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Friday, October 30, 2009

Congressional Black Caucus Members Under Investigation

The Washington Post is reporting that House ethics investigators have been scrutinizing the activities of more than 30 lawmakers and several aides in inquiries about issues including defense lobbying and corporate influence peddling, according to a confidential House ethics committee report prepared in July.

Dozens in Congress under ethics inquiry

Ellen Nakashima and Paul Kane staff writers with the Washington Post are reporting the a number of members of the Congressional Black Caucus are being investigated for defense lobbying and corporate influence peddling, according to a confidential House ethics committee report prepared in July.

The document also disclosed that ethics committee staff members have interviewed House Ways and Means Chairman Charles B. Rangel (D-N.Y.) about one element of the complex investigation of his personal finances, as well as the lawmaker's top aide and his son.

Rangel said he spoke with ethics committee staff members regarding a conference that he and four other members of the Congressional Black Caucus attended last November in St. Martin. The trip initially was said to be sponsored by a nonprofit foundation run by a newspaper. But the three-day event, at a luxury resort, was underwritten by major corporations such as Citigroup, Pfizer and AT&T. Rules passed in 2007, shortly after Democrats reclaimed the majority following a wave of corruption cases against Republicans, bar private companies from paying for congressional travel.

According to Wapo Rangel said he has not discussed other parts of the investigation of his finances with the committee. "I'm waiting for that, anxiously," he said.

Reps. Maxine Waters and Laura Richardson are seen.

There is more.. According to Wapo, Politico, and The LA Times, the committee did not detail the two newly disclosed investigations. However, according to the July document, Rep. Maxine Waters, a high-ranking member of the House Financial Services Committee, came under scrutiny because of activities involving OneUnited Bank of Massachusetts, in which her husband owns at least $250,000 in stock. Waters arranged a September 2008 meeting at the Treasury Department where OneUnited executives asked for government money. In December, Treasury selected OneUnited as an early participant in the bank bailout program, injecting $12.1 million.

AAPP: Voters in their congressional districts need to take a hard look at these Corrupt Congressional Black Caucus members. It just may be time to throw these folks out of office. I know if any of them were representing me, I would vote them out of office in a heartbeat. I guess Cathy Hughes would do the same thing. If I were Obama I would not meet with the Congressional Black Caucus until they stop standing up for crooks, get there act together and purged those who bring the group into disgrace.

I'm also getting a bit tired of these Congressional ethics inquiries, that have been dragging on for sometime despite vows to end corruption.

I guess I can understand why some democrats are worried that one of their own could cost them their jobs.

Friday, September 18, 2009

NAACP Joins Fight For Federal Taser Standards

The Publisher of Tasered While Black says: Finally the National Office of the NAACP is discussing the issue of Black folks getting Tasered While Black. We salute the fact that Ben Jealous has joined in this fight. I hope that the National office of the NAACP's new involvement is sincere, and is not just another PR effort that they have been famous for in the past.

Let's see if the NAACP will join the already established effort of the Afrospear and
Tasered While Black to gain a Congressional Taser Hearings or will they go it alone, and establish a new effort for PR purposes... Only time will tell.

Benjamin Jealous

As reported on the NAACP Website and the Afro Newspaper in Baltimore Maryland, (September 17, 2009) - The NAACP is renewing a push for federal standards on police use of force after the shooting of an unarmed Black man by two White police officers inside a church while day care children watched, the Associated Press reported.

According to witnesses, the man was surrendering but officials in Rockford, Ill., deny this description of events, saying Mark Anthony Barmore attempted to grab an officer's gun after they cornered him in the church.

However, both sides agree Barmore ran when officers approached him in the church parking lot, highlighting the suspicion and fear that can poison relationships between police and minority communities across the country.

"There are no national standards for the use of force (or) training for use of force," Benjamin Todd Jealous, president and CEO of the NAACP, said Sept. 11.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Inmates in the US - Tasered While Handcuffed or Restrained

Another reason for congressional hearings on Taser Torture In America - A Call For Congressional Hearings.

As reported by the LA Times, The U.S. Department of Justice is conducting an investigation into Orange County's troubled jail system, examining a decade's worth of allegations that deputies mistreated inmates and used excessive force to keep control.

Orange County jail

Officials from the department's Civil Rights Division are seeking to determine whether incidents of violence by jail personnel amount to a pattern of violating inmates' rights, the Sheriff's Department confirmed.

