According to a damning report from ProPublica, a county was exposed for illegally locking up children, and in some instances, using lies to justify it. Some of these children who were locked in cages were as young as seven.
Like the instance in Wilkes-Barre, a county juvenile judge, Donna Scott Davenport, played a key role in this horrifying practice — so did the cops.
According to the report, Davenport, a self-described Christian who referred to herself as the “mother of the county,” took an exceedingly harsh stance on children who got in trouble and even ones who didn’t.
Case in point: In 2016, police responded to an alleged fight at Hobgood elementary school in Murfreesboro between a 5-year-old and a 6-year-old. Though this was hardly an incident for which police and the court system needed to be involved, for some reason, the school called for them.
When police showed up, the the 5 and 6 year old kids were handcuffed and arrested. But that’s just the beginning. Zacchaeus Crawford also got a call that day from police telling him that his three children, ages 9, 10 and 11 were also arrested at the school, along with an 8-year-old and a 13-year-old.
All seven of these children were handcuffed and brought to jail. For allegedly watching the fight between two kids — not participating in it at all — the other five children were charged with “criminal responsibility for conduct of another”—a crime that does not exist in Tennessee law.
“It makes me want to fight. I’m not going to lie and say it doesn’t,” Crawford said of his children’s arrests. “How would you feel if it was your child? I’m frustrated.”
A year later, he and his wife sued and won an $86,500 settlement.
“All plaintiff children suffered great mental anguish and emotional trauma as a result of the false arrest and malicious prosecution as instigated and directed by defendants,” the lawsuit filed Feb. 16, 2017 stated.
Despite paying the settlement, the only person involved in the illegal arrest and detention of the children was a single cop, who was suspended for just three days.
Instead of decrying the incident, Judge Davenport issued a statement about children being bad. “We are in a crisis with our children in Rutherford County. I’ve been in officer 17 and a half years and I’ve never seen it this bad,” she told News 4 Nashville at the time.
Indeed, Davenport has a disdain for children like no other. According to the ProPublica report, nearly half of all children who go through her court, 48% — go to jail! That number is nearly ten times higher than the state average which is just 5% of children.
According to a report in Forbes, judge Davenport holds immense power over the local juvenile justice system, appointing all magistrates and approving policies for the detention center, thereby enabling this process even further.
ProPublica points out that Davenport is an apparent braggadocio about her record of jailing kids and keeps a high profile outside of the courtroom. She appears on a monthly segment on a local radio station, in which she has claimed children are behaving far worse now than they have in the past — on multiple occasions over several years.
“It’s worse now than I’ve ever seen it,” she said in 2012. Parents don’t parent: “It’s just the worst I’ve ever seen,” she said in 2017.
Davenport says she believes she’s on “God’s mission” to discipline children in the community, according to ProPublica.
“Whether the mask is labeled fascism, democracy, or dictatorship of the proletariat, our great adversary remains the apparatus—the bureaucracy, the police, the military. Not the one facing us across the frontier of the battle lines, which is not so much our enemy as our brothers’ enemy, but the one that calls itself our protector and makes us its slaves. No matter what the circumstances, the worst betrayal will always be to subordinate ourselves to this apparatus and to trample underfoot, in its service, all human values in ourselves and in others.”—Simone Weil, French philosopher and political activist
We labor today under the weight of countless tyrannies, large and small, carried out in the so-called name of the national good by an elite class of governmental and corporate officials who are largely insulated from the ill effects of their actions.
We, the middling classes, are not so fortunate.
We find ourselves badgered, bullied and browbeaten into bearing the brunt of their arrogance, paying the price for their greed, suffering the backlash for their militarism, agonizing as a result of their inaction, feigning ignorance about their backroom dealings, overlooking their incompetence, turning a blind eye to their misdeeds, cowering from their heavy-handed tactics, and blindly hoping for change that never comes.
Imagine for a moment that your home that you’ve lived in for decades caught fire and your belongings and irreplaceable family heirlooms are gone forever. Sadly, this is a reality for nearly 400,000 Americans every year and Suzanne Afolabi became one of them in May. Unfortunately, because government does what government does, Afolabi’s house burning down was only the beginning of her nightmare.
After her family’s house burned down in May, her insurance company provided her with an RV that she could live in on her property until her home was rebuilt. She, her husband and their grandson lived in the RV while the home was being repaired — that is, until a neighbor complained.
“We’re just temporary out here in this camper it’s not permanent until we get the house built,” Afolabi told WNDU.
However, when an apparently heartless and vindictive neighbor reported Afolabi’s RV — which was set up on her own property — to the local authorities, government turned the family’s bad dream into a nightmare.
