Month: November 2014

News Release: The National Bar Association Issues Next Steps In The “War on Police Brutality”

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Good Morning, the statement below is a new and breaking headline in reference to our unified response to combating Police Brutality on a National Level. Any correspondence can be addressed to the responsible  parties listed on the document.

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                
National Bar Association
November 26, 2014
communications@nationalbar.org Forward to a Friend View in Browser
The National Bar Association Issues Next Steps In The “War on Police Brutality”  

In Wake of the Michael Brown Verdict, Yesterday’s 12:30 a.m. Call to Action Conference Call Brought Members and Community Advocates Together to Begin Our Journey To Justice

WASHINGTON, DC — In the aftermath of the verdict by the St. Louis County Grand Jury, the National Bar Association is still questioning how Darren Wilson, a Police Officer in Ferguson, Missouri, was not indicted and tried for the shooting death of 18 year old Michael Brown. Accordingly, this Association is deeply concerned whether under the current legal standard a victim of excessive and/or deadly force by the hands of a police officer in America can receive fair and equal justice.

During yesterday morning’s national, “War On Police Brutality” conference call held at 12:30 a.m., “REAL SOLUTIONS TO AMERICAN’S EPIDEMIC”, were provided by the National Bar Association President, Pamela J. Meanes along with members of the National Bar Association; Pastor Gregg L. Greer, Founder of Freedom First International and Committee Member of The Southern Christian Leadership Conference; Dr. Cornel West, Activist and author; Pastor Chantel Renee Wright, Founder of Songs of Solomon and Bernard Butler, Founder, Urban Diary TV.

THE PLAN: JUSTICE FOR MICHAEL BROWN

1. Demand the United States Department of Justice Indict Darren Wilson How to Implement: Submit your demand by contacting the US Department of Justice

By Mail U.S. Department of Justice 950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20530-0001

By Phone Main Switchboard: (202) 514-2000 Comment Line: (202) 353-1555

By Email Submit demands to: webmaster@usdoj.gov

2. The National Bar Association filed an action seeking to revoke Wilson’s license to be a police officer.  How to Implement: Click here to sign our petition. 
IMMEDIATE JUSTICE 
1. SOCIAL MEDIA BLACKOUT We are asking everyone not to use Twitter or Facebook as follows:

  • Tuesday, November 25 – Tuesday, December 2, 2014
  • From 8:09 pm until 12:39 am for a week. (The month and date of Michael Brown’s death and four hours his body laid in the street)
  • During this time, be sure and post the above image. Click here to download.

2. NATIONAL ECONOMIC BOYCOTT WITH LOCAL IMPACT  As the National Bar Association studies the impact of an economic boycott on police brutality, we wanted to make all aware of several individuals/organizations who have called for an economic boycott:
Pastor Gregg L. GreerFounder of Freedom First International and Committee Member of The Southern Christian Leadership Conference

Dr. Cornel West, Activist and author, Pastor Chantel Renee Wright, Founder of Songs of Solomon and Bernard Butler, Founder, Urban Diary TV.

Five cities that are being targeted include*:

  • Atlanta  Lottery, Macy’s, Target and Bed, Bath and Beyond
  • Chicago Lottery, Macy’s Best Buy, Target
  • Houston Lottery, Galleria Mall (Designate Mall as of limits for shopping
  • Los Angles Lottery,(To be determined in consultation)
  • New York Lottery, (Macy’s Target)

LEGISLATIVE CHANGE

1.Demanding the Implementation of New State and Local Laws  How to Implement: Require your councilperson and state legislators to implement the following laws

LOCAL LAW: Mandating Independent Investigations: Visit your City Hall to locate the following:

  • Contact information for all council members.
  • The expiration date of council members terms.
  • Scheduled council meetings and citizens should attend and demand that the above laws are implemented IMMEDIATELY.
  • Local attorneys (at least two) are asked to attend each council meeting.
  • Demand higher standards for individuals to Become Police Officers (local & state)

STATE LAW: Mandating Independent Investigations: Check your State Legislature website for the following:

  • State Senate and Congressional representative’s contact information.
  • The expiration date of the legislative member’s term.
  • Legislature sessions.
  • Write letters, attend congressional sessions and demand that the above laws are implemented IMMEDIATELY.

STATE AND LOCAL LAW: Mandating Diversity Training

  • Require a standard training program for police officers in every state.

