TMZ obtained legal documents where Wayans cites his use of the controversial word as a term of endearment, explaining how he grew up in New York City projects, where black men and women frequently used the N-word as a term of camaraderie.

 

Click here for full story.

Tracy Morgan sues Walmart over deadly crash

Tracy Morgan (Getty Images)

Tracy Morgan (Getty Images)

 

by Corinne Heller, E Online            –theGrio.com

E Online – Tracy Morgan has filed a lawsuit against Wal-Mart over the deadly six-vehicle crash that left him with critical injuries and was allegedly caused by one of the retail giant’s truck drivers.

The papers were signed on July 10, submitted to a New Jersey court and also name fellow passengers Ardley Fuqua, a comic, and Morgan’s personal assistant Jeffrey Millea, plus the man’s wife Krista, as plaintiffs. The lawsuit, which was posted by The Hollywood Reporter, claims Wal-Mart was “careless and negligent in the ownership and operation of its motor vehicle, which caused Mr. Morgan to suffer severe personal injuries.” The case remains under investigation.

On June 7, the 45-year-old comedian, former “SNL” and “30 Rock” actor and father of four was riding in a limo bus with his entourage on a highway in New Jersey when a Wal-Mart semi-truck (also known as a tractor-trailer or big rig), slammed into it, causing it to overturn. Comedian James McNair, known as Jimmy Mack, 62, was riding with Morgan and died in the crash, which also involved five other vehicles. Morgan and other passengers were hospitalized. The actor was treated for a broken leg and ribs and later transferred to a rehabilitation facility to continue his recovery.

Click here for full article.

Transit settlement holds the key to decreasing homicides in our community

get-attachment.aspx7

 

The recent spate of shootings in our community and last week’s announcement of a $13.5 million settlement of a suit brought by the Black Health Coalition of Wisconsin (BHCW) and Milwaukee Innercity Congregations Allied for Hope (MICAH) against the Wisconsin and U.S. Departments of Transportation to increase access to jobs outside Milwaukee county by creating and expanding bus routes are interrelated.
How, you ask?
Jobs are seen by many poltiical figures and law enforcement officials in Milwaukee and the city’s Black community as the best way to decrease the high crime rate–especially the homicide rate–that dogs our community.
The $1.7 billion Zoo Interchange project currently underway ignores the needs of those who depend on public transportation to reach jobs that are increasingly being created outside the city of Milwaukee and Milwaukee County.
Approximately $11.5 million will be spent over the next four years to create bus routes that will transport workers between Milwaukee and suburban communities that have built business parks that are attracting manufacturing companies, corporate headquarters, and financial institutions that generate billions of dollars in revenue and thousands of jobs.
With a good paying job that can support a family, a person is NOT very likely to hold up a corner store or gas station; or be so stressed and angry about not having a way to support a family, they take their frustration out on someone else, whether known or unknown to them, with a gun.
With a good paying job, there is no need to sell drugs on a street corner to support a family and risk loss of life due to competition or robbery.
Yes, the settlement and the city’s rising homicide numbers are very much intertwined.
That is why what the BHCW and MICAH accomplished is so important to the welfare of our community and its future–especially for our children, who have become unwitting collatoral damage brought on by senseless violence committed by individuals with misplaced rage and bravdo.
We hope the two government entities and the suburban businesses who are targeted by the settlement will not fight BHCW and MICAH, but work with them to create opportunities for our community’s jobless, who only want to work to support their families and give their children a brighter, better future.

Again? Tyler Perry Sued for Copyright Infringement For a Second Time this Year

Tyler Perry
abcnews.com

by Barry Burch Jr.

Tyler Perry is certainly not the first movie producer to be sued, but he is the latest to come out on top of a copyright infringement lawsuit.  It has not been easy for Perry; however, who has been sued twice in the last 12 months by distraught writers, claiming Perry stole their material.

