Freeholder Assistant

Last year prior to the election Lou Magazzu and his merry band of freeholders created a brand-new position of Freeholder Assistant. This job title had not existed previously, and pays between $30,000 and a very greedy $100,000.

If Lou thinks that any job that pays more than $75,000 a year is greedy why would he vote for this position to top out at 33% more than that extremely greedy salary?

Anyway, MWatch has just obtained photos of the very qualified person that was given that job. From what we have been able to ascertain, the job was never advertised , and was created for one person in particular.

The Freeholder Assistant, MaQuan Dawkins is the one in the orange, flashing what appears to be a gang sign. Aren’t you glad the county is in such capable hands, courtesy of Lou Magazzu?

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29 Responses to Freeholder Assistant

  1. Tinfoil Hat says:

    A gang sign? More like a bad version of the Shocker (he has it backwards). Congrats on making yourselves look like a bunch of racist fools by misinterpreting an out-of-context picture.

    Of course, if you’re Dawkins, you have to be smart enough to make sure these photos stay out of the public eye. We all do stupid stuff at parties, but adults have to realize what needs to stay private (or just grow up and not do stupid stuff at parties, but what fun is that?).

  2. Lobster Claws says:

    It’s not a gang sign.

    Other than your inaccurate perception, there’s nothing wrong in that photo.

    Though I guess it must look rather “ethnic” to you.

  3. WuLi says:

    First I have to answer the stupidity that infers that it is “racist” to criticize someone of color. What these two commenters are saying is that people should get a free ride because they are black, and that they are immune to criticism. If a black person acts in an manner that is questionable – a white person is not allowed to comment about their behavior. That attitude in itself is blatantly racist. people are people, regardless of the color.

    Also, I would suggest that neither of these commenters lives in the areas of the city of Millville that I do. I would suggest also that they would be afraid to walk through the areas of the neighborhood where i reside at night, alone,and unarmed. And with good reason – all one need do is read the police blotter. Last Thursday night we had a shooting in the “War Zone” at 3rd and Oak Streets. There was gunfire at that location the night before the shooting also. in fact, I hear gun shots frequently. Sp please excuse me if I find emulating the gangsta person a bit offensive.

    The disturbing thing about the photo is that it was just one of many,many photos of a man who is supposed to be a role model acting like a gangsta. Wouldn’t a far better role for him to model be that of the college football player? THAT is an achievement, but is downplayed with the gangsta poses. And the hand signs are probably not real gang signs – maybe it is American Sign Language.

    I understand that he was a hard political worker in the GOTV in Bridgeton. Would that even be a better role? In my neighborhood, and I am sure throughout the county, we have more than our share of gansta wannabes. isn’t it time that we have role models that break the stereotype and show disadvantaged youth, regardless of their color, that they can succeed?

    And Lobster – I am especially disappointed in your comment. you know me better than that – and you wonder why I don’t return your messages? That comment is petty, and you should be ashamed.

  4. EasyE says:

    Regardless of the sign Mr. Dawkins is giving. I personally have had a conversation with this man (because I cannot call him a gentleman)and he is the most uneducated, ignorant person I have ever had words with. WAY TO GO LOU! WAY TO HIRE THE BEST OF THE BEST. Street trash that is!

  5. Matt Dunn says:

    Wuli, the more you try and explain yourself, the more out of touch you sound. I’m pretty sure MaQuan performs in a rap group. So he’s not “emulating” anything … least of all a “gangsta.” If hand gestures and color coordinated dress connotates a gang association to you, then you might as well just say the entire hip hop industry is based in gang culture. If that’s not stereotyping, I don’t know what is. Leave it alone. Move on.

  6. WuLi says:

    Matt, maybe I am out of touch – how much time have you spent in a neighborhood where a large majority of the kids think it is cool to act “ghetto”?

    I live here. Now other than being a rap star, I don’t see much chance of advancement for anyone of any color when they dress ghetto and act ghetto.

    Obama did not get where he is by acting ghetto. To bring it closer to home, Al Kelly does not act or dress ghetto and pretend to flash gang signs. (That was not the only photo – there are plenty more).

    Reverend Charles Wilkins does not dress or act ghetto – he is a personal hero of mine because of his low-keyed way of addressing the inner city problems that we see every day in my neighborhood.

    Dressing “cool” is good for kids – but it loses its enamor when you have a position such as Freeholder assistant – and are a role model for today’s youth – again – regardless of color.

    It is amazing how quickly people are to play the race card whenever an attempt is made to point out that one’s race and one’s culture does not necessarily mean that one must act ghetto. just ask Bill Cosby.

