This petition is about the moral authority of SCLC. The legacy Martin King and SCLC have long been the moral conscience of this nation. America could not be what she is today absent Dr. King. However, in 2010 the SCLC National Board must remove the beam in our own eye before we can criticize the specks in the eyes of others.
I am the President of the SCLC chapter in Jacksonville, Florida and I have called for the removal and ouster of both the Rev. Raleigh Trammell, national chairman of SCLC, and Spiver Gordon, SCLC Treasurer. An internal SCLC investigation found Trammell and Gordon improperly diverted $569,000 in SCLC funds to bank accounts they control.
The Fulton County, Ga., District Attorney’s office and federal authorities are investigating. Additionally, the FBI on Feb. 11 raided the Dayton Ohio SCLC headquarters and the homes of Trammell and his daughter. Beyond this, the Montgomery County, Ohio, Emergency Food and Shelter Policy Board cut off federal funding for two programs run by Trammell’s Dayton-based groups. The Dayton Southern Christian Leadership Conference’s domestic violence shelter and the Interdenominational Ministerial Alliance’s pantry and food programs had received a combined $124,558 from the Federal Emergency Management Agency last year.
Trammell was considering an application for $88,016 more for 2010, but the request was denied. Just last week, the Dayton SCLC told the United Way that the shelter and food pantry had closed in August but the most recent application for federal dollars, signed by Trammell and his daughter, made no mention that the programs were closed. Since 1988, the county paid the SCLC and IMA more than $3.4 million to run programs for the needy.
If Trammell and Gordon remain in the leadership of SCLC, Dr. King would be most disappointed. SCLC will become an irrelevant organization, absent of any moral authority if they remain. They do not have the vision, values, morals or leadership SCLC needs today. SCLC must provide the voice of moral authority to combat the short-term monetized pragmatism rampant in the land. We must focus on the next generation, who by the way are the poorest public school children in our history, not the next quarterly report, the next bank bonus, or the next election.
Please join me, by signing this petition, in urging the National Board of SCLC to take the bold steps to remove Trammell and Gordon. As ever, SCLC must offer our opponents forgiveness, reconciliation and reconstruction. For as Archbishop Tutu says, "Without Forgiveness, the is no Future."
Thank you for signing this petition.
Dr. Henry B, Thomas, President
SCLC Jacksonville, Florida
Dr. Henry B. Thomas, President