Several Hospitalized After Blast At Waukegan Illinois Silicon Plant

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE NEW YORK POST)

 

Several hospitalized after blast at Illinois silicon plant

A massive explosion in a silicon plant in northern Illinois sent at least four people to the hospital late Friday night.

The 9:30 p.m. blast at AB Specialty Silicones, located at an industrial park in Waukegan, also left an unknown number of employees unaccounted for, CNN reported.

Local police said an “active search and rescue” operation was underway, according to Chicago TV station WGN. The cause of the blast was under investigation.

Loud booms were heard and the ground shook in towns in the region, about 50 miles north of Chicago along Lake Michigan.

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Chicago’s Next Mayor Will Be A Black Woman

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF NPR NEWS)

 

History To Be Made As Chicago Votes For Mayor

Chicago mayoral candidates Toni Preckwinkle (left) and Lori Lightfoot speak during a March 13 forum on crime and violence.

Kamil Krzaczynski/AFP/Getty Images

No matter who wins Tuesday’s election for mayor of Chicago, the United States’ third-largest city will be led by an African-American woman for the first time.

The historic race pits Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle against Lori Lightfoot, a lawyer and former head of a police oversight board who also would become the city’s first openly gay mayor.

The free-for-all campaign has represented a sharp contrast to almost every past election in a city that has been synonymous with Democratic machine politics and bossism for nearly a century.

In the first-round election in February, Lightfoot, 56, and Preckwinkle, 72, were the top two vote-getters among 14 candidates. Lightfoot led the crowded field with 17.5 percent of the vote, while Preckwinkle received about 16 percent, qualifying them for Tuesday’s runoff election.

The wide-open succession battle began with a surprise retirement announcement last year from two-term Mayor Rahm Emanuel, a prolific fundraiser and former White House chief of staff to then-President Obama. The famously combative and profane Emanuel had earlier said he planned to run for a third four-year term.

But Emanuel’s popularity suffered major blows as he grappled with the city’s deep financial crisis and the increasingly volatile relationship between police and the black community. Those tensions rose dramatically after the 2015 release of a videotape showing a white officer firing 16 shots into Laquan McDonald, killing the 17-year-old African-American.

Both Lightfoot and Preckwinkle have sought to brand themselves as much more progressive Democrats than Emanuel, a centrist who often feuded with public-employee labor groups, including the teachers’ union.

After recent polls gave Lightfoot a big lead, many Emanuel backers in the city’s business community gravitated toward her.

In her first campaign for public office, Lightfoot has argued that she’s the best candidate to “break from the status quo that has failed us” and deliver “equity, inclusion and fairness.”

“It’s unacceptable, the condition of our communities on the South and West sides,” she said during a candidate forum last week on WBEZ-Chicago Public Media, referring to predominantly black and disadvantaged areas of the city of 2.7 million people. “The only way we are going to carve a new path for the city, to take us in a direction that our communities don’t continue to be resource starved, is to vote for change.”

Lightfoot also appeared to benefit from the anti-incumbent, reformist mood of an electorate rocked by yet another City Hall corruption scandal.

In January, federal prosecutors alleged attempted extortionby veteran City Council member Edward Burke. And they accused Burke of shaking down a businessman to give a campaign contribution to Preckwinkle, who is also leader of the Cook County Democratic Party.

Preckwinkle and her backers countered that Lightfoot is not a true progressive or outsider, having worked under Emanuel and former Mayor Richard M. Daley.

Preckwinkle also warned that Lightfoot’s thin political résumé shows she would be far too inexperienced for the daunting job.

“It’s easy to talk about change,” said Preckwinkle, who once served as a member of the City Council, representing the ward where Obama lived. “Change is not easy. It takes hard work. It takes experience. Being mayor is not an entry-level job.”

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Hindus, Jews celebrate joint festival of lights At Chicago Synagog

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE TIMES OF ISRAEL)

 

Two holidays, one theme: Hindus, Jews celebrate joint festival of lights

Bringing together two diverse communities and highlighting strong Israel-India relations, over 400 people gather in Chicago to simultaneously honor Diwali and Hanukkah

  • Candle lighting with Rabbi Sidney Helbraun & Acharya Rohit Joshi at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)
    Candle lighting with Rabbi Sidney Helbraun & Acharya Rohit Joshi at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)
  • The crowd enjoying the program at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)
    The crowd enjoying the program at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)
  • Learning how to do a Hindu dance at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)
    Learning how to do a Hindu dance at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)
  • Standup comedian Samson 'Mahatma Moses; Koletar performs at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)
    Standup comedian Samson ‘Mahatma Moses; Koletar performs at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)
  • The crowd enjoying the program at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)
    The crowd enjoying the program at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)
  • Jewish dance lessons at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)
    Jewish dance lessons at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)
  • A Diwali diya and Hanukkah menorah shine side by side at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)
    A Diwali diya and Hanukkah menorah shine side by side at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)

CHICAGO — A joint Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights drew over 400 people to a suburban Chicago synagogue on Sunday, as together they honored the similarly-themed holidays of Hanukkah and Diwali.

The evening, which featured speakers, candle lighting, food from both cultures, dance lessons, and the world’s only Indian-Jewish stand up comedian, was hosted by Temple Beth-El in the Chicago suburb of Northbrook, Illinois.

