Thursday, February 26, 2009

Angry Racist Who Helped Promote Tawana Brawley Hoax Assumes Room Temperature

One of the most notorious race baiters in New York history is dead.

Good riddance to bad rubbish.
Wilbert "Bill" Tatum, publisher emeritus of The Amsterdam News, one of the nation's oldest continuously-running black newspapers, and formery [sic] deputy borough president of Manhattan, has died.

The Rev. Al Sharpton released a statement confirming Tatum's passing, saying he had been informed of the news by Tatum's daughter, Elinor, who succeeded him as publisher in December 1997 and (most recently) has been a prominent figure in the ongoing battle over the Post's dead chimp cartoon.

Word of Tatum's death has rocked veteran Harlem Democrats, with whom he had a close relationship. When Tatum purchased his weekly paper in the 1970s, he did so with a group of prominent investors that included Percy Sutton, H. Carl McCall, David Dinkins and John Edmonds, who later successfully sued Tatum and accused him of abusing his power.

Sharpton called Tatum, who had a role in the Tawana Brawley case that catapulted Sharpton into the national spotlight, (he defended her against official findings that the sexual assault she said she had suffered was a hoax), "an iconic and vitally important figure in both journalism and civil rights."
Some icon. A racist fraud is what he was. No surprise to have another racist fraud praising this lowlife.

He wasn't only a racist, but also an anti-Semitic creep.
Tatum was also a controversial figure.

For example, in 1996, a jury sided with Edmonds and found he had wrongfully diverted $1.05 million worth of corporate money. In 2001, the Anti-Defamation League accused him of "once again" using anti-Semitic language and conspiracy theories to influence the 2001 mayor's race.
Am I being harsh?

Siding with an angry shareholder in a long-running battle for control of the city's largest weekly newspaper aimed at black readers, a jury in Manhattan has ruled against the longtime publisher of The Amsterdam News, Wilbert A. Tatum.

The verdict, reached last week by a jury in State Supreme Court, found that Mr. Tatum had "wrongfully diverted" $1.05 million in corporate money. The decision signaled the beginning of a new phase in Mr. Tatum's 13-year feud with the shareholder, John L. Edmonds; now the court must decide how much money the publisher should return to the company.

In reaching its decision on Friday, the jury found that Mr. Tatum had abused his power in order to favor his investments, like a second office in a building he owns in the East Village and a messenger service that Mr. Edmonds argued has only one purpose: to distribute copies of the paper on orders from Mr. Tatum.

"Wilbert Tatum has used The Amsterdam News since 1982 as his own personal piggy bank," said a lawyer for Mr. Edmonds, Saul B. Shapiro.

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