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Straight No Chaser: It Ain’t Political, It Is Definitely Personal

Op/Ed By Gloria Winston


gloria newCan someone please be kind enough to recommend a product that will help heal these rope-burn marks around my neck?

The marks are from the hi-tech lynching Rachel Barnhart spearheaded against me and my truth on social media.

I guess that’s what white media does when you dare to be black and opinionated in Rochester.

However, what Rachel has failed to recognize is, first of all, I could care less about what the white media thinks about me.

In fact, the lack of black, opinionated journalists and news in MY community is the same reason publications like The North Star, The Negro Digest, Ebony, Sepia, Jet, Black Enterprise, Essence, The Frederick Douglas Voice Newspaper, Communicade, The Buffalo Challenger, and The Minority Reporter were founded in the first place.

You don’t get it, do you?

Why do you think there was a NEED for WDKX in 1972?

I am not a RACIST, Rachel, I am an opinionated journalist (Editorialist), whether you like it, or not.

I did not just come to town—I’ve been here a while, and I’ve been expressing myself for decades.

My community LOVES me.

When I left the Black Panther Party, and founded About Time Magazine, it was to fill a void, and to create a much-needed voice in the BLACK community.

In my experience, historically, white journalists, the white media, and its representatives have proceeded like the Constitution, and our First Amendment rights, belong only to them.

I write for the Minority Reporter because it speaks to MINORITIES.

And, the day they find what I say to be inappropriate is the day I will begin to listen to my critics.

However, control freaks like you, Bob Lonsberry, and the others who represent the discriminatory members of the main-stream media are less than important to me.

And, the lies you’ve attempted to saturate social media with have been laughable.

At no time did I insult anyone’s wife. The point of my column last week—which by the way was NOT published in its entirety, as I intended—was to question James Sheppard’s integrity.

I am of the opinion that he has none, and I will continue to share my personal experiences which explain why I feel that way.

Bob Lonsberry, you interpreted my words to suit your ignorant needs as well.

And, Sandra Frankel, I was really shocked to see you jumping on the band wagon.

Oh, I did notice there was one colored, wannabe journalist in the mix, as well.

It’s the one Gannett dumped, without warning, because he was so valuable.

I have always felt he was jealous of me because—even though he may have had more credentials than me—people actually READ what I write!!

And, Evan Dawson, I used to like you.

Until recently, I considered you to be fair, even though you don’t host many people of color on your show.

Were you trying to use me to increase your ratings?

If you want to increase your ratings, invite me and Howard Eagle onto your show to discuss RACISM, and why it is impossible for BLACKS to be racists.

I also think I saw a comment from a convicted felon, who served time for selling drugs, in the social-media mix.

I believe he came home, took a shower, changed his name, and is now considered to be an upstanding citizen.

People in glass houses should not throw stones, especially at ME.

Rachel, why don’t you share with the public the real reason you came after me?

You left WROC-TV just in time, and you know it.

You know I was a part of the process which collected thousands of signatures to have you and your racism REMOVED from the airwaves.

You also know that your new BFF, Scott Gaddy, tricked me into making sure the petitions were handed over to him, under the guise that he supported our efforts, and that he lied to me about using them in some fictitious lawsuit against you.

Lo and behold, now he surfaces as Judas, instrumental in your campaign.

And, it turns out the petitions went to no one.

However, it doesn’t really matter, because, if the FBI does its job thoroughly, I am confident he might find his way to a federal correctional facility, based on his business ties to the now-deceased Bill Nojay.—Good decision choosing Gaddy to be involved in your campaign!

And, you have also demonstrated that Howard Eagle possesses far more intelligence than you, because he got it right!!

You, of all people, must think we have forgotten how you attacked the mayor and her family, while her grandfather lay on his death bed.

What follows is some of what should have been included in my recent, aforementioned column:

Back at the NET office on Norton St., when Sheppard was housed there as a Lieutenant, I can personally credit him for putting my life in danger.

I moved to a cute little street on the north side that was one block long, in order to help care for an elderly friend of mine.

Within a matter of months, I recognized there were FIVE drug houses on my street.

“How does this happen???” I asked myself. “Why aren’t the police trying to do something about these houses?”

The house I had a really BIG problem with was the one right next door to me, and the only thing that separated our houses was a driveway.

Personally, I don’t condone drug dealers, but I understand that many of them are products of the Rochester City School District’s inability to produce those who are employable. I just don’t want them living next door to me.

During my time living on the street, drug traffic used to begin at about 11 p.m., and it would continue ALL night long.

Needless to say, my husband and I got very little sleep.

So, being the good citizen and community activist I try to be, I went into the local NET office, and reported the problem to then-Lt. James Sheppard.

During my visit, there were only two people in the office, Sheppard and a receptionist.

When I reported the incident, his door was open, so I don’t know if it was Sheppard, or the secretary, who made the call that reached the drug dealer before I got home.

My son immediately came up to me and said, “Mom were you at the NET office today??”

“Yes,” I told him.

My son then told me the drug dealer I had gone to complain about, who happened to be a Hispanic male, came to the house to tell me I needed to learn to mind my own business, or he would make sure I did.

Now, I am not saying Sheppard made the call to the drug dealer, but SOMEONE did.

At the time, my life was threatened, and my porch was egged more than once.

However, as Karma would have it, that drug dealer ran into some competition which put him in a wheelchair.

The bottom line is, it is not political, but it is PERSONAL with me, especially when someone wants to lead my city, and has flaws in his character—like James Sheppard does.

I have much more to say, so stay tuned!


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