The Chicago event has inspired similar gatherings nationwide — from a December 8 celebration in San Francisco, to events being planned in New York, Atlanta and Florida. The Chicago organizers also look forward to organizing a collective celebration of Purim and Holi, the Hindu spring festival, in 2019.

“I think we connect over a shared sense of pain and overcoming adversities,” Sunil Krishnan told The Times of Israel as people mingled before the program. Krishnan, who is Hindu, made the nearly two-hour drive from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, to attend the event.

“I don’t know much about the Hindu religion, but I’m fascinated by it,” said Margaret Geber, a Jewish woman who came with two friends. “I love the feeling of hope and the energy of the room as people are getting to know each other.”

The crowd enjoying the program at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)

Highlights from Sunday’s program included speeches by human rights activist Dr. Richard Benkin; Indian Consul Head of Chancery D.B. Bhati; and Aviv Ezra, the Consul General of Israel to the Midwest.

Bhati drew parallels between Diwali’s festival of lights and the lights of Hanukkah, while Ezra highlighted the 26 years of diplomacy between Israel and India. That relationship has “grown in even more profound ways” since India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visited each other’s respective countries last year, Ezra said.

Candle lighting with Rabbi Sidney Helbraun & Acharya Rohit Joshi at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)

The idea for the joint festival began five years ago when Peggy Shapiro, Midwest executive director of StandWithUs, invited leaders of the Indian community to her house for dinner to celebrate the 65th anniversaries of Indian and Israeli independence.

“The problem is, what food do you serve?” joked Shapiro.

“When we got together that night at my dining room table, we found such commonalities in our communities,” Shapiro said.

“I learned a bit more about India and the Jewish community there — India is one of the only places in the world that has never had anti-Semitism,” she said (presumably attributing the horrific 2008 attacks on the Mumbai Chabad House to Islamic terrorism, rather than specific hatred against Jews).

Snacks are served at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)

Prasad Yalamanchi of the Global Hindu Heritage Foundation also spoke about India’s support for Israel and stressed the shared experiences between Hindus and Jews, including the staggering losses that both communities faced due to persecution.

“We need to get together, Hindus and Jews, to protect our heritage and civilization for future of generations,” he said to roaring applause.

Shapiro then introduced “someone that nobody has ever heard of, but appeals to everybody — the world’s only Indian-Jewish stand-up comedian, Samson Koletar, aka Mahatma Moses.”

Koletar poked fun at Jewish and Indian stereotypes to the delight of a mixed crowd that apparently had a common appreciation for self-deprecating humor. And like any good comedian, Koletar didn’t spare himself, laughing about people’s confused reactions to his mixed Indian-Jewish heritage.

Standup comedian Samson ‘Mahatma Moses; Koletar performs at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)

Rounding out the speeches, Dr. Souptik Mukherjee — a researcher who has long been an advocate for Hindu-Jewish relations, and who has contributed to Israeli media — spoke about the 2,500 year history of Hindu-Jewish relationships.

“[Our] two communities today unite to celebrate values dear to us all, of coexistence, tolerance, gender equality, mutual respect and respect for each other’s culture and faith,” Mukherjee said.

The festival concluded with traditional Hanukkah and Diwali desserts, followed by dance lessons from each culture.

Dr. Souptik Mukherjee speaks at the Hindu-Jewish Festival of Lights at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, Sunday, November 18, 2018. (Ronit Bezalel/ Times of Israel)

“It’s really wonderful to have this event in our synagogue, and see new faces in here,” noted Mandy Herlich, the director of lifelong learning at Temple Beth-El.

Chicago’s Festival of Lights was sponsored by the Global Hindu Heritage Foundation, Param Shakti Peeth of America, Sewa Interational, Shir Hadash, StandwithUs, Temple Beth-El, TV Asia, and Vishwa Hindu Parishad of America.

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Media Tries To Eliminate Woman From Her Own Murder Story

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE HUFFINGTON POST)

 

The mother of Tamara O'Neal holds a picture of her family, Nov. 20. O'Neal was fatally shot by her former fiance in Chicago t

CHICAGO TRIBUNE VIA GETTY IMAGES
The mother of Tamara O’Neal holds a picture of her family, Nov. 20. O’Neal was fatally shot by her former fiance in Chicago the day before.

Dr. Tamara O’Neal had just finished up her emergency room shift at Mercy Hospital in Chicago on Nov. 19 when Juan Lopez, her ex-fiance, materialized in the parking lot. He knew where to find her. Earlier in the day, he rang the hospital trying to get her on the phone. She told the clerk who took the call to tell him she was busy.

As recently as September, O’Neal, 38, had planned to marry Lopez. But something caused her to change her mind, and a few weeks before the wedding, she broke off the engagement. On Monday the sight of him scared her enough to dial 911.

In the parking lot, he claimed to want his engagement ring back, but that was an excuse, another attempt to control her. He revealed his true intentions when he pulled out his gun and shot her six times. Afterward, he ran into the hospital and kept shooting, killing Dayna Less, a 24-year-old pharmacy resident, and Samuel Jimenez, 28, a rookie officer with the Chicago Police Department, before being killed by officer gunfire.

