Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Happy SumMEr Solstice & Happy 92nd LIFe Affirmation Day To THE Immortal Arthur 'Soldier Boy Grip' Taylor!!!

Happy SumMEr Solstice & Happy 92nd LIFe Affirmation Day To THE Immortal Arthur 'Soldier Boy Grip' Taylor!!!

JUNe 20th Was Not Only THE Longest Day Of THE Year But Also Marked THE 92Nd LIFe Affirmation Day Observation Of My Late Maternal GrandfaTHEr, Arthur ‘Soldier Boy Grip’ Taylor….My GrandfaTHEr Was THE BEst Black Man That I Have Ever Known & THE GREatest Man I Have Ever MEt…Although HE Has BEen Gone For 11 Years His SpirIT Keeps MarchIN On IN My Heart & MEmory…My GrandfaTHEr Was Generous To A Fault, Loyal To THE Bone, & A True SouTHErn Gentleman…For A Man WITh Just A High School Education HE Was Very WEll REad: HE Was WEll Familiar WITh THE Works Of Richard Wright & Langston Hughes As HE Was WITh THE Sports Section…

DurINg WW 2 My GrandfaTHEr Was A MEmBEr Of THE Legendary REd Ball ExpREss, A UNIT Of Mostly African AMErican Army Truck Drivers Who DeliveREd Supplies INcludINg Food, Oil & AmmUNITion While DodgINg Sniper Bullets And Enemy Bombs To THE Rapidly AdvancINg Allied Forces IN Europe Post D Day Led By General Patton & THE 3rd Army…My GrandfaTHEr Fought IN THE Battle Of THE Bulge...

HE Was Also A GIFted Baseball Player Who Was Scouted By THE Negro Leagues’ Kansas CITy Monarchs (A Major League Baseball Player, E.B. BlackWEll,Was So ImpREssed WITh My GandfaTHEr’s Skills That HE Told Him HE Should Play On THE Brooklyn Dodgers Alongside Jackie RobINson)…UNfortUNately, HE Was Seriously INjuREd IN THE War & Was Not Able To Pursue His DREam Of PlayIN Baseball (HE Contracted TB Of THE SpINe, Had Several BraIN Surgeries & Had To Spend A Year ConvalescINg IN A Full Body Cast)…

Although My GrandfaTHEr Was ‘100% Disabled’ From WW2, HE Did Not Start REceivIN His BEnefITs UNtil 1955, SoME 10 Yrs After THE End Of THE War…My GrandfaTHEr Felt That THE War RobBEd Him Of His Youth & DREams…NeverTHEless, HE BEcaME A Devoted & LovINg Family Man, RaisIN 6 ChildREn INcludINg My Mom WITh My BE-YOU-TOO-FULL GrandmoTHEr, Hattie Mae Taylor…My GrandfaTHEr Was Also A CertIFied Tailor & Only IN HINdsight Do I Now REalize How UNusual IT Was That HE Was So Exceptional @ SewINg & StITchINg… HE Was A Real REnaissance Man…

And BEst BElieve That My GrandfaTHEr SuffeREd Trauma Not Only From WW2 But THE Bigger War Of WhITe SupREmacy/Racism…My GrandfaTHEr Was IN Constant Physical PaIN For All THE Days Of His Adult LIFe Post War But Did Not Take THE REquiREd Daily MEdication On A REgular Basis…WHEn HE Lost A LUNg To Cancer HE Kept On SmokIN His FavorITe Cigars For 30 Plus MOOR Years…HE Was As Tough & Durable As THEy CoME…

As A Black Man From Mississippi HE Had Demons HE Had To Deal WITh But NeverTHEless HE Made His PoWErful Contribution & Pay IT Forward…OTHErwise I Wouldn’t BE HERE…My GrandfaTHEr Was Truly BEyond Category…WE LOVE YOU MADLY SOLDIER BOY GRIP!!! ‪#‎R2c2h2Says‬

 You Can Check Out My Comic Blog I CREated IN His Honor IF You Want MOOR Stories & INsight…

Arthur ‘Soldier Boy Grip’ Taylor Chronicles
http://www.soldierboygrip.blogspot.com

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

W.E. A.L.L. B.E. TV: Soldier Boy Grip: George Stinney Jr., An Amerikkkan Travesty

 
Soldier Boy Grip: George Stinney Jr., An Amerikkkan Travesty 
WATCH NOW:

http://youtu.be/xzTglwoZ-SM

On June 16, 1944, 14 year old George Stinney Jr. became the youngest person put to death in the history of 20th Century Amerikkka:


