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Thank God Karolina is a white woman

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When Police Supt. Phil Cline said he is "sickened and embarrassed" by the brutal beating of Karolina Obrycka, a bartender at a Northwest Side bar, I believe him. But when he says that Chicago police officer Anthony Abbate has "tarnished our image worse than anybody else in the History of the Department," I have a problem with that.

Young black men (and women) have been brutally beaten by out-of-control police officers in the past, and the incidents have been handled as if they were isolated cases.

But the mauling Obrycka took at the hands of an alleged drunken off-duty police officer will change the culture of the police department. Why? Because she's a white woman.

Don't get me wrong, Abbate, who was caught on videotape beating the female bartender after she refused to serve him another drink, is a horrible human being. But the dishonor of "worst" goes to Jon Burge, the former Cmdr. of Area 2 Police Headquarters. Dozens of suspects were tortured under his charge, and three former death row inmates have sued the city and could receive a $14.4 million settlement because of the department's culture of abuse.
Other worst cases: the four police officers indicted last year on corruption charges that included home invasion, kidnapping, and delivery of narcotics; crooked and abusive cops in Gresham; rogue cops in Austin.

Over the years, I've written about cops so abusive, one of them knocked a teenage girl's teeth out; another allegedly shot a family's dog just for the hell of it. In 2003, a home video showed Chicago police officers dragging four men from a van and kicking them in the Cabrini-Green neighborhood. Two officers, Joseph Groh and Vander Mey, were brought up on charges, and accused of "bringing discredit" upon the Police Department. The tape showed one officer throwing punches at one of the suspects while other officers held the man down.

But a jury found Vander Mey not guilty on all charges because the videotape was "too grainy" to positively identify the police officer.

When the verdict was read, police officers who were in the courtroom burst into loud applause.

Yet, unless the men caught on the videotape were fake police officers, a shameful crime was committed.

So I'm thankful that Karolina Obrycka is white. Like I've said in the past, when out-of-control cops start terrorizing white people, things are going to change.

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54 Comments

Mary,

Let's do somthing totally different today. Let's show the good side of the city, the good side of a city employee and not look at black and white. Try hard. I think and hope you can do that. Here is a good article to run.

As a fellow Chicago Firefighter, I was appauled at the medias coverage of
Firefighter William Grant's funeral. No one covered it live and the web
casts that were availale kept freezing and going out. I unfortunately had
to work as did hundreds of other Chicago firefighters. I was glued to the
television at 10:30 and only bits and pieces were aired. Did anyone besides
this mans family and firefighters across the country care? I gues hard
work, dedication and duty are not news worthy.

Yes, it was beautiful. Yes, it was large and impresive. Yes, is was
extremely sad. Yes, it was something that is usually reserved for heads of
state. But that's not what it was about and that was the only reason the
media covered it. It was about a great man, a geat father, a great husband
and a great firefighter. Nothing more. The show was not what was
important. It was the man. Heroes like him deserve more. A hero was laid
to rest. And more importantly, we lost a hero.

I really wonder where peoples priorities are. You can turn the TV on any
time of the day and hear about Anna Nicole Smith or turn on any local news
and watch that apphauling video of that cop beating the female bartender.
What is really important to us?

White, Black & Hispanic. Male and Female. Catholics, Jews, Muslims and
Athiests. Republicans and Democrats. All finally comming together for a
brief moment putting all our differences together to do something good and
something positive. Honor a great man, a great father, a great husband and
a great firefighter.

I have been on the job for a little under two years. I am the fifth
generation in my family to proudly wear the badge of a Chicago firefighter.
I unfortunately never had the chance to meet William Grant. I pray for him
and his family every night as do my four children. I pray that I can become
the type of firefighter he was and that I will be able to honor my family,
The City of Chicago and The Chicago Fire Department as he did. He gave the
ultimate sacrifice for this city and for all it's residents. Every single
man and woman in a Chicago Fire Department uniform that was in attendance at
the funeral or at the firehouses scattered throughout the city is of the
same character.

We were all hurt beyond belief at the loss of this man. He was the type
that all firefighters could look up to and try and emmulate. The motto of
The Chicago Fire Department is "We're there when you need us!". Where was
the media when we needed them. Where was "What's Really Important!"

When a bad cop or bad firefighter screws up, it's front page news or they
break into your favorite show with all the nasty details. Is this the only
news people care about any more?

What was important was Queen of Martyrs and Saint John Fisher schools
allowing all the children to line 103rd street and honor this man. What was
impotant was the hundreds of people who had no duty to honor this man come
out of their houses and walk blocks to watch the funeral procession pass
by.

I guess being a firefighter instills you with different values. I guess we
place importance on different things. The people in the media and the
station managers at our local stations should be ashamed and embarrased. It
would have been a great opportunity to show our children the story of a
great man, working in a great city and for a great fire department. It
would have been good to use William Grant's story to highlight dedication to
his family and to his job.

Does the media and news care? The Chicago Fire Department and William Grant
cared. We actualy dont care in a different yet good way. We don't care
who's house it is. We'll be there. We don't care what color or race you
are. We'll be there. We don't care what time it is. We'll be there. We
don't care what dangers we face. We'll be there.

Mary,

I am a black man in my early 30's and needless to say I have been stopped numerous times by the police. But my biggest issue with police isn't the race issue (which we all know it there), but the fact that most cops forget they are civil servants. Most of of them ride around town with serve and protect on their vehicles, and i'm sure they don't know the words are there.

Mary, I'll take a slightly different turn to your title, "Thank God Karolina is a white woman". Mary, it should have been, "Thank God the camera was working in that tavern." Unfortunately, the Jon Burge victims didn't have benefit of the camera. And I have questions I wish were answered. Where's Jesse Jackson? He use to always criticize bad police. He still does in New York City (Diallo tragedy). But isn't Jackson a Chicago resident? Unarmed African-Americans Latanya Haggarty and Robert Russ both get shot dead and he's quiet. Oh, perhaps its because the bad cops were all black. Or maybe he only goes after bad police in cities where the mayors are republicans. Still, the rogue cop who beat-up Karolina was white. Oh, maybe its because Karolina was white. Hey, where is Wallace 'Gator' Bradley? He's always on this blog bringing up the Burge controversy. He's always going after the police department. So why not now? Gator, you still around? Or are the police exempt if the victims they beat up not blacks? Then again, maybe Gator's computer is not working properly. Because I figured he'd have been the first guy pointing-fingers.