In the immediate aftermath of the shooting, when the facts were still being sorted, the media latched onto the policeman who was killed in the line of duty. His death ― understood as the most newsworthy component of the incident ― became the story. Headlines, captions and mobile alerts (including HuffPost’s), focused on him. In The New York Times, for example, O’Neal was not named until the fifth paragraph, as one of the “other victims,” and her relationship to the shooter wasn’t explained until later in the story.

Somehow, a mass shooting rooted in gendered violence was framed as a random act. Even Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel in a news conference said the mass shooting was “the consequence of evil.”

But the shooting was not random at all. It was the consequence of domestic violence. And by relegating O’Neal to a supporting part in the story, the media fundamentally misrepresented the nature of the attack. The massacre was a result of her ex-partner’s final attempt to control her.

“We are not connecting the dots correctly,” said Monica McLaughlin, the director of public policy at the National Network to End Domestic Violence.

The erasure of O’Neal from the narrative obscures the motivation behind the attack, McLaughlin added, making it harder for the public to recognize the undercurrent of toxic masculinity in American gun violence.

Tamara O'Neal in September 2017. Although her killing was the consequence of domestic violence, many news outlets at fir

MONTE GERLACH PHOTOGRAPHY VIA AP
Tamara O’Neal in September 2017. Although her killing was the consequence of domestic violence, many news outlets at first minimized her in their reports about a mass shooting.

“Violence against women is a common denominator in many, many, many of these shootings,” she said.

As HuffPost has reported, most mass shootings in the U.S. involve a man targeting his intimate partner or another family member. And among mass shooters who target the public in random acts of violence, many have histories of abusive behavior toward women. (See: Pulse, ParklandSutherland Springs.)

David Adams, a domestic violence expert who has studied men who kill their partners, said many homicidal abusers feel a sense of ownership over their wife or girlfriend.

“They blame their partners for their own problems and, in general, see themselves as victims of unappreciative, selfish partners,” he said. Men who kill their partners as part of a mass shooting may simply want a larger audience to advertise their grievances, he added.

Like many mass shooters before him, Lopez had a history of abusive behavior toward women. He was fired from the Chicago Fire Academy in 2014 after he was accused of inappropriate conduct with female cadets. The same year, his then-wife filed an emergency protective order against him. “I fear that my safety is in jeopardy,” she wrote, stating that he was acting erratically with his firearm and had threatened to go to her job and cause a scene.

Four years later, he followed through on his threat to cause a scene at a workplace, only this time it was to confront O’Neal. “He couldn’t let it go,” her father, Tom O’Neal, told the Chicago Sun-Times. “He couldn’t let go and he took her away from us.”

Ruth Glenn, the executive director of the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, said she understood the gut instinct among media outlets to emphasize the police officer’s death. Unfortunately, when it comes to gun violence, there is a hierarchy of newsworthiness. A police officer killed in the line of duty makes headlines far more often than a woman slain by her intimate partner. Especially, Glenn said, if she is a woman of color.

“[Police officers] put their lives on the line every day,” she said. “But if you think about it, so does a victim when she has decided that she needs to be away from the violence.”

A mass shooting rooted in gendered violence was framed as a random act.

Women are at the highest risk of being killed when they leave their partners, said Maureen Curtis, the vice president of criminal justice programs for the nonprofit group Safe Horizon. For many women, their workplaces can become a place of heightened danger, as their partners know when and where they work.

In 2017, Karen Elaine Smith was teaching an elementary class in San Bernardino, California, when her husband, whom she had recently left, walked in with a handgun and began shooting, killing her and an 8-year-old student.

“This is one reason why we need to recognize that domestic violence is not just a personal matter and that helping and supporting a victim not only can save her life but the lives of others,” Curtis said.

Erasing domestic violence from the story also does a disservice to the police officer slain, said Mark Wynn, a retired Tennessee officer who now travels the country training police on issues related to violence against women.

Calls related to domestic disputes are the most dangerous for police, he said. In a strange coincidence, Wynn was just a few miles from Mercy Hospital, training Chicago police officers how to respond to domestic violence incidents, with a focus on officer safety, when the shooting happened.

“Every cop knows the deadly line of ‘If I can’t have you, nobody will,’” he said. “Abusers do not like to be held accountable for their crimes.”

This story has been updated to include Dr. Tamara O’Neal’s occupation.

Police officer shoots and kills good guy with a gun

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF ‘THINK PROGRESS’)

 

Police officer shoots and kills good guy with a gun

Jemel Roberson was a 26-year-old armed security guard who apprehended a shooter. He was also black

Jemel Roberson; CREDIT: GoFundMe
JEMEL ROBERSON; CREDIT: GOFUNDME

Around 4:00 a.m. ET on Sunday morning, a disgruntled group of drunken men were asked to leave Manny’s Blue Room Bar in the Chicago suburbs. According to WGN-TV,  one of those men returned with a gun and opened fire.

Amid the chaos, 26-year-old armed security guard Jemel Roberson chased one of the suspects outside of the club and apprehended him at gun point.

Roberson seemingly did everything right. But when Midlothian police officers arrived to the scene, one of them saw the security guard pointing a gun at the suspect, and shot and killed Roberson on the spot.