The Orange County district attorney criticized deputies earlier this year for a "code of silence" that he said hampered prosecutors' ability to investigate possible criminal activities.

Among recent cases: An inmate was stomped to death by fellow prisoners after a deputy allegedly told them falsely that the man was a child molester. A county grand jury later criticized the Sheriff's Department for trying to impede the investigation into the death and concluded that there was evidence of rampant abuse at the Theo Lacy Jail in Orange.

The department has also been criticized for using Taser stun guns on handcuffed or restrained inmates. More HERE

Yet another reason why black bloggers have called for 'Congressional Taser Torture Hearings. Visit the Electronic Village, afrospear blog, NewsOne, Electrocuted While Black, Tasered While Black and this blog for more insight into the tasing of black folks in America. As tasers turn out to be America's 21st Century whips of terror.

Don't forget to sign the petition against Taser Torture In America.

Visit Tasered While Black and African American Political Pundit often.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Latinos and Blacks Tasered in America

More reasons for a Congressional Hearing on Taser Use In America. It's becoming clearer that it's not only Tasered While Black it's also Tasered While Latino. It truly is time for Congressional Hearings.

As reported by blogger, When I Write, In their own backyard at a Baptism, police in Manassas didn’t exactly kick in the door and wave the .44, but they did taser a pregnant woman and a 55 year-old man . I can’t wait to see if Barack Obama will invite this family for Tecate on the White House lawn. Police were responding to “a noise complaint at a child’s baptism party. By the time they left, a grandfather and a pregnant woman had been Tasered… The 55-year-old homeowner is a church family counselor and a bible study teacher.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Obama Praises White Policeman - Says FOX NEWS

Yes the folks at Fox News are at it again. Check out the headline - Obama Seeks to Clarify 'Stupidly' Comment, Praises White Policeman:

President Obama stopped short of an apology to Sgt. James Crowley on Friday for saying he "acted stupidly" for arresting black Harvard scholar Henry Lewis Gates Jr., but said he should have chosen his words more carefully.

At an impromptu appearance at the daily White House briefing, Obama said he spoke with Crowley over the phone, and said he wanted to share a beer with Crowley and Gates at the White House.

"Because this has been ratcheting up and I helped contribute to ratcheting it up, I want to make clear that in my choice of words I unfortunately gave an impression that I was maligning the Cambridge Police Department or Sgt. Crowley specifically and I could have calibrated those words differently."

"My sense is you've got two good people in a circumstance in which neither of them were able to resolve it the way the wanted to resolve it," Obama added.

Earlier in the day Friday, the Cambridge and area police unions voiced their support for Crowley and called for an apology from Obama for his statement.

"His remarks were obviously misdirected but made it worse yet by suggesting somehow this case should remind us of a history of racial abuse by law enforcement," Dennis O'Connor, president of the Cambridge Police Superior Officers Association, said at a news conference.

O'Connor also referred to statements made by Governor Deval Patrick -- the state's first black governor -- who called the arrest "every black man's nightmare."

"Whatever may be the history, we deeply resent the implications and reject any suggestion that in this case or any other case that they've allowed a person's race to direct their activities. However we hope they will reflect upon their past comments and apologize to the men and women of the Cambridge Police Department," O'Connor said.

Obama has said he was surprised by the controversy sparked by his comments. White House spokesman Roberts Gibbs said early Friday that the president regrets that the media have gotten all worked up over the controversy and been distracted from other more substantive issues such as health care.

AAPP: Well, if the President and his supporters on this issue understood many of the "white police officers" who disdain, hate and abuse black folks, "the Rednecks at FOX News and local police sources in America could be on to somethhing. It really could make it harder for those on the edge of bigotry to work with people of color and set back the progress of race relations that helped Obama become the nation's first black president." More HERE

Friday, July 24, 2009

Barack Obama, black folks, and the police

When the President ran for the Presidency he invoked his dear white mother and grandparents to get into power. Threw his former pastor under the bus, and made no commitments to black Americans for their collective vote. Now the president has pissed off the white cops. Instead of Barack Obama pissing them off for a good reason, like shooting black people in the back or tasering black folks while black, he had to say something about his Harvard Buddy.

As reported by MSNBC, many police officers across the country have a message for President Barack Obama: Get all the facts before criticizing one of our own.

Obama's public criticism that Cambridge officers "acted stupidly" when they arrested black Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. could make it harder for police to work with people of color, some officers said Thursday. It could even set back the progress in race relations that helped Obama become the nation's first African-American president, they said.

