27 February 2016


(Source: digitaltimes.org)

MMIW Report: Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women In Canada

The Canadian Parliament has been pressured by indigenous grassroots organizations to conduct a national inquiry into the overwhelmingly large proportion of cases involving missing and murdered indigenous women (MMIW). In December the liberal government in Canada announced plans for the inquiry.

Yet there are already discrepancies in data collected by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP). The reported figure of 1200 cases has been contested by many grassroots groups as being way too small than the actual number. This February, Lisa J Ellwood's Indian Country report confirmed that RCMP collects its data solely from its affiliated police agencies. There is over 300 non-RCMP affiliated police agencies where homicide data on indigenous women has not been collected. Furthermore, police are biased, racists, and colonial in their interpretation of what MMIW cases count as homicides or missing persons.

RCMP has tried to skew its information in order to say that MMIW cases are a result of domestic violence and that the perpetrators are really Indigenous men. Yet RCMP ignores cases involving sex workers. Studies have proven that the majority of cases involve non-indigenous men.

(MarShawn McCarrel, Image: uinterview.com)

Black Lives Matter Activist MarShawn McCarrel Commits Suicide

23 year-old Black Lives Matter Activist MarShawn McCarrel shot himself in front of the Columbus Building February 8, 2016. His last tweet read: "let the record show that I pissed on the state house before I left."

McCarrel was instrumental in organizing BLM protests in Ohio after the killing of Mike Brown in 2014. He was the founder of the youth mentorship program Pursuing Our Dreams. He also founded a Feed the Streets program for the homeless. McCarrel himself was homeless for three years after high-school and had since made it his duty to give back because so many had helped him. He was named one of Radio One’s Hometown Champions, an award for community activists and volunteers, earlier this year.

The McCarrel family believes that his work, dedication, and selflessness took an emotional toll.

Deray For Mayor

Prominent Black Lives Matter activist DeRay Mckesson announced that he will be running for mayor of Baltimore early this month. In just nine days he raised over $77,000 and has even put forth portions of his mayoral platform. He is the second candidate in the race to do so. Mckesson's plan focuses heavy on public school reform including radically altering Baltimore City Community College to improve graduation rates. Mckesson wants to expand public pre-K to enroll low-income children, release internal audits from city schools, and create literacy-rich educational environments. For policing, Mckesson wants to eliminate lethal policing methods such as illegal chokeholds and band the excuse that the suspect "was reaching for their weapon."

He is calling for standard firearms to be replaced by "smart guns," the redistribution of Baltimore police budgets towards communities most affected by crime, and the creation of a city commission to send drug addicts to treatment centers instead of jail. Mckesson also wants to increase the minimum wage in Baltimore to $15 and hour, expand youth employment opportunities in neighborhoods affected by unemployment, and establish employment programs for ex-convicts. Mckesson made his debate debut February 16th among 23 other candidates.

Peter Liang Convicted for the Murder of Akai Gurley

This February, Officer Peter Liang was convicted in the 2014 killing of Akai Gurley. Officer Liang and his partner were conducting a "vertical patrol" in a Brooklyn housing project. In the stairwell, Liang was suddenly startled and opened fire. The bullet reportedly ricocheted and hit Akai Gurley, who was walking down the stairs with his partner. Officer Liang did not call for help for Gurley nor did he offer medical attention. Liang, who is Chinese-American, was indicted by the grand jury on charges of manslaughter. The decision is a rarity and a relief for the Gurley family in a country where police officers are almost never indicted by grand juries. Still, Liang's status as Asian-American certainly plays a roll in the jury decision. The white police officer who killed Eric Gardner had been dropped of all charges, while the only black police officer on the scene was the only officer charged in the case. Grand Juries seem to readily indict people of color but are unable to indict white police officers. Liang is due back in court this April.

Flint Water Crisis Continues

An out-pouring of bottled water from all over the country has temporarily provided the citizens of Flint with clean water. But the Flint water crisis is about more than just poisonous water. Governor Rick Snyder claimed that the reason for switching Flint's water supply from Detroit sources to the Flint River was to save city money. Yet a report from the Motor City Muckraker confirms that Detroit Water and Sewerage Department offered the City a 50% reduction in prices if Flint remained with Detroit water sources. Snyder refused the plan which could have saved Flint $800 million. Snyder's motives for switching to the Flint River are unknown though many have suggested it was to further his own political and economic interests. Flint residents have described Snyder as a fascist dictator and have demanded that Snyder be removed from office and arrested immediately. Flint Mayor Karen Weaver has stepped in with a $55 million dollar plan to swiftly remove all of the lead pipes from the water system and replace them with new pipes. Weaver's plan has received insufficient funds from state and she is even considering opening a crowd funding campaign to bridge budget gaps. Snyder still remains in office.

