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This chilling story has been overshadowed by the sniper killing spree, but is every bit as gruesome and horrible.

It is this kind of mentality that festers far too long in this City. This kind of brutality and senseless murder is allowed to continue, because there is no fear of the laws in Baltimore or the state of Maryland, especially when you have a politically correct governor who places a moratorium on the Death Penalty......A law on the books in this state that is rarely used in the first place.

Add to that fact that these gutter rats are sheltered from the law by slimy attorneys who line up to defend them, and liberal judges who let them out on the streets of Baltimore.

Read all about it, and tell me if Mr. Lofton and I were exaggerating.........
http://stories.wbal.com/stories/t/news.asp?articleid=4303&zoneid=2

Any comments??


big grin big grin big grin
Original Post
Hello Mr. Bankins,

....and what you have shared is part of the perversion of inner-city Black America, in that many times the truly innocent of Black America end up behind bars or perhaps are killed, while the truly criminal receive timeless "Get Out of Jail Free Cards". In some instances, should one summon police officers for assistance to arrest anyone criminal, instead of going after the suspect, or suspects, you may be treated as the suspect or criminal.

I must commend Montgomery County Police Chief Charles A. Morse for being very professional about his work. It is sure refreshing to see the good within police officers for a change, because as reality would have it, usually in any confrontation between a Black male and police officers, the confrontation ends up being very deadly for the life, limb, and pursuit of happiness for the black male, without regard to guilt or innocence.

Sincerely,

Michael Lofton

[This message was edited by Lofton on October 24, 2002 at 09:42 PM.]
Good Morning Mr. Bankins,

....in addition, it is imperative that the condition of high unemployment is alleviated so that more Black men can remain in the community to protect their own families, their neighbors families, etc., so that the criminal element will not rule the community. Until additional employment opportunities, additonal business formation to create opportunity with the "Hood" are create, women as well as men will continue to deal drugs, burglarize, rob, steal, be con artists, etc., because in any nation of free enterprise, an individual must have gainful employment to legally make a go of it.

In some of the worst inner-cities or otherwise, no one in town is gainfully employed, thus the community is very unsafe as a result of an environment that keeps the residents in poverty. Those who live in such an environment prey on those within, and/or any stranger who may visit the neighborhood to make their living in the name of survival.

I know this is a cruel or crude answer, because no one should be senselessly robbed, maimed, killed, ....be illegally arrested fined, and/or jailed...., set ablaze, etc., but given the scenario this is in fact the reality of it.

Again, people must have a stake in the community before any advancement takes place. When people have a stake in the community, there is no need to saturate the community with an outside occupying force living outside the community of inner-city Black America police force, that generally protects the property rights of business owners, who more so than not are Caucasian, and not U.S. citizens of Black American heritage.

This is all the more reason why Black America's own elected leadership, lawyers, true civil rights leaders must sue for redress when government violates the rights of the truly law abiding of Black America to create an economic base so that our community will have the resources to create work for our own people, and/or use their expertise to create gainfully employment opportunities for the people who live in the inner-city.

Based on this reality, the elected leaders of inner-city Black America, the legal community, the journalism community, and the law abiding residents themselves are the blame for not pushing our own elected leadership, lawyers, preachers, so-called civil rights organizations to deliver opportunity to the inner-city, to make for a safe environment within inner-city Black America.

Sincerely,

Michael Lofton

[This message was edited by Lofton on October 25, 2002 at 05:50 AM.]
For those who missed the story from the link posted earlier, here it is......

Father Injured In Rowhouse Fire Dies
Wednesday, October 23, 2002

A man died Wednesday a week after being burned in a fire that killed his wife and five of her children, a blaze police said was set in retaliation for the family calling 911 to report drug dealing.

Carnell Dawson Sr., 43, was burned over 80 percent of his body in the fire Oct. 16. He jumped out of an upper-story window as the fire gutted the family's three-story corner rowhouse in east Baltimore.

Dawson died Wednesday afternoon at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, said Susan Davis, a hospital spokeswoman.

Sheila Dixon, Baltimore's City Council president, said his death underscores the city's need to do more to increase police presence in troubled neighborhoods and encourage residents to take a stand against the city's drug problem.