14 year old Stinney, who was black, was arrested for murdering two white girls, Betty June Binnicker, age 11, and Mary Emma Thames, age 8, in Alcolu, located in Clarendon County, South Carolina, on March 23, 1944. The girls had disappeared while out riding their bicycle looking for flowers. As they passed the Stinney property, they asked young George Stinney and his sister, Katherine, if they knew where to find "maypops", a type of passion fruit and flower. When the girls did not return, search parties were organized, with hundreds of volunteers. The bodies of the girls were found the next morning in a ditch filled with muddy water. Both had suffered severe head wounds


Stinney was arrested a few hours later and was interrogated by several white officers in a locked room with no witnesses aside from the officers; within an hour, a deputy announced that Stinney had confessed to the crime. According to the confession, the 14 year old Stinney (90 lbs, 5'1") wanted to "have sex with" 11 year old Betty June Binnicker and could not do so until her companion, Mary Emma Thames, age 8, was removed from the scene; thus he decided to kill Mary Emma. When he went to kill Mary Emma, both girls "fought back" and he thus decided to kill Betty June, as well, with a 15 inch railroad spike that was found in the same ditch a distance from the bodies.


Townsmen threatened to storm the local jail to lynch Stinney, but prior to this, he had been removed to Charleston by law enforcement. Stinney's father was fired from his job at the local lumber mill and the Stinney family left town during the night in fear for their lives.



It's hard to find any info about the Stinney case. Alot of the info presented is very against any argument that George Stinney may have been innocent because he was railroaded by the Jim Crow practices of the Amerikkkan South. For example, his white court appointed lawyer, Charles Plowden, 'failed' to tell Stinney and his family that he could have filed for an appeal to delay the execution for at least one year to gather support, evidence and monies in order to defend his life in a proper way…By his lawyer failing and/or refusing to tell him of his rights, his human and civil rights were violated…The only advice the family did receive was to leave town before their relative was put to death in order to avoid any mob revenge. His trial lasted a total of 3 hours from opening statement to jury verdict and he was dead less than two months later. This trial basically went undetected by both national and world news because the world was at war and the Allied Forces just invaded Normandy on June 6, 1944 ...The fact or assumption that this was just another Bad Black Nigger accused of killing two defenseless beautiful and innocent White daughters of the Amerikkkan South didn't help matters either.


The execution of 14 year old George Stinney was carried out at the South Carolina State Penitentiary in Columbia, South Carolina, on June 16, 1944. At 7:30 p.m., Stinney walked to the execution chamber with a Bible under his arm. Standing 5'1" and weighing just over 90 pounds, he was small for his age, which presented difficulties in securing him to the frame holding the electrodes. Neither did the state's adult-sized face-mask fit Stinney; his convulsing exposed his face to witnesses as the mask slipped free. Stinney was declared dead within four minutes of the initial electrocution From the time of the murders until Stinney's execution, eighty one days had passed.


The legacy of George Stinney Jr. is that the systemic and physical lynching of Black males is still alive and thriving in the neo-slavery system known as the U.S. private prison industry complex…Anytime you privatize something your goal is to maximize profit, in some cases by any means necessary, ethics and morality, guilt and innocence be damned…One man’s salvation is another man’s damnation, A White Man’s Heaven Is A Black Man’s Hell…The U.S. has 25% of the world’s prison population, more than anywhere else on the planet…2 million people are currently warehoused and rotting away in our U.S. Gulags & dungeons with close to a million of these prisoners being African American…As a matter of fact there are more Black males in prison than were slaves in Pre-Civil War Amerikkka…Black women are now being incarcerated at a highly alarming rate along with Black juveniles, collateral damage of course from ‘the war on drugs’ (read war on poor people and people of color)…The Black family unit is being destroyed, exploited and institutionalized in the private prison industry complex aka the 21st Century Plantation … Our People Are In Peril...Many Of Them Are Not Aware They Live In A Police State & Are Under House Arrest...Wake Up Out Of Your Slumber & Fight The Powers That Be !!!



