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December 12th: Justice for Black Lives Matter

BlackLivesMatterThe videotaped police murders of unarmed Black men have created a crisis in Black communities around the United States.  The history of failure by the criminal justice system and law enforcement bodies to hold those police responsible for their crimes has inevitably unleashed a rage among Black youth, particularly Black men.


We know how this scenario plays out.  The victims become evermore victimized.  The Black community’s response to the government’s failure to address the systemic racism and white supremacy rampant in the US now becomes the justification for a more heightened police presence and aggression within our communities.

This can only lead to more acts of unwarranted violence against and murder of Black people.  This cycle can only stop when we clearly and unequivocally identify its source.

Michael Brown to OTP: Are you serious????
You have Yossi Stern, a Jewish person trying to tell us Black people how to solve the problems they have brought upon us, yet when I asked if I could contribute to what I thought was a Black newspaper, I was referred somewhere else.


Stern’s entire paternalistic article is disgusting, as if we grown Black men and women don’t know the causes and solutions to our problems. You won’t give me a voice or allow me to address my community but Jewish people who own every major newspaper in America and New York, you can make space for his total nonsense. I could take this article and dispute it LINE by line but why should I or any other Black man waste his time; you don’t want to hear from us or what we have to say unless we are some feet-shuffling, sellout house Negroes…..He can’t recommend anything to me, his community has marginalized Blacks and Hispanics in NYC by giving .04 and .045% of city spent money to Black and Hispanics, respectively, which is less than 1% so do you think he would ever recommend the fair distribution of our tax dollars to be shared equally…..Until then, and until the unfair tax statements and the billion dollar properties given always to developers who are raping our communities of its resources by stealing properties and deeds from the rightful minority owners, building settlements in our communities where they won’t rent to the Black and Brown people that can afford it.

As your once-held-in-great-esteem newspaper pointed out when a Jewish developer said white people tell him they are not paying all that money for them to have Blacks live in the building — speaking about housing in our community–why won’t you allow me to address the problems facing my people in my community?

I have a degree in computers so it isn’t like I am so ignorant that someone from outside my community must speak for me …. and I am fearless !!!! The worst that can happen to you is they will buy out your newspaper for a billion dollars to shut me up and/or kill me to silence me. Either way, it is a win-win situation for you …  but please stop insulting me and Black people by publishing some garbage from someone who has no idea, no clue what ails Black communities or the remedies when they know exactly the who, what, why, when and how but will NEVER call for the  truth or the redistribution of monies they have a monopoly on. [Michael Brown, E-mail:]


 “Is this Patient Gentrification at Brooklyn Plaza Medical Center?”

Who made this decision to remove staff at Brooklyn Plaza Medical Center and why?


Brooklyn Plaza Medical Center is located at 650 Fulton St. in downtown Brooklyn. For years, it was a medical center where everyone who received health care felt like a person not a chart number. Consumers moved out of the city, state and country and still continued there at BPMC.

On June 16, 2016 Dr. Cary English, HIV Clinical Coordinator;  Dr. Erroll Byer, Jr., Chief Medical Officer; Gracie Ann Roberts, Physician’s Assistant; Horace Ward, Social Worker; and June Robinson, Director of the Rising Heights Program were all dismissed. The consumers of Brooklyn Plaza Medical Center were not informed, and had no input. The Client Advisory Board was not given respect or consideration when this baffling decision was made, without prior notice,  to fire, release or whatever excuse, to take away 5 staff members who were unjustly removed with no concern, no respect for their wonderful service to us and with nothing in place but to bring in a slew of new doctors.

I am the voice of and face of those who are diagnosed with HIV/AIDS who have been under the care of Dr. Cary English.  We are devastated with this news. In 1995, I received my HIV-positive diagnosis and was referred to a big hospital in Flatbush. I am passionate about this. I was not referred by any agency. I heard a whisper in my spirit look to the right as I was looking out the window in a daze. Then I was ushered to get off the bus and walk to look in the window of what I thought was a bank. I looked, to my amazement, the sign that said Dr. C. English, Clinical Director of the HIV Div., that inner voice said, “This Is Your Doctor”.

In a time when good health care is needed, I and many consumers are baffled and find ourselves in a health scare, especially those in the Rising Heights HIV Program.

No consideration was given in how we got this news on June 16th, 2016 that our providers were no longer there. I had called to double check my appointment, I was sadly told by the receptionist that he is not here. So I said that’s OK, I’m confirming an important appointment. Then they told me Dr. English was no longer there.


Many consumers of BPMC (for over 25 yrs.) walked in for appointments and left in tears. When I arrived for my HIV/AIDS care appointment I was told, “We can try to get you an appointment with the other doctor who comes in part-time”.  I was and I’m still in shock. Why weren’t we asked about these staff  members who were asked not to come back, escorted out and belongings brought to them?

On Wednesday,  July 27th,  2016 at 12 noon, we will be standing together in our 2nd protest to shed light on this decision that affects the lives of so many people. We need answers.  No one showed any regard to those who are serviced under these providers. Today, our doctors tomorrow could be yours.

“Is this Patient Gentrification?” We are asking anyone who was ever received or serviced here, have a family member or members who get any treatment here, to please STAND with us in unity. If you want to support us in opposing what was done and how it was done to us, the people, the consumers, see you there!!!!  Joyce McDonald, Consumer


Black Banks Should be Accountable

  While the practice of “supporting our own” is laudable, prior to making the move to black-owned banks it would be prudent to examine that bank’s history/policy of lending to, and otherwise support of, black businesses, black community institutions, and black individuals.


Typically, Jewish-owned banks in the USA serve the Jewish community as a priority. Chinese, Korean, and other ethnically-owned banks do the same for their own communities.

Many other ethnic and/or religious communities adhere to the tradition of “hawala” as a means to support members of their own community.

Muslim banks, in accordance with Muslim tradition, do not charge interest on loans. Usually they adhere to the traditional practice of “hawala” as a means to support members of their own community who seek financing.

Black-owned banks in the USA do none of this. Unfortunately these banks adhere entirely to the principles of “capitalism” to the detriment of the rest of us.

Unity is great – if it works both ways.  Judy Burnette


(See Black Banks story on Page 7)


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