Diane Patterson, a Palm Coast resident whose mother lives on Hymon Circle in Bunnell, secured a permit from Flagler County to use the pavilion outside the Carver Gym in Bunnell for a big Mother’s Day block party. She put down a $100 deposit, paid the $50 alcohol permit fee, and paid a $30 rental fee. And she circulated fliers advertising the May 12 event.
On May 6, she got word that the county had revoked the permit—a very unusual move.
Patterson thinks the wording on the flier may have been the cause. “Just because of a flier, or because you feel threatened because we use our words differently than someone else might use theirs, they took too much into the content of the flier and cancelled the event,” she told the Bunnell City Commission Monday evening. “That was so unfair. I called and I said, is there anything I need to do. I could pay for an officer to be there or whatever. And I was still turned down.”
Patterson didn’t tell commissioners the whole story (nor did City Manager Armando Martinez later in the meeting). In her permit application, she’d answered “No” when asked if the event was charging a fee. The flier notes a $10 fee “to park and play.” She’d also marked an anticipated attendance of 60. Attendance was to be several times that. (She was refunded the full amount.)
Who owns what around Carver Gym can get confusing: the county owns the gym and small parcels of land around it, including the pavilion Patterson was applying for, a basketball court and a small playground. The school district manages the programs inside the gym. The Flagler County Housing Authority owns the rest of the vast land in front of the gym, but it leases that land to Bunnell for its recreation programs. So four local governing authorities have some form of jurisdiction on some parts of the gym area.
If a block party was being organized for 60 people on the county’s portion of the land, it likely would not have been an issue. But the matter is more complicated.
The block party flier in an image provided by Flagler County. Click on the image for larger view.
This much is uncontested: People organizing the event were black, and were organizing it mostly for the black community of South Bunnell, which is predominantly black. This, too, is uncontested: People showed up for the Mother’s Day block party anyway, in large numbers.
So did police.
It was Bunnell police, according to a county spokesman, who had taken the flier circulating about the party to the county administration, prompting the administration to cancel the event.
The event was not scheduled to begin before 2 p.m., as the flier noted. But Patterson said Bunnell police were at the scene beginning in the morning. That, too, may be explicable by the start time Patterson herself had put down in her application, which does not make a distinction between preparation time and actual party time: 7 a.m.
The cops were later joined by Flagler County Sheriff’s deputies. There were no incidents, no issues, no arrests. But the cops’ presence rankled people attending the event, and not just because it was happening at that event, but because they felt watched and “bullied,” as two people who addressed the city commission put it.
On Monday evening, several people who had been at the event, including Patterson, addressed the Bunnell City Commission in sobering and uncertain terms, raising questions about the motives of the Bunnell City Police Department’s method of watching people—black people—who gather in South Bunnell.
The discrepancies between the permit application and the advertised event were never mentioned, though one person did specify that once the issue of the fee was raised, the $10 charge was eliminated. Police harassment, people speaking to the commission said, was not just at that Mother’s Day event, but wherever and whenever blacks gather in Bunnell. Even, in one case, when they hold a family barbecue in the yard.
Three years ago—ironically, to save Carver Gym from closure—the same community had targeted the county for discriminating against South Bunnell, saying the county wouldn’t act likewise against recreation facilities in whiter areas of the county. People addressing the commission Monday once again underscored what has been the longest-running racial divide in the county, and what they perceive to be an issue with the city’s cops, but in words and descriptions more reminiscent of the 1950s than the second decade of the 21st century.
“I’m glad that you guys had a good time with potato fest,” Emma Sanders, a resident of Bunnell’s Chapel Street, began, noting ironically the Potato Festival that had taken place the same weekend, with a distinctly lighter police presence (and distinctly lighter skins all around). She spoke of the several events that have been held in or around Carver Gym over the months, including the Mother’s Day event.
“But every single time we’ve been trying to have an event there’s been harassment of police in the area,” Sanders said. “Yesterday it was overwhelming. It was inundated with police officers, and I feel like there wasn’t any at the potato festival like that. So the question was asked, do you guys need so much law enforcement here at this event? And they told us, there’s over 200 people, they said likely there’s a warrant in the area. And I feel like, just because it was a black event, this community with black people trying to get together, just to have a good time, that they were—I don’t want to say racial, I don’t want to say racist, but it was kind of like it was influenced because there was black people in the community, and I’m pretty sure, just like black people, white people also get warrants. But I just felt like it was unnecessary, and it was very offensive towards us.”
