You are here

Peace & Nonviolence

How do police handle violence in countries where officers don’t carry guns?

  • It doesn’t help that the law in the United States gives fairly wide scope for police violence. Under the European Convention of Human Rights, police can only shoot if it’s “absolutely necessary” in order to achieve a legitimate law enforcement purpose. Meanwhile, in the US, police officers can shoot if there’s reasonable” perception of a grave and imminent threat, which is a far more subjective standard.
  • Related: Video Shows How British Police React to a Teen with a Toy Gun — Putting US Cops to Shame
  • Related: Good Cops Turn In Their Own Officer After He’s Caught on Dashcam Beating Handcuffed Man

Olivia Goldhill, Quartz

Police don't need guns to be effective. (Reuters/ David Moir)

Another week, another police shooting in the United States. So far this year, 569 people have be killed by US police, according to The Guardian’s count. Police brutality is a horrific normality and, in more ways than one, black men being shot by police has become the modern-day equivalent of lynching.

But, of course, it doesn’t have to be this way. A police officer does not have to shoot to kill and, in several countries, a police officer does not even have to carry a gun. In Norway, Iceland, New Zealand, Britain, and Ireland, police officers generally do not carry firearms. In one of these countries, Iceland, it’s legal for citizens to carry guns—and there’s an estimated rate of 30 privately-owned guns per 100 people.

Olivia Goldhill is weekend writer for Quartz, with a focus on philosophy and psychology.

Full story … 

Related: Journalism 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.

Video Shows How British Police React to a Teen with a Toy Gun — Putting US Cops to Shame, Matt Agorist, Free Thought Project 

  • For the naysayers who think that this case is an isolated act of heroism, think again. The lack of deadly force is so common by police in European countries that it’s not only been documented multiple times, but it’s been caught on film multiple times.
  • It is high time this country looks closely at the way it trains its police force.
  • Related: How do police handle violence in countries where officers don’t carry guns?


Good Cops Turn In Their Own Officer After He’s Caught on Dashcam Beating Handcuffed ManJustin Gardner, The Free Thought Project

  • While this handcuffed man’s actions may have been questionable, there are plenty of incidents during which cops stood by and watched their fellow cops beat non-violent, and even innocent individuals without saying anything. Good cops turning in the bad ones is a huge part of the solution to bridging the divide in America, and the officers who were unafraid of crossing the blue line deserve to be recognized.
  • Related: A Former Police Chief: Put Down the Big Stick


Our Leaders Perpetuating Violence in America

Time and time again, leaders like Obama warp the Constitution to fit their desires, regardless if right or wrong.  Either by actively promoting or by passively promoting though not reprimanding bad behavior, Obama is perpetuating violence in America— a virus spreading like wildfire across our country.

Amber Bogdanowicz, The Alternative Examiner has run rampant across the US, lately, and it is perpetuated by our leaders.  The aim of this campaign and President Obama’s goal going into presidency is to end discrimination when in reality, the effort to lessen it has inversely increased it.

Fanning the flames and injecting toxic ideas into the citizens of America, Obama set a divide in the US with all his statements of disappointment in our “poor racial relations.”  Along with race, this includes transgender rights which has largely been a disaster.

Amber Bogdanowicz is a writer for The Alternative Examiner.

Full story … 



From the Archives | The Bandwagon of Hate: America’s Cancer, Odysseus Ward, Angry Humanist

So here I ask that each of us pull our heads out of those fluffy and, mostly white, clouds of privilege and see the world our choices have created. Stop supporting the status quo with silence and quick indictments of the disenfranchised. Stop changing the subject. Stop complaining about our hurt feelings. Stop listening to everyone except the people who are suffering. We either challenge the system and our long held perceptions of the people it harms or do nothing, and thus, contribute to the collapse.



While We Obsessed over Melania, US Airstrikes Massacre Scores of Civilians in Syria

“There must be a prompt, independent, and transparent investigation to determine what happened, who was responsible, and how to avoid further needless loss of civilian life. Anyone responsible for violations of international humanitarian law must be brought to justice and victims and their families should receive full reparation,” said Magdalena Mughrabi, the interim deputy director of the Middle East and North Africa program for Amnesty International.

Tom Cahill, U.S. Uncut 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 in the above right-hand corner—so we can bring you more just like it.

July 19, 2016 As many as 77 innocent people or more, including 11 children, were killed during US-led coalition airstrikes performed in Syria over this Monday and Tuesday.

According to Agence France-Presse (AFP), the US-led airstrike in Manbij, Syria targeted the group of civilians, mistakenly identifying them as ISIS-affiliated fighters. The number of those killed remains unclear, though AFP and the New York Times reported that 56 civilians were killed Monday and another 21 killed Tuesday. Dozens more have been wounded.

Tom Cahill is a writer for US Uncut based in the Pacific Northwest. He specializes in coverage of political, economic, and environmental news. 

