““Freedom, Justice and Equality for All, Love of God and Our Fellow Man; Doing All the Good We Can for Our Community," Andrew J. Smitherman (1883-1961). The Purpose of the Buffalo Empire Star is to keep the African-American community informed about past, current and future events to continue onward in the struggle for freedom, justice and equality in the spirt of the underground railroad pioneers.

George K. Arthur speaks at the forum on buffalo shootings

George K. Arthur, former President of the Buffalo Common Council, presented a historical perspective at the forum organized for the families of the victims to speak to Margaret Sullivan, Editor and VP of the Buffalo News about their outrage at the story it published on Sunday, August 22, showcasing the criminal backgrounds of the victims, 4 killed and 4 wounded in one of the worst massacres in Buffalo’s history.

Speaker after speaker of the victim’s family spoke directly to Sullivan as she sat in front of the podium with her entourage.  Many of the victim’s  families spoke about their feelings, outrage and reactions at the August 22 News article.

And the timing of the article August 22, just after the burial of the last victim outraged a grieving community, causing widespread disenchantment with the Buffalo News, and two demonstrations held outside the News building in downtown Buffalo while others gathered to  burn copies of the newspaper protesting their reaction to the story, calling for a boycott of the News.

A CNN broadcast aired  on August 25, with Editor of the Buffalo News Margaret Sullivan and Rev. Kinzer Pointer pastor of Agape Fellowship Baptist Church on Sycamore Street familiar withDemario Vass, a victim still in critical condition at ECMC. His son attends the Enterprise Charter School where Rev. Pointer is a school official.

George K. Arthur said, ” we’re not a community of crimminals…we want to be respected like any other community…”  He called for and “proposed that the News besides committing to an apology would also commit that there would be a select group of people from the Black community and select group from the News to meet privately to talk about ways and means of preventing this kind of outrage from happening in the future so that we can say Buffalo truly is a City of Good Neighbors.”

More clips to be up loaded of the eloquent speech of  Rev. Matthew Brown and Murray Holman of STOP the Violence Coalition.


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