"It's going to be imperative that people not go back to a state of: 'Well, it didn't happen to me,"' Dixon said.

A funeral was scheduled for Thursday for Angela Dawson, 36, and the children. They were LaWanda Ortiz, 14; Juan Ortiz, 12; Carnell Dawson Jr., 10, and twins Kevin and Keith Dawson, 9.

Police said the man charged with setting the fire, Darrell Brooks, was retaliating for Mrs. Dawson's calls to police to clear her block of drug dealers.

The house was firebombed two weeks earlier, but the family escaped injury. Police said investigators questioned Brooks about the first fire, but he wasn't charged.

Prosecutors allege that in the second fire, Brooks kicked in the door, poured gasoline on the floor and lit the blaze.

The family's deaths turned into a call for the city to do more to protect people from violence. Hundreds rallied Sunday and Monday in front of the burned-out shell of the Dawsons' home.

On Friday, Stuart Simms, secretary of the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services, said a preliminary review found department procedures were not followed when Brooks was on probation.

Brooks was put on probation in April for his conviction on a car-theft charge, but he never made contact with the probation office and the office never attempted to contact with him, even though an officer was assigned to the case, Simms said.

....wbal.com
When you get through,please analyze the Ozarks and Appalachias....I would like to see if black and white pathological behavior have the same elements....maybe we can bask in both the same...maybe as a black, I will go to mainly white forums and remind whites of their shortcomings......maybe i'll get the same perspective you whiteas attain in here. Wouldn't you agree that it would help us all get to know each other better? I personally think economics plays an important part in this behavior. I haven't spent enough time examining the poor uneducated white to have a baseline for compariosn.
Mr. Kevin41,

"When you get through,please analyze the Ozarks and Appalachias....I would like to see if black and white pathological behavior have the same elements....maybe we can bask in both the same...maybe as a black, I will go to mainly white forums and remind whites of their shortcomings......maybe i'll get the same perspective you white as attain in here. Wouldn't you agree that it would help us all get to know each other better? I personally think economics plays an important part in this behavior. I haven't spent enough time examining the poor uneducated white to have a baseline for comparison." by Kevin41

No doubt, the issue of economic opportunity more so than ethnicity, is responsible for such a condition.

As reality would have it, studying the poverty that exists with the Ozarts and Appalachias will neither solve or address the serious problems of poverty that exists within inner-city Black America. Caucasian Americans, I'm sure are doing their very best to alleviate poverty in their own immediate respective communities of concern. In any event it is not the direct responsibility of any U.S. citizen of Black American heritage to resolve issues of poverty within the community of Caucasian America, Korean America, China town, the Barrio, etc.

I'm sure that poverty exists within the Korean community. Few if any Koreans collect welfare benefits, thus Koreans must be doing a very good job of addressing poverty in their community, without the benefit of the first "welfare check". It is certain that Koreans are not summoning Black America to address the issue of poverty in their community. Heck, any Korean, Vietnamese, Hispanic, Jewish, or Chinese immigrant, can set up a liquor store, a Pawn Shop, a swap meet, a nail parlor, a beauty supply shop, a check cashing outlet, a dry cleaning, and/or Laundry business, etc., in any inner-city of Black America, and in no time flat, their problems of poverty are resolved, without any help from the government. The fact that Black people have difficulty in creating employment opportunities for each other because of the high degree of deceit, mis-trust, dishonesty, sleaze, greed, etc., that exists within our own immediate community is not the fault of any other community but our own. Seems to me, Black people are doing a very good job of keeping themselves in poverty, without any help from outsiders.

Maybe this is the problem, meaning the elected officials, and the middle class of Black America bend over backwards to represent every other community but the community of "inner-city Black America", at the expense of the community of Black America.

It is not the direct responsibility of any Black elected official, Black lawyer, or otherwise to alleviate the issue of poverty within the Ozarts, the Appalachias, the Chinese, the Japanese, the Hispanic, the Morman communities, etc. It is however, a direct responsibility of Black America's own in position of leadership to resolve economic issues, within the community of inner-city Black America.

