Photo of Rev. Al
Reverend Al is up to his usual tricks – race baiting and rabble rousing – in the Trayvon Martin murder case. I keep waiting, and have been waiting for years, for the Rev. Al to change his ways. Unfortunately, he never will change and he will never answer for his behavior.
Rev. Al is back in the limelight over George Zimmerman, the white Hispanic he is hoping to send to jail.
It’s time to bring up Rev. Al’s past yet again, and quite a past it is.
REMEMBER CROWN HEIGHTS
In 1991, Gavin Cato, a seven-year-old black child was killed in a traffic accident in Crown Heights (in Brooklyn), when a car driven by a Hasidic Jew went out of control. Sharpton turned it into a racial incident. Sharpton led 400 protesters through the Jewish section of Crown Heights, with one protester holding a sign that read, “The White Man Is the Devil.”
After four nights of rock and bottle throwing, a young Talmudic scholar found himself surrounded by a mob shouting, “Kill the Jew.” In short order, he was stabbed to death. A hundred others were injured.
Sharpton said at the time, “The world will tell us that [Gavin Cato] was killed by accident….What type of city do we have that would allow politics to rise above the blood of innocent babies?…Talk about how Oppenheimer in South Africa sends diamonds straight to Tel Aviv and deals with the diamond merchants right here in Crown Heights….All we want to say is what Jesus said: If you offend one of these little ones, you got to pay for it. No compromise. Pay for your deeds.”
Some time later, Sharpton would said, “If the Jews want to get it on, tell them to pin their yarmulkes back and come over to my house.”
Sharpton says that with the virtue of hindsight, he would have done some things differently – stating that “we,” meaning protesters, “should have expressed more clearly” “the precious value of Yankel Rosenbaum, who was killed by a mob that night.” He says, “I would have also included in my utterances that there was no justification or excuse for violence or for the death of Yankel Rosenbaum.”
But he never outright apologized for his conduct. His conduct was reprehensible.
He makes only passing mention of the vile words that incited the anti-Semitic rioters, which made an already volatile situation much worse. It was Sharpton who repeatedly bellowed to the rioters, “No justice, no peace!”
Sharpton claims his remarks at Gavin Cato’s funeral were misinterpreted. He said – according to a 1993 report in the Jewish Forward by legendary reporter Philip Gourevitch – “Talk about how Oppenheimer in South Africa sends diamonds straight to Tel Aviv and deals with the diamond merchants right here in Crown Heights. The issue is not anti-Semitism; the issue is apartheid. . . . All we want to say is what Jesus said: If you offend one of these little ones, you got to pay for it. No compromise, no meetings, no coffee klatsch, no skinnin’ and grinnin’.”
Based on everything we have seen and read, Sharpton never called upon the rioters to stop their anti-Semitism-inspired violence. He never called on the rioters to go home. To the contrary, he stirred them up. And three days of anti-Semitic violence culminated in the Crown Heights riots.
Sharpton’s revisionism only serves to perpetuate the fallacy that the riots erupted organically from some underlying ongoing issues between the African-American and Jewish communities of Crown Heights. In other words, profound tensions were boiling just beneath the surface, and were suddenly unleashed by the tragic death of Gavin Cato.
REMEMBER TAWANA BRAWLEY
The Tawana Brawley case is the most famous of the Rev. Al’s offense.
On November 28, 1987, Tawana Brawley, who had been missing from her home in Wappinger Falls for four days, was found covered in feces in a garbage bag with the words ”KKK,” “Nigger” and “Bitch” written on her body. She appeared to be semi-conscious. She said she was raped and later said it was not rape but other types of sexual assault. She named no one but said it was three white men and one was a police officer. At one point, it was allegedly six white men.
There was no evidence of any sexual assault nor was there any evidence that she was exposed to the elements even though she claimed she was held in the woods for four days with evening temperatures below zero.
Rev. Al Sharpton, with attorneys Alton H. Maddox and C. Vernon Mason jumped into the case and it exploded. The three named names – a part-time police officer, named Harry Crist Jr., who committed suicide within a couple weeks of the incident, and an Assistant AG, Steve Pagones. Harry Crist Jr. was despondent over his failure to pass the police department test before he aged out. His girlfriend had very recently broken up with him. He couldn’t handle it and ended his life. He was described by friends and family as hard-working and kind.
So how did his name get pulled into the case?
IA postal worker told investigators that sometime around the period during which Ms. Brawley said she was abducted, he spotted a car that resembled Mr. Crist’s near the place where Ms. Brawley was found.
And in a telephone conversation that Ms. Brawley had with a friend, and that law enforcement officials recorded, she alluded to Mr. Crist’s death in connection with what she said had happened to her.
His name leaked out in news reports and Ms. Brawley’s advisers seized on it, brandishing it in public forums.
It was from there that Steve Pagones’ name was dragged into the case because he provided an alibi for the now-deceased Crist. Pagones testified that he was out shopping with Harry Crist when the alleged assault occurred. Pagones tried to do the right thing.
Sharpton seized on this and then named Pagones as one of the perpetrators.