"What we don't need is public safety officials across the country second-guessing themselves," said David Holway, president of the International Brotherhood of Police Officers, which represents 15,000 public safety officials around the country. "The president's alienated public safety officers across the country with his comments." More HERE

AAPP: Many in the Brotherhood of Police Officers have alienated and abused black folks for years. Whites have wanted to politically dig into Obama for some time, he has given them the opportunity with his support of Louis Gates over police in this issue. Here is what Barack obama had to say:

Obama was asked about Gates' arrest at the end of a nationally televised news conference on health care Wednesday night and began his response by saying Gates was a friend and he didn't have all the facts.

"But I think it's fair to say, No. 1, any of us would be pretty angry," Obama said. "No. 2, that the Cambridge police acted stupidly in arresting somebody when there was already proof that they were in their own home. And No. 3 — what I think we know separate and apart from this incident — is that there is a long history in this country of African-Americans and Latinos being stopped by law enforcement disproportionately, and that's just a fact."

AAPP: Why can't Barack Obama ever talk about black people, without including some other group? Why don't Gates and Obama get it? Just because you have a Doctorate degree or Law degree from Harvard "your still black in America." Maybe, just maybe, The President should be supporting the "voiceless" blacks who have been abused, shot, tasered and killed by police, rather than supporting a man who already has a voice, and get's paid well, to express his opinion on how he feels white police act towards black people. It's interesting how black elitist Louis Gates and President Barack Obama, are all of a sudden one of us common black folk.

The flap over the arrest of Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates, top left, by Cambridge Police Sgt. James Crowley, bottom left, has renewed attention to an ongoing question of whether the U.S. has moved past racism.

When do we begin to hold people accountable? Who should be held accountable? Should it be the Police who are seeking an Obama apology? I guess Obama's honeymoon period with the American people is over. Now we are spending more time on this issue, because President Barack Obama needed to support his buddy, rather than talking about more important issues impacting black folks. As an example, why not talk about how FEMA mishandled toxins in trailers housing victims of Hurricane Katrina?

What do you think?

More about this issue on African American Political

Friday, June 19, 2009

Rusty Depass and other Post-Racial Bigots

More sorry Post-Racial white male bigotry in South Carolina. First it's the Gov. who has to be ordered by the SC high court orders governor to take federal cash. Now, as reported by Politics Daily, The South Carolina Republican Party recently launched a campaign to reach out to minorities who have, for decades, wanted nothing to do with the state's GOP. On Sunday, however, longtime Republican activist Rusty DePass seemed to be doing everything in his power to thwart that effort when he was caught making a racist joke on his Facebook page about First Lady Michelle Obama.

Rusty Depass has a rusted, color aroused brain.

Over the weekend, a gorilla escaped from a zoo in Columbia, and according to the New York Daily News, DePass just couldn't resist what he saw as the perfect opportunity for humor, updating his status message to read,

"I'm sure it's just one of Michelle's ancestors - probably harmless."

More at: GOP activist says escaped gorilla was 'ancestor' of Michelle Obama. Ben Hoover reports

Now the old negroes are upset about the Michelle Obama Gorilla Comment: NAACP Demands "Proper" Apology. I'm appreciative of the The Wichita NAACP
activism. I only wish the NAACP national office could get upset and join the national effort to stop the taser torture of black folks in America, as they are concerned about our first lady.

Most black folks understand that there is clear evidence of hate and contempt for a Black President and first lady in America. Let's hope that the Obama's realize that we are not in a
Post-Racial America.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

The Tasering of Brian Cardall Brings Out More Info On Tasering

Ok, As you know I'm usually talking about the tasering of black folks on my blog Tasered While Black. But I must say incidents of tasering involving people of every group, including the tasering of seniors in the United states are rising. Take for example the recent killing of Brian Cardell who was recently tasered to death. As reported by Electronic Village, Brian Cardall, recently diagnosed with bipolar disease, was driving home from a family wedding in Salt Lake City with his wife when he became disoriented. He stopped the car and got out. His wife called 911 to request medical assistance. More HERE

Now, as reported by KCSZ TV, A Hurricane man has come forward with an eyewitness account of Tuesdays tasering incident that led to the death of 32 year old Brian Cardall.

