Monday, February 8, 2016

Her Name is Christine Ledlow: 15 Minutes Away from Shift Ending, Two Blacks Gun Down White Store Clerk in Mississippi

She was performing the role an immigrant is expected to do in 2016 America. 

After all, why would a white person work in such a vocation as a convenience store clerk, when these positions are supposed to go to down-on-their-luck immigrants merely trying to better themselves and live the American Dream? 
Christine Ledlow, left, and her daughter: 15 minutes away from clocking out, she'd become just another white person murdered by blacks in what was once the United States of America
What kind of absolute loser, what kind of white trash would work such a remedial job? 

Well, the kind of white person whose individual contribution once built a nation. 

The kind of white person whose execution is hardly a news item worthy of mentioning outside of the backwards town she called home.

After all, what self-respecting white person hasn't sacrificed the future for their children just so some 3rd world immigrant can perform the duty of being a gas station clerk? [Store clerk's daughter leaves heartbreaking tribute,, 2-2-16]:
The Mapco where a clerk was shot and killed is still closed for now. The only person around is a security guard.  
However, people who knew the clerk are still reeling while police hunt for the second suspect after the first suspect was turned into police by his own parents. 
"When I heard about it this morning, my heart broke for her just knowing that could have been me," coworker Nicole Harville said. 
The clerk was shot multiple times at approximately 5:30 a.m. Monday at the Mapco gas station on Highway 72 East. 
She later died from her injuries. Police confirmed the victim was 43-year-old Christine Ledlow. 
Coworkers added that she was just 15 minutes from the end of her shift when the shooting happened. 
Corinth Police Department said it received dozens of tips about the two suspects. 
Within an hour, they had tips and within five hours, a suspect was behind bars. 
The black males who murdered Christine 
The police chief contacted the parents of one of the suspects. Those parents brought the 17-year-old to the police station. The second suspect is still at large. 
Corinth Police Chief Ralph Dance said two teens went into the store to rob it. He believes the teens panicked and opened fire when the clerk hit the panic button. He does not believe the shooting was gang related. 
"They had no reason to kill her. She put her hands up. She would have given them anything in the store,” one Corinth native said. 
Ledlow's coworkers said she'd been working at the convenience store for six years. They noted that many people see her every morning and get a cup of coffee. They said Ledlow was well-liked around town. 
"It’s disturbing,” Police Chief Ralph Dance said. “You don't want to think people are that cold-hearted. She has a family. She is a hard working lady. For someone to gun her down for no reason for money that they didn't even take.” 
Ledlow's coworkers said she leaves behind two daughters, 17 and 20 years old. 
As the coworkers stood outside the gas station Monday, they said the store will never be the same. 
Ledlow's daughter posted a heart wrenching tribute to her mother on Facebook. 
It's a tribute to a woman she describes as beautiful, her biggest supporter and someone who is now looking down on her from heaven and smiling.
Fifteen minutes.

Fifteen minutes away from clocking out and then two black males walk in to her store.

Micah Bostic and Brooklyn Taylor.

And only fifteen minutes away from clocking out, Christine Ledlow would never again leave the store to see her children.

There is no United States of America anymore, only a country people vaguely remember as once being a nice place to live. Now this great, big landmass is nothing more than a place where we work, shop, eat, and sleep with the greatest of hope that in between these events we don't become just another nameless individual murdered by a black person. WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Saturday, February 6, 2016

“We never harm tourists. Never. Got that. We keep our shit to ourselves": Life in 80% Black Selma, the Most Dangerous City in Alabama

Years ago, I went to 80 percent black Selma, Alabama. I walked across the Edmund Pettus Bridge, the most iconic Civil Rights monument in America, trying to imagine just what those white police officers dared defend on that bridge nearly 50 years before (the trip was in 2011). 