Here are some more places where you can find info on the George Stinney,Jr. case:






http://www.soundportraits.org/on-air/youngest_executed/



http://www.crimelibrary.com/notorious_murders/young/child/1.html



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Stinney





http://www.floridasupport.us/forum/viewtopic.php?t=48&sid=141d14bbad79b4fcd66c543bb713ce04



A Study of the history of executions in the Amerikkkan South includes the Stinney case and some others of note as well:



http://users.bestweb.net/~rg/execution/regional_studies_south.htm 


For More The Arthur Soldier Boy Grip Taylor Chronicles Please Visit The Official Website:




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Monday, May 31, 2010

W.E. A.L.L. B.E. TV: The Arthur 'Soldier Boy Grip' Taylor Chronicles: Baseball & The Law

The Arthur 'Soldier Boy Grip' Taylor Chronicles: Baseball & The Law


The following is my response to U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander’s refusal to sign the anti-lynching resolution and his reasons…Please feel free to read his statement by clicking on the following link: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/06/23/AR2005062300492.html

I agree with Lamar to a degree, but isn't he one of the people that helped start the movement of the privatization of the prison industry in the United States and guess who makes up more than a adequate percentage of the prison population...If he and others really want to help Black folks then there a few significant things that can be done...First of all they need to change these lopsided drug and gun possession laws that got so many of our men and women in jail...This isn't just a Republican thing either...

For example because of the crack/coke policy that he wholeheartedly supported the Black President Bill Clinton is responsible for having more Black people behind bars during his tenure as Pres. than any other president in history. 

Many people do not know that in post-Civil War America many Black men were framed for crimes to help build this country's railroad system (think John Henry who was a actual Black man from New Jersey), that Black dock workers used to be given cocaine for free and legally by White business interests that controlled the country's seaports and waterdocks so that they could work longer and faster without taking any breaks...This was common practice less than 100 years ago. 

Finally reparations (including financial) is needed for Black Americans… It is sad to me that people, including Black folks laugh at this but we actually did the job that nobody, including Mexicans wanted to do which is our ancestors built this mighty Superpower we call the U.S. for "free"...The Jews and Japanese got their money for crimes committed against them during WW2, and it was common practice for the U.S. government to pay foreign countries such as Italy, Mexico and China financial compensation for immigrants lynched in the U.S… 

Many people do not understand the psychological, economical and sociological damages done by lynching...Many Blacks were not lynched for 'raping' white women, but for owning successful businesses, many acres of fertile and valuable land, or exercising their rights as U.S. citizens...In other words they were killed because they dared to be successful, prosperous and treated like citizens in a republic that they helped build from the ground up. 

In reality it is sad that the two Mississippi Senators would not let their voices be heard...After all Mississippi led the nation in lynching from the late 1870s well into the 20th Century...Many people do not know that Mississippi has the largest number of Black elected political officials in the nation yet 75% of the state's prison population is Black...Who said lynching is dead??? My thoughts.

R2C2H2

p.s.

If you want to learn about true anti-lynching heroes please read something by or about the great Ida B. Wells-Barnett, the late legendary Walter White or the former late U.S. Rep.George White...You should also read Soledad Brother and Blood In My Eye by the late great George Jackson which deals with the lynching of Black souls in the prison industry and what can be done to combat the process...One more book is Carnival of Fury by the late William Ivy Hair which deals with the New Orleans Race Riot of 1900 and the real-life folk hero Robert Charles…If you need to find your respective senators’ contact info please visit http://www.senate.gov/ …The following are the 20 U.S. Senators who did not sign the anti-lynching resolution the first time around:

19 Republicans and 1 Democrat

1.) Lamar Alexander (R-TN)

2.) Robert Bennett (R-UT)

3.) Christopher Bond (R-MO)

4.)Jim Bunning (R-KY)

5.)Conrad Burns (R-MT)

6.)Saxby Chambliss (R-GA

7.)Thad Cochran (R-MS)

8.)Kent Conrad (D-ND)

9.)John Cornyn (R-TX)

10.)Michael Crapo (R-ID)

11.)Michael Enzi (R-WY)

12.)Chuck Grassley (R-IA)

13.)Judd Gregg (R-NH)

14.)Orrin Hatch (R-UT)

15.)Trent Lott (R-MS)

16.)Lisa Murkowski (R-AK)

17.)Richard Shelby (R-AL)

18.)John Sununu (R-NH)

19.)Craig Thomas (R-WY)

20.)George Voinovich (R-OH)

For More Please Visit The Official Website:

W.E. A.L.L. B.E. TV : The Arthur 'Soldier Boy Grip' Taylor Chronicles: ON MEETING GEN. DAVIS

The Arthur 'Soldier Boy Grip' Taylor Chronicles: On Meeting Gen. Benjamin Davis

MY GRANDFATHER ON SEVERAL OCCASIONS RECALLED TO ME THE STORY OF HOW HE GOT TO MEET GEN. BENJAMIN DAVIS, SR., THE FIRST BLACK GENERAL IN U.S. MILITARY HISTORY…IN 1940, HE WAS APPOINTED BRIGADIER GENERAL OF THE U.S. ARMY BY U.S. PRES. FRANKLIN ROOSEVELT…

