Oh, Those Pro-Protesters, At It…Wait.

Credit: YouTube.

Credit: YouTube.

It’s not protesters causing trouble, it’s a cop. Again. In this case, there’s a 13 year old who is damn lucky to be alive. Let’s see what caused this shining example of “to protect and serve” to boil over, shall we?

Protests erupted in Anaheim, California on Wednesday after an off-duty LAPD officer dragged a 13-year-old boy across his yard, pulled a gun on the boy’s friends, and pulled the trigger.

According to an eyewitness, the confrontation began after a young girl walked across the lawn of an off-duty officer, who responded by calling her a “cunt.” Thirteen-year-old Christian Dorscht reportedly tried to defend the girl.

Cellphone video then shows the unnamed cop grabbing and pulling Dorscht by the arm. As a group of young people wearing backpacks looks on, the officer drags Dorscht for a few yards. Moments later, three boys rush the officer, pushing him into nearby bushes to free Dorscht. Seemingly uninjured, the cop gathers himself and drags the 13-year-old through the shrubs. After one boy tries to punch him, the officer reaches into his waistband and pulls out his gun. Everyone backs away, but the officer fires anyway. Nobody was struck by the bullet.

Oh, well, a kid cut across his lawn. Yes, that’s such an extraordinarily unusual and heinous action! There’s no such thing as the cliche of an adult, generally an old curmudgeon, shaking their fist and yelling “damn kids, get off my lawn!” Obviously, such a horrible act forced this upstanding officer to spit “cunt” at her, and what on earth was a 13 year old boy thinking, trying to defend her? Goodness, such awful behaviour, oh my yes.

Approximately 300 protesters —including young people — gathered in the streets Wednesday night, as news of the incident spread. They reportedly blocked major avenues and intersections in Anaheim, home of Disneyland, and some protesters marched to the unnamed officer’s house. People yelled “Whose streets, our streets” and “Hands up, don’t shoot” as they marched, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Some of the demonstrators threw rocks at police observing the fray, while a few people banged on the doors of the officer’s home. Riot police were eventually called to block off protesters.

Oh, I’m sure that just completely justified calling in riot cops. Having been face to face with riot cops more than once, I can say that no, protests don’t justify their presence in any way. You have a bunch of hyped-up authoritarians swaddled in battle armor, just itching to use all those nifty, lethal toys.

So, what happened to the key players, like the cop, who was an adult, at least technically, who called a young girl a cunt, assaulted a 13 year old boy, and pulled his gun and fired? Oh, nothing much, but those evil, meddling kids?

Dorscht, who sustained a line of bruises on his neck, was arrested and brought to the Orange County Juvenile Hall for battery and making criminal threats against the officer. A 15-year-old involved in the initial confrontation was also arrested for assault and battery.

According to Anaheim Police Sgt. Daron Wyatt, the officer was not arrested but was removed from the field for three days. The LAPD is currently investigating the matter.

Oh, I’m sure they are “investigating”, if that means getting stories straight, shuffling paperwork, and purging evidence. In the meantime, two victims have been dumped into the maw of the SoCal juvenile justice system, which is a remarkably ugly one, as these systems go. As for those wicked protesters, 24 of them, including 6 minors, were arrested and charged for resisting arrest, battery, and refusing to disperse. Remember, cops are the good guys!

Via Think Progress.

Arizona Goes for Full Protest Suppression.

Women's March on Washington (Photo: Sarah Burris/RawStory).

Women’s March on Washington (Photo: Sarah Burris/RawStory).

The myth of professional protesters continues to be spread by rethugs, and Arizona rethugs have passed legislation which would allow the cops to seize the assets of anyone who attended a protest which turned violent in any way, along with the power to arrest those who planned the protest, although they did not commit any violent acts. The rethugs are extremely unhappy with The Resistance, and are doing everything they can to shut it down. We are all going to have to stiffen our spines and our resolve, and refuse to back down in the face of blatant rights violations.

The Republican-controlled Arizona Senate has passed a bill that would let law enforcement officials seize the assets of people who participate in protests that turn violent — even if those people had nothing to do with any violent incidents.

