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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

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.

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Opinion | Anita Hill: How to Get the Kavanaugh Hearings Right - The New York Times

"Anita Hill: How to Get the Kavanaugh Hearings Right

The Senate Judiciary Committee has a chance to do better by the country than it did nearly three decades ago.

Ms. Hill is a professor at Brandeis University.

Anita F. Hill, right, is sworn in to testify before the United States Senate Judiciary Committee on the confirmation of Judge Clarence Thomas by Chairman Joseph Biden in October 1991.

Photo by: Arnie Sachs/picture-alliance -- dpa, via Associated Press

There is no way to redo 1991, but there are ways to do better.

The facts underlying Christine Blasey Ford’s claim of being sexually assaulted by a young Brett Kavanaugh will continue to be revealed as confirmation proceedings unfold. Yet it’s impossible to miss the parallels between the Kavanaugh confirmation hearing of 2018 and the 1991 confirmation hearing for Justice Clarence Thomas. In 1991, the Senate Judiciary Committee had an opportunity to demonstrate its appreciation for both the seriousness of sexual harassment claims and the need for public confidence in the character of a nominee to the Supreme Court. It failed on both counts.

As that same committee, on which sit some of the same members as nearly three decades ago, now moves forward with the Kavanaugh confirmation proceedings, the integrity of the court, the country’s commitment to addressing sexual violence as a matter of public interest, and the lives of the two principle witnesses who will be testifying hang in the balance. Today, the public expects better from our government than we got in 1991, when our representatives performed in ways that gave employers permission to mishandle workplace harassment complaints throughout the following decades. That the Senate Judiciary Committee still lacks a protocol for vetting sexual harassment and assault claims that surface during a confirmation hearing suggests that the committee has learned little from the Thomas hearing, much less the more recent #MeToo movement.

With the current heightened awareness of sexual violence comes heightened accountability for our representatives. To do better, the 2018 Senate Judiciary Committee must demonstrate a clear understanding that sexual violence is a social reality to which elected representatives must respond. A fair, neutral and well-thought-out course is the only way to approach Dr. Blasey and Judge Kavanaugh’s upcoming testimony. The details of what that process would look like should be guided by experts who have devoted their careers to understanding sexual violence. The job of the Senate Judiciary Committee is to serve as fact-finders, to better serve the American public, and the weight of the government should not be used to destroy the lives of witnesses who are called to testify.

Here are some basic ground rules the committee should follow:

Refrain from pitting the public interest in confronting sexual harassment against the need for a fair confirmation hearing. Our interest in the integrity of the Supreme Court and in eliminating sexual misconduct, especially in our public institutions, are entirely compatible. Both are aimed at making sure that our judicial system operates with legitimacy.

The Supreme Court nominee Brett M. Kavanaugh during the Senate Committee Judiciary Committee hearing on Capitol Hill last week.

Photo by: Doug Mills/The New York Times

Select a neutral investigative body with experience in sexual misconduct cases that will investigate the incident in question and present its findings to the committee. Outcomes in such investigations are more reliable and less likely to be perceived as tainted by partisanship. Senators must then rely on the investigators’ conclusions, along with advice from experts, to frame the questions they ask Judge Kavanaugh and Dr. Blasey. Again, the senators’ fact-finding roles must guide their behavior. The investigators’ report should frame the hearing, not politics or myths about sexual assault.

Do not rush these hearings. Doing so would not only signal that sexual assault accusations are not important — hastily appraising this situation would very likely lead to facts being overlooked that are necessary for the Senate and the public to evaluate. That the committee plans to hold a hearing this coming Monday is discouraging. Simply put, a week’s preparation is not enough time for meaningful inquiry into very serious charges.

Finally, refer to Christine Blasey Ford by her name. She was once anonymous, but no longer is. Dr. Blasey is not simply “Judge Kavanaugh’s accuser.” Dr. Blasey is a human being with a life of her own. She deserves the respect of being addressed and treated as a whole person.

Process is important, but it cannot erase the difficulty of testifying on national television about the sexual assault that Dr. Blasey says occurred when she was 15 years old. Nor will it negate the fact that as she sits before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Dr. Blasey will be outresourced. Encouraging letters from friends and strangers may help, but she cannot match the organized support that Judge Kavanaugh has. Since Dr. Blasey and Judge Kavanaugh have the same obligation to present the truth, this imbalance may not seem fair.

But, as Judge Kavanaugh stands to gain the lifetime privilege of serving on the country’s highest court, he has the burden of persuasion. And that is only fair.

In 1991, the phrase “they just don’t get it” became a popular way of describing senators’ reaction to sexual violence. With years of hindsight, mounds of evidence of the prevalence and harm that sexual violence causes individuals and our institutions, as well as a Senate with more women than ever, “not getting it” isn’t an option for our elected representatives. In 2018, our senators must get it right.

Anita Hill is university professor of Social Policy, Law, and Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies at Brandeis University in Waltham, Mass."

Opinion | Anita Hill: How to Get the Kavanaugh Hearings Right - The New York Times

Monday, September 17, 2018

I'm Asian But My Culture is Black

New Data Confirm Adverse Childhood Experiences Are Widespread : Shots - Health News : NPR

"When researchers first discovered a link in the late 1990s between childhood adversity and chronic health problems later in life, the real revelation was how common those experiences were across all socioeconomic groups.

But the first major study to focus on adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) was limited to a single healthcare system in San Diego. Now a new study — the largest nationally representative study to date on ACEs — confirms that these experiences are universal, yet highlights some disparities among socioeconomic groups. People with low-income and educational attainment, people of color and people who identified as gay, lesbian or bisexual had significantly higher chance of having experienced adversity in childhood.

The study finds three out of five adults across the U.S. had at least one adverse experience in their childhood, such as divorce, a parent's death, physical or emotional abuse, or a family member's incarceration or substance abuse problem. A quarter of adults have at least three such experiences in childhood, which – according to other research — increases their risk for most common chronic diseases, from heart disease and cancer to depression and substance abuse.

"This is the first study of this kind that allows us to talk about adverse childhood experience as a public health problem in the same way we talk about obesity or hypertension or any other highly prevalent population risk factor," says Adam Schickedanz, an assistant professor of pediatrics at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, who was not involved in the research. "Up until now, we haven't really had a study that takes a national look."

The study researchers, led by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention researcher Melissa T. Merrick, analyzed data from 214,157 adults in 23 states between 2011 and 2014. The participants answered 11 questions about whether they'd experienced what have now become well recognized as ACEs: parental separation or divorce, child abuse (physical, emotional and sexual), domestic violence and living with someone who has been incarcerated or has a mental illness or a substance use disorder.

Nearly 62 percent of respondents had at least one ACE and a quarter reported three or more. The remaining respondents had at least two ACEs, including 16 percent with four or more such experiences.

Those identifying as black or Latino and those with less than a high school education or an annual income below $15,000 were more likely to have more ACEs. But a relatively new finding was that multiracial and gay, lesbian and bisexual individuals carried the greatest burden.

Multiracial participants reported roughly 2.5 ACEs, and bisexual adults reported 3.1, both the highest scores reported. Women, younger adults, unemployed people and those unable to work also tended to have higher scores.

But Schickedanz cautions that, while the disparities are real, it's important to recognize how common these experiences are among all people, including white and middle class families.

"This [study] shows that ACEs affect people from all walks of life everywhere," he says.

The link between trauma and health

The original ACE study, published in 1998, analyzed data from more than 9,000 primarily middle class adults in the San Diego area, starting in 1995-1997. Its publication opened people's eyes to how common adverse experiences are even among children in seemingly more privileged homes. Nearly 40 percent of participants had at least a college degree, and 75 percent were white.

More than a quarter of those original participants reported physical abuse in childhood, and one in five reported sexual abuse. And the study identified the link between adverse childhood experiences and poor physical and mental health decades later.

Since that study, an increasing number of states have begun collecting data on ACEs with the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, the database used by the new study's researchers. All states use the system, and 32 states since 2009 have collected ACEs data.

The CDC tracks the many ACE-related studies published on a website section specifically about ACEs. Studies have linked a greater number of ACEs with greater risk of heart disease, cancer, bone fractures and chronic lung or liver diseases, diabetes and stroke. Those with the most ACEs, four to six or more, tend to have higher rates of mental illness.

Scientists have just begun understanding the social and biological mechanisms that might explain how highly stressful experiences in childhood could translate to greater risks for heart disease or diabetes. One way has to do with the stress response itself: the body produces and releases the hormones cortisol and adrenaline while increasing blood sugar and blood pressure — all of which help with the body's need for fight or flight.

But chronic stress means chronically high levels of these substances, which isn't healthy in the long term. Consistently high blood sugar, for example, increases the risk of diabetes, and high blood pressure is linked to heart disease.

Opportunities for intervention

This new study suggests a need to target prevention resources where they can help most, says Jack Shonkoff, a professor of child health and development at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. This also requires identifying what makes some people more susceptible than others to the effects of adversity.

"Nobody is immune to adverse experiences in childhood but for some population groups, they're a larger burden of childhood adversity than others," he says. "We need to focus on targeting limited resources to the people at greatest risk and making sure those resources go into programs that reduce or mitigate adversity."

Doing that will require developing tools to screen for people's sensitivity to adversity, he says. He also notes that ACEs alone don't account for health disparities. Genetics play a key role in health outcomes as well, he explains.

"Environmental risk factors are only part of the story. You can't separate genetics from environment," Shonkoff says.

To address the consequences of childhood adversity, it will be important to develop programs that help children learn healthy coping mechanisms and strengthen families and communities overall, says Andrew Garner, a clinical professor of pediatrics at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland.

"Our objective is not to put kids in a bubble but teach kids how to deal with adversity in a healthy manner," Garner says. "If parents are in survival mode, their kids are in survival mode too, and they're not going to learn as well and learn coping mechanisms. Those poor coping mechanisms are what we think links adversity to poor health outcomes."

For example, youth who cope by using drugs, alcohol, sex or other risky behaviors are increasing their risk of substance abuse problems, teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections, all of which increase risk of other chronic diseases later on.

Garner and Schickedanz both pointed to increasing levels of social isolation documented by other researchers as a substantial likely contributor to the health outcomes linked to ACEs.

"If you look the very highest risk group, it's bisexuals, and we know they may feel isolated. The second highest is multiracial people who may not necessary feel they belong in any particular group," Garner says. "We know from biology that it's really bad to be socially isolated and we're seeing that disparities in adversity are mirrored in health outcomes later on."

But Garner emphasizes that an ACE score is "not destiny." In addition to social programs that address underlying income and racial disparities, it's vital to teach kids resilience.

"Resilience reflects using skills, and the beauty of that is that skills can be learned, taught, modeled, practiced and reinforced, and kids learn better when they're in relationships," he says. "We need to do better job of primary prevention by focusing on emotional learning and promoting safe, stable, nurturing relationships."

New Data Confirm Adverse Childhood Experiences Are Widespread : Shots - Health News : NPR

The truth is in the ”Timeline” Kavanaugh’s accuser came forward before his Supreme Court nomination.

Reporter: Kavanaugh accuser came forward in July

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Kavanaugh accuser speaks out about alleged assault

Ocasio-Cortez: Puerto Ricans treated like second-class citizens

Opinion | Eyewitness to the Desolation of ‘Black Wall Street’ - The New York Times

"On Wednesday afternoon, I traveled to the charming but unassuming neighborhood of Juniper Hill in White Plains to speak with a living legend too few people know about.
Her name is Olivia J. Hooker, and she is a sharp and glorious 103 years old. Not only was she the first African-American women to join the Coast Guard, not only was she a psychology professor and activist, but she is one of the last known survivors of the Tulsa Race Riot of 1921. During the riot, white residents destroyed the prosperous black neighborhood of Greenwood, which had come to be known as “Black Wall Street.” A report by the Oklahoma Commission to Study the Tulsa Race Riot said, “It is estimated that approximately 11,000 blacks resided in Tulsa in 1921, most living in the area of the Greenwood section.” As many as 300 people were killed and 8,000 left homeless. 
As The New York Times wrote in 2011 on the 90th anniversary, the Tulsa riot “may be the deadliest occurrence of racial violence in United States history.” And yet, as the Tulsa Historical Society and Museum points out, not one act of violence that occurred that day “was then or ever has been prosecuted or punished by government at any level: municipal, county, state, or federal.”
There was no news peg for my conversation with Dr. Hooker, no milestone, no major anniversary, but it is my philosophy that when life affords you the opportunity to sit at the elbow of a historical figure who has lived through things you’ve only read about, you take it.
Dr. Olivia J. Hooker with the author.

So I entered Hooker’s home and locked eyes with her, as a broad smile pushed up her cheeks. Her small body lay almost enveloped by the cushions of a large red recliner.

Shortly after I arrived, she began to speak, recalling an awesome story of a terrible time.

Hooker grew up in a happy house with three sisters and one brother — she was the fourth child — her parents and a grandmother. Their house was a small, five-room cottage, white with green trim, in Greenwood.

Her father owned a department store that carried his name, Samuel D. Hooker. “My daddy only had first-class stock,” Hooker related with a smile and a hint of pride.

She described an idyllic life of school, visits to the grocery store whenever she had two pennies, and her fear of the trolley that ran through town.

But that was all ripped apart one day in her sixth summer, when Greenwood erupted.

White men broke into their house as Hooker and some of her siblings hid beneath an oak dining table, draped with a tablecloth.

“They took a hatchet to my sisters’ piano. They poured oil all over my grandmother’s bed.” They “stuffed the dresser” with ammunition, Hooker told me. Maybe they had intended to burn or destroy the house, but they didn’t.

She continued, “They took all the beautiful biscuits out of the oven and threw them out in the mud.” We both managed a laugh.

They broke the phonograph and the Enrico Caruso records her mother had received as a gift from a friend who had gone to study in Heidelberg, Germany.

“They didn’t appreciate you having anything classical,” Hooker said. “They took all the silverware that Momma had just got for Christmas, coffee pot, teapot — you know, that kind of beautiful stuff. If anything looked precious, they took it.”

Hooker told me that after the men left the house, “The militia sent folks down to talk to my mother. She said: ‘Why are you shooting the victims? Why don’t you shoot the aggressors?’” A militiaman responded: “We can’t do that. How can we do that?”

“This is how you do it,” said Hooker’s mother, turning a musket on the men. Hooker told me that her mother had been to Tuskegee Institute and that a boyfriend at the time was a militiaman who had told her that women should learn self-defense. He had taught her many of the things he knew, including how to shoot.

When Hooker’s mother turned the gun on the white men, the militiaman yelled at her, “You have to get these children to a safe place!” She replied, “I had a safe place!”

People think that the horror of America’s racial history is an unfortunate episode among ancestors, but it is not. The civil rights movement was only 50 years ago. The Tulsa riot was less than 100 years ago. People alive today still carry that weight, still manage that trauma, still hide those scars.

American history is full of stories of black people doing precisely what America says it wants of its citizens — being creative, enterprising and industrious, being self-respecting and self-sufficient — only to have white people destroy what they’ve built, impede their progress and erase their wealth. And those are not far-off stories: Those are also the stories of the living.

I look at it this way: Dr. Hooker’s life has overlapped with that of my grandparents, my parents, my kids and me. So, too, must the lives of some of the men who destroyed this black neighborhood, the ones who burst into the small white and green Hooker house looking to loot “precious” things.

What impact did this have on Hooker and those she influenced? What impact did it have on the rioters and those they influenced? History doesn’t stay stuck in the time that it happens. That is only where it is born, after which it is alive and moving with us through time and space.

In the immediate aftermath of the riots, Hooker was traumatized.

The community was decimated. “All of the schools where black people could go to were destroyed,” she told me. As Hooker tells it, they were bombed from the air using crop dusters. Her father’s store, with its Arrow shirts and Edison hats, had been emptied by looters.

Her mother moved with the children to Topeka, Kan., so they could go to school, while her father stayed behind to try to rebuild his business.

“I used to scream at night. I didn’t sleep. I had nightmares,” she said. Dr. Hooker was so traumatized that when her mother sought medical advice about what to do with her sleepless child, she was told to keep her home from school, which she did for a while.

Think about what this kind of trauma (or our modern versions, in the form of things like televised state violence or mass family separation and internment) does to a child’s — a person’s — sense of trust and belonging.

Hooker said it made her question her sense of belonging in this country, as well as the patriotic songs she had learned as a child. “All the beautiful songs, well, I had believed them.”

Hooker said her mother told her, “We are citizens, but they don’t respect us.”

“My family had never told me about hate,” said Hooker. “I didn’t know what that was.” She told me: “All of the nonblack people I had seen had been gentle and nice, laughing with us children and listening to my sister play the piano, because they wanted to sell my father their wares. I thought that was the nature of whites.”

As Hooker put it, “It took years for me to get over the shock of seeing people be so horrible to people who had done them no wrong.”

That to me was Hooker’s great lesson about Tulsa: that racism and racial violence is shocking and haunting and you carry it with you, both communally and individually, in blunt injury and in excruciating detail, down to the image of the beautiful biscuits being tossed in the mud."

Opinion | Eyewitness to the Desolation of ‘Black Wall Street’ - The New York Times

Opinion | What America Looks Like From a Jail in South Texas - The New York Times



















"Of all the ways I imagined the inevitable — being arrested, getting detained — I never envisioned sitting on the cold cement floor of a jail cell in South Texas surrounded by children.

It was July 2014. The cell, as I remember it, was no bigger than 20 by 30 feet. All around me were about 25 boys, as young as 5, the oldest no more than 12. The air reeked. A boy across the room from me was crying inconsolably, his head buried in his chest. Most of the boys wore dazed expressions. It was clear they had no idea where they were or why they were there.

The only source of entertainment came from Mylar blankets, flimsy metallic sheets that were supposed to keep us warm. Three boys played with a blanket as if it were a toy, crunching it up into a ball, passing it back and forth.
A window faced a central area where a dozen or so patrol agents were stationed, but there was not much to look at. All I could do was stare at the boys’ shoes. My shoes were shiny and brand new; theirs, dirty, muddy and worn down. The only thing our shoes had in common was that none of them had laces.

“Jose Antonio Vargas,” said an agent as he walked in. “I don’t need you. Not yet. But we’re gonna move you.”
The moment the agent said my name, one of the boys playing with the blanket started speaking to me. I had no idea what he was saying. The one word I could make out was “miedo.” Something about “miedo.”

If I spoke Spanish, I could have told the boys the story I kept secret for years, a story that I’m now asked to tell almost every day: I was born in the Philippines, a country whose colonial-imperial history is characterized as being “300 years in the convent, 50 years in Hollywood.” When I was 12, my mother put me on a plane to California to go live with her parents. When I was 16, while applying for a driver’s permit, I discovered that the documents my grandfather had given me were fake, that I did not have legal documents to be in this country.

Which is why, in 2014, a Border Patrol agent at the airport in McAllen arrested me the moment I told him I was here illegally.
If I spoke Spanish, I could have told the boys about the country they had arrived and been detained in, a country I’ve lived in for more than 20 years, the country I did not ask to come to but where I have been educated, where I have worked since I was a teenager, where my grandparents and other relatives immigrated with documentation but where I have found myself stranded without a way to “get legal.”

Opinion | What America Looks Like From a Jail in South Texas - The New York Times: ""

Saturday, September 15, 2018

New York Elects Its Next Anti-Trump Warrior | The New Republic

"By winning the Democratic primary to be New York’s next attorney general, Tish James is now virtually guaranteed to become the state’s top legal officer this November. That position will almost immediately make her into a national figure—and perhaps the most influential state official in the country who isn’t a governor..."

New York Elects Its Next Anti-Trump Warrior | The New Republic

SE Cupp: Why is it so hard for Republicans to say Trump is wrong?

Why Do Gullah Communities Choose to Ride Out Hurricanes?

The places that are most threatened by Hurricane Florence this week, especially along the coast of the Carolinas, were heavily and, in some areas, almost entirely populated and owned by African-Americans a century ago...”
While many of these black residents have since moved elsewhere, those in pockets like Princeville, N.C., remain. One of the oldest towns incorporated by African-Americans in the United States, Princeville was devastated by Hurricane Matthew in 2016, but many residents chose to stay, hoping to avoid “another lost colony.”
Regina Cobb, 50, and her family have lived in Princeville for generations. “If it floods this time, I think my family is out,” she said this week. “This is God’s way of saying: ‘It’s time to do something different.’”
African-Americans have been driven from their homes in the region for decades, but the decision to leave has not always been theirs to make. In 1950, African-Americans were about a quarter of North Carolina’s population, according to census data. Today, blacks are roughly one-fifth of the total population.
Andrew W. Kahrl is a professor of history and African-American studies at the University of Virginia and the author of “The Land Was Ours: African-American Beaches from Jim Crow to the Sunbelt South.” Here we discuss race and the displacement of black coastal communities on the Atlantic....

Friday, September 14, 2018

“Climate Capitalism is Killing Our Communities”: Protesters Disrupt Gov....

Paul Manafort Agrees to Cooperate With Special Counsel; Pleads Guilty to Reduced Charges - The New York Times

"WASHINGTON — Paul Manafort, President Trump’s former campaign chairman, agreed on Friday to cooperate with the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, as part of a deal in which he pleaded guilty to reduced charges stemming from consulting work he did for pro-Russia political forces in Ukraine.

Appearing in United States District Court in Washington, Mr. Manafort entered guilty pleas on two conspiracy charges. Andrew Weissmann, the lead prosecutor, told Judge Amy Berman Jackson that there was a cooperation agreement with Mr. Manafort but provided no details.

It was not immediately clear what information Mr. Manafort might provide to prosecutors or how the plea agreement might affect Mr. Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election and related questions about possible collusion by the Trump campaign and obstruction of justice by Mr. Trump.

The plea deal is another unsettling development for Mr. Trump. For months, Mr. Trump has praised Mr. Manafort for fighting the charges. In private discussions with his lawyers, Mr. Trump has raised the possibility of pardoning Mr. Manafort..."

Paul Manafort Agrees to Cooperate With Special Counsel; Pleads Guilty to Reduced Charges - The New York Times

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Indulging Steve Bannon is just a form of liberal narcissism. White supremacy and fascist flirtations are not ideas that need to be ‘exposed’. We just need to fight them. | Nesrine Malik | Opinion | The Guardian

Steve Bannon appearing on Good Morning Britain in July 2018.

"I grew up in the long shadow of a military coup. To be a child in a country where relatives and friends suddenly disappeared, were detained indefinitely without trial, or in some instances executed, was to grow up very quickly. But the most difficult thing to process was seeing those who had lost family to the government’s brutality scramble to make peace with its members, or even join it, once it became clear the military regime was staying. It’s still a depressing thing to return to Sudan and see men who I remember as a child returning from prison gaunt and hollowed out with starvation and torture, sit among the government’s ranks, fatted, safe, and soft with power.

But it taught me an important lesson: the fate some politicians fear most is not defeat, it is irrelevance. And as the Donald Trump administration functions largely like an African dictatorship, it has been a lesson that has been helpful in shedding light on the complicity of formerly moral Republicans, and in turn, the normalisation of Trump and his associates by liberals.

Once you see relevance and proximity to power or influence as a basic motivator of elites, you cannot unsee it. When David Remnick, the editor of the New Yorker, invited Steve Bannon to headline the magazine’s Festival of Ideas, an invitation he later rescinded because he had “changed his mind”, it was not an aberration. The liberal media, so in the thrall to the power of narrative, spun Bannon’s myth before he had even properly set foot in the White House, and wrote hagiographies after.

His brief association with Trump – by all accounts a coincidental move after a peripatetic career – was written into something of far more consequence by those fascinated by a man who should have been one of their own but took the dark path, like an evil twin in a Hollywood movie. He is constantly remade, even though since he was fired he has done little but bait and agitate in culture wars. The New Yorker attributes an entire school of thought to him, and calls it “Bannonism”.

In another such outing of Bannon as a dark knight, this weekend he will be interviewed by Zanny Minton Beddoes, the Economist’s editor in chief, at the magazine’s Open Future festival. A few months ago Bannon also enjoyed a cosy interview with Lionel Barber of the Financial Times, where they traded (dull) DC war stories of Barber waiting in cafes around the White House until Bannon could come and get him. At one point Bannon says “well I’ve dealt with you before” with a sort of conspiratorial leer. The interview revealed a particular kind of rapport between them, something the French call “complicit√©”: a word that has a deeper meaning than the English “complicity”. It implies not only the bond of two people who are in on something the rest of us are not, but an intimate affinity based on something shared.

There is now a liberal media checklist when it comes to defending the hosting of Bannon. In a letter standing by her decision to invite him, Beddoes ticks some of them off. They want a “vibrant discussion”, a “robust argument”, not an “echo chamber”; ideas should be “tested”, a debate will “expose” bigotry and prejudice.

This is a delusion. Just as Bannon baits liberal media for his own propaganda purposes, so liberals benefit from engaging with him because he is really quite an easy person to engage. He is like a scratching pole for the Oxbridge- or Ivy League-style debaters at the helm of such establishments. They can come away from a polite joust with him having challenged racism and also having stood up to the hoard by protecting freedom of speech. To use a favourite phrase of Bannon himself, interviewing him is a perverse form of virtue signalling. To indulge him is an egotistical misreading of freedom of speech. It is about boasting liberal commitment to the value, rather than engaging with the evils that hide behind it.

This is a narcissism that many cannot afford. White supremacy, banning Muslims from entering countries and fascist flirtations are tangible issues for those not cushioned by the comforts of being of the correct race, religion or skin colour. They are not ideas that need to be “exposed”, or interrogated, or challenged. They are simply to be fought.

This is not philosophy, it is real life. But those who carry such concerns are excluded from the “robust debate” because what popular successful movements are they at the centre of? They did not campaign for Brexit, they did not put Trump in the White House, and they are not pushing back far-right gains in Europe. They are losing, and so the perceived architects of their disenfranchisement – the Nigel Farages and Steve Bannons and all the other dissimulating career nativists – will be entertained for as long as they are relevant. Even though in reality they are part-actors in the grand scheme of things, cast in a central role because that way they, and the story, sell better.

That is the real echo chamber: the one that leaves those at the sharp end of these debates out in the cold, even as they are accused of demanding a sanitised “dinner party” politics. Bannon is on the inside, because his views are seen to be successful. The echo chamber isn’t one of ideology, it is one of establishment.

It does not matter that what he stands for is essentially white nationalism, a racism that he said at a French far-right rally should be worn “as a badge of honour”. All that is relevant is that he is relevant, that he has become someone of consequence due to his brush with power, and seems to be at the centre of something that, in the words of Beddoes, “worryingly large numbers of people are drawn to”. And so that is the benchmark for what constitutes something worth entertaining and validating via prestigious invitations to intellectual festivals. Bannon will not be a rogue element, invited to be challenged and exposed. He will be among his people, fatted, safe, and soft with power.

• Nesrine Malik is a Guardian columnist"

Indulging Steve Bannon is just a form of liberal narcissism | Nesrine Malik | Opinion | The Guardian

Former Cuomo Aide Drafted Language for Inflammatory Anti-Semitism Flier - The New York Times

"Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s former top lieutenant approved an inflammatory flier that suggested his Democratic rival, Cynthia Nixon, was anti-Semitic, the campaign said on Wednesday. And it was another former aide to the governor who crafted the mailer’s language, according to an email obtained by The New York Times.

Lawrence S. Schwartz, the former secretary to the governor, inadvertently signed off on the flier after its language was drafted by David Lobl, a former special assistant to the governor who was volunteering with the re-election campaign, the campaign said. Mr. Lobl suggested the language for the mailer in an email to two campaign aides, who helped create the flier.

The correspondence, dated Sept. 1, shows Mr. Lobl outlining text that was later replicated almost verbatim on the back side of the mailer, which was sent to 7,000 households shortly before Rosh Hashana and days before Thursday’s primary."

Former Cuomo Aide Drafted Language for Inflammatory Anti-Semitism Flier - The New York Times

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Rick Santorum Blames The 'Country Of Puerto Rico' For Its 'Woefully Defi...

Detention of Migrant Children Has Skyrocketed to Highest Levels Ever - The New York Times

"Seven NYPD cops were arrested Wednesday over their alleged involvement in a prostitution and gambling ring, The Daily Beast can confirm. A senior law-enforcement official told the Beast that those arrested include two detectives, two police officers, and three sergeants, along with “dozens” of civilians. Two additional officers were not arrested but have been placed on desk duty as part of the probe, sources said. The seven arrested officers, who have been placed on desk duty and stripped of their guns and badges, allegedly provided protection as part of the ring, according to multiple law-enforcement sources. The NYPD’s Internal Affairs Bureau began investigating the ring in April 2015, after receiving a tip from a member of the service, the sources added. The Queens District Attorney’s Office is prosecuting the case. “Today, those who swore an oath and then betrayed it have felt the consequences of that infidelity,” Police Commissioner James O’Neill said in a statement. “The people of this Department are rightly held to the highest standard, and should they fail to meet it, the penalty will be swift and severe.”

Detention of Migrant Children Has Skyrocketed to Highest Levels Ever - The New York Times