PS: Mary and everybody, as far as terrible police go, please never forget those Ford Heights policemen who stood by and let a gang of thugs perform that hate crime and dose that white man with gasoline in a brutal murder. And then setting him on fire. That was probably the most disgusting as far bad police work goes.

I'm with you on many of your opinions and will concede that cops often are more aggressive toward blacks. But this isn't one of those times. It has nothing to do with white and black in this case and everything to do with being recorded on camera. These things happen all the time. They made all the threats against the bartender and bar owner and tried to cover it all up; they pulled an incredible stunt at the arraignment. The four guys that six cop-thugs beat up were white.

I don't know where you get the idea that these thugs only abuse minorities. Those of us that have been around long enough to be street smart know way better. These people are blue in color and everybody else in the world is of some lesser color.
When a black woman was killed in the passenger seat of a car running from a cop car a few years ago she was shot by a gun toting crazy cop that was order not to chase but she chased the car anyway, pulled up on the right side and at a high rate of speed pulled a cowboy shot that killed the passenger in a traffic thing. She lost her job for killing an innocent person against direct orders. Wonder what would have happened if I shot an innocent person - think I'd lose my job? The victim and the shooter were both black women in that case.

A bunch of off-duty Sheriffs Deputy thugs in Countryside beat a man to death at a wedding party and if I remember right hardly got a slap on the hand. The victim was white and most if not all of the killing deputies were white.

As I say, these thugs are blue and everybody else is a lesser color.

What if the cop was black and the girl white? Then, of course you would have nothing to say, and you would write a column on how white's have not properly allowed the education of that black man and that is why he beat up the girl, it was all he knew, just a poor soul.
Thats sad, even when the cop is white and the girl is white, you have to bring up race! That's really grasping at straws, or creating them if you will.

For all those wondering...Mary is interested in promoting black issues and current events that impact black people. I have no problem with that and I'm white. It doesn't advance the cause or popularity for Mary, Jessie, (pick a Reverend) to stand by a white person impacted by racism. Why would it benefit Mary to discuss a story about a white person getting beat up in a racially charged fight?
This is not a discussion about race - it is a discussion about issues facing black people. I cannot identify with that day in and day out. The only blogs from white people will of course counter Mary's arguments and points of view. If it takes a beating of a white women by a white cop to help black people, that's her view.

The person most fortunate that the bartender is white is Abbate himself. Because whatever jail time he is going to get for this crime, the time would be double if the victim were black. Because in today's racist, anti-white system that we have a white life is not worth as much as a black life. To Steuben, you are obviously a very intelligent and informed young man.

Yes - Jesse Jackson has sat quietly in the midst of this horrible event, as he should. Why, you ask? Because Karolina and the rest of White America already have a voice. One that is seen and heard everyday on every media outlet in the western hemisphere. Karolina has been and will continue to be spoken for everyday. Specifically by Supt. Cline. Our communities (the black ones) need a voice so that is why everytime there is a tragedy in one of our communities you will see Jesse, Al and others - because for now, they are our voice. Now, I cannot speak for Ms. Mitchell, however as I read her blog - my interpretation of her message was to point out that rogue cops may now actually have to answer for their misdeeds. The Anthony Abbattes of the CPD have have been roaming Englewood, Woodlawn, Roseland and other black neighborhoods for years. Beating us, stealing from us, planting dope on us, disrespecting us and KILLING US and not much has been done about it. CPD does not always hold cops accountable for their actions, as civilians are, when in actuality police officers should be held to a higher standard. Mayor Daley and Phil Cline should DEMAND a higher standard of behavior from police officers toward citizens and up until now they haven't. But now that a cop has done a white woman wrong, maybe Phil and Rich Daley WILL do something about the "thugs" on their police force. Yes - the headline says Thank God Karolina was a white woman - but read beyond the headline people. Maybe now cops will be held accountable for their actions and predecent will be set that this type of behavior is NOT allowed. When Jeremiah Mearday was beaten by two thug cops back in 1997 and photos of his injuries were plastered all over the news, what happened? Exactly. Not only are you scratching your heads asking who is Jeremiah Mearday, you're scrambling for an answer to the question. I'll answer it for you. Nothing. Yes the cops were eventually fired, but no criminal charges were brought against them and they broke this young man's jaw and bloodied him up pretty badly, not to mention planted drugs on him. Mearday and his family suffered intimidation and harassment from CPD cops familiar with his name and face for years after the incident to the point that they had to change residences, more than once I believe. Cops still abuse and KILL minorities at alarming rates. Now that a white woman has been the victim of the ways of a rogue cop - maybe the powers that be will listen to what we (black folks) have been SHOUTING for years. Cops (some, not all) are out of control and something needs to be done about it. Daley said after the Mearday incident (and I quote) "An officer who commits brutality will be looking at penetentiary time. . ." Nice quote for the papers but we all know he was a lie because Serena Daniels is walking the streets (the cop who killed LaTanya Haggerty). Now that the victim was named Karolina instead of Marquesha - maybe Daley will make a truthful man out of himself.

This is to the attention of Tom Cook......

I completely agree with you on your point. Why didn't the media cover it live on TV? I thought it should have been covered live on the networks. But who are we kidding.

I too sat glued to my computer trying to watch the live stream coverage. As the daughter of a retired firefighter, who when he was on the force has a few close calls, it was heart breaking to watch, but I had to.

Although I do not know the Grant family, my heart breaks for them. I do know of firemen that were close to him and were ones to have to recover his body from under the firetruck. These people are struggling to get past it.

Heres a blog idea Ms. Mitchell......

Why not do one on the fact that the bus driver did not "hear or see the firetruck"

That is the biggest lie I have ever heard. Why you ask?

(1) I live 6 blocks from the firehouse in Mt Greenwood and I will tell you that at 6 blocks away, I can hear the ambulances and fire trucks at all odd hours of the night. You mean to tell me she could not hear the firetruck right in front of her? Give me a break.

(2) If you watched the reconstruction of what happened, she clipped the back of the firetruck, not the front. You mean to tell me besides not hearing the firetrucks sirens, she could not see something that clearly was already in her path? How fast was she driving? Was she blasting music, talking on a cell phone, I could go on and on.

All I can say is this..... thank god she does not drive a school bus for my child or other children that I know. They said her driving record was clean, it was not. She had 6 violations, maybe not driving a bus, but she still has moving violations.

