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Human Rights & Civil Liberties

Adam Zyglis | Black Lives Matter / media.cagle.com

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Close the SOA/WHINSEC Included in the Platform of the Democratic Party

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“In order to create real change, we can't rely on politicians to make it happen for us. We have to organize to build broad-based grassroots power, and hold those who are making decisions that affect our lives accountable,” said Hendrik Voss of School of the Americas Watch.

Hendrik Voss, SOA Watch

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http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/evergreenedigest.org/files/SOAW%20banner.jpgJuly 12, 2016 | At the two-day Platform Committee meeting, that took place in Orlando, Florida last weekend, it was agreed to include the closing of the School of the Americas, now known as the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation, as one of its planks into the Democratic Party's policy platform.

 

The amendment to call for the closure of the notorious US military training school, which reads “Our support of democracies and civilian governments in the Western Hemisphere includes our belief that their military and police forces should never be involved in the political process, and therefore we will reinstate the 2000 Congressional mandate to close the School of the Americas now known as WHINSEC” was introduced by Marcos Rubenstein, a member of the platform committee, who was elected by the Sanders delegates. 

The "Close the School of Americas" plank was accepted by both the Sanders and the Clinton campaigns and is now in manager's mark. That means that only grammatical changes are now allowed. This is the first time that the draft of the Democratic Party's policy platform includes the call for the closure of the School of the Americas/ WHINSEC.

The draft policy platform, which still needs to be ratified at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia later this month, is supposed to be the policy on which the presidential candidate runs, and around which Democrats rally. While the platform is nonbinding, grassroots activists, who have been concerned about the hawkish stands of presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton towards Latin America, will push the Obama administration and the Clinton campaign to adhere to the platform’s call for the closing of the School of the Americas/ Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation.

Hillary Clinton has been dogged on the campaign trail with questions about her role as Secretary of State in the 2009 military coup in Honduras, which was carried out by graduates of the School of the Americas. The State Department under Hillary Clinton legitimized the 2009 coup, which has led to increased militarization, and unleashed violence and human rights abuses. Thousands of Hondurans are fleeing their country, as political violence by the government and death squads is ongoing. Hundreds have been murdered, including indigenous environmentalist and social justice activist Berta Cáceres, who was shot in her house in the Honduran community of La Esperanza on March 3, 2016.

School of the Americas Watch, the activist organization that is working against US militarization throughout the Americas, is mobilizing for a Convergence at the US/Mexico border from October 7-10, 2016 in the lead-up to the elections: http://SOAW.org/border The convergence will demand a fundamental shift in US foreign policy, shine a light on how US militarization in Latin America is a principal root causes of migration, and call attention to the devastating impact of US security and immigration policy on refugees.

“In order to create real change, we can't rely on politicians to make it happen for us. We have to organize to build broad-based grassroots power, and hold those who are making decisions that affect our lives accountable.” said Hendrik Voss of School of the Americas Watch.

SOA Watch, founded by Fr. Roy Bourgeois in 1990,  is an independent organization that seeks to close the U.S. Army School of the Americas, under whatever name it is called, through vigils and fasts, demonstrations and nonviolent protest, as well as media and legislative work.

Full story ... 

 

Philando Castile deserves justice

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  • http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/evergreenedigest.org/files/Take%20Action%20Today%20button.jpg Join this call to action and send Governor Dayton, Attorney General Lori Swanson and Ramsey County Attorney John Choi an email asking for a Special Assistant Attorney General to be appointed immediately.
  • Related: Feds cover up police killing of Jamar Clark, community renews fight for justice

ACLU of Minnesota  

 

https://ms.clicks.actions.aclu.org/img/org_1004/mn-image-07132016.jpg Tell our elected officials to appoint a special prosecutor in the shooting of Philando Castile.

July 13, 2016 | Philando Castile should still be alive.

