Group of predominately African-American Detroit police officers says they were denied service at restaurant


NOVI, MI- According to a report from FOX 2, close to a dozen off-duty African-American Detroit police officers were denied service a Novi’s Bar Louie.

After their shift on the night of June 6th, the officers went to the bar to hang out, but after waiting several minutes to be seated, a manager came out and told them that the kitchen was “closed.”

Now, the general manager a Bar Louie insists that race was not a factor, even though the group was predominantly African-American, stating that it was a “bad decision” by the employee left in charge who chose to “close up early.”

Sergeant Myron Watkins said that he and 10 other off-duty officers were embarrassed and humiliated after they were denied service at Bar Louie in Novi. He said in a statement:

“We’re walking out and I hear somebody at the bar say, ‘We weren’t going to serve them,’ and everybody busted out laughing.”

Watkins added:

“One of my co-workers asked, ‘What time does the kitchen close?’ He didn’t give us a direct answer. He pulled out his cell phone, looked at his cell phone and said, ‘It’s 9:26 and it closes at 9:30.”

Aaron Gonzales added:

“Walking in there like I said earlier, there’s a sign on the door that says kitchen stays open late. Doesn’t make sense, right?”

The group of officers said that there were still people inside placing orders when they were very clearly told that they could not get any service. Two of the officers then asked a stranger to go in and try to get service. Dominque Brown said:

“He was able to sit down, had a menu and he asked them what’s good to eat? She responded ‘a burger.’ We didn’t get that treatment.”

Officer Johnathon Gardner said:

“Like I told them outside being a Detroit police officer, I’m in the military for 15 years and when you add it up we’ve all got 40 years we’ve served this country between us. And it’s like we can serve our country but we can’t come in and have a burger, we can’t have anything to eat. It’s kind of infuriating because the same people we fight for, won’t even serve us.”

Nine of the 11 officers that attempted to grab some food at Bar Louie on the night of June 6th were black and one was latino, with the other white. Seven of them were interviewed by FOX 2 on the night of June 8th; the other four did not want to show their face on camera.

After the incident, the group ended up going to Buffalo Wild Wings and if there were any questions about the racism and discrimination they faced earlier in the night at Bar Louie, it was made clear by the end of the night. Watkins said:

“Once we left the other restaurant, as we were walking by Bar Louie, they were serving food and that was around 11 o’clock at night. So, their kitchen didn’t close. It was just closed for us.”

FOX 2 reportedly asked the officers to raise their hands if they believed that they were discriminated against, even though the customer they asked to go inside to try and get service was also black and every single hand went up. Dana Ford said:

“I felt it. As soon as we walked in the door.”

Gardner added:

“One single black guy isn’t a problem. As a group I feel we were judged. They looked at us and they judged us as a group, [like] ‘This is too many black people coming into our establishment, this is too big of a concern, they’re going to cause a scene or a ruckus.’ And I feel like they judged us.”

He added:

“I feel like if we were a group of 11 white people, we would’ve had a totally different interaction.”

A spokesperson for Bar Louie provided a statement that said, in part:

“We have reached out to the group of officers to sincerely apologize for their experience and invited them back in to enjoy a chef-inspired meal and handcrafted cocktails on us. While we regret the incident occurred, we will use this opportunity to better train and educate our teams to ensure that it never happens again.”

In response, Juwan Brown said:

“There’s nothing you could really give training on – it should come natural. Treating people like people is something that should just naturally be done.”

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Watch: Without any evidence, Biden states black Americans ‘wake up’ knowing they’ll die while ‘jogging, sleeping at home’

May 26th, 2022

WASHINGTON, D.C.- On Wednesday, May 25th, President Joe Biden alleged without any evidence that black Americans “wake up knowing they could lose their life in the course of just living their life.”