In all reality she should (and I hope) lose her job. Besides the fact she has to live with what she did for the rest of her life, She should have had to watch the Honorable service they had for Firefighter Grant.

To the Attention of Mary Mitchell..... you are quick to discuss race issues. Do you only address them when it is a black person who is the victim by a white person? Is this issue not worthy of your attention? It apparently seems so.

Mitchell comment:

What is the race issue you want to address? Are you saying that the school bus driver intentionally slammed into the fire truck because the firefighter was white? Is that your point?

I believe that some things will change as a result of the color of the victim in the case of Karolina Obrycka.

However, a major problem with the Chicago Police Department is that it has a conflict of interest in investigating itself. The Chicago Police Department and the Office of Professional Standards should be separated having both the Superintendent of Police and the Administrator (or Director)serving at the pleasure of the Mayor and reporting to the Mayor.

The Superintendent of Police should not head the Office of Professional Standards as it is an obtrusive conflict of interest. Then and only then shall we see major improvements to the Chicago Police Department and racial desparities in the CPD. The Superintendent and the OPS Director should instill in each Officer that no one is above the law and that they will uphold the law as if they were any other civilian.
And that's Accountibility.

You're thankful that a white woman took this hellacious beating rather than a black woman in order to create change...ahh yes...journalism at its finest!

Mitchell comment:

Cheryl, that's not what I wrote. That's your characterization. My point is this, if Karolina had been a black woman, people like you would have said she deserved it.

I understand whaat Mary is saying. I too had the same reaction to Supt.Cline's comment that this was the worst thing to tarnish the reputation of the hicago Police force in history. This was absolutely horrible and thank God for the video camara, but John Burgess systematic tortue over a period of time with the full knowledge of the powers that be, not just his commanding officer and a few cops, that this man can never be charged for his many crimes I believe, does far more damage to the police department reputation. This incident just adds to the legacy of John Burgess that there are certain men and women in blue who believe they can get away literally with murder and the department will cover it up as long as there are no camaras involved.

I must say to all those brave men & women in blue who risk their lives everyday to protect us, who truly believe in the justice system, because there are many out there, why are you allowing these people to demean you and what you stand for by not standing up to the corruption and hatred within in your own ranks?

I don't know what infuriated me more...having a friend of mine getting brutally beaten up by a cop and having to watch it over and over on T.V., or having some myopic columnist who can't seem to think except in terms of skin color, try to turn this into a racial soapbox to preach the gospel of "black victimhood".

Mitchell comment:

Yes, but I'm right about it.

Not once was the fact mentioned on this blog that the victim in this particular case was a Polish immigrant. I dunno, but that very well may have been what infuriated the police officer and drove him to pound that "white" female. How could someone of what he may have considered a lower class tell him that he could no longer guzzle his swill at that establishment.

You forget that immigrants are many times thought of as lower or second-class citizens also, in many cases Polskies.

I do have to concur that Burge leapfrogs over this incident in terms of tarnishing the image of those responsible for protecting this city, though.

As I read the posts on this particular post it is obvious just how many different points of view exist regarding this subject. There are opinions based on occupation, race, gender, relationship to the victim, etc. Why is it that responders find it difficult to view the comments posted by Ms. Mitchell objectively? What is so difficult about putting yourself in Mary's shoes and responding to her point? The police need to be held accountable regardless of the complexion of those who are victimized by them.

Some of you have had encounters with members of the CPD. Some of these may have been positive, while others were not. Can you honestly say that when you hear the siren screech behind you that you don't get a sick feeling in the pit of your stomach? Maybe you were only driving a couple of miles over the limit. Maybe you had just one drink. Do you ever worry that the encounter will turn out badly? Guess what, blacks worry about that the majority of the time when they hear a siren behind them. And it isn’t only because they were breaking the law.

Are you blind to the plight of people who on a regular basis suffer such injustices as Karolina suffered from Abbate? Start asking questions such as:
1) What would have happened had not the video recorded this beating?
2) Why was Karolina threatened by the police following this incident?
3) What did the police do after Karolina reported the incident?
4) Why in the face of obvious guilt would any officer say that Abbate is being treated as guilty before proven innocent?
5) What sort of society do we live in where citizens are reluctant to stop an unjustified attack because they fear reprisals from the police?

These are questions that can be applied to any race, any ethnic background or any socio-economic condition.

My last question to each of you...what would you want done if Karolina was your sister, wife, friend or mother? Wouldn't you want that officer and any other treated like the citizens they are "sworn" to protect?

To Tom Cook, I have and continue to believe that firefighters are the only true heroes in society. I would expect the driver of that bus to be charged with vehicular homicide.

There is no way that we can know for sure that that this story got the press that it did due to the race of the victim. The purpose of blogs like this is to raise viewpoints that no one in the mainstream media is willing to discuss. I agree with Mary, and find pleasure in reading the hilarious reactions of those who disagree with her.

To Stacey, as someone who grew up in Mt. Greenwood but who no longer lives there, I would like to commend the neighborhood for making sure that the people who tried to murder Ryan Rusch last summer in Beverly Park were not given special treatment by the authorities. I still know many people there and I was told that the neighborhood really stepped up and put pressure on the authorities to do their jobs.

Mary,
I haven't lived in Chicago for five years. I still try to keep up with local news through friends and family. I have read your column numerous times. Most times I have agreed. Sometimes I haven't agreed.
I read about the police superintendent stepping down and that lead to the other articles about Karolina Obrycka being beaten by the off-duty cops.
This is one of the few times I have been so moved to right and comment that I couldn't see straight at the ignorance and self-centered views of some many Chicago residents. I lived in Chicago for over 30 years and feel I have a right to express my opinion as you get paid to do. Many of your readers seem to forget that as well.
I could go on and on about the racism that has rained down on blacks in Chicago over the centuries of its existence but I am sure that everyone who reads your paper has access to the public library just as I do. Though, they don't teach black history in most schools and most black students could tell you American history on their heads, they don't know much about their own people. Ms. Karolina Obrycka's friend talks about your myopic view and the "gospel of black victimhood" but I would like Gerry to help me to explain to my son why I came home with a cracked headlight after work when I went through Marquette Park. Please,Gerry, explain to my black son in terms he can understand why he sees black men getting pulled over in our neighborhood and checked for license and registration and handcuffed while its being done. Please explain to him why your friend's beating got so much media attention and the rape and murder of black girls in the park steps from his door never got a peep even though many of us called the media. I don't enjoy knowing your friend was brutalized by anyone but it doesn't diminish the documented yet unrecognized plight of black in Chicago. Ms Mitchell has her right and obligation to voice her opinion about black issues in Chicago. You have a right to disagree with her opinion but you don't have a right to diminish the history of racism blacks experience and still endure. Read,Gerry,Read! Read about someone else's plight and be thankful that your friend lived because there are numerous blacks who did not survive their beatings.


