Durham Sheriff addresses rising crime rates
Sheriff Clarence Birkhead, along with numerous local faith leaders, addresses rising crime rates in Durham during the coronavirus pandemic.
welcome by our honorary past. Grandmaster Jackie Robinson. Right. Okay. Good afternoon. It's a pleasure to welcome everyone here. There is a saying life is like a sandwich. The more you put in it. The belly deal. So we got Dagwood sandwich out here. Let's give me Oh, come on. You look, you said welcome. Uh huh. I like that. Yeah. We're gonna ask if you will to bow your heads as we ask God's blessings. Do you? The company. Okay. Gracious and eternal. Lord, we do Thank you for your blessings. For your guidance, for your strength, your help and wisdom for us. We asked, Father that as we are here this day, that we as we gather this day that you will walk with us, stand with us, help us to come together in the unity of purpose unity of mind and unity of heart that we might do what is necessary And what is for the good of Durham to end the violence. Thio, end the rage that we see in our city in our county. Now, Lord, As we begin this program, we can do nothing without you and we dare not move without your blessing. Now, if you will come down and ascend into this place, be with all that will speak and all that are here and protect us. We do pray in the matchless name of Jesus the Christ and the Children of God said Amen. On the behalf of the pastor of Mount Vernon Missionary Baptist Church, Dr. Jerome Washington. Uh, he could not be here this morning because of some other engagements, but we did want to say publicly thanking him for all that he has done and allowing us to use the space. We have a list of speakers. I'm gonna call your name. If you're here, I'm gonna ask you to please come so that we can move expeditiously. Bishop Ron Gabi, pastor of the river Church. Dr. J. Augustine, pastor of ST Joseph AM Church Chief C. J. Davis Durham Police Department. Councilman Middleton. This state that he would be late. He's here. Okay. Councilman Mark Middleton, Durham City Council. Dr Cheryl Moore, pastor of Zion Temple. Sheriff Clarence Birkhead, the Durham Sheriff's Department Commissioner. Brender Howerton, Durham County commissioners and the most worshipful grand master of North Carolina Ph a. Prince Hall affiliated D. T. Thompson. Um Judge Pat Evans is here. Judge Evans, will you please come and greet us? Uh, Judge Evans started this initiative almost two years ago and getting us moving. And so after Judge Evans will speak, then those that were called in the order, uh, our Bishop Godbey and Dr Augustine will follow. Thank you. God bless you. Thank you, Dr Berg. Good morning, everyone. Morning. I never wanted to correct a preacher, but he said two years ago. But this goes back to 1994 when I ran for district attorney of Durham and my slogan, Waas stopped the violence. But everybody put money ahead of lives. So right now we're here because he young black men are dying at alarming numbers. Endure. Um, and that is not acceptable to me. So my purpose here this morning is to ask all the ministers and you all know who you are to get in touch with me so we can go a different route. Our job is to back law enforcement, protect the community and make sure everyone is treated fairly. So I thank you for your attention. And please pay attention to all the good ideas that's gonna come from all of our leaders. God bless you all okay to the esteem body that has been gathered before us. To those who have been the voice that have issued the clarion call that has collectively brought us to this moment to all of our officials, to our leaders in our city, this moment is reflective of the genius of the city of Durham. It is truly the reason why I stand here hopeful because our pastor one of the largest churches in this city, um, I'm not one who was absent of hope. We have been invited into this moment because collectively, way each embody the genius that is reflective of our city genius that will resolve the tension that faces us in times that seemed tumultuous and seem almost to bring us to a place of conflict and confusion, I'm hopeful, because in the midst of conflict and confusion, it's what in theology we call a Kairos moment. Kairos moment is a moment of chaos. Moment of chaos is something that has to be sovereign, Lee resolved. It's in moments like this that we get to see a sovereign resolve. It's an opportunity for us to see that individually, we could do nothing. We're collectively we can resolve. The tension that faces us is we come together not to amplify the issues that plague us in our community, but to commit each ourselves to each other, that in our individual offices we will collectively come together and play a role and that we will resolve the tension that plagues our community. Right here on this corner, we see the sum total and the evidence that we have the right to be hopeful at the helm of each of our organizations are black brilliance at its best, and we will support them. And we will continue to commit ourselves to them as we walk with our brothers and sisters in blue to declare into decree upon our city streets that violence will come to an end. We're not divided. We are a unified people. That's what today says. It speaks it to every home. It speaks it to every corner of our community into every sector of our society that we will not let partisan politics separate us in this city. But we have a unified goal and it is embodied in this moment, and I am extremely grateful for each of you who are present because it says that Durham is