The Republic of T.

Black. Gay. Father. Vegetarian. Buddhist. Liberal.

December 9, 2014
by terrance
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Digest for December 8th through December 9th

Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for December 8th through December 9th:

  • Why no justice in cop shootings – As the country searches its soul in the wake of the recent wave of questionable killings by police, Americans of all races are struggling with a distressing sense of deja vu. This is not the first time we have struggled with this anguish and it will not be the last. But there may be a new prospect for hope this time.
  • Op-ed: Undocumented, Queer, and Bullied – Imagine living in a world where every single part of your identity is constantly under attack.
  • 6 Things the Mainstream Media Won’t Tell You About the Berkeley Protests Against Abusive Police – In Berkeley, California, a second consecutive night of demonstrations against police brutality turned ugly late on Sunday when a handful of the 500 protesters who began marching hours before broke police car windows and began vandalizing corporate chain businesses on several commercial streets.
  • Grand Juries Should Be Abolished – Grand juries originated in 12th-century England to prosecute criminals; in the 20th century, England abolished them. Other members of the former British Empire—Scotland, Wales, New Zealand, Ireland, Australia, and Canada—have done the same, but not the United States. As demonstrated in the Michael Brown and Eric Garner cases, today’s state criminal grand juries serve no useful purpose and make a mockery of justice; they should be abolished. There is nothing grand about grand juries.
  • Retired Cop on What Went Wrong in Garner, Brown Deaths (VIDEO) – If there's anything the last few weeks have taught us, it is how difficult it can be to understand how things can go so wrong with interactions between the police and the public. One question we had at Youth Radio was how the training of law enforcement officers factors into the tragic incidents we've seen over the past year.
  • To my white male Facebook friends – A plea to the good guys in my world to stop being so defensive and listen to other people's experiences
  • This Case Cries Out for Disclosure – What can explain a Staten Island grand jury’s refusal to indict police officer Daniel Pantaleo for the chokehold death of Eric Garner? Even if any answer is speculative and inconclusive, asking the question is an appropriate and maybe cathartic effort—one that can help prosecutors address these difficult cases in a more effective way that inspires public confidence in the outcome.
  • I Was Sexually Assaulted: The Shocking Reasons My Attacker Didn’t Get Prosecuted – "The prosecutors explained to me that I wasn’t a very good victim"
  • Everything Rolling Stone did wrong: How it should have protected Jackie from getting torn apart by trolls – Finally, the magazine stops blaming Jackie and starts blaming itself
  • Historian links slavery and Ferguson: US has always criminalized ‘living while black’ – The “peculiar institution” of slavery directly contributed to the fatal police shooting of Michael Brown, according to one expert, because American law has essentially criminalized “living while black.”

December 8, 2014
by terrance
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Digest for December 4th through December 8th

Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for December 4th through December 8th:

December 4, 2014
by terrance
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Digest for December 3rd through December 4th

Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for December 3rd through December 4th:

  • White America’s moral disaster: From Eric Garner to Mike Brown, a destructive view of “justice” – Eric Garner is just one example of black life devalued. Here's how white victimization is tearing the nation apart
  • The real problem in Ferguson, New York and all of America is institutional racism | Vincent Warren – Black men are not dying at the hands of (mostly) white cops – nor are those cops being excused from legal responsibility – because of mutual ‘distrust’
  • 10 Ways the System Is Rigged Against Justice for People Wrongly Killed by Cops – As passions and protests flared on the streets of New York City following a Staten Island grand jury’s decision Wednesday not to indict the white NYC police officer whose chokehold and rough arrest killed Eric Garner, an unarmed black man, a key question emerges: Why is the justice system so biased against holding abusive officers accountable?
  • Choking on the News – Is the U.S. a police state? Sometimes it feels it's headed that way. Reading the news about the Eric Garner grand jury decision coming so soon after the Ferguson grand jury farce left me breathless and shocked.
  • The Eric Garner Case Shows Body Cams Don’t Mean Much – You'd have to actually believe in police abuse for cameras to be effective.
  • Everyone But Us – The announcement that the St. Louis Grand Jury's decision would not indict Darren Wilson was about much more than his potential prosecution; yes, it was yet another reminder of America's creed, where justice for African Americans remains a dream deferred and where politically, culturally, and morally black lives don't matter.
  • America Can’t Breathe – While the case of Eric Garner's killing without a doubt reflects on the need for improved law enforcement practices, it also calls into question our legal system, and demonstrates the need for reforms throughout the entire legal process.
  • Why We All Need Affirmative Action – We should care about affirmative action because recent headlines have jarred the nation's consciousness to the immediate, lethal consequences of racism. Three recent highly publicized murders of black teenagers—Trayvon Martin in 2011 in Sanford, Fla.; Jordan Davis in 2013 in Jacksonville, Fla.; and Michael Brown this year in Ferguson, Mo.—demonstrate how racism can effectively condemn someone to death.
  • An Open Letter To Charles Barkley – Once you were not afraid to ask that all-important question: “Who’s afraid a large black man?” Tragically, it now seems like the answer might be you.
  • An Invitation to White People – Imagine you are a black woman and you have a daughter named Jade who is in elementary school. One day she comes home and asks you, "Mommy, what does 'nigger' mean?" Your heart stops as the weight of this moment hits you. Do you stick with a short answer — "It's a mean word for black people" — and pray to God that she doesn't ask you the inevitable toddler question "Why?" Or perhaps you take a deep breath and decide that you'd rather be the one to tell her the truth about being black in America.

