Celebrating Black History Month, The Black History Moment Series #22: Dr. John Hope Franklin, African American Scholar And Historian.


 

By Jueseppi B.

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Throughout the month Of February, TheObamaCrat™ will post a daily series called The Black History Moment Series. Each day for 28 days of this historic month you will be given the food of Black History to satisfy your hunger for knowledge. 

 

Celebrating Black History Month: The Black History Moment Series #22 Dr. John Hope Franklin. African American Scholar And Historian.

 

John Hope Franklin

1915–2009, the dean of 20th-century African-American historians, b. Rentiesville, Okla., grad. Fisk Univ. (A.B., 1935), Harvard (M.A., 1936; Ph.D., 1941). Franklin served on the faculties of his alma mater (1936–37), St. Augustine’s College (1939–43), North Carolina College (1943–47), Howard Univ. (1947–56), Brooklyn College (1956–64), and the Univ. of Chicago (1964–82) before assuming (1982) the James B. Duke Professorship of History at Duke. He became professor emeritus in 1985, but taught at Duke’s law school from 1985 to 1992. Franklin was also president of Phi Beta Kappa (1973–76), the American Historical Association (1978–79), and several other scholarly organizations.

 

Franklin’s many publications focused on the history of the American South, on slavery and Reconstruction, and on the African-American contribution to the development of the United States. His best-known book, the pioneering From Slavery to Freedom (1947; 8th ed. 2000), revolutionized the understanding of African-American history and changed the way the subject is taught. Among Franklin’s other works are The Militant South: 1800–1860 (1956), Reconstruction after the Civil War (1961),The Emancipation Proclamation (1963), Color and Race (1968), Racial Equality in America (1976), Race and History(1989), The Color Line (1993), and In Search of the Promised Land (with L. Schweninger, 2005). He also edited a number of books, including the autobiography (1997) of his father, an Oklahoma lawyer.

 

Active in the civil-rights movement, Franklin provided historical information vital to the brief for the landmark Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kans. case, marched with Martin Luther King, and testified repeatedly at congressional hearings regarding racial issues. He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1995 and was appointed President Clinton’s adviser on race two years later. His papers form the nucleus of Duke’s John Hope Franklin Research Center for African and African-American Documentation.

 

John Hope Franklin

 

 

Early life and education

Franklin was born in Rentiesville, Oklahoma to attorney, Buck (Charles) Colbert Franklin and his wife Mollie Parker Franklin and named after John Hope. He graduated from Booker T. Washington High School in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He graduated from Fisk University in 1935 and gained a doctorate in history in 1941 from Harvard University.

 

 

Career

“My challenge,” Franklin said, “was to weave into the fabric of American history enough of the presence of blacks so that the story of the United States could be told adequately and fairly.”

 

In his autobiography, Franklin described a series of formative incidents where he confronted racism while seeking to volunteer his services at the beginning of the Second World War. He attempted to respond to the Navy’s search for qualified clerical workers, but after he presented his extensive qualifications, the Navy recruiter told him that he was the wrong color for the position. He was similarly unsuccessful in finding a position with a War Department historical project. When he went to have a blood test as required for the draft, the doctor initially refused to allow him into his office. Afterward, Franklin took steps to avoid the draft, on the basis that the country did not respect him or have an interest in his well-being, because of his color.

 

In the early 1950s, Franklin served on the NAACP Legal Defense Fund team led by Thurgood Marshall, which helped develop the sociological case for Brown v. Board of Education. This led to the 1954 United States Supreme Court decision ending the legal segregation of black and white children in public schools.

 

 

Professor and researcher

Franklin’s teaching career began at Fisk University. During WWII, he taught at St. Augustine’s College and North Carolina College.

 

From 1947 to 1956, he taught at Howard University. In 1956, Franklin was selected to chair the history department at Brooklyn College, the first person of color to head a major history department. Franklin served there until 1964, when he was recruited by the University of Chicago. He spent 1962 as a visiting professor at the University of Cambridge, holding the Professorship of American History and Institutions.

 

David Levering Lewis, who has won the Pulitzer Prize for history, said that while he was deciding to become a historian, news came that Franklin, his mentor, had been named departmental chairman at Brooklyn College.

 

“Now that certainly is a distinction. It had never happened before that a person of color had chaired a major history department. That meant a lot to me. If I had doubt about (the) viability of a career in history, that example certainly helped put to rest such concerns.”

 

In researching his prize-winning biography of W. E. B. Du Bois, Lewis said he became aware of Franklin’s

 

“courage during that period in the 1950s when Du Bois became an un-person, when many progressives were tarred and feathered with the brush of subversion. John Hope Franklin was a rock; he was loyal to his friends. In the case of W. E. B. Du Bois, Franklin spoke out in his defense, not (about) Du Bois’s communism, but of the right of an intellectual to express ideas that were not popular. I find that admirable. It was a high risk to take and we may be heading again into a period when the free concourse of ideas in the academy will have a price put upon it. In the final years of an active teaching career, I will have John Hope Franklin’s example of high scholarship, great courage and civic activism.”

 

From 1964 through 1968, Franklin was a professor of history at the University of Chicago, and chair of the department from 1967 to 1970. He was named to the endowed position of John Matthews Manly Distinguished Service Professor, which he held from 1969 to 1982. He was appointed to the Fulbright Board of Foreign Scholarships, 1962–69, and was its chair from 1966 to 1969.

 

In 1976, the National Endowment for the Humanities selected Franklin for the Jefferson Lecture, the U.S. federal government’s highest honor for achievement in the humanities. Franklin’s three-part lecture became the basis for his book Racial Equality in America.

 

Franklin was appointed to the U.S. Delegation to the UNESCO General Conference, Belgrade (1980).

 

In 1983, Franklin was appointed the James B. Duke Professor of History at Duke University. In 1985, he took emeritus status from this position. During this same year he helped to establish the Durham Literacy Center and served on its Board until his death in 2009.

 

Franklin was also Professor of Legal History at the Duke University Law School from 1985 to 1992.

 

 

Racial Equality in America

Racial Equality in America is the published lecture series that Franklin presented in 1976 for the Jefferson Lecture sponsored by the National Endowment for Humanities. The book divides into three lectures, given in 3 different cities, chronicling the history of race in the United States from revolutionary times to 1976. These lectures explore the differences between some of the beliefs related to race with the reality documented in various historical and government texts as well as data gathered from census, property, and literary sources. The first lecture is titled “The Dream Deferred” and discusses the period from the revolution to 1820. The second lecture is titled “The Old Order Changeth Not” and discusses the rest of the 19th century. The third lecture is titled “Equality Indivisible” and discusses the 20th century.

 

 

Later life and death

In 2005, at the age of 90, Franklin published and lectured  on his new autobiography, Mirror to America: The Autobiography of John Hope Franklin. In 2006, he received the John W. Kluge Prize and as the recipient lectured on the successes and failures of race relations in America inWhere do We Go from Here? In 2008, Franklin endorsed presidential candidate Barack Obama.

 

Franklin died at Duke University Medical Center on the morning of March 25, 2009.

