Rev. Pinkney Arrested AGAIN, supporters: Lynn Stewart, Voice Of Detroit, EXPOSED,

Mass Demonstration against Voter Suppression in Benton Harbor

Voter suppression led by Whirlpool Corporation and Berrien County Sheriff Department. Protest all injustices being forced on our town, your town and all around the country! It is not one thing it is everything. The murder of Benton Harbor residents, gentrification by Whirlpool, Governor Snyder’s Emergency Manager dictatorship. Find it on the ActivateHub community calendar!

May 24, 2014 11:00am - City Hall, 200 Wall St., Benton Harbor, MI, 49022 (11:30am - press conference)


Monday, December 31, 2007

MICHIGAN PASTOR JAILED FOR QUOTING SCRIPTURE

(from California)

Reverend Edward Pinkney of Benton Harbor, Michigan, spent Christmas in jail this year when his probation was revoked for quoting Deuteronomy 28 in a newspaper article.

On Thursday, December 20, Judge Alfred Butzbaugh ruled that the quotation from Moses was inflammatory and threatening and therefore a violation of Rev. Pinkney’s probation.

Rev. Pinkney is a longtime community leader in the Benton Harbor area and an outspoken opponent of corporate oppression of the poor. He was convicted earlier this year of “voter fraud” in a hotly contested trial that many viewed as racially motivated and riddled with constitutional irregularities.

Judge Butzbaugh has made the profound error of confusing Biblical law and prophecy with human threats. Without exception, the role of Biblical law and prophecy is to point out the very serious divine consequences for sinful and disobedient behavior.

In his newspaper article, Rev. Pinkney stated that he believes the Judge’s actions are contrary to God’s commandments. He then quotes from Deuteronomy 28: 15-16, 18, 22, and 45 to warn him of the consequences of his actions according to the Word of God. (The article appeared in the November issue of the Peoples Tribune.

At no time did Rev. Pinkney state, suggest, or imply that he, Rev. Pinkney, would commit any of these actions. Indeed, the idea that a human being can cause another to be cursed by God or to be smitten with consumption, fever, and inflammation is a far-fetched and bizarre interpretation.

Furthermore, Rev. Pinkney clearly states that none of these evils will come to pass if Judge Butzbaugh “hearkens unto the voice of the Lord thy God to observe and do all that is right.” So if Judge Butzbaugh is obedient to God he has nothing to worry about.

The Mosaic law and virtually every prophet in the Bible – Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and Jonah to name a few – repeatedly predict dire consequences for those who disobey God. Even Jesus often uses highly inflammatory language and warns us starkly to “repent or perish”. The Apostle Paul teaches that we will reap what we sow. These are profound Biblical truths.

To throw someone in jail for simply pointing them out is a fearful assault on the religious rights of every American.

We are asking anyone concerned with the religious freedom aspect of this case write letters of support for Rev. Pinkney and send them to his attorney at the following address before January 4:

Hugh M. Davis, Constitutional Litigation Associates, P.C., 450 West Fort Street, Suite 200, Detroit, Michigan, 48226. Phone: 313-961-2255; Fax: 313-961-5999; email: conlitpc@sbcglobal.net

We also especially encourage Biblical scholars who can further explain the issues in this case and would like to testify or write a support statement to contact the attorney as well.

Sandy Perry
CHAM Deliverance Ministry
San Jose, California

Sunday, December 30, 2007

The Truth About the June 2003 Riot

A young black man by the name of Terrance Shurn was trying to outrun the police on his motorcycle and was killed in June 2003.

A misconception by many is that this was the cause for the riot. Just the opposite, the blacks of Benton Harbor have suffered these types of demeaning actions for years, and have always held back from over reacting.

They held a candlelight vigil as a funeral ceremony and prepared a religious offering in honor of this young man, and the police chief sent his officers in to break it up. In doing so, they denigrated this religious offering, and at that point people started to object.

The police chief then gave the order: “shoot to kill.” Since the police officers were related to many of the people they were supposed to kill, they said “no way.” These were old men, women, and children that he wanted them to shoot.

