Thursday, December 29, 2005


In King's last sermon in the Washington Cathedral in 1968, and King was preaching his heart out, he said these words: "We have learned to fly in the air like birds, we have learned to go to the depths of the ocean, we have learned how to build beautiful skyscrapers, but we have not learned the simple art of walking the earth as brothers and sisters." He said, "With all our accomplishments as a society, I can still hear the God of history saying that was not enough, Because I was hungry and you fed me not, I was naked and you clothed me not, I was devoid of a decent sanitary house to live in and you provided no shelter for me. Therefore you, America, do not know me, you do not know me."

"America, oh America", he said, "when will you rise up and live out the true meaning of your creed, that all people are created equal? Those are nice words, those words pierce the heart of so many and yet, tragically in our times, we are losing sight of Dr. King's dream. We see on television commercials promoting corporations, people sayomg they have a dream that they too can be rich, that they too can own a Mercedes, and can have the "things" of life. The CEO with a $20 million dollar salary says, "I have a dream that my corporation will sail on into the multi-billion dollar range." But this was not Dr. King's dream. King said that the social evils of proverty, racism, and war were inextricably bound together, and that there is a loving God in the universe who wills that His children begin to walk the earth as one.

What would Dr. King say about the war question? Well, he spoke loudly about the Vietnam War. He said, The bombs that drop in Vietnam explode in the ghetto because for every dollar spent, for every tens of thousands of dollars spent to drop a bomb, there is less than fifty cents spent for a child that is hungry in the ghetto.

Dr. King insisted that America's war on poverty should be the chief priority of the country. Here, 30 years later, we have a scourge that Dr. King would not have wanted to recognize, called homelessness in America. Now some six million of our brothers and sisters live like that. Where is the dream? One day this nation, he said, would begin to understand his words clearly and see that ALL are endowed with inalienable rights. Inalienable means God-given rights. God gives you the right to housing. God gives you the right to a living wage, and God gives you the right to health care. God gives you the right to be free. But not in America. In America you have to pay through the teeth for these rights. Do you know what a right is? A right is given by your Creator. Jesus knew this, and He gave it freely. Jesus didn't ascend to the heights of worldly aspirations, no, He went to the least first, He went to the last first. This was King's last and greatest dream, to take 3,000 poor people of all colors, from the farmworkers in California, the abject poor in the South, people from all around the United States, to the capital, to remain there until the government began to redress their legitimate grievances.

Do you know what King really believed? He said that we must turn toward our Creator. King believed that only God could provide the strength, the impetus, the long-term change that was needed. That the words we often profess, oh so many that are believers of all religions, do we practice the precepts of our belief?

How long will it take? Not long, he would say, because no lie can live forever. How long? Not long. Because you reap what you sow. How long? Not long, because one day we're all going to stand as one people. One day, we're going to see that dream come true, one day, brothers and sisters, I believe.

Make Dr. King's spirit live in your heart. May his spirit continue to inspire us, and may you continue to challenge yourselves to grow in the places where you need to grow, to be the person you are called to be, to be all that you can be - not in the Army's way, but in the army of truth and righteousness and justice. God bless you and keep you. Amen.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Rev Pinkney at event in LA

Rev Pinkney speaks at important event in LA, November 17, 2005,
co-sponsored by Danny Glover

List of speakers:

* Sharmini Peries, Int'l Relations Advisor to Venezuelan President Hugo

* Bolivar Ramilus, Haitian peasant leader & former member of the Haitian
Parliament under President Aristide, member of Fanmi Lavalas party,
President of the Haitian Parliament¹s Commission on Peasant Affairs

* Rev. Edward Pinkney from BANCO (Black Autonomy Network Community
Organization) in Benton Harbor, Michigan, which with little national support
has been fighting the same racism, political corruption, police brutality
and land-grabs that Hurricane Katrina exposed for all to see

* Women's Caucus of the People¹s Hurricane Relief Fund and Reconstruction
Coalition, from New Orleans

* Grassroots Los Angeles speaks out on campaigns: for justice for those
criminalized, for welfare, quality education & other resources, autonomy &
community control, against war and occupation

More Info:

Organized by the Global Women's Strike, co-chaired by Margaret Prescod of
Global Women¹s Strike and host of Sojourner Truth on Pacifica Radio's KPFK.
KPFK is the media sponsor for the event.

Download the flyer here.

Friday, December 02, 2005


**please forward worldwide**



Whirlpool Corporation, the world's largest manufacturer of household appliances, is headquartered in Benton Harbor, Michigan. It is a multibillion dollar corporation. Whirlpool has not given a substantial number of jobs to the predominantly black and poor community of Benton Harbor. It has outsourced jobs while at the same time benefitting from tax breaks and favorable land deals and profiting from the dire situation of the local population. Benton Harbor is a company town and Whirlpool wields strong influence over the local economy, the political government, and the judicial system.

Black people in Benton Harbor are desperately poor. 70% are unemployed, 90% live below the poverty level, and the city is 96% black. Meanwhile, the neighboring city of St. Joseph is predominantly white and prosperous with 2% unemployment and average incomes of $44,000 per household. In Benton Harbor, there is a long history of police brutality against the black population of Benton Harbor as well as misconduct by the prosecution office and local law enforcement officials. Residents of the city have been made scapegoats for economic and social conditions beyond their control. They have been subjected to discriminatory practices and procedures by local police agencies and judicial officials who cover up for the excessive use of force and racial profiling.

Whirlpool created a phony civil group called the Committee for World Class Communities which many people in Benton Harbor recognize as a fraud. The group has done nothing to reduce poverty in Benton Harbor, nor has it provided any tangible resources for the community. The committee does not advocate sharing political power nor major reinvestment in the black community. In fact, Whirlpool is the hidden economic base of the racist government in Berrien County.

For example, Fred Upton--an heir to the Whirlpool Corporation founder--has served in the U.S. Congress since 1986 as a Newt Gingrich Republican, dismantling the social gains of the 1960's civil rights movement. Upton resides in St. Joseph and is part of its power base. Whirlpool money put him in power and has kept him in office for the last eight Congressional terms. Although the Congressional district Upton supposedly serves covers both Benton Harbor and St. Joseph, it is the city of St. Joseph which has benefited from his years in Congress. He has secured millions of dollars in block grants, federal loans and contracts, state community and economic grants, and other funding for the St. Joseph community, while obtaining virtually no support by comparison for Benton Harbor's black and poor residents.

We are calling for a worldwide boycott of Whirlpool. We ask you not to buy Whirlpool, Maytag, Kitchen Aid, or other subsidiary products because Whirlpool is clearly subsidizing racism and poverty in Berrien County. For a listing of Whirlpool's entire products line, please go to its website at



For futher information about how you can support this campaign please contact:

Tel: 269-925-0001

Saturday, November 26, 2005


The ruling class is attempting to use the destruction brought about by Katrina as a smoke screen to hide the real reasons for the continuing deterioration of the people's living standards. Katrina's cost in human suffering is immeasurable--but clearly the politicians aren't worried about that. The cost in material damage is in the neighborhood of 200 billion dollars.

That is a lot of money to take out of an economy. Yet the criminal war against Irag has cost $201,418,920,955 American dollars, as we go to press. The cost is increasing by 1 billion dollar a week. We have to look elsewhere for the reasons behind the economic crisis.

The real reason--and workers know this instinctively--falling value of labor power is cheaper to acquire. And why? Evenually, the price of anything on the market will fall to the value of the amount of socially necessary labor that goes into creating it. It might seem callous to talk about the cost of producing a worker, but the capitalist class calculates it down to the penny. Cut down the amount of necessary labor to produce it, and you ultimately cut the market price. There is not a direct one-to-one relationship, but in the long run this is true. Labor-replacing machinery, robotics, automation, whatever you may call it--it is hitting the world's working class hard and laying the foundations for a revolutionary change in society.

An example of this is that world productivity has risen 70% since 1973, while wages have risen 13%. It is cheaper to produce a worker today.

The electronics that produced robotics also produced a global labor market. With the former Soviet Union, India, and China entering that global market, the global work force has doubled with practically no increase in capital. At the same time, advancing technology is constantly cutting the demand for labor.

The growing labor supply and the lowering of the demand for labor can have only one result--the often referred to race to the bottom. It also means the political strengthening of the political clout of all workers.

The process is deep in the so-called developing countries and is becoming clear in America. For example, last year's wages fell at the fastest rate in 14 years. Employment for young workers in the age bracket of 20 to 24 years old fell from 72.2% to 67.9%. Katrina caused none of this.

The outlines of the developing crisis are clear for all to see. Are we to sink deeper and deeper hoping for some good capitalist to lead us out of this impending crisis?
They're the ones who created it. If we the people do not intervene, it is going to go from bad to worse.

The people of New Oleans must first visualize what kind of a city they want to rebuild before they can fight for it. In a like manner, the people must first visualize what kind of a country they want before they can effectively fight against this looming catastrophe. A competitive economy and private property brought us into this mess--we cannot visualize it getting us out. The alternative is a cooperative society based on public ownship of the giant corporations. The people must visualize it, and then fight like hell for it.

The government cannot hide behind Katrina. That hurricane was terrible. Global capitalism is worse.

