Criminal justice reform for Black America is long overdue. Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis, Jr. is President and CEO of the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) and can be reached at dr.bchavis@nnpa.org
#NNPA BlackPress

COMMENTARY: Criminal Justice Reform Long Overdue for Black America

NNPA NEWSWIRE — For 40 long years, until North Carolina Governor Beverly Perdue signed “Pardons of Innocence” documents for each member of the Wilmington Ten (including myself), the issues of unjust and disproportionate mass incarceration, bail reform, racism in the judiciary, prosecutorial misconduct, and reentry challenges were not matters of partisanship, but were matters of fundamental civil and human rights. […read more]

Democrat Stacey Abrams, candidate for Govenor of Georgia and her opponent Brian Kemp, current Georgia Secretary of State.
Atlanta Tribune

Northern District of Georgia Court Orders Full Counting of Absentee Ballots

ATLANTA TRIBUNE — These are ballots which were cast in good faith by thousands of Georgians attempting to exercise their fundamental right to vote, and which were among the countless votes Brian Kemp attempted – but ultimately failed – to suppress in this year’s election. Judge Jones is the fourth Federal judge in the past three business days to find that portions of the Secretary of State’s administration of the 2018 election violate the United States Constitution. […read more]

(Photo: iStockphoto / NNPA)
Commentary

Is the FBI Underreporting the Surge in Hate Crimes?

NNPA NEWSWIRE — “Anti-Black or African American” bias accounted for nearly half of all crimes motivated by race or ethnicity, which rose 18 percent according to the FBI data, while “Anti-American Indian or Alaska Native,” “Anti-Multiple Races, Group,” and “Anti-Hispanic or Latino” hate crimes all increased over 20 percent (251, 180, and 427 incidents, respectively). […read more]

Afro

COMMENTARY: Let us say #SheToo for women who can’t

THE AFRO — “Women generally are not willing to complain about such behavior for fear of retribution. Most simply try to escape their situations as soon as possible. The lack of attention to the issue, the absence of secure and supportive channels to discuss problems, and the uncertainty that remedial action will be taken are seen as official tolerance of such behavior.” — The Stern Report […read more]

Commentary

COMMENTARY: President Trump’s Latest Idea: A Cruel and Unconstitutional Attack on American Birthrights

The purpose of the birthright provision of the 14th Amendment was wide ranging. It was a direct assault on the dreadful Dred Scott decision, and overturned the idea that former slaves were not citizens and therefore had no rights a white man must respect. It reflected the language of the 1866 Civil Rights Act and negated the infamous Black Codes that were adopted to limit the rights of former slaves. […read more]

Community

Longview Police Officer David Cheatham: Protector of the Community

EAST TEXAS REVIEW — “How do you feel when you put on your uniform each day? ‘I was a Military Police Officer 1985-1987. Putting on the uniform can be a mixed bag of emotions. Some days I still get that old excitement that there is no way of knowing what will happen today and that is a good thing but then on other days I get that feeling there is no way of knowing what will happen today and that is a bad thing.'” […read more]

Education

HISD Trustees Unlawfully Give Black Woman the Boot & Then Reverse Decision After Community Pressure

NNPA NEWSWIRE — One of the most disturbing issues that has captured the attention of legal experts and members of the community is whether those five HISD trustees violated the spirit of the Texas Open Meetings Act, which was enacted to ensure that Texas government is transparent, open and accountable to all Texans. […read more]

Screen capture from police video footage of the killing of Laquan McDonald by Former Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke
Chicago Crusader

A Crusader Investigation: They Knew but Said Nothing

CHICAGO CRUSADER — A Black teenager was dead and a Chicago police officer was being held responsible for shooting him 16 times. There was a video to prove it and also an FBI and state criminal investigation to find out why Officer Jason Van Dyke needed to shoot Laquan McDonald so many times on October 20, 2014. On April 13, 2015, six Black aldermen were among 18 aldermen given these facts at a City Hall meeting. Corporation Counsel Steve Patton wanted to quickly get approval of a $5 million settlement before the mother of a dead son took her story public with a wrongful death lawsuit. […read more]

Sen. Kamala Harris questions Supreme Court Nominee Brett Kavanaugh (screen capture / YouTube)
Featured

Senators Urge Trump Administration to Halt Deportation of Mauritanians

NNPA NEWSWIRE — Between 1989 and 1991, tensions between Arab-Berbers and black ethnic groups in Mauritania resulted in the government-led displacement, expulsion, and denationalization of over 70,000 black Mauritanians. According to Human Rights Watch, these injustices were also accompanied by a litany of other abuses, including extrajudicial executions, arbitrary arrests, torture, rape, property theft, and destruction of legal documents. […read more]

Jason Van Dyke convicted of second-degree murder and all 16 counts of aggravated battery and one count of police misconduct. (Photo by Nancy Stone/Pool/Chicago Tribune)
#NNPA BlackPress

GUILTY!

CHICAGO CRUSADER — Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke was found guilty of second-degree murder Friday, October 5, by a jury at the Leighton Criminal Courthouse, ending decades of frustration in Chicago’s Black community and marking a significant turning point involving police misconduct in the police department’s notorious history. […read more]

#NNPA BlackPress

COMMENTARY: The deafening drumbeat of the unfree

CALIFORNIA VOICE — Dehumanized by the labels “prisoner,” “inmate” and “convict,” even reduced to serial numbers like Victor Hugo’s Jean Valjean in “Les Misérables,” these men and women are, just like you and me, or any mortal – irrespective of flaws, frailties, even felonious acts and misdemeanors – endowed with the right to be treated with dignity, decency and respect. […read more]

Bill Cosby speaks at Frederick Douglas High School in Atlanta/ United States Navy Photo by Mr. Scott King/Wiki commons
Crime

EXCLUSIVE: Experts Say, ‘Throw out Cosby Conviction’

“It is also a fact that Black men are more likely to be prosecuted and then given severe sentences than white men, even though rates of criminal activity are similar. This system bias is most evident in murder cases when offenders are black and victims are white but has been shown in other forms of violence. This is unjust, and it may be that victim impact statements are part of this problem…” […read more]

Commentary

The Emancipation of the Wilmington Ten

Victories for Black Americans, and for all others who stand freedom, justice and equality, do not come easy and do not occur without a prolonged, sustained struggle or “movement of people” that creates a “moment in history.”  On behalf of the four deceased members of the Wilmington Ten – William “Joe” Wright Jr, Jerry Jacobs, Ann Shepard, and Connie Tindall – and on behalf of six living members of the Wilmington Ten – Wayne Moore, Willie Earl Vereen, Reginald Epps, James McKoy, and Marvin Patrick – I express our heartfelt gratitude and appreciation to all who helped to make this moment possible.  Forty years is an awful long time for justice to be done, but we are thankful that this day has finally come. […read more]