ASK Musings

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August 2017



What I’m Reading – August 20, 2017

Written by , Posted in What I'm Reading

Horrific Legislative, Executive, and Judicial Action

“Yet even if all 1,500 Confederate symbols across the country were removed overnight by some sudden supernatural force, the pernicious crusade to roll back voting rights would continue apace, with voters of color suffering its effects disproportionately. Pushing back hard against those who would purge voter rolls, demand forms of voter ID that many Americans don’t possess, and limit times and venues for voting — this should be a paramount cause for the Trump era.” Voter suppression is the civil rights issue of this era (by the Editorial Board of the Washington Post)

“Desperate, Arias hired an attorney to help him pursue the injury benefits that Florida law says all employees, including unauthorized immigrants, are entitled to receive. Then one morning after he dropped off two of his boys at school, Arias was pulled over and arrested, while his toddler watched from his car seat. Arias was charged with using a false Social Security number to get a job and to file for workers’ comp. The state insurance fraud unit had been tipped off by a private investigator hired by his employer’s insurance company.” They Got Hurt At Work — Then They Got Deported (by Michael Grabell for NPR)

““What we have is a sweeping request for every single file we have” in relation to, said Chris Ghazarian, general counsel for DreamHost, which hosts the site. “The search warrant is not only dealing with everything in relation to the website but also tons of data about people who visited it.” The request also covers emails between the site’s organizers and people interested in attending the protests, any deleted messages and files, as well as subscriber information — such as names and addresses — and unpublished photos and blog posts that are stored in the site’s database, according to the warrant and Ghazarian.” Tech firm is fighting a federal demand for data on visitors to an anti-Trump website (by Ellen Nakashima for Washington Post)

“But not everyone agrees with that statement. State lawmakers in at least six GOP-controlled states have pushed for laws this year that would shield drivers who hit protesters. The bills are part of a wave of anti-protest proposals introduced since the rise of the Black Lives Matter and anti-Trump resistance movements.” Republicans in 6 states are trying to protect drivers who hit protesters (by Kira Lerner for Think Progress)

White Supremacy

“But turnout on the white supremacist side was incredibly small. They were outnumbered, by the thousands, by counter-protestors, who flooded Boston Common and the surrounding streets to rally against neo-Nazis, the KKK, and racist violence.” White supremacist rally fizzles, overtaken by massive anti-racism march (by Jessica M. Goldstein for Think Progress)

“Over time, I noticed that her opinions and politics began to skew right. Or at least, her rhetoric sounded as such. She often questioned my rage at injustices in society. Not so much the instances that annoyed me, but my belief that America, as an institution, was at fault. She preferred to believe that there were just bad apples out there making bad choices. My issues were isolated, not systemic. No matter how I presented my case, she always found a way to insinuate that maybe it wasn’t as bad as I was making it out to be and that everything wasn’t about race. These conversations always frustrated me because I couldn’t understand how anybody who watched the news, and then heard her own flesh and blood speak passionately about his own experiences, could doubt with so much conviction.” How Trump Ruined My Relationship With My White Mother (by Panama Jackson for The Root)

“The ACLU’s Virginia branch defended the right of white nationalists, neo-Nazis and other groups under the banner “Unite the Right” to protest the removal of a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee from a Charlottesville park. “The events of Charlottesville require any judge, any police chief and any legal group to look at the facts of any white-supremacy protests with a much finer comb,” said Mr. Romero. The revised policy marries the 97-year-old civil-rights group’s First Amendment work with the organization’s stance on firearms, which aligns with many municipalities and states that bar protesters from carrying weapons.” ACLU Will No Longer Defend Hate Groups Protesting With Firearms (by Joe Palazzolo for the Wall Street Journal)

“But while the president may have muddied the waters for those who were not present on those Virginia streets last weekend, the protesters, reporters, and clergy present understand the true character of the chaos: violence on Friday night, with police asleep at the switch, led to an uneasy atmosphere Saturday morning. Police again played the bystander’s role the next morning, fanning a tense morning into a bloody afternoon of pitched battles in the public street.” The police failed Charlottesville (via Alan Pike for Think Progress)

“Online, white nationalists may use pseudonyms, VPNs, and other techniques to try to mask their identity out of fear of doxxing, or having their personal, sensitive information leaked online. But at Charlottesville, those who attended had no reasonable expectation of privacy, according to the organizers themselves.” Doxxing White Supremacists Is Making Them Terrified (by Steven Blum for Broadly)

