The Black Politico

Orlando politics and more -- from a black perspective

Democrats Launch War Against Middle Class and Dwight Bullard; Contender to be the party’s first Black Chair

Democrats are usually touted for being the party that houses the best ideas and platforms for Black and middle income people.

But, Dwight Bullard’s experience climbing the party ladder is showing us reality is different.

Truth and demographics show, the Democratic Party is still a political party run by wealthy, white people.

Florida Progressives are hoping to change that. But it appears there are secret deals being cut to keep Dwight Bullard and the middle class out of power.

Florida could have the first African American man as Chair of The Florida Democratic Party very soon.

Except a huge barrier was just created.

A major funding source for FDP, Steven Bittel, is gearing up to run for the same seat.

It appears Bittel made a chess move last week during a Miami-Dade, Democratic party election by using another member of the party.

A long time Democrat and active member of the Democratic party, Bret Berlin, ran for Statewide Committeeman. He won that position. He told members via social media, he was excited about being elected and looking forward to holding the seat. However, it appears that was simply a sly move to make sure Dwight Bullard doesn’t get elected as Chair of the Florida Democratic Party.

Right after winning the Statewide Committeeman seat, Berlin allowed a host of new members to join.

Berlin then resigned the position he recently won in only a matter of days to make it possible for Bittel to run for his seat and subsequently for FDP Chair.
Those members could very well be joining to vote for Bittel as Florida Chair. Having a large number of people to join could upset and offset the Bullard voters currently in the chapter.

When Berlin was confronted on social media about not being transparent and honest with voters he posted and reposted the same statement over and over again which took little effort and appeared to show no true concern about his recent moves to trade power.

Both have different views on how to lead the party. Bullard, a Progressive Democrat and Bittel, a traditional Democrat.

The former Chair of the Florida Democratic Party was Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz. Schultz recently resigned after emails were leaked about the party’s involvement in helping Hillary Clinton over Bernie Sanders in the primary election.

Former Senator Dwight Bullard is currently the outgoing chairman in the county for the party. The Bittel-Berlin apprears to be leading to a face-off between Bullard and Bittel.

Bullard made his actions clear on Monday. In an email, Bullard wrote, “To whom it may concern, Let this email serve as notice that I will be seeking the office of State Committeeman for the Miami-Dade County DEC.”

The recent moves by the establishment seem to be yet another slap the white and elite members of the establishment landed on Progressives.

Progressives see a need to move the party in a direction that can directly compete with the far right-winged agenda Trump defined on the campaign trail.

Traditional Democrats completely missed the boat on how to run a campaign against a candidate like Donald Trump and the Republican Party ultimately losing the Presidential election, control of Congress and eliminating chances to get a liberal on the Supreme Court.

Experience is key in all of this and Bullard has it. Bittel lacks it. But with loopholes, new and mysterious members and the recent resignation of Berlin, Bittel can run for State Committeeman, remain in that position for hours, maybe several days and then become Chair.

Bullard rose through the ranks and took on each position with honesty and good-will for the party. Bittel appears to be quickly running through the ranks in order to gain access to one of the most powerful positions the party has to offer.

The Dakota Access Pipeline; an Open Wound in America

While the vast majority of Americans were celebrating Thanksgiving, America’s government and corporate America hit Native Americans with cannons of cold water during freezing temperatures to keep them away from a billion dollar project.

I’m sure you’ve seen the #NoDAPL hashtags on social media. It’s the reference to the Dakota Access Pipeline that is currently in construction on Native American treaty land.

Some wonder why Native Americans are all up in arms about this pipeline.

The reasoning is simple.

They want to continue to have clean water and they want the clean water to flow for generations from now. The pipeline is being constructed in and on treaty land in North Dakota. Approval was not given by the Native American Chairpersons or appropriate Boards for the federal government and Energy Transfer Partners, a corporation, to construct the pipeline running through sacred land.