Sincerely,

Michael Lofton

[This message was edited by Lofton on October 27, 2002 at 03:55 PM.]
Maybe it can become the basis for looking the root causes of poverty, violence and those other from an objective manner, rather then seeing it as particular to black people in their majority populated urban areas as many do in here. i think that approach will focus more on the behaviors associated with disenfranchisement through systematic means rather than castigating blacks as sorry in general....those with a conservative leaning philosophy tend to do so. they never address factors that foster behavior.......they seem to emphasize the behaviors themselves...over and over again....I am well aware of those things...you all remind me daily even if i did not know what goes on.......what are your innovative approaches to economic enfranchisement beyond simple local service sectors and what do you actually hold this government of yours, not just black elected officials accountable for in the corrective process?
I cannot believe someone is actually suggesting that poverty is the reason for lawlessness and murdering your own people. I cannot believe someone would actually trivialize the plight in many depressed neighborhoods by comparing them to the Ozark mountains and other communities, and then in the same breath say it's more the government's responsibility than the annointed black leaders......The same skin-shade hustlers who do take the time to whip us into an emotional frenzy to vote Democrat on election day and claim to represent us, but remain silent on real-life problems like the Dawson family that gave their lives to rid their neighborhood of drug dealers!!!

Sorry, but even I have my breaking point! Mr. Lofton and I have literally spelled out what goes on in these neighborhoods and how people like the Dawson family are ignored when say...., a Jesse Jackson can shake down a beer company for supposed discrimination practices and end up with beer distributorships for his sons!!

Since you want answers from us, how about stopping all this "BS" about racial profiling and how unfair it is that so many young blacks are in prison!!

How about actually demanding that people start respecting the lives and property of others and start forming neighborhood associations that actually work with law enforcement to weed out the human debris instead of blaming their misdeeds on poverty!!

How about taking a stand against the negative messages of the pop culture/Hip Hop lifestlyes promoted in music, movies, and videos, and teaching our kids some moral values!! The NAACP is trying to woo young blacks through the Hip Hop music culture, thus rubber-stamping this self-destructive lifestyle.

And how about stop making excuses period!! How about owning up to the responsibilities of citizenship instead of sitting on your hands and expecting government to solve your problems!! the government is not some autonomous entity separate from us......The government is us!!

Government only works when the citizens are involved. We saw an example of that with the capture of the sniper. In the end, it was a citizen who spotted the car at the rest stop.

But how many citizens spot criminal activity in these poor neighborhoods and look the other way???

How many John Williams or Darrell Brooks are running free because nobody will call annonymous tip lines to turn them in??

So cut the crap! The troubles in inner-city black neighborhoods can be addressed when people like the Dawson family decide that they can no longer sit back while Rome burns!! It's everybodys problem no matter where you live..., even those who live in the Ozarks!!


big grin big grin big grin
Ya, B. Bankins nobody doubts you, the hood is fcked up! Problem is many folk including myself grew up in the hood, so unlike those you believe don't know what's going on, I'm not one of them! Additionally, say what you will but many in my generation (1952) we were taught to go to school graduate or go in the military and go to school and then get out of the projects! Nobody was taught to stay in the projects, i.e., the hood! In all honesty, people growing up in my generation were taught that only those Negroes who didn't want anything or did not take advantage of what was available to black people stayed in the projects.
Hello Mr. Bankins,

"And how about stop making excuses period!! How about owning up to the responsibilities of citizenship instead of sitting on your hands and expecting government to solve your problems!! the government is not some autonomous entity separate from us......The government is us!!

Government only works when the citizens are involved." by Mr. Bankins

I couldn't agree more. As for the comment of running away from the projects, I think running away is not always the best solution. When land is at a premium, to which price controls are determined by the "Law of Supply and Demand", there is an increased demand for land.

The demand for land in a good location is responsible for the creation of various redevelopment projects throughout the U.S., to create "New Towns in Town", to shorten commuting distances, create "Mega Mall" shopping centers, etc. This renewed interest in the "inner-city", will turn a former "inner-city" neighborhood into a "Gold Mine" for those who have the resources, and the foresight to benefit from the renewed investment in the "Hood".