According to reports, as he spoke, he went on to cite that “jogging” and “sleeping at home” are some of the activities in which black Americans could be murdered. Biden said:

“As we’ve seen all too often, public trust has frayed and broken, and that undermines public safety. The families here today and across the country who’ve had to ask this nation – why so many black Americans wake up knowing they could lose their life in the course of just living their life.”

He added:

“Simply jogging, shopping, sleeping at home. Whether they made headlines or not, lost souls gone too soon.”

During his speech, the president did not present any data or evidence to substantiate his claim that “shopping, jogging, or sleeping at home” were dangerous activities for minority communities. Watch the speech below:

Following the horrific mass school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, President Joe Biden called for changes to gun laws, saying “we must stand up to the gun lobby.” Biden said:

“To lose a child is like having a piece of your soul ripped away. There’s a hollowness in your chest, you feel like you’re being sucked into it, never able to get out. Suffocating. It’s never quite the same.”

Biden said, quoting Psalm 34:

“The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.”

The after asking for prayers for the families and friends of those murdered, he called for more restrictive gun laws. Biden said:

“As a nation, we have to ask, when in God’s name are we going to stand up to the gun lobby? When in God’s name, will we do what we know if our gut what needs to be done? We have to act. Don’t tell me we can’t have an impact on this carnage.”

Vice President Kamala Harris said in her own statement:

“Enough is enough. As a nation, we have to have the courage to take action and understand the nexus between what makes for reasonable and sensible public policy to ensure something like this never happens again.”

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) took to social media and blamed Republicans for the shooting:

“There is no such thin as being ‘pro-life’ while supporting laws that let children be shot in their schools, elders in grocery stores, worshippers in their houses of faith, survivors by abusers, or anyone in a crowded place. It is an idolatry of violence and it must end.”

According to the Washington Post, Joe Biden has played a central role in many of the unsuccessful efforts to enact significant gun legislation amid thousands of mass shootings in the past decade. First as vice president under Barack Obama and now as president, Biden has yet to receive from the Democratic-controlled Congress any major piece of legislation aimed at preventing mass shootings.

After the Buffalo massacre, Biden said there was “not much on executive action” what he could carry out on gun control and, referring to the 1994 assault weapons ban, said, “I’ve got to convince the Congress that we should go back to what I passed years ago.”

Before boarding Air Force One to fly back to Washington, Biden acknowledged the political head winds he is still facing, nearly a decade after Sandy Hook, saying:

“The answer is going to be very difficult. It’s going to be very difficult, but I’m not going to give up trying.”

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Unprecedented and extreme power play: Pelosi pushing for bill to enable Biden to control fuel prices

May 14th, 2022

WASHINGTON, DC – House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is supporting a Democrat-backed bill that will greatly enhance the power of President Joe Biden to control fuel prices within the U.S.

However, it is not clear how prices of imported fuel would be controlled.

The Biden administration has blamed out-of-control fuel prices on Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, calling it “Putin’s price hike.”

Biden also blamed former President Donald Trump, who he recently referred to as “the great MAGA king,” for increasing the deficit.

During her weekly press briefing, Pelosi also blamed U.S. oil corporations for rising fuel prices, claiming that they were exploiting consumers and that gouging them is an actual “part of the business plan of companies.”

At the briefing, Pelosi pushed H.R. 7688, a bill known as the “Consumer Fuel Price Gouging Prevention Act.” Its intention is “to protect consumers from price-gouging of consumer fuels, and for other purposes.”

The bill would allow President Biden to declare an “energy emergency proclamation” and then have the power to regulate prices by stopping fuel companies from selling their products at prices considered to be “unconscionably excessive” and exploitative.

The bill would give President Biden price-control powers that could last months or years due to the renewal clause inserted within it:

“The President may issue an energy emergency proclamation for any area within the jurisdiction of the United States, during which the prohibition in paragraph (1) shall apply, that includes the geographic area covered, the consumer fuel covered, and the time period that such proclamation shall be in effect.”

