De Blasio’s NYC:
“The NYPD, seemingly determined to double down on violence against black people after the post-chokehold death of Eric Garner, apparently used the banned tactic again on a seven-months-pregnant woman after she grilled [yes, grilled, as in, cooked food] on the sidewalk in front of her home this weekend.”
De Blasio’s NYC:
Of course Gazans have created a series of underground tunnels. They are utterly besieged, imprisoned, and cutoff from the rest of the world by Israel’s barbaric siege (abetted by Egypt). The only reason that Gazans have been able to stave off utter and complete mass starvation, death, and social collapse (i.e., genocide), is because they have been able to get goods, commodities, medicines, foodstuffs, and yes, weapons, through underground tunnels.
The difference between Gaza and Israel in this latter respect is that while Israel gets its first-rate weaponry — helicopters, fighter jets, bombs, tanks — directly and openly from international sources (namely, the U.S.), Gaza is compelled to get its low-grade weaponry — rockets, bullets, guns — indirectly from international sources through subterranean means.
Largest Palestinian march in the West Bank since 2nd Intifada happening now and Israeli forces are responding with live ammunition. Follow #48KMarch on twitter.
As I keep saying, this time is different. The largest march in decades taking place in Palestine right now as thousands march from Ramallah to Jerusalem in solidarity with their brothers and sisters in Gaza. Absolutely incredible. May Allah protect them all. #48KMarch #FreePalestine
Military device used on Detroit protest against Water Shutoffs
Learn more » http://bit.ly/1nxYeUF
This is shameful.
After watching continuous acts of police abuse and brutality from coast-to-coast, perhaps the real question is, have we reached a point where federal authorities need to step in?
… The video footage that emerged of Eric Garner’s encounter with police is disturbing on multiple levels and very difficult to watch. I caution anyone who is about to view it to be prepared to witness a level of disregard for human life that should disgust and outrage us all. I cannot understand how anyone can choke an unarmed man, and continue to do so despite the fact that he is saying he cannot breathe over and over and over again. Let’s put aside the fact that chokeholds are illegal; where is the humanity? This man is literally telling you he cannot breathe. And to add insult to injury, EMS workers and others that arrive on the scene also fail to do anything to revive or assist Garner as this footage shows. The level of disregard is utterly frightening. And what might you ask was Eric Garner’s alleged crime? Selling loose cigarettes.
On the other side of the country, NAN’s LA chapter leader Rev. K.W. Tullos worked with other leaders to organize demonstrations to call for justice in the case of Marlene Pinnock. The videotape in this outrageous case shows a CHP officer punching this unarmed woman in the face and head 10 to 15 times as she lay on the ground according to numerous reports. The excuse in this incident is that Pinnock wasn’t listening to the officer’s commands. In Garner’s case, the excuse is that he was trying to sell loose cigarettes? Are we serious? Are we even having a serious discussion at this point when such ridiculous excuses are being thrown around?
If you were outraged by the police murders of Amadou Diallo, Sean Bell, or any of the countless others, you need to be fucking outraged about this. This Black man was lynched in broad daylight by the NYC police. The cops are a terrorist organization, plain and simple. Sign the petition linked to in the article.
reports from Staten Island on the wave anger and outrage after New York City police targeted an innocent man for harassment—and caused his horrific death.
CHANTS OF “I can’t breathe! I can’t breathe!” rang out in the streets of Staten Island last Saturday, July 19, as demonstrators marched to protest the killing of an unarmed Black man, Eric Garner, who died after being strangled by New York police in an illegal chokehold.
The chant was a reference to Garner’s last pleading words, which can be heard on a horrifying video that captured the murder committed by New York cops.
Now, family and community members are full of grief and anger about the death of a man universally described as a “teddy bear”—and they are demanding justice. Eric Garner is dead today, not just because of the violent actions of one cop, but because of a whole police department where racial profiling and brutality are the rule, and a city government under successive mayors that has demanded aggressive police practices in the name of maintaining “law and order.” …
Sign a petition calling for Justice for Eric Garner at the Color of Change website.
Innocent, unarmed Black man choked to death on the street by NYC police
Americans Killed by Cops Now Outnumber Americans Killed in Iraq War ~ Read more: http://bit.ly/18GjLSn
An officer with the Department of Homeland Security opened fire on Palestine solidarity activists as they drove away from a pro-Israel rally in front of the Federal Building in Westwood in Los Angeles on Sunday. The activists have also complained that they were attacked by Israel supporters.