Here in Los Angeles County, many Black people ran away from South Central Los Angeles, etc., only to be tailed by the very individuals or criminal element that they attempted to escape from, as it pertains to gang members, career criminals, welfare recipients, the homeless, etc.

South Central Los Angeles is within a twenty mile radius of the Staples Center, the Hollywood Bowl, the Sunset Strip, the Los Angeles Convention Center, USC, UCLA, Loyola University, Pepperdine University, Hollywood Park, Downtown Los Angeles, many beach communities, the Los Angeles Music Center, etc., etc. It would behoove any owner or investor to take note, because as I see it, it is of far greater advantage to live closer to your place of employment, or even better yet working right out of your home.

The move from South Central Los Angeles to the Inland Empire is no where close to being an even exchange. Many communities within the Inland Empire are at least ninety miles from Los Angeles, which means added frustration, additional expense for up keep of an automobile, additional financial expense for commuting, extended hours on the freeway, extended time away from your family members, etc., etc. Many individuals who took the plunge, still work within the City of Los Angeles, but must now commute over two hundred miles round trip daily to maintain their livelihood.

While many Black people ran like a "Bat out of Hell" away from South Central Los Angeles, those who see promise in what was previously thought as being a worthless neighborhood either remain, and/or others will jump at any opportunity to move closer to the center of their daily activities. Many Caucasians, Hispanics, Koreans, etc., are buying property in areas such as South Central Los Angeles, buying in some instances way below market value, because it just makes sound economic sense, to stretch the dollar, to make it work for you, as opposed to falling prey to any "Trick Bag" that makes your life miserable at best.


It would behoove one to do their best to improve the neighborhood that they live in, or assist in reaching back to help others to improve their lives, because running away is not always the best answer. The "grass is not always greener in the other pasture".

Sincerely,

Michael Lofton

[This message was edited by Lofton on October 28, 2002 at 11:53 PM.]
Yes Mr. Kraaal, we were taught to take advantage of the opportunities available to exit the hood, and only those who want nothing out of life stayed. that much is true.

But Mr. Lofton is correct that you don't really excape inner cities with urban flight. The cost of living and commuting are higher, and crime will venture into those lush suburban areas seeking new opportunities.

Baltimore City neighborhoods like Cherry Hill and Federal Hill, are being revitalized. These hoods border the harbor and are 5 minutes from downtown Harborplace. Expensive homes, condos, and waterfront properties ( priced cheaper because of being in the city ) are replacing rat-infested, run-down row houses, and are bringing suburbanites back into the city.

My wife and I lived in a neighborhood for 12 years just like the Dawson family because we couldn't afford better. When our financial situation improved, we took advantage of the low cost home prices in a better city neighborhood and moved. My parents still live in the same house I grew up in 47 years ago.

Baltimore has a lot of good decent neighborhoods, but crime and violence are everywhere. You won't excape unless you move to an island.


big grin big grin big grin
B Bankins and others,

If you do not believe that poverty drives behavior....why in both black and white communities across the country...do you think that crime, drug use and broken homes are more prevelant in impoverished areas than in middle class or upscale areas....that goes for all the social ills.....from graffiti on down? or do you think that blacks are just predisposed to that behavior.....period? there is a certain psychology that goes along with poverty and disenfranchisement....if you think i'm wrong...take away your income and your spouse's also....and watch how you turn on each other...no one ever factors that in...andi guess expect poor people to be model citizens as they accept their way of life......
I was born and raised in the Central area of Cleveland, OH. It was then and continues to be one of the poorest sections of the city and had all the problems that you have mentioned, crime, absentee landlords, absentee parents ...

At the age of 15, my parents purchased a home in a "better" section of town. I was encouraged to go to school and then college so that I could escape the ghetto. Upon my graduation, I returned to the Central area. I purchased and rehabbed home about four blocks from where I was raised. All of my childhood and college friends were convinved that I had lost my mind. Here was a young Black college educated and gainfully employed man that chose to live on a street that was surrounded on three sides by projects and/or vacant lots, in a community that had the lowest per capita income of anywhere in the state.

My reason for moving back to the "hood" was two-fold: first, I saw an opportunity to purchase a home and the two adjacent lots for next to nothing.