I am familiar with the plight of the people of Lee Township with the Allegan County Sheriff’s Department, and it becomes very frustrating trying to earn a living and fight the police a the same time. It is a crime in our country to be poor, and our prisons are the proof of that. I was told that young black men run from the police all the time, because if they don’t , they just may end up dead or beaten severely if they are caught.

--from the excellent e newsletter: West Michigan News Company. (subscribe: news@wmnc.biz)

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Robert Jensen article

Here's a segment from this fairly short article by Robert Jensen:

Imagine that you could line white people up in front of a door and get them to really believe that if they walked into a "race-changing room" they would emerge on the other side with black skin ... Then ask whites to set their price -- the amount of money it would take them to agree to enter that room. Imagine ... an attendant ... with stacks of cash to hand to the white folks. ... let's say the cash award is tax free. ...when white people really had to face the possibility of being black -- knowing all they know about the reality of life in white-supremacist America -- what would the price be?

My guess is that a significant percentage of whites would not become black for any amount of money. I also am fairly confident that the median price set by the whites who might be willing to go into the room would be considerably more than $1 million.

In that moment of choice...the problem wouldn't be that we whites don't know enough. We know plenty. The issue would be whether or not we had transcended the deeply rooted white supremacy of the culture. In that moment, we would find out about the depth of white people's commitment to a color-blind society. [or not]

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Wise words from Mr. Wise

At timwise.org you can read Tim's review of the movie "Crash." It's an excellent read. Our resident racist here on the banco weblog may even like it. Below is a segment. (p.s. - We need you, mr. racist....we learn how you think and rationalize.)

"Racial conflict has emanated from a very particular history, which has been anything but random, whether in Los Angeles or anywhere else in the United States. Racial conflict in L.A. hasn't just happened, as if by accident. Particular patterns of oppression, including police brutality, the exploitation of immigrant labor, racist housing patterns that have kept people of color isolated from opportunities, and deindustrialization, have all conspired to produce the toxic mix of hostility and desperation that has so often played out in the city. So too with America more broadly: we are not randomly crashing into each other, as if by coincidence. We are not suspicious of one another by accident. The history of the U.S. has been one in which opportunities have been racially contingent, in which whites have been favored in every avenue of life, and people of color relegated to either de jure or de facto second-class citizenship...That Crash gives us little in the way of insight as to that backdrop...only lowers the probability that audience members will come to appreciate just how deeply ingrained the damage of racism truly is."

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Michigan Public Radio

Reports are coming in from various Michigan locales that Public Radio aired a fair and even-handed broadcast on Benton Harbor, the Judge, Rev. Pinkney, etc. during the past couple of days. We've heard that it lasted from 2 to 3 minutes. Mainstream media attention outside of southwestern Michigan is what has been sorely lacking, and we hope this is only the beginning. The following are some of the countless websites where this topic is mentioned.

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/wakeupcallshow

http://playfulspirit.wordpress.com/2007/12/18/rev-edward-pinkney-fighing-racism-in-michigan/

http://panafricannews.blogspot.com/2007/12/rev-edward-pinkney-arrested-at-his-home.html

http://www.phillyimc.org/or/2007/12/43835.shtml

http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2007/12/14/18466911.php

http://reddit.com/info/1l8vu/comments

http://www.assatashakur.org/forum/showthread.php?t=26256

http://en.redtram.com/go/69245404/

http://northstarcenter.wordpress.com/2007/11/02/injustice-in-benton-harbor-reverend-pinkney-speaks/

http://s.technorati.com/bhbanco.blogspot.com

http://www.blackagendareport.com/index.php?Itemid=34&id=178&option=com_content&task=view

http://www.opednews.com/maxwrite/link.php?id=47944

Friday, December 21, 2007

Constitutional Law meets "Berrien County Law"

the following is from:
http://www.blackcommentator.com/258/258_cover_rev_pinkney.html

Rev. Pinkney's Attorney, Hugh M. Davis, tells BlackCommentator.com an attempt to get Pinkney out of jail at a hearing on Thursday, December 20th failed. Davis says Judge Alfred Butzbaugh accepted their argument that the following statement was protected by the first ammendment right of free speech:

"The corruption and the deceitfulness continues in Berrien County Courthouse. Judge Butzbaugh has violated his oath. I support the constitution of the United States and the State of Michigan; we are still waiting on this racist corrupt judge to do the same. Judge Butzbaugh has failed the people, the community, his duties and his office."