You see, we live in the post-Selma world, one where white people have lost all moral authority and even daring to speak favorably of anything remotely positive of whites means you yearn for a return to a world of segregation and Jim Crow (actually, I advocate the same goals of the American Colonization Society).
Visiting Selma and crossing the Edmund Pettus Bridge means entering a city in 2016 whose 80 percent black population has performed exactly how white people long ago feared they would when left to their own devices... and the civilization whites built for their posterity crumbles 

Those white police officers on Edmund Pettus Bridge back in 1965 were defending civilization as defined by the type of world European-descended people build, maintain, and pass on to their posterity. 

Today, we live in a rapidly disintegrating society where memories of a better yesterday are but a bitter reminder of the horrors of tomorrow. 

And 80 percent black Selma in 2016 (a city with a black mayor, a black police chief, a black district attorney and a majority black city council), is representative of exactly what white people long ago knew would happen to their civilization in both their absence and with black-rule.

Because of persistent black violence, the city has hosted not-so-national-media-friendly "stop the violence" marches in 2010 and 2014, unconvincingly asking black people to stop killing each other. 

But the 80 percent black residents of Selma, who have helped make the city Alabama's most violent, continue to provide a paradise for white journalists - still stuck in a pre-Selma mindset - a veritable wonderland for woe-is-me-let's-blame-the-white-man-for-our-predicament stories. ['Still a city of slaves' – Selma, in the words of those who live there: A beacon for the civil rights movement 50 years ago, the Alabama city’s largely African American population today struggles with joblessness, poverty and drugs, The Guardian, 2-4-16]:

Ten figures clambered over piles of rubble from the old cotton warehouse, picking up bricks. It was a cold day for Selma, Alabama, close to freezing, and as the sun disappeared they gathered to warm their hands over makeshift fires. 
For 10 hours they removed bricks from piles mixed with wood and metal, chipping each recovered brick free of mortar, and then stacked them. The bricks were handmade in the 1870s, and a foreman was paying them between $10 and $20 in cash for a pile of 500.  
It was hard work. A pile took about half the day to gather, and most quit from fatigue after one go. An older man watched them: “Everyone heard about this job, but few want to do it, because it pays nothing, and lots of people been hurt doing it. But there are no jobs here in Selma. Especially if you got a record, and almost everyone in Selma has a record.” Nobody knew who owned the old warehouse, although most reckoned it was a white man: “They own everything around here.” 
A brick buyer from a construction firm came to look at the pile. “Handmade bricks, especially historical ones like this, are in demand. They often sell for over a dollar per brick.” 
Jennifer had spent the day picking bricks, and wasn’t complaining, “I am a single mother with five kids. I will do any work, and this is the only work in town.” 
A man on a break, his hands bleeding beneath a cloth wrap, smoked a cigarette. “This is slave work, that’s what it is, but the only work around. Kind of funny when you think about it, because them bricks were probably made by slaves. That is Selma for you, though: still a city of slaves.” 
Driving towards Selma, you are constantly reminded by historical markers that although once a city of slavery, the city now symbolizes civil rights. The march to secure voting rights for African Americans in 1965 originated there, and is celebrated in a film named after the city. 
Crossing over the river into Selma is another reminder; the Edmund Pettus Bridge is recognizable from newsreels of Bloody Sunday, when marchers were beaten by the police, or from last year when President Obama came to mark the 50th anniversary of that day. The central street beyond the bridge is three short blocks filled with shops catering to tourists. 
Yet if you walk beyond those blocks you see the ugliness of poverty that is modern Selma: dilapidated and boarded-up homes tagged with gang symbols, empty lots littered with vodka bottles and fast-food wrappers, and sterile low-income projects. You see men clustered on corners selling drugs, and on the better-kept homes you see sign after sign urging, “Stop the violence”. You don’t see working factories, only empty ones being torn down for scrap.You see a population disenfranchised, economically and politically. It makes Selma, a symbol of past civil rights victories, a symbol of current civil rights failures. 

Marcus, 55, moved to Selma when he was a baby. “Everyone always saying we don’t have jobs because of things we lack, but it ain’t what we lack, it’s what we have: black skin. When I was a boy we had to cross through the white neighborhood to get to school, and they used to sic the dogs on me and my younger sister. I left Selma and joined the military. When I came back, nothing much changed. They don’t sic dogs on you any more, but they stack so much against you that it might as well just be dogs.” 

