Showing posts from May, 2013

Suicide by Cop now Being Studied by the Department of Justice

There is a sad phenomenon occurring in Philadelphia now.  I will call it suicide by cop.  Last week, there were four police shootings.  Three of those shootings were fatal.  In a city in which over 1200 shootings occurred last year, this blip is nothing new.  It just reflects the desperation that some individuals in our society feel now.  It is a rare situation in which an individual will have the police outnumbered.  I remember that we had a spate of police officer killings about two years ago so I don't blame the police for the need to protect themselves.  I am just wondering what is causing this recent trend.

In some recent discussions that I have had, it was iterated that some individuals just do not want to go back to jail.  Many individuals who have encountered the judicial system in some way cannot get a fair chance to get a job.  There is research being done in advance of proposed legislation by State Representative Jordan Harris that will help some non-violent offenders …

Naqyil Booker: Rest in Peace

I couldn't make the Homegoing service for Master Naqyil Booker yesterday.  He was the Son of my former student, Yolanda Floyd Booker.  He was diagnosed with cancer six years ago.  He passed away from this earthly existence last week.  Shawn and I got a chance to visit with Yolanda on Tuesday evening.  Whe was in great spirit and was prepared for her sons transition.  He was 16 years old.  The cancer had debilitated his body to the point where his vision was failing and he could not walk.  His father had been caring for him up until the time of his demise.

I met Yolanda back in 1985.  I was a young guidance counselor at Mercy Vocational High School and she became one of my favorite students.  She attended my wedding after I had consulted with her about the engagement ring I selected.  She has been a great friend ever since.  She has been married 15 years and is a great role model for people who have experienced the pain of losing a child.  I would have been crying all over the pla…

Philadelphia School District Budget Numbers Don't Add Up

I attended a rally this morning by Dr. Hite, Mayor Nutter and select members of the Legislature of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.  State Senator Anthony Williams spoke and did not have much to offer except the statement that adults are to blame for the mess that has become the PSD budget.  State Senator Vincent Hughes, the Chairman of the State Appropriation Committee, was more informative with numbers and if it was up to him, we wouldn't have a budget issue.  $100 million could be diverted from the Liquor Control Board if privatization doesn't take place.  There is another $700 million that could be divided statewide but Philadelphia will not get the lion's share of this funding.  I didn't stay for the presentation by State Senator James Roebuck, Chair of the Education Committee, but I cannot imagine that what he said would have solved anything.

I was impressed walking up to the school by the volume and harmony of the music being played.  I thought I was going to …