December 1, 2014
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.
Continue Reading →
November 28, 2014
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:
- 8 Horrible Truths About Police Brutality and Racism in America Laid Bare by Ferguson – African Americans and communities of color face many ugly obstacles.
- Racism: It’s the Law | Common Dreams | Breaking News & Views for the Progressive Community – Smoke and fire, sirens blaring, horns honking, a sudden hail of bullets. This is what passes for the American dialogue on race and justice. It’s hidden until it explodes.
- The five leaders who failed Ferguson – The crisis in Ferguson has been made worse by serious failures in public administration by police chiefs, regional leaders and even the state’s governor.
- 14 Bad Things I Did as a White Kid That Would Have Turned Out Differently If I Were Black – If I were black I would probably be in prison now.
- Secrets of Obama’s evolution: The inside story of how the president backed gay marriage – The behind-the-scenes story of how same-sex couples took on the politicians and pundits — and won.
- Prosecutor Manipulates Grand Jury Process to Shield Officer – You know the fix is in when a suspect who shot an unarmed man voluntarily provides four hours of un-cross examined testimony to a grand jury without taking the Fifth. On August 9, Ferguson, Missouri Police Officer Darren Wilson gunned down 18-year-old African American Michael Brown. Since that fateful day, people across the country have protested against racial profiling, excessive police force, and the failure of the criminal justice system to provide accountability.
- We Are the Enemy: Is This the Lesson of Ferguson? – Ferguson matters because it provides us with a foretaste of what is to come. It is the shot across the bow, so to speak, a warning that this is how we will all be treated if we do not tread cautiously in challenging the police state, and it won't matter whether we're black or white, rich or poor, Republican or Democrat. In the eyes of the corporate state, we are all the enemy.
- I am Utterly Undone: My Struggle With Black Rage and Fear After Ferguson – I woke up in black skin today — and felt its scourge. After Ferguson, here's what "rule of law" means to me now.
- Editorial: The Meaning of the Ferguson Riots – Distrust of law enforcement presents a grave danger to the civic fabric of the United States.
- Asking for peace and ignoring history in Ferguson – The issue here is not whether the peaceful or non-peaceful response is the correct one. It’s more that when it comes to interactions between police and citizens, too often it is African Americans who are punished under a presumption of malice and aggression, while others are given the benefit of the doubt.
November 26, 2014
This week, the only thing worse than the Ferguson grand jury’s decision not to indict Darren Wilson in the death of Michael Brown, was the right-wing reaction to that decision. Continue Reading →
November 26, 2014
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:
November 25, 2014
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.
November 25, 2014
Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for November 25th from 10:34 to 10:36:
- As a White, Teenage Girl I Experienced a Kind of Privilege Michael Brown Could Never Imagine – Please don't tell me this isn't about race. Of course it's not just about race — it's also about socioeconomic status, it's about the unchecked abuse of power — but it is, definitely and without question, also about race. It is about deeply inherent, institutional racism. It is about a fear of young black men. It is, arguably, about just how dark Michael Brown's skin happened to be.
- Ferguson: No Shortcuts to Justice – Shortcuts almost always end up creating more problems than they solve. St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Robert McCulloch took a shortcut through Ferguson. The results have been catastrophic.
- What It Takes To Convict A Killer Cop – More often than not, when an officer kills a person they suspect of committing a crime, it's difficult to get that cop indicted, let alone convicted. Officer-involved killings are hard to track, and if any punishments are meted out, the information often gets "buried in police department bureaucracies," American Civil Liberties Union spokeswoman Alexandra Ringe told The Huffington Post.
- On the Darren Wilson Grand Jury Decision – 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 and in motion for progress until we are finally what we say we are: One Nation, Under God, Indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for All.
- No Indictment for Darren Wilson, No Justice for Black Lives – Protesters in Ferguson should not be calm, as they have been admonished by everyone from the president on down. Michael Brown doesn’t need calm. Black boys and girls who grow up in America need their lives to be respected. They need justice.
November 25, 2014
Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for November 25th from 10:22 to 10:33:
- St. Louis Blues: An Old Refrain In Grand Jury Decision – St. Louis is a lovely place, but legally it can be a toxic police mixture of the Midwestern love of social order and Border State race-based severity.
- The Ferguson, Mo. Shooting in American History: What to Tell the Children – As the new school year begins, first and foremost on our minds and in our hearts will be the killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri. Teachers may be faced with students’ anger, frustration, sadness, confusion, and questions. Some students will wonder how this could happen in the United States. For others, unfortunately, police brutality and intimidation are all too familiar.
- Ferguson Cop Darren Wilson Is Just the Latest to Go Unprosecuted for a Fatal Shooting – Few police officers who shoot and kill citizens in St. Louis have been investigated by a grand jury, let alone charged by one, according to data from city and county prosecutors.
- Darren Wilson Wasn’t the First: A Short History of Killer Cops Let Off the Hook – The Ferguson grand jury’s decision not to indict Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson for the killing of African-American teenager Michael Brown is heartless but unsurprising. But it is important to place the case in context with the history of police violence investigations and prosecutions in high profile cases—and the systemic and racist police brutality that continues to plague the nation.
