ASSOCIATION for LITIGATION

ASSOCIATION for LITIGATION;

And  Vigorous Advocacy For Lawful Ends

_________________

Dear Concerned Citizen:

In September and November of 2004 the Black Farmers and Agriculturalists Association, Inc (BFAA, Inc) was able to get Congress (The Committee On The Judiciary, Subcommittee On The Constitution) to hold Hearings regarding the Notice Procedure of the Black Farmer’s class action lawsuit.

BFAA, Inc was persuaded by its members that the reason so many of them did not file for compensation in the Black farmer’s lawsuit was because they never received “notice” of the lawsuit.  BFAA, Inc agreed and immediately started to contact members of Congress. What follows immediately below are certain comments from the ‘opening’ statement of the Second (November 18, 2004) Hearings:

NOTICE AND DUE PROCESS OF LAW

“Due Process of law is the legal concept that the framers of our Constitution created to ensure that the Government respects all, not some or even most , of an individual’s right to life, liberty, and property.

The due process clause places limits on the Government’s ability to deprive citizens of these rights, guaranteeing fundamental fairness to all individuals.

One of the most important safeguards that has evolved from this clause is the right to notice, notice of a judicial proceeding in which an individual’s right to life, liberty, and property may be affected or eliminated altogether. The form of notice must be reasonably designed to ensure that those individuals will, in fact, be notified of the proceeding. This fundamental right to notice applies to the 1999 Pigford Consent Decree and all those who had a viable claim of discrimination which impacted their lives, liberty, and property against the Department of Agriculture.”

Congressman Steve Chabot, Chairman, Subcommittee On The Constitution of The Committee On The Judiciary, U.S. House Of Representatives: November 18, 2004.

These comments were made after BFAA, Inc had filed a Motion in Federal Court, by and through one of our Attorneys,  James  W.  Myart,  Jr., asking Judge Paul L. Friedman to do, among  other things, “modify” the Consent Decree. This motion asking the Court to modify the decree was for the benefit of ‘over’ 65,000 Black farmers and their heirs who were denied entry into the lawsuit by  Attorney Michael K. Lewis, Court Appointed Arbitrator.

These 65,000 plus Black farmers and/or their heirs were being denied an opportunity to have their claims of discrimination against  the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) heard on  the  merits.  According   to  Attorney  Michael  K. Lewis  these claimants  had  been denied  because,  as  he  put it, they did  not meet   the   standards   for  “filing  late”   as   set   by  him.   Judge Friedman made Mr. Lewis the sole arbiter and judge as to which Late Filers could be allowed into the lawsuit. Subsequently, Mr.  Lewis denied practically every one of these 65,000 plus Late Filers entry into the lawsuit.   However, as seen herein above, Congress ultimately   did not   agree with the Government,  Judge Friedman,  Mr.  Lewis and/or the lawyers who opposed the modification. Congress’s actions effectively vindicated and  otherwise validated  BFAA, Inc’ position (modification)  of the lawsuit for the 65,000 plus Late Filers as per our motion.

What is important to note is that these Court motions and requests [1] for congressional hearings were also being held over the “objections”  of  the very lawyers  who were themselves appointed to represent the Black farmers, their heirs, administrators and assigns in the lawsuit.  Specifically, “class counsel,” Attorney Alexander J. Pires. Jr.,  (Colon, Frantz, Phelan, Pires & Leavy) opposed our attempts to have the Courts to allow these Late Filers an opportunity to receive a settlement from this lawsuit. These attorneys maintained that “they” opposed our motions because, among other things, (Mr. Myart and others–Yours truly) were being irresponsible, ridiculing and showing  contempt  for the Court  system.  BFAA, Inc knew, however, all along that their opposition was nothing more than the concoction of  a guise  and pretext for justifying their hostility toward anyone from the African American community for indeed, opposing them.