However, Davis says the Judge ruled that the following statement by Pinkney calling on God to curse the judge and his family was not protected by the first ammendment and it was a violation of the probabtion terms prohibiting inflamatory remarks:

"Judge Butzbaugh, it shall come to pass; if thou continue not to hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God to observe to do all that is right; which I command thee this day, that all these Curses shall come upon you and your family, curses shalt be in the City of St. Joseph and Cursed shalt thou be in the field, cursed shall come upon you and your family and over take thee; cursed shall be the fruit of thy body. The Lord shall smite thee with consumption and with a fever and with an inflammation and with extreme burning. They the demons shall Pursue thee until thou persist."

Both of the above quotes are part of an article that originated in the People's Tribune PO Box 3524, Chicago, IL 60654, 773-486-3551, info@peoplestribune.org. written by Rev. Pinkney. There is an online version of the People's Tribune.

Attorney Davis also tells BC he is puzzled by the ruling and has never heard of anything like it before. Another hearing on the matter will take place in about two weeks.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

This actually happened yesterday in Berrien County Courthouse

[This is exactly why Rev. Edward Pinkney has been a daily court observer for approximately 6 years, and why he's now in jail. Oversight organizations like state gov., the ACLU, the NAACP, the Dept. of Justice, etc. know about this courthouse and do nothing. The media knows also. Organizations and media are just people. People who are busy looking the other way as lives and families are ruined.]

It happened yesterday, Wed. Dec. 19, 07. There were only 2 witnesses in court, Belinda Brown and Dorothy Pinkney, who were waiting for Rev. Pinkney's hearing which was eventually postponed until later today.

Judge Butzbaugh was on the bench as a young black woman (20's) was pleading guilty. Remember that Berrien County judges are accustomed to meting out their brand of justice without anyone watching.

After pleading guilty, the young woman asked if she could say something else. The judge said "yes." (Remember, he had witnesses.) She cried as she began to explain that the court appointed atty. told her that if she pled guilty she could go home and be with her children. But, she said she wasn't guilty, that she was the one who was assaulted.

The atty. began explaining to the judge that he had already discussed all this with her. Then, something totally unexpected happened: Judge Butzbaugh displayed anger and walked right out of the courtroom without adjourning. At this point, the 2 witnesses left the courtroom and decided his anger was motivated by their presence.

This courthouse has the highest rate of innocent convictions in Michigan - Mrs. Pinkney and Mrs. Brown only observed one example. Judges here are known to say, "I know you're innocent, and I'm putting you away." It's also common knowledge that cops are always around town stirring things up, accusing people of things, parking in places where people can be harrassed, making false arrests, and much worse.

Larry Pinkney (no relation to Edward) and David Love will appear on Make It Plain with Mark Thompson on Sirius Radio - Left Channel 146 today (December 20, 2007) at 7pm Eastern Time. They will be discussing the Rev. Pinkney case.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Hunger Strike: Day 6

Rev. Pinkney's hearing in front of Judge Butzbaugh has been
postponed until 4pm tomorrow, Thursday 12/20.

Funny, Whirlpool's company paper, the Herald-Palladium,
reported on yesterday's front page that the judge might revoke
Pinkney's probation today! This begs the question: how would
they know that before it happened? Is it all one big corrupt club in Berrien County?
Media, corporation & corp. real estate, gov., courts, law enforcement, Rep. Fred Upton......
Good luck finding articles on the paper's website. They are
not a member of mlive.com with other city papers in Michigan,
and make their site almost impossible to navigate. Certain things must
remain secret where corruption runs so deep.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Pinkney's Hunger Strike: Day 5

News flash: Judge Butzbaugh has ordered Rev. Pinkney to
be in court tomorrow (Wed) at 8:30am. We know that this courthouse
is all about making money. Judge B. could decide to "free" Pinkney on
bond. In essence, they falsely arrested him, and may now make him pay
money to return home to House Arrest. This would be beyond imagination.
We'll see what happens - a report will be forthcoming tomorrow.
(The public is welcome to attend his court appearance tomorrow.)

