federal mandate

BREAKING: Trump officially withdraws protections for transgender students
The Trump administration on Wednesday night withdrew Obama-era guidance on transgender bathroom use in public schools.
By Ariane de Vogue, Mary Kay Mallonee and Emanuella Grinberg, CNN

The Trump administration has officially withdrawn the guidelines issued by President Obama which protected transgender students’ rights to use gender-affirming bathrooms, have their correct names and pronouns used at school, and overall be treated as the gender with which they identify. It’s all gone. 

While some protections still exist in certain local or state governments, the removal of federal guidelines means trans students in conservative, anti-LGBT areas are out of luck. 

In a two-page “Dear Colleague” letter to public schools, the Trump administration said the existing guidance did not “contain extensive legal analysis or explain how the position is consistent with the express language of Title IX, nor did they undergo any formal public process.”

The letter – which does not offer new guidance but simply withdraws the Obama administration policy – says there must be “due regard” for the role of states and local school districts in shaping education policy in schools.“

As President Trump has clearly stated, he believes policy regarding transgender bathrooms should be decided at the state level,” the White House said in a statement. “The joint decision made today by the Department of Justice and the Department of Education returning power to the states paves the way for an open and inclusive process to take place at the local level with input from parents, students, teachers and administrators.”

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos said the administration has “a responsibility to protect every student in America and ensure that they have the freedom to learn and thrive in a safe and trusted environment.”

This is not merely a federal mandate, but a moral obligation no individual, school, district or state can abdicate,“ the statement continued. "At my direction, the department’s Office for Civil Rights remains committed to investigating all claims of discrimination, bullying and harassment against those who are most vulnerable in our schools.”

Dammit dammit dammit. We knew this would happen. He tried to claim he was an ally, and we knew from the start he was lying, and look where the f*ck we are now. But we’re not done here. We will fight this. We will right this wrong. Trans friends: you are valid and worthy exactly as you are.

A ‘Forgotten History’ Of How The U.S. Government Segregated America

In 1933, faced with a housing shortage, the federal government began a program explicitly designed to increase — and segregate — America’s housing stock. Author Richard Rothstein says the housing programs begun under the New Deal were tantamount to a “state-sponsored system of segregation.”

The government’s efforts were “primarily designed to provide housing to white, middle-class, lower-middle-class families,” he says. African-Americans and other people of color were left out of the new suburban communities — and pushed instead into urban housing projects.

Rothstein’s new book, The Color of Law, examines the local, state and federal housing policies that mandated segregation. He notes that the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), which was established in 1934, furthered the segregation efforts by refusing to insure mortgages in and near African-American neighborhoods — a policy known as “redlining.” At the same time, the FHA was subsidizing builders who were mass producing entire white subdivisions — with the requirement that none of the homes be sold to African-Americans.

Rothstein says that these decades-old housing policies have had a lasting effect on American society. “The segregation of our metropolitan areas today leads … to stagnant inequality, because families are much less able to be upwardly mobile when they’re living in segregated neighborhoods where opportunity is absent,” he says. “If we want greater equality in this society, if we want a lowering of the hostility between police and young African-American men, we need to take steps to desegregate.”

LGBT(PN) people had to riot at stonewall, stage LITERAL DIE-ins during the AIDS crisis, fight legal battle after legal battle to earn the right to decriminalize consensual sex in their own goddamn homes, get fired from their jobs, get told they cannot use public restrooms, be subject to “trans panic” laws that legalize murdering trans people, have hundreds of programs dedicated to torturing the gay and trans out of us (that were federally funded and mandated!), and you people are acting like being called a plant and getting told you’ll “grow out of it” is comparable?? All of that was the US alone, not to mention the countless other places where you can still get put to death for being gay!

You all want to steal our resources when the resources today for LGBT(PN) people came at the cost of our community’s lives. Our elders died for these resources. Our predecessors fought tooth and nail so their blood could give us homeless shelters, crisis hotlines, legal protection, and better healthcare. Cishet aces did none of that, suffered none of that, and were part of the group that subjected us to all of that in the first place.

If cishet aces want safe spaces and resources, they can do it themselves. Yall don’t have a fraction as many obstacles and roadblocks as LGBT(PN) people did and still do to get to where we are today but yall are still too lazy to organize yourselves and actually create change.

You want resources? Make your own. Stop expecting marginalized people to cater to you. Put in the work. You want to have a community like ours? Then go fucking make one you selfish assholes.

Die Autobahn bei Nacht. German Autobahnen have no federally mandated speed limit, although limits are posted and enforced as needed in areas that are urbanized, sub-standard, accident-prone, or under construction. In case of bad weather, limits may be set and are frequently enforced. On unrestricted stretches, an advisory limit (Richtgeschwindigkeit) of 130 km/h (81 mph) applies - but you can do what you want. In 2008, 52% of the Autobahn network had no speed limit; 15% had temporary limits due to weather or traffic conditions, and only 33% had permanent speed limits. Germany’s Autobahn network has a total length of 12,845 km and ranks it among the most dense and longest systems in the world.

