Rekia Boyd

Meet Rekia Boyd, born November 5, 1989 and a resident of Dolton, Illinois, along with her family.

On March 21, 2012, Rekia’s life was tragically cut short. While out with a group of friends late in the evening, enjoying music, drinks, and each others’ company at Douglas Park. In the small hours of the night, Rekia and a few of her friends made their way to a nearby liquor store, where their paths would intersect with off-duty Chicago Police Department officer Dante Servin.

Servin approached the group in his vehicle — whether calmly or belligerently, we don’t know for sure — and reportedly solicited buying drugs from the group, to which Rekia’s friend Antonia Cross responded, telling Servin to “get his crackhead ass out of here.”

At some point, Servin drew his weapon on Rekia and her friends, and aiming out his window, he opened fire on them. Antonia was shot in the hand. Rekia, the head. She was killed instantly.

Servin would claim later that Antonia was approaching him with a gun, but no such gun was ever recovered from the scene; most likely, Antonia was holding his phone. Servin would also claim that as he approached, the group were arguing.

Servin, in November 2013, was tried for manslaughter, but was acquitted of all charges two years later in a directed verdict — Judge Dennis. J. Porter ordered a decision of not-guilty. Manslaughter implies an accident, but the actions of Servin that night were intentional. The judge reasoned that if there was a crime, it would be murder, not manslaughter. No murder charges were brought against Servin, however.

Servin resigned from the Chicago Police Department on May 17, 2016, two days before a hearing to determine whether he would be fired, as called for by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Superintendent of Police Garry McCarthy.

The City of Chicago would give Rekia’s family $4.5 million, and her murder and the subsequent complete lack of justice would help inspire Black Lives Matter.

Former Detective Dante Servin would go on in 2017 to briefly serve as a national police community advisor in Honduras. In 2019, he sought to have the record of his manslaughter indictment expunged from his record, or at the very least to have those records sealed so that the public would no longer have access to them, so that he could have “closure” and better job prospects. Both of these requests were denied, however, and as judge Leroy Martin, Jr., noted, “Candidly, it seems to me, that Mr. Servin has benefitted from the state’s…failure to file a murder indictment against Mr. Servin and to go forward on involuntary manslaughter.”

Martinez Sutton, Rekia’s brother who was present for the court consideration of Servin’s record, said, “You go through those experiences, and the person who murdered your sister still gets to walk around and still collect a pension from the city then why would anybody have faith in the court system?”

Former Detective Dante Servin collects monthly pension checks of $4,700, and has done so since 2018.

Rekia Boyd was twenty-two years old.

Rekia Boyd’s life mattered.



Cap and Trade in a Nutshell

You may have heard a lot lately about the cap and trade bill which was recently sped through the House of Representatives and is currently in the Senate. And you may have, like I had, absolutely no idea what “cap and trade” — emissions trading — is all about.

I asked Dad for a bit of clarification, and here it is, as I understand it. [2019 note: Please do not make the mistake of thinking Dad agreed with my climate change denial in this post. He explained cap and trade well; I was just too tied up in a conservative mindset to know any better.]

Cap and trade legislation is intrinsically tied to the idea that not only is mankind somehow affecting the climate of Earth but that such effects are significant and could result in Very Bad Things.


Political Rumormongers Should Get Snopesed

I‘ve long been a proponent of the idea that should be required reading prior to forwarding chain letters in email, instant messenger, and so on.

Now, it should also be required reading for politicians, the media, bloggers, and anyone else talking about politics. I’ve heard more than one person criticize Barack Obama for refusing to make public his birth certificate because it would reveal him to have been born outside of America. Likewise, I’ve heard more than one person criticize Sarah Palin for bearing a rifle while bikini-clad with other gun lovers.

Turns out, unsurprisingly, both of those rumors are untrue.

Want to find out what else may or may not be true?


“American Pie”: An Intro to Ron Paul

The Cerulean Standard