human Rights Activist
Dominique Reed, HRC-Fed Up!
Donna Wallach, Justice for Palestinians
Earl Smith, Executive Director, Order of Kush International
Eddie Griffin (BASG)
Fayemi Shakur, Sundiata Acoli Freedom Campaign
Florence L. Tate
Harambee Radio and Television Network
Helen Raines Staley, Albany NY
Int'l Concerned Family/Friends of Mumia Abu-Jamal
Jacqui C. Williams
Julie Ann Turner
Kenneth King
Kermit Eady, Eady Associates
Leonna A. Brandao, S.W.III, New Vision Org., Inc.
Malaika H. Kambon, People's Eye Photography
Mary Ratcliff, Editor, San Francisco Bay View Newspaper
mesha Monge-Irizarry, Director, Education Not Incarceration, SF Chapter,
Idriss Stelley Foundation, + SF MOOC City Commissioner*
Michael Johnson/Black Student Union (Comm. College of Balt. County/Essex)
Michelle Alexander, Author, "The New Jim Crow - Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness"
Mississippi Prison Watch
Monica Moorehead, Women's Fightback Network, NYC
Nancy Lockhart, M.J., Legal Analyst
Nathan Hare, Black Think Tank
Nkechi Taifa, Esq. - President, Legacy Justice Institute
People's Organization for Progress
Rev. Kenneth Glasgow, T.O.P.S.
Rev. Majadi Baruti, Udja Temple Ministries
Sam Jordan - Advocate for Justice and Prison Abolition
Senghor Jawara Baye, President General UNIA-ACL
Sistah Q, Author of Maintaining Our Temples
Sundiata Acoli
Tara Graham
Terry Howcott
The African American Freedom & Reconstruction League
The MOVE Organization
Trinita Simpson
(* For ID purposes only)


You can do this by some or all of the following:
- Post our press release and flyer to your FB and other social networking sites, forward it to your email colleagues and forward it to local and national print, radio and tv media.
Press release:; -- Flyer:;

- Write a blog, article or commentary on our mission and call, post it and pass it on for posting on our website.
- Write and publish an article on the case of the Scott Sisters and the issue of Black incarceration. (Case Summary on the Scott Sisters is at;
- Volunteer to help us prepare for the day, particularly if you live in the DC, Balt., VA area, we need you however you are able!
- Please donate yourself on that day with your conscious and respectful entertainment performance!


Please mail an M.O. for whatever you can spare (no amount is too small!) ASAP made out to Donnie Finley and mail to:
Donnie Finley c/o Gloria's Kitchen, 2855 Bailey Ave., Jackson, MS 39206. If you need more info please phone Donnie at: 601-454-6507. Thank you in advance for your kind support!


Contact us at, 1- 866-968-1188, Ext. 2, and please link to/follow us at; and support!