    Now maybe the picture is out of context, he had no explanation on the many photos posted on his Facebook page. However, I would expect a mix of serious pics with the “fun” and “goofy” pictures.

    And I really won’t comment on the hip-hop culture other than to say that the lyrics I hear blasting from my neighbors across the street on a regular basis could never be played on prime-time TV, and I will not print them because they are that vulgar.

    They are an assault to any decent person’s ears, and I am fairly liberal in my assessment of obscene. I would fight tooth and nail for the right of rappers to write them, sing them, and perform them. However I will also fight for the right of people that don’t want to be audibly assaulted not to have to hear it.

  7. Matt Dunn says:

    If it means anything, every time I see MaQuan in a work-related scenario, he’s been dressed very “professionally.”

    As far as when he’s not at work, I could care less.

  8. LobsterClaws says:

    Wuli, you’re mistaken about who you think I am. I haven’t left you any messages. Wrong person, sorry.

    Anyway, I don’t know what you consider gangster about the photos? They’re not dressed in colors, they’re not coordinated and, by the looks of it, even though they’re not fine tailored suits, those close are probably expensive.

    Anyway, how old is this kid and was he working at the time the photo was taken? That should play a role in your assessment of him.

  9. Matt Dunn says:

    There’s nothing “gangster” about this photo or any others on his Facebook page.

    At the risk of being misunderstood for my “I could care less” about a county employee’s behavior outside of work comment … let me take that back. Of course, there are times when a person’s behavior outside of work can influence their job – a drug or alcohol dependency or, yes, a gang affiliation.

    In this case, all you’ve got is what Wuli considers the appearance of a gang persona.

    I – on the other hand – look at this picture and see nothing wrong.

    I’m just sayin’ … if you want to criticize MaQuan’s work performance or something tangible, that’s fair game. This, however, is just a waste of time to discuss.

    I know you’re not that out-of-touch Wuli. I’m just giving you a hard time. And I understand the problems you’ve had with your neighbors. I’d be pissed about loud music being played at odd hours of night and the type of behavior you complain about.

    I just think, in the case of trying to make this picture and others an issue, you’ve missed the mark.

    Matt Dunn

  10. Tinfoil Hat says:

    “Black guy + hand sign = gangster” is racist, chief. Deny it all you want, but all hand signs are not gang signs. Go call all the alums of Texas or Arizona State if you have any questions.

  11. mango says:

    Those of us who have been exposed to gang prevention seminars by the police were taught that various finger bendings and pointings are gang signs. I too would have thought Ma’Quan was flashing a gang sign. While I’m familiar with the standard gestures most people use (everything from waving “hi” to the “finger”), these odd finger bendings and downward pointings suggest a gang sign, whether the person is a gang member, or whatever color the person is. If a white person were flashing the same gesture, I would have thought it was a gang sign. I wasn’t aware that sports team fans use the same signs, as suggested in a previous response. Perhaps these signs are being assimilated into the larger culture and one day we’ll all be using them.

    One problem here is the eagerness to label another person “racist”. Tinfoil hat must indeed wear a tinfoil hat, perhaps one that receives signals from outer space – or he or she is the real racist here.

    I wonder what racism is today. I find it difficult to associate racism any longer with skin color – we have come such a long way in terms of friendship/marriage/working together, that I think very few people actually hate someone because of the color of their skin. What many white folks – and probably many black folks (Cosby being the obvious example) have a problem with is many aspects of ghetto culture. I’m thinking of things such as obscene and loud music, denigration of women, unbelted pants falling down to expose underwear, crude ghetto speak, nuisance behavior, denigration of education, etc. Is ghetto culture the “standard” black culture today? It’s true that in the past many aspects of black culture – jazz and rock and roll the obvious examples – moved into and enriched the American culture. But I’m finding it hard to believe that the worst aspects of today’s ghetto culture will ever be accepted by the mainstream.

    Which brings us back to Ma’Quan’s photo. Clearly, the unnatural bend of his finger suggests he is flashing a sign, whether it is a gang sign or not. For those of us who are uninformed, it looks like a gang sign. Use of a gang sign suggests an acceptance/ glorification of ghetto culture.

    So it is a fair question – is that what is intended? Does Ma’Quan glorify ghetto culture? If white or black people speak out against ghetto culture, are they racist? Is a photo that suggests at the very least a lack of professionalism one that Ma’Quan wants to represent him?