[…]

The bill would allow police to seize assets of anyone who attended a peaceful protest that happened to turn violent, and it also gives cops the power to arrest people who planned the events, even if they did not personally commit violence.

State Sen. John Kavanagh (R-Fountain Hills), who supported the bill, explained to the Arizona Capital Times that it’s aimed at curtailing the activities of “professional protest” groups whose goal is to start riots and damage private property.

“You now have a situation where you have full-time, almost professional agent-provocateurs that attempt to create public disorder,” said Kavanagh, a former police officer.

Bald-faced fucking liar. :spits: I’d like to see this flaming asshole address all the violence at Black Lives Matter protests, as the violence was all perpetrated by cops. I’d like to see this asspimple address the overwhelming violence committed by cops against all those at Standing Rock. Fuck you, Kavanagh. People are marching and protesting and protecting because it’s the only recourse we have. It’s not like we can look to our government for help.

Via Raw Story.

Homeland Security: Department of Lies.

Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly speaks at news conference as cars enter the United States from Mexico at the San Ysidro Port of Entry on February 10. CREDIT: AP Photo/Denis Poroy.

Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly speaks at news conference as cars enter the United States from Mexico at the San Ysidro Port of Entry on February 10. CREDIT: AP Photo/Denis Poroy.

Homeland Security, also known as the department of official lies and bullshit, is now spewing out lies about all those awful aliens. The manipulation is so blatant as to be pointless, outside of the Cult of Trump. Look at that photo, the choice of location! That’s a location I know very well, having been across it and back more times than I could ever count. One thing is sure – most all those cars lining up to head back into SoCal contain U.S. citizens. Mexico is a very popular place. I get the idea behind having the press conference there was to scare idiots though, “oooh, looky, an unsecured border! Hordes of aliens could come pouring in!” The bullshit is deep enough to choke on.

A Department of Homeland Security memo authored by Secretary John Kelly asserts that “criminal aliens routinely victimize Americans and other legal residents.”

The memo, entitled “Enforcement of the Immigration Laws to Serve the National Interest,” creates a new federal office meant to work with those victims.

“Accordingly, I am establishing the Victims of Immigration Crime Engagement (VOICE) Office within the Office of the Director of ICE, which will create a programmatic liaison between ICE and the known victims of crimes committed by removable aliens,” Kelly writes. “To that end, I direct the Director of ICE to immediately reallocate any and all resources that are currently used to advocate on behalf of illegal aliens to the new VOICE Office, and to immediately terminate the provision of such outreach or advocacy services to illegal aliens.”

Sigh. Bullshit is not strong enough. Lies is not strong enough. This is not based on any factual information whatsoever. Immigrants, legal or illegal are less likely to commit crimes, particularly so in the case of people who are illegal. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out why. Way back when, I worked with a whole lot of people who were illegal, and they were law abiding to the core. One thing they did not want was the attention of cops. What this new “office” will do is give hateful bigots the equivalent of a wet dream, allowing for a brand new level of harassment.

Data indicates undocumented immigrants are no more likely to commit crimes than American citizens, and are actually less likely to be criminals in some cases.

The literature is summarized in a 2015 Cato Institute report entitled, “Immigration and Crime — What the Research Says.” Here are some key findings from studies cited in the report.

— One study found that “roughly 1.6 percent of immigrant males 18–39 are incarcerated, compared to 3.3 percent of the native-born.” The study found the disparity in census data spanning three decades — from 1980 to 2010.

— Another found that the phased rollout of the Secure Communities (S-COMM) immigration enforcement program didn’t reduce crime in affected communities. S-COMM “led to no meaningful reduction in the FBI index crime rate,” researchers found. If undocumented immigrants were more likely to commit criminal acts, you’d expect to see crime rates decrease as undocumented immigrants were removed from communities. That wasn’t the case.

— Another study “looked at 159 cities at three dates between 1980 and 2000 and found that crime rates and levels of immigration are not correlated,” the CATO report says, summarizing the findings.

— Another “looked at a sample of 150 Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) and found that levels of recent immigration had a statistically significant negative effect on homicide rates but no effect on property crime rates.” Yet another study found that an influx of immigrants is actually correlated with decreases in homicide and robbery rates.

