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Khlood cannot imagine life without her son, cannot accept losing this child forever and knows her son is hurting even more. Imagine being a boy who is loved like no boy has ever been loved before and then suddenly losing that love forever. Nothing can ever replace a mother’s love. If this child is not allowed to reunite with his mother, he will always be empty inside. The 1997 creation of incentivized adoption, which severely limited the amount of time parents have to reunify with children, has been the biggest desecration to the American family since slavery.
On Friday, Oct. 3, Antolin Marenco was dead, found “blue” and hanging in his cell in SF County Jail, an apparent suicide. I say apparent because evidence surrounding his death is still coming in and, as someone who was in regular contact with Antolin, I can say with certainty that if he took his own life, he was driven to this extreme act by over a year of sustained torture, brutality and neglect at the hands of the SFPD and the San Francisco Sheriff’s Department.
More than 23 years after the videotape release of White uniformed LAPD officers beating unarmed Black motorist Rodney King in 1991 – which sparked civil unrest in Los Angeles and throughout the country in 1992 – the savage beating of 51-year-old African American woman Marlene Pinnock by a yet to be named White California Highway Patrol officer on the Santa Monica Freeway on July 1 was captured by cell phone video. A community is outraged, civil rights and community leaders are planning a protest and the victim’s attorney is demanding justice.
Today, for the first time, the United States Departments of Education and Justice jointly released guidance that outlines civil rights obligations regarding school discipline that schools and districts throughout the country must follow affirming that “racial discrimination in school discipline is a real problem.” The guidance was included in a resource package with guiding principles and a resource guide from the Department of Education.
I am very familiar with the serious medical issues involved with the long term and short term care of these SHU patients in solitary confinement that are both very deleterious to human health and not very visible to people who are not insiders and familiar with this environment at PBSP. Many of these issues have not penetrated the ongoing public discussion of the ongoing and created health care consequences of solitary confinement in the SHU at PBSP.
A horrific shooting on Nov. 29 resulted in the death of two unarmed African Americans, Malissa Williams, 30, and Timothy Russell, 43. This may be the worst example of excessive use of deadly force in the history of the United States. The fact that 12 of the 13 Cleveland police officers were white and the victims were Black in a city which has an almost 70 percent minority population is a crisis. We all know that 12 Black police officers would never have fired 137 shots at Black or white citizens.
Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums had a chance to shine last Thursday, after the verdict was announced in the murder trial of transit cop Johannes Mehserle for the Jan. 1, 2009, killing of 22-year-old unarmed Black man Oscar Grant. But instead of standing with the people, Dellums stood with his police chief, and together they proceeded to criminalize the entire community.
The veil of authority and legitimacy shielding most urban police forces against popular suspicion and distrust simply doesn’t exist in New Orleans. Hardly anyone likes or trusts the po-po. The actual point of this piece is to reflect a little on the war currently raging between the people of New Orleans and the NOPD.
A family of Section 8 landlords, Riaz, Maryam and Mark Patras of Antioch, who have rented several homes to Section 8 families, are suing the City of Antioch and five members of its Police Department in federal court for civil rights violations, including loss of rental income, emotional distress, humiliation and loss of privacy. They are also alleging that the police department's Community Action Team (CAT) used rough and illegal tactics to force the landlords to evict their Section 8 tenants, all of whom are African-American.