FAMU Marching 100 Photo Used in Article on Hazing at Dartmouth

Roland Martin Reports published an article on hazing at Dartmouth University, “Dartmouth Hazing: Faculty Condemn ‘Moral Thuggery’ In Letter To Administration.” So why is the accompanying graphic for the article a photograph of the Florida A&M University Marching 100? The article does not address the hazing death of FAMU drum major Robert Champion.  

Roland Martin Reports
Screen shot of Roland Martin Reports. Article on hazing at Dartmouth. Photo of FAMU Marching 100 used.


The Huffington Post website, referenced in the article on Roland Martin Reports,  includes a photograph of a building one can assume is on the Dartmouth campus.

The Huffington Post
Screen shot of The Huffington Post website on same article.


Note this article was originally posted in early February 2012. I came to know of it only tonight via a friend. 

I make no secret I am a  Florida A&M University alum. I do not condone the brutality that lead to the death of Robert Champion. I fully understand my alma mater will be portrayed in a negative light for quite some time. Some criticisms will be justified and must be addressed by the University administration and the entire FAMU family. 

Yet other situations may arise that are controversial, sensationalistic and unfair such as the use of an unrelated photograph of the Marching 100 with an article on hazing at Dartmouth.


The Curious Case of Troy Davis: Too Much Doubt [VIDEO by Jasiri X]

Troy davis too much doubt On August 19, 1989, off-duty cop Mark MacPhail was shot and killed in Savannah, GA. Troy Davis was arrested and sentenced to  death. There was no physical evidence linking him to MacPhail’s murder. There were nine witnesses who said that Davis was the killer. Seven of those nine witnesses have recanted their testimony citing coercion by law enforcement. One of the two remaining witnesses is the original prime suspect.

Based on these facts, one has to wonder why the State of Georgia insists on executing Troy Davis on September 21, 2011. There is just too much doubt in the case of Troy Davis.

Hundreds of thousands of people have signed petitions asking that Troy Davis not be executed. Several former government officials and celebrities have also asked that Troy Davis not be executed. However, Michael MacPhail’s mother is looking forward to the execution of Troy Davis. She thinks it will bring her some peace. My heart goes out to her. I know the pain she feels. I know the feeling of having a child’s life taken in such a violent manner.

The truth, however, is that there is too much doubt that Troy Davis murdered Mark MacPhail. Family and friends want someone to pay for Mark’s murder. If Troy Davis is executed, their desire will still not have been honestly satisfied.   

The execution of Troy Davis would be a terrible miscarriage of justice. Here are three steps you can take to help him before the Georgia Parole Board meets on September 19. 2011:

1. Send a message of support to Troy as he fights for justice on what may be the final days of his life:

2. Sign the name wall, if you haven't already. And if you have, send it to your friends and family. Each name means a more united front for justice:

3. Make sure everyone knows about this injustice. Spread the word on Facebook and Twitter (using the hashtag #TooMuchDoubt) so that Troy Davis's story can be heard. We still have a chance to save his life, but only if people are willing to speak out against injustice.


Free Audio Download

Murder of Tamara Greene in the Spotlight Again

It seems that former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick's connection to murdered stripper Tamara Greene will not go away. A task force has been formed to investigate Greene's murder. The sordid details of the involvement of Mayor Kilpatrick's security and alleged attack on Greene by his wife are just a few incidents that should have been fully investigated previously.

Global Day of Blogging for Justice: Save Troy Davis!


Several journalists and bloggers have joined Amnesty International and other human rights groups to call attention to the impending execution of Troy Anthony Davis who sits on Death Row in Georgia. Davis has been this close to execution three times before but was spared thanks to expert lawyering. This time Davis may be out of luck as his last extension expired last Saturday.

In spite of the fact that seven of nine witnesses in the twenty year-old case recanted and cited undue influence by law enforcement; Davis is still set to be executed. How the U.S. Supreme Court and the American justice system in general can allow this to happen is nothing short of frightening.

