Mayor Kenney’s Broken Promise to Black Voters

Mayor Elect, JIm Kenney greets black voters at My Brother's Keeper event at CCP in Philadelphia.

Mayor James F. Kenney made a promise to Black Voters and broke that very promise within weeks of taking office.

Kenney stated, “my position on stop-and-frisk hasn’t changed.”

But it has changed.

And Kenney didn’t stop there. He suggested the name of stop-and-frisk and said that wasn’t the actual problem as it was “unfortunate terminology.” His play on words is simply playing with black and brown lives.

Many whites and middle class people of color are unaware of the life curtailing effects and great number of stop-and-frisk. Most people of affluence don’t know because stop-and-frisk focuses on poor neighborhoods of color. In fact, almost 90 percent of those frisked were black or brown.

The streets of Philadelphia are still ringing with the silence of Kenney’s promise, “If I’m mayor, stop-and-frisk will end in Philadelphia, no question.” In case black voters doubted his sincerity, he followed up by explaining that “83 percent of the time, stop-and-frisk does not result in an arrest or recovery of a weapon.”

In an attempt to mitigate the pressure of being squeezed between the Fraternal Order of Police, who prefer stop-and-frisk and his pledge to black voters who helped put him in office he chose to break that very pledge only weeks after being in office.

Yet, John McNesby, leader of the FOP is famed for his chest pounding support of stop-and-frisk.

McNesby recently said, “Everybody is making a big deal out of stop-and-frisk.” “You’re allowed to stop-and-frisk under a Supreme Court ruling,”

We must be reminded by history, just because it may be the law doesn’t make it right.

As in 2009, over a quarter of a million stops were made by the Philly PD rivaling NYC’s numbers with a fraction of them claiming “reasonable suspicion.”

With the risk of violating a large percentage of people’s constitutional rights- still In 2014 a minor decrease was reported at 200,000 stops, with only 47 percent based on “reasonable suspicion.”

At the My Brother Keepers event just months ago, I listened to Kenney make this promise to a room full of hopeful young students of color at the Philadelphia Community College. He promised a robust end the stop-and-frisk.  Kenney was applauded with vigor as many attendees expressed their fear of feeling hunted in Philly streets by police. Kenney claimed to agree that people of color are unproportuntaely targeted by the PPD and as a result has fractured relations between the PPD and local communities of color. With a straight back, Kenney once again promised to end the era of stop and frisk to usher Philadelhia into an era of equality.

Kenney’s broken promise will certainly lead to the infringement of more Philadelphian’s constitutional rights and more lives being sacrificed to the private prison industrial complex. In this flammable time of fueled racial tensions and civil rights violations targeting people of color as reflections of fascism and plutocracy mine the despair of a lost middle class, we can’t afford to be silent on this in our own back yard.

Now Philadelphia’s black and brown communities are left to wonder, Where do we go from here?
All content and photos provided by Shara Dae.
Sent from my iPhone

Philly’s own, Amos Lee, sings on The Sons of Anarchy

Amos Lee

Philadelphia singer songwriter, Amos Lee, and the Forrest Rangers share their petroleum and honeyed version of Bob Dylan’s ‘Boots of Spanish Leather.’

The Son’s of Anarchy house band, The Forrest Rangers, chose Lee, one of Philadelphia’s musical unsung hero’s, to construct a brassy and yet smooth take on Dylan’s 1964 hit for the show’s upcoming episode titled “Faith & Despondency.”

Lee’s popularity has grown internationally as he has become known for his emotive vocals, sweet runs and raw lyrics-Such a fiery combination of talents seems fitting when paired with the powerfully acclaimed show, The Son’s of Anarchy.

When listening to the collaboration, it’s almost impossible to ignore the sweet melancholy of Lee’s voice and the beautiful sting of the steel guitar, while Dylan’s heart wrenching lyrics cascade throughout. This collaboration is truly inspired.

Shonda Rhimes Runs Thursday Night Must See TV

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The Thursday night premier of How to Get Away With Murder, was a hit. The premier prompted positive responses throughout Facebook & Twitter as audiences were riveted by Shonda Rhimes’ new Thursday night lineup. The overwhelming feedback was that How to Get Away With Murder appears to be an interesting mix of styles from Grey’s Anatomy to Scandal. Shonda hit the nail on the head with her characters who are young and compelling- capturing a wide demographic. Not to mention the show has a certain historic cashe as it is set right here in Philadelphia, the City of Brotherly Love.

Shonda Rhimes, the prolific producer behind Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal has done it again. How to Get Away With Murder, was all the buzz leading up to, during and hours after  premier on 6abc Thursday night. This is possibly the best revenge in response to a New York Times failed feature designed to put the spotlight on Rhimes’ ability to break down stereotypes essentially reduced the prolific showrunner to an “angry black woman.”

Social media was popping after The New York Times story went viral as audiences were furious and frustrated with what was perceived as the authors careless and linear view of women of color. The story haplessly gave Rhimes back-handed compliments, thus perpetuating stereotyping of black women as “angry,” rather than driven, talented and rightfully successful-in Rhimes’s case.

In response, producers and stars from all three shows gathered Saturday night in Hollywood to kickoff the fall’s Shondaland “TGIT” programming block. At this viewing, The Hollywood Reporter asked stars to describe Rhimes in three words and no one uttered “angry black woman. Here’s what they had to say about Shonda Rhimes,

Kerry Washington, Scandal
Brilliant, compassionate, courageous

Viola Davis, How to Get Away With Murder
Innovative, courageous, visionary

Kevin McKidd, Grey’s Anatomy
Inspirational, intuitive, deeply passionate

Bellamy Young, Grey’s Anatomy, Private Practice, Scandal
Genius life-changer

Tom Verica, Grey’s Anatomy, Private Practice, Scandal, How to Get Away With Murder
Beautiful, gifted, powerful

Caterina Scorsone, Grey’s Anatomy, Private Practice
Kaleidoscopic, nuanced, compassionate