Political Dugout

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Political Dugout

Postby EOCF » Mon Jul 13, 2015 5:34 pm

This is a nice little blend of sports and politics.

Obama commutes Demaryius Thomas' mother's prison sentence

Denver Broncos wide receiver Demaryius Thomas mother, Katrina Stuckey Smith, was one of the 46 federal drug offenders whose sentences were commuted by president Barack Obama.
"God is good.." Thomas wrote on his Facebook page. "Great news today, My Best lady come home November 10.. Godbless.."
Smith was sentenced to 292 months imprisonment after being guilty of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine and cocaine base.
"These men and women were not violent criminals, but the overwhelming majority had been sentenced to at least 20 years; 14 of them had been sentenced to life for nonviolent drug offenses, so their punishments didn't fit the crime," Mr. Obama said in a video released on the White House Facebook page, in which he is shown signing the commutation letters. "I believe that America, at its heart, is a nation of second chances, and I believe these folks deserve their second chance."


Personally, I think we need to see more of this. There is no simple answer to curbing drug use, treating addicts or combating what is clearly a "for profit" prison system at times, but this is an overall positive step. JMO.
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Re: Political Dugout

Postby R27 » Mon Jul 13, 2015 5:48 pm

EOCF wrote:This is a nice little blend of sports and politics.

Obama commutes Demaryius Thomas' mother's prison sentence

Denver Broncos wide receiver Demaryius Thomas mother, Katrina Stuckey Smith, was one of the 46 federal drug offenders whose sentences were commuted by president Barack Obama.
"God is good.." Thomas wrote on his Facebook page. "Great news today, My Best lady come home November 10.. Godbless.."
Smith was sentenced to 292 months imprisonment after being guilty of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine and cocaine base.
"These men and women were not violent criminals, but the overwhelming majority had been sentenced to at least 20 years; 14 of them had been sentenced to life for nonviolent drug offenses, so their punishments didn't fit the crime," Mr. Obama said in a video released on the White House Facebook page, in which he is shown signing the commutation letters. "I believe that America, at its heart, is a nation of second chances, and I believe these folks deserve their second chance."


Personally, I think we need to see more of this. There is no simple answer to curbing drug use, treating addicts or combating what is clearly a "for profit" prison system at times, but this is an overall positive step. JMO.

There's really a lot more to this, especially for Thomas' mom. His mom was given the opportunity to plead guilty and do 4 years, and they had overwhelming evidence against her, but she decided to go to trial against the advice of her lawyer because she had some magic candles that were supposed to keep the law away.

I can get on board with minor drug possession offenses being handled more leniently, but at some level there is intent to distribute and that is what should really be punished.
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Political Dugout

Postby EOCF » Mon Jul 13, 2015 6:49 pm

Sounds like she has waaaay more than just a drug problem to deal with.
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Re: Political Dugout

Postby marteezy » Thu Jul 23, 2015 4:28 pm

What we need to do is address the reasons why people are forced to consider drug dealing as a means to bring in income.

No one aspires to be a drug dealer, but circumstances, many beyond their control make them seek out underground means of income.
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Re: Political Dugout

Postby chevyman58 » Thu Jul 23, 2015 8:41 pm

We need to figure out how to help the burglars, armed robbers, muggers and pickpockets too. Nobody aspires to do those things, just pour souls who've not gotten the opportunities they deserve. Everybody gets a trophy.
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Re: Political Dugout

Postby Tulcard » Thu Jul 23, 2015 10:57 pm

marteezy wrote:What we need to do is address the reasons why people are forced to consider drug dealing as a means to bring in income.

No one aspires to be a drug dealer, but circumstances, many beyond their control make them seek out underground means of income.


Seriously? Sorry for the reaction....something beyond my control forced me to post this.... :shock:
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Re: Political Dugout

Postby marteezy » Fri Jul 31, 2015 9:23 am

Tulcard wrote:
marteezy wrote:What we need to do is address the reasons why people are forced to consider drug dealing as a means to bring in income.

No one aspires to be a drug dealer, but circumstances, many beyond their control make them seek out underground means of income.


Seriously? Sorry for the reaction....something beyond my control forced me to post this.... :shock:


Yes, seriously. Look beyond yourself and place yourself in someone else's shoes before you judge.

If you don't know what it's like to be poor, black and live in a hopeless situation in the ghetto, don't make judgmental comments because you don't know what your talking about.
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Re: Political Dugout

Postby chevyman58 » Fri Jul 31, 2015 9:58 am

********************************************************************************************************************************
marteezy wrote: Look beyond yourself and place yourself in someone else's shoes before you judge.

********************************************************************************************************************************


After I picked myself up off the floor I checked 3 times to make sure I was seeing correctly who actually wrote that.

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Re: Political Dugout

Postby Tulcard » Fri Jul 31, 2015 10:45 am

MT, first of all don't ever tell me to look beyond myself. You don't know me, what background I came from or anything about my life. So get off your high horse man.

I have many Black friends and clients who began their lives in unfortunate circumstances yet have made the choice to get out of their situations educate themselves and make something of their lives. However, being poor and living in a hopeless situation is not limited to race or skin color. Surely an intelligent man like yourself realizes this.

I commend you, or anyone else who reach out to help others realize there is a different path to take in their lives. We all have personal struggles to overcome in life regardless of where we came from or our skin color. We all have choices to make. To become a productive member of society or a destructive one.

Some cannot, or will not make the effort to escape the generations of living in poverty. It's unfortunate but that is the way it is.
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Re: Political Dugout

Postby chevyman58 » Fri Jul 31, 2015 2:45 pm

Apparently MT has never been to the lesser-known territories of Oklahoma.