Council McReynolds, 52, has spent his entire life in Selma, and wishes he could leave. “All the factories that used to be here are closed: the candy factory, the furniture company, they all picked up and moved when we elected a black mayor.” 
His house is one of only two on the long block that isn’t abandoned and boarded up. The one next to his is half-burned-down, the others sit empty, although a few people squat in them. “Selma ain’t like that movie. There everyone is shown working together and putting the past behind them. But the reality is Selma has been left behind, and folks are certainly not working together.” 
When I asked him about one of the empty buildings next to his, he smiled, “That ain’t empty at all. There is a family living there, being charged by a landlord.” 
Council’s block is not an anomaly in Selma. Boarded-up or falling-down houses make up about a quarter of the city. Many other buildings, which in other places would be considered derelict, with broken windows, porches filled with holes, are stunningly being used as rentals. 

Melvin Barnes, 39, met me in the low-income projects that surround the Brown Chapel AME church, a historical landmark that was center of the voting rights march. He grew up in Selma, started dealing at 17, and got caught up in the street life. 

“Everyone around me had guns, everyone around me dealt, and I got caught up in it. I got a gun when I was 14, carried it around, and shot it a lot. Everyone did.” 
Seven years ago, he got into a “street altercation” that ended with a bullet meant for him almost hitting a child next to him. “I came home from that, and looked at my child, and hugged him. I knew I had to stop the game.” He quit drugs and now hosts a daily radio show, and works the streets, urging others to stop the violence. 

Melvin took me to the old abandoned home he sleeps in when homeless. “I haven’t had any money since I quit dealing, nobody is gonna give a former drug user like me a job.” 
At the spot where we talked, Antoine Stallworth was shot and killed only a few yards away from the church two weeks before on New Year’s Eve. It was the last murder in Selma of 2015, bringing the total to 11, and making Selma (population about 20,000) one of the most violent cities in the US, with murder rates more than 10 times the national average. 

My last two days in Selma were spent with Escrow, 34 (named changed), who has four felony convictions, for drugs, guns and attempted murder. He moved to Selma at the age of 14, brought to live with his grandmother by a mother addicted to crack. When he shook my hand, he smiled, flashing a row of missing teeth, “Welcome to the real hood. Selma don’t play games.” 
He has been shot six times and shot many others. “I don’t know how many times I shot at people. I am just a shooter, always have been.” 
He talks quietly and methodically, only stopping to sell drugs – “excuse me, I got to make a deal”. 
When I ask about guns in Selma, he grimaces. “When I got here, everybody had a gun, everybody was shooting. I needed to be like them. I learned quickly you got to escalate, or guys will see you as weak, and shoot you dead, so I escalated.” 
He always carries a gun, except when on his block. 

t the end of my last day in Selma, exhausted from seeing so much pain, I sat outside the Brown Chapel AME church, watching kids play, and making small talk with a group of men. I went to take the picture of the kids, and forgetting their age, started my normal interview, “Do you like Selma? What was it like growing up here?” 
They all looked at me confused, except one girl, Robin, aged nine. “No I don’t like Selma. Not at all. Too much shooting and my momma can’t find a job. That is why we are moving to Florida.” 
As I photographed the kids in front of the sunset, a BMW pulled up. Two tourists got out to look at the Brown chapel. The gang of men, including Escrow, watched them, wondering where they were from. I went over and talked to the tourists who were from Ontario and excited to see places they knew from the movie, but concerned about their safety. 
When I came back and told the men where the tourists had come from they all whistled in proud disbelief. “Damn, CANADA. Wow. They came all the way from Canada to see Selma?” 
I also mentioned their fears of the neighborhood. Escrow stopped playing with his phone, looked at me, eyes drilling into me, smile gone. 
“We never harm tourists. Never. Got that. We keep our shit to ourselves. They come here because special things DID happen here. Just wish they would happen again.”
Like the Canadians, I too once went to Selma as a tourist, but unlike our friendly neighbors from the north, I visited the city not to massage my white guilt muscles (do white liberals get some weird sexual satisfaction seeing the city?); my visit to Selma was to see a visual representation of exactly what those white cops dared stop from ever coming to fruition. 