 

 

John Hope Franklin

John Hope Franklin

John Hope Franklin (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Born January 2, 1915
RentiesvilleOklahoma, U.S.
Died March 25, 2009 (aged 94)
Duke University Medical Center
DurhamNorth Carolina, U.S.
Alma mater Fisk University (B.A., 1935);
Harvard University (M.A., 1936;

Ph.D., 1941)

Occupation Scholar, historian, author, professor
Spouse(s) Aurelia Whittington Franklin

(m. 1940; d. 1999)

Honors

 

Honors

 

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In 1991, Franklin’s students honored him with a festschrift The Facts of Reconstruction: Essays in Honor of John Hope Franklin (edited by Eric Anderson & Alfred A. Moss, Jr. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, c1991).

 

Franklin served as president of the American Historical Association (1979), the American Studies Association(1967), the Southern Historical Association (1970), and the Organization of American Historians (1975). He was a member of the board of trustees at Fisk University, the Chicago Public Library, and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association.

 

Frankin was elected as a foundation member of Fisk’s new chapter of Phi Beta Kappa in 1953, when Fisk became the first historically black college to have a chapter of the honor society. In 1973-76, he served as President of the United Chapters of Phi Beta Kappa.

 

Additionally, Franklin was appointed to serve on national commissions, including the National Council on the Humanities, the President’s Advisory Commission on Ambassadorial Appointments, and One America: The President’s Initiative on Race.

 

Franklin was a member of Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity. He was an early beneficiary of the fraternity’s Foundation Publishers, which provides financial support and fellowship for writers addressing African-American issues.

 

In 1962 honored as an outstanding historian, Franklin became the first black member of the exclusive Cosmos Club in Washington, D.C.

 

The John Hope Franklin Research Center for African and African American History and Culture resides at the Duke University Rare Book, Manuscript, and Special Collections Library and contains his personal and professional papers. The archive is one of three academic units named after Franklin at Duke. The others are the John Hope Franklin Center for Interdisciplinary and International Studies, which opened in February 2001 and the Franklin Humanities Institute. Franklin had previously rejected Duke’s offer to name a center for African-American Studies after him, saying that he was a historian of America and the world, too.

 

In 1978, he was inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame.

 

In 1994, the Society of American Historians (founded by Allan Nevins and other historians to encourage literary distinction in the writing of history) awarded Franklin its Bruce Catton Prize for Lifetime Achievement.

 

In 1995, he was awarded the Spingarn Medal from the NAACP.

 

In 1995, Franklin was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor.

 

In 1995, he received the Chicago History Museum “Making History Award” for Distinction in Historical Scholarship.

 

In 1997, Franklin was selected to receive the Peggy V. Helmerich Distinguished Author Award, a career literary award given annually by the Tulsa Library Trust. Franklin was the first (and so far only) native Oklahoman to receive the award. During his visit to Tulsa to accept the award, Franklin made several appearances to speak about his childhood experiences with racial segregation, as well as his father’s experiences as a lawyer in the aftermath of the 1921 Tulsa race riot.

 

In 2002, scholar Molefi Kete Asante included Franklin on his list of 100 Greatest African Americans.

 

Oklahoma Governor Brad Henry presented the Governor’s Arts Award to Dr. Franklin in 2004.

 

On May 20, 2006, Franklin was awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters at Lafayette College‘s 171st Commencement Exercises.

 

On November 15, 2006, John Hope Franklin was announced as the third recipient of the John W. Kluge Prize for lifetime achievement in the study of humanity. He shared the prize with Yu Ying-shih.

 

 

Personal life

According to a DNA analysis, Franklin was descended mainly from people of Sierra Leone.

 

Marriage and family

Franklin met and courted Aurelia Whittington at Fisk. They married on June 11, 1940 at her parents’ home in Goldsboro, North Carolina. Their only child, John Whittington Franklin, was born August 24, 1952. Aurelia was a librarian. Their marriage lasted 59 years, until January 27, 1999, when she succumbed to a long illness.

 

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Keeping Hope Alive: A Conversation With Dr. John Hope Franklin (5/30/2007)

 

Published on Jun 2, 2013

Keeping Hope Alive: A Conversation With Dr. John Hope Franklin (5/30/2007)

“My Challenge Was To Weave Into The Fabric Of American History Enough Of The Presence Of Blacks So That The Story Of The United States Could Be Told Adequately And Fairly.”
~Dr. John Hope Franklin

 

Dr. John Hope Franklin Passed Away March 25, 2009 at the age of 94 after living a truly purpose driven life… Hopefully and finally he has reunited with his beloved wife, Aurelia…

 

 

 

Mirror to America by John Hope Franklin–Audiobook Excerpt

 

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Published on Apr 12, 2012

Listen to this audiobook excerpt and hear John Hope Franklin read from his book Mirror to America: The Autobiography of John Hope Franklin–ninety years of American history as lived by the nation’s preeminent African American historian and winner of the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

 

 

 

Dr. John Hope Franklin Tribute | PBS

 

Uploaded on Mar 25, 2009

In a special tribute to Dr. John Hope Franklin, a conversation with the dean of African American historians about the racism he encountered.

 

 

 

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Black History Month 2014 Presents: Celebrating Black History Month; The Black History Moment Series, #1 thru #21….

 

In Case You Missed This Series….Black History Month 2014 Presents: Celebrating Black History Month; The Black History Moment Series.

 

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Statements And Releases From The President Of The United States, Barack Hussein Obama


 

By Jueseppi B.

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FACT SHEET: President Obama to Sign Executive Order on Streamlining the Export/Import Process for America’s Businesses

 

In his State of the Union address, President Obama set an ambitious agenda to make 2014 a year of action: using his pen and his phone to take steps that expand opportunity for America’s middle class – including helping small American businesses compete in a global economy.  Today, aboard Air Force One, the President will sign a new Executive Order on Streamlining the Export/Import Process for America’s Businesses.

 

Specifically, the Executive Order cuts processing and approval times from days to minutes for small businesses that export American-made goods and services by completing the International Trade Data System (ITDS) by December 2016.  Today, businesses must submit information to dozens of government agencies, often on paper forms, sometimes waiting on process for days to move goods across the border.  The ITDS will allow businesses to electronically transmit, through a “single-window,” the data required by the U.S. Government to import or export cargo.  This new electronic system will speed up the shipment of American-made goods overseas, eliminate often duplicative and burdensome paperwork, and make our government more efficient.

 

This Executive Order is especially important to small and medium companies that depend on global trade.  Once fully implemented, the ITDS will dramatically reduce the time and expense for businesses to move the more than 50 million containers and $3.8 trillion worth of goods that cross our borders each year.

 

Development of a “Single-Window

The Executive Order mandates the completion of the International Trade Data System (ITDS) by December 2016.  The ITDS creates capabilities that will allow businesses to transmit, through an electronic “single-window,” the data required by the U.S. Government to import or export cargo.

 

At present, businesses must submit data to multiple agencies through various channels, often in paper form.  The ITDS will save businesses time and money, and dramatically reduce the number of forms a business has to fill out to import or export.

