Saturday, August 12, 2017

President Trump Addresses Violence in Virginia

Source: CBS News

Virginia Governor McAuliffe Holds Press Conference to Discuss Charlottesville Protests


Why Won’t Trump Denounce White Nationalists?

The following commentary was provided by Richard Cohen, President of the Southern Poverty Law Center.

After the deadly clash between hundreds of white supremacists and counter-protesters today in Charlottesville, Virginia, President Trump called for Americans to “come together.”

He used similar words in his victory speech in the wee hours of Nov. 9, even as white supremacists began to celebrate.

The problem is that Trump’s words are hollow.

His calls for the country to unite will continue to be meaningless as long he fails to take responsibility for his role in dividing it – something he conspicuously avoided again during his press conference today.

“It’s been going on for a long time,” Trump said. “Not Donald Trump. Not Barack Obama.”

It’s true. America has had racial strife since its founding.

But from the day he came down the escalator in the tower that bears his name, Trump consciously poured fuel on the fire. He ran a racist, xenophobic campaign that energized the radical right – that “unearthed some demons,” as U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford put it.

The day after Trump was elected, hate incidents soared. Many of them were carried out in his name.

Neo-Nazi David Duke, the former Klan leader who endorsed Trump during his campaign, had this to say about the deadly violence in Charlottesville:

“This represents a turning point for the people of this country. We are determined to take our country back. We are going to fulfill the promises of Donald Trump. That’s what we believed in. That’s why we voted for Donald Trump, because he said he’s going to take our country back.”

Duke’s words reflect the views of a white nationalist movement that sees Trump as its champion.

Let there be no mistake: This is a fascist movement that threatens not only extremist violence but our democracy as well.

All the while, Trump continues to employ as his chief strategist the former head of Breitbart News, Stephen Bannon, who has proudly boasted that he provided “the platform for the alt-right” – a fancy term for white supremacy in the digital age.

Trump calls for the country to unite. But he is still ducking responsibility for his role in dividing it.

Until he apologizes and takes responsibility for the damage he has caused and enacts policies to mend the wounds in our country, his words will continue to ring hollow.

National Action Network's Statement Regarding the State of Emergency in Charlottesville

Washington, DC -- The current state of emergency in Charlottesville and loss of lives is a scathing reminder to us all that the fight for justice is not over – we still have so much more to do. But we cannot forget that this is also a symptom of the rhetoric the Trump Administration has supported since the Presidential Election and into the White House, promoting violence, attacking civil rights, and allowing organizations backed by bigots to thrive.

The National Action Network calls on President Trump to address the causes of these events, denounce the white supremacists at the very heart of this conflict, and start working towards peace.

On August 28th, NAN, along with faith leaders of all ages, will unite at the Martin Luther King Memorial to send a message that religious communities will not stand by idly as atrocities like these are committed and rights are stripped from people in their congregations including voting rights, health care, economic opportunity, criminal justice rights, and more. We stand with the counter-demonstrators in Charlottesville, and will continue to fight for justice across the country. 

Source: Mercury

Alt-Right Rally & Counter Protesters in Charlottesville, VA

Source: American Revolution

White Nationalists Hold Torch Lit March Through UVA Campus

Source: All InOne News

Friday, August 11, 2017

A Song for the Soul...and Black Community: 'Lift Every Voice'

Terri Lyne Carrington with Melba Moore, Bebe Winans, Bobby Brown, Howard Hewitt, Gerald Albright, Jasmine Guy, Debbie Allen, Jeffrey Osborne Louis Gossett and more.  

In the wake of everything that's happening, economically, politically, racially and socially, stand proud and stand strong, Black America.   


Trailblazers in Black History: Francis "Frank" Johnson

Francis Johnson was a celebrated Philadelphia composer and bandleader.  Primarily known as a bugler, Johnson also performed on the violin. Born in Martinique, West Indies, Johnson moved to Philadelphia around 1809. Abolitionists in that city had created an atmosphere where many Black people lived in relative freedom.  

The publication of Johnson's Collection of New Cottillions, about 1818, brought widespread notice. He developed a school of Black musicians, and was the first to give formal band concerts.  

By the 1820s, Johnson was a successful leader of bands, and dance orchestras for which his musicians substituted string instruments. He toured the nation with his band, and was the first American to take an ensemble to Europe. He is often cited as the first African American to have his music published, and the first to participate in integrated concerts. 

'Flashback Friday': Segregation at All Costs (Bull Connor and the Civil Rights Movement)

NFL Losing Millions Over Kaepernick Situation

A Commentary by Dr. Boyce Watkins

This video was published on YouTube on August 11, 2017. 

Source: Boyce Watkins

NY Teen Spent a Year in Rikers Island on Fabricated Murder Charges

Source: Roland Martin

Protesters Clash at Downtown Dallas Demonstration

This video was published on YouTube on August 10, 2017. 

