Contact Me By Email

Atlanta, GA Weather from Weather Underground

Know Anyone Who Thinks Racial Profiling Is Exaggerated? Watch This, And Tell Me When Your Jaw Drops.

This video clearly demonstrates how racist America is as a country and how far we have to go to become a country that is civilized and actually values equal justice. We must not rest until this goal is achieved. I do not want my great grandchildren to live in a country like we have today. I wish for them to live in a country where differences of race and culture are not ignored but valued as a part of what makes America great.

What To Do When You're Stopped By Police - The ACLU & Elon James White

What To Do When You're Stopped By Police - The ACLU & Elon James White

Saturday, February 25, 2017

The Immigration Facts Donald Trump Doesn’t Like - The New York Times


 "Let’s be clear: The moral case against President Trump’s plan to uproot and expel millions of unauthorized immigrants is open-and-shut. But what about the economic cost? This is where deeply shameful collides with truly stupid.

The Migration Policy Institute reported in 2013 that the federal government spends more each year on immigration enforcement — through Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Border Patrol — than on all other federal law enforcement agencies combined. The total has risen to more than $19 billion a year, and more than $306 billion in all since 1986, measured in 2016 dollars. This exceeds the sum of all spending for the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the Drug Enforcement Administration; the Secret Service; the Marshals Service; and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

ICE and the Border Patrol already refer more cases for federal prosecution than the entire Justice Department, and the number of people they detain each year (more than 400,000) is greater than the number of inmates being held by the Federal Bureau of Prisons for all other federal crimes.

That is blank-check, steroidal enforcement — and Mr. Trump and the Homeland Security secretary, John Kelly, want more."

(Via.).   The Immigration Facts Donald Trump Doesn’t Like - The New York Times:

These Are Children, Not Bad Hombres - The New York Times


  "Last year 7-year-old Kendra Cruz Garcia and her 10-year-old-brother, Roberto Guardado Cruz, crossed the Rio Grande alone. When their tiny boat reached the shore, they started walking into Texas.

The Border Patrol agents who soon caught the Salvadoran siblings deemed them ‘unaccompanied’ because no parent was with them. Children with this designation are granted special, well-deserved protections.

They aren’t subject to quick deportation and are entitled to a full hearing before an immigration judge. They can’t be held for long periods in immigration jails. Instead, they are transferred to child-friendly shelters operated by Health and Human Services’ Office of Refugee Resettlement, and released, usually within a month, to a parent, relative or sponsor while their court hearings proceed. Instead of facing cross-examination by adversarial prosecutors, children are interviewed by an asylum officer trained to gently probe whether they qualify to stay in the country legally.

In other words, they are treated with kindness and decency by our government because they are innocent children.

Continue reading the main story But President Trump has decided to get tough on many of the 60,000 Central American children who arrive at our border each year begging for safety after fleeing some of the most dangerous places on earth. His executive orders, and memos from the Department of Homeland Security on how to interpret them, could strip this special treatment from the roughly 60 percent of unaccompanied children who have a parent already living in the United States. If Kendra and Roberto were just entering the United States now, they would fall into this group; instead they kept their protections and were eventually united with their mother, a house painter in Los Angeles.

Parents like her, the argument goes, are exploiting benefits established to help children who really are alone here. The administration has threatened to deport parents who send for their children or prosecute them for hiring smugglers.

Last week Mr. Trump’s press secretary said the president’s intention was to prioritize the deportation of immigrants who ‘represent a threat to public safety.’ Supporters say he’s upholding the law. But these children are not threats, and there are many ways to preserve the integrity of our immigration laws while treating them humanely.


(Via.).   These Are Children, Not Bad Hombres - The New York Times:

People From 7 Travel-Ban Nations Pose No Increased Terror Risk, Report Says - The New York Times


"When President Trump signed an executive order last month temporarily barring visitors from seven mostly Muslim countries, he said he was moving to protect the United States from terrorist attacks. The Homeland Security secretary, John F. Kelly, echoed the president, saying the travel ban was necessary because vetting procedures ‘in those seven countries are suspect.’

But an internal report written by intelligence analysts at Mr. Kelly’s department appears to undercut the assessment that people from the seven countries — Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen — pose a heightened threat of terrorism. The three-page report found that ‘country of citizenship is unlikely to be a reliable indicator of potential terrorist activity.’

The report adds to the difficulties the Trump administration has faced in carrying out the travel ban. Federal judges have suspended the order, and the administration has said it will redo it to withstand legal scrutiny, but has not given a timetable.

The Department of Homeland Security assessment, first reported by The Associated Press, found that only a small number of people from the seven countries had been involved in terrorism-related activities in the United States since the Syrian civil war began in 2011. In addition, the report noted, while terrorist groups in Iraq, Syria and Yemen pose a threat to the United States, militant groups in the other four countries have a more regional focus.

The report also found that in the past six years, the terrorism threat reached much more widely than the seven countries listed — individuals from 26 countries had been ‘inspired’ to carry out attacks in the United States.

Furthermore, few individuals from the seven countries affected by the ban have access to the United States, the report said, noting the small numbers of visas granted by the State Department to citizens of those nations."

(Via.).  .People From 7 Travel-Ban Nations Pose No Increased Terror Risk, Report Says - The New York Times:

Immigration Agents Discover New Freedom to Deport Under Trump - The New York Times


"In Virginia, Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents waited outside a church shelter where undocumented immigrants had gone to stay warm. In Texas and in Colorado, agents went into courthouses, looking for foreigners who had arrived for hearings on other matters.

At Kennedy International Airport in New York, passengers arriving after a five-hour flight from San Francisco were asked to show their documents before they were allowed to get off the plane.

The Trump administration’s far-reaching plan to arrest and deport vast numbers of undocumented immigrants has been introduced in dramatic fashion over the past month. And much of that task has fallen to thousands of ICE officers who are newly emboldened, newly empowered and already getting to work.

Gone are the Obama-era rules that required them to focus only on serious criminals. In Southern California, in one of the first major roundups during the Trump administration, officers detained 161 people with a wide range of felony and misdemeanor convictions, and 10 who had no criminal history at all.

Immigrant Mother in Denver Takes Refuge as Risk of Deportation Looms FEB. 15, 2017 ‘Before, we used to be told, ‘You can’t arrest those people,’ and we’d be disciplined for being insubordinate if we did,’ said a 10-year veteran of the agency who took part in the operation. ‘Now those people are priorities again. And there are a lot of them here.’"

(Via.).  Immigration Agents Discover New Freedom to Deport Under Trump - The New York Times:

Friday, February 24, 2017

The Death of Compassion - The New York Times


"Folks, we have been here before.

After Ronald Reagan, a celebrity-turned-politician, carried 49 states in his devastating defeat of Walter Mondale in 1984, Democrats were whining and moaning, shuffling their feet and scratching their heads.

Reagan had done particularly well with those who would come to be known as Reagan Democrats — white, working-class voters, particularly in the Rust Belt, whom a New York Times contributor would later describe as ‘blue-collar, ethnic voters,’ who were drawn to Reagan’s messages of economic growth and nationalistic pride.

But just like Donald Trump’s path to victory, Reagan’s was strewn with racial hostilities and prejudicial lies.

While Trump’s tropes involved Mexicans and Muslims and that tired euphemism of disastrous inner cities, Reagan used the ‘welfare queen’ scare, as far back as his unsuccessful bid for president in 1976.

Continue reading the main story RELATED COVERAGE

Opinion Charles M. Blow The G.O.P.’s ‘Black People’ Platform JAN. 6, 2012

Charles M. Blow Politics, public opinion and social justice. Harry and Sidney: Soul Brothers FEB 20 Drip, Drip, Drip FEB 15 The Power of Disruption FEB 13 Trump’s Leading Rivals Wear Robes FEB 9 A Lesson in Black History FEB 6 See More »

As I have written before, Reagan explained at nearly every stop that there was a woman in Chicago who ‘used 80 names, 30 addresses, 15 telephone numbers to collect food stamps, Social Security, veterans’ benefits for four nonexistent, deceased veteran husbands, as well as welfare. Her tax-free cash income alone has been running $150,000 a year.’

But it was not as it seemed.

As my colleague Paul Krugman wrote in 2007: ‘Reagan repeatedly told the bogus story of the Cadillac-driving welfare queen — a gross exaggeration of a minor case of welfare fraud. He never mentioned the woman’s race, but he didn’t have to.’

As Gene Demby perfectly summed up on NPR in 2013: ‘In the popular imagination, the stereotype of the ‘welfare queen’ is thoroughly raced — she’s an indolent black woman, living off the largess of taxpayers. The term is seen by many as a dog whistle, a way to play on racial anxieties without summoning them directly.’

So, then as now, economic anxiety and throbbing xenophobia were convenient shields behind which brewing racial animus could hide.

Indeed, Trump’s slogan ‘Make American Great Again’ was first used by Reagan.

And yet, Democrats in 1984 were quick to look for the lessons they could learn on how to reach out to the Reagan coalition, instead of condemning it.

In the days following Reagan’s win that year, The New York Times reported:

‘Democratic Party leaders began yesterday what they foresee as a long and agonizing appraisal of how they can renew their appeal to the white majority in presidential elections and still hold the allegiance of minorities, the poor and others who seek federal assistance.’"

(Via.).  The Death of Compassion - The New York Times:

Trump Intensifies His Attacks on Journalists and Condemns F.B.I. ‘Leakers’ - The New York Times


"WASHINGTON — President Trump turned the power of the White House against the news media on Friday, escalating his attacks on journalists as ‘the enemy of the people’ and berating members of his own F.B.I. as ‘leakers’ who he said were putting the nation at risk.

In a speech to the Conservative Political Action Conference, Mr. Trump criticized as ‘fake news’ organizations that publish anonymously sourced reports that reflect poorly on him. And in a series of Twitter posts, he assailed the F.B.I. as a dangerously porous agency, condemning unauthorized revelations of classified information from within its ranks and calling for an immediate hunt for leakers.

Hours after the speech, as if to demonstrate Mr. Trump’s determination to punish reporters whose coverage he dislikes, Sean Spicer, the White House press secretary, barred journalists from The New York Times and several other news organizations from attending his daily briefing, a highly unusual breach of relations between the White House and its press corps."

(Via.).  Trump Intensifies His Attacks on Journalists and Condemns F.B.I. ‘Leakers’ - The New York Times:

Muslim adviser quits after 8 days of Trump admin. | MSNBC

Muslim adviser quits after 8 days of Trump admin. | MSNBC

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Republican Health Plans Have Winners And Losers, Just Like Obamacare | FiveThirtyEight

"The Affordable Care Act sacrificed affordability in order to get more people insured. Prohibiting companies from denying people insurance because of pre-existing conditions, for example, opened up access to everyone, but it also made insurance more expensive for people who were healthy. Similarly, requiring insurers to offer a comprehensive set of benefits meant that low-cost plans offering only catastrophic coverage were no longer allowed for most people, which meant higher premiums for everyone. President Trump has promised to insure more people at a lower price, but it’s not clear how he could make that happen.

Now, Republicans who have promised for years to repeal and replace the ACA are tasked with balancing winners and losers, coverage and cost. GOP House members outlined their replacement plan last week. Here’s a look at how the main policy proposals would shake out against the current system.

Insuring the sickest Americans

Underlying the tradeoffs of any health policy is the world’s most expensive medical system. Until we do something about the high cost of care overall, someone has to pay, whether it’s the federal government with tax dollars, companies or individuals. But just a sliver of the population is responsible for the majority of health care spending in the U.S., and figuring out how to pay for the most costly patients is one of the biggest challenges in health care policy.

Before the ACA, many states had high-risk pools: state-run programs for people with serious medical needs who couldn’t get health insurance elsewhere. Most enrollees had been turned down for coverage by insurance companies because of pre-existing health conditions and didn’t have an employer-sponsored plan. In 2007, 34 states had pools that spent more than $1.8 billion on the 201,000 people enrolled in these programs, which did little to reduce the overall uninsured rate but were life changing for many of the people they did cover.

By requiring that insurers cover everyone, including those with pre-existing conditions, the ACA did away with those programs. Republicans have pushed to bring this system back, because removing the people who cost the most to treat would result in lower premiums for everyone else in the general insurance pool. That shift would isolate the people with the greatest medical needs, however, and leave them open to funding shortfalls. The programs rely on sick people paying more for care, anywhere from about 120 percent to 250 percent of what a healthier counterpart would pay, which can be an added strain on families. In Minnesota, which had the oldest and largest high-risk pool in the country, a 60-year-old man in the program paid $685 per month for a plan with a $2,000 deductible in 2014, according to information gathered by Lynn Blewett, a professor at the University of Minnesota who has studied high-risk pools. “For people who could afford it, it was a good product,” Blewett said. “But there were a lot of people who couldn’t afford it.”

Republican Health Plans Have Winners And Losers, Just Like Obamacare | FiveThirtyEight

Amazon argues Constitution protects your chats with Alexa - CNET

"Amazon says the First Amendment protects your conversations with Alexa.

"Such interactions may constitute expressive content that implicates privacy concerns and First Amendment protections," the company's lawyers wrote in a court filing Friday.

The legal filing addresses a warrant obtained by Benton County, Arkansas, investigators for any recordings gathered by an Alexa-powered Echo device that was in the home of a homicide suspect in 2015. Investigators say the recordings could provide clues to help them investigate the death of Victor Collins, who was found dead in the hot tub of James Bates in Bentonville. Bates has been charged with first-degree murder and released on bail."

Amazon argues Constitution protects your chats with Alexa - CNET

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

What the Jewish Cemetery Attack and Trump’s Movement Have in Common - The Daily Beast

"...Jewish cemeteries are a reminder of Jewish death, and Jewish death means the Holocaust, a genocide still unprecedented in scope and scale.

The bigoted, racist, anti-Semitic, Islamophobic, white supremacist far right knows this. (Their wanna-be “alt” signifier can go to hell.) Whoever committed the acts of vandalism in the Chesed Shel Emet cemetery, they knew that defiling a cemetery is a particularly loathsome act, and defiling the graves of dead Jews, many of whom were surely Holocaust refugees or survivors, has a very particular resonance.

This is also why, after calling out white supremacy last Spring and being promoted for doing so by the Daily Stormer, I received hundreds of tweets with pictures of me in a gas chamber, me wearing a Jude star, my head on the body of a rat. And why, despite myself, they actually hurt..."

What the Jewish Cemetery Attack and Trump’s Movement Have in Common - The Daily Beast

Undocumented Woman With a Brain Tumor Locked Up by ICE - The Daily Beast

"The 26-year-old undocumented woman was in a detention center in Texas when she started complaining of headaches earlier this month.

The pain was caused by a brain tumor and, today, lawyers for the woman who remains in the custody of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement fear she’ll die there without ever seeing or speaking to her family again.

It’s a scenario that advocates worry could become far more common under President Donald Trump’s new immigration enforcement rules.

According to her legal team, helmed by attorney Marcia Kasdan, the woman — who we will identify as Sara to protect her privacy — was being held at the Prairieland Detention Center in Alvarado, Texas, when she started complaining of terrible headaches.

In her court testimony, Sara acknowledged that she illegally crossed the border on Nov. 4, 2015, and border patrol agents apprehended her. A sworn statement from Border Patrol agent Roberto Gonzalez Jr. says Sara told him on Nov. 8, 2015 that she came to the U.S. to work, and not to seek asylum.

She told an immigration judge on Jan. 12, 2016, that she actually did come to the U.S. from her native El Salvador seeking asylum, and that she feared her aunt — who she said is gang-affiliated — would kill her because she was in a relationship with a Salvadoran police officer. But Sara missed the deadline to file her asylum claim, so the judge ordered her deportation. Her legal team, which began working with her after she missed that deadline and acknowledges that it was missed, appealed. She has been in detention since then."

Undocumented Woman With a Brain Tumor Locked Up by ICE - The Daily Beast


Relevant Case law setting guideline limits to ICE searches an seizures of undocumented aliens.

“United States Supreme CourtINS v. LOPEZ-MENDOZA, (1984)No. 83-491Argued: April 18, 1984    Decided: July 5, 1984Respondent Mexican citizens were ordered deported by an Immigration Judge. Respondent Lopez-Mendoza unsuccessfully objected to being summoned to the deportation hearing following his allegedly unlawful arrest by an Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) agent, but he did not object to the receipt in evidence of his admission, after the arrest, of illegal entry into this country. Respondent Sandoval-Sanchez, who also admitted his illegal entry after being arrested by an INS agent, unsuccessfully objected to the evidence of his admission offered at the deportation proceeding, contending that it should have been suppressed as the fruit of an unlawful arrest. The Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) affirmed the deportation orders. The Court of Appeals reversed respondent Sandoval-Sanchez' deportation order, holding that his detention by INS agents violated the Fourth Amendment, that his admission of illegal entry was the product of this detention, and that the exclusionary rule barred its use in a deportation proceeding. The court vacated respondent Lopez-Mendoza's deportation order and remanded his case to the BIA to determine whether the Fourth Amendment had been violated in the course of his arrest…..”

It's legal for an immigration agent to pretend to be a police officer outside someone's door. But should it be? - LA Times

"During a nationwide operation this month by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, a team of ICE agents in Los Angeles approached the house of a man targeted for deportation.

“Good morning, police,” one agent announced in the pre-dawn darkness. 
A man opened the door moments later.

“Good morning, how you doing? I’m a police officer. We’re doing an investigation,” the agent said.
The exchange, captured on a video released publicly by ICE, seemed routine. But it has reignited long-simmering objections from immigrant rights attorneys and advocates, who say the scene illustrates unethical — and in some cases, illegal —  ruses ICE agents have used for years, portraying themselves as officers from local police departments to ensnare people or fool them into revealing the whereabouts of family members.
The use of the tactic, critics said, is particularly egregious in heavily immigrant cities such as Los Angeles and San Francisco, where police and elected officials have tried for decades to distinguish their cops from federal immigration agents, in an effort to convince immigrants living illegally in their cities that they can interact with local police without fear of deportation. The practice of using ruses predates the Trump administration. But the president’s announcement of his intent to dramatically increase the number of people ICE apprehends for deportation has increased concerns by immigrant advocates that the tactic will grow even more prevalent.

“There is something fundamentally unfair about ICE exploiting local and state policies that are trying to improve public safety by promoting immigrants’ trust in law enforcement,” said Frances Miriam Kreimer, senior attorney at Dolores Street Community Services in San Francisco.
Kreimer is challenging the legality of a ruse ICE officers used to arrest a client, in which they told the man they were police officers investigating a crime.

'I’m not going to do it.' Police aren't eager to help Trump enforce immigration laws'I’m not going to do it.' Police aren't eager to help Trump enforce immigration laws"

It's legal for an immigration agent to pretend to be a police officer outside someone's door. But should it be? - LA Times: ""

Trump on Slavery: ‘Boy, That Is Not Good’ - The Daily Beast

"President Trump on Wednesday visited the National Museum of African American History and Culture and was reportedly moved to audibly comment on the horrific nature of slavery during his tour. Martin Luther King Jr.’s niece Alveda King accompanied the president and, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, said that when Trump came upon a stone auction block for selling slaves, he commented: “Boy, that is just not good. That is not good.” Later, when he saw a set of shackles used on slave children, he said, according to King: “That is really bad. That is really bad.”

Trump on Slavery: ‘Boy, That Is Not Good’ - The Daily Beast


Trump finally condemns anti-Semitic attacks After twice declining to condemn the rise in anti-Semitism, the president spoke out today - though plenty remain unsatisfied. - All In with Chris Hayes on MSNBC

All In with Chris Hayes on MSNBC

Pres. Trump’s Lawyer Denies Delivering Russia-Ukraine Peace Plan | MSNBC

Pres. Trump’s Lawyer Denies Delivering Russia-Ukraine Peace Plan | MSNBC