Witness Comes Forward Following Tragic Taser Incident

Lorry Stratton, a propane service man, was traveling on SR 59 Tuesday afternoon when two hurricane officers with lights flashing passed him going up the hill.

Moments later Stratton pulled up on scene and saw Hurricane City Police Chief Lynn Excell and another Hurricane officer standing near a man who was undressed and holding his clothes in his hands. Stratton said he watched the officer say something to the man and the man took a step forward.

That is when the officer deployed his taser causing him to drop to the ground. Stratton says the man did not seem to be a threat. More HERE The police killed Cardall with 50,000 volts of electricity from their taser gun.
As Villager from the blog Electronic Village said, "Brian Cardall is the 21st person in America to die from taser-related shooting this year. Torture isn't limited to Dick Cheney. Taser-torture is occuring all over our nation."

As reported by
KSL TV, Taser International says "exposure to tasering is not risk free, but there's no conclusive evidence [it says] for a high risk of serious injury." But the death this week of a 32-year-old man who was tased by police in Washington County is again drawing questions from cardiologists who specialize in the electrophysiology of the heart.

While police have experienced tasing themselves and the manufacturer has tested the device on numerous volunteers, cardiologists still question the effects of the gun's jolt on the heart.

Dr. Brian Crandall specializes in the electrophysiology of the heart. He says making a blanket statement about a Taser's low risk when users often don't know the medical background of the person they're tasing.

Crandall said, "If someone is going to get tasered, they're not evaluating their medical history going into it, so you don't know those things in advance, so it's difficult to make any blanket statements."

Dr. Crandall says the balanced electrical rhythm of the heart can be fragile even in a normal heart, depending on what's happening at the moment inside the body.

In a heightened mental condition where anxiety is pervasive, circulating hormones and the nervous system have an impact on the heart. Crandall explained, "The heart is heavily nerved and the nervous system has a big influence on the heart and the heart rhythm."

Also, a lot depends what part of the body is targeted by the Taser user. For example, if the victim is hit in the chest. "The proximity would definitely play a role," explained Crandall. "It would hit the heart much more there than if it were at a further distance away."

Tasing is simply not a "one-for-all" answer in disabling someone.

In an officer's judgment when to use the device, The U.S. Department of Justice warns, "Abnormal mental status in a combative or resistive subject may be associated with a risk for sudden death."

Crandall said, "A sick heart is one that would be at high risk … but it can even happen in people with normal hearts that, given the right circumstances, that if the rhythm is thrown off and there is no immediate remedy to it, that it could be a life threatening situation."

Crandall says physicians know a lot about electrical currents used in medicine to restart a failing heart, but researchers need more extensive studies on the effects of tasing. More HERE

AAPP: It's clear Police training for handling mental illness cases is lacking, Clearly it's time for all Americans to join the effort to have congressional hearings on taser torture. Please consider signing the petition.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Kentucky Fried Fools?

File this under: The Politics of chicken. Or better yet, chicken-crazed black folks. The fact of the matter is Americans of all races became copying experts this week as the free chicken coupons were printed on home and office printers/copying machines across America. KFC should have known in the economy there would be millions of people printing free chicken coupons for everyone in the family, and then some. Fact is, many folks started selling the coupons in front of KFC, in this hard economic times. DON'T HATE!

KFC Coupons Have Area Residents Fried

As reported by BNET Advertising Blog Oprah Winfrey’s offer of a free KFC grilled chicken meal for anyone downloading a coupon has created two interesting things:

  1. A 1960s-style sit-in at a Manhattan KFC when management refused to continue honoring the offer.
  2. Yet another opportunity to debate whether using black people to advertise a fried chicken chain is racist.
You can read about the mini-riot over on Gothamist. More HERE

News outlets such as the Huffington Post, NY Times, and bloggers like
and Carmen D at Black Voices Blog are covering the story. Many bloggers are asking is Oprah wrong for feeding us with KFC?

There is one thing for sure, Oprah's KFC free-for-all has sparked a number of civil rights era-style protest.

Blogger is on point when he wrote: "There are soo many things wrong with this story. Although I can’t help but laugh at the fact that those who actually wanted to pay faced beatdowns from angry coupon holders.

But the fact remains that people staged a sit-in for chicken. Chicken! These weren’t starving people begging for a meal, but crazy Americans angry that KFC wouldn’t honor a coupon. And I just know that after the whole Popeyes debacle, black people were involved. Probably spearheaded the revolt. The special runs until May 10. So these angry customers could have just come back to get their free chicken on another day.