“Everybody was screaming out, ‘Security!’ He was a security guard,” a witness, Adam Harris, told reporters. “And they still did their job, and saw a black man with a gun, and basically killed him.”

Many anti-gun control politicians and advocates, including President Donald Trump, frequently say that armed security guards are the only way to stop mass shootings. Last month, after eight people were killed at a Pittsburgh synagogue, Trump suggested that there should be armed guards at churches and synagogues.

This is an offshoot of a frequent National Rifle Association talking point, that the only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.

Roberson was both an armed security guard and a good guy with a gun. He risked his life to apprehend a shooter. And police killed him anyway.

Like many NRA-based talking points, this one doesn’t seem to apply to black people.

On social media, loved ones mourned the loss of Roberson. LeAundre Hill, a pastor and family friend, said that he was a great pianist who had just played at HIll’s grandmother’s funeral on Friday.

LeAundre Hill@PastorDreHill

Jemel has played for @PurposedChurch for the last several years and just played for my grandma’s funeral Friday and now he is gone. 😢
Rest In Peace

FOX 32 News

@fox32news

BREAKING: Cook County Coroner confirms that security guard shot dead by Midlothian police at bar in Robbins was Jemel Roberson, 26. https://bit.ly/2PXPDyY 

View image on Twitter

See LeAundre Hill’s other Tweets

Roberson was also reportedly studying to be a police officer.

The officer who killed Roberson has already been placed on paid administrative leave, per protocols. WGN-TV reports that the Cook County Sheriff’s Office is conducting the criminal investigation of the original shooting, and the State Police Public Integrity Task Force is investigating Roberson’s death.

Friends and family have already set up a GoFundMe account to raise money for Roberson’s burial.

“Jemel Roberson was a young man who was greatly loved by all who knew him.  He was the light of his mother Beatrice’s life, and was a devoted loving son,” the GoFundMe reads. “Jemel was a gifted basketball player and musician, and his love for God and his family were at the forefront of his life.

“Sadly, Jemel’s life was tragically and unexpectedly cut short this morning as he tried to save others from senseless violence.  Today, many remember him as a hero; one who put others before himself.”

The Hypocrisy Belongs To Some In The “LGBT” Community, Not To The Chicago Cubs

The Hypocrisy Belongs To Some In The “LGBT” Community, Not To The Chicago Cubs

 

This morning I had every intent to write an article about fallen Senator John McCain and I hope that I will still have the energy to do so after I finish this article first. I got up out of bed about 4 A.M. this morning and came out to my computer aiming to write the McCain article but as is normal I read some of the events I find on my computers main pages first. You know, things like I want to know if our “Mafia in Chief President” has started anymore new wars before I try to get my day started. To the best of my knowledge he has not so I then went on to some MLB Web-Sites as I am still somewhat of a baseball fan, not as much as when I was a kid, but it is still my favorite sport. I read an article from Yahoo-Sports that changed my thoughts about my first column today. My article about John McCain is still more important to me but it is going to be a mostly ‘positive’ article and this one on the Cubs (my life long favorite team) has more negative energy in it so I have decided to write this one first, to get the negatives out of my thought patterns.

 

In an article dated yesterday afternoon (August 26th, 2018) on Yahoo-Sports written by Blake Schuster was an article about the recent trade that the Chicago Cubs made with the Washington Nationals for second baseman Daniel Murphy. Even though I have known of Mr. Murphy for several years I have only known of him from a ‘Baseball-Stats’ prospective, nothing about his personal life, either good or bad. By his stats I would say that I consider him an above average overall second baseman so I had no problem with the Cubs trading for him. But here is the ‘rub’ of the Yahoo-Sports article, evidently about 3 years ago he made some comments about the LGBT-Gay lifestyle that still to this day offends many folks who believe that this lifestyle is a perfectly fine way of life. Guess what folks, not everyone on the planet happens to agree wit you about it being an ‘okay’ way to live. Learn to deal with this reality, it is you being the hypocrites here, not Mr. Murphy.

 

About 3 years ago Mr. Murphy evidently said that he “disagreed with the gay lifestyle” so now it seems that many people in that community really do not like him. This seems to even go to the extent that they would prefer that Mr. Murphy wasn’t able to earn a living in his preferred profession as a major league baseball player. There is a rather large group of people in the Chicago land area who call themselves the “Out At Wrigley” LGBT organization. Yesterday was the ’18th annual LGBT original MLB Gay Day.’ As it turns out (I did not know of this fact until I read this Yahoo article) that one of the Ricketts family who owns the Cubs is an openly gay lady, Ms. Laura Ricketts. Some folks in the LGBT groups decided to wait to give their opinion on the trade for Mr. Murphy until Ms. Laura weighed in with her opinion on the issue. Other folks within the LGBT community there in the Chicago Land area weren’t quite so kind or patient. There will be some folks who read this article who will be mad at me and even call me a hypocrite and some other names for writing this article and for daring to have an opinion different from their own concerning the LGBT life style. My official opinion is that “I, just like Mr. Murphy, do disagree with the LGBT-Queer Lifestyle being an okay lifestyle.”