different. We are an eclectic array of people, and it is our diversity that makes us the city that we are. And because we're different, we will pull together that difference, and we will see the change and transformation will come to the city of Durham. And so, to all of our officials who are present today, the river church stands with you. We pray for you and we continue to commit ourselves to your journey and whatever it is you desire to do in our city. God bless you, my brothers and my sisters. I agreed all of you all in the sense of peace and unity that surpasses all understanding. I'm Dr J. Augustine, and I have the awesome pleasure of serving as the senior minister at ST Joseph A M E Church on Fed Ville ST not far from here. We come together today really to talk about unity. But the first thing I want to say is thank you. Thank us has been reference to the host Pastor, my dear friend, my fraternity brother, the Reverend Dr Jerome Washington for allowing us to be in this space at this time. Thank you to my Masonic brother, Dr Angelo Birch, for the opportunity to be here and to say a few words to all of the brothers and the sisters and the interdenominational ministerial alliance and all of you, including our public servants, who put their lives on the line each and every day here in Durham. Now they're two fundamental philosophies by which I operate. They are these one. The windshield is much bigger in the rear view mirror. The second is that that which unites us is far greater than anything that could ever divide us. The matters we are addressing today, ah, local in nature. But they really play into a larger narrative that has been about disunity and about division. But I want to put all of that in the past as we talk like Paul. I'm a priest tomorrow. But Paul says I press on, as I think about that which lies ahead, what lies before us and what is going on right now should get all of our attention. And that is the opportunity to change. And for this country to move in a better direction by voting as we talk about division, we can continue to focus on the narrative that will have us call the names of George Floyd of Ahmad Aubrey of Briana Taylor. Yes, those names are important. They will be in in grand in our hearts forevermore, but we cannot continue to be distracted by the realities of white systemic racism that exists at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. We cannot continue to be distracted by narrative that will attempt to undermine people based on ZIP code based on education based on class. Well, we can do, however, is come together and be determined to put an end to crime in our community. We can come together and focus on policies as we go forward to support law enforcement toe work, hand in hand with law enforcement and to address problems that are localized and that a national we can elect leadership in this United States of America. Leadership here in North Carolina leadership here in Durham that will move us all in a positive direction because indeed, the windshield is much bigger in the rear view mirror. So as we come together today as a sign of unity, working hand in hand with those who have been elected or appointed to serve us. I am thankful for the opportunity to be here, but I'm more than anything optimistic about the future because people are turning out in droves. Toe vote. My congregation will be leading a souls to the polls tomorrow from ST Joseph Church and approximately one o'clock PM over to the law school at North Carolina Central. I invite each and every one of you to join us. We're supposed to have a special guest, I'm told. I invite each and every one of you to join us to look forward to the future because that which unites us is far greater than anything that could divide us. Let's continue to stand by professionals that have been elected or appointed to serve us. Let's continue to work together as a community. And let's continue to make Durham the best place it could possibly be. Thank you very much. Okay, that's some good afternoon, everyone. It's a pleasure to be here as the chief of police of the city of Durham, but at the same time is very sobering. I want to thank our ministers, Doctor Birch, Bishop Godbey, all of the ministers are elders are good. Judge who? She and I have many conversations even in the wee hours of the night, about the conditions of our community in the way forward on my frat brothers, on my sorority sisters. All of you that are out here are community members, those who are concerned you're here because you're concerned toe all of our law enforcement family, those on the front lines, the sheriff who is a colleague and friend now in tow. All of the law enforcement personnel who work on the front lines every day during police department and more thank you to the media for being here to listen to us and help us convey a message to our elected officials who I have to work with every day who continued to work alongside the during Police Department to help us figure out the way forward for our community. In 2020 we have been faced with unprecedented challenges not just in this city but around the country with a pandemic, and also with an uptick and violent crime. And the unusual changes that we see is that many of the violent crimes that we're seeing are being committed by young people younger than usual. The teens really our babies. It's even though the city of Durham is down in homicides. We're up considerably in the numbers of shootings that have occurred in our city, which disproportionately impact communities of color where we are right now, communities of color. And we're not just thinking in terms of the victimization of violent crime and how it impacts minority communities and communities of color. Disproportionately, every time a person is a victim of a violent crime, whether it is a homicide or whether it is simply being the victim of a shooting, you have one person who has become victimized. You have two people that might be headed to jail. Two homicides, four people headed to jail, three homicides. 