Required Service

It should be a federal mandate of every country that every citizen of that country should work retail for a year. No exceptions. This way, people will understand what it is like to deal with customera. Maybe everyone would treat everyone better as a result.

If I have gained anything from my 4+ years of retail, it is that I have a deep and profound respect for anyone who works with the general public, and I have learned how not to treat people.

I’m pretty sure some people don’t even think of me as human when I’m in the checkstand.

Top 12 Things You Should Know About the U.S. Postal Service

(from the USPS website)

12. Nearly 6,000 mail carriers are attacked by dogs each year. All attacks are preventable. It’s a serious problem the Postal Service addresses every day and customers are asked to restrain their pets when carriers are on their delivery routes. While the Postal Service routinely promotes safety tips to avoid dog attacks, one week a year is dedicated to promoting education and public safety during the annual National Dog Bite Awareness Week in May.

11. The Postal Service has the country’s largest retail network — larger than McDonald’s, Starbucks and Walmart combined, domestically

10. Through the Carrier Alert Program, Postal Service letter carriers help monitor the well-being of elderly and disabled customers. If carriers notice an accumulation of mail that might indicate an accident or illness, they notify emergency personnel. In addition, each year postal employees go beyond the call of duty, some even risking their own safety to save the lives of the customers they serve. In 2015, the Postal Service recognized 318 employee heroes for going above and beyond.

9. The Postal Service processes and delivers nearly half of the world’s mail — 47 percent.

8. The Postal Service embraces the heroic service of the United States’ armed forces. More than 113,000 veterans are employed with the organization, and more than 140 stamps have been issued that reflect the nation’s military history, including the current Medal of Honor series. (As of Jan 2015)

7. The Postal Service is the only organization in the country that has the resources, network infrastructure and logistical capability to regularly deliver to every residential and business address in the nation.

6. The Postal Service has more than 200,000 vehicles, one of the largest civilian fleets in the world. Part of this fleet is currently in the process of being replaced with next generation vehicles to incorporate the automotive industry’s advances in ergonomics, safety features, fuel efficiency, low emissions and design flexibility.

5. The Postal Service can and does compete with the private sector — and it collaborates with it, too. UPS and FedEx pay the Postal Service to deliver hundreds of millions of their ground packages to residences, taking advantage of the Postal Service’s expansive delivery network. The Postal Service pays UPS and FedEx for air transportation, taking advantage of their comprehensive air networks.

4. Mail is a great communication tool. It’s personal. You can keep letters and cards forever. There are no monthly plans. No signal outages. No roaming charges. Regardless of geographic location, anyone can send a letter for just 47¢ to anywhere in the United States, its territories and U.S. military and diplomatic installations worldwide.

3. Mail is reliable, trusted and secure — more than 200 federal laws protect the sanctity of the U.S. Mail. These laws are enforced by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, one of the oldest law enforcement agencies in the country. U.S. Postal Inspectors are federal agents, mandated to safeguard the nation’s mail — including the people who move it and the customers who use it.

2. The U.S. Postal Service is the core of the $1.4 trillion mailing industry in this country that employs more than 7.5 million people.

1.The Postal Service receives NO tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations.

Exclusive: Secret Service out of money to pay agents because of Trump's frequent travel, large family
Agents must protect Trump – who travels almost every weekend to properties in Florida, New Jersey and Virginia – and his on-the-move adult children.

The Secret Service can no longer pay hundreds of agents it needs to carry out an expanded protective mission – in large part due to the sheer size of President Trump’s family and efforts necessary to secure their multiple residences up and down the East Coast.

Secret Service Director Randolph “Tex” Alles, in an interview with USA TODAY, said more than 1,000 agents have already hit the federally mandated caps for salary and overtime allowances that were meant to last the entire year.

The agency has faced a crushing workload since the height of the contentious election season, and it has not relented in the first seven months of the administration. Agents must protect Trump – who has traveled almost every weekend to his properties in Florida, New Jersey and Virginia – and his adult children whose business trips and vacations have taken them across the country and overseas.

“The president has a large family, and our responsibility is required in law,” Alles said. “I can’t change that. I have no flexibility.”

Alles said the service is grappling with an unprecedented number of White House protectees. Under Trump, 42 people have protection, a number that includes 18 members of his family. That’s up from 31 during the Obama administration.

Overwork and constant travel have also been driving a recent exodus from the Secret Service ranks, yet without congressional intervention to provide additional funding, Alles will not even be able to pay agents for the work they have already done.

The compensation crunch is so serious that the director has begun discussions with key lawmakers to raise the combined salary and overtime cap for agents, from $160,000 per year to $187,000 for at least the duration of Trump’s first term.

But even if such a proposal was approved, about 130 veteran agents would not be fully compensated for hundreds of hours already amassed, according to the agency.

“I don’t see this changing in the near term,” Alles said.

anonymous asked:

Other than the obvious, what are the differences between a Catholic and public school?