Participate in the National Police Brutality Day On The Hill:

  • Friday, November 28, 2014 and Friday, December 5, 2014
  • Show up on the steps of your state legislative and/or your local municipal building and demand that the above laws are implemented IMMEDIATELY.

More information: nbacrimlawsection@gmail.com
2. DEMAND CONGRESSIONAL ACTION BEFORE DEMOCRATS LEAVE SENATE 

  • Congress Pass laws related to:
    • Body Video Cameras
    • Use of Force
    • Elevation of Force
    • Permanent Suspension
    • Felony Police Brutality
    • End the “School to Prison Pipeline
  • Contact Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) and demand that he allow Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) and Rep. Bobby Scott (D-Virginia) IMMEDIATELY hold hearings on Police Brutality.
  • Contact Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), and demand the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee IMMEDIATELY hold hearings on Police Brutality

The Honorable Bob Goodlatte (R-VA)
House Judiciary Committee
2138 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Personal Office: (202) 225-5431
Committee Office: (202) 225-3951
Online: goodlatte.house.gov

The Honorable John Conyers (D-MI)
House Judiciary Committee
2142 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Personal Office: (202) 225-5126
Committee Office: (202) 225-6906
Online: conyers.house.gov

The Honorable Patrick Leahy
Chairman (D-VT)

Senate Judiciary Committee
244 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510-4502
Personal Office: (202) 224-4242
Committee Office: (202) 224-7703
Online: www.leahy.senate.gov

 

NATIONAL BAR ASSOCIATION LEGAL RESOURCES TEAM

The citizens of Ferguson and this nation are in need of legal representation to those individuals who were arrested for exercising their constitutional rights. If you are a member of the Mound City Bar (MCBA) or Jackson County Bar Association (JCBA), please contact Kendra Howard, President of MCBA at president@moundcitybar.com. All others should contact Attorney Aramis Donell Ayala, Chair of the National Bar Association Pro Bono Committee at aramis.donell@gmail.com.

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ABOUT THE NATIONAL BAR ASSOCIATION The National Bar Association was founded in 1925 and is the nation’s oldest and largest national network of predominantly African-American attorneys and judges. It represents the interests of approximately 60,000 lawyers, judges, law professors and law students.The NBA is organized around 23 substantive law sections, 9 divisions, 12 regions and 80 affiliate chapters throughout the United States and around the world. For more information, visit: www.nationalbar.org

Copyright © 2014 National Bar Association, All rights reserved.
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This Holiday Season we must not forget the homeless population

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One World By Gregg L Greer, Editor for One World
 
I spent the better part of this summer in Florida specifically Orlando, and Gainesville with my friends at Speak Up Florida helping them open their office, in addition to helping them organize their effort to educate and combat serious issues such as HIV, Homelessness in the Orlando community. This past week I was saddened to hear one of the advocates there committed suicide which is the reason why I wanted to write this post.

Poverty

Homelessness and poverty are inextricably linked. Poor people are frequently unable to pay for housing, food, childcare, health care, and education. Difficult choices must be made when limited resources cover only some of these necessities. Often it is housing, which absorbs a high proportion of income that must be dropped. If you are poor, you are essentially an illness, an accident, or a paycheck away from living on the streets.

 

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The CES defines homeless people

10169436_885785151461586_2983674168572247999_nAn estimated 100 million people worldwide are homeless.  In western countries, the large majority of homeless are men (75–80%), with single males particularly overrepresented
 
In 2009, at the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe Conference of European Statisticians (CES), held in Geneva, the Group of Experts on Population and Housing Censuses defined homelessness as:

In its Recommendations for the Censuses of Population and Housing, the CES identifies homeless people under two broad groups:
(a) Primary homelessness (or rooflessness). This category includes persons living in the streets without a shelter that would fall within the scope of living quarters.
(b) Secondary homelessness. This category may include persons with no place of usual residence who move frequently between various types of accommodations (including dwellings, shelters and institutions for the homeless or other living quarters). This category includes persons living in private dwellings but reporting ‘no usual address’ on their census form.
The CES acknowledges that the above approach does not provide a full definition of the ‘homeless’.

What can you do!

Miguel Adams for Speak Up Florida and I (Gregg Greer) and the team at The Guilty In Innocence Project and Freedom First International are currently building national network to advocate for people who are currently experiencing or who have experienced homelessness. Our growing network must (will) include activists and advocates, community-based and faith-based service providers, and others committed to a single mission: To prevent and end homelessness while ensuring the immediate needs of those experiencing homelessness are met and their civil rights protected.
 