10 African American males headed to jail. So the victimization needs to be spoken to from a holistic standpoint, with this crime and violent crime do entire communities, and I can't talk about the whole problem because the whole problem involves social issues, jobs and employment and all of those other issues that impact our community and the quality of life. And even though I prepared notes today, I could talk about this because I talk about it every day, every day. I talk about this because we cannot arrest crime away in the city of Durham. We asked for resource is because we're the only resource is sometimes is dealing with the problem. I would never ask for another officer if the community didn't expect us the during Police Department to do something about it. But we don't get great pleasure and putting young black men in jail. We need to find solutions that keep our Children out of jail and keep our nine year olds are 10 year olds safe. So I think they deserve life. Elderly people in our community deserve to be able to sit on the front porch and just have a conversation without a stray bullet taking the life out of them. And as we get angry about what is happening around our country, I don't need that. All right as we get angry because I'm angry, too, about what I see around our country on what represents law enforcement. I don't wake up in the morning with these uniforms. Are I wake up in the morning, just like my officers do is human beings that have feelings and should be held accountable for the work that we do every day. But at the same time, I get justice angry when I see the silence when our young people lose their lives in the streets, silence is complicity. Silence is complicity. So I think everybody for being out here today and this can't be a one and done. We need to mobilize because, as I said, the during Police Department cannot handle a problem that's bigger than the Durham Police Department. And people need to stop looking at 60 to East Main Street as if some magic happens there and that we can just completely eliminate crime in this community is going to take everybody to mobilize and be angry enough to save a life. Be angry enough to save the next life. And if you can influence someone to put a gun down, if you know of someone that's involved in a crime, help us to get those individuals off the street, right? So I think my colleagues and all of the folks in the community for being out here, and as I said that I am a who sort of vetted this idea and we've been talking about this. But this isn't a one. And done. We have to get in the community and meet people where they are and do something about the crime that's occurring in the city. We have a unique opportunity here in Durham to be the model for how to do it. Right. So thank you all. And I look forward to working with each and every one of you. Okay, Seven months ago, your government placed this city in a state of emergency because of covert 19. And it was the right thing to do. Seven months later, we need a declaration of emergency in our city for the lives being lost on our streets to gunfire. When cove it is over. What will we do about this emergency that has persisted for years in our city? I'm standing here as one of your elected officials, telling you as one of the brand ambassadors of this city, that it does not matter that we are the fourth most educated city in America. It doesn't matter how impressive and tall and shiny our skyline gets. It doesn't matter what's playing at Deepak. It doesn't matter how great our restaurants are the highest and greatest measure of a civilization is what we do to protect the most vulnerable among us. And what will we do about our Children? Everyone out here should be storming the gates at City Hall, petitioning us toe, push every button and toe, pull every level. Listen, I sit in that building and I watched what we spend money on. I love trees. I will never not vote for trees, but I want to keep our kids alive long enough so they can stand under the shade. E. I love bike lanes. I love riding bikes. I will never stop voting for bike lanes, but there's a problem when we have to teach our Children to jump off of their bikes and duck and cover like soldiers on the ranter. Afghanistan and other kids can use those bikes, those bike lanes. Let's keep our kids alive long enough so they can use those bike lanes. Let's okay, we are in a state of emergency in our city. Do you know that there is no species on Earth that will watch you approach their babies and do harm to their babies? Watch any animals show I don't care how big or small they are. You can't just roll up on their kids. There is no civilization in history that would watch the blood of their citizenry be spilled and not mount a response. So, Durham, on this day, while our blood is being spilled, what shall our response be? What shall we do? There should be no rest in this city. We have reached an inflection point. There should not be a day that goes by while gunfire rings out in our city where the phones at City Hall aren't ringing where the emails at City Hall aren't blowing