Archive for July 19th, 2013

19
Jul
13

Happy Birthday, Liberal Librarian

We raise a gimlet (or 8) to you, Sir!

Follow the fella, @Lib_Librarian, but unfollow if he mentions Chelsea 🙄

19
Jul
13

Why Did the Jury NEVER see Trayvon Martin as a CHILD?

Why Did Jury NEVER see Trayvon Martin as a CHILD? Ida B Wells Barnett explains in 1895 _A Red Record_

by @zizii2

“A Black person has “no rights which a white man is bound to respect.” ~ Chief Justice Roger B. Taney in 1857

In his impromptu remarks this afternoon in the White House Press Room, President Obama asked a most salient question: “If Trayvon Martin had been of age and armed would he have been justified in standing his ground on that sidewalk?” Of course that hypothetical question is premised on Trayvon having the right to carry a weapon as an adult. But Sybrina Fulton yesterday put her finger on the more immediate concern. To her the jury did not consider Trayvon as their own Child. In other words, Empathy Deficit. But there is a reason for that. American culture has NEVER had a place for children of color in its construction of childhood.

Pres Obama’s Remarks on Trayvon Martin – 07-19-2013

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Six days since the phrase “Not Guilty” was curtly announced at the George Zimmerman trial about the killing of Trayvon Martin, a lot has been written from various perspectives endorsing, questioning, or parsing the verdict. A wave of activism has also sprung up in its wake demanding revisions to Stand Your Ground laws in states like Florida, while campaigns such as the NAACP’s #HesNotaSuspect seek to validate the human worth of black male children.

However at the crux of the court case, a key element never came up: What were Trayvon’s RIGHTS as a CHILD in the encounter with George Zimmerman that fateful night? What provisions do Stand Your Ground laws have to protect children in any encounter with an adult? What is a child supposed to do when confronted by an armed assailant/stalker/intruder/stranger?

Sybrina Fulton & Tracy Martin Interview with Al Sharpton

Continue reading ‘Why Did the Jury NEVER see Trayvon Martin as a CHILD?’

19
Jul
13

Chat On And On

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19
Jul
13

“Trayvon Martin Could Have Been Me 35 Years Ago”

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President Obama’s Full Remarks

  First of all, I want to make sure that, once again, I send my thoughts and prayers, as well as Michelle’s, to the family of Trayvon Martin, and to remark on the incredible grace and dignity with which they’ve dealt with the entire situation.  I can only imagine what they’re going through, and it’s remarkable how they’ve handled it.

The second thing I want to say is to reiterate what I said on Sunday, which is there’s going to be a lot of arguments about the legal issues in the case — I’ll let all the legal analysts and talking heads address those issues.  The judge conducted the trial in a professional manner.  The prosecution and the defense made their arguments.  The juries were properly instructed that in a case such as this reasonable doubt was relevant, and they rendered a verdict.  And once the jury has spoken, that’s how our system works.  But I did want to just talk a little bit about context and how people have responded to it and how people are feeling.

You know, when Trayvon Martin was first shot I said that this could have been my son.  Another way of saying that is Trayvon Martin could have been me 35 years ago.  And when you think about why, in the African American community at least, there’s a lot of pain around what happened here, I think it’s important to recognize that the African American community is looking at this issue through a set of experiences and a history that doesn’t go away.

There are very few African American men in this country who haven’t had the experience of being followed when they were shopping in a department store.  That includes me.  There are very few African American men who haven’t had the experience of walking across the street and hearing the locks click on the doors of cars.  That happens to me — at least before I was a senator.  There are very few African Americans who haven’t had the experience of getting on an elevator and a woman clutching her purse nervously and holding her breath until she had a chance to get off.  That happens often.

More here

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President Barack Obama speaks to reporters in the Brady Press Briefing room of the White House in Washington.

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President Barack Obama speaks on Trayvon Martin and the George Zimmerman trial.

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President Barack Obama gestures as he speaks during his daily news briefing at the White House, Friday, July 19, 2013, in Washington, about the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin by George Zimmerman.

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Sybrina Fulton & Tracy Martin statement on President Obama’s Remarks About Trayvon Martin

We are deeply honored and moved that President Obama took the time to speak publicly and at length about our son, Trayvon. The President’s comments give us great strength at this time. We are thankful for President Obama’s and Michelle’s prayers, and we ask for your prayers as well as we continue to move forward.

We know that the death of our son Trayvon, the trial and the not guilty verdict have been deeply painful and difficult for many people. We know our family has become a conduit for people to talk about race in America and to try and talk about the difficult issues that we need to bring into the light in order to become a better people.

What touches people is that our son, Trayvon Benjamin Martin, could have been their son. President Obama sees himself in Trayvon and identifies with him. This is a beautiful tribute to our boy.

Trayvon’s life was cut short, but we hope that his legacy will make our communities a better place for generations to come. We applaud the President’s call to action to bring communities together to encourage an open and difficult dialogue. Our family is committed to this dialogue through the work of the Trayvon Martin Foundation.

We seek a future when a child can walk down the street and not worry that others see him as dangerous because of the color of his skin or the clothes on his back. We seek a future where our children can grow up and become the people God intended them to be.

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President Barack Obama pauses while speaking about Trayvon Martin in the press briefing room at the White House

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19
Jul
13

President Obama on the Trayvon Martin case

19
Jul
13

Chat Away

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19
Jul
13

Rise and Shine

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Today (all times Eastern):

10:45: Rep. Nancy Pelosi Holds Weekly Press Briefing (C-Span)

11:30: VP Biden meets with law enforcement officials to discuss common sense immigration reform

1:30: Jay Carney briefs the press

5:0: President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama host the Diplomatic Corps Reception (Closed press)

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Occupy Democrats: Watch a Doctor Destroy a Koch Brother-Funded Anti-Obamacare Ad in 2 Minutes:

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The Hill: The Obama administration on Thursday highlighted lower-than-expected premiums for healthcare plans sold through ObamaCare’s new insurance marketplaces.

In the 11 states that have released rates for next year, premiums for a middle-of-the-road plan are an average of 18 percent cheaper than the Congressional Budget Office had expected.

…. New York is the latest state to report that premiums for plans offered through its exchange would be cheaper than expected — and, on average, 50 percent cheaper than comparable policies available in the state today …. California also reported lower-than-expected premiums…

Six states have released rate filings for plans available to small businesses through a separate exchange. Those policies are also an average of 18 percent cheaper than existing coverage options, HHS said.

Full post here

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Jonathan Cohn: The Obamacare Train Still Hasn’t Wrecked

President Obama on Thursday touted some good news about Obamacare. And, lord knows, he’s earned the right. Republicans and conservative intellectuals keep seizing on setbacks — some real, some imagined — and predicting that Obamacare will be a catastrophe. They are almost certainly wrong.

Ironically, one of the best reasons to believe in Obamacare may be the very issue that has inspired so much chortling on the right: The insurance premiums for people who buy on their own, because they don’t get coverage from an employer or through a government program.

Insurers around the country have already submitted bids…. they are coming in lower than most experts had predicted….

…. it means the overall price of Obamacare — the amount of money the government must spend, in order to make the law function — is going to be even lower than predicted.

More here

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ThinkProgress: Most Media Coverage Ignores Premium Drop, Focuses On GOP Effort To Undermine Obamacare

Early on Wednesday, as House Republicans prepared to vote for a delay of the Affordable Care Act’s employer and individual mandates, New York state officials announced that health care premiums in the new exchange will plummet by at least 50 percent as a result of the law.

For reform advocates, the story represented a reprieve from the constant drum beat of media coverage about implementation delays, predictions of rate shock, and employers dropping coverage. But a ThinkProgress analysis of television reports about the health care law for Wednesday, July 18th, confirms that even with good news to report, bookers and segment producers are still far more interested in broadcasting stories about the political brinkmanship in Washington, DC than the actual, tangible progress of implementation.

More here

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Steve Benen: The U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on the Voting Rights Act did not actually strike down the entire civil-rights law, but rather, gutted it by rejecting Section 4 of the VRA. The burden then shifted to Congress to find a remedy …. Yesterday, the House held its first hearing on the VRA since the court ruling, and if the public comments were any indication, the odds of success in the near future appear long…

Most of the Republican members of the panel apparently didn’t think the hearing was especially important – which is to say, they didn’t show up ….

… Anyone predicting congressional Republicans might do the right thing on voting rights should probably adjust their expectations accordingly. GOP policymakers at the state level are rushing to impose new restrictions to keep voters from participating in their own democracy, and GOP policymakers at the federal level appear content to do nothing to stop them.

Full post here

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Charles Pierce: Some Voting Rights Act Fakery

As part of our Summer Of Fakery, the House allegedly has taken up the job of repairing the damage done to the Voting Rights Act that occurred when John Roberts declared the day of jubilee. One of the witnesses today was Hans von Spakovsky, who’s been scamming this particular scam for over a decade now. Anyway, this is what von Spakovsky was peddling today.

“[That section] was an unprecedented, extraordinary intrusion into state sovereignty……..”

…. Not to bring that pesky Constitution into things again, but here’s an extraordinary intrusion into state sovereignty:

Amendment XIII: Section 1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction…..

…. If you want to understand why modern conservatives seem so impatient with settled law, remember that they owe their modern ascendancy to the people who refused to accept any of these three Amendments because they didn’t believe the freaking Civil War changed anything.

Full post here

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ThinkProgress: On Thursday, three Texas Republicans filed a measure that would criminalize abortion services after a fetal heartbeat can be detected — which typically occurs around six weeks of pregnancy, before many women even know they’re pregnant.

The Texas legislature is currently in the midst of a special session that was convened specifically to give lawmakers more time to consider abortion restrictions. The session will end on July 31. Until then, GOP lawmakers have been busy proposing a slew of anti-abortion bills in the hopes of being able to rush them through.

More here

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Continue reading ‘Rise and Shine’

19
Jul
13

Chat away…

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Photo of POTUS making statement on ACA today in East Room

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A member of the audience and her guide dog at today’s ACA speech by Pres Obama in the East Room

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POTUS and VP meet w just-confirmed Cabinet Secretaries Thomas Perez (Labor) and Gina McCarthy (EPA) in Oval Office

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