Thursday, July 22, 2010

African american woman forced to resign after false allegations of racism.

For those of you who have not been following the story of an african american woman who was fired from the United States Department of Agriculture let me brief you about what happened. Shirley Sherrod, the former Georgia director of Rural Development, was forced to resign under pressure this week after racist blogger Andrew Breitbart published a video clip where she seemingly tells a group she did not help a white farmer as much as she could have. Sherrod said her statements, which were given at a local NAACP banquet in Georgia in March, were part of a larger story about overcoming her own prejudices 24 years ago.

Sherrod was giving her testimony about her experience of helping a white farmer. This experience she was talking about happened 24 years ago. The controversy began after several media organizations posted a 38-second video clip of Sherrod speaking to a local Georgians at a NAACP event. She tells the group that she did not give a white farmer "the full force of what I could do" after he asked for assistance.

Sherrod was asked to resign by government officials."They called me twice," Sherrod told the Associated Press. "The last time they asked me to pull over the side of the road and submit my resignation on my Blackberry, and that's what I did." ( read more at nydailynews )

The video surfaced days after the NAACP had argued with Tea Party members over allegations of racism. And of course Sherrod's words were taken out of context. "My point in telling that story is that working with him helped me to see that it wasn't a black and white issue," she said. Sherrod also said that the episode took place in 1986 before she worked for the Agriculture Department.

Take a look at the full Shirley Sherrod video and judge for yourselves.

So many of these elected officials and media giants had jumped to their own hastily conclusions such as:
President of the national NAACP, Benjamin Todd Jealous, who supported the resignation, saying the organization has a zero-tolerance policy.
U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, who wrongfully fired Sherrod, offered her some sort of civil rights position in the Office of Outreach at the Department of Agriculture.
Fox News and the broadcasters who covered the story blatantly gave a one-sided point of view that was slanderous to Sherrod causing unjust injury.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Haiti still has no relief money

Six months ago Haiti was rocked by a 7.0 earthquake that killed more than 200,000 people, left more than 1.5 million homeless and destroyed the country's capital and surrounding areas.  The charitable outpouring for Haiti has been huge. To date, Americans have phoned, texted and mailed in more than $1.3 billion, according to The Chronicle Of Philanthropy.

But charitable-giving experts say people need to keep an eye on where their money goes. Some of the top organizations that donated funds for emergency relief to Haiti are: The American red Cross, Catholic Relief Services, Doctors Without Borders U.S., World Vision USA, The Clinton Bush Haiti Fund and the Clinton Foundation Haiti Fund. These would seem like reputable companies whom people can trust if money is donated for a specific cause. Would you agree?

        (above: Port-au-Prince street in Haiti)

Well, it has been six months and no clean up effort has been done yet. Why is that so? Hundreds of thousands of buildings and homes lay collapsed and crumbled with their steel and wooden frames tattered, twisted and broken as if the hurricane just happened a week ago. Why has no clean up effort been done yet? Are systems in place to manage resources, people and program capacity to engage in a disaster like this one? Here's an idea for you, instead of having them sit around doing nothing there can be a cash for work program in progress to clean up the debris and torn down structures. That way the victims can rebuild their communities and earn wages and at the same time help ease the pain on the way to recovery.

Another question, why are there no big industrial equipment such as bulldozers, backhoes and dump trucks available on site to speed up the process and perform excavation  and backfilling operations that humans cannot perform?
How many groups/organizations will be working and helping in Haiti after the public has stop giving donations and has stopped paying attention to the whole ordeal?

Rubble removal is moving at a snail's pace and not enough land has been secured to build replacement housing. Haitian Prime Minister, Jean-Max Bellerive said that there are some organizations who are too independent and are not distributing the money appropriately and certain organizations are not informing the Haitian government about their intentions there in the country. (pictured below: the Presidential Palace as it lay in ruin.)

The U.S. and other donor countries pledged more than $9 billion to Haiti at a U.N.-sponsored donors' conference in March, but to date they have delivered only a fraction of the money pledged. Haiti's former prime minister, Michele Pierre-Louis, says aid groups working in the country need to be more visible. "If you come to help, show us that you are really helping, that the Haitian people, especially the poor, the destitute, those that most need this help, are the ones really getting it," she says.
Amid the recovery, there is a lot of finger-pointing going on in Haiti and nobody is blamed. Why is that so, especially in African and African descent countries? Meanwhile the situation remains difficult with so many people still living in terrible conditions.

The Clinton Bush Haiti Fund and the Clinton Foundation Haiti Fund refuse to answer questions regarding this despite repeated phone calls and emails from noted news organizations such as CBS. These two charitable organizations say they collected 51 million donor dollars but have only spent about only $7 million which is about 1/7 th of the relief fund. That's despicable, that's just like America "despicable me"(and not the hollywood movie). [ to view the CBS video click here ]

Catholic Relief Services (CRS) has collected $165 million of emergency funds committed to Haiti. Out of that relief fund $2.5 million was spent on food and $1.28 million went to emergency shelter which totals $3.78 million......where is the other $161.22 million huh? That means no more than 8% actually went to Haiti. These big non profit organizations and billion dollar corporations need to be spending the money RIGHT NOW because it is  for EMERGENCY RELIEF.

So, as I started off saying in the beginning of this article about keeping your eye out on these major non profit organizations fortune 500 companies is because they are to blame. The people trust the companies to use the money for a specific cause and that is was not and is not being done which therefore violates the trust of the donors. What are these big reputable companies doing with the money? Is it diverted and/or transferred to other divisions or programs possibly? or even diverted to a bogas account and then used for lavish living or used for personal living expenses like mortgages, bank loans, car loans, shopping sprees, vacations, etc.

It seems to me that these big so-called reputable corporations, charities and non profit organizations just collect the working class's money give a very small percent to the actual cause and
keep the remaining lion's share for themselves to keep their rich class level status.