up like any other group in this city that pushes for what we need, what is more important than our babies dying? What is more important than our Children dying? What shall our response be? Way live in a great city that gets a lot of attention. But we have a secret. And if it gets out, I know one of y'all told it is just between us. We have a secret there to Durham's. There's the one that's on the pamphlets, and that makes the list all the national list and the ones that we talk about trump it around the world. Yea, Bull city. And I love that Durham. But there's another Durham. When the sun goes down, the one that we want to pretend doesn't exist. Some of us, the one that we don't want to talk about or address. But I'm here to tell you today that if we don't do something, the Durham by night will soon overtake the daytime Durham on. Want anybody be going to Deepak? Want anybody be going to a ball game? Nobody will be able to enjoy anything until our Children stop dying. Yes, sir. Way are in a state of emergency and the question is simple. What shall we do? And what shall our response be? Let him live. Let him play. Push every button. Pull every lever. Bull City. Okay? Yeah. Okay. Yes. I'm past the Cheryl More of the past of you, Zion Temple United Church of Christ here in Durham. But I don't stand before you today as a pulpit pastor, I stand before you as a street pastor on. I want to talk to all of our brothers and sisters who make up the citizenry of our great city. Stand up, Durham, time is a precious commodity, and I don't have time toe waste your time. I could stand here and heip us up, but I'm tired of motivation without mobilization. I'm tired of all talk without any action. Time is a precious commodity, and it's time for us to start walking it like we're talking. I could stand here all day, talk about the disparities in our communities. I could talk about how this pandemic has magnified the health and health care disparities. How Kobe 19 disproportionately affects black and brown people, how we suffer disproportionate health issues because it's cheaper to buy a pack of bologna than it is to buy fruits and vegetables. I could talk about our educational disparities and how there really is a pipeline from our schools to the prisons waiting for the mass incarceration of our Children. I could talk about the working class poor who are living from paycheck to paycheck, and how this administration will make sure that big banks and corporations get trillions of dollars and refused to give people who are struggling through this pandemic a meager $600 per week. I could talk about it all day. E could talk about issues of fair housing right here in our city. Because you do understand that McDougall terrorists was not a physical structural issue, but a structural, economic and racial injustice issue. I could talk about it all day, but I ain't got for three minutes e I don't wanna waste your time. We are doing This is our city, the Bulls City and the City of Medicine. And it's time for us to reclaim our communities. It's time for us to rebuild our communities. And no, I'm not talking about gentrification. I'm talking about unification. We must unify. Yes. We must hold our officials accountable. We must hold our city leaders accountable, dog on it. We must hold the black churches in our cities accountable. But now it's time that we hold one another accountable Because we've got to understand that this is our city. And ain't nobody gonna save us but us way are durum the Bulls City people of great tenacity, power and strength. We are Durham, the city of Medicine, The city of Innovation City of Black Entrepreneurship, City of Black Wall Street. We are doing This is our city. This bull city, the city of medicine But I'm afraid that we live between the tension off our identity. Waken talk about money and have money talk all day We can have gun control talk We can have violent crime talk We can have gang violence talk We can have all the talk in the world But until we start toe have heart talk Ain't nothing in Durham gonna change Let's have a heart talk What is your love language? What is the language that we can speak? Tow our brothers and our sisters so that they start to see one another as humans rather than seeing one another as enemies. What is our love language? What is the talk that we can have amongst our brothers in our sisters? That will make me want to have a conversation with you and not want to shoot you? What is our love language? Durham, weaken March and scream Get off our next all day long But we've got to get off our behinds and do something our Children deserve better. Our babies deserve to be able to eat A snow cone arrived in the car without fear of being shot. We've got to do better way Haven't figured out that black lives matter. Not just in the case of police brutality, but black lives matter. All black lives matter in each and everyone of the situations in which we find ourselves. We are doing the bull city and the city of medicine. How about we take the beast that we have with one another and make a hamburger so that everybody in our community eat? How about we make our paper legal or illegal? Baby, I gotta make it. I understand that. But how about we create a new black Wall Street, revive economic wealth and opportunity in our streets and take our street ingenuity and turn it into entrepreneur economic empires and their storm the commonwealth of our neighborhoods? Let's build a legacy. How about we buy back our blocks, upgrade our hoods and preserve our own history in our communities? You got a