“He came out and told me that I couldn’t be here,” Afolabi said of the zoning board inspector who told her she had to move the RV off of her own property. However, there was a glimmer of hope when the zoning tyrant told her that she could get a variance on the RV and it would be no problem. But when she asked for one, the board refused to grant it.
When WNDU reached out to the zoning board to confirm this asininity, they unapologetically responded by telling the reporter that the trailer is actually a recreational vehicle (RV) and cannot be a permanent home due to zoning codes — despite the fact that it is not a permanent home.
In the Land of the Free, as TFTP frequently reports, attempting to use your own property in a manner that suits you but not the government, can and will land you in hot water. Dennis Moriarty offered up his life to preserve the ostensible freedom in this land yet he is now finding out that “freedom” under tyranny is not freedom at all. His “crimes” in this new tyrannical world? Planting a flower garden in his own yard.
Moriarty, an 80-year-old Army veteran who loves butterflies, spends his days looking out from his porch into his 1,500 square foot garden in his front yard. He loves this garden as he’s spent countless hours planting native plants to attract butterflies.
The garden consists of milkweed, coneflowers, culver’s root, buttonbush, and other native flowers that aid in attracting bees and butterflies. As KansasCity.com points out, however, this beauty comes with a price — thanks to government.
“It’s not only gorgeous, but beneficial, using less water than conventional grass, for one thing. Yet the city has ordered him to either cut it down or wind up in court. That’s because Moriarty’s flowers are several inches higher than the 10 inches allowed in the city code against common nuisance.
With all the challenges Kansas City faces — gun violence, homelessness, crumbling abandoned buildings, the lack of affordable housing, trashy vacant lots and so much more — we have one question: Huh?”
Despite actual crime running rife throughout the city, the code enforcers are out in full force to make sure 80-year-old vets don’t have tall flowers. So, after wasting tax payer money to stake out Moriarty’s yard and photograph what he thought were “weeds,” code inspector Leon Bowman told Moriarty that he has 10 days to cut these “weeds” or else.
If Moriarty doesn’t cut his flowers, he will be subject to fines and eventually — if he resists this extortion — a warrant will be issued for his arrest and he will be kidnapped and caged.
Amos Miller and his family has been running Miller’s Organic Farm for over a century, providing willing and highly satisfied customers with milk, chicken, beef, and eggs. All of the food coming from Miller’s farm is beyond organic, humanely raised in a non-factory setting and the animals treated with dignity as they spend their entire lives naturally and stress-free out on pasture. By any moral standard, Miller’s farm is the leading example of what farming in America should look like.
Unfortunately, because Miller uses humane techniques and treats his animals well, this has put a government target on his back. Recently, federal Judge Edward G. Smith, imposed sanctions on his farm, ordering the family farm to pay over $250,000 in fines or go to jail. Because the Millers don’t use the USDA factory farm methods, this makes them non-compliant and thus an enemy of the state.
“In order to effect defendants’ future compliance, by making them aware of the seriousness of their violations and the consequences for future violations, defendants are ordered to pay to the United States, within 30 days of the date of entry of this Order — and pursuant to written instructions that the United States will provide to defendants—a fine of $250,000, or face further monetary and other penalties, possibly including imprisonment of Amos Miller,” the order says.
In July of this year, as residents of the Golden Acres Projects sweltered in their homes during an oppresive Florida heatwave, rapper Kodak Black decided to step in and help them out. On the 4th of July, Black arrived in the neighborhood with a truck full of 100 AC units to hand out. He went door to door himself to hand out the units.
“We out here passing out AC units, helping install them,” Kodak said in a video posted to social media. “We do it for the projects, we do it for the projects. The people relying on just enough cash to survive. We’ll get you all ACs man, we out here.”
Many of the residents were brought to tears by the kind act which may have quite literally saved some of their lives.
“A lot of times people get it twisted. They be like, ‘Man, Kodak sleep, Kodak this, Kodak that.’ Well check this out. Kodak back in his hood, man, giving back. It’s nothing new. You just happen to be a part of it today, that’s it.”
While the community celebrated their new AC units and the fact that they could now cool their homes, the government was working behind the scenes to do what government does.
Fast forward to this month and the Housing Authority of Pompano Beach made sure that no good deed goes unpunished. TMZ reports the Housing Authority of Pompano Beach issued a cease and desist letter to Kodak, claiming that he caused “disturbances” when delivering air-conditioning units to a housing project in July.
“Your actions have adversely impacted the Property’s residents’ right to peacefully enjoy the property,” the letter reads, according to TMZ.
The authority also claimed that the rapper’s subsequent music video, which was shot in the same location, also caused a “disturbance.”
