Tag Archives: racial profiling

Admitting Failed Experiment, DOJ to Phase Out Private Prisons

Private prisons more dangerous and costly, Justice Department finally admits

By Nika Knight, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 8-18-2016

Corrections Corporations of America is one of the largest private prison corporations in the country, and currently runs 47 prisons nationwide. (Photo: CCA.com)

Corrections Corporations of America is one of the largest private prison corporations in the country, and currently runs 47 prisons nationwide. (Photo: CCA.com)

After years of documented human rights abuses by the private prison industry, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) is finally ending its use of privately-run, for-profit prisons, the Washington Post reports.

Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates issued a memo Thursday announcing that the federal government is ending its contracts with the private prison industry, days after the department’s Inspector General issued a damning report about the danger and abuse facing inmates in private federal prisons. Continue reading

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Blue Lives Matter: Police Exceptionalism Leading America Toward Second Civil War

By Claire Bernish. Published 7-23-2016 by The Anti-Media

PORTLAND OREGON - NOV 17: Police in Riot Gear Holding the Line in Downtown Portland Oregon during a Occupy Portland protest on the first anniversary of Occupy Wall Street November 17 2011

PORTLAND OREGON – NOV 17: Police in Riot Gear Holding the Line in Downtown Portland Oregon during a Occupy Portland protest on the first anniversary of Occupy Wall Street November 17 2011

United States — Lurched back and forth in the ever-quickening spiral of an American empire circling the drain, we — as a people — have chosen battle lines on nearly every issue from politics to foreign policy, domestic surveillance to policing.

Thrust back into national focus, the last issue — policing in the U.S. — might even surpass in contention the ongoing race to the White House. And it stands to reason, with the world lashing out against failed globalism in its various nefarious incarnations — largely driven by American exceptionalist military presence nearly everywhere on the planet — the empire sees expediency in heading off a possible insurrection. Continue reading

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Bahamas to Its Citizens Traveling to the US: Beware of out of Control Cops

By Clarice Palmer. Published 7-9-2016 by The Anti-Media

The International Arrivals Hall at Boston Logan International Airport's Terminal E. Photi: hildgrim/flickr/CC

The International Arrivals Hall at Boston Logan International Airport’s Terminal E. Photi: hildgrim/flickr/CC

It appears even foreigners are scared of United States law enforcement.

The Bahamian government is warning its citizens to use extreme caution when traveling to the United States. The recommendation follows the “extrajudicial killings” of blacks, Caribbean outlet Antillean Media Group (AMGreports, “which have spurred increased unrest across America.” Continue reading

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“Why Do You Have to Make These Shootings About Race?” Because They Are

By PM Beers. Published 7-9-2016 by The Anti-Media

#BlackLivesMatter protest in St. Paul- September 2015. Photo: Fibonacci Blue from Minnesota, USA [CC BY 2.0 ], via Wikimedia Commons

#BlackLivesMatter protest in St. Paul – September 2015. Photo: Fibonacci Blue from Minnesota, USA [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Baton Rouge, LA —Why do you always have to make it about race?

Because it IS about race.”

This is a common, growing conversation in the United States.

PolRacismtweet1 Continue reading

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‘Corroding Civil Liberties,’ Supreme Court Codifies Unlawful Police Stops

“This case tells everyone…that your body is subject to invasion while courts excuse the violation of your rights,” Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote in the dissent

By Nadia Prupis, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 6-20-2016

The Supreme Court ruled 5-3 that evidence collected during an illegal stop can be used in court if the search was conducted after the discovery of an arrest warrant. (Photo: Mark Fischer/flickr/cc)

The Supreme Court ruled 5-3 that evidence collected during an illegal stop can be used in court if the search was conducted after the discovery of an arrest warrant. (Photo: Mark Fischer/flickr/cc)

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday ruled that evidence recovered during illegal stops may still be used in court, if police officers conducted their searches after learning that a defendant had an outstanding arrest warrant.

In a 5-3 ruling (pdf), the Supreme Court said such searches do not violate the Fourth Amendment, which protects against “unreasonable searches and seizures.” Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who dissented, slammed the decision, writing in a sharp rebuke that the case “tells everyone, white and black, guilty and innocent…that your body is subject to invasion while courts excuse the violation of your rights.” Continue reading

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Striking Analysis of Civil Rights Complaints Sheds Light on Why Police Impunity Reigns

Newspaper investigation reveals that federal prosecutors failed to pursue civil rights complaints against police officers in 96 percent of cases

By Lauren McCauley, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 3-14-2016

The findings come against a backdrop of increased attention on police misconduct, including evidence of racial discrimination, unlawful shootings, surveillance, imprisonment, and torture. (Photo: Thomas Hawk/cc/flickr)

The findings come against a backdrop of increased attention on police misconduct, including evidence of racial discrimination, unlawful shootings, surveillance, imprisonment, and torture. (Photo: Thomas Hawk/cc/flickr)

A striking new analysis published this weekend found that federal prosecutors failed to pursue civil rights complaints against police officers a full 96 percent of the time.