This is important because Energy Transfer Partners is a for-profit company building a pipeline that could easily contaminate the drinking water of the Native Americans who live there. Their water could become as contaminated as the water in Flint, Michigan and eventually lead to a decline in health for those residents.
The answer should be, to reroute the pipeline into an approved area and away from the land which the protestors are fighting to protect.
But, that would cost in excess of dollars which the corporation and the federal government are unwilling to pay or forfeit. If that happened, the project would have to be stalled and that would cost more time and money. Instead, the pipeline project is continuing to snake its way through Standing Rock, which is the sacred land protestors are peacefully fighting to protect.
The function of this pipeline is to fill it with oil transport it. According to the DAPL website, the pipeline will transport almost half a million barrels of oil per day and it’s capacity is 570,000 barrels. Historically, pipelines have broken often. Once the pipelines break, the oil seeps into the water and while oil and water don’t mix, it will get into the drinking and bathing water of the people living on the land atop the pipeline. By this time next year, the pipeline is expected to be fully operational.

This is no cheap project. It’s a 3.7 billion, with a “b”, dollar investment by the government, stakeholders and Energy Transfer Partners. The project promises to grow the economy and create thousands of jobs. The problem is the people who live there are more concerned about their health and welfare as opposed to money. As far as this project is concerned, all Native Americans want is to get the corporations and federal government off their land and to keep their water clean. Protestors are not asking for jobs. Protestors are not asking for money. The people of Standing Rock are not even asking to profit from this project.

Native Americas are simply asking to be left alone and for the pipeline project to stop so they may maintain their way of life.

While we celebrated Thanksgiving, a historical time in which Europeans sat down to feast with Native Americans, has been transformed.

The federal government and big corporations shot Native Americans with rubber bullets, sprayed them with freezing water in subzero temperatures and arrested Indigenous People on their own land simply because they are refusing the construction of a pipeline on their native and treaty land. Indigenous People would rather keep their water clean for the present lives that inhabit the land and for generations to come. Listening to the stories and watching the attacks fueled by the government and big corporations should lead us all to think about what’s happening to Indigenous People on the land they inhabited prior to Christopher Columbus’ arrival. This is more than a blemish for America. It’s an embarrassment, an open wound and a national shame to take over sacred and treaty land and impose violence on non-violent protestors as they stand together for clean water on their own property.

Trump Swiftly Constructs Administration While President Obama Addresses the Nation; Supporters

Democrats, your grieving period is going to have to come to a quick end.

This is reality. No, it’s not a reality show, it’s our American reality.
While some Democrats, Independents and No Party Affiliated voters are still blaming each other for the election’s outcome, protesting in the street and sharing safety pins on Facebook, we must move forward strategically and quickly by first accepting the fact that Donald Trump will be our next President.
And, the President-Elect is not wasting any time by pulling together his transition team which is made up of his children, Rudy Giuliani, Ben Carson, Newt Gingrich, Pam Bondi, Chris Christie and Stephen Bannon, who is an ultra conservative, to say the least. Those mentioned here are just some of the names on his transition list, however the list continues even suggesting an inclusion of Trump’s ex-wife Ivana. She is rumored to be putting her name in the hat to become an Ambassador while Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner is going to have a significant role in the administration.

Unfortunately, we have no idea of the qualifications of many of those said to be appointed. As those who will be governed, it is up to us to find out.

As for the election results, unfortunately, the mathematics of this outcome is as true as it was when Clinton was nominated last summer at the Democratic National Convention. Here’s what’s scariest: Trump only needed 5% or less of our vote to win and he got it. In the eyes of those who are in his administration and want revenge, this means they don’t have to serve or govern in a manner to support issues that plague the Black community.

Latinos turned out in high numbers and voted for Trump. “The only thing that unites us, is the language,” shouted one American Latino at a protest. Even though many thought Trump’s language was damaging to his own campaign, threats to deport millions of illegal immigrants did not sway the Latino vote to significantly oppose him.
This shows us how much farther we have to go with learning the true reasons people voted for Trump. We will have to be ever present in our government in order to fight the legislation and all the issues that will come against us. In the first White House Press conference since Trump’s election, President Obama said on Monday, “Campaigning is different from governing and I think he (Donald Trump) recognizes that.”

Obama said his job is to make sure he has The White House in the best possible shape before he hands it off to Trump and his team. After the President’s Press Conference, he joined supporters, activists and campaign workers on a conference all and talked a bit more about Donald Trump.

“He successfully mobilized a big chunk of the country to vote for him and he’s going to win; he won,” he said.