And KFC and Oprah hold the responsibility for this foolishness. Oprah, I never thought you’d make the Do Better list, but alas, the day has come." More HERE

AAPP says: Candidly, I like many bloggers wonder why Kentucky Fried Chicken has black folks dancing around buckets of chicken?

It's all about the money! Now they (Kentucky Fried Chicken) are willing to spend money to make more money from.... guess who?

Check it out -
The KFC President Apologizes For Oprah Fiasco

Feel better now?

Customers wait in line on East 42nd St. to redeem their free coupon for KFC's new grilled chicken.

After being turned away angry Tuesday, customers left a bit happier Wednesday.

Why is it that news outlets like, Forbes, the NY Daily News, and other news outlets can cover and shame Kentucky Fried Chicken and find Oprah's KFC Promotion Hypocritical yet also on many occassions fail to address real issues impacting black America?

Why is it that black folks can lead demonstrations to get KFC to mail out rain checks for Oprah chicken freebie, but seem to refuse to address issues of impacting our own community?

It's too bad black folks by and large don't address crime in our communities, poverty, teen pregnancy, tasering while blacks, high unemployment rates among black youth, lower educational attainment, high rates of incarceration among black males, the unwillingness of some businesses to employ ex-offenders, and the loss of between $71 billion and $92 billion in black home ownership assets - the worst loss of wealth for people of color in modern U.S. history.
But let's get irate and demonstrate about some free chicken of course. We should be signing a petition to save black folks, instead we are more interested in some silly chicken.

File this under: The Politics of chicken. Or better yet, Chicken Wars

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Are Black Americans Stupified by Barack Obama?

Stupified: Confused and stupid at the same time.

AAPP: There seems to be a new sense of racial optimism. Very few
newspapers or bloggers are talking about "The black-white divide in Obama's popularity. For many, including Obama, silence is golden regarding color and racial matters. Most newspapers and bloggers are talking about how African-Americans are optimistic about Obama. While some blogs dare to ponder The Obama effect: Have blacks in general suddenly become smarter?

I guess black America is going Post Racial or just stupified by post racial madness - like Jay-Z . Soon Obama like Jay Z will say "There Is No Such Thing As Black Music"

Speaking of Stupified and Post Racial - There is a great article in The Atlantic by Ta-Nehisi Coates. regarding The Essental Americanness of African Americans. Ta-Nehisi Coates notes that a CBS News polling data has some interesting results on race. Matt was surprised that a significant number (44 percent) of African-Americans believe that blacks and whites have the same shot at success in this country:

I'm surprised that as many as forty-four percent of blacks say that both races have equal opportunity. I think the evidence is unambiguously clear that they do not. African-American children have parents with lower levels of income and education. Their families, even when they have above-average incomes, tend to have less wealth than white families. And even controlling for parental income and educational attainment, black kids do worse in schools than white kids. Then beyond all that, there's clear evidence of discrimination against job applicants with "black" names that tends to suggest a broader pattern of employment discrimination. There are inequities in the criminal justice system both in terms of more punishment being meted out to black offenders, and the police and the courts doing less to protect black victims.

I'm not surprised that most white people prefer to ignore this sort of evidence and believe in the existence of equal opportunities, but it's surprising to me how many African-Americans have adopted an unrealistically optimistic view.

Ta-Nehisi Coates says: I obviously agree with Matt's assessment of the socioeconomic plight of black folks. But I don't share his surprise. First there is this--If you're black, a quick way to go insane is to think about how much racism has altered your life. But beyond that, I spent a lot of time in my youth as a left-black nationalist arguing with friends and family about race. One thing that became clear is that while a large number of black people recognize the ugly history of racism in this country, many have a hard time seeing themselves as victims of that racism.

This makes sense if you think about it from a human perspective. Black people have to compete, and their kids have to compete. In order to wake up every morning, work your ass off, and pay taxes, then tell your to do the same, it helps to buy in to the idea that "you can win." Perhaps more important than that, African-Americans are Americans, and "you can win" is a part of our ethos. I suspect that overestimating the extent to which "individual effort" matters is an American trait. Maybe even a human one, I'm not sure. More HERE

AAPP: Let me be very clear, I'm no Obama hater. President Obama is hands down, better than George W Bush any day. There are Obama haters who criticize his every move.