New York Daily News columnist Errol Louis pens an excellent article citing the facts of the case; shoddy and incomplete police investigation and the egregious decision by several Supreme Court Justices to deny Davis a hearing to present new evidence because his papers were filed late.

Where is the justice in such a decision that may result in the murder of an innocent man? Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue should do the right thing and pardon Troy Davis. It is just. It is humane. It is the right thing to do.

Save Troy Anthony Davis. Please.

The Wrongful Conviction of Gladys and Jamie Scott

You know I'm really sick and tired of these blog posts about police brutality and wrongful conviction cases. It's just wrong that people are taken advantage of by the justice system. It's also horrible when guilty folks get off for crimes that they have obviously convicted but I won't go there on this post.

This post in no way condemns the law-abiding enforcement officers or condones folks who act like idiots and need to be jailed. But there is something so insidious about police officers, lawyers, judges and other folks who taint the judicial process. In the end, Jesus, God, Allah, Jehovah or just divine order will take care of the culprits but that doesn't relinquish us of the duty to help those in need.

Enter sisters Gladys and Jamie Scott. These two women have been incarcerated for more than 14 years. They received a double life sentence for armed robbery committed on December 24, 1993. As has become typical, one of the men who actually committed the robbery later said he was coerced. All of the evidence wasn't presented. You know the rest because these cases appear to have similar recurring civil rights violations. Let me not forget to inform you that the robbery netted all of about $11.00. That's not a typographical error.

Please check out the links below to learn more about the case and spread the word about the wrongful conviction of the Scott Sisters. I know that we all must become somewhat tired with one case after another but if we put ourselves in the shoes of the Scott Sisters and their family, we'd want all the help we could get too.

Always in Light and Love….

Related Links:

The Wrongful Conviction of Jamie And Gladys Scott

Women In Prison (Where Do We Draw the Line?)

Your Black World: Interview With Nancy Lockhart On The Case Of Jamie & Gladys Scott


Please sign petition to Free the Scott Sisters.

© 2009, on the black hand side,

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Chris Brown and Rihanna: Exploitation Under the Guise of News and Anti-Domestic Violence

Is it just me or are you a bit disgusted by the barrage of media coverage and privacy violations in the domestic violence saga of Chris Brown and Rihanna? Now don't think this is any attempt to justify or diminish the horrific beating Rihanna endured but if there was concern about both of these young people overcoming this; there were be more consideration and respect for their privacy. Sure, they are celebrities and relinquish some privacy but this is a sensitive issue, pull up already, please. Domestic violence needs to be discussed and dealt with when it occurs however exploiting the Chris-Rihanna situation is not cool.

Whoever is responsible for releasing the photos of Rihanna's bruises should be prosecuted but the reality of the media is that these things happen as long as someone can get paid for information. Who cares about Rihanna's pain, humiliation or anger --- right? Let's just put the young sister out there like that and then make sure folks pass the photos around in e-mails to their friends. It's just wrong.

It's also wrong for mainstream media television shows and media outlets to continue blasting this situation as a lead story when there have been no additional developments. Instead of exploiting Brown and Rihanna, how about using the situation to reach out to women, and some men, who are victims of domestic violence? Hello, throw these folks a lifeline so they know they are not alone and there are organization that can help them.

For now, I am done with the Chris Brown-Rihanna drama. Am I praying that she doesn't go back to him? Yes, but I prayed that prayer days ago and in the end it's up to her. We don't have to like her decision; just respect it and keep it moving. Am I praying that Chris Brown gets help for his uncontrollable anger? Most definitely. Brown has serious personal issues that he needs to deal with and right now. The mantra that no publicity is bad publicity is not the case for him when it comes to beating down women.

The reality is that the Chris Brown-Rihanna situation is no more tragic than the domestic violence that may be occurring to your friend, neighbor, family member and even you. Just because this young couple generated a slew of publicity and other situations don't; make sure you do not allow yourself to be abused. If you are an abuser or feel that you have the potential to become one; get help now.