— A study that looked looked at 103 different MSAs from 1994–2004 found that “the weight of the evidence suggests that immigration is not associated with increased levels of crime. To the extent that a relationship does exist, research often finds a negative effect of immigration on levels of crime, in general, and on homicide in particular.”

Last month, Richard Pérez-Peña of the New York Times alluded to some of the aforementioned research, writing, “several studies, over many years, have concluded that immigrants are less likely to commit crimes than people born in the United States. And experts say the available evidence does not support the idea that undocumented immigrants commit a disproportionate share of crime.” Pérez-Peña’s report is entitled, “Contrary to Trump’s Claims, Immigrants Are Less Likely to Commit Crimes.”

While citizens don’t have reason to fear undocumented immigrants more than they would any other person, the two memos distributed by Homeland Security on Tuesday makes gives undocumented immigrants good reason to by fearful of anyone with a badge.

Oh yes. There will be much more reason to fear. As if non-white people didn’t already need to be scared to death of cops.

As ThinkProgress covered in another post, Kelly’s memos detail “an implementation plan to hire thousands more immigration officials, make more criminal offenses punishable by deportation, allow local law enforcement officials to carry out federal immigration duties, and make it easier to prevent entry to asylum-seeking children who show up at the southern U.S. border.”

Oh good, even more reason to fear cops! Neatly buried under all the fear-mongering is the ginormous waste of money this will be.

Full story at Think Progress.

Thanks for the Warm & Fuzzy, Canada.

Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) officers assist a child from a family that claimed to be from Sudan as they walk across the U.S.-Canada border into Hemmingford, Canada, from Champlain in New York. REUTERS/Christinne Muschi

Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) officers assist a child from a family that claimed to be from Sudan as they walk across the U.S.-Canada border into Hemmingford, Canada, from Champlain in New York. REUTERS/Christinne Muschi.

Here’s a contrast and compare: Canadian cops who smile and assist people seeking refuge, and ugly American border cops who want to catch those seeking refuge, so they can lock them up and deport them. This one’s a no brainer, seriously. There’s a family who will now receive help, settle in, and become productive Canadian citizens. Here’s the thing – this family was living in Delaware for two years, being productive citizens in the U.S., but they weren’t legal, and given the current climate, had no hope of becoming legal. So, it’s one big fucking loss for the country with no compassion, and a net win for the country with it.

America is going full tilt manic ugly these days, and warm & fuzzies ain’t easy to come by. My thanks to Canadians for this one.

Full story here.

Think Progress is also covering this story, in-depth. I don’t like the descent into full court ugly here in uStates, but I am grateful people seeking refuge have a place to go where they are welcomed and taken care of by decent peoples.

*Spits*

19-6

© C. Ford.

North Dakota legislators have been pushing a raft of draconian bills through to make any protesting impossible to do, if you’re actually outside your abode. The worst of them is one which would allow drivers to ‘accidentally’ hit a protester without penalty. Thankfully, it didn’t pass, but the shit-filled asshole who authored it still wants it to be enacted, because:

Republican state Representative Keith Kempenich told local media that he sponsored the bill after his mother-in-law was caught in a protest while driving.

Kempenich defended the bill Monday before a vote, saying current laws had failed to protect citizens, and that the much publicized bill was mischaracterized by the media.

“I’d like to see this bill passed forward. I think that it shows that we are willing to stand up for the citizens of this state,” he said.

How about you say what you mean, you piece of shit? You want that bill to pass because you think us nasty Indians ought to be killed. We sure as hell obviously aren’t citizens of this state in your colonial, genocidal eyes. Fuck you, Kempenich.

Via Raw Story.

Shoot A Black Man, Get Hired By Trump.

Dontrell Stephens via Miami Hearld video.

Dontrell Stephens via Miami Hearld video.

A Palm Beach County Sheriff’s sergeant who shot and paralyzed an unarmed black man in 2013 has been assigned to oversee security for President Donald Trump when he visits his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida.

According to the Miami Herald, Sgt. Adams Lin has been assigned to work with the Secret Service overseeing security at Palm Beach International Airport including watching Air Force One.