What follows further are some of the ‘questions’ being asked by Ranking Committeeman, Congressman John Conyers of Michigan and corresponding remarks to his questions by the Black farmer’s  lead attorney, Alexander J. Pires, Jr.,  during  the September 18, 2004 Hearings, to-wit:

page 90

Mr. CONYERS. Thank you, Chairman Chabot.

Mr. Pires, Attorney Pires, why did you oppose the motion to modify the Pigford suit   filed by the Black  farmers?

Mr. PIRES. Filed by the Black  farmers?  Mr.  Myart motions?

I think Mr. Myart’s motion are irresponsible. He does not  represent the Black farmers in this case. And his motions are irresponsible.  That is why I opposed them.

Mr. CONYERS. Okay.  Why did you file a motion to enjoin

[2] Black  farmers from speaking on the Pigford v. Glickman settlement last week?

Mr. PIRES.  In that motion, it is public,  Mr.  Myart and others ridiculed the court,  ridiculed the judicial system, made fun of Judge Friedman and the monitor and others.  And I am sworn,  as a member of the court, to defend that.

I don’t think you get anywhere making fun of the judicial system.

And anybody who comes forward and make fun of Judge Friedman or anyone else, I am going to oppose that.  That is my job.

Mr. CONYERS. Well, Counsel, do you still oppose—would you oppose a modification of the time limits for the filing in this case at this point in time?

Page 91

Mr. PIRES   I don’t think  the  Pigford consent decree can be modified, Congressman Conyers. The Government has told us for years that they will  not  consent. So I don’t see how it can be accomplished. And  I  am trying, through legislation, to get what I got 8  years ago, which  has helped. I don’t think it is worth repeated filings before Judge Friedman that are denied. I think  it is a  waste of time. I think the most  important thing is to get to the heart  of the problem and get relief from congress.

Mr. CONYERS. Well, that is not quite the question that I asked which was, would you object to the court deciding or reconsidering the 65,000 claimants should be allowed to enter?

Mr.  PIRES.  Would I oppose——

Mr.  CONYERS.   Would you object? Yes. Would you object if the court determined that this was such a serious miscarriage of the goals of the farmers across all of the years, and they—that he decided that he would reconsider and create a new way for them to apply?

Mr. PIRES.  Judge Friedman does not have that authority.

Mr. CONYERS.  Well, am glad to  hear you tell–this  is the f irst time I  had a  lawyer  explain  the jurisdiction of a judge. I mean why couldn’t he? You are telling me that he could not extend this even if he wanted to?

page 92

Mr.PIRES. I do not believe that Judge Friedman, on his own, without the Government’s consent, can  change a consent  decree and change the  terms such that there is  an extension of time to allow  people in. I do not believe that is the law. That would be reversed, and it would be wasting years of time.

Mr. CONYERS.  Wait a minute. That  sir, is  your hypothetical back to me. I  didn’t tell  you that  Federal court would–that the Government wouldn’t join in with him.

You know, Al, look, let’s  face it. You seem to be resisting the 65,000 people getting some relief. That is what it sounds to me.    See Transcript of  September 18, 2004 Hearing under www.mybfaa.com Downloads.

Here also  is  a comment to  Congressman  Conyer’s  question being asked of Attorney Michael K. Lewis, Count Appointed Arbitrator and the one who Judge Friedman gave the absolute responsibility to allow and/or deny  Later Filers into the lawsuit, to-wit:

page 95

Mr. CONYERS.  You would  like to see the decree modified to allow them to come in.

Mr. LEWIS.  Frankly I agree with Mr. Pires.

So,  there   you  have   it.  The   lead  attorney, Alexander J. Pires, Jr., and   the    Court   Appointed   Arbitrator,   (Mr. Lewis)  being   paid   by the   Government to represent the Black farmers, doing what  can only be    described    as,   showing    their   abject    indifference,   distaste, contempt  and  steadfast  resistance for  their  client’s constitutional right  to  Due  Process  and  Equal Protection under  law.  Talk about a conflict  of  interest.   Again,  all  of  which   of course  in  front   of one of the most powerful and influential  committees in Washington—in broad daylight.  This speaks volumes about the lack of concern for justice and equal rights that still exist toward members of the African American community by this Government and certain members of the legal profession.