Monday, November 21, 2005


All over the world, people are resisting the war machine, confronting dictatorships, corporate globalization and exploitation, and fighting back against cultural and physical genocide. The U.S. wars in Irag and Afghanistan are the tip of the iceberg. The U.S. has military forces, bases, and operations in the Phillppines and over 130 countries around the globe. This empire props up abusive local regimes and protects the interests of multinational corporations. As police killings here in Benton Harbor, the imprisonment of over 2 million, and the deadly government response to hurricane Katrina in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama make clear, struggles are going on inside this country as well.

But as the people rise up, they face repression, torture and imprisonment by those who maintain power over them. As a result,in the U.S. itself and in all the countries trying to free themselves from this system of empire, exploitation, and in some cases as prisoners of war. The oppressors want to keep them locked up to silence their voices.

From the Phillippines to Puerto Rico and Palestine, from Iran to Indonesia and occupied northern Ireland, across Africa, Asia and Latin America, and in the industrial countries of the global north community, organizers, trade unionists, student activists,indigenous and landless peasant spokespeople, and resistance fighters have been the targets of death squads, disappearances, torture, and brutal incarceration.

Here in the U.S. too, a whole new generation of detainees, grand jury resisters, and direct action activists are being locked up. They enter prison alongside the freedom fighters and the resisters of the black Liberation, Chicano-Mexicano, Puerto Rican independence, and American Indian movements who were targeted by the government's COINTELPRO counter-insurgency program of assassination, disruption and imprisonment, and are among the longest-held political prisoners in the world. To abandon these political prisoners would be to sell out and undermine our struggle for peace, justice, liberation, and survival. To fight back against the war machine and the evil empire, we must make the demand to free all political prisoners a central aspect of our
on-going struggle.

December 3, 2005 has been declared an international day of solidarity with political prisoners by BANCO and the International League of Peoples' Struggle. This has been taken up by organizations in the Philippines, Ireland, Turkey, Palestine, and many others countries, including here in the United States. We want all political prisoners free.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Michigan's Shame

Historically, the US has jailed or murdered many
Blacks who have risen to leadership positions and
challenged institutional and government racism. The
list is long.

History is attempting to repeat itself in Berrien
County where Granholm-appointed Judge Butzbaugh is
ordering me to stand trial on the testimony of Brenda
Fox. Ms. Fox is not a credible witness, and an
honorable judge would not let her near a witness
stand. I'm sorry to say she is a crack addict.

During my preliminary examination which would have
received high ratings on Comedy Central (no
exaggeration), Ms. Fox stated that on Feb. 22, '05
(election day), she took ten people to the clerk's
office to vote absentee. The deputy clerk said there
is NO voting at the clerk's office on election day -
and, that absentee voting cannot be done on election

Ms. Fox did these things: stated that I paid these
ten people $5 each to vote, AND signed an affadavit
stating that I never paid anyone to vote....

This is the state of "justice" in the Berrien County
Courthouse. I am being tried for voter fraud (paying
people to vote) and the prosecutors and judges cannot
find a credible witness to substantiate the claim.
Yet, there will be a trial.
No date yet. Incredibly, the way I learned about
Judge Butzbaugh's decision to go to trial was by
reading it in the Herald-Palladium.

For more information, call me anytime, night or day:

Please send very badly needed donations (any amount)
for my legal fees to:

Atty.Tat Parish
1940 Union St.
Benton Harbor, MI 49022

Rev. Edward Pinkney

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Gap between black, white infant mortality grows

Benton Harbor has the highest death rate in the state; health officials plan not to attack problem. Berrien county health department will do nothing to reduce the death rate of black infants.

Benton Harbor has the highest rate of African-American infant deaths in the state. Approximately 85 percent of those deaths occured among babies born to Benton township residents.

At the same time, the county`s death rate of children less than 1 year old declined for whites. The gap between the two has widened since 1995. From 1997-1999, 21.7 of every 1000 African-American babies born in Berrien County died before their first birthday compared to 5.5 of every 1,000 white babies.

We want to create an awareness among health providers of the huge disparity in infant death in Berrien County.

In Berrien County the death rate for children of all races went down to its lowest point in the decade in 1994.

There was a rise in 1995,but the rate for African-American babies went up.

How much is enough? How large does the gap have to be before we act? Why can`t we live in a community where African-American and white babies have an equal opportunity to survive to their first birthdays? In the data I studied, black babies were twice as likely as white babies to weigh less than 5 pounds 9 ounces at birth. Weight defines a low birth weight baby.

Twice as many white mothers as black mothers received adequate parental care, defined by the stage in pregnancy at the first medical visit.

The average age of Afican-American first time mothers was 22.7years; the average age of white first time mother was 26.4 years. However, a very large number of black mothers were teen-agers.

Pinkney calls on health care professionals to analyze information they have on where and when prenatal and infant health services are provided, who provided those services and what is missing from our recipe. Why can`t we live in a community where African-American and white babies have equal opportunity to survive to their first birthdays?

Monday, October 31, 2005

Radio Interview

1. To listen to a short radio interview of Dorothy
and Rev. Pinkney, (approx. 10 min.):

2. As in a bygone era when racism was the norm and police oppression considered business-as-usual, Benton Harbor cops and Berrien County sheriffs are blanketing the city for witnesses who will agree to give false testimony against Rev. Pinkney. Tax payer money is funding the effort as officers spend their days driving from homes to apt. complexes to soup kitchens, trying to coerce residents into lying on the stand at Rev. P.'s upcoming frame-up trial. (no date yet)

This is all going on without any outcry or action from social justice groups, the ACLU, NAACP, Dept. of Justice, or anyone in Lansing..... just a renegade county system doing it's thing to ruin lives. Right here in the state of Michigan, people and organizations in power look on without blinking their eyes.

Donations, no matter how big or small, needed for my defense fund. Make check payable to:


1940 Union St.
Benton Harbor, MI 49022

THANK YOU in advance.
--Rev. Edward Pinkney, 269-925-0001

Sunday, October 23, 2005


The former chairman and chief executive officer of Whirlpool Corp. said there is one reason the Harbor Shores development was proposed, and that is to take over the city of Benton Harbor and not to improve the quality of life for the residents of Benton Harbor.

Before David Whitwan retired as Whirlpool's CEO last year, he was in favor of transferring most of the jobs out of Benton Harbor. He is now chairman of the Alliance for World-Communities, part of Whirlpool and Cornerstone Alliance. At a recent Benton Harbor City Commission meeting, Whitwan said he understands Benton Harbor residents' skepticism, but, "trust me," he said, "often Whirlpool lied and promised things that did not happen. Trust me." The former chief executive of Whirlpool, who was in favor of transferring most of the jobs out of Benton Harbor, said, "trust me, I understand your skepticism, trust me." Also in attendance was a Mr. Chaney who is white. He charged Mr. Whitwan to be honest and stop lying. "This is going to be a all white community," Chaney said. Whitwan, stop lying.

The proposed 530 acre Harbor Shores development project is a collabortive venture between Benton Harbor, St.Joseph, Whirlpool Corp, the Alliance for World-Class-Communities, and Cornerstone Alliance. It is common knowledge in this county that Whirlpool Corp.,the World Class-Communities, Cornerstone Alliance and St. Joseph are all the same people.

The project Harbor Shores would be a residential and commercial development roughly bounded by Benton Harbor lake front on beautiful lake Michigan land. Most of the land is in Benton Harbor, a small portion is in St. Joseph.

PUBLIC ACT 425 allows for the temporary transfer of the small portion of St. Joseph land to the city of Benton Harbor for 20 years. After Benton Harbor has paid off the 89 million dollars or more infrastructure cost, all the land becomes the city of St. Joseph until the world ends.

The infrastructure is to include roads, storm sewer, gas and water service, and environmental clean up. An 89 million "gift" from Benton Harbor to St. Joseph. A forced gift.

St. Joseph city commissioners unanimously approved the transfer of land. We can gain an awful lot if this development happens. It is a really great thing for the city of St. Joseph.

I, Rev Edward Pinkney, must admit this is a really great thing for the city of St. Joseph and St. Joseph only.

The recall election was very important to the Whirlpool dream project. The project needed the Benton Harbor city commissioner-at-large Glen Yarbrough, a know drug user and bully who gets his way through intimidation.
They needed six votes to steal the land and make this project a reality; without Yarbrough it could not be done.

When the recall was sucessful the Whirlpool dream project was about to go down the toilet, so the group came up with a plan to claim voter fraud. Judge Paul Maloney, Prosecutor James Cherry, Benton Harbor city manager Mitchell, and Yarbrough gave the Herald Palladium's Julia Swidwa, well known racist, the story. Everything she write's is questionable. The group knew this plan would work. Yarbrough was bribed with a five year offering to fund the summer youth work program, a man who has a history of stealing from the youth program.

My question is who has the power to make his or her acts legitimate? In the County of Berrien, the State of Michigan, the United States, that power is invested in the hands of the "haves" and it makes their acts legitimate. We must start to think about a world-wide boycott of Whirlpool products. When does it stop?

Monday, October 17, 2005

Swida's Courtroom Coverage Questionable

The following is a letter sent to the editor of the Herald-Palladium by Gaurav Jashnani of Detroit, Michigan:


I attended Rev. Pinkney's hearing last Tuesday. For you to lead with the testimony of Brenda Fox, the prosecution's star witness, without mentioning its numerous contradictions, was disappointing.

Fox wrongly identified the date of the recall election and of the alleged violations of the law. She claimed that she took two groups of five absentee voters into the city clerk's office, where she stood over their shoulders and instructed that they mark "yes" for the recall; she said the clerks did nothing. Yet, the previous witness, Deputy Clerk Kimberly Thompson, testified that no absentee voters were present in groups that day.