So, I’ll be honest Nonnie, I had a really hard time figuring out my tack on this one. It’s an incredibly broad question. So, I’m gonna focus in on the big issue. One type of school is a government entity, one is not.

But I knew that already? You say.

Yes, but it’s actually far more to it than just where the money comes from. Much of this will apply to the difference between private non-religious schools and public schools as well.

State funded public schools have a whole ton of federal and state mandates that they HAVE to fill. They also have far more regulations of the sort of education and certifications their teachers have to have. I’m not that familiar with the Catholic Archdiocese’s requirements? But from the job postings I see they generally require the same sort of education in their employees that public schools do. However, they’re not REQUIRED by law. So like any other private enterprise the requirements are self set and self policed by the organization. This can be a good thing or a bad thing.

Catholic schools also tend to pay less, and not have as good insurance. Do I have citable evidence for that? No, but it’s one of those things everybody in the industry just kinda knows. There may very well be cases out there where it isn’t true. Why do teachers still go teach there if they can be paid more elsewhere? There are a few reasons. Often they are Catholic themselves and truly believe in the mission of the schools, sometimes they’re less experienced so the lower pay is a stepping stone to a higher paid job or, they like the smaller classes where they don’t have to do as much classroom management.

What’s classroom management you ask? Classroom management is the art of keeping the class on task and interested in learning while dealing with the ‘extras’ By extras I mean the kid in the back that likes to call out, while at the same time the counseling office keeps sending aides up with notes, and this class tends to be talkative so you always have to keep the attention on you.

Catholic schools have far more power over their student population than public schools do. They can kick out and accept anyone for any reason. Now, do they abuse this? Generally no, because then no one would want to go to Catholic schools. But it does mean that the kid who is a constant discipline problem and disrupts class will be kicked out far sooner than in the public schools. Some teachers like this, it makes their jobs easier. Some parents like this as well they feel it makes the learning environment better.

Catholic schools aren’t the best as special education, they don’t have the same system setup that the public schools do. Public schools get some federal money to help defray the costs of extra teachers and resources needed for special ed. Catholic schools don’t.

I can’t really go into class periods, times, lunches etc because that varies school to school even in the public school realm. Catholic schools will have a religious component and you generally have to go to mass.

Sorry if this was really general. If you’d like something more specific feel free to send another ask..

I posted this on FB and wanted to post it here as well.

I have largely kept quiet about a lot of this until now, but with the double whammy of Thanksgiving and Black Friday fast approaching, I had to say something. To wit: this coming Sunday will mark one year since I walked out on the worst job I’ve ever had.

A job where I was actively discouraged from taking my federally mandated rest periods. A job where my first supervisor encouraged me to prey on Hispanic customers and convince them to open credit cards because, in her words, “You know those people. They can’t help themselves with money.” A job where that same supervisor disparaged fat women openly: “They’re always so angry. That’s why they leave the plus size section a mess.” A job where all of these things happened during my first week.

A job where management expected employees to flatter and humor customers who sexually harassed them. A job where I was reprimanded for calling out sick 3 times in a year and a half, despite having doctor’s notes. A job where my scheduled hours were consistently kept just low enough that I never accrued a single hour of paid time off. A job where I was encouraged to work off the clock. A job where conversations with my HR lead were immediately repeated and spread, despite my insistence that those conversations remain confidential. A job where those conversations were held over my head and used as a reason why I might not succeed in a managerial role. A job where I was poorly trained, micromanaged, mocked, and belittled. A job where my direct supervisor, a woman who made at minimum three times my salary, did not understand how time zones worked. A job where, as employee morale plummeted, the staff was repeatedly told, “If you aren’t smiling, you aren’t doing your job.” A job where my team members were sent home (without pay, obviously) for “looking tired.”

One year ago, I realized that I was wasting my time, energy, sanity, and youth at a company that did not give a flying fuck about me. I realized that it’s normal to dislike your job, but not for your job to make you feel utterly worthless, hopeless, and suicidal. I realized that it wouldn’t change. I realized that I could fucking do better. I walked into the building on the morning of November 27th, 2015, put my keys on my store manager’s desk, and told her I was done. The night before, I had told another manager in confidence, “I can’t trust anyone in this store.” That morning, my store manager glared at me and said, “I’m disgusted that you think you can’t trust anybody here.” Note that I never said those words to her, thus proving my point. I smiled at her and said, low and slow, “If you’re finished, I’m leaving now.”

In the year that has passed, I have not, for one single moment, regretted my decision to leave that viper’s pit of backstabbing, gossip, and incompetence.