    These are fair questions, because he works for us. He is the right hand man of the Freeholders, our elected leaders. We pay his salary for a position he got not because he competed for it, but because he worked for the Democrats. Certainly Ma’Quan is well aware that some have criticized his appointment, and you would think for that reason he would want to manage his image. Or perhaps this photo is a taunt – “I can present myself any way I want. I don’t have to appear professional, because Lou is taking care of me.”

  12. PaperCut says:

    I think you all are terrible ! MaQuan suffered a tragic carpentry accident in shop class as a young man. He usually wears a prosthesis but it fell off just before this picture was taken. How can you be so cruel?

  13. LIFE says:

    I see you guys erased my comment I left earlier. I have to post it again. I know Ma’Quan personally and he is representing himself and our county very well. This is a kid who struggled his entired life and defeated the odds. If you ask about Mr. Dawkins you will not hear a negative word about him. Unless that person is jealous, envious, racist, or livng a miserable life. He is a young man that was a national honor society student in high school. You can ask the daughter of Freeholder Elect Tom Sheppard about Ma’Quan they graduated together and were at the top of their class. Not only did he finish high school, he earned an academic and athletic scholarship to attend the University of Iowa (one of the Elite schools in US) and earnd his DEGREE. But you would call him uneducated for what reason???? Moreover, that picture probably was taken in IOWA during his college years because the guy alongside him now plays in the NFL for the Carolina Panthers. Ma’Quan is a well respected man on and off his job. He is the Golden Child to his community.

  14. WuLi says:

    LIFE – your previous post was not deleted – it was never approved because you typed it in all CAPS in violation of one of the few rules we have on this website.

    I never called him uneducated – I merely posed an opinion that posing like a “gangsta” or acting “ghetto” is not appropriate for a young man that is supposedly a role model for other youth. Please be honest in your responses – I am the one that brought up his college education and I expressed that I would rather see him capitalize on that rather than act ghetto.

  15. Lobster Claws says:

    I think wuli owes this young man an apology.

    Wuli spends half of his life trying to defend himself from spurious comments (some of which aren’t so spurious, amirite?) made by others yet is more than willing to do the exact same thing to others.

    That’s why so many people have a hard time taking you or your fights seriously.

  16. LIFE says:

    @WuLi
    What would be the definition of a “gangsta” pose? Or acting ghetto? Moreover, who are you to judge what the qualifications of a role model are? Have you ever met this young man? Your simply judging this young man by an old college photo. Posting false accusations slandering Ma’Quan Dawkins name. I feel you owe this young man an apology. Stemming from a low poverty community this young man could have clearly taken the wrong road. However, he did not. He choose to make something of his life. Ma’Quan Dawkins is a success story whether you want to acknowledge it or not. With that being said stop attacking Ma’Quan Dawkins as a publicity stunt. Afterall he is loved by many so this is a dead end. People who know him will know the truth. This man has never been affiliated with a gang in his life. As far as the way he dresses, I’m sure if I run into you on a Saturday morning your not wearing a three piece suit. Let me enlighten you on cultural diversity. People of many races and cultures have different ways of expressing themselves. Considering your cultural environment was probably very different from Mr. Dawkins, I don’t expect you to understand his indifferences. But that doesn’t give u the right to judge him. Ma’Quan is known, loved, and supported by his family, his friends, his community, community leaders, school boards, coaches, moreover what do you call it HIS COUNTY. Now what ghetto “Gangstas” have that kind of support system. Al Kelly and Reverend Wilkins came to Ma’Quan for assistant in community affairs and without his help the Nehemiah Coalition wouldn’t have been a success.

  17. mango says:

    So the Nehemiah Coalition is a success? Tell me more about that, please. Where are they conducting their programs? How many youth are enrolled in their programs? What have their outcomes been — How many youngsters have they diverted from gang membership,? How many in their programs have stayed in school through graduation? Are there numbers that show that teen pregnancies have been prevented through their programs? Overall, how many lives have they really changed? I’m seriously interested in this. Public money is supporting this program, yet I haven’t seen anything about their successes in the papers.

    As for Ma’Quan, no one owes him an apology. He apparently made this and other photos available for public consumption. The photo speaks nothing of his accomplishments, as reported here. Instead, it portrays an image that seems not suitable for a professional in county government. Perhaps that reaction is in the eye of the beholder. Others may look at the photo and think he looks just dandy. But my guess is that a substantial number of the county’s taxpayers, who pay his salary, would ask the same questions raised here.

    Lobster Claws, it’s not clear what your beef is with Wuli, but the odds are it is related to recent events at the Millville City Commission. You may not be who Wuli suspects, but my guess is that you are closely related.

