In Memory of Brother Leonard Gakinya.  A native from Kenya residing in Springfield, Missouri levitating on October 2, 2002 to rest easy with the ancestors.  Age 27.
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NAACP Where Are You?

Media and NAACP documenting the         latest hanging victim in Springfield.

The following is an article regarding a murder/hate-crime which happened near the same time as Leonard Gakinya's body was found.  It appeared in the Springfield Newsleader.  The Missouri NAACP President, Mary Ratliff, made a comment in this article.  The problem with this comment is that  the authorities ALREADY CONCLUDED this was a hate-crime.  She has yet to make a statement regarding Gakinya.  We do not need NAACP to "notarize" what was already determined.  The police already called the death of Zandon Maddox a result of a hate-crime.  We need NAACP to stand up when the authorities have attempted to cover-up and lie about the findings.  NAACP either stand on the side of African Americans or get out of the way and please stop fighting.

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According to several sources Larry Maddox, Acting President of Springfield's NAACP, is shown speaking with the media while Leonard Gakinya's corpse dangled 30 feet in the air.  (Picture is located on the right)

Although NAACP called for a thorough investigation, there were several arguments that arose amongst members of NAACP as to who would be the Gakinya family spokesperson.  My point to all of those who are arguing is "who cares" who belongs to NAACP?  NAACP in Missouri has not been as proactive for Black people and I am not the only one who thinks so.  There are those in the African American community who wish that these pictures not been taken.  They wish that concerned citizens in and out of Springfield would just go away.  To those who have attempted to devalue the investigation, let me ask you this simple question.  What if it had been YOU hanging from a tower in downtown Springfield?....

What is also alarming is that the President of the Missouri Chapter of NAACP, Mary Ratliff, has yet to make a statement or to request an investigation or the records regarding this lynching.  Where are the rally's?  Where are the protests?  Where are the picket signs?  Where is NAACP?

NAACP was created in the early 1900's as a DEFENSE against the lynchings and other forms of abuse on Blacks in America following their freedom from slavery.  But 100 years later, what looks and stinks like a lynching took place, and NAACP is finally revealed to be more of a social club than a civil rights organization.  THIS IS A POSSIBLE LYNCHING!  It has become apparent that the folks running NAACP are either tired, asleep, or have the belief that because we are able to share drinking fountains that "we have come a long way."  My concern is for the future of our children.  And it is obvious to me that NAACP is not concerned about our children when they do not provide the leadership necessary to see that this LYNCHING stays in the forefront of attention.

I recently attended the state NAACP banquet.  Following the ceremony, I asked how I could find out when the meetings were held.  I was given an email address and have yet to receive a reply.  I asked about how to become a member and I was handed a money envelope.  The speeches were not about African Americans in Missouri but about NAACP which is not the same.  When you need NAACP, they are not listed in the phone book.  I saw Missouri's NAACP President in the courthouse one day.  I asked if she could give me a business card and...that's right,  I never got a business card.  And why isn't NAACP listed in the phonebook?  

The bottom line is that NAACP does not represent African Americans in this new century.  NAACP represents NAACP.  We as a community need to find new weaponry.  Using NAACP in 2002 is like going to battle on the back of a horse.  And NAACP, I fear, is doing MORE HARM THAN GOOD pretending to represent the combined needs of the African American community while their officers only show up when there is pomp and circumstance.  

NAACP STOP!!  Don't take this personally.  But if you choose to, please understand that I also take this personally.  You are affecting my life, my child's, and her offspring.  It's time for some new blood and if you can't stand up and ask questions then "let go" so that someone who will step up take the reigns.  Quit passing yourself off as representing African Americans when in fact you are creating more harm than good by remaining silent (except of course to fight for who gets the glory or when it's YOUR FAMILY).  NAACP thank you for your past efforts.  Were it not for all of the many changes in civil rights initiated by this organization, we likely would be segregated from even the Internet.  But right now, what we need is NAACP to take the lead (if that's what you do) so that each individual American, who believes that an injustice has taken place, may become a part of the body that seeks the TRUTH!

NAACP this is a sincere appeal.  Please, think about our children.  Without us, who will they turn to?

Email: kenya@kenyaspeaks.com
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