A group of protesters in Baltimore stood their ground again tonight and civilly disobeyed the 10 PM curfew currently being enforced by the city. While details of this incident are obscure, we see that one officer pepper-sprays the man, and then a few seconds later another officer comes up behind him and violently pulls him to the ground by his locks. Three officers then proceed to drag his body off the street as if removing a dead deer carcass off the highway. Totally uncalled for, in my opinion.
Donta Allen, the man who was in custody with Freddie Gray in the back of the police van, spoke with WBAL TV yesterday to clarify his side of the story. His account of what happened in the van definitely doesn’t support the BPD officers’. At the station, he says he overheard a conversation the officers were having in which one of them said, “We gave him [Gray] a run for his money.” He goes on to note that all he heard in the van was “a little banging” for approximately four seconds, which he later on took to mean that Gray’s body was “wobbling” in the back “because he was dying.” Other than that, he says it was a “smooth ride to the police station.” He insisted that there is no way he could have hurt himself in the back of the paddy wagon, so whatever injuries he had sustained happened to him before he was put in there.
On Wednesday April 29, while exercising my “rights” as press, my coverage of the NYC Freddie Gray Rally resulted in me being accosted/kidnapped/illegally detained by the para military occupying force that you refer to as the NYPD. I was doing nothing more than documenting their Gestapo tactics, in this case which were telling peaceful protesters that they no longer had the right to exercise their right to free assembly and freedom of speech. The parallels are staggering, check this out, as a result of the work that the gunman from Baltimore put in December resulting in the death of two cops in Brooklyn, there has been a reconstruction of the statues/ordinances/codes that pertain to how people in this city are “allowed” to protest.
Protest, in it’s essence should not be about consent, first and foremost. What is the point of making your words heard and your action felt, if you are being told what the acceptable decibel is that your pitch can be heard at, or what is the acceptable motion that the herd can be herded in? While the majority of people in this city sip tea and point fingers, De Blasio‘s powers have been usurped by a villainous treasonous para military organization who are doing the bidding of their task masters who have declared war on your basic liberties, and this diatribe is for those who still think that they are “citizens” of a democratic society.
When basic liberties are usurped and non violent civil disobedience is met with the force reserved for full scale escalations, then NO ONE is safe. Safety is an illusion when your fellow man is denied the basic rights of existence, and one of the paramount tenets of existence is your ability to be heard, on your own terms.
For those of us who know that NYC is a municipality, a corporation, deriving from municipium, a Latin word that “derives from the Latin social contract “municipium”, meaning duty holders, referring to the Latin communities that supplied Rome with troops in exchange for their own incorporation into the Roman state (granting Roman citizenship to the inhabitants) SOURCE: Wikipedia, we KNOW that none of these codes, ordinances, or statutes are lawfully binding and this in fact is not a Democratic society or even Government in the sense of how we collectively identify the word.
Please refer to last Friday’s KTLRADIO show we did called “The People vs Ferguson, Inc.” where we laid out in detail how these corporations are using the “people” for personal profit while usurping folks basic inalienable rights. There is no other glaring exposure of this practice at our disposal, than the Fed’s report on Ferguson. Continue reading
Joseph Kent’s newly appointed attorney Steve Beatty spoke with CNN’s Don Lemon last night to set the record straight on what Kent’s motives were for breaking the citywide curfew. He also relays a message from Kent asking that people not commit any violence in his name. For now, Kent remains in jail on a curfew violation charge.
Twitter user @POPSspotsports has come forward with some interesting pictures and recollections from his encounter with Baltimore activist Joseph Kent last night. This young man was not only peaceful, he was assisting police and also acted as a mediator between them and the protesters. This is someone who was clearly not anti-police, not a ‘thug’, not provocative, not inciting riots, etc.
Many viewers looked on in disbelief last night as they saw a slow moving humvee pull up beside 21-year-old Baltimore activist and Morgan University student Joseph Kent while a group of National Guardsmen suddenly descend upon him, snatch him up, and put him in the vehicle before getting in themselves. The clip quickly went viral on social media with people demanding to know, “where is Joseph Kent?”
It’s being reported that he was arrested for violating the 10 PM curfew that went into effect yesterday. Baltimore attorney Steve Beatty says Kent is currently being held at the CBIF (Central Booking & Intake Facility) and is waiting to be let upstairs to see him.