THE APPOINTMENT WAS CONSIDERED AN UNPOPULAR MOVE BY MANY IN THE U.S. AND CREATED A LOT OF POLITICAL AND SOCIAL PROTEST AND CONTROVERSY FOR MANY WHITE AMERICANS…

HOWEVER TO MANY BLACK AMERICANS LIKE MY U.S. SOUTHERN BORNED AND RAISED GRANDFATHER , THEY SAW GEN. DAVIS AS A SOURCE OF PRIDE AND INSPIRATION AND A MIRACLE WHO WAS A BEAUTIFULLY FORMED ROSE THAT GREW OUT OF THE SEEMINGLY IMPENETRABLE CONCRETE OF UNITED STATES A.K.A. JIM CROW RACISM , INEQUALITY AND SEGREGATION…GEN. DAVIS WAS COLIN POWELL BEFORE THERE WAS A GEN. POWELL!!! 

BEFORE GEN. DAVIS WAS MADE A GENERAL HE OVERSAW THE NEW YORK 15TH NATIONAL GUARD UNIT IN HARLEM DURING THE 1930S…THE NEW YORK 15TH NATIONAL GUARD UNIT BY THAT TIME WAS KNOWN BY ITS LEGENDARY NICKNAME ‘THE HARLEM HELLFIGHTERS’, A NAME GIVEN TO THE ORIGINAL MEMBERS OF THE UNIT BY THE FRENCH BECAUSE THEY SERVED BRAVELY, PROUDLY AND FOUGHT FEROCIOUSLY IN WORLD WAR ONE , NEVER LOSING AN INCH OF GROUND OR FELLOW SOLDIER TO ENEMY CAPTURE…

A NATIVE OF WASHINGTON. D.C. , GEN. DAVIS WAS A CAREER SOLDIER’S SOLDIER SERVING HIS COUNTRY HONORABLY AND WITH DISTINCTION FOR SEVERAL DECADES AT HOME AND ABROAD…

GEN. DAVIS HAD A SON NAMED BENJAMIN DAVIS, JR. AND LIKE HIS NAMESAKE HE WAS AN EXCEPTION TO THE RULE AS WELL…BENJAMIN DAVIS, JR. WAS JUST THE FOURTH BLACK GRADUATE OF WEST POINT AND THE FIRST BLACK GRADUATE OF THE 20TH CENTURY…HE WENT ON TO COMMAND THE ELITE TUSKEGEE AIRMEN, A LEGENDARY ALL BLACK AIRPLANE FIGHTER/ ESCORT SQUADRON WHICH NEVER LOST A BOMBER PLANE TO ENEMY FIRE DURING WORLD WAR TWO…

FOLLOWING IN HIS FATHER’S ENORMOUS FOOTSTEPS, DAVIS, JR. BECAME GENERAL DAVIS,JR., THE SECOND BLACK GENERAL IN U.S. MILITARY HISTORY AND THE FIRST BLACK GENERAL IN U.S. AIR FORCE MILITARY HISTORY…I GUESS GREATNESS MUST HAVE BEEN IN THE GENES!!!

ONE DAY, GEN. DAVIS, SR. CAME TO A BASE MY GRANDFATHER WAS STATIONED AT TO REVIEW THE TROOPS…MY GRANDFATHER AND OTHERS LIKE HIM MUST HAVE GOTTEN A THRILL OUTTA OF SEEING WHITE FOLKS, ESPECIALLY RACIST ONES, SALUTE A COLORED OR BLACK MAN BECAUSE HE WAS CONSIDERED THEIR SUPERIOR AND THEREFORE THEY WERE REQUIRED BY MILITARY LAW TO TREAT HIM AS SUCH AND EVEN CALL HIM ‘SIR’…YOU MUST REMEMBER THIS WAS AMAZING CONSIDERING THE FACT THAT IT WAS NORMAL AND ACCEPTED FOR A BLACK MAN TO BE CALLED ‘A BOY’ IN AMERICAN SOCIETY AT THAT TIME REGARDLESS OF HIS AGE OR ACCOMPLISHMENTS!!!