Hi Ms. Mitchell,I totally agree with your article. I don't see what was so hard to understand. African Americans have been screeming Bloody murder for decades, with no effect. I'm the proud son of a retired African American Chicago Police officer. When my Father started with the force, he stayed in trouble with White Irish cops. He stayed in so much BS, with the white cops, that the African American cops formed the AAPL(African American Patrolmans League). I can tell you so many Horror stories,about white police beatings,upon Black civilians as well as Black cops. That the dismantling of the White Bartender would seem like a Walt disney movie. To answer the question, is Chicago the most Rasist city today or ever. Take a look at Martin Luther Kings archives about Chicago, he stated that this was one of the worst cities that he has ever visited, it was worst than Mississippi. Also when a race of people get together to change Laws and disciplinary procedures, that protect their race first, that to me is Racism. When M.L.King visited Chicago in the early sixties. He was belted with stones and called the N word all while he was here. White men were caught who threw the stones. They were caught by African American Police Officers. They were turned over to the White police Officers. To make a long story short, they never reached the police department for arrest. They were let go by the white cops.(True story, by my Father, who was one of the ones who caught the suspects). If it takes a White woman to get her head bashed in to get change, so be it. What will it take to stop the overflow of drugs and guns into our neighborhoods, I hope NOT ANOTHER WHITE BARTENDER!!!

I am absolutely disgusted by the excuses being made on this board about police brutality. It doesn't matter if the cops were black or white or if the victims were black or white. I understand Ms. Mitchell's point concerning the brutality that blacks experience at the hands of white cops, but the point still remains that police brutality is a pox on our society and we the citizens should not stand for it in any shape, form or fashion.

We should demand that when any police officer is charged and indicted for brutality against a citizen, they should be fired immediately and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. The race or ethnicity of the police officer is a non-issue. They are charged and hold one of the greatest responsibilities in our society, to serve and protect. If they are not capable of doing that, then they should not have the job. Their mandate, to serve and protect, does not give them the right to brutalize anyone.

Please refrain from being hung up on the small picture and look at the big picture. If these cops, and almost every police force has them, are allowed to get away with brutalizing the citizenry, how long do you believe it will be before one of you is at the receiving end of a baton, a Taser, fists, kicks and so on?

Hey Mary, You should have thought more about the title of this column. I get your point but I think you're really lost and too caught up in the race issue. Do you really believe that things will change wihtin the police department? Some policies might change and some new training might result. But do you really think that it will benefit blacks? Not a chance. The best case scenerio would have been Abbate as the white offender and Karolina as a black victim. But significant members of the black community have to step forward and bring this issue to the attention of the world as those in the know have done for Karolina. You've made another mistake Mary and relied upon the white man to help you out again!!!

Mitchell comment:

So what would your column title have been. As for the white man helping me out, what the heck are you talking about?

everytime you assign racism to an event you are responsible for perpetuating it. QUIT IT! Yes, racism, sexism, all isms exist but write responsibly. Karolina has gotten attention because it was TAPED just like RODNEY KING. REMEMBER THAT???????? And justice was just as/and swift. I am so tired of this irresponsible and unchanging defensive attitude. I don't live my life acting victimized because I am a woman and of Irish descent. Stop the blame game and get on with the richness of life.

Mitchell comment:

No. You QUIT IT!!! Yes, the Rodney King beating was videotaped and you remember what happened. Although the videotape was shown repeatedly, the cops initially got off, didn't they? Do you really believe they would have gotten off if Rodney King had been white.
If you are tired of this attitude then become pro-active about racism, sexism and all the other isms instead of demanding that I stop writing about it. You don't get to tell me what I should be writing about, As for the richness of life, I'm enjoying mine.

I really feel this topic is a white folks problem. This was a white on white crime and I frankly think that blacks commenting on it are intruding and putting their two cents in where it doesn't belong. Speaking for myself I only get outraged about a crime when it is black on white crime. I pay very little attention to black on black crime because I feel it is none of my business. I understand the premise for this topic is that blacks say this has happened to them for years, and that maybe now something will be done about it because the victim is white. But I don't buy it because I don't think this is a police department issue. The guy was off duty, and what his occupation was is kind of irrelevant. He could have been an off duty accountant, bus driver, construction worker, investment banker or newspaper columnist. He was a guy who can't handle his liquor, and I have known many guys like that who are not cops. Remember, he was not making an arrest or pulling over a motorist to write a ticket. He was a drunk who was looking for trouble.

ok Mary - your prior blog called your respondents an "angry mob" and yet your response to Cheryl above was nothing less. She criticized your position, albeit sarcastically, and you essentially characterize her as a racist. You have been accused by many here as being a racist as well...does that mean it should be your defense as well?

I think a reasonable person should be able to disagree with your position here. It's your opinion..it's not a set in stone as a definitive answer. The fact that is was captured on video is the reason Cline was canned (my opinion)...

Mitchell comment:

That's your opinion and you are entitled to it.

