Tag Archive: Georgia


The Long and Winding Road


The Long and Winding Road

 

  Growing up I often heard the expression…not to choose is to choose. The meaning of which became much more clear as I aged and matured.

  How often had I heard some one say that they were angered or frustrated with a situation and yet did nothing? Often we decide to sit the fence about issues…so to speak. We may feel a certain way about something, yet we take no stand. It is unfortunate that we don’t understand…when we fail to take a stand…we already did.

  We may say that we are against slavery…yet if we do nothing to stop the enslavement…we are silently approving the action. True, it may not be easy to stand up against those who are seemingly in the majority…but what are we REALLY saying…by saying nothing…by taking no stand?

  We are saying…it is okay. We are lending our support to those that we may very well be opposed to. We may say that we do not support the destruction of our planet…but unless we are willing to stand up for the world around us…our well wishes…will always fall upon deaf ears.

  It takes bravery to speak openly against those that oppress us…and often those people are targeted as troublemakers. I almost laugh at those statements…because I personally know one of those troublemakers. I have watched and heard her young heart standing up for what she believes is right or wrong in this life. I have seen people try to muffle her cries for justice…with laughter or jokes, hoping to discourage her candor. But I promise you that this angel is only fueled by any opposition. She is never deterred by society’s criticisms…she keeps her head held high and marches on. She is strong and vigilant…she will stand up even when she feels she is under attack. She always makes her position known…regardless of the viewpoint or perception of others. I have seen her defend the life of a tree more passionately than I have seen men or women defend their fellow man.

  In mid conversation, she will say that it is wrong for the state to kill someone…to prove that killing is wrong. The act in itself emphasizes the “do as I say and not as I do” idea. Even before Troy Davis, the Georgia man who was executed Sept 21, 2011…for the death of an off duty police officer; as a fifteen year old girl…my daughter was debating the death penalty with educators. Did she have some information that we didn’t? No, she simply didn’t need anyone to tell her that killing is wrong. She didn’t seek or desire direction on this matter…she just always knew that loving our fellow man was our primary objective. To put it in her own words…how can our parents teach us that we are not supposed to fight…and that turning the other cheek is what God wants from us. Yet…we send our nation to war. It may seem like an over simplification to some…but again, in her words…wrong is wrong…no matter how many words you dress it up with.

  This young woman is one of my personal heroes. She has won no awards…there have been no stories written about her…outside of my own efforts. She has no National Holiday…but she sings her song of justice loudly…to anyone who will listen. She hasn’t prevented a war…she hasn’t stopped famine or the ongoing problems that we have created for ourselves. But everyday she will tell people openly that the man in the mirror is the change needed. For our reflection is who we are…not who we may think we are. We have a voice…we choose when and where to use it.

  As a society, we have chosen to be led. Growing up; we are told how to behave. Where to sit or stand…who to be nice to…what to wear; the problem is that we are now conditioned. We are conditioned to believe that we need permission to do what we already know is right. It is this conditioning that causes us to allow the destructive actions and decisions of others. No one is dictating to us what we should be doing…so we do nothing. As if we need permission to carry out the work of God.

  What I am saying is that the truths we were taught as children…theses still are true today. The fact is that the TRUTH….always will be TRUE. It is the one constant in our lives. Life can be like a long and winding road…seemingly endless; but the path is the one we have always known.

  We were created to love one another…and with love, comes peace. There can be no negative in that…for the basis of love and peace…comes from our Creator.

  Taking a stand can be hard…but masking who we really are in our silence…is a crime against our nature. Stand up for those that have no voice…be the voice of reason and justice…like our fore fathers before us. Be what we teach our children to be…every day. Lead by example…love by choice…be the humanity we seek in others.

 

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The Race is On


The Race is On

 

    What do you call it when a police officer can stop a driver of a car, for what ever traffic violation, and ask for verification of legal status in this country? What would you call it if I told you that if that individual didn’t have the documentation on his person, that he could be detained up to 48 hours, until further verification can be made?

 What would you say if I told you that it is not only a violation of the Fourth Amendment to detain anyone for the sole purpose of verifying immigration status, but also has never been required for Americans to even carry Government issued identification at all times.

What if I told you that if you gave a neighbor a ride to Wal-Mart, and got pulled over for a broken tail light, and your neighbor turned out to be an illegal immigrant…that you could charged with a criminal offense of harboring an illegal immigrant and charged up to $20,000 and sentenced up to 5 years in jail? I wonder what would happen if you were a taxi driver, or a greyhound bus driver, given those circumstances.