WHEN HE MADE HIS WAY TO THE BLACK TROOPS HE TOLD THEM WITHOUT HESITATION THAT HE WASN’T COLORED LIKE THEM AND THAT HE WAS A DIFFERENT TYPE OF COLORED…NO ONE SAID A WORD WHEN HE WAS INSPECTING THEM, BUT WHEN HE LEFT MANY OF THE BLACK SOLDIERS THAT WERE PRESENT DURING HIS TALK WERE VISIBLY UPSET AND ANGRY THAT HE WOULD SAY WHAT THEY CONSIDERED TO BE A VERY DETRIMENTAL AND HURTFUL REMARK…A FEW WERE EVEN CALLING GEN. DAVIS A SELL-OUT AND A UNCLE TOM…

HOWEVER, SOME OF THE SOLDIERS WHO WERE A LITTLE BIT QUICKER ON THEIR FEET IN TERMS OF WIT REASONED WITH THE OTHERS THAT MAYBE WHAT THE GENERAL MEANT WAS THAT HE WAS THE ONLY COLORED OR BLACK GENERAL IN THE U.S. ARMED FORCES WHICH IN TURN MADE HIM A DIFFERENT TYPE OF COLORED MAN, MEANING ONE WHO HAD GREATER MILITARY RANK AND AUTHORITY…MANY, NOT ALL, BLACK SOLDIERS ACCEPTED THIS INTERPRETATION OF THE COMMENT AND ONCE AGAIN PUT GEN. DAVIS BACK ON HIS HERO WORSHIP PEDAL…

LESSON: LOOK BEYOND THE WORDS, TRY TO READ WHAT WASN’T SAID INSTEAD OF WHAT WAS SAID!!! 

For More The Arthur Soldier Boy Grip Taylor Chronicles Please Visit The Official Website:

Thursday, August 14, 2008

(August 15, 2008) Soldier Boy Grip Comic & Commentary Of The Week...

A Soldier Boy Grip Moment Of Clarity


(c) R2C2H2 Tha Artivist/ Ronald Herd II From The Arthur 'Soldier Boy Grip' Taylor Chronicles

"Throw away your fears and prejudices then, and enlighten us and treat us like men, and we will like you more than we do now hate you....Treat us like men, and there is no danger but we will all live in peace and happiness together. For we are not like you, hard hearted , unmerciful , and unforgiving. What a happy country this will be, if the whites will listen. What nation under heaven, will be able to do anything with us, unless God gives us up into its hands?...Treat us then like men, and we will be your friends. And there is not a doubt in my mind, but that the whole of the past will be sunk into oblivion, and we yet, under God, will become a united and happy people." ~From David Walker's Appeal


Aug 12, 2008 marked three years since the transition of my maternal Grandfather into Ancestorhood...But, his spirit lives...

As I reflect upon this man who was my true father figure I often wonder what would Soldier Boy Grip Taylor been thinking, doing or saying right now if he was my age at this pivotal moment in history...

Being born into the heart of Jim Crow Amerikkka, he was actually baptized into an ongoing Black Holocaust which to date has not still be given proper study and analysis...I don't mean Cable News Documentaries and/or halfhearted snake oiled apologies from the floor and halls of the U.S. Congress, but a true reconciliation and compensation based on the facts as well as the effects of Amerikkka's hatred and envy of its darkest citizens by way of the historical record...


The reason why my Grandfather and his generation was called the greatest generation was because they were the most brainwashed generation...They were under the spell of a terrible lie...A lie which was more pleasant to hear than the truth...A lie that we all still want to believe...The Lie:We fight wars to make the world safe for democracy...The Truth: We fight wars to make the rich richer...We Fight Wars To Keep Uppity Colored Folks In Their Place...

And the ironic thing about Amerikkka is that her "freedom fighting" is heavily depended on its most enslaved citizens: African Amerikkkans...

This year marked the 60th Anniversary of the Desegregation of the U.S. Military forces by U.S. president Harry S. Truman...However, his act wasn't fully realized until after The Korean War which still featured segregated units...Also many U.S. military bases and camps in particular in the southern U.S. states practiced the religion of Jim Crow racism well into the 1960s...

Although these honorable men of color and distinction were hailed as heroes and defenders of liberty abroad, their U.S. Homecoming was less than enthusiastic and receptive...Many times as in the case of the famous Evers Brothers (Medgar & Charles) these brave veterans were turned away from the voting polls at gun point and some were even lynched in full uniform...Medgar was even denied entrance into the University of Mississippi Law School even though he had earned the entitlement of the G.I. Bill to rightfully attend...These things were taking place less than 60 years and not 150 years ago...

I say this because we are supposedly moving towards a post-racial society...I remember hearing Barack Obama remarked that we are 90 % there...Which is funny because I agree...We are 90 % there not because we are progressing and striving towards something positive, but because we are forgetting and regressing towards something less celebratory and woefully negative....Unlike the resourceful and tenacious Jewish people who vowed to never forget, we as Black folks seemingly can't wait to get amnesia and fall into a Terri Schiavo-like comatose state...We have literally taken ourselves out of the game by not confronting our true history, adversaries and demons...

