AFRICAN-AMERICAN ENTREPRENEUR DEVELOPS NEW HI-TAPO APP TO RECORD VIDEO DURING LAW ENFORCEMENT STOPS

Free mobile app documents interactions and provides local geo-mapping.

Martin Whitehead is the founder and CEO of HI-TAPO, a new free mobile app for Android phones that provides unprecedented support during interactions with law enforcement. The app records video and audio of law enforcement stops and feeds it to a pre-programmed network of up to 10 friends and family so they can watch the interaction in real time. HI-TAPO provides geo-mapping so your network will know where you are.

BlackNews.com

The centuries-old criminal justice paradigm has just shifted. HI-TAPO, a new free mobile app for Android phones, which launched this week as a pilot program, could change everyday interaction between residents and law enforcement for the better.

"HI-TAPO (pronounced hi-toppo) records video and audio of law enforcement stops and feeds it to a pre-programmed network of up to 10 friends and family so they can watch the interaction in real time. HI-TAPO also provides geo-mapping to identify the user’s location," said HI-TAPO CEO Martin Whitehead, the African-American entrepreneur who developed the app. (Visit www.HI-TAPO.com.)

According to Whitehead, HI-TAPO promotes safe returns home following law enforcement stops for every person, regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, or religion. It adds an extra layer of support wherever you go, he said.

The innovative monitoring and social networking system is designed to provide immediate support during law enforcement stops; promote safety during stops; protect against potential rights violations; foster greater law enforcement accountability; and assist in community-building.

There is overwhelming evidence that police stops can escalate quickly and even be fatal. With HI-TAPO, users and their networks see and hear the interaction and have immediate access to the video and audio.

HI-TAPO instantly documents user interactions with law enforcement via streaming video, social sharing, and text and e-mail notifications to users' networks including family members, friends, loved ones and civic and community organizations.

"Additionally, HI-TAPO can provide a mechanism for collaborative, fair and equitable oversight of local police, state troopers, sheriffs, ICE agents, and others. It can be used as a new tool in community policing. With HI-TAPO, communities can actually map police stops," he said.

The HI-TAPO app is available for free download to Android mobile phones through Google Play. HI-TAPO is user-friendly with an easy swipe-and-click activation, and starting in November, audio activation.

Once the HI-TAPO app is activated, live streaming of audio and video immediately begin to record the user's interaction and GPS tracking pinpoints the location. Alerts are sent to those in the user's network allowing them to listen to and view the interaction in real time. If necessary, the audio/video can be used in a court of law.

After activating HI-TAPO, the user can hit an "all-clear" button once the interaction has concluded. However, if there is no all - clear signal given after a pre-determined amount of time, an SOS alert will automatically be sent to his/her network.

"Users can activate HI-TAPO and know that they are not alone, but have a network of concerned people who care about them, who know their location and who can see what is happening to them in real time. Loved ones won’t have to wonder where you are or what is happening to you. They will know," said Whitehead.

In addition, following the stop, Hi-TAPO allows users to write a review of the interaction, including the officer's name, badge number, the reason for the stop, use of force, if any, and a rating of the overall experience with a thumbs up or down. There is also space for additional comments.

The HI-TAPO system will aggregate ratings and comments about interactions with law enforcement providing greater transparency, information sharing, an opportunity for community-building, as well as a vehicle for highlighting well-trained officers who engage the community in a fair and equitable way. Visit www.facebook.com/HI.TAPO/videos/1897634000368656/

Whitehead said he hopes HI-TAPO can help reduce distrust between officers and the communities they serve.

Subscription service to provide live, 24-hour support.

HI-TAPO offers a subscription service which provides live 24/7 on-demand concierge support. If users are arrested or detained, HI-TAPO activates automatically to help locate them, whether in jail or a detention center, so their network can find them more quickly and work on their behalf. The concierge service is $9.99 per month, or get a month free with an annual subscription of $109.99. Group discounts and grants are also available at contact@HI-TAPO.com.

"It helps minimize the amount of time you or your loved ones are unaccounted for and, possibly, vulnerable in the criminal justice system," said Whitehead.

HI-TAPO for iOS is scheduled for release in 2019. Visit www.HI-TAPO.com. Follow HI-TAPO on Facebook and Twitter @HI_TAPO.


