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Ferguson Exposes the Reality Of Militarized, Racist Policing

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  • This is a teachable moment for the nation that presents an opportunity to transform policing so it serves the people.
  • To Terrify and Occupy
  • Cops Behaving Badly, June 28,2014

Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers, Popular Resistance

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Ferguson-militarized-police-on-truck-pointing-e1408284943671.jpgResist! Militarized Police, Police Abuse,  Racism

August 17th, 2014 | The killing of Michael Brown by a Ferguson, MO police officer, who was identified Friday as Darren Wilson, and the aftermath in which nonviolent protesters and reporters were met with a violent and militarized police force have exposed something that has been building for years. Many have written about the militarization of the police and the disproportionate impact they have on people of color, but now more Americans are seeing this reality and cannot escape it.

Michael Brown is one of four unarmed black men killed in the last month (alone) by police. On July 17, Eric Garner was killed by an illegal chokehold in New York. On August 5, John Crawford was shot in a store in Beavercreek, OH. Just after Brown’s death, on August 9 Ezell Ford, a young man with known mental illness, was shot in Los Angeles. These are four examples of many, according to a recent study, a black man is killed every 28 hours by police, security guards or vigilantes. The whole nation is experiencing these tragedies; reality is being forced upon us.

Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers are participants in Popular Resistance. They also co-direct It’s Our Economy and are co-hosts of Clearing the FOG, shown on UStream TV and heard on radio.

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To Terrify and Occupy, Matthew Harwood, TomDispatch / Truthdig

  • One Nation Under SWAT
  • When law enforcement is law and order’s biggest threat

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ca29770c-e6a2-4551-8b3e-3b502fe4c9ba-460x276.jpegCops Behaving Badly, June 28,2014, Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

  • Search  on the internet "police brutality" or "police excessive force."  If you search YouTube, there are many videos of cops acting WAY beyond their limits.
  • Part 1: A SWAT Team Blew a Hole in My 2-Year-Old Son
  • Part 2: US police departments are increasingly militarised, finds report
  • Widespread Police Misconduct and an Expanding Prison Population

 

To Terrify and Occupy

  • One Nation Under SWAT
  • When law enforcement is law and order’s biggest threat

Matthew Harwood, TomDispatch / Truthdig

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120612357_a498028423_z.jpgPhoto by jasoneppink (CC BY 2.0)

Truthdig Editor's Note: This piece first appeared at TomDispatch. Read Tom Engelhardt’s introduction here.

Aug 14, 2014 | Jason Westcott was afraid.

One night last fall, he discovered via Facebook that a friend of a friend was planning with some co-conspirators to break in to his home. They were intent on stealing Wescott’s handgun and a couple of TV sets. According to the Facebook message, the suspect was planning on “burning” Westcott, who promptly called the Tampa Bay police and reported the plot.

According to the Tampa Bay Times, the investigating officers responding to Westcott’s call had a simple message for him: “If anyone breaks into this house, grab your gun and shoot to kill.”

Matthew Harwood is senior writer/editor at the American Civil Liberties Union and a TomDispatch regular

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Related:

When law enforcement is law and order’s biggest threat, Simon Maloy, Salon

  • The debacle in Ferguson represents a near-total breakdown of our civic institutions. Here's why that's so scary
  • All hell has broken loose. 
  • Cops Behaving Badly, June 28,2014

 

When law enforcement is law and order’s biggest threat

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  • The debacle in Ferguson represents a near-total breakdown of our civic institutions. Here's why that's so scary.
  • All hell has broken loose. 
  • Cops Behaving Badly, June 28, 2014

Simon Maloy, Salon

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ferguson5.jpgA man watches as police walk through a cloud of smoke during a clash with protesters, Aug. 13, 2014, in Ferguson, Mo. (Credit: AP/Jeff Roberson)

Thursday, Aug 14, 2014 | The circumstances leading up to the fatal shooting last weekend of 18-year-old Michael Brown by Missouri police officers are in dispute. Police officers maintain that Brown attacked officers and tried to seize one of their weapons. An eyewitness to the event describes something more along the lines of an execution of a frightened and unarmed man running for his life. All that’s known for certain is that Brown is dead, and he died at the hands of the cops.

Since the fatal shots were fired, all hell has broken loose, leading up to the surreal and horrifying spectacle that unfolded in the streets of Ferguson, Missouri, last night as police in military gear transformed an American city into something approximating a war zone. What we’ve witnessed in Brown’s shooting and in the days that followed has been an almost complete breakdown, from bottom to top, of the civil institutions we empower to protect our rights and maintain order.

Simon Maloy is Salon's political writer. 