You cannot say stop living in the past when you don't know history and that you are indeed alive...You can't say history repeats itself when you don't know what the hell you are repeating...
The State & Face Of Black Amerikkka reflects the lies and falsehoods we have accepted as truths far too long...Too many generations have been seduced by the high falutin' Jezebel known as Lady Liberty with her unfulfilled promises & infidelity...She has laced our melting pot with rat poison and has fed and seduced us with her contaminated goods for 400 years...Now we find ourselves lost in the wilderness with a jones we can't seemingly cure and a hurt that time can't seem to heal...

We must now more than ever in our winter of discontent find the motivation, wisdom, vision and courage to control our lives by being accountable for our destiny...We must now painstakingly learn how to turn the wilderness into farmland to feed and sustain our people...We must now turn the poison into an antibiotic to cure and heal our people...

We Must Resurrect LIFE From The Crypt Of Death!!!

Seek Knowledge Don't Defend Ignorance...

(R2C2H2 Tha Artivist is host and editor of Tha Artivist Presents…W.E. A.L.L. B.E. News & Radio http://www.blogtalkradio.com/weallbe & http://www.weallbe.blogspot.com... He is also the author of James Reese Europe: Jazz Lieutenant http://www.jazzlieutenant.blogspot.com…He can be reached by e-mail r2c2h2@gmail.com)


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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

(7/29/2008) Soldier Boy Comic & Commentary Of The Week...


(c) R2C2H2 Tha Artivist/ Ronald Herd II From The Arthur 'Soldier Boy Grip' Taylor Chronicles

Bush: Former Army Cook's Crimes Warrant Execution

By DEB RIECHMANN, Associated Press

President Bush could have commuted the death sentence of Ronald A. Gray, a former Army cook convicted of multiple rapes and murders.

But Bush decided Monday that Gray's crimes were so repugnant that execution was the only just punishment.

Bush's decision marked the first time in 51 years that a president has affirmed a death sentence for a member of the U.S. military. It was the first time in 46 years that such a decision has even been weighed in the Oval Office.

Gray, 42, was convicted in connection with a spree of four murders and eight rapes in the Fayetteville, N.C., area between April 1986 and January 1987 while he was stationed at Fort Bragg. He has been on death row at the U.S. Disciplinary Barracks at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., since April 1988.

"While approving a sentence of death for a member of our armed services is a serious and difficult decision for a commander in chief, the president believes the facts of this case leave no doubt that the sentence is just and warranted," White House press secretary Dana Perino said.

"The president's thoughts and prayers are with the victims of these heinous crimes and their families and all others affected," she said.


This April 1988 picture shows Ronald A. Gray in handcuffs and chains, escorted by military police leaving a Fort Bragg, N.C. courtroom. President Bush on Monday, July 28, 2008 approved the execution of the Army private, the first time in over a half-century that a president has affirmed a death sentence for a member of the U.S. military. Gray was assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg.
(AP Photo/The Fayetteville Observer, Marcus Castro)


Bush's decision, however, is not likely the end of Gray's legal battle. Further litigation is expected and these types of death sentence appeals often take years to resolve. It also remains unclear where Gray would be executed. Military executions are handled by the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

Members of the U.S. military have been executed throughout history, but just 10 have been executed by presidential approval since 1951, when the Uniform Code of Military Justice, the military's modern-day legal system, was enacted into law.

President Kennedy was the last president to stare down this life-or-death decision. On Feb. 12, 1962, Kennedy commuted the death sentence of Jimmie Henderson, a Navy seaman, to confinement for life.

President Eisenhower was the last president to approve a military execution. In 1957, he approved the execution of John Bennett, an Army private convicted of raping and attempting to kill an 11-year-old Austrian girl. He was hanged in 1961.

Gray was held responsible for the crimes he committed in both the civilian and military justice systems.

Silas DeRoma, who left active duty in 1999, was one of several military attorneys who represented Gray on appeal.

"It's disappointing news, as you can imagine," said DeRoma, who now works as a regulatory attorney in Honolulu for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. He said the basis for some of Gray's appeals focused on the prisoner's mental competency and his representation at trial.

In civilian courts in North Carolina, Gray pleaded guilty to two murders and five rapes and was sentenced to three consecutive and five concurrent life terms. He then was tried by general court-martial at the Army's Fort Bragg. There he was convicted in April 1988 and unanimously sentenced to death.