The first of the two lawsuits was filed back in November by author, Terri Donald.  Donald claims that he sent Perry a copy of his 2007 novel, “Bad Apples Can Be Good Fruit,” and the actor used it as the premise for his 2012 film, “Good Deeds.”

But fortunately for Perry, Tyler Perry Studios and Lionsgate Entertainment were able to persuade a New York federal judge to dismiss the claim.  As reported by The Hollywood Reporter, two attorneys for Perry and Lionsgate, Tom Ferber and Pryor Cashman, said a judge ruled in their favor because the single similarity between Perry’s movie and Donald’s novel was that there was a romance between a wealthy black man and a woman, who was experiencing hardship.  According to the judge this was not enough evidence because copyright law only protects expression and not ideas.

The movie, Good Deeds, which grossed $35 million at the box office, is centered around a wealthy businessman character played by Perry, who meets a single woman, struggling with a child.

Donald was going for the gold, seeking $225,000 in damages.  Not to mention an injunction requiring that Perry’s company add a credit for the book in both the opening and closing credits of the film.

According to Atlanta Black Star, the remaining lawsuit against Perry was filed earlier this year by screenwriter William James.  Though in this case a screenplay rather than a novel, James, too, claims Perry stole his premise.  James claims Perry intentionally lifted his 2013 directorial effort, Temptation, from James’ 2009 screenplay, Lovers Kill.

The case has not been resolved, and James is seeking unspecified damages.

Zimmerman Sued For Allegedly Not Paying For Bodyguard Services

George Zimmerman sits in court at the Seminole County courthouse for a hearing, Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2012, in Sanford, Fla. Zimmerman must remain under 24-hour GPS monitoring while awaiting trial in the fatal shooting of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin and must stay in the county despite the defense’s concerns about his safety, a judge ruled Tuesday. (AP Photo/Orlando Sentinel, Joe Burbank, Pool)

 

by NewsOne Staff
ORLANDO, Fla. — A security company claims in a lawsuit that George Zimmerman, his wife and attorney owe more than $27,000 for protection services.

The Orlando Sentinel reports (http://thesent.nl/WBDTAJ ) that Associated Investigative Services filed the lawsuit Friday in Orange County Circuit Court. The company says it was hired in June to provide security for the Zimmerman family but promised payments stopped after an independent trustee took over Zimmerman’s defense fund.

Zimmerman attorney Mark O’Mara says the lawsuit was a surprise and that the company was paid some $40,000.

Zimmerman is awaiting trial on second-degree murder charges in the shooting of Trayvon Martin. Zimmerman contends the unarmed teenager attacked him and is claiming self-defense in the February killing. Zimmerman is free on $1 million bail and is in hiding.

 

City of Milwaukee seeks to join Act 10 lawsuit as plaintiffs

Madison, WI (WTAQ) – Wisconsin’s largest city wants to join a lawsuit which claims that the state’s collective bargaining and public employee benefit law is unconstitutional.

Milwaukee City Attorney Grant Langley has asked a state appeals court in Madison to let the city join the Madison teachers’ union and a Milwaukee city employee union as plaintiffs.

Langley says the union law violates the state Constitution’s home rule powers, by not letting the city pay anything toward its employees’ pension contributions. Also, Langley says the law violates constitutional bans on creating impairments to employee contracts.

Dane County Circuit Judge Juan Colas has struck down the state’s union law as it applies to local government and public school employees.

But Milwaukee officials say the law can still be brought back, because the state is appealing the judge’s decision.

Alabama black farmers sue USDA alleging discrimination

Video still of African-American farmers gathered at Kelly Ingram Park, Birmingham, Alabama for news conference about the lawsuit. Courtesy of WBRC

by Abdul Sada, theGrio

Around half a dozen African-American farmers in Alabama are filing a class action lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Agriculture for alleged discrimination.

The farmers are suing the federal agency because they alleged that loans provided to white farmers were not provided to them.

