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Human Rights & Civil Liberties

Paul Fell | Something's Burning /

Weekend Read: It’s past time for white supremacy to die

  • In the last year we’ve seen the growth of the so-called “alt-right,” a rise in neo-Nazi groups and, in response, a spike in black nationalist groups.

The common thread?

White supremacy.

This weekend we're bringing you an editorial by our Intelligence Project Director Heidi Beirich from our latest Intelligence Report, reminding us that if we want to reverse a trend that saw hate groups rise for the third year in a row, we must dismantle the white supremacy that's embedded so deeply in American society.

  • Related: Hate Groups Attack Southern Poverty Law Center, and Some Journalists Pile On

Heidi Beirich, Southern Poverty Leadership Conference (SPLC) If you like reading this article, consider joining the crew of all reader-supported Evergreene Digest by contributing the equivalent of a cafe latte a month--using the donation button above—so we can bring you more just like it.


February 24, 2018 | There were two dynamics that determined the fate of America's radical right in 2017: the election of President Trump and the fallout from the Charlottesville, Virginia, deadly white nationalist rally.

Extremists rode a wave of euphoria from Trump's January inauguration until August 11, finally having found an uncucked politician who reflected the world they wanted to see: a world where racism was sanctioned by the highest office, immigrants given the boot and Muslims banned. Riding high, a wide range of extremists who usually don't get along — from heavily armed militias, to polo-attired white nationalists, to Klansmen, to neo-Nazis — all joined forces in mid-August in Charlottesville. Beirich leads the SPLC’s Intelligence Project, which publishes the award-winning Intelligence Report and the Hatewatch blog. She is an expert on various forms of extremism, including the white supremacist, nativist and neo-Confederate movements as well as racism in academia.

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Hate Groups Attack Southern Poverty Law Center, and Some Journalists Pile On, Sharona Coutts, Rewire “Last week I did a monologue on the Southern Poverty Law Center and they took issue, yes 'issue,' with me, with some of the statements made on the show, including a joke, a joke, that they do virtually no law,” Fox News' Greg Gutfeld said in a heavily sarcastic tone. Fox News / YouTube

  • Far-right groups attacking the SPLC claim that the group has lost its credibility because it has targeted groups such as the Family Research Council and others on the far right.
  • Related: The New York Time’s Assault on Press Freedom Justice!  No Peace!  Please share this post.

Series | A Nation Under Trump, Part 3 - Trump has put anti-immigrant campaign promises into action

A woman holds a child during an immigration rally near the U.S. Capitol in Washington Sept. 26. (CNS/Tyler Orsburn)

  • The Series: As the anniversary of Donald Trump's election as president of the United States approached, the NCR staff wondered if the calls to action that persisted immediately following the election remained as urgent.
  • Part 3: Trump does seem to be making an effort to intensify his immigration policies. On Oct. 8, he released a list of priorities that include hiring more ICE agents, cracking down on visa overstays and sanctuary cities, building a border wall, facilitating deportation of unaccompanied minors and asylum seekers, and shifting to a "merit-based" immigration system.
  • Related: Demanding a Clean DACA Bill, Now!


Maria Benevento, National Catholic Reporter (NCR)

Nov 2, 2017 | To the alarm of immigrant rights groups, President Donald Trump has spent the first months of his presidency putting his anti-immigrant campaign promises into action.

"That rhetoric we were hearing in the election season has moved into actual policy," said Jeanne Atkinson, executive director of the Catholic Legal Immigration Network Inc. "I think immigration is one of the most prominent policy areas of this administration and ... we're seeing public policy going in the wrong direction."

Maria Benevento is an NCR Bertelsen intern.

Full story … 

Previously in this Series:

Part 2 - The Trump presidency and Europe's dilemma

Part 1 - What has the GOP learned since Trump's election? 