White liberals see Selma as eternally stuck in 1965, congratulating themselves over and over again for being on the "right side of history."

In reality, the civilization white people built in Selma is becoming nothing more than history, the very bricks once forming the bedrock of their civilization being chipped away and sold for pocket-change.  

Thursday, February 4, 2016

His Name is Mike Gilotti: Two Black Teens Murder White Iraq War Veteran in Hoover, Alabama

Unless you were paying attention, the murder of a Hoover, Alabama man as he went to workout in early January 2016 was probably something you never, ever read about. A platoon leader and 1st Lt. in the George W. Bush war with Iraq, Mike Gilotti is now just another name added to a roll-call few have the time to bother hearing. 
Sons of Obama: A picture the two black murderers of Mike Gilotti gleefully posed for to be added to their social media pages...
Yet another white person murdered by blacks. [2nd teen charged in murder of Hoover father, Iraq veteran,, 2-4-16]:
A second teen is now charged in the shooting death of a Hoover husband, father and Iraq war veteran. 
Authorities today announced a murder charge against 17-year-old Ahmad Johnson. He is charged in the slaying of 33-year-old Mike Gilotti who was gunned down Jan. 5, and then collapsed and died on the front steps of his Lake Cyrus home. 
Mike Gilotti, with sons Russel (left) and Kevin.
A Jefferson County grand jury six days ago indicted Johnson and 16-year-old Charleston Wells, each on one count of murder and nine counts of unlawful breaking and entering a vehicle. 
Johnson has been in custody since Jan. 7, held in Jefferson County's Family Court system. He is now charged as an adult, and expected to be transferred to the Jefferson County Jail where Wells has been held without bond since January. At least two other suspects are in custody on other charges, but they have not yet been named or charged in Gilotti's death. 
"Please understand we will continue to investigate this case until we are satisfied that everybody involved is behind bars," Hoover police Chief Nick Derzis said at a press conference held today to announce Johnson's arrest. 
Investigators today said Johnson, Wells and the other suspects are members of a Bessemer-area gang called M-tre, which stands for Money Making Mafia. Though they claim to be aspiring rappers, Rector said M-tre members are street criminals who break into cars and commit other crimes to get money. They often post pictures of themselves on Facebook and other social media sites holding guns and money. 
"I called them common street thugs at our last press conference and I think that still is an appropriate term to describe them,'' said Hoover police Capt. Gregg Rector. "They're not aspiring rappers, they're criminals. They're criminals who break into cars for a living. In this case, they're property thieves who when confronted by a homeowner, they take that to a whole new level and shoot and kill an innocent person." 
"Their motto is 'get money.' When they talk about getting money, that means taking money from you, and I, and people who actually have jobs and earn money for a living,'' Rector said. "Getting money to them means stealing from innocent victims. That's their existence."
Mike Gilotti was just another white American who believed the United States of America still existed. 

It doesn't. 

This is not a cynical or nihilistic point of view, but a reality more and more are beginning to understand. 

I grew up in an exceedingly Christian household, but have long lost the faith sustaining the insane reactions of people like Davey Blackburn and the Lash's of Atlanta, who have encountered pure evil and yet found forgiving murderers or would-be murderers a worthy action, even though these black individuals who did the unspeakable harm never asked for forgiveness. 