I spent much time and money fixing up my home and my neighbors began to do likewise. I cleaned up the vacant lots surrounding my lots and I was soon joined by my neighbors. I confronted the dope boys and prostitutes and told them "not on my block." After a while (and several confrontations) the dope boys and prostitutes moved on. After about two years, my neighbors and I were able to sit outside on our porches in the evening.

I had long believed that the central city was being allowed to deteriorate, so that it could be re-developed for people that did not look like me. This was proved partially correct. In the 20 years since my purchase, there have been some 50, $150,000 homes built, though mostly by Black professionals.

My second, and more important, reason for purchasing in the "hood" was because of my commitment to the Black community. During my college years, I came to realize that urban flight resulted in a "brain-drain", but moreso a "morality drain." When those that work everyday leave a community, what role-models are left behind? The dope dealer and dope users; the single mother who only sees her babies' daddy only on the 1st of the month; the "pimps" and hustlers that live off the meager resources of whatever woman that is willing to support his trifling butt.

One hot Saturday while I was out cutting my grass, a young kid (probably 15yrs old) was walking down the street. We made eye contact, well, I was tired and it was hot, so I asked him if he worked to make some money. He asked what he had to do. I told him to finish cutting the grass. When he finished, I paid him $30. That was well above what it was worth, but I was really tired. The following Saturday, at about the same time, I had just about finished cutting the grass, when the kid came by. He slowed down when he got in front of my house. Although, I only had the tree lawn to cut, I offered to pay him to finish up for me. I paid him $10, again well above what the job was worth. After he had finished, I offered him some pop (soda) and we talked a little.

The next week, he came by a little earlier and he brought a friend with him. Again, I paid them to cut my lawn. After they finished, I again gave them some pop and we talked for a couple of hours. After about a month, I had about 10 kids coming by and I expanded to having them clean and cut some of the vacant lots on the street. But more, the group began talking about life and what it had to offer. My only role was to correct mis-information, provide historical information and to keep the discussion positive. For the rest of the summer, on Saturday mornings, rain or shine, I had between 5 and 20 kids on my front porch, drinking soda and talking about life, racism, sex and whatever topic that was raised. Although, We talked, I never asked the kids their names. That just didn't seem important.

Then the school year started. We still met and talked, but I encouraged them to bring their school books and tutored them the best I could. When the group got too big for my house, I contacted a local community center and the group began meeting there.

Then after Christmas, the origin kid disappeared. I asked around and all anyone knew was that he left town, a common expression for getting locked up. I continued to ask around but not knowing his name or where he lived I couldn't find him.

Well, around Easter the kid knocked on my door. He told me that although he did not know what I did for a living, he knew that I got up every morning and went to a job; he knew that I drove a nice car; he knew that I took pride in my home and everything around it. He told me that he wanted to thank me because I had shown him another way. He now knew that he did not have to hustle to make it.

As it turned out, when he went back to school, a teacher noticed a change in his attitude and his hard work in school. She hooked him up with a program that places gifted though economically disadvantaged students in prep schools across the country. He was gone because he was attending a school in Pennsylvania.

Now, I can't take credit for his success, but I can't help wondering, what path his life would have taken had I chose to buy a house in the suburbs like all my other "Down for the Cause" friends.

Another thing that this kid told me that really impacted me was that through the community center he had met a lot of successful Black folks that volunteered weekends to work the various literacy and mentoring programs, but they all left before sundown. He appreciated the fact that I was there, in the community, living my life.

I realize this was a long piece, but thank you for letting me share.
Hello, Kevin41,

I have a question, on the subject of poverty=criminality: What drives your belief? Why is it assumed that to be poor is to be a criminal? I ask, because I often see people, not just you, saying things like, "Well of course they're criminals. You would be too, if you were poor." Why do you believe that criminality doesn't reflect a defiency of values, instead of a deficiency of bank accounts?

There is an expression statisticians or pathologists, etc, like to use: Correlation does not equal causation. A typical example is the one about statistics showing that short people get chicken pox more than tall people. Shortness and the incidence of the disease correlate, but shortness is not the cause. It's a coincidence, since the short people in question are almost always children, and chicken pox is a childhood disease.