Black Lives Matter Meeting with Obama: A Photo Opt and A Sham

On February 18, 2016 Black Lives Matter activists met with Obama and a number of long-time activist including Rev. Al Sharpton to discuss a range off issues including the administration's plans for criminal justice reform. Black Lives Matter activists DeRay Mckesson and Brittany Packnett were there as well as Missou students from #ConcernedStudents1950. Widely publicized as the "first-of-its-kind" and a positive step towards Black liberation, the meeting has also come under considerable critique from BLM activist and co-founder of BLM Chaicago Aislinn Pulley. Pulley respectfully declined the invitation, saying that "I could not, with any integrity, participate in such a sham that would only serve to legitimize the false narrative that the government is working to end police brutality and the institutional racism that fuels it. " She said that: "For the increasing number of families fighting for justice and dignity for their kin slain by police, I refuse to give its perpetrators and enablers political cover by making an appearance among them."

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February 2016

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President Barack Obama. The first Black president. Leader of the so-called free world. You could still see him triumphantly approaching the podium in Washington that day in 2008 before a sea of arms and waving flags. As he now leaves office the country has fallen into endless lamentation.

The Decolonizer says: stop D*** riding Obama.

We had ourselves a Black president. And it was great, unprecedented, a moment in United States history. It was a blue and red 2008 election button with the word "change” in bold white letters.

The conservatives cringed. The liberals clamored, their hearts raised joyfully to the new sovereign as if to say: "Obama is in office for our sins.” Couldn’t wait to tell the good news to their Black friends: "racism is a thing of the past, we have a Black president!” They could barely keep themselves from salivating.

Meanwhile, a black woman digs in between the sofa cushions of a run-down home in Chicago trying to come up with the money to bury her son. Said she was looking for change.

The Obama years saw the extra judicial killings of so many Black people that the #BlackLivesMatter movement was created in response. The largest Black outcry in recent memory was made a national movement because a Black president sat in the White House unable to challenging anti-Black state violence.

Who could forget that fateful night in November when Officer Darren Wilson was not indicted for murdering Mike Brown? When the riots begin Obama’s face appears on a TV screen. Live on public television he says: "no one needs to be policed more than poor communities with high crime rates.”

During the Baltimore riots, Obama proceeded to wag his finger at angry protesters saying "there is no excuse for violence in Baltimore.” Never once has he taken administrative action to bring extra judicial killings to justice. He has said “Trayvon Martin could have been me” but never once has he openly acknowledged India Clarke, Sandra Bland, Rekia Boyd or any of the Black cis and trans women who have been killed by state violence.

Then there is Obama’s immigration policy. He is responsible for the aggressive forced removal of thousands undocumented immigrants. Through the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raids he is responsible for the state terror and virtual assault on migrant families. The Obama administration escalated the ICE raids at the beginning of this year, targeting Central American immigrants mostly from Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador.

The United States is willing to exploit these countries for produce, labor, drug trafficking, and is willing to install puppet governments, but is unwilling to accept migrants who cross its boarders to escape the conditions the United States has helped to create. Lives are placed in jeopardy when immigrants are sent back to these countries because of the ongoing violence that occurs there.

ICE raids have been conducted inhumanely, often in the early hours of the morning, where people are taken into custody and thrown into the deplorable immigration detention centers.

How many people of color has Obama killed?

Then there is Obama’s foreign policy. The Obama years saw the rise of drone warfare; the buzzing death machines that hover over arbitrary "hot spots” in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Waziristan, Libya, Syria, Somalia, and Yemen, killing supposed terrorist leaders on Washington’s secret "kill list.” The Obama Administration was directly responsible for the tenfold increase in drone activity during Obama’s presidency. Obama himself was directly responsible for overseeing the drone program.

According to the Bureau of Investigative Journalism over 400 reported drone strikes have occurred as of 2014. It is estimated that U.S drones have killed at least two thousand people; most of them were people of color. Most of them were innocent civilians. In 2013, Obama defended the program by saying that strikes were as a last resort and as "precise” as possible. Leaked documents on the program proved that this was a lie. 90% of the people killed by drone strikes are innocent civilians. Apparently the lives of brown people are extinguishable.