There are also some people that are looking at Barack Obama's policies for urban America. At this point Obama is getting an F from a number of Chicago activists. Candidly, I'm hoping that Black Americans are not becoming stupified by President Barack Obama.

President Obama does not want to be called the "Black American - President," and he shouldn't be. He is the President of all the United States, including Black citizens of America. We should hold him accountable like any President and forget about his blackness.

I'm not stupified by Barack Obama. Are you?

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Black Bloggers urge Congressional U.S. Taser Torture Hearings

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE -- Tuesday April 28, 2009
Black bloggers call for "Congressional Taser Torture Hearings"

Wayne Hicks, Electronic Village,
LN Rock, African American Political Pundit
Eddie Griffin, Eddie Griffin-BASG,

A group of bloggers called the afrospear, a 2 year old coalition of black bloggers from across America (and around the world) held a day of Blogging for Justice standing up against pre-trial capital punishment by electrocution event on Friday. More

The Afrospear also established a p
etition to Congress calling on Senator leader Harry Reid, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and members of the Congressional Black Caucus to speak out and organize public hearings on the systemic human rights violations occurring with Federal funding against black, Latino, Native American and other Americans.

Group member Eddie Griffin, of the blog, Eddie Griffin-BASG, said, "While there continues to be considerable media and congressional attention to torture in Guantanamo, there is comparatively little attention to the mounting evidence of human rights violations in the streets of America by a number of police departments across America, including torture and killings of black children, women and men through-out the United States through the use and abuse of Tasers."

LN Rock, a 2008 DNC Convention Blogger, who publishes the blogs, African American Political Pundit
and Tasered While Black said, "We want Congress to stand up with us against the police pre-trial electrocution of black children, women and men - by taser. He went on to say, "We believe that few Americans support spending our tax dollars on torture, which violates our moral, religious and legal traditions. Most Americans expect an American policing policy that ensures the rights of all individuals regardless of race, greed, color, national origin, sex, disability or political or religious affiliation."

Wayne Hicks, publisher of the blog, Electronic Village, said, "We believe most Americans would favor Congressional hearings as to whether our own U.S. police, policing policies and actions violate Federal and International laws prohibiting human rights violators. Evidence of widespread police abuse of tasers is more than enough to warrant our concern and justify a congressional inquiry." He went on to say, " We propose that Congress undertake serious oversight into the extent to which our taxes are funding human rights violations and torture by tasing, and provide an alternative roadmap to the restoration of our democratic values. We want Congress to make sure that police pre-trial electrocution of black children, women and men by taser stops."

The bloggers are asking for:

1. The U.S. Attorney General and the Justice Department to aggressively fulfill its most basic mandate of enforcing the law. Torture by tasing is a crime, and the Justice Department is the right place to initiate an independent top-to-bottom investigation of the torturing of black children men, women and children by local police jurisdictions throughout the United States. It's important that the general public understand the 'use of force continuum' used by law enforcement officials, and how it is abused by many in the law enforcement community. (See the use-of-force-continuum provided by the blog Electronic Village) Note: Although there is a Justice Department Review of TASER-related Deaths the on-the-spot pre-trial electrocutions continues.

2. Congress should investigate whether US police tasing policies violate Federal or international civil and human right laws, including the U.N. Convention against Torture, and international covenants against cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment of citizens even in cases of so-called "state emergencies".

3. Congress should require the effective regulation of Taser use and require police/citizen review panels by Federal, state and local police and security agencies, including strict adherence to international human rights standards, or act to defund all such Federal, State and local police and security agencies who violate taser use regulations that would be established by Congress. No Federal stimulus dollars should be used to purchase tasers.

The bloggers point out UN's Committee against Torture has declared that Taser use can constitute a form of torture, while USA: Amnesty International has an on-going concern about the use of tasers on American citizens. With all the conversation about the Bush torture memos and torture in the United States, we the undersigned bring up the issue of torture of black Americans at the hands of police in the United States. We urge you to stand up against the police pre-trial electrocution of black children, women and men by taser.

Here is a sampling of what black bloggers are saying about the tasing of so many blacks in the United States.