After Fox said that she could not remember anyone by name, Assistant Prosecutor Vigansky fed her names for her to single out as individuals paid to vote. She contradicted herself while describing details about why Rev. Pinkney allegedly paid her and when they were next in contact. Her testimony seemed clearly contrived, and there is no way that Ms. Swida, your reporter, could have failed to notice these improprieties.

Fox was only one of many witnesses lacking credibility. Many stated that they "think" or "believe" certain things, without having actually witnessed anything, and most of them seemed confused and led on by the prosecutor. One witness admitted to regular cocaine use now and at the time of the election. Another, Rosie Miles, has a son who recently faced charges after a drug raid at her house. Since she has become a witness for Rev. Pinkney's prosecution, her son's charges have been mysteriously reduced to a violation of probation.

On top of all this, the prosecution's witnesses sat in the hallway with an incongruous air of festivity. This is after specific allegations have been made (and an affidavit signed) that Yarbrough has paid witnesses to concoct lies, and that the city is cutting deals on other people's charges (or their children's) and the police are applying pressure in exchange for exaggerated or false testimony.

To say the least, your coverage of the story seems questionable. The sort of bias present in Wednesday's story by Ms. Swida leaves me baffled--but then, I don't know the politics of St. Joseph and Benton Harbor. It seems that a lot of powerful people have a vested interest in locking up Rev. Pinkney. Judging from your coverage, it seems that some of them may have an ear at the Herald-Palladium office.

Gaurav Jashnani
Detroit, Michigan

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Statistical Information about Crime and Race

Dru Blood - I believe in the inherent goodness of all beings

"I'm so glad someone was able to pull together the statistics about race and crime and make the point that Bill Bennet's comments were not egregious because they called for hypothetical genocide, but rather that they wrongfully forwarded the notion that African Americans are a criminal race:

The better question for public debate is this: do the actual government statistics bear out the claim that Blacks contribute disproportionately to the crime rate? Or is this largely a stereotype, which is driven by the disproportionate rate of ARRESTS and CONVICTIONS of Black people? And does the over-focus on Black crime conceal an alarmingly high crime rate within the white population?"

Thursday, October 06, 2005


I have been told that in 1965, during Hurricane Bessie, the city of New Orleans dynamited a levy, diverting the water to the have-nots living in the lower 9th WARD TO PREVENT FLOODING IN THE EXCLUSIVE FRENCH QUARTER. Many bodies were found floating in this year of 2005, many Katrina victims say the levy was dynamited and the water was diverted to the 9th ward once again. Many, many bodies were floating in the water.

Like most residents of New Orleans, Sandra Moore from the 9th ward, thought hurricane Katrina was a usual storm just passing through. But she awakened in total shock to see her neighorhood submerged in water. "We have nothing now! No jobs, no homes, no schools, no hospitals - we have nothing but floating bodies everywhere," said Ms Moore. She rescued her drowning grandmother, mother, and aunt, all who were unable to swim to safety on their own. Ms Moore, with her six-month old baby wrapped under her arm headed for higher grounds in hope of receiving help. That hope turned into hell, frustration, and long hours.

I, Edward Pinkney, the executive director of the Black Autonomy Network Community Organization (B.A.N.C.O.), one of the largest activist organizations in the midwest, located in Benton Harbor, Mi, was part of a caravan that brought people out of the gulf area and placed more than 20 families in homes. We brought two truck loads of donations and were turned away by the national guard inside New Orleans. We found a large group of people in a store parking lot where we distributed relief items: cleaning supplies, aspirin and other over the counter drugs, bottled water, canned goods, hygiene supplies, baby formula, diapers, wipes, pedialyte, sterile gloves, and batteries from AA to watches and and hearing aids batteries.

We visited many outlying towns and villages in Mississippi and Louisiana, places that the Red Cross and FEMA hadn`t visited. I spoke with a nurse who said a New Orleans doctor told her how she prayed for GOD to have mercy on her soul - she ignored every tenet of medical ethics and ended the lives of many she had fought to save. Her heart rending account has been corroborated by a hospital orderly and by local government officials. Those who had no chance of making it were given morphine and laid down in a dark place. Euthanasia is illegal in Louisiana. I also heard doctors were acting on instructions from the federal government.

What happened after Hurricane Katrina was shocking and awful. There was a total non-response of the federal government for four days. The world was left to see pictures of tormented black faces; relief was nowhere to be seen for the poor and the have-nots, U.S.citizens, and immigrants.

This could easily have been Benton Harbor, as long as we have Whirlpool, Cornerstone Alliance, and Berrien County Commissioners, who are racist. The Berrien County Courthouse that practices racism every single day and that has destroyed more families than Katrina. And let`s not forget about the four corrupt black families that run the city of Benton Harbor and have given the city away.

With these people and institutions in place, there would be no relief for Benton Harbor in the face of such disater.

Thursday, September 29, 2005


And ye shall hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you not be troubled. For all these things must come to pass, but the end is not. For nation shall rise against kingdom; and there shall be famines, and pestilences, all these are the beginnings of sorrows.

The city of Benton Harbor is moving closer and closer to great strife, unrest and bloodshed. Although the residents of Benton Harbor are supposed to be of one nation, the division between the haves and the haves nots is getting wider and wider and that breach is being filled with hatred. And, our political beliefs are dividing us, fueling that hatred even more. Right and left, liberals, conservatives and all of the many causes that people have are showing signs of potential bloodshed. The people of Berrien County do not seem willing to argue their point and let truth prevail. But the frustration is leading to resolution of conflict by means of the gun. The weapons of war are being sold legally and illegally throughout the city of Benton Harbor in unprecedented numbers. The proliferation of assault weapons is mounting in Benton Harbor.

Civil unrest in the future will not be able to be handled by the police. The police will be supported by federal troops. When this day arrives, and it will, the breakdown of law and order will be so great in Benton Harbor that it will be as the prophecy, and it does not appear that it will be avoided or averted, though it could be.

Our youth are dying in unprecedented numbers and for the first time, death by the gun is nearly out numbering death by disease. Gang conflict is civil strife, when we of the same racial and historical orgin are pitted aginst each other. It is not black against white. It is the haves aginst the have-nots.

Benton Harbor, a city headed for civil war, is controlled by four families. All of the crime, drugs, corruption and the city jobs are within four families and friends you are protected by the Benton Harbor police department, supported by Cornerstone Alliance and Whirlpool.

Welcome to Berrien County: the police, the prosecutors, the politicians, the judges and the machinery of government are inexorably grinding away at the individual liberties guaranteed to all Americans by the Constitution.

The government agencies in Berrien County arrest without warrants, spy without legal authority, imprison without charges, kill without cause. Benton Harbor is a city headed for civil war. Judicial misconduct, prosecutorial misconduct, ethics violations, civil rights violations and legal misconduct is Berrien County. Judges do not follow the law in Berrien County, they make up their own laws.

Did you know that since 1970, individual judges and the appellate court panels cited prosecutorial misconduct as a factor when dismissing charges at trial, reversing convictions or reducing sentencing of 4,017?


Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Excellent book about white privilege & racism

Robert Jensen has just published a book that is well worth reading. Here is a short description with info at the end:

An honest look at U.S. racism, and the liberal platitudes that attempt to conceal it.

In "The Souls of Black Folk", W.E.B. DuBois wrote that the real question whites wanted to ask him, but were afraid to, was: "How does it feel to be a problem?" In "The Heart of Whiteness", Robert Jensen writes that it is time for white America to self-consciously reverse the direction of that question at the heart of color. It's time for white people to fully acknowledge that in the racial arena, they are the problem.

While some whites would like to think that we have reached "the end of racism" in the U.S., and others would like to celebrate diversity but remain oblivious to the political, economic, and social consequences of a nation founded on a system of white supremacy, Jensen proposes a different approach. He sets his sights not only on the racism that can't be hidden, but also on the liberal platitudes that sometimes conceal the depths of that racism in American "polite society."

This book offers an honest and rigorous exploration of what Jensen refers to as the depraved nature of whiteness in the United States. Mixing personal experience with data and theory, Jensen faces down the difficult realities of race, racism, and white privilege. He argues that any system that denies non-white people their full humanity also keeps white people from fully accessing their own.

This book is both a cautionary tale for those white people who believe that they have transcended racism, and also an expression of the hope for genuine transcendence.

"Very few white writers have been able to point out the pathological nature of white privilege and supremacy with the eloquence of Robert Jensen. "In The Heart of Whiteness", Jensen demonstrates not only immense wisdom on the issue of race, but does so in the kind of direct and accessible fashion that separates him from virtually any other academic scholar, or journalist, writing on these subjects today.

"With radical honesty, hard facts, and an abundance of insight and compassion, Robert Jensen lays out strategies for recognizing and dismantling white privilege and helping others to do the same. This text is more than just important; it's useful. Jensen demonstrates again that he is a leading voice in the American quest for justice." -Adam Mansbach, author of Angry Black White Boy, or The Miscegenation of Macon Detornay

The Heart of Whiteness: Confronting Race, Racism and White Privilege
by Robert Jensen
Available September 2005, City Lights Books
ISBN 0-87286-449-9
Paperback, 124 pp

Friday, September 09, 2005


To say there need to be fewer poor people. The motive is political as well as economic. Although the wealthy whites, mostly untouched by Katrina and living comfortably uptown, cultivate and encourage the black mayor, Ray Nagin, and black business leaders, they now charge them with preventing large numbers of blacks from returning to the city in order to eliminate the African-American voting majority power which is overwhelmingly Democratic. New Orleans business representatives will be meeting with Mayor Nagin in Dallas to begin mapping out a future for the city, the Star Journal reports.