Full story … 

No More Fast-Track Firing At Veterans Affairs

  • We are a broken nation that is supposedly flat broke while spending trillions without accountability of our own, creating unending wars in foreign countries and creating new disabled veterans we will refuse to help when the time comes.
  • If we do not turn this system around, shame on us for failing our …  veterans.
  • Related: How America’s Wars Came Home With the Troops

Benjamin Krause, Photo Credit: Robert Adrian Hillman/ 

June 20, 2016 | Veterans Affairs officials just announced they will no longer use the streamlined disciplinary powers because the White House refuses to enforce them.

Weren’t these the same powers signed into law by our president?

In an unusual turnabout, the same accountability powers President Barack Obama signed into law after being passed by Congress are now deemed unconstitutional by the Department of Justice. All the political congratulations in 2014 about the bill was apparently merely political theater at its finest.

Benjamin Krause, Founder of, is a lawyer, investigative reporter, and award-winning veterans advocate. He is author of the guide Voc Rehab Survival Guide for Veterans and writes every weekday on

Full story … 

Related: To stay on top of important articles like these, sign up here to receive the latest updates from all reader supported Evergreene Digest.



How America’s Wars Came Home With the Troops, Ann Jones, the Nation

  • Since 2002, veterans have been committing murder individually and in groups, killing family, friends, strangers and—in appalling numbers—themselves.
  • Related: Disabled Veterans Shatter the Myths of American Warfare


'You Cannot Use Military Force to Wipe Out Terrorism',h_316,al_c,q_75,usm_0.50_1.20_0.00/25f54d_0b3f03a501c24802b7a7f2a0e3f8eba0.jpg

  • But the problem is, as long as you’re doing the military, the others don’t work. You can’t be bombing people and at the same time think that you’re going to succeed at, quote, “persuading” them, which is one of the great things the Obama administration has talked about wanting to do, persuading them that ISIS is not their friend. Well, it might be easier to persuade them of that if you weren’t killing them. You know, it’s — there’s something illogical there.
  • Janine Jackson interviewed Phyllis Bennis about ISIS attacks for the July 8, 2016, episode of CounterSpin. This is a lightly edited transcript.

Janine Jackson, Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR) stay on top of important articles like these, sign up here to receive the latest updates from all reader supported Evergreene Digest. Bennis: “You can’t be bombing people and at the same time think that you’re going to succeed at ‘persuading’ them.

July 8, 2016 | Janine Jackson: Early in the morning of Sunday, July 3, a truck bomb exploded in a shopping district in Baghdad. Many of the more than 200 people killed were children shopping for new clothes for Eid Al-Fitr. The group ISIS claimed responsibility.

That was two days after militants claiming fealty to ISIS killed 22 people in Dhaka, Bangladesh, after an 11-hour siege on a cafe. It was five days after at least 42 people were killed in Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport. And it was the day before three separate bomb attacks across Saudi Arabia, including one in the holy city of Medina near a site sacred to Muslims, the mosque where the prophet Mohammed is believed to be buried.

Phyllis Bennis directs the New Internationalism Project at the Institute for Policy Studies. Her most recent book is Understanding ISIS and the New Global War on Terror. Find her article “From Paris to Istanbul: More War on Terror Means More Terrorist Attacks” on Foreign Policy in Focus. 

Full story … 

How America’s Wars Came Home With the Troops

Since 2002, veterans have been committing murder individually and in groups, killing family, friends, strangers and—in appalling numbers—themselves.

Ann Jones, the Nation 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. First Class Erick Rodriguez stands guard at Fort Hood after Ivan Lopez’s shooting rampage in Texas on April 2, 2014. (Reuters/Erich Schlegel) Evergreen Digest Editor's Note: Sources are now being quoted to the effect that the shooter in the recent Dallas police massacre was an Afghanistan veteran.

April 17, 2014 | After an argument about a leave denied, Specialist Ivan Lopez pulled out a .45-caliber Smith & Wesson handgun and began a shooting spree at Fort Hood, America’s biggest stateside base, that left three soldiers dead and sixteen wounded. When he did so, he also pulled America’s fading wars out of the closet. This time, a Fort Hood mass killing, the second in four and a half years, was committed by a man who was neither a religious nor a political “extremist.” He seems to have been merely one of America’s injured and troubled veterans who now number in the hundreds of thousands.

Some 2.6 million men and women have been dispatched, often repeatedly, to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and according to a recent survey of veterans of those wars conducted by the Washington Post and the Kaiser Family Foundation, nearly one-third say that their mental health is worse than it was before they left, and nearly half say the same of their physical condition. Almost half say they give way to sudden outbursts of anger. Only 12 percent of the surveyed veterans claim they are now “better” mentally or physically than they were before they went to war.

Ann Jones is a journalist and author whose works include Kabul in Winter (2006) and War Is Not Over When It’s Over (2010), both from Metropolitan Books. Her latest book is called They Were Soldiers: How the Wounded Return From America's Wars—The Untold Story (Dispatch Books).