[…]

A spokesperson for the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s office confirmed that Lin, who has been promoted since the shooting, is assigned to the Trump detail, calling it a “local issue.”

In 2013 Lin shot Stephens who had been riding a bike when the then deputy attempted to cite him for a traffic infraction. According to Lin, he “feared for his life” when he saw something in Stephens’s hand which turned out to be a cell phone.

Lin shot Stephens four times in the back paralyzing him from the waist down.

While the PBSO ruled the shooting justified a federal grand jury disagreed in 2016, finding Lin had violated Stephens’ civil rights by using excessive force and awarding him more than $24 million.

Really couldn’t be much more black and white, could it? Trump obviously doesn’t have a problem with murderous cops, as long as they are trying to murder people of colour. The Tiny Dictator might manage to object if someone white was shot. I can’t imagine Mr. Stephens being unaffected by this, or all his loved ones. It’s outrageous to hire a coward of a cop, who did his best to commit murder.

Via Raw Story.

Ubiquitous Nazis.

Photo: John Moore/Getty Images.

Photo: John Moore/Getty Images.

Nazis, nazis everywhere. Under every rock, and we are all on extremely rocky ground right now. I skimmed an article about this the other day, but I wasn’t in a state to pay much attention. I’m not feeling much better now that I have paid attention. I don’t think it’s been any sort of secret that policing often attracts less than ideal personalities for the job; nor that many cops are bigoted as all hells. Given all the murders committed by cops every year, most of them against people of colour, handily demonstrate the bigotry and reliance on stereotypes which afflict way too many cops. This is an old, old story, as old as policing itself, and it’s a rare cop shop which truly tries to combat vicious and dangerous bigotry, and where cops with a conscience will stand up and speak out. Unfortunately, the news is worse. Nazis. Nazis who do need a stinking badge, and rely on that badge to recruit.

White supremacists and other domestic extremists maintain an active presence in U.S. police departments and other law enforcement agencies. A striking reference to that conclusion, notable for its confidence and the policy prescriptions that accompany it, appears in a classified FBI Counterterrorism Policy Guide from April 2015, obtained by The Intercept. The guide, which details the process by which the FBI enters individuals on a terrorism watchlist, the Known or Suspected Terrorist File, notes that “domestic terrorism investigations focused on militia extremists, white supremacist extremists, and sovereign citizen extremists often have identified active links to law enforcement officers,” and explains in some detail how bureau policies have been crafted to take this infiltration into account.

Although these right-wing extremists have posed a growing threat for years, federal investigators have been reluctant to publicly address that threat or to point out the movement’s longstanding strategy of infiltrating the law enforcement community.

No centralized recruitment process or set of national standards exists for the 18,000 law enforcement agencies in the United States, many of which have deep historical connections to racist ideologies. As a result, state and local police as well as sheriff’s departments present ample opportunities for white supremacists and other right-wing extremists looking to expand their power base.

That last is such a massive problem, and always has been – the one way to clean up policing is for there to be strict standards, recruitment and otherwise, across the board. None of the individual states doing their own thing anymore. Yeah, I know, ‘merica, land of the stubborn asshole of “independence”. That’s gotten us nowhere except in the bottom of hole, with out of control authoritarian fantasists playing with military gear.

In a heavily redacted version of an October 2006 FBI internal intelligence assessment, the agency raised the alarm over white supremacist groups’ “historical” interest in “infiltrating law enforcement communities or recruiting law enforcement personnel.” The effort, the memo noted, “can lead to investigative breaches and can jeopardize the safety of law enforcement sources or personnel.” The memo also states that law enforcement had recently become aware of the term “ghost skins,” used among white supremacists to describe “those who avoid overt displays of their beliefs to blend into society and covertly advance white supremacist causes.” In at least one case, the FBI learned of a skinhead group encouraging ghost skins to seek employment with law enforcement agencies in order to warn crews of any investigations.

Ghost skins. Regardless of the silly name, I expect most of us have known at least one person who avoids overt displays in public and around people they don’t know, but in private settings allows their bigotry to rage. I grew up with one, and I’ve known too many more.

