Reno Gazette-Journal
4 Nov. 2015

As we were preparing for the 70th annual Reno/Sparks branch NAACP Freedom Fund Banquet “Pursuing Liberty in the Face of Injustice”, I was shocked and dismayed to see an extremely uninformed column “Anger at ‘Black Lives’ “ (Oct. 25) written by Randi Thompson.

Patricia Gallimore

Ms. Thompson not only is confused about her frustration with union and union leader antics while praising public servants who comprise the unions, is upset that people can not understand that even illegal citizens’ lives matter and is angered at Black Lives being recognized.

Black Lives Matter is a movement that seeks to shed light on the undisputed fact that people of color have a different and negative engagement with law enforcement in this country.
African Americans historically and systematically are ignored economically, educationally and politically to the point where there is a perceived need by our leaders to take care of the entire Black, or for that matter, Native, Hispanic or fill in the blank ‘other’ cultures they treat normally as their pets.

Those issues ultimately need to be addressed, but we will discuss why ‘Black Lives Matter’ matters.

Research indicates that every 28-hours a black man, woman, or child is murdered by police or vigilante law enforcement.

Black Lives Matter is not anti-police officer and it’s not anti-white, it just seeks to focus attention on the disparate outcomes for people of color, most notably young black men.

A more accurate title would have been “Black Lives Matter TOO."

There are efforts all over the country to address black on black crime. And Northern Nevada is in the
forefront concerning innovative ideas, such as The President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing and
prisoner release programs to cull inmate populations. The Reno-Sparks NAACP is providing input into
those, and many other, projects seeking advisory consultation.

If the writer actually cared about the country or making a positive difference, she would have done a
little research and not just put her uninformed bias on display for the entire community to behold. In
fact, Ms. Thompson is welcome to join us at the NAACP to effect these structural alterations.

Ms. Thompson and her like-minded followers should know that crime in all communities is intra-racial.
About 90 percent of black homicide victims are killed by black offenders. But this is the part everyone
needs to be clear about; white people kill each other at roughly the same rate. We should also talk
about white on white crime and the overall violence in our country as compared to other countries.

The roots of crime are structural. Socioeconomic factors rather than inherent criminality,
dependence on government, or cultural pathologies as suggested by the author, are also keys to
explaining cause and effect in the behavior of Blacks in America.

What we are witnessing around the country is our young Black people being slaughtered! The
warmongering criminal perpetrators don’t even have to face the judicial system if they are any part of
law enforcement!

This is egregious and goes against everything our country should symbolize. Because the treatment is
grossly unfair, the Black Lives Matter movement is necessary. Our Black children matter enough to
receive the same protections under the Constitution as white children. However, equality seems to be
a foreign concept to most of Americans when it threatens their power.

President Obama has gone to the site of every mass shooting and talked about the need for reforms.

Most of those victims were not black. Yes, the far right forgets Obama was birthed and reared by a
white mother and for someone to say that he only cares about black people is empty, destructive and
racially inflaming rhetoric that seeks to get a reaction rather than present a reasonable line of

The overall content of Ms. Thompson’s comments was offensive, as was the tone. We have to have an
honest dialogue about why people are so open to hate, open to injustice, open to gross

generalizations about entire communities. “Anger at ‘Black Lives’” is an article that increases, not
disperses, the pain, degradation and disrespect Blacks, and most other neglected and despised
minority groups, feel from the legally controlling ruling class.

Bigoted Reno Gazette-Journal column debunked
By Dennis Myers / Reno News & Review 10-29-2015

Where is the fact checking?

It's time to remove Randi Thompson's column. Her latest screed "'Black lives matter' implies other lives don't'" was an appalling compilation of distortions and inanities.

The low-hanging fruit: No, President Obama did not honor Whitney Houston instead of Chris Kyle. A quick snopes.com check would have corrected that Rush Limbaugh-created lie.

Chris Christie did demand New Jersey's flags fly at half-staff. Representatives were sent to funerals during riots, not because of skin color.

People of color are disproportionately stopped, harassed, imprisoned and sometimes killed by the police. This is what four decades of "tough of crime" policing looks like. This is such a problem that The Guardian, a respected British newspaper, has an ongoing investigation called "The Counted."

Unarmed black men are being killed at a disproportionate rate (30.1% compared to19% whites, 25% Latino and something horrific like 28% of indigenous people. The Guardian doesn't count them separately.)

"Black Lives Matter" is not a threat to white people or to cops. It's an appeal to stop allowing this awful disparity in justice.

This is America, not apartheid South Africa. Let's apply equal justice to ALL people.

Jacqueline Simonds

— Reno Gazette-Journal letter to the editor, 29 Oct. 2015, page 4A
Keeping up with pop references: Completing compelling commentary upon which has been imposed a word-limit straitjacket — >

Whitney Houston (1963-2012) was an African-American superstar singer who starred with Kevin Costner in the 1992 hit film "The Bodyguard," for which she sang and made a megahit of Dolly Parton's "I will always love you."

Chris Kyle (1974-2013) was a U.S. Navy SEAL murdered at a Texas gun range by a troubled colleague suffering from PTSD who is now serving life in prison. Kyle was the subject of the 2014 major Hollywood film "American Sniper" starring Bradley Cooper and directed by Clint Eastwood.

Rush Limbaugh is a nationally-syndicated talk radio host whose misogyny and bigotry have made him a millionaire many times over.

Chris Christie is the Republican governor of New Jersey.

The Guardian began its database on police-involved homicides after viewing D. Brian Burghart's groundbreaking research in the Reno News & Review, for which he and his colleagues received the Reno-Sparks NAACP's highest honor, the Eddie Scott/Bertha Woodard Human Rights Advocacy Award at the Branch's 70th Annual Freedom Fund Banquet on 24 Oct. 2015.


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