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Saturday, January 20, 2018

TIME’S UP - WOMEN TO MARCH SUNDAY JANUARY 21, 2018 - SUPPORT WOMEN ENTREPRENEURS (WEAR BLACK)








TIME’S UP - WOMEN TO MARCH SUNDAY JANUARY 21, 2018 - SUPPORT WOMEN ENTREPRENEURS (WEAR BLACK):

TIME’S UP MOVEMENT RAISES $15 MIL.

VIOLENCE, SEXISM, DISCRIMINATION & SEXUAL HARASSMENT AGAINST WOMEN HAS NO PLACE IN THE INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS WORLD.

WOMEN HAVE EQUAL HUMAN RIGHTS TO SUCCEED IN BUSINESS & HELP CREATE JOBS WITHOUT FEAR.

TIME'S UP.


Sources: Post Sources: Heavy.com, Telegraph.co.uk, CBS News, Page Six, Youtube


******* Women’s March on Washington D.C. 2018: Route, Time, & Map for January 20


The Women’s March organization is hosting a one-year anniversary event, called Power to the Polls, on January 21. But Washington D.C. is hosting its own Women’s March today, January 20. A year ago, the women’s march in D.C. was massive, so expect a big crowd again today. The March on Washington 2018 (in D.C.) rally begins at 11 a.m. Eastern today, January 20, at the Reflecting Pool in front of the Lincoln Memorial. The march itself is expected to start around 1 p.m., according to the event’s official Facebook page. You can’t bring tripods, chairs, or tables. But you can bring cardboard posters or signs, as long as there are no metal or wood posts to hold them up.

Be sure and arrive early, because the event is going to be massive. At least 9,600 have RSVP’d that they plan to attend, and about 5,500 are expected. The rally portion of the event will feature several talented speakers. Here is a map of where the rally will be taking place:

The march, which is expected to begin around 1 p.m., will march all the way to the White House. Although the organizers did not to release the march on their website, according to their march’s Route Webpage, they have released the map via other sources. Thrillist shared a map of the march and where it will be taking place, courtesy of the Women’s March. You can view the map and route here. The march will travel along Constitution Avenue and Independence Avenue. Marshals will help direct the marchers so they know where to go.

Numerous special guests will be speaking at the rally before the march begins. They include:

• Daryl Davis, musician, actor, lecturer, and race relations consultant. He’s the leader of the Daryl Davis Band and wrote Klan-Destine Relationships. He appeared on HBO’s The Wire.
• Judith Heumann, an international disability rights advocate. She served as the first Special Advisor for International Disability Rights during the Obama administration.
• Kofi Annan, president of the Fairfax County NAACP. He’s a native of Georgetown, Guyana, and immigrated to America at the age of 12. He served eight years in the U.S. Army and is now the founder and CEO of Veteran Career Counseling Services, LLC.
• Judy Gearhart, executive director of the International Labor Rights Forum. She teaches human rights at Columbia University.
• Tim Kaine, former Vice Presidential nominee for the Democratic Party.
• Brittany T. Oliver. She’s the founding director of Not Without Black Women, and is a race and gender activist. In 2016, she received national recognition for challenging white feminism during the early stages of the Women’s March on Washington.
• Joanna Lohma, professional soccer player. She’s been a professional athlete for 13 years and is a Sport Diplomat.
• Mia D. Mason, owner of Managers Lendors Investors, Inc.. She’s a veteran LGBT Infantry servicewoman, an Army electronic warfare officer, and a Naval aviation electronic technician.
• Chris Carson. She’s President of the League of Women Voters.
• Kelly Convirs-Fowler, delegate for the 21st district in Virginia.
• Kamala Lopez, director, actress, and President of Heroica Films.
• Jean S. Gearon, Ph.D., Women’s Alliance for Democracy & Justice
• Susan Platt, President of Platt Consulting.
• Kings Floyd, co-chair of DC Metro ADAPT
• Marcela Howell, executive director of In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda
• Eve Hurwtiz, Treasurer of March On
• Nuchhi Currier, President of the Women’s National Democratic Club
• Muthoni Wambu Kraal, VP for Outreach and Training at EMILY’s List
• Eleanor Smeal: President and co-founder of Feminist Majority Foundation
• Toni Van Pelt: President of the National Organization for Women
• Marilyn Karp: A leader of Indivisible Nova West, a group focused on Getting Out the Vote.
• Elise A. Bryant: Director and Labor Educator
• Greisa Martinez Rosas: DACA recipient and potential Dream Act beneficiary
• Nadia Hassan: Young Leaders Institute
• Ann Marie Benitez: Senior Director of Government Relations, National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health
• Wendi Wallace: Political Outreach Director for Planned Parenthood Action Fund
• Tom E. Perez, Chairman of the DNC
• Bryce Armstrong, Miss District of Columbia USA 2018
•Performers will include Batala in Washington D.C. and SongRise.

This isn’t the only event in the nearby area that you can attend this weekend. On Sunday, January 21, at 7 p.m., a book discussion on feminist books will take place at the home of an Arlington NOW member (details here.) And on Saturday at 1 p.m., Plymouth Congregational United Church of Christ in DC will be hosting an abortion discussion, focusing on the effects the pro-life movement has had on African Americans.


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***** Sexism against Female entrepreneurs


In the wake of the ongoing sexual harassment scandals in Hollywood and beyond, women across the world are taking a stand.
This Sunday, thousands of women (and men) will join forces in cities the world over, taking to the streets to march and send the message that 'Time's Up' - the name of a legal defence fund set up to financially support women who have experienced sexual harassment, assault, or abuse in the workplace.

It comes exactly a year after the global women's marches in protest at Donald Trump's inauguration, which saw half a million people descend on Washington DC to defend women's rights, amid concerns that the US President would begin to dismantle them. Many wore hats with pink ears, and celebrity supporters included Emma Watson and Madonna.

The 2018 march in London - which starts opposite Downing Street at 11am on Sunday January, 21 -, seeks to capitalise on the activism kick-started by the #MeToo hashtag that sprung up in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, and has seen a widespread move to tackle sexual harassment in the workplace.

In a statement, the organisers said: ‘We are coming together to pledge that we are going to make change in big and small ways. We will stand side by side, once again, in solidarity with our sisters, brothers and siblings around the world. Together we are strong and if we all work for a better world then time is really up for oppressors of women.’

In 2016, just nine per cent of all start up funding went to female founders, according to data from Barclays and the Entrepreneurs Network. With male entrepreneurs 86 per cent more likely than their female counterparts to raise venture capital funding in the UK, it’s safe to say there is an issue.

Such a climate even lead two young women entrepreneurs to invent a fake male co-founder to correspond with potential investors. Penelope Gazin and Kate Dwyer, who founded the online art marketplace Witchsy, created an imaginary third co-founder Keith Mann to help get their business off the ground.

"It's frustrating that a significant proportion of funding goes towards male-founded or led businesses," Annabel Denham, programme director at The Entrepreneurs Network, previously toldThe Telegraph. "This is not just an economic discussion, though we know start-ups are vital to the UK economy: we want to see smart, savvy businesswomen getting the same opportunities as their male counterparts."


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*** Time’s Up very close to $16M goal


Since launching January 1, the Time’s Up initiative has raised $15.86 million of its $16 million goal.

To celebrate, Reese Witherspoon shared a video on Instagram with Brie Larson, Kerry Washington, Tracee Ellis Ross, Rashida Jones and Tessa Thompson thanking everyone for their generous donations.

“We have raised $15 million so far from more than 10,000 people who have donated from 60 countries, all 50 states and this is just the beginning,” Ross said.

“This is only possible because of you,” Thompson added.

Time’s Up is also raising money for a legal defense fund for both women and men who believe that they’ve been discriminated against or harassed in the workplace.

Jones and Washington invited viewers to wear black Sunday in honor of the 2018 Golden Globes, where stars are wearing black to take a stand against sexual harassment and sexual assault.

Many attendees are also donning the Time’s Up pin, which was created by costume designer Arianne Phillips and jewelry designer Michael Schmidt.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

SCOTUS BLOCKS NORTH CAROLINA ANTI-GERRYMANDERING DECISION FROM LOWER COURT (2018 & 2020)










SCOTUS BLOCKS NC ANTI-GERRYMANDERING DECISION FROM LOWER COURT:

GOP’S NC VOTING DISTRICTS APPROVED.

BLACK ELITE NORTH CAROLINA LEADERS & WHITE DEM LEADERS WERE TOO BUSY BEING RACIALLY DIVIDED TO SEE THIS POLITICAL ALBATROSS LOOMING OVERHEAD.

WHILE BLACK ELITE & WHITE DEM LEADERS WERE COMFORTABLY BLOCKING PROGRESS FOR LOCAL NC VOTERS, THE GOP QUIETLY REVISED NORTH CAROLINA’S VOTING DISTRICTS.

“We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.”

DR MARTIN LUTHER KING JR, 1964



Sources: NY Times, PBS News, The Young Turks, YouTube


**** Supreme Court Temporarily Blocks North Carolina Gerrymandering Ruling


WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Thursday temporarily blocked a trial court’s order requiring North Carolina lawmakers to produce a revised congressional voting map, making it likely that the midterm elections this year will be conducted using districts favorable to Republican candidates.