So, I want to know why you believe poverty isn't a coincidence, but rather a cause of criminal behavior. Isn't it possible that there is a similar mindset at play with some poor people, and criminals? Bank robbers, for example, don't believe in making an honest living at an actual job. I'll bet they don't manage their savings and budgeting too well, either. They might have a spend more, save less, mentality for example. A lot of poor people have those same habits and attitudes. They will stay poor. People who don't value what they have; who have a low regard for others, who are self-centered, aren't going to keep up their property. You will see grafitti in neighborhoods with those kinds of people. You may have noticed that rental properties often aren't nearly as pristine as places where people own their homes. Could it be that people who worked for their home and their property will value--and maintain--that home better than people who see property upkeep as someone else's responsibility, not their own? Why do you believe that behavior and attitude do not determine one's station in life?
read on the psychology of poverty and disenfranchisement.....economics drive behavior.....notice how crime has gone up nationally with the economic downturn...look at households and marriages and how they break up due to financial difficulities....all of these represent that same phenomenon......it didn't used to be that way...poor blacks had more at stake to gain, so they were the most hard working and dedicated to their children...i think shallow materialism made people compromise their values as materialism became more and more tied to self-adequacy....what else would make a kid kill a kid over some Jordan's...i refuse to believe that blacks are some inhumane monsters genetically predisposed to this behavior......

to me, it seems as if blacks have actually bought into the double perception that the media programs in to their heads...think about it...when a black kid shoots one kid in school, it is "just how they are"...when a white kid shoots up the whole damn school, it is "he is a good kid" and they search for the psychological reasons that motivated the crime.


at this point I have been talking on these boards for about 7 months now....and overall, blacks are buying into what others are telling them about themselves and are doubting themselves after some of the greatest success we have ever experienced...if there were not a few progressive minded blacks in here and tbwt that knew how to focus on black progress and not be so damned peer-conscious, I would be through talking to blacks and whites both and stay to my damn self..and stick to further academic acheivement ...as a basis for increasing my independence.....peace
Kweli4Real
you have the right idea...i try to do the same thing with the postion i'm in...black females bring their sons to my classes all the time..and we talk about what they are doing and how to improve upon it...that is what people in our position is supposed to do.....elevate our own...and don't worry what self-hating negroes or racist whites thnk....because when it is all said and done...the proof is in the pudding.....efforts do have measurable outcomes....great job bro......great job.....
I'm sad to say that a few years ago I moved from Cleveland to Tucson, AZ., and the state of Blacks here is worse than anything in Cleveland. Besides there being no real Black hood, there is no Black community. Here Black folk may go to church together, but the other 6 days of the week, they're not about any type of collective action. I so miss the "back east flavor."
Hello Mr. Kweli4Real,

"I had long believed that the central city was being allowed to deteriorate, so that it could be re-developed for people that did not look like me. This was proved partially correct. In the 20 years since my purchase, there have been some 50, $150,000 homes built, though mostly by Black professionals.

My second, and more important, reason for purchasing in the "hood" was because of my commitment to the Black community. During my college years, I came to realize that urban flight resulted in a "brain-drain", but moreso a "morality drain." When those that work everyday leave a community, what role-models are left behind? The dope dealer and dope users; the single mother who only sees her babies' daddy only on the 1st of the month; the "pimps" and hustlers that live off the meager resources of whatever woman that is willing to support his trifling butt." by Mr. Kweli4Real

Well said, to which indeed it would behoove more Black people to invest in our own neighborhoods, our own causes, for as you state, should outsiders make such an investment, Black people won't have the first percentage in the development.

Rather than the "Media Made" idols or organizations, pertaining to a Reverend Jesse Jackson, the NAACP, or otherwise, it is the many unsung heroes of inner-city Black America or plain and simple it is the "little guy or gal", who make the difference, such as the difference you made in changing the direction of thinking of the soon to be young men or women, by showing them another way, namely the way to be a winner in spite of the "Hand that is Dealt" one.

Prosperity is not promised to anyone, but for those who are willing to make the sacrifice, or take on any constructive challenge, a world of achievement awaits them.