Excuse my bluntness, but we would have to be extremely ‘unsophisticated’ to think that this dearth of regard for our rights as shown by these attorneys, speaking on behalf of the Government and the Courts–not their  clients,  has improved since the Hearings in 2004.  The Government and the lawyers (Mr. Pires et., al.) for which it has paid to represent the Black farmers and their heirs in the re-opening of this lawsuit are as glacial and condescending to us as ever before.  I ask you ladies and gentlemen, what better proof of indifference  to our civil rights,  than these attorney’s testimony and attempts to deny free speech to their own clients,  has been left behind?

Even more foreboding is the fact that this  same  group of lawyers has been marshaled, re-commissioned and brought back into service by the Government  to fulfill, USDA style justice for the very  Late Filers  who were opposed by USDA from the start.   If  this does not  constitute a “travesty  of  justice,” then  we should stop talking  as if there is indeed such a thing as  a “travesty of justice.” Our community deserves  better than this.  No other race of people in this country would stand by and allow this sham legal process to be visited upon its community. These 65,000 plus African Americans  have absolutely no chance of receiving anything, ever so slightly, resembling justice and fairness from these lawyers, USDA employees and their fakery.

Likewise, the attorneys representing both the Plaintiffs and Defendant  and the neutrals managing this lawsuit are “mad as hell” because you (BFAA, Inc) have gone over their heads and are now making them do what they vowed and pledged[3] to one another, what  they would never do—let the 65,000 plus claimants into the lawsuit. Remember what Attorney Pires told Congressman Conyers herein above, “I don’t think the Pigford consent decree can be modified, Congressman  Conyers.  The Government has told us for years that they will not consent.” See page 91 of the September 18,2004 Hearing.  We must not forget, retire and rest in some romantic notion that this Government  and the special interest groups which are running it are  simply going to do what they have never want to do in the first place–pay Black people for the wrong for which has been perpetrated against us—without one ‘hellava’  fight,  if indeed at all.

Moreover, when attorney Alexander J. Pires flaunted and paraded his contempt to one of the Black congressional members, Congressman John Conyers of Michigan at the September 2004 Hearings, he (Pires)  was really showing his and the Government’s contempt for the  Africa American leadership. He did not, however, display that same degree of insubordination and rebelliousness toward the White members of that Honorable committee.  He was very much aware of his gentility, propriety and over all etiquettes while being engaged with questions and comments from those Congressmen and Congresswomen–bow tie and all.  I know, I was there.

More specifically, if one were to offer a ‘cursory’ examination of  the proposed Settlement Agreement ($1.25 Billion) dated February 18, 2010, one would only  be left  with the inescapable conclusion that the “Devil and all of his Lieutenants are still in charge of the details.”    This  proposed Settlement Agreement  has USDA  employees’  racist  initiatives, motives and anti African American inventiveness  written all over it—-countless efforts to spin and make it appear to be what the  Obama Administration wants for Black farmers, notwithstanding. This Settlement Agreement is the last nail in the coffin of Black farmers and their heirs. It is specifically designed to sever and cleave any hopes of the African American community ever being a part of the renaissance and proliferation of economic development opportunities in the agriculture and energy industries. This is not a settlement agreement people. This is a Badge of Slavery—-straight up.

Accordingly, if the Department of Agriculture can discriminate and remove Black farmers out of Agriculture, with absolute impunity: the Defense Department could remove African Americans from the military: the Education Department could deny education to Black children:  the Transportation Department could deny contracts (stimulus money) to African Americans in construction. So forth, so on and so up to. There is more to this discrimination against Black farmers over at USDA than meets the eye.

Astonishingly, all of this of course is materializing  while the leadership of the Black civil rights community looks the other way.  Will the real Thurgood Marshall, Oliver W. Hill, William H. Hastie  Spottwood W. Robinson of the 21st civil rights movement please stand up, we need you——now.