Others disagree, however, and Black’s attorney, Bradford Cohen, responded with a letter of his own reprimanding the housing authority for their “wish to stop the assistance to the elderly and underprivileged during a heat wave and 2 year pandemic.”
The Libertarian Party VP candidate for 2020, Spike Cohen, also shared some harsh words about the government’s response to a rapper donating AC units to those in need.
Multiple states now have policies in action where drinking and driving can get your blood drawn by force — for a misdemeanor. While many states require a medically trained professional to conduct the blood draw, Georgia has upped the ante by training cops to draw your blood.
The Governor’s Office of Highway Safety received an impaired driving grant this month and is using it to train police officers to be vampires. While police won’t actually suck out your blood with their teeth, they will use a syringe to remove your blood from your body — even if you do not consent.
“A blood test is often the key piece of evidence needed to convict a DUI driver in court, but the barriers law enforcement officers are facing in getting blood drawn during a DUI investigation are resulting in too many of these cases going to trial without any toxicology evidence,” Allen Poole, director of the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety, said.
The agency claims that not only will the blood evidence help prosecute cases, this could also be a deterrent if a driver knows a cop is also a phlebotomist.
“Knowing law enforcement will be able to gather forensic evidence and better prosecute the case, we’re hoping to get voluntary compliance with people not getting behind the wheel and driving,” said Roger Hayes, GOHS Law Enforcement Services Director.
But forced blood draws and increased DUI stops have done nothing to deter drunk drivers. In spite of their increased presence over the last decade, DUI checkpoints and Soviet-style roadblocks have not proven to significantly decrease DUIs.
An Illinois mother says a Cook County judge decided to strip her parental rights over her refusal to get the COVID-19 vaccine, according to a local report.
Rebecca Firlit told FOX 32 Chicago that Cook County Judge James Shapiro revoked all of her parenting time with her son until she gets vaccinated.
“I miss my son more than anything. It’s been very difficult. I haven’t seen him since August 10th,” Firlit told the outlet.
A spokesperson for Shaprio told FOX 32 that the judge could not comment on the ruling due to the ongoing nature of the case.
Firlit, who has reportedly been divorced for seven years and shares custody of her son with her ex-husband, said she does not want to get the vaccine due to previous adverse reactions to vaccines, according to FOX 32.
Last year, after the killing of George Floyd, protests erupted across the country. One such protest took place in Manassas, Virginia and subsequently turned violent, sparking a secret meeting among several Prince William County board members and then-chief of police for Prince Williams Barry Barnard.
The secret meeting was not open to the public which spawned a subsequent lawsuit against the board, claiming that the supervisors violated the Virginia Freedom of Information Act by attending a forum organized by the police chief and refused to allow the public to attend.
The lawsuit was supported by many members of the community, who subsequently raised nearly $25,000 for legal fees. Though the lawsuit was ended in May of this year, according to those close to the plaintiffs, the harassment for seeking government accountability did not end.
Alan Gloss was one of the lead plaintiffs in the lawsuit last year, who is reportedly a target of said harassment as he has been outspoken in holding his local government accountable. In fact, the harassment was captured during a meeting in July when the board’s Chair At-large Ann Wheeler was caught on a hot mic saying, “what are you going to do about Alan Gloss?”
This statement garnered the attention of another concerned citizen, who decided to email the board and tell them that it was not okay to target citizens in this way. In the unnamed man’s email, he wrote:
“What about you going to do about Alan Gloss?” The smart answer to that is “nothing.” If anything happens to him, you will face even more investigation and scrutiny than has already been revealed.
According to the Potomac Local News, that unnamed man also criticized a number of other government policies and moves in his email.
The writer also criticized Wheeler for comments earlier this year at those who opposed a new housing development on 340 acres of land in the county’s rural area, noting they created “manufactured outrage” in their opposition to the project.
The author also called out a newly proposed equity and inclusion policy, initiated by the current Board, that would create diversity and equity teams at every county government level to ensure the new equity policy is enforced. The policy is still under review by county officials.
“The feedback deadline [for the proposed policy] had to be extended, presumably so you can get more positive feedback,” the author writes. The author also urges the Board of County Supervisors to censure Wheeler and Potomac District Supervisor Andrea Bailey “for their disdain for citizens.”
Exactly none of the words in the email were threatening or otherwise unlawful but this did not stop the board members from siccing the police on the man for his free speech. Because the email had a subject line of “Government Target” — in reference to government targeting Alan Gloss as recorded on the hot mic — board members claimed this was a threat.
This week, body camera footage of the interaction between the officer and the unnamed man was released, showing the power of government to attempt to silence or threaten their critics.