“The torch bearers who descended upon Charlottesville this past weekend to protest the removal of a statue honoring Lee appear young enough to have attended grade school after the separation, but it’s clear they received the same message. In Lee, they see a hero. Not only do they see a hero, they see themselves. The chant that animated their march was, “You will not replace us.” More than 150 years after the end of Civil War, they choose to identify with those who took up arms in order to maintain holding people in bondage. I wish I found this more surprising.” Historical Amnesia About Slavery Is a Tool of White Supremacy (by Mychal Denzel Smith for The Nation)

“But these right-wing extremists are the same group that helped put Donald Trump into office, aligning with his discriminatory, socially regressive agenda. According to The New York Times, David Duke, a former imperial wizard of the Ku Klux Klan, told reporters on Saturday that the protesters were “going to fulfill the promises of Donald Trump” to “take our country back.” So it’s no wonder why we’ve seen Donald Trump focus his agenda almost entirely on countering Islamist extremism while skirting around white supremacist extremism.” Right Wing Terrorism in America (by Hannah Rose for Bust)

““Me and about five of my friends were out protesting. We thought [the racists] left, but at one point they came back. Everyone was exchanging words with the group, but then the KKK and white supremacists just rushed us,” Harris told The Root in an interview. “They were beating me with poles. I have eight staples in my head, a broken wrist and a chipped tooth,” Harris said.” Interview: 20-Year-Old Deandre Harris Speaks Out About Being Assaulted by White Supremacists in Charlottesville, Va. (by Yesha Callahan for The Root)

“The road that James Alex Fields Jr. sped down was paved with countless editorials in major newspapers and magazines that positioned student movements or black women on Twitter as existential threats to “free speech.” It was paved by those who said they were less afraid of Richard Spencer than the man who punched him. It was paved by countless people saying, “they’re just words” or “it’s just the internet, it’s not real life” in defence of extremists’ vitriol, never realizing that such statements are not mere words on the wind: they are promises.” When ‘Free Speech’ Kills (by Katherine Cross for The Establishment)

Fight Back

“”Find what’s wrong, don’t ignore it, don’t look the other way,” Bro said. “Say to yourself, ‘What can I do to make a difference?’ And that’s how you’re going to make my child’s death worthwhile.” “I want this to spread. I don’t want this to die. This is just the beginning of Heather’s legacy,” she continued.” The mother of Heather Heyer, Charlottesville victim, just gave a must-watch speech. (by Parker Molloy for Upworthy)

“Our country’s entire social, political, and economic system is built off of the promise that poor and working class whites would always get more than everyone else — that they deserved more than everyone else. When the profits of white supremacy prove to be meager, because capitalism will always send the spoils to the top few, the anger of being cheated out of their just rewards is easily funneled into racist hate.” So You Want To Fight White Supremacy (by Ijeoma Oluo for The Establishment)

“Dozens of NYPD officers joined Raymond in wearing black shirts with the logo “#ImWithKap.” City Council member Jumaane Williams opted for a red Kaepernick jersey. Near the end of the rally, all involved raised their fists and took a synchronized knee in support of the one-time San Francisco starter.” Frank Serpico, NYPD cops raise their fists, take a knee for team-less Colin Kaepernick at Brooklyn rally (by Dale W. Eisinger and Larry McShane for NY Daily News)

“In his defense of terrorist extremist factions, the president also lumped in the anti-fascist (or “antifa”) movement. While many are familiar with the various segments of white supremacy, few people have taken the time to explain the origins and motivations of the antifa movement that recently stepped into the spotlight, so we thought we’d offer this explainer.” Yes, Anti-Fascists Are Violent … and Necessary (by Michael Harriot for The Root)

Something Good

“Farooq Aftab, the event organiser and the deputy head of AMYA, told The Independent the location was important because it showed Muslims were engaged in public life across the UK, despite the area itself not being particularly diverse. “We recognise Islam as a religion of peace and integration which promotes unity and this is what this event will show. We want to make sure that we bring people together and that we show unity and humanity,” he said, adding the event will help to fight “misconceptions about Islam”. The event’s motto “every act of goodness is charity” is a message of the Prophet Muhammad who according to Muslims encouraged charitable actions towards others.” Muslim youth group combating Islamophobia by raising £500,000 for charity with single event (by Chloe Farand for The Independent)

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