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'Maybe now we can hear each other,' says Greater Cincinnati leader of a national Black militia group

Grandmaster Jay (center) says he urges the members of the NFAC to stay within the law, when demonstrating, unlike what happened on January 6th
Grandmaster Jay
Grandmaster Jay (center) says he urges the members of the NFAC to stay within the law, when demonstrating, unlike what happened on January 6.

West Chester's Grandmaster Jay of the NFAC says it's the responsibility of all Americans to keep their hand on the pulse and temperature of our country.

In his second interview with WVXU in less than a year, the head of a national Black militia group is looking forward to unity in 2022 but cautions it will be hard without equality.

John “Grandmaster Jay” Johnson lives in West Chester and leads NFAC, which stands for the Not F***ing Around Coalition. You may have seen its members demonstrating where African Americans have died at the hands of police in places like Louisville and Georgia.

Last summer, Grandmaster Jay laid out the group’s goals for WVXU. They include defending the Black community, being responsible firearms owners and educating and fostering unity.

As he looks ahead to this year, Grandmaster Jay says, “Maybe things have calmed down just a little bit that we can now hear each other, and we can now talk.”

Grandmaster Jay doesn’t have a problem with police and government if there is “fair and equitable distribution and application of the law.”

Should things begin to move into the red, he says, “We have a responsibility to address those per the Constitution if it means to peacefully assemble.”

He does not want NFAC members to participate in anything like January 6.

“Someone has said before, ‘Well, if it had been you guys there would have been bodies on the front lawn.’ I said, ‘Well, it’s not so much whether or not it would be us, it’s how does the United States handle this and appear fair and equitable in the eyes of all citizens?' "

Jay is satisfied with how the government has handled the January 6 investigation and glad the Oath Keepers’ leader has been charged.

“At the end of the day, my message is simply that as American citizens, we have to realize that we too have a responsibility to keep our hand on the pulse and the temperature of the country,” he says.

His group plans to stay vigilant.

He faces federal charges in Louisville for pointing a gun at people on a roof. A court date has been scheduled for April 25. Grandmaster Jay says he didn’t knowingly point weapons at anyone.

Ann Thompson has decades of journalism experience in the Greater Cincinnati market and brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her reporting.