The trial court had found that Republican legislators in the state had violated the Constitution by drawing congressional voting districts to hurt the electoral chances of Democratic candidates.

The Supreme Court’s move was expected and not particularly telling. The court, which is considering two other major tests of partisan gerrymandering, has granted stays in similar settings. Its decisions in the pending cases, from Wisconsin and Maryland, are likely to effectively decide the North Carolina case, too.

Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor noted dissents from Thursday’s order, which was brief and unsigned.

The previous North Carolina decision, issued by a three-judge panel last week, was the first from a federal court to strike down a congressional map as a partisan gerrymander. Republican state lawmakers, the court said, had violated the 14th Amendment’s guarantee of equal protection by drawing voting districts to their party’s advantage.

The judges noted that the legislator responsible for drawing the map had not disguised his intentions. “I think electing Republicans is better than electing Democrats,” said the legislator, Representative David Lewis, a Republican. “So I drew this map to help foster what I think is better for the country.”

The plan worked. In 2016, the court said, Republican congressional candidates won 53 percent of the statewide vote. But they won in 10 of the 13 congressional districts, or 77 percent of them.

The Supreme Court has ruled that racial gerrymandering can violate the Constitution. But it has never struck down a voting map as an unconstitutional partisan gerrymander.

Republicans and, in private, many Democrats in North Carolina had expected the Supreme Court to stay last week’s ruling, which ordered legislators to prepare a new map by Jan. 24. But elected officials and political strategists had been preparing for the possibility of a hasty redrawing of the congressional map and an upending of carefully laid plans for the midterm campaigns.

Even the brief gap between the trial court’s ruling and the Supreme Court’s order left the state in turmoil weeks before the deadline to declare candidacies.

Few states in recent years have seen as much political turbulence as North Carolina, where Republicans took control of the General Assembly in 2010 and now face off regularly with a Democratic governor. Many of the high-decibel clashes in North Carolina, even before Gov. Roy Cooper was elected in 2016, focused on elections and voting procedures.

A voter ID law has been the subject of contentious litigation, and a different three-judge panel concluded that many of the state’s legislative districts had been racially gerrymandered. In 2016, a court struck down a different version of the congressional map, saying it was a racial gerrymander.

But last week’s ruling stirred particular anger in Raleigh, the state capital, with Republicans infuriated that the judges had begun making arrangements for a court-appointed expert to draw a map as an alternative to one that the Legislature might develop.

Although observers said the three-judge panel’s ruling, stayed or not, had offered Democrats a valuable talking point in the months before midterm elections, Republicans welcomed the Supreme Court’s order on Thursday.

“We did fully expect this, but we are still grateful,” said Dallas Woodhouse, the executive director of the North Carolina Republican Party, who complained in an interview that the lower court had tried to “inject chaos into our elections.” Mr. Woodhouse said he fully expected that this year’s elections would be carried out under the existing map.

Critics of the map expressed disappointment and frustration with the court’s order.

“We still believe the day is coming soon for the General Assembly to be held to account for this madness,” said Allison Riggs of the Southern Coalition for Social Justice, which represents the League of Women Voters of North Carolina, a group that challenged the map. “The law and the facts of this case make that clear.”

J. Michael Bitzer, a political scientist at Catawba College, near Charlotte, said the Supreme Court’s order was an important, if perhaps temporary, win for Republicans in North Carolina.

“Certainly, Republicans will view this as a victory but probably a short-term victory,” he said. “They certainly dodged a bullet tonight. The question is: ‘How long do we have before the Wisconsin decision comes down, and what kind of impact will that have on 2018’s elections?’”

In October, the Supreme Court heard arguments in the case from Wisconsin. The trial court in that case had struck down a voting map for the State Assembly as an unconstitutional partisan gerrymander.

The Supreme Court has also agreed to decide whether Maryland Democrats crossed a constitutional line by redrawing House districts to flip a Republican-held seat to Democratic control.

In asking the Supreme Court to block the North Carolina ruling, state lawmakers said the trial court had made legal errors and unreasonable demands, notably in ordering new congressional maps to be drawn by Jan. 24.

The lawmakers’ brief reminded the justices that they had granted a stay in the Wisconsin case. “Particularly given the relief this court already granted to Wisconsin,” they wrote, “it makes no sense whatsoever to force North Carolina to immediately remedy a purported partisan gerrymandering violation and commence its 2018 election cycle under a new court-imposed map before this court can even decide whether and under what circumstances such claims may be adjudicated.”

In their own brief, lawyers for Democrats challenging the map said the lawmakers’ motive in seeking a stay was “plain as day.”

“The Republican contingent of the legislature wants to enjoy the fruits of their grossly unconstitutional actions for yet another election cycle,” the brief said.

CORY BOOKER FOR PRESIDENT IN 2020? (BOOKER vs TRUMP vs OBAMA)










CORY BOOKER FOR PRESIDENT IN 2020? (BOOKER vs TRUMP vs OBAMA):

BOOKER IS A GREAT CANDIDATE BUT DON'T KNOW IF HE CAN RAISE BIG MONEY LIKE OBAMA DID.

BOOKER IS PASSIONATE BUT IT TAKES MORE THAN PASSION TO BECOME U.S. PRESIDENT.

TRUMP STILL PULLS BIG MONEY FROM BUSINESS BILLIONAIRES.

OBAMA ALSO PULLED BIG MONEY FROM BUSINESS BILLIONAIRES.

IN FACT TRUMP BORROWED HIS 2016 WINNING STRATEGY FROM OBAMA'S POLITICAL PLAYBOOK.

OBAMA SET A POLITICAL GENIUS STANDARD HARD TO BEAT FOR ALL FUTURE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES.

MANY SOUTHERN BLACK VOTERS DON'T KNOW BOOKER.

WILL BLACK VOTERS SHOW UP FOR BOOKER IN LARGE NUMBERS? I DON'T KNOW.

~ FYI:
I DON'T BELIEVE TRUMP IS RACIST, PERHAPS MISGUIDED.

SOMETIMES I REALLY DO MISS "COOL HAND LUKE" OBAMA.

I'M JUST SAYING.


Sources: NJ.com, Raw Story, BBC News, CNN, Youtube


****** Cory Booker's voice challenges the silence of Trump supporters


Every now and then, a political leader seems to capture what is on our minds. Franklin Roosevelt had that ability. So did John Kennedy, Ronald Reagan and occasionally Barack Obama. Even Chris Christie could do it until he became intoxicated with his presidential ambitions and his bully ways.

This week Cory Booker found his voice – and ours, too, with just six words.

“She hit a nerve in me.”

Booker was not talking about one of his colleagues in the U.S. senate or even one of his constituents back in New Jersey. His words, spoken during an interview on CNN, were directed at Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen.

It was evening in Washington, D.C. Booker looked worn out. He was sporting a five o’clock shadow beard when he appeared on CNN.

Hours earlier, in one of his first appearances as a new, very junior Democratic member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Booker had listened quietly as Nielson said she “could not recall specific words” when President Trump reportedly cursed a blue streak a week earlier as he criticized an immigration plan suggested by Sen. Dick Durbin, the Illinois Democrat, and Sen. Lindsey Graham, the South Carolina Republican.

As almost everyone in America has heard, the “specific words” that Trump is said to have uttered are “s---hole” during that immigration discussion. The president was not describing the plan or any of the people in the Oval Office. His words were aimed at Africa, Haiti and El Salvador. Simply put, the president wanted to register his disapproval of immigrants from those “s---hole” nations.

After the meeting broke up, Durbin went public with Trump’s vulgarity, saying Trump was out of line and disrespectful of those nations and their people. Graham backed Durbin up. Neither Trump nor the White House tried to deny the “s---hole” remark – at least not initially.

But as uproar spread across the nation that the president – indeed, any political leader – would describe poor nations like that, Trump had second thoughts. He suggested that he didn’t quite use the “s---hole” phrase.

So what did Trump say?

About a dozen people were in the Oval Office for the immigration discussion. But it seems that everyone except Durbin and Graham came down with a sudden case of hearing loss, amnesia or had taken a monk-like vow of silence.

Actually, that’s not quite correct. After first claiming they did not know what Trump said, two GOP senators who were present for the discussion said that Trump did not say “ s---hole” but “s--- house.”

As if that makes a difference.

But now, here was Kirstjen Nielsen several days later testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Maybe she could recall what Trump actually said. Was it “s---hole” or “s--- house” – or something else?

Instead of shedding light on what happened, Nielsen did her best imitation of Sergeant Schultz, the rotund, dim-witted Nazi prison guard in the 1960’s TV sitcom, “Hogan’s Heroes,” who habitually exclaimed to “know nothing” when asked by his commander whether the American and British prisoners of war were planning to escape.

Nielson first claimed too many people were talking at once so she couldn’t quite determine what was being said. Then, she conceded that she managed to hear what she described as “rough talk.” She just couldn’t recall anything specific. So how did she know the talk was “rough”?

As Nielson offered this lame explanation, the TV footage showed Booker in what could kindly be called a slow burn. When it was his time to speak, his eyes widened and he declared that he was “seething with anger” over Trump’s alleged comments.