 

The ITDS will allow more efficient government decision-making associated with goods arriving at the border, reducing the time for clearing goods from many days to, in some cases, seconds.  This will dramatically speed the flow of legitimate commerce across our borders.

 

Coordinated and automated messaging about these decisions will increase predictability for the private sector and allow them to plan supply chain movements with greater confidence and less cost.

 

Though the development of the ITDS has been underway for some time, the Order establishes a deadline for completion, requires relevant agencies to transition from paper-based to electronic data collection, and calls for enhanced transparency by requiring public posting of implementation plans and schedules.

 

Creation of More Efficient Business Processes through Partnership

The new Executive Order also charges the government to partner with non-government stakeholders to build more efficient business processes and improve border management policies.

 

A newly expanded group, the Border Interagency Executive Council (BIEC) will be responsible for improving coordination among the dozens of agencies with import and export requirements and with outside stakeholders.  The BIEC is charged with cutting red tape and reducing supply chain inefficiencies, while managing the risks presented by goods flowing in and out of the United States.

 

The ITDS Board of Directors will continue to oversee the development of the ITDS automated capabilities.

 

 

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Statement from the President on the Retirement of Congresswoman Gloria Negrete McLeod

Gloria Negrete McLeod has been a strong advocate for hardworking families and farmers in California’s 35th district and across the country.  She has been a key partner in promoting access to affordable health care and bringing quality employment and higher education opportunities to all Americans.  Gloria has consistently supported working women and their families and has championed programs to help our nation’s veterans find jobs and enroll in college. Michelle and I thank Congresswoman Negrete McLeod for her service and send her, her husband Gilbert, and their family our warmest regards.

 

 

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Statement from the President on the Retirement of Congressman Rush Holt

Over his 15 years in Congress, Rush Holt combined a relentless focus on building a brighter future with an unwavering commitment to improving the everyday lives of the New Jerseyans he represents, especially the veterans he works tirelessly to support.   Just the second research physicist elected to Congress, no one has worked harder to keep America on the cutting edge of innovation than Rush.  Time and time again, he has led efforts to fund science education and basic research.  His legacy will live on in our labs, our universities, and our classrooms, where countless math and science teachers have been able to afford college thanks in part to the TEACH grants he helped create.  Michelle and I thank Congressman Holt for his leadership and service, and we wish him, his wife Margaret, and their children and grandchildren the very best in the future.

 

 

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On-the-Record Call by Jason Furman and Betsey Stevenson on the CBO Report on Minimum Wage

 

 

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Readout of Vice President Biden’s Call with Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych

Vice President Biden called Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych today to express grave concern regarding the crisis on the streets of Kyiv.  He called on President Yanukovych to pull back government forces and to exercise maximum restraint. The Vice President made clear that the United States condemns violence by any side, but that the government bears special responsibility to de-escalate the situation. The Vice President further underscored the urgency of immediate dialogue with opposition leaders to address protesters’ legitimate grievances and to put forward serious proposals for political reform.  The United States is committed to supporting efforts to promote a peaceful resolution to the crisis that reflects the will and aspirations of the Ukrainian people.

 

 

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FACT SHEET: Opportunity For All: Improving the Fuel Efficiency of American Trucks – Bolstering Energy Security, Cutting Carbon Pollution, Saving Money and Supporting Manufacturing Innovation

 

 

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North American Leaders’ Summit

 

The North American Leaders’ Summit is the official name of the trilateral annual summit between the prime minister of Canada, and the presidents of Mexico and the United States. It started as the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America, a continent-level dialogue, founded on 23 March 2005. The summit is often referred to as the Three Amigos Summit in the popular press. This year, February 19, 2014, the summit is held in  TolucaMexico State, Mexico.

 

 

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White House Schedule – Wednesday February 19th, 2014

 

 

On Wednesday, the President will travel to Toluca, Mexico, to participate in the North American Leaders Summit. At the Summit, the President will discuss a wide range of issues including economic competitiveness and citizen security with Mexican President Peña Nieto and Canadian Prime Minister Harper. The President will return to The White House around 2 AM EST.

 

In the morning, the President will depart Washington, DC for Toluca, Mexico to participate in the North American Leaders Summit. The departure from the South Lawn is open press.

 

In the afternoon, the President will arrive in Toluca, Mexico. Upon arrival, the President will participate in an official arrival ceremony at the Licenciado Adolfo López Mateos International Airport. The official arrival ceremony will be open press.

 

After the official arrival ceremony, the President will visit Palacio de Gobierno del Estado de Mexico and be welcomed by President Enrique Peña Nieto of Mexico. There will be pre-set pool coverage of the President’s arrival at Palacio de Gobierno del Estado de Mexico. Following his arrival, the President will hold a restricted bilateral meeting followed by an expanded bilateral meeting with President Nieto. There will be a pool spray at the top of the restricted bilateral meeting and the expanded bilateral meeting will be closed press.

 

Later in the afternoon, the President will participate in a leader photo before having a working lunch with President Nieto and Prime Minister Harper of Canada. There will be a pool spray of the leader photo while the working lunch is closed press.

 

Following the working lunch, the President will then take part in a walk and talk with Prime Minister Harper, before delivering remarks to North American business, civil society and education leaders with President Nieto and Prime Minister Harper. There will be a pool spray during the walk and talk, while the President remarks are pooled press.

 

In the evening, the President will participate in the Trilateral North American Leaders Summit meeting and a joint press conference . There will be a pool spray at the top of this meeting, while the press conference is open to pre-credentialed media.

 

Later in the evening, the President will depart Toluca, Mexico for Washington, DC. The departure from the Licenciado Adolfo López Mateos International Airport and the arrival on the South Lawn are open press.

 

 

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014 All Times ET

 

1:00 PM: The Vice President delivers remarks highlighting the need for continued investment in infrastructure to create jobs and grow our economy, Local Event Time: 12:00 PM, Granite City, Illinois.

 

 

1:35 PM: The President greets President Nieto, Local Event Time: 12:35 PM, Palacio de Gobierno del Estado de Mexico – Toluca – Mexico.

 

 

1:55 PM: The President holds a restricted bilateral meeting with President Nieto, Local Event Time: 12:55 PM, Palacio de Gobierno del Estado de Mexico – Toluca – Mexico.

 

 

2:10 PM: The President holds an expanded bilateral meeting with President Nieto Local Event Time: 1:10 PM, Palacio de Gobierno del Estado de Mexico – Toluca – Mexico.

 

 

3:40 PM: The President accompanies North American leaders for a family photo, Local Event Time: 2:40 PM, Cosmovitral – Toluca – Mexico.

 

 

3:45 PM: The President attends a working lunch, Local Event Time: 2:45 PM, Cosmovitral – Toluca – Mexico.

 

 

5:20 PM: The President participates in a walk and talk with Prime Minister Harper of Canada, Local Event Time: 4:20 PM, Cosmovitral – Toluca – Mexico.

 

 

5:50 PM: The President delivers remarks with President Nieto and Prime Minister Harper, Local Event Time: 4:50 PM, Salon del Pueblo – Palacio de Gobierno – Toluca – Mexico.