While the bill states that the proclamation “may not apply for a period of more than 30 consecutive days,” it can “be renewed for such consecutive periods, each not to exceed 30 days, as the President determines appropriate.”

It also includes “a period of time not to exceed 1 week before a reasonably foreseeable emergency.”

Pelosi said:

“Next week on the floor of the House, we will have another piece of our lowering-costs-for-the-American-people legislation for first House Democrats, led by [Washington] Congresswoman [Kim] Schrier and [California] Congresswoman [Katie] Porter introduced the ‘Consumer Fuel Price Gouging Prevention Act.’

“While families are struggling to pay higher prices at the pump, oil and gas companies are recording record profits, with [the] seven largest oil companies announcing buybacks that could total $41 billion this year alone.

“Again and again, we see gas prices rise, sometimes when the cost of oil drops, oil prices drop, and price gouging needs to be stopped. This is a major exploitation of the consumer because this is a product that the consumer must have.

“Again, the Putin tax cut hike at the pump is a part of this, and you would think that the oil companies would compensate for that rather than exploit the opportunity that it — so in this bill, what this bill does [is] — price gouging needs to be addressed, including new tools at the FTC [Federal Trade Commission] to address those abuses.

“Our bill enables the president to issue an energy emergency declaration making it unlawful to increase gas and home energy prices in an exploitative and excessive way, which is part of the business plan of these companies.”

Daily Wire noted:

“Violations of the order would be treated as an unfair or deceptive trade practice, and enforced by the FTC. The bill instructs the FTC to prioritize sellers with total wholesale or retail sales of more than $500 million annually for enforcement.

“The bill also sets up a ‘Consumer Relief Trust Fund’ to deposit fines collected by the FTC while enforcing an energy emergency. Those funds would be distributed to low-income households via the Department of Health and Human Services’ ‘Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program’ and the Department of Energy’s ‘Weatherization Assistance Program.’

“Democrats have continued to press short-term, demand side solutions, such as rebate programs and gas cards, to soaring gas prices, which broke new record highs on Wednesday at $4.40 a gallon, according to AAA.

“The Biden administration has also called for oil companies to increase supply right away. But the administration canceled an enormous oil and gas lease sale in Alaska and two sales under consideration in the Gulf of Mexico Wednesday.”

Are U.S. oil companies responsible for lowering retail fuel prices?

The Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, which covers the state of Texas, 26 parishes in northern Louisiana and 18 counties in southern New Mexico, noted on May 10:

 “Even though the price of oil makes up over half of the retail price of gasoline, oil companies play an extremely limited role in how retail gasoline prices are set.

“While U.S. retail gasoline prices in many regions have remained stubbornly high since March, this situation reflects frictions in the retail gasoline market rather than the supply of oil or the price of oil.

“We discuss why, in many regions, pump prices have not fallen as quickly as oil prices have recently and explain why this asymmetry need not be an indication of price gouging.

“Finally, we examine the obstacles to substantially increasing U.S. oil production. We make the case that even under the most favorable circumstances, higher production growth is unlikely to materially lower global oil prices—and, thus, U.S. retail gasoline prices—in the foreseeable future.”

The Federal Reserve Bank also noted that gas retailing involves a complex supply chain and that only 1 percent of service stations in the U.S. are actually owned by companies that also produce oil:

“Before a gallon of gasoline is pumped into a car’s tank, it has traveled through a complex supply chain.

“Independent oil and gas companies—those without refining assets—are responsible for 83 percent of U.S. oil production and about half of the oil consumed in this country.

“Oil is sold in competitive markets at prices reflecting global supply and demand. It is refined into gasoline, diesel and other fuels whose prices are similarly set in competitive markets.

“Fuels are then sent to more than 400 U.S. distribution facilities, from which they are sold and delivered to retailers and end users at another price depending on local conditions.

“Gas station operators set retail prices based on their expected acquisition cost for the next delivery of fuel from the local distributor, federal and state tax rates, and a markup that covers operating expenses, such as rent, delivery charges and credit card fees.