MR. ASHTON O'DWYER, WHITE NEW ORLEANS POWER PLAYER, ENJOYS HIGHBALLS WITH ICE. On a sultry morning earlier this week, Ashton stepped out of his home on the city`s grandest street and made a beeline to his neighbor`s pool. Wearing nothing but a pair of blue swim shorts and carrying two jugs, he drew enough water from the swimming pool to flush the toilet at home.

The mostly African-American neighborhoods of New Orleans are underwater, and the people who lived there have scattered across the country. But in many of the predominatly white and more affluent areas the streets are dry and passable. Gracious homes are mostly intact and powered by generators. Yesterday officials reiterated that all residents must leave New Orleans, but it`s still unclear how far they will go to enforce this order. The green expanse of Audubon Park in the city's uptown area has doubled in recent days as a heliport for the city`s rich--and a terminus for the small armies of private security guards who have been dispatched to keep the homes there safe and habitable.

Mr O`DWYER has cellphone service, and ice cubes to cool off his highballs in the evening. By yesterday the city service sprang to life, making the daily trips to his neighbor`s pool unnecessary. A pair of oil-company engineers, dispathed by his son-in law, delivered four cases of water, a box of delicacies including mustard sauce and 15 gallons of generator gasoline. Despite the disaster that has overwhelmed New Orleans, the city white elite is hanging on and maneuvering to play a key role in the recovery when the flood waters of Katrina are gone. New Orleans is ready to be rebuilt. Let`s start right here says Mr O`DWYER standing in his expensive kitchen next to a counter covered with a jumble of weapons and electric wires.

More than a few people in uptown, the fashionable district surrurounding St. Charles Ave., have ancestors who arrived here in the 1700s. High society is dominated by these old-line families, represented today by prominent figures such as former New Orleans board of trade President Thomas Westfeldt, Richard Freeman, cion of the family that long owned the city`s Coca-Cola bottling plant, and William Boatner Reily, owner of a Louisiana coffee company. Their social pecking order is dictated by the mysterious hierarchy of krewes, groups with hereditary membership that participate in the annual carnival leading up to the Mardi Gras. In the recent years, the city's most powerful business circles have expanded to include some newcomers and non-whites, such as the Mayor Ray Nagin, the former Cox Communiciations executive, who was elected Mayor in 2002.

The power elite of New Orleans has moved temporarily to enclaves such as Destin, Fla. They promise that the remade city will not be restored to the old order where African-Americans had power and leadership positions.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Support Rev. Pinkney Tuesday, Sep. 6

As one middle aged woman said at the last Benton Harbor Community Forum, "We can't allow them to lay their hands on Rev. Pinkney. He's the only person in my lifetime who has stood up for the people of Benton Harbor against racial profiling and police brutality."


Let's show that Michigan activists care about civil rights in Benton Harbor. If you can, bring a clip board with the name of your organization in large print on the back, and take notes during the hearing. This is Rev. Pinkney's last chance for a fair trial - a hearing to disqualify all Berrien County prosecutors.

9am, Sept. 6
Berrien County Courthouse
811 Port St.
St. Joseph, MI
I-94, exit 33

(At this time Pinkney is in the New Orleans area. He drove 3 others from Benton Harbor down to aid the rescue effort. Of course he'll return for the hearing on Tuesday.)

Definitions of violence: from New Orleans to Benton Harbor

The following is from an email written by activist Wendy Murphy. I think it applies to Benton Harbor as much as to Louisiana. So many in our society are blind to structural violence and cultural violence, then wonder where direct violence comes from. Seen in historical context, "riots" and "looting" take on a meaning very different from the media spin. Also see the very relevant article linked below.

Subject: More on "Looting"--and some definitions of violence

In conflict studies there are three types of violence. The first is the obvious, direct violence. The second is called structural violence, when systems exist or are put into place that case harm to people in the short run and/or the long run--such as turning off water to make hurricane victims who have absolutely now way to escape, leave. Robbing the poor to give the rich tax breaks is another type of structural violence, for the levee might break on hundreds of thousands of poor, old, disabled, and black people. This type of violence is quite hidden for most people have difficulty putting words to it or don't see the connections however, indeed, it often leads to direct violence--such as the anarchy we've witnessed these past few days with starving people acting out of desperation. Then there is the third type of violence, cultural violence. This is when other people ignore or accept when bad things happen to victims of direct or structural violence, because the victims are not perceived as valuable people, or are even hated. It's just a personal feeling, but these are the worst perpetrators of violence out there.

What happened to, and was done to, Louisiana, and the following article, is a classic example of the workings of the three types of violence. With this, I hope you will see how even the "looters", each and every one of them, are victims, and were set up to be before the hurricane even hit.


The Perfect Storm: The Death of the Common Good in the Non-Abstract
by Chris Floyd
September 1, 2005
First Published in: Empire Burlesque

But as culpable, criminal and loathsome as the Bush Administration is, it is only the apotheosis of an overarching trend in American society that has been gathering force for decades: the destruction of the idea of a common good, a public sector whose benefits and responsibilities are shared by all, and directed by the consent of the governed. For more than 30 years, the corporate Right has waged a relentless and highly focused campaign against the common good, seeking to atomize individuals into isolated "consumer units" whose political energies -- kept deliberately under-informed by the ubiquitous corporate media -- can be diverted into emotionalized "hot button" issues (gay marriage, school prayer, intelligent design, flag burning, welfare queens, drugs, porn, abortion, teen sex, commie subversion, terrorist threats, etc., etc.) that never threaten Big Money's bottom line.

Read more:

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

White Whine: Reflections on the Brain-Rotting Properties of Privilege

"White Whine: Reflections on the Brain-Rotting Properties of Privilege" is an article written by Tim Wise.
This and other remarkable examples of his anti-racist writings can be found on his website. Just google on his name and it should be the first site you see. I believe he is white - it's extraordinary how clearly he sees the problems faced by African-Americans.

On another note -

To the English Major who likes to criticize folks' writing: We're just pleased as punch to have you on the blog. All of us reading here have undoubtedly been hoping for someone to show us the way, grammatically speaking. And it's so pertinent to the topic of the blog! We all know that the only people who have anything valuable to say are those who win spelling bees.

(PS - Anyone and everyone can post comments here - so far, many of the most interesting comments have not come from the English Majors.)

Sunday, August 28, 2005


This is an auspicious time for our nation. After a decade of peace, prosperity, and progress, we are met by the unexpected. Not just the peril of terrorism and war. We face the peril of self-delusion as well.
A few weeks ago, a newspaper in Washington carried a four-part series entitled "Black Money". It said that life for African-Americans has never been better, suggesting that the quest for racial equality in America was complete.
In fact, that is what most Americans believe. In a major national poll last year, a majority said when it comes to jobs, income, health care, and education, black Americans are doing just as well as whites.
Well, we looked at the facts. We asked, "What would life be like if the majority of Americans were right? What if the racial gap was closed? What would we gain?" So we did the math.
If Americans had racial equality in education and jobs, Afican-Americans would have two million more high school degrees, nearly two million more professional and managerial jobs, and nearly 200 billion more in income.
If America had racial equality in housing, three million more African-Americans would own homes.
And, if America had racial equality in wealth, Afican-Americans would have $760 billion more in home equity value. Two hundred billion more in stock market. One hundred and twenty billion dollars more in retirement funds. And $80 billion more in the bank. That alone would total over $1 trillion more in wealth.
These gaps demonstrate that the long journey of black Americans from an enslaved people to full participants in our
society - a journey that began well over 140 years ago - is far from complete.
We have come a long way. We have not won the equal rights to education, to employment, to housing, and to success. The racial gaps persist. Why is that? How can we close the gaps?

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Support from the East Coast

via comments:

Rev Pinkney,I learned of the problems through an e-mail of global women`s strike in phila and i want to support you and the black community in Benton Harbor Mi.I lived in St. Joe for over twenty -five years.I know the attitude of the people in Berrien County.When it come to black people.You have a excellent blog,lots of information.Keep up the great work you are doing.

Barbara Loewen

Sunday, August 21, 2005


And ye shall hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you not be troubled, for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; and there shall be famines,and pestilences and earthquakes in diverse places. All these are the beginning of sorrows.

The city of Benton Harbor is moving closer and closer to a great civil strife, unrest, and bloodshed. Although the residents of Benton Harbor are supposed to be of one nation, the division between labor and management is growing more intense. The division between haves and haves-nots is getting wider and wider and that breach is being filled with hatred. The division between politics, right and left, so-called Christian right and left, liberals, conservatives, and all of the many causes that people are giving to signs of bloodshed.

The people of Berrien County do not seem willing to argue their point and let truth prevail. But the frustration is leading to resolution of conflict by means of the gun. The weapons of war are being sold legally and illegally throughout the city of Benton Harbor in unprecedented numbers. The proliferation of assault weapons are mounting in Benton Harbor.

Civil unrest in the future will not be able to be handled by the police. The police will be supported by federal troops. When this day arrives, and it will, the breakdown of law and order will be so great in the city of Benton Harbor THAT IT WILL BE AS THE prophets foretold: a time of trouble such as never before. This is a terrible prophecy and it does not appear that it will be avoided or averted, though it can be.