December 3, 2014
by terrance
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The President’s Too Modest Proposals Won’t Prevent Another Ferguson

As a grand jury in New York decides not to indict the police officer who killed Eric Garner with an illegal chokehold, the president’s too modest proposals fall short of the change America needs. The problems highlighted by Ferguson require more than body cameras and “oversight” for militarized police departments. President Obama should look to history for the response America needs.
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December 2, 2014
by terrance
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Digest for December 2nd

Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for December 2nd from 16:02 to 16:09:

December 2, 2014
by terrance
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Ferguson: A Perverted Process

Editor’s Note: Following my posts about the Ferguson grand jury decision, a few people have asked why I — and many, many others — still say an injustice occurred. This series of posts attempts to offer some answers.

St. Louis County prosecutor Bob McCulloch’s perversion of the grand jury process in Ferguson yielded an unsatisfying imitation of justice.

Perverted Process

After referring the case to the grand jury, and declining to recommend charges against Darren Wilson, Bob McCulloch’s attempt to shoehorn a jury trial into the grand jury process, without the elements that help to ensure a fair trial, was an intentional “misuse of a grand jury.”

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December 2, 2014
by terrance
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Digest for November 28th through December 2nd

Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for November 28th through December 2nd:

  • Allen L. Roland: Why Ferguson Matters – Fourteen teens have been killed by the police since Michael Brown was gunned down on August 9th and young African Americans are killed by cops 4.5 times more often than people of other races and ages. We are obviously watching our police shift their mission from saving lives to prosecuting drug wars, social injustice and an increasingly visible militarized police state
  • ‘The closet is a terrible place…’ How coming out transformed five lives – Gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender, it’s hard to be happy when you have to lie about who you are
  • Rudy Giuliani Doesn’t Understand Crime As Well As He Thinks – On Sunday, during a Meet the Press panel on the unrest in Ferguson, Missouri, Rudy Giuliani reminded the world that he is an unserious person.
  • Black Men Don’t Need a Guardian Angel. Who We Need Is Our Guardian Slave. – From 12 to 50 it's assumed we're packing, assumed that like the Hulk or zombies we possess superhuman, virtually unstoppable destructive power. So where an average citizen may disagree, even argue and berate a police officer, treating them as the public servant that they indeed are, a black man, if he wishes to continue living, must channel his ancestors. His slave ancestors. He needs to forget there is a black president and remember that the default position of cops, cop wannabes like George Zimmerman, and the population at large is to view him as a perpetual deadly threat.
  • Fury After Ferguson – This is about whether black boys and men, as well as the people who love them, must fear both the criminal and the cop.
  • Darren Wilson and Cops of His Ilk Are Guard Dogs for White America – Darren Wilson is not a monster; he is the mundane face of white supremacy.

December 1, 2014
by terrance
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Ferguson: Failure To Prosecute

Editor’s Note: Following my posts about the Ferguson grand jury decision, a few people have asked why I — and many, many others — still say an injustice occurred. This series of posts attempts to offer some answers.

“The process is broken,” said Brown family attorney Benjamin Crump, after the Ferguson grand jury’s decision not to indict Darren Wilson in the death of Michael Brown. St. Louis County prosecutor Bob McCulloch “broke” the grand jury process in Ferguson, perverted it, and turned it into a farce.