The court-martial panel convicted Gray of:

_Raping and killing Army Pvt. Laura Lee Vickery-Clay of Fayetteville on Dec. 15, 1986. She was shot four times with a .22-caliber pistol that Gray confessed to stealing. She suffered blunt force trauma over much of her body.

_Raping and killing Kimberly Ann Ruggles, a civilian cab driver in Fayetteville. She was bound, gagged and stabbed repeatedly, and had bruises and lacerations on her face. Her body was found on the base.

_Raping, robbing and attempting to kill Army Pvt. Mary Ann Lang Nameth in her barracks at Fort Bragg on Jan. 3, 1987. She testified against Gray during the court-martial and identified him as her assailant. Gray raped her and stabbed her several times in the neck and side. Nameth suffered a laceration of the trachea and a collapsed or punctured lung.

Gray has appealed his case through the Army Court of Criminal Appeals (then known as the U.S. Army Court of Military Review) and the Court of Appeals for the Armed Services. In 2001, the Supreme Court declined to hear the case.

___

Associated Press writer Martha Waggoner in Raleigh, N.C., contributed to this report.

(R2C2H2 Tha Artivist is host and editor of Tha Artivist Presents…W.E. A.L.L. B.E. News & Radio http://www.blogtalkradio.com/weallbe & http://www.weallbe.blogspot.com... He is also the author of James Reese Europe: Jazz Lieutenant http://www.jazzlieutenant.blogspot.com…He can be reached by e-mail r2c2h2@gmail.com)


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Sunday, July 20, 2008

(7/20/2008) Soldier Boy Grip Comic & Commentary Of The Week...


(c) r2c2h2 tha artivist/Ronald Herd II from The Arthur 'Soldier Boy Grip' Taylor Chronicles

Be The Change You Seek…It Starts With People Power!!!

By R2C2H2 Tha Artivist


As Obama mania goes through its corporate media induced ebbs and flows, people of all stripes, concoctions and persuasions should take the time to look back to the 60s…Not in terms of over-romanticizing and over-mythologizing, but in terms of analyzing the actual gains that were made in progressive politics, grass roots organizing and issue based advocacy…


I think people have in many ways since the watershed and tragic year of 1968 undervalued the power of collective dissent and people power…In 1968 many idealistic, well meaning and in some cases na├»ve people thought ‘Messianic figures’ would be able to transform the bitter realities of their lives through rhetoric and protest demonstrations…That year saw two great potential ‘Candidates for Change’ cut down in a hail of sniper bullets compounded by a pathology of hate, ignorance and indifference…In 1968, U.S. cities were set ablaze, after years of built up frustrations, hypocrisy and disgust exploding like a home made molotov cocktail…Just like literary great Bro. James Baldwin prophesied ‘the fire next time’…


In the gross corporate media induced comatose state of our selective national memory and history, many believed then and still unfortunately continue to believe today that leaders make powerful people movements…But closer inspection of true history will show that people movements produce leaders and not the other way around…


MLK was reluctant in accepting his destiny, but it was the Black community of Montgomery that forced him into the limelight and the nation’s conscience…The people organized the first meeting at his church and the people helped form the Montgomery Improvement Association which spearheaded The Montgomery Bus Boycott and ignited the Modern Civil Rights Movement…So it was the people that gave the great MLK the platform and impetus to speak to the better angels of mankind…


In 1968, RFK, by then a seasoned politician marked and toughened by personal tragedy and frustrated by the sluggish bureaucratic process of beltway politics, was inspired by the utter poverty he saw while visiting the poor and dispossessed of the Mississippi Delta…He saw the plight of the migrant workers of California and visited the lost worlds of the ghettoes in cities throughout the U.S.…The people inspired him to make his run to his destiny in 1968…It was the plight of the forgotten working class poor, the sanitation workers of Memphis that forced MLK to delay his Poor People’s Campaign to prepare a trip to the site of his crucifixion, Memphis, TN in Spring 1968…In both cases it was the suffering of the least or have nots of society that inspired these men to take the personal and political risks that resulted in their ultimate sacrifices…


But History will tell also tell you that the have-nots or people at the bottom are usually at the vanguard of their own revolution and liberation and are not waiting for marching orders from the people at the top of the hill or “The Chosen One”…


Take the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party…Many of the key leaders and personalities were folks that came from what some or many would call destitute and impoverished backgrounds…These were the people a.k.a. “the forgotten ones” many pols always talk about not “leaving behind”, people at the bottom rung of the societal ladder in terms of race and class...And yet these same people had the political and spiritual courage to transform the Magnolia State into a flower with a less bitter and sweeter fragrance…