 

 

6:30 PM: The President participates in the Trilateral North American Leaders Summit Meeting, Local Event Time: 5:30 PM, Courtyard, Palacio de Justicia -Toluca – Mexico.

 

 

7:00 PM: The Vice President attends an event for the Democratic National Committee, Local Event Time: 6:00 PM, Minneapolis, Minnesota.

 

 

8:15 PM: The President, President Nieto and Prime Minister Harper hold a press conference, Local Event Time: 7:15 PM, Palacio de Gobierno – Toluca – Mexico, Patio Cental.

 

 

9:50 PM: The President departs Mexico en route Washington, DC, Local Event Time: 8:50 PM, Licenciado Adolfo López Mateos International Airport – Toluca, Mexico.

 

 

1:50 AM EST: THE PRESIDENT arrives Joint Base Andrews.

 

2:05 AM EST: THE PRESIDENT arrives the White House, South Lawn. South Lawn.

 

Briefing Schedule

Press Secretary Jay Carney will gaggle aboard Air Force One

 

 

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Next Up…

February 19, 2014 5:50 PM EST

President Obama Speaks with President Nieto and Prime Minister Harper

Toluca, Mexico, White House LIVE!!! Streaming Schedule.

 

 

 

February 19, 2014 8:15 PM EST

President Obama, President Nieto and Prime Minister Harper Hold a Press Conference

Toluca, Mexico, White House LIVE!!! Streaming Schedule.

 

 

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Barack heads from His House to Marine On for trip to North American Leaders' Summit in Toluca, Mexico

Barack heads from His House to Marine On for trip to North American Leaders’ Summit in Toluca, Mexico

Wheels Up For The Trip To Toluca, Mexico

Wheels Up For The Trip To Toluca, Mexico

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TheObamaCrat™ Wake-Up Call For HuMpDaY The 19th Of February, 2014. North American Leaders Summit In Toluca, Mexico.


 

By Jueseppi B.

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White House Schedule – Wednesday February 19th, 2014

 

 

THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 19th, 2014

 

DAILY GUIDANCE AND SCHEDULE FOR
FRIDAY, JANUARY 19th, 2014

 

On Wednesday, the President will travel to Toluca, Mexico, to participate in the North American Leaders Summit. At the Summit, the President will discuss a wide range of issues including economic competitiveness and citizen security with Mexican President Peña Nieto and Canadian Prime Minister Harper. The President will return to The White House around 2 AM EST.

 

 

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014 All Times ET

 

8:15 am:  The POTUS departs White House.
12:10 pm CT: The POTUS Arrives Toluca, Mexico.

 

12:35 pm CT: The POTUS Greets Mexican President Nieto and begins bilateral meetings; Palacio de Gobierno del Estado de Mexico, Toluca, Mexico.

 

2:45 pm CT: The POTUS Attends a working lunch; Cosmovitral, Botanical Gardens, Toluca, Mexico.

 
4:20 pm CT: The POTUS Participates in a walk and talk with Prime Minister Harper of Canada.

 
4:50 pm CT: The POTUS Delivers remarks with President Nieto and Prime Minister Harper.

 
5:30 pm CT: The POTUS Participates in the Trilateral North American Leaders Summit Meeting Courtyard, Palacio de Justicia, Toluca, Mexico.

 
7:15 pm CT: The POTUS Holds a press conference with President Nieto and Prime Minister Harper; Patio Cental, Palacio de Gobierno, Toluca, Mexico.

 
8:50 pm CT: The POTUS Departs Mexico, for the United States.

 
2:05 am: The POTUS Arrives White House.

 

 

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North American Leaders’ Summit

 

U.S. President Barack Obama at the North American Leaders' Summit

U.S. President Barack Obama at the North American Leaders’ Summit

 

The North American Leaders’ Summit is the official name of the trilateral annual summit between the prime minister of Canada, and the presidents of Mexico and the United States. It started as the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America, a continent-level dialogue, founded on 23 March 2005. The summit is often referred to as the Three Amigos Summit in the popular press. This year, February 19, 2014, the summit is held in  TolucaMexico State, Mexico.

 

 

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Pres. Obama Joint News Conference w/ Mexican/Canadian Leaders

President Obama will hold a joint news conference in Toluca, Mexico with his North American counterparts, Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

 

 

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Readout of the President’s Call to President Peña Nieto of Mexico

This morning President Obama spoke by phone with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto to discuss progress on the bilateral agenda the two leaders set when they met in May 2013.  The President congratulated President Peña Nieto on the important reforms he has undertaken in his first year in office.

 

The President noted he is looking forward to traveling to Toluca, Mexico on February 19, 2014, to participate in the North American Leaders Summit.  At the Summit, the President looks forward to discussing with Mexican President Peña Nieto and Canadian Prime Minister Harper a range of issues important to the daily lives of all of North America’s people, including economic competitiveness, entrepreneurship, trade and investment, and citizen security

 

 

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President Obama to visit Mexico in February for leaders summit

 

(Reuters) – President Barack Obama will visit Mexico in February to attend a North American leaders’ summit, the White House said on Monday.

 

White House spokesman Jay Carney said Obama would travel to Toluca, Mexico, on February 19.

 

Obama will attend the annual North American leaders summit along with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

 

The U.S. president visited Mexico last May and held talks with Pena Nieto and the two leaders emphasized economic issues in a relationship that has long been dominated by security concerns.

 

Carney said the leaders will discuss a range of issues such as economic competitiveness, trade and investment and citizen security.

 

Obama called Pena Nieto on Monday to congratulate him on “the important reforms” the Mexican leader has undertaken in his first year in office, the White House said in a statement.

 

Pena Nieto last month signed into law a radical reform of the country’s energy market, ending a 75-year oil and gas monopoly in hopes of attracting investments to boost production.

 

Ratings agency Standard & Poor’s raised its credit rating for Mexico by a notch on the energy reform, calling it a watershed moment that boosts the country’s long-term growth prospects.

 

The energy sector overhaul is a centerpiece of a broad range of reforms pushed by the Mexican leader as part of an effort to boost growth in Latin America’s second-largest economy.

 

Pena Nieto has overseen passage of a major education overhaul, shaken up oversight of the telecommunications market, and pushed through reforms of the tax system and banking rules.

 

 

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White House Week Ahead Schedule – February 20th &21st, 2014

 

 

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On Thursday, the President will return from Toluca, Mexico and attend the Democratic Governors Association dinner.

 

On Friday, the President will meet with the Democratic governors in town for the annual National Governors Association Winter Meeting to discuss his Opportunity for All agenda and the Year of Action.

 

 

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Biden to visit Granite City, Ill. on Wednesday.

 

WASHINGTON–Vice President Joe Biden travels to Granite City, Illinois on Wednesday to visit America’s Central Port, a rail, river road shipping complex on the Illinois side of the Mississippi River.

 

From the White House: “The Vice President’s visit will mark the fifth anniversary of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and highlight the need for continued investment in infrastructure to create jobs and grow our economy. Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx and former Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood will also attend.”