Speak Up Florida
 
Speak Up Florida based in Orlando Florida, is a Human Rights advocacy, educational, Non Profit Organization.
Who’s Mission is to End Mass Incarceration, the War on Drugs (Us), and its collateral consequences: The New Jim Crow.
 
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Guilty in Innocence Project doesn’t just reveal the outrage of human rights abuse but inspires hope for a better world through public action; we are dedicated to exonerating wrongfully convicted people through Investigation and Public Lobby reforming the criminal justice system .
 
Freedom First
Freedom First International was originally formed in 2009. The main aim was to advance the cause of civil rights, human rights and Social Justice.
 
 
Please feel free to reach out to via email at One1worldtoday@gmail.com or leave a comment below.
 
 

Use Your “B.R.A.I.N.S” My Proven Strategy for “Effective” Social Justice Campaigns

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One World By Gregg L Greer, Editor for One World
Use Your Brains for effectiveness.
Use Your Brains for effectiveness.

Build

We should always be ready to explain and understand the use of creativity and timing to “Build” momentum. PR and media will always help move the cause forward, and galvanize hundreds. Highly Promote your mission and mission Statement.

Revolutionize

Understand the economy of the action and how success requires winning decisive engagements quickly. In this section, we must keep in mind successful campaigns require limiting the cost of competition and conflict and maximizing that cost to your opposition. This knowledge will provide your cause with “change”-This is the heart of a “Revolutionary” effort.

 Assessment

Prior to starting a detailed “Assessment” and Planning- explore and checklist the fundamental factors including the opposing leadership and management also the major elements that determine the outcome of your engagement. By thinking, assessing and comparing these points, we can better calculate our chances of victory. Habitual deviation from these calculations will ensure failure via improper action. Stress to your team that your effort is a very grave matter and must not be commenced without due consideration.

Intelligence

“Intelligence.” Focus on the importance of developing good information sources, and what specified types of intelligence sources are needed. Know how to best manage each of them. Always select someone in the leadership to continue a consistent flow of information.

 Note

“Note” the disposition of the Campaign know the importance of defending existing position until the end of the campaign a beyond. Throughout the campaign, we must recognize, note and look for strategic opportunities, and in addition we must not create opportunities for the enemy.

Strategy

“Strategic”  When you (group) attack always define the main source of strength is unity, not size, and discuss all factors that would be needed to succeed in your campaign. In order of importance, these critical factors are Attack, Strategy, Alliances, opposition, and location.

 

 

 

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Notes from “My struggle” Why some Leaders control over the Civil Rights Dialog has been our long term Failure.

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One World By Gregg L Greer, Editor for One World

 

The tangle of leadership, in both the white establishment and the black community, has contributed to the chaos

 

Friends on the eve of our initiative to combat the Ferguson Missouri issue-our coalition has decided that economic boycotts would be the most appropriate immediate response. At best the early numbers look to be just over 1000 including Attorneys, social justice activist, and labor unions. With that on mind, I believe we are on the right path.

However, I must state; I’m seriously concerned about Ferguson, Chicago and other communities around the country. As we (coalition) try to address the issues, I’m puzzled to ask why and how did we get here. I as well as many others believe that if we are to address the issues accordingly, then we must look at the breach in the road and go back to repair it. After putting some thought into the problem in Ferguson, I begin to see one huge issue is our leadership. I agree with the sentiment expressed a recent New York Times article called The Chaos in Ferguson is Fueled by Tangle of Leadership. I didn’t say it, but I believe it’s too true!

An example of  my struggle with the current leadership

I will offer an example of  my struggle with the current leadership. Several Months ago-I along a few others orchestrated a multi-state stand down at the State Capital of Florida versus Stand Your Ground Laws and Police Brutality. Friends in California, Virginia, and Georgia joined us-but another high-profile civil rights organization and it’s leader attempted to dwarf out efforts by requesting that those in the community do not attend. The belief is their concern was about being upstaged!

The tangle of leadership, in both the white establishment and the black community, has not only contributed to the chaos but it has also raised questions about the effectiveness of both sides to bring an end to the standoff. In many ways, the tangle of leadership is dangerous because change must happen, but it stops lasting change on the complicated issues of race, trust and policing.