 What if you were told that as an employer that you had to E-Verify all employees if you have 10 or more, even if in the case of Chamber of Commerce v. Whiting, the Federal Government explicitly told the Supreme Court that the E-Verify program was strictly voluntary, and any state requiring employers to participate is to be preempted by federal law?

  Welcome to Georgia’s Illegal Immigration Enforcement and Reform Act!!!!

   Let’s just call this what it is….RACIAL PROFILING. And now the state of Georgia, just like the state of Arizona has made Racial Profiling a part of their daily life.

 I mean, lets be real, how do I determine who to ask for legal status? What guidelines do I have to tell me who to ask and who not to ask; keeping in mind that it is all going in to a database?

 Racial Profiling is very real, and it is being used to cause further separation of our country from within its own borders. I am sure I don’t need to remind anyone that the United States was never anything but a giant sanctuary for immigrants…and now we are punishing people for doing just that.

 I can not determine if this is more frightening than it is sad, or vice versa. We can not continually stand firmly silent on issues that seriously undermine what this country was built on.

 I have often been told that my ideas of peace and love of my fellow being…is made up of  unrealistic hopes and dreams; but the truth is that is exactly what people come to this country for. Can you remember when this country stood on the premise that anything was possible here, because we live by the standard that we are an extremely diverse and accepting culture? What has happened to us? Why are we allowing the very government we created to dictate to us…and instill in us….fear? We fear what we do not know and instead of reassuring us; our government is infringing up on us…what an American REALLY is or is not.

  We are all diverse…we come from different cultures, societies, religions and beliefs. But when we lose track of the knowledge that WE ARE ONE…we all lose.

 

Please join me in asking President Obama to help put an end to Racial Profiling.

http://www.rightsworkinggroup.org/content/sign-petition-tell-obama-take-action-stop-racial-profiling

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All Eyes on Georgia


All Eyes on Georgia

  Define irony…Irony is planning an execution for an inmate, whose guilt is questionable…at the least, on September 21st …which is International Peace Day.

  In 1991, Troy Davis was found guilty of the 1st degree murder of Mark Allen MacPhail, an off duty police officer….in Savannah, Georgia.  And Mr. Davis was found guilty based on NO physical evidence…no fingerprints…no DNA…no weapon. The evidence that was used to convict Troy Davis consisted solely of 9 eye witness accounts.  Mr. Davis has served 20 years for a crime that he may NOT be guilty of, not a huge shock to many…since there have been countless inmates who have served a decade or more…before being found NOT GUILTY.

  In 2010, 7 of the 9 eye witness accounts were recanted, some of which stated that they were coerced by police to finger Davis.  The judge in the case discounted the recanted testimony, stating that the witnesses had “extensive criminal records” and therefore their testimonies were not valid. One of the 2 remaining witnesses is Sylvester “RED” Coles…the first person, who police suspected of the heinous crime. The judge also stated that Troy Davis failed to prove his innocence in this case.

 So to reiterate…the 7 eye witness testimonies, which were recanted…are not permissible because the have criminal records…however they were valid for the conviction. And the one other suspect in this crime is now an eye witness.

  And on September 21, 2011, the state of Georgia will execute Troy Davis, via lethal injection, unless the Governor intervenes.

 I am not asking you to believe that Troy Davis has been a model citizen, because he hasn’t. Mr. Davis has a police record, beyond this conviction. However, that should have no bearing or weight in this case…since it is not connected in any way.

  I am also not asking you to say that he is innocent. In our Justice system, we do not have to prove innocence…we only need to be certain “BEYOND A REASONABLE DOUBT” that Troy Davis is guilty. He deserves his day in court…as 7 of the original eye witnesses have recanted their testimony. And one of the remaining witnesses is a probable suspect.

  Let me state also, the death of Mark Allen MacPhail, was a tragic event…and my sympathy goes out to his family. However executing the wrong person…is not justice…it is wrong.

 At this time I am asking for your signature on one of many online petitions, stating that his voice deserves to be heard. Please do not sign if you believe beyond a shadow of a doubt that Troy Davis is guilty, but if you question the verdict, AT ALL…please join us in this cause.

http://www.change.org/petitions/7-of-9-witnesses-say-my-brother-is-innocent-stop-troy-davis-execution-on-sep-21

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