Thursday, May 08, 2008
Secret Service Gearing Up For Possible Obama Presidency; Noose Found At Its Maryland Training Facility
Apparently at least one member of the Secret Service wants the White House to remain white. On April 28th, 2008, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that the U.S. Secret Service has placed an white agent on leave after an black employee reported finding a noose hanging at the J.J. Rowley Training Center, the service's main training facility in Beltsville, Maryland. The service has acknowledged "an allegation of misconduct", and that it placed an unidentified male employee on administrative leave last week, pending the outcome of an investigation. The employee is a veteran agent with the Secret Service, and allegedly admitted to leaving the rope, although he disavowed any racial intent. Story also reported by ABC News and by CNN. YouTube video of CNN report embedded below:
The noose was found by an black officer in the uniform division of the service during the week of April 14th. He reported the incident to his supervisor and it was sent up the chain of command. The discovery comes as U.S. Magistrate Judge Deborah A. Robinson considers whether to sanction the Secret Service for failing to turn over evidence in a long-running discrimination lawsuit filed by Atlanta native Reginald G. Moore. Her decision is expected in June.
Moore and nine other plaintiffs contend that the Secret Service created a racially hostile atmosphere that tolerates discrimination and routinely discriminates against black agents seeking promotion in favor of white agents who score lower on promotional exams. Nearly 60 black agents have submitted sworn statements to the court in support of the lawsuit's allegations. Judge Robinson has already sanctioned the service three times since the discovery process of the lawsuit began 3 1/2 years ago.
Here was the Secret Service's response: "In response to your question, there has been an allegation of misconduct at our training center," said Edwin M. Donovan, assistant special agent in charge of government and public affairs. "The employee involved has been placed on administrative leave pending an investigation by our Office of Professional Responsibility, which serves as the agency's internal affairs office," Donovan said. "At the conclusion of the investigation, additional information may be available."
"We are appalled but unfortunately not surprised that a noose was prominently displayed recently in a Secret Service training center," said Jennifer Klar, a lawyer with Relman & Dane who is representing the plaintiffs with lawyers from Hogan & Hartson for free. "This incident of racial hatred is troubling in an agency that has the important duty of protecting world leaders of all races, including our own leaders such as (presidential candidate) Barack Obama and (Secretary of State) Condoleezza Rice," Klar said.
"This racist incident is a reminder that long-time discrimination in the Secret Service has created an atmosphere where such hateful acts occur all too regularly. It is time for the Secret Service to put a stop to acts of racism by addressing and healing the racially charged environment that has been created over the years," Klar concluded.
The service denies the allegations and is now appealing all of the sanctions issued by Robinson. The Office of Professional Responsibility, previously called the inspection division, will investigate the noose allegation. It figured prominently during the discovery process of the lawsuit as well.
Ironically, Reginald Moore, the lead plaintiff in the long-running discrimination case, was promoted after filing his lawsuit in 2000. He is now in the service's senior executive service. Yet Moore said that he will keep fighting until the promotional system is permanently changed so that all agents of all colors have an equal chance of promotion.
A CNN story published in 2000 provides more perspective on the lawsuit itself. It appears those who filed the lawsuit want to try to extend it to cover every black person who ever worked for the Secret Service, and demands $300,000 compensation for each one. This is a massive extortion and "reparations" program. It's no wonder the Secret Service has fought it. As long as blacks and whites and forced to live together in the same society, these problems will persist.