As someone who lived through this hoax, it was clear to even the media by this time that the allegations were getting more and more ludicrous.
Accoridng to wiki, On October 6, 1988, the Abrams Grand Jury released its 170-page report concluding Brawley had not been abducted, assaulted, raped and sodomized, as had been claimed by Brawley and her advisers. The report further concluded that the “unsworn public allegations against Dutchess County Assistant District Attorney Steven Pagones” were false and had no basis in fact. To issue the report, the Grand Jury heard from 180 witnesses, saw 250 exhibits and recorded more than 6,000 pages of testimony.
In the decision, the grand jury noted many problems with Brawley’s story. Among these were that the rape kit results did not indicate sexual assault. Also, despite her claim of having been held captive for days, Brawley was not suffering from exposure, was well-nourished, and appeared to have brushed her teeth recently.
Despite her clothing being charred, there were no burns on her body. Although a shoe she was wearing was cut through, Brawley had no injuries to her foot. The racial epithets written on her were upside down, which led to suspicion that Brawley had written the words.
Testimony from her schoolmates indicated she had attended a local party during the time of her supposed abduction. One witness claimed to have observed Brawley’s climbing into the garbage bag. Brawley never testified…
Tawana might have lied because she was facing the possibility of violent punishment by her mother and stepfather. Once she was so far along with this story, there was no turning back and, to this day, she has not explained what really happened.
Steve Pagones, father of three, said that the stress from this event broke up his marriage. He sued and in 1998, a jury found that the three advisers, including the Rev. Al Sharpton, had defamed Mr. Pagones and awarded him $345,000 in damages. Ms. Brawley, whom Mr. Pagones had also sued, defaulted by not appearing at the trial, and the judge ordered her to pay him damages of $185,000 which she never paid. Sharpton never paid but the Black community paid Sharpton’s share of the damages.
It appeared that Sharpton might very well have helped fabricate the lie that implicated Crist and Pagones.
REMEMBER MR. WHITE
We had a tragic case on Long Island a couple years ago.
A young white man was told by a girl he knew that his black friend threatened to rape her. That later turned out to be a lie perpetrated by the girl in question. The young man – drunk – went to his black friend’s house with a gang of friends and screamed threats and racial epithets at the father of the friend and the friend.
Then the situation turned. The father, a Mr. White, instead of going into his home and waiting for police, told his son to get his gun, which the son did. The father then shot the young white man in the face as he screamed and threatened.
Rev. Al held a march on Long Island on behalf of the shooter and continued to advocate strongly for him during and after the trial. The shooter was given a two-year sentence but served only 8 months for the vigilante justice he meted out.
How different things are for Rev. Al when the victim is white.
REMEMBER HIS TAX PROBLEMS
For someone who loves socialism, he appears to behave in quite an opposite manner. He often refuses to pay his taxes. MSNBC reported in 2009 that he owed $1.5 million in back taxes and it was a recurring problem. In a 1988 interview, Sharpton said he saw no reason why blacks should pay taxes. “If we do not have a justice system that protects us, what are we paying for?” Sharpton has faced multiple charges—and one conviction—of tax evasion.
REMEMBER THE CENTRAL PARK JOGGER
In 1989 “the jogger,” a young white woman, was monstrously raped and nearly beaten to death in Central Park. Sharpton insisted—despite the defendants’ confessions—that her black attackers were innocent, modern-day Scottsboro Boys trapped in “a fit of racial hysteria.”
Sharpton charged that the jogger’s boyfriend did it, and organized protests outside the courthouse, chanting, “The boyfriend did it!” and denouncing the victim as “Whore!” He brought Tawana Brawley to the trial, to show her “white justice” and arranged for her to meet the attackers.
Sharpton appealed for a psychiatrist to examine the victim, generously saying, “It doesn’t even have to be a black psychiatrist….We’re not endorsing the damage to the girl—if there was this damage.” (While it doesn’t excuse his calling the victim a “whore” and denigrating any damage to her, or his accusations against the boyfriend, the convictions of the accused were eventually vacated, despite their taped confessions, after another man—whose DNA matched—confessed to the rape in 2002.)
ARAFAT: When Sharpton announced a 2001 trip to the Middle East, Rabbi Shmuley Boteach helped plan his itinerary. Sharpton, according to the Rabbi, promised not to meet with Yassir Arafat, yet only days later, Jewish New Yorkers opened the morning paper to see a smiling Arafat and Sharpton, meeting and shaking hands in Israel.
Furious, Rabbi Boteach said, “Prior to our recent trip to Israel, U.S. black leader Reverend Al Sharpton and I discussed several times that there were to be no meetings with Arab or Palestinian leaders, not because I wished to set preconditions for our travel, but because the express objective of our mission was to show solidarity with Israeli victims of terror. The idea was to provide a magnanimous gesture of friendship and solidarity with the Jewish nation that would hopefully have strong reverberations for the relationship of the Jewish and black communities back home.”