Reforming police, as it turns out, is a lot harder than reforming the military, because of the decentralized way in which the thousands of police departments across the country operate, the historical affinity of certain police departments with the same racial ideologies espoused by extremists, and an even broader reluctance to do much about it.

“If you look at the history of law enforcement in the United States, it is a history of white supremacy, to put it bluntly,” said Simi, citing the origin of U.S. policing in the slave patrols of the 18th and 19th centuries. “More recently, just going back 50 years, law enforcement, particularly in the South, was filled with Klan members.”

Norm Stamper, a former chief of the Seattle Police Department and vocal advocate for police reform, told The Intercept that white supremacy was not simply a matter of history. “There are police agencies throughout the South and beyond that come from that tradition,” he said. “To think that that kind of thinking has dissolved somehow is myopic at best.”

Stamper said he had fired officers who expressed racist views, but added, “It’s not likely to happen in most police departments, because many of those departments come from a tradition of saying the officer is entitled to his or her opinions.”

When you stop and look, and start paying attention, the sheer magnitude of instances protecting white supremacists is overwhelming. In the States, the nazis still have “good guy” status, putting white, male, christian, and hetero on a pedestal, shot through with the poisonous ideology of superiority.

“This is a fundamental problem in this country: We simply do not take this flexible, and forgiving, and exceptionally understanding approach for combating any other form of terrorism,” said Jones. “Anybody who’s on social media advocating support for ISIS can be criminally charged with very little effort.”

“For some reason, we have stepped away from the threat of domestic terrorism and right-wing extremism,” Jones continued. “The only way we can reconcile this kind of behavior is if we accept the possibility that the ideology that permeates white nationalists and white supremacists is something that many in our federal and law enforcement communities understand and may be in sympathy with.”

That sympathy might just be reflected by the election of a president who was endorsed and celebrated by the KKK, and who has been reluctant to disassociate himself from individuals espousing white supremacist views.

We are years beyond stepping away from the threat of domestic and right-wing terrorism. Too many Americans are intent on erasing the very idea of home grown terrorists. Unlike other countries, America has dealt with one major outside terrorist event, and yes, it was awful. It was also 15 years ago. In that 15 years, pretty much everything has been done in the worst possible way, and the refusal to deal with our rising nazi problem, and the problem of out of control cops continues to not only plague us, but to make every single one of us very unsafe, every day. We need to stop being afraid to face the truth.

The full, in-depth article is at The Intercept.

No Free Speech Without A Permit.

Denver Police Commander Tony Lopez (YouTube).

Denver Police Commander Tony Lopez (YouTube).

Free speech, now illegal without a permit, so sayeth the cops.

Protesters at the Denver airport over the weekend were told by police that it was illegal to exercise “free speech without a permit.”

Denverite reported that over 200 people gathered at the Denver International Airport on Friday to protest President Donald Trump’s executive order banning travel from seven majority-Muslim countries.

In video posted to YouTube, Police Commander Tony Lopez can be seen advising demonstrators that they are in violation of the law.

“Stop doing anything that could be construed as free speech without a permit,” he explains.

I expect this glurge of nonsense just spilled out without thought, but still, it points to the ongoing lashing of the whip aimed at all those who protest. Of the 200 protesters in Washington who were hit with felony charges, one case has been dropped. The others are facing prison a/o outrageous fines of $25,000 dollars. Land of the Free. Right.

Via Raw Story.

NO DAPL Roundup.

Malia Obama (Pinterest)

Malia Obama (Pinterest)

Malia Obama has chosen to stand with Standing Rock.

A group of 100 people gathered in Park City to protest the revival of the project by new U.S. President Donald Trump. Despite freezing temperatures and heavy snowfall, Malia Obama joined the protester who were holding up signs that read: “Exist. Resist. Rise.” and “Impeach corporate control,” according to the Daily Mail.

Along with protesting the construction of the pipeline, which will disturb sacred grounds and introduce contaminants into the local water supply, the group was protesting the festival sponsorship by Chase Bank, which is invested in the pipeline. The rally was held in front of the Chase Sapphire on Main lounge.

Courtesy MSNBC via YouTube.

Courtesy MSNBC via YouTube.