 

 

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The White House Blog

 

New Funding to Increase Access to Mental Health Services and New Protections Under the Health Care Law

 

Stefanie Feldman
February 18, 2014
07:22 PM EST

 

So far this year, the Administration has taken three key steps as part of our ongoing effort to increase access to mental health services.

 

First, the President signed an omnibus appropriations bill, securing $115 million for new mental health initiatives that the President and Vice President proposed in January 2013 as part of their comprehensive plan to reduce gun violence. This funding will have a real impact in communities across the country, where it will be used to train more mental health professionals and help educators and other adults who work with youth recognize the early signs of mental health problems and refer young people to appropriate help when needed.  The funds will also be used for a new initiative which will support innovative state-based approaches to making sure young people ages 16 to 25 who are at high risk for mental illness don’t fall through the cracks of our mental health system when they leave school or home.

 

Second, on January 31, with funding from the Affordable Care Act, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services made $50 million available to help Community Health Centers across the country establish or expand mental and behavioral health services for people living with mental illness or addiction. Using these funds, Health Centers can hire new mental health professionals and add mental health and substance use disorder services. This new funding was first announced by Vice President Biden last December. At that time, the Vice President also announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has set a new goal of financing $50 million for the construction, expansion, or improvement of mental health facilities in rural areas over the next three years.

 

And finally, on January 1, 2014, the Affordable Care Act went into full effect. For the first time ever, Americans across the country can no longer be denied health insurance or charged more based on a pre-existing mental illness. Health plans offered through the new Health Insurance Marketplace are now required to cover ten categories of essential health benefits, including mental health and substance use disorder services.

 

The Administration will continue to look for steps we can take to help prevent mental health problems and make sure people experiencing mental health problems get the help they need. As the Vice President said in December, “The fact that less than half of children and adults with diagnosable mental health problems receive the treatment they need is unacceptable. The President and I have made it a priority to do everything we can to make it easier to access mental health services.”

 

A Look At What They’re Saying About myRA Across the Country

 

Kicking Vehicle Efficiency into High Gear

 

Congressional Budget Office Report Finds Minimum Wage Lifts Wages for 16.5 Million Workers

 

We the People Response: Reaffirming the White House’s Commitment to Net Neutrality

 

The Fifth Anniversary of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

 

Administration-Wide Response to the Drought

 

 

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President Obama Speaks on Improving Fuel Efficiency for American Trucks

 

Press Briefing

 

President Obama Responds to the California Drought

 

President Obama Participates in a Roundtable Discussion on the California Drought

 

 

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President Obama holds a meeting with African American civil rights leaders in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, February 18. Flanking the President are Attorney General Eric Holder and Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett with Rev. Al Sharpton, president of National Action Network, also attending.

President Obama holds a meeting with African American civil rights leaders in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, February 18. Flanking the President are Attorney General Eric Holder and Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett with Rev. Al Sharpton, president of National Action Network, also attending.

President Barack Obama delivers remarks on improving the fuel efficiency of American trucks, at the Safeway Distribution Center in Upper Marlboro, Md., Feb. 18, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Amanda Lucidon)

President Barack Obama delivers remarks on improving the fuel efficiency of American trucks, at the Safeway Distribution Center in Upper Marlboro, Md., Feb. 18, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Amanda Lucidon)

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Celebrating Black History Month, The Black History Moment Series #21: Stand Your Ground Law.


 

By Jueseppi B.

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Throughout the month Of February, TheObamaCrat™ will post a daily series called The Black History Moment Series. Each day for 28 days of this historic month you will be given the food of Black History to satisfy your hunger for knowledge. 

 

Celebrating Black History Month: The Black History Moment Series #21: Stand Your Ground Law.

 

Stand Your ground is a Black History subject because Stand Your Ground disproportionately effects ALL Black Americans.

 

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Florida Stand Your Ground Victims: Who Will Be Next?

 

Published on Aug 29, 2013

these are only a few of the many unarmed victims in Florida who were killed by someone who invoked Stand Your Ground laws.
PLEASE SHARE THIS VIDEO!!

 

 

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stand-your-ground law is a type of self-defense law that gives individuals the right to use deadly force to defend themselves without any requirement to evade or retreat from a dangerous situation. It is law in certain jurisdictions within the United States. The basis may lie in either statutory law or common law precedents or both. One key distinction is whether the concept applies only to defending lawfully occupied locations. Under these legal concepts, a person is justified in using deadly force in certain situations, and the stand-your-ground law would be a defense or immunity to criminal charges and civil suit. The difference between immunity and a defense is that an immunity bars suit, charges, detention, and arrest. A defense, including an affirmative defense, is a fact or set of facts that may avoid or mitigate the adverse legal consequences of the defendant’s otherwise unlawful conduct.

 

Forty-six states in the United States have adopted the castle doctrine, that a person has no duty to retreat whatsoever when their home is attacked. Twenty-two states go a step further, removing the duty of retreat from other locations outside the home. Such “stand your ground”, “Line in the Sand” or “No Duty to Retreat” laws thus state that a person has no duty or other requirement to abandon a place in which he has a right to be, or to give up ground to an assailant. Under such laws, there is no duty to retreat from anywhere the defender may legally be. Other restrictions may still exist; such as when in public, a person must be carrying firearms in a legal manner, whether concealed or openly.

 

“Stand your ground” governs U.S. federal case law in which right of self-defense is asserted against a charge of criminal homicide. The Supreme Court of the United States ruled in Beard v. U.S. (158 U.S. 550 (1895)) that a man who was “on his premises” when he came under attack and “…did not provoke the assault, and had at the time reasonable grounds to believe, and in good faith believed, that the deceased intended to take his life, or do him great bodily harm…was not obliged to retreat, nor to consider whether he could safely retreat, but was entitled to stand his ground.” However, the Supreme Court decision did not create case law impugning a state’s authority to either adopt or invalidate stand-your-ground law.

 

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Effect on crime rates

Supporters and critics of the law dispute whether or not it has an effect on crime rates. The third edition of More Guns, Less Crime by John Lott says that states adopting “stand your ground”/”castle doctrine” laws reduced murder rates by 9 percent and overall violent crime by 11 percent, and that occurs even after accounting for a range of other factors such as national crime trends, law enforcement variables (arrest, execution, and imprisonment rates), income and poverty measures, demographic changes, and the national average changes in crime rates from year-to-year and average differences across states.

 

A study by Texas A&M economics professors observed that the adoption of stand-your-ground laws correlated with a statistically significant increase in the raw homicide rate. Little to no relationship was seen between adoption of the law and a deterrence of crime. The authors of the study were unable to determine what percentage of the increase was justifiable homicide, due to the reporting of homicide to the FBI often lacking notation whether the homicide was justifiable or not.

 

Another analysis of stand-your-ground laws by economists at Georgia State, using monthly data from the U.S. Vital Statistics, observed a significant increase in homicide and injury of whites, especially white males. They also analyzed data from the Health Care Utilization Project, which revealed significantly increased rates of emergency room visits and hospital discharges related to gun injuries in states which enacted these laws.

