Tuesday, December 04, 2001

Text of Black United Front letter




        Dear Friends of Justice:

        We send you this letter requesting your cooperation. The level of racism, discrimination, tyranny and general oppression in every area of life here in Cincinnati has grown to such a level that only national and international economic sanctions may get the attention of the corporate leaders and their political servants. Tim and again we have gone to our elected and corporate leaders, but our voices and proposals have been ignored or improperly implemented. THEREFORE, WE HAVE CALLED FOR TRAVEL AND TOURISM SANCTIONS AGAINST THE CINCINNATI AREA.

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        Think of the irony of living in the city where the centerpiece of the National Underground Freedom Railroad network is being built, and we are struggling through the highest state of Apartheid. Economic disparity, legal injustice, political and governmental unaccountability, and lack of adequate and affordable health care and housing are just some the the challenges we face.

        Police are killing, raping, planting false evidence, and along with the Prosecutor and courts are destroying the general sense of self-respect for black citizens. Most recently, Officer Road, who shot and killed unarmed Timothy Thomas last April, was found ""not guilty'' by a judge...not a jury...on the misdemeanor charges of negligent homicide and obstruction of justice. Officer Jorg, who, by a marine-style chokehold, killed unarmed Roger Owensby Jr. last, November, was found not guilty on the assault charge and a mistrial was declared on the involuntary manslaughter charge. Officer Caton, who beat brother Owensby while he was handcuffed, was also found not guilty of assault. We need you to help oppose these constant injustices!

        IF YOUR ORGANIZATION IS PLANNING AN EVENT IN CINCINNATI, OR IF YOU ARE PLANNING TO ATTEND AN EVENT HERE, PLEASE CANCEL. Your sacrifice will be a great contribution toward our ability to negotiate. We also request that you specifically let our government officials know that you are canceling a planned trip to Cincinnati. Please send a letter stating that to: Mayor, City Hall, 801 Plum Street, Cincinnati, OH 45202. We request you also send us a copy of that letter to: Cincinnati Black United Front, 1829 Elm Street, Cincinnati, OH 45202. If you believe cancellation of your event in Cincinnati is not feasible, we request you contact us with that information also. We will demonstrate and protest at events held here. However, we do not want to demonstrate if there are justifiable reasons for the event not being cancelled.

        We know that many people in your city are suffering many forms of injustices also. However, nearly everyone who can personally compare Cincinnati racism with other cities, state that Cincinnati is more racist than any major city they have seen. Many describe the situation here as ""unbelievable.'' We all must stand to end the overbearing racism here and then collectively move to the next target. The Cincinnati Black United Front's study of historical struggle and advancements reveal that when racists, discriminators, and their chosen cronies are denied their (our) capital, this pressures them to be more progressive and inclusive in their behaviors.

        What do we want? The answer is too long to provide details because different groups of blacks need different relief and opportunities. Please visit our website at cbuf.org to find a list of demands and our press statement announcing these sanctions. These tourism sanctions are just one component of a broad strategy to change the way business is conducted in Cincinnati. We cannot go back to ""business as usual'' which is what the current Mayor has publicly stated he wants to do.

        As part of our strategy regarding these sanctions, we are developing a list of supporters. We would like to add your organization to our list. Please let us know if you will allow us to include you in our fight against injustice. You can write us at the above address or call the undersigned at (513) 623-7237.

       



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