 

There are many who may well say things along the line of “why should I give a damn about what you have to say, your just an old white boy in Kentucky.” To this I say, exactly. Why should you care what I have to say if I disagree with you, but then again why am I suppose to care what you think or feel about this issue either? Now a third line of thought on this ‘caring’ issue, why should you or I care what Mr. Murphy’s thoughts or feelings are on this issue? He is a baseball player, concerning the Cubs trade for him, only what he does on the field should matter to any of us. Now, if Mr. Murphy was wearing a bright neon tea-shirt in the pregame fielding and batting practice that blared out something like “I hate Gay people” then yes, you should probably take offence to him doing that. Personally I would take offence to him doing that myself, just as I would if he or any other player decided to wear a dress out on the field. He is there to play baseball, he is paid to play baseball, if he has an opinion that is different from yours or mine on the “Gay issue,” so what!

 

There are probably a few folks in their anger at me for not having the same opinion as their, or for daring to state my beliefs who will bring up other ‘incidents’ to see if I feel the same way toward those folks. What I am getting at is that some folks will, in their anger, say things like, well I bet you would be okay with Murphy if he was a wife beater or a child molester too, as long as he was a good baseball player. Folks, that is stupid, being a wife beater or being a child molester is actually illegal, disagreeing with you about if a person agrees with or disagrees with your LGBT lifestyle is not ‘yet’ illegal. We do have something in the Constitution of the United States (First Amendment) saying that we the people are allowed to have free speech in this Country whether you happen to like it or not. Not everyone is going to agree with you, or me, on everything, grow up, learn to deal with reality just as those who don’t agree with you also have to do!

Have You Ever Spoken With One Of God’s Angels Face To Face?

 

For a person who does not know the Scriptures they may think, well wouldn’t the wings give them away or wouldn’t the halo’s be a sign to you, or maybe, the bright light around them or their bright shining eyes, wouldn’t these things let you know that you were talking with an Angel? For those of us who do know a little about the Scriptures we know that any of these things could happen if/when we meet an Angel of God, but most likely not. One also has to remember that Satan also has tens of thousands of Angels with Him who can, if they wish to, portray themselves as Angels of God in an attempt to fool people, even devout Christians. The Scriptures do let us know that it is more likely that we could/will entertain an Angel of God, and we won’t even realize that we have done so. Why would we not know, how could it be that we would not know? Friends, the answer is simple, they tend to portray themselves as everyday people, just like you and I, the same as an Angel of Satan can do.

 

So, how are we suppose to know if we have ever entertained an Angel of God? How do we know if we have ever even spoken with an Angel face to face before, or who knows, maybe even over the phone? Have you ever spoken with one of God’s Angels before? Have I? How can we be sure either way? I do not know for sure if I have or not but I would like to tell you two short stories, two possibilities that I did, at least two times where I may have caught it, realizing what had just happened. I don’t remember now which one happened first as they were both back in the late 1980’s or early 1990’s. Most all of my adult life I drove a truck for a living all over the lower 48 States and Canada and there were a few times that I took a Greyhound Bus from one job to another or times when I went to fetch an abandon truck for the company that I was working for and I would take a Bus to go get it. One day I was in the Bus Terminal in Chicago and I was laid over for a few hours waiting for a connecting bus to my destination. It was normal for me to always have my Bible with me when I was at work or just traveling and I was just sitting at a table reading paying no attention to those in the Terminal with me when an old woman just appeared in front of me and asked me a question. The oddity wasn’t that she had been able to come up to me unnoticed or that she asked me a question. She did see me reading the Bible and she stopped and asked me only one thing, what is your favorite Book? I think that I was reading in the Book of the Prophet Isaiah and I think that I told her probably the Books of Genesis or maybe Revelation. She just nodded and I looked back down to read when I realized that maybe the correct answer would have been the Book of Isaiah or even the Book of Daniel. That hesitation was maybe two seconds, three at the most, when I looked back up I could not find this old lady anywhere, I looked all around me, nothing, it was as if she had just evaporated in thin air. How she could have done that, I don’t know.

 

The other case I am going to bring to your attention is even more baffling. I realize that some will say that the old lady somehow was able to quickly get out of my sight range in that two seconds or so, somehow blended in with the paint on the walls or the vending machines but those possible answers won’t work for the next situation I am going to tell you about. One morning I was headed east on interstate 80 in western Nevada just a little ways east of Reno when I picked up a man who was about my own age who was hitch-hiking to some place in eastern Nevada. He was in the truck with me for about four hours and we just talked the miles away. He noticed my Bible that I kept on my dash and he started the conversation almost all of which was about religion or Biblical things. I remember we had a real good conversation, he was quite knowledgeable and the time went by quickly. Then, while we were still ‘in the middle of no-where’ he let me know that he needed off at the next exit ramp so I pulled off the side on the berm and we said our good byes and he got on out of the truck. I reached over to make sure that the passenger door was locked when I remembered that I was going to give him something that I had forgotten to give. I looked up and out of the window, I looked in my mirrors and then I looked all over again. There was no one anywhere to be seen anywhere. This was a desert spot, there was nothing to hide behind, just dirt and sand. This was the case that made me realize that something special had just happened, a human can not just disappear into thin air like that. Actually this just made me remember a third case of an event that not just I but several other men witness at a small business just north of Philadelphia one afternoon but that would make this article a bit to long so I will write about it at another time. So, have I ever met an Angel of God? I have never seen any wings fluttering or any halo’s, no. How about you, have you ever entertained an Angel of God? How do you know, how do you know that you haven’t?