Or watched an episode of Honey Boo-Boo.
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Re: Political Dugout

Postby marteezy » Fri Jul 31, 2015 3:02 pm

Instead of being lazy and laying blame, we should work towards a solution to the poverty and educational inequities that plague most of the urban communities.

People that don't know from first hand knowledge will never understand. And some choose to be willfully ignorant because it's easier that way.
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Re: Political Dugout

Postby chevyman58 » Fri Jul 31, 2015 7:31 pm

OK

Take some time & layout your ideas on how to get started. Be sure & include actions by ALL involved, including the downtrodden.

Instead of just repeating the same stuff over & over & over (see years & years of these 'discussions' we had at CCH) how about finally laying out an initial action plan, how about suggesting some solutions?

Every time we try to do so you belittle them. Your turn.
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Re: Political Dugout

Postby marteezy » Sat Aug 01, 2015 11:17 am

chevyman58 wrote:OK

Take some time & layout your ideas on how to get started. Be sure & include actions by ALL involved, including the downtrodden.

Instead of just repeating the same stuff over & over & over (see years & years of these 'discussions' we had at CCH) how about finally laying out an initial action plan, how about suggesting some solutions?

Every time we try to do so you belittle them. Your turn.


I'm glad you asked. To me, the bedrock is education. This is where it all starts and ends.

Right now across America, the revenue generated by property tax is the prime driver for the funding of our schools. The more affluent areas where property values are higher generate more revenue than impoverished areas. This simple difference creates a gap in the quality of education. More affluent areas are able to get top teaching talent because their districts are able to pay higher salaries. Impoverished districts have to get either inexperienced teachers are less motivated or skilled teachers.

If it were my call, I'd put all of the property tax revenue in one barrel and divide it equally. Thus leveling the funding playing field. Additionally, since working in the ghetto isn't a prime goal for many, I'd offer incentive pay for qualified teachers that were willing to take their talents to the inner city. What would qualify them? A combination of performance history, experience, education level and certifications. You get better talent in some of these schools, you will see sharp improvement in the performance of the students.

Secondly, I would make an investment in highly qualified guidance counselors with the primary emphasis being on life after high school. I would demand that they take a proactive approach towards counseling. Your students that are high achievers work with them to get them in four year colleges; your students that show effort and improvement, work with them on getting into community colleges; and then your students that struggle, direct them towards the trades. In my opinion, every school district should have a close relationship with the local community colleges and trade schools. By first day of a kids senior year in high school, that child should know exactly what their plan is for continuing their education after high school.

Employment

The next piece of the puzzle is employment. If you build it they will come! As we are seeing in St. Louis, the city and state are jumping through hoops to keep the Rams in St. Louis. They are figuring out ways to get more and more money to subsidize a stadium for a billionaire. The effort is impressive but in my opinion its a bit misguided. They can use that money and put it to good use in communities that need it more than E. Stan Kroenke.

If it were my call. I would level the abandoned buildings in the ghettos, rezone some of the areas and build industrial parks with the goal of luring companies and businesses into these communities. The work of tearing down, cleaning up and building would provide work to a large number of people in those communities. And the companies that would eventually take up residence in these parks would be able to employ people in these areas.

Law enforcement

I'm a believer in the broken windows theory of policing. The theory is sound, if you clean up the small stuff, the big stuff will go away. The problem with broken windows is the execution. As we've seen in New York, where 'stop and frisk' is a driver in broken windows disproportionately impacts blacks and latinos. This comes from not having enough police officers in these communities that understand, can relate to or look like the residents they are serving.

I would make a push to recruit and hire more minority officers. I would recruit heavily in urban communities and impoverished neighborhoods. I would then use these officers to patrol the areas in which they live or are familiar with. Using 'broken windows' and a more community based policing approach you will minimize the chances of incidents like Eric Garner, Mike Brown or Samuel DuBose occurring.

I think these three efforts alone would make a significant improvement and provide a sense of ownership of their communities to people that don't feel as if they have any control or ownership of anything.

There are far too many misguided beliefs about the reasons for poverty in this country. There are some of you that believe that minorities are genetically predisposed to poverty or that they come from a culture of poverty borne from inappropriate traditions in the subcultures of the communities, ethnic groups or homes. Some believe that individualism is king and a persons success or failure is based on their effort rather than the social circumstances that they may find themselves in. Others believe in essentialism which states that less privileged groups (blacks, hispanics, native americans) inherit genetic characteristics that account for whatever lack of success they have or is the main driver of criminality.

All of these are wrong. They are flat wrong. All people need is a chance, a fair chance, to live, learn and pursuit happiness.

So that's what I would do if I were given the opportunity. And people that believe in those principles are the people that I vote for.

Tulcard wrote:Some cannot, or will not make the effort to escape the generations of living in poverty. It's unfortunate but that is the way it is.


Two questions for you.
1. What do you think caused the generations of poverty?
2. Why do you believe people can't escape the grips of poverty?
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Re: Political Dugout

Postby chevyman58 » Sat Aug 01, 2015 1:33 pm

Great ideas.

Serious question - why don't you run for an elected position, or position yourself for an appointed one to get on the ladder, where you can begin to influence a more positive direction and initiate interest in your ideas?
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Re: Political Dugout

Postby marteezy » Sat Aug 01, 2015 4:10 pm

chevyman58 wrote:Great ideas.

Serious question - why don't you run for an elected position, or position yourself for an appointed one to get on the ladder, where you can begin to influence a more positive direction and initiate interest in your ideas?


I've considered it. I'm very active within my community. Maybe in the next couple years I'll seek opportunities to try my hand at my city council.

If I lived in St. Louis is definitely do it. But I'm not going to live there ever again.

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