The following is from - http://phillyimc.org/en/2007/12/43725.shtml

Until Friday, Rev. Pinkney was under house arrest –
having to pay $84/week for the court tether he was
required to wear in order to avoid serving time in jail.
He was the only one under house arrest in Michigan
who was being monitored by satellite.

Mrs. Dorothy Pinkney, wife and fellow campaigner for justice, reports that the sheriff's deputies presented a bench warrant to arrest the Reverend for violating the 15th condition of his probation (which she said they were totally unaware of) by being quoted in the Peoples Tribune newspaper as follows:

”The corruption and the deceitfulness continues in Berrien County Courthouse. Judge Butzbaugh has violated his oath. I support the constitution of the United States and the State of Michigan; we are still waiting on this racist corrupt judge to do the same. Judge Butzbaugh has failed the people, the community, his duties and his office."

What about Rev. Pinkney’s right to free speech under the Constitution? And why have they seized his computer? Have the sheriffs of Berrien County, Michigan nothing better to do than to persecute Rev. Pinkney? No violent crimes to solve, no rapists to catch, no people to protect?

The police examining Rev. Pinkney’s computer will find he and BANCO have supporters all over the world. For example, a delegation from the Global Women's Strike representing South America, Europe and the Caribbean visited Rev. and Mrs. Pinkney in mid-November, and are committed to gathering global support for him. “Benton Harbor’s struggle against racism and to survive in their own home city is our struggle,” they said.

Legal abuse and persecution of Afro-Americans in the Jim Crow South is flourishing in Michigan. We must not stand by while the white elite of Berrien County attempt again to silence a man whose only ‘crime’ is to be the voice of Benton Harbor’s Black community, calling out the racism and corruption of local government, police and courts.

ACT NOW. Demand Rev. Pinkney’s immediate release!

Demand that all charges be dropped against him and that he be released from house arrest!

1) Call or write with your objections
Call the Sheriff’s Dept, Berrien County Michigan and inquire about Rev. Pinkney’s well-being.
Sheriff Paul Bailey
Berrien County Sheriff’s Department
919 Port Street
St. Joseph, MI 49085
(269) 983-7141
Email: Pbailey@berriencounty.org.

Copy Letters to: Hugh M. Davis, Constitutional Litigation Associates, P.C., 450 West Fort Street, Suite 200, Detroit, Michigan, 48226. Phone: 313-961-2255; Fax: 313-961-5999; email: conlitpc@sbcglobal.net:

2) Demand Rev. Pinkney’s pardon and immediate release.
Gov. Granholm has the ability to pardon Pinkney or commute his sentence.
All individuals and organizations are urged to immediately write letters or post cards DEMANDING his pardon.
Governor Granholm
P. O. Box 30013
Lansing, MI 48909
517-335-7858

3) Send donations to BANCO
Legal Fee Donations (non-profit so it's tax-deductible):
BANCO
1940 Union St.
Benton Harbor, MI 49022

4) Write to the Editor of the main newspaper of Benton Harbor/St Joseph and say what you think of this outrage against freedom of speech.
Herald Palladium Newspaper (letters to the editor)
P.O. Box 128
St. Joseph, Michigan 49085
800-356-4262

5) Support Rev. Pinkney and Sign the Petition: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/624471377
bhbanco.blogspot.com

6) Boycott Whirlpool and its subsidiaries, and spread the word:
Maytag, KitchenAid, Jenn-Air, Amana, Gladiator, GarageWorks, Inglis, Estate, Roper, Magic Chef, Acros, Supermatic. ABROAD - Bauknecht, Brastemp, Consul, Eslabon de Lujo.

Let Whirlpool know that’s what you’re doing:
Whirlpool Corp. (World Headquarters and N. America Region)
2000 N. M-63
Benton Harbor, Michigan 49022-2692 Tel: 269-923-5000

7) Demand an immediate investigation into this injustice. Contact:

The Congressional Black Caucus. Phone 202-226-9776, mail to 2264 Rayburn House Office Bldg, Washington, DC 20515.

Your Congressional Representative CONYERS. For phone number and address call 202-224-3121.

