[Opinion]ICYMI 9/26/20|  According to the New York Post, ‘Black Lives Matter groups are multiplying — and competing for donations.’  Which has left many Americans wondering just where all the money (over a billion dollars) is going and how it is being spent.

The Post explained ‘The Black Lives Matter movement has sparked an outpouring of more than $1 billion in corporate giving — and launched a wild scramble for the cash among a dozen BLM groups scattered across the country.

Some are for-profit, some are nonprofit but all are positioned to claim big bucks in corporate pledges from companies such as Bank of America, Walmart and Facebook.

Four are already in trouble with the IRS, according to public records.

They show that BLM charities in New York, Vermont, Florida and South Carolina have had their nonprofit status revoked by the IRS for failing to file annual returns.

There’s also confusion among the groups, along with a lack of transparency, which is alarming watchdogs.

Robert Ray Barnes, a music producer from California, incorporated the Black Lives Matter Foundation in California in May 2015, more than a year before BLM Global Network — the self-styled leader of the movement — was founded as a for-profit firm in Delaware, records show.

Some donors got the two mixed up.’

In fairness, there are plenty of grifters on both sides of the isle.  Whenever you find people who are passionate about a cause and are willing to throw large sums of money at changing the world in their image, scam artists will not be far behind, just as Robert Caron.

Take for instance the allegations that the Federal Bureau of Investigations is leveling against the founder of the Black Lives Matter group centered in Atlanta, Georgia.  According to Fox News the changes include fraud and money laundering.

32 year old, ‘Sir Maejor Page,’ stands accused of misappropriating $200,000 in donations, which he used Facebook to solicit, allegedly on behalf of Black Lives Matter of Greater Atlanta.  This comes from a report by Fox 5 Atlanta that was published Friday.

Fox News reported ‘Page was released on bond after appearing before a judge via video …

The FBI opened an investigation last year after a cooperating witness submitted a fraud complaint against Page, whose real name is Tyree Conyers-Page, FBI agent Matthew Desorbo said in the complaint.

Page founded Black Lives Matter of Greater Atlanta in 2016 and this year took in more than $466,000 in donations in June, July and August, Desorbo said.

“In sum, Page has spent over $200,000 on personal items generated from donations received through BLMGA Facebook page with no identifiable purchase or expenditure for social or racial justice,” he said.

The FBI said Page pledged to use those donations “for George Floyd” but instead used the money make purchases related to food, dining, entertainment, clothing, furniture, a home security system, tailored suits and accessories.

According to the bureau, Page also used $112,000 of the donated money to purchase a house for himself in Toledo, Ohio. The transaction took place last month.’

‘Sir Maejor Page’s’ BLM front group lost it’s ability to solicit donations in 2019 after the IRS put the kibosh on their tax exempt status following the group’s failure to submit the required 990 tax return to the Internal Revenue Service, according to the Fox News report.

While this story is just one example of a grifter taking advantage of the sorrow and good intentions of others, it is a telling tale.  The fact that the accused was part of ‘a group of Black activists who met with then-Atlanta mayor Kasim Reed to demand changes in police training and tactics. Page even spoke at a joint news conference, according to the station,‘ raises many red flags.

Factor that in with the fact that ‘Sir Maejor’ has been arrested multiple times for impersonating an officer, according to Fox, and it is easy to see the concern many have with the BLM movement.  While BLM activists often scream about ‘defunding the police,’ studies have shown that as many as 81% of black Americans do NOT want to defund the police, and more actually want to see more cops on the street rather than less, according to Newsweek. ‘

Newsweek stated ‘A Gallup poll conducted from June 23 to July 6 surveying more than 36,000 U.S. adults found that 61 percent of Black Americans said they’d like police to spend the same amount of time in their community, while 20 percent answered they’d like to see more police, totaling 81 percent. Just 19 percent of those polled said they wanted police to spend less time in their area.’

Add this in with all the allegations against Page and others who are committing graft while hiding behind good intentioned folks in the BLM movement (we may not agree with their solutions or the tactics of many BLM protesters, but there are good people among them, even if we do not see eye to eye with them on solutions, not all people who identify with this movement have nefarious intentions), with the violence and property destruction done in the name of BLM, and the fact that most black Americans do not want to defund the police, one begins to wonder exactly WHO BLM is serving.

Hypothetically, if I were a criminal, I would want less police in my neighborhood.  Having no police would be ideal.  When we learn that criminals are part of the delegations meeting with mayors to discuss defunding the police, or ‘solutions’ to the problems with policing, it is time to investigate what is really going on.

I think most Americans agree that we do not want a militarized police force, but at the same time, we need police on the streets to keep the peace.  However, the more unrest caused by BLM and other radical groups, the more the police militarize, and the more doing so is justified, as their safety is in even more danger now.  The whole thing sounds like a perfectly constructed exploitation of Hegelian Dialectic if you ask me.

I think the solution to this divide is to become more active in our communities and try to open dialogues with our neighbors.  5 years ago race was not an issue, however, now the Democrats have made it one, in what I see as an attempt to Balkanize the American people.  We can not let them get away with this, and if we start talking to one another civilly again, I am confident we will all realize that we have a lot more in common than we thought.  We need to go back to being ‘One nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all’ … before it’s too late.

Mark Sidney

Mark Sidney is a father, husband and advocate for a return to Constitutional governance. He now lives with his family in the South after fleeing the People's Republic of New Jersey.

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