Protesters for and against the removal of Dallas' Confederate monuments clash during a demonstration at downtown's Pioneer Park Cemetery.

GOP Divide: Behind the Trump, McConnell Health Care Fallout

Trump: North Korea 'Will Truly Regret' Any Attack on Guam

If North Korea Goes to War with US, China Will Remain Neutral

Source: FRANCE 24 English

US - North Korea Tensions: Why is Guam in the Centre of All Attentions?

Source: FRANCE 24 English

Celebrations in Kenya as Kenyatta is Declared President

Source: SABC Digital News

Venezuela: 5th Opposition Mayor Sacked Over Protests

Source: FRANCE 24 English

A Boat of Migrants Lands on a Beach, Surprising Sunbathers in Spain

Source: FRANCE 24 English

Europe Tainted Eggs Scandal: Crisis Escalates into "Diplomatic Spat"

Source: FRANCE 24 English

Iraq: Yazidi Families Try to Rebuild After Fleeing Islamic State Group

Source: FRANCE 24 English

Refugee Crisis: Dozens of Migrants Deliberately Drowned by Smugglers

Source: FRANCE 24 English

Thursday, August 10, 2017

A Discussion on the Federal Climate Change Report

E&E News White House reporter Zack Colman discusses a new federal climate change report drafted by scientists from 13 federal agencies and whether the Trump administration will approve it.

Source: C-SPAN 

President Donald Trump Takes Questions After Earlier Remarks on Rising Tensions with North Korea

Source: ABC News

Saving Our Youth: Teen Suicide Prevention

This video was published on YouTube on June 5, 2013. 

In this video created by Mayo Clinic, teens describe common signs that a teen is considering suicide and provide encouragement for communicating directly and immediately for support and safety. It also Includes suggestions for what to say to a teen who may be at risk for suicide and ways to keep them safe. Things can get better.

Source: Mayo Clinic

Trailblazers in Black History: Mark E. Dean

This video was published on YouTube on August 26, 2013. 

Dr. Mark Dean, a co-creator of the personal computer, speaks about his contributions at IBM as well as what he learned that will help his students.

State Troopers Policing Cities With High Crime Rates Stir Tensions

Source: Roland Martin

NAACP Legal Defense Fund Appeals Ruling Allowing White Alabama Town to Secede From School District

The NAACP Legal Defense Fund has a message for a mostly white Alabama town that got the green light from a federal judge to split from a racially-mixed county school district and start its own system — not so fast.

The civil rights organization has made good on its vow to appeal Judge Madeline Haikala's ruling in April that allowed the town of Gardendale to secede from the Jefferson County school district, even though "race was the motivating factor" for many supporters of the split.

"The District Court agreed that Gardendale’s bid to form its own school district was designed to exclude black school children," said LDF's senior counsel Chris Kemmitt. "In filing this appeal, we are simply asking the Circuit Court to follow that finding to its logical conclusion and prohibit Gardendale from creating a separate, segregated school district at the expense of the broader community." 

Click here for the full article.

Source: NBC News 

No Charges for DC Police Officer Who Fatally Shot Unarmed Black Motorcyclist

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser said she wants the officer who shot and killed an unarmed black motorcyclist to resign. News4's Shomari Stone and Mark Segraves report how the community has reacted and what could happen moving forward.  

Click here for video. 

This video was published on the NBC News website on August. 9, 2017.

Source: NBC News

CVS Charges More for Generic Drugs Paid for With Insurance, Lawsuit Claims

A California woman is suing CVS, the largest pharmacy chain in America, for allegedly charging more to customers who use insurance to pay for certain generic prescriptions.

The lawsuit, filed on Monday, accuses CVS Health Corporation of participating in a "fraudulent scheme" and claims the plaintiff, Megan Schultz, paid $165.68 for a prescription in July that, had she bought without using insurance, would have only cost $92.

"CVS never told her that paying in cash would allow her to pay 45% less for the drug; instead, CVS remained silent and took her money — knowing full well that no reasonable consumer would make such a choice," the complaint says. 

Click here for the full article. 

Trump Surprised by FBI Raid on Manafort Home: ‘Pretty Tough Stuff’

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump said Thursday he was surprised by the early-morning FBI raid on the residence of his former top campaign aide Paul Manafort, calling it a "very, very strong signal or whatever."

"I thought it was a very — you know, they do that very seldom, so I was surprised to see it," Trump said of the raid during a lengthy, wide-ranging question-and-answer session with a group of reporters at his 
Bedminster golf club. "I was very, very surprised to see it."

Trump said he's always found Manafort to be "a very decent man," and added that he hasn't spoken to him "in a long time." 

Click here for the full article. 