Chairman Archambault on MSNBC: ‘President Is Circumventing Federal Law’.

Standing Rock Sioux Chairman David Archambault II was more surprised at the rapidity with which Donald Trump signed presidential memoranda purporting to speed up the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) and reinstate the Keystone XL pipeline than he was by the act itself.

“We were prepared for President Trump take a run at everything we have accomplished in the last two years,” Archambault told Tamron Hall on MSNBC on Wednesday January 25, the day after Trump signed a Presidential Memorandum attempting to move DAPL along. “This nation better start bracing itself for what’s to come if in the first four days we’re witnessing him using an executive order to circumvent federal laws. It’s not right, and it’s something we better get ready for. I was disappointed that it came this soon, because we had worked so hard for the last two years.”

The tribe wants closer study of the pipeline’s potential effects on water supply, sacred sites and treaty rights, he said, and Trump is trying to do an end run around such statutes as the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).

“The troubling thing is that this president is circumventing federal law,” Archambault said. “We have Treaty rights, we have water rights with our Winter’s Doctrine, we have NEPA.”

The Keystone XL Pipeline Will Create Just 35 Permanent Jobs. Don’t Believe the Lies.

For those who still insist fossil fuels are the future, the Trump administration represents a new day for some old ideas. In an early sign of things to come, the president showed his faith in big oil when he signed documents Tuesday pressuring federal agencies to support construction of the Dakota Access and Keystone XL oil pipelines. Each of these projects faced enormous protests and was put on hold by the Obama administration because of legitimate environmental and due process concerns.

Congressional Republicans frequently howled at far less heavy-handed exercises of executive power under the previous administration. Today, they applaud Trump’s move on the mistaken premise that these pipelines are good investments. Not only will these projects not create long-lasting jobs – as CNBC, not exactly an anti-corporate mouthpiece, has noted: “Pipelines do not require much labor to operate in the long term” – they will further delay the inevitable transition to clean, renewable energy our economy needs and the American people demand.

Standing Rock Chairman Archambault Sends Strong Letter to Trump.

Editor’s note: Reaction was swift and strong when President Donald Trump signed a series of Presidential Memoranda and Executive Orders designed to move the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) forward and revive the Keystone XL pipeline. The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe responded immediately, and on January 25 Standing Rock Chairman Archambault wrote a letter to Trump explaining the legal constraints, the support that the Environmental Impact Statement and the tribe have, and the need for a leader-to-leader meeting. The full text is below.

DAPL Profiteers Steal Marty Two Bulls Designs.

You’ve probably seen and shared at least one of the many brilliant political cartoons by Marty Two Bulls at some point in time. Marty Two Bulls—an artist from the Oglala Lakota Nation—has been drawing political cartoons with great success for many years. His work has long been a staple on the pages of ICTMN. He’s known for bringing clever humor and hilarious imagery to hot, controversial issues: most recently the anti-DAPL movement in Standing Rock.

But now, you might see his work in places it shouldn’t be: dozens of t-shirt sellers who are hoping to make a buck from the #NoDAPL campaigns have ripped off Marty Two Bulls designs and been using them to sell t-shirts of their own with no credit, profit, or acknowledgement offered to the artist. Now, Two Bulls has taken the matter into his own hands. In addition to filing dozens of reports to stop production of the rip-offs, he has decided to sell t-shirts of his own.

The design thieves are mostly from overseas with no connection to Native country.
“So far I caught over 20,” Two Bulls said, “I go online, I search terms like #NoDAPL and Water is Life on Facebook, and there they are.”

Marty is an amazingly talented artist, and one of the best political cartoonists in the world, he’s brilliant. Please, if you want to show support for Standing Rock, take the time to make sure your item is coming from the actual artist. Most artists aren’t rolling in money, and this theft hurts, one more than one level. Marty is trying to do something for his people, and if you want to help, and like his artwork, please buy from Marty Two Bulls.

Indigenous Roundup: Avenger Missiles, No Clemency, Decampment.

Courtesy Gary Dorr.

Courtesy Gary Dorr.

Mobile Avenger Missile Launcher Appears at Standing Rock.

A first-hand account of the terrifying deployment of an anti-aircraft device pointed at people.