The Senate Judiciary Committee, Washington DC 20510, demanding a full investigation into the Whirlpool corporate takeover of the city of Benton Harbor. Phone 202-224-7703.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Reverend Pinkney's Fight Against Racism, Gangsterism and Land Stealing - Color of Law - David A. Love, BlackCommentator.com Editorial Board

12/13/07

In Benton Harbor, Michigan, the injustice against Rev. Edward Pinkney continues


An outspoken leader in the fight against racial injustice, poverty, corruption and corporate greed, Rev. Pinkney was sentenced to jail by an all White jury for voter fraud. His crime was leading a successful effort to unseat a city powerbroker, and resisting corporate development of his poor Black community. In a May 10, 2007 commentary, Benton Harbor 2007: A Case Study of State Sanctioned Suppression of Voting Rights, Black Commentator editorial board member Larry Pinkney (no relation) sets the stage by providing an insightful analysis of the situation in Benton Harbor.

Benton Harbor is a mostly poor (90 percent), mostly unemployed (70 percent) and mostly Black (94 percent) town of 11,000 people, located 100 miles east of Chicago. In fact, it is the poorest place in Michigan, and was called "the worst place to live in the nation" by Money magazine in 1989. Today, foreclosures abound and families are being decimated in Benton Harbor, while its residents are intimidated by police brutality and controlled by an unfair criminal justice system.

At the same time, Benton Harbor rests on prime waterfront property on Lake Michigan, adjacent to the predominantly White and affluent town of St. Joseph, home of the Whirlpool Corporation, the largest company in the area. Both communities are located in Berrien County, Michigan, which is less than 16 percent Black and has transitioned from an industrial economy to a tourist, service and real estate economy. Whirlpool has had machinations regarding its poor, isolated and economically depressed Black neighbor. It bought 465 acres of Benton Harbor's prime real estate for $1 million - a modern-day equivalent of beads and trinkets - in order to pave the way for a $750 million to $1 billion private development project called Harbor Shores. The resort development will include two hotels, 880 luxury housing units, a marina and a Jack Nicklaus golf course. The project is of no benefit to the predominantly Black Benton Harbor residents. Pinkney and his organization, BANCO (Black Autonomy Network Community Organization) waged a recall election battle in 2005 to unseat Glen Yarborough, the powerful City Commissioner who was instrumental in making the land steal, or rather, land deal, happen.

Yarborough lost by 54 votes. A local judge, Hon. Paul Maloney, said there was fraud, threw out the election and ordered a new one, in which Yarborough won by 40 votes and was reinstated.

Maloney, who, as an election commissioner had voted against authorizing the language in BANCO's recall petition, and had alleged ties to the Harbor Shores project, should have recused himself. But President Bush rewarded Maloney with a seat on the federal bench in the Western District of Michigan. This makes sense, given the energy spent by the Bush Justice Department on the manufactured issue of voter fraud - a pretext for the elimination of voting rights for Black, Brown and poor people, in order to facilitate Republican electoral victories across the nation.

Meanwhile, Yarborough sought payback. Pinkney was arrested and charged with voter fraud, amid sketchy allegations that Pinkney paid voters to vote against Yarborough, and that Pinkney handled absentee ballots. The prosecutor made use of a 1995 state law that makes it a felony to handle an absentee ballot of a person not a family member, even without evidence of ballot tampering or criminal intent. Pinkney provided poor Benton Harbor residents with address labels and postage stamps, but asserted that he did not handle the ballots.

Pinkney's first trial in March, 2006, had two Black jurors. Witnesses were allegedly intimidated. There was a hung jury on all five counts against him. The prosecution called for another trial. This time, the National Lawyers Guild provided Pinkney's defense. The second jury was all White, not surprising, given the county's history of excluding African Americans from juries, a condition Rev. Pinkney spoke against for years. On March 21, 2007, the jury found him guilty, and he was sentenced to a year in jail and five years probation. He was placed under house arrest.

The selective prosecution of Black men is nothing new in America. Nor is the targeting of truth tellers and change agents. As hate crimes go unpunished, and as politicians and lawmakers commit criminal offenses against humanity, with impunity and without penalty, and pay no price for making deceitful decisions that cost thousands of lives, the Reverend Edward Pinkneys among us are fair game for prosecutors with lots of spare time, warped priorities, secrets to hide and interests to protect.