Demanding a Clean DACA Bill, Now! Alvaro Huerta, LA Progressive

  • While undocumented immigrants and their allies continue to organize against the racist Trump administration and complicit Republican leaders, Democratic leaders, who depend on the Latina/o vote, have failed miserably.
  • Related: Make a Call for Dreamers

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House votes to gut the Americans with Disabilities Act; Justice Department Scraps ADA Guidance

  • Part 1: House votes to gut the Americans with Disabilities Act
    • A House bill would make it harder for people with disabilities to hold businesses accountable for inaccessibility.
  • Part 2: Justice Department Scraps ADA Guidance
    • Attorney General Sessions is rescinding several guidance documents clarifying the implications of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

Part 1: House votes to gut the Americans with Disabilities Act People participate in the first annual Disability Pride Parade on July 12, 2015 in New York City. Credit: Stephanie Keith/Getty Images

A House bill would make it harder for people with disabilities to hold businesses accountable for inaccessibility.

Casey Quinlan, Think Progress

Feb 15, 2018 | On Thursday, the House of Representatives voted 225 to 192 in favor of a bill that would significantly weaken the landmark Americans with Disabilities Act and let businesses off the hook for failing to provide accommodations for accessibility.

The ADA Education and Reform Act was introduced by Rep. Ted Poe (R-TX), and was recently adopted in the House Judiciary Committee. It addresses the 1990 civil rights law that protects people with disabilities when it comes to employment; access to public entities, such as transportation; and accommodations to fully enjoy businesses, such as being able to go to a hotel without barriers to getting inside. The law allows people with disabilities to file lawsuits against businesses that don’t provide reasonable accommodations, but supporters of the ADA Education and Reform Act argue that it fuels “drive-by lawsuits.” Casey Quinlan is a policy reporter at ThinkProgress covering economic policy and civil rights issues.

Full story … 

Part 2: Justice Department Scraps ADA Guidance Attorney General Jeff Sessions revoked numerous guidance documents including over a half dozen pertaining to the Americans with Disabilities Act and said more withdrawals may be forthcoming.(Ting Shen/Xinhua/Sipa USA/TNS)

Michelle Diament, Disability Scoop
January 4, 2018 | Attorney General Jeff Sessions said he’s rescinding more than two dozen guidance documents including several clarifying the implications of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Among the 25 revoked documents are a number of ADA-related items dating as far back as 1995 offering guidance on everything from service animals to accessible building practices as well as a 2016 letter on employment of people with disabilities.

Michelle Diament is a seasoned journalist whose work has appeared in People, AARP, The Washington Post Magazine, The Chronicle of Higher Education and Gannett News Service. As the sibling of an adult with autism, Diament is no stranger to the world of disability issues.

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Demanding a Clean DACA Bill, Now!

  • While undocumented immigrants and their allies continue to organize against the racist Trump administration and complicit Republican leaders, Democratic leaders, who depend on the Latina/o vote, have failed miserably.
  • Related: Make a Call for Dreamers

Alvaro Huerta, LA Progressive Now you can follow Evergreene Digest on Facebook. 15, 2018 | Democratic leaders should unite and stand firm against President Donald J. Trump—“Racist-in-Chief” and “Hustler-in-Chief”—and the complicit Republican leaders on passing a clean DACA bill. A clean bill only focuses on DACA or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, which provides temporary protections from deportation and work permits for an estimated 800,000 young undocumented immigrants. Trump announced the phase out of DACA on September 5, 2017, which former President Barack H. Obama—“Deporter-in-Chief”—implemented as an executive order on June 15, 2012.

As a manufactured crisis by Trump, unless Congress acts or the courts successfully intervene on behalf of immigrants, DACA will end on March 5, 2018, creating havoc for hundreds of thousands of undocumented youth. More specifically, if the xenophobic forces in the Trump administration and Congress prevail, the violent Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents—la migra—will target the energetic, productive and hard-working youth with mass deportations. Huerta is an assistant professor of urban and regional planning and ethnic and women’s studies at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. He is the author of “Reframing the Latino Immigration Debate: Towards a Humanistic Paradigm,” published by San Diego State University Press (2013).