I worked in retail for ten years, from independent stores to small regional chains to national big box retailers. No job has ever destroyed my sense of self worth so thoroughly, no company has ever treated me as poorly, as JC Penney. If you read any of these things I’ve written here and thought, “Wow, that is awful,” I urge you NOT to spend your money there. Not on Thanksgiving. Not on Black Friday. Not ever.

anonymous asked:

Not really cringe, but I find it ironic my school is making us learn about stereotypes and generalisations, when its common knowledge that girls and internationals (especially those of Asian background) are more likely to be accepted into the school. Y'know, cause academic value is an archaic belief :/

I think a lot of men are encouraged by the carrot on the stick. Go and ask men in college why they’re going to school, and like 8/10 times in my experience it’s either “I want more money” or “I want a more prestigious job”. I don’t know how different it is with women, but with men? The goal of going to school is because they want something.

The like defining masculine trait is a desire to push change onto something. For men to do well, they have to give a shit. And the current system, at least in the US, discourages giving a shit. Federally mandated testing has no bearing on you. The only general tests that actually matter to the students are the ACT and SAT. And it shows- I’ve never seen anyone study for the state testing, but we all studied for the ACT and SAT (and most of us took both). If you give men an environment where they feel pressured to succeed, where they feel like what they do actually impacts whether or not they’ll succeed, they will. You can help them, but you cannot take away the ability to fail and expect them to succeed, because you’re not defining success.

I don’t know if this would also help women. But it would sure as hell help men. Men are motivated by the desire to succeed, and the fear of failure. Changing culture in male circles to emphasize academic success- and punish academic failure- may also help. Taking the emphasis off safety, and pushing it onto success, may also help. Removing things like closed campus could also help.

#OTD: Four Little Girls Killed in “Bombingham”

Photo: From left, Denise McNair, Carole Robertson, Addie Mae Collins, and Cynthia Wesley. (AP)

On September 15th, 1963, a bomb planted by white supremacists ripped through Sixteenth Street Baptist Church killing four little girls – Addie Mae Collins (14 years-old), Cynthia Wesley (14 years-old), Carole Robertson (14 years-old) and Denise McNair (11 years-old) – and injuring several others. The tragedy marked the third bombing in eleven days in Birmingham, Alabama.

In the 1960’s, Birmingham was one of the most racially segregated cities in the country. State and local politics were dominated by the Ku Klux Klan, the city police commissioner, Eugene “Bull” Connor, who promoted violence against black communities and the Governor George Wallace, who was a staunch segregationist. These factors combined to heighten anti-black sentiment and create a particularly dangerous environment for African Americans. Racially motivated attacks on black homes and churches grew so common that the city was referred to as “Bombingham.”

Photo: The terrorist act against the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church was a brutal reminder that the successes of the civil rights movement and the changes it represented would not go unchallenged. In the face of such violence, the determination to continue organizing intensified. These glass shards are from the church’s stained-glass window. Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, Gift from the Trumpauer-Mulholland Collection.

For these reasons, African American civil rights activists made Birmingham a focal point of their desegregation campaign. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was famously arrested in the city in the spring of 1963 while leading a nonviolent demonstration. The media coverage of the extreme police violence against protestors that day along with King’s Letter from a Birmingham Jail garnered much-needed national support for desegregation, and more broadly, for African American civil rights. The Sixteenth Street Baptist Church was at the center of this activism.  As a well-known gathering place for civil rights leaders and a pillar of the black community, it was a significant the target. The church had received several threats, but when a federal court order mandated the racial integration of Alabama schools, white supremacists turned hateful words into deadly action.

Photo: Cars were damaged by the blast from the 16th Street Church bombing. 

Ultimately, the bombing had the opposite effect that the attackers intended. The funeral for three of the girls drew 8,000 people and inspired continued protests for African American civil rights. Public outrage over the bombing also contributed to the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

The Sixteenth Street Baptist Church remains etched into our collective memory as Americans. The impact of the church bombing has been strongly felt by generations of activists, from the black power movement to Black Lives Matter. Today, this history challenges us to confront a difficult past and make lasting change in the same spirit of the summer of 1963.

NMAAHC recognizes the need to preserve and share this history. We have collected the stained-glass window shards from the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church bombing as a generous gift from the Trumpauer-Mulholland Collection (pictured above). It is our charge not just to care for these precious materials, but to also contextualize and interpret their meaning for the public. We invite you to come and share in this important story upon our opening.  

Tsione Wolde-Michael is the Writer/Editor for the Office of Curatorial Affairs, Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture. She is also a Doctoral Candidate in History at Harvard University.

a-literal-trash-man  asked:

I got a big question for you Father. I'm not sure if my canvassing and voting for the Democratic Party in 2016 was morally just. I didn't take the issue lightly, and I firmly believe that life begins at conception and obey the Church's teachings. I've been getting involved with the Democrats for Life to try and change the direction of the party. If I were given the chance, I'd make that same vote, and am only sorry that it wasn't enough to stop the current situation. Am I in mortal sin?


A mortal sin requires grave matter, as well as deliberation and free will.

I doubt that canvassing for the Democratic Party could be classified as “grave matter.” If you were to canvass in favor of abortion, or the “right to choose” and try to convince people that this was a good thing, that would be grave matter. But it is clear that such was not your intention at all, so that is not a problem here.

