02-19-2017  6:12 pm      •     

DALLAS (NNPA) - Dallas has an ugly history of racism - one that city leaders are not so eager to share with visiting tourists. Therefore, tourists find themselves unknowingly at Dallas' historical center of the South's most egregious brands of "justice."
Not far from the steps of the old Red Court House, hate groups lynched African-Americans without the due process of law. Among those lynched was an elderly man named Allen Brooks. On May 3, 1910, vigilantes administered justice, Texas style.
Brooks, a 68-year-old Black man on trial for allegedly molesting a 3-year-old White girl, was seized from the courtroom, bound, thrown out of the 2nd floor window of the courthouse, knocked unconscious and lynched in the courtyard before thousands of witnesses. The crowd brutalized his body and took parts of his clothes as souvenirs.
It is here, at this place of injustice that Black leaders have gathered to state their case about the modern terror tactics of the Ku Klux Klan and other hate groups and to serve notice to them, "Enough is enough." Recent acts of overt racial intimidation cause it to appear that shameful legacy of the south is indeed rising again in North Texas.
On May 12, almost 100 years after Brooks' lynching, several local groups, led by Claudia Fowler, the Political Chair of the Dallas NAACP, met on the steps of the Old Red Dallas Court House to say, "no" to racial hatred and violence. Those groups included the Dallas Commons, The New Black Panthers Party, Texas Alliance of the Formerly Incarcerated and Victims of Racial Hate and Intimidation.
Just eight months ago, On Oct. 12, 2008, Ministers Ernest and Debbie Walker, who have a home in Ovilla, Texas out of which they operate a home based Christian ministry, were victims of vandalism. The words, "no n——rs" were spray painted on the door of their home. Mrs. Walker said the word does not personally offend her because she knows what it means, but stated, "I think it was meant to scare us. I am not angry at the people who committed this act of racism. I am more sorrowful that someone could disgrace God's house like this".
Fowler, who is calling this a hate crime, said she has contacted the Department of Homeland Security. "There is a new uprising of racial tensions and hatred and we must be diligent in protecting our children," Fowler stated. "I think they are border line terrorist."
Olinka Green of The New Black Panther Party gave a passionate plea for people to take this threat seriously, saying, "Me and mine we are going to be vigilant."
"This type of racism is not new to me. I deal with this type of racism all over Texas," stated Rev. Ronald Wright of Dallas Commons. Wright said he does not believe there is an increase of racial hate in the United States because of the election of President Barak Obama. In fact, he believes it has always been here and is now coming out of the shadows into the light. "They have traded in their sheets for suits and uniforms." Wright said.
However the statistics based on a Southern Poverty Law Center report on May 7, 2009, titled The Year in Hate, would beg to differ with Rev. Wright. The report proves that hate group membership and activity has grown at an alarming rate in the US since the election of President Obama. The report states that hate groups grew by 54 percent since the year 2000 and identified 926 existing hates groups in the United States. There are 38 more hate groups in 2008 than in 2007 that are now active in our country. A CNN report that gave these statistics also said that California has the most hate groups of any state in the US with a total of 84. The same article by CNN says the FBI crime report showed that there were 7,624 hate crime incidents in 2007.
The Rev. Cedric Malone, Pastor of The Church at Grand Prairie, was also present at the courthouse because he and his congregation were victims of racial hatred on May 5, 2009, when the church van was vandalized. The words are too vulgar and sexually oriented to print and the N-word was also used. Rev. Malone says he has taken the high road, which is fueled by his faith. He states, "We still believe in our community. We will overcome this, not only as African Americans, but as Americans and Christians."
Fowler stated it couldn't be proven that the KKK was involved in the incidents of vandalism recently occurring in the DFW Metroplex. However, the Klan has reared its ugly head in a local suburb, having passed out fliers in Forney. The KKK No. 66 is responsible for leaving the fliers on the doors of numerous citizens in Forney, and some of the homes were those of African American citizens. The flyers read, "Save our Land Join the Klan," and gave information with a phone number urging people to call and join. When interviewed by Fox 4, many of those residents stated they were outraged by this event.
The Klan has also initiated similar recruitment efforts in Marshall. An image of a Klansman riding on a horse, brandishing a torch is displayed on the flyer. A second page is reported by a local paper to have contained harsh criticisms of President Barak Obama, characterizing his administration as Socialists and stating, "Americans, the time to take a stand for our great nation is now. Our new president has been out downing our economy and stating he wants to remake America. Socialist leaders are not going to openly announce their intent; they mask it and sell it as progressive.
"Remember, no country has ever been bettered by socialism so why try it? Let's all band together, stand up and be heard."
Fowler called the number on the flyer and invited the KKK to this news conference and asked if they would bring applications for membership, but the Klan refused. When she suggested some Blacks wanted to join the organization, the Klan stated that people who are not White cannot join the their organization.