Help is available to callers 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Hotline advocates are available for victims and anyone calling on their behalf to provide crisis intervention, safety planning, information and referrals to agencies in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Assistance is available in English and Spanish with access to more than 170 languages through interpreter services. If you or someone you know is frightened about something in your relationship, please call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or TTY 1-800-787-3224.

© 2009, on the black hand side,

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Racism Won’t Go Away in Paris, Texas

Racism Won't Go Away in Paris, Texas

Latest trouble: Nooses, offensive graffiti in local factory

By Howard Witt <>
Tribune correspondent

6:11 PM CST, February 24, 2009

HOUSTON-Only a few weeks ago, race relations had reached such a low point in the troubled east Texas town of Paris that federal Justice Department mediators were called in to try to bring together black and white citizens, but the public meeting quickly dissolved into rancor.

Now fresh racial tensions are erupting inside one of the town's biggest employers, the Turner Industries pipe fabrication plant, where black employees charge that hangman's nooses, Confederate flags and racist graffiti have been appearing throughout the workplace for months.

One worker, Karl Mitchell, took pictures of the offensive symbols in early February and filed a formal complaint with the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission last week. Other African-American employees assert that they've repeatedly complained about the racist symbols to their bosses, only to be ignored or told to keep quiet.

"Somebody had to step forward," said Mitchell, who also alleges a pattern of wage and promotion discrimination at the plant stretching back nearly two years. "They are so wide open with [the racist displays] and so certain that African Americans aren't going to say anything about it."

Officials at Turner Industries headquarters in Baton Rouge, La., say they only learned of the discrimination allegations last week, when photographs of the racist symbols began circulating on the Internet. They say a noose and other inflammatory depictions and graffiti have been removed and a company investigation has been launched.

"All of us in management find all of that offensive," said John Fenner, the company's corporate general counsel. "We do not condone any displays of this type. I can promise you that in the event we uncover that any of our people participated in the display of any of those matters, they may very well lose their jobs."

Fenner also denied that blacks, who comprise 11 percent of the Paris plant's 660 employees, are discriminated against in either pay or promotions.

The racial flareup at Turner Industries comes just as Paris leaders were hoping to finally fall out of the spotlight after several troubling racial incidents focused national attention on the town of 26,000.

"Obviously, this isn't going to play well," lamented Pete Kampfer, president of the Lamar County Chamber of Commerce, who said he e-mailed the troubling photographs to Turner officials in Baton Rouge last week as soon as he was alerted to them. "We've had a lot of recent racial discussions in Paris and you better get a heads-up if you see another storm working."

Paris first drew national scrutiny in 2007, after a 14-year-old African-American girl, Shaquanda Cotton, was sentenced by a local judge to up to seven years in a youth prison for shoving a hall monitor at Paris High School. Three months earlier, the same judge had sentenced a 14-year-old white girl to probation for the more serious crime of arson. Less than a month after a Tribune story contrasting the two cases triggered national civil rights protests and petition drives, Texas authorities ordered Shaquanda's early release from prison.

Then last year, a 24-year-old African-American man, Brandon McClelland, was murdered, allegedly at the hands of two white men who authorities charge dragged him beneath a pickup truck until his body was nearly dismembered. The accused killers are awaiting trial for murder, but McClelland's family and civil rights leaders have pressed prosecutors to add hate-crime charges as well.

© 2009, on the black hand side,

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WA Deputy Attacked 15 Year-Old Girl [VIDEO]

It is difficult to watch this video of King County, WA Deputy Paul Schene attacking a 15 year-old girl --- slamming her to the jail cell floor, punching her in the face and pulling her by the hair.

Schene had the unmitigated gall to plead NOT GUILTY to fourth degree assault.  He needs to be punished to the full extent of the law.

Schene's attorney says the video does not tell the whole story and prohibits her client from getting a fair trial.

Read more

Thanks to AAPP for the heads up.