Full story … 


Related: Photo Credit: Robert Adrian Hillman/ 

Disabled Veterans Shatter the Myths of American Warfare, Ann Jones, the Intercept

  • The military ambitions of the U.S. will not be restrained by the “true costs of war,” not even those exacted on the bodies of its soldiers.
  • A Trail of Tears

War unvarnished is brutality itself

  • 'You cannot qualify war in harsher terms, than I will. War is cruelty and You cannot refine it,' thundered Sherman in King James biblical cadences, which all Ameri­cans understood, 'and those who brought war into our country de­serve all the curses and maledictions a people can pour out.' At this Point Sherman the cool deist had become Jeremiah, the Old Testament judge, and an ancient war god emerged from his prophecy, the god of the terrible swift sword.
  • from Citizen Sherman by Michael Fellman

Delanceyplace Now you can follow Evergreene Digest on Twitter.

Stereograph showing skeletal remains and uniforms on the battlefield at Gaines' Mill, Virginia, several months after the battle.

July 5, 2016 | Today's selection -- from Citizen Sherman by Michael Fellman. In his march on Atlanta, and his subsequent march to Savannah and the sea, General William Tecumseh Sherman was the first in the Civil War to engage in "total warfare." In this mode, in addition to battling the Confederate Army, he burned homes, destroyed crops, expelled civilians and sought to destroy the South's will to fight. At a key moment in this campaign, he exchanged letters with his opponent, Confederate General John Bell Hood, thus providing an extraordinary portrait of the mind at war:

"Immediately after Atlanta fell to his army, Sherman initiated a plan to expel all civilians from the city, something he had done on a much smaller scale before but that, at this level, amounted to perhaps the most extreme action yet taken against civilians by any general in the war. Anticipating Southern reactions, Sherman declared to [his fellow General Henry] Halleck, 'If the people raise a howl against my barbarity and cruelty, I will an­swer that war is war and not popularity seeking. If they want peace they and their relatives must stop war.' Writing this letter, on September 4, 1864, was the moment in which Sherman attained his most fully conscious and self-acknowledged role as psychological warrior. Though he had a military argument for getting civilians out of the way of his army -- in order to use Atlanta as one big military rail depot -- his greater purpose was to strike terror into Southern hearts. He would not remain a personality with human feelings, but would incorporate war itself. Having chosen transformation into the totalist warrior, he would offer Southerners a big puzzle -- what would this particular gen­eral not do? In purpose and self-conception he would be barbarous and cruel, not from his peacetime person, but from his personal rededi­cation in war, a war into which he had finally and fully entered.

Delanceyplace is very simply a brief daily email with an excerpt or quote we view as interesting or noteworthy, offered with commentary to provide context.  There is no theme, except that most excerpts will come from a non-fiction work, mainly works of history, and we hope will have a more universal relevance than simply the subject of the book from which they came. All profits from Delanceyplace are donated to charity.

Full story … 

Urgent -- and Sustained -- Action on Gun Violence

What will move Congress to act? Not more statistics. You.

Amelia Kegan, Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL) Now you can follow Evergreene Digest on Twitter. June 16, 2016 | There are some sad realities in this world. The presence of violence, and in the case of Orlando, hateful violence directed at the Latino LGBTQ community, is one of those sad realities our society faces.

Yet this is a reality we are called to change. Events like the tragedy in Orlando should galvanize all of us to action. We can't turn away because the politics are hard or disengage because we don't like the campaign rhetoric.

What will move Congress to act? Not more statistics. You. Act This Week

Your calls today matter. It will also take sustained action – showing Congress over and over again that this is a priority for you – to keep the momentum going for change. We’ve seen the pattern before: a tragedy like the Orlando shooting captures headlines and attention for a few days or weeks, and then things return to business as usual – until the next preventable tragedy.

That’s why, after you make your call, I hope you’ll send an email to your senators and representative. Tell them that background checks would be a good start, but it’s not enough. Tell them it’s time they take action against military-style assault weapons.

Similar types of military-style assault weapons were used in Orlando, Newtown, Aurora, San Bernardino, and the Umpqua Community College.

Tell Congress to reinstate the assault weapons ban. Act This Year

This isn’t just about one killing, or even a series of mass killings. Gun violence permeates our society. The current stats are already alarming:

  • 1,500 shootings in Chicago so far this year.
  • On average, 51 women in the U.S. are shot and killed by an intimate partner each month.
  • 20,000 gun suicides in the U.S. every year.

This summer, candidates for public office – people who want to represent you and your views – are campaigning and holding events.

Bring your concerns for preventing gun violence to campaign events.

People running for office in this country need to hear that it’s time for Congress to prioritize preventing gun violence.

See FCNL’s resources on asking candidate questions, find out about races in your area and how to contact candidates, and see tips for being heard at in-person candidate events.

This is a time of great grief for our country. Yet we can also translate this moment into a moment of action. But it's going to take all of us speaking up and showing up.

Please act today and throughout the summer and fall so this tragic history doesn’t keep repeating itself.


Amelia Kegan, Legislative Director, Domestic Policy, Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL)


Subscribe to Peace & Nonviolence