purpose. Let's get together and create a plan. Because this is our city. The bull city, the city of medicine. We just got to decide whether or not we're gonna be the city that kills or the city who heals. Stand up, Durham. Okay. Thank you. Comes. Y'all can let that sink in. Yeah, We've already heard the message that we need to hear today. We already have been charged and challenged in a call for action. We've already heard preaching. Good afternoon, everyone. I'm Durham County Sheriff Clarence Birkin, and I am truly honored to be here with you today to stand up for Durham, our Durham. I think all the clergy, certainly Dr Washington for allowing us the space and to be in this community and has already been said, I'm really happy to see all the elected officials here, which I'm won. My county commissioner, Commissioner Howerton, who I know are equally as concerned as I am about what's going on in Durham, our Durham. I recently had the opportunity toe sit down and talk with some of Durham's clergy, as I often do. Bishop Godbey. Thank you so much, Dr Birch and others and members of the I m. A. To discuss how churches can beam or involved in crime fighting. And this is not new for me. It's not a new conversation. I've been saying it for years. We need our churches to take back their position in the community toe, lift up our community. I was raised in the community where the church was the cornerstone and you knew that your mother was a home. But the mother of the church could get you a swell. So we need our churches to stand with us now. I'm not suggesting that we arm clergy, but rather, uh, well, I'm strongly encouraging, as I have done for years, that churches take a more active, invisible role in standing with law enforcement to help us save the lives of our young people. We need you to stand with us. As Chief Davis has already mentioned, We cannot do this alone. What's the state? Our future? The future of our city, our youth? Now is not the time for us to seek sanctuary in the churches all across Durham. Now is the time for us to take to the streets. Now is the time, as I told Bishop, God being are meeting. Now is the time to encourage some of his 1500 members to run for City Council, run for county commissioner, get on boards and commissions to talk about those trees and sidewalks that Councilor Min Little mentioned to take an active role in addressing the issues that are plaguing our city that lead to crime and violence. Imagine that for a moment we start filling our elected seats would like minded individuals that are out here today. Folks who are committed to addressing these issues folks who are coming charged by the word of God to make a difference. Okay, then I had a conversation with Grandmaster Brother Daniel DT Thompson, about the same issue. Met with him at the Lodge Grand Lodge downtown. And I stand before you today and I could not be a more proud Mason member of the Prince Hall. Masonic family. Um okay, Thank you. Part of our underlying mission is Masons is to assist communities, empower our youth and motivate Masons. Grandmaster, thank you for your willingness to stand with us here today and to put the call out for the brothers and the sisters to come and stand with us. It's already been said that law enforcement cannot do it alone. We cannot arrest our way out of this crisis. We cannot do it. We have to stand together to address the causes of crime. And there are causes. There's a direct connection between economics and crime, education and crime. or lack thereof. I've been reflecting on 2020 has been a heck of a year. It's been difficult for all of us. But I believe that our challenge, our biggest challenge, is completely preventable. I'm talking about the violence and the crime that's plaguing our city already this month, as chief Davis mentioned earlier, we've seen unprecedented shootings. In the last 72 hours we witnessed MAWR shootings have been over 730 plus shootings alone. 240 plus people shot 23 24 25 people killed. That's too many. Too many lives snuffed out. And, as the chief said, Young lives young lives. So I'm here to say that enough is enough. The violence that we're seeing on our streets is unacceptable. The shootings and the gang activity is unacceptable. Why are there people in certain neighborhoods that are afraid to come out of their homes? Why are there people who calling me and say they have to sleep in the bathtub because of gunshots? Why are our Children being killed? And as the pastor said, you're right. Black lives matter, and unfortunately, some have died at the hands of police, but Mawr have died at the hands of those who look like that. We have to be honest about this. We have to address it by showing solidarity here today we are building up our community. We're standing with one another. We're standing with law enforcement while we are challenged. Right now, our truth lines in numbers. And I do believe that yes, we will overcome. There will be a better day. I want to take a moment and talk directly to our young people. And if you're not here, I hope the media will, uh, edit this sound bite and put it Put it in the in the piece because I want our young people to know that we love them and we care for them on and we need them. We need them to stand with us, just like we need everyone here today to stand with us. We need them to talk to their brothers and their sisters and their cousins and their nephews and their aunts and uncles to talk about the violence in their neighborhood and how they could be part of the solution. We need them to stand with us. I am truly