© 2008, on the black hand side,

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Justice Watch: The Case of Troy Davis

Troy Davis sits on death row in Georgia for the murder of Savannah police officer Mark Allen MacPhail. Davis was convicted, in 1991, based on eyewitness testimony and without any physical evidence.

All but two of the nine eyewitnesses have recanted, citing pressure by law enforcement to accuse Troy Davis. One of the two eyewitnesses who hasn’t recanted is suspected of actually committing the crime.

Troy Davis has received support from many in the United States and throughout the world. His case has been stayed three times with him coming within twenty-four hours of execution twice.

Officer MacPhail was murdered and that fact should never be forgotten. Troy Anthony Davis did not commit that murder but someone did. Law enforcement, not at the local level, must re-open the investigation of the murder of Officer Mark Allen McPhail. His family deserves the truth and his murderer should serve out the proper penalty.

Troy Davis’ family deserves justice also. He was unjustly arrested in 1989, incarcerated, tried and convicted in 1991. Witnesses have recanted. Let the man go free.

For more information and to take action in helping Troy Anthony Davis re-gain his freedom, go to Amnesty International USA.



Video by: Citizen
Music by: State Radio


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Murder Not Suicide: Justice for Billey Joe Johnson

Billeyjoe On December 8th, 17-year-old Billey Joe Johnson died from a gunshot
wound to the head. Police say he killed himself with a shotgun after
being stopped for a simple traffic violation in Lucedale,
Mississippi.[1] Several things seem to cast doubt on the official
story, including an independent investigation that concluded it would
have been impossible for the shot that killed Johnson to have been

Many on the ground smell a murder and a cover-up. We don't have all the
answers, but it's clear that in the racially divided town of Lucedale,
all the ingredients exist for a miscarriage of justice.

I've joined in demanding answers and justice for
Billey Joe's family. Together, we can help ensure that the District
Attorney feels the presence of a national spotlight, and let him know
that anything short of a thorough investigation will result in massive
attention and a call for outside intervention.

Please join me. It takes only a moment:

From the beginning, the District Attorney has treated the
investigation of Billey Joe's death as a suicide or the result of an
accidental self-inflicted injury. Based on his public statements and
interactions with Billey Joe's family, it appears that the District
Attorney hasn't looked into whether Billey Joe was killed by an
officer or someone else. Again, we don't have all the answers, but
here's what we do know:

- Billey Joe was at his former girlfriend's house minutes before the
killing.[2] He never entered the house, but police were called to
respond to an attempted burglary there.[3] This fact was not a part of
the original story given by the police.

- Billey Joe's family say that his ex-girlfriend had been staying at
her father's house because her mother threw her out for dating Billey
Joe (she is White and Billey Joe was Black). They said Billey Joe knew
to only go to the house when the girl's father was not present, that
the two of them were on good terms even after he had broken up with
her, and that the breakup was largely because of pressure from her
father. The family also claims that there is a relationship between
the officer present at the scene of Billey Joe's death and the girl's

- A witness heard two shots, not one, at the scene where Billey Joe
died, according to an independent investigation launched by the
Mississippi NAACP. The pathologist in that investigation has indicated
that it would be impossible for a bullet from a a self-inflicted shot
to enter in the manner that it did. He also said that given the length
of Billey Joe's arms and the length of the shotgun, it would have been
impossible for him to hold the weapon and fire it at himself.

- Billey Joe was a star athlete with scholarship offers from more than
half a dozen schools. No one--including family, friends, and
coaches--could think of a reason that Billey Joe would want to end his

A true investigation would sort out fact from rumor. But we can't be
sure that Johnson's family will get the investigation it deserves. In
the case of the Jena 6 we saw a District Attorney and a judge
incapable of carrying out justice in a racially charged environment.
In the recent case of the murder of Oscar Grant by police (and many
like it), we see how unlikely it is for District Attorneys to do their
job when the suspect is an officer of the law. But in both these
cases, public pressure has made all the difference by shining a
spotlight on local authorities.

In the case of Billey Joe Johnson, we're looking for the truth and for
justice. A minute of your time can help ensure his family gets both: