Ocala, Florida — Marion County residents are outraged over recent statements made by Reverend Reginald Willis, chairman of Marion County’s NAACP Religious Affairs Committee and co-chairman of its Civic Engagement Committee.
Willis is pointing his finger directly at white residents as well as Marion County’s elected officials, blaming them for the shortcomings of the black community.
He is now calling for a “Clarion Call” (Demand) meeting.
Willis said, “Local extremist elected and appointed leaders are ignoring the needs of the black community while joining forces with the rich and powerful whom are spending billions of dollars corrupting the political system. The local minority communities are in crisis.”
Willis said that the black community wants the same thing as “other” people. Willis said poor people within the black community want to live in that gated community, they want to have a horse farm.
The most shocking of all is what was written on a website that appears to be against the white community. The rant was actually more like a list of demands for “free stuff.”
The list is as follows:
- Restore the voting rights of all black felons in Marion County so they can feel like they are part of the community instead of disenfranchised.
- Give more civil rights and human rights
- Better criminal justice and public safety
- More economic justice (Higher Pay)
- Better education
- Better housing
- More Medicaid expansion and healthcare exchanges
- Abolish the “Stand Your Ground” law
“The above important issues are of critical value to the local African American communities in Marion County. The local NAACP in recent time has spent significant time working with the National, Regional and FL State Conference NAACPs preparing to lead the fight for equality on every front. The time is now to bring the struggle fight to the home front (Ocala/Marion County),” Willis wrote.
The website not only suggest that the “Stand Your Ground” law should be abolished, but also that drugs should be legal.
Willis also said that he is calling on the black community and coalition partners to join a movement designed to change the present local leadership.
Willis wrote, “The ‘Clarion Call’ meetings will start a new chapter of local people power.”
“Today’s ‘Clarion Call’ meeting will be the first of many to come,” said Willis.
This meeting comes just weeks after the Marion County NAACP accused local law enforcement of singling out Mary Alexander, a local woman arrested on multiple charges of welfare fraud. The NAACP stated that law enforcement is against her since she is a “legitimate” black business woman. The NAACP requested all charges be dropped.
According to the last Census, more than 98 percent of the black community within Marion County is already on some sort of government assistance. Whether that be free child care, food stamps, cash assistance, free housing, free utilities, free phones, free education and sometimes free transportation, Willis wants more.
Investigators said that many of the individuals that are receiving government assistance are doing so illegally, and many times use cash assistance to buy drugs and alcohol.
Jack Heacock, Jacksonville director for the Division of Public Assistance Fraud at the state Department of Financial Services, said public assistance fraud has increased drastically since 2011. Since January of 2014, investigators have uncovered more than $400,000 just in childcare fraud; that is more than triple the amount in 2011.
Ocala Post contacted the office of the NAACP via e-mail. We asked if they felt that a persons socioeconomic status is determined by the color of their skin. Furthermore, we asked why the leaders of the NAACP separate and divide the human race, by continually blaming others in society for the actions of those within the black community?
Ocala Post’s e-mail has not been answered.
Ocala Post is currently investigating details in regards to the website, including the registered owner.
Ocala Post wants to hear your thoughts. Do you think the Marion County NAACP has over stepped its boundaries?