The Obama administration constantly preferred extermination over capture during covert counter-terrorist operations. Obama has developed "kill teams,” special military units formed for the purpose of assassinating CIA terrorist targets. Obama has taken liberties to target and execute anyone who poses a national security threat in the Middle East. The most famous kill team mission of course was the assassination of Osama bin Laden, who Obama never fails to gloat shamelessly about during public discussions of his foreign policy.

Obama: keeping the world safe for United States colonial domination.

This past January Obama made his final State of the Union Address.

It was an address oozing with United States exceptionalism. It played up bipartisan conflict instead speaking frankly about the racial situation. Obama affirmed U.S leadership of the world aggressively and with the up most barbarism. It was an address that utterly ignored the horrors of his administration, all the bloody mangled bodies floating in the background of his presidency.

F*** Obama!

They say that he was a litmus test. That he was the president that America had been waiting for. He was the symbol that people of color had made it to the mountain top. Conditions for people of color in America have scarcely improved since Obama took office. The expression "I have a Black president" has lost its meaning.

Obama's change could not save us. It could not save Sandra Bland or Michael Brown. It could not save the families from the added grief of knowing that no justice will be served.

Obama teaches us that, so long as the United States is an illegitimate country founded on the genocide of Indigenous people, the forced slave labor of Africans, the cheap labor of migrant workers, the domestic labor of women, the exploitation of the poor, the neo-colonial imperialism in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, it's leader is by default an accessory of global white supremacy, capitalism, settler colonialism, and white supremacist patriarchy. The operation of this country requires the global destruction of people of color. It does not matter what complexion you are or how far left on the liberal spectrum you fall. If you are president you will carry out this requirement.

This is Obama's Legacy.

February 2016

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1 February 2016


Betty Jones

Betty Jones was a 55 year-old cis Black woman who was mistakenly shot and killed by Chicago police as she answered the door of her home in the early morning of December 26, 2015. Police responded to a call of domestic disturbance. Quintonio LeGrier, her upstairs neighbor, had been swinging a bat. LeGrier's father had asked Jones to look out for the police and let them in when they arrived.

Quintonio LeGrier

Quintonio LeGrier was a 19 year-old cis Black male who was shot and killed by Chicago police on December 26, 2015. Police responded to a call that a male was wielding a baseball bat and threatening his father at his family's West Side home. LeGrier had been going through a mental health crisis. Upon arrival, police officer Robert Rialmo fatally shot and killed LeGrier's neghbor, 55 year-old Betty Jones. LeGrier was then shot six times by police as he motioned towards Jones.

Cedrick Chatman

Cedrick Chatman was a 17 year-old cis Black male who was gunned down by Chicago police on January 7, 2013. Video of the killing was kept from the public by the City of Chicago for three years. After the Chatman family sued the city and officers Kevin Fry and Lou Toth, a federal judge ordered the release of the video footage and the City dropped its case against releasing the footage on January 13, 2016. The footage shows Chatman running out of an allegedly stolen car and being chased by Fry and Toth. Kevin Fry then stops in the middle of the street and opens fire as Chatman disappears from camera view. Moments later, Chatman is seen face down and unresponsive as officer Fry places his foot on top of Chatman's body.

Rest in Power

Who Will Survive America?

January 2016

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No Indictment: Sandra Bland

BLM activists endured a series of let-downs at the end of 2015. On December 23rd the Waller County grand jury decided against indicting any of the jailers present when 28-year old Sandra Bland was found dead in police custody. Bland was found unresponsive in her cell days after her arrest by a state trooper during a traffic stop in July. Dash cam and amateur video shows Texas state trooper Brian Encinia demanding Bland get out of her vehicle or "I will light you up." Out of camera view, she is heard being slammed to the ground. An investigation by the Texas Commission on Jail Standards found that the Waller County Jail violated minimum standards, including failure to check on prisoners frequently enough.

A team of five special prosecutors appointed by the county district attorney had presented to the grand jury. Yet no attempt has been made to include the Bland family in the investigation process. The prosecutors have conducted the proceedings in secret and have declined to share evidence with the family. They have refused to pursue the case as a homicide and had instead tried to determine if there was any negligence. The prostitution, the authorities, and the grand jury assumed that Sandra Bland killed herself, a conclusion that the family refuses to accept. The plastic bag Bland had supposedly killed herself with was never fingerprinted. Many of the family members believe that a thorough investigation was never conducted. On January 7th state trooper Brian Encinia, the man responsible for wrongfully arresting her, was charged not with homicide, but a perjury misdemeanor.