President Obama continued and said he told his team, “You’re allowed to mope for a week and a half, maybe two if you really need it.” Fighting day-in and day-out for our ideals, building relationships, focusing on down-ballot races like Senate and House of Representatives seats, recruiting, training candidates are all things the President said we need to do. “We gotta train new voters, we gotta train volunteers,” he said.

“I’m going to be a private citizen and I’m not going to stop,” Obama added. The President assured those on the call he was in the fight for the long haul saying, “I’m sure we are going to be working shoulder to shoulder for many, many years to come.”

I must say though, when I saw how humble Trump looked when he met President Obama, I was oddly relieved. In a CBS interview on Sunday night, Trump humbly said, “I’ve had a lot but I’ve never had this much,” referring to what was around him in The White House.

I was happy he wasn’t power-tripping and he seemed differently than he was on the campaign trail. My concerns are those who are advising him. They can easily set him up to fail or push an agenda on people of color, the LGBTQ community, women, Native Americans, any group of people they wish to harm. Before we do anything rash, I think we owe it to the person elected by this country and its process to give him a chance. And, just as Dave Chappelle said on SNL, we demand he give us a chance, too.

Stop blaming 3rd party supporters for Trump’s surge

Democrats, stop blaming 3rd party supporters. Republicans, stop praising them.

A vote for a 3rd party is a vote for a third party. It’s not a vote for Trump no more than it’s a vote for Clinton.

Democrats didn’t need Berners or Jill Stein supporters in the primary election. So, shouldn’t their math tell them, they don’t need them now?

I remember seeing a post on social media stating, although Bernie Sanders could turn-out crowds of thousands while Clinton struggled to even get hundreds to a rally, that didn’t translate into votes.

Seriously?

People really pushed that narrative and thought it was bought hook, line and sinker.
Now, they are running back to those same supporters with heartburn begging for them to vote for Clinton.

Listen Democrats, calm down, she’ll win. No need to take it out on young people and 3rd party supporters. She will win but it won’t be because 3rd party supporters put her in the White House.

It’ll be because Republicans also know how dangerous Trump is and they too will graciously hand over the Presidency to Clinton because she’ll do more to support Republicans than Trump will ever do.

That’s the smart way to do it, right? I mean, if you are in support of the Democratic Party and in any way, shape or form at the top of the food chain making decisions, you’d be “smart” to be holding crooked, private meetings doing brother-man head nodding in agreement that this is the strategy to take.

Now, of course, the Democrats will have to sacrifice a little by offering up some Senate and House seats but it’s well worth pushing it aside and claiming that Oval Office, isn’t it?

My mother would always say not to tell a lie because you’ll have to keep on telling lies to cover up the first lie you told. If Clinton and the Democratic Party stole the primary election from Sanders, they have to keep on stealing in order to get the overall win.

They just didn’t anticipate having to steal it from fiery Republicans and the Tea Party who infiltrated the party when President Obama was first elected.

Democrats have to negotiate with Republicans in order to get the White House and by golly, my radar detector tells me that’s exactly what will happen.

Before you go all willy-nilly on me, I’m no Trump supporter. I think the man is as looney as they come and what comes out of his mouth sounds like modern-day Hitler rhetoric.

The vast majority of his supporters are angry for one reason or another. It may be because they are racist and believe Trump will send all “immigrants” away and will take America back to the days of old. Or, maybe his supporters are so angry with Democrats and the Clinton’s that they have decided Trump really won’t be so bad after all.

Then you have those who just won’t vote because they have lost faith in the system altogether.

Whatever the reasons are, it’s sad. Yet we’re in a new era that is staring at the end of a two-party system as we know it.

Trump won’t do what the Republicans tell him to do and his own party knows it.

Not one of these candidates have demanded to stay steadfast on the issues to a point where the American people can take their focus off of the personalities of both and really imagine what a better America could look like for us. It’s not and never has been about them. It’s about us. Somewhere along the line, the American people have forgotten to demand we discuss the issues rather than the personal lives of those running.

Just look at the Dakota Access pipeline controversy right now. Do you wonder why in the world no candidate is talking about it rather than name-calling each other, discussing how he gropes women and blaming Huma Abedin for wide-open private servers simply because she married a creep?

