Top 5 Live-WURD Tuesday July 21
1. Sandra Bland’s Family’s Lawyer Details Dashcam Video of Traffic Stop
The lawyer for the family of a woman found dead in a Texas jail cell last week said dashcam video from the roadside traffic stop that led to her arrest shows the encounter grew confrontational after she refused an officer’s demand to put out her cigarette.
Sandra Bland, 28, was pulled over by a state trooper for a routine traffic violation in Prairie View on July 10, authorities said. The trooper ran her license and insurance and was about to give her a written warning, according to family lawyer Cannon Lambert.
The trooper then asked Bland to put out her cigarette.
Bland responded: ‘Why do I have to put out a cigarette when I’m in my own car?’” Lambert said. “And that seemed to irritate him to the point where he said, ‘Get out of the car.’”
2. Clinton on Facebook: ‘Black lives matter’
Hillary Clinton declared Monday that “black lives matter,” using the benefit of time to avoid the bitter responses her Democratic foes faced for their answers on racial justice.
In a Facebook chat, Clinton was asked what she would have said to the protesters had she attended Netroots Nation in Phoenix, Arizona.
“Black lives matter. Everyone in this country should stand firmly behind that,” she said.
With two days to gauge the reaction of former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley’s on-stage declaration that “all lives matter” — which protesters perceived as a slight — Clinton wrote a different response.
“We need to acknowledge some hard truths about race and justice in this country, and one of those hard truths is that that racial inequality is not merely a symptom of economic inequality,” Clinton wrote. “Black people across America still experience racism every day.”
3. House schedules vote on ‘sanctuary cities’ bill
The immigration debate is coming to the House of Representatives this week.
House GOP leaders have scheduled a vote on legislation that withholds federal money for states or local governments whose policies prohibit federal officials from enforcing immigration laws.
After Donald Trump made controversial comments about the danger posed by Mexican immigrants in announcing his candidacy, other GOP presidential candidates have been pressed about their own positions on immigration.
The addition of the GOP bill to the voting schedule comes just weeks after Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez, an undocumented immigrant with a felony record, killed Kate Steinle, a young woman in San Francisco. Lopez-Sanchez was released by city authorities after drug charges against him were dropped.
Trump pointed to Steinle’s death as evidence his focus on illegal immigration was on target.
San Francisco is one of dozens of local governments and states across the country with so-called “sanctuary” laws that order their employees not to cooperate with federal authorities who are attempting to enforce immigration laws.
4. Republicans to Wolf: Call off the attack ads
As the state entered its third week without a new budget, Gov. Wolf and the Republicans whose support he needs to pass a spending plan were hundreds of miles apart – and not just figuratively.
On Monday Philadelphia-area GOP legislators gathered in Norristown to assail the governor’s position on key budget issues – and what they believe is his unprofessional, take-no-prisoners public relations war against them.
The lawmakers called a news conference to respond directly to what they called misleading television ads and mailers that attack each individually. The ads, costing at least $750,000 and paid for by Wolf’s allies, claim among other things that the Republicans put natural gas company profits ahead of education and have denied homeowners property-tax relief.
An interest group affiliated with the Democratic Governor’s Association (DGA) is behind the mailers.
“We can’t negotiate with a constant campaign barrage aimed at members of our delegation,” said state Sen. John Rafferty. “The campaign has stopped, Governor, and it’s time to get to the budget table now.”
For his part, Wolf batted back with this: The truth hurts.
5. Rachel Dolezal addresses ethnicity in Vanity Fair: ‘I didn’t deceive anybody’
A month after facing intense scrutiny when she was accused of pretending to be black, former NAACP chapter president Rachel Dolezal says she had no intention of hiding her identity.
“I just feel like I didn’t mislead anybody; I didn’t deceive anybody,” she told Vanity Fair in an interview posted on Sunday. “If people feel misled or deceived, then sorry that they feel that way, but I believe that’s more due to their definition and construct of race in their own minds than it is to my integrity or honesty, because I wouldn’t say I’m African American, but I would say I’m black, and there’s a difference in those terms.
“It’s hard to collapse it all into just a single statement about what is. You can’t just say in one sentence what is blackness or what is black culture or what makes you who you are.”
Her parents told TODAY that their daughter pretended to be black, claimed to be born in a teepee and made other false claims possibly as a way to “damage her biological family.”
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Solomon Jones is an Essence bestselling author and award-winning columnist. He is the creator and editor of Solomonjones.com and morning host on 900 am WURD radio. Click here to learn more about Solomon