“A day of blogging for Justice ... What bloggers are saying and thinking:
Wayne Hicks - Electronic Village -
LN Rock, African American Opinion -
Kathy - Daily Kos Blogger - Do White People Care About Tasing?
The Kid - Pirate satellite: A Day of Blogging for Justice -
Wayne Bennett, The Field Negro, Major side bar and link highlighting the importance of this day.
Purple Zoe - UltraVioletUnderground -
April Davis - Around
PaJoyner - PlezWorld -
Yobachi - Black -
Ms. Lady Deborah - From my Brown Eyed View -
Eddie Griffin BASG -
Rev. Sequoyah Kofi bin-Tomas, Intelligent Aboriginal News Service (IANS) - The Angry Indian - Inteligentaindigena Novajoservo: When "Non-Lethal" Weapons Kill
Wayne Hicks - Villager, OxDown. Firedoglake -
Wayne Hicks - Villager - Electronic Village-.. - Use of Force Continuum
SjP - Sojourners Place -
LN Rock - Post Racial Blog -
The SuperSpade -
Anyway I Have To -
Vanessa Byers- On The Black Hand Side -
It All Goes Here -
Independent Bloggers Alliance -
Rover's Morning Glory -
Assata Shukur Forum -
RiPPa - The Intersection between Maddness and Reality -
Lola - Whatever Lola Wants -
African American Political Pundit Report -
African American Political Pundit Blog -
Electrocuted While Black -
Scotty - Black Talk Radio -
Proud Black Blogger -
Carmen D. - Black Voices -
Chicago Cop Watch -

Here is a link to the Afrospear
Petition to request Congressional hearings on the Taser torture of Americans:

Friday, April 24, 2009

A day of blogging for Justice - Standing up against the pre-trial electrocution

AAPP Says: Today is a special day, it's a day when bloggers from around the United States, Canada, UK, Africa, Europe, Brazil, and other parts of the world have come together for “A day of blogging for Justice - Standing up against the pre-trial electrocution.” It's time to demand a congressional investigation into Taser Torture in America.

Here is what black bloggers are saying and thinking:


Today, Black bloggers around the web (including Afrospear members and The Electronic Villiage) are setting aside the day to stand up against the use of tasers by the police. The New York City Police Department (NYPD) refers to them as “Conducted Energy Devices (CEDs)”. Some of the bloggers refer to their use as “Police Pre-Trial Electrocution”.

- Villager, Electronic Village

AAPP says: Wayne Hicks has been tracking the tasing issue even before I began publishing the blog, Tasered While Black. Wayne takes a look at the tasing issue and details many of the abuses in today's post:

I've shared other examples on my blog in the past:
  1. Valreca Redden (Trotwood OH) - pregnant Black woman tased by Officer Michael Wilmer when she went to police department for help.

  2. Eugene Snelling (Austin TX) - tased by Officer Thomas O'Connor driving with his mother on Thanksgiving Day.

  3. Donnell Williams (Wichita KS) - deaf Blackman tased in his own home.

  4. Major Lemon (Madison WI) - Blackman tased while holiday shopping at the local mall.

  5. Xavier Jones (Coral Gables FL) - Tasers deployed by two police officers killed this Blackman.

  6. Darryl Turner (Charlotte NC) - unarmed 17-year old Black youth killed when Officer Jerry Dawson decided to fire at him with a taser gun.

  7. James Garland (Miami FL) - unarmed and naked 41-year old Blackman killed by police taser gun while disoriented in the street.

  8. Baron Pikes (Winnfield LA) - Police officer Scott Nugent indicted for murder because he tasered a handcuffed 21-year old Blackman to death.

  9. Terrance Kennedy (Dallas NC) - Police killed another Blackman in North Carolina with their taser guns.

  10. Marcus Moore (Freeport IL) - unarmed 40-year old Blackman killed by police with their taser guns.

  11. Robert Mitchell (Warren MI) - unarmed 16-year old Black youth killed police taser guns.

  12. Gary Decker (Tucson AZ) - unarmed 50-year old naked man killed by police taser guns while in his own hotel room.

  13. Michael Jacobs (Ft. Worth TX) - unarmed, mentally impaired 24-year old Blackman killed by police taser guns on his own front yard in front of his parents.
The successes aren't the problem - the failures are.

How many more Black folks need to be executed by the police before the Congressional Black Caucus does something about it? I encourage all villagers to immediately sign online petition demanding a congressional investigation into Taser Torture in America. More HERE

Asabagna of the Afrospear Think Tank says:

When I started to contemplate what I was going to write for this day of blogging action on the use of tasers… i.e., “electrocution” to control and/or stop what are considered dangerous, anti-social behaviors… what stood out in the forefront of my mind was that in the past, electrocution (called Electroconvulsive Therapy), was also widely used for a similar purpose: as an approved, standard medical/psychiatric procedure for “supposed” dangerous and anti-social behaviors deemed to be mental illnesses, which included homosexuality and political dissent.