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November 28, 2014
by terrance
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Digest for November 26th through November 28th

Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for November 26th through November 28th:

November 26, 2014
by terrance
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Digest for November 26th

Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for November 26th from 11:42 to 11:52:

  • Ferguson grand jury decision: between the lines of the St Louis County prosecutor’s announcement – St Louis County prosecutor Bob McCulloch announced on Monday that Darren Wilson would not be charged for the fatal shooting of teenager Michael Brown. In a remarkable 20-minute tirade, McCulloch lashed out at protesters, as well as the ‘insatiable’ media appetite for information. Here’s the story behind what he said.
  • Please Stop Telling Me That All Lives Matter – When I say "Black lives matter," it is because this nation has a tendency to say otherwise. Racial discrimination does affect all minorities but police brutality, at such excessive rates, does not.
  • 12 Things White People Can Actually Do After the Ferguson Decision – This cannot simply be about performing change and solidarity; it cannot be about doing without accountability and sacrifice.
  • Michael Brown Wasn’t a Superhuman Demon – To his friends, Michael Brown was a “gentle giant”—a “quiet person with a wicked sense of humor.”
  • Racial Fearmongering and Ferguson: US Stereotype of “violent” African-American Men as old as Slavery – The public stereotyping of black American males still justifies the use of lethal force against them by authorities at increasingly alarming levels. And as long as racial fear can be used to justify that force, killings like that of Brown will continue.
  • Darren Wilson’s Testimony Reads Like Ramblings of a Paranoid White Supremacist – The absurd, unfathomable, and fantastical story which Wilson spun out of the whole cloth in order to justify killing an unarmed black teenager combines the deepest and ugliest white supremacist stereotypes and fantasies about black folks' humanity such as the negro fiend", "black beast", and "giant negro", with white racist paranoiac thinking, and dialogue from blaxploitation movies.
  • Thanksgiving #Ferguson – This is a strange year, even an awful one, to celebrate Thanksgiving. A grand jury's refusal to indict Ferguson, Missouri police officer Darren Wilson has crystallized ugly truths. Many Americans feel unsafe in their own neighborhoods, not despite law enforcement but because of it. In some places, the police seem, and act, like an occupying force. If the law does not represent you, but only governs you, you are a subject, not a citizen.
  • 8 positive things you can do in response to Ferguson – Monday, a grand jury decision not to indict Darren Wilson for fatally shooting Michael Brown sparked protests across the country.

    There are many things each of us can do to support communities of color and make sure police brutality and violence against black youth no longer go unpunished. Here’s how you can help:

November 25, 2014
by terrance
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Digest for November 25th

Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for November 25th from 12:57 to 13:12:

  • ‘Fanciful and not credible’: CNN legal analyst destroys Darren Wilson’s testimony – CNN legal analyst Sunny Hostin ripped St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Robert McCulloch for asking Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson “softball” questions during the cross examination of his testimony, which she called “fanciful and not credible.”
  • Taking Note: How Darren Wilson Saw Michael Brown in Ferguson – In his testimony, he said the unarmed teenager “looked like he was almost bulking up to run through the shots.”
  • Ferguson and American Racism After the Killer of Michael Brown Goes Free – This is a sad day. The grand jury’s decision is yet another sign that all of America’s sons’ lives are not yet valued equally in the eyes of our courts. All of America’s fathers, mothers and children should stay outraged
  • Being Black, the Real Indictment in Ferguson and the USA – Now that the grand jury has returned with their decision on the extrajudicial killing of Michael Brown, we should be reminded that even though Darren Wilson was not indicted, Blackness was certainly indicted by the grand jury. Black Americans have been reminded again that their lives are regarded as of little worth. However, the burden of what needs to be done to change this issue is not a Black problem.
  • Most White People in America Are Completely Oblivious – Black people have to learn everything about white people just to stay alive. White people just don't get that.
  • A Sad Night for America – Many black families woke up this morning knowing that the lives of their children are worth less than the lives of white children in America. The deep distrust of law enforcement in their own communities that so many African Americans feel just got deeper last night — 108 days since the killing of unarmed teenager Michael Brown — when the prosecuting attorney announced the decision not to subject the police officer who killed Brown to a trial where all the facts could be publicly known and examined.