As has been said earlier, BFAA, Inc was the “ONLY” advocacy and civil rights organization filing motions in Federal Court and lobbing Congress to “modify” the lawsuit. Even other Black farmers’ organizations were telling people that the Consent Decree and by derivation, the lawsuit could not be amended and/or modified (re-opened) to allow the Late Filers in.  However, we know now that they and the lawyers, as herein above mentioned,  were wrong with respect to the modifying of the lawsuit.  Congress did indeed find that the NOTICE PROVISIONS of the Consent Decree violated our Due Process and Equal Protection Rights as guaranteed by the Constitution and instructed the Government and the Court to allow these Late Filers an opportunity to have their claims of discrimination heard on the merits. Consequently, over 65,000 plus African Americans now have, because BFAA, Inc asked—to paraphrase the gospel, an opportunity to receiving money and other relief from this lawsuit.

Again, it should never be forgotten that, had it not been for the members who supported this esteemed organization, thousand of African Americans who are now eligible for Reparations in this historical class action lawsuit would be left out of the process.  Now we know why Mr. Pires and others tried to get the Court to muzzle, suffocate and enjoined[2] BFAA, Inc  from “speaking” about this lawsuit. Fortunately, however,  the Court  refused to hear Mr. Pires’  Motion against Mr.Myart, BFAA, Inc President and Thomas Burrell.

Undoubtedly, the Court was reminded of, among other things, the First Amendment guarantee as was posited in the historical United States Supreme Court case of N.A.A.C.P v. BUTTON 83 S. Ct. 328, 371 U.S. 415, 9 L. Ed.2 405 (1963). This case involved Robert Y. Button, Attorney General of Virginia et al.,  and subsequently the Virginia State Supreme Court (which was overturned), trying  in 1963 to curtail the NAACP and its attorneys to associate and assist persons seeking legal redress. Black citizens in Virginia were being discriminated against and experienced infringement of their constitutionally guaranteed and other rights by certain school district “closings” (Massive resistance) in that state in the late 50′s and early 60′s.

The United States Supreme Court through Justice William Brennan, Jr., held that:

1.  “For a state may not, under the guise of prohibiting professional misconduct, ignore constitutional rights.”

2. “The  activities  of  the  NAACP, its  affiliates, and  legal staff are modes  of  expression and association  which  are   protected   by  the First Amendment  and Fourteenth Amendments, and  which Virginia may not prohibit  under its  power  to regulate  the legal  profession and improper solicitation of legal business..”

3. “The   First   Amendment also   protects   vigorous   advocacy certainly  of  lawful  ends, against governmental intrusion,”  and

4. “The   NAACP  is  not  a  conventional  political  party; but  the  litigation it assists, while  serving to vindicate the legal rights of members of the American Negro community, at  the  same time  and perhaps more importantly, makes possible the distinctive contribution of a minority  group to  the  ideas  and  beliefs of our society. For such a group, association for  litigation may  be the most effective form of political association.”

What a statement by Justice Brennan!

Moreover,  what was important in 1963 in the NAACP case is still important and applicable for the African American community today–association for litigation and vigorous advocacy for lawful ends. The Black farmers class action lawsuit should be the new Poster Boy for the “political association” for the African American community of this decade. However, the Supreme Court will not and should not,  have to constantly remind us of the importance that this constitutional right (association for litigation etc.,) has for the advancement and survival of our cause(s).  The current situation with USDA and its lawyers should be a poignant reminder of the necessity for the constant and penetrating vigilance to preserve, protect and enforce our rights and economic prosperity against Governmental intrusion. vigorous advocacy certainly of  lawful  ends,  against governmental intrusion.

Little, if anything, has changed for the advancement of African American community, Especially Black farmers since 1963. The resistance to our rights, currently and elsewhere   from “others” has not and will not change or by any measurable degree attenuate itself.   What has changed and indeed become rarefied is our “commitment” to clamping down and demanding of a recognition by “others,” of our civil rights and long overdue Reparations.