There were several police officers in the commission meeting room as well: somehow they’d been told that the matter might be discussed.
Brian Williams of Bunnell was more blunt. “The police,” he said, “I think they’re not there to serve us. They’re there to bully us. If we are so-called so wild and rowdy, why is it that we don’t have any incidents about us being wild over there on the south side?” He referred to the “ditch line” that separates South from North Bunnell, the old mark of segregation in the city. “I don’t think it’s right for us to be bullied and herded around. Sunday, police was everywhere flashing lights for no reason. What was the reason for that? To me it was just not right. It makes us feel like we’re not free. If my mom and dad want to have a barbecue outside and we’re not allowed, the cops ain’t got a right to tell us to go home, to go inside and not have a barbecue. It’s a family affair, right? So if it’s wrong for us to have it, why is it not wrong for the north side to have one? That’s all I want to know. If it’s fair, let’s be fair to everybody, not to have a different standard for a certain group of people.”
Armando Martinez, the city manager, described that Sunday’s particular issue as a misunderstanding: the city was not involved. That, of course, was not the case: it was at the city police department’s instigation that the event was cancelled.
While Bunnell police was there, so were sheriff’s deputies, he said. “My understanding is that the county government cancelled that event and that it just happened anyway,” Martinez said, “and then it caught people by surprise, and officers had to be called in on overtime to be there after the fact, and that also the county sheriff’s department had to send deputies there too.”
That prompted David Williams, a Cherry Street resident, to wonder to commissioners why, then, weren’t organizers of the event more clearly informed of the lines of authority when they were merely trying to do the right thing. “You can’t blame a person for not speaking German if he never spoke German,” Williams said.
(Cheryl Massaro, the director of the Flagler County Youth Center and Carver Gym, confirmed in a phone interview that she never got an application for an event inside the gym, and would not normally have charged money for one anyway, since, she said, the place is to be used as a community center—unless the organizers were intending to charge admission.)
Tasha Fullwood, a Palm Coast resident with family in Bunnell, said that once the issue of a lacking permit was revealed, the organizers agreed to not charge for the event but continue with it as a private party. “They still harassed us,” Fullwood said of the police, even though there were no issues. “Nobody called the police. We checked around.” She did not agree with the claim that the police turned up only after large numbers of people had. “They were out there from the beginning. They were out there from when we started setting up,” she said.
Sanders agreed. And she stressed that it was not just a problem with the Mother’s Day event, but a chronic issue.
“That’s basically what we’re trying to do, is to get people together, is to just enjoy one another without the problems,” Sanders said. “And it seems like every single time there’s cops posted up, sitting there or walking through or just like, oh yeah, like looking for a problem when there is none. Even if we’re in the city itself, it’s just harassment for no reason. It’s bigger than this. But this is where we’re going to start at. It’s way bigger than just this event, just this one time. It’s happening every single day. And just like the word used by another one of my friends back there, bullying is what it is, harassment and bullying, and we’re just trying to find a way to come to a medium to stop it, because everybody in Bunnell are not criminals.”
Commissioners had few remarks. Jenny Crain-Brady, who serves on two boards that have jurisdiction over Carver Gym, on two occasions explained the process enabling community members to use the facility, and the distinctions between who owns what there. When Commissioner John Rogers toward the end of the discussion asked whether the issue involved Bunnell cops or sheriff’s deputies, several voices in the audience began answering, but Mayor Catherine Robinson silenced them.
“Excuse me,” she said. “We need to sit down, get together, have a meeting, I don’t think anybody is opposed to having a meeting. This was a Flagler County event in the Carver Gym. I don’t know about the police department. See, again, we don’t know what your event was Sunday because we were not a part of your event, we didn’t have anything to do with your event, so—” again voices erupted to specify what had been said earlier during the comments.
“Excuse me,” Robinson said again. “A point of order, you’ve had your say, now it’s our turn. So there’s obviously confusion, no doubt about it, and there’s obviously a problem, so we need to figure out what the problem is. Your questions were good, and work toward solving that problem. This was a Flagler County event to approve or not approve if it was in the Carver Gym.” (Actually, it is a school district decision if it’s in the gym, a county decision if it’s on the county land around the gym.)