WE BUY BLACK CONVENTION HELPS BLACK CONSUMERS "MAKE THE SWITCH"

The inaugural event aims to simplify "buying black" and galvanize support for a growing national movement.

 

WeBuyBlack entrepreneurs

BlackNews.com

Get ready to replace your weekly Target run with a more meaningful purchase. On November 16-17, 2018, goods from over 100 Black-owned businesses will be on sale at the Inaugural We Buy Black Convention in Atlanta at the Cobb Galleria Centre.

And if you think there will only be shea butter and incense, think again.

"Our people create almost everything we need. There's really no reason for us to give our money to corporations and companies that don't have our interests in mind," said Shareef Abdul-Malik, 26 year-old Howard alumnus, event organizer, and founder of e-commerce site WeBuyBlack.com.

With the theme "Remove, Replace, and Rebuild: Our Struggle Toward Collective Economic Dignity", the convention will showcase goods from vendors selling everything from daily necessities like toothbrushes, toilet paper, and laundry detergent to clothing, art, and homewares. "It's time we remove our dollars from companies that do not support our community, replace these companies with Black owned businesses giving us the dignity to support ourselves, and rebuild our family and community like every other civilized group in America and around the world," he said.

Organizers and vendors hope the convention will help show consumers how easy it can be to swap some of their favorite goods for similar items produced by Black-owned companies.

Channeling the "Do For Self" mantra, Shareef believes that soon, all the wants and needs within the Black or African American community will be created and provided by the community:

"There's no dignity in shopping at stores and nothing is produced by African Americans and those of African decent. I believe it is a sin when we give our money over to other communities and watch our schools suffer, our businesses close, and our family without jobs. I believe that is a sin. It's no victory when one of us land our products on the shelves of these large corporate stores, it's a victory when we become the large store and house the products of our whole community. Our collective success is much more important and fulfilling. We will never be able to support the world properly, until we do for our self."

Connecting Black businesses with consumers is not new for Abdul-Malik, but he hopes this convention will help get the community excited about the variety of high-quality products Black businesses have to offer and inspire others to become business owners themselves.

"This is not just about making a sale, this is about empowering our community and showing what the Black dollar and the Black entrepreneurial mind can accomplish. Who knew we had a Black owned battery company, laundry detergent, first-aid bandages, toothbrushes, bed sheets, toilet tissue, diapers, and more? Wherever there's a predominantly Black community, there should be a Black owned grocery store with predominantly Black owned products. This is what this convention is about," he said. "We've got everything, from a business competition to a hot sauce competition ... we even have a workshop on manufacturing and a fashion show. So, we've really got something for everyone.”

In addition to the live marketplace, the convention has a full roster of business workshops available, including a Business to Business Speed Consulting session, pitch competition, panel discussions, and a fashion show and conversation with the founders of Black-owned fashion brand FUBU.

Although there is a large emphasis on business and commerce, the convention still promises to be a family-friendly event. Children who attend will have access to their own robust lineup of equally empowering events like a STEM science show and youth entrepreneur presentations, in addition to face painting, storytelling, and surprise visits by Black cartoon character favorites. Admission is free for children under 18 years old.

Live entertainment will be provided by Neo-soul performing artist Bilal and a roster of national artists.

We Buy Black Convention
Nov. 16-17, 2018
Cobb Galleria Centre
2 Galleria Parkway - Atlanta, GA 30339

Tickets and more information can be found at www.webuyblackconvention.com

About WeBuyBlack.com

WeBuyBlack.com is the largest online marketplace for Black-owned businesses and individual sellers. By giving Black businesses and sellers access to a diverse, open, and international market, We Buy Black stimulates the circulation of wealth among the Black Diaspora and assists Black businesses in providing for families and communities at large.

Social Media

Instagram: www.instagram.com/webuyblack/
Facebook: www.facebook.com/webuyblackcom
Twitter: www.twitter.com/webuyblackcom


Why Is There, So Much, Voter APATHY?