As much as I disagree with the evils promoted by the Democratic party, along with the bad, I have to admit that there are good elements of service, justice, and the search for the common good in education, which are part of the Democratic platform. It isn’t 100% bad.

As to whether canvassing for the Democratic party in 2016 was morally just, I can not answer that question. I am no authority to speak for the entire Church, and this question speaks to an individual, their values, and what in particular of the Democratic platform they were trying to promote.

From what I can tell of your intentions, they seem like they were sincere, motivated by a faith vision that respects Life, and were seeking the good of the country. 

While I disagree with some of the politics of the Democratic Party, as many Catholics would, who are vehemently opposed to abortion, gay marriage, embryonic experimentation, and federal mandates for contraception in health insurance, etc.–from a religious and moral point of view, I see no intention on your part which was wrong or sinful.

After all, good and sincere Catholics can have very opposing and different judgments on specific political candidates, and specific political platforms. Each has different conclusions on what is most prudent and wise for the direction of the nation. No, I definitely do not believe you are in mortal sin. God bless and take care, Fr. Angel

“Are you unhappy?” asks the onboard psychiatrist wedged crudely into the dashboard of my C3 Corvette. I sighed, and tried to ignore it. Ever since the government had decided that being angry or sad in traffic was a primary cause of accidents, they decided to chase after it by mandating that we all install artificial-intelligence psychiatrists in our shitboxes.

The upshot is that you always had someone to talk to on long road trips, but the downside was that almost nobody liked to be psychoanalyzed while waiting at a stop light. Usually, I was pretty good at controlling my galvanic skin response, the percentage of moisture in my breath, and at keeping my curse words to myself. Sometimes, like today, it wasn’t nearly enough.

“Maybe you should try telling me about your childhood,” chirped the federally-mandated safety device. I continue to make my best effort to pay no attention to it, turning up the stereo as loud as I feel the creaking paper-cone speakers can muster.

I was just about to snap and punch out the robot, federal law be damned, when a bicyclist rode alongside me in the bike lane. The in-dash psychiatrist suddenly became quiet.

The bicyclist looked left, looked right, then rode through the red light.

“PEDESTRIAN OR VEHICLE, PICK ONE, MOTHERFUCKER,” screamed the single-DIN shrink, loudly enough to crack my dash pad. As it continued to wail in inarticulate rage, I noticed a faint red glow appearing from behind its module. At last, I smelled the scent of lifting solder, and the unit sharply went silent.

The next day, the friendly agents from the government visited me at home. Shaking their heads, they extracted the destroyed psychiatrist from my dashboard before glumly placing it into a glossy black trash bag.

“Some things are just impossible to keep from being angry at,” the senior agent explained to me, barely holding back tears at the loss of one more brave soldier of road safety.

y'all listen. if every state and local fire/EMS agency in the country was mandated federally to send 2-3 qualified members to provide disaster relief and additional emergency services, there could be upwards of 5,000 extra hands on board for every natural disaster. if every state was mandated to provide relief with their own national guard, the strain on local resources would be limited. what the fuck is the point of training people on emergency management and agency cooperation if you’re not going to use it when it’s needed

In 1992, presidential candidate Bill Clinton vowed that he would never permit any Republican to be perceived as tougher on crime than he. True to his word, just weeks before the critical New Hampshire primary, Clinton chose to fly home to Arkansas to oversee the execution of Ricky Ray Rector, a mentally impaired black man who had so little conception of what was about to happen to him that he asked for the dessert from his last meal to be saved for him until the morning. After the execution, Clinton remarked, “I can be nicked a lot, but no one can say I’m soft on crime.”

Once elected, Clinton endorsed the idea of a federal “three strikes and you’re out” law, which he advocated in his 1994 State of the Union address to enthusiastic applause on both sides of the aisle. The $30 billion crime bill sent to President Clinton in August 1994 was hailed as a victory for the Democrats, who “were able to wrest the crime issue from the Republicans and make it their own. “The bill created dozens of new federal capital crimes, mandated life sentences for some three-time offenders, and authorized more than $16 billion for state prison grants and expansion of state and local police forces. Far from resisting the emergence of the new caste system, Clinton escalated the drug war beyond what conservatives had imagined possible a decade earlier. As the Justice Policy Institute has observed, “the Clinton Administration’s ‘tough on crime’ policies resulted in the largest increases in federal and state prison inmates of any president in American history.”

Clinton eventually moved beyond crime and capitulated to the conservative racial agenda on welfare. This move, like his “get tough” rhetoric and policies, was part of a grand strategy articulated by the “new Democrats” to appeal to the elusive white swing voters. In so doing, Clinton—more than any other president—created the current racial undercaste. He signed the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act, which “ended welfare as we know it,” and replaced it with a block grant to states called Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF). TANF imposed a five-year lifetime limit on welfare assistance, as well as a permanent, lifetime ban on eligibility for welfare and food stamps for anyone convicted of a felony drug offense—including simple possession of marijuana.

