On Tuesday Bishop Bobby Hilton, President of Greater Cincinnati Chapter National Action Network announced that he supported the controversial parking plan which is opposed by Councilman Christopher Smitherman, President of the Cincinnati NAACP.
Hilton announced his support for the parking plan on Lincoln Ware's WDBZ-Am (1230 am the Buzz) talk show, but made it clear that his decision was made as a private citizen and not as the President of Greater Cincinnati NAN chapter.
Smitherman does not support the parking plan as President of the Cincinnati NAACP or as a council member. He was one of four council members who voted no to City Council's Budget and Finance Committee approved plan to lease Cincinnati's parking assets to the Port of Greater Cincinnati Development Authority. A press release sent out by the Cincinnati NAACP encourages members and friends to sign the parking meter petition drafted by attorney Chris Finney, who is the co-founder of tea party group Coast. The petitions were printed by a white owned business Curry Printing, owner Tom Brinkman, Coast member.
Coast co- founder attorney Chris Finney sent a public records request to the City of Cincinnati last March requesting the entire City file on the black owned business Mahogany's restaurant. Finney later admitted to a Mahogany supporter that his request was on behalf of his client Council member Christopher Smitherman. Coast and others continue to attack the restaurant. Finney is an extreme right-wing activist who has been caught on tape referring to President Obama as a foreign person and he once referred to Mayoral candidate Roxanne Qualls as a dyke.
A majority of Ware's talk show callers and Cincinnati NAACP members are uphappy with the Cincinnati NAACP partnership with Coast.
The partnership is why Cincinnati NAACP members left the organization in droves when a NAN chapter was formed in Cincinnati. For the record President Hilton has repeatedly stated that NAN was not created to be in competition with the local chapter of the Cincinnati NAACP.
The Cincinnati NAACP group has thousands of members compared to Cincinnati NAN few hundred. However, a large number of Cincinnati NAACP active members belong to the tea party. Whereas grass roots activist of all races, who care about civil rights issues have dual memberships to NAN and the NAACP.
The conversations being had in some grass roots circles praise Hilton for being a strong advocate for fairness and justice in Hamilton County. Hilton continues to be a strong supporter of Juvenile Court Judge Tracie Hunter, who continues to be raked through the coals by extreme right wing zealots who are unhappy that Hunter became the first African American woman to serve in that position.
Smitherman has his supporters too, who have been given the nickname Smithereens because of their seemingly blind support of him. Smitherman supporters argue that Smitherman is still concerned with the plight of black people.
Precious Williams who has a dual membership the NAACP and NAN stated, "there isn't and there never should be a rift between the two groups because the mission of both groups are basically the same. We have too many issues going on in black communities to be fighting against each other."
In November Cincinnati voters will be electing nine council members to four-years terms instead of two-year terms and with the present majority on council being black, black neighborhoods and black people are still in dire conditions. Blacks have 99 problems and privatization of 11 % percent of Cincinnati parking ain't one.
FBK is a unapologetic black writer who often finds it necessary to keep it real with issues that pertain to race. Follow her on twitter @fbkwrites
"The choice in politics and civil rights isn't usually between black and white. It's between two horrible shades of gray. Unknown.
Next article on La Salle shooting case in Cincinnati.
Is traditional media sweeping this story under the carpet - there can never be justice for Justin Brown. Brown's name and memory will forever be linked in Black Cincinnatian's mind with unfairness and double standard of prosecution in the just-us system. Division and mistrust will continue to divide our city.
This article is dedicated to the memory of Justin Brown.