Black Panther intimidation at the polls?; NBPP: “We will be at the polls in the cities and counties in many states to ensure that the enemy does not sabotage the black vote, which was won through the blood of the martyrs of our people”
Reader Steve e-mails: “Just after 12:00 noon, Fox News reported that two black panthers were at one location in Philadelphia “guarding” the doorway to a polling station. One carried a nightstick and confronted a citizen who had gone in to the polling place. That citizen called police (he was interviewed by the Philly correspondent for Fox). The citizen reported that police removed the black panther with the night stick, but the other, who lives in the area, remains near the door.”
The New Black Panther Party said yesterday it would send its members out to the polls to ensure its interests on Election Day:
Minister Najee Muhammad, national field marshal for the New Black Panther Party, and Uhuru Shakur, local chairman of the Atlanta chapter of the party, took turns reading statements from Dr. Malik Shabazz, leader of Black Lawyers for Justice and attorney for the party (yes, that Malik Shabazz)…
…”We will not allow some racists and other angry whites, who are upset over an impending Barack Obama presidential victory, to intimidate blacks at the polls,” Muhammad said. “Most certainly, we cannot allow these racist forces to slaughter our babies or commit other acts of violence against the black population, nor our black president.”
Muhammad added, “We must organize to counter and neutralize these threats using all means at our disposal. This is a great time for our people, and we must ensure that peace prevails for our people.”
Shakur said the New Black Panther Party does not hate white people, but it does not like racist white people who try to harm the black community…
…Shakur added, “We warn you, leave Barack Obama alone and leave our babies alone because black people are a spiritual people and a people who are trying to do right, and we will not hesitate to take up our legal rights of self-defense.”
Shakur said the New Black Panther Party believes the plot that was foiled in Crockett County was not an isolated incident and that the party will do what it can to protect members of the black community on Election Day.
“We will be at the polls in the cities and counties in many states to ensure that the enemy does not sabotage the black vote, which was won through the blood of the martyrs of our people,” he said.
As members of the New Black Panther Party said “Black Power,” Andrew Chirwa, an Alamo resident and native of Malawi in Southern Africa, urged everyone at the press conference to shout “Black Power” together.
Transcript from the FNC report:
FOX: LEVENTHAL (Alleged Black Panthers Voter Intimidation)
JANE SKINNER: breaking election news, we have reports of possible voter intimidation in some way — pennsylvania. republicans saying that two black panthers have been blocking the doorway of one polling locations. rick, what are the details on this? what are you hearing?
RICK LEVENTHAL: i do not even know where to begin, but we have reached a polling place in the city of philadelphia. one of the two black panthers who was allegedly blocking the door is standing right over here, with an accused us of intimidating voters because we were here with a camera and microphone. he did not answer questions, other people here have confirmed that another person in black panther attire was holding a night stick and apparently the concern was that they were intimidating people who were trying to go inside to vote. a republican poll observer actually called the police, the police were here and we miss them, they came and left. that person called the police is here. why don’t you tell us — step down off the curb, if you do not mind. what is going on here?
CITIZEN: we got a phone call that there was intimidation going on. i walked up to the door, two gentlemen in black panther guard, one brandishing a nightstick, standing in front of the door. they closed ranks as i walked up. i am a veteran, that does not scare me. i went inside and found full- watchers, they said they had been here for an hour — i went inside and found poll-watchers, they said that they had said not to let people outside because black people are going to win no matter what. at that point, i spoke to him, we would not get into a fistfight, i said, and i called the police.
LEVENTHAL: the person with the nightstick was escorted away, which i just confirmed inside. but the implication is that you were telling me that the black panthers were there to intimidate white voters from coming to this location?
CITIZEN: anyone who is not going their way, i do not know. someone in front of a polling place with a nightstick, that is intimidating for all voters.
LEVENTHAL: this is the first time i have heard of black panthers being stationed outside of a polling place. the one gentleman who is still here, he is a poll-watcher?
CITIZEN: yes, and he can wear what he wants.
LEVENTHAL: the other person was not allowed to be there with a nice that?
CITIZEN: you cannot stand with a nightstick anywhere, that is a weapon. obviously, you cannot stand around with a weapon menacingly in your hand under any circumstances.
LEVENTHAL: that is situation, as far as we know it. we have heard of other incidents in the city, including voting machines breaking down. we heard of an incident not far from here where far — all three machines broke down. people did wait, most of them. lines have dissipated. i have not made it inside yet, we had a skirmish in front of the door. apparently there is voting going on as well. at this point, apparently anyone who wants to vote here can vote here.
SKINNER: i know that they do not have enough people to man ever falling site, but as far as you understand the police have come and gone. is anyone monitoring in case someone is still hanging around?
LEVENTHAL: well there are poll watchers still standing here, we’ve been to at least a half a dozen polls around here and I haven’t seen any police officers, they don’t want a police presence to intimidate some voters, they did escort one gentleman out of here
SKINNER: It’s true in some places they don’t want police on sight, plenty going on there for you
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