Philando lost his life last week for no reason, shot to death in front of his girlfriend and her child. We mourn him because the police failed to protect and serve him. If they had done their job, he would still be alive. Since we allow citizens to carry guns, shooting them for legally carrying a gun is not acceptable.

Philando became the 123rd Black person to be killed by U.S. law enforcement this year. We know there is a better way to police, an approach that doesn’t leave us with disproportionately high numbers of people of color injured and dead.

http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/evergreenedigest.org/files/Take%20Action%20Today%20button.jpgJoin this call to action and send Governor Dayton, Attorney General Lori Swanson and Ramsey County Attorney John Choi an email asking for a Special Assistant Attorney General to be appointed immediately.

 

ACLU of Minnesota continues to protect the civil liberties of all Minnesotans through litigation, public education, and lobbying.

Full story … 

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Feds cover up police killing of Jamar Clark, community renews fight for justice, Jess Sundin, Fight Back! News

  • Family and community were shaken, but not surprised, by Thursday’s announcement. They are responding with action.
  • Related: Jamar Clark case - Freeman played dog-whistle politics in communicating the narrative.

This Is How Many People Police Have Killed So Far In 2016

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  • In the first half of 2016, police have killed 532 people (almost 3 per day!) — many of whom were unarmed, mentally ill, and people of color.
  • Related: Feds cover up police killing of Jamar Clark, community renews fight for justice.

Celisa Calacal, ThinkProgress

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http://cdn.thinkprogress.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/30163700/Police-Have-Not-Been-Held-Accountable3-1125x635.jpgJul 5, 2016 | In the first half of 2016, police have killed 532 people — many of whom were unarmed, mentally ill, and people of color.

This number comes from The Guardian’s police killings database, but the Killed by Police database counts 580 people who have died at the hands of police so far this year. The Washington Post also reports that 488 people have been shot and killed by cops.

Going by the Guardian’s count, 261 white people were killed by police — the highest total out of any racial group. But data also shows that black people and Native Americans are being killed at higher rates than any other group.

Celisa Calacal is an intern at ThinkProgress. She is currently a rising junior studying journalism at Ithaca College, where she is an editor for The Ithacan, the college’s student-run newspaper. In addition, she is a staff writer for Buzzsaw, the college’s independent, student-run magazine.

Full story … 

 

Related:

Feds cover up police killing of Jamar Clark, community renews fight for justice, Jess Sundin, Fight Back! News

  • Family and community were shaken, but not surprised, by Thursday’s announcement. They are responding with action.
  • Related: Jamar Clark case - Freeman played dog-whistle politics in communicating the narrative.

No human being is illegal

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  • Tie Vote In Supreme Court Deals Devastating Blow To Millions Of Immigrants
  • They Live Here, They Work Here, They Stay Here
  • Related: A guide to the worst refugee crisis since WWII

Ian Millhiser, ThinkProgress

http://cdn.thinkprogress.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/23104611/AP_120425049109-1024x691.jpgJun 23, 2016 | In an anti-climatic end to what, at one point, appeared like it would be one of the most important immigration cases to reach the Supreme Court in decades, the justices split 4-4 on Thursday on a challenge to Obama administration programs that could have allowed nearly 5 million undocumented immigrants to temporarily work and remain in the country. Though this decision is a tie and will not bind future court decisions, it is, in effect, a shattering loss for the immigrants who hoped to benefit from these programs.

The plaintiffs in this case, led by the state of Texas, appear to have actively shopped around for a trial judge who is openly hostile to immigrants. That strategy has now paid off. The trial judge, Judge Andrew Hanen, issued an unusual nationwide injunction halting the new immigration programs. And a split decision in the Supreme Court is not enough to lift that injunction.

Ian Millhiser is a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress Action Fund and the Editor of ThinkProgress Justice. His writings have appeared in a diversity of legal and mainstream publications, including the New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, U.S. News and World Report, Slate, the Guardian, the American Prospect, the Yale Law and Policy Review and the Duke Law Journal. Ian's first book is Injustices: The Supreme Court's History of Comforting the Comfortable and Afflicting the Afflicted.