 

In a 2007 National District Attorneys Association symposium, numerous concerns were voiced that the law could increase crime. This included criminals using the law as a defense for their crimes, more people carrying guns, and that people would not feel safe if they felt that anyone could use deadly force in a conflict. The report also noted that the misinterpretation of clues could result in use of deadly force when there was, in fact, no danger. The report specifically notes that racial and ethnic minorities could be at greater risk because of negative stereotypes. In Florida, use of the law by blacks and Hispanics has equaled or exceeded those killed.

 

Florida state representative Dennis Baxley, an author of the law, notes that crime rates in Florida dropped significantly between 2005, when the law was passed, and 2012. However, crime rates had been declining in Florida as well as nationally since at least 2000. Representative Baxley told Politifact Florida that he does not believe his law is the main reason for the drop in crime rates in Florida, but may be one of several reasons.

 

The Stanford Law Review found that aggravated assaults temporarily increased in those states with stand-your-ground.

 

Most states have some form of stand-your-ground law. Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts (though the term is used very loosely there), Michigan,Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming have adopted Castle Doctrine statutes, and other states (Iowa, Virginia, and Washington) have considered stand-your-ground laws of their own.

 

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Controversy

Stand-your-ground laws are frequently criticized and called “shoot first” laws by critics, including the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. In Florida, self-defense claims tripled in the years following enactment. The law’s critics argue that Florida’s law makes it very difficult to prosecute cases against people who shoot others and then claim self-defense. The shooter can argue that he felt threatened, and in most cases, the only witness who could have argued otherwise is the deceased. This problem is inherent to all self-defense laws, not just stand your ground laws. Before passage of the law, Miami police chief John F. Timoney called the law unnecessary and dangerous in that “[w]hether it’s trick-or-treaters or kids playing in the yard of someone who doesn’t want them there or some drunk guy stumbling into the wrong house, you’re encouraging people to possibly use deadly physical force where it shouldn’t be used.”

 

In Florida, a task force specially appointed by the governor issued a report concurring with the core principles of the state’s stand your ground law, but recommending further legislative clarification of the requirement that the person asserting the defense not be engaged in “unlawful activity.” The report also recommended legislative standards for recognized neighborhood watch groups. An independent task force was convened by a state senator, which issued its own report and submitted it to the Governor’s Task Force. Among its recommendations was the unanimous conclusion that claims of self-defense be submitted to a grand jury prior to prosecution. One of the witnesses before the independent task force complained that the law is “confusing.” Those testifying to the independent task force included Buddy Jacobs, a lawyer representing the Florida Prosecuting Attorney’s Association. Jacobs recommended the law’s repeal, feeling that modifying the law would not fix its problems.

 

In a July 16, 2013 speech in the wake of the jury verdict acquitting George Zimmerman of charges stemming from the shooting death of Trayvon Martin, Attorney General Eric Holder criticized stand-your-ground laws, saying they “senselessly expand the concept of self-defense and sow dangerous conflict in our neighborhoods.” The relevance of the stand-your-ground provision of the self-defense law to the Zimmerman case has been questioned, however, because Zimmerman claimed he was restrained at the time of the shooting and had no option to retreat. Although Zimmerman’s defense team did not use the “stand your ground” defense during their trial and instead opted to use “self-defense” as their official defense, Circuit Judge Debra Nelson’s instructions to the jury included the statement that he had no duty to retreat as per Florida’s stand-your-ground law.

 

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States with Stand Your Ground and Castle Doctrine Laws

 

“Stand Your Ground Law” different states my differ slightly in their interpretation of the law:

 

Stand-your-ground laws allow someone to use force in self-defense when there is reasonable belief of a threat, without an obligation to retreat first. Generally, these laws require the person to (1) have a legal right to be at the location and (2) not be engaged in an unlawful activity.

 

State with Stand Your Ground Laws in Place:

 

Castle Doctrine Definition – again my differ slightly depending on each state:

 

The Castle Doctrine is a common law doctrine that designates a person’s abode (or, in some states, any place legally occupied, such as a car or place of work) as a place in which the person has certain protections and immunities and allows such a person in certain circumstances, to attack an intruder instead of retreating. Typically, deadly force is considered justified homicide only in cases when the actor reasonably feared imminent peril of death or serious bodily harm to oneself or another. The doctrine is not a defined law that can be invoked, but is a set of principles which is incorporated in some form in the law of most states. Forty-six states, includingConnecticut, have incorporated the Castle Doctrine into law.

 

States with Castle Doctrine laws in place

 

My advice to anyone of color is to avoid these states listed above unless you are armed legally and have a concealed carry permit.

 

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Concealed carry, or CCW (carrying a concealed weapon), refers to the practice of carrying a handgun or other weapon in public in a concealed manner, either on one’s person or in close proximity. Not all weapons that fall under CCW controls are lethal. For example, in Florida, carrying pepper spray in more than a specified volume (2 oz.) of chemical requires a CCW permit, whereas anyone may legally carry a smaller, so-called, “self-defense chemical spray” device hidden on their person without a CCW permit.

 

While there is no federal law specifically addressing the issuance of concealed carry permits, all 50 states have passed laws allowing citizens to carry certain concealed firearms in public, either without a permit or after obtaining a permit from local government and/or law enforcement. Illinois had been the last state without such a provision – but its long-standing ban on concealed weapons was overturned in a federal appeals court, on constitutional grounds. Illinois was required by the court to draft a concealed carry law by July 9, 2013 (including a 30-day extension) at which time the Illinois legislature, over-riding the amendatory veto of the governor who had sought to impose many restrictions, approved concealed carry to begin January 2014, at the latest.

 

The states give different terms for licenses or permits to carry a concealed firearm, such as a Concealed Handgun License/Permit (CHL/CHP), Concealed Carry Weapons (CCW), Concealed (Defensive/Deadly) Weapon Permit/License (CDWL/CWP/CWL), Concealed Carry Permit/License (CCP/CCL), License To Carry (Firearms) (LTC/LTCF), Carry of Concealed Deadly Weapon license (CCDW), Concealed Pistol License (CPL), etc. Thirteen states use a single permit to regulate the practices of both concealed and open carry of a handgun.

 

Some states publish statistics indicating how many residents hold permits to carry concealed weapons, and their demographics. For example, Florida has issued 2,031,106 licenses since adopting its law in 1987, and had 843,463 licensed permit holders as of July 31, 2011. Reported permit holders are predominantly male. Some states have reported the number of permit holders increasing over time. ”With hard numbers or estimates from all but three of the 49 states that have laws allowing for issuance of carry permits, the GAO reports that there were about 8 million active permits in the United States as of December 31, 2011. That’s about a million more than previous estimates by scholars.” 

 

The number of permits revocations is typically small. The grounds for revocation in most states, other than expiration of a time-limited permit without renewal, is typically the commission of a gross misdemeanor or felony by the permit holder. While these crimes are often firearm-related (including unlawful carry), a 3-year study of Texas crime statistics immediately following passage of CHL legislation found that the most common crime committed by CHL holders that would be grounds for revocation was actually DUI, followed by unlawful carry and then aggravated assault. The same study concluded that Texas CHL holders were always less likely to commit any particular type of crime than the general population, and overall were 13 times less likely to commit any crime.