The investigation, conducted by Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reporters Brian Bowling and Andrew Conte, examined 3 million federal records regarding criminal complaints against law enforcement from 1995 through 2015. The findings come against a backdrop of increased attention on police misconduct, including evidence of racial discrimination, unlawful shootings, surveillance, imprisonment, and torture. Continue reading

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#DayWithoutLatinos: Thousands Protest Anti-Immigrant Bills in Wisconsin

‘Wisconsin needs Latino and immigrant workers, and today everybody knows it,’ says Voces de la Frontera

By Nadia Prupis, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 2-18-2016

Photo: Twitter

Photo: Twitter

Workers, students, and activists walked off the job and out of their schools for a massive action in Wisconsin on Thursday, protesting two anti-immigration bills currently advancing through the state legislature.

Thousands of Wisconsinites converged at the State Capitol in Madison for A Day Without Latinos and Immigrants, organized by the grassroots rights group Voces de la Frontera, among other organizations. The action is being updated on Twitter with the hashtag #DayWithoutLatinos. Continue reading

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Justice Department Files Civil Rights Lawsuit Against the City of Ferguson

By Jake Anderson. Published 2-11-2016 at The AntiMedia

Photo: Paul Sableman (Ferguson City Hall) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Photo: Paul Sableman (Ferguson City Hall) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

In response to Ferguson City Council requesting amendments to a consent decree, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced Wednesday that it will “aggressively” prosecute a civil rights lawsuit against the city. Attorney General Loretta Lynch stated that the lawsuit alleges a pattern and practice of unconstitutional police conduct.

“The residents of Ferguson have suffered the deprivation of their Constitutional rights, the rights guaranteed to all Americans, for decades. They have waited decades for justice,” Lynch said. “They should not be forced to wait any longer.” Continue reading

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2015: The Year That Black Lives Mattered, At Last

Written by Terrance Heath. Published on December 26, 2015 by Campaign for America’s Future Blog, republished by Common Dreams on 12-27-15.

Over 3000 protesters gathered in the Mall of America Saturday in support of the BlackLivesMatter movement. Image via Facebook.

Over 3000 protesters gathered in the Mall of America on December 20, 2014 in support of the BlackLivesMatter movement. Image via Facebook.

Michael Brown. Eric Garner. Laquan McDonald. Sandra Bland. Walter Scott. Rekia Boyd. Tamir Rice. Most Americans have at least heard their names, and the stories of how they died. We have seen videos and images of their deaths, or of the aftermaths. They are African-Americans who have been killed by police, or died in police custody, in just over a year. There are many more.

We know their names because of the ⌗BlackLivesMatter movement, born after George Zimmerman was acquitted for the murder of Trayvon Martin. The ubiquity of smartphones and mobile internet access put the tools of the media in the hands of savvy, young, blacks who used them to demand America pay attention to what had long been going on — and going unheralded — in black communities, where the police acted as an occupying force, and court systems turn jails into debtors’ prisons with endless, exorbitant fees and fines.

This was the year that #BlackLivesMatter mattered. It arrived precisely at a moment of crisis that called for a movement that values and demands respect above respectability, doesn’t hesitate to disrupt “business as usual.”

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How Black Lives Matter came back stronger after white supremacist attacks

By Celia Kutz. Published 11-30-2015 at Waging Nonviolence

Black Lives Matter Minneapolis marches after the shooting by white supremacists. (Facebook/Adja Gildersleve)

Black Lives Matter Minneapolis marches after the shooting by white supremacists. (Facebook/Adja Gildersleve)

When five protesters were shot by white supremacists in Minneapolis, Minnesota on November 22, my world turned a bit upside down. My time as an activist there, from 2006-13, has largely informed how I organize and do movement building. I knew at a lot of the people involved and was quickly on the phone. The protesters’ campaign demanded justice for Jamar Clark, an unarmed African American who was killed by Minneapolis police a week before.

I knew that the protest site, the Fourth Precinct Police Station on Plymouth Avenue, had previously been the location of a storefront center for black activism named The WAY. Thirty-five years ago, Police Chief Anthony Bouza bragged about how he would turn the site into a police station to show who was on top. Now the location spotlights the violent police role in institutionalized racism in Minnesota. It’s no wonder that freelance shooters would show up. Continue reading

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