As a police officer (in Canada), my initial point of view is that I will use whatever level of force I deem necessary, when dealing with a violent criminal suspect, to protect the life of others and/or prevent bodily harm, but more importantly… to ensure that I go home to my family at the end of my shift! Presenting my wife and son with a Canadian flag and a hug or handshake at the end of a memorial service in my honor, just isn’t a life-affirming ambition of mine. With that being said, the police organization I work for, like most if not all police services in North America, are mandated and trained to follow some sort of “use of force continuum model”, which dictates what level of force is to be used in a given situation.

However, what this type of model does not show are the individual, environmental and societal factors that may influence how an officer will react to a given situation or person. It does not consider what are the beliefs, values and more importantly, the prejudices that may spur an individual officer’s action or reaction, to a particular situation or person. More HERE

The publisher of says, is strongly against the use of tasers. We have based our decision on information revealed by the New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU) and the fact that the use of tasers are harmful and dangerous to potentially innocent people. The NYCLU states that the NYPD has instituted the use of a leathal weapon without proper research or public dialogue. While the NYPD did conduct a Rand Study, according to Donna Lieberman (NYCLU executive director), the NYPD commissioned the study on important public policies without involving the public or anyone outside the NYPD. As a result, the NYCLU and doubt the thoroughness and objectivity of the study.

The Rand Report, which was supposed to be aimed at evaluating the racial disparities in NYPD practices following the Sean Bell Incident (two black men and one latino man were shot at 50 times by the NYPD [Sean Bell was killed]), focuses on supporting the increased use of tasers as a replacement for handguns. The use of these weapons has been linked to hundreds of serious injuries and fatalities.

Last year police fatally tased Iman Morales, a 35 year old man suffering from mental illness. The police responded to a call by Morales’ mother, who had resorted to calling the NYPD after her son had stopped taking his medication. The incident left Morales standing on a metal box that was on top of a store’s security gate, naked, screaming incoherently with an 8 foot fluorescent light tube in his grasp.

Lt. Michael Pigott issued the order to shoot Morales with a taser which was a clear violation of NYPD guidelines stating that “when possible, the CED (taser) should not be used in situations where the subject may fall from an elevated surface.” As a result of being tased, Morales fell head first onto the pavement below and was killed. The was incident was captured on camera by an onlooker. (Lt. Pigott committed suicide shortly after the incident occurred.)

Months before this tragedy 17 year old Alexander Lombard 3rd, son of a NYPD veteran, was tasered 4 times, hit 15 times with a nightstick and put in a choke hold by a NYPD officer. Lombard suffered serious injuries (video) as the result of excessive use of force by an officer at a community sponsored barbecue in Harlem. No charges were filed against Mr. Lombard indicating that he was neither resisting arrest nor carrying a weapon. The use of the taser against Lombard can only be described as excessive and unnecessary. More HERE

There is plenty more thoughts and opinions regarding the torture and tasering of black Americans. Kathy - a DailyKos Blogger wonders: Do White People Care About Tasing?

Blogger Francis L. Holland provides a history of Naming" it "Police Pre-Trial Electrocution and Execution"

Check out these great bloggers and their thoughts about the torture of black American by Taser, and what they think should be done.

Rock, African American Opinion -
Kathy - Daily Kos Blogger - Do White People Care About Tasing?
The Kid - Pirate satellite: A Day of Blogging for Justice -
Wayne Bennett, The Field Negro, Major side bar and link highlighting the importance of this day.

urple Zoe - UltraVioletUnderground -

April D.
- Around

PaJoyner - PlezWorld -

- Black -

Ms. Lady Deborah
- From my Brown Eyed View -

Eddie Griffin BASG

More Links to come...

Check out The Angry Indian's blog post on When "Non-Lethal" Weapons Kill

*This article is in response and solidarity with the call from fellow Afro-blogger African American Political Pundit's call for editorials concerning the use of Tasers on not just the African population but against free citizens in general. Follow the links immediately after this commentary. Check out more of the post HERE

AAPP: Hat tip to all the afrosprear, and other bloggers who contributed to this day of blogging for justice. Don't forget to sign the online petition demanding a congressional investigation into Taser Torture in America. The tasing of our children demand that our voices be clear.