Insight News

Aug 03rd


What to do about racism?

Earlier this year, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People passed leadership to what they are calling “the next generation of civil and human rights activists”.    Forty-four year old Roslyn M. Brock is now Chairman of the venerable organization and 39 year-old Benjamin Todd Jealous is CEO.  So, many are wondering what was in their minds when they allowed a resolution during their conference in Kansas City, Mo. calling on Tea Party activists to "repudiate the racist element and activities" within the political movement.  Their reports alleged that the Tea Party has used racial epithets against President Barack Obama and verbally and physically abused African-American members of Congress.  The resolution’s actual language will remain secret until it is approved later this year by the national board.

Clarity and the New Black Panther Party

In its coverage of the Philadelphia voter intimidation case, conservative media has unfortunately chosen sensationalism over clarity. There are layers to this case to be explored that might highlight the idealism of the right and expose the pessimism of the left.  Unfortunately, those layers of exploration are not as sexy as the continuous video loop depicting New Black Panther Party member King Samir Shabazz screaming about killing crackers.

The vast majority of black people respond to such rants this way:  “That brother is crazy!”  Indeed, to see the video of Samir suggesting that black liberation can be had only through the murder of white babies is to witness a man in the throes of mental illness.

Letter to the editor

I am writing about the article in the June 28-July 4th edition entitled Bicycle Apartheid Nice Ride (if you can get it).

First of all the title Bicycle Apartheid is a very strong title/statement. Perhaps Insight News wanted to get readers’ attention. In the article you state that the bicycles are available in Downtown and Uptown. We know people of color live in those communities and have easier access to use the bikes in the Nice Ride Program.

What about "buying Black"?

In The Souls of Black Folk W.E.B. DuBois’ vision was that by incorporating into White industry Negroes could build an economic foun¬dation by becoming skilled workers through industrial educa¬tion and from their ranks small capitalists could rise.

There is a movement of note to boost Black economic development.  The current interest group started when one suburban, professional couple took a stand to live off Black businesses for one year.  In early 2009, Maggie and John Anderson an upper-middle-class African-American couple, who live in Oak Park, Illinois, made a vow to only patronize Black-owned businesses.

Letter to the editor: Transit for livable communities

We are writing in response to your June 25 article about the launch of the Nice Ride bicycle sharing program. Bike Walk Twin Cities, a program of Transit for Livable Communities, administers the Minneapolis location of a federal non-motorized transportation pilot program to increase bicycling and walking and decrease driving. One of our strategic funding goals is to address cultural and economic gaps and improve access for underserved communities. We will continue to work with stakeholders and partners—including Nice Ride—to expand the network for bicycling, walking, and access to transit for a wide variety of users.

Will Dudus sing?

Christopher “Dudus” Coke is a man worth watching.  Coke is a Kingston, Jamaica resident who caused a state of emergency and got the leader of the country’s ruling party to put his political career and reputation on the line to keep him out of American courts.  The arrest of Christopher Coke was an urban spectacle, and his trial has the potential to revel a lot about American and Jamaican officials’ drug trade dealings.  If Coke sings much may be told about Jamaican and American officials’ involvement in illegal activities from the Caribbean to North America to England.

The case is an example of the “strong arm” of the United States government and its practices in the drug trade.  The US justice department had the alleged leader of the notorious Shower Posse gang on a "world's most dangerous" list, while a former Jamaican national security minister describes him as “probably the country’s most powerful man”.  The role and record of “Dudus” is result of alliances between U.S. imperialism and the predominately-Black island’s governing bourgeoisie.  Coke gained his mythical status as a linkage between Jamaica’s working class elements and the political ruling class elite that comprises the: Jamaica Labor Party (JLP) and the People's National Party (PNP).

American gun rights

The U.S. Supreme Court recently ruled that state and local governments can no longer restrict an individual’s right to own a firearm. However, the Court’s decision and supporting arguments left room for lawmakers to impose some restrictions on ownership and prevent easy access to guns while still protecting this basic right. In handing down its decision, the Court focused its attention on a case that challenged a 28-year-old Chicago ban on handguns. The decision is an extension of the Court’s 2008 ruling that the Second Amendment was not intended just for militias and did, in fact, extend to individuals.

While the ruling doesn’t guarantee cities will modify their gun ban laws, it does open the door for residents to legally challenge those laws and win. Officials in these cities, where there are high rates of gun crime, are upset and fear the Court’s decision will interfere with their ability to craft gun laws that reduce crime. That fear, however, may be unfounded. The Court made certain to note that the right to own a firearm is not the same as the right to possess and carry a firearm in any manner for whatever purpose. To that end, the Court does support restricting firearm ownership for felons and the mentally ill and encourages state and local efforts to close loopholes that allow individuals to purchase guns without a background check.
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