Our youth are dying in unprecedented numbers and for the first time death by the gun is nearly outnumbering death by disease. Gang conflict is civil strife when we of the same racial and historical orgin are pitted against each other. It is not BLACK AGAINST WHITE. IT IS THE HAVES AGAINST THE HAVES-NOTS.

Benton Harbor: a city headed for civil war is controlled by four families. All of the crime, drugs, corruption and city jobs are within four families who are protected by the Benton Harbor police department, supported by Cornerstone Alliance and Whirlpool.

Welcome to Berrien County: The police, the prosecutor, the politicians, the judges, and the machinery of government are inexorably grinding away at individual liberties guaranteed to all Americans by the Constitution.

The government agencies in Berrien County often arrest without warrant, spy without legal authority, imprison without charge, and kill without cause.

Benton Harbor is a city headed for civil war. Judicial misconduct, prosecutorial misconduct, ethics violations, civil rights violations, human rights violations, and legal misconduct is Berrien County. Judges do not follow the law in Berrien County - they make up their own laws.

Did you know that since 1970, individual judges and appellate court panels cited prosecutorial misconduct as a factor when dismissing charges at trial, reversing convictions or reducing sentencing of 4,017 cases?

Wake up!Wake up!Go and work as hard as you can.We must have a mass movement. Go and tell your friends, your families, your children, your sons, tell white folks, tell black folks, the young college educated, and the young uneducated. Tell them we come to untie them. I AM COUNTING ON EACH OF YOU!

Tuesday, August 16, 2005


It is apparent that the people need more than organization. We need mass organization with an action program - aggressive, bold, and challenging in spirt. Such a movement was our March on Washington.
Our first job then is actually to organize millions of people and build them into block systems with captains so that they may be summoned to action overnight and thrown into physical motion. Without this type of organization, the people will never develop mass power which is the most effective weapon the people can wield. Witness the strategy and maneuvering of the people of India with mass civil disobedience and non-cooperation and the marches to the red sea to make salt. It may be said that the
Indian people have not won their freedom. This is so, but they will win it. The central principle of the struggle of oppressed people like the blacks and others is not only to develop now, waging a world-shaking, history-making fight for independence. India`s fight is the peoples' fight.
Now, let us be unafraid. We are fighting for big stakes. Our stakes are liberty, justice, and democracy. Every person should hang his head in shame who fails to do his part now for freedom. This is the hour of the people. It is the hour of the common man and woman. May we rise to the challege to struggle for our rights. Come what will or may, let us never falter.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Reply to Anonymous, 8/11, 3:38pm


You commented on the Peoples Tribune article, and wanted to know how to bring the two halves of the article together - what BANCO has to do with poverty. I'm for some reason not able to add a comment, so i'll have to answer you on this post.
Thanks for your rational question - you sound like a reasonable, thinking person, who would like to debate/discuss ideas.

I'll take a stab at an answer, altho it may not be complete. It seems to me that the most urgent problem facing BH residents isn't the poverty, believe it or not. Yes, I think that's an enormous problem, but the corruption in the legal system is more immediate. There are a few pockets of this kind of extreme corruption around the country, and the results are always the same. Residents feel like their lives have been stolen from them. They no longer have freedom of motion. Every waking minute is consumed with worry: is there still a police stake out down at the corner? will the cops come to my door today to harrass my son? if i go to the grocery store will i get stopped? will my neighbor receive a prison sentence for the crime he was accused of and didn't commit? how many more people will I hear about today who are in trouble with the law?

Anyone living in these conditions may as well be living under occupation. If you don't feel like you're being protected by the constitution, you can't live a normal life. You can become an emotional mess. And, it affects some people worse than others. Getting a job can seem like an insurmountable task. When you live in a place where law enforcement is treating people like human beings, people can live normal lives, and have the energy to follow their dreams. Lifting oneself out of poverty becomes a possibility. This is why Rev. Pinkney has become a court watchdog. That's one place people can go to make a difference and get the system to behave in a fair and just manner. Only then can people live normal lives and rise out of poverty. Also, BANCO did make a huge attempt to bring a factory to BH. The business from out of state which was ready to make this happen said that dealings with city and county officials were so difficult that it couldn't work. I believe the owner has pulled out. BANCO also initiated a Pathways Program for youth.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Whirlpool Corp. Agrees to Pay $850,000 in Back Wages to Settle Discrimination Claims

LaborProf Blog: Whirlpool Corp. Agrees to Pay $850,000 in Back Wages to Settle Discrimination Claims

"The Department of Labor is reporting that Whirlpool has enter into a consent decree that settles the DOL's allegations that Whirlpool engaged in hiring discrimination from March 1, 1997 to February 28, 1998. The company admits no liability. In addition to paying the back wages, Whirlpool will hire 48 of the rejected African-American applicants."

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

From the People's Tribune, July 2005

The People's Tribune has offices in Chicago, Detroit, Houston, Atlanta, and Oakland, CA.

Benton Harbor, USA - Taking a Stand Against Corporate Power

There are so many moral outrages being perpetrated today against the American people by the wealthy and the corporations - and the government they control - that it's impossible to keep track of them all. But we at the People's Tribune want to call the attention of our readers to a particularly outrageous attack on the people of the southwest Michigan town of Benton Harbor, not the least because it represents what is happening, or will happen, to the majority of the American people if we don't stand up and fight.

Benton Harbor is a town of 12,000 that is 92 percent African American and with an unemployment rate of 70 percent. It is plagued by poverty and police brutality, and by the aarrogance of the Whirlpool Corporation, which is the largest employer in the area and dominates the local government. Community leaders, led by the Rev. Edward Pinkney of the Black Autonomy Network Community Organization (BANCO), organized in recent months to urge voters to recall a city commissioner who is backed by Whirlpool. When the recall was successful, Pinkney was arrested April 18 on trumped-up "vote fraud" charges. If convicted, he faces up to 20 years in prison.

The community is not taking this attack on its leaders lying down. They are actively resisting, with marches and rallies, and with demands for an investigation of the justice system in Berrien County. People from other parts of Michigan and from surrounding states have been coming to Benton Harbor to support this struggle.

This most recent attack on the pepole of Benton Harbor is part of a long history of such attacks. In June 2003, there was an uprising in the city in the wake of the police killing of a young man.

The corruption that is evident in Benton Harbor - among the police and in the judicial system, and in the corporate domination of local government - represents more than just an evil situation for the people of Benton Harbor. The attack on Rev. Pinkney represents the latest assault on democracy itself. We are now being told that if we dare to use the vote to make our will felt, our organizations will be threatened and disrupted, and our leaders might be thrown into prison - or worse. Similar struggles are under way in cities and towns across the county, as people of all colors and nationalities step forward to demand that their government do something aobut the spreading poverty, unemployment and hopelessness in our country.

Benton Harbor is just a manifestation of the larger situation in Michigan and in the US as a whole. From 2001 to 2002 alone, the number of people in poverty in Michigan grew by 25 percent, and the number has grown more since then. The loss of tens of thousands of manufacturing jobs, and the cuts in pay and social services in Michigan have affected millions of people, and there seems to be no end in sight. A similar sceario is playing out in many other states, and people are organizing to demand a government that will represent their interests.

Americans should be outraged at what is happening in Benton Harbor, just on general principles. This kind of corruption and repression can't be tolerated in what is supposed to be a democracy. Is this the America we want? Do we want an impoverished America, where the right to speak our minds and organize ourselves to demand justice is gone, replaced by the open dictatorship of the giant corporations? Or do we want a just and democratic America, where society is organized to guarantee our needs? This is what the struggle in Benton Harbor is about. All of us have a stake in the outcome. In Benton Harbor and in every such town across America, we must defend our leaders when thay are attacked. We must make clear to the wealthy masters of our country that we know that they are rich precisely because we are poor, and that we intend to defend democracy and have a government that will represent our interests and will do what is necessary to end poverty once and for all.

Monday, August 08, 2005


The Bible teaches us to first take care of ourselves and then attend to the organization of god,which the holy ghost has made you overseer of. The ideology is simple. The reality is, if you don`t take care of yourself first, when you getinto trouble the organization may not be able to take care of you.

I have never seen a more graphic illustration of this than I LEARNED WHILE RIDING ONE OF THE AIRLINES. It is the custom of the flight atttendants to get up and announce as the airplane begins to ascend that, should it start to depressurize, you are to reach up and pull the mask down and put it on your face first and then attend to your organization. The reason she says the priority is you first, is not to say you are more valuable than the child or the organization, but to say that, if a crisis should occur, you will be able to help the child or the organization, but the child or the organization may not be able to help you. Be careful leaders, that you don`t put the mask on the wrong face. The city of Benton Harbor has placed the mask on the wrong face.

What the residents of Benton Harbor have done is place the mask on the wrong face. Whirlpool is a bloodsucker - they have sucked the life out of Benton Harbor residents, buying buildings for less than market value, operating a billion dollar corporation almost tax free by using the city and the people of Benton Harbor.

Whirlpool and Cornerstone Alliance, a subdivision of Whirlpool, own more property than the city of Benton Harbor in Benton Harbor. Cornerstone Alliance has taken over 70 percent of the lake front property and land. The goal is to take control of the remaining 30 percent and change the name to Harbor Town.