Hey everybody, CAMERA's, CAMERA's, CAMERA's. Again, thats what caught the police red-handed. Of course, there have been rogue police for many many many years. And I'm still waiting for Gator Bradley to say, "I told you so." I guess being an Urban Translator has him too busy for computer use. And yes people, this was NOT as bad as Jon Burge, an ultimate thug. And definately NOT as bad as the Ford Heights Police. Bigger thugs then even Burge, if that is possible.

to Black Wiseman: You are right on some points. Blacks have been getting harrassed and beaten by rogue cops for years. As have some whites (not as many I'll admit) and hispanics. And yes, Chicago is the MOST racist city in America. Sorry folks, it is. I spend alot of time in San Antonio. And while you do have your richer and poorer neighborhoods per se, its a division by wealth and not race. There is no longer (I'm not familiar before the 70's) a black side of town, such as the westside here, and a white side of town. EVERY neighborhood has every race of person. And not just some tokens, either. So Black Wiseman, I do know where your going with that. And we ALL know how Dr. King was a target of taunts and bricks, and what have you. I (I'm white) have been taunted with 'white mother f**ker', honkie, what have you' by blacks as they assembled when I use to install meters in black neighborhoods. More then once, too, may I add. And I bet other whites who use this blog have similar stories. You know what was different in my situation. I didn't have no politicians or columnists calling me telling me how bad they felt. NOBODY and NO GROUP has a 'halo' over their head. Yes, the black community probably is rampant with drugs and guns (so is the white neighborhood, if they'd own up to it). You know what though, just don't blame white people. NOBODY is making people become drug addicts. Its SUPPLY and DEMAND. There is no sales if there are no willing buyers. SELF RESPONSIBILITY and SELF DISCIPLINE is what will end the drug problem in America. Hey, your LIBERAL friends, how come nobody points the finger at them? Remember, they told all of us those conservatives and blue-collar working folks were behind times. They weren't with it. Height & Asbury in San Francisco, remember? Cocaine in America multiplied TWENTY-times over beginning in the 70's. Remember why? Those movie-actors, music rock-stars, etc. in California, and elsewhere, whom you all adore told all of us cocaine was NOT habit-forming, it was the recreational drug, remember? Do you still believe that? Well, do you? Now as far as guns go. When the Englewood High School School Board gave awards to the Black Gangstra Street Gang, where you outraged? Where you? Because your all sure making alot of noise about the Curie HS situation. Did you ever watch Bill Kurtis's "Investigative Reports" on the A&E Channel on cable TV? Oh, did he have a good one once. Rev. Jackson and Minister Farrakhan (who knows, they may have meant well) held a summit to bring peace among the gangs. Anyway, they gave some gang leaders a sum of money (isn't it nice to know where corporate contributions and donations is going). "Investigative Reports" followed the money path. They documented it on film, for all of us to see. The money wound up in a Colorado Springs, Colorado, gun-shop. With this donation the gang-bangers BOUGHT many many AUTOMATIC weapons. Thankfully, the FBI also was following and apprehended the men and weapons. But where was the criticism, Black Wiseman? Did you tell Jackson and Farrakhan they were wrong and/or nieve? Those AUTOMATIC weapons would have caused much sadness to the Black Community, don't you think? And where were all the do-goodie columnists? The Walter Jacobson's, Dick Kay's, etc.? Why the SILENCE? Black Wiseman, you seem like a concerned citizen. So I'd say to you that you need to really truly examine who your friends really are before making an automatic judgement.

to Tamara Adams: I feel bad your son had to go through that. Its wrong and its terrible. Yes, I know many African-Americans were roughed-up because they were black. Having been a victim of abuse from some black racists, I know the anguish. I don't wish it on ANYBODY. I'm not nieve, I know it existed and exists. As I told Black Wiseman, "yes, Chicago is probably still the most racist city in America." I'll grudgingly agree with him on that. I hope you and your family is blessed from now on. Same wishes for you, Black Wiseman.

to Lucretia J. Williams: You said Jessie should not get involved because Karolina had a voice it being the white community. Think that one over. Back in the Jim Crow south, alot of good and decent white people were too afraid to speak-up and get involved. To be honest, they were scared Jim Crow would harrass them if they did. We know the results because of that thinking. You said you needed Jackson to speak for you. Again, we have a different philosophy. I'll tell you who I think should speak for Lucretia J. Williams. Lucretia J. Williams should speak for Lucretia J. Williams. Hey, you have intelligence. You communicate wonderfully over the computer. You DON'T need Jackson. YOU are talented.... Maybe Mary wants to voice her opinion on this. Mary, you did spend many nights burning the midnight oil, as they say, inorder to be where you are at now, am I right?....Back to Lucretia: Yes, I remember the Mearday incident. It was horrible and wrong. If its any consolation to you, I have had not one, but two good and totally-innocent friends who have had the you-know-what beaten out of them by thug bully rogue cops and my friends were white. Although I'll admit, percentage-wise, it happens more in the black community. As for back to Jackson, again YOU be your spokesman. I'm amused because I'm reading Gov. Blagojevich laughing at Jesse because Jackson backed-off on the governor wanting the fat-cat corporate folks paying more and closer to their fair-share, which would ease the burden for little guys like us. The reason: Jesse's contributors are these fat-cats and they 'pulled the strings' as they say (see Sun-Times, Tuesday, 4/3, page 20--good article). In otherwords, its about GETTING RICH, not whats right. Jesse had to jump when they said jump. I read a piece on him about a year back where he has to have $250-$500 a night hotel suites for him and much of his entourage. No Holiday Inn, Red Roof, or Motel 8, for him, like us peasants. He can't jeopardize that by making his contributors mad. So you be your own spokesperson. Nobody would do it better than you. And that goes for everybody, regardless of race.

to Mary: I read everybodies thoughts so I have just emptied mine. I'm sure I made folks BOTH black and white angry at me, and maybe even you, but you know what, these were my thoughts. Again, remember, Karolina had a major thing going for her. And that thing was the CAMERA.

Write what you want Mary but for goodness sake, how about some straight truth for a change? When whites become pro-active about black racism we get tarred and feathered by the likes of your ilk in the press.

The video of the bartender was suppressed for over a month and the police department didn't act on the beating till the video was leaked to the press. Now, Mary, tell us how that is getting preferential treatment because the victim was white?

I'm angry that Phil Cline lost his job over this. When will our society get to the point where we can just put the criminal in jail and be done with it? Phil Cline didn't beat up any white women in any bars, he didn't beat up any business men or block any parking lots. This type of corruption existed long before he took the job.

It's rare that such a situation is video taped. If the bartender had been black I would feel the same outrage after seeing that video. Nobody deserves that kind of attack. To suggest that if she was black no one would care is inaccurate

I felt compelled to respond to the post by Quit It. Ms. Mitchell's response was great, but I understand that space probably did not allow for a fuller response.

The Rodney King debacle is a poor example to use in reference to what happened to Ms. Obrycka. The officers in the Rodney King case were acquitted in the state’s case and in the case brought by the Federal government, only two of the officers were found guilty and sentenced to 30 months in prison. The other two officers were acquitted. There was no actual “justice” in this case because the culture that exists in the LAPD that allowed these officers to brutalize Rodney King still exists to this day, over 10 years later. Based on what I’ve read about the Chicago police department, that very same culture exists there as well. So, where exactly is the “justice”?