He then used his entire 10-minute session that had been set aside for him to question Nielson to lecture her. He mentioned Ghandi and the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. He also described his parents’ difficulty in confronting bigotry when they purchased a home in Harrington Park.

Booker's message was simple: Why wasn’t Nielson confronting bigotry – in this case, the words of her boss, the president?

Nielson sat stone-faced.

“I sit here right now because when good white people in this country heard bigotry or hatred, they stood up,” Booker declared.

Nielson still sat stone faced.

When Booker had finished, Nielsen did not address what he said but instead talked about threats from white supremacists. Then Nielson said she believed that the president was trying to suggest in that Oval Office discussion that America ought to have a “merit-based” immigration system – meaning that highly educated immigrants or those with skilled would be admitted.

She didn't have to say that immigrants from “s---hole” nations would be rejected. She didn’t need to. Suggesting a “merit-based” immigration system was her clever way of avoiding any discussion of immigrants from “s---hole” nations – the poorest of the poor.

What is disturbing here is not just the president’s words, but the reaction from those closest to him like Kirstjen Nielson. Simply put: What is it going to take for people in the White House – or, frankly, in the Republican Party – to criticize Trump for stepping over a line?

We shouldn’t be surprised by the silence. Remember Trump’s “rapist” comment about Mexicans? Or when he doubted that John McCain was a war hero? Or when he disparaged the Muslim parents of an Army officer who was killed in Iraq? Or when he mocked a disabled journalist?

Trump loves picking on anyone who is vulnerable. But the uproar over Trump’s litany of outrageous statements was often brief at best and coming mainly from Trump’s critics. Trump’s allies were mostly mute, dulled into tacit acceptance.

This pattern seemed to bother Booker deeply – and rightly so. What does it take for Trump’s buddies to speak up?

And so, when Kirstjen Nielson seemed overcome with amnesia, Booker fired back. And a few hours later, when asked on CNN why he was so bothered, he said, “She hit a nerve in me.”

In that simple sentence, Booker captured the frustration that so many have felt in the first year of Trump’s presidency. He not only strikes a nerve when he opens his mouth, but his supporters strike that same nerve in their silence.

This week, Cory Booker found his voice.

When will Trump’s people find theirs?

Friday, January 12, 2018

MARYLAND BLACK WOMAN THROWN INTO FREEZING STREET BY BALTIMORE HOSPITAL











MARYLAND BLACK WOMAN THROWN INTO FREEZING STREET BY BALTIMORE HOSPITAL:

AN AFRICAN HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONAL SAVED HER.

WASHINGTON DC & MARYLAND BLACK LEADERS TREAT MOST BLACK PEOPLE LIKE DRUG DEALERS AND CRIMINALS.

INCLUDING LOCAL BLACK VOTERS.

IT’S WORSE THAN JIM CROW.

DOES THE GOV OF MARYLAND REALLY CARE ABOUT BLACK VOTERS?

DO DC POLITICIANS REALLY CARE ABOUT BLACK VOTERS?

AFTER WITNESSING HOW BLACK PEOPLE ARE MISTREATED BY BLACK LEADERS IN DC & MD, I NO LONGER THINK THE DMV IS BETTER THAN NYC.


Sources: AP, CBS News, TIME, Yahoo News, The Independent, Washington Post, Youtube


******* Man who aided hospital patient discharged in gown shocked


The man who said he came to the aid of a woman discharged from a Baltimore hospital wearing only a gown and socks on a cold winter's night, says he was left outraged and stunned at how she was treated.

Imamu Baraka, identified in local reports as the person who sought to help the woman, told The Associated Press he was so angry he decided to record Tuesday night's events on cellphone video, fearing no one would believe him if he reported a woman being left at a bus stop like that.

"I saw the unthinkable: another human in a wheelchair being wheeled out in the dead of cold," he said in the phone interview Thursday evening.

He described frigid temperatures in the 30s and a cold wind blowing at the woman's hospital gown, exposing her to the elements.

Baraka, who said he has a psychotherapy practice in a building across the street from the Maryland Medical Center Midtown Campus, said he rushed back to his office, retrieved his cellphone, returned and hit "record" while growing increasingly angry.

As a medical professional, the psychotherapist said he sought to keep his emotions in check even as he repeatedly challenged those who had wheeled the woman out to the street in the dark.

"At first I was shocked. I couldn't believe what I was seeing. And I move beyond that to the next level from being shocked. I became ... irritated and fearful for the young lady. And then I became angry," he recalled.

He added he failed to get satisfactory answers as he tried to help the woman.

Of those who brought her outdoors, he said: "I asked them three times, I asked them specifically, 'Are you going to leave this lady out here like this?' They kept walking. They then went inside of the building." He said he went and asked a security guard outside the hospital for a supervisor and was told "I am the supervisor."

Rebuffed, he said, he then went and tried to help the woman shelter in the bus stop while calling 911 for an ambulance. He said he asked the arriving ambulance crew where they would take her, and they replied "back to the hospital."

Recalled Baraka, "I said, 'Are you kidding me, they just dumped her on the curb.'"

It wasn't immediately clear what happened to the woman after she was driven back toward the hospital. But the hospital confirmed in a statement that the woman was discharged that Tuesday night.

Dr. Mohan Suntha, president and CEO of University of Maryland Medical Center Midtown Campus, told a news conference on Thursday afternoon that the hospital had "failed" after the video posted on Facebook showed the unidentified woman mumbling and appearing disoriented in frigid weather outside. Suntha also said there were no excuses for what happened to the woman.

"We believe firmly that we provided appropriate medical care to a patient who came to us in need, but where we absolutely failed, and where we own that failure, is in the demonstration of basic humanity and compassion as a patient was being discharged from our organization after having received that care," he said.

He added that the woman wasn't mistreated while in the hospital's care and that the incident was isolated and that hospital officials were conducting an extensive internal review.

Said Suntha, "We do not believe that what occurred Tuesday night in any way defines who we are as an organization. There has been a lot of conversation since this incident came to light."











Saturday, December 30, 2017

BLACK WOMEN REGAIN HONOR & RESPECT AT THE POLLS (NO RACIST DRAMA)






BLACK WOMEN REGAIN HONOR & RESPECT AT THE POLLS (POWER OF BLACK VOTE):

DEMOCRATS WON ALABAMA WITH THE BLACK VOTE, MAINLY BLACK WOMEN VOTERS.

BLACK WOMEN ARE NO LONGER BEING RIDICULED OR STEREOTYPED AS DRAMA QUEENS OR WELFARE QUEENS DUE TO INSTITUTIONAL RACISM.

OBAMA WON 97% OF THE BLACK VOTE IN 2008.

BILL CLINTON WON ABOUT 90% OF THE BLACK VOTE IN 1992.

WILL DEMOCRATS TRADE BLACK VOTERS FOR LATINO VOTERS AGAIN AND LOSE AGAIN AS THEY DID IN 2016??

DEMOCRATS GAVE LATINO VOTERS EVERYTHING THEY ASKED FOR IN 2016 YET LATINO VOTERS DID NOT TURN OUT FOR DEMS AT POLLS.

WILL DEMOCRATS TRADE BLACK VOTERS FOR LATINO VOTERS AGAIN?

STAY TUNED.


Sources: The Week, Scholar Works UMB, Washington Post, Youtube


******* BLACK WOMEN ARE EAGERLY USING THE VOTES THEY FOUGHT FOR


On December 12, 2017, Black women voted overwhelmingly for Democrat Doug Jones in his Alabama Senate race against Republican candidate Roy Moore.

Black women made up 17 percent of voters compared to white women, who made up 31 percent.

While 63 percent of white women voted for Moore—a man accused of sexual abuse and harassment by numerous women during their teenage years—98 percent of black women voted for Jones, helping him to win by a slim but decisive 1.5 percent margin.

Without the support of black voters, Jones would have lost the election, and Roy Moore would have been elected to the United States Senate. This would have had a detrimental effect on the lives of black Alabamians.

In September, Moore declared that his support of Trump’s promise to “Make America Great Again” would involve a return to a time when slavery was legal and women had yet to win the franchise. Black women stopped him from winning the Senate race.

The voting power and progressive political thought of black women is an old tradition. In the United States, their history of participation in the passing of the nineteenth amendment has been lost in debates about whether the amendment helped them or was largely a victory for white women.

What these debates often leave out is the history of black participation in the suffrage movement. From the days of its inception, black women decided they would not be left out.

The historical record indicates that it was not an allegiance to white suffragists that determined whether black women participated, nor was it Republican Party loyalty.

These assertions negate the intellectual work black women did to make political choices.

Black suffragists spoke for themselves to win the vote for themselves. This was done to win freedom from racism, classism and sexism.

Black women have always pushed the country to live up to that ideal. Their standing at the intersection of the most marginalized communities in the country ensures that, as they rise economically, politically, and socially, other marginalized communities will rise as well.

In her 1998 book, African American Women in the Struggle for the Vote, 1850-1920 , historian Rosalyn Terborg-Penn points out that black women began their struggle for voting rights while enslaved as abolitionists and after Emancipation as active participants in the women’s suffrage movement.

Debates about the voting power of black women began before the nineteenth amendment, and black women in Colorado, Illinois, and California voted in local elections.