The Berrien County Courthouse: bloodsuckers. Benton Harbor has the highest rate of residents in prison per-capita for non-violent crime than anywhere in the country. Berrien County has the highest rate of juveniles tried as adults in the state. The people of Benton Harbor have survived abuse and forced confessions, tribunals without lawyers, isolations and humiliation in the Berrien County system. It is hard to believe that in the year 2005 we have a county in Michigan with a legal system this antiquated and this racist. What is harder to believe is that no one at the state level is taking any action to remedy the situation.

The Berrien County law enforcement agencies: bloodsuckers. There have been five murders by the Berrien County law enforcement agencies that we know of. McGinnis and Rudy were murdered by the same officer. He was then promoted to the department of corrections for his fine work killing two black males. Rice was murdered by a Benton Harbor police officer and nothing was ever done. Terrance [T-SHIRT]SHURN AND Arthur Partee were murdered by Benton Township police. The report around Benton Harbor is that the unsolved murders of four women was done by police officers.

Under former chief of police Sam Harris's watch, there were more than 30 citizen police brutality complaints in one week. The complaints were destroyed. We the people have placed the mask on the wrong face.

I have a dream that one day even the city of Benton Harbor and the county of Berrien, a city, a county, and a state swelling with the heat of injustice and oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.

I have a dream.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005


An arbitrator has ruled that Dennie Brown, fired from the Benton Harbor Police Department last summer, should and will have his job back.
Interim police chief Al Mingo said he also has received the arbitrator`s ruling, but declined to comment Monday, referring reporters to the city attorney. Charlette Pugh Tall said only that the city can appeal the ruling.
City manager Dwight Pete Mitchell and city commissioners, this very sad group, said they had not seen the document and could not comment on the ruling they have not seen. Brown said in a ruling he received July 18 that the arbitrator decided the city had no reason to fire him. Sam Harris and Pete Mitchell would not grant him a hearing before he was fired.
Brown was a police officer in Benton Harbor for 10 years before being fired last July. He already had sued the city, alleging he was punished at work for reporting all the police brutality, violations, crime, and wrongdoing in the police department.
Brown lost that case when Berrien County trial court chief judge Paul Maloney ruled "no cause for action" in the suit against the city, then police chief Sam Harris, and former city manager Joel Patterson. That ruling had NO substance.
Brown repeatedly asked the city commissioners to hear him in closed session, but commissioners said they could not because he was no longer a city employee. Now, Brown will get his closed session with THE commissioners next week. He said he doesn't want to start work until Sept. 1 because of family issues he is dealing with, but wanted to talk about the city attorney and former police chief Sam Harris who both have committed criminal acts.
Mitchell cautioned Brown that if and when he goes back to work the police chief will be his boss and he should follow proper chain of command. When he was still a police officer, Brown was disciplined for reporting crimes inside the police department and Berrien County court house. This one is for the good guys.

Sunday, July 24, 2005


After sucking all the blood out of the residents of Benton Harbor, black workers in Nashville were passed over for promotion.
A discrimination lawsuit was filed in Nashville by 15 black employees of the Whirlpool Corporation in LaVergne. The company fostered a racially hostile environment,
The employees say they were passed over for promotion and their complaints to management were brushed to the side. According to the attorney, 12 white employees have come forward to back up the claims. The suit seeks more than 50 millions dollars from a federal jury.
Whirlpool officials deny the claims. The suit was orginally filed in 2003 according to court records, but was suspended while the sides were engaged in mediation.
Whirlpool is a leading manufacturer of major home appliances. The LaVergne plant makes air conditioners, built-in refrigerators, air purifiers, and dehumidifiers.

Thursday, July 21, 2005


The state of Michigan is stealing our children and your family could be next!
Messy house, spankings, poor, vegetarians, disabled, drinkers, overweight, messy kids, unemployed, head lice, gun owners, adult videos, inappropriate clothing, yelling, naked baby pictures, mental problems, religious beliefs, homeless,slow-kids,homeschoolers, being too concerned about your child...
None of these things are crimes. The state will take your child away for any of these reasons.
We must start protecting freedom and families nationwide. Outrage and protest must happen.
We must stop the abuse of child protection laws.
One of the child protection agencie's key incentives for receiving federal dollars is the sheer number of children taken from parents and put into foster care.
Parents are falsely accused 60-80% of the time. Meaning, 20% of the cases are actual child abuse/neglect. The other cases do not warrant the removal of the children, but children are removed from their homes nonetheless.
CPS and the courts conduct trials behind a cloak of secrecy. The workers can commit perjury, defy court orders, used coerced and false and hearsay testimony, and ignore constitutional rights, and still be almost totally unchallenaged. Arrogance is prominent among CPC agencies.
Child protection has become a money making cottage industry. A multi-billion dollar business natinwide.
Our organization is dedicated to advocating for children and familes caught in the mire of the corrupt child protection services industry across the United States.
Our mission is to work for the reform of a broken government system that destroys far more familes than it helps - at an immense cost to the tax payers of this country. It is outright criminal. Our first concern always is for the rights of the child to live in a safe loving home, with his or her biological family.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

From IPPN's Ted Glick

July 17, 2005

Benton Harbor Minister Under Attack

By Ted Glick

It's time for the progressive movement to come to the defense of one of our courageous African American community leaders, Rev. Edward Pinkney of Benton Harbor, Michigan.

A little over two years ago, in mid-June, hundreds of unemployed African American young people in Benton Harbor rose up in anger after 28-year-old Terrance Shurn died following a high-speed chase after him by local police. When 50 people gathered the next evening for a prayer vigil, police moved in and ordered them to disperse. When they didn't immediately do so, the cops threatened arrests, tensions escalated, and the people's anger broke open.

For two nights hundreds of people demonstrated in the streets, setting fire to approximately 30 buildings and battling with police. According to local United Church of Christ minister F. Russell Baker, all but two of the buildings were abandoned: "The rioting was focused in two areas. One was anger at the police. The other was at the abandoned houses. The reaction of those who were rioting was against the neglect. But it was a focused riot."

For several days national media attention was riveted on this small town, 92% black, on the southeastern side of Lake Michigan, about two hours from Chicago. Predictably, many articles referred to the poverty and unemployment in Benton Harbor, where 1/3 of its households have annual incomes below $8,000 and unemployment is at 65%. Democratic Michigan governor Jennifer Granholm said, "I can promise them an ear, I can promise them that I will send in a team, I can promise them we will make Benton Harbor a priority as we are with our cities. Benton Harbor is an example of why we've got to focus on our urban centers."

Also predictably, after a period of time, media attention and state politician attention virtually disappeared.

But local minister Rev. Edward Pinkney and others in the organization, Black Autonomy Network of Community Organizers (BANCO), stepped up their efforts to address the burning issues of Benton Harbor. One of their actions was to organize a successful recall of one of the town's city commissioners, Glen Yarbrough, who was a strong supporter of many of the most racist and abusive police officers. Yarbrough also worked closely with the Whirlpool Corporation, the largest employer and the major power in Benton Harbor. Yarbrough and Whirlpool have been collaborating on plans to knock down a senior citizens building and replace it with upscale homes in an area by the lake, as well as to build an exclusive golf course.

After the successful recall, Yarbrough and other city officials produced a witness, Mansel Williams, a substance abuser and ex-offender, who told prosecutor James Cherry that Rev. Pinkney had paid him $5 to vote against Yarbrough. He later made a tape in the mayor's office and signed an affidavit stating that Yarbrough had paid him $10 to say that Pinkney had paid him $5. Mansel never came to court to testify. Another government witness, Brenda Fox, was threatened with a prison sentence if she did not testify that Pinkney had paid people to vote; she had earlier signed an affidavit stating that she was paid to pass out flyers and work the polls, nothing more.

Pinkney's supporters in the area have rallied to his side. In late May a supportive demonstration was held which included both local people and people from throughout Michigan and Illinois. Desperately-needed funds are being raised for his legal defense.

Rev. Pinkney is facing the threat of bankruptcy because of this and other attacks against him.

It's a familiar scenario for progressive leaders of color who refuse to back down in the face of government/corporate injustice.

It's another example of the racist nature of our so-called "criminal justice system," its susceptibility to corruption in furtherance of the agenda of the rich and powerful.

And it's a situation which calls for support, financial and otherwise, from all those who consider themselves progressive. Let's not emulate the corporate media and the two-party politicians who speak words of concern when the daily reality of injustice and oppression is cracked open a bit but who then take no action afterwards.

We must defend our leaders and expose those who trample on our rights so they can maintain oppressive power and gross economic and racial inequality.

Donations can be made or information obtained by writing to BANCO, 1940 Union St., Benton Harbor, Mi., 49022, calling 269-925-0001, or emailing

Ted Glick

"How to bring into being a world that is not only sustainable,
functional and equitable but also deeply desirable is a question
of leadership and ethics and vision and courage, properties
not of computer models but of the human heart and soul."
Donella and Dennis Meadows and Jorgen Randers

Sunday, July 17, 2005


Starletta Banks say officials kidnaped her children. Starletta Banks has not seen her children, Darius, 11, Danielle, 7, and Darren, 5, since the year 2000, but she says she is determined to have them come home again to her loving arms.
"Its been devastating", said Banks.

"Its been hard holding jobs and eating and sleeping. You can`t even imagine the Christmas`s and birthdays I`ve spent. When we get them back, whenever that is, it will be Christmas, because I KEPT buying presents for them all this time."