Full story … 

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A guide to the worst refugee crisis since WWII, Ben Norton, Mondoweiss

  • The struggles of refugees from Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Yemen, and elsewhere, for the moment, seem to not be given much attention as the media focuses on refugees from Syria and as the international community tries to grapple with the largest refugee crisis since World War II. 
  • Read This Before the Media Uses a Drowned Refugee Boy to Start Another War

 

Disability Rights and the 2016 Election

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  • People with disabilities are the world’s largest minority.
  • A full transcript of the video is included for those who may be hearing impaired.
  • Part 1: The #CripTheVote Movement Is Bringing Disability Rights To The 2016 Election
  • Part 2: People With Disabilities Explain Why Their Voices Need To Be Heard This Election Season (Video)

Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest





Part 1: The #CripTheVote Movement Is Bringing Disability Rights To The 2016 Election

People with disabilities are the world’s largest minority.

Amber Ferguson, the Huffington Post

http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/evergreenedigest.org/files/Editor%20Comment%20graphic_0.jpg A full transcript of the video above is included at the end of this piece for those who may be hearing impaired.

http://www.truthout.org/sites/default/files/052711-5.jpg(Photo: moni / Flickr

05/02/2016 | People living with disabilities are typically left out of the political conversation during elections, but one social campaign is hoping to get candidates talking about disability issues in the U.S. 

#CripTheVote is a nonpartisan campaign that was started on Twitter to both engage voters with disabilities and encourage politicians to have a national conversation about disability rights.

Amber Ferguson: Associate Politics Video Editor, the Huffington Post

Full story … 


 

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Part 2: People With Disabilities Explain Why Their Voices Need To Be Heard This Election Season (Video)

Over 56 million Americans have disabilities.

Madeline Diamond, the Huffington Post

Madeline Diamond is a student at Bucknell University double majoring in English and history. She is currently the news editor of The Bucknellian student newspaper and has previously interned at the nonprofit organization VOICES of September 11th. 

Full story (video) … 

UN Officially Declares that UK's Austerity Policies Violate Human Rights

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  • 'It is clear that since 2010, ministers were fully aware that their policies would hit lower income groups hardest.'
  • Women, minorities, young people, and people with disabilities were disproportionately affected, the authors said.
  • Related: The Real Meaning of Brexit: Cry of Pain by the World's Working People

Nadia Prupis, Common Dreams

 

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http://www.commondreams.org/sites/default/files/styles/cd_large/public/headlines/austerity_3.jpg?itok=KxqR6zyFProtesters march against austerity in London in June 2015. (Photo: Jason/flickr/cc) 

Thursday, June 30, 2016 | The UK government's austerity policies violate international human rights, and growing inequality in the nation is cause for "serious concerns," a damning new report by the United Nations has found.

The UN Committee on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights found that six years after the Conservative party took power and extended the previous Coalition's stringent economic practices, UK residents have faced an increased reliance on food banks, rising unemployment rates, a housing crisis, and growing racism and discrimination, among other impacts.

Women, minorities, young people, and people with disabilities were disproportionately affected, the authors said.

Nadia Prupis, staff writer, Common Dreams

Full story … 

Related:

https://www.project-syndicate.org/default/library/b71da4aa7fcc049ed6f3f525bb4acda6.landscapeLarge.jpgThe Real Meaning of Brexit: Cry of Pain by the World's Working People, Michael Lerner, editor, Tikkun magazine & Chair, the (interfaith and secular-humanist-and-atheist-welcoming) NSP: Network of Spiritual Progressives

Tikkun Editor’s Introductory Note:  The vote by a majority in the UK to exit from the European Union  (Britain exiting, now called Brexit) is actually a cry of pain by the working people of Britain, and a reflection of the growing pain that will shape the social and political lives of our world in the coming decades till that pain is fully addressed.

 

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