“But,” Robinson acknowledged, “I hear the overtones that it’s also the city of Bunnell police department, so with that I think we need to have a meeting and come together, have the police department there, if you want the county there that’s fine too, and sit down and everybody get around the table and be as civil there as you are today.”
Paul Spearmon, a resident of Hymon Circle, had suggested the idea of a meeting moments earlier.
Sid Nowell, the city attorney, said there’d been some discussions about a meeting since, but no date set.
Diane Patterson’s permit application
I think they were trying to have an event and make $ on something they shouldn’t have been making $ on, they were caught and now they are trying to play the race card. Truth of the matter is they lied on their application to rent facility. End of story. Event Planner took it upon themselves to still try to have party even though permit was revoked. They were paying $10 a head to get in and get drinks, this was not a family affair. You can charge to have your own event but you have to pay taxes on what you make…most events are usually done on PRIVATE property not PUBLIC.
Chevanne mccall says
You dont know what happened anonymous when i got out of church at 1 i saw police in the field and parked at the community center. My church is right accross the street from the gym. They are always harassing us. You cant speak on something that you know nothing about. Yes they were charging for parking and alcohol, so what it was people trying to make some money. IT WAS RACIAL. If the police were looking for people who had warrents just ask all the undercovers they have. How come i see the people who have warrents and the police dont? They know where they live and where they hang out. Dont wait until we have a get together to start arresting people and get them fired up. We cant have a good time without being watched. That scene is not my cup of tea but when the police get in my nephew face(he was the DJ) and start yelling at him im in this. I was raised on south moore street and my mom still lives there. So until you walk a mile in our shoes your opinion doesnt count. Im not hiding who i am. Who gone check me? I pay my taxes, a hard working woman with no record, Bunnell raised and proud of it.
So they were going to charge for alcohol? Was there a permit for that? Color has nothing to do with it. More about trying to get away with something by thinking the rules of agreement didn’t need to be adhered to.
I would start having public gatherings there (or “private parties” as referred to in the article) every week! See how many times the Bunnell PD and Flagler Deputies show up, and how many show up. Have these gatherings coincide with events in the north part of Bunnell, and see which side gets the bigger police presence! I can promise you that it will NOT be the drunks in the Beer House on N. State Street or out at the Bimini on West 100……….you will see every police cruiser in the county lined up from E Booe to S. Anderson to Short Street and Hymon Circle! They are more concerned about the people having a good time without bothering anyone else than the drunks in the bars on the north side getting behind the wheel! It is rather difficult to not cry racism on the Bunnell PD when they don’t have a single African-American officer in their department!
Now that is QUALITY police work in the city of Bunnell!
Ray Thorne says
How many times are police called to Heart of the City club by patrons? Lets start there.
Oh shucks….I bet they would have had ice cream and cake there for everyone. Maybe even some carnival games like “Bobbing for apples”. Gee, they never let us have any fun !
Ron Hubbard says
Typical race card. This is what happens when certain people watch nothing by Al Sharlaton on MSLSD TV.
north ditch says
I am the whitest girl in Bunnell and I go to David Williams’ home on Cherry Street to visit my childhood friends, his children. I go in, I come out. All the while, cameras are focused on every corner and police ‘presence’ blatantly obvious. Mr. Williams, I humbly ask you to run in the next election. I am SICKENED by Catherine Robinson and her racist band of thieves. She is worried that perhaps someone other than her relatives and friends might have an event with drinking? Mrs. Robinson, Your protege JCB didn’t have cameras focused on her when she publicly consumed alcohol at the COUNTY fair…..Will you support that event’s permit being pulled? How about Cracker Day? Why can’t next years event be in honor of Mr. Verdell? He was a well known, well liked contributor to the equine community for decades…..I can answer that….it’s Cracker Day. Again, I am the whitest girl in Bunnell and I would LOVE to see Mr Williams take JCB’s or Catherine’s seat because I believe the South ditch folk are getting railroaded by the City AND county. This white girl thinks someone should put these talking points in a document and share with NAACP and let Mrs. Robinson’s reign of racial discrimination, crony-ism, Martinez suporting and generally being an embarassment to our City be the focus.