“Since only 1 percent of service stations in the U.S. are owned by companies that also produce oil, U.S. oil producers are in no position to control retail gasoline prices.”

The bank also suggested that the slow decline of fuel prices was not an automatic sign of price gouging:

“Given that crude oil accounts for 59 percent of the cost of gasoline, a 34 percent increase in the price of oil should imply a 20 percent increase in the retail gas price. Likewise, a 22 percent decline in the price of oil should translate to a 13 percent decline in the pump price. However, that did not happen at the national level.”

Through a chart, the bank showed that the spot price of gasoline (the price of gasoline at the refinery gate), as proxied by the prompt contract for New York Mercantile Exchange RBOB gasoline, generally rose and fell with the price of West Texas Intermediate crude oil, and it noted:

“However, the response of U.S. pump prices has been highly asymmetric. While the price of retail gasoline cumulatively rose about as much as expected following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, recent national retail gasoline prices dropped only 6 percent from the March peak, far less than the expected 13 percent.

“This indicates that retail gasoline prices remaining persistently high was not the result of an oil shortage or high oil prices. Rather, the elevated retail gasoline prices must be attributed to events in the U.S. retail gasoline market beyond the control of oil producers.”

The bank further pointed out:

“Moreover, the asymmetry of the response of retail gasoline prices need not be evidence of price gouging. One potential explanation is that station operators are recapturing margins lost during the upswing, when gas stations were initially slow to increase pump prices.

“The reluctance to lower retail prices also likely reflects concerns that oil prices—and, hence, wholesale gasoline prices—may quickly rebound, eating into station profit margins.

“Another possible reason for this asymmetry is consumers’ tendency to more intensively search for lower pump prices as gasoline prices rise than when they decline.

“This diminished search effort provides further pricing power to gas stations, causing prices to fall more slowly than they rose. This has prompted researchers to liken the response of gasoline prices to higher oil prices to a rocket—and the response to lower oil prices to a feather.

“Yet another potential explanation for this asymmetry is that seasonal demand tends to increase as the weather warms, supporting higher retail prices.”

The Federal Reserve Bank also reported that prices do not uniformly change across the country and suggested that “price-reduction policies that treat all regions of the country the same are unlikely to be effective at curing the root causes of the asymmetry in the aggregate retail price response.”

In addition, oil producers are facing difficulties with increasing production. The bank noted:

“Consumers and policymakers often ask what domestic oil producers can do to raise output and lower gasoline prices, especially since producers’ profitability has greatly improved in 2022.

“Because the price of crude oil is determined in global markets, increases in domestic oil production affect the retail price of gasoline only to the extent that they lower global oil prices.

“Many observers point out that oil companies currently hold nearly 9,000 permits to drill on federal lands. But holding 9,000 permits does not equate to 9,000 well locations that are worth drilling, nor would it be possible to churn through that much inventory in a reasonable time frame.

“Data provider Enersection found that since 2015, an average of 1,560 wells have been drilled on federal lands annually, but only 47 percent of federal permits issued were actually utilized. This is because companies tend to acquire permits on the acreage they lease even if they are not certain whether the location is worth developing.”

Producers and service companies are also constrained by labor shortages, rising input costs and supply-chain bottlenecks like other businesses are currently facing.

An industry that lacks experienced staff and materials cannot on short notice substantially increase drilling and production. 

Finally, the bank said that even under the most optimistic view, U.S. production increases would likely add only a few hundred thousand barrels per day above current forecasts:

“This amounts to a proverbial drop in the bucket in the 100-million-barrel-per-day global oil market, especially relative to a looming reduction in Russian oil exports due to war-related sanctions that could easily reach 3 million barrels per day.

“Placing the responsibility to lower retail gasoline prices on shale oil producers is thus unlikely to work, and additional regulation of oil producers is unlikely to lower pump prices.”

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