Later, a veteran buddy looked it up to be sure, matched it up with our pictures, and based on his experience noted:

“My suspicion is that the Avenger Missile Systems deployed to Standing Rock are a cost-effective alternative to having an Apache Helo flying overhead when they need it. The Avenger system has Forward Looking Infrared (FLIR) Capabilities. The civilian plane and helicopter probably don’t have FLIR and that is when they need an Apache Helo to “monitor” situations under darkness and record for evaluation later. Instead of calling up the Apache, they can have Avengers on-site for instant intelligence day or night. The Avenger system also has video capabilities. It costs them far less to have an Avenger system on the ground 24 hrs a day than to deploy an Apache Helo occasionally. The security ground forces have Night Vision but the Avenger has FLIR and a laser rangefinder along with video capabilities. The FLIR will be at least a plate-sized round lense mounted on the weapon rail on the left side (driver side) if there is one. Just a suspicion. If I am correct, there should be more info to request in a FOIA. The sheriff’s Department can’t all have TS Sec clearances so if they brief them all using Avenger footage, it should be low hanging fruit that would be unclassified.”

[Read more…]

A Shameful Justice System.

Pearl Pearson Jr., a deaf man who was charged with resisting arrest after not listening to officers' instructions.

Pearl Pearson Jr., a deaf man who was charged with resisting arrest after not listening to officers’ instructions.

A deaf man from Oklahoma has been cleared of charges that he resisted arrest because he allegedly failed to hear police officers’ orders.

Pearson was originally pulled over by troopers in February of 2014, and was slapped with a misdemeanor charge for resisting arrest after not obeying officers’ instructions.

[…]

Pearson claims that he tried to inform the troopers who pulled him over that he was deaf, and he says that they proceeded to beat him after pulling him from his vehicle. His 2014 mug shot clearly shows a swollen eye and other injuries that he alleges came from his encounter with police.

[…]

The district attorney cleared the troopers of any criminal wrongdoing in the case, but charged Pearson with a misdemeanor of resisting arrest.

Yes, of course you did, after all, beating the shit out of people is just another day at work, right? Perfectly okay that, and to insist on preferring charges against a deaf person. Makes perfect sense if you’re a regressive, backwards asshole.

Attorneys for Pearson had successfully argued Pearson needed special interpreters for his trial. Pearson learned sign language during segregation, which means his way of communicating differs from traditional American Sign Language, or ASL. District Attorney David Prater, who appeared for the state in person at the hearing requesting interpreters, did not object to the request.

Pearson’s attorney, Scott Adams, says prosecutors told him they were dismissing the case due to the costs associated with the special interpreters for court. The case was scheduled to go to trial next week.

Online court records indicate the case was dismissed without cost to Pearson, though he has had to pay for his own defense attorneys.

Court documents filed by prosecutors say the cost of Pearson’s misdemeanor trial could meet or exceed $40,000.

“It is the District Attorney’s responsibility to be a good steward of the taxpayer’s money,” Prater wrote.

Oh, right. So that’s what it is, deciding on what to do with taxpayer money, sort of an accounting thing, not a justice thing. Mr. Pearson won’t see any justice for being beaten by cops; he’ll still have to pay his lawyers, and if it weren’t for the need to pay special interpreters, you would have gladly wasted a lot of money persecuting him for no good reason. Perhaps with some of that 40k you saved, you should put out some public service announcements: Danger! Don’t Be Deaf Around Cops! Danger! Especially Don’t Be Black and Deaf, No!

Via Raw Story and KOKH.

Oceti Sakowin Camp.

Photo by Tom Jefferson.

Photo by Tom Jefferson.

There are still people at the Oceti Sakowin camp, a considerably smaller number, around 2,000, who will stay until DA is gone. They are requesting that no one new come into camp right now, as weather conditions are very harsh. Those of us fighting the Black Snake still need help. You can signal boost, get involved in various actions, or donate, all is appreciated, deeply.

Have a look at the Oceti Sakowin Camp site, and see if there is a way to add your voice to the many.

The Dakota Access Pipeline may be on hold, but Water Protectors are still fighting for their freedom.