Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Ferguson in Fresh Perspective

While the unrest sparked by the decision of the grand jury not to prosecute Darren Wilson for the killing of Michael Brown, Jr., is still smoldering - in Ferguson, MO, as well as cities and capitals around the country - there is consistent sensationalism over the property damage caused by a subset of the protesters.
You who walk in the privilege of power, whatever the power is, don't get to determine how the oppressed rage.  
- Tweet from Emma Jordan-Simpson
In an incredibly insightful article, Carol Anderson, Associate Professor of African American studies at Emory University, digs below the surface of what is typically described as black rage against police or American's justice system and uncovers the more devious and systemic presence of white rage against racial progress in America.

Check out this powerful, mind-opening piece by clicking here.

Working within the system to effect change is only one tool, and often without the pressure of active protest, an ineffective one.

My your anger become motivation, and may your motivation be baptized in genuine love for people who are vulnerable.  Amen.  - Tweet from Rev. Otis Moss III
When your grandchildren ask, "Where were you when justice became a reality instead of an ideal?" what will you have to say?

A call has gone out for no shopping on Black Friday, as a show of unity and impact for we who are seeking justice. Please join us as we enjoy family and friends. #BLACKOUTBLACKFRIDAY

The video below is from the group Blackout for Human Rights, one of the groups encouraging the Black Friday Boycott:

This has got to stop!

God bless.

A luta continua,

Daryle Brown
Trinity Justice Watch Team
The Next Movement

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Now What?

So, Election Day has come and gone. The political landscape in Illinois and in most of the country has changed. We heard how the President has turned a deaf ear on the American people, and this is why many Democrats were defeated. In fact, some Democrats did not want their respective campaigns associated with President Obama, due to his disapproval rating. Some folks (who will remain nameless) took to the airwaves and some pulpits claiming how a party change (not Jesus) is the only hope for Black folks, as Republicans replaced Democrats in both federal and state offices. (I hope they get to the bank before the checks bounce.) I think we still need to ask the question, “Where does that leave ‘us’?” When it is all said and done, what will change for the “least of these”?

On the eve of the midterm elections in 2010, Senator Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) made the infamous remark during an interview with the National Journal, The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.”  Now that Congress is controlled by the GOP, it will be said this election was a mandate on the economy, Affordable Health Care Act, immigration reform, “big government”, Ebola, etc., and that the Obama administration showed incompetence in dealing with “bread and butter” issues. Now that Sen. McConnell will become the Senate Majority Leader, I can safely assume his priorities have shifted (obviously) from President Obama being a one-term president, to being the leader of an obstructionist movement to make the President a “lame duck” before the 2016 elections. Guaranteed, the rich are salivating. Meanwhile, the Democrats believe they have lost touch with their base…the middle class. What about us….the faithful… going to the polls that vote “blue” regardless of whether it is in our best interests or not? Neither party talked about helping the working class and the working poor during the campaign. Remember, welfare reform, which sent millions below the poverty line, was under the Clinton administration, and he was not a Republican.

I think we still need to ask the question, “Where does that leave ‘us’?” When it is all said and done, what will change for the “least of these”?

What does the change in Congress and state houses mean for unemployment and underemployment, affordable health care, affordable housing, and so many of the issues that have plagued Black folks? To some, all the problems are a result of Democrats in control, almost as if institutional racism and neo-Jim Crow policies, police misconduct, crime, lack of opportunities, and an apartheid-style education system were the Democratic platform.  In reality these are, and will continue to be problems, regardless of which party is in office, as long as the rich are in control.

I can hardly wait to hear “Plan B” that will resolve ALL of the woes and failures not resolved under President Obama and state Democratic administrations.  And of course, if unemployment reaches double digits, health care costs skyrocket, public education receives less funding, and the economy begins to tank even more, somehow the Democrats will be blamed, even though they are no longer in charge of Congress. It really doesn’t matter which party is in Congress or the White House….many of us are still in the “outhouse.”  Until the political landscape changes in favor of the majority of Americans, and when people, and not profits, are on the top of the list of any party platform, the question still stands, “What will change for the ‘“least of these’?”

What do you think?

Kevin Tyson
Trinity UCC Justice Watch Team

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Do You Even REMEMBER our Daughters?

Five months ago, over 250 young girls were abducted from the Chibok boarding school in Nigeria. Although 53 successfully escaped, the other 223 left behind … along with scores of others (including young boys and men) have been added to this number.

In an article posted by Charlotte Alfred in the Huffington Post’s The WorldPost segment, Alfred describes in detail an 8-point fact brief on what has happened since then. To read that entire article, CLICK HERE.

Why should we care?  There’s something very disturbing about the attention span of our society when we can skip from crisis to crisis like changing clothes one day to the next. Whatever is the “hot spot” item on the news becomes our “hot spot” attention-getter. 

Here’s why we need to be concerned. Of the additional scores of kidnapped persons in Nigeria, it is reported that several of the young boys and men have been rescued. Well, what about our girls? None have been rescued

There have been numerous attempts and global interceding on the part of France, Canada, Israel, the UK and the U.S. – all of which still have not proved successful. Sightings mean nothing without rescue. Negotiations that stop short of release are meaningless. Are we indeed saying, “The foreign collective has no ability to stop mindless thugs like Boko Haram…”?

As a community of people committed to the welfare, freedom, and human dignity of our fellow sisters and brothers of humanity, we have got to keep the pressure high. We need to continue to write our governmental leaders, press our global partners, and urge the Nigerian government to resolve this tragic problem or see their power be disintegrated by the power of the voting pen at election time! In every society, we have got to stand firm, acknowledging that our daughters are equally as valuable as our young boys and men! 

Anything less, is simply unacceptable and inexcusable!

Keep hashtag #BringBackOurGirls flowing on your media web pages.  Accept nothing less!

Sis. Lynda Holiday Lawrence
Trinity UCC, Africa Ministry

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Find our Daughters!

Nigerian school girls abducted April 16th from a school in Chibok, in the country’s rural northeast.

Convoy disappears with hundreds of school girls
According to reports, armed members of Boko Haram overwhelmed security guards at the all-girls schools, herded the girls out of bed and forced them into trucks in the town of Chibok. The convoy of trucks then disappeared into the dense forest bordering Cameroon.

On Friday, Nigerian authorities updated the number of girls kidnapped to 276. At least 53 of the girls escaped, leaving 223 in the hands of their captors, police said.

Authorities said that the new figure for missing girls — 223 — could grow as police fill in spotty school enrollment records.

The Danger for our Daughters is Growing
The longer the girls are missing, the longer they are at risk and exposed to sexual violence, psychological oppression and death. Let’s work together to return these daughters to the arms of their families and communities. And further, let us take a stand so such acts of violence will not continue. These girls are sacred and we cannot remain silent. We must find them, return them home and bring charges against the abductors and anyone linked to their suffering.

Act Now
Please sign the petition on to President Obama (link and QR code on the reverse side) to insist the U.S. take action to intervene on behalf of these innocents.

Sign the petition by clicking here.

Listen to Mrs. Monica Moss discuss human trafficking on Empowering voices, by clicking here.

And let's keep this in the op of trending by keeping these hashtags active: #BringBackOurDaughters #BringBackOurGirls