Joe B says
It is discrimination and I’m a white boy. Sid Nowell dropped the ball to set precedent. Sheriff Manfre needs to step up also as well as the new chief of the Bunnell Police Dept.. Why were there so many police officers at this event especially ones sent in on overtime on the handout of the taxpayer again.
I don’t think the issue should be about the $10. Besides, having a BBQ and beer cost money.
There are plenty of manuels online including Federal, State and County material for Police Departments and Cities on how to address community events. After all, Sheriff Manfre adheres to the concept of Community Policing. Nothing new here guys. I worked plenty of them in Harlem and loved them. Don’t be afraid of black people they just might watch your back..
What these agencies need is a Community Service Officer and preferably black.
I was born and raised in this county, and this bullying is true. It has went on for years and years and it is very noticeable also. I remember as a teenager I would be pulled over and my car searched just because of the fact I had black friends with me. Its sickening and it needs to stop. Crime happens all over our county and not just in south Bunnell either.
FRANK DILIBERTO says
Got caught??????? lets try the race card!
ps: great job by Bunnell PD AND FCSO.
the crime stopper says
And does anyone remember the chief was black
It is a matter of fact, that, despite the amount of complaining from the residents of south Bunnell, it is the residents of the South side of Bunnell that call the police more than anyone else. It is in the streets of South Bunnell, that gunshots can be heard every night. It is in the streets of South Bunnell, that narcotics are sold in an open air market. It is primarily in South Bunnell, that the residents stand on the street corner all day and night selling, bragging on Facebook and Twitter about how much money they have despite never having worked a day in their lives. These same drug dealers are the ones claiming indigent status every time they want a public defender to defend them in court, and the same ones that live in a friends house in the projects, paying 10-20 dollars a month for rent. It is primarily in South Bunnell that people illegally carry firearms. It is primarily in South Bunnell that you can not walk down any street without seeing a “crackhead” wandering aimlessly; you cannot go more than 10 minutes without smelling the odor of burnt cannabis. They want to claim racism, but when was the last time a black resident walked into the North side of the city and got beaten and robbed??? Now reverse that and let’s see how the white person would fare…they may be served some dope…and if they choose not to buy, probably be called a cracker…quite possibly be robbed and/or beaten. Does Ms. Patterson really think that there wouldn’t be an issue with a party in the North side, if 100 cars all started blasting music with no regard for the non attendees, many attendees smoking marijuana, flying “Black flags” or “Grove Street” and “Zoe Pound” colors???!!! Does the North end’s version of Johnnie Thomas drive by a crowded Ralph Carter park and open fire on a crowd of people, hoping to hit a member of “Grove Street”?? Are there any…ANY..North side residents that stand in the street selling crack cocaine all day long??? Sure, there are criminals, warrants, and drug dealers in the North side of Bunnell. Of course, there are awful people of every single race, doing awful things all the time. You cannot judge a book by its color…nor can you a person. God bless the residents of South Bunnell that try to better themselves, working hard at their legitimate job everyday, finishing college, etc. and I’m certain that the criminal activity that goes on during the average block party likely embarrasses them, just like the nonsense that goes on at a drunken Mondexian hoedown might embarrass a white person. If there was a history of gunshots and gang violence during North Bunnell parties…then the police would be proactive with those parties too…but that’s not the case. I understand that the city of Bunnell has a history of uneducated, ignorant, racism…as do many cities in the oft bigoted “deep South”, but that’s not the case now.
That’s some Mother’s Day party!
By the looks of the flier, moms were to show up mostly naked.
Why wasn’t 2-Live-Crew invited?
We could have enjoyed some extra profane rap!
Ten bucks a pop. What gonads!
Charles Gardner says
I like the suggested solution “lets have a meeting”. Then what?
Joe B: The chief of Police for Bunnell is Jeff Hoffman. Manfre is the Sheriff of Flagler County.
I don’t know if there was an issue or not… I do think the next time she plans an event she should tell the truth if she’s charging or not and what she thinks the attendance is going to be. Come on, 60 people but you’ve printed out flyers (although that looks like a business card) , you know you’re going to have more than 60 people and that is your intention.
