Wednesday, March 26, 2008

More about Disproportionate Sentencing

From, a message to the Senate Judiciary Committee to support S.1711:

Misguided politicians and their "war on drugs" have created a national disaster: 1 in 9 Black men between the ages of 20 and 34 are now behind bars. It's a man-made disaster - fueled by unfair sentencing rules.

These rules treat 5 grams of crack cocaine—the kind common in poor Black communities—the same as 500 grams of powder cocaine, the kind prevalent in White and wealthier communities.

Tell the Senate Judiciary Committee to challenge unequal justice by ending unfair sentencing laws.

Go here to sign the online petition, and, if you like, you can copy and paste the below to an email message to the likeminded:

Dear Friend,

The so-called "war on drugs" has created a national disaster: 1 in 15 Black adults in America are now behind bars. It's not because they commit more crime but because of unfair sentencing rules that treat 5 grams of crack cocaine, the kind found in poor Black communities, the same as 500 grams of powder cocaine the kind found in White and wealthier communities.

These sentencing laws are destroying communities across the country and have done almost nothing to reduce the level of drug use and crime.

Senator Joe Biden is one of the original creators of these laws and is now trying to fix the problem. But some of his colleagues on the Senate Judiciary Committee are standing in the way. I've signed on with to tell them to stand with Joe Biden and undo this disaster once and for all. Will you join me? It just takes a moment and you can start by clicking on the link below:


Talk About It

Saturday, March 22, 2008

In Memory of Chiquita Ford

Laci Peterson was eight months pregnant when she was reported missing in December 2002. We got news updates daily. National coverage in the newspapers and on television. I don't even watch much TV, and I can still picture her face. People went crazy with the story. Everyone knows the story. Her husband, who we all agreed was the jackass to end all jackasses, was eventually convicted of killing her. Now he is on death row in San Quentin.

Chiquita Ford was five months pregnant when she was reported missing in October 2007. That was after I got rid of the cable, so I cannot for a certainty say there was never a news report about her disappearance. I do read the newspaper, however, and I can say that there was not daily coverage, not even locally. No big People spreads with pictures of Ms. Ford and her family in happier times, no People interviews with friends and family members.

Here is Chiquita Ford. The remains of her body were found near Lexington Reservoir on March 7.
Chiquita Ford deserves to be remembered just as much as Laci Peterson. Toward that end: Ms. Ford was 33 years old. She lived in Oakland. She was the mother of two teen-age boys. She liked to watch comedy; she like to do hair; and she liked to dance. She had a family, she had friends, and there are people who loved her who miss her. There is a lot more to her story, just as much to her story as there was to Laci's, but we'll probably never know it.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

The Long March of Those Who Came Before Us

. . . in the immortal words of Senator Barack Obama.

I suspect many will rely on media accounts of the speech, instead of going to the primary source. That is unfortunate. Regardless, here it is:

Thursday, March 13, 2008

It's So Easy

Oh, yes, Obama is in the running because he's Black. Because being Black gives you an elevator ride to the top, while all white Americans are slowly and laboriously climbing the ladder by dint of their own efforts. Huh. That must be why there have been so many Black presidents.

Keith Olbermann's response here.

Monday, March 3, 2008

What Does This Smile Say?

I'm thinking it says something along the lines of, "Once this mess gets cleaned up, Ima own this town."

I'm hoping.