“Black folk, y’all need to wake up. Wake up black folk. This is what is going on in the United States. They don’t want us here. But it’s OK, we’re here,” said Mike Stovall, a farmer from Town Creek, Alabama.

According to Fox WBRC, a $1.2 billion settlement had been offered in this case; however, the Birmingham farmers say they are not part of that class action case, and theirs is an independent lawsuit that has yet to be addressed.

Robert Binion, a farmer from Clanton, Alabama, said, “The black farmer lawsuit started in 1999. They have tried on several occasions to pay us but they have failed to pay all of us.”

The black farmers are urging President Obama to get involved so that the Department of Agriculture can settle their lawsuit in a timely manner.

The farmers have also alleged that the federal government is trying to force them to sell their properties.

Green bay race discrimination lawsuit settles


Green Bay, Wisconsin – Barbara Robinson and Shelia Walker have settled a federal lawsuit alleging illegal housing discrimination against Ken McCoy, the owner of multiple rental homes as well as a motorcycle dealership in Green Bay.  McCoy will pay Robinson and Walker $35,000 to settle their lawsuit, which alleged that he denied them housing because they are African-American. 
In August 2009, Shelia Walker saw an advertisement in the Green Bay Press-Gazette for a house for rent.  She called the number in the ad and spoke with the owner, Ken McCoy.   He told her that the house was located at 339 South Webster Avenue.  He said that someone would be working there all day and that she could drop by anytime to see it.  Walker and Robinson were happy to hear the home’s address, since it was in an area they wanted to live in.  Walker went to the home later that day, but no one was there. Walker called McCoy again and told him she’d tried to see it but no one was there, and asked if she could make an appointment to view it.  He asked her where she was originally from, and she told him she was from Milwaukee.  He told her that he would not rent to anyone from Milwaukee, and that he had had “problems” with people from Milwaukee in the past.  A few days later, Walker called McCoy again and asked McCoy to reconsider, and he told her that the neighbors might have “trouble with it,” and that it was a nice neighborhood and he wanted to keep it that way.  
Concerned that McCoy had discerned Walker’s race over the telephone and was discriminating against them because of it, Walker and Robinson contacted the Metropolitan Milwaukee Fair Housing Council (MMFHC) and each filed a complaint.  MMFHC operates a satellite office in Appleton, the Fair Housing Center of Northeast Wisconsin, which serves the Fox Valley and Brown County.  MMFHC counseled Walker and Robinson on their legal rights and conducted a testing investigation into their allegations. Testing is a controlled method of measuring and documenting differences in the quality, content and quantity of information and service afforded to different homeseekers by a housing provider.  A white tester called McCoy and told him that she was moving to Green Bay from Milwaukee; she asked to make an appointment to see the home and McCoy agreed.  The white tester called McCoy again later, to ask for the specific addresses of the homes available and to ask if McCoy would enter into a year-long lease.  The white tester identified herself as the caller from Milwaukee, and again, McCoy had no negative response to the fact that she was moving from Milwaukee. 
McCoy subsequently rented the home on South Webster Avenue to a white couple. 
With assistance from MMFHC, Robinson and Walker filed housing discrimination complaints with the Wisconsin Equal Rights Division (ERD) and the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in January 2010.  MMFHC also referred Robinson and Walker to Attorney Michael Cohn, and in March 2010, they elected to file a federal lawsuit.  Both ERD and HUD issued charges in favor of Walker and Robinson, determining that there was reasonable cause to find that McCoy had violated fair housing law. 
In August 2012, Robinson, Walker and McCoy reached a settlement agreement in federal court. McCoy paid Robinson and Walker $35,000.  Despite the settlement, “the experience still hurts,” says Walker, “because it could happen again. People should know that discrimination still exists today.  I don’t want anyone to be treated like we were treated.” 
Robinson and Walker’s attorney, Michael Cohn, notes that, “In the 21st century, it’s unfortunate that people are still being denied housing because of their race, but it is more common than most people suspect.”