 

 

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State laws

Regulations differ widely by state, with most states currently maintaining a “Shall-Issue” policy. As recently as the mid-’90s most states were No-Issue or May-Issue, but over the past 30 years states have consistently migrated to less restrictive alternatives. For detailed information on individual states’ permitting policies, see Gun laws in the United States by state.

 

Permitting policies

State regulations relating to the issuance of concealed carry permits generally fall into four categories described as Unrestricted, Shall Issue, May issue and No Issue.

 

Unrestricted

An Unrestricted jurisdiction is one in which no permit is required to carry a concealed handgun. This is sometimes called Constitutional carry.

Among U.S.states, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Vermont and Wyoming allow residents to carry a concealed firearm without a permit.

 

For a complete list of permit regulations state by state:

Permitting policies

 

Unrestricted

 

Shall-Issue

 

May-Issue

 

No-Issue

 

Limitations on CCW Permits

 

Training requirements

 

Reciprocity

 

Restricted Premises

 

Federal law

 

I suggest Black Americans take a page from our racist caucasian brethren and man up and arm up to defend our ground and the lives of our children.

 

It’s Stand YOUR Ground right now. It needs to be STAND OUR GROUND.

 

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Must Reads….

 

Most Shocking Stand Your Ground Incidents Of 2013

 

Black America: Wake Up. Arm And Defend Yourselves.

 

The Curious Case Of George Zimmerman

 

Stand Your Ground: NOT For Women OR people Of Color

 

 

Marrisa Alexander

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New Orleans Stand Your Ground Shooting Puts 14 Year Old Black Youth In Critical Condition

 

The Wild Wild West Is BACK “aka” Hunting Niggers

 

Facts 2 Truth 2 Knowledge 2 Power 2 Freedom

 

Know Which States Have Stand Your Ground AND Avoid Them If You’re Black.

 

From Arizona To Florida, Stand Your Ground Ends In Manslaughter

 

Facebook Killer Derek Medina Indicted, Claims Stand Your Ground

 

Major Stand Your Ground Law News Of 2013

 

19 Year Old Renisha McBride: Lynched By Stand Your Ground

 

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UN experts urge U.S. to examine stand your ground laws

 

Florida Man Kills Neighbors, Cites “Stand Your Ground” and “Bush Doctrine” as Defenses

 

Boycott The Racist Stand Your Ground Law States

 

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Guns In South Florida Schools: A Tragedy Waiting To Happen in “Stand Your Ground” Land

 

Stand Your Ground States Boycott Still Going

 

Ohio Stand Your Ground Opponents Using ‘Bush Doctrine’ Ideology Today

 

Stand Your Ground In Action: Dead Men Can’t Talk

 

Black American Injustice Continues: Commute The 25 Year Mandatory Minimum Sentence For Michael Giles.

 

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Florida Tweaks Stand Your Ground Law

 

Cleveland Joins List Of Ohio Cities Against Stand Your Ground

 

Celebrating ‘Guns Save Lives Day’ – ‘South Carolina Man Gets Off Thanks To ‘Stand Your Ground’ After Shooting And Killing Innocent Bystander’

 

Statement By Family Of Stand Your Ground Victim Darrell Niles

 

Justice Denied: Bystander Killed, Man Freed By Stand Your Ground

 

Mother In Stand Your Ground Movie, Son Is Victim Four Months Later

 

Lucy McBath, National Spokesperson for Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, to Testify at U.S. Senate Stand Your Ground Hearing

 

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Mother of Trayvon Martin Tells Senate Panel “Stand Your Ground” Laws Do Not Work and Should be Changed

 

Ms. Lucia McBath & Ms. Sybrina Fulton

Ms. Lucia McBath & Ms. Sybrina Fulton

 

At Stand Your Ground Hearing, Ted Cruz Argues Florida Law Helps African-Americans

 

Panel At US Senate Hearing Appears Against Stand Your Ground Laws

 

Stand your ground repeal rejected in Florida

 

Florida Lawmakers Kill Stand Your Ground Repeal Bill At Hearing

 

New Stand Your Ground Case: Caucasian Motorist in Accident Gunned Down In Poor Neighborhood Looking for Help

 

Can Renisha McBride Killer Claim Stand Your Ground Defense?

 

Stand Your Ground Gets Double Murder Charge Dropped

 

Stand Your Ground Cases That Make Us Gawk

 

Blind Man Who Killed Friend Freed By Stand Your Ground

 

Petitions Against Stand Your Ground Reach Over 500,000 Names

 

 

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In case you missed any of the post of this “Black History Moment Series”……

 

In Case You Missed This Series….Black History Month 2014 Presents: Celebrating Black History Month; The Black History Moment Series.

 

 

Black Panther Party founders Bobby Seale and Huey P. Newton standing in the street, armed with a Colt .45 and a shotgun. THIS is the only way to fight Stand Your Ground. Bring Back The Black Panther Party For Self Defense....Standing Their Ground.

Black Panther Party founders Bobby Seale and Huey P. Newton standing in the street, armed with a Colt .45 and a shotgun. THIS is the only way to fight Stand Your Ground. Bring Back The Black Panther Party For Self Defense….Standing Their Ground.

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Barack After Dark™: The Prez Is As Busy As Ever. CongrASS Is AS Invisible AS Usual.


 

By Jueseppi B.

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President Obama Speaks on Improving Fuel Efficiency for American Trucks

February 18, 2014 | 16:20 |Public Domain

 

President Obama lays out additional details for the plan he announced in the 2014 State of the Union to improve the fuel efficiency of American trucks and bolster energy security, cut carbon pollution, and spur manufacturing innovation.

 

 

FACT SHEET: Opportunity For All: Improving the Fuel Efficiency of American Trucks – Bolstering Energy Security, Cutting Carbon Pollution, Saving Money and Supporting Manufacturing Innovation

 

Remarks by the President on Fuel Efficiency Standards of Medium and Heavy-Duty Vehicles

 

 

Press Briefing

February 18, 2014 | 53:55 |Public Domain

 

White House Press Briefings are conducted most weekdays from the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room in the West Wing.

 

 

 

Lie Witness News — Presidents’ Day Edition

 

Published on Feb 18, 2014

We went out onto Hollywood Blvd. to tell people that President Franklin Delano Roosevelt died today. He actually died in 1945 but that didn’t stop people from remembering him fondly.

 

 

 

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The White House Blog

 

 

A Look At What They’re Saying About myRA Across the Country

 

Brandi Hoffine
February 18, 2014
06:20 PM EST

 

Ed. note: This is cross-posted from Treasury Notes, the official blog of the U.S. Department of the TreasurySee the original post.

 

Last month in the State of the Union, President Obama laid out specific executive actions he will take to put more Americans back to work and expand opportunity so that every American can get ahead. Speaking about the importance of securing a dignified retirement, the President announced that he would direct Treasury to create a new way for working Americans to start their own retirement savings. According to independent estimates, about half of all workers and 75 percent of part-time workers lack access to employer-sponsored retirement plans. That is why the Obama administration designed myRA (my Retirement Account) – a simple, safe, and affordable retirement savings account that will be offered through employers to help low- and moderate- income Americans begin to save for retirement.

