Category Archives: Racism

Free speech is not absolute, it comes with consequences and accountability

Social media platforms such as Apple, YouTube, Facebook, Spotify and other companies removed or banned the truly vile Alex Jones and his conspiracy theory mongering Infowars from their platforms over the past week or so.

In recent years, Conservatives Have Weaponized the First Amendment:

A new analysis prepared for The New York Times found that the Supreme Court under Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. has been far more likely to embrace free-speech arguments concerning conservative speech than liberal speech. That is a sharp break from earlier eras.

As a result, liberals who once championed expansive First Amendment rights are now uneasy about them.

“The left was once not just on board but leading in supporting the broadest First Amendment protections,” said Floyd Abrams, a prominent First Amendment lawyer and a supporter of broad free-speech rights. “Now the progressive community is at least skeptical and sometimes distraught at the level of First Amendment protection which is being afforded in cases brought by litigants on the right.”

Many on the left have traded an absolutist commitment to free speech for one sensitive to the harms it can inflict.

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Dear Nancy Pelosi: take away the GOP’s favorite toy to win in November

The top three Democratic leaders in the House are in their late 70s. Minority leader Nancy Pelosi is 77 years old, Democratic whip Steny Hoyer is 78 and assistant minority leader Jim Clyburn is 77 years old. The Democratic Party has an age problem. On the Senate side, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer is 66.

The current Democratic top contenders for 2020 are Vice President Joe Biden, 75, Bernie Sanders, 76, and Elizabeth Warren, 69.

Miles Mogulescu snarkily, but accurately noted at the Huffington Post, Democratic Leadership Looks Like Old Soviet Politburo:

What does a professional sports team do after 6 straight losing seasons? Among other things, it usually fires the coach and looks for new blood, new leadership, and new strategies.

But not if you’re the minority House and Senate democratic leadership… Or the Politburo of the Soviet Communist Party shortly before the collapse of communism.

Instead, the failed, and increasingly geriatric leadership holds onto its fading power with increasing tenacity.

I’m sorry, but NO. It’s time to thank them for their years of dedicated service to their country and give them their gold watch and retirement party. To paraphrase President John F. Kennedy, it is “time to pass the torch to a new generation” of Democratic leadership in the Congress.

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Spike Lee’s ‘BlacKkKlansman’ premiers today, and just in time

Wednesday night on her primetime show The Ingraham Angle, Fox News host Laura Ingraham whitesplained that “the America we know and love doesn’t exist anymore. Massive demographic changes have been foisted upon the American people,” she said, in the form of documented and undocumented immigrants. Laura Ingraham’s Anti-Immigrant Rant Was So Racist It Was Endorsed by Ex-KKK Leader David Duke:

Minutes later, Duke tweeted praise for Ingraham.

“One of the most important (truthful) monologues in the history of MSM,” he wrote above a clip of Ingraham’s rant. He later deleted the tweet.

* * *

Ingraham blamed the left for pushing out whites.

“From Virginia to California, we see stark examples of how radically, in some ways, the country has changed,” Ingraham said. “Now, much of this is related to both illegal and in some cases legal immigration that, of course, progressives love.”

Ingraham’s white grievances/white fears racist jeremiad is strangely perfectly timed for the premier of Spike Lee’s new film, BlacKkKlansman (opening in Tucson theaters today), a comedy based upon the true story of a black cop with the Colorado Springs Police Department in the 1970s who infiltrates the Ku Klux Klan by posing as a rabid racist and anti-Semite. (The aforementioned David Duke is portrayed in the film). ‘BlacKkKlansman’ a masterful reality check from Spike Lee:

Screen Shot 2018-08-09 at 3.40.26 PM

Link to Movie Trailer.

Sometimes it doesn’t matter all that much if a movie is based on a true story or has sprung fully from the imagination of the screenwriter.

But in the case of Spike Lee’s searing, electric and sometimes flat-out funny “BlacKkKlansman,” knowing we’re seeing a dramatization of real-life events definitely helps — because if this were pure fiction, it would just seem too unbelievable.

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The alt-right is coming to Washington, D.C. this weekend in front of the White House. What could possibly go wrong?

This past weekend we got a preview of what is to come in Washington, D.C. this weekend on the one year anniversary of the deadly alt-right “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville last year.

Four people were arrested late Saturday as scores of right-wing and anti-fascist demonstrators squared off in Portland, Oregon, where four people were injured in similar rallies on June 30. Right-wing protesters and opponents square off in Portland:

Police tried to keep the two sides apart as protesters chanted and hurled insults at each other. Authorities set up a security perimeter around a waterfront park and officers frisked attendees and confiscated flag poles and other potential weapons.

Clashes after similar protests in Portland in June sent four people including a police officer to the hospital.