I dont care if it was 60 or 6 thats not the issue this isnt the first time theyve done this just this past Easter BPD sat. On the field, and watched us as if we was on display for no apparent reason no one has to play the race card when you’re only playing the hand that you’ve been dealt the question is why were they in their tactical gear as if they were ready to go to War the real question is why don’t they sit down by Porkchops Alibi Bar that
Keeping It REAL says
Actually, Everyone involved is wrong. If my memory serves me correct, GILYARD’s event was canceled for he EXACT same reason “HIS FLYER” which had half naked women, as well. The southsouth residents need to realize that the school board, housing authority, the county, and the city, cant approve events that are advertised with inappropriate language and/or photos. It sends the wrong message!!! The police presence was not as heavy at the potato festival nor EASTER SUNDAY at the sme park. The Bunnell PD “ALWAYS” take things too far. The do harass the people that live on the southside but the people of the southside need to have more respect for themselves and authority figures and abide by the rules and make sure they are not violating any regulations before they acuse anyone. THINGS WERE HANDLED WRONG FROM THE BEGINNING AND THINGS ENDED WRONG. EVERYONE NEEDS TO TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR OWN ACTIONS AND EVERYONE NEEDS TO BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE FOR THE WAY THINGS WERE DONE
When ever they don’t get thier way they pull out that race card and blame someone else..
There was no Police presence at last years Easter Sunday get together. The reason being, is that no one knew that there was going to be over 1,000 people at the Carer pavilion. During and after the gathering, there was multiple reports of gun fire and fights and all sorts of havok. Bunnell Police have 2 (Just two!!!) Officers on duty at any given time. I’m sure the increased Police presence this time was just make sure everyone knew they were around to prevent any incidents. It’s called being proactive as opposed to reactive. And since when is a bunch of cops standing around a problem? If I were throwing a party with 60 people and we were drinking and having a good time, I’d prefer for there to be a bunch of cops hanging out. Why? Because I’m a law abiding citizen who respects what the police do for me and my family. You complain when they are there, then when there’s a shooting it’s “Where was ya’ll?”
The problem isn’t the people that organize the event, it’s the friends of their kids (Just an example) that show up with weed, warrants, pistols and bad attitudes. That’s why the cops are there. Get over yourselves. Stop complaining and come to terms with reality… jeesh.
I REALLY WISH THE CAMERAS THAT ARE ON THE POLES COULD BE USED AS PROOF TO SHOW HOW THE OFFICERS PATROL ONLY A SPECIFIC AREA DURING THEIR SHIFTS. IT SEEMS AS IF THE MAYOR OF BUNNELL IS TRYING TO DOWN PLAY THE BPDs ACTIONS & REDIRECT THE FOCUS ON THE FCSO. THE FCSO IS ONLY THERE TO ASSIST, AND SHOULDN’T BE BLAMED FOR HOW THINGS HAPPENED. I’M GLAD TO READ ABOUT THE SOUTHSIDE TAKING A STAND, BUT THIS IS THE WRONG BATTLE. THE BPD HAVE BEEN GETTING AWAY WITH HARSH & RACIAL BIAS THINGS THEY DO TOWARDS BLACKS IN SOUTHSIDE BUNNELL, FOR AS LONG AS I CAN REMEMBER,& COMPLAINING LEADS TO A DEAD END. THIS IS NOT RACIAL IS ABOUT NOT FOLLOWING RULES
The permit states what is allowed. It was granted in good faith with the understanding that the applicant
would comply with permit conditions. The flyer contradicts the applicants agreement. Sure a few more folks who is going to complain. But when you advertize every county is invited, come on really.And your charging for entrance , a violation of liquor law. It was a good proactive step for someone to step up and bring this to the counties attention. Ms D Paterrson either did not read her application and understand it or she was trying to take advantage of the citizens of Bunnell. I think the latter. And the party went on anyway without the 10 dollar fee. It is the responsibility of the officials in Bunnell to maintain a safe environment for its citizens. And they did. If this event would of gone as Ms Patterson planned it may have turned out to be a big problem. Black or any other cultural group. Try again do it legally and work with the police so they may understand any cultural diversities that may affect the event planned. Ms Patterson started the ball rolling on this outcome what did she think was going to happen. Come one come all, Bunnell is back on the Map.
Ron Hubbard says
Alcohol and gambling? Some Sunday Mother’s day meeting. Is mom supposed to get loaded there?
More white people should start using the race card.