Many are criticizing the way that Kent was detained, calling it a violation of rights and likening it to blackbag kidnapping. We can probably assume Kent was not read his Miranda rights, either. I have just one question for all the pacificists and peaceful protest advocates:
Do you approve of this? What Kent did was simply an act of civil disobedience, he was not harming anyone or destroying anything, and yet he was still snatched up just like anyone else would be.
UPDATE: Good news from Steve Beatty:
With scenes of the Michael Brown protests in Ferguson, MO still ripe in the minds of many, the clips that have been circulating of what took place in the Freddie Gray protests yesterday should not come as a surprise. In fact, they should be expected. Because when such displays of extreme disregard for human life are the catalyst for these actions, in communities where many of its downtrodden occupants already feel like they and others who look like them are walking targets, it is inevitable. Then, those whose duty it is to hold criminals accountable have the audacity to put the perpetrators of these contemptible acts on administrative leave with pay, while imposing mandatory curfews on those demanding justice and telling them how and where to protest. No, that’s not how it works. You do not get to dictate how the People choose to express themselves when your actions and/or failure to take necessary action is/are the reason(s) the People are protesting in the first place.
If we allow those whom we are protesting against to determine what is acceptable and what is not without applying any type of pressure, what is stopping these things from happening again if they feel they can contain the level of response? And if they know the People will ultimately acquiesce to their requests? Could this be a reason why we are seeing no change in the excessive use of police force across the country?
Besides police, I have heard quite a few people pass judgment on how protesters choose to express themselves. If you aren’t living in the same conditions as many of them or are so far removed from the urban community and the experiences of those living there that you can’t empathize with their struggle, then what right do you have to tell them how they should conduct their protests? How can one remain peaceful when your People have been getting harassed, assaulted, and killed by those whose job it is to protect and serve you and getting away with it for generations? How can you keep faith in the idea that justice will be served when time after time, it isn’t?
Do I condone one form of protest over another? No. I just am not naïve enough to believe that simply protesting peacefully is the only answer. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was as peaceful as they come, and he was still shot down in cold blood. Not everyone who uses aggressive action as a form of protest is a thug, hoodlum, animal, or opportunist; many of them are just tired of not being heard. If they were to take their aggression out on the police rather than their surroundings, then what would you say?
When things like social unrest start moving into areas like Downtown Baltimore, as shown in the video below, where the people of higher classes are known to frequent, clearly there is a communication barrier that exists that we all need to address, because the death of Freddie Gray is not just a Black issue, it is a human issue. To some, the Orioles game or the White House Correspondents Dinner held more value than showing solidarity with our brothers and sisters (Black, Brown, White, whatever) in demanding justice for this man’s life. And let’s be realistic, telling people to make sure they vote in the next ballot or election does absolutely nothing to help them right now. You can’t expect those being affected to just sit on their hands and remain passive until the polls open while injustice continues to plague their communities. Enough is enough. You are either part of the solution or part of the problem.
If you haven’t been keeping up with the protests in Baltimore, check this extensive article written by WBALTV. What are your thoughts on the protests and the current state of society in the U.S.?
How backward are we in this country? These students took to the streets to protest the Conservative Party who basically have cut education while raising student tuition and things got outta hand. They do even worse to us here and we sit back like punks and do absolutely ziltch.
Vodpod videos no longer available.
via Telegraph CO UK
A number of police officers were injured after they came under attack from youths, some wearing scarves to hide their faces, amid scenes of chaos.
Vodpod videos no longer available.
via NY Times
Scores of police officers wearing helmets and carrying batons and pepper spray entered a New School building at 65 Fifth Avenue around 11 a.m. on Friday, arresting 19 protesters who had occupied it as part of a determined protest aimed at the university’s president, Bob Kerrey. “The Police Department was asked to arrest individuals trespassing on the property,” said Paul J. Browne, the department’s chief spokesman, who said the operation “was done in a very organized, orderly fashion.”
But students at the scene described a tumultuous situation in which protesters were pepper-sprayed before being placed in handcuffs and loaded by police officers into the back of a white van, around 11:30 a.m.
Mr. Browne said it was “untrue that pepper spray or mace was used in effectuating the arrests.” Continue reading
via Guardian UK
Police are preparing for a “summer of rage” as victims of the economic downturn take to the streets to demonstrate against financial institutions, the Guardian has learned.
Britain’s most senior police officer with responsibility for public order raised the spectre of a return of the riots of the 1980s, with people who have lost their jobs, homes or savings becoming “footsoldiers” in a wave of potentially violent mass protests.