- Utah Police Kill More People than Gang Members – Police in Utah have killed more people in the past five years than gang members, drug dealers or child abusers.
- Teaching our sons to be afraid is not the answer to cops who shoot children | Latoya Peterson – Tamir Rice’s mother will have to bury her 12-year-old son. Do I have to tell my son to accept being treated as less than human to preserve his life?
- Is Missouri breaking the law by concealing the names of officers involved in shootings? – Feinberg’s Stone Butch Blues is best understood within the genre of American revolutionary fiction that linked oppressions, forged solidarity and expressed utopian longings.
- Leslie Feinberg: Defiant Radical, Gender Queer Revolutionary – Feinberg’s Stone Butch Blues is best understood within the genre of American revolutionary fiction that linked oppressions, forged solidarity andexpressed utopian longings.
- The Gospel of Rudy Giuliani – Yes. It's almost as if killers tend to murder people who live near them. Moreover, it seems that people actually hold officers operating under the color of law to a different standard. This an incredible set of insights, which taken together offer a revelation so profound, so far-reaching, that it must not be wasted on our shiftless minority populations. The Gospel of Rudy Giuliani must sally forth across the land and challenge a culture that accepts neighborly violence and differing standards of death.
- St. Louis prosecutor McCulloch roasted online for indicting everybody but Darren Wilson – St. Louis County prosecutor Bob McCulloch (D) was criticized as much on Monday night for the decision not to indict Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson as for his 20-minute statement leading up to it.
November 25, 2014
The grand jury in Ferguson, Mo., has reached the decision many of us dreaded, but fully expected. Now, we must forge our profound disappointment into determination to achieve lasting justice, in Ferguson and beyond. Continue Reading →
November 25, 2014
Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for November 21st through November 25th:
- Why It’s Impossible to Indict a Cop – It’s not just Ferguson—here’s how the system protects police.
- Ferguson Decision: No Justice for the Family of Michael Brown – There will be no justice for the family of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri.
- No Indictment for Darren Wilson, No Justice for Black Lives – Unrest kept Michael Brown’s memory alive, and unrest is the key to justice.
- The Big Takeaway from the Ferguson Ruling: White Supremacy Is Alive and Well – With "no indictment" announced against Darren Wilson, a perverted natural order of things was affirmed.
- How Darren Wilson avoided criminal charges for killing Michael Brown – The Ferguson police officer was entitled to use deadly force for two reasons, but both contradict eyewitness accounts. So how might have a grand jury decided?
- Still No Justice for Michael Brown – In the coming days, as I and countless others pour over the evidence presented to the grand jury, I will be asking at least two basic questions.
- Chris Hayes: There’s ‘real underlying rage’ – Ari Melber talks to Chris Hayes about the reaction of protesters in Ferguson, MO following the decision not to indict Officer Darren Wilson.
- Ferguson, goddamn: No indictment for Darren Wilson is no surprise. This is why we protest – The Missouri grand jury’s decision has sent a message to the world that black lives do not matter. Fists up. The cops still shoot.
- Op-Ed Columnist: Suffer Little Children – Today’s immigrants are the same as our parents and grandparents were. President Obama is doing the decent thing with his immigration initiative.
- Congresswoman-Elect Mia Love: Personification of GOP Hypocrisy on Immigration – As a woman born to immigrants, a group Republicans have been hostile towards for decades, Mia Love’s membership in the Grand Old Party is downright hypocritical.
November 21, 2014
This week, President Obama punk’d the GOP on immigration, leaving them caught between Latino voters and their wingnut base. And there’s not much they can do about it. Continue Reading →
November 20, 2014
In Ferguson, Missouri, citizens and activists prepare for injustice, while government and law enforcement prepare for outraged reaction to injustice. But what about preparing for the justice Ferguson, and America, really needs?
As it waits to hear whether the grand jury will indict officer Darren Wilson in the death of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown, Ferguson is preparing for the worst: that the grand jury will decide not to indict Wilson, leading to more outrage and unrest in the streets of Ferguson. Continue Reading →
November 19, 2014
Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for November 19th from 11:05 to 12:34:
November 19, 2014
The goals of the post-Ferguson movement for justice must reach beyond whether the grand jury indicts officer Daren Wilson in the death of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown. Too much depends upon its success.
Over 100 days ago officer Darren Wilson shot and killed Michael Brown. In the aftermath, the streets of Ferguson resembled a war zone. Today, Ferguson is preparing for war again. As the city awaits the grand jury’s decision, citizens and law enforcement are arming and preparing for the worst.
In the days, weeks, and months to come, anger over the absence of justice must not overshadow the changes we must continue to fight for after the Ferguson grand jury makes its decision. Continue Reading →
November 17, 2014
Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for November 17th from 14:00 to 14:04:
- Report: South Urgently Needs an ‘Infrastructure of Opportunity’ – Five years after the Great Recession, the American South has emerged as a region divided. The great sweep of territory from the Potomac to the Rio Grande offers stark juxtapositions of bright hopes and deep distress and discontent. The South has both powerhouse cities, growing in jobs and population, and depressed towns and neighborhoods, where people seem stuck without prospect of upward mobility.