  18. oinkforfreedom says:

    Lobster, whatever. So has your daughter learned how to read a driving abstract yet?

    What is a “driving abstract”

  19. Lobster Claws says:

    I don’t have any kids. You and wuli, if he’s not lying face down in the gutter, or if he’s not drunk before 10 a.m., can email the address I provided to this site if you want more information about me.

  20. Lobster Claws says:

    Again, wuli owes this young man an apology.

  21. Tinfoil Hat says:

    It’s unlikely Dawkins intended to make the photo public – Facebook just completely changed their privacy settings, and it’s very easy to accidentally take everything that had been previously private or restricted to a certain group and make it public. Coincidentally, Wuli posted this photo right after that privacy change – a photo, you should probably note, was uploaded nearly three years ago.

    Conveniently, he ignores photos posted since then of Dawkins in a shirt & tie, with Stedman Graham, with an NBC10 reporter, and so on. And beyond that – expecting to see a mix of professional and personal photos on Facebook? How clueless are you guys? Go take a random sampling of Facebook photos and get back to me on how many of them are of people in suits & ties (and not at weddings), and how many are people at parties, on vacation, or otherwise totally informal.

    And seriously, stop trying to claim ignorance to excuse racism: if this was a photo of a white kid who worked for the county at a party making some goofy hand sign, no one’s gonna toss off the weasely line, “what appears to be a gang sign.” You guys are smart enough to be on the internet, you should be smart enough to Google what is and isn’t a gang sign.

  22. mango says:

    Tinfoil, people like you who so cavalierly toss out charges of racism nauseate me. We’re racist just because we didn’t google gang signs? Please! You have no idea who we are or where we’re coming from. The facile charge of “racism” is a cheap ploy you use to make yourself feel superior.

    Dawkins published a photograph of himself making some type of hand gesture which is readily interpreted as a gang sign. If it’s not a gang sign, what is it? Some random gesture? I’m supposed to research various finger configurations to determine if it really is a gang sign? Let’s say it is “in the nature of” a gang sign. If it were a were a white person making the same sign, I would have had the same reaction.

    I would not assume that the person, including Dawkins, was a gang member. I would think it possible they were trying to be cool and that they regarded gang signs as cool. This would lead me to think that they were in some way glorifying the negative aspects of ghetto culture associated with gang signs.

    Now admittedly these are my assumptions, and while they may ultimately be proven incorrect, they are not illogical, nor are they racist, despite what it makes you feel good to believe.

    I do agree it is possible that Dawkins published photographs on Facebook that he would prefer not to be public — he would not be the first person to whom this has happened. The unfortunate part is that the photograph is of such a nature that many of us not immersed in the intricacies of contemporary hand signs see a gang sign and wonder what is going on with this public official. Dawkins is especially vulnerable because he got his job with the county as a patronage payoff. It was not advertised, others were not interviewed, it was just given to him — and there are probably scores of young people in the county who would have liked to have a shot at it.

  23. Tinfoil Hat says:

    Nope, it’s a logical fallacy (multiple logical fallacies, in fact) to say that a hand sign is a gang sign or even in a dreamed-up “in the nature of” or “family” of gang signs (there’s no such thing). It’s also illogical to say it’s part of some ghetto culture – which is an oversimplification – when it is certainly a part of hip-hop culture, and Dawkins has aspirations of being a rapper.

    At best, you’re elevating yourselves from racist to ill-informed guys who base opinions on bad assumptions. You might want to quit while you’re ahead.

  24. mango says:

    Ok, then check this out. Look familiar? Maybe you are the one who should quit.

    http://www.knowgangs.com/photo/showphoto.php?photo=4038&cat=515

  25. Lucky the Dog says:

    Oh My God. That’s Ma’Quan and Brendan !

  26. Tinfoil Hat says:

    Not the same thing MaQuan was doing (c’mon, you should be smarter and/or more observant than this), and besides that, those are user-uploaded photos. The credibility is majorly in question. Seriously, if you guys want to play journalist over here, you’d better up your standards.

  27. Nicole Butler says:

    I personally know MaQuan graduated high school with him and am now a teacher in Bridgeton Schools. First I would like to say that MaQuan had come so far in our community it is quite difficult to be a young Black male in society period but it is especially difficult to live in an envirnoment such as Bridgeton. He is a great encouragement to many of the young boys in my class and to many in our community who feel that life has dealt them a bad hand, and if you knew anything about MaQuan a bad hand he was dealt however he has overcame it all and is prospering. I say to whoever has an issue with some of the choices one makes as young adults think about some of the choices you or your children are making at this very moment.

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