Eric Holder Unveils Major Drug Sentencing Reforms

Attorney General Eric Holder will announce major drug sentencing reforms today.

The Justice Department will avoid charging low-level and nonviolent drug offenders with crimes that carry mandatory minimum sentences, as long as they’re not connected with criminal organizations.

U.S. attorneys across the country will also be afforded with greater prosecutorial discretion.

Grand Jury Will NOT Charge Officer Who Shot and Killed Unarmed Teenager Ramarley Graham

Not to be outdone by the antics of Florida, a grand jury has decided not to charge an NYPD officer who shot and killed unarmed teenager, Ramarley Graham.

Officer Richard Haste pursued and then entered the apartment that Graham shared with his grandmother, confronted, and fatally shot the 18-year-old.

Federal Prosecutors say they will review the case to determine if Graham’s civil rights were violated.

 

The decision, which was announced on Thursday morning, was met with shock from the Bronx district attorney, Robert T. Johnson, and it prompted calls for a federal civil rights investigation and an independent prosecutor. By late afternoon, the United States attorney’s office in Manhattan said it would review the evidence to “determine whether there were any violations of the federal criminal civil rights laws.”

Chair of Florida ‘Stand Your Ground’ Hearings is a Staunch Supporter of the Policy

Florida Gov. Rick Scott’s decision to hold a hearing on the “Stand Your Ground” law may have seemed like a major step in the right direction.

But news of the man picked to chair the hearing – Rep. Matt Gaetz – has many shaking their heads.

Gaetz is a staunch supporter of the law, proclaiming that he doesn’t “support changing one damn comma of the ‘Stand Your Ground’ law.

Will Marissa Alexander be Pardoned?

As controversy surrounding Florida’s Stand Your Ground law persists, much attention has been paid to the shocking case of Marissa Alexander.

Alexander fired a warning shot during an altercation with her abusive husband. The shot did not hit anyone; and although Alexander was in fear for her safety, Stand Your Ground did not save her. She received 20 years in prison.

A growing chorus of voices are calling for Alexander to be pardoned.

Ebony Magazine Dedicates September Issue to Trayvon Martin w/ Four Covers

Ebony Magazine is dedicating their September issue to Trayvon Martin.

The magazine will feature four covers honoring the memory of Trayvon Martin. Three covers feature celebrity dads Spike Lee, Dwanye Wade, and Boris Kodjoe posing with their sons in hoodies.

The final cover is the parents of Trayvon Martin, and Trayvon’s younger brother Jahvaris.

Florida Lawmakers Will Review ‘Stand Your Ground’ Law

Florida lawmakers have reportedly agreed to review the state’s dangerous Stand Your Ground laws.

Their decisions comes after widespread outcry from community members, celebrities, and political figures; and most notably after weeks of protests from the amazing Dream Defenders.

From Raw Story:

The announcement on Friday by Will Weatherford, the speaker of Florida’s House of Representatives, marked the biggest concession yet by the state’s Republican leaders to protesters’ demands for a top-to-bottom review of the law, which allows people in fear of serious injury to use deadly force to defend themselves rather than retreat.

Don Lemon and Media Violence Against Young Black Men

By Antwaun Sargent

 

 

I have watched the Don Lemon CNN “No Talking Points,” segment over and over again. I was looking for some truth in his five suggestions to young black men. Don Lemon said, we should pull up our pants, stop using the n-word, stop littering, finish school, and not have children out of wedlock.

 

I have by Don Lemon’s estimation done all the right things. I am a 24 year old black man. I don’t sag my pants. I went to Georgetown from the Cabrini-Green Housing projects and then on to get a Masters degree, and recently just finished teaching for two years in an under resourced community in Brooklyn. I don’t litter, and I don’t have any children. But I do feel alienated by Don Lemon’s comments. I feel alienated by his comments because they translate into a form of media violence, that Black men know all too well.