In the 1920 presidential campaign, Warren G. Harding sought the support of black women. Lethia C. Fleming, Mary B. Talbert, and Mary Church Terrell were some of the black women involved in that campaign.

Black women were also running for political office as early as 1920. In Seattle, Washington, Mrs. W. L. Presto was a candidate for the Washington state senate.

Terborg-Penn makes a crucial point about the political thought of black women in the 1920s. Black women were already “reflecting the growing socialist movement among intellectuals and professionals of the times.” Black women were fighting for voting rights as women, black people, and progressives.

Once we understand their political strategies today, we can get closer to supporting them in their intentions to improve conditions for themselves and other women, the black community, and economically marginalized people nationally.

Black women continued to make a space for themselves in the political arena. The life and work of Fannie Lou Hamer decades after the suffrage movement demonstrates that by the mid twentieth century black women in the South were still struggling for the right to vote unharmed and unhampered.

Her speech at the 1964 Democratic National Convention shows that black women in the South were also struggling for representation in the Democratic Party.

Her brave declarations and the larger Civil Rights Movement, made up significantly of black women across the nation, pushed President Lyndon B. Johnson to sign the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

This protective legislation led to more black women voting, and in places where black people made up the majority, black women were elected to office. Hamer was a member of the first policy council of the National Women’s Political Caucus along with another black woman who was especially committed to exercising her right to run for political office: Shirley Chisholm.

Shirley Chisholm won office in New York State as an Assemblywoman in 1964. Four years later, she became the first black congresswoman in 1968 where she served for seven terms. In 1972, Chisholm became the first black woman to run for the office of President of the United States.

Historian Anastasia Curwood describes the political thought of Chisholm in her 2015 article, “Black Feminism on Capitol Hill: Shirley Chisholm and Movement Politics, 1968-1984.”

Curwood notes that Chisholm understood the unique position black women held as black, female, and for a large part of the community, working class. Chisholm referred to this position as “twin jeopardy,” a term influenced by Frances Beal.

Throughout the 1960s and 1970s black women were political thinkers and actors.

Recent elections have shown that the political activity of black women is strong. What has changed since the rebellion against the Trump Administration is a deeper understanding of how dependent the Democratic Party is on black women’s votes.

One organization, Higher Heights, is pushing the Democratic Party to recognize the strength of black women’s votes. Higher Heights is an organization that advocates for the political participation and election of black women.

In an open letter to the Democratic National Committee chair, Tom Perez, published in May 2017, Higher Heights petitioned Perez to take black women’s political contributions seriously by meeting with them to discuss their concerns.

They argued that since black women overwhelmingly support the party’s candidates, their support and representation should be increased within the party.

A day after the election of Doug Jones, Perez would declare on Twitter, “Black women are the backbone of the Democratic Party, and we can’t take that for granted. Period.”

People of color, poor people, and women account for the majority of people in this country. As black women vote and advocate for the candidates with their interests in mind, and as people trust their choices, the country will be pushed further to the political left.

So, it isn’t so much that black women “turn out” to vote. It is who they choose, their political agenda, the political party that shares their agenda, and the savvy way with which they cast their votes. It isn’t just that black women vote, it is that they choose freedom.

They choose freedom for themselves and for anyone affected by race, class, and gender in this country.

Organizations like Higher Heights are aware and calling for others to go beyond being excited to directly supporting black women.

Black women must be recognized beyond the times they turn out to vote. That recognition must extend to change.

TRANSGENDER PEOPLE ALLOWED TO ENLIST IN U.S. MILITARY JAN 1, 2018 (TRUMP'S STRATEGY)



TRANSGENDER PEOPLE ALLOWED TO ENLIST IN U.S. MILITARY JAN 1, 2018 (TRUMP'S STRATEGY):

TRUMP CHOSE NOT TO APPEAL COURT'S LATEST RULING.

IS THIS TRUMP'S WAY OF REACHING OUT TO THE GAY COMMUNITY AHEAD OF 2020??

TRUMP MAY BE MUCH WISER THAN WE ALL REALIZE.


Sources: Reuters


****** U.S. military to accept transgender recruits on Monday: Pentagon


Transgender people will be allowed for the first time to enlist in the U.S. military starting on Monday as ordered by federal courts, the Pentagon said on Friday, after President Donald Trump’s administration decided not to appeal rulings that blocked his transgender ban.

Two federal appeals courts, one in Washington and one in Virginia, last week rejected the administration’s request to put on hold orders by lower court judges requiring the military to begin accepting transgender recruits on Jan. 1.

A Justice Department official said the administration will not challenge those rulings.

“The Department of Defense has announced that it will be releasing an independent study of these issues in the coming weeks.

So rather than litigate this interim appeal before that occurs, the administration has decided to wait for DOD’s study and will continue to defend the president’s lawful authority in District Court in the meantime,” the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

In September, the Pentagon said it had created a panel of senior officials to study how to implement a directive by Trump to prohibit transgender individuals from serving. The Defense Department has until Feb. 21 to submit a plan to Trump.

Lawyers representing currently-serving transgender service members and aspiring recruits said they had expected the administration to appeal the rulings to the conservative-majority Supreme Court, but were hoping that would not happen.

Pentagon spokeswoman Heather Babb said in a statement: “As mandated by court order, the Department of Defense is prepared to begin accessing transgender applicants for military service Jan. 1. All applicants must meet all accession standards.”

Jennifer Levi, a lawyer with gay, lesbian and transgender advocacy group GLAD, called the decision not to appeal “great news.”

“I’m hoping it means the government has come to see that there is no way to justify a ban and that it’s not good for the military or our country,” Levi said. Both GLAD and the American Civil Liberties Union represent plaintiffs in the lawsuits filed against the administration.

“COSTS AND DISRUPTION”

In a move that appealed to his hard-line conservative supporters, Trump announced in July that he would prohibit transgender people from serving in the military, reversing Democratic President Barack Obama’s policy of accepting them.

Trump said on Twitter at the time that the military “cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail.”

Four federal judges - in Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Seattle and Riverside, California - have issued rulings blocking Trump’s ban while legal challenges to the Republican president’s policy proceed.

The judges said the ban would likely violate the right under the U.S. Constitution to equal protection under the law.

The Pentagon on Dec. 8 issued guidelines to recruitment personnel in order to enlist transgender applicants by Jan. 1.

The memo outlined medical requirements and specified how the applicants’ sex would be identified and even which undergarments they would wear.

The Trump administration previously said in legal papers that the armed forces were not prepared to train thousands of personnel on the medical standards needed to process transgender applicants and might have to accept “some individuals who are not medically fit for service.”

The Obama administration had set a deadline of July 1, 2017, to begin accepting transgender recruits.

But Trump’s defense secretary, James Mattis, postponed that date to Jan. 1, 2018, which the president’s ban then put off indefinitely.

Trump has taken other steps aimed at rolling back transgender rights. In October, his administration said a federal law banning gender-based workplace discrimination does not protect transgender employees, reversing another Obama-era position.
In February, Trump rescinded guidance issued by the Obama administration saying that public schools should allow transgender students to use the restroom that corresponds to their gender identity.

U.S. SOLDIER DIES AS A HERO HELPING SAVE LIVES IN NYC FIRE (KWABENA MENSAH, 27)


U.S. SOLDIER DIES AS A HERO HELPING SAVE LIVES IN NYC FIRE:

KWABENA MENSAH 27, WENT HOME TO VISIT AND WAS KILLED BY A DEADLY BRONX BLAZE.

THE U.S. MILITARY TEACHES SOLDIERS TO CONSIDER OTHERS ABOVE THEMSELVES.

I SEND MY PRAYERS & CONDOLENCES TO HIS FAMILY.


Sources: MSN


***** Army soldier, visiting NYC for holidays, died trying to save people from fire, father says


An Army soldier who was visiting New York City for the holidays was among the 12 victims in the deadly Bronx blaze, his father told CBS New York. Kwabena Mensah said his son, Emmanuel, spent his final moments trying to rescue other people in the building.

"That's what I think, because it was in his nature," the elder Mensah said. "He wanted to help people out."

The 28-year-old was in for the holidays – his first trip home since joining the Army a year ago. Kwabena Mensah was on the scene early Friday morning, looking for any signs of his son after checking area hospitals.

"I thought maybe he was coming back," he said. "Unfortunately, it turns out the other way."

Emmanuel Mensah's roommate was the last to see him. She made it out with her four children and husband but lost Mensah in the mix.

"Tried to call and phone everywhere, my husband went to hospital," she told CBS New York.

Kwaben Mensah took comfort knowing his son lived and died a hero.

"God is in control, I have no control. God is in control," he said.
The four-alarm blaze that broke out late Thursday is New York City's deadliest fire in 25 years, Mayor Bill de Blasio said. Four children, including a 1-year-old baby, are among the 12 killed.

The fire was started by a 3-and-a-half-year-old boy who was playing with burners on a kitchen stove located in a first-floor apartment, officials said.

"The mother was not aware of it, was alerted by the young man screaming," said Daniel Nigro, commissioner for the New York City Fire Department. "She exited her apartment with her 2-year-old, and 3-year-old and left the door open."

