Archive for the ‘Pattern or practice’ Category

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A great story of a small attorney firm believing in a civil rights case and teaming with a national firm to  take on racial discrimination and institutionalized racism in a midsize city.

Kohler and Hart Milwaukee investigated the allegations brought by the plaintiffs for over a year. Teaming up with Segal McCambridge Chicago before they filed a complaint.
Early on the bar owners banded together after having their livelihoods taken and hunted for an attorney.
Even going so far as making a pitch on a fundraising site. One plaintiff mortgaged his home for private investigator fees  Plaintiffs participated in a documentary to get their story heard. At one point 10 attorneys, paralegals and staff  worked on the case. City aldermen were puzzled by how this ragtag bunch of minority businessmen, (that they had literally run out of business), could bankroll such an effort. Over 50 depositions were taken including the Mayor of the City of Racine. Shocking information was revealed which kept the city from going to trial and risking a larger settlement then the 1,3000,000 million settled upon.

 Now that the federal civil rights suit has progressed further, ( Holmes vs City of Racine)  evidence has been revealed that racial slurs were used, and a biased attitude toward minorities has been entrenched in the personalities of several public officials.  This cannot help but have  a damaging effect on public confidence in city government.  Revealing this evidence will certainly prove disruptive to the domestic tranquility, but it’s a necessary beginning to a long overdue process of ending racism and discrimination in our community.

This lawsuit, which began as a response to the systematic closure of minority taverns, is important, but it is merely emblematic of deeper, more pervasive civil rights issues that plague Racine

As people become more familiar with what racism really is, and how it works, they will be shocked and appalled by what has been taking place where they live.  Hopefully, they will be inspired to do something about it.  The bottom line is, if we do not begin to accept one another as fully human, and willingly share the opportunities that are created by civilized societies, we are going to end up destroying what has taken many generations to create.