honored and humbled to be the sheriff for Durham County, honored and humbled to stand shoulder to shoulder with our chief, the men and women of the Durham Police Department and certainly the outstanding men and women of the Durham County Sheriff's Office. Some of them are here today, and I appreciate each and every one of you for being here. We are strong when we are one community, one door. Now more than ever before. We need the prayers and words. We need action. We need action to stop the violence. We need our young people to rise up. We need our old people to rise up. We need to to buy nine to rise up. We need the Masonic family to rise up. We all need to stand together to stop the violence. Thank you so much for being here today. Like it's already been said. I don't want this to be a one and done. I want us to form a plan. A plan of action, Bishop. God being are we talked about a plan of action. I told him I didn't want another press conference. But if this is how we get our message out that I welcome it But what we need moving forward is action. Because history has shown us. And I'm talking about the last 48 hours, we're gonna have another shooting. We're gonna have another death. That's unacceptable. We need to start today curbing this violence, addressing the pain and healing our community. I know we can do it. We can do it together. Thank you. Okay. For good evening, everyone. So has everything been said or you think not? So I'm Brenda Howerton. One of you learn longest serving commissioners. Except for Commissioner wreck out, which will be retiring this year. So, as a commissioner, I think you know what my responsibilities are. And as I listened to the prior speakers, the charge has been set. And I wanted to say thank you as well to all the clergy. Add. Yeah, Police Chief on my sheriff. All of you community that's here this morning or this afternoon. I can't get for this afternoon or evening. We have a challenge, and I could read my notes, but my heart is heavy. When you talk about Children being killed, my heart is heavy and we talk about all the things that causes it. But one of the things that we don't address that we will not touch. It's called racism systemic racism. Ramon. Call it out. Systemic racism is what's driving. Everything in this community is driving the murderers what is driving education or the lack off when it's driving the jobs and poor pay salaries when it's driving everything that's happening with black on brown people, this is a kind of thing that happens in a community, and when it's not addressed, it becomes, ah, pandemic number two. So we have all of that happening now. I received the call as of yesterday, from from D. C. From a journalist that want to know, What is it that we expect to do around declaring racism? Ah, public health crisis. Ah, public health crisis. It's a public health crisis because it is affecting everyone in this community, you know? Now if we are afraid to address it, whose door whose window is the next bullet going to come through? Yes, the city took on and undertook racial equity that our task team to come up with all of these strategies that needs toe happen, but it can't stop there. When 539 of your citizens show up at the county commission meeting and demand that we take on causing creating a commission that we undertake and begin to look at our systems to look at our systemic racist systems that causes. It's whether it's an education, whether it's in job training, whether it is wherever it ISS, that we call it out, that we name it. Nothing will change unless we're willing to do that. So are we willing to keep allowing the pastors to take our Children to the grave? Because we're afraid to stare racism in the phase. Now I'm here and I am honored to be called to participate, but I am tired. I am sick and tired of people standing up and it's coming. And when you talk about racism, it's not just community people. It's from the commissioner's chambers. Come on out. So that council chambers it comes from the White House on down. Tow our house. Now, If we're not willing to address at our level, how do you expect it to get addressed? So how do you address it? Call Kenny's articles. Keep coming out, telling you what's going on and silence is complicity. If you're not willing to send an email. Having this pandemic is put us at a disadvantage. You don't you can't show up and hold us accountable. But you can send emails. You can write letters. You hold us accountable because you didn't elect us to show the racism that's there, the biases that's there, we can't get the work done. So what I'm asking you to dio it's the whole US accountable. Pay attention to what's going on. Pay attention to where the money goes. Pay attention. I've been the only black female on that board for the past 12 years, and I could tell you some stories that I'm not allowed to tell you. But let me tell you, black people, I wish I could tell you the truth, but because we have closed sessions agreements, I can't tell it. Some of it I can, but I have to be careful how I tell it, because I could be brought up on charges. But the thing I'm saying to you is, don't sit back and think that everybody cares about you and your Children. Please don't do that because Children need food. And when the Children don't think they were carried about. This is what you get. You get the shootings because they don't care about us, so why not? So I'm asking you to pay attention on call us on account, call us to be accountable to you because you vote and put us in those positions. So I'd like to leave you with, um