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“They’ve made Johannes Mehserle into a victim in this case and he’s nothing but a brutal killer," said Aidge Patterson, leader of the LA Coalition for Justice for Oscar Grant. He believes a lack of media coverage of the first cop to be tried for murder in California was intended to quiet people down. “This is obviously one of the most historic cases in the entire country and it should be on every news station, but they’re good at keeping people ignorant.” Thank Minister of Information JR for convincing the Black press to cover the story.
As Oscar Grant triggerman Johannes Mehserle's trial approaches, issues that have been settled in court are still muddied in the media. Reports that Mehserle "allegedly shot" Grant abound, yet even Mehserle's lawyer admits his client did shoot Grant. And why are the media alluding to Grant's "criminal" past when the only evidence is a 2006 arrest for resisting arrest? Get ready to attend the trial at two forum-screenings of "Operation Small Axe" June 4 & 5 at the AFIBA Center in LA.
On Friday’s Hard Knock Radio and Flashpoints shows on KPFA at 4 and 5 p.m., Minister of Information JR reported straight out of Los Angeles on the first pre-trial hearing since the murder case of Johannes Mehserle, the BART police officer who executed Oscar Grant, was moved there from Oakland.
Meet former Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney and see a screening of 'Operation Small Axe' Wednesday, Jan. 13, 7 p.m., Black Dot Café, 1195 Pine St. West Oakland. Come and support Minister of Information JR and Holly Works, who still face charges from the Oakland Rebellions that secured the indictment of Johannes Mehserle, the triggerman who executed Oscar Grant.
Dec. 9 will mark the 28th year that former Black Panther and present day political prisoner and prolific journalist Mumia Abu Jamal has been locked up for the murder of a Philadelphia police officer, although the evidence points to his innocence. After nearly three decades, many of Mumia’s supporters around the planet believe that he is closer than ever to being assassinated by lethal injection on Pennsylvania’s death row. We are asking everyone who reads this piece to get involved in freeing this man.
Happy New Year, Blessed Eid Al Adha and Happy Kwanzaa. I’ll be back in February 2009. Check the radio show and my blog for updates. I’ll be traveling. Tune in to Wanda’s Picks Radio at www.wandaspicks.com over the next month, when I will be broadcasting from Senegal, Mali and The Gambia.
The right wing bullies at Fox News – Glenn Beck and his ilk – are going after a man known for years of progressive work in the Bay Area: Van Jones. Van’s real crime? He’s the triple threat: He’s Black, he’s effective and he is empowering the people in this country who have the least resources.
As the contretemps surrounding Dr. Henry Louis Gates and the Cambridge Police Department recedes into the roiling news flood to become fodder for the late night comedians, we learn, if anything, that even a president has limits when it comes to a “teachable moment.” For, as any schoolteacher could have taught him, learning is a two-way street. When the student is closed to the lesson, ain’t nothing getting in. (And America ain’t trying to hear nothing about its racist present!)
Los Angeles – In the tradition of the Black Press working as an opponent of racial injustice, we as chairmen of the California Black Media, West Coast Black Publishers Association and National Newspaper Publishers Association stand with President Obama in his original assessment of the arrest of Dr. Henry Louis Gates.
On New Year's morning BART police officer Johannes Mehserle fired his gun at point blank range into Oscar Grant's back, killing him as he lay face down on the train platform, hands behind him. A preliminary hearing is now underway to determine whether Mehserle will be charged with murder or whether the charges against him will be lowered.
"Our success here to secure justice for Oscar Grant will no doubt be that line in the sand that will say to all police officers, ‘If you kill or break the law, you will go to jail,'" wrote Oscar Grant's Uncle Bobby, Cephus Johnson, in a message of thanks to supporters. Watch Davey D's video on the week's events. Oscar Grant's family asks supporters to return to the courthouse next week.
Grant pleaded with officers not to harm him: "Oscar yelled, 'You shot me. I got a 4-year-old daughter,'" said Fernando Anicete. "Oscar was telling us to calm down, and we did. We weren't looking for any trouble."
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