Clinton did not stop there. Determined to prove how “tough” he could be on “them,” Clinton also made it easier for federally-assisted public housing projects to exclude anyone with a criminal history—an extraordinarily harsh step in the midst of a drug war aimed at racial and ethnic minorities. In his announcement of the “One Strike and You’re Out” Initiative, Clinton explained: “From now on, the rule for residents who commit crime and peddle drugs should be one strike and you’re out.” The new rule promised to be “the toughest admission and eviction policy that HUD has implemented.” Thus, for countless poor people, particularly racial minorities targeted by the drug war, public housing was no longer available, leaving many of them homeless—locked out not only of mainstream society, but their own homes.

The law and order perspective, first introduced during the peak of the Civil Rights Movement by rabid segregationists, had become nearly hegemonic two decades later.

—  Michelle Alexander, The New Jim Crow

Redacted Tonight with Lee Camp [#106]

July 1, 2016:

“This debate over the platform of the Democratic National Committee showed the DNC’s true colors. Here’s another example. After everyone agreed that America has to get to 100% clean energy by 2050, to keep alive… Here’s how the committee responded to actual ways to get there.

A carbon tax. Voted down 7-6. A ban on fracking. Voted down 7-6. An effort to keep fossil fuels in the ground. Voted down 7-6. A measure to mandate that federal agencies even weigh the climate impact of their decisions. Voted down 7-6. A plan to stop fossil fuel companies from taking private land by eminent domain. Voted down 7-6. And then Bill McKibben, of 350.org wrote, “We did however reach unanimous consent on more bike paths.” Yes! Yes! The Revolution is here!!…

The point is, the DNC and Hillary Clinton may at times talk a good game. But, they will lead us off of an ecological cliff. Just like the Republicans will.

The difference is that we’ll go off that cliff, on a bicycle!

This is why it is that much more infuriating that this election was stolen from Bernie Sanders. And it will happen, again, and again, and again. Until we stand up against it.” - Lee Camp @redactedtonight 

“Curtain Call”

Characters: Gabriel/Reader

Words: 2230

Warnings: none

Also on:  AO3 | FanFiction.net

A/N: Is it bad to say I’m kind of proud of this one? I really loved writing it! Thank you for reading, and hope you enjoy!

Maybe you could try picturing the audience naked.

Granted, you weren’t the one who was going to be performing, but the nervous energy coursing through your body could be sympathy pains of some kind, right? After all, the seats were steadily filling, the auditorium coming alive with excited chatter and the flash of cameras. It was only natural that you’d feel a pang of stage fright for your daughter.

Keep reading

hey there old man winter. yea you might be old now but we’ve seen the pictures. you were a lady killer in your day, but in the good way. you were so hot people used to mistake you for summer. you had a nice run back then but now you’re the only old man who isn’t allowed in florida. but getting older has it’s perks. we have an exclusive menu for guests over 55 that you would just love. and thanks to recent federal legislation we are mandated by law to serve non-human entities that personify seasons! so don’t go wrecking infrastructure throughout the northeast on an empty stomach. come fuel up with a hearty meal and then go show the kids you’re still cool by shutting down some school systems.

THE EIGHTH-GRADE STUDENTS gathering on the west lawn of the state capitol in Sacramento were planning to lunch on fried chicken with California’s new governor, Ronald Reagan, and then tour the granite building constructed a century earlier to resemble the nation’s Capitol. But the festivities were interrupted by the arrival of 30 young black men and women carrying .357 Magnums, 12-gauge shotguns, and .45-caliber pistols.

The 24 men and six women climbed the capitol steps, and one man, Bobby Seale, began to read from a prepared statement. “The American people in general and the black people in particular,” he announced, must take careful note of the racist California legislature aimed at keeping the black people disarmed and powerless Black people have begged, prayed, petitioned, demonstrated, and everything else to get the racist power structure of America to right the wrongs which have historically been perpetuated against black people The time has come for black people to arm themselves against this terror before it is too late.

Seale then turned to the others. “All right, brothers, come on. We’re going inside.” He opened the door, and the radicals walked straight into the state’s most important government building, loaded guns in hand. No metal detectors stood in their way.

It was May 2, 1967, and the Black Panthers’ invasion of the California statehouse launched the modern gun-rights movement. THE TEXT OF the Second Amendment is maddeningly ambiguous. It merely says, “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” Yet to each side in the gun debate, those words are absolutely clear.

Gun-rights supporters believe the amendment guarantees an individual the right to bear arms and outlaws most gun control. Hard-line gun-rights advocates portray even modest gun laws as infringements on that right and oppose widely popular proposals—such as background checks for all gun purchasers—on the ground that any gun-control measure, no matter how seemingly reasonable, puts us on the slippery slope toward total civilian disarmament.

This attitude was displayed on the side of the National Rifle Association’s former headquarters: THE RIGHT OF THE PEOPLE TO KEEP AND BEAR ARMS SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED. The first clause of the Second Amendment, the part about “a well regulated Militia,” was conveniently omitted. To the gun lobby, the Second Amendment is all rights and no regulation.
Although decades of electoral defeats have moderated the gun-control movement’s stated goals, advocates still deny that individual Americans have any constitutional right to own guns. 