The Electronic Intifada’s Ali Abunimah was attacked by Los Angeles police in the same area while filming a pro-Israel rally last week.
After being shot at, the men were detained by the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department and then smeared by various media outlets as violent members of Hamas.
Update, Tuesday, 15 July: Israel supporters assaulted Palestine activist
Palestine solidarity protesters were assaulted for waving a Palestinian flag out of the window of their truck on Sunday at a Los Angeles rally in support of Israeli airstrikes on Gaza, according to Reuters.
The flag was torn to the ground and stomped on by the Israel supporters, prompting the Palestine supporters to exit their truck to retrieve it. While kneeling to recover the flag, one Palestine activist was “stomped and kicked” by pro-Israel demonstrators. Yet it was four Palestine activists who “were booked on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon after some of those involved in the melee were seen brandishing wooden poles,” reported Reuters.
The Los Angeles Times clarified that the “wooden poles” were actually wooden posts used to prop up their protest signs.
In other words, protest signs, when “brandished” by Palestine solidarity activists, are deadly weapons.
Meanwhile, the Department of Homeland Security officer who opened fire on pro-Palestine demonstrators has been placed on administrative leave pending an investigation.
Chicago police shot and killed a 16-year-old boy as he hid under a car in the Gresham neighborhood, one of five people shot by officers in the city over 36 hours, according to authorities.
… A woman who lives on the block, Keiyana Hawkins, said she went outside to search for her children after she heard gunfire. She said she saw a young man running and surrendering with raised hands when a police officer opened fire.
In horrific news out of Fort Myers, Florida, a trans woman of color has been murdered, and her body set on fire, then dumped in a garbage bin. I just can’t right now, I just can’t even.
The way the incident is being handled sets a dangerous precedent.
The news: This shocking video shows El Paso, Texas, police officer Jose Flores shooting Daniel Saenz, a 37-year-old bodybuilder, while the man was in police custody, handcuffed and within the security perimeter of a city jail. For resisting arrest, Saenz lost his life.
The bullet entered Saenz through his left shoulder, piercing his heart. El Paso police claimed it was an accident and that Saenz presented a lethal threat, capable of reversing his handcuffs and using them as a lethal weapon a la No Country For Old Men. But the graphic video released by a Texas court, which you can see below, is pretty clear. The relevant sequence, clearly showing the pistol shot that killed Saenz, begins around 18:00.
Saenz was brought into police custody after erratic behavior at a local grocery store led to him being taken to Del Sol Medical Center. There, he allegedly attacked an off-duty policeman and members of staff. No one questions that Saenz’s behavior warranted intervention, and it seems clear that he was mentally unwell.
Yet despite video footage demonstrating that rash actions by Officer Flores led to the senseless death of a man in custody, he was never indicted, though the New York Daily News reports that it’s unclear whether he is still on duty.
21 June 2014
Two days ago, Annie, a 2-year old child with a heart condition, died in Illinois because she was refused a heart transplant.
The reason? She was born with Down Syndrome, and had what are often referred to as “special needs”. In the U.S., children with disabilities such as Down Syndrome are nearly always automatically removed from organ donor transplant lists. Their lives are deemed less valuable by medical professionals, administrators, insurance companies, and state and federal law-makers and enforcers.
As journalist Jenna Glatzer wrote at Salon.com a few years back, “In the U.K., the policy is absolute: No medical center will give a transplant to a patient with Down syndrome. [But] in the U.S. policy is unofficial — there’s no written rule excluding people with disabilities. However, in practice, the statistic speaks for itself: Only one person with Down syndrome has ever been granted a heart transplant in this country.”
One hospital medical director put it bluntly to Glatzer: “My main aim is to make people live and to become independent human beings that will live a fulfilled life. I have grave doubts as to whether … a Down’s sufferer [would] ever be able to lead a totally independent life. If asked to make a decision between a normal person and a Down’s patient, [we take] the person who is the most whole.”
Such life-and-death decisions are made in the medical industry all the time, and often the reasons provided by doctors or medical administrators are not as blatantly bigoted as the one above. (Though this still leaves aside the basic problem that such decisions are subject to the whim of unaccountable medical technocrats, rather than truly being in the hands of the people themselves, as per the norms of what is generally understood as “democracy”).