Again, vigorous advocacy is what is missing in our communities.  This might explain why we are losing the civil rights war—by attrition, as it were. There are simply more people and special interest groups discriminating against us than there are civil rights advocates fighting for us.  We simply have more adversaries than we have advocates.  Good men and women are simply doing nothing. Therefore, evil doth prevaileth–bottom line.  We have ostensibly stopped fighting while others are as committed as ever to the erosion of our previous gains and achievements. Again, favorable rulings and laws from the Supreme Court and the Congress, not with standing.

We can not forget that, once more, in the instant lawsuit, USDA, a Governmental agency admitted in open Court and to the world that it discriminated against Black farmers by refusing and otherwise frustrating their efforts to contract for credit and other loan benefits. Federal penalties for this breach of constitutional rights are spell out under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act of 1974, 15 U.S.C Section 1691, et seq., and other federal enforcement statutes (Fifth Amendment, Fourteenth Amendment and Title VI of  the Civil Rights Act of 1964—42 U.S.C. Section 2000d etc.,).

What is then, the point for voting for Congressional leaders (particularly Black lawmakers) if at the end of the day Black citizens can’t realize and/or retain the fruit of their labor and political association against illegal and unconstitutional laws and acts?

If the NAACP in the state of Virginals in the 1963 case had not enforced its and its member’s right to association with the NAACP, certain of its leaders would have been found guilty, fined and no doubt sentenced to jail–for violating and otherwise unconstitutional  state law.   Likewise, we cannot allow USDA to deny the thousands of African Americans who lost  property and economic opportunities to it (USDA)  to go uncompensated because of an unconstitutional Settlement Agreement and ineffective legal representation.

THE LINE IN THE SAND

Make no mistake about it, the most glaring example of this impending constitutional battle is, without a doubt, this liquated (back-of-the-bus) Government settlement of $1.25 Billion to all 65,000 plus African American farmers and their heirs. There is no way that $1.25 Billion could ever begin to pay this number of claimants the promised $50,000 each and Government knows it.  This offer is proof positive, prima facie evidence (at first sight) that this Government has no intentions of extending to these 65,000 plus individuals anything close to equity and justice.  This paltry and trifling $1.25 Billion so called “Settlement Agreement” is this Government’s way of drawing the proverbial line in the sand and testing the civil rights waters to gage the energy and resolve of the Black community to resist it.

CENSORSHIP OF INFORMATION

What is also sad and now being manifested in most, if not all of  calls BFAA, Inc is receiving in its office, is the negative and otherwise unaffirmative information being given to claimants and potential claimants, to-wit:

(a).  ”I called the Government in Washington and they said it is to late to …….”

(b). ”I talked to some attorney and they said the Government will not do………”

(c). ”I was watching CNN and they said that the Government is not going to….”

(d). ”My neighbor told me that since I didn’t file in 1999 that I won’t be able to .”

Again, virtually all of the information about the “Largest Civil Rights lawsuit in the history of this country” (The Black farmer’s lawsuit) is originating and being disseminated through either the Government, it minions and/or the media.   Again, not one of the 26 law firms, along with the several Black farmer’s advocacy groups is  raising any questions regarding our civil rights in this civil right lawsuit–except of course BFAA, Inc.

Interestingly enough, every week or two you will see on CNN, Fox News and other media outlets some of these advocacy groups and their leaders herding livestock throughout the streets of Washington and elsewhere. The real question should be, why  have these groups  not filed any legal motions in Federal court to preserve their members constitutional standing in this lawsuit?  This is a lawsuit, not a public relation contest.  At the end of the day, we will either win or lose this fight in the Courts, not the media.  This struggle should be about Reparations, not about a Rhetoricain.

The Prussian General Carl von Clausewitz in his book, “On War,” states that, “weakness invites attack.”