Nationwide ICE Raids Destroy Lives and Families

Forcible deportations by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has escalated at the beginning of this year. Surprise ICE raids have been launched in the wee hours of the morning by the Obama administration, who had made plans to forcibly deport undocumented immigrants who crossed the boarder after May 2014. Large-scale immigration raids were launched in early January, where some 120 persons at a time were taken into custody across the country. Raids have been occurring in several locations across the country including Atlanta, New York City , Texas, Georgia, and North Carolina and Central American immigrants have been targeted in particular. These raids pull apart immigrant families, who often have children born in the U.S as citizens but whose parents are forcibly deported. As Latinx immigrants begin to disappear in their own communities, people are forced to live in a constant state of fear.

  • If ICE comes to your house: Do not open your door to let them in. They most likely do not have a warrant to enter and do not believe them if they say that they do. Ask to see the warrant.
  • Do not provide them with your immigration information or your ID.
  • If they forcibly enter, request the names and badge numbers of the officers for entering without consent

No Indictment: Tamir Rice

On December 28, 2015, a grand jury decision failed to indict officer Timothy Loehmann for the murder of 12 year-old Tamir Rice. During a press conference, Cuyahoga County prosecutor Timothy J. McGinty admitted that he recommended to the grand jury that they not indict the officer. He proceeded to justify Loehmann's actions as reasonable and constitutional: “To charge police, even in a situation as undeniably tragic as the death of her son, the state must be able to show that the officers acted outside the constitutional boundaries set forth by the Supreme Court of the United States. Simply put, given this perfect storm of human error, mistakes and miscommunication by all involved that day, the evidence did not indicate criminal conduct by police.” McGinty did not pursue an indictment from the very beginning of the case, and consistently worked against wishes of the Rice family to pursue a murder charge directly without a grand jury proceeding. If he was not going to pursue an indictment, the Rice family asked for him to step down. Tamir's mother issued a statement in response to the decision stating "as the video shows, Officer Loehmann shot my son in less than a second. All I wanted was someone to be held accountable. But this entire process was a charade."

Video of Cedrick Chatman Released

On January 13, 2016, after three years of withholding the video to the public, the City of Chicago finally released the footage in the killing of Cedrick Chatman by Chicago police. With the mounting outrage over corruption in Mayor Rahm Emanuel's administration, the City of Chicago was forced to release the video in an effort to be "more transparent." The video clearly shows Chatman being gunned down as he runs away from police. The police report from claimed that Chatman turned towards officers with a black object in his right hand that was believed to be a gun. The object turned out to be a iPhone box. Furthermore, the video clearly shows Chatman running away from officers, never is he shown turning towards them. After the Laquan Mcdonald video release in November of 2015, many believe that the decision to release the Chatman tape is apart of a public relations campaign to salvage the Emanuel administration.

Fascist Donald Trump throws Muslim Woman Out Of Rally

On January 8, 2016, Muslim woman Rose Hamid was thrown out of a Donald Trump rally in South Carolina for silently protesting against Islamophobia. As Trump spewed Islamophobic epithets about Syrian refugees, saying that they "are probably ISIS," Hamid silently rose from her seat. She was wearing white hijab and a T-shirt reading "Salam, I come in peace." As Trump continued speaking the crowd erupted demanding that Hamid be removed. Hamid was joined by a handful of protesters, each wearing a yellow Star of David to symbolize the Nazi oppression of Jews during the Holocaust. The crowd threw anti-Muslim epithets until Hamid was escorted out by security officers as the crowd of conservative Republicans cheered.

Kizzy Adonis Charged In Eric Garner Case

On January 8, 2016, Sargent Kizzy Adonis was charged with internal departmental charges in connection with the Eric Gardner case. She is the first person officially charged for wrong doing in the Eric Gardner case. Adonis, who is a Black woman, was one of two supervising officers present during the confrontation with Daniel Pantaleo that led to Eric Gardners death. Though she has not been charged with Gardner's death, she has been stripped of her badge and gun. The decision does nothing to hold Daniel Pantaleo, the man who actually killed Gardner, accountable. Eric Gardner'd daughter, Erica Gardner, has condemned the decision and questioned the reason for the charges when Adonis was the only officer on the scene who tried to save her father's life.

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January 2016

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