To me, though, this is not really a “medical” issue or problem, at base. It is a social one. It is not the medical field which is the root of the devaluation of the lives of disabled people in this society, though the medical-industrial complex has historically and presently played an outrageous role in justifying and contributing to such devaluation.
At base, it is about what our society as a whole deems to be a “worth-while” life. Starting with the advent of the industrial revolution, it came to be an accepted fact that the purpose of society was to produce, accumulate, and exchange as many goods, commodities, and wealth as quickly as possible. If that meant throwing children into factories; so be it. Paying starvation wages; so be it. And if it meant casting aside to die all those individuals deemed incapable of engaging in sufficiently profitable and productive labor in the factories, mills, and workhouses emerging everywhere; so be it.
This is why the US has institutionalized, sterilized, and killed millions of disabled people over the course of its existence (and even today continues such practices). In a capitalist economy based on prioritizing profit and breakneck production over all else — in which cutthroat competition reigns supreme as per the dystopian dictates of “survival of the fittest” free-marketeers and ideologues — all those humans who are incapable of laboring under the prevailing rate and pace of industrial exploitation are considered mere “burdens” by the bean-counters and cynics who rule over the economy (and consequentially the polity itself).
We are not humans first in such a society, but rather “human resources” compelled to sell ourselves on a “job market.” The value of our labor — i.e., our capacity to produce surplus value, or profit, for a prospective employer — is what determines our value in society as a whole.
The lower one’s “marketability” as such a human resource, the lower one’s social position in society, replete with the poverty, ostracism, and perceived inferiority that comes with it.
The fact of the matter is that the measure of the value of human life should not be, need not be, and hasn’t always been, commensurate with one’s ability to participate fully in specifically capitalist, i.e., exploitative and grueling, conditions of social labor (i.e., the total societal production, exchange, and distribution of goods and services).
What if the purpose of life was not to be deemed sufficiently “valuable” to an employer — or to pursue profit for profit’s sake, but merely the pursuit of happiness, love, meaningful social interaction, and creativity, based upon a society in which each person was able to contribute to the total quantity of socially-necessary labor (i.e., the total work necessary to enable society to function and equitably prosper) according to no other consideration than their unique abilities and creativity?
All humans are capable of loving and being loved; of interacting with other humans and their environment in unique, special, and intrinsically valuable ways. And that is the point of human existence. Not having a profit-margin that outpaces a competitor; or a GDP that outpaces a rival nation. These latter things are artifices imposed upon us by capitalist-driven market forces and divisions. They are not natural, and certainly not necessary.
At present, the human species has developed the wealth, technology, and productive capacity to provide for all; to reduce the labor burden placed on each, and enable the participation of all in the procurement of our social necessities. To allow for the free development of all humans as an end in itself; to allow for the flourishing and integration of all humans in greater and more harmonious intercourse regardless of the unlimited mental and physical differences which obtain between us.
When just the US alone spends nearly $2 billion A DAY maintaining its military machinery; when the 400 richest individual Americans have more combined wealth ($2 trillion) than the bottom half of the entire population combined, and more than the entire GDP of 80% of the nations on this planet; when we can find the means to pay the average CEO of a large U.S. corporation a wage of $7,000 per hour;— when we look at all these things it is clear that — if apportioned equitably — we more than have the resources and the ability to provide for all human beings and enable all human beings to live as free and full members of society.
In such a context, the notion that a disabled child or adult is a “burden” on the rest of the human population is not only barbaric and bigoted, it is anachronistic. It is a notion which continues to corrupt our species for no other reason than that the form of socio-economic organization (yes, capitalism) which comports with — and gives rise to — such prejudices, lingers on as the hegemonic system under which human affairs are organized.
It is high past time that such a system — and all of the unnecessary, barbaric, and backward ideas which it fosters — be consigned to historical bygone, once and for all.
For the first time CBS 5 News gets a tour inside the Nogales warehouse holding close to a thousand children who have crossed the border illegally and without their parents. You can see the slideshow of what we witnessed here: http://fb.cbs5az.com/1phfGtS
What do you think the American government should do with these babies, children and teens?
[Also, I include the original text above as written by CBS News to demonstrate the bigoted way in which they even approach this clear crime against humanity].