FREDDY’S FASHION MART/”WHITE INTERLOPER”: 1995. A Jewish store owner in Harlem was accused of driving a black record store owner out of business, when the United House of Prayer, one of the largest black landlords on 125th Street, raised the rent on the Fashion Mart owned by a Jew, Freddy Harari, who then raised the rent on his subtenant, Sikhulu Shange, who ran a record store.
At one of many rallies meant to scare the Jewish owner away, Sharpton said, “…There is a systematic and methodical strategy to eliminate our people from doing business off 125th Street. I want to make it clear…that we will not stand by and allow them to move this brother so that some white interloper can expand his business.”
Following a demonstration three months later, one of the protestors, a black man, stormed Freddy’s Fashion Mart with a pistol, screaming, “It’s on now! All blacks out!” In addition to shooting, he set fire to the building, eventually killing himself and seven others. Initially, Sharpton denied having spoken at any rallies. When tapes surfaced, he said, “What’s wrong with denouncing white interlopers?” Eventually, he apologized—but only for saying “white,” not “interloper.”
CRIMINAL JUSTICE: During the “Million Man March” in Washington, civil rights “activist” Al Sharpton thundered, “O.J. is home, but Mumia Abu Jamal – a cop killer – ain’t home. And we won’t stop till all of our people that need a chance in an awkward and unbalanced criminal justice system can come home.”
OUT OF THE KING MOVEMENT: Although he was 14 when Martin Luther King was assassinated, Sharpton claims he “came out of the King movement.” Sharpton once explained, “I was on some show this week, and people said, ‘Why don’t you just let it go? Why don’t y’all just get over it?’ Get over what? Get over Dr. King dying? Get over Medger Evers dying? Get over Goodman, Chaney and Schwerner dying? Get over those four girls in Birmingham dying? We are never gonna get over it, and we are never gonna let you forget it!”
FBI TAPES/COCAINE: In 2002, HBO aired a 19-year-old FBI surveillance of Sharpton with self-described mobster Michael Franzese and an undercover FBI agent posing as a Latin American businessman. The three were discussing promoting boxing matches and musical events. HBO’s “Real Sports” got a hold of a hidden camera video that shows undercover agent Victor Quintana posing as a drug dealer trying to convince Sharpton to play a middleman in a big cocaine buy.
Sharpton asks the undercover agent, “What kind of time limit are we dealing with?”
“Coke?” the agent asks.
“Yeah.” Sharpton says.
The phony drug dealer says, “Could be about the same time we have 4 million coming to us.”
Sharpton: “End of April?”
“End of April. Six weeks from now. Is that a good time you think?” the agent asks.
“Probably,” Sharpton replies.
Later on, the undercover agent offers Sharpton a finder’s fee for help with the drug deal and says to Sharpton, “I can get pure coke for about $35,000 a kilo … Every kilogram we bring in, $3,500 to you. How does that sound?” Sharpton nods in response.
The deal never went down, and Sharpton has said he was just playing along because he was scared of the would-be kingpin. “And I’m in his office. I don’t know whether this man is armed. I don’t know what’s going on. So I kind of say, ‘Yeah, yeah, yeah,’ to get out of there,”
Sharpton claimed the tape was leaked by law enforcement officials to disrupt his 2004 presidential run, and he sued HBO, its parent company AOL Time Warner, and several individuals who worked on the story.
No charges were ever brought against Sharpton because of the tape, which was allegedly made to get Sharpton to act as an informant for the feds into an investigation into corruption by Don King and the boxing industry.
The HBO report featured former Mafia captain Michael Franzese saying that the FBI was on the right track when it targeted Sharpton in a sting back in 1983 to try and root out corruption in boxing.
Sharpton admitted in 1988 that he informed for the government in order “to get rid of drugs and election fraud” in black neighborhoods. He denied informing on civil rights leaders and organized crime figures.
FBI TAPES/DONATIONS: After Sharpton’s name surfaced on wiretaps in an unrelated Philadelphia City Hall corruption case, the FBI launched a probe into Sharpton’s fund-raising for his failed 2004 presidential run.
The FBI secretly videotaped Sharpton on May 9, 2003, pocketing campaign donations from two “shady fund-raisers” in a NY City hotel room, and then demanding $25,000 more.
The two fund-raisers were La-Van Hawkins and the late Ronald White. Hawkins is currently on trial in Philadelphia on corruption charges. White was going to be indicted, but died before charges were brought.
A later wiretap recorded Hawkins telling White that they had raised more than $140,000 for Sharpton the previous quarter, but Hawkins was concerned that Sharpton had only reported about $50,000 to the Federal Election Commission, as required by law.
Sharpton said the allegations were a “politically motivated smokescreen” to hide the fact the Justice Department is out to get him. He ripped the probe and the secret videotaping, saying, “Can you imagine what would happen if it was a white presidential candidate?”
Sharpton supported the anti-government anarchists, communists, socialists, democratic socialists who created mayhem on Wall Street and elsewhere last year. He showed up at rallies and gave out his autograph in support.
I guess black people are allowed to have their bad leaders too. Rev. Al is definitely one who should be in jail.