Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Cleveland Plain Dealer Reporter Mark Namik's story on the Cleveland NAACP and potential racial unrest if 49 shots Cleveland Police Officer Michael Brelo, who is White, gets off for gunning down unarmed Blacks Malissa Williams and Timothy Russell, 12 other non- Black Cleveland police officers who together fired 88 shots at Russell and Williams were not charged, read the introduction of Namik's story here

Cleveland police shooting trial, justice department 

investigation test local NAACP: By Mark Naymik, 

The Cleveland Plain Dealer

Ohio's Largest Newspaper
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Two upcoming events will test the Cleveland branch of the NAACP: The U.S. Department of Justice’s investigation into the Cleveland police department and the trial of the Cleveland officer accused of killing two unarmed suspects after the infamous November 2012 police chase. (Marvin Fong / The Plain Dealer) (Marvin Fong)
Mark Naymik, Northeast Ohio Media GroupBy Mark Naymik, Northeast Ohio Media Group 
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on October 21, 2014 at 9:00 AM, updated October 21, 2014 at 9:14 AM

CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Two upcoming events will require the Cleveland branch of the NAACP to step up if the storied 102-year-old civil rights organization wants to remain relevant.
One is the release of the U.S. Department of Justice's investigation into the Cleveland police department, which is expected before year's end and could result in some form of federal oversight.

The other is the trial of the Cleveland officer accused of killing two unarmed suspects after the infamous November 2012 police chase.

Both could ignite racial tension in the city and inflame an already volatile relationship between black residents and a mostly white police force.

At minimum, the Cleveland NAACP will need to enter the national debate over the use of force by police, a debate heightened recently by the shooting of an unarmed black teen by a white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri.
But becoming a community broker will take more than just talk. The organization will have to lead, either by quelling potentially violent protests or by organizing and managing peaceful demonstrations and campaigns to hold political and civic leaders accountable.

And that is a tall order.

The Cleveland NAACP has been trying for years to rebuild its voice, especially on civil rights and economic development issues, but it continues to struggle with internal politics, organizational changes and financial stress.CLICK HERE TO READ NAMIK'S FULL STORY BY THE CLEVELAND PLAIN DEALER AT CLEVELAND.COM