By Richard Brody 

Whether it's because, many feel disenfranchised, or, believe their vote won't make any difference and/ or count, or the level of the individuals, who seek elected office, we have noticed, in the United States of America, voter turnout is low and disappointing (for example, half the eligible voters didn't exercise their right, in the Presidential election of 2016). Some state, in 2016, many didn't like and/ or trust, either candidate, and Donald Trump was elected, because so many disliked his opponent. Others proclaim, some of the so - called, progressives, were disappointed when Bernie Sanders, did not win the Democratic nomination, so didn't care to vote. Of course, some rarely or never exercise this franchise, to vote, perhaps because of APATHY, or the length of the election process. Every once in a while, we witness elections, where, just, a few votes, determine the winner. With that in mind, this article will attempt to review, consider, and evaluate, using the mnemonic approach, some of the aspects, involved, as well as potential issues, and reasons, voter apathy, threatens the strength of our society/ nation.

1. Attention; ask: Perhaps because of the negativity of the rhetoric, and the boredom with the many empty promises, while some immerse themselves, in the political process, many turn - off! When confronted with, either paying keen attention, or getting tired of, the politics and politicians, they opt for the latter. However, until/ unless, more citizens pay more attention, and ask relevant, probing questions, we will continue to be served by representatives, who, often, focus, far more on their personal/ political agenda, and/ or, self - interests, than making a difference, and changes, for the better.

2. Politics; policies; priorities; perceptions; promises: Wouldn't we be better off, if politics were based on priorities, and addressed needs, goals, and perceptions, rather than, business - as - usual, where relevant, sustainable policies, were introduced, and empty promises, were replaced with viable solutions?

3. Aptitude; articulate; accuracy: In our present system, we often elect, candidates who made promises, or stoked - fears, rather than articulated a realistic, relevant, plan of action. Voters should seriously consider a potential office - holder's aptitude, and whether the particular skill - set, will effectively serve our nation and citizens. Demand accuracy, rather than accepting lies, and half - truths, and populist myths!

4. Timely: Beware of anyone who speaks of the good - old, days! Rather, seek someone, who understands the history and heritage, recognizes what is relevant, and sustainable, and is ready, willing, and able to proceed, consistently, with well - considered, timely action!

5. Healing; head/ heart: We need leaders who use both logic, and emotion, in a relevant, head/ heart balance! Avoid those who are polarizing, and vote for those, who prioritize healing, for the common good!

6. You; your: Each voter must assume his personal responsibility, and realize, voting, and making your voice heard, is, up to you!

Rather than complaining about past elections, and why, we need better, we need, far less, voter APATHY, and far more, well - considered, involvement. Will you take your part responsibly?

Richard has owned businesses, been a COO, CEO, Director of Development, consultant, professionally run events, consulted to thousands, conducted personal development seminars, and worked on political campaigns, for 4 decades. Rich has written three books and thousands of articles. Website: http://plan2lead.net and LIKE the Facebook page for common sense: http://facebook.com/commonsense4all







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The Gospel of White Supremacy: America's Brewing Holy Race War

By Keith Magee
 

Dr. Keith Magee

The election of Donald Trump embodies White supremacy theology that is hostile toward non-whites Black -- in particular Black men. He began spurring flames of discord, as the driving force of the birther movement, and also called Mexicans rapists and targeted Muslims with a travel ban. These are underpinnings of the hate of the Ku Klux Klan and a deeply seeded Evangelical apocalyptic theology of a Holy Race War. It is a fact that White evangelicals voted at a rate of 81 percent for Trump. 

As someone who attended Vacation Bible School, in the conservative bayou of Louisiana, one of the first songs I remember was "Yes, Jesus Love Me". Winan United Methodist Church was the place where a White, blonde hair, and blued-eyed Christ was introduced to me as the Savior of the world. This Christ and his church was a place of safety from our personal sins, the social ills on the outside, yet assuredly as place of his love. 

The fact that, in 1915, a UMC minister, William J. Simmons, played a major role in the new charter of the KKK, was either unknown or accepted by many. Simmons' first public order was consecrating their Christian morality by setting a fire to the old rugged cross atop of Stone Mountain, Georgia. And yet there is an idea of racial hierarchy, embedded into religious teachings, that has been a part of our culture for over 400 years. 