Superintendent David Hartshorn, who heads the Metropolitan police’s public order branch, told the Guardian that middle-class individuals who would never have considered joining demonstrations may now seek to vent their anger through protests this year.
He said that banks, particularly those that still pay large bonuses despite receiving billions in taxpayer money, had become “viable targets”. So too had the headquarters of multinational companies and other financial institutions in the City which are being blamed for the financial crisis.
Hartshorn, who receives regular intelligence briefings on potential causes of civil unrest, said the mood at some demonstrations had changed recently, with activists increasingly “intent on coming on to the streets to create public disorder”. Continue reading
Protests over a controversial New York Post cartoon drew people from all walks of life Thursday — as activists outlined a detailed plan to show their outrage and demand changes from the spirited tabloid.
It was a huge demonstration, one that clearly got the attention of The Post.
The newspaper came under fire Wednesday after a cartoon was published that critics said links President Barack Obama to a raging chimpanzee shot dead by police in Connecticut. But the newspaper also said the image was exploited by its longtime antagonists.
On Thursday night the tabloid newspaper apologized “to those who were offended by the image,” in an editorial on its Web site.
The editorial also said some media and public figures who have long-standing differences with the paper saw the cartoon “as an opportunity for payback.”
The editorial called them “opportunists” and said: “To them, no apology is due.”
The drawing shows a dead chimp, with the caption reading: “They’ll have to find someone else to write the next stimulus bill.”
That set off a swarm of controversy, culminating in The Rev. Al Sharpton-led protest Thursday afternoon outside The Post’s Manhattan headquarters.
Sharpton, who planned another rally for Friday, released a statement, saying he’s not satisfied with simply an apology.
“The New York Post statement will be discussed by all of the leadership of the various groups that have mobilized and we will respond to it at the rally at 5 p.m. tomorrow outside of the New York Post.
“At this point there will be no cancellation of the rally and though we think it is the right thing for them to apologize to those they offended, they seem to want to want to blame the offense on those of whom raised the issue, rather than take responsibility for what they did. Continue reading
NEW YORK (Reuters) – Saying Bernard Madoff enjoys a “gilded penthouse incarceration,” civil rights activist Al Sharpton led a rally outside the accused swindler’s Manhattan home on Saturday urging equal justice for the rich and poor.
Sharpton and about 30 other demonstrators protested that Madoff was being allowed to remain free pending trial while poor people with no access to top legal representation languished in prison for relatively minor infractions.
“There must be one standard for all, and not one based on income,” Sharpton said at the protest on Manhattan’s affluent Upper East Side.
He added that Madoff, who is under house arrest, was experiencing “a kind of gilded penthouse incarceration.”
Madoff, 70, was arrested on December 11 in connection with what authorities have described as the biggest Ponzi scheme in history. In a Ponzi scheme, early investors are paid with money from new investors.
According to prosecutors, Madoff has confessed that his money management business was “one big lie” and had racked up losses of as much as $50 billion.
It was not known whether Madoff saw the rally taking place on the street below his penthouse.
Madoff is under 24-hour surveillance in his apartment as a condition of his $10 million bail agreement. Under his bail terms, Madoff must wear an electronic monitor and is only allowed to leave his apartment for court appearances.
A federal judge last month rejected a government appeal to send him to jail.
via Times Online
Armed police guarded cinemas in eastern India today after slum dwellers ransacked a picture house showing Slumdog Millionaire because they didn’t like the use of the word “dog” in the title.
Several hundred people rampaged through the cinema in Patna, capital of the eastern state of Bihar, on Monday and tore down posters advertising the film. They said the title was humiliating and vowed to continue their protests until it was changed.
The protest was organised by Tateshwar Vishwakarma, a social activist who filed a lawsuit over the title last week against four Indians involved in its production – a lead actor, the music director and two others.
“Referring to people living in slums as dogs is a violation of human rights,” said Mr Vishwakarma, who works for a group promoting the rights of slum dwellers. We will burn Danny Boyle [the film’s British director] effigies in 56 slums here.”
The case will be heard in a Patna court on February 5, according to police.
Kishori Das, another activist, said: “We are in touch with like-minded organisations across India to take the issue on a large scale.” Continue reading
The debate rages on about whether lethal injection is legal and/or violates the 8th Amendment. Inmates and Lawyers across the country are challenging this hot-button issue that seems to cause great debate on both sides of the issues. Recent reports have surfaced that the process of lethal injection is sometimes flawed and recipents endured a long and painful death, instead of a quick exit. Check out a detailed article from a reporter actually witnessing an execution.