As smoke engulfed the building on Prospect Avenue just before 7 p.m. Thursday, family after family desperately ran out, barefoot and freezing, to try to get to safety.

"When I wake up, all I see is the flames going up, kids are on the fire escape," said neighbor Rafael Gonzalez. "It was one apartment and then it escalated to two apartments. It just kept going next and up — it escalated."

As firefighters scrambled to save tenants, the Red Cross arrived on scene to wrap residents in blankets and provide buses for shelter as temperatures lingered in the teens with the wind chill below zero.

"No coat or nothing, straight shorts," said Gonzalez. "Straight shorts so I know, therefore, I know they had to be cold."

"It was like freezing point, so it was worse for people who wasn't ready and dressed appropriately – with no shoes or any of that," said one woman who was evacuated to a warming bus.

The victims range in age from one to 63. Among the dead: a mother and her two daughters and niece. A family member didn't want to go on camera, but the heartbreak was obvious, CBS News' Don Dahler reports.

"Oh my God, those two little babies," they said. "God rest their souls, they're beautiful."

In another apartment, a woman and infant were found huddled in a bathtub.

In all, 170 firefighters were called in to fight the blaze, but the cold weather made things worse, since crews had to battle the flames with freezing hoses.

According to city records, the 100-year-old building has a number of open safety violations, including a defective smoke detector on the floor where the fire began.
The fire department is investigating whether that played any role in the tragedy.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

DOUG JONES WON BECAUSE THIS TIME DEMOCRATS REMEMBERED BLACK VOTERS (OBAMA 2008, BLACK WOMEN)







DOUG JONES WON BECAUSE THIS TIME DEMOCRATS REMEMBERED BLACK VOTERS:

DEMS LOST IN 2016 BECAUSE THEY TRADED BLACK VOTERS FOR LATINO VOTERS.

NO OTHER VOTING BLOCK CAN COMPETE WITH THE POWER & LOYALTY OF BLACK VOTERS.

ESPECIALLY BLACK WOMEN VOTERS.

JUST ASK OBAMA ABOUT HIS 2008 ELECTION WIN.

TAKE HEED GOP LEADERS IN 2018 & 2020.

DEMS PLAN TO WIN 2020 ONE STATE AT A TIME JUST AS OBAMA & TRUMP DID IN PREVIOUS ELECTIONS.

PROTECT VOTING RIGHTS.

"Fully 96 percent of Black voters supported OBAMA and constituted 13 percent of the electorate, a 2-percentage-point rise in their national turnout. As in past years, Black women turned out at a higher rate than Back men."


Sources: CNN, NY Times, Washington Post, Politico, The St. Louis American, Youtube


***** There Is Power In The Black Vote


There is something happening in America, and it starts with the power of Black women. It started a long time ago when they were queens, and we see the evidence in their work ethic and their ability to achieve under impossible odds.

When Black women are behind you, their passion and drive can move mountains.

In the 2017 Alabama senate race, the largest voting segment of the population was Black women, in which 98 percent of that group voted Democrat.

Black men voted Democrat at 93 percent, and together they were the largest core group of Democrats in the election, and many experts think this was the reason Doug Jones won the election.

“We learned valuable lessons last month and last night – we invest early and in our communities, we win,” said DNC Black Caucus Chair Virgie Rollins. “The DNC knows Black voters are a force to be reckoned with at the ballot box, and that’s exactly why we used a nearly $1 million investment to mobilize Alabama’s African-American, millennial, and faith communities.

And to help boost turnout, we made sure we had our own staffers on the ground engaging Black leaders and implementing organizing programs.”

Democrats now have a template that they can use around the country to get the black vote out.

Investing a large part of $1 million into the black community is a significant amount of money that will change Black voting habits during mid-term elections. When Black voters are informed and mobilized, they vote.

According to the New York Times, “Black voters turned out in force, handing Mr. Jones a decisive lead in Alabama’s cities and predominantly Black rural counties.

In Jefferson County, home to Birmingham and its whiter suburbs, turnout exceeded the 2014 governor’s race by about 30 percent, and Mr. Jones nearly matched Hilary Clinton’s vote total there. Other populous, heavily African-American counties, including Montgomery and Dallas County, where Selma is, also exceeded their 2014 turnout.”

As I talk to many African Americans in Orlando, many have a pessimistic attitude about organizing and mobilizing the Black vote in 2018.

Many think we have lost our excitement with the voting process, and even with the Democratic Party.

But I believe the problem in the Black community is leadership, financing and supporting the Black media. In order to galvanize our community, our leadership must agree on a strategy, communicate the information with our media, and stay organized and be determined.

“And so for all little girls out there who need somebody to believe that you’re better than your circumstances. I need you all to remember that Black girl magic is real,” said Keisha Lance Bottoms, newly elected mayor of Atlanta.

Many experts expected Keisha Lance Bottoms to lose this election to a white candidate, but she won by 800 votes. She won with help from the hip-hop community, and a collaboration of progressive whites, Black women, Hispanics, and the LGBT community.

The African-American community is making the difference if a candidate wins or loses an election all around the country.

The Democratic Party understands the power of the Black vote, but black folks are not in many powerful executive positions and party leaders are reluctant to spend money in the Black community.

But if the Democratic Party during the mid-term elections spends millions of dollars in the Black community and treats us as the cornerstone of the party, the results will be phenomenal.

Democrats have the opportunity to win back the Senate, and make the House more competitive and closer in terms of numbers.

There is power in the Black vote, and the black community is not taking full advantage of its influence and power.

Once the Black community takes full advantage of its power, there will be a major transformation in American politics.
Our leaders must work for the majority of the American people, as opposed to the rich and major corporations.

EZEKIEL ELLIOT NOT REWARDED BY NFL FOR DOMESTIC VIOLENCE (NOT RACE, HIS FISTS, RAY RICE)





EZEKIEL ELLIOT NOT REWARDED BY NFL FOR DOMESTIC VIOLENCE (RAY RICE):

IT'S NOT ABOUT HIS RACE, IT'S ABOUT EZEKIEL'S FISTS.

BEATING WOMEN SHOULD NOT BE A RITE OF PASSAGE.

GOD DID NOT CREATE WOMEN TO BE USED AS PUNCHING BAGS.

INSTEAD OF MEN & CHURCHES BLAMING WOMEN FOR "PROVOKING" THEM TO VIOLENCE, GO SEEK SOME THERAPY.


Sources: TMZ Sports, Dallas Morning News, Fox Sports, NY Daily News, USA Today, YouTube



******* Suspension of Cowboys' Ezekiel Elliott shows NFL has finally learned from Ray Rice

“I believe you."

It’s such a simple phrase, most often said without much thought of any greater meaning. But for women who are victims of domestic violence, conditioned to think no one will believe them, or that they somehow brought some horror upon themselves, those three little words can be life-changing.

Maybe even life-saving.

Ezekiel Elliott’s six-game suspension, announced Friday by the NFL, has the potential to be transformative, and I’m not referring to the Dallas Cowboys’ Super Bowl hopes. In its letter to Elliott, one of the league’s brightest young stars, the NFL made it clear that it believed the woman who had accused him of domestic abuse.

It didn’t matter that prosecutors had decided not to bring charges, a sadly common occurrence in domestic violence cases. Nor did it matter that Elliott had disputed the allegations, trashing his former girlfriend and her credibility in the process. It didn’t even matter that Jerry Jones, arguably the most powerful owner in the NFL, had tried to use his influence to affect the outcome of the investigation.

After a thorough and extensive investigation, the NFL came to a simple, yet powerful conclusion: It believed her.

“Based on the entire record, the credible evidence establishes that on multiple occasions during the week of July 16, 2016, you used physical force against (the victim) resulting in her injury,” Todd Jones, the NFL’s special counsel for conduct, wrote in the letter explaining Elliott’s suspension.

The impact of the league siding with a domestic violence victim cannot be overstated.

Yes, understanding of domestic violence has grown in the three years since the Ray Rice fiasco, and attitudes toward victims are improving. But there is still much work to do. Too many cases go unreported or unprosecuted because of a lack of evidence or a fear of not being believed. (Funny how no one demands a video of the break-in when a robbery is reported.) Too many people still assume that domestic violence is someone else’s problem, certain it couldn’t happen in their community, in their circle of friends, in their own home.


Too many women still live in terror, for themselves and for their children. Too many women are still dying, an average of three each day.

By doing a thorough investigation — the league consulted with two medical experts about “the causation and aging of certain injuries” and there were over 100 exhibits, including “thousands” of text messages and other electronic communications — the NFL sent a message that domestic violence is to be taken seriously, and that the accused isn’t the only one who deserves the benefit of the doubt.

“They have a commitment to their players, to treat the players fairly and evaluate any evidence against them fairly,” said Kim Gandy, president and CEO of the National Network to End Domestic Violence.

“But they also have taken on a responsibility to their fans and society at large to make sure that the victims are also treated fairly.”

For years, the NFL put women in harm’s way with its decisions and actions on domestic violence — or inactions, as was too often the case. Players busted for DUI or drugs often face harsher consequences.

Even after all of the promises Commissioner Roger Goodell made in the aftermath of the Rice debacle, the NFL suspended New York Giants kicker Josh Brown for all of one game last year — this despite knowing his wife had told police she’d been abused more than 20 times and its own security having to step in at the Pro Bowl after Brown showed up at her hotel room.