And surely, they believe that a community leader who fights against poverty and racial injustice, exposes corruption and unseats the powerful, poses a great threat to the status quo and must be silenced. This gives the impression, firmly grounded in reality, that this is not our justice system. "There is a problem here," says Rev. Pinkney. "They are like gangsters here. They're pushing them out of the community."

Although it is easy to conclude that hicktown justice is limited to the deep South, one could say that Benton Harbor and Berrien County, Michigan are little more than Jena, Louisiana North. The case of Rev. Pinkney is proof that these things still happen, and the struggle continues. His fight is everyone's fight, and how the story ends is up to ordinary, everyday people. Rev. Pinkney deserves clemency from the Governor of Michigan, and must be made whole for the injustices perpetrated against him. And Whirlpool products--including Maytag, KitchenAid, Magic Chef, Amana, Jenn-Air, Gladiator, GarageWorks, Inglis, Estate, Roper, Acros, Supermatic, Bauknecht, Brastemp, Consul, and Eslabon de Lujo - deserve a boycott by the public.

BlackCommentator.com Editorial Board member David A. Love, JD is a lawyer and prisoners' rights advocate based in Philadelphia, and a contributor to the Progressive Media Project, McClatchy-Tribune News Service and In These Times. He contributed to the book, States of Confinement: Policing, Detention, and Prisons. (St. Martin's Press, 2000). Love is a former Amnesty International UK spokesperson, organized the first national police brutality conference as a staff member with the Center for Constitutional Rights, and served as a law clerk to two Black federal judges. His blog is davidalove.com. Click here to contact Mr. Love.

Reverend Edward Pinkney Jailed for Speaking Out

David Love writes in the Black Commentator:

At approximately 1:30 pm Friday, December 14, 2007 Eastern time the Sheriff's Department in Berrien County Michigan arrested Rev. Edward Pinkney and took him to the Berrien County Jail in St. Joseph (the adjoining township to Benton Harbor, Michigan).

The sheriff also seized/confiscated Rev. Pinkney's computer when he was arrested.

Pinkney's wife Dorothy tells BlackCommentator.com the sheriff's deputies presented a bench warrant that stated Pinkney was being arrested for violating the 15th condition of his probation by writing the following words about a white Berrien judge in an article published in the Peoples Tribune newspaper.

"The corruption and the deceitfulness continues in Berrien County Courthouse. Judge Butzbaugh has violated his oath. I support the constitution of the United States and the State of Michigan; we are still waiting on this racist corrupt judge to do the same. Judge Butzbaugh has failed the people, the community, his duties and his office."


Dorothy Pinkney tells BC her husband and his lawyer were completely unaware of any condition of the probation prohibiting "inflammatory behavior". Ms. Pinkney also tells BC that her husband feels he has the authorities in Benton Harbor, Michigan exactly where he wants them and the situation is in his favor because there is now undeniable proof of the existence of the injustice he has been protesting.


Rev. Pinkney's charge is related to a quote of his in print media which criticized the court system. Free speech is guaranteed by the first amendment!!

Please see recently published article on Pinkney from the well-respected website BlackCommentator.com.

Gov. Granholm has the ability to pardon Pinkney or commute his sentence. All individuals and organizations are urged to immediately write letters or post cards DEMANDING his pardon. He is only one (the most vocal) in a city of people under a severely repressive government. THEY WANT HIM SILENCED. So far, with the complicit media, they have been successful. Let's do what we can to free him since his leadership is crucial.

Governor Granholm
P. O. BOX 30013
LANSING, MICHIGAN 48909
517-335-7858 (call may not be recorded)

Legal Fee Donations (non-profit so it's tax-deductible):
BANCO
1940 Union St.
Benton Harbor, MI 49022

Herald Palladium Newspaper (letters to the editor)
P.O. Box 128
St. Joseph, Michigan 49085
800-356-4262

Whirlpool Corp. (World Headquarters and N. America Region)
2000 N. M-63
Benton Harbor, Michigan 49022-2692
269-923-5000

Support Rev. Pinkney and Sign Petition:
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/624471377

Boycott Whirlpool and it's subsidiaries: Maytag, KitchenAid, Jenn-Air, Amana, Gladiator, GarageWorks, Inglis, Estate, Roper, Magic Chef, Acros, Supermatic. ABROAD - Bauknecht, Brastemp, Consul, Eslabon de Lujo.