Full story … 


Make a Call for Dreamers, Indivisible Team

  • Immigrant youth have waited too long for a permanent solution to the crisis created by Trump’s vicious deportation agenda. 122 Dreamers lose their protection every day. The time for hesitation is over.
  • See where your Senators stand and make a call to Senators who are voting to deport Dreamers. Justice!  No Peace!  Please share this post.

Rachel Meeropol on Illegal Detentions


Former US Attorney John Ashcroft

It seems to me incredibly relevant that the communities likely to be subjected to discriminatory and arbitrary national security policies are black and brown communities … . That it seems that the rights of those individuals maybe don’t weigh quite as heavily as the rights of others, and that’s something we have to confront.

Rachel Meeropol, Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR) To stay on top of important articles like these, sign up here to receive the latest updates  from all reader supported Evergreene Digest


June 30, 2017 | This week on CounterSpin: After 9/11, hundreds of non-citizen Muslim, Arab and South Asian men should be locked up and treated as suspected terrorists, despite no of terrorist connections. That policy came from the highest levels of government; that’s why a suit brought on behalf of some of those men sought damages from top officials, including former Attorney General John Ashcroft. The Supreme Court has just denied the men’s right to sue those officials. What does that mean for accountability when powerful people make unconstitutional policy? We’ll hear from Rachel Meeropol, senior staff attorney at the Center for Constitutional Rights. (MP3)

Transcript: Janine Jackson interviewed Rachel Meeropol for the June 30, 2017, episode of CounterSpin about the Supreme Court’s rejection of an unlawful detention lawsuit. This is a lightly edited transcript.

If We Don’t Have Accountability, There’s Nothing to Stop it From Happening Again <

Rachel Meeropol is a Senior Staff Attorney and Associate Director of Legal Training and Education at the Center for Constitutional Rights, where she works on prisoners' rights, Muslim profiling, criminalization of dissent, and First Amendment issues.

Full story …

What We Discovered During a Year of Documenting Hate


Hate crimes often fall through the cracks in our justice system, and we've only just scratched the surface of understanding why.

Rachel Glickhouse, ProPublica with real independence and integrity is a rare thing. All reader supported Evergreene Digest relies - exclusively!- on reader donations. Click on the donation button above to make a contribution and support our work.


Dec. 26, 2017 | The days after Election Day last year seemed to bring with them a rise in hate crimes and bias incidents. Reports filled social media and appeared in local news. There were the letters calling for the genocide of Muslims that were sent to Islamic centers from California to Ohio. And the swastikas that were scrawled on buildings around the country. In Florida, “colored” and “whites only” signs were posted over water fountains at a high school. A man assaulted a Hispanic woman in San Francisco, telling her “No Latinos here.”

But were these horrible events indicative of an increase in crimes and incidents themselves, or did the reports simply reflect an increased awareness and willingness to come forward on the part of victims and witnesses? As data journalists, we went looking for answers and were not prepared for what we found: Nobody knows for sure. Hate crimes are so poorly tracked in America, there’s no way to undertake the kind of national analysis that we do in other areas, from bank robberies to virus outbreaks.

Rachel Glickhouse is the ProPublica partner manager for Documenting Hate.

Full story … 

Republicans’ Proposed Tax Plans Will Have Devastating Consequences for People With Disabilities

2017 has been marked by a continuous war on people with disabilities by the GOP, and its tax plans are no exception.

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Bold, upfront, objective and reader supported.

Robyn Powell, Rewire

Submitted by Evergreene Digest Contributing Editor Lydia Howell.

Nov 15, 2017 | Living with a disability can be very expensive—and it is about to get a whole lot worse if congressional Republicans have their way. If passed, the GOP’s proposed tax plans in both the U.S. Senate and House will have devastating consequences for the nearly 20 percent of people in the United States who have disabilities.

Although members of the GOP claim their plans will lead to significant tax cuts for the middle class, that is not entirely certain. What is clear, however, is that based on the plans’ current incarnations, people with disabilities will likely face greater tax burdens and decreased opportunities to live the life they choose. Powell is a disability rights attorney, PhD candidate at Brandeis University, and freelance writer. Her work has appeared at The Establishment, Vox, Huffington Post, Bustle, and xoJane.


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