The Second Amendment, in their view, protects only state militias. Too politically weak to force disarmament on the nation, gun-control hard-liners support any new law that has a chance to be enacted, however unlikely that law is to reduce gun violence. For them, the Second Amendment is all regulation and no rights.

While the two sides disagree on the meaning of the Second Amendment, they share a similar view of the right to bear arms: both see such a right as fundamentally inconsistent with gun control, and believe we must choose one or the other. Gun rights and gun control, however, have lived together since the birth of the country. Americans have always had the right to keep and bear arms as a matter of state constitutional law. Today, 43 of the 50 state constitutions clearly protect an individual’s right to own guns, apart from militia service.

Yet we’ve also always had gun control. The Founding Fathers instituted gun laws so intrusive that, were they running for office today, the NRA would not endorse them. While they did not care to completely disarm the citizenry, the founding generation denied gun ownership to many people: not only slaves and free blacks, but law-abiding white men who refused to swear loyalty to the Revolution.

For those men who were allowed to own guns, the Founders had their own version of the “individual mandate” that has proved so controversial in President Obama’s health-care-reform law: they required the purchase of guns. A 1792 federal law mandated every eligible man to purchase a military-style gun and ammunition for his service in the citizen militia. Such men had to report for frequent musters—where their guns would be inspected and, yes, registered on public rolls.

OPPOSITION TO GUN CONTROL was what drove the black militants to visit the California capitol with loaded weapons in hand. The Black Panther Party had been formed six months earlier, in Oakland, by Huey Newton and Bobby Seale. Like many young African Americans, Newton and Seale were frustrated with the failed promise of the civil-rights movement. Brown v. Board of Education, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 were legal landmarks, but they had yet to deliver equal opportunity. In Newton and Seale’s view, the only tangible outcome of the civil-rights movement had been more violence and oppression, much of it committed by the very entity meant to protect and serve the public: the police.

Inspired by the teachings of Malcolm X, Newton and Seale decided to fight back. Before he was assassinated in 1965, Malcolm X had preached against Martin Luther King Jr.’s brand of nonviolent resistance. Because the government was “either unable or unwilling to protect the lives and property” of blacks, he said, they had to defend themselves “by whatever means necessary.” Malcolm X illustrated the idea for Ebony magazine by posing for photographs in suit and tie, peering out a window with an M-1 carbine semiautomatic in hand. Malcolm X and the Panthers described their right to use guns in self-defense in constitutional terms. “Article number two of the constitutional amendments,” Malcolm X argued, “provides you and me the right to own a rifle or a shotgun.”

Guns became central to the Panthers’ identity, as they taught their early recruits that “the gun is the only thing that will free us—gain us our liberation.” They bought some of their first guns with earnings from selling copies of Mao Zedong’s Little Red Book to students at the University of California at Berkeley. In time, the Panther arsenal included machine guns; an assortment of rifles, handguns, explosives, and grenade launchers; and “boxes and boxes of ammunition,” recalled Elaine Brown, one of the party’s first female members, in her 1992 memoir. Some of this matériel came from the federal government: one member claimed he had connections at Camp Pendleton, in Southern California, who would sell the Panthers anything for the right price. One Panther bragged that, if they wanted, they could have bought an M48 tank and driven it right up the freeway.

Along with providing classes on black nationalism and socialism, Newton made sure recruits learned how to clean, handle, and shoot guns. Their instructors were sympathetic black veterans, recently home from Vietnam. For their “righteous revolutionary struggle,” the Panthers were trained, as well as armed, however indirectly, by the U.S. government.

Civil-rights activists, even those committed to nonviolent resistance, had long appreciated the value of guns for self-protection. Martin Luther King Jr. applied for a permit to carry a concealed firearm in 1956, after his house was bombed. His application was denied, but from then on, armed supporters guarded his home. One adviser, Glenn Smiley, described the King home as “an arsenal.” William Worthy, a black reporter who covered the civil-rights movement, almost sat on a loaded gun in a living-room armchair during a visit to King’s parsonage.

The Panthers, however, took it to an extreme, carrying their guns in public, displaying them for everyone—especially the police—to see. Newton had discovered, during classes at San Francisco Law School, that California law allowed people to carry guns in public so long as they were visible, and not pointed at anyone in a threatening way.

In February of 1967, Oakland police officers stopped a car carrying Newton, Seale, and several other Panthers with rifles and handguns. When one officer asked to see one of the guns, Newton refused. “I don’t have to give you anything but my identification, name, and address,” he insisted. This, too, he had learned in law school.

“Who in the hell do you think you are?” an officer responded.

“Who in the hell do you think you are?,” Newton replied indignantly. He told the officer that he and his friends had a legal right to have their firearms.

Newton got out of the car, still holding his rifle.