Buy NON-Whirlpool brands! - Frigidaire, General Electric, LG, Samsung, Viking, Subzero, Dacor, some Kenmore, etc.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Benton Harbor struggle update

ACTION ALERT: Please mark your calendars and stand with Rev. Pinkney in his heroic struggle against racism and oppression in Benton Harbor - July 19, 2008: Mass Demonstration in support of justice for the earth and it's people.

UPDATE: Pinkney is still on House Arrest wearing an electronic tether. Despite lack of evidence or credible witnesses for the prosecution, on March 21, 2007 an all-white jury found Rev. Pinkney guilty of election fraud. One of the jurors lied and stated that Rev. Pinkney's attorney was in the parking lot making a drug deal. She was not removed. On May 14, 2007 six motions for retrial were put forward. On August 24, 2007 all were denied. The reason? Rev. Pinkney failed to object on ALL the motions--corruption just keeps rollin'.

On Nov. 21, 2007 Pinkney filed in the State Appeal Court for a new trial demanding justice. Rev. Pinkney is bankrupt and funds are urgently needed. He must reimburse Berrien County for the first transcript of $2800., court costs of $6,405.00, probation fee of $4,000., and transcript fee of $5,000.


Fascism is Rule by Corporation

As this truism becomes more and more applicable to our nation we see the silent drama of this reshaping of governing institutions to suit corporate power being played out in our own small communities, townships and moderate sized cities all across the country.
Nowhere is the gut wrenching human cost of these practices more palpable than in Benton Harbor, a once thriving community of African American businesses and vibrant neighborhoods. Whirlpool, the corporate giant whose headquarters are located here, is relentlessly engaged in grinding the residents here into the dirt with no regard to their legal rights, the historical integrity of the community, or for modern ethics of any sort.
This gigantic corporation has, through blatantly fraudulent means, placed their pawns into key positions to ensure procurement of the public land held in trust for the Benton Harbor citizens. They plan to use this land to establish exclusive private parks, fenced golf courses and gated compounds for their highly paid executives and management personnel.
After devouring all the valuable park and lakefront realty here for a pittance of their true value, Whirlpool then plans to "give back to the community" in the form of the most menial and hopeless employment opportunities--janitorial and landscape maintenance. This "new jobs success story" will then allow Whirlpool to take the poverty stricken state of Michigan's tax breaks as a reward for having "created" the new jobs. The tax payers in Michigan will thus supply corporate welfare to an entity that is destroying their communities, usurping their treasured public lands and parks, and racially oppressing the people in them.
Racism, fascism and corporate greed have traditionally gone hand in hand worldwide.
Nowhere is this more evident than here in our very own state of Michigan in Berrien County.
Let the horrifying statistics speak for themselves:

Race breakdown
Benton Harbor 94% black
St. Joseph 99% white

Average income
Benton Harbor $8,000
St. Joseph $65,000

Unemployment rate
Benton Harbor 70%
St. Joseph 3%


These two communities are adjacent to opposite sides of the same river; the stark numbers tell a story and the story includes the grinding poverty, the systematic dehumanization most often associated with the world's most notorious fascist dictatorships such as Nazi Germany, with its walled compounds, economic enslavement and ultimately -- death camps.
How is this happening here in our United States, the onetime beacon of freedom and liberty to a weary world?