Trump Officially Declares Opioid Crisis a National Emergency

Trump: Maybe North Korea Warning "Wasn't Tough Enough"

Source: CBS News

North Korea Details Guam Attack Plan

Source: CBS News

Engineer Behind Controversial Google Memo Speaks Out

Source: CBS News

U.S. Expels Two Cuban Diplomats

Source: CBS News

The 'No-Nonsense' Judge That Could Decide Trump's Fate

By Betsy Woodruff

Robert Mueller may be the face of the independent investigation into Russian meddling in the U.S. election, but a cybersecurity wonk on the federal bench may help decide Trump & Co.’s fate.

Behind the scenes, Beryl Howell is in a position to make pivotal decisions. And her importance could only grow. Federal court rules indicate that she signed off on Mueller’s request to assemble a grand jury, a highly secretive gathering of about two dozen people in Washington’s E. Barrett Prettyman courthouse that will grill witnesses and demand Trump associates’ documents.

And if (well, when) Team Trump’s lawyers hit back, Howell will be the umpire-in-chief: deciding whether or not Trump allies’ lawyers can quash subpoenas, and whether or not people like Jared Kushner can invoke what’s known as executive privilege to get out of testifying under oath before Mueller’s grand jury.

These decisions could be immensely consequential.

“Even though she worked for Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee, she’s been very straight-arrow as a judge and she wouldn’t be impaneling a jury for the heck of it, or anything less than there being ample justification for it,” said a former federal lobbyist, referring to Howell’s previous work for Sen. Patrick Leahy. “She’s like Mueller: He wouldn’t ask for it unless he had more than enough evidence to justify it, and she wouldn’t have granted it unless he did.” 

Click here for the full article. 

Source: The Daily Beast

SPLC Releases Campus Guide to Countering ‘Alt-Right’

With college students returning to class in the coming weeks, the Southern Poverty Law Center released a new guide today that advises them on how to respond when speakers associated with the growing white nationalist, or “alt-right,” movement, appear on campus. 

In recent months, numerous campuses have been rocked by student protests sparked by the scheduled appearances of alt-right figures such as Richard Spencer and Milo Yiannopoulos.

The alt-right activity is part of a larger surge in campus organizing and recruitment by white nationalists. Now, the movement is seeking to capitalize on the publicity and momentum it gained amid its strong support of the Trump campaign.

Some of the recent protests, at Berkeley and elsewhere, have attracted far-left activists known as anti-fascists and have turned violent, igniting a debate over freedom of speech on campus.

In its new publication – The Alt-Right on Campus: What Students Need to Know – the SPLC advises students to avoid direct confrontation with alt-right speakers and their supporters, many of whom are young white supremacists eager to engage in street fighting with students and anti-fascist protesters. 

Click here for the full article. 

Source: The Southern Poverty Law Center

No, We Aren't All Praising Gen. Kelly's New Role

By Nida Khan 

Donald J. Trump isn’t acting on his own. Following his ‘fire and fury’ threats to North Korea, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders addressed reporters on Wednesday and said in part: “Gen. Kelly and others on the NSC team were well aware of the tone of the statement of the President prior to delivery. The words were his own. The tone and strength of the message were discussed beforehand.” I for one am not surprised.

If we were to go by earlier news reports, political commentary and pundit insight, Gen. John Kelly was the greatest thing to happen to the White House since Election Day. He would reign in the chaos, get Trump to stop tweeting and acting out, bring order and lay down the law. While the current White House clearly needs some structure, blindly supporting yet another general in the executive branch is not the answer. In the midst of nonstop breaking news and self-inflicted antics, this White House has somehow made people from all ends of the political spectrum forget that further militarization of the West Wing should make us all pause – if not, object.

“What I do is, I authorize my military,” said Trump after the U.S. dropped the ‘mother of all bombs’ (MOAB) in Afghanistan earlier this year. He went on to say that he’s given the military “total authorization”. Hardly anyone blinked. Gen. Kelly serving as Chief of Staff to this President is just the latest empowerment of the military industrial complex into our civilian government. Kelly joins national security adviser Lt. General H.R. McMaster, Secretary of Defense ‘mad dog’ Mattis (a retired Marine general) and Joseph Dunford, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and a Marine general. The last time we saw this many generals in the cabinet was probably right after World War II.

Prior to becoming the ‘savior’ of a dysfunctional White House, Kelly had a brief stint as Secretary of Homeland Security (thanks to Trump as well). Kelly has not only worked to carry out Trump’s desire to tighten visa screenings and implement tougher deportation policies, but he has been an open supporter of the travel ban (aka Muslim ban), calling it “lawful and constitutional”. But in order to fully understand Kelly and what his military background truly means for this nation (and the world for that matter), those of us who object to draconian measures, nativism, torture of prisoners and endless war must speak out.

Click here for the full article.

Source: The Huffington Post