 

59 Shot, Eight Dead In Chicago Since Friday

(THIS INFORMATION IS COURTESY OF ABC NEWS AND WLS NEWS FROM CHICAGO ILLINOIS)

 

59 shot, eight dead in Chicago since Friday

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At least 30 people were wounded in shootings across Chicago Sunday morning.

Dozens of people were wounded in shootings across Chicago since Friday, police said.

Since midnight, police said 42 people have been shot, four fatally. Since Friday at 5 p.m., 59 people have been shot, eight fatally, in shootings in Chicago.

“We know that some of these incidents were targeted and are related to gang conflicts in those areas,” said Chicago Police Chief of Patrol Fred Waller at a press conference Sunday afternoon.

RAW VIDEO: Chicago police address surge in weekend violence:

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Chicago Police Chief of Patrol Fred Waller addresses the surge in shootings this weekend.

Police said there was a “trauma lockdown” at Stroger Hospital with only immediate family members of victims are being allowed in the emergency room. A spokeswoman for Stroger Hospital disputes the police account.

“Over the past 24 hours, Stroger’s trauma unit received an unusually high volume of patients. At no time did Stroger go on bypass or ‘lockdown’ its trauma unit,” the spokeswoman said. “We are asking the families of trauma patients to limit visitation at this time to immediate family members only so staff may focus on patient care. ”

In one shooting in the Gresham neighborhood, eight people were wounded, police said.

RELATED: Teen girl killed, 5 wounded, including 11-year-old boy, in Lawndale shooting

Police said a group of people, three teens and five adults, were standing in a courtyard in the 1300-block of West 76th Street at about 12:40 a.m. when several people approached on foot and opened fire at the group. The victims range in age from 14-years-old to 35 years-old.

Several had multiple gunshot wounds. All of them were transported to area hospitals and all are expected to survive.

No one is in custody in connection with the shooting.

RELATED: Lawndale block party shooting leaves 4 wounded, including 13-year-old boy

In addition to the shooting in Gresham, a pair of shootings in the Lawndale neighborhood left a teen girl killed and nine people wounded.

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A shooting in the Lawndale neighborhood Sunday morning left a 17-year-old girl killed and five people, including an 11-year-old boy, wounded.

Police said two gunman got out of a white Impala and shot four people at a block party in the 1600-block of South Avers Avenue at about 12:02 a.m. Later Sunday morning, a 17-year-old girl was killed and five other people wounded, including an 11-year-old boy in a shooting in the 1300-block of South Millard Avenue.

Later Sunday morning, four people were shot, one fatally, in the North Austin neighborhood.

The shooting took place at 4 a.m. in the 1600-block of North LeClaire Avenue. A 19-year-old was shot in the back of the head and pronounced dead at the scene.

A 37-year-old man was shot in the right calf and hospitalized in stable condition, a 21-year-old man was shot in the upper thigh and hospitalized in stable condition and another male victim was shot and is hospitalized. The condition of the fourth victim was not immediately known.

At 6:50 a.m. Sunday, one man was killed and four others wounded in a shooting in the first block of North Leclaire Avenue in the South Austin neighborhood, police said.

A 32-year-old man was shot four times and was pronounced dead at Stroger Hospital. A 30-year-old man was shot in the back of the head and is hospitalized in critical condition, a 27-year-old woman was shot in the arm and wrist and is hospitalized in stable condition, a 21-year-old woman was released from the hospital after suffering a graze wound and a 34-year-old man walked into Stroger Hospital with a wound to his lower leg and is in good condition.

This comes just days after Superintendent Eddie Johnson visited ABC7 and talked about decreasing crime numbers and overall violence in Chicago.

“I think some of our more challenging, communities, it’s just imperative that police and the community work together to reduce this gun violence,” Superintendent Johnson said. “We just have too many guns on the streets of Chicago.”

Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report

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In America Police Are Their Own Worse Enemy

In America Police Are Their Own Worse Enemy

Here in America if you are a parent of an Elementary school child or a teacher at an Elementary school do you still tell the children to go find a Police Officer if they get lost or are scared? In a few days I will be 60 yrs old (Lord willing) and when I was a young kid this is what you would see on TV and hear from your school teachers. I also remember seeing Police Officers treating people very hatefully and physically rough since I was about 3 or 4 yrs old. I remember thinking to myself that there was no way I was going to trust such mean and hateful people because of things I had seen and things I had heard from the adults in my life about how crooked so many of them were.