Among the right-wing marchers, some of whom wore body armor and carried shields, were members of the Patriot Prayer group founded by Joey Gibson, a conservative Republican who is running for the U.S. Senate in November’s midterm elections. [Will he get Donald Trump’s endorsement?]

They were opposed by [antifa] counter-protesters, some dressed in black with face masks, who shouted anti-Nazi slogans.

Vox.com reports The alt-right is coming to Washington, DC. Here’s how anti-racist groups are preparing.

Last August, hundreds of white supremacists, neo-Nazis, and members of the alt-right descended on Charlottesville, Virginia, for “Unite the Right,” a rally to put the power of white nationalists on full display. A year after that event resulted in chaos and violence, groups plan to hold another “white civil rights rally” in Washington, DC.

But a broad coalition of organizers representing anti-racist, anti-fascist, and socialist groups say that when Unite the Right 2 participants arrive in DC, they will be met with significant resistance throughout the weekend.

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Democratic Senate Candidate Elizabeth Brown Will Fully Fund Education

Democratic LD 12 Senate Candidate Elizabeth Brown

Over beverages at the IHOP at Sossaman and Baseline in Gilbert, Clean Elections Legislative District 12 Senate Candidate Elizabeth Brown conveyed the reasons she is making a second run for the State Senate after losing to Warren Pedersen in 2016. Ms. Brown is an experienced public servant whose campaign message centers on four themes. These are:

  • Promoting public education.
  • Protecting our environment.
  • Modernizing and expanding our local and state Infrastructure.
  • Guaranteeing ethics and equality for all.

Arizona LD 12 (see map) includes parts or all of Gilbert, Queen Creek, and San Tan Valley. This has normally been a reliable Republican district that has attracted minimal Democratic opposition in the past. In 2012, Republican Andy Biggs ran unopposed for this Senate seat. Ms. Brown did lose to Mr. Pedersen in 2016. However, Democratic enthusiasm has surged since 2016. There are three able and energized Democrats vying for the two State House seats and Ms. Brown seeks to ride that momentum to a Senate victory this November. A progressive, she feels that “if people would just take the “D” and “R” away and people see what I stand for, the people would see a lot of common ground with my positions.”

Who is Elizabeth Brown?

A former drama teacher, Ms. Brown, a wife, and mother of two daughters is an experienced public servant whose experiences start in 2004 when she volunteered for the Kerry and Edwards campaign. From 2004 to 2008 she worked for the Maricopa County Democratic Party as an office manager and executive assistant whose main responsibility was to recruit volunteers and assist legislative district chairs. She worked in Governor Napolitano’s and Governor Brewer’s office in the Constituent Services Department, observing how policies were formulated. Afterward, she was an assistant to former State Senator Barb McGuire and saw how bills were written. She also saw Republican heavy-handedness in burying Democratic bills and, later, constitutional amendments like the Equal Rights Amendment.

She believes that a lot of our legislators are in office for “personal gain” and “are out of touch with reality with what is happening with people. They are living in a bubble and do not treat people with dignity and compassion.” This is especially problematic because it is in the local sphere of the city, school and utility boards, and state level where most decisions affecting lives are made.

She believes that for too long, only men have represented the Legislative District and she feels that it is “time for more diverse representation.” She is running for the State Senate because she “believes our state is at a crucial crossroads and we can choose to continue the status quo of corporate handouts or we can reclaim our state government for all Arizona’s.” She pledges to be a “true public servant who will not look the other way when I see corruption or anything that seems unethical.” She wants to be the voice of the people and their concerns as their advocate at the capital, relying on “community engagement while seeking real and practical solutions for all Arizonans that create the policy that will ensure the wellbeing for all.”

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Federal courts reject Trump immigration policies

The Trump administration’s family separation policy — state sponsored kidnapping and child abuse — may result in making orphans of 572 children for whom the government has opted not to try to reunify with their parents, despite a court order, and instead passing the buck to the ACLU: “If you want them reunified so bad, you do it.”

The judge was not amused. Judge calls Trump administration family reunification efforts ‘unacceptable’:

The federal judge overseeing the court-ordered reunification of the 2,551 migrant children separated from their parents at the border blasted the Trump administration Friday for lacking a plan to reunify the remaining 572 children in its custody with their parents and the slow pace of progress.

In a Thursday night status report filing, the Trump administration said only 13 of the parents had been located by the American Civil Liberties Union, which U.S. District Judge Dana Sabraw of the Southern District of California called “unacceptable at this point.”

The parents of 410 children are currently outside of the United States, likely having been deported before reunification, according to the court filing.

The Trump administration had proposed the ACLU take the lead in locating and identifying what the judge had called “missing parents” of children still in government custody. Sabraw said that plan was not acceptable and placed that responsibility squarely on the government.

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