That’s where the Democratic Party has fallen short and their kickback is our sharp and beautiful, Michelle Obama speaking highly of her trust for Hillary Clinton. The Clintons and the party has even pushed our beloved Mo (Michelle Obama) to stomp for the very person that wished her husband harm and launched a brutal attack against him 8 years ago. We still and always will love you MO but we still have yet to focus heavily on us.

That’s politics and that’s where the free world stands today.

So here we are, with a little over a week until November 8th with Clinton and Trump, face-to-face, like they are in an old, western gunslinging movie and they can only draw for their guns on election day, a day when historically more Republicans turn out than democrats.

Yet, there’s nothing to fear and no one to blame but the parties themselves and the narratives that have been pushed since the start of the campaign.

Make no mistake, we’re looking at the very end of a two-party system as we know it and we should be.

Many people can’t fit themselves inside the two-party box no matter how hard they try and it’s about time we stop blaming the 3rd parties for a messy two-party system.

Prince: Celebrating the Life of a Legend

Last week, the world lost a modern-day Mozart. A talent that comes along once in a lifetime, died under mysterious circumstances in his home called Paisley Park, a place where he lived, produced music and music videos.

Prince, which was in fact his birth name, was a musician that is respected and admired by so many people across the globe.

Thursday, Prince was found dead in the elevator in his home in Minnesota. He was last seen on Wednesday night around 8pm when he was dropped off at his home. However, earlier last week, Prince’s plane had to make an emergency landing because he was sick with the flu. Reports say, Prince was rushed to a hospital and then released. The following day, he was dead.

When the news of Prince’s sudden death broke, fans began to leave purple balloons, cards, notes and flowers outside of his home and production studio. His friends and fellow musicians began to speak with the big news outlets explaining how Prince did a concert at the Fox Theater on Friday in Atlanta and was his magnificent self. The great musicians of our time like Stevie Wonder, Bruce Springsteen, Angela Davis and others spoke and paid tribute to Prince both in sadness and shock.

Dave Chappelle made America laugh with his skit he and Charlie Murphy developed about Prince and a “secret” basketball game at Paisley Park. Chappelle, who was a fan of Prince, said he was so distraught when he learned about Prince’s death that he almost canceled his comedy show that night in San Francisco. Chappelle told the crowd, “this is the black 9/11,” describing the death of Prince as such a major shock to the black community.

Thursday night, people poured into the streets of Harlem celebrating Prince’s life by dancing and singing to his hits while Spike Lee helped host the impromptu event on CNN.

Michaela Angela Davis described Prince as a “Pimp, Prophet and a Protestor.” Prince developed sexy girl bands before it was cliche in the music industry to do so. He highlighted the talent of women like Wendy and Lisa that helped to form, “The Revolution” and Vanity, Shelia E. and Apollonia among others. He also gave ballerina Misty Copeland her big break into the entertainment industry. Vanity ironically died earlier this year also at the age of 57 due to kidney failure.

Prince was a Jehovah’s Witness and his church said he used his celebrity status to bring people to Christ. The church also said he would walk and knock on doors to tell people about his religion right along with the other members. In church, he wasn’t described as a superstar but as just another one of Jehovah’s Witnesses.

It has always been so easy for most of us who appreciate the arts to put Prince on a pedestal. He didn’t just play 27 instruments, he mastered them. He sang, danced and kept his body in shape so that he could always perform at his very best.

When performing live, he gave his fans more than just a show. Prince in concert was an event! He cared about other people, what happened in the world around him and what beef rappers had against each other. He opened dialogue with the artists to dispel those quarrels.

Prince is one-of-a-kind. He opened doors for so many including Florida A&M University’s Marching 100. The world would be hard-pressed to find another artist as talented as he. He set the bar high for anyone trying to be in the music industry but most of all, he fought hard to make sure that artists have ownership of their own music as opposed to the record labels and promoters getting the bulk of the money that is due those who write, perform and create their own music that mesmerizes the masses just as Prince so gracefully did.

Geraldine Thompson takes an odd, sloppy swing at Chief Val Demings

Geraldine Thompson takes an odd, sloppy swing at Chief Val Demings

Geraldine Thompson made a statement about District 10 Candidate Chief Val Demings regarding an excessive force case that happened while Demings was in office over six years ago.