Yes, the Obrycka received attention because it was videotaped, but that is not the only reason. It is also the first time that I am aware of that the beating of a white female has been videotaped and was released for the world to see. It is also worth noting that, NO ONE has said or even hinted that she deserved that beating. This is not something that was heard during the Rodney King debacle, for too many people said that Rodney King deserved the beating that he received.

Many people do not live their lives acting victimized. If you as an White, Irish American woman has never been the victim of the “isms” that you described, then you are fortunate, but if you have been spit at, called the “n” word, stopped for no good reason, been beaten and so on and so forth, then you know that if it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, then it is most certainly a duck; and the duck in this case would be racism and sexism.

As Ms. Mitchell suggested, if you are tired of the “victimization” attitudes, then YOU need to do your part in fighting the “isms” you stated in your post. If YOU are not doing your part, then you have no right or reason to complain.

Ironically, it seems that back in 1980 when Ritchie Daley ran for Cook County State's Attorney, people (especially some/most? Blacks) forgot why Bernard Carey (a Republican) was the incumbent and not Fred Hanrahan. Once people forgot Hanrahan's 1972's defeat for that office because of his involvement with the Fred Hampton and Mark Clark murders, it planted the seeds for the Daley II Machine which has been running Chicago since 1989. I'll never forget how many Blacks I spoke to in 1988 who were going to vote for Daley over Terrence Gainer for Cook County State's Attorney, even when some of them said they knew Daley would run for Chicago Mayor in 1989.

I have solved the entire dilema of Chicago police violences against the public. Hence from this moment on all outstanding litigations; criminal or non-criminal will have a change of venue. All outstanding cases will be heard and adjudicated in SIMI VALLEY Calif. These people have the experiences and expertise in deciphering videos regarding Police Brutality

I wanted to comment on the article as well as Ms. Mitchell's blog regarding this incident. It's sad that it had to come to this, but what Karolina needs to know is the nightmares may never end. I had my share of crazed incidents with the Chicago Police, from drugs being placed on me to actually being beaten in my own home. The event's happened to me in the mid to late 90's, yet I still have to face the nightmares. Reading the recent articles put the events in my mind again, but I thank God for being delivered from those situations. The police entered my residence shooting first and asking questions later, so to speak. The larger of the two officers grabbed me by my neck tie, choking me, and then using his club to hold me in the air, by the neck. The other officer began beating me in the thighs, repeatedly ramming his knee's into my legs until they went limp. I believe this was done to keep from showing bruises. They then dragged me outside to a paddy wagon(by the neck tie) causing physical & emotional pain, being embarraseed by the neighbors, and scarring me for life. When I made bond, I took this same incident to the Office of Professional Standards, only to have them ignore it as well.

What I've observed over the years; from the Rodney King to Jeremiah Mearday to the Karolina Obrycka Case is if there isn't any camera's around, then it's your word against theirs. Which then means you'll get that conversation with the police, a lawyer or public defender telling you you may lose a case if you fight it. It's best to take a plea you may get off with probation, etc. etc. That's how so many people are forced into confessions. It's sad! Karolina if you're out there, I feel your pain & I'm not getting any sleep as well. Be blessed!

Mitchell comment:

No. You QUIT IT!!! Yes, the Rodney King beating was videotaped and you remember what happened

Yes, I remember seeing thousands of black people looting stores in LA, and also remember seeing a white truck driver getting pulled out of his truck, and nearly beaten to death by a gang of black youths.
Maybe these actions helped convict the cops involved...not sure.

I agree that police brutality is bad. People are forgetting one thing-how did Daley become mayor?

From 1980-1988, African Americans and others constantly re-elected Daley Cook County State's Attorney, even when it was evident by 1988 he would run for Chicago Mayor in 1989. If Daley, Devine, etc. weren't concerned about Burge then, what made people think voting for Daley 1989 and onward would do?

Will it take another revolution like 1972 when Bernard Carey (a Republican) defeated Ed Hanrahan? Yes, the same Hanrahan that ordered the Fred Hampton and Mark Clark murders.

I hope this is printed this time. :)

MARY....

What is your opinion on the recent termination of the female police officer for battery against her boyfriend's daughter? I noticed you have not said anything about it. Could it be because it is not white on black, and nothing to stir the pot on this one?

Kudos to the CPD for the instant termination of this officer

I was right Mary. You really don't understand. Your point was that the recent abuse of a white woman at the hands and feet of a brutal cop will really bring to light the issue of police brutality. By doing so, you truly believe police culture will change because a white woman is the victim and this will benefit blacks. Aint gonna happen. As far a relying on the white man again to help you out...let me briefly explain. Unless your race decides to stand up for itself and MAKE things change you shouldn't rely on the whites to do it for you...hence your title, Thank God Karolina is a White Woman. If Karolina were black, you stand a better chance of shedding some light on police brutality against blacks. At least a better shot than you do with Karolina being white...

You are the racist you are always accusingsomeone else of being. Gee, what would you do if you couldn't ALAWYS play the race card? If the police are always wrong when it come to "beating" a black person for no reason, why don't you volunteer to ride with a white police officer in a black neighbrhood for just one night. In fact ride with a fire truck crew and throw in a night with a parimedic. Make them ALL white working in black areas. Then, if you could honestly report the events and disrespect that is thrown at these civil servents, maybe honest journalizm could spew from your mouth instead of your hatred opinions. But I think not, because MY opinion is that you wouldn't release this information because they would be FACTS, and not you opinion. You are filled with the racism you write about - no facts, just opinions. Why is it a police officer is expected to keep his/her cool even when the poor crack head spits in their faces. Could Mary keep her cool in an event such as this? Answer with a fact, and not an opinion!

Mary,
Here's another interesting scenerio: Black cops beating the Hell out of a Black female bartender. Do you get as outraged when you hear of a Black cop shooting or beating up a Black person as you do when it's a White cop and a Black person ? Why didn't we hear anything about the cop's race last year that shot the little boy who pointed a toy gun at him ? I've seen plenty of instances of White cops beating up White people but I don't see any so-called civic leaders yelling at news cameras about it. What happened to Karolina had nothing to do with racial police brutality , I would call it drunken rage with abuse of power !