Weakness: Just last week we had one of the leaders of a Black farmers’ advocacy groups apologizing for “Reparations.”  After failing for perhaps, the ninth time in trying to get Congress to fund  the $1.25 Billion Settlement Agreement:  that will not compensate Black farmers even if it were to pass, John Boyd, President of National Black Farmers Association is now  explaining to the media (Fox News) how the Black farmer’s lawsuit is not Reparations.

“WASHINGTON—John Boyd,  a fourth generation  farmer, wants it to be clear – his  efforts  to secure  Congressional funding for a discrimination settlement that Black farmers reached with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA is not the pursuit of  “reparations.” by C.K. Moreland, Jr.

http://seattlemedium.com/news/Article/Article.asp

Attack: In the same week a group of Republican Congressmen  have decided to force the Justice Department to investigate some of the Black farmers claims of discrimination as being, among other things,  fraudulent. Congressmen, alleging “massive,” widespread  fraud” amongst claimants  and  attorneys  in  the Pigford settlement,  have  called on the Department of Justice to open an investigation. Iowa  Rep. Steve  King,  Minnesota  Rep. Michelle  Bachman  and Virginia  Rep. Bob Goodlatte –said they want legitimate cases of USDA discrimination against black farmers to be rectified.

http://deltafarmpress.com/government/trio-calls-pigford-investigation

This Blogger will devote the very next post ‘entirely’ to how and why the Obama Administration, Black civil rights and Black farm advocates (less and except BFAA, Inc) have now “cowed” down to this Government/special interest groups and have elected not to stand up for Reparations for the African American community.

All of this, unfortunately,   while most if not all of the 65,000 plus Late Filers actually think that the Government is going to do right by them in the second lawsuit simply because we have gotten Congress to force it to letting them in. We must remember, members of Congress are not going to be sitting next to you when you have to face this group of lawyers for which the Government will pay to come around to the Fill-Out-Form-Sessions and collect your information (Affidavits etc.,) and the Claim packages. See paragraph 1(d) of Consent Decree.

By contrast, our constitutional rights, as were upheld in the congressional hearing in 2004, will not automatically produce the fruits of our advocacy without the constant application of civil rights pressure–vigorous advocacy.  This pressure must, necessarily be directed against those who have sworn and made a pack, tacitly or otherwise  with others to deny us our justice and Reparations–let alone galloping  away from a discussion on Reparations.     As Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., wrote in his famous Letter From A Birmingham Jail; “We know through painful experience that freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.”  God still help those who help themselves and it appears from the event surrounding this lawsuit that  Congress and the Courts operate in much the same fashion.

This fight against racism and economic deprivation with USDA has not ended simply because we have forced it through congressional acts to re-open this lawsuit. We must be willing and prepared to enforce (vigorously) our rights to getting the full and equal settlement that the earlier claimants also received ($50,000 and Injunctive Relief)—maybe more, but definitely no less.   This means being prepared to go all the way to the United States Supreme Court if necessary.  Unfortunately,  the current pool of attorneys being made available to us will “never” make, preliminarily,  the necessary arguments to sustain  a favorable Supreme Court ruling.

The constitutional arguments necessary to sustain a grant of Certiorari from the Supreme Court must be made now, at  the beginning of this re-opened case–not after some of our members have been denied relief later on. These arguments must, necessarily be entered into and made a part of the Court records at the Trial Court or District Court  level to preserve our legal standing with both the Appeals  and U.S. Supreme Court.  We must start this fight, from day one, with the recognition, attitude,  strength, fortification and resolve of going the distance to getting  our Reparations as provided for and set forth in this lawsuit–not apologizing for it. History tells us that virtually ever major civil rights achievement came from decisions and legal rulings made by the Justices at the United States Supreme Court level.  Not CNN and Fox News. This instant lawsuit with its civil and human rights implications contained herein are indeed worthy of such a social, political and financial sacrifice on our part.

Again, BFAA, Inc is the only advocacy association that has filed a motion in Court on behalf of these individuals and potential new claimants who may also have been the victims of racial animus by USDA.  We have absolutely no intentions  of backing down, recoiling  and/or retreating from our constitutionally fortified civil right stronghold.