- Op-Ed Columnist: When Government Succeeds – There is a lot of good news that Republicans don’t want you to notice.
- Dolly Parton and her ‘lack of judgment’ – The fact that Dolly Parton has become such a beloved entertainer across so wide a spectrum of American audiences is a unique story. She is one of country music's brightest stars, but she is so much more. That big hair floating above her flamboyant outfits straining to contain those epic boobs, Dolly is a talent bursting at the seams. Dolly Parton is loved for many reasons, but most of all she is loved for her authenticity.
- Dropping Out: Why So Many College Kids Never Graduate – A new study reveals a grim future for students who have a stop-and-start college experience.
- The State of LGBT Equality in Africa – Homophobia thrives in most countries in Africa, making the continent an oppressive place to live for countless LGBT people.
- Michigan Claims 300 Same-Sex Marriages ‘Never Existed’ – The Sixth Circuit's decision upholding marriage bans is being cited as reason to ignore 300 same-sex couples who got marriage licenses.
- 3 Things You Can Do the Next Time Someone Says “You Can’t Do That” – You don’t have to take “no” for an answer, just find a way to get started.
- The Power of Empathy – Empathy and sympathy are vastly different. A clear empathic way to help those who are down with depression can make our communities stronger.
November 17, 2014
Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for November 13th through November 17th:
- The Two Types of “Black Church” and Why I Left the First One – … despite the differences in beliefs, bank statements and interpretations of the bible, all the black churches I encountered during my tenure as a resident musician were either severely disconnected from the political systems that surrounded it, traditionalist to the point of oppressive, devaluing women in the way their leadership structure was organized, obsessed with demonizing and degrading homosexuality or just way to deep and prophetic, speaking more words in tongues than English.
- Every Child is Equal – Do you know by looking at a child who they will turn out to be?
- Gay Marriage Issue Squarely Before High Court – Appeal by lesbian couple from Michigan puts gay marriage issue squarely before high court.
- People Want Flexible Work Hours – In the November/December issue of the Washington Monthly, Judith Warner of the Center for American Progress has a piece on the importance of passing national paid family leave legislation. Parents are more involved in their children's lives than ever but they've never had less time to tend to their families. The resulting stress is reducing female participation in the economy and is now reportedly becoming a big problem for men, as well.
- Op-Ed Columnist: Race, to the Finish – Let’s review how we got to this point where African-Americans vote so overwhelmingly Democratic and are suspicious of Republican motives.
November 14, 2014
If this week is a preview of what we’re in for with the next Congress, get ready to step through the looking glass and into a world where executive actions are impeachable offenses, and Duck Dynasty is Broadway bound. Continue Reading →
November 13, 2014
Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for November 13th from 12:28 to 12:42:
November 12, 2014
Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for November 12th from 11:32 to 11:41:
November 11, 2014
Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for November 11th from 12:45 to 13:05:
November 10, 2014
Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for November 10th from 14:01 to 14:12:
- Democrats Create An ALEC-Killer – Chastened by the conservative movement’s startling success at using national money to dominate state legislatures, liberal activists this week will ask top donors to support a plan to reverse the precipitous Democratic decline in state governments, where the party was trounced yet again on Tuesday.
- How State-Sponsored Lotteries Steal From the Poor to Give to the Rich – Last year, in the words of “Last Week Tonight” host John Oliver, “Americans basically spent more on the lottery than they spent on America.” And although lottery commercials would have you believe that proceeds go to charitable causes, the truth is a bit more complicated.
- Ferguson police’s other sin: Why grand jury must probe Brown shooting’s aftermath – As we wait to hear the grand jury's decision, one part of the horrific episode is getting way too little attention
- Video games are not making us more violent, study shows – Long-term research into homicide rates and depictions of violence in video games and movies shows no significant relationship
- Empathy Heroes: 5 People Who Changed the World By Taking Compassion to the Extreme – Teresa MacBain helps nontheists build church-like communities with social support and rituals that appeal to many religious adherents.
- Former Christian Minister: Why I Left Christianity and Started an Atheist Church – Teresa MacBain helps nontheists build church-like communities with social support and rituals that appeal to many religious adherents.
- Op-Ed Columnist: The Latest Frivolous Attack on Obamacare – Politics, not legal reasoning, is behind the assault on Obamacare that is now headed to the Supreme Court.
- Op-Ed Columnist: The Obama Opposition – Republicans would erase the accomplishments and the man.
- “It’s symbolic annihilation of history, and it’s done for a purpose. It really enforces white supremacy”: Edward Baptist on the lies we tell about slavery – Edward Baptist on horrifying truth that we memorialize Confederate soldiers and not Americans who died enslaved
- Michael Brown’s parents to testify before UN about Ferguson police violence – Lesley McSpadden and Michael Brown Sr allege in report that their sons killing violated torture rules and Ferguson police systematically target black people