We must understand, “Poor leaders,” can have a negative impact on the issue and might even damage the issue; that’s the bottom line (end of issue). Poor leadership affects your community and its ability for advocacy, change and lowers most people’s morale, motivation and productivity to inspire for change. Understanding the traits of poor leaders will help us avoid leadership pitfalls and strengthen your leadership abilities.

 Elitism or rather social and class divides us

My point is that throughout history in the African-American community, we are, unfortunately, in a position where elitism or rather social and class divides have been yet another nail in the coffin. In addition, it has affected our moving forward as the black and human race and ignited a fire in our communities abroad.  Some may say that perhaps, I may invoke this slightly exaggerated view about Civil Rights. I must say, I stand by my belief about being unified as a race in order to “move forward” and whatever that is or may look like, but I am quite clear that we have a serious problem. While the time has not yet come, this issue and its provocateurs will  have to be dealt with.

The “us vs. Them” ideals

The “us vs. Them” ideals within our race evolve from those who are sick. I urge some Leaders control over the Civil Rights Dialog has been our long-term failure. Many of us did not request you to be our leader (that was your desire). So if you are in that position or “claim to be,” I ask that you stay in the fight, and fight right! Stop selling our people out! Period!

My proclamation is-I just want to do “God’s Will,” and as long I am pleasing God it is immaterial to me who is displeased. For this I will not bow down, sell out or settle!   All Glory I give to God!

In Love and Peace
Gregg L. Greer
 

National Economic Boycotts begin with the Ferguson Announcement!

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National Economic Boycott vs. Organized Oppressive Tactics

The National Economic Boycott vs. Organized Oppressive Tactics, or Ne’Boot will be used as a campaign for “Peaceful,” political and social protest against the various growing policies of injustice that we are seeing across the country. The campaign will begin when-The Ferguson Federal Grand Jury ruling is announced, and will continue indefinitely.

The Ne'Boot Logo to be placed on facebook pages
The Ne’Boot Logo to be placed on Facebook pages

https://www.facebook.com/pages/NeBoot/694299660665716?tab=page_info&view

“American State Governments have idly allowed, citizens in many communities to be disproportionately affected by oppressive or weak human rights policies. These tactics have taken us backward to a period resembling much like that of the Jim Crow Era by targeting certain communities more harshly than others, and allowing decimating policies against those in communities of color to which have caused many (all) to be socially infected.  The current U.S. Criminal Justice System is need of an overhaul and now functions as a contemporary system of racial or caste control—relegating millions to a permanent second-class status and to the point of human life being expendable.” For this reason we must take a stand! said Gregg L Greer (Architect) Lead Organizer

Why is this initiative important to join

  •  This effort is simple, honest  and allows everyone to participate regardless of age, location, or capability.
  • By “growing,” the coalition we can  place more serious focus on future targets with unity and empowerment.
  • We have to organize in a way that protects our communities against any attack. Period!
  • In many ways protesting is dangerous and we must limit participants from suffering Jail, or harm whenever possible.
  • Economic sanctions historically are proven to have a lasting effect toward Peace and Resolution.

The Ne’Boot will function by announcing daily at 12:01 P.M (exact time Michael Brown was shot) various the economic boycott targets around the country will be announced. The boycott targets will include national, and local companies and well as municipal operations. Initial Campaigns have been scheduled for Chicago, Missouri. For those who disagree Economic leverage isn’t the enemy of free expression; it’s a form of free expression guaranteed by the U.S Constitution. Several Coalitions have joined this effort from around the country including Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and Texas. (Details to be announced) Facebook users are being asked to “Blackout,” their profile picture or use the Ne’Boot picture

Thus far, we cannot and have not resolved any problem through retaliatory violence. “We must now find better ways to carry out change. The economic problems of working-class and unemployed Americans, have suggested that the civil-rights movement and its period of “protest” have changed and we have entered into a new era of “concerns”, in which the community have to ally with the economic and labor movement in mind. Stand with us!

 

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Arizona continues in the disgraceful effort to railroad Shanesha Taylor based on statements from a convicted felon.

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One World By Gregg L Greer, Editor for One World

Arizona continues in the disgraceful effort to railroad Shanesha Taylor based on statements from a two time “Convicted Felon.”