Mary said:

"No. You QUIT IT!!! Yes, the Rodney King beating was videotaped and you remember what happened. Although the videotape was shown repeatedly, the cops initially got off, didn't they? Do you really believe they would have gotten off if Rodney King had been white.
If you are tired of this attitude then become pro-active about racism, sexism and all the other isms instead of demanding that I stop writing about it. You don't get to tell me what I should be writing about, As for the richness of life, I'm enjoying mine."

Mary, in this case the cop "initially got off" as well. White cop, white woman, and the cop was initially only charged with a misdimeanor. It wasn't until the video got network play that public outcry and pressure caused the state's attorney to upgrade the charge to a felony.

You keep presenting hypotheticals which have been previously and currently disproven.

I wish you'd just drop the pretenses in your racist column. You, like Al Sharpton, are just as racist against whites as you claim they are against blacks.

Why else would you have to manufacture racism where there is none?

hey eric,

no one wrote anything about not being victimized by an ISM. the point is perception. fighting against injustice OR ANY ISM-is about make wise choices in perception and action. choosing to be or not be VICTIMIZED. ONCE AGAIN I WRITE..........QUIT IT!!!!!!

please, pls. pls. crooked cops will always be here until MANDATORY RANDOM DRUG testing is enacted. crooked politicians need CROOKED COPS to protect them,from honest citizens. Mary please read ICE 287G. 1996 immigration act authorizes STATE and LOCAL TO WORK IN TANDEM TO IDENTIFY CRIMINAL ILLEGAL FELONS. This fact and the 1996 act PROVE crooked illinois and local politicians refuse to co-operate with ICE and homeland security.

Mary is right

At least 5 black men were killed by the Chicago Police last year. They all had the same story. They all followed the same pattern including the car that got pulled over, the guy that got out of the car supposedly brandishing a weapon,pointing it at them, the police "were in fear of their lives" and shot the boy - in the back. That kid really had something going to be scaring the police when he isn't even facing them, but more likely was running from them. They searched the car, a daily occurrence for black people, and found guns, drugs and money, lots of it,no charges were filed against the other two other people in the car. I said, excuse me? No charges? It was a warning. The witnesses were released to tell everyone else. My first suspicion was a payoff not being made by drug dealers. The drug trade can only flourish where there are dirty cops.

See people if you look for the inconsistencies, you find the truth. I know people who have filed against the police and its true, if you have no camera,or independant witnesses, you lose. However, in civil court, all of these people seem to win judgements for civil rights violations as evidenced by the phenomenal amounts of money paid out for CPD transgressions. And most of them the city settles out of court. But are these officers fired or sanctioned? No.

Whoever was talking about the users of drugs perpetuating the drug trade, etc. Look to yourselves. The sting the CPD did in a poor black neighborhood shows the truth. Of the 300 people they sold drugs to, 90% of them were white from the suburbs. How many of them had their cars confiscated? Because if you're black it's a given. How many were prosecuted and put in jail? Again if you're black, it's a given. How many had access to private attorneys who got them off and how many had the cases dropped? If you're black, it's a plea bargain and jail. Last time I looked, you have to possess the drugs to use them - it is a crime. There weren't 300 separate drug dealers out there, just a few cops posing. Seems the users are the problem Talk to your own community.Tell them to stop going to these neighborhoods and screwing them up for the law abiding people who just want to raise their families.

I'm white and I thought the same thing Mary did, now they'll do something. And for Michele A, I got news for you. The CPD has partnered with the U of C to do a study on what they can do to change themselves. So it did do something, and it's because they're white. No one cares how many minority kids got beaten, killed or violated by the CPD because the attitude, as expressed by some on this blog is, good riddance, get rid of the drug dealers. News flash - white people deal drugs to, only they do it from expensive condos in Lincoln Park and bars in Lakeview.

Che - The Superintendant of Police sets the policy and the tone. He is the leader. If he said "everyone who backs up a corrupt cop's lies in court testimony will be fired, taken into custody, and have perjury charges filed against them", this crap would end real quick. But he doesn't, he protects them.He knew about the 4 businessmen in December but those cops are still on the street.

Note to all: Pay attention now, NO ONE KNEW ABOUT IT UNTIL AFTER THE ELECTION!!! Check out the Reader today. The cop that shot an UNARMED MAN in the 95th St CTA station WAS PROMOTED by Cline!!! And you think he should still be the top cop? That is what breeds a culture of abuse and tyranny.

It has been around forever in the minority communities but there are no excuses that anyone will buy against people in the white community. The businessmen were a threat and I feared for my life. Would you believe that story? No. But you're more than willing to believe it if it happens in the minority community.

Stop looking at the world through a white prism. Drive through Englewood one day and ask yourself just what these kids growing up have to hold onto that gives them hope. Try to find somewhere they can work. Try to find easy and convenient public transportation. Why do you think all of these neighborhoods are getting face lifts and attention by the mayor, the transit agencies, etc after they've been ignored and neglected for decades?

I'll let you answer that question if you can be at all honest with yourselves.

Core criminal elements exist in many chicagoland police agencies.The crooked cops are protecting COMBINE politicians. pls do a story about the corrupt police chiefs who refuse to partner with ICE.these crooked police bosses continue to create a public safety threat. read judicial watch.com, EDUCATE yourself. why why why have il pols refused over a decade to i.d. ILLEGAL ALIEN FELONS. They lied saying the feds offered no help. Costa Mesa,Florida State police many ,many examples of HONEST COPS trying to do the right thing. Let's put the public SPOTLIGHT on the criminals wearing police costumes and start at the top.

Dear Mary:

I am in total agreement with a great majority of your comments/opinions. Thank you for your presence and empowermentin the African-American community via media/blog.

To: Police Raid/Chicago

You almost hit the nail on the head!

To: QUIT IT!!

Practice, practice, practice...spelling and the rules of grammar. It seems you love to write because of the many responses you have posted to this blog. If you have a passion for writing, then learn to do it well.

You're right, thank god she is white. If she were black this would have become a racial issue that most likely would have led to rioting and violence.