Sincerely,

Michael Lofton

[This message was edited by Lofton on October 29, 2002 at 06:59 PM.]
"The police believe that Mr. Brooks set the fire because {his victims reported Mr. Brooks' drug activity to the police}."

The details within the article that this post refers to should be required reading for anyone who believes that casual drug use {of marijuana,or ecstasy which is a type of methamphetamine, or cocaine} is 'innocent' and does not support an industry that is responsible for serious crimes including murder. In fact, there is just one degree of separation between the person who smokes pot/drops E/snorts or smokes coke, and the victims in this article. In Baltimore, the number one cause of death for young males under 25 is murder and the number one factor that is responsible in those cases is the association with the drug trade. So, statistically, life in Baltimore is actually very safe if you are not related in any way to the drug life.
Hello Carla,

"In Baltimore, the number one cause of death for young males under 25 is murder and the number one factor that is responsible in those cases is the association with the drug trade."

....and the key reason that many young people, or otherwise enter the business of dealing illicit drugs is because of the lure of quick financial gain. There is no way that any minimum wage "fast food" legal means of employment can compete with selling illicit drugs, to which those involved in the illicit drug trade can make more in an hour, than one who lives on minimum wages in a day, or even a week.

In addition few options exist because just like South Central Los Angeles, Baltimore does not have enough avenues to gainful employment to employ every Black man or woman who seeks to be gainfully employed, be it university educated or otherwise. Many Black males and some Black females, have felony jackets, be it earned or unearned, that negatively impact their ability to find gainful employment, which keeps them in the revolving cycle of penal incarceration, the use of the subculture for survival, etc.

Although I have an unearned criminal conviction, the counter-action claim filed in my behalf by my parents during my young adult life is responsible for turning my life around. Most every place of employment, pertaining to worthwhile employment, have questions relating to any history of a criminal record, and/or in some instances any history of a dishonorable discharge from the military. Unless an individual who has this in his or her background can prove their innocence there is little hope that such a record will be overlooked or expunged.

In my case, the only thing that saved me, again was the counter-suit to prove my innocence that kept my present employer from using the illegal arrest, unearned conviction, and unwarranted criminal prosecution for 148 P.C., from being used as a reason for not hiring me.

Unless, the opportunity comes along, or one is very resourceful, even the strongest succumb to some form of the subculture to make ends meet. Some become con artists, some deal drugs, some use violent methods to provide the necessities of life, some give up by succumbing to the use of illicit drugs, alcohol, or some run away from their problems through the excessive use of religion.

Very few opportunities exist in the "Hood" for gainful employment to change this negative scenario, and few of Black America's elected leadership are doing anything to reverse this trend. Heck, many of Black America's elected officials use false pretenses to hold elected office, or don't live in the community, so they could care less about improving the quality of life in the inner-city, because it was not their intention to competently represent our community in the first place.

Sincerely,

Michael Lofton

[This message was edited by Lofton on November 07, 2002 at 05:29 PM.]
quote:
Originally posted by Carla;

So, statistically, life in Baltimore is actually very safe if you are not related in any way to the drug life.


Tell that to the many innocent children or bystanders shot by stray bullets from drug turf wars.

Tell that to pizza delivery or Taxi drivers.

Tell that to elderly citizens who live in apartments and nursing homes that have uniformed guards and card key entry systems.

Tell that to the many Baltimoreans who do not go out at night or answer their doorbell after dark.

Tell that to convenience store, gas station, and fast food employees who face robbery and thieft at gunpoint.

And finally, tell that to the many citizens who endure carjackings, muggings, residencial break-ins, and rape because they cannot afford to live in one of those suburban gated communities the Washington DC area (like Montgomery County, and Chevy Chase) is famous for.

We are all related to the drug problems of inner cities. It's everybody's problem!

big grin big grin big grin
Good Morning Mr. Bankins,

If accurate statistics were in fact taken, the results would be more in line with what you have expressed.