Thompson said she was working with the NAACP on legislation that would require FDLE to investigate uses of police force that results in death or serious bodily harm and then cited a case where a man involved in an altercation with the Orlando police was injured and settled his case.

She then added that incident was on Demings watch. The story started to unfold and the Black Lives Matter movement was thrown in the mix in what appeared to be a sloppy attempt to confuse black voters. But, the man in the case Thompson mentioned is an 84-year old white man.

The case is old and it’s over. Yet, currently we are witness to a sitting police chief that has excused excessive force against black people right here in Orlando.

However, Thompson didn’t call that out. She called-out a former black, female police chief that actually has a stellar record. Being afraid to question and if need be, attack (not physically, of course) the source of the current problem is something our leaders must be able to do effectively. When there are 23 inexcusable, excessive force cases under the current leadership now and a candidate takes a shot at someone who previously led that force instead of the current leader is frankly a cowardly move.

As we celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King this month, we should all take a good look at our strategies against our own people, especially those looking to lead our communities. Not only that, we should take a good look at how we treat each other and that includes what we say to each other and how we say it. During the Democratic debate last Sunday, Bernie Sanders refused to bring into question the past indiscretions of Hillary Clinton’s husband, President Bill Clinton.

Sanders almost emotionally embraced and protected her from the firestorm that is already brewing to use the former President’s affair(s) as a public relations target in an effort to shy people away from voting for her. Sanders’ move was not only classy but it was right. It was also the ethical thing to do. Most of all, he stayed on the issues that Americans want to discuss.
Frankly speaking, here we have two white people, Clinton and Sanders, who refuse to personally destroy each other on the campaign trail. Is it too much to ask for our local candidate to do the same? In the District 10 race, the move made by Thompson was an oddly desperate move to destroy the character of Demings amongst voters in the black community after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi endorsed Demings. What else could it be?

Oddly, the only current thing she linked it to was the Black Lives Matter movement yet the injured man was again, an 84-year old white man. Thompson’s move certainly doesn’t describe the character of Demings. Sure, it wasn’t an affair like Clinton, but the issue surrounding it was simple mudslinging. If this excessive force case meant that much to Thompson then why not lead the charge against the multi-excessive force cases against OPD right now by being just as vocal about these 23 excessive force cases as she is about this one that settled years ago?

The real reason is because she is not running against Chief Mina or any officers. She’s running against Congressional Candidate for District 10, Val Demings. Why is all this important to you and me? It’s important because it shows the character of Thompson. This is not a fight for the people, it’s her own personal fight for the congressional seat, otherwise, her sights would be set on the faulty agenda that holds Central Floridians back; especially black Central Floridians.

This kind of campaigning is what we all should think about when we go to the polls. And, let me be clear. I am not directly defending Chief Demings. I am directly defending YOU.

Those who are in the district need to hear the issues surrounding what will help them, not be witness to a mudslinging contest. It’s understood that no campaign is going to be nice, warm and fuzzy. We get that. However, attack the opposition on the issues because that’s what matters to us.

I don’t know about you but I couldn’t care any less about a settled case that happened years ago. I want to move forward and I would like to know how each person stands on the issues that matter to me and you and our families. Both candidates are running for U.S. Congress and the election will be held on August 30, 2016.

Why Isis is not the top fear among Black people

Photo courtesy of O. Levard Photography studios

Photo courtesy of O. Levard Photography studios

If I were to cover and title weekly articles about people killed under very interesting and unusual circumstances, the title would look like this: “What happened to” or “Justice for” (and then I would fill in the name here), i.e.: Trayvon Martin, Rodney Johnson, Freddie Gray, Walter Scott, Laquan McDonald, Mike Brown, Omar Grant III, Corey Jackson, the list seems endless.

Terrorism is alive and well in the black community.

In America, cops, mainly white, shoot and kill unarmed black people with no expectation of punishment. Matter of fact, in the murder of Laquan McDonald, 5 police officers witnessed the murder and told a story other than the truth, to cover it up.