 

Shanesha Mullins Taylor original  arrest picture
Shanesha Taylor original arrest picture

I received a call from a friend in reference to joining the advocacy for Shanesha Taylor- a single mother who is now being railroaded by the Arizona media and the Arizona State Courts.  Many are familiar with Shanesha’s case last Spring 2014 in which Arizona authorities accused Taylor of leaving her children in a hot car while she went to a job interview. For the record- In opposition, Arizona is known by many in the human and civil rights advocacy world as one of the worst states in America when it comes civil rights. Surprisingly, The various local news agencies have posted newscasts, and articles-full of outright lies and distortion of the facts, without any effort to get clarification.  

 The issue surrounds Arizona’s demand by Maricopa County Judge and County Prosecutor Bill Montgomery for Shanesha Taylor to put her donations into a trust fund or else Arizona would re-prosecute her for already cleared charges. This seems to many to be one of the most disgusting displays of government abuse and over-reach ever known on record. Montgomery and his right-wing prosecution team are serious about proceeding with their “shame and Blame campaign,” and despite the cost to the state, and more importantly about the emotional toll to the children involved.  Not to mention the devastating damage that a prosecution on two felony charges of which she has already been cleared will cause with her effort to support her family. However, the fact that a judge wanted to direct or control how and where she spent donations given to assist with her personal needs is questionable. Why is it a judge wanted to control how she spent her money? 100k is not exactly life changing if it is your only means for survival. Many believe she (Shanesha Taylor) should be able to invest however she sees fit. Also, one must ask- is there even a precedent for this time of ruling? 

Jarrett Maupin stirs up controversy!

The question is why had this issue become so pervasive? The answer to that question evolves around allegations that came from the extremely controversial Reverend Jarrett Maupin II “a self-proclaimed Civil Rights Advocate,” who has gone a media frenzy, seemingly to assist with the prosecution of Shanesha Mullin.  According to Maupin’s claim, “We had someone call my office and alert her attorney to the fact that she spent $6,000 at a music studio in Tempe to finish her baby daddy’s rap album,” Maupin said. “That’s not what people gave her that money for.” Maupin says Taylor wasted her donated money.

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Jarret Maupin while  on his recent publicity frenzy! to have Shanesha Taylor indicted.


We’re trying to separate Shanesha Taylor from her mistakes, and that has proved to be perhaps an insurmountable obstacle,” said Reverend Jarrett Maupin. Maupin would rather have everyone forget the sordid history of previous his false claims of the once Rev. Al Sharpton protégée Rev. Jarrett Maupin II? 

But in a Sep 22, 2009 – A Seeing Red AZ News Article told the story of Jarrett Maupin the former Phoenix mayoral candidate, who was sentenced to five years’ probation and 75 hours of community service for making a false report to the FBI.

Maupin was indicted after admitting that he falsely informed the FBI that Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon had allegedly engaged in criminal activity. Maupin made the claim in order to damage Gordon’s mayoral aspirations.

In the 2014  elections as a Congressional Candidate Jarrett Maupin was unable to vote for himself in the primary due to the fact that he was a  two count felon who was still serving probation at the time. The U.S. Constitution does not bar felons from running for office, but the Arizona Constitution does forbid felons on probation or with outstanding restitution from voting. As a result of the convictions, Maupin was required to resign from the Phoenix school board, pay restitution for offering legal services without a law degree to at least two people and serve five years of probation. Maupin’s probation was set to end in April but was extended by a judge after prosecutors claimed his performance while on probation was “nothing more than a continuation of his predilection for lying and half-truths.   See Article  here: “http://seeingredaz.wordpress.com/2008/11/20/prodigy-mayoral-candidate-jarrett-maupin-ii-arrested/  

 According to federal prosecutors, Maupin has repudiated the false report as part of his plea agreement and agreed to resign his position on the governing board of the Phoenix Union High School District.

Mayor Maupin

In the oddest of circumstances, Maupin was removed from the 2007 city ballot after the Maricopa County Clerk’s Office determined that nearly 185 of the signatures that sealed his spot in the race were collected by convicted felons.

“(I’d) go to Washington, smoke cigars and drink brown liquor with the Speaker and get something done for our state,” Maupin said this week in an endorsement interview with The Arizona Republic editorial board, explaining how he would work with Republicans if elected to the U.S. House while attempting an unsuccessful 2014 to run for Congress in Arizona District 7.  

Maupin got off easy with his sentence.  He faced up to 6 months in jail and fine of up to $2,500, as Seeing Red AZ reported.

Maupin said he arranged jobs for Taylor in the hospitality industry, a business in which she told him she was interested. “I call these Taylor-ready jobs, all she had to do was show up,” Maupin said. “Unfortunately, she didn’t.”