But Elliott’s suspension, and the league's commitment to giving his accuser a fair shake, is a positive and welcome change. Nothing in this country commands a bigger spotlight than the NFL, and its decisions have the power to drive conversations and influence opinions.

Maybe the NFL's decision, and its reasoning for it, will give a woman the courage to report her abuse or leave her abuser. Maybe it will make those so quick to blame the victim pause to consider that she might be telling the truth.

“Whenever a sports organization — whether it’s the NFL or Major League Baseball or the NBA — takes serious action backed up by evidence in a domestic violence case, it raises the profile of the issue,” Gandy said.

The NFL told a domestic violence victim it believed her. Why shouldn’t we?



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



***** Ezekiel Elliott 'itching to play,' even with Cowboys out of playoff picture


Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott -- who returned from a six-game domestic violence suspension last Sunday -- said that the Cowboys' clash with the Philadelphia Eagles this Sunday matters, even with Dallas out of the playoff picture.

"I only played nine games this season; I'm itching to play football," Elliott told reporters Wednesday, via The Dallas Morning News. "I don't care if we're playing for nothing, I'm playing for something.

"I'm playing for myself, we're playing for each other, and so I'm excited to go out and play Sunday. I'm not going to have any problem waking up Sunday morning, getting ready to play. You don't have to worry about that from me or from anyone on this team."

Through the nine games Elliott has played, he's racked up 880 yards and is within range of surpassing the 1,000-yard plateau on Sunday.

"If it happens, it happens," Elliott said. "It's not like you can go out there and force that, but it definitely would be nice."

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


******* Report: Ezekiel Elliott involved in earlier altercation with domestic violence accuser


Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott was allegedly involved in a February altercation with the same woman who has previously accused him of domestic violence, according to a report from USA Today, with the incident reportedly resulting in police being called to the scene:

The woman who accused Dallas Cowboys star Ezekiel Elliott of abusing her for five days in July also called police on him months before the NFL Draft, alleging she suffered left shoulder pain from the force of Elliott pushing her up against a wall during an argument that turned physical.

An incident report obtained Friday by USA TODAY Sports from the Aventura (Fla.) Police Department said there were no visible signs of injury and that the accuser declined to go to the hospital after police responded to a call about an altercation at Elliott’s apartment Feb. 12.

Article continues below ...Elliott reportedly was not placed under arrest for the alleged altercation.

The Cowboys running back was interviewed by the NFL last month regarding domestic violence allegations from the same accuser this past summer.

No charges were brought at that time. Prosecutors stated the lack of charges were “primarily due to conflicting and inconsistent information across all the incidents resulting in concern regarding the sufficiency of the evidence to support the filing of criminal charges.”

Elliott’s alleged ex-girlfriend told police in July that Elliott assaulted her while they sat in a parked car and that she has had pain in her wrist but declined medical treatment.

Elliott, who has maintained his innocence, told authorities at the time that he never touched Thompson in “a harmful manner.” He claimed Thompson suffered the bruises in a bar fight.

Earlier this week and prior to this new report, Elliott's attorney, Frank Salzano, released a statement defending his client (via USA Today):

“For the past several days the media has elected to focus on allegations of domestic violence involving Mr. Elliott despite the Columbus, Ohio Prosecutor’s Office decision not to charge Mr. Elliott nearly two months ago.

As previously reported, the prosecutor's office conducted a thorough seven-week investigation whereby in their own words they “dotted every I and crossed every T” and concluded there was no credible evidence to file any charges against Mr. Elliott.

My office provided a mountain of exculpatory evidence demonstrating Mr. Elliott's innocence and directly contradicting all of the false allegations contained in the Accuser’s two police reports as first reported on July 22, 2016.

“Yet the media has chosen to deflect the recent negative press regarding the NFL's reported mishandling of several domestic violence matters by focusing on the NFL's prolonged investigation of Mr. Elliott.

The NFL’s interview of Mr. Elliott was conducted over four weeks ago and went unreported at the time as it was then, and still remains a non-story.

It is league protocol to conduct a separate investigation whenever there are allegations of domestic violence by one of its players.

“We firmly believe that the NFL should promptly close its investigation which is only open because of their apprehensiveness stemming from the recent scrutiny it has come under for its handling of other domestic violence matters.
Notwithstanding the forgoing, we remain firm that the NFL will clear Mr. Elliott of any wrongdoing and this matter can be finally put to rest.”

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE LAWS ARE FINALLY CHANGING (2018 ELECTION ISSUE)



DOMESTIC VIOLENCE LAWS ARE FINALLY CHANGING:

MORE WOMEN ARE SPEAKING OUT, SO IS THE MEDIA.

2018 ELECTION ISSUES SHOULD INCLUDE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE.

IT'S NOT ABOUT HATING MEN, IT'S ABOUT NOT BLAMING THE VICTIMS WHEN MEN BEAT WOMEN.

WOMEN WHO TRY TO DEFEND THEMSELVES AGAINST ABUSERS SHOULD NOT BE LABELED AS "CRAZY".

"NICE" MEN DON'T BEAT THEIR WIVES.

"NICE" MEN DON'T PUNISH THEIR WIVES FINANCIALLY TO FORCE THEM INTO ADULTERY OR OPEN MARRIAGES.

"NICE" MEN GO TO THERAPY WHEN THEY HAVE AN ANGER PROBLEM.


Sources: WBUR, NY Times


******* Deadlock, Delay Mark Explorations Of Mass. Public Records Law Changes


Lawmakers should continue to study the possibilities of requiring daily arrest logs from the state police and removing or modifying public record exemptions for domestic violence incidents, according to a working group created by a 2016 law.

An overhaul of the state's public records law that Gov. Charlie Baker signed on June 3, 2016 established a pair of panels to study additional measures and gave both deadlines of Dec. 30, 2017. The law also set a ten business day response window for records request responses, required state agencies and municipalities to designate records officers, and limited how much money public entities can charge to fulfill a request, among other measures.

One of the groups the law created — a 14-member commission tasked with examining "the accessibility of information concerning the legislative process" and the constitutionality of extending the public records law to the Legislature, the governor and the Judiciary — has until Dec. 1, 2018 to report findings. Lawmakers last month quietly pushed back the original Dec. 30, 2017 reporting date by adding language to a Cannabis Control Commission spending bill. The co-chairs of the State Administration Committee - Rep. Jennifer Benson of Lunenburg and Sen. Walter Timilty of Milton - are leading that group.

The other group, which filed its final report with the House and Senate clerks on Friday, was charged with exploring the topic of police department records.

"While the group could not reach consensus on proposed legislation, it highlighted areas of concerns in current statutes and recommended further examination of these laws," state supervisor of records Rebecca Murray, who chaired the working group, wrote in a message accompanying the report.

Murray wrote that she hopes the report "sets the groundwork for the Legislature to ensure the laws of the Commonwealth reach the necessary balance between the transparency of law enforcement in Massachusetts and the privacy of individuals."

Specifically, the law instructed the working group to review the exemption to the public records law that covers "investigatory materials necessarily compiled out of the public view by law enforcement," as well as the "the public interest" in releasing police documents such as arrest reports, and related privacy and confidentiality concerns.

The group was deadlocked on whether to recommend adding the state police into the law that requires all municipal police department to maintain a daily log of complaints, crimes and arrests, according to meeting minutes included in the report.

Entries in such logs are considered public records, with exceptions for incidents involving certain handicapped individuals, domestic violence, rape or sexual assault, and arrests for assault against a relative or household members.

Murray, Sen. Joan Lovely, attorney Jeffrey Pyle of Prince Lobel, Foxborough Town Clerk Robert Cutler, and Randall Ravitz, chief of Attorney General Maura Healey's appeals division, voted in favor of extending the log requirement to state police.

Voting against were Shannon Sullivan, a designee of Public Safety and Security Secretary Daniel Bennett; Capt. Michael Lyver, president of the state police Commissioned Officers Association of Massachusetts; Robert Ross, general counsel at the Executive Office of Administration and Finance; Jessica Katon, Sen. Richard Ross's constituent services director; and Salisbury Police Chief Thomas Fowler.

A 2014 law aimed at curbing domestic violence made it so police reports about domestic violence and rape were not deemed public records, and therefore not subject to disclosure requirements. Supporters said the move would increase confidentiality for victims.

The group voted 10-0 to not recommend changes to the disclosure exemption for reports of abuse involving household members, and 10-1 not to recommend changes to the exemption relating to domestic violence, with Robert Ambrogi of the Massachusetts Newspaper Publishers Association dissenting.
Instead, the panel suggested that the Legislature should study those issues, as well as the question of whether the state police should be subject to the daily log requirements and how that requirement would be fulfilled if so.

PENTAGON SUED FOR ALLOWING MEN WHO BEAT WOMEN TO POSSESS GUNS (VETS NOT EXEMPT)



PENTAGON SUED FOR ALLOWING MEN WHO BEAT WOMEN TO POSSESS GUNS:

VETS WHO BEAT THEIR WIVES SHOULD NOT BE EXEMPT.