Terrorism is also well-defined and top-of-mind in the black community. White America goes to bed worrying about the terrible tragedies that did and could happen at the hands of foreign terrorists, while black people go to bed praying that our children never have to cross paths with a white domestic officer. We feel this way because if we call the police, for any reason, our chances of being shot and killed increases exponentially.

Even if we discuss our history to some of those of another race, try to explain why we fear the police, even if we mention slavery and the wounds that black people feel from our battered history, we are told to pull ourselves up by our bootstraps and continue on. To forget about what happened but to look forward to a brighter day.

Now, turn the tables and mention the tragedy on September 11th, 2001 to those same naysayers and their response would be to “never forget”. What most black people are trying to say, is, “we get it”. We understand why the majority of America fears foreign terrorists because we are a part of it, but we also have a fear of domestic terrorists on a daily basis, too.

We care about what happened on 9-11, in San Bernardino and many other places in America and we want white America to care about our youth enough to change the laws so that we are protected against trigger-happy officers, who are sworn to protect and serve us. We can forget about those officers and many Americans outright caring that black lives matter. It’s evident they don’t share our reality or passion.

Therefore, changing the laws to attract equality for black people is the only thing we have to hold on to. It pains us to see our fellow Americans be killed in attacks like 9/11. We pray for our country just as hard and frequent as any loving, God-fearing, red-blooded, American would.

However, when asked to put the burden of Isis on the front burner, emotionally, it is more than difficult for us to do. The terrorism the country feels from these foreign terror groups or the wanna-be terrorists, like the San Bernardino killers, is not something we fear as much as we fear cops and racist individuals like Michael Dunn.

So there. I’ve said it. I’ve combined my thoughts with the opinions of several other black people and whipped them out on paper here. Go ahead, throw your tomatoes. Post your comments. Yell, scream, tell me I’m wrong.

Then get over it and realize, I’m right.

Jordan Davis’ life was taken by what we consider a domestic terrorist who was ready to so very easily murder someone he hated with each passing swig of liquor he drank.

When Jordan Davis’ killer was taken into custody, he even asked the police as to what his own motive was. As if he was looking for guidance on how to wiggle his way through the system without being incarcerated for his crime. Makes one think whether or not he has done something like this before. Thank God, Jacksonville Police did not allow or provide him a way out.

However, even in a Florida courtroom, being tried on the charges in which he should have been, Jordan Davis’ killer, Michael Dunn, was not initially convicted of murdering Jordan Davis. In a nutshell, Dunn was initially convicted of attempting to murder the other young men in the car. In Florida, once Davis was dead, his life mattered not, to the system we claim upholds justice.

Unfortunately, America in general, all to often allow cruel and unusual punishment on black Americans making it quite difficult for black people to see any other threats to black lives beyond what’s closest to the human eye; and heart. It is also very difficult to push our fears to the background and replace those with the fears of people who may kill us, wound us and/or support those and the laws that continue the cycle of the legal killing of black America.

Self Medicating: A broken healthcare system leads to patient power

Last spring, a south Florida man fought against Florida’s marijuana laws and won his argument to be able to treat himself with medical marijuana.

Jesse Teplicki, a severe anorexic, told a south Florida news channel, this case is about medicinal marijuana and that he was going home to celebrate his legal win by, smoking a “fat one,” as he described it, before dinner. Prior to using medical marijuana Teplicki would get sick simply at the sight of food. However, he has found a way to successfully use the marijuana he grows in his own home as treatment for his condition. Even though marijuana is, for the most part, illegal in Florida, Teplicki’s Attorney Michael Minardi was successful in convincing a jury of Teplicki’s peers that Teplicki was within his rights for growing 46 plants in his home for his medical condition. They found no reason to believe he was selling the plant for monetary gain.

This case is also about the right to choose what happens to our bodies on the inside as well as on the outside. As we embark on an election season, many people are fighting for or against a woman’s right to choose what happens with the health of her body and her right to choose whether to have an abortion or not.

Teplicki had no medical records in ten years which clearly means he has not been seen by a “traditional” doctor in a decade yet he has successfully treated a severe condition without the frustration of using health insurance and bouncing from doctor to doctor. According to the Power To the Patient advocacy group, statistics show most people have gone to an average of 6-7 doctors before they actually get a diagnosis. That is an unacceptable way to treat illness. Even though many are suffering with aches, pains, mental conditions, lupus, sickle cell anemia and more, there is a frustrating system patients must go through in America in order to be diagnosed and treated. Being properly treated is even harder.