“We had someone call my office and alert her attorney to the fact that she spent $6,000 at a music studio in Tempe to finish her baby daddy’s rap album,” Maupin said. “That’s not what people gave her that money for.”

 In Shanesha Taylor’s case common sense would dictate that the best way to protect children is to give single mothers back-up and support, but in Arizona hateful attitudes as displayed in the comments sections at the various media sites are more the rule than the exception. Logically, The question that presents itself to all is?- Do we take the word of a two-time convicted felon, or a single mother trying to work herself out of the struggle? I choose Shanesha Taylor.

What you can do to help!

County Prosecutor Bill Montgomery
County Prosecutor Bill Montgomery

Please use this link to contact The Maricopa County Prosecutors Office to clearly tell County Prosecutor Bill Montomgery-We support Shanesha Mullins Taylor! Hands off!

http://www.maricopacountyattorney.org/contact-us.html

Additional References:

http://www.forharriet.com/2014/11/shanesha-taylor-was-right-to-refuse-to.html?utm_content=buffer28eee&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

http://madamenoire.com/490666/shanesha-taylor-owes-nothing/2/

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What Do the King Letters from the FBI reveal to us Today?

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One WorldBy Gregg L Greer, Editor for One World

This letter should be read and studied by everyone in the United States, only because it demonstrates exactly how much damage the intelligence community was willing to inflect on citizens —and when they (intelligence) latch on to a target, how far will they go to accomplish their mission.

imagesRZI84PW0The New York Times recently published a unreacted version of the famous “suicide letter” from the FBI to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The letter, recently discovered by historian and professor Beverly Gage. The anonymous letter was the result of the FBI’s comprehensive surveillance and harassment strategy called Cointelpro, the notorious program between the years 1956 and 1971, they (FBI) wanted to prevent the rise of a black “messiah.” FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover vigorously disrupted the lives of black leaders such as Dr. King and others including the Black Panthers, Malcolm X, and S.C.L.C-Southern Christian Leadership Conference. The strategy included bugging their homes hotel rooms, photographic surveillance, and physical observation of their daily movements by FBI agents.

 

The FBI’s comprehensive surveillance and harassment strategy called Cointelpro
The FBI’s comprehensive surveillance and harassment strategy called Cointelpro

Portions of the letter had been previously redacted. One of these portions contains a claim that the letter was written by another African-American:

 “King, look into your heart. You know you are a complete fraud and a great liability to all us Negroes.” It goes on to say “We will now have to depend on our older leaders like Wilkins, a man of character and thank God we have others like him. But you are done.”

  • This line is key, because part of the FBI’s strategy was to try to fracture movements and pit leaders against one another.

The newly unreacted portions shed light on the government’s bizarre plan to harass and discredit Dr. King. One paragraph states:

No person can overcome the facts, now even a fraud like yourself. Lend your sexually psychotic ear to the enclosure. You will find yourself and in all your dirt, filth, evil and moronic talk exposed on the record for all time. . . . Listen to yourself, you filthy, abnormal animal. You are on the record.

  • And of course, the letter ends with an ominous threat:

“King, there is only one thing left for you to do. You know what it is. You have just 34 days in which to do it (this exact number has been selected for a specific reason, it has definite practical significance). You are done. There is but one way out for you. You better take it before your filthy, abnormal fraudulent self is bared to the nation.”

There’s a lesson to learn here: history must play a central role in the debate around spying today. As Professor Gage states:

Should intelligence agencies be able to sweep our email, read our texts, track our phone calls, and locate us by GPS? Much of the conversation swirls around the possibility that agencies like the N.S.A. or the F.B.I. will use such information not to serve national security but to carry out personal and political vendettas. King’s experience reminds us that these are far from idle fears, conjured in the fevered minds of civil libertarians. They are based in the facts of history.  

 

the famous “suicide letter” from the FBI to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
The famous “suicide letter” from the FBI to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

           

Today technology allows us better understanding of these strategies in the digital age are not so much surprising but sill disturbing nonetheless. What if the Facebook chats, porn viewing history, emails, were made public to discredit a leader who threatens the status quo, or used to extort a reluctant target into becoming an FBI informant? These are not far-fetched ideas. They are the reality of what happens when the surveillance state is allowed to grow out of control, and the full King letter, as well as current intelligence community practices illustrate that reality richly. (GLG)

 

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