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  • WASHINGTON (AP) — One month after the inauguration, the stretch of Pennsylvania Avenue in front of Donald Trump's White House still is a hard-hat zone. Skeletal remains of the inaugural reviewing stands poke skyward. Random piles of plywood and cables are heaped on the ground inside crooked lines of metal fencing. The disarray outside the president's front door, though not his fault, serves as a metaphor for the tumult still unfolding inside. Four weeks in, the man who says he inherited "a mess" at home and abroad is presiding over a White House that is widely described as itself being a mess. At a stunning pace, Trump has riled world leaders and frustrated allies. He was dealt a bruising legal blow on one of his signature policies. He lost his national security adviser and his pick for labor secretary to scandal. He's seen forces within his government push back against his policies and leak confidential information. All of this has played out amid a steady drip of revelations about an FBI investigation into his campaign's contacts with Russian intelligence officials. Trump says his administration is running like a "fine-tuned machine." He points to the rising stock market and the devotion of his still-loyal supporters as evidence that all is well, although his job approval rating is much lower than that for prior presidents in their first weeks in office. Stung by the unrelenting criticism coming his way, Trump dismisses much of it as "fake news" delivered by "the enemy of the people" — aka the press. Daily denunciations of the media are just one of the new White House fixtures Americans are adjusting to. Most days start (and end) with presidential tweets riffing off of whatever's on TV talk shows or teasing coming events or hurling insults at the media. At some point in the day, count on Trump to cast back to the marvels of his upset of Democrat Hillary Clinton in the November election and quite possibly overstate his margins of support. Expect more denunciations of the "dishonest" press and its "fake news." From there, things can veer in unexpected directions as Trump offers up policy pronouncements or offhand remarks that leave even White House aides struggling to interpret them. The long-standing U.S. policy of seeking a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict? Trump this past week offered this cryptic pronouncement: "I'm looking at two-state and one-state, and I like the one that both parties like. I can live with either one." His U.N. ambassador, Nikki Haley, the next day insisted, "We absolutely support a two-state solution." Trump's days are busy. Outside groups troop in for "listening sessions." Foreign leaders call or come to visit. (Or, in the case of Mexico's president, cancel out in pique over Trump's talk about the planned border wall.) After the president signed two dozen executive actions, the White House was awaiting a rush order of more of the gold-plated Cross pens that Trump prefers to the chrome-plated ones used by his predecessor. Trump hands them out as souvenirs at the signing ceremonies that he points to as evidence of his ambitious pace. "This last month has represented an unprecedented degree of action on behalf of the great citizens of our country," Trump said at a Thursday news conference. "Again, I say it. There has never been a presidency that's done so much in such a short period of time." That's all music to the ears of his followers, who sent him to Washington to upend the established order and play the role of disrupter. "I can't believe there's actually a politician doing what he says he would do," says an approving Scott Hiltgen, a 66-year-old office furniture sales broker from River Falls, Wisconsin. "That never happens." Disrupt Trump has. But there may be more sound and fury than substance to many of his early actions. Trump did select Judge Neil Gorsuch to replace the late Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court, a nomination that has drawn strong reviews from conservatives. But the president is regrouping on immigration after federal judges blocked his order to suspend the United States' refugee program and ban visitors from seven Muslim-majority countries, which had caused chaos for travelers around the globe. Some other orders on issues such as the U.S.-Mexico border wall and former President Barack Obama's health care law are of limited effect. Trump says his early actions show he means to deliver on the promises he made during the campaign. "A lot of people say, 'Oh, oh, Trump was only kidding with the wall,'" the president told a group of police chiefs recently. "I wasn't kidding. I don't kid." But the Republican-led Congress is still waiting to see specifics on how Trump wants to proceed legislatively on top initiatives such as replacing the health care law, enacting tax cuts and revising trade deals. The messy rollout of the travel ban and tumult over the ouster of national security adviser Michael Flynn for misrepresenting his contacts with Russia are part of a broader state of disarray as different figures in Trump's White House jockey for power and leaks reveal internal discord in the machinations of the presidency. "I thought by now you'd at least hear the outlines of domestic legislation like tax cuts," says Princeton historian Julian Zelizer. "But a lot of that has slowed. Trump shouldn't mistake the fact that some of his supporters like his style with the fact that a lot of Republicans just want the policies he promised them. He has to deliver that." Put Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., in the camp of those more interested in substance than style. "I'm not a great fan of daily tweets," McConnell said Friday, referring to the "extra discussion" that Trump likes to engage in. But McConnell was quick to add: "What I am a fan of is what he's been actually doing." He credits Trump with assembling a conservative Cabinet and taking steps to reduce government regulation, and promised: "We like his positions and we're going to pursue them as vigorously as we can." The challenge may be to tease out exactly what Trump wants in the way of a health care plan, tax changes and trade policy. At his long and defiant news conference on Thursday, Trump tried to dispel the impression of a White House in crisis, squarely blaming the press for keeping him from moving forward more decisively on his agenda. Pointing to his chief of staff, Reince Priebus, Trump said, "You take a look at Reince, he's working so hard just putting out fires that are fake fires. I mean, they're fake. They're not true. And isn't that a shame because he'd rather be working on health care, he'd rather be working on tax reform." For all the frustrations of his early days as president, Trump still seems tickled by the trappings of his office. When New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie visited the White House last week to discuss the national opioid epidemic over lunch, the governor said Trump informed him: "Chris, you and I are going to have the meatloaf.'" Trump added: "I'm telling you, the meatloaf is fabulous." ___Follow Nancy Benac on Twitter at http://twitter.com/nbenac
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