Banks says her children were essentially kidnapped by Governor Jennifer Granholm, Attorney Mike Cox, and various judges, adminstrators, and doctors, to be used as cash cows "for the benefit of the state`s child foster care system." That system is largely farmed out to private non-profit agencies who receive federal funds for each child. She says the alleged kidnappers have profited because they sit on the board of the agencies in the system.

On June 6 Banks filed suit in U.S. District Court under federal racketeering and civil rights statutues demanding her childrens' return, and calling for an investigation by the Justice Department into the alleged misuse of federal funds by the state of Michigan in her case and thousands of foster care cases.

"I am going to fight them with everything I have got until my children are returned to me, and I want other families to join me." Banks is so far is representing herself in the case. She resides with her mother and father Barbara and Leo Banks who are supporting her suit. The suit was inspired by a similar action in Los Angles County that opened an investigation into 30,000 foster care cases there.

"Plantiff was severely damaged and her family destroyed by the kidnapping under the color of law of her three children," read Banks complaint.

Defendant used the Michigan State system as a child for profit machine with eighty percent of their case load contracted out to private agencies who are paid federal monies by the case.

Defendant sat on the board of agencies that received federal monies for the care and custody of children while actively participating in or making judicial decisions on cases involving child custody or termination of parental rights including plaintiff`case.


Friday, July 15, 2005


On August 19 at 9am in Berrien County two main questions will be presented before the court. Should head prosecutor James Cherry be disqualified from my trial and, should Mr.Cherry's entire office be disqualified?

Cherry must be disqualified because he has a personal interest in the outcome of this litgation and a personal relationship of animosity with me as the result of an ongoing, open, and widely publicized political disagreement between myself and the Berrien County prosecutors' office.

The way in which prosecutors unlawfully obtain convictions number in the 100`s or 1000`s but some of the specific techniques are so effective and non public that they tend to repeat the same acts. The consequences of over zealous prosecutors like James Cherry are too high (very long prison sentences). Mr.Cherry is in control of all kind of things he shouldn`t be in control of.

Recent Michigan prison stats: 3rd in state spending on corrections, 6th in prison population: over 50k.

The purpose of the over zealous prosecutor is too often the sought-after fame, fortune, power, and political position, but the victims, including virtually everyone in the community are left to pay the bills for wrongful incarceration, excessive criminal proceeding, destroyed family, wrongfully confiscated property depriving a newly-accused defendant of the funds to defend himself/herself. Wrongfully impoverished families requiring government assistance, a loss of skilled workers and loss of voters needed to strike a more just political balance in the country and various other consequences which need to be explored by the press and book authors. It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong. Harassing, DISPLAYING bias toward, or having a vendetta against the defendant.

Mr. Cherry, it is dangerous to continue with your conduct.

Thursday, July 07, 2005


The Supreme Court of the United States, with a stroke of a pen last week effectively rejected one of the most fundamental constitutional freedoms guaranteed to all citizens: the right to own property. We have got to stop them now.
Before this ruling the government could only step in and seize property if it was needed for public projects, road building, parks, and development of public entities such as hospitals.

Today, with the Supreme Court ruling, the government may seize the home, small business, or other private property of one citizen and transfer it to another private citizen if the transfer would boost the community economic development. Simply put, this means your house could be replaced with a shopping mall.

We must fight for our civil rights so that we may continue to celebrate our freedom - or what is left of it. Our parental rights, our civil rights, our human rights are all being stripped away. How much more do we have to lose before the people of this nation will rise up and speak out against the abuse of power over the innocent in Berrien County, in the State of Michigan, in the United States? WE THE PEOPLE MUST STOP THIS NOW !

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Community Support

Changes are taking place in America in the various nations of the earth, in a manner, or at a rate of speed, which makes it very difficult for us to keep up. It is almost as if you nod or take a nap, the world has passed you by. This may seem like an exaggeration, but it is true. The people in the city of Benton Harbor have survived abuse, forced confessions, tribunals without lawyers, isolations and humiliations in the Berrien County court system.

I would like to say to you, Rev Pinkney, you are doing a great and wonderful service for the people of Benton Harbor.

I have lived in Benton Harbor for over forty years. You have proven to be a man of God. Keep fighting, the people know your are innocent. My family loves you and I love you, do not stop what you are doing.

Pastor Long

via comments

Green Party of Michigan Supports BANCO

"Greens have been meeting and working with Rev. Pinkney and BANCO for the past few years. Now, they are demanding that trumped-up charges of election fraud against Pinkney be dropped -- and that the February 22 recall election in Benton Harbor be recognized as valid, and Glenn Yarbrough be removed from the at-large seat on Benton Harbor City Commission."

Via comment at Michigan Independent Media Center (IMC)

Benton Harbor Struggle Continues

Rally Held to Defend Rev. Pinkney at Public Library
Prosecutors in Berrien County seek to silence community activist

By Abayomi Azikiwe, Editor, Pan-African News Wire

...Local activist Rev. Carl Brown of BANCO said that "when the people take a stand great change can take place." He continued by discussing how local authorities have accused his organization of "rabblerousing." He pointed to an article in the newspaper recently quoting police chief Samuel Harris as saying that "this group has put a stranglehold on 50,000 people in this community. And in response to that I say that it shows you that when righteousness stands all sin will be exposed."...

Hunter also stated that Berrien County "is operating like it was in the deep south during the 1950s."...

"This fighting that is taking place in Benton Harbor is an economic fight. It is an economic fight over who going to be able to eat, have a home, education and recreation. We have to show them that it is time out for this nonsense and that our children must have a future," [Marian] Kramer declared....

"What they are trying to do is to criminalize the leadership of the movement. And in criminalizing the leadership of the movement what they hope to do is to scare people away. Stop people from organizing and at the same time take away the leadership of the organizations that are really standing up for the people. We cannot allow them to do that," the MECAWI and DCAPB representative stated....

Original article via Michigan Independent Media Centre (IMC)

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Officials Should Be Held Accountable

In response to the comments about the negativity of BANCO... For myself, I understand the reason for rallies and the attempt to hold elected officials and other gov. officials to their reponsibilities, and to point out as often as necessary when they abuse their authority. Otherwise, they will be allowed to continue to be the cause of suffering.

It reminds me when the author, Arianna Huffington, said she worked tirelessly for many charities when living in Washington DC.... until the day it dawned on her that the government was passing laws that would undo all of her efforts - or, that no matter how hard she worked to help people, gov. policies tore down her efforts either immediately or eventually.

There are probably hundreds of kind souls doing good in Benton Harbor, but until the justice system operates in a way that is fair, citizens will be living in fear. Until that fear is eradicated, people will be unableto carry on their lives. The kindness and reaching out will not help if folks are afraid to leave their homes.

Sometimes I think that business as usual has been carried on for so long in Berrien County that people who have lived there a long time don't even realize how bad it is. Rev. Pinkney goes to court regularly and can hardly believe the way people are treated there. There are countless stories from people about the harrassment they receive from law enforcement simply for driving while black. It is not this bad in most other communities - even places with high levels of unemployment and poverty.

I believe Benton Harbor residents are fortunate to have Rev. Pinkney in their city - acting as court watchdog and supporting people in whatever way he can.

Monday, July 04, 2005


There is a crisis in Berrien County surrounding legal services for defendants whose very lives are at risk in criminal courts, jails, and prisons. Racial discrimination remains a dominant feature of the criminal justice system in the United States and Michigan.

The State of Michigan disenfranchises more of its citizens as a result of criminal convictions than any other state in the country.

Our children are 35% of our population in Berrien County and 100% of our future! Where there is no vision, the people perish.
The Equal Justice Initiative of Michigan stated that by the year 2007 the government expecst 2,000,000 millions black people to be in prison. One out of three will be under government supervision under 30 years of age.

The Equal Justice Initiative of Michigan also stated that the he gap between black and white infant mortality is growing in Berrien County. Berrien county has the highest black infant death rate in the state. How large does the gap have to be? How many black infants must die before we act? Will someone please tell me?

Sunday, July 03, 2005

Dave Zirin: Pining for the Pistons

Dave Zirin: Pining for the Pistons

"It was only 18 months ago when (Ben) Wallace laid a verbal smackdown on (NBA commissioner David) Stern, saying, 'I see behind the lines. I see behind the false screens. I know what this business is all about. I know the commissioner of this league makes more than three-quarters of the players in this league... They look at black athletes like we're dumb-ass n------. It's as if we're just going to shut up, sign for the money and do what they tell us.'"

Friday, July 01, 2005

Once a month, in the city of Benton Harbor, where justice is almost unheard of, and the promise of the constitution is but a dream, crowds gather to hear speakers inform listeners about the current state of social injustice in Benton Harbor, the state, and the country. Both the speakers and the audience are becoming more and more multi-cultural. For an activist, it feels like there’s now a place to go on a regular basis to listen to people talk about problems, solutions, opinions, to gather information, and to network. Many of the speakers are inspiring and exciting to hear.

Benton Harbor Community Forums, sometimes called Rallies, are held once a month. Last Saturday’s Rally was held in the BH library and brought people from Chicago, Detroit, Lansing, Ann Arbor, Albion, St. Joseph, and Flint. Dorothy Pinkney opened the afternoon with a prayer, and reminded us that we are in a war (right in BH). Rev. Carl Brown said that the entire state and country is witness to what’s going on in Berrien County.