Frustration is growing amongst patients and Teplicki is a patient who has power, determination and gained even more after his historic legal battle. Most of all, he had a passionate attorney when it comes to medical marijuana. Attorney Michael Minardi told us this lawsuit seems like it happened so long ago, yet, the groundbreaking trial ended this past March and Attorney Minardi is set to battle yet another similar case on August 24th in Osceola county.

Using medical marijuana for some people is not just a recreational move. There are several reasons why people turn and self-medicate and a broken medical system is where it all starts. Going to a primary care doctor with a problem means that you will most likely be sent to a specialist. It may take a while for a patient to get an appointment because being a new patient to an office means completing more paperwork and getting insurance approval. This can prolong the process patients have as they suffer with whatever medical condition they are battling. Meanwhile, the fight for medical cannabis is going on right alongside the right for women to choose and medical marijuana is looking like it could become legal in 2016.

However, some are arguing that the only amendment to the law that is on the ballot is the one proposed by Attorney John Morgan of Morgan and Morgan. Others are trying their hand at proposing an amendment that claims to encompass a plan that legalizes marijuana that is similar to states like Colorado and California however, those amendments are still in the petition phase while Morgan’s amendment will be on the 2016 Presidential ballot.

As for Teplicki, the jurors in his case clearly sided with him agreeing patients who need medical marijuana may use it to treat their illness.
Teplicki plans to file a civil suit however the judge was sure to stand up in court and tell him not to push his luck and to be careful with his actions in the future.Medical cannabis in Florida

Civil Rights Leader Julian Bond passes away at age 75

Social Activist and civil rights icon, Julian Bond, passed away on Saturday at the age of 75.

Bond was more than an icon during the civil rights movement of the 60’s but also was the man who helped shape the way white people and black people relate to each other in America. Bond helped define the civil rights movement which was about demanding change for people of color. On Sunday, the Southern Poverty Law Center, which Bond is the founding President, issued a statement of Bond’s death. The statement read, “Not only has the country lost a hero today, we’ve lost a great friend.” The post also stated, Bond suffered a brief illness and passed away on Saturday night in Fort Walton Beach, Florida.

What made Julian Bond great was that he stood firm on his demand for equal rights for black people and he told the story of civil rights with such charisma and class. He made sure to create and help charge organizations with the same goals and objectives that he worked hard to develop with other black leaders, so that the mission could be a successful one.

In response to the news of Bond’s death, President Obama issued a statement from The White House, stating, “Julian Bond helped change this country for the better. And what better way to be remembered than that.”

Bond was also a student of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr at Morehouse College and helped lead one of the very first college sit-ins. From leading boycotts to leading his state, Bond was elected to the Georgia House of Representatives in 1965, where he would carry out civil rights equality in a different capacity.

Bond championed equality in America with a blueprint that is used still today by different groups trying to achieve the equality in America, too.

Julian Bond’s impact to this country was equally advantageous to whites as blacks regardless of what many in white America feel or felt at that time. The Southern Poverty Law Center called Bond a “visionary and tireless champion for civil and human rights.” The SPLC goes on to state, “With Julian’s passing, the country has lost one of its most passionate and eloquent voices for the cause of justice. He advocated not just for African Americans, but for every group, indeed every person subject to oppression and discrimination, because he recognized the common humanity in us all.”

What a beautiful way to be immediately associated, remembered and recognized.

The life Bond lived and what he accomplished gives each of us the same blueprint in which to work. Equality today must come in the form of economic opportunities, equal pay for equal work, an increase in 7 and 8 figure contracts for minority businesses and so much more. The kind of change that was made in race relations in America during the 60’s is so critical to the way we live today. Our Social Activists in our local communities help make and create the change we wish to see and feel as a community an ultimately a country.

Our elected officials as well as the appointed ones are expected to enforce this change just the way the leaders like Bond did during the most charged movement in American history. We certainly still have boundaries put on us and barriers put in our way but collectively, we can choose to be as active in our communities as we can in order to achieve greatness for our country and our families for generations to come.