 

During my early twenty’s I dabbled in Security and Police work for about five years (1976-81) and the reason I decided to change from that profession was because of the attitudes I witnessed on a regular basis. I did not find their humor to be funny and I refused to treat people badly unless they forced the issue upon me and gave me no choice. I then spent 30 yrs as a long haul truck driver traveling the lower 48 States and Canada trying to make a living that way. During this time I came across many very dirty Police Officers all across the country, as a person who tries to be a good Christian (follower of Christ’s examples) many of these Officers actions really disappointed me greatly. I have never been roughed up by a Police Officer but I have always been pleasant with them even when they were being crooked with me. I have always tried to live by the philosophy of “don’t give an A-hole an excuse to act like an A-hole.” My bad adventures with Officers were always about crooked tickets, fraudulent fines. Think about this one issue, the issue of truck stop scales. When I first started driving a truck there were few private scales for you to weigh at and most of them were just where you could only weigh one axle at a time and none of them were ‘certified’ to be accurate. So when you came to a set of State Scales the Officers could say anything they wanted as far as what your weight was and then they would fine you for being over weight either on your individual axles and your total gross weight. The problem was so bad that finally a whole new industry was born because of it.  Now certified platform scales are in almost all truck stops everywhere plus a lot of big shippers have their own. Think about it, a billion dollar industry was born because of crooked Cops. Another issue to remember is that Police Departments are the fists of crooked politicians.

 

When I was in my tween years our local Police Department had members who were stealing snow mobiles each winter for a few years. When they got caught they were given a two-week paid vacation as punishment. After that they were stealing pool tables off of parked train cars and having inmates put them together for their ‘clients’. Again their penalty was paid time off. These issues were well known in the populous. I was a bit surprised to hear a man who was a Deacon at our Church say to my parents one day that he would rather have a thief knock at his door than to have one of the local Police Officers to knock at his door. His reasoning was that with a thief you knew what he wanted but with a Cop you just never knew what he was up to. I could give you several examples of crooked cops that I know of from all around the country but that would just be a waste of ink, I believe that most of you know exactly what I am speaking of.

 

Any time I come across a Police Officer I always treat them with nothing but respect, if they will allow that to happen. I so badly want Officers to act in a professional manner and if the Officer refuses to act like a decent human-being I still will give the Uniform respect. People must understand that every time that a Police Officer comes up to you that your financial and physical life are in their hands, so do not act like an idiot when they are in your presence. I have seen many times on TV where a person whom a Police Officer has made contact with where the civilian acts like an idiot, refusing to obey an Officers commands (whether they were legal or not) and then the Officer did something stupid like shoot them. Now days with all the cameras available to the public it would seem like all Police Officers everywhere would always act in a professional manner, but it is obvious that some still don’t.

 

The issue for every community everywhere is for the Police Chiefs, Sheriffs, Mayors, District Attorneys and States Attorneys to insist that their Officers obey the laws of the land and to not allow them to be the worse criminals on the streets. Being a Police Officer is a very tough and dangerous job and they need the general population to be on their side. This should be because of respect that the civilians have for them, not because the population is scared of them. Just as there is the reality of Doctors who protect their own and refuse to report other Doctors who are dangerous, Policing Departments also have this issue. Reality is that if an Officer turns in another Officer because they are a ‘bad apple’ that they themselves will be black-balled by the Department, or even worse. All Police Departments must be clean from the top down, if not, the bad actions of Officers within the Departments only get worse, not better. Also is the issue of some of the Police Unions. An example I am going to use today is the one where a young black man in Chicago was chased down by a Chicago City Officer about two years ago because he was waving a small knife around, and once the Officer caught up with him he shot him 16 times in about 15 seconds. If you have seen the video it appeared that the Officer shot him at least ten times after he was laying lifeless on the ground. Two other issues about trust in regards to this horrific event, one is that even with the videos of this event the Police Union is paying the legal fees for this Officer and have given him a job within the Union so that he doesn’t lose his pay check. The other big issue is that this happened about eleven months before the Mayoral election and the Mayor’s Office didn’t release the video’s until after the Election. One simple question before I finish this article, when Politicians, Police Departments and Police Unions along with the District Attorneys and State Attorneys act like this, how are the people, the citizens, ever suppose to be able to trust any of them? There is an old and truthful saying, if you want respect then you must give respect. True leaders lead by example, not by tyranny.

Do Black Lives Or Any Lives Really Matter In Today’s Society

Do Black Lives Or Any Lives Really Matter In Today’s Society

(I wrote this on September 26th of 2016)

Here in the States we see and hear of evil everyday on the different news feeds we have at our fingertips. Just this morning I heard of an active shooter in SW Houston Texas where a disgruntled lawyer went on a shooting spree wounding 9 people before the Police shot and killed him. As of the time of this report I do not know if the color of ones skin had anything to do with who was shot this morning or not. Just a couple of days ago an idiot shot and killed 5 people at a mall in Washington State. In that instance it appears to me that gender and the religious beliefs of the shooter had a huge role in those murders. Yet even when there are mass shootings here in the U.S. the mass media focuses most of its airtime whenever a Black person is killed by a Police Officer than on any other of these events. It seems that in our American Media there is always the effort to divide and take sides when this happens. I guess because hatred, racism, ignorance and criminal activities sell more papers and airtime.

