NEWS THAT AIN’T NEWS. YET. Here’s a roundup of big stuff that will break after I upload this on Monday, past deadline as always. (Sorry, boss, as always.)
PIZEN SWITCH SWATTED. If there was ever any doubt that Terri Keyser-Cooper has long been and remains the best civil rights lawyer in Nevada, last Thursday’s shutout at the Reno federal courthouse sealed the deal.
U.S. Dist. Judge Larry Hicks ruled on all counts in favor of Keyser-Cooper’s clients, an African-American family from Yerington which has been subjected to brutal, overt racism and death threats. I broke the story more than a month ahead of all other media. (Barbwire 10-18-2017 and followups)
Jayla Tolliver, one of the victims, was suspended from Yerington High School. That has been “expunged” with a court order to back it up. However, as I noted last week (“Marked for life for making a phone call”), once something’s on the Internet, it’s there forever. I got a voicemail from the ACLU after the April 4 Barbwire in response to my questions about the “expunged” suspension of McQueen High School teen Noah Christiansen. He was busted by Congresscritter Mark Amodei, R-Nev., for using a dirty word often employed by Mr. Amodei. Mr. Christiansen uttered the unspeakable in a phone call demanding that Amodei move on gun control.
The ACLU apparently wants to talk student confidentiality issues. I don’t. I want to know how Noah and Jayla can escape the scarlet letters which are permanent anchors dragging down their futures.
Judge Hicks also lifted the no-trespassing order against Jayla’s father who dared to raise his voice to the Yerington High principal when the principal refused to acknowledge complaints of racial harassment. Keyser-Cooper also won retention of a diversity panel to perform a study on YHS and its racial – ahem – “climate.” (Is a forest fire a climate?)
Literal smoking gun photos – with knives and guns – featuring a Lyon County deputy sheriff’s kid displaying worship of “the redneck god of all gods we bout to go nigger huntin” at Yerington HS, will be linked to the greatly expanded web edition of this column at NevadaLabor.com/
A Yerington cop defended the “nigger huntin” photos as First Amendment-protected free speech. In more enlightened legal circles, that’s called assault. Yerington Police Chief Darren Wagner illegally ordered the police reports shredded.
Judge HIcks also ordered a full year of weekly therapy sessions for Jayla and her sister, Taylissa Marriott, to be paid for by the Lyon County School District. Keyser-Cooper and her associates will also have access to the discipline records of their 23 student harassers. Sworn depositions of the dirty double dozen will be taken later this week.
To a now-retired longtime rural Nevada teacher, this came as no surprise.
“I blame the parents who made their kids that way,” said the voice of experience.
Lyon County’s Democratic mayor reportedly said that’s just how people are out here.
That mindset is chillingly familiar to a quote included in a recent letter to U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions from a mixed-race Douglas County couple. They assert that the Douglas DA told them that “it’s no big deal, the word nigger is used frequently.”
GUBERNATORIAL LEGERDEMAIN. The Reno-Sparks NAACP filed a complaint with Nevada Attorney General Adam Laxalt about the Yerington Police Chief illegally ordering the complaints of the oppressed family shredded. The AG’s report is not only very late but the Barbwire has been informed that one of the investigators Laxalt dispatched is a former Yerington cop. Bad form.
It will be interesting to see how long Laxalt takes to respond to a letter I got at deadline replete with allegations against Tesla County Sheriff Gerald Cook-Antinoro. Many of the items therein have been published on the Barbwire starting in 2014.
Given the lateness of the Yerington response, it appears Mr. Laxalt prefers doing the smart thing politically: delay past election day.
QUOTE OF THE CENTURY: “Facebook is a surveillance machine.” – University of North Carolina Prof. Zeynep Tufekci.
Be well. Raise hell. / Esté bien. Haga infierno.
Andrew Barbano is a 49-year Nevadan and editor of NevadaLabor.com. He serves as first vice-president of the Reno-Sparks NAACP. As always, his opinions are strictly his own. Barbwire by Barbano has originated in the Tribune since 1988. E-mail <email@example.com>