Friday, May 31, 2013
"A PROFESSIONAL photographer with a lengthy rap sheet died last week in a Philadelphia jail cell, and some people close to him are raising questions about the official account of his death.
The man, Zakee Vaughn, 29, of Willow Grove, Montgomery County, was shot May 12 by a Philadelphia Police officer on Oxford Avenue near Summerdale, in Northeast Philly's Summerdale section.
It was Mother's Day and Vaughn was with the mother of one of his two children. Lt. John Stanford, a police spokesman, said he was shot because he had tried to grab the gun from an officer's holster after cops, responding to the report of a domestic dispute, chased him on foot.
After eight days at Albert Einstein Medical Center, Vaughn was moved to the Detention Center on State Road, where authorities say he committed suicide by asphyxiation the first night....
Vaughn was a photography student at the Community College of Philadelphia and worked for a photo studio in Port Richmond. He had six arrests dating to 2003.
On the morning of May 21, having been released from Einstein the night before, Vaughn was found dead in his cell by workers in the Prison Health Services Wing at the Detention Center, a drawstring plastic bag wrapped around his head, according to Shawn Hawes, a prison spokeswoman. The Medical Examiner's Office ruled the death a suicide.
Hawes would not say how Vaughn had obtained the bag. She said the investigation into his death had ended.
Vaughn's mother, Carol Vaughn, said that prison officials had told her nothing and that she was unable to inquire further. She said she was looking for a lawyer.
In 2011, Vaughn was convicted on three counts of driving under the influence and was sentenced to 90 to 180 days in prison, but was put on immediate parole with credit for time served. He had been arrested three other times between 2008 and 2010 on charges ranging from assault to drug offenses and a DUI.
Still, friends say, Vaughn had changed.
"He was definitely a different person," said Shadeed Bradley, 29, a friend of Vaughn's since middle school, who disputed the official account of his death. "He was doing big things for himself."
Vaughn's employer, Calvin Childs of Aperture Studios in Port Richmond, said that he knew about Vaughn's criminal record when he hired him as an assistant in early March, but that he found him to be an honest, hard worker to whom he often entrusted the keys to his shop holding thousands of dollars worth of photographic equipment." [Story]
Remember young black men, you can catch a beat down from the po po for just a stare. (h/t Tia)
BTW, you white folks are not immune from cops behaving badly, so before you go thinking that it's just those Negroes; think again.
Madison Avenue always gives me the one black friend, the one who is always smiling with the group. I have even seen Gay couples and other interracial couples before, but I have never seen the black and white couple with the male being black.
Still, this is America, and given the nature of some of our fellow countrymen we know that the "post-racial" buzz was just an illusion.
The reality is quite different, and Cheerios had to disable the comments under the You Tube video because of all the vile racist comments that were being left.
And, speaking of comments, I found the following one under the New York Daily News article on the subject quite interesting.
"I just posted a comment on another story of a white woman having various sex acts with a dog and recording these acts on her phone. I was lamenting the fact that it was the fourth story within the last nine or so months where animals were so savagely assaulted and the responses to such atrocities by the public were largely tepid.
I turned to this story about the cheerios ad which features a fictional mixed race family and all hell has broken loose. well,well, well... Those of you who like to claim that racism is over or non-existent, here is your empirical answer. The racist savages in this country are so sick and twisted that they believe that it is okay if a white person rapes a dog. But showing a fictional interracial family with a black man as the head -- it's heresy. That is why any time a black person alleges an act of racism against them I almost always believe. Because racism , even though it is dying, is still very much alive and still is a potent force in this country. There is an unnatural fear of the Black man. Whatever stereotypes that the racists have in their minds about black masculinity, it stimulates this dread that the black man and the white would get together and that would leave the white man out. This is not likely to happen; but fear is not a rational thing. In societies where races freely mix only a certain percentage of each race would mix. Most races and cultures would stay within.
The problem with racism is that the leaders of this country from the very outset embarked on demonizing and dehumanizing the black man. Not only was he enslaved, but the white power structure, spent many millions of dollars and hundreds of years to create a false and negative image of the Black man. The power structure also expended resources to make sure that blacks were poor and powerless and thus without the wherewithal to pull themselves up from the valley of oppression. Whites upon seeing the condition of blacks and hearing from the white power structure that they were superior to blacks , believed it. Because humans love praise. People enjoy hearing that they are better than others. That is why, even today, if a racist hears any spectacular story of black success they would either try to deny it or downplay it. It is not easy hearing all your life that you are something special then wake up one day to the reality that you are not. You would fight violently against that. For example if someone were to come up with proof that God does not exist, most believers would fight violently against that truth. They may even try to kill the messenger. Long held beliefs, whether right or wrong, are not easily discarded. They have been unquestioningly held for too long.
So what we are seeing is the racist violently spinning out of control because he is beholding a new world which he does not understand. He does not understand it because he believes he is losing control of it. He longs for the time when he could just go out there and kill a non-white person with impunity. He misses the days when he could rape a non-white woman and nobody would care. The racist long for the days when nobody would take the word of a non-white person over his -- no matter his reputation. He had absolute power then. But they say absolute power corrupts absolutely. The white racist is absolutely corrupt. And he is fighting to keep it that way."
I think I will have Cheerios for breakfast tomorrow.