When one reads about the final moments of Mike Gilotti's life, who served in the United States Military and was deployed in the Middle East, the first thought that comes to mind is simply this: do a people who lack the will to live have a future on this earth? [Family mourns man killed at Lake Cyrus home: 'Nothing prepared me to hold my husband bleeding at my front doorstep, with my son yelling ‘Daddy’ and my baby crying in the other room.',, 1-6-16]:

While family members mourn his loss, Hoover police are still looking for a suspect in the death of 33-year-old Mike Gilotti. 
The father and Iraq war veteran was killed by a single gunshot as he stood in his Lake Cyrus driveway Tuesday morning. 
"I just keep replaying it in my head right now. I just hear that gunshot,” said Heather Gilotti, Mike Gilotti's wife. "I'm struggling with the thought of losing my best friend. I never thought I'd be making funeral arrangements at 32 years old for my spouse." 
Heather Gilotti met Mike Gilotti at air assault school in Hawaii before he served as a platoon leader in Iraq. Back home, he was working for an insurance company. She is a physical therapist. The couple are parents to two young children – Russell, age 5, and Kevin, age 1. Life was good until early Tuesday morning, when she heard a gunshot and Mike Gilotti yelling to call 911. 
"I opened the door and he fell into my arms, and I tried to do CPR. Nothing prepared me to hold my husband bleeding at my front doorstep, with my son yelling ‘Daddy’ and my baby crying in the other room," she said. 
They were planning to go zip-lining Monday for their eighth anniversary. 
Instead, Mike Gilotti's funeral will take place Sunday. 
"I've already told the older one that his daddy is in heaven right now looking down on him and is so proud of him,” Heather Gilotti said. 
Faith was an important aspect of life for the Gilotti family.  
“I don't think I've had more peace in my heart than right now. I can't explain,” Heather said. “I don't hate this man who did it. I feel sorry for him.” 
She said before he lost consciousness, Mike Gilotti’s last words were, “God, forgive my sins.” 
Mike Gilotti is dead. 

He was simultaneously a husband and a father, roles in life he can never fulfill again. 

And yet in his final moments on earth, Mike Gilotti bled to death in the arms of his wife as his five-year-old and one-year-old son were nearby. 

Murdered by two black males, perhaps more. 

He never will get to take his wife zip-lining to celebrate their eighth anniversary.  

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Two Years After Blacks Killed Amber Long Over a $14 Purse, Philadelphia Detectives Have No Leads in Solving Her Murder

Heroes are for the stories. 

For the theater. 

For fiction. 

In our world, villainy reigns. 
Amber Long, 26-years-old on Jan. 19, 2014, always felt safe in Philadelphia, what she dubbed "her city." She was murdered two years ago by two unidentified black males, as they shot her after Amber dared fight to keep her $14 purse from falling int their hands. Two years later, detectives have virtually no leads in cracking the case...

Amber Long would have been 28 on December 23, 2015. 

Her mother, Stephanie, still keeps alive the hope the black killers of her daughter will be brought to justice, though virtually no one dares mention Amber Long was murdered by unidentified blacks in Philadelphia on Jan. 19, 2014. 

Amber and her mom were walking on North Front Street, heading to the former's car after attending a reception at a museum earlier in the night. A car was following them, with two assailants eventually getting out and targeting the Long's for a burglary. They grabbed Amber's purse and after she pulled back, they shot her with a .22 in the abdomen. 

The bag had been purchased at a thrift shop days before for $14 dollars.

[Two years later, detectives still work Amber Long case,, January 20, 2016]:

Philadelphia Detective John McNamee knows of cases that stay with homicide investigators. Cases that remain stubbornly unsolved, cases that sit on the desks of veteran detectives who have cleared dozens of killings. Cases that they carry for years. 
He doesn't want to carry Amber Long's case for much longer. 
Long was 26 when she was killed walking to her car in Northern Liberties on the night of Jan. 19, 2014. 
She and her mother had just attended a gala at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. On a desolate stretch of Front Street, two men approached them and grabbed at their purses. 
Long held onto hers a second too long. Her assailant pulled out a .22-caliber pistol and fired once, striking her in her abdomen. Long collapsed on the sidewalk at her mother's feet. 
The men fled in a rented car. 
McNamee has worked on the case for two years - two years spent poring over surveillance footage, sifting through hundreds of rental-car records, following up on leads that never panned out. 
What he needs now, he says, is for someone to "grow a conscience" and call in the tip that will break Amber Long's case. The city's $20,000 reward in the case still stands. 
"We have everything we need. We've collected the evidence. We're ready for when the day comes," McNamee said in a recent interview at Police Headquarters. 
Long's case is not without evidence. It's just that the evidence hasn't been enough. 
There is surveillance footage of the shooting that only shows the killers from behind. 
Video of the rental car they drove that's too blurry to make out the license plate. 
Ballistics evidence that has not matched any known gun. 
"There were at least two, maybe three, people involved," said McNamee's supervisor, Lt. Mark Deegan. "We're hoping that maybe someone talks too much one night." 
They're hoping that someone else overhears an incriminating conversation and decides to call police. 
In the meantime, they wait. They check guns seized by local and federal authorities to see if one can be traced to Long's killing. They took the video of Long's killing to the FBI in an effort to enhance the picture. They follow up every tip that comes in, however insubstantial. 
McNamee has stopped watching the grainy surveillance video of the shooting. 
"I don't have to see that video anymore," he said. "It is ingrained in my mind." 
Long was a transplant from Harrisburg, a graduate of Philadelphia University who stayed after graduation and decided to make the city her own. An architect, she had landed a promising job at a local firm just before her death. 
In the two years since the shooting, Long's mother, Stephanie, has cleaned out her daughter's apartment on Ritner Street in South Philadelphia. She has carted off Amber's unfinished paintings, and finished some herself. She has raised tens of thousands of dollars for a scholarship in Amber's name. 
On the first anniversary of her daughter's death, Stephanie Long showed up at the homicide unit with daffodils for the detectives - bright flowers in honor of her daughter's "bright, sunny smile." Daffodils will dot Philadelphia University's campus come spring - Stephanie Long and her daughter's friends planted 1,000 bulbs there in October. 
"Hopefully they will bring as much joy to others as they would have to her," she wrote on Facebook at the time. 
She could not be reached for comment on Monday. The Facebook page she runs in honor of Amber has been quiet of late, but was flooded with birthday wishes on what would have been her daughter's 28th birthday on Dec. 23. 
"So many things make me think of you. Your wisdom and maturity that was beyond your years and your love of life in general. I remember cartwheels in the grass, building snowmen and counting stars," one friend wrote. "Thinking of you today and every day." 
Deegan and McNamee, in a cramped back office at Police Headquarters, say they will chase every tip they get, follow every scrap of a lead, be there when, at last, the call they need comes in. 
"You don't get frustrated," McNamee said. "You don't lose your determination." 
He doesn't want to carry this case. But he will carry it for as long as he must.

 Amber would die 40 minutes after the shooting as she was being rushed to a hospital in Philadelphia. I've long wondered what the final words were Stephanie spoke to her daughter in those final moments they shared together, before Amber would slip out consciousness.

When students pass by the 1,000's of daffodils on the Philadelphia University campus, few (if any) will know why they were planted.

An attempted stealing of a $14 dollar purse is why those daffodils blow in the wind.

In darker moments, I wonder if Stephanie Long has dared dip just one toe into the tragically deep waters of race realism, daring to look at the horrifying number of black-on-white murderers occurring just since Barack Obama became president.

Amber Long should still be alive, happy to be 28-years-old and moving forward with her life. She should still be sharing in the love her mother gave her, and looking forward to attaining milestones she could never even dream of achieving.

Instead, like a grain of sand on the beach, she is just another nameless, voiceless white life snuffed out in a war yet without a name.

I know if Stephanie Long ever came across this posting, she'd probably boil over with anger that any person would ever dare demean Amber's memory by associating it with racial honesty, but that's basically the only manner in which Amber will ever be remembered.

If Stephanie only know how many daffodils would need to be planted to commemorate the life of a white person murdered by a black assailant, her eyes would gaze upon an seemingly field of floral memories of lives extinguished by a villain few dare address.