my president Barack Obama. Yeah. Said the time is now the time is now for all of us to stand up and save our Children. And then John Lewis, John Lewis says, make good trouble, make good trouble sitting back and saying and even waiting for the young people because we think we're too old to do anything. We've got the knowledge and experience to get it done. People, we need you. And we need you to stand up and call us on account because our Children life is at stake and vote like your life is depended on it because it is. Thank you so much. I'm glad to be here. Just people looking good when this is so you. God bless you. You hit it off because you thank you. So be it. It already I'm going to follow all the go bring it home and Yeah, first did it Tell me again. Good afternoon. I'm my name is Daniel L. D. T. Thompson. I have the honor of being 24th was worth a grand master for the Prince of Grand Lodge in North Carolina. Standing next to me is the 24th grandmother Matron for the grand chapter ordered the Eastern Stars. Mary are McGee. Some of you are probably wondering why she standing up with me. It's a family affair. So? So I'm sure you football, right? Looks like Okay, in the three minutes I have been allotted, let me first thank all of you for coming out today to stand for Durham. Let me thank the law enforcement of Durham. The City Council of Durham cleared your Durham and the Prince Hall Masons of North Carolina for coming out, uniting together for what we call stand for Durham. Let us all remember we must stand for it Was Malcolm X who who said that a man who stands for nothing will fall for anything. We have an obligation to support one another in order for our community to grow and thrive. That means support law enforcement, attending city Council meetings, support church missions. And that means exercise your right vote. We have a duty to teach what right looks like we have to put a end to doing wrong for so long that wrong becomes accepted, right? We have to hold each other accountable. We gain nothing by pointing the finger and blaming somebody else way. Gotta stop saying it's the chief's job. It's the sheriff's job. Or if the City Council's job, it's our job. When we get up in the morning, we could never forget. When we look in the mirror and do like Michael Jackson and see the man in the mirror, we have to remember through many dangers, toils and snares we have already come. It was grace that brought us safety's for his grace that will leave us home. Last but not least, we must stand with devotion. It is only through attentiveness, commitment and dedication that returning negatives and the positives returning, testing the testimonies. Now I need you understand that I need you. You need me. We're all a part of God's body. Stand with me. You are important to me. I need you to survive my brother, my sister Let us stand. Let us stand today. Let us stand tomorrow. Let us stand next week. Let us stand next month. Let us stand forever remembering. We must always support each other. We must always teach each other. We must always hold each other accountable. We must always holding leadership accountable. We must never forget. We must be devoted by doing that understanding. We always will get to the next day. God bless you. May God always keep you nothing. Thank you. Judge Evans. Bishop Godbey. Dr Augustine. Chief Davis. Councilman Middleton. Doctor More sure. Birkhead, Commissioner Howerton and our Grand Master Thompson. Thank you all for being here. We could not do this without you. We need all of us to work together First Bishop. Bishop, if you will come over here for a minute with me, I'll get it later. But come over here with me real quick, Doctor, obviously. And come over here. We're good. This is what the black community is built on the church. It is through the church that we stand. Someone wrote a song and I can't do it all because of copyright. But you know the words that said You may think that I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one. I hope some day you'll join us and the world will be Aziz One His doctor, Fred Davis. Still here? Doctor! Doctor David! You don't mind come staying with us real quick. Come on, gringa. Just Yeah. Come on, Baringo. I'm bringing these pastors because this is how we move from here to the next day. Dr. More Where are you? Dr More common. This is how we move. We don't stop here way. Don't need another dreamer. We don't need another dream. We need to just put put to the pavement and make it work. Now I'm gonna do something I didn't think I had the nerve to do. But I feel it right now after what Dr Moore did. And when I get through, Dr Davis is gonna call close us out in prayer. But this is how we get it done. Fucker. A straight my hand, Thio. No, I know ive now. Withdraw. Yes, sir. I myself from me. Whoa! The Shall I go? Yeah, let us pray. Eternal God, we give you thanks for the gathering of like minded individuals For where we stand, we stand along with you. Give direction, Give divine presence. Give your protection. Bless everybody that's represented here today. Dismiss us from this place and never from your presence. And if it all possible, let us be at peace with one another. It is in the awesome name of the eternal God. We pray. Hey, man, there's food to my right and music to my left. Go ahead, D J. God bless you. Thank you. Mentioned. Yeah, very. See? That's all. Yeah. Okay. Hey, E e Knowing that was you out there. E wait, Don't mind. You're doing right. Oh, right up. You got I don't really missing. Not sure. Get over here. Jacket way. Got everybody.