Mary;
do a little more research, there are just as many black on white, black on black police beatings in the city,you just don't have media such as yourself writing about it as often, try looking into stats from Evergreen Park P.D. - also as mentioned above don't forget those Ford Heights policemen who stood by and let a gang of thugs perform that hate crime and dose that white man with gasoline in a brutal murder. And then setting him on fire. Your most recent embarrassment is the black officials, as well as the Mayor stealing guns from evidence, loosing records for major gang bangers and murderers, and how about the beloved alderman who is under investigation for Gang ties, shall I go on, why is it alway BLACK VS WHITE OR VISE VERSA WITH YOU.....ARE WE NOT AS MARTIN LUTHER KING SAID TO BE TREATED AS EQUAL....there are just as many bad African American police as there are White, Hispanic and others, in the end, it's how you were raised, YOU LIVE WHAT YOU LEARN REGARDLESS OF YOUR RACE! if you were raised properly with moral values, you just don't take advantage and miss use the power you have been given, try posting that in this weeks paper, how about giving the GREAT police officers of all races, who risk their lives daily to keep this city safe their props for once!!!

WHY IS EVERYTHING WHITE /BLACK WITH YOU?YOU SAY YOU LIVE IN MAYWOOD TELL YOUR READERS WHERE IN MAYWOOD ,ITS NOT IN THE SEEDY PART THATS FOR SURE.I WOULD NOT GO THRU MAYWOOD DURING THE DAY LET ALONE NIGHT.SHARPTON AND JACKSON ARE NOT GODS AS YOU LIKE TO MAKE THEM OUT TO BE ,ALSO WHEN LITTLE GIRL X WAS BLINDED AND RAPED I DIDN'T SEE JACKSON STEPPING FORWARD,IF IT HAD BEEN A WHITE PERSON WHO DID THAT TO THAT LITTLE GIRL HE WOULD HAVE BEEN RAISING ALL KINDS OF HELL.WHY NOT TALK ABOUT THAT WHAT HAPPENED TO HER HOW HAS SHE ADJUSTED.YOU SPEND 2 HOURS DOING YOUR HAIR YOU DIDNT HAVE TO THROW IN THE "EXPENSIVE" PART,IN PART YOU WRITE LIKE A RACIST.

I've been a Chicago Police Officer for over ten years. Every time I meet someone new and tell them I'm a Polcie Officer I get the same story of that time they got pulled over and were ticketed for speeding, disobeying a red light or someother violation. Now I haven't been in traffic enforcement for over seven years but that's what people want to talk about and I understand. However not once do I hear the story of how someone had a criminal act committed against them, whether it be rape, robbery, battery, a burlary or any other crime and how when they called 911 the polcie came and did a good job and everything in their power to rectify the situation.

Now I would hope that everyone would agree we need police, trust me sometimes I wonder. Have you ever thought what would happen if for one day when you called 911 no one responded? That would make for an interesting day.

I have arrested hundreds of people over my career and this may surprise you but not ONE of them WANTED to be arrested and most have resisted in a physical manner. Now I understand you want to make a race issue out of every issue so how about we try an experiment. Put only black officers in black neighborhoods. Put only Hipanic officers in Hispanic neigborhoods. White officers in white neighborhoods. Gay officers in gay neighborhoods. Etc etc. Take race out of the equation. This is assuming you of course agree we NEED police enforcing the laws our elected officials make.

And to the the person who stated that fireman are the only TRUE heros, I say shame on you. Plenty of Poice Officers as well as other civil servants loose their lives every day repsonding to calls for help to citizens. Not family. Not friends. But simply doing the job they are asked to do and protect the citizens of Chicago and every other major city in the United States.

Dear Mary,

I am, like any other reasonable human, upset about that poor kid on the bus. I think you will find par of the answer of why this is happening on a regular basis from The Black Star Project and the other from answering the folowing question.


Where is the shooter in the Ben Wilson murder now?


Luck,

Robert

Dear Mary,

I am, like any other reasonable human, upset about that poor kid on the bus. I think you will find par of the answer of why this is happening on a regular basis from The Black Star Project and the other from answering the folowing question.


Where is the shooter in the Ben Wilson murder now?


Luck,

Robert


PS I wanted to email you this so I would get a direct response.

Mary,
You are something else. How dare you turn the Criminal into the victim? I am so sick to death with you people playing the race card. Actually he is not yet like O.J. in that O.J. was a "Murderer" who is free and God willing the same will not occur with Cotts. Take your head out of the sand and try writting about something worth reading.

Mary, i think you are a very racist person. Get over it. Every single column that you write has something to do with race. That's why I don't even read the Sun Times anymore because I can't stand to see what stupid things you are writing now. I don't see any of the white reporters/columists write about how terrible the white epople are getting treated EVERY DAY. I'm sure if you were white, you would. Everything is not about black/white. As soon as you get that hatred out of your heart, I'm sure you would be much happier. Why don't you try writing something else for a change?

Mary,

I started reading your column to understand your title, and I did understand SOME of your P.O.Vs. I do have to say, like most other people who commented here, that the title for this column is very wrong.

First of all, Karolina is an immigrant from Poland. Yes, she is white, but to say that it's, basically, a good thing that she was the one beaten by this stupid cop is because she's white is ludicrous! She's lucky it was caught on tape. If it hadn't been, Anthony Abbate would have gotten off with no charges, except MAYBE a misdeamenor.

This whole incident has nothing to do with race, nor should it. The fact that you are turning it into a race issue shows that you are a racist. I live in New Orleans, and let me say, it is definitely a Black against White world here. I am constantly harassed for being a white girl and I never had to deal with racism until I moved here. There is such a thing as black people being racist, too. But, I'm sure you would never bring that up in any of your columns or write about a black cop beating a white civilian.
I'm a strong believer that race should never affect other people, but it's not going to happen. And (this is to Lucretia) as far as white Americans having a voice? Well, so do you. And to act like it's only Jesse Jackson and whomever else is simply ridiculous. Race crimes are always on the news. We hear "racism" cried out every day. Yes, there are constantly race issues and hate crimes, but it's not just strictly black/white. What about the Native Americans, Muslims, Asians, and any other race?!

Maybe Karolina should say this was a hate crime because she was Polish. That does seem to get the media's attention, but what mainly got their attention was that it was a BIG, male cop beating up a PETITE WOMAN. I think if you should pull out any "cards", it should be the abusive misogynist card. The other (white) men in the bar didn't even help out Karolina. That's something that I was to see brought up. But women are always being raped and abused in front of people and they don't do anything.

Please quit dropping the racsim card when it has nothing to do with it. Ever heard about the boy who cried wolf?

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This page contains a single entry by Mary Mitchell published on March 29, 2007 3:01 PM.

Friend of Curie LSC Chair speaks out was the previous entry in this blog.

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