Full story … 

Related:

Cops Behaving Badly, June 28,2014, Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

  • Search  on the internet "police brutality" or "police excessive force."  If you search YouTube, there are many videos of cops acting WAY beyond their limits.
  • Part 1: A SWAT Team Blew a Hole in My 2-Year-Old Son
  • Part 2: US police departments are increasingly militarised, finds report
  • Widespread Police Misconduct and an Expanding Prison Population

 

Another Botched Execution

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  • As the nation is horrified by another botched execution, a capital defense lawyer in Texas, legal scholar in New York and the former warden of San Quentin work against capital punishment.
  • Rachel Maddow's Harrowing Description Of Botched Arizona Execution
  • Cops Behaving Badly, June 28,2014

Martha Rosenbergopednews.com

18/1284856024_4238/300h.jpg7/26/2014 | There were only three people in the room: Jeanne Woodford, the chaplain and the man strapped to a gurney with tubes coming out of his arms. After hearing the man's last words, Woodford signaled the corrections officer who was "working the chemicals," which means in prison argot that he started infusions of lethal chemicals that flowed into the man on the gurney. As warden of California's San Quentin, Woodford presided over this high-tech ritual of punishment four times. After a stint as Executive Director of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, she threw in the towel to become Executive Director of Death Penalty Focus, the abolitionist organization that sponsored the 2012 SAFE referendum seeking to replace the death penalty with life without parole. Though the referendum failed to pass, Woodford is still hard at work in the movement to abolish capital punishment in California.

Meanwhile, across the continent, in the gentility of Fordham University's school of law, Arthur A. McGivney Professor Deborah W. Denno writes scholarly articles about "working the chemicals" that are published in the nation's leading law journals and quoted at death penalty hearings before the United States Supreme Court.

Martha Rosenberg is an award-winning investigative pubic health reporter who covers

justice190v.jpgthe food, drug and gun industries. Her first book, Born With A Junk Food Deficiency: How Flaks, Quacks and Hacks Pimp The Public Health, is distributed by Random House. 

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Related:

Rachel Maddow's Harrowing Description Of Botched Arizona Execution, Catherine Taibi, Huffington Post

07/24/2014 | Rachel Maddow gave a chilling account of the botched execution that took place in Arizona Wednesday night.

Maddow described the disturbing death of Joseph Wood, the inmate whose execution went horribly wrong on Wednesday after the state used the same drugs that caused the faulty executions of death row inmates in both Oklahoma and Ohio earlier this year.

 

Cops Behaving Badly, June 28,2014, Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

  • Search  on the internet "police brutality" or "police excessive force."  If you search YouTube, there are many videos of cops acting WAY beyond their limits.
  • Part 1: A SWAT Team Blew a Hole in My 2-Year-Old Son
  • Part 2: US police departments are increasingly militarised, finds report
  • Widespread Police Misconduct and an Expanding Prison Population

 

GM Recalls: How General Motors Silenced a Whistle-Blower

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A week after her appalled husband woke her up in the middle of the night, Beth Kelley ... laughs. “I’m surprised there aren’t more people who stand up for what they believe,” she says. “But am I surprised that they wouldn’t go against General Motors? I suppose not.”

Tim Higgins and Nick Summers, BloombergBusinessweek

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feat_GM26__01__970.jpg In 2006 the wreck of a 2005 Cobalt killed two and injured one. Photograph by St. Croix County Sheriff’s Office/AP Photo

June 18, 2014 | It was close to 3 a.m. on June 6 when Courtland Kelley burst into his bedroom, startling his wife awake. General Motors (GM), Kelley’s employer for more than 30 years, had just released the results of an investigation into how a flawed ignition switch in the Chevrolet Cobalt could easily slip into the “off” position—cutting power, stalling the engine, and disabling airbags just when they’re needed most. The part has been linked to at least 13 deaths and 54 crashes. GM Chief Executive Officer Mary Barra, summoned before Congress in April to answer for the crisis, repeatedly declined to answer lawmakers’ questions before she had the company’s inquest in hand. Now it was out, and Kelley had stayed up to read all 325 pages on a laptop on the back porch of his rural home about 90 miles northwest of Detroit.

The “Valukas Report,” named for former U.S. Attorney Anton Valukas, who assembled it at GM’s request from interviews with 230 witnesses and 41 million documents, blamed a culture of complacency for the more than decade-long delay before the company recalled millions of faulty vehicles. It described employees passing the buck and committees falling back on the “GM nod”—when everyone in a meeting agrees that something should happen, and no one actually does it. On page 93, a GM safety inspector named Steven Oakley is quoted telling investigators that he was too afraid to insist on safety concerns with the Cobalt after seeing his predecessor “pushed out of the job for doing just that.” Reading the passage, Kelley felt like he’d been punched in the gut. The predecessor Oakley was talking about was Kelley.

Tim Higgins is a reporter for Bloomberg News in Detroit.

Nick Summers covers Wall Street and finance for Bloomberg Businessweek.

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