VETS WHO BEAT THEIR WIVES SHOULD BE COURT FORCED INTO THERAPY, NOT ALLOWED TO CARRY GUNS.

NO WOMAN CAN PROVOKE A MAN TO BEAT HER BRAINS OUT OR SHOOT HER BRAINS OUT.

21st CENTURY AMERICA STILL LAGS WHEN IT COMES TO PROTECTING WOMEN.


Sources: Washington Post


***** After Texas church massacre, cities sue Pentagon for failing to report criminals to FBI gun database


Three cities have filed suit against the Pentagon for lapses that allowed a mass shooter in Texas to buy a gun, even though he carried a conviction in military court that should have barred his purchase.

Devin P. Kelley, who was convicted of domestic violence while serving in the U.S. Air Force, was never reported by the military for inclusion on an FBI database of individuals blocked from purchasing firearms. Kelley went on to kill more than two dozen churchgoers in Sutherland Springs, Tex., last month in one of the worst mass shootings in U.S. history.

In the complaint filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Alexandria, Va., the three cities — New York, San Francisco and Philadelphia — say they rely on the integrity of the FBI’s background check system. The suit alleges that the defendants, which include the military branches and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, have an “admitted, systemic and longstanding failure to comply with the law.”

The cities are seeking to force the Defense Department to fully participate in the reporting system, which they said is already required by law. They also want the court to oversee the department’s compliance efforts.

“The Executive Branch and Congress have both had their chances to repair this clearly broken system. Now, after twenty years of failure, it’s time for the Courts to step in,” Ken Taber, a partner at Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman and lead counsel for the plaintiffs, said in a statement. The Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence also helped prepare the suit.

A spokesman for the Defense Department declined to comment Wednesday, citing a policy against commenting on ongoing litigation. A spokesman for the Justice Department said the attorney general has launched his own investigation into the issue.

“After visiting first responders and victims’ families in Sutherland Springs, Attorney General Jeff Sessions instructed the ATF and FBI to conduct a comprehensive review with the Department of Defense of how certain information is reported to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System,” Justice Department spokesman Devin O’Malley said in an email Wednesday. “The Justice Department is reviewing yesterday’s lawsuit and determining next steps.”

Members of a family ravaged by the Sutherland Springs shooting have also filed suit against the Air Force, alleging its failure to report Kelley’s criminal background led to their loved ones’ slayings.

Military officials have long acknowledged problems with the way it reports records to the FBI gun background check database.

According to Pentagon guidelines, military law enforcement personnel are supposed to submit fingerprint cards as well as information about the results of a criminal proceeding to the FBI database if troops are charged with or convicted of certain violent crimes, including domestic violence and child abuse.

However, a recent review by the Pentagon’s oversight agency, which examined 2,502 criminal cases between January 2015 and December 2016, found that 1 in 4 fingerprint cards were not submitted to the database. Military law enforcement failed to submit one-third of the final disposition reports, the review found.

Kelley’s record should have disqualified him from purchasing a weapon. Kelley spent a year in jail for crushing his young stepson’s skull, assaulting his wife and making other threats. He received a bad-conduct discharge from the military in 2014, a step below a dishonorable discharge.

Two years after his discharge, Kelley cleared a background check and bought a Ruger AR-556 semiautomatic rifle from a San Antonio sporting goods shop.
The weapon was found in front of the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs after the Nov. 5 killings.

Monday, December 25, 2017

SEN HEIDI HEITKAMP INTRODUCES BILL TO HELP HOUSE WOMEN & CHILDREN IN DOMESTIC VIOLENCE SITUATIONS (HEALS ACT)



SENATOR HEIDI HEITKAMP INTRODUCES BILL TO HELP HOUSE WOMEN & CHILDREN IN DOMESTIC VIOLENCE SITUATIONS:

NOT HAVING THE RESOURCES TO LEAVE IS WHY MOST WOMEN REMAIN IN ABUSIVE RELATIONSHIPS.

THE OTHER REASON IS PSYCHOLOGICAL BECAUSE CONSTANT ABUSE CAUSES WOMEN TO QUESTION THEIR SELF-WORTH.

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AFFECTS WOMEN PHYSICALLY AND PSYCHOLOGICALLY.

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE IS WHEN A MAN CONTROLS A WOMAN'S MIND WITH HIS FISTS.

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ABUSERS ARE VERY CUNNING AND OFTEN ACCUSE THEIR VICTIMS OF "PROVOKING THEM".

THESE NARCISSITIC MEN APPEAR TO BE "NICE" IN PUBLIC WHEN BEHIND CLOSED DOORS THEY ARE MONSTERS.

THE CYCLE OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE & SEXUAL HARASSMENT AGAINST WOMEN MUST BE STOPPED.

GREAT JOB SENATOR HEITKAMP........THANK YOU.


Sources: NTXE, WDAZ


******* Sen. Heitkamp introduces bill to help shelter victims of domestic violence

After an incident of domestic violence, many victims don't have a place to go.

But a safe place may soon be closer to home.

WDAZ's Scott Cook tells us how badly it is needed in our area.

"It's extraordinarily difficult for a woman in an abusive relationship to leave. In fact, national statistics tell us it takes seven times. And you may ask why -- why is because frequently there are no other options, there’s no place to go, there’s no housing," says Senator Heidi Heitkamp.

No housing, no place to go. That's an issue many victims face after an act of domestic violence. But Senator heidi Heitkamp has introduced a bill to fix the crunch. The Help End Abusive Living Situations Act or HEALS -- would provide more funding for 'transitional housing,' an important step between shelters and permanent housing that includes counseling, childcare, career and financial training.

"Whether people are aware of it or not, we have a huge need for housing in this community," says Kristi Anderson, CVIC Counselor.

According to Kristi Anderson with the CVIC here in Grand forks, its a problem more common than most would think.

Thirty-three families are in danger of allowing the cycle to continue, as they wait for housing.

"The clients we see coming in -- usually the biggest barrier is where are they going to stay that night. If they can't go home because of the abuse in the family, they would need to either utilize a hotel, which sometimes they don't have the funds for, so they would need to utilize shelter, which isn't always the best option especially for families with kids," says Anderson.

The HEALS Act would increase funding and create more flexibility for transitional housing programs that help victims get back on their feet. And the added funding would help with more than just the housing waitlist.

"It's not just housing, it's the whole wrap-around services that are so critically important to these families recover from a life of violence," says Heitkamp.

Some legislature that could help some of the most vulnerable people in our society.

According to the National Network to End Domestic Violence, fifty-one percent of victims who need emergency housing do not receive it.


WOMEN IN ABUSIVE RELATIONSHIPS ARE OFTEN MADE TO APPEAR AS BEING "CRAZY"



WOMEN IN ABUSIVE RELATIONSHIPS ARE OFTEN MADE TO APPEAR AS BEING "CRAZY":

OUR JUSTICE SYSTEM ALLOWS THIS TO PROTECT MEN WHO BEAT THEIR WIVES & TO SILENCE WOMEN.

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AFFECTS WOMEN PHYSICALLY AND PSYCHOLOGICALLY.

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE IS WHEN A MAN CONTROLS A WOMAN'S MIND WITH HIS FISTS.

HUSBANDS WHO BEAT THEIR WIVES ARE "REWARDED" WITH LIGHT SENTENCES.

GOD IS THE ONLY REAL JUDGE WHO PUNISHES MEN WHO ABUSE WOMEN WHEN COURTS REFUSE TO.


Sources: Daily Beast


****** Here Is the Powerful Statement a Wife Read Aloud to the Court and Her Abusive Husband


For ten years, Neha Rastogi says, she was abused by her husband, Abhishek Gattani. But despite her recordings recording some of that abuse, the Santa Clara District Attorney’s office let him plead no contest to offensive touching and felony accessory after the fact and agreed to a deal in which he would serve less than two full weeks in jail. Here is Rastogi’s full statement, as written, that she read aloud while Judge Allison Marston Danner was on vacation, asking her to change the terms of the prosecutor’s deal:

"Your honor,

I appreciate this opportunity given to me to speak about my abuse at the hands of Abhishek Gattani, I thank for this time given to me to voice my concerns, and requests to you and this court in the case of People vs. Abhishek Gattani. I apologize that my statement is a bit long but I've been effectively silenced since the day I married Abhishek and now throughout these criminal court proceedings and this is my one and only chance to speak … so please bear with me.

First I’d like to bring to your attention a few facts, which I feel, have not been considered in this case while coming up with the plea deal granted to and accepted by Mr. Gattani.

I had been married to Abhishek Gattani for 10 years, and being battered by him for the entire duration. He hit me, multiple times during each incident on my face, arms, head, belly, pulled my hair and abused me and called me a bitch, whore, slut, bastard and much more in my language.

Towards the last 4 years of our marriage he brainwashed me into admitting that I was a complete disgrace to him and the family we built and that if he was in my place, he would commit suicide out of shame, in other words telling me to commit suicide. He also started to threaten to kill me and when I expressed fear or feeling unsafe with him he called it “my self inflicted depression”.

He was probably a few days away from killing me when I got out of this dangerous and abusive marriage – I had started getting my will done, my life insurance done, in other words started to prepare our child’s future once he kills me. I even mentioned to him that what if this happen to our child if this happens and he said “I will not leave you, I will kill you and then kill myself, our child (not mentioning her name here) is collateral damage”. Abhishek – she is NOT collateral damage - She is the best thing that happened between us and will remain so.