Ask Rev. Pinkney this question -- a man who has waged a David and Goliath struggle against the giant Whirlpool for years here in Benton Harbor--and you will hear a tale of-out-of-control law officers and the senseless killing of a young black man, ensuing riots and the beginning of an intense monitoring of courtroom proceedings at the Berrien County Courthouse. Pinkney and his loyal band, BANCO among them, also picketed the local papers (including The Herald Palladium owned by a wealthy Paxton, KY family) demanding that they supply objective news reporting and coverage of those involved in these racist and corrupt proceedings.
BANCO and Pinkney were successful in obtaining the recall of a corrupt city commissioner named Glen Yarbrough who was in the pay of Whirlpool. This recall was overturned by the power elite and they attempted retribution against Pinkney in the form of charges of election fraud and vote tampering, saying that Pinkney paid for votes and had absentee ballots in his pocket, both of which charges were completely unfounded.
The first trial, with a jury which included two blacks, resulted in a hung jury. A new trial was ordered and the residents of Benton Harbor came out in support of Pinkney both inside the courthouse and in the surrounding parking area.
The residents of Benton Harbor are united in their opposition to the usurpation of their community by Whirlpool and they are demanding a full investigation into this affair by the Senate Judiciary Committee.

By attacking and criminalizing Rev. Pinkney--who has done nothing but demand fair court proceedings and truthful news coverage for his community--the power elite hope to stop any further initiatives among the oppressed community to stand up to racism, economic exploitation and the passing of public land and funds into corporate hands.
We can't wait for others to defend us. Corporate fascism and racism MUST STOP. Will our communities and loved ones be the next in line for corporate take over?
Your support is urgently needed both in Rev. Pinkney's heroic struggle for justice and fair courtroom proceedings and the ongoing battle to stop the corporate takeover of public land and community assets.
We must all demand the resignation of corrupt Judge Alfred Butzbaugh and his dishonest prosecutor Gerald Vigansky.

All individuals and organizations are urged to immediately sign up, write letters, etc., in favor of clemency. We already have hundreds and hundreds of letters that we obtained for sentencing. We need updated letters. Benton Harbor and Pinkney need many letters (5000 would be fantastic) sent to:

ATTORNEY
Hugh Davis Constitutional litigation
450 West Fort St.
Detroit, MI 48226

Gov. Granholm has the ability to pardon Pinkney or commute his sentence.

Governor Jennifer Granholm
P. O. BOX 30013
LANSING, MICHIGAN 48909
517-335-7858 (correct)

to email the gov: www.michigan.gov/gov
(click Contact Gov., then click Share Your Opinion)

Legal Fee Donations (non-profit so it's tax-deductible):
BANCO
1940 Union St.
Benton Harbor, MI 49022

Herald Palladium Newspaper (letters to the editor)
P.O. Box 128
St. Joseph, Michigan 49085
800-356-4262

Whirlpool Corp. (World Headquarters and N. America Region)
2000 N. M-63
Benton Harbor, Michigan 49022-2692
269-923-5000

Support Rev. Pinkney and Sign Petition:
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/624471377

Boycott Whirlpool and it's subsidiaries: Maytag, KitchenAid, Jenn-Air, Amana, Gladiator, GarageWorks, Inglis, Estate, Roper, Magic Chef, Acros, Supermatic. ABROAD - Bauknecht, Brastemp, Consul, Eslabon de Lujo.

Buy NON-Whirlpool brands! - Frigidaire, General Electric, LG, Samsung, Viking, Subzero, Dacor, some Kenmore, etc.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

REV ED PINKNEY SPEAKS OUT AGAINST...UNFAIR JUSTICE.

December 12th, 2007 at 8pm,Rev Ed Pinkney will be special
program guest on Brother WilliamX Blogtalk's radio program
RIGHTS TO BE HEARD. This is a worldwide broadcast on the
internet, but callers will be able to call into the program by
calling the program's toll-free number 1(646) 716-8675.

To be able to hear the program visit http://www.communityactions.org
Once you are on the site scroll down to where you see the mike, and
highlight the mike. This program is a special feature of the National
Community Actions Coalition. Who has headquarters in Augusta Ga,
and RIGHTS TO BE HEARD is a blogtalk radio program creation of the
Midwest CAC Regional chapter. Where Brother WilliamX, is the newly
appointed regional director.

Thanks, Sister Michelle Vann, who is the National CAC director. For
allowing the RIGHTS TO BE HEARD broadcasted worldwide, and for
a rewarding two hours of information tune into the broadcast Dec 12th,
8pm - 10pm to support Rev Pinkney's fight against Unfair justice.

(*** The toll-free numbers is for those who would like to call in***)