 

Below is a look at what newspaper editorial boards and financial columnists across the country are saying.

 

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Kicking Vehicle Efficiency into High Gear

 

Dan Utech
Dan Utech

February 18, 2014
03:45 PM EST

 

President Barack Obama delivers remarks on improving the fuel efficiency of American trucks, at the Safeway Distribution Center in Upper Marlboro, Md., Feb. 18, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Amanda Lucidon)

President Barack Obama delivers remarks on improving the fuel efficiency of American trucks, at the Safeway Distribution Center in Upper Marlboro, Md., Feb. 18, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Amanda Lucidon)

 

When the President took office, the fuel efficiency standards for our cars had been stuck at 27.5 miles per gallon for twenty years – two decades of lost time when it comes to developing new technologies that can get more miles per gallon out of every tankful of gas. That’s why one of the very first actions the President took in office was to direct the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Transportation to work with the auto industry to develop new fuel economy standards for cars and trucks. It was guided by a belief that if this industry was truly going to come back stronger than before – and thrive over the long term – then we had to build the cars of the future right here in America. After all, improving fuel efficiency represents one of the best opportunities we have to reduce our dependence on oil.

 

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With the President’s leadership, we were able to move forward. Taken together, the standards the Administration has put in place for cars and light trucks span model years 2011 to 2025 and they represent the toughest fuel economy standards in history. Under this first-ever national program, average fuel efficiency for cars and trucks will nearly double, reaching an average performance equivalent of about 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025.

 

In 2011, the President also established the first-ever fuel efficiency and greenhouse gas standards for medium- and heavy-duty vehicles, covering model years 2014 through 2018. Over the lifetimes of the vehicles covered, trucks and buses will reduce oil consumption by a projected 530 million barrels and greenhouse gas pollution by approximately 270 million metric tons, saving vehicle owners and operators an estimated $50 billion in fuel costs.

 

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Today, the President directed the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Transportation to set the next round of fuel efficiency standards for medium- and heavy-duty trucks by March 2016. This next round of fuel efficiency standards will build on the historic work done to date, support American manufacturing innovation, and spur the development of new technologies. After years of idling on fuel efficiency, America’s truck fleet is on a straight road to lower emissions, fuel savings for drivers, and leading the world in advanced vehicles.

 

Check out our progress report, Improving the Fuel Efficiency of American Trucks, to learn more about today’s announcement and find out how the President is taking action on climate change by improving the efficiency of our vehicles.

 

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  • We the People Response: Reaffirming the White House’s Commitment to Net Neutrality

     

    Gene Sperling and Todd Park
    February 18, 2014
    02:06 PM EST

     

    Ed. note: Earlier today, the White House issued its response to a We the People petition on net neutrality. You can read it below, or see the response here.

     


     

    Thank you to everyone who has signed on to this petition in support of a free and open Internet. Since his days as a United States Senator, President Obama has embraced the principle of net neutrality. As the President recently noted, his campaign for the White House was empowered by an open Internet; it allowed millions of supporters to interact with the President and each other in unprecedented fashion. That experience helped give rise to the creation of this very platform — the We The People website– where Americans can express their opinions on any topic and receive a response from the White House. Rights of free speech, and the free flow of information, are central to our society and economy — and the principle of net neutrality gives every American an equal and meaningful opportunity to participate in both. Indeed, an open Internet is an engine for freedom around the world.

     

    Preserving an open Internet is vital not to just to the free flow of information, but also to promoting innovation and economic productivity. Because of its openness, the Internet has allowed entrepreneurs — with just a small amount of seed money or a modest grant — to take their innovative ideas from the garage or the dorm room to every corner of the Earth, building companies, creating jobs, improving vital services, and fostering even more innovation along the way.

     

    Absent net neutrality, the Internet could turn into a high-priced private toll road that would be inaccessible to the next generation of visionaries. The resulting decline in the development of advanced online apps and services would dampen demand for broadband and ultimately discourage investment in broadband infrastructure. An open Internet removes barriers to investment worldwide.

     

    A wide spectrum of stakeholders and policymakers recognize the importance of these principles. In the wake of last month’s court decision, it was encouraging to hear major broadband providers assert their commitment to an open Internet.

     

    It was also encouraging to see Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler, whom the President appointed to that post last year, reaffirm his commitment to a free and open Internet and pledge to use the authority granted by Congress to maintain a free and open Internet. The White House strongly supports the FCC and Chairman Wheeler in this effort.

     

    The petition asked that the President direct the FCC to reclassify Internet service providers as “common carriers” which, if upheld, would give the FCC a distinct set of regulatory tools to promote net neutrality. The FCC is an independent agency. Chairman Wheeler has publicly pledged to use the full authority granted by Congress to maintain a robust, free and open Internet — a principle that this White House vigorously supports.

 

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The Fifth Anniversary of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

 

Dive into the Presidency for President’s Day

 

Administration-Wide Response to the Drought

 

Weekly Address: Calling on Congress to Raise the Minimum Wage

 

Weekly Wrap Up: the French Visit, the President Raises the Wage for Federal Contractors, and More

 

First Lady Michelle Obama: “I Need You to See This”

 

 

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White House Week Ahead Schedule – February 19th to the 21st, 2014

 

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On Wednesday, the President will travel to Toluca, Mexico, to participate in the North American Leaders Summit. At the Summit, the President will discuss a wide range of issues including economic competitiveness and citizen security with Mexican President Peña Nieto and Canadian Prime Minister Harper.

 

On Thursday, the President will return from Toluca, Mexico and attend the Democratic Governors Association dinner.

 

On Friday, the President will meet with the Democratic governors in town for the annual National Governors Association Winter Meeting to discuss his Opportunity for All agenda and the Year of Action.

 

 

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Biden to visit Granite City, Ill. on Wednesday.

 

WASHINGTON–Vice President Joe Biden travels to Granite City, Illinois on Wednesday to visit America’s Central Port, a rail, river road shipping complex on the Illinois side of the Mississippi River.

 

From the White House: “The Vice President’s visit will mark the fifth anniversary of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and highlight the need for continued investment in infrastructure to create jobs and grow our economy. Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx and former Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood will also attend.”

 

 

!!!!!!barackphotooftheday

 

President Obama holds a meeting with African American civil rights leaders in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, February 18. Flanking the President are Attorney General Eric Holder and Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett with Rev. Al Sharpton, president of National Action Network, also attending.

President Obama holds a meeting with African American civil rights leaders in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, February 18. Flanking the President are Attorney General Eric Holder and Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett with Rev. Al Sharpton, president of National Action Network, also attending.

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President Obama Speaks At Safeway Distribution Center In Maryland

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President Barack Obama said he wants the environmental protection agency and the transportation department to implement a new round of fuel efficiency standards for medium and heavy-duty vehicles by March 2016.

President Barack Obama said he wants the environmental protection agency and the transportation department to implement a new round of fuel efficiency standards for medium and heavy-duty vehicles by March 2016.

Barack Obama

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