Fannie Lou Hamer


Fannie Lou Hamer, the spiritual leader of the MFD, did not know she could vote until she was 44 years old…She was born and lived on a plantation as a sharecropper all of life up to that point…When she got the will to exercise her right to vote, she was ‘disowned’ and kicked off the plantation that same day…Most people would have given up and went back to the comforts of their enslavement, but Fannie Lou immortally decried “I am sick and tired of being sick and tired” and instead chose a path of self determination and liberation…


With a coalition of poor working class Blacks, sympathetic White Mississippians, college educated Black and White liberal activists, Fannie Lou along with her comrades was able to re-write U.S. political history…In 1964 the year of the infamous Freedom Summer project that saw the martyrdom of three civil rights workers in Mississippi, the MFDP boldly held up the Democratic National Convention in Atlantic City by blocking the seating of the all-white Mississippi Delegation…


Many of the party’s elite including Pres. Lyndon B. Johnson a.k.a. “The Architect of The Great Society” were outraged at this act…However the MFDP insisted that they should be seated instead because they represented Mississippi’s true citizenry makeup…In the end the MFDP refused to compromise their integrity and principles for two token seats…However, they made their point to a national audience and was able to secure a major victory for the civil rights movement, their direct action securing the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965…


Although the MFDP was active for only 4 years time, their energy, optimism and hard work was able to change the face of Democratic Party politics in particular and U.S. politics in general…By the end of 1960s, Mississippi saw the election of its first Black mayor since Reconstruction, Charles Evers, the brother of the martyred civil rights leader Medgar Evers…Fast forward to the present, Mississippi has the highest number of elected Black officials than any state in the Union, a remarkable feat considering its bloody Jim Crow Apartheid past…


And mind these changes were not just implemented by fancy rhetoric and hollow promises of stump speeches, catchy campaign songs, subliminal truth loose commercial ads and NY Times editorials…These changes were literally manifested by the blood, sweat and tears of everyday people…People who shared the same fears and doubts about the unknown a.k.a. the future like we all have at some point…People who had flaws, but yet had the courage to master their fears and soldier on in favor of justice…People who cared enough to reach back to help their fellow humans while practicing the foresight and perseverance to plant seeds for future generations to reap the harvest…


All Power To The People Is The Key…Be That The Change That You Seek!!!


(R2C2H2 Tha Artivist is host and editor of Tha Artivist Presents…W.E. A.L.L. B.E. News & Radio http://www.blogtalkradio.com/weallbe & http://www.weallbe.blogspot.com... He is also the author of James Reese Europe: Jazz Lieutenant…He can be reached by e-mail r2c2h2@gmail.com)


For More On The Adventures Of Arthur 'Soldier Boy Grip' Taylor Please Visit http://www.soldierboygrip.blogspot.com/





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Saturday, July 12, 2008

(7/12/2008) Soldier Boy Grip Comic & Commentary Of The Week...


(c) R2C2H2 Tha Artivist/Ronald Herd II From The Arthur 'Soldier Boy Grip' Taylor Chronicles

The following was written by a great and gifted close family friend,Uncle Marvin Butler, in immediate response to the passing of the person who actually inspired this comic strip, my maternal grandfather the late great Arthur 'Soldier Boy Grip' Taylor Sr. (June 20, 1923 - August 12, 2005)...This is also dedicated to 'The Darker Band Of Brothers' of 'The Greatest Generation":

The Ballad Of Soldier Boy Grip
By Marvin Butler

Let me tell you the story of Soldier Boy “Grip”

What happens to him is really a Trip

Young Black Buck straight of Missipp

He was in the Second World War

Thinking of his sweetheart back home

And his sons and daughters not yet ever born

And if he had killed a 1,000 Germans when he pulled the trigger

Would the only name they call him would it still be Hey Nigger!

But, he had to endure the shame

And it didn’t matter if they knew his name

Because he was helping to pave the way

So that his children could have a better day

And the pain of Soldier Boy “Grip”

Having his Commanding Bars stripped

All because they said he broke some laws

But, as time went by come to find out all it was all a lie

Time has pressed on 40 years have come and gone

And it took until his children started to groan

About the misjustice their father had to face

Just because of his skin color and race

So they petitioned about their father’s condition

The United States Government admitted the wrong

And distinguished medals were finally sent to Soldier Boy Grip’s home.


For More On The Adventures Of Arthur 'Soldier Boy Grip' Taylor Please Visit http://www.soldierboygrip.blogspot.com/





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