 

Do I think that some Police Officers are racist and or just plain punks? Yes of course I do, I have lived 60 years here in the States and I have been eye-witness to such type of events several times. Do I believe that all Police Officers are racist or punks, no, not at all, that would be bias and quite stupid of me to think that. Yet it is my belief that some people do believe that about all Police Officers and if they do then I believe that they have become exactly what they hate, racist, hate filled punks themselves. Do I believe that the young Black man who was shot and killed by a Black plain clothed Police Officer in Charlotte North Carolina this past week was a racist act? No I don’t unless the Black Officer was a person who is bias against his own race. Also earlier this week there was another case of a young Black man being shot and killed by a White lady Police Officer in Tulsa Oklahoma. Do I believe that race had anything to do with this shooting? Yes I do. Each case of a Police shooting has to be analyzed separately. Every human case is different because the humans involved are different. The lady Officer in Tulsa has been charged with first degree manslaughter but the Officer in Charlotte has not been charged with anything, at least not yet. Personally I believed and still believe that the Officer in Tulsa should have been charged with second degree murder. I have known a lot of Officers in my life and I know that some do always carry a ‘throw down’ gun or a knife just in case they mess up and shoot an unarmed person they can throw down that weapon so that they don’t get charged with shooting an unarmed person. Is this what happened in Charlotte? By what I have seen on tapes and pictures, it looks to me like this might well be one of those throw down situations.

 

Race is a big issue on these shootings because of the media trying to sell airtime and news papers. There are far more people in this Country that are shot by Police Officers that are not black folks than the cases where they are Black folks. Yet we hear very little in the Nations media unless it is a Black person who got shot. The media and those ignorant enough to believe their bias hype could believe that Police Officers only shoot black people. There are plenty of cases though where I do believe the person’s skin color got them executed by a Police Officer like where that young Black kid was shot 16 or 17 times as he lay on the street in Chicago. In my opinion this is a case of first degree murder and the Cop should be charged with first degree murder and nothing less.

 

How much ruckus do you hear in the media when any other race of person is shot by an Officer when the one shot wasn’t Black? How about when a White person is shot by an Officer? Now, when was the last time there were any riots when a Hispanic, Indian or Asian person was shot by an Officer? America’s media play’s the race card mostly/only when it is a Black person who has been shot. Our society has been groomed to treat Black folks different in almost all issues. Some of these issues are good but many are toward the negative. Before the 1960’s all non White people were treated horribly not just the Black folks. It is true that the only ‘legal’ slaves in this Country were Black people but slavery ended more than 150 years ago. Most likely no one in our Country today has ever even known someone who was a ‘legal’ slave nor has anyone ever been one. Slavery of any kind is a sickening thing to even think about and it is nothing to ever joke about. Have you ever watched the movies Roots or Django? How about the TV program on WGN out of Chicago called Underground? If these situations don’t make you sick at your stomach, have you no morality?

 

This ‘movement’ here in America called ‘Black Lives Matter’ in my opinion is not much more than a racist movement of hate. Do Black lives matter? Absolutely they do, but so does every life, equally. Should it be okay for people in this Country to protest peacefully against the Government or against a Police Department’s? Yes, of course it should be okay for everyone in this Country to peacefully protest yet the word Peacefully is the key word. In Charlotte we have seen once again where folks, mostly Black folks have protested with violence and the Nations media has remained very quiet about it because if they spoke the truth they would be accused of being racist towards Black people. Think about it, people riot, burning vehicles, breaking into store and tractor trailers on the interstate and blocking off a major interstate and it is said by some that these rioters were simply ‘street cleaners’, how sickening! The media have created their own monster. The Black Race in this Country has been allowed to be racist in almost all venues. Think about these issues for a moment please. Here in this Country there are such things as the NAACP, the Black Miss America Pageant, the Negro College Fund, Black Colleges, Black Churches, Black Congressional Caucuses, Black Businessmen Associations, Black Lives Matter Movement and the list goes on and on. Now think about it, if there were such things as the National Association of White People, the White Miss America Pageant, the White Peoples College Fund, White Colleges and White Churches, White Congressional Caucuses, White Businessmen Associations, or the White Lives Matter Movements a huge amount of America’s Black folks would be livid, ranting and raving about how racist these groups are and how they had to be stopped from existing? The same thing would happen if there were Associations like this for Asian, Hispanic or Indian folks. There is a group of white folks that most everyone knows of called the KKK and rightfully so, most Americans have no use for their hatred. My question to everyone is, shouldn’t every single thing is this Country that is in any way race based be made illegal? Are they not all hate groups? Are they not all bias?

 

Racism is a huge problem in this country and racism does exist in some people in every race on the planet. Racism is simply another term for hatred of those who aren’t like us. I am a white guy by birth, I like everyone else ever born had no say so concerning my skin color when I came out of the womb. Skin color does not make me a good person or a bad person. My skin color had nothing to do with me being or not being a racist hate filled person, nor did it you. I have first hand experienced hate because of my white skin. This has happened many times from Black folks, Hispanic folks and from Indian folks. I have also experienced hatred from White people who were mad at me because I was daring to speak with a non-White. Now the question is, do Black Lives Matter? I think you know my answer by now so the question is to you, do Black Lives Matter, to you? The question is also to all of the Black folks reading this article today, are you a racist, do you hate any other race of people, or all the other people who are not Black? Hatred like racism is a disease of the mind and of the Soul. Everyone on this planet are brothers and Jesus made it plain that if we hate our brother without a cause (something they can’t help or do anything about, like skin color) then we are condemning our own selves to Hell. I’m just saying, racism is an individual personal thing, we choose to be or not to be. So now my last question to you is, what have you chosen to be?