While confined within the chattels of slavery, religion was an outlet that gave hope in this faith of a suffering servant. The idea was that suffering with him might make it possible to reign with him in eternity. His blood shed, on the cross, was the horror of death and yet the beauty of a saving grace for all. However, it is the same symbol of the cross that is burned, as a form of intimidation, to remind Black people that even this White Savior can't save them from the venom of White hate. 

It seems that daily, throughout America, another Black life is suffocated to death at the hands of someone, in a blue uniform, who is protected by the government. Recently, the death of Botham Jean of Dallas has created a deeper level of anger and outrage. Now it is being communicated that not only are Blacks in danger while driving, standing on a street corner, and in their back yard. But, there is no safe place - even in the sanctuary of their own home. 

While Muslim mothers and children have been caged like animals. And, in the last 48 hours, Jews are being reminded of the never-ending antisemitism through the loss of 11 lives during a baby naming ceremony.

The use of religion to stoke racial strife and violence is prevalent in our societies. This past August 2018, while meeting with Evangelical Christian leaders, Donald Trump told them that there would be "violence" if Republicans lost their majority in Congress, as a result of November's mid-term elections. He told them to take to their pulpit to tell their followers that this is a referendum on him, their religion and freedom of speech. The same religion that teaches love thy neighbor, don't steal, cheat or commit adultery, is seemingly using white-out to affirm this American president. The adulterer, one who pays for sex and speaks freely about being able to walk down 5th Avenue and shoot someone, is touted as the one to save and make America great again. 

The duality of religion and vulnerability was something I Iearned a long time ago from my father who was a lover of dogs. As he would sit out back on a stump, he would give me world wisdoms. He often told me that "if you keep kicking a dog, he will bite back." The preaching of "whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also", seemed to apply only to those seen as less than human while these White Christians raged injustice and violence against our communities and leaders. Just over 50 years ago the KKK offered a $100,000 bounty for the assassination of the non-violent Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., resulting in the cowardly shooting of James Earl Ray. 

The snuffing out of his life led to anger and biting back with people taking to the streets in over 125 riots in American cities and around the world. This isn't 1968 when impassioned response for a revolution, from was Pittsburgh to Paris to Prague, happening with protest in the streets. It would appear that this indignation of these Whites is ushering Jesus' sign of the end, "nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom." The word nation is translated from 'ethnos' which is the root of ethnicity. 

It is clear that the White House is being led by an Imperial Wizard and king, the GOP is serving as his Klexter (outer-guard), and his latest US Supreme Court Associate Justice is his Klarogo (sergeant-at- arms). By invoking an evangelical theology and using the Bible to justify their cruel actions, while also trying to subjugate Black people under that same God, there appears to be no recourse but to go to war. 

A war for the soul of the country is the true meaning of a righteous doctrine. This hatred under the guise of religious teachings can no longer be met with patience, peace talks or Twitter protests. And, if there's resistance in it being met with preaching the gospel of Jesus' love to a Christian sect who apparently welcome the KKK's, "So I'll cherish the bright fiery cross, till from duties at last I lay down, then burn over me a bright fiery cross, the day I'm laid in the ground." 

Nor can we have any hope that this President, who just affirmed to his Texas supporters that he's a proud nationalist and believes that if the synagogue had an armed guard there would have been a different outcome. The only thing that he can do is continue to spark and ignite more flames of discord and hatred.

It calls to question: Do we have to accept that non-White Christians, along with White Christians, who don't believe this rhetoric, won't be able to enter paradise through the same pearly gates? Possibly there's a backdoor for the rest, on a lower level, because of an unequal salvation? Or perchance there's a difference in how Jesus loves me verses them?

It is obviously that this sect of Christians has completely forgotten the Jew, from Nazareth, who came to fulfill the law through the good news of love. It was his belief, and that of his father, Yahweh, that his death would save the entire world, regardless of difference - through his selfless act and message of love. It is that love that most dominates all of our hearts and theologies, so that we can have peace on earth.

Dr. Keith Magee is a public intellectual, theologian, and social justice scholar. He is Senior Fellow in Culture and Justice, University College London and serves in leadership, The Berachah Church, Boston, MA and The Tab Church, London, England. For more information visit www.4justicesake.org or follow him at @keithlmagee.

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