We had an honored guest. Carl E. Person, NYC anti-trust attorney, flew in to speak about the fact that oppression by elected officials can and should be offset by filing civil rights and anti-trust lawsuits against gov't. agencies and major corporations to get back much of the money and opportunity which they are stealing from the poor and unrepresented. This will have the effect of elevating civil lawsuits and lowering a community's reliance on costly, unjust criminal prosecution. Atty. Person has written three books and is one of the most interesting minds I've ever met. Many people spoke to him after the rally.

I reminded everyone to leave the Rally and tell ten people to stand up and fight. We’re the busiest people in the world and we’re doing nothing. There are four families in BH who control drugs in the city. Everything they do is bad for the city and county. The recall election was good for one reason: those in power now see that BH residents can get organized and take action. This is a real war and the opposition leaders in Berrien County should be criminalized.

Marian Kramer from Michigan Welfare Rights League: “Malcolm X said that if you live south of the Canadian border, you live in the South. Highland Park is run by an appointed, not elected, manager - that’s the plan for all cities. Water is the next gold. It is being privatized for the benefit of those who will make maximum profit.”

Flint speaker from the Poverty Round Table, Clara McClinton: “The struggle in Benton Harbor is a blessing because you’re standing up and making a difference. We’ve got to educate people on how the system works. When a police officer strikes a person that is the state against the people."

Roderick Casey from Ypsilanti is circulating a petition for juries to be comprised of at least 6 (50%) who are the same color as the defendant. His email:

This is only a partial representation of the stimulating speakers we were fortunate to hear in Benton Harbor on June 25.

Benton Harbor Rally Sat. July 30, 1pm
Benton Harbor Public Library
215 Wall Street. Take I-94 to exit 33,
about 5 lights turn left on Pipestone, go one block.

Send tax-deductible donations for atty. fees to
1940 Union St.
Benton Harbor, MI 49022
(desperately needed)

call or email me with ANY questions, anytime!
Rev. Edward Pinkney, 269-925-0001

Thursday, June 30, 2005


A Berrien County Assistant Prosecutor will remain as prosecutor of a case in which he obtained and read the strategy paper the defendant and his lawyer had prepared. Assistant prosecutor Jeff Taylor will be allowed to continue to prosecute the case.

Concerns arose when Taylor disclosed he had obtained a copy of the entire legal strategy Dr. Renney and his lawyer, Frank Stanley of Grand Rapids, had planned on using. Taylor admitted to Stanley he had read the strategy and discussed it with two office workers.

Dr. Renney of Stevensville consulted with another attorney, Phil Stoffan, at the request of Judge Wiley, because prosecutor Taylor will not be removed from this case. Dr. Renney and Phil Stoffan came to the conclusion that terminating Stanley at this point would be of no benefit.

Dr. Renney stated he agreed because "my defense and strategy is base on the truth and facts. If I was guilty I could just fire my lawyer and get a new one and work out a different strategy, but the truth is the truth. There is no way to create something different out of it."

Dr. Renney and his lawyers have not yet reached a decision regarding charging the false witnesses who are supposed to testify against him with violation of mcl 750,411a false report of a crime. The law states that if the report is a false report of a felony, the person is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 4 years or a fine of not more than $2,000.00, or both. The law became effective May 20 2004.

This is how Berrien County courthouse does business.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Letter to Amnesty International USA

This is the text of a letter that a supporter sent to AIUSA in Chicago, explaining why Rev. Pinkney's case is a human rights concern:

I want to alert AIUSA of a case that may be of interest to you. I understand that AIUSA is limited in the number and type of cases you can take on, but I hope that you can take a moment to learn about this one. I believe that an activist and civil rights leader is at risk of being framed on false charges, being denied a fair trial, being imprisoned for his political activism rather than valid charges, and facing mistreatment in prison.

The case concerns Rev. Edward Pinkney of Benton Harbor, Michigan. I don't know how familiar you are with Benton Harbor. Visiting there is like stepping back into the pre-civil rights era. There is an extreme racial and economic division between Benton Harbor (95% black, over 50% real unemployment) and neighboring St. Joseph (95% white, 2% unemployment) and an imbalance of power. Frustration with injustices there have sparked periodic race riots over many decades.

Rev. Pinkney has been the most vocal critic of the county's police and judicial systems. He has long maintained that the system is extremely racially biased and politically corrupt. For five years (until January 2005), he maintained a daily vigil at the courthouse, witnessing court whenever it was in session. He organized a weekly march on the courthouse in St. Joseph with local citizens. He founded a community group (BANCO) to organize around these concerns. After the nationally-publicized riots of June 2003 (provoked by an incident involving a police chase and the death of a local black man), Rev. Pinkney and BANCO organized a mass protest march and worked to draw outside attention to not only the issue of police brutality (already well-publicized), but also the racial bias in the judicial system. The history of this struggle can be reviewed in the press releases at BANCO's Web site:

In February, BANCO led a successful election to recall a city commissioner (Glen Yarbrough) who supported the former police chief (Sam Harris, who recently resigned in the face of dozens of citizen complaints of police brutality and sexual harassment). In April, the recall vote was overturned and Rev. Pinkney was arrested and charged with four felonies and a misdemeanor, alleging his involvement in alleged election fraud. To date, at least two witnesses have submitted testimony that suggests that Rev. Pinkney is being framed and that the allegations of fraud are false (see here). In light of this testimony, supporters believe the charges should have already been dropped and the recall vote restored.

There is a valid concern that Rev. Pinkney cannot get a fair trial, fair sentencing, or fair treatment in the county where he has been the foremost watchdog and critic of the county’s judges, prosecutors, defenders, police, and politicians. Last week, Judge Paul Maloney denied a motion to disqualify himself and other local judges from hearing Rev. Pinkney’s case. Judge Maloney claimed that he never noticed his own name and the names of the county’s other judges on the signs of BANCO protesters outside the courthouse or on the T-shirt worn by BANCO members. This claim is not very credible and already suggests that Rev. Pinkney will not receive a fair trial from Judge Maloney. The denial of the motion will be appealed.

Raising the profile of this case regionally and nationally would increase the likelihood of a fair trial by a less-biased judge from outside the county. If Rev. Pinkney is sent to prison in Berrien County, I believe it will be because of his political activism. My fear is that in prison he would be in physical danger. Allegations of abuse in the county’s prison are many and longstanding and a resident reported being told by a policeman after the Reverend's arrest: "Your voice in this town is gone. Pinkney won't last long in jail." I think these are the sort of human rights abuses that AI has addressed very successfully abroad. Now we're in danger of it happening in our own backyard.

Please consider taking on Rev. Pinkney's case. If that is not possible at this time, please consider at least tracking it as the case goes to trial. There is further background information at BANCO's Web site (see here). You can also contact me or Rev. Pinkney at 269-925-0001 or

Thank you very much for your time and attention.

Help request investigation of prosecutor Cherry

A simple act could make a big difference for Benton Harbor.

Please send a postcard or letter to:
The Attorney Grievance Commission
243 W. Congress
Detroit, Mi 48226

Request a complete investigation into the activities of Berrien County prosecutor James Cherry during and in relation to the recall election trial, April 12, 13, 14, 2005. The concern is whether Atty. Cherry fabricated evidence. I have mailed materials to the commission, so it's ready to be investigated.

All that's needed is:
1 - your name and address,
2 - James Cherry, 811 Port St., St. Joseph, MI 49085
3 - what your request is with as little (one sentence) or as much detail as you wish.


Next Community Forum Sat. July 30, 1pm
Benton Harbor Public Library
215 Wall Street. Take I-94 to exit 33,
about 5 lights turn left on Pipestone, go one block.

-Rev. Pinkney

Rally a Success!

Over 50 people gathered inside the Benton Harbor Library, where air conditioning helped cool down the already hot supporters of justice in Benton Harbor. Folks were from all over Michigan: Detroit, Lansing, East Lansing, Albion, Flint, Ann Arbor; also from Chicago, Illinois and New York City.

More images.

Friday, June 24, 2005

Judge Maloney's claim that he never knew Rev. Pinkney publicly criticized him is not at all credible.

Rev. Pinkney and BANCO's criticism of the Berrien County justice system has been well-publicized. Just one example is this report from WNDU-16 on 6/24/03:

'Reverend Edward Pinkney, the leader of BANCO, says, "We want the justice department to not only look into the police department but we also want them to look into the Berrien County courthouse because we believe the Berrien County courthouse is the root of the problems."

Racially biased?

Reverend Pinkney says sentencing is racially biased. "One particular group of people, the African Americans, usually gets the maximum amount of time a judge can give them. And usually if you're Caucasian or white you get the least amount that's available to you."

Along with others calling for investigations into local police, BANCO wants a committee to oversee complaints about Berrien County judges.'

via thecomments






Sunday, June 19, 2005

Observers and funds needed

from Rev. Edward Pinkney, 925-269-0001

Since the request to disqualify all Berrien County judges from my trial was
denied, my appeal will be heard this Wednesday -- by chief Judge Maloney.

Witnesses are needed to observe the proceedings since this court has a
history of falsifying records. (Not to mention that this court jails more
African-Americans per capita - and the sentences are longer - than possibly
anywhere in the US.) Please attend if at all possible.

Wed. June 22, 1:30pm
Berrien County Courthouse
811 Port St.
St. Joseph, MI
I-94, exit 33

Send tax-deductible donations for atty. fees to
1940 Union St.
Benton Harbor, MI 49022
(desperately needed)

(editor note, or click the paypal button)