WE ARE MONSTERS!!!!
Tim Dog all day
A little over a week ago, I was shot along with 19 other people at the Mother’s Day second line. Everyone survived varying degrees of injury. I am still in the ICU and I have at least 2 more months of possible hospital stay.
I have known from the moment the shooting happened that I did not want these young men thrown to the wolves and that we have been given yet another opportunity to demonstrate a different way of treating our humanity.
Those young men and other young men like them did not end up at 20 years old saying that I am going to shoot 20 people today.
Do you know what it takes to be so disconnected in your heart that you can walk out into a gathering of hundreds of people who look just like you and begin firing?
They have been separated from us through so much trauma. Now where do we go?
We have, over the last 2 1/2 years, brought to town and invested in report and programs created by the best experts in the fields of public safety and criminal justice. We have programs that have been identified that are making great strides that we have not given full blown chance to succeed. We spend money on other programs that aren’t proven and communities don’t know how to access. Every young man at risk should know about available programs with proven success that can help him.
It is absolutely critical that the entire city know the criteria used for funding and measuring success in all criminal justice initiatives, such as NOLA for Life.
We need to know the 12 plus best practices for reforming our criminal justice system, already identified by criminial justice experts brought here over the last 2 1/2 years. And to hear that the administration has a reinvigorated commitment to integrate these changes into policies, because to continue to run the opposite way during a crisis is counter productive and makes no sense.
We need more answers and leadership from all involved.
— Deb “Big Red” Cotton
Host Michel Martin looks into why some non-profits are tax exempt, and how something like the recent IRS flap could happen. She speaks with David Cay Johnston, a columnist for Tax Analysts and reporter Brentin Mock of Colorlines.com.
Also read my story today, “Voter Suppression Group Sues IRS For Delaying Their Voter Suppression” here in Colorlines.
I’d like to address the L.A. Times’s story, “Organizers ‘Embarrassed’ by New Orleans Parade Shooting.” The reporter quotes my BLKVS blog, “What Kind of Animal Shoots Up a Mother’s Day Parade?” particularly the part where I wrote:
What kind of monster opens fire on a Mother’s Day parade…
The Fair Sentencing Act of 2010 should apply to all defendants, including those sentenced prior to its passage, according to a decision issued by the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals today. The FSA reduced the sentencing disparity between offenses for crack and powder cocaine from 100:1 to 18:1.
“This decision could make a real difference in the lives of men and women currently serving needlessly cruel and very long mandatory minimum sentences for what are often low-level, non-violent drug offenses,” said Laura W. Murphy, director of the American Civil Liberties Union Washington Legislative Office. “The Fair Sentencing Act and its retroactive application are important steps toward ending our country’s misguided, ineffective, and harmful war on drugs. However, while we are celebrating this landmark decision for racial justice, we must not lose sight of our ultimate goal to remove all disparities between crack and powder cocaine sentencing.”
In its decision, the court described old crack sentencing laws as “racially discriminatory” and argued that continuing to apply them to defendants violates the Equal Protection Clause. Heightened penalties for crack cocaine were adopted decades ago, based on assumptions about crack that are now known to be false. The single feature that most distinguishes a crack cocaine arrestee from a powder cocaine arrestee is skin color. Crack arrestees are far more likely to be Black than white, even though the majority of crack users are white.