The civil rights movement of the 50′s and 60′s had their George Wallace (Alabama), Orval Faubus (Arkansas)  and Sen. Harry F. Byrd, Sr. (Virginia). Presently , at ‘first light’ at least,  we have Rep. Steve Kings (Iowa), Rep.  Michelle Bachman (Minn.)  and Congress Bob Goodlatte (Virginia) rattling their sabers, hurdling threats and invectives and standing in the “door-ways” of Reparations for Black farmers and their heirs. It is for this reason that we are asking you to  help, financially, in this monumental battle.  There are now 26 law firms before  Judge Friedman’s  court representing these Late Filers. Hereto again, all have agreed to except this inadequate settlement offer of $1.25 Billion as being a good deal for Black people.

OUR POSITION

BFAA, Inc is arguing, however, and will continue to argue that the original act of congress in 1998 [Agricultural, Rural Development, Food & Drug Administration and, Related Agencies Appropriation Act of 1998, Public Law  No. 105-227, Section 741,112 Stat. 2681 (Codified @ 7 U.S.C. Section 22970)] provided a “federal right” which is enforceable against governmental discrimination by USDA employees and others under existing enforcement statutes, herein above mentioned, to sustain our legal victory.  These statutes already supply a legal remedy for those Black farmers, their heirs, administrators and assigns who otherwise believed then and even now, that they have a meritorious claim of discrimination against USDA during the period specified in the Consent Decree. See paragraph 2(a) and 5(g) of the Decree.

This Act (1998) never made any reference , whatsoever, to limiting either 1)  the money needed to pay the Black farmers and their heirs to a $1.25 Billion (cap) or any other amount  and, 2) limiting the number of Black farmers and/or heirs to 60,000, 70,000, 100,000  or any other number.

With all due respect, The Honorable Paul L. Friedman was simply wrong to have allowed Attorney Michael K. Lewis (Arbitrator) to set the limit on Black farmers (Late Filers) who could participation in this lawsuit, other conflict of interest, notwithstanding.  No matter whatever else was the case, all Attorney Michael Lewis did was to take, with  Court  sanctions, out of these farmers hands what Congress had already, through Federal rights legislations,  placed into their hands—an unambiguously conferred constitutional “right” to having their claims against the Government heard.   After all,  the whole point for Congress passing this legislation (1998) in the first place was to provide a mechanism for the farmers who were osstensibely barred by the existing ‘two year’ statute of limitation on Federal lawsuits.

Congress (1998) was extremely explicit with the language granting these farmers/heirs an opportunity to have their claims of discrimination against USDA heard–on the merits. There is simply no language, expressly or by clear implication, where Congress set up a mechanism for these farmers to vindicate their rights against governmental intrusion by a comprehensive scheme that is incompatible with the individual  enforcement under existing enforcement statutes. That is to say that we don’t need Congress to pass legislation fund this $1.25 Billion Settlement Agreement. The money  (with no cap)  was already provided for in the first lawsuit ([Pigford et., al. v. Vilsack-- Civil Action No. 97-1978 (PLF)], and no limit on the number claimants.   This proposed $1.25 Billion Settlement Agreement is a Red Herring (idiom-scent hounds) designed specifically to misdirect, re-route and confuse us from following the “financial and monetary trail”  of original lawsuit.

Lastly, there are simply too many African Americans in this country in general (40,000,000) and nearly 100,000 or more in the lawsuit in particular to allow this Government and its hired guns to deprives us of both our heritage in agriculture and our rightful standing in the constitution of this great nation.  We owe our forefathers and our children to much to let this once-in-a-lifetime-harvest pass us by.    We have a perfect and legal right to choose our own legal representation in this lawsuit.  The only question is whether we are financially independent and willing to pay for that legal representation.  And the answer is–we are and we will–with your help.

Please go to the www.mybfaa.com Home Page and donate now. Thank you.