Sherry Epley says
After reading these comments, it seems to me that, unfortunately, racism is alive and thriving in Flagler county. Just look at the words used as characterizations of “us” and “THEM” or “THEY”. Ladies and gentlemen, regardless of the color of anyone’s skin, we are all (as the religious teachings say) brothers and sisters of the human race.
We should walk in another person’s shoes and look at (and hopefully change) our own personal prejudices before we comment so very loudly about the behavior of others. . . especially about an event or a circumstance where we were not involved or present.
It seems to me that the permitting process should have been conducted according to appropriate statute/codes, and that the reasons for the revocation of the event permit should have been applied without consideration of race, in any fashion, and without prejudice. Perhaps the process needs to be revised so that a copy of all advertising literature is reviewed before the permit is issued, to begin with. The reasons for revocation of the permit should have been explained IN WRITING directly and clearly. . . including what actions would be taken by the authorities should the event not be cancelled.
On the other hand, the event should not have been held on non-private property without the required permit.
Consider the possibility that a better permitting process, applied in an even handed way, with clear communication in writing, could have gone a long way in avoiding such misunderstanding and conflicts in the community.
Peace, love and joy to you and yours.
Glad I left Palm Coast says
Well if the citizens of the southside would act like normal and proper civilians and stop blaming others for their own problems and take responsibility like other people. It looks like they were out to make a quick buck, plus look what happens when you get the blacks together for a party there is usually someone who does not belong pulls out a gun and opens fire. Just look a past incidents maybe the police might have saved a life. Get a life and deal with reality stop playing the race card!!! Ignorance breeds ignorance
Good job BPD don’t listen to the complainers yous did your job well done
Here is the public youtube video that they posted about the event….nothing like reckless and careless driving to promote an event….
Look, the City should help the permitting process and not hinder it. What remains is the community would have liked to have a picnic type event. After all, Palm Coast is sponsoring events in Town Park and conveniently serves alcoholic beverages now.
some guy says
Amazing someone looks to put on an EVENT and make $$$$ from it while calling it a “block party” that would have about 60 family and friends going to it. When it is found out that it is NOT a gathering of friends and family BUT an EVENT to make $$$ the permit is pulled and the orginizers and other cry foul on RACISIM.
Keeping It REAL says
Sherry & anonymous, you both have some valid points. Regardless, the city said no. Everything has a process, if the event organizers did not agree with the decision they should have chalenged their decision the correct way. Ignoring the city is just as bad as a person taking the law into their own hands. If officers used force, it’s because they knew by them having the event, it was a clear indication, that they were up against individuals with no respect for authority &/or the law. Bottom line your suppose to give respect if you want respect.
Popo3984, I hope to God you are no longer a police officer, because if that is the type of thinking pattern you promote(don’t listen to the complainers), then our police force is on the fast track to tyranny and having no responsibility for ones actions. Just as the government should fear its people, so should the police force, never forget that you answer to us.
The Geode says
I am ALSO Black and regularly comment on the LACK of the police doing their job. I almost ran over a frigging 9 year old riding a dirt-bike on the public road. (which happens constantly) I remember when I was coming up in Bunnell, the police had the gumption to actually get out and walk among the people and we had a level of respect for them doing their job …as we did ours. As for that “flier crap”, I have less of a problem with any fees because nobody was going to pay shit anyway and of course we generally bring our OWN inhibitions. My problem is the blatant exploitation and gratuitous sexualizing of Black women as a means to generate interest. For a BLACK FEMALE to use these tactics shows a general lack of respect as a whole. … especially since this very mind-set allowed them to be “mothers” in the first place.
Thank you for pointing out the last part…, not just mothers, but mothers who raise sons to disrespect and treat women like trash; and daughters who follow in the same footsteps as their mothers, producing more and more ‘mommy’s baby but daddy’s maybe’ and perpetuating the cycle. It is sad that they are unable to see this.
A thousand likes+++
James Wigington says
The Bunnell Police are racist, we all know it. There were rules in place. The “black” people didnt follow them. So that left the window open. Cross your T’s and dot your I’s before you let loose “black” people in Bunnell. If someone would have been hurt or shot at the party and the police and ambulance didnt respond quick enough Im sure the race card would have been pulled also. Its always gonna be this way. Its what makes Bunnell, Bunnell.
palm coast suck says
I’m black myself but what I would like to know is why is it that when other blacks get caught doing something tthat they shouldn’t the first thing they do is pull the race card?