2. Finally on 1st July 2016, I reported abuse to the authorities. Abhishek Gattani was arrested once before on 30 November 2013, as he was beating me punching me in the head and grabbing me from the neck, out in the open (on the street) when our mailman reported his abuse. He was convicted for this violence against me in this very court in 2014.

His first arrest on felony battery charge was reduced to misdemeanor – disturbing the peace on account of POSSIBLE immigration consequences.

The same reason being given by his defense attorney Mr. Paez (who I hired for Abhishek during the first case), this time around to enable reduction and leniency in the plea deal offered to this serial aggressor. I helped Abhishek escape a harsher punishment, because, being from India, I did not know better, I did not understand the American criminal justice system and above all I hoped like a fool that this might bring some change in him.

3. He was also required to take a 52-week anger management class as part of his previous sentence.

4. This time around there is evidence in the form of audio and video clips which clearly show and prove that Abhishek was hitting me (repetitively hitting me on the face and body), there are videos of him threatening to stab me 45 times and many of these videos show this abuse towards and happening in the presence of our then 2.5 year old child. There is also evidence in the form of pictures of bruises obtained from these beatings. There is also evidence of his parents confirming (over a video recording) to his physical abuse against them (both father and mother) as well as Abhishek’s younger sister.

5. Abhishek and I have a now ~3.5 year old daughter together who has been exposed to and has been impacted from, his abusive – aggressive behavior.

YH, this is the second time his abuse towards me has been reported to the state, but it is not the second time he has committed these crimes. Our child (3.5 years now) and I have taken many years of abuse, of which 3 years of abuse post his conviction in the matter from 2013. I hoped that he could change his ways and that I could give a complete family to our child. That hope died on 30th June 2016 and I reported his violent abuse towards our daughter and me on July 1st of 2016.

In these past few months I have tried come to terms with the fact that the man I married … the father of my child … is a horrible human being, and didn't deserve my care or respect or love and now, he doesn’t deserve another second of my mental space given the 10 years I have already wasted on him. He was a mistake and now I need to move on... but I find it difficult to move on when I feel wronged by the DA's office and this court. Honestly I feel fooled not just by a convicted criminal, aggressor, wife beater, batterer, that I unfortunately married - the worst mistake of my life but by this court as well. With all due respect to the system... I stand FOOLED, disgraced and ridiculed as a victim.

I wanted to speak up at the last hearing as well, but I was told today is the right time to do so. Honestly I am not sure why is it so, as it seems it's all done... what's the point of me speaking up now?

I get heard to be ignored? to be told that the system understands the abuse and the impact it has had on our child and me but sorry it is what it is. I was told no jail, no classes, no penalties can change Mr Gattani.

Is this the faith the DA’s office and the court have in the justice being provided in this court? Is that the reason for leniency in such cases? Have we given up on justice? Is that the thinking behind giving him a charge which honestly doesn’t add up to his crime AT ALL?

I am no attorney but I can read and understand English. When I look up the charge: Felony – Accessory after the fact it means: Someone who assisted another 1) who has committed a felony, 2) after the person has committed the felony, 3) with knowledge that the person committed the felony, and 4) with the intent to help the person avoid arrest or punishment.

Please help me understand how is this a charge appropriate to the crimes he has himself admitted to in this very court. By taking the plea deal he has admitted to hitting me, he has admitted to threatening to kill me, he has admitted that he hit me and mentally tortured me throughout my pregnancy and his abuse resulted in me making multiple trips to the ER even as late as 8 months into my pregnancy.

Please advise me how does accessory after the fact apply to a criminal like him? Who was he assisting while torturing me … who is that criminal, because if it wasn’t him shouldn’t this court be searching for that person. Please let me assure you as a victim of his abuse, you need to look no further – HE did it. His charge should be Felony – battery with the intent to harm if not kill.

The second charge on him is a “Misdemeanor – offensive touching”? I didn’t even need to look this one up, as it made me laugh when then I realized that I was laughing at myself, I was the joke here. “Offensive touching!!!”

Please explain me is it offensive touching when a 8 month pregnant women is beaten and then forced to stand for the entire night by her husband, is it offensive touching when a mother nursing her 6 day old child is slapped on her face by her husband because he thinks she is not latching properly with the child, is it offensive touching when a women is flung to the floor and repetitively kicked in her belly, is it offensive touching when a women is slapped 9 times by her husband until she agrees to everything he is saying and then gets hit again for not agreeing with it sooner … is it offensive touching - I call it terrorism … That’s how I felt – terrorized and controlled held hostage by the fear of pain, humiliation and assault on my being and my daughter’s.

I feel disgraced by the charges – 3 years of abuse towards our child and 10 years of abuse towards me has equated to 15 days of his life in jail.

The system has shown me that concerns over Abhishek’s immigration status has completely trampled rights of my daughter and my own. How is it that this is the second time he has been convicted of Domestic Violence and this is the charge.

Between the prosecution and defense, I've been marginalized and honestly insulted. What I have suffered at Abhishek's hands has become insignificant in favor of considerations for Abhishek's job, immigration status. What about our child, what about me? We both experienced domestic violence from Abhishek, yet our voices cannot reach the authorities.

The plea deal given to him is not punishment for his doings rather an encouragement for continuing his ways, with just one lesson to be learnt by him – to keep it under the covers next time and that he should silence the next victim and not just control her. He was shown leniency by this court in his previous case, but the same shown this time around, stands no basis. Seriously, how many chances does a grown up, educated, CEO of a tech startup need to understand that he is not to hit anyone or else he will have consequences like going to jail, or even being deported.

This person preys on the mere perception of weakness and that’s what the system is exhibiting today.

Multiple times in the past, Mr Gattani would come back home from Cuberon, his startup, after having an argument with his co-founder and tell me, “you and my co-founder (who shall remain unnamed) are the same – lazy, empty promise makers, Positive fools, with no results. I can’t trust him.” Mr Gattani, had the same remarks about friends and even successful, accomplished people as the main investors in his very startup just because they would show empathy and not aggression when approaching a challenging situation, calling them free loaders and lucky by being at the right place at the right time.

Who is the free loader today if not him, and who is offering this leniency – the judicial system. This to him isn’t equality or rights but sign of weakness, which he takes advantage of. He has physically and mentally tortured his parents, his sister, his wife and now his 2.5 yr old daughter too – all because he looked at our values and morals and care for him as a sign of weakness, which he could misuse.

He named our strength as our weakness and continuously took advantage of it. He will do the same here and I stand terrified of the consequences of that as a mother, as again a future victim and for all those who he would prey on in the times to come.

I am appalled by the sentence he is getting.

I believe justice will come to him, if not through this court then by God's decree on account of his doings but I do stand disappointed here as a law abiding citizen of the most powerful country in the world, feeling unprotected and ridiculed by a CRIMINAL… who is here pleading guilty for the same crimes committed against the same victim in just 3 years of the first REPORTED incident while ON probation.

The reason I speak out now, is that, no anger management classes can help a man who doesn’t think he did anything wrong when he HIT and ABUSED others to control them, once someone escapes their guilt the only thing that stops them is serious consequences – which is a rightful conviction. I see that the defense council has requested his felony charge to be reduced to a misdemeanor in the future. This is the same criminal who has already fooled the system for 3 years after being convicted for the same crimes. I can almost confirm he will do the same again.

I believe in God and I will pray that we don't come back here in this very situation because this court was lenient with this convicted felon with a criminal history... I pray that I am proven wrong as peace is cheap at such cost... but if I am proven right this moment will stand very dark and very heavy in the minds of all of us who could have done something to stop that from happening.

I don’t understand the legal proceedings but I do seriously object to his request for getting to serve county jail post completion of the 5 month sheriff’s program. Is this a joke?.

This criminal is asking for a chance to wrap up his business???? Really are we enrolling him in a spa of giving him a punishment for abusing his wife and child for 10 years.

We are looking for the convenience of this felon who forced me multiple times to resign from my job (all recorded and provided as evidence) or else he will continue his abuse in front of our then 2.5-year-old child and not allow her to go to sleep … this leniency for a person of his morals and virtues?

I cannot articulate my despair at this treatment of his crimes. It’s as if we are giving him a slap on his wrist because he got caught … this is barely any consequence for him for ruining the childhood of our daughter and the 10 best years of my life.

I believe you as the judge in this case have the power to rethink what is being given away here in the name of equal rights. Rights come with consequences too.

I believe you have the power to stop any further leniency then already being given to him by the DA’s office. I believe you have the power to restore some faith in my heart that I wasn’t completely made a fool of, by this criminal and the judicial system.

I request you the following:

1. no jail credits are given to him and he serves full sentence of 30 days in county jail (CJ),

2. he be arrested today and made to serve his CJ sentence from right now; and

3. his Felony charge NEVER be reduced to a misdemeanor.

I request this to you knowing fully well that YOU have the power to do so. Rest, please do what you think is right and would help you sleep tonight.
Once again, thank you for this opportunity to state the facts and voice my disappointment. Thank you for listening to me everyone."