Thomas Burrell

BFAA, Inc-President

_____________________________

[1].    BFAA, Inc, by and through Attorney James W. Mayart, Jr., was the only Black farmers’ Association requesting a Hearing and working with the legal staff (Attorney Philip G. KiKo, Chief of Staff-General Counsel and Mindy Barry, Full Committee Counsel) of the the Judiciary Committee.

[2].      Attorneys Alexander J. Pires, Jr., and David J. Frantz  filed their [MOTION TO ENJOIN JAMES W. MYART AND THOMAS BURRELL FROM DISSEMINATING MISLEADING COMMUNICATIONS TO CLASS MEMBERS AND OTHER RELIEF] two days (September 16, 2004)before they appeared by before congress.

enjoin: (verb)  for a court order that someone either do a specific act, cease a course of conduct, or be prohibited from committing a certain act. To obtain such an order, called an injunction, a private party agency has to file a petition for awrit of injunction, serve it on the party he/she/it hopes to be enjoined, allowing time for a written response.  Then a court hearing is held in which the judge will consider evidence, both written and oral, listen to the arguments  and then either grant the writ or deny it.    Source: www.thefreedictionary.com

[3].     In the Consent Decree under paragraph No. 25; the parties, Defendants and Plaintiffs attorneys spell out a clause—Duty to Defend Decree

“The parties to this Consent Decree shall employ their best efforts to defend this Consent Decree  against  and  challenges  to  this  Consent Decree, in any form.”

PLEASE VISIT www.mybfaa.com FOR ADDITIONAL LINKS AND TAGS TO THIS POST

BFAA, Incorporated

5 North 3rd Street, Suite 2030

Memphis, Tennessee 38103

901.522.8880

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15 Responses to “ASSOCIATION for LITIGATION”

  1. I was honestly amazed with how well this blog was done, beautiful layout, professional writing, great job! :)

  2. college ring says:

    Amazing issues here. I’m very satisfied to see your article. Thank you so much and I am looking forward to contact you. Will you please drop me a e-mail?

  3. Linda Robinson says:

    Need additional information regarding the BFAA, just finding out about it from a friend. Is it too late to participate, and get in on the litigation. Also I live in Houston, Tx area, is there any up coming meetings that I can attend?

    • admin says:

      There are two meetings to be held at the CWA Union Hall in Houston, TX on 8/3/13. The meeting times are at 10 am and 4 pm. You can address all inquires to Mr. Thomas Burrell at that time.

  4. Linda Robinson says:

    Is it too late for me to get in on the litigation, and if not where is a meeting in the Houston, Tx area. Thank You very much. And what is the attorney or attorney’s name that is representing the Black Farmers?
    Linda Robinson

    • admin says:

      There are two meetings to be held at the CWA Union Hall in Houston, TX on 8/3/13. The meeting times are at 10 am and 4 pm. You can address all inquires to Mr. Thomas Burrell at that time.

  5. Robert says:

    Hello, my name is Robert *******. May you please mail me an application because I am interested in being a member of your association. My address is ****************,*********, Liberty, Tx. Thank you all for your time.

  6. Jennifer says:

    I have a paper trail of the usda denying a loan in texas in the Beaumont area. Then approving a loan in Nebraska with the same information 2 months later. I would love to get some advise from these attorneys. The usda in texas is crooked.

  7. Casey Ingram says:

    Please send me an application to **** ******* **, Itta Bena, MS *****

  8. Bertha J crowley says:

    Please send me the documents to join in on the suite. My Grandfather and Father both were Farmers and we are the living heirs.

    Thank you.

  9. Hello, my name Sheila Howell M*****,maiden name M*****, my father and grandfather John was also farmers way back a long time, they work hard to keep food on our table,and it wasn’t easy. I just found out about this from my nephew, I was shocked to hear this, I am Mississippi born and raised. please keep me informed.

    • admin says:

      Hello Mrs. M*****, just keep checking our site for updates and sign up for our email list for future events and additional info.

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