If the inner-city is such as paradise because of such favorable statistics, why is it that those of middle class Black America or otherwise run away like a bat out of "Hell" to get away from the reality of high unemployment, high crime, substandard housing, substandard public school facilities and teachers, selling seconds at a premium neighborhood clothing or grocery stores, inept elected leadership, and/or neighborhoods saturated with police officers, many of whom neither live in the community to which police abuse is the norm, etc., etc.

Any statistics finding that claim any inner-city of Black America is a land of paradise void of heavy criminal activity, high unemployment, and/or substandard everything is only fit for the trash can. The only thing that is a heavy hitter in the inner-city is the building of larger places of incarceration, high unemployment, (....high unemployment and criminal activity breed each other....), placing more police on the streets to control inner-city Black America be it the criminal element or otherwise, to keep the environment of misery alive and confined to the inner-city.

Sincerely,

Michael Lofton
quote:
Originally posted by Carla:

In Baltimore, the number one cause of death for young males under 25 is murder and the number one factor that is responsible in those cases is the association with the drug trade. So, statistically, life in Baltimore is actually very safe if you are not related in any way to the drug life.


I saw the news report about this situation in Baltimore, on Nightline (I believe). Pretty tragic...

Carla, remember, drugs breed crimes other than the murder of people involved in the lifestyle. Like BB said above, there's a lot of other victims. It's likely that the "drug-related crime" statistics you refer to also include killings of people caught in the crossfire, burglary by people looking to get money for drugs, and so on. And when all of this nightmare is going on around you, the quality of life suffers dramatically. Statistics don't paint the whole story. Statistics don't measure the misery left in the wake of the drug situation among those who aren't involved. The situation is grim.

By the way, B Bankins, what about gangs? Drug dealers have always been here, but Crips and Bloods have invaded Jersey over the last couple of years. What about in B'More?
Hello Vox,

"By the way, B Bankins, what about gangs? Drug dealers have always been here, but Crips and Bloods have invaded Jersey over the last couple of years. What about in B'More?"

With this response you've just dumped salt on an already aggravated wound. Speaking of the Crips and Bloods, so many Black people have been killed or maimed as a result of senseless shootings attributed to the Crips and/or the Bloods, that it is a huge embarrassment to the community of Black America to talk about.

Crips or Blood sets don't get along with each other, within their own gang set, so you can extrapolate the amount of damage done to our community pertaining to individuals who have no connection to any gang set.

The Los Angeles County Sheriffs, and the LAPD, would intentionally leave an opposing gang member in enemy territory rather than waste tax payer's money incarcerating them. Some Crips or Bloods wised up to this tactic of the police to incite bloodshed between gangmembers, and many haven't a clue, as to the harm they've done, to which they continue to senselessly bring wrath on other Black people.

If there ever was a movement specifically designed to kill off Black people, the Crips and the Bloods would win hands down, all bets aside.

Sincerely,

Michael Lofton

[This message was edited by Lofton on November 08, 2002 at 02:08 PM.]
quote:
Originally posted by Kevin41:
When you get through,please analyze the Ozarks and Appalachias....I would like to see if black and white pathological behavior have the same elements....maybe we can bask in both the same...maybe as a black, I will go to mainly white forums and remind whites of their shortcomings......maybe i'll get the same perspective you whiteas attain in here. Wouldn't you agree that it would help us all get to know each other better? I personally think economics plays an important part in this behavior. I haven't spent enough time examining the poor uneducated white to have a baseline for compariosn.


DAMNED. Even back in 2002 - Kevin41 was doing the same B.S.

As soon as he sees a Black person acting in a bad light he must defend his consciousness by finding a WHITE PERSON who did the same. MOST RATIONAL PEOPLE would seek to bring the BLACK COMMUNITY up to his standard rather than seeking to find WHITE FOLKS who are below his standard but equal to the offense.

SIMPLY DAMNED AMAZING.
MBM already said what was needed about the external construct...I see why blkCONS end up being self-alienating.....I am done trying to even get you to see the pathology of your ways...have at it....I don't think anyone probably takes you too serious anymore...I do not....I wouldn't subject myself to a loathing motherfucker who just rails on blacks all day and refuses to see the same things in others....so that they can bask in castigating blacks in a stereotypical way....black=inferior is your thing CF....its your life........

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