“What are you going to do with that gun?” asked one of the stunned policemen.

“What are you going to do with your gun?,” Newton replied.

By this time, the scene had drawn a crowd of onlookers. An officer told the bystanders to move on, but Newton shouted at them to stay. California law, he yelled, gave civilians a right to observe a police officer making an arrest, so long as they didn’t interfere. Newton played it up for the crowd. In a loud voice, he told the police officers, “If you try to shoot at me or if you try to take this gun, I’m going to shoot back at you, swine.” Although normally a black man with Newton’s attitude would quickly find himself handcuffed in the back of a police car, enough people had gathered on the street to discourage the officers from doing anything rash. Because they hadn’t committed any crime, the Panthers were allowed to go on their way.

The people who’d witnessed the scene were dumbstruck. Not even Bobby Seale could believe it. Right then, he said, he knew that Newton was the “baddest motherfucker in the world.” Newton’s message was clear: “The gun is where it’s at and about and in.” After the February incident, the Panthers began a regular practice of policing the police. Thanks to an army of new recruits inspired to join up when they heard about Newton’s bravado, groups of armed Panthers would drive around following police cars. When the police stopped a black person, the Panthers would stand off to the side and shout out legal advice.

SOURCE: http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2011/09/the-secret-history-of-guns/308608/

Donald Trump Basically Says Conflicts Of Interest Aren't Illegal If The President Has Them
“The law’s totally on my side," he said.

WASHINGTON ― President-elect Donald Trump told The New York Times Tuesday that laws around conflicts of interest don’t apply to him, and he can simply keep running his businesses from the White House.

“In theory I could run my business perfectly and then run the country perfectly,” Trump said, according to tweets from New York Times reporters interviewing the president-elect Tuesday.  “There’s never been a case like this.”

He is technically correct on both counts.

Federal conflict of interest laws do not apply to the president of the United States, and the obvious conflicts of interest created from his ownership of a global real estate empire are unprecedented in the nation’s history.  Just because the federal laws mandating other federal officials to place their assets into a true blind trust run by an independent trustee do not apply to the president, does not mean that Trump’s conflicts of interest are not real.

Trump seems to think otherwise: “The law’s totally on my side, the president can’t have a conflict of interest.”

To take Trump seriously, and not literally, as his defenders like to do, he is saying: If the president does it, it’s not illegal.

The comments come just hours after Trump tweeted Monday night that people knew about his glaring conflicts of interest when they voted for him.  It is therefore supposedly the media’s fault for reporting on them.

Trump’s global real estate empire presents the potential for massive conflicts of interest or their appearance as every U.S. government policy action could be directed or seen to be directed to benefit the president’s pocketbook.  The United States government is supposed to act in the public interest of the people and not in support of one individual’s private benefit.

The list of the president-elect’s conflict of interest problems has grown over the two weeks since he won election.

Trump has claimed to place his three adult children, Ivanka, Donald Jr. and Eric Trump, in charge of his business, but also appointed them to the executive committee of his presidential transition, thus nullifying any separation between company and government.

He met with three of his Indian business partners one week after winning election. Trump is involved in at least five real estate deals in India.

His Argentinian business partners celebrated with him at his victory party and helped President Mauricio Macri get in touch with the president-elect after the election.  Trump hopes to build an office tower in Buenos Aires.

Ivanka Trump, supposedly leading the Trump business independent of politics, also spoke with Macri on that call.  She also appeared in a photograph with Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe when he met with the president-elect.

Laws against bribery most certainly apply to the president.  Another thing that does is the emoluments clause of the Constitution.  It states that no government official shall receive favorable payment from a foreign government, foreign government-owned company or foreign official without the consent of Congress.  Trump owes millions in debt to the Bank of China, which is owned by the government of China.

He also owes hundreds of millions in debt to Deutsche Bank, a private German bank that is currently in settlement talks with the Department of Justice over its illegal mortgage abuses.  He operates a hotel in Las Vegas currently in a labor dispute.

He owns a government lease for his Washington, D.C., hotel even though the lease states that it could not be held by a government official.  The D.C. hotel held an event the week after his election to sell foreign diplomats and dignitaries on staying at its expensive luxury rooms to curry favor with the president-elect.

In the New York Times interview, Trump stated that the D.C. hotel is “probably a more valuable asset than it was before.”  He bragged that his brand is “hotter” now that he is president.

On Monday, the Times reported that Trump spoke to British political figure Nigel Farage, the former head of the right-wing UK Independence Party, about opposing the construction of offshore wind farms in the UK.  Trump has long protested the construction of offshore wind farms near his golf course in Scotland.  He claims they would sully the view and lower his property value. Farage appears to have gone ahead and denounced those offshore wind farms.

“I might have brought it up,” Trump sheepishly admitted in the Times interview.

He added, though, “My company’s so unimportant to me relative to what I’m doing.”

